Bishop – Study

June is a great time of year for our ward.  The kids are out of school which provides many great opportunities.  Many of our youth and families will participate in the Mormon Miracle Pageant.  Our girls will go to girl’s camp with the Stake.  Our young men will have a camp that they will attend at the end of the month.  Mount Pleasant in June is one of the greatest spots on the planet.  The weather is perfect, the mountain becomes accessible, and the valley is still green.  What a great time to year to celebrate all the wonderful blessings Heavenly Father has blessed us with here in the Sanpete Valley.

This month the theme is Personal Study.  For me and my family, summer is the hardest time to consistently study our scriptures.  Without the routine of school, it is difficult to keep the routine of daily scripture study.  With all the church activities, summer camps, and other activities we as a family will really need to make a conscious effort to schedule our scripture study.  With teenager’s schedules, it can be difficult for family prayer as well.

I know that our family is much happier when we have regular scripture study.  Family prayer brings the spirit into our home.  The effort that it takes to keep the habit of daily scripture study during the summer is well worth the benefits we receive.  I look forward to a great month.  For good weather, good experiences, and the continued spiritual growth that can only come through regular, consistent, personal study.

Bishop Applegarth

Scripture Study

I like to get up early in the morning and study my scriptures. I find my mind is a lot more clear at that time, and I like starting my day off with something spiritual. I feel it helps my day go smoother, also. I can’t think of a specific incident while reading the scriptures that would be considered a big spiritual experience, but the scriptures seem to testify of their truthfulness over and over again to me. There’s an app I like to use called “My Daily Book of Mormon Devotional.” I also use “The Gospel Study Series,” by David J. Ridges. They really help me in my studying.

I try to read a conference talk after reading my scriptures also. A talk that has had an impact on me is Elder Holland’s talk “None Were With Him.” It’s probably my favorite. Another one that really helps me is Elder Christofferson’s talk on trials called “As Many as I Love, I Rebuke and Chasten.” It’s a good one to listen to or read often.

I remember the first time I saw the “Praise to the Man” movie at the Legacy Theater. It was so powerful! I don’t think there was a dry eye there. It made my faith and testimony in Joseph Smith grow so much!

I have a testimony that I know if we read and study our scriptures and study the words of our prophet and apostles that they can help with the problems we our having in our daily lives.

Julie Pehrson

Personal Study

About 2 years ago, I was really struggling with some personal things going on in my life.  Prayer has always been difficult for me not because I didn’t believe in it I have just never had those great experiences you hear people talk about where they just felt the Savior’s arms around them while praying.  I have never experienced that.  But I knew that I needed to get some answers to some questions and help how to deal with the issues I was having.  I started for the first time really in my life being very diligent about praying and reading my scriptures every day.  I had never done it consistently I would pray here and there or read my scriptures here and there but never had been consistent every day.

As I began to study and pray, and not just read to get through it but really try to understand what I was reading, I couldn’t believe the difference of things that I was able to understand and actually retain or how something would jog my memory of another scripture, it was amazing!   For the first time in my life I finally completed the Book of Mormon!  And I actually had a desire to keep reading so then I read the Doctrine and Covenants and Pearl of Great Price too.  I couldn’t believe it, I had never been able to do that before but something had changed.  I don’t know if it was because I was earnestly trying and needing so much help from my Father in Heaven that I was able to do it but it was wonderful.  I have since slacked off again and I notice the difference, why I can’t keep on rolling is a question I am still wrestling with in my own head, but when I reflect back to that time and how I was really trying to study how the answers came so clear and prayers were answered I know it was because I was doing what needed to be done.  Although Heavenly Father and our Savior already know what we are dealing with it is our responsibility to go to them in prayer and to study and to ask for that help.  They are there and they are willing we just need to do our part, so as I have tried to apply that in my own personal study I have seen the blessings that come from it.  I am grateful that each day we get to start new.  I fail daily on so many levels but the knowledge that I can start again and just a little harder the next day keeps me going, and that is all that they expect of us is to just keep trying, never giving up.

I love the quote by Elder Jeffrey R Holland that says “Don’t you quit.  You keep walking, you keep trying there is help and happiness ahead.”  My testimony is simple of personal study, it works if we just keep trying and applying the principles that we learn while studying and the blessings are there we just need to ask.

Kristie Ison

Elder Applegarth – June 2017

Elder Applegarth Mission Office Address PO Box 263 Sierra Leone Freetown

The highlight for the month of May for us as a family was speaking with Spencer at Mother’s day.  At Christmas time, we spoke with Spencer for about 20 minutes.  At Mother’s day, we spoke with Spencer for about 1 hour 45 minutes.  We even got to speak to Spencer’s Mission President.  It was so fun to listen to his stories and hear his testimony.  At the end of our conversation, it was hard to hang up.  Lots of tears were shed, tears of missing each other, but also tears of joy for the growth we are all experiencing.  It was fun for all of us to recognize the spiritual growth Spencer has had and also the blessings our family has received from Spencer’s missionary service.

Spencer continues his service in Waterloo, this is his third transfer in Waterloo.  He loves the branch and the people have been so nice and kind to Spencer.  He continues to have a lot of success as the people in Africa are ready for the gospel.  Not many of the saints in the Waterloo branch have had the opportunity to attend the temple.  I asked Spencer if the Branch President has been endowed.  Spencer indicated that he had not yet because it was too expensive to get to the temple.  The branch has been saving money for a group of them to go to the Accra Temple in Ghana.  Spencer continues to point out how blessed we are here in Sanpete.

 Bishop Applegarth

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Elder Talbot – June 2017

Elder Talbot Trinidad Port of Spain Mission Office Address PO Bag 543 Valsayn Trinidad and Tobago

So this week has been so insanely crazy and has been soooo busy!! We moved apartments from “the Tree House” to “the Pink Palace”! It is the cutest place in all of Guyana, haha. We moved on Thursday and Friday so those days nothing really happened, but then on Saturday we worked the new area. I am still with Elder Hanks and we live in the village called Bath. It is so nice, and we have met a lot of really nice people. It is so cool, and there is a lot going on. We have been having lots of crazy things happen and I am glad I don’t have a problem living with other creatures because we live with lots of them.

Tuesday and Thursday was a lot of working, teaching, and meeting as many people as possible. We worked on that, and are really trying to help people understand that this church can help them with whatever they are going through. I really don’t know how these people live the way that they do. It is so hard to relate to them and help them understand.

I miss you so much and love you so much and want you to know that if you pray for me just know that I pray for you because who you are matters to me – and especially you matter to me more than anything. The people you love and the people you come to love are in your memory and in your heart forever and you are always on my mind and in my heart!

Week of May 1st

This week has been super long and has had lots to do with shoes. We have been walking so much it is crazy. We have been contacting people all week and we have been working on trying to start off this new area right! Bath is such a blessing and the people are so great! We are teaching these girls and they are super interested – and even more so now that they came to church!! That never happens. They showed up really late, but it was better than nothing – so it was all cool. We talked to them after church was all over and they said that was the best service they have ever been to, and will most definitely be back on the next Sunday – haha. We walked and walked and walked. To explain how much I have put huge holes in my shoes. It is the best thing ever to be able to say that I used my shoes all up – haha, it is so great!!!!

I do believe that you get to know a person best by the way they take care of their shoes. I miss you all so much and can’t wait to hear from you as well. Keep looking up when things get hard. Sometimes it is hard to look up when it is raining but it is worth it when you see how much God really does love you!!!

Week of May 8th

This week has been pretty interesting and fun. I really have had some cool stuff happen, and we sadly only had a few people at church – though it was a lot more than usual. We had 67 so we are improving. The best part of this week was with branch President Narine. He came with us on Saturday and we saw a lot of members and investigators. We had some really good lessons and they were very spiritual. We then got a lot of support from him on Sunday as we tried to work and get as many people as possible at church!!!

I really wanted to share a scripture today. Helaman 5:12 “And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall.”

Basically if you build a strong foundation on Christ the devil and his mighty whirlwinds won’t be able to knock you down! The way that you build on this foundation is through the various primary answers 🙂  Prayer, Scripture Study, and attending Church! Keep building on that foundation!

Week of May 22nd

Today we had a zone conference on Temples and I want to go back so bad, but it is getting me ready for the future and when I can go one day with my future wife (if there is one, I hope!). BUT I HOPE YOU GO TO THE TEMPLE!! I encourage you go TODAY, if possible, and know that we do the things in the temple for a reason. I hope that you study where things come from and why they are there. When I see you again I would love to talk to you about it – but I don’t have a lot of time. I love you soo soo much and can’t wait to see your stories!!! The next time you go to the temple I want you to take a picture of you putting your hand on the temple and send it to me. It has to happen because I love to see that and because you can feel the power that comes from the temple by even just touching it!!

Week of May 30th

Lesson Schedule – June

June 4th “Looking Forth for the Great Day of the Lord to Come”, By Quorum/Group Presidency

June 11th The Word of Wisdom: “A Principle with Promise”Home—The Basis of a Righteous Life

June 18th“Seek Learning, Even by Study and Also by Faith”Obedience: Simply Live the Gospel

June 25th“Be Not Deceived, but Continue in Steadfastness”The Power of the Book of Mormon by President Thomas S. Monson 

Book Highlight – Freckles

This month I have chosen a classic, Freckles by Gene Stratton Porter. This is part of it’s synopsis from the Focus on the Family edition taken from GoodReads.com.

“Into a majestic forest wanders an orphaned young man known only as “Freckles.” Arriving at the logging camp of Mr. McLean, he persuades the man to give him a job guarding the prized lumber, though Freckles has only one hand. Despite harsh conditions, Freckles soon falls in love with the forest, as well as a beautiful young girl. But he wonders if she could ever love someone like him–crippled, with no family or identity. A surprising turn of events leads Freckles to discover his courage, as well as answers to his mysterious past. Freckles … remains an unforgettable story of love, courage, and adventure.”

This book can be checked out from the Mt. Pleasant Public library, or can be downloaded legally from Project Gutenberg. You can check out more reviews from Amazon and GoodReads as well.

Brother Zundel

Bishopric Message – Restoration

The theme in Sacrament Meeting this month is the Restoration.  I am so grateful for the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ.  It has absolutely impacted every aspect of my life.  It has brought me and my family immense happiness, joy, and opportunities.  The marvelous truths that I know because of the restoration include the knowledge that I can live with my family forever, that I can progress eternally, that the atonement is infinite, that God and Jesus Christ aren’t just faceless beings similar to a cloud, instead they are a loving father and older brother – with an eternal body.  They know me and my family and watch out for and bless me daily.  I’m so grateful for this gospel.

I love church history.  I love reading about the pioneers, the early restoration, and the trials that the saints faced and overcame.  April and May are great months for me to reflect on the sacrifice that many people have made so that I can have the gospel in my life.  I marvel that Joseph Smith was able to accomplish all that he did at such a young age.  At 14, Joseph Smith received the first vision, at 17 Joseph Smith received the earliest revelation that is included in the doctrine and covenants.  The gospel provides such strength, that people are able to accomplish amazing things – even at a young age.

This is true for our youth in the Mount Pleasant Fourth Ward.  We have nine seniors in high school that will graduate this month.  Cade Davis, Ryker Erickson, Mariah Hafen, Jentry Ison, Dani Jallath, Christian Johansen, Natalie Jorgensen, Jared Lee, and Abigail Walker.  Each of these young people have accomplished many great things.  I have enjoyed watching this group participate in athletics.  I have loved listening to their musical talents.  I have loved watching them perform in plays or the band.  They are all great students.  Just like Joseph Smith accomplished a lot at an early age, this group of seniors have accomplished a lot.  They have made Mount Pleasant better.  I can’t wait to watch them as they move on to their next endeavor.  I love each one of them and really appreciate the impact each of them have had in my life and the lives of my family.

I also would like to publicly thank Jeff and Angie Parish for their great service.  I love Jeff and Angie and want them to know that they are both amazing examples to me.  Jeff has the ability to reach out to those in need.  He has a great sense of knowing who needs help and how to help them.  Angie is always happy, always ready to help, has been a great Relief Society President, and makes a really good carrot cake.  Both Jeff and Angie put others first and have served the ward well.  I’m excited that they will be close by and look forward to their continued friendship.

The gospel of Jesus Christ is true.  It will continue to assist these nine young people and all of the members of the Mount Pleasant Fourth Ward as we seek to progress and improve our situations, the situations of our families, and the situations of all those around us.  I’m so thankful for the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Bishop Applegarth

Restoration

“It is left for us to see, participate in and help to roll forward the Latter-day glory, “the dispensation of the fullness of times, when God will gather together all things that are in heaven, and all things that are upon the earth, even in one,” (see Eph 1:10) when the Saints of God will be gathered in one from every nation, and kindred, and people, and tongue, when the Jews will be gathered together into one, the wicked will also be gathered together to be destroyed, as spoken of by the prophets; the Spirit of God will also dwell with His people, and be withdrawn from the rest of the nations, and all things whether in heaven or on earth will be in one, even in Christ.  The heavenly Priesthood will unite with the earthly, to bring about those great purposes; and whilst we are thus united in the one common cause, to roll forth the kingdom of God, the heavenly Priesthood are not idle spectators, the Spirit of God will be showered down from above, and it will dwell in our midst.”

History of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 7 vols. 4:610

“In this day of the Restoration of the fullness of the gospel, the Lord has again revealed to us the blessings promised us for being obedient to His commandments.”

L. Tom Perry

Elder Applegarth – May 2017

Mission Office Address PO Box 263 Sierra Leone Freetown

Spencer has hit his sixth month mark.  In his last letter he shared with us how easy it is to love the people in Sierra Leone.  Spencer says that everybody is friendly.  They always have a kind word.  Even if they are not interested in learning about the church, they are a polite and kind people.  Spencer has learned a lot from this kindness and hopes that when he returns to the USA that he is able to bring that culture back with him.  Spencer has several baptisms coming up this month.  He has been working hard and because of the great people that he teaches, they are ready to receive the gospel.  He continues to serve with a missionary from Ghana.  He also lives with two elders that are the zone leaders.  They are both from Nigeria.  Spencer is really starting to enjoy the food in Sierra Leone.  He wasn’t much of a rice eater when he was home, but now he really loves rice.  The month of May will start the Rainy Season in Sierra Leone.  He goes from no rain, to an average of 6 inches in May and then it escalates to an average of 20+ inches each month during the summer.  The mission home has issued him rubber boots.  With the roads being dusty today, soon they will all be one big mud puddle.  He is excited to see the rainy season, he says he is ready for a change from the dry heat that he has experienced over the past six months.

We have enjoyed the pictures Spencer has sent us.  We have been fascinated that the people in Sierra Leone carry everything on their head.  Spencer has tried to imitate this while doing service, I guess it is easier than carrying things with your arms?  Spencer points out that there a lot of people that carry some heavy loads on their head.  The mission has made a huge impact on Spencer’s life and although the past six months have been a challenge, he loves what he is doing and is looking forward to the next 18 months.

Bishop Applegarth

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Elder Ison – May 2017

Montana Billings Mission Office Address 1848 Rimrock Rd Billings MT 59102

He has been transferred to the Bozeman area and will continue serving as Zone Leader there with his new companion Elder Tippets and is super excited because they will be serving in the YSA ward. He continues to grow and I am amazed at the man he is becoming. He loves Montana and how beautiful it is. They have several people they are working with right now that are progressing well and they hope to set for baptism soon. Please keep him in your prayers and those that they are teaching. He is super excited to be in the area with his trainer Elder Rich and that he will get to serve around him for the next transfer or 2 before Elder Rich goes home. He loves being a missionary and serving in Montana.

Kristie Ison

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Elder Jessee – May 2017

Mission Office 29 Wiryeseong-daero 22-gil (Ogeum-dong) Songpa-gu Seoul-teukbyeolsi 05655 South Korea

Just got back from a mission activity, it was a pretty good time. The mission activity was a 5k “run” as well as some kickball. While run/walking my first lap of 7, I thought of my mom…. how she completed a full marathon, at a high level on a big stage and it gave me motivation. I thought in my mind… if my mom could run 20+ miles, of course I can finish the rest of lap 1 in a jog. I began running, with all motivation but ended the first lap in a brisk walk. After completing the first lap, and knowing the 5k was optional I battled within my mind whether to continue on with the next 6 laps. Just then I realized I needed water and then found myself getting distracted with playing football and eating some kimbap (Korean sushi). Well, there goes the extent of my running career. Glad to see Mom’s race was a lot more successful!

This week we had transfer calls, my companion got called to a different area far away and I am staying in the same area. President called me to be an Assistant Zone Leader so I will be serving with someone named Elder Lydon. He was my Zone Leader this transfer and now we will be working together as Zone Leader and Assistant Zone Leader. Elder Lydon has about 6 months left on his mission. Really great guy from Texas and was a quarterback in high school and has been Zone Leader for about 5 months. It will be a fun time. Also not yesterday but the week before I gave my first blessing to a woman in Korean. It was a mix of English toward the end but it was really cool to be able to do that.

I hope you are all striving to become closer to God and Christ through prayer and reading the scriptures. I love you all so much. Try to acquire as much “Light” as you possibly can. While in the world, there are things that increase the light of Christ within us and some things that decrease it. Always strive to be in those places and do those things that will increase your light and as you do so, you will shine as a light to others. Love you all so much. You guys are the best!Jessee1

Elder Talbot – May 2017

Trinidad Port of Spain Mission Office Address PO Bag 543 Valsayn Trinidad and Tobago

Current Address 243 ceder court lamaha gardens, georgetown, Guyana

This week has been short and sweet. We have not done a lot, but we do what we can. I went on an exchange and it went very well. Taking charge of stuff is pretty scary but is also very fun, and really crazy. The exchange was with Elder Batista who is a really cool guy (no he is not related to the wrestler). He is super funny and loads of fun. He really has lots of things to talk about and has had a pretty rough life. He is such a good kid, though he is from Idaho, and is really lucky to have what he does – but he is none the less a really great guy.

This week has been a lot of teaching. We just go from house to house teaching everything that we feel. We are really working hard to help one of our investigators, Latoya, get ready for baptism. She is scared of how everything works and wants to be positive that she will not fall away.

Sorry this letter is so short but the next one will be really good with zone conference coming up, and soon transfers. I love you so much and know that the things this church teaches are really from God. Look at Romans 8:16 for an example of how God loves us so much – we are all his children no matter what we do and say. We are always going to be that!

Week of April 17th

This week has been crazy. To start off we had a great Tuesday but we didn’t have district meeting because of zone conference. We had a lot of fall throughs which I am used to so I am over it. We taught a lot of really good people that day.

Wednesday was sad. We had such a great day planned – and no one was home. We had planned on teaching a lot of people and they told us to not come by that day or just weren’t home. Thursday has been sad as well but pretty good. We had a lot of lessons planned but only like 3 actually happened; but I know that when you make contacts you find the elect that are ready to hear the gospel.

Friday was soooooo cool we had zone conference and it was so good. Our Mission President talked about the blessings and covenant of Abraham, I learned so much. Our President is the coolest man I have ever met, and he really works alongside the Lord in teaching and running this mission.

Saturday we got up and didn’t even have time to study before we had to go to interviews with the Mission President. Those went really well and the spirit was so strong, especially as we talked about how much he loves me. This showed me how much he represents Jesus Christ in all that he does. He is so amazing and has such a big heart.

Sunday was the coolest. We got up and helped all of the members and investigators get on a bus to travel over the river to go to a multi-branch conference. When we got there President Egbert announced that the branch I am in is being shut down and is being combined with Rosignal to form a new branch. This side of the world is working very hard to get a temple in Guyana, and it is working towards that pretty fast. The missionaries are so great in this country and the people that are here are so loving and humble.

Today has been great, and I know that it is only going to be get better. I love you so much it is insane. You are the best. I want you to know that this gospel can change anyone as long as they know why they are doing it. I want you to all smile more and love the reason you are alive. I know that this church is true and The Book of Mormon is what is needed the most at this time in the world!!!!!!

Week of April 24th

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this was what the church looked like till it got shut down.
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Elder Wells

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