Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Sorry I am sending this so late!

Things have been crazy the past few days and i did not have a second to email yesterday, so sorry this is late, but i will do my best to get my whole past week in this email. OnTuesday we spent pretty much the whole day at the mission home working on transfers, it is insane how time consuming it can be and how much it changes, by tuesday night we thought we had it all pretty much figured out but right now the board looks very different. Its crazy but really good, the spirit is always present and i am confident that in the end everyone will be where they are meant to be. We spent the night in our area, we met with our ward mission leader, and were able to a less active. Wednesday was pretty much more of the same, transfers threw the day and then working in our area at night. OnThursday we also met with President and he had us put together a power point for him and then we drove down to Medford (3 hr) because President wanted us to go down to their district meetings. We got there at about 9 and then we split up and i went with the Zone Leaders in the Central Point zone. Central point and Medford were one zone when i was there but a few months ago they split. The Zone Leaders are really awesome missionaries, one was in my zone for a while (Elder Woestman) and we really got along so it was cool to be with him again. The next morning (Friday) i went to their district meeting, and then after i went to with the missionaries in Ashland to contact a referral that Aunt Becca gave me of someone they know who lives there, I was really exited to talk to them but sadly they were not home so i left a note saying i had been there but i was only down for the day and that other missionaries will be trying back later. I  have not heard from them yet but i hope for the best there. Thanks for the referral Aunt Becca! After that we drove back down and worked in our area, we immediately started tracting because we felt like we really needed to find some new people, but we only had 20 minutes before our dinner appointment, we went to a street that we had both previously seen and felt we needed to knock it. We started knocking and the first two doors no body opened, then we knocked on another door and a 8 year old boy opened the door. We asked him if his parents were home and he called for his but stayed standing there. As soon as his Mom came to the door he pointed at us and said "I want to go to a church." We started talking to her and she was friendly but did not seem super interested, we started talking to her about the Book of Mormon and how much it blesses our lives. We are taught as missionaries to always talk to people about their families and how the gospel can bless families, so i asked her what her concerns were raising a child in the world today. She talked about how she is concerned with all the negative influences that were not here when she was growing up. After talking about that i opened up to Alma 56 when it talks about the stripling warriors and how their mothers had taught them and how because of there mothers faith, we gave a background on the story and then read with her verses 47-48. We bore our testimonies on how the book of Mormon blesses our lives and how we can learn from the stories in it. We left her with the Book of Mormon and committed her to read that chapter, and set a time to come back and teach her more. Our appointment is tomorrow (Wednesday) and we stooped by today to make sure she was still planning on it and its ago, so we are very exited. On Saturday we went up to Salem (the north most part of our mission and Oregon's capital.) Its was cool to be up there cuz i had never been to Salem before. President had them move their district meetings to Saturday so he could attend and see how the how everyone is doing so he could have a better idea for transfers. He ended up getting caught up in some other stuff and was not able to go so we went instead. After the district meeting we went on a couple hour exchange with the Zone Leaders there. The Zone Leaders cover a ward that was just created right before transfers and they are really struggling because the ward is so caught up in everything else that missionary work is one of the last priorities. They wanted us to come in so we could talk with them about what to do with the area and then split up and try to find some people. It was kinda scary going in because we knew that they were expecting us to help fix their problem, and they were definitely expecting to find some new investigators as we split up and tracted. We felt like if we did not find anyone it would be super depressing for them, and they would not know how they could make things work. So we were praying really hard that our finding would be successful. And low and behold we both found new investigators from tracting for Elder Adams and I it was on the last door we knocked. We woke this guy up from his nap but he actually nice, and we talked to him about the Book of Mormon. Lately i have been studying and practicing how to really introduce the Book of Mormon and give them a good understanding and a excitement to read it, so I have been studying the title page and trying to be able to teach each point that it covers in a natural way. We were able to do that with him and it really seemed to peak his interest and he accepted a return appointment. It is incredible to see how the God grants unto us according to our desires, every time i have gone out finding full of faith and very prayer full i have almost always been led to someone, but when i go out just to pass time or do it only because i know i should, I find very few prepared people. Sunday was a pretty normal Sunday, and we had to spend some time getting ready for some meetings this week. Something not so normal is at 7pm we picked up a missionary who extended and his extension was up (Elder Larsen.) Elder Larsen was my first district leader and it was fun to be with him again. Yesterday (Monday) We started the day with numbers and then we took Elder Larsen to the airport. It seems I have been to the airport a lot lately its becoming a regular thing, When its actually time for me to go i guarantee i am going to go to the airport and not fully grasp that i am actually leaving cuz i am so use to going there and droping people off. After that we had our regular Monday morning meeting with President, which turned into working on transfers and then him giving us somethings he wanted done that night, one of them being editing a power point for him. That kept us pretty busy till we had a dinner with a active member and a resent convert, and after the dinner we started the new member lessons, we taught the restoration and it went really well. Today (Tuesday) was probably one of the strangest days of my mission that that's because it was sisters conference. President planned this sisters conference two weeks ago and we weren't sure if he was going to want us there, but we did not want to ask him because we were afraid then we would ask us to come, and we really did not want to. But on Sunday he went over with us what he wanted taught during it and he informed us we would be attending the whole thing and training a good chunk of it. It was really weird being at the mission home with all sisters, and it was even weirder training them all, but it all worked out and it went well. 
So now i am going to include any random stuff that i think you guys might want to know. Elder Hackett is great, we really get along, he is a incredible teaching and is always on top of things. Our apartment is right between the mission home and the office about three minutes away from either one, its actually a Duplex, and we even have a garage, which is pretty sweet. The office has Photo Shop on the computers and i have actually been able to use it quite a bit. I used it for making some church invites and also on some slides for a powerpoint that president had us make. I really love using Photoshop and its fun that i get to use my photoshop skills here. Transfers are next Monday so i probably wont be able to email until Tuesday or Wednesday. President has not yet chosen who the new AP is going to be he has 3 he keeps switching between and they are all amazing missionaries and i would love to be with anyone of them. Well that's all i got for this time. I love you all. The Restoration is a real thing, and the restored gospel blesses lives more than imaginable.
Elder Covey 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Transfers are just around the bend, which makes my life pretty crazy!

I dont know if i have mentioned this it in any of my past emails but this transfer is only 5 weeks long (usually 6.) they are changing our transfer schedule because of all the new missionaries and the shorted MTC time, so this one is 5 weeks but after this transfer they will be 6 weeks long again. Since its a shorted transfer it means that transfers are right around the bend, and that makes things really busy for us. In President Young's office in the mission home he has a huge white board and on the white board are there are lots of different missionary cards. Each missionary has a card and on the card it has there picture, name, when they came out, what leadership positions they have had and how many transfers they have been in the area. The cards are all organized by Zone and there area and zone are written next to them. 

This board is called "The Transfer Board" This board is becoming a bigger and bigger part of our lives as transfers get closer. To figure out a whole transfer, where everyone is going and who there companion is, is a huge process, and it takes a lot of time, so President likes to start early. This week we have had a few meetings with President regarding transfers, we start with a prayer that we will be led by the spirit and then we started moving people. President will usually asks us questions about a certain missionaries, how they are doing, or who they would work well with, then he moves it on the board. With every move it effects a lot so it is a very time consuming thing, and final decisions of where people go will not be made till just days before the transfers, for now we try to listen to the spirit and put these elders where they need to be and then when its time to make final decisions president will pray specifically about the different places we have people, and with out us he will make the final decisions. 

So Elder Hacketts and I's main role is have all the info needed about each missionary and area, and to give good suggestions. In order to know about the missionaries we do a lot of calling missionaries. We call zone leaders often and ask them how missionaries in their zone are doing and we companionship's also to see how they are doing. Transfers are super stressful but super exiting and i am exited for things to experience it all. We will probably spend about 20+ hours of working on the transfer board withe President for this transfer alone. Okay, glad i got that explained so you all will know what i am talking about when I say "worked on transfers" or "transfer board." 
         I guess i will started going threw my week a little bit. On Tuesday we had DL training withe the North half of the mission, it went great, much like the first DL training we really think it is going to help district meetings a lot. 

On Wednesday  we drove with president Young to Bend Oregon. Bend is in eastern Oregon and it is very different from the rest of Oregon. It is pretty much like Utah weather, its the desert. We have two zones out in that area. We had a specialized training with the two zone from 1-3 it went pretty good, I am still getting use to this be ready to teach what every prince, whenever president calls on us but I feel I am getting better. After The meeting we went on exchanges, I went with the Zone Leaders in Bend. It was cool to be in Bend I have heard a ton about it since i have been here but this was my first time actually going there. We saw a lot of snow on our drive over and it made me grateful i dont serve around a place with a lot of snow cuz when we drove threw it really made me want to ski. The whole drive i was day dreaming about skiing.

Thursday morning we drove back and right when we got back we got in our car and drove out to the coast to go on exchanges there and go to thier Zone Training Meeting (taught by the ZL's.) It was cool to go back to Coos Bay, it kinda felt like i never left. I went with the Coos Bay Elders, Elder Charleson and Elder Benard. Elder Charleson was my companion for about 3 weeks almost a year ago, and we really got along so it was cool to be with him again. It was interesting being back in the Coos Bay ward. It was really cool cuz i got to go by and Visit Rebbeca Walters, it was great to see her again, she is doing very good and has such a strong testimony. It was funny seeing Members in the Coosbay Ward cuz they assumed that i still was in the North Bend ward, so i just played along with that. 

Friday we went to Coos Bay's ZTM and then drove back to Eugene. We worked on transfers with President and then spent a little time in our area at night. 

On Saturday we were able to spend a lot of time in our area which was really good. We found a cool new investigator tracting and were able to set some appointments with some part member families. 

On Sunday we had a great lesson with a part member family we are working with. their names are Mike and Kandice Wyatt. Mike has been a member all his life and is a classic case of grew up in the church but never really gained a testimony so he fell away once he left home. We feel like past missionaries have really been focusing on trying to teach Kandice and not really giving any attention to Mike when they teach. We really feel it is important for Mike to gain a testimony or else it will never really stick for Kandice. The lesson was really good we read a chapter with them and then asked Mike if he believed that the BOM was true. He said he was not fully sure so we taught about it the BOM and how it blesses life and challenged him to read and pray. We had his home teacher there also who just got assigned this last week, and he was a huge help. They are a great couple (Wyatts) and i am very exited to continue to teach them. 

Today (Monday) has been a pretty common P day as in we did not really have a P day. We did our regular Monday morning numbers and meeting with President, and then we had lunch and helped the office for a while. There is a missionary around us who has a Costco card, so we took them and went to Coscto to shop which was pretty cool. Then at 4 we had a appointment with a returning less active Young Man (Branden) who is dating a active member. Brandon is a awesome kid, he was baptized into a less active family so he has never really been in the church, but he has been coming for the last while and has recognized how it has blessed his life. We are teaching him the lessons and it is all pretty new to him. We are putting a lot of special effort in helping him gain a strong testimony, our goal is to get him committed to go on a mission once the time comes! 

My testimony of the Book of Mormon has really been strengthened on my mission. I love sharing it with people, its always the first thing i try to talk about when tracting or street contacting, and with each of my investigators i make sure they understand what it is, what it means, and how much it can help them. The Book of Mormon is truly the word of God, it has helped me so much, the peace I get from reading it and the helps me so much. The knowledge i get from it blesses me also, i have learned so much from it, and it exited me to think that day after day i get to share it with others. I love you all and hope you have a amazing week! 

Fearless via Faith

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Another Crazy Week

It has been a very good week with a lot going on. I will try to hit all the highlights. 

On Tuesday we rode down with Pres and sister Young to Medford for a district leader specialized training. It went from 10am-2pm. The training went very well. We taught mostly about district meetings and exchanges. On the way we made a outline for the meeting with president but we did not decide who would teach what between us and President, so it was kinda off the cuff. When President wanted to teach something he would just take over and jump in and when he wanted us to teach something he would just turn the time over to us. It makes it very important to know all that we want to get across, cuz you dont know what part your going to be expected to teach. After the training Elder Hackett and I split up and went on exchanges. I went to Central point with a new missionary (Elder Francinbery) and his trainer (Elder TIdwell.) It was a great exchange, it was weird to be back in the Medford area and around the temple. I have been very impressed with the skill level of the new missionaries, on the exchange Elder Francenbery was a great teaching and very good at talking to people on the door step. 

Wednesday morning we drove back to Eugene with Pres and Sister Young. Once we got back we had a huge conference call with all the trainers and new missionaries. And after that we started on transfers with President. Transfers are crazy, it is so complex because you have this board with 200 missionaries pictures on it and you have to decide which ones stay, which ones go, where they go, who gets leadership assignments and so forth. It has been surprising to see how much President trusts and relies on his assistants for transfers. He expects us to know how each companionship is doing, and he will always ask us what we think in the situation,  but of course he would never make a action we suggest without praying about it and getting that confirmation. Wednesday night we were able to spend  a little time in our area. We had a successfully visit with a less active laddie named Jenice Duke. She was exited to meet with us. We are going to be teaching her the lessons, and trying to get her back to church. 

Thursday was ZLC. We had already been preparing ZLC for the past week, so we were pretty prepared. We decided to make it about 90 min longer than usual so because we had a lot we wanted to get across. It went really well, it was a lot like DL training we weren't sure when President was going to call on us to teach the next item. Over all ZLC went good. On Friday's we choose a different district meeting to go to each week, and this week we decided to go to Corvallis for District Meeting because they have a lot of new missionaries in that Zone. It was AWESOME to go back to Corvallis. I love that town! I got to see Elder Kwok again, which was great. He is doing really good he is finishing up training and just got made the District leader. After District Meeting we drooped by the institute for Friday Forum (Lunch) because we knew that Xingyu would be there. It was cool to go back to the institute and see some of the members. It was especially great to see Xingyu. He is doing better than ever. He has quite smoking and is very close to baptism. 

Friday night and Saturday we got to spend a lot of time in our area. It was really good we picked up a few new investigators and were able to teach some less actives. 

Sunday was a good day, except for the fact that the 3 people who committed to come to church bailed. After Church we tracted and tried to get as much proselyting in before the Super Bowl started. Then we had dinner with a member and went back to our apartment and did weekly planning (usually done on Thursdays but we had ZLC) then we made some more visits after. 

Today has been a pretty crazy day. We woke up early and came to the office and did numbers, and then we went to the mission home to have our meeting with President and he told us about all the crazy stuff that had happened in the last 12 hours. I dont know how mission Presidents do it, they have so much responsibility. 

These past two weeks have been really good and very different from the rest of my mission. I have loved being able to be around President and Sister Young a lot. They are so funny together, every once in a while they disagree on things and the way go about it is hard to describe but is really funny. President and Sister Young are the best, I love them. I will say I have never been more tired in my life than these past 2 weeks, but thats a good thing! Even though I am so tired I have been very blessed with being able to get up easily in the mornings, I usually pop right up even if we are waking up at 5:30, the tiredness hits me around 2 and does not really go away until i go bed, but when i am really tired i will usually take a 5 min power nap and i feel much better. I remember at the start of my mission I would go to bed exited to wake up, because i was just so exited for the next day. After a while that lessened, but in the past two weeks it has come back, and I love it! The Church is True! I absolutely love teaching about the restoration, it is so amazing. I love you all

                Elder Covey