The Fullness of the Gospel

“I don’t know how many more “rushes” we can handle this weekend. Some of us have weak hearts.” -Elder Holland

What a great month it’s been!  It finally feels like spring has arrived.  To start with General Conference and to hear the inspired words of a living prophet was wonderful… but more on that in a moment.

The Young Men and Young Women had the opportunity on the 15th to attend Music and the Spoken Word at the Tabernacle on Temple Square.  It was beautiful!  Our Ward Game Night on the 18th was great as well.  Special Thanks to all who made it such a fun night.

We’re excited to begin with the changes in the Priesthood organization, and the new Ministering program which President Nelson called: “a newer, holier approach”.  We hope that the spirit of love will fill our ward as we do so.  It’s easy to feel the love that our Prophet has for all of us.

The topic for the month of May is The Restoration.  I really like L. Tom Perry’s talk from the April 2007 Conference.  I leave you with his words, adding my testimony to his:

“Our message is unique. We declare to the world that the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored to the earth. We declare with boldness that the keys of the priesthood have been restored to man, with the power to seal on earth and in the heavens. The saving ordinances pronounced by the Lord as requirements for entering into eternal life with Him can now be performed with binding authority by those who worthily exercise the power of His holy priesthood. We declare to the world that this is the day referred to by biblical prophets as the latter days. It is the final time, before the coming of Jesus Christ to rule and reign over the earth.

We invite all to listen to the message of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ from us. Then you can compare the glorious message with what you may hear from others, and you can determine which is from God and which is from man.

My witness to you is that this is the Church of Jesus Christ, established in the latter days. In the name of our Lord and Savior, even Jesus Christ, amen.” – L. Tom Perry

Brother Walker 2nd Counselor

The Blessings of the Restoration

The restoration of the church and the true gospel of Jesus Christ has brought many gifts into my life, everything from Relief Society sisters to Priesthood blessings to a Patriarchal blessing to the temple. By far, the greatest gift I received was the sealing of my parents (both deceased) to each other and my sealing to them in the Manti Temple in 2017. That was easily one of the most profound spiritual experiences I’ve ever had. An immeasurable amount of light poured through me, through my two friends who served as proxies for my parents on that day in the sealing room, and through all the people who were present as witnesses–it was a palpable, awe-inspiring experience. Many tears of joy were shed, and Jesus infused all of us with an immense, remarkable amount of love.

In addition, the restoration has allowed me, a Jewish woman, to partake of the blessings of the gospel of Jesus Christ while continuing to embrace my genetic and cultural heritage. I see the gospel as an expansion of my spiritual path, not an “either-or.” I still celebrate Passover and other Jewish holidays–often with my LDS friends–as those holy days align with the gospel, I also can now fully embrace Christmas and the glory of Easter. I have learned that, through the restoration, there is room in this gospel and this church for everyone.

Alyssa Wolf

Elder Applegarth – May 2018

Mission Office Address PO Box 263 Freetown Sierra Leone

Spencer hit his 18 month mark in April. He is excited to be serving the good people of Sierra Leone and is looking forward to his next 6 months of service. We are really looking forward to Mother’s Day when we will enjoy the last skype with Spencer on his mission. Time is short and Spencer is working hard to make sure he accomplishes everything he can as a full-time missionary. Spencer is still serving in Kontollah, which is in Freetown. He has really enjoyed working in this area. He trained a missionary that was from Sierra Leone, Elder Newton. Elder Newton waited for about four months, before he finally got his visa to serve in Mozambique. Elder Newton came to the Provo MTC to learn Portuguese and to prepare for his mission. Kathryn was able to meet Elder Newton at the Provo Temple. Many members of our ward kindly donated clothes and money to Elder Newton. He recently left Provo and is now in Mozambique. He was excited about his new pants, shirts, and ties. He is well equipped and looks every bit as good as Spencer or any other missionary from the Mount Pleasant fourth ward. Elder Newton called Kathryn from the airport to let her know he is on his way. It sounds like Kathryn has another African son, we are expecting a call from Elder Newton for mother’s day.

Spencer is hoping to serve the last 6 months of his mission in the rural areas of Sierra Leone. He is ready to be out of the big city, but has really enjoyed the Freetown area. He is planning on several baptisms on May 4th.  The work in Africa keeps going forward. In Spencer’s last letter he said “we have been preparing 5 people for baptism. All of them are doing well with an exception of 1 named brother Prince. He is the one who has the problem smoking. He is getting better but still has a little bit of a problem so he won’t be able to be baptized on the 5th but maybe the next baptism. I love trying to help the man out. He is slowly starting to overcome the habit. We have also been expanding our teaching pool. It was a blessing to see most of them at church yesterday!” Spencer celebrated his 20th birthday this past month. He described his birthday as follows: “I was able to baptize 6 people this week!!! Every time I put them under the water the spirit filled my heart. It was so amazing to be able to do that for them. After they came out of the water each one of them looked me in the eyes and said thank you. That is when tears started to roll down my face because all I could think about is my saying the same thing to our Savior one day. It was truly a humbling experience. What better birthday present is there? Then I got to spend some time with my converts and they made my day special for me, we had a lot of fun! Sunday was also an amazing day as I stood in the circles for their confirmations the spirit filled the room.  After the blessings the recent converts that I baptized a while ago all got callings!!! It has truly been amazing to see everyone’s progress!!”

Other exciting news for Spencer is that his companion for the past four months finally got his visa, so he is attending the MTC in Provo where he is learning Portuguese.  He will be preparing to serve in Mozambique.  The final elections happen this week in Sierra Leone.  Hopefully democracy continues as a peaceful event there.

Bishop Applegarth

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Elder Jessee – May 2018

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

Well, our little investigator Jo Yeon Woo is now a member! He was baptized and confirmed yesterday! What another great baptismal service. I am so happy to have a small part in bringing another soul closer to the Savior, and help him make the first step in his journey back to God and Jesus Christ! He has such a great spirit about him! During these last two months as we have been teaching him, I was amazed with his willingness to keep the commitments we gave him and how his knowledge and testimony and understanding of the gospel grew as he came closer to God and Jesus Christ. He understood more, and quicker, than most of the older and smarter men I have taught on my mission. This testified to me that in growing a testimony and coming closer to God humility, willingness, and a desire are the most important things. Through humility, willingness, and desire we can come closer to God, know what His plan for us is, and become more than we ever could by ourselves. God will mold and shape our lives into something we can’t even imagine! I’m Grateful for all these experiences I have had on my mission.

We have also been meeting with a less active for the last few weeks. He wasn’t coming to church because he worked on Sunday, but has recently quit his job and is now able to come back to church. He is a 28ish year old guy named, Gwon Hyo Moon and was baptized only 2 years ago. He is a really great guy and this week we went and ate at a meat buffet with him!

Elder Jessee

Sister Ison – May 2018

Vancouver Washington Mission Office Address 2223 NW 99th St. Vancouver WA 98665

She has been transferred to Battle Ground Washington and has a new companion Sister Perry.  She LOVES Sister Perry and the new area.  They are white washing the area and are having some great success finding new people to teach and reaching out to those that are inactive and just are having an amazing time.  They have wonderful member missionaries who feed them and help them find new investigators.  Their mission has been given a commission to baptize 50 people each month and Sister Ison and Sister Perry are working hard to help that goal be met.  Here’s a little tidbit from her last email….

“I know that the commission that this mission has to baptize 50 each month is totally possible! As we have that day of decision and give our will to the Lord he will make a lot more out of us than we ever thought we could! I know as we are obedient and act on promptings we receive we will be blessed for it and we will bless others. Each of you has a divine purpose and you are all children of our loving Heavenly Father! I know our Savior Jesus Christ lives and is walking with us always along this journey through life! He suffered for our sins so that we can BECOME AS HE IS! Our Savior Jesus Christ and our loving Heavenly Father want us to return to them! So keep going, keep working hard and remember to serve others! Always remember to do what our Savior would. Yes we all make mistakes but use the atonement and strive to become better, he only asks that you try your best and you exercise your faith. I know that families can be together forever and that we can all help someone know this for themselves! I know that prayers are answered I have seen it! I love you all with all I have and I say these things in the name of our Savior Jesus Christ amen!”

3 Nephi 5:13 “Behold, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I have been called of Him to declare His word among his people, that they might have everlasting life”

Kristie Ison

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Lesson Schedule – May 2018

May 6th – Gospel Doctrine: Lesson 16: I Cannot Go Beyond the Word of the Lord, Relief Society & Priesthood: Council Meeting

May 13th – Gospel Doctrine: Lesson 17: Beware Lest Thou Forget, Relief Society & Priesthood: April General Conference Message

May 20th – Gospel Doctrine: Lesson 18: Be Strong and of a Good Courage, Relief Society & Priesthood: April General Conference Message

May 27th – Gospel Doctrine: Lesson 19: The Reign of the Judges, Relief Society & Priesthood: Ministering to Others –  What does it mean to minister?