Sunday, October 27, 2013

Monday, October 21, 2013

Thank you for this detailed update on the family! And let Austin know how much I love him and that I will be keeping him in my prayers everyday! It’s sad to hear that, and wish I could do more for him as I'm sure you feel too.

Answers to your questions I will be sure to explain in my letter, all of them have great relevence to what happened this week. You just have that perfect motherly sense that you know what is going on before I even tell you.

So here is the scoop:
I had the opportunity to confer upon Troy the Aaronic Priesthood and ordain him to the office of Priest this Sunday. I told him that I would somehow get a hold of my priesthood line of authority and get it to him. And I was just so proud to know how I received my priesthood and of who gave it to me, you! I am so glad to have had a consistently worthy priesthood holder as my dad. It had affected me so much in who I am today. Thank you.

Well this week has been another week full of miracles! Tuesday, we have a lot lessons with Recent Converts. We have 5 recent converts (within 1 year baptized) that we try to visit weekly. Troy R, Armida R, Scott D, the Lucky family, and Rob V. We got to visit 4 of the 5 that day and taught them great lessons that day! Many of them are planning on going to the temple with the youth this Saturday. I sure hope they will make it!

One Wednesday we had District meeting and took a district picture because it was the last meeting before transfer calls. I will attach the picture. Then we did our normal service at Brenda's (Simply Comfort) with Kateleen. I hope to get a picture of them today so you know what they look like. They are so sweet to us. Almost every time they see us Brenda feeds us and gives us left overs from the previous day, tons of it! She says, "Well, I've got to take care of my boys!" She is like one of our mothers out here. And Kateleen is like a sister for us! To sum it up, they make us feel at home! :)
Thursday was sweet! We did splits for the first time and afterwards we didn't know why this was the first time we did it! The idea first came up from Elder Tewksbury. We had a conflict in schedule with a dinner and teaching appt. with the Lucky family and teaching Alan. So the Luckys would always do a barbeque because they are a Marshalese family like the Rings (Armida) and thats just what they always cook....tons and tons of meat! (as Elder Tewksbury described) haha So he said, "Well this is perfect, Myself and Elder Terry can go to the dinner appt with the Luckys and contact a referral out that way while you go with Brother Best now that he is all fired up and contact some of the less active names that he gave us, and teach Alan! And you will not have to eat meat!"

So that’s what we did and it really was perfect! The referral was a success and they want us to come back, My companions stuffed themselves with meat! While I connected well with Brother Best and had supper great lesson with Alan. Brother Best bore a super powerful testimony to him about his own conversion story and he comforted him in the fact that he doesn't have to know everything to become baptized. He said, "All I knew before I got baptized was that I knew God and Jesus were real, they loved me, and that they wanted me to keep his commandments, and for me to come back to them. And that was enough!" It was perfect for him and it led to us helping him make more commitments that will help him get closer to baptism!

It was exactly what he needed to hear. We stopped by a couple less-actives and sadly they didn't want anything to do with us, and seemed very against the church but were still on the records. But I know that it is needed to visit all of these less actives even if it is just to rescue one! So I felt so successful after that night and was a huge miracle for me this week.

The Saturday we received a call from President Stoker and I will be leaving the area, I am excited for the change and will find out where I am staying tomorrow at transfer meeting!

I love being a missionary and see miracles everyday because of it!
I love you all so much!
-Elder Swalberg

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