Just to let you know... It's a VERY emotional and bittersweet week for me in the Washington Yakima Mission full of lots of memories.
This week began with the news that my dear friend Brian Kisner had passed away. This is news that came only soon after I was given word that another dear friend Mike Gilbert had suffered a heart attack. I found out last p-day from a Zone leader currently serving in second ward and also Elder Thompson that Brian had passed away while traveling in Idaho over the Christmas break. Christmas Eve was his last day on Earth. I had the wonderful opportunity to attend his funeral this morning and be reunited with my Yakima 2nd ward family. The funeral was presided over and conducted by Bishop Christensen: A very spiritual giant and one of my heroes. He bore powerful testimony of the Savior and His love for us. Brian's powerful passion for life was remembered by his loving mother and his son. They had many wonderful memories to share with us and lots of laughs from his former days fixing up and riding motorcycles! That made me very happy. We enjoyed a luncheon afterwards with lots of catching up and friendly faces to remember while I felt down. I was looking much forward to when Brian would be able to receive his endowment in the Columbia River Temple in a few months but I know that God has other plans for this great man! :) I love him and my Heavenly Father very much.
Elder Brinkerhoff and Brian at Brian's baptism
Thursday brought many needed changes to the Mission leadership in a "Super Mission Leadership Conference" with all of the Zone leaders, District Leaders, Sister Training Leaders and the Assistants. Our follow up with the Elders and Sisters in our varied stewardships will be much improved and clear. We are getting away from the mixed cultures from the WKM and WVM and building the culture of the WYM together. It was great to reunite with former companions and missionary friends and to learn about these much needed improvements. These changes brought many answers to many of my prayers. However... I received a phone call from President Lewis on Saturday letting me know that my service as a District Leader will be coming to an end and that I will be transferred to Moses Lake 4th and 7th wards. It is a relief to be released but a sad thing as well. I will be serving with a young missionary named Elder Poloncic from Utah. He came out twelve weeks ago with Elder Peterson and has also just finished up his training period. It is a biking area! It will definitely be an adventure and I will be sad to leave Yakima but I will return in a few months ;)
'K' is doing very well and still understanding and learning a lot! I hope he is on date for baptism again soon!
I'm glad that I am here on my mission. If I was home now, I could be at school. I could be earning money. I could be dating. (I could be watching STAR WARS!!!) I could be living life selfishly, but I am grateful for my Loving Father in Heaven who has led me here and let me have these experiences. I love my Savior Jesus Christ. I devote my life to Him. This week has been hard, but because of Him, I will continue to... "...Press Forward with a Steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life” (2 Nephi 31:20)
I miss Brian Kisner dearly, but the peace and love that I feel right now is so sweet.
(Sister Chandler's mom sent me some Easter goodies!!!!)
I'll just get this out of the way first...odisfgnlagnael;gnaejrgnadro;vnaerk.gnaeklruljvg Whoo whoo!! I hope Kortney will have a blast in July! When did she get her mission call? Ha ha I'd probably be a nervous wreck as well!! I'd probably die in the heat, different culture, and don't get me started on speaking spanish!!! ok ok I know Heavenly Father would help me either way, but seriously though!! But I'm so excited for her! She looks so happy!
Sounds like you had a crazy weekend, but a fun one! How did the concert go in Mesa? No worries, I have trouble paying attention to conference. But I actually had a weird weekend because this is the most I've ever gotten out of general conference in my life. I received great guidance from the last in October, but this one was just special for some reason. Maybe it's because I've been out this long and really needed some spiritual a…
What's cuter than a bunch of 1st and 2nd graders putting on a Christmas play? Not much!!!! Here are most of the 1st Graders (the second graders are on the other side of the stage and since I don't have a 2nd grader, I didn't bother to take their picture). This was probably the cutest Elementary "concert"/program I have ever seen. The music teacher here is amazing and prepared the kids thoroughly. I was so impressed at how well those little 1st graders performed. The elves, and other characters not shown here, had multiple speaking parts and they did an amazing job. They looked and sounded like little actors (it kinda reminded me of the 90's Little Rascals movie). The 1st graders also learned 6 songs...most of which had choreography. Nathan actually SANG and did some of the choreography! Usually in any school program he has been a part of in the past, he has just stood with his hands over his ears......and didn't participate. He did get distracted …
Hi everyone! I'm a dork and forgot my camera cord AGAIN. But, I can still tell you about my week since you've been asking!
Working at the temple open house is crazy, long and sometimes weird but oh my sooo fun!
Every day is different. Our Sister Training Leader now drives a big white van which holds the sisters in the zone and the sisters from Sugar City. We all try hard to drive each other crazy for about a half hour or so until we get to Idaho Falls. We then work at the open house from the afternoon till evening and sleep in apartments in Idaho Falls for the night. When we wake up we get ready for our devotional at 7:30 and go back to work at 8. We pretty much have only a few proselyting hours after that back in Rexburg.
The Sister Missionaries in the Idaho Falls mission and the Pocatello mission get to help out a lot. First, there's the video room that explains what temples are and why they are so special. We have a recitation with instructions for the tourists …