July 5, 2010
Hey guys! It was great to hear from you and I really enjoyed reading your emails like always! Thank you for always writing to me. Some of the Elders here don't get emails from their families every week and sometimes only from one parent. My companion hasn't heard from his mom in two months so it makes me REALLY grateful that I get to hear from both of my parents every week. So thank you! This week has been a little bit different for us. Monday we got out Settlers of Catan and we played that for a while! I love that game! We are planning to go play again after we are done writing actually! But that was fun last Monday. On Tuesday we went to district meeting and we had our branch president come so that we could talk about less actives. We went over the branch list and we realized that we doing know half of the people on the list! There are probably only 45 active members and there are like 200 on the list! So we spent the rest of the day updating the branch list and figuring out how to get in contact with all of the inactive members. So now we have this huge list and we have been trying to stop by these people's houses all week and we have actually had some cool things happen. But I will come back to that. So that was Tuesday. On Wednesday we went and helped Donatas, the branch president, move. That was a lot of fun. It's always fun to do service. His wife actually gave birth to their first kid this past Friday which is way cool! So, we helped Donatas move and then we went and tried to find less actives the rest of the day. We have been trying to find any way that we can strengthen the branch here because it is so fragile! We need more priesthood holders to keep it going so we either need to find new ones or go find the ones that have fallen away. The most important thing is just to help people find Christ in their life, but I have been so worried about the branch here lately... My heart has really been moved towards them because they are such god people but they need to be strengthened cause there are so few of them. Anyways, that is why we have been doing a lot of work with in actives. It has been fun to try and find them cause some of them live in areas that I haven't ever been before and I love looking at maps :) so it's cool to try and find them. Some of them live out a ways form the city so it is really pretty out there with these rolling fields and stuff. It's really pretty. So that was Wednesday. Thursday was a normal day of finding and trying to get in touch with less actives. Friday we did more of the same, but here was a cool spiritual experience that we had. So, we were just about to leave our apartment in the morning and we were trying to figure out which less active member to go try by and we decided to go try this guy that lived pretty close to where we live. So we went over there not really feeling either way what he might do. As in telling us that he didn't want anything to do with the church or accept to meet with us. So we knocked on his door and he immediately told us to come in (which we was shocking) and we sat down with him and started to talk and get to know him, but he kept saying he couldn't believe that we were there! So finally we asked him why and he said... I was really needing to see you guys and you came right in time! I just can't believe that you are here! It's a miracle!... For all we know he hadn't been in contact with the church for a few years and we had no idea why he needed to see us and why US! But he was crying and stuff and it was just really cool! He must have been going through a hard time and needed a friend or something... But we shared a thought with him and invited him to come back to church and he promised that he would be there! And guess what?! He came yesterday! He is the coolest guy! He is already a priest and seems so solid! He's maybe in his 50's and is a really built guy but he is so cool. So, that was a little miracle this week for us. The Spirit led us to him when he needed us and we had no idea. The spirit really is an amazing thing... So that was Friday. We had a youth activity on Saturday that we went to and made them tacos cause they hadn't had them before. We just did more of the normal the rest of that day. And then yesterday we had church and then we went over to that family’s house that was baptized when I first got here and we made them a 4th of July dinner! It was a lot of fun. Their dad got back from work in Norway this week which was a surprise for them and us missionaries so we are hoping that he will want to fallow his family and join the church. He is a way nice guy. So we will see where that goes. But we wanted to celebrate the 4th some how cause we are Americans... :) So, we told the family that we were going to make them an American dinner and celebrate it with them. So we made hamburgers and beans and had watermelon and chips... Summer foods I guess! I made the Hamburgers which was the first time that i have ever grilled anything. :) They weren't bad! But we sang the national anthem for them cause and it was fun! We had to celebrate the 4th of July! Oh, and yesterday morning Elder Graham and I wanted to serve the other elders so we woke up early and snuck into their apartment and cooked them pancakes and when they woke up guess what they said when they woke up?! Its fast Sunday guys! haha... So that was a failure! But we at least did their dishes for them. :) Anyways, that was our week. It was a pretty full week. Missionary work is a great thing and I know that it can help so many people. Its teaching me so much about life and I can feel myself growing in so many ways. I'm really grateful for that cause I can see that I need to grow in a lot of ways still and I really don't know anything about anything really! But I know that this is a good thing and I'm grateful that I can be here serving others and especially my Heavenly Father. I need to go, but I hope you guys have a great week! Thank you again for everything and for all of the continued support in so many ways! I love you guys!
Love, Elder Leishman
173 days down, 557 days to go!!!