Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Week 56:A little tired after a long walk

So....I'm in a biking area again. Elder Jones doesn't have a bike yet, so we're walking. Today we got to walk all the way to the family history center. I don't feel as impressive anymore. I mapped it out, and it was only a 3 mile walk...I'm still pretty tired though...

The area seems good. The members(or at least the leaders) are excited to do missionary work. Elder Jones got to speak on his first Sunday. He's from Grants, New Mexico which is near the 4 corners area.

We had two baptisms Saturday. The first was in my old area Nampa North. I didn't get a picture there because Robert was camera shy. I was able to perform the baptismal ordinance for the first time. Later on in the night there was a baptism in our new area. We never got to teach her though because she had already been taught, and the old missionaries came back to witness the baptism.

It's supposed to be cooler this week. We'll see if it actually happens.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Week 55(Part2): The cycle of life continues

Well, I tried to get the official picture taken back at the beginning. Unfortunately, the missionary I handed my camera too wasn't paying attention. As such, you get a picture taken right before I started this email.

Today a year ago(the 24th of July 2012) was the day I left the MTC a year ago. Today a year ago(the 4th Wednesday of July 2012) I was assigned to my trainer Elder Jones. Today, Elder Jones was assigned to be trained by me.

This here is Elder Cooper Jones. He comes from New Mexico. He graduated just 2 months ago from high school, so he's one of the new young'ns. Cooler than that though, is he is one of the original group to receive a call to the Idaho Nampa Mission. He knows nothing of Boise and won't aside from getting to go to the temple on his year mark.

Everything is going well so far! We've got some missionaries staying at our house while they try to figure out where they are living. With all of the new missionaries, it's hard to come by housing as areas are split. Life's good!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Week 55:A new transfer, a new area, and a new missionary

Transfer calls came Saturday. I found out that I'm getting moved. It's a really big one too. I'm traveling 5 miles away to the Nampa East Stake. This area boarders the Nampa North area I was in. The new address for those who might feel inclined to write a letter is
Elder Soren Mann
520 S Railroad Court
Nampa, ID 83687

I'm training a new missionary as well, so I'll be sending a picture with another email Wednesday. I'll get to train one of the first Idaho Nampa Missionaries. Yay!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Week 54: An uncreative title for an uncreative email

don't even think uncreative is a word. It's got a red squiggly line under it telling me that it isn't a word, but at the same time it only offers "creative" as an alternative.

This weekend Elder Larsen and I participated in the baptism of Hayden. It was pretty sweet. We started teaching him at the beginning of the transfer. He's pretty smart for a kid. He understood everything. I found it pretty crazy that he'd already been drinking coffee! His mom started him when he was young I guess. haha I just think of coffee as an older/teenager drink, but here is this kid who was drinking coffee.

We also got to go to the new mission office. The last one was attached to a church building. This one is actually an office in an office building. Some of the missionaries have said it feels like visiting a medical clinic. Once they said that, I kind of did get that vibe. I took a picture in front of the old sign, so I 'needed' to take one in front of the new sign too.

This weekend we'll get transfer calls. We're not sure what's going to happen, but we're almost positive one of us will be leaving. If I stay again, that'll be the 3rd companion I've kicked out of here. If Elder Larsen stays, my "established pattern" of being in an area for 3 transfers is still established and becomes more of a pattern because it'll have actually happened 3 times.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Week 53:The things you learn from working in the field

Hello! Not much time to email, but we'll see if I can get everything I need to out!
4th of July rocked! We got to go to a pancake breakfast and flag ceremony. It felt like being back at home(Especially considering I was wearing a suit and tie last year after having been set apart as a missionary the night before.) They rest of the day was pretty relaxing. Nampa did their firework show the night before at a "God and Country" rally. There were still a lot of fireworks on the 4th because they aren't illegal. Every other house was having a personal firework show....but it wasn't so personal because everyone could see it.
The 5th of July marked one year as an official missionary with a name badge! That was a sweet day too! We had interviews with President Cannon in the morning. It was like a year ago when I was first introducing myself to the other President Cannon, but 3 weeks early because of the MTC time last year.
In the afternoon, Elder Larsen and I got to do gardening service. I did my first harvest. I picked zucchini, cucumber, and squash. Bro Bittick charged me with checking the tomatoes to see if any were ripe. There were 3 rows...I got to army crawl to check the middle row! It was pretty fun. I never knew plants were so prickly though...ouch.
In the evening time, I participated in the great missionary burning tradition. A missionary who had lived in the apartment before left a few white shirts behind. None of them fit us, so I stole one of those to use in "the burning" 1 year down; another year to try(full time) to help as many people as possible.
As I've reflected on the past year, I think I have actually learned a thing or two on my mission. Learning to focus more on the future has been one of the major things I've learned over the year. As I've gotten older, I've come to realize that the years ahead hold a lot of important decisions that will affect me (and my family) for the rest of my life. I used to mourn over not being able to go back to the past. Now, I have a better understanding of the ability I have to change the future by acting now. Actions speak louder than words. They shape us. As we seek to act in a correct manner, it will help make our future brighter and better.
Catch everyone in another year!
Elder SUMann

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Week 52:You know it's warm outside when...

When summer began on the 21st, it was a nice 70* with rain. It jumped up a little bit between then and now. Now it's a scorching 105*, and it has been since Friday. That's actually why this email is late getting out. All of us missionaries were emailing yesterday when the power went out! We think it was a combination of heat and overloading the system, but we're back online now. Everything works out in the end.

This was a good week for us. We found a new investigator along with a few potentials. Right now we're teaching 4 different kids ranging in age from 9 to 12. 3 of the 4 have dates for this month, and we're really enjoying the ease with which we are able to teach them. It's nice when you've got 1 person to focus on, especially one so young and ready to listen. It's sticking better with some than with others, but they'll all get there in the end.

This email also comes with some bad news. I didn't survive my two years in the Idaho Boise Mission. I didn't even make it a year! Am I feeling bad about it? If it weren't for the fact that the mission got split, I would be. I stayed in Nampa, so I am now a part of the Idaho Nampa Mission. An iron curtain fell yesterday between Nampa and Meridian forming the new boarders seen on the attached map. The way I see it, I got off easy. The Boise mission is only 4 towns-well, 4 cities. It's a tiny mission, and I like being able to be transferred more than half an hour from my last area. Maybe if I had started out that way I'd've been ok, but I'm used to big transfers.(both transfers I jumped across the mission)

A new mission president came along with the new mission, President Cannon! Yup, my new mission president has the same name as my last mission president. That makes it easy for us missionaries to remember his name. We met with President Cannon Saturday. He's a sporty guy who used to play basketball and still golfs. His most recent calling was young men's president, so I think he's ready to work with a whole bunch of us young men. I was lucky enough to receive confirmation right away that he is my new priesthood leader at this time. I'll gladly follow his council and wisdom.

There is a new mission office to go along with the new mission. The old address(1111 S Cole Rd) is bad. There's still a mission office there, and for the next little while they'll forward mail. We've got a new office though. To reach me now, send mail to
Elder Soren Mann
Idaho Nampa Mission
1008 W Sanetta St
Nampa, ID 83651-5047
United States(If you happen to be out of country.)

Next week...The year mark!