Bishopric – Repentance

It is always sad to say goodbye to summer, but I’m looking forward to a wonderful fall. We have been blessed as a ward and I’m excited to see the blessings continue to flow.  One of my favorite duties in the ward is working with the youth. I’m always excited to mention the ten missionaries we have serving from our ward. I enjoy reading their emails and feeling their spirit. It was fun over the summer to see Bubba Ison and Amy Staker leave on their missions. Both of their emails are so positive and happy, it is great to see their progression as they deal with hard things and invoke the spirit into their lives. 

This month I’m looking forward to going to the drive in with the youth (Sept 3), cleaning the highway and eating dinner with the youth (Sept 11), and participating in baptisms for the dead with our youth (Sept 25). If you’re in the young men’s or young women’s program, please come and join us. Come participate with your new young women’s presidency (Shelby Eliason, Tena Seely, Cindy Johansen, and Kiersten Wheeler). Come and feel the spirit of our young mens presidency (Kyler Wheeler, Hunter Atkinson, Drew Jorgensen, and Steven Brito). We enjoy getting together and I’m looking forward to a great month. 

The theme in sacrament meeting this month is Repentance. I have enjoyed several conference talks from this past April which talked about repentance. I’m reminded that repentance isn’t just for those big hairy sins, but repentance is an opportunity to use the atonement of Jesus Christ to improve ourselves every day. I hope that I can join our 10 missionaries in crying repentance this month. I’m not planning on pointing out other people’s sins, I don’t think that strategy is going to be very effective. Instead, I hope I can leverage the atonement in my live and you can leverage the atonement in your live and together we can work hard to improve ourselves, our families, and our ward. I’m grateful for Jesus Christ, I’m grateful for the atonement and the huge blessing that is in my life. I’m grateful for the knowledge that families are forever. That through Jesus Christ, I have the potential to live with Kathryn, my kids, my parents, my siblings, forever. I’m grateful for this ward and the love and support each of you give me.

Bishop Applegarth

Sister Hafen – September 2019

Paraguay Asunción North Mission Office Address Av. Santísima Trinidad N° 1280 c/Julio Correa Casilla de Correo 1871 Asuncion

Hola. It’s been another week! I can’t believe it!!! The time is going to fast here, and we finished another Transfer here in the Paraguay Asuncion North mission. The best mission ever by the way. So my comp Hermana Rangel is making her way back to Cedar city Utah this Wednesday, I’m glad it’s not my time! I’m getting a new comp and her name is Hermana Barrera, and she’s literally like my best friend in the mission!!!!!! I went on a division with her once and we are like the same people so I’m excited to be with her!  This week has been super good and we actually saw a lot of progress with a lot of the people that have a lot of potential! We actually had lessons with them this week. The struggle here in the city is that everyone is so busy, with working 2 jobs, taking the kids to their activities and all the cumpleaños that everyone has every weekend! Here birthdays are such a big deal and they throw huge parties for every year!!! We taught lots of people this week and it’s just a tender mercy because when we teach it’s almost like we just teach with the spirit so much, and with so much power because we are just ready to teach, we just want to share our testimonies so bad!

This week we taught hermana LILU, the girl that we contacted last week with the president of the south mission! It was one of the most memorable first lessons I’ve had in my whole mission! It was so awesome. So we got there and we invited her husband to listen too, and he’s like anti religion, but we politely asked him in guanani and that opened his heart a little bit! So he came and sat down, but said he wasn’t going to answer any questions he was going to listen no mas jajaj. Okay. So we were able to teach them and when we got to the restoration part of our lessons… there were SO MANY distractions! We couldn’t get to that part, so we were almost doubting, if we should keep going but, we finally got to share it, and she literally was so touched by the spirit and said that she believes it’s all true. She had questions, very good questions, and we were able to answer them with the help of the spirit, and it was just an amazing lesson. It’s crazy how hard Satan was trying to stop us from sharing that part of the lesson, because I truly believe that she’s prepared!!! But we gave her a Book of Mormon and invited her to read and pray about it and she accepted, and told us we could come back whenever, and her husband just sat there, but I promise you he felt the spirit. How could you not?

This week we were coming back from one of the sketchy parts of our areas, haha by the cemetery and the colectivo was super busy, so my comp and I were like together but not on the colectivo, and so she gets off, and I saw that she got off so I was trying to make my way to the back of the colectivo with my big bag and everything and then the door shuts and it drives away….. I’m like pressing the button like let me off, but when you’re in the city they only stop at designated bus stops, so it kept going and probably like a mile away or so it stopped and I was like oh no, I don’t have the phone or anything, so I just started walking back to where she was on the freeway, and I was just praying that I would be protected.  I was ALONE! But it was all good, and we met up again, but that was a new experience!

Also I had the opportunity to give a talk in sacrament meeting and I think I would 10x rather give a talk in Spanish than English at this point, but everyone complimented me on how Paraguayan I was when I talked lol.

I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY! IT’S THE BEST! Everyone should do it! jajaj There’s so much joy and blessings that I’ve seen in my life, I never want to not be a missionary! I know this is the church of Jesus Christ and he leads it, I know that the Book of Mormon is the evidence. I know that families can be together forever and I’m so grateful for the restored priesthood that helps us with that. I LOVE PARAGUAY! I LOVE THE GOSPEL! I love the come follow me books programs!

Thanks for all the love and support!

CHE ROHAYHU

HERMANA HAFEN

Elder Ison – September 2019

Washington Yakima Mission Office Address 1006 South 16th Avenue YAKIMA, WA 98902

He has made it to the mission field. He definitely likes the mission field better than he liked the MTC. He did have this to say about the MTC:

Something the MTC has taught me is love. Love your studies, your district, teachers, companion, and most importantly love Jesus Christ. He is the reason we are all here, without him Gods plan of happiness wouldn’t work! My testimony grew while I was there and I’m thankful for what I’ve learned and what I will continue to learn out in Yakima.

He is in Natches and this was his description of it:

So when you think of Washington you think of rain and everything is green right? Nope the Yakima mission is desert and it’s kind of an ugly place. My area is the Naches and it’s the smallest town ever and everyone is a farmer so it’s like I live in Indianola which blows Haha. The people here are kinda nice but everyone is catholic but we have met 2 people that might be interested.

He hasn’t lost his sense of humor 😉 He was able to give his first priesthood blessing last week and said even though the girl was “wack”  it was an awesome experience to be able to do that.

Kristie Ison

Sister Kennedy – September 2019

Oregon Portland Mission Office Address 1400 NW Compton Dr. Ste. 250 BEAVERTON, OR 97006

Oh my goodness! The time has finally come where I can share about our awesome week here! On Sunday we had such a great day!

So the cute couple we met chalk boarding, Joe and Eslyn, were finally able to make it to church! We had invited them to come last Sunday, but unfortunately they couldn’t make it. So they came this Sunday! It was so cool some of the members were nice and came to introduce themselves. The Fosters came over and talked to them. They asked Joe and Elsyn how they met us. Of course they mentioned the chalkboard, but then Joe said that they felt like they needed to come after all the effort me and an elder put in to invite them. It was comforting to know that we awkwardly chased after them for a reason. They are such a darling couple. Somehow they both were blessed with nice eyebrows. Like how??? Moving on. Sister Thorpe came THRU and talked about when she goes to other churches she has questions and asked if they had any. That’s when we made a return appointment with them! Joe said that he had lots of questions and it would take a long time to answer them all and he wants to hear our testimonies and learn more. We are so excited they are so cool! It is amazing to look back and think that we almost gave up on the chalkboard because of all the hassle. But we knew with all the chaos that it meant we needed to do it.

This weekend we didn’t have anyone signed up for dinner which actually turned out well. Saturday we went and helped our ward mission leader in the Oatfield ward. Since we didn’t have dinner that evening he was nice and took us out to eat. It was good for us to get to know him better. He really opened up to us and it was then that I realized he is pretty less active. He ended up coming to church that Sunday which was awesome! It was so cool to hear his story! After that we hurried over to a block party to see Edith. We got there when everyone was cleaning up. Edith was super nice and gave us food to eat even though we were about to explode. We were sad that we missed the party so we couldn’t meet people, but it wasn’t until our ward mission leader came to church that we realized how good it was for us to be with him.

Now since we didn’t have a Sunday dinner we weren’t sure what to do. We talked about how we should ask one of our favorite people, Sister Alsbury next week if she would have us over so it wouldn’t be last minute. She is so in tune with the spirit because not long after she texted us asking if we had dinner that Sunday!! We were so excited because we love them!! Her and her husband both served missions and it is so cool to hear their stories and see them glow every time they talk about it.

Now for another good part!! We had a lesson with James and Robert! James is one of my favorite people! He is so cool!! We felt like we needed to go over the Restoration. When we asked James if he remembered what it was he said “remind me.” It was such a great lesson and at the end I asked Robert if he believed that Joseph Smith was a true prophet called by God. He said yes and that our lesson all made sense!! Then that’s when we popped the question!!! We invited him to be baptized and he said yes!! For Sept 7th!! He is so ready and we are so excited for him to receive those blessings!

Well we had a great week here!! I am so grateful to be here!! I know that the Lord will always provide! 🙂 It is so amazing to serve others at this time and give back to our Father in Heaven. There is no place I’d rather be! I love you all! Have a wonderful week! Enjoy all the many selfies we take.

Sister Kennedy

Elder Olson – September 2019

New Zealand Hamilton Mission Office Address P.O. Box 9542 Hamilton 3240 New Zealand

Kia Ora, Everybody!

This week was pretty full on, with a lot of ups and downs, but I will try to sift out the unimportant things.

This Saturday we had a Ward Activity, and the theme was the Wild West. I will give them credit; they did a pretty good job. For dinner, the Elders’ Quorum First Counselor made some chili. He had no idea what he was doing, so he was asking me and my companion for a lot of advice. He was very proud of his creation. He did make pretty good chili. The best part, though, was the raw fish that one of the members brought. It was so out of place, yet perfectly Maori.

We had another spectacular turnout at church yesterday. It was probably the most full anyone has seen it in a while. To top it off, one of the people we are teaching brought four of her nonmember family members. She told us “We’ve all wanted to start coming for a while, we just needed the push.” We are going to begin teaching them in the coming weeks, so my companion and I are going to be pretty busy.

Spiritual Thought: James E Talmage said that “All truth is of value, above price indeed in its place; yet with respect to their possible applications some truths are of incomparably greater worth than others… A personal knowledge of God is essential to the salvation of every human soul that has attained to powers of judgement and discretion. The value of theological knowledge, therefore, ought not to be underrated; it is doubtful if its importance can be overestimated.” I love this quote. All knowledge we gain in this life will be of great benefit in the next. But, some knowledge will be of greater, even infinite benefit. Remember the knowledge of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is THE MOST IMPORTANT thing you can ever gain in this life.

The rest of the week was a lot of teaching and trying to catch people in between appointments. We have met a lot of people here who like meeting with missionaries, but don’t want to progress. We met with this Seventh-Day Adventist on Wednesday. The first half of the lesson, he was telling us how we are doing all sorts of stuff wrong and whatnot. The second half he was praising our work and telling us all the stuff we are doing right. Mixed messages.

I hope of you have a great week! Summer is ending for all of yous back in the states, but over here, spring is right around the corner. Enjoy life, and keep pressing forward!

Ofa Atu,

Elder Olson

Elder Walker – September 2019

Washington Yakima Mission Office Address 1006 South 16th Avenue YAKIMA, WA 98902

Elder Walker has had an eventful August.  He and his companion worked hard to increase their teaching pool just in time for transfers which took him to a new assignment and new area. He’s now serving as District Leader in the center of the mission. He and his companion are both new to the area and back to focusing on the teaching pool. He says that his new leadership responsibilities are trying but rewarding. For details of his last month’s journey, see his blog.

Sister Walker

Bishopric – August 2019

Summer is in full swing!  July was a very busy month with the 4th of July and 24th of July holidays.  We also had two more outgoing missionaries give talks.  We wish Wyatt Ison (Washington, Yakima) and Amy Staker (Oregon, Salem) the best as they being this next chapter in their lives.  We’re so excited for them. 

August has several things coming right up that we want everyone to know about.  August 1 is our Stake Temple Night in preparation for Stake Conference on the 11th.  August 2 is our Father’s and Son’s night.  This year it will be held at Bro. Larry Staker’s property.  Come enjoy a dinner and good company.  The 8th of August is our Summer Ward Party.  We are having it at Heritage Grove Campground (the same place as last year). Please invite your friends and neighbors and those you minister to.  It will be a lot of fun!  Thanks again to the McClellan’s for spearheading this.

The theme for August is Sacrifice.  As I thought about topic and something I could share I came across this message: 

I am going to preach a hard doctrine to you now. The submission of one’s will is really the only uniquely personal thing we have to place on God’s altar. It is a hard doctrine, but it is true. The many other things we give to God, however nice that may be of us, are actually things He has already given us, and He has loaned them to us. But when we begin to submit ourselves by letting our wills be swallowed up in God’s will, then we are really giving something to Him. And that hard doctrine lies at the center of discipleship.

Neal A. Maxwell

As I thought about how I could do better I was encouraged by the thought that our loving Heavenly Father is always there for us, to help, to support, to welcome us back when we stray.  I know that through the ultimate sacrifice, the Atonement of his Son, we can return to live with them.  July was a great month to think about our pioneer heritage, and all the sacrifices they made.  I think that they were willing to make those sacrifices because of their faith in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  And though my own faith may be small and weak sometimes, it gives me great hope that I can continue to set aside (sacrifice) my own pride and weaknesses and come closer to being a true disciple of Jesus Christ.  Have a great month everybody!

Bishopric 2nd Counselor Brother Walker

Inspirational Thought – Sacrifice

Generally speaking, the most miserable people I know are those obsessed with themselves; the happiest people I know are those who lose themselves in the service of others. By and large, I have come to see that if we complain about life, it is because we are thinking only of ourselves.

Gordon B. Hinckley March 6, 1977 BYU Devotional

“A religion that does not require the sacrifice of all things never has power sufficient to produce the faith necessary [to lead] unto life and salvation.”

Joseph Smith, Lectures on Faith 6:7

What Sacrifice Means To Me

Hello all! It has been a while so I thought that it would be good if I took this opportunity to share a few of my feelings about sacrifice with you. We have just finished a season remembering our progenitors and the sacrifices that they made during the Revolutionary War which ultimately lead to the formation of this great country. We also remembered the pioneers with their sacrifices that paved the way for the church that we cherish today. We are currently studying the early Christian Apostles and their sacrifices to spread The Gospel throughout their known world. Not too long ago we celebrated Easter when The Savior sacrificed His life for our salvation.

Sacrifice can mean many different things to different people. And we each sacrifice many different things for different causes. In church we may sacrifice time and devote talents to fulfill our callings. We may sacrifice time and money to go on a mission, or to support someone else that is on a mission. We also make sacrifices for our families.

As with the New Testament story of “The Widow’s Mite” we cannot judge a person’s offering by its size. What may be a monumental sacrifice for one person may be just a normal occurrence for another. Only God knows the heart of the giver, and how much it means to them.

Looking back on my life I can see many choices that I made, or sacrifices, to benefit others. That is what I see is the true measure of a sacrifice, the motivation. If an action is motivated by obligation, selfish thoughts, etc. it is not a true sacrifice. If it comes from a selfless place or love then it is a true offering.

The best example that I can think of from my life happened around the time of my son’s birth. At the time my family was living in Missouri. We moved there after I graduated from Snow College and was unsuccessful finding employment here in Sanpete. Becky’s parents live there and we had some hopes of better prospects over there, but nothing ever panned out. Eventually I took a job as a part time cashier at the “local” (half hour away) Walmart. It was good to have some sort of income, but with travel I did not see my family much. At the time I felt that I needed to sacrifice my time to provide money for my family – even though it was a horrible dead-end job and I hated every minute that I was there.

Within a few months of Cal’s arrival into this world it was apparent that he was going to have some major struggles just to stay alive. At about 3 months old he was admitted as a resident of a children’s hospital and as soon as possible he underwent open-heart surgery. When we found out the needs of our son I had some choices to make. I knew that with Cal’s medical issues we would need whatever money we could get, but I also knew that no matter what I needed to be with my family through this time of struggles. I decided to quit my job, but it was not because I hated it – I did it because I knew that my family needed my time more than we needed the money.

We spent over a month at that hospital, and I spent every night with my son in his room – with the exception of a few nights that my mother-in-law came up to give me some time with Becky. We pretty much devoted our whole lives at that time to watching over Cal and making sure that the decisions that his doctors were making were what was best for him. As we were there we saw several other children come and go, and most of them saw their families very little. Even though it was the hardest thing that we have done, we know that sacrificing out time and energy for him at that time was the best thing.

Even after he was well enough to leave the hospital, Becky and I spent most of our day caring for, especially feeding, him. It took a year from when he was born to when it was possible for me to enter into the workforce again. Over the last 6 years of having him in our lives I have had to make many decisions based on “what would be best for him?” or “what would be best for my family?” I have always found that as I put others first and sacrifice my selfish way of thinking, everything works out in the end.

I can bear you my testimony that God loves each one of us. I know for certain that everything that He does is motivated by that love. As we try to emulate His love in all our actions, no matter what it costs us personally, everything will work out in the end. I know that we will grow close to Him and this life will be a success.

Brother Calvin Zundel

Sister Jorgensen – August 2019

Arkansas Little Rock Mission Office Address 905 Kierre Dr. North Little Rock AR 72116

Aloha y’all!

Bet y’all haven’t ever tried to mix southern and Hawaiian. Well leave it to Sister Jorgensen to mix it together for ya. It’s about to be the best southern Hawaiian lingo mix for the next 6 weeks. If y’all haven’t caught on by now my new comp is from HAWAII. Heavenly father sure is good and was aware of how much I love that place (; I actually came out with Sister Uli’i and I’m excited to be here in Searcy with her. She’s basically “Moana” and everywhere we go everyone says “bye Hawaiian girl, bye blonde girl”. Haha gotta love it!

The work is going good here despite the deadly heat God is still so good (: we started teaching these 2 little girls Kayla and Mo who’s mom is a member and they want to get baptized. We taught them the plan to salvation this week with sidewalk chalk and they loved it! They are the cutest little girls. Our recent convert Donald is doing awesome we gave him a restoration DVD he said he stayed up until 4 am watching it over and over mind you it’s like 20 minutes long. He said it touches his heart every time ❤

I love seeing the gospel touch and change people’s lives every day. So grateful to be here in the ALRM! The gospel is so true. As people say here in the south “Christ died on the cross for my sins” YES BUT it’s so much more than that it started way before he was hung on the cross, he suffered more than our sins, our pains our sicknesses our weaknesses our temptations so that he would know how to succor his people (Alma 7:11-13), and 3 days later he rose. He lives! Because of Him regret can become relief we can experience peace in this life!

Sorry its short but I hope y’all have a blessed week and happy 24th to all y’all in Utah! Enjoy heat with no humidity 😉

Love

Sister Jorgensen

Sister Kennedy – August 2019

Oregon Portland Mission Office Address 1400 NW Compton Dr. Ste. 250 BEAVERTON, OR 97006

I just wanna start out by saying I honestly have no idea how it is already p-day again. This week just zoomed by. Last p-day our favorite person, Sister Alsbury, was kind and came to the temple with us. We went to the 6am session which we found out the hard way it doesn’t exist. The guy at the recommend desk felt so bad he gave us money to go get breakfast. I hope that guy had an extra blessed week!

Sunday we a member from Gladstone and a member from Oatfield sign up for dinner. The one from Gladstone fed us mac and cheese because it was apparently national mac and cheese day. The 2nd dinner we had breakfast which was fun. Then after that we went to a barbecue at the McDonald’s for Emma’s 14th birthday. It was like the 14th birthday party I never got. Haha! The McDonald’s are that one family that could have their own reality TV show. How Sister Thorpe explains the parents, Priscilla and Pat, they are basically still in high school. As for the kids they are little punks. You wanna know who all the cool members are and who to hang out with? Ask Priscilla. Haha Priscilla was showing people her blanket that she got for her baby on the way. She starts fake crying and says “why can’t I be having another girl?” So Jen who is in our ward says “you have Emma.” Then Priscilla goes “Yeah but Emma is like a boy.” I just love the McDonalds and all their boldness, and sass.

That was pretty much our week here. We had an awesome lesson with a little girl named Ella who is adorable. Her mom said that her heart is softening and is getting closer to letting Ella get baptized. So that was cool! The mom is a convert to the church. Anyways I love you all and hope you have a great week! The church is true!

Sister Kennedy

Elder Olson – August 2019

New Zealand HamiltonMission Office Address P.O. Box 9542 Hamilton 3240 New Zealand

Kia Kia Ora, Everybody!

I hope you all had an incredible week, because Elder Lindsay and I sure did. Elder Quentin L. Cook said “New Zealand is Zion, gather Israel,” and here in “Gis-Zion,” we are definitely gathering “Gisrael.”

To start off our amazing week, we got fed heaps this week. The people here think it’s funny to feed the missionaries too much, because they know the missionaries will try to eat it. To make about 5 long stories short, I didn’t just try. I succeeded

We also found 3 new people to teach! Two of them are kids of a less active guy and his wife. When we went over, he talked about how he could see signs the Lord was giving him that were saying “Get to the Temple!!!” So now we are going over twice a week and working with the whole whanau.

Spiritual Thought- Earlier this week we were meeting with a man who was struggling financially. I wanted very much to be able to give him all the money in the world, but I knew it wouldn’t last. He needed to learn for himself how to be smart with money, or it would all be gone again. I remembered that it is the same with us. In 3 Nephi 15:18, it says “And now, because of stiffneckedness and unbelief they understood not my word; therefore I was commanded to say no more of the Father concerning this thing unto them.” The Lord wants to give us knowledge. Knowledge, wisely applied, is one of the greatest gifts imaginable. However, the Lord cannot bless us with knowledge unless we try for ourselves and trust the Lord.

Last Monday, I got to celebrate my year mark. It is crazy to think that one year ago, I boarded a plane to New Zealand. I hope that this next year is just as good, if not better, than this past year. I know it is July, but I hope all of you have many great experiences wherever you are in the world!

Fa Se Fua,

Elder Olson

Elder Walker – August 2019

Washington Yakima Mission Office Address 1006 South 16th Avenue YAKIMA, WA 98902

Elder Walker is doing well in the Yakima Washington Mission. He is currently serving in Omak–the northern part of Washington. This past month he and his companion have working to build their teaching pool. They’ve had to be creative in this rural part of the world. But he’s found success by working with members and reaching out to past contacts. For more details about his experiences, see his blog.

Sister Walker