Monday, November 13, 2017

Another good week...and some throwback pictures!

Dear Familia and friends,

This week again was very fast. We had exchanges again and it was great!  We found 5 new investigators. Being on full bike and talking to everyone is soo effective. I miss being able to bike around and have everyone become a new investigator, not just YSA aged people. We did a zone bike blitz in Vineyard area and that too was super effective. We biked around Vineyard Ward for 2 hours. I even knocked my own door at my old house. That was super trippy.

We had a goal as a zone to get 20 new Investigators (2 per companionship). We found 17 investigators some were new some were potential. I can’t remember the exact number. This week as a zone we found the most “new investigators” since I have been here and Elder Berry has been here. The zone deserves some praise for sure. We won’t be letting off finding this week. We will incorporate a goal this last week of the transfer to find more investigators than the previous week. 

I love being a missionary. I’m doing my best to become the message I share and I want the rest of the Zone to become the message they share as well. We had MLC this week...MLC brought great insights. Revelation is always flowing in MLC I love it so much. Transfers calls are this Saturday. They have a new transfer schedule which means Transfer day will be Tuesday now instead of Monday. I will be emailing on Monday next week not Tuesday like usual. There is always a possibility that I could leave Elk Grove or get a new companion. President Hymas likes to mix things up and rock the boat around. 

I officially am 14 months out on my mission...time is straight crazy fast out here. It’s scary to think that I am one of the oldest missionaries now. I’m excited to see what the future holds. I am making it a goal to read Doctrine and Covenants this month. I want to finish it before the month is over! Wish me luck! Also, a goal is to get everyone pumped up for Light the World. I know Thanksgiving hasn't happened yet but best believe I am already looking forward to Christmas. Christmas has such a great spirit! 

With Love 

Nelly boy

** side note-  Sister Mullen is a lady from our old ward in Sacramento.  Connor attended her in-home daycare before he was old enough for preschool.  This week she gave him some pictures of when he was in her daycare. I have attached them to this email.  Also a fun fact, the little girl in the ORANGE shirt was one of Connor's daycare friends at the time. Today she is his cousin.  Her dad and Eric are brothers and these pictures were taken before Eric and I knew each other. Small world! :)    love Ashlie 

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Another week goes by...

Dear Family and friends- 
This was a very different week! We were in a trio for the week with Elder Henry. We had two exchanges this week and balanced Florin and Cosumnes River YSA! We always had something to do and I loved it! The first exchange this week was with a quiet missionary but when he does talk he is powerful. We focused on talking with everyone and smiling! Everyone needs to show how happy this gospel can make us! I committed him to have the faith to baptize by asking everyone to be baptized.
The next exchange this week was with a very good missionary and he has great desires to do missionary work. I focused on just having fun with this Elder because he seems to be struggling with his companion. I committed him to stay diligent and to study PMG pg. 121.
Elder Berry and I are doing awesome! We didn't have much proselyting time together but we are getting along. We had a Halloween Training on Halloween night obviously, it was an interesting training. We complimented everyone for 2 hours was the sister’s idea I hated it! But I played along with it.
I was super sick Saturday night and all of Sunday I have no idea what happened to me. I had a really bad headache Saturday night and I woke up Sunday with a fever of a 101 and body aches and nausea. It was a blast sabbath day! I slept for 36 hours straight and couldn't keep any food down. 
Our investigator pool right now is starting to get better. During all the exchanges we were able to find a lot of new people to teach. We are just hoping that many will commit and want to come to church. We have MLC (mission leadership council) tomorrow so I am excited for the new revelation the mission will receive.
I’m a happy missionary
Elder Nelson 

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Another week in the life of a missionary....

Hello from EG!

This week was fast and tiring! We had three exchanges this week. The first two exchanges were in our Zone and the last one was in Carmichael with the Assistants. Elder Berry and I decided that I would take the “harder” out of the two companions for the week. During our exchange, we focused on being ourselves and having fun. The Elder I was with, is a very closed book but we were able to have some good miracles. I committed him to be diligent in all phases of missionary work.

Two days later I had an exchange with a different Elder. He also is a closed book and very very indirect. It was a funny exchange- he was cracking me up with some of his weird comments. We focused on talking to everyone and having courage to act. It was a long day that exchange I was getting very drained from doing everything. We had a Companionship Study half way through the day and I committed him to take the initiative and talk first. The rest of the day went a little smoother.

The last exchange of the week was with one of the assistants and we had a blast. It was an unusual exchange for us because we picked up another Elder from our Zone half way through the day. His companions went home because his father passed away. He got special permission to go home for a week and he will be back next Sunday. I have never heard of that happening but he is blessed I guess.

So, it was 3 of us and we were in Carmichael trying our best to baptize nations.  The Assistant Elder committed me, after contacts with people, to represent the message we just shared with people. I tend to get too pumped up when we have a good contact and I guess when I leave I am loud and laugh. By the end of all the exchanges I was exhausted.

Sunday was a good day...another Sabbath Day of running into more old friends or even people who I can’t quite remember but know me. We ate dinner in the Florin Ward and my Sunbeams teacher (Alisha Williams..she married now so that’s not her last name but anyways) fed us dinner. It was funny to see her reaction. Highlights from this week were getting new proselyting clothes from grandma and mom. They fit good and I needed them so thank you! We ate dinner at the Bennions. They are such a cool family. I love serving in the YSA ward. Missionary work is still tough and kinda slow though. For Halloween tomorrow, we are stuck inside a church building so you know I will be going insane and wanting to leave. I also have no pictures again. I’m sorry I'm failing at taking them. I will do better next week! I have tons of families looking out for me so don't worry about us not getting fed or me needed anything. It feels like I have family everywhere! And to answer my mom’s question- Yes sometimes I feel like a celebrity with everyone looking to take a picture with me! Not sure if Elder Berry is getting annoyed about it or not!

Elder Nelson

*** Connor may not have pictures to send me but attached are 6 pictures that I received from people just this week who ran into him.  FYI- Mom's LOVE to get pictures of their missionaries so when you have missionaries over for dinner--take a picture and text it to their families! :) It will make their day!- Love Ashlie 

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Another week of working hard!

Dear Family

This week was great! It went very fast! We had Zone Conferences this week and it was all about the First Vision and using the best tools our Father in Heaven has given us (Book of Mormon and Preach My Gospel). I went into Zone Conference this week with the question of “what does the Elk Grove Zone need to improve on?” It has been on my mind lately and I have been studying out in my mind! I knew that Zone Conference was going to have the Spirit strong enough to get my answer. The answer to the question I got was help the Zone develop the faith to Baptize! It totally sounded like PMG (Preach My Gospel) develop the faith, chapter 9 to find, but instead of 'finding' its 'baptizing'.

 Elder Berry and I are going to plan a Zone Training and try to give a training based of developing the faith to baptize! I’m super excited! This zone already has 6 individuals with a date who are praying about their date! And 5 others who has accepted and ready to be baptized on their date! I know God will give them the right answer.

 We had the opportunity to do exchanges with Elder Snow and Elder Henry. I was with Elder Henry who is from Spanish Fork, Utah.  He is a good hardworking missionary. We actually were able to get two less active YSA member to church this Sunday because of our efforts. I committed him to study diligence in PMG and to be as diligent as possible throughout his whole mission!

 Elder Berry and I are continually trying our best to be there for our zone and help them in any way possible. Elk Grove Zone will develop the faith to baptize and their efforts will be blessed because of it! Some highlights from the week was watching the meteor shower that happened this week! It was pretty cool! Some of the stars were hard to see with all the city lights.

 I saw Isabel Mariano this week. I dropped off a gift to her from Sister Hogge. It was cool to see her! I saw Aaron Pierce at church but failed to get a blanked my mind! That kid is so funny! We played some 'beat ya teach ya' this week at the church with some nonmembers! They brought some really good kids! It was fun...I still didn’t lose but it was best competition I have had out here! 

 We were driving down the street one day and Elder Berry loves to parallel people on the road. This time he paralleled some girls and they saw us and slammed on their brakes just to play along. The girl then floored it after we slowed down and almost hit the car in front of her so she swerved into our lane and then almost hit the car in front of her again so she swerved into the suicide lane and almost hit the car trying to turn in the suicide lane so she swerved into the next lane on the opposite side of the road. She then almost hit a Police car head on and then swerved all the way back onto the right side of the road. The police car turned around and pulled her over so quick! I literally thought I was going to see a huge crash happen. It was a crazy day! 

 With love,
Elder Nelson

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Elder Nelson in Elk Grove- his hometown!

Hello Everybody,

This week was a roller coaster let me tell ya! First YSA work and tracking down young adults is a very hard thing to do. They have school and work and sleep all the time! It looks like I already know what my life is going to be like when I get home!

Elder Berry and I have spent most of the week getting to know each other and setting goals for our Zone and Companionship! Literally this was the first week of the transfer so not a whole lot of meetings or crazy activities yet. The highlight of the week had to be Stake Conference!

Ok I will try and list off all the families that swarmed me...I mean came up and talked to me this week! The Foxes, Potts, Mullens, Haas, Jenson, Stephenson’s, Busch’s, Bishop and President Hogge and I'm blanking on a few more! It was good to see everyone! Everyone said I was tall and all grown up! I actually hope I grow a couple more I can’t be all the way grown up yet!

We met at Bishop Hogge’s house twice this week! Both times he asked about home and how my family was doing! I thought it was awesome! I can tell he wants to just ask a bunch of questions but keeps it on purpose for us missionaries! He is a great man and great Bishop! We live in apartments off Bruceville! So very familiar spot and I know my way around town as if I lived here or something!

I think highlight of the week was teaching a new investigator. He has met with missionaries before but this time he is a lot more committal. We feel like this could be his time to enter the gateway! He was unable to come to conference for actual legit family problems so we know he wasn't actually flaking on us! I’m pumped to be teaching him and hopefully something amazing will happen with him! Elder Nelson is doing great out here! Everywhere we drive I am just yelling saying “Hey I remember that place, or Hey I have been there!” My poor companion I bet he is sick of me pointing at everything and yelling at it! Anyways I got some pictures to share! We had a Zone Activity today! We each came with little minute to win it games! We all played at Elk Grove Park! This week was good. Hopefully this upcoming week is just as awesome!

Elder Nelson

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Transferred to the YSA ward!!

Hey Family and Friends,

This week for sure had its ups and downs. First the down side, Elder Toki is officially home and I will miss the fun we had together. He was for sure one of my favorite companions! Transfers this week as a single Zone Leader was very busy and tiring! It was fun though trying to balance 18 missionaries and when and where they are all getting transferred to!

So quick update on transfers.... President Hymas called me and told me I was getting transferred! They made a lot of changes this transfer! The Fijian Ward will get two new missionaries in that ward! President Hymas call to me when like this. “Elder Nelson the Lord has called you to go will be serving the Cosumnes River YSA Ward in the Elk Grove Zone!” For I second, I was confused and wasn't sure what he meant by going home but when I finally understood I accepted the call and jumped out of the park car I was in a ran like 800 miles in circles! I was screaming and dancing and really just acting like a freak! IM PUMPED, YOUNG EG BOY IS SERVING IN ELK GROVE!! It’s good to be home!

My new companion is Elder Berry! He is from Rexburg Idaho. He went to the same High school and played on the same team as Elder Anderson, one of my last companions (Madison High). We are hoping this will be a pump-up transfer and that we will get a lot done in YSA work. The YSA ward covers two stakes! The Elk Grove Stake and the Sacramento Stake. The Sister Training Leaders, STLs, cover the Elk Grove Stake side of the boundaries and we cover the Sacramento Stake boundaries. So really my proselyting area didn't change but the people I am preaching the gospel to has!

Let me tell you a little story about yesterday our first day in YSA work! So, by the time transfers were all done and I got all unpacked it was dinner time! We ate dinner at Chick-fil-a and then went out. Not a lot of success most of the night. The first door I knock for a potential YSA investigator was also the first door that opened for us that night, it was around 8pm! Just imagine this right, 8pm, crazy day, finally someone opens, and I get to share the gospel with them!! was a very attractive Latino girl, and boy oh boy, I couldn't say one word.... finally, when I was done being in LaLa Land we actually got a return appointment and gave her a Book of Mormon! Elder Nelson needs to focus up and not get stuck in LaLa Land again. I learned a good lesson my first night out! I will be better prepared to see who in inside of these YSA houses! I am doing great, I have a new fire for the work, and know that this church and gospel are true! It’s time for me to play some basketball now!

The happy missionary,

Elder Nelson!

Monday, October 2, 2017

Transfer coming next week...

Hey Family!

This week was a meeting packed week!  We had MLC, General Conference, and Elder Toki’s departing interview. I remember when Elder Toki and I got together we were thinking this upcoming week was never going to happen.   I never thought Elder Toki leaving was going to happen, but it is here! We will work super hard this week to help him finish strong.  MLC was great.  I feel like sometimes missionaries forget whose name is on their name tag and forget that most of the guidelines/questions people have they can answer themselves.  

My all-time favorite talk was from Elder Anderson. He finished General Conference with some fire. Elder Bednar is always my favorite but Elder Anderson knocked it out of the park. This General Conference was powerful...we need to be prepared for Satan to try and match that. Stay strong to the faith and just like Henry B Eyring and Russel M. Nelson said “SURROUND YOURSELF WITH THE BOOK OF MORMON”. God preserves his people so we need to stay on his side!

This upcoming week will be a sad one but I learned a lot from Elder Toki! I will have to jump in with another companionship for the weekend...I will be a lone wolf by myself.  Transfer calls are this Saturday and I get to do them by myself because I will be the only Zone Leader. Everyone is calling me the Zone Emperor! Haha! The weather out here in SacTown is beautiful! I love it here...I think I will stay here after my two years and never come home...anyways!

We did a huge Church tour at the Seasons building. It wasn't as successful as we thought but a lot of good things happened. Lots of investigators came and they all felt the spirit and learned what the church is all about.  Well I’m too lazy to write more I’m sorry!

Elder Nelson