Well, I'm in a trio with Elder Nelson (who is training me) and Elder Curry. Elder Nelson is from Tacoma, Washington and Elder Curry is from Clearfield? He went to Syracuse High School. He's the DL out here in the Duncan Zone so he's ALWAYS on the phone. haha
President Taylor is my Mission President and he's awesome. Same with his wife. They have two of their kids that live out here with them. The older one just got his mission call to Milan, Italy and the other one is 16. And I promise you this . . .their son will be the most obedient missionary ever. :)
I'm in the little town of Anadarko, Oklahoma. It's a very sad little town. There are lots of Indians and casinos here. Check it out on Google Earth. It's literally smaller than Beaver. No joke. The people here are very humble. Mainly because they don't have anything. Or because they've pretty much lost everything because of alcohol or drug abuse It's just super sad. But I'm still my happy-as-ever self trying to teach these people how to smile.
We do have a spanish family that we're teaching. They started out as "potential" investigators and after our visit we've moved them into "investigator" status. Their names are Jesus and Bico. They are just the sweetest people. They've been married for 40 years and all their kids have grown up and moved on. Jesus has been very patient with Elder Curry and me - our spanish is rough so we try to work our way through the lessons. We taught them about the Book of Mormon the other day (the are extremely Catholic), so we just shared that the Book of Mormon is just extra scripture and he loved it. So they invited us back for dinner tomorrow night. :) I love getting fed! (Sorry Ty)
I haven't gotten to eat at Panda yet. Elder Curry is obsessed with McDonald's so we've been there 4 times. Yes, in a week. :)
It sounds like everyone back home is enjoying their blessings. Just keep reminding our family of how blessed they are . . . seriously. If you could just see some of the families here - there's just a lot of work to do.
It's just a branch here in Anadarko. It's just not dig enough to be ward, but if we had all of our less active or inactive members coming we would have enough for a ward. I heard that a couple of years ago that they were ready to make a ward. The leadership was changed around and the man that they put in as the branch president offended a lot of people so the missionaries have spent a lot of time just repairing the damage. Fun fact for you though! Anadarko was the 2nd established branch in the state of Oklahoma! And after all these years, it's still a branch. :)
When we got here on Tuesday, we drove to the Stake Center near town. I don't remember exactly which city we were in, but we hung out all day with the mission president, the AP's and all the new missionaries. We are some food, sar around and listened to a lot of instructions. It was just a very long day sitting in the church. That night we went to the ZL's apartment and crashed.
On Wednesday - Transfer day we went back to the same stake center and I met my trainer - Elder Curry. Then we took off to good ole' Anadarko. When we got down there we knocked a couple of doors and guess what!?! I GOT MY FIRST DOOR SLAMMED IN MY FACE! :) :) :) It was the funniest thing. I walked off the porch just laughing. It was so great to get that out of the way. I even took a picture of the door to remember this day!
Then we went out to eat for Elder Curry's birthday. We went to this little Mexican restaurant in town and it started to rain. If you didn't hear, we were on tornado watch that day from 5 p.m. on. So we went back home and waited for the sirens so we could get into our storm shelter. But it never came, the closest tornado was 20 miles away. No biggie.
But it's still tornado season here, so I'll keep you updated on events! Rumor has it that we're supposed to have another big storm tomorrow! It's the best around here during tonado season becuase we have super nice weather at night.
On Thursday some guys from the branch called and wanted us to go out with them. Their names were Brother Jones and Brother Silverhorn. We went and visited this less active lady. She has some random guy crashing at her house who speaks Spanish. She speaks English - and they're dating? I'm not really sure about how that all works out - but we don't ask. We did ask him if he wanted to sit in on the lessons with us so I did get to speak a little Spanish with him!
After that we met up with this really cool guy named Tennyson. He's the BOSS. Super quiet, humble, and a great guy. He's an Indian and fights fires for a living. A lot of the Indians out here go out for 2-3 weeks fighting fires. It's just what they do for their job. We're trying to help Tennyson get a side job and I think we got him one!
We also took him to meet one of our investigators. Her name is Destiny. She's 18 and still in high school and is truly searching for the right church. Her friends are touble and she ALWAYS has one of them with her. One of her friends has a baby, and another one on the way. Ya, she's only 17. It honestly just makes me so sad to think about it. But they do love to talk about the church. Funny thing about Destiny is that her Grandma owns a lot of Anadarko and is COMPLETELY ANTI-MORMON. I heard that about 2 years ago Destiny's mom was going to be baptized until the grandma filled her head with a bunch of lies about the church.
So during this lesson with Destiny, we resolved a lot of questions she had after talking with her grandma. I think that she believes us more than her grandma. She can truly feel the spirit. In fact, it was funny because she turned to one of her friends during the lesson and asked "do you feel that burning I was talking about?" It was awesome to see that she can recognize the spirit. :)
That night, Brother Jones did a fireside on the history of the Native Americans since pretty much everyone within an hour of here is Native American. haha So we had a pretty good turn out - about 25 people - along with a couple of these kids that are at the "boy's ranch" out here. It's interesting to me how all of the Native American tribes when translating the name of their God turns out to be something like 'The White God, The Fair God, The Descending God, The Son, The Shephard". It was so cool because he went over almost all of the tribes from North America and the translation. He also showed the path of the people of Lehi and also the people of Judah coming through the north part of Europe and then over to the Americas.
The awesome part was that those same 7 boys asked us for a copy of the Book of Mormon - so I guess we've got 7 more potential investigators! Then we went and played basketball with them in the little gym and the missionaries rained. :)
On Friday we went on splits with the ZL's. So I went out with Nelson and Zerkle. We taught this little family and invited them to come to Stake Conference with us on Sunday. They had this little girl who is about 12 years old. It was sad because she is pretty heavy and her dad wasn't very nice to her - called her names and stuff. In my mind I was thinking c'mon man . . . have some respect.
After that, we went and helped this family move into a new house and I met someone that used to work with President Haymond (Argentina Mission President) - so that was kinda cool. That night we crashed at Zerkle and Traasdahl's apartment.
On Saturday I met Elder Neil L. Anderson! :) Ya, what's up. Every missionary got to shake his hand and a couple other members of the 70. That was so awesome! He's such a normal guy it kills me!
After our meeting we drove to who knows where in Oklahoma to meet with an inactive family. Apparently they don't like big crowds so they live 20 miles away from civilization. And that's one of the reasons why they don't go to church. They won't go to a ward because it's too big and the branch is about 2 hours from their house. I don't know what the ZL's are gonna do there . . .
This is the best part of my week! That night we decided to go on a "Spiritual Walk" around town. So we met a few of the less active families, handed out some books and some pictures of Jesus. While we were walking to this lady's house, we met this boy named Drew. He was drunk but we prayed with him anyway. Since we kinda work in the bible belt, we tract a little differently. When we go to houses we tell that we are representatives of Jesus Christ and then ask them if we can say a prayer with them. After we finish our prayer, we then ask them if we can come back some time to pray and talk some more about Jesus Christ. Since most of them are either Baptist of Catholic they usually accept our offer.
As a background, there is one church here that is kind of the "IT" church. It's like the Grace First Catholic or something - so we just call it the "Grace Church". Everyone goes there - they give out food, play rock music and say "hallelujiah" and they are saved! Ya. So we were talking about this church the other day and wanted to know more about it. So while we were on our spiritual walk, I had this impression to go knock on the door of this green house just off the main street. So we went over there and the man that lives there is named Derek. We asked him if we would pray with him - he agreed and informed us that he's the PASTOR OF THE GRACE CHURCH! :) We spent some time talking to him - he's a hippie by the way. haha
I LOVE Oklahoma! It's weird how attached to it I already am. As sad as this little town is, I'm really trying to make it a better place - and I will! It's just going to take a little time.
Anyways, I'm out of time. Please keep me updated with life and everyone! I love and miss you all.
Our little house . . .
How old is this oven?
Do you love our shower?
My brothers came to see me the Sunday before I left Provo