Monday, January 25, 2016

Snowin' in VA

We got a ton of snow! It started Thursday evening and didn't stop snowing 'til Saturday night. I think it was like 18 inches that fell and we obviously couldn't use the car so Elder Everett and I went around shoveling snow for investigators and less actives. The missionary work was a bit slow, but we made the best of it. It was really funny though because everyone here is terrified of snow so when they heard it was gonna snow they went and bought  ALL the eggs, bread, and milk at the stores so when we went shopping today they were completely out. We were also trying to set up return appointments earlier in the week and people would say "you know it's gonna snow right?" or once it snowed people would be like "what'chu doing out here in the cold? You gonna catch a cold and die!"  Like we couldn't have lessons because it was snowing outside. Anyways, it's super sunny and nice here now so I doubt the snow will last long.

The four of us are having a great time. Our new missionary is Elder Galvin from Calgary Canada. He's a fantastic missionary so I'm really glad he's here. We ended up having a bit of a "draft pick" over our investigators to see who would teach who, but we still have plenty of people to teach. Elder Galvin also has pretty similar music taste
as me so it's been fun talking about bands and music and poking fun at him because he's been out longer than me so I've heard some newer music he hasn't.

Church was cancelled yesterday which kinda sucked because a few of our investigators' baptism dates had to be pushed back, but what eves. We had permission to take the sacrament, though, which was really nice and really spiritual. We had a mini sacrament meeting among the four of us; Elder Andersen conducted and Elder Galvin and I gave talks.

As far as investigators, we've got a few on date, one of which has already read the Book of Mormon and is definitely going to be a temple worker one day. It feels really good to be baptizing people you know are going to stay active.

I thought I might fill ya'll in on some southern (Danvillian) slang. A lot of people here use the phrase "I'm in the process" like "I'm in the process of moving" or "I'm in the process of recovering from a surgery". Another great one is "thing of it is" like "thing of it is, they gonna shut my lights off". "Fixin to" is another great one; "I'm fixin to buy me a new one". But my favorite one is "white truck". Literally every car in Danville is a white truck, or at least
that's what they refer to it as. For example: we were helping a lady with her groceries at the food bank we volunteer at and we asked where her car was and she said the white truck over there. Elder Everett said "you mean the grey suburban?" And she said yeah. I thought it was just kind of a weird thing, but it happened to us a bunch that day and none of them were white trucks. Not really sure what that's all about....

Jonas's video was great! Tell him we all had fun watching it. 

Okay here's some pictures to clear up who's who. I love y'all

Elder Everett (my Alaskan companion):

Elder Andersen (from Eugene, OR):

Home, sweet home:


Monday, January 18, 2016

Still in Danville....

I'm staying in Danville! Pretty stoked. So Elder Andersen is getting a new companion. Elder Everett and I will be together, but Elder Andersen and his new companion will be here in Danville too. There's just too much work for one companionship here so they decided to put another set in. We'll be in the same house still, which should be fun, and I'll be finishing Elder Everett's training. So now I'm locked in to being in Danville nearly 8 months. 

This week I've been studying the atonement a lot.  My understanding and appreciation for the atonement has exploded this week. I'm also almost done with the Book of Mormon! It's funny because I really want to finish just so I can read 1 Nephi again; the books in Nephi are my favorite.

We had a district meeting in Casswell and afterwards we went to a member's house for lunch. I guess he's  really into antiques because his home was like a museum. Everything in there was antique.  I was scared to sit down because I thought the chairs were going to snap! He made us really good banana pudding (I think that's a southern thing) and he showed us all his old stuff. He also has a couple of old cabins on his property that he had moved and rebuilt there. The one in the picture was made in the 1700's. I think Uncle Danford would have really liked this guy.  He lived just up the road from Danford's parents so he may know the guy.

Other than that nothing much exciting has happened. I bought an electric razor today, that was pre cool! Let me know if there's anything else you want to hear about because I feel like I can never think of anything

Sure love ya!


Monday, January 11, 2016

Hey Ya'll!

This week flew by! We had a meeting in Charlotte on Tuesday and another meeting in Greensboro on Thursday. On the way to Charlotte Brother B almost ran into a barrier and light pole at 50 mph. Brother H was riding passenger and yelled at him and pulled the wheel. We did a nice little skid out Fast and Furious style. After that we stopped at a gas station and Brother H drove the rest of the way. Brother H said the only reason we didn't crash was because we were in the car. There was only about 15 feet of stopping distance and we should have hit that pole. Honestly I wasn't even scared, just at little confused and tired because it was 6 A.M. Both of our meetings were really good though! There's also a worldwide mission conference a week from Wednesday that I'm pretty excited about. 

Can't remember what day this was, but we had to call the police for the third time on my mission. One of our investigator's wife went missing for 12 hours and she was mentally unstable.  He was too distraught to call so we called for him to see if anyone had found her anywhere. Elder Andersen dialed the wrong number, though, so someone got a call from some Mormon missionaries wanting to file a missing persons report. It turns out she was at the hospital the whole time and no one notified her husband. Kinda weird that they didn't tell her husband,but she's doing a lot better now which it good because now she can get baptized with him!

It's actually sortta getting cold here! Like low fifties, high fourties, however yesterday was beautiful! It was really sunny and nice out, felt like it was still summertime.

On Friday night our high councilman from our ward took us and the Casswell elders (he's from the Casswell Ward) out to eat. Casswell is also in a trio and consists of a 260 lb Samoan, a six foot tall 240 lb whiter than white Utah elder, and a 180lb military cut Californian. Even with us Danville shrimps we weighed close to 1500 lbs all
together, and he took us to Buffalo Wild Wings. Heavenly Father must have known I'd be too tempted to watch "worldly entertainment" though because the only thing on was WNBA...

(In response to Mom's questions:)  I've been cooking a bit more for myself lately. Made a few chicken pot pies and lots of rice and soup. I've been studying the Book of Mormon and the New Testament, I wanna read the full missionary library by the end of the year so that's kept me busy.

Anyways I love ya'll

Elder Earnest

 Pot Pie
 Johnny's baptism

Monday, January 4, 2016

Busy missionaries

Glad to hear ya'll had a good New Year! Mine consisted of playing some indoor spike ball, going to bed at 10:30, and then getting woken up at 12 by people going crazy on my skreet.

It's been a pretty rad week. Yesterday between investigators and less actives we had over 20 people come to church. A good chunk of them were investigator's children, but that was still really great to see. We finally got the overflow doors opened in sacrament which was a big deal. Made me pretty happy.

We also got over 20 Bible referals last week (that's just when people order free Bibles online and we go to drop them off). We were out of Bibles so we axed the zone leaders to grab us more at MLC in Charlotte. They brought us four. Apparently that was all the mission had left, so we've had fun deciding  who gets Bibles and who doesn't
for now.

Grandma Ann will be happy to know I started Johnny up on family history. He started from scratch and traced his main line all the way back to 300 A.D. I guess it's way more fun to do family history when most of it isn't already done.....he's also interviewing for the priesthood on Sunday!

So I thought of one other thing about the sacrament I didn't mention last week. Moses 3:5 says "this is my work and my glory; to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life or man." Immortality requires overcoming physical death and eternal life requires overcoming spiritual death. The bread and water in the sacrament is symbolic of
Christ's body that died for us (allowing us to overcome physical death) and his blood that was shed in the Garden of Gethsemane (allowing us to overcome spiritual death). So by taking the sacrament you qualify yourself to overcome physical and spiritual death and literally take part in God's work and glory. Neato right?

So I took plenty of pictures for you this week. Here's us trying to fix a busted headlight fuse, giving service to Brother B, and me making myself a grill cheesed sandwich. I'm living the real exciting life.