Baton Rouge Louisiana Temple

Baton Rouge Louisiana Temple

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Where'd that 6 weeks go?

Today was another extremely busy transfer day. We didn't even get out of the office until almost 7 pm, thus missing the 5:30 temple session. Not good. Unfortunately we didn't have a choice. I'll just let the pictures do the talking for the day.
The New Iberia Sisters--Sister Encizo and Sister Vasquez--Sister V is one of our Spanish Sisters. She's now comps with Sister E, an English Sister who wants to learns Spanish. Good for her! I hope Sister V is a great teacher?:)
Elder Howald and Elder Joubert--they might be new companions, but half of  the New Orleans Spanish Zone was cut off from the transfer board I brought home.
Elder Browning and Elder Decker--the Baker Elders
Elder Rees, one of our new missionaries, and his 1st companion, Elder Nield will be serving in the Slaughter Branch.  Elder R is from Cedar City, his brother was the case worker for one of the Jordan's little children in foster care, and his dad spoke at the Enoch West Stake (our home Stake) RS Conference recently. Small world!
Same faces, different setting--Sister Call has been in Plaquemine and Sister King in BR. They're now companions in Plaquemine.
Sister Truchard, Sister Neilson, going to Gonzales, and Sister Hoskins and Sister Biver who'll be returning home tomorrow after serving diligently and successfully. We'll really miss them.
Sister Honey and Sister Greer in Opelousas and Sister Earl and Sister Arntz--Sister Training Leaders for the New Orleans and New Orleans Spanish Zone--4 super Sister missionaries!
Elder Romero (I'm told he's really fun and quite a clown), Elder McMurray and  Elder Cooley--two of the New Orleans Spanish Elders
Elder Smith and Pres. Hansen--Elder S's companion is Elder Romero in the above pic. They're in Jefferson. I think that's a bike area so they'll stay in shape:)
Sister Palmer will be training Sister Burns, one of our new missionaries. They're Spanish Sisters serving in the West Bank.
Elder Toone and Elder Olschewski--the very fun Mandeville Elders
Elder Madsen with homebound Elder McCutcheon who'll be going home tomorrow.
Sister Black and her brand new companion, Sister Whitney, who's from Long Beach. She's in the same Stake but not the same Ward as Bronson & family.
Sister Hafford and Sister Butterfield are the Prairieville Sisters and also the BR Sister Trainers. It'll be nice to have Sister H closer to the office so we can get to know her a little better. She's served in New Orleans and Denham Springs Zones, but now she's almost local.
Elder Murhula, one of the APs, and Elder Lauper
Elder Smiley and Elder Smith--After serving about 6 months in Natchitoches, Elder Smith will be in Oakdale with Elder Smiley and the Hastings, Oakdale's favorite Senior Couple.
It seems like I have mostly Spanish missionaries today! Here's Elder , Elder Passey, Elder Page, Elder Joubert and Elder Horrocks
Two California Elders--Elder Peltzer and Elder Glauser will be opening a new Spanish area in Denham Springs.
Sister Ng, one of the new Temple Square Sisters, will go to Leesville and Sister Abercrombie who'll be a new Sister Trainer in Albany, DS Zone
Elder Sabey serves in Many and his companion is not in this picture. Elder Smith and Elder Romero from Jefferson.
Elder Madsen will be training Elder Bown. This should be a dynamite companionship!
Elder Jean Louis and his new comp and Zone Leader, Elder Mills
Elder Cole, a BR North Elder, is now comps with Elder Baker who used to be in Plaquemine.
Elder Caldwell and Elder Hale will be opening a Spanish area in Chalmette, east of New Orleans. Yes, Elder Hale is from Hawaii. What gave it away?
Elder Allen and Elder Dobie--the LaPlace Elders
Elder Bown and Elder Madsen at the office
We had to say good-bye to Elder Casillas so he could bolster the Spanish ranks with his comp, Elder Jensen.
Notes from the Transfer Meeting
Sister Hansen ~ Missionaries need to learn to not be self-critical. In every section of "Adjusting to Mission Life" self-criticism is addressed. Focus on what you need to do today. Ask yourself, "How can I make today the best day possible?"
President Hansen ~ Ships in the ocean have barnacles that grow on them. They're small, hard shelled animals that attach themselves to the hull or bow and, as they build up, their weight causes ships to slow down--sometimes to half their speed. So the ship has to be put in dry dock to have barnacles removed. Portland, Oregon became a great port because it was discovered that barnacles would die in the fresh water of the port. By the time the ships sailed to Portland and unloaded their cargo the barnacles had died and they could sail without the extra weight.  

Sometimes we get barnacles that weigh us down. What's our port? Having the Spirit, being obedient, creating an environment where the Spirit can be. Elder Bednar said that "we're not her for planting, but we're here for the harvest." We're here to establish the Church in Louisiana--in each city and town where we work. Each of you is responsible for an area. Every day you need to decide what's good, better or best for that city. 

We're starting a new tradition in the Mission. This will be a time for the whole mission to pray together for one purpose and for heaven to hear our prayers. It will be called "Fridays for Families." Every Friday at 8 am we will pray to find families that we can find and teach and bring into the Church.

Parting words and advice from our returning missionaries:
Sister Biver ~ Don't mess with the "greenies." You have a big responsibility to be teach them correctly. Decide today that each companion will be your best friend. Never forget that truth is truth, but only pure truth can be found in the Gospel.
Sister McEntire ~ I've loved all 18 months, every opportunity to love and serve and am grateful for the changes I can see in myself. It's been difficult, but I've grown. Heavenly Father knows us better that we know ourselves and what's best for us.
Sister Hockemier ~ Heavenly Father loves each of us. A mission teaches tat He loves us so much. "You can do hard things with Christ as a Companion." This is on a necklace I've world every day. You'll do more good than you'll know. You may not see the fruits of your labors.
Sister Hoskins ~ Heavenly Father loves us and is there for us. He has a plan. The Brother of Jared, and his people commended themselves to God while they came across the sea in their small boats. We have to do that on a mission. Sometimes we're covered by mountainous waves, but He will be there to steer us. My advice is to love your companions. Take one day at a time. You can do it!
Sister Monk ~ Grateful for my mission and the amazing people in LA. Matthew 19:26 says that with God all things are possible. No matter what you go through you can have success if you rely on Heavenly Father.
Sister Astle ~ This is one of the best missions in the world. I was so blessed to come here and meet you. A mission is one of the most rewarding things you'll ever do. As missionaries we sometime get down on ourselves so remember Hymn #249 "Know This That Every Soul Is Free." Each of us is incredibly loved by Heavenly Father. The power of the Atonement changes lives. 
Sister Paige ~ "The Clock Man" by Shel Silverstein "How much will you pay for an extra day?" The clock man asked the child. "Not one penny," the answer came, "For may days are as many as smiles."
"How much will you pay for an extra day?" He asked when the child was grown. "Maybe a dollar or maybe less, for I've plenty of days of my own." "How much will you pay for an extra day?" He asked when the time came to die. "All of the pearls in all of the seas, and all of the stars in the sky." Enjoy the time you have on your mission.
Sister Davis ~ Heavenly Father loves us and has called us here for a purpose. Through the Atonement we can become better. 
Sister Smith ~ Heavenly Father loves you with an infinite love and always will. He gives you companions for a reason. They will change you. I'm forever grateful for the time I've been here and what my companions taught me.
Sister Worthington ~ Things I wish I knew before my mission. 1-This mission was designed specifically for me. 2-Heavenly Father would put me in difficult situations to help me. 3-I'd meet people here I knew before. People I may not have associated with somewhere else have become my friends and family here. 
Elder Gosch ~ I've been blessed with the chance to get to know and love so many of you. Quote from Pres. Monson to the Mission Presidents' Seminar 2013--"You may sometimes be tempted to say, 'Will my influence make any difference? I am just one. Will my service affect the work that dramatically?' I testify to you that it will. You will never be able to measure your influence for good."
I've come to know the Atonement is real. You can change. The people you teach may not know about the Atonement. We know and can teach it to others.
Elder Hall ~ 1-Treasure the Book of Mormon. It changes lives. There's a power there that can't be found anywhere else and you will come to know the Savior. 2-Treasure your mission. This is a once in eternity experience. It'll end quickly. 3-If you have a car, treasure it! I've been on a bike for 2 years!
Elder McCutcheon ~ Don't beat yourself up. That gives Satan more power over you. Think about what you're doing on a mission. I've been asked what's motivated me on my mission.I've loved my mission. It's hard to go home. I have a picture of Jesus that says "Do you love me?" The love I have for the Savior and what He's done for me has motivated me. If you're discouraged, think about the Savior. Let your mission change your life.
Elder Perazzo ~ Love everyone! As you work on your mission you'll lay up treasures in heaven. Like a body in motion stays in motion, on a mission, if you're working you'll stay working.
Elder Castro ~ Three scriptures: John 17:3 Get to know God; Mosiah 5:13 How can you know a master you haven't served? Mosiah 2:17 We are in the service of God. Service has been incredible on my mission. It changes hearts. Utilize it. You're here to serve and teach. Teaching is how we feed his sheep.
Elder Olsen ~ Be yourself. Be a missionary, but be yourself. God didn't call the qualified. He qualifies who He calls. A quote from President Wall: "First love them, then serve them, then teach them." This won't be easy, but it'll be worth it.
Elder Barker ~ It's okay to be excited to go home. That doesn't mean you didn't love your mission. Don't judge. It'll prevent you from loving people. Only God knows enough to judge. Moroni 9:6 Let us labor diligently that we may conquer the enemy of righteousness. Alma 31:38 Offer prayers that are heartfelt--prayers of faith. 
Elder Beach ~ We wear our name tags over our hearts so they go in our hearts. This is a gospel of change. It requires more. Be the missionary your mom thinks you are!

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