Tuesday, March 13, 2012

ゾーン会議!Zone Conference! 27 February 2012

Hey Family! 

         Another week gone...and even busier than the last! We were able to teach a lot of lessons this week, and we also had Zone Conference on Tuesday! The first three hours of it was President and Sister Baird speaking to us with me translating, and then the last two or three hours was the APs speaking, then Elder Skankey and I speaking, and then at the end we had a testimony meeting. It turned out really well! The topics that they were training us on, we felt were exactly what everyone in our zone has needed recently, and even though Elder Skankey and I were pretty nervous about the training that we were going to be giving to everyone...I think it turned out well in the end. We had exchanges with the APs right after the zone conference and into the following day, which was a lot of fun as usual :) We all went back to the apartment after zone conference, looked over the plans for the day, set the goals that we wanted to achieve, and worked the best that we could to achieve them. We were talking to as many people as we possibly could, as we went to the separate appointments that we had...and by the end of the day, we were able to find four new investigators! It was a really great experience...really strengthened my faith in the fact that the Lord is leading those that he has prepared into our paths. 
          We have been awesome success in getting the family home evenings going with everyone here! Just for this week we already have three scheduled with different families, and at each one there will be non members or our investigators! Actually one of the new investigators that we had from last week, was the husband of the member that we did a family home evening with recently. We actually had a really cool experience last night while we were out visiting in-active members! This isn`t really related to family home evenings, but it just popped into my mind. It was my first time going to this person`s place, and it took us awhile to find it, but we knocked on their door, which they opened right away, and after talking with them for a few minutes invited us to come in and sit down to talk some more. That is something that is pretty rare actually...I might have mentioned it before. Anyway, it was the in-active member and his mom, and we sat down together with them in the living room and continued getting to know them a little better. Turns out that he was baptized a very long time ago, when he was in elementary or middle school, and that due to the fact that he hasn`t been going for so long, doesn`t really remember much about the church. As we were sitting there, I was trying to figure out how we could make a connection with those memories, how we could help him remember the good experiences that he had at church...so I started asking him about the experience of when he had met the missionaries. (how he had met them, what he thought about them...etc) The one thing that he recalled, was that every time he had met with the missionaries, they had finished with a hymn and a prayer. We asked him if he had liked those hymns, to which he said yes, and that he likes singing...so kind of on the spot, right as we were about getting ready to go, I asked him if it would be okay if we sang a hymn with him and his mom and then say a prayer. He said yes, and so we pulled out our hymnbooks and sang " I Am a Child of God" with them, shared our testimonies of the fact that we all Heavenly Father`s children and that he loves all of us, and then prayed together. It was such a neat experience! It was really simple, but just by that short hymn and prayer I felt like the whole atmosphere changed, the spirit was with us, and we were all able to feel Heavenly Father`s love as we sang. His mom seemed particularly moved, and really seemed to want us to come and visit again...which we plan on doing maybe this next Sunday or around then. I just love the hymns so much! I`ve been thinking a lot about it lately, and I loved them before my mission as well, but of course as I have been out here I have had many many more opportunities to sing them, and feel the spirit that they can bring to us. I feel like they can bring so much strength to our testimonies...the invitation that we have heard many many times to memorize the words of hymns so that we are able to call them to our minds whenever we want to, has gained so much more meaning for me. While I`m riding my bike or doing other things during the day, I quite often have the lines of those hymns running through my mind...it just gives a whole different mood to the day :)
             On a completely random note...we a got an American dryer this week! That might not seem like a very significant thing...but we have been hanging our clothes on poles in front our gas heater for the past couple transfers, so it`s been a nice change. haha. It`s made things soo much easier for p-day! 
             You were mentioning a few things about the weather in your e-mails...yeah, it`s still snowing here on and off. The last few days it`s been more of a nice sleety time of feeling...but actually today was way sunny, just still cold. It`s not unbearable though, spring is coming! :) 
             I`d better go...I love all of you guys so much! Have a great week, I look forward to hearing from you next week! 

                                                                                                                                 -Elder Voss

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