Monday, July 17, 2017

I Feel Like I Did Here What I Was Sent Here To Do And That Is All I Could Hope For

Well Hello again!  

Its kinda weird to think that this is my last time emailing back home! Its weird to think that i am all packed up and ready to go to the mission home later today. When people ask what its like to go home and how i feel. I always tell them i am really excited but I am not ready. That I am going to be a terrible normal person. So i guess that we will see how it all goes. Earlier this week it really hit me that i am actually going home but right now it doesnt really feel too much. Its so close and i am packed but it doesnt really feel real.

This last week was a pretty good one. We didnt end up teaching M-- again. They were never home! the wife was there a few times and the older sons were. But i guess they went to Spokane so they will have to find them later. But yes Elder Winuea is staying in this area and he is going to be the district leader! He is not too excited but he is going to do really good. We had a last lesson with B-- and said bye. Her surgery got pushed back to this week so this week she said that she is going to have a lot of time to read in the Book of Mormon. She is really solid for baptism. She is on date for August 19 the same day as her mom who lives in Richland and they want to be baptized together. They are both working together now to to quit smoking! She is so awesome! M--'s mom has been in town and he doesnt get to see her much so we had a lesson or two with him but he wasnt able to come to church yesterday. He is still doing really good though. He still wants to be baptized. We found a new investigator J--! her kids were going crazy and she was super frustrated. It was one of the hardest lessons to teach. We just wrapped it up fast and we set a time to come back tomorrow after her kids are in bed! so it will be really good for them.  It is awesome to see how this area in the last transfer has changed so much. I am glad that we were able to work hard and get a lot done. I feel like i did here what i was sent here to do and that is all i could hope for.

Well I am super excited to see all of you here soon!! I am also excited to hear about all the fun things you guys have been doing and also to just have a great time with you. sorry if I am weird when i come back!

I love you all! It is going to be weird to be home but it is going to be good. sorry it is so short! but i guess i will just have to tell you more when i get back. So there isnt to much to complain about i guess!

See you all!!!

Elder Mortensen

Saturday we had a bunch of gift cards and went to dairy queen! 
We come back to our apartment and traded some ties then we celebrated! 
It was such a great transfer! i loved it here.

Kennewick District

 Service Project

Elders serving in Kennewick

Monday, July 10, 2017

It's Amazing to Think That A Guy While Growing Up His Parents Taught Him To Not Believe In God, Now Is Having All These Experiences And Know There Is A God

Hey again!

its crazy to think i am where i am with my mission. It has been really amazing these last few weeks and lots of good things have happened. Its weird to think how close it is to ending and its even weirder to feel it. I love my mission.

This last week we had another lesson with M--. It was a lot better than the first. The first time there was a ton of distractions but this time the only distraction was a car crash right in the middle of the lesson! we were out side and we couldnt see it but it was just around the corner. Its crazy to see how many times there is a distraction right before you talk about Joseph smith and the first vision! It seems like its almost every time! But it was a very good lesson. The spirit was for sure there. We invited him to be baptized and he said he would. We invited him to be baptized to a date but he said he would like to talk to his wife about it first. That he usually likes to talk to his wife about things like this. It was kinda funny. But we invited him to share the Restoration Pamphlet with his wife and he said he would. We had a time to come back and teach them both this last Sunday. We got out of dinner late, then we had to walk to their house. So its was later and they weren't home. So we are going by sometime this week to teach them. I am really excited for that. We had a great lesson with B--! We taught her the first half of the Plan of Salvation and she really liked that also. She did find her Book of Mormon! and she only read a little bit in it. We rode our bikes up to her house friday and went to invite her to church and read a little of the Book of Mormon with her. She was not doing very good. She has blocked arteries in her legs and she said that she has like no energy and she is short of breath. So we didnt teach her because she has just been spending time in bed. She has had a headache so she hasnt been reading. She said she was going in to the ER Tuesday if she doesn't feel better. So we are going to get in contact with her again today and she how she is doing. She is awesome just her health is not so great right now. M-- is doing awesome! So he was supposed to be baptized this week but he needed to get married first. Last week he was set on getting married and baptized. The last few weeks i have just been thinking i dont know how it is going to happen so fast. But he wants it so we will work with him towards it. He has been praying to know if he should get married right now then get baptized. But he felt he needs to wait. He is praying a lot and has been reading. He says whenever he reads and prays he feels something come into his heart then hears a voice. he said it makes him feel clean. he was praying if he needed to do this right now and he said he heard the words "wait my son, your time will come". he said it felt good but he still wanted to be baptized. He wanted our help to know if it was from God or Satan. We talked to him of how he felt and taught him how to recognize it as the spirit or not. He said it felt good and he was comfortable with that answer. It was really awesome to share that experience with him. The spirit was for sure their as we were talking about it. We talked about not pushing his baptism more and more. that it needs to happen and he understands that. He is just so solid! Its amazing to think a guy that growing up his parents taught him to not believe in God, now is having all these experiences and know there is a God.

So if your cant tell there is a ton of miracles happening and it was a super awesome week. Church was really awesome. In sacrament someone said one little thing and my thoughts just kept going. I was reading a talk this week called The answer is the Doctrine By Elder Bednar and it kinda blew my mind. During sacrament it just made sense and i understood it! i know there isnt lots of details in that, but for me it helps me know how we are cleansed by the spirit because we partake of the sacrament and how that allows the spirit to teach us more and more. how some things can only be learned b the spirit.

Well back home looks like there was a ton of fun stuff going on this last week! 4th of July we came in early at 6. We went and hungout with the other elders in our district and before you knew it stuff was flying everywhere. I guess they have some new nerf guns that shoot little balls so we had a major battle for the night. It was a good last holiday here!

I love you all!

Elder Mortensen

PS: thanks for always writing mom! you are the best. And yes you answered right for the indoor soccer! i will be a little rusty, but i guess thats alright.
I dont have any pictures of me, but here are some pretty cool pictures of the river!!

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

I Have Learned What The Spirit Feels Like And Have Lived In A Way To Become More Sensitive To It

Hello again!  

This week was also an awesome one. We did meet with B-- and M-- again! They are both doing really awesome! B-- has a son that has mental disabilities and he went and put her Book of Mormon away for her. So now she hasnt been able to find it. She said she didnt look too hard though. She has been reading the gospel Principles book and has really liked the things in that. We for sure want her to read the Book of Mormon so we said we would give her another one but she wanted to look for hers first. So we are going back probably like tomorrow to see if she found it. We taught her the first half of the Plan of Salvation. She really likes how all we do is centered on families. She is just doing really good. She believes all the things that we have taught her and is really excited for it all. She didnt come to church because her step brother was getting his leg looked at to see if they were going to have to amputate it and her mom wanted her to be there with her. So i guess that is an alright excuse. M-- has been doing really good also. He has read a little bit and has been praying! He believes the things we have taught him are true and is learning how the holy ghost feels for him. He says he really likes the way it makes him feel. He had to work this Sunday so didnt come to church, but he wanted to. He is going to be able to come next week he said. He is just doing really good too. We found this guy named M-- this week. He was a former investigator and really likes the things we teach. It was a pretty good lesson there were just lots of distractions. We are going back this week and plan to teach him more after. It was a good week of a lot of finding. That is what we are needing to do more of and find new people to teach. Its been really good the last couple of weeks. the area has changed a lot and we have seen lots of miracles. 

An answer that answers all three of your questions kinda come to the same answer. The biggest change, the thing that has made the biggest impact on my life and also the thing that strengthens my testimony all come back to learning how the Spirit talks to me and following it. I think this is the most important thing that anyone could learn. If we want Gods influence in our lives, that is what we must do. If we want to learn what God wants us to learn, thats what we have to do. If we want to be a tool in Gods hand, that is what we must learn. I have learned what the spirit feels like and have lived in a way to become more sensitive to it. I have also learned to always follow the first prompting. Lots of the time its hard to know if what comes to mind is from the spirit or just your own thoughts. But it doesn't matter. If its good, it is of God! In Elder Rasbands last talk he quoted Joseph Smith. It says something like if we follow the first prompting we will be right 9 times out of 10. so i have learned just do what feels right and to try to do it as soon as possible. From trying to do this i now know more of how god loves me and wants to be present in my life. If there was anything that i would tell someone to best prepare them for a mission or really for life, it would be learn how the spirit speaks for you. also to learn how to receive revelation especially through the Book of Mormon. There are a lot of things that have impacted me, but that is one of the biggest things. 

It is awesome to see all the things that have been going on this last week! It really is awesome how great of a experience Ali had. I think that is super awesome all the things that she has learned and even more awesome the things she has felt. It will always be a great thing for her in her life. 

The plans you talked about sound great. It will be a good time to be up there with all of them. Also on Sunday, those sound great also. I wont have much time to prepare a talk, but no worries, I was planning of winging it anyways!!! haha no, that dosent worry me. It will be enough time. I am excited to see you all. It is going to be a big change and really weird, but it will be good. I dont know how i am going to be at not being a missionary and trying to be a normal person, but i guess we will see. 

Thanks for the email!! i love you all!! I hope you have a great week!

Elder Mortensen

Elder Mortensen and Elder Winuea

Kennewick District.  We have logs of fun!

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

His Prayer Was So Simple And So Amazing


Its great to hear from you!!! Every time i get these pictures it reminds me of how much i love the mountains!! you have no idea how excited i am just to see mountains! Its crazy. But it looks like you all had a great week this last week. Its cool to hear of all the fun things that you all are doing. haha i like the picture with Dad and jaxsen. If dad gets his other bike fixed up and i was there and they tried to take that picture, i would probably be clear in the back rolling down the hill or something. I cant tell you how weird it is to get back on a bike. I never crashed but when i got here i was so bad at riding a bike! It was so weird. Its cool to hear a little about what ali is doing. She is in the same part of the world where Elder Winuea is from. I have heard a lot about that area of the world and it seems amazing.

This week was another week of miracles! I think the coolest thing that happened was when we found this lady named B--. So she called the mission office and was looking for some help with her yard. The mission office got a hold of some bishop in kennewick and he got a hold of us and said this lady needs some help with her yard and its even a chance to teach. So we rode our bikes to her house and talked to her. She showed us what she needs help with and we made a plan to go back monday to do it. We asked if we could share a message of Christ. She said she would love that. So we sat down outside and taught her. She is so awesome! She just took it all in. She said she was excited to read the book of Mormon. That she hasnt read her bible in the last few months and wanted to start reading it again so now she will start this. We Invited her to be baptized and she said yes! We invited her to be baptized on July 29th. It was a great lesson. We finished up and got on our way. We got a few blocks away down the hill and the thought came to me that we forgot to invite her to church. So i called to Elder Winuea and we decided we should go back. So we turned around and rode our bike back up the hill and invited her. She said she would love to come. She dosnt have a car so we said we would help her get a ride. So we got a ride and she came to all 3 hours of church and just had a great time! She said all the people were so nice. It was super awesome. It was a huge miracle how it all happened. 

We had a few lessons with M--. He is doing really good. The last lesson we had with him he took some huge steps. He was excited to show us what he read in the Book of Mormon and he found a journal and took notes! His prayer was so simple and so amazing. He said something along the lines of thanks for having the missionaries come back over to teach me. Thanks for the Book of Mormon. I will keep reading it and i will make you happy, Amen. When he finished the spirit just hit me and elder Winuea and we just kinda looked up and it took a second before we could say anything. It was an amazing lesson. He is also living the Word of Wisdom!! He said that he use to drink a lot. Then a few months ago he felt like he should read the bible one day so he did. Then he felt like he should stop drinking,  so he did. Right there. It is amazing to see how people are prepared little by little to receive our message.  It happens so much and its cool when we get to see just a little of how it works. 

we have been in contact with L--. She has had a few concerns come up. But she is still willing to meet with us and wants to learn.She is really hard to find home with all her treatments. Those keep her out of the house a lot. Then she never knows how she is going to feel after. 

Thank you for that quote. I really like it and really know that it is true. It is super awesome to be able to see in your life. I have been able to see it a lot this transfer and there is no way of explaining how amazing it is. 

I hope you all have a great week! I love you all!

elder Mortensen

sorry for no pictures this week. We are at the mission office because we had to talk to some of the office missionaries and try to get everything figured out for elder Winuea after his mission and there are lots of flash drives in the computer and i dont want to mess anything up. But next week! there will be some. 

Monday, June 19, 2017

Did Jesus Send You?


Wow! what a letter!! thanks for the letters each week. It always is fun to get them. It sounds like you are all having a lot of fun down there in Utah!! and i guess Ali in Samoa. I am sure it would be awesome to be on that trip even just on the Island. If you want to see a weird looking island look at one called Tarawa.  It is where Elder Winuea is from! a member was looking it up on his phone so it was kinda cool to see pictures of it. All the cool camping trips/youth conference look like a ton of fun. Its kinda weird that summer has started and all that kinda of stuff is already happening. It looks like a lot of fun.

This week was awesome! We got a lot of time to work! M-- is doing pretty good. we had a lesson planned but he ended up having to work. He just got a new job. But we go over and talked with him here and there. We also saw him riding our bikes down the road and stopped to talk to him. So He is doing pretty good. He has read a little bit in the Book of Mormon. We saw him yesterday and he said he would read that night and also tonight when we have a lesson with him tomorrow. So we are pretty sure he will get a little more reading done. He is just really humble and will do what he says he will.

We had a super cool Miracle this week. We were out knocking doors and looking for some part member families. There was one on this certain road we felt like we should go find right now. So we went and it was a duplex and we didnt know what one it was so we just knocked the first one. after a little this lady walked up behind us and said,  Who sent you here? We were like oh no, what is she going to say. We told here who we are. then she said, Did Jesus send you? then she told us we needed to come in. So we came in and she sat down and we talked to her. Her name is L--. She told us about the things that are happening in her life. She has Kidney failure and her son has this bone disease where his bones are super weak. the first time he broke his back was at the doctors when they asked him to touch his toes. He right now has it broke in 2 places. She said that she just doesnt know what to do. we talked to her about how the Gospel can bring peace into her life and how God, as we follow what he tells us, can bless us more then we can imagine. We taught part of the restoration also. As we were talking the spirit was so strong. She started crying. She said she has been praying for a sign of what she should do and she takes us coming that night as a sign. We invited her to be baptized. At first she was a little hesitant. We talked about how what she is feeling is the spirit and its how God talks to us. We talked more about why it is important and she later accepted to be baptized. It was such an amazing experience. Just to see God was leading us even when we didnt know it. That we were right where we needed to be right when we needed to be there.

Also knocking doors we saw this lady walk out and before we said anything she just went off on the crazy things that have been happening to her in her life. She has had a crazy last couple of months. Long story short, Her husband went crazy and attacked her with a knife. Her son saved her life and now she is disabled and has like 11 rods in her back. It took like 40 minutes. After she just looked at us and was like, So who are you? We told her we are missionaries, Then we shared a message that will bring her peace and comfort. She said that she could really use that. She said that her mom and some of her friends she works with were talking about how they have been meting with missionaries lately. how she is actually really interested in what we share. We were headed to another lesson and were already late so we didnt get to teach her much but she seemed really sincere. It was cool to see what just listening can do. We are going back tomorrow or the next day to teach her.

This week has just been a week of miracles! Its amazing to see what happens when you put some faith and hard work together to see all the things that can come from it. I feel like i have already grown a lot from being here. I have seen more of how the Lord really does lead us when we go out and try to do what he would have us to. In the morning we have been praying and telling God we are ready to listen, to help us be willing to follow what we feel. And we have seen a lot of miracles because of it.

The ward here is really good. It is pretty small though. We dont really fill the chapel hardly. We didnt eat much with members this last week because the list didnt get passed around, but this next we have one for everyday. so it will be good. The Bishop here is awesome! He is for sure a business man. That is how like half the ward is. There is a lot of money in this area. It is actually kinda crazy.

Well i really do hope you all have a great week! I Love you all!!!

Elder Mortensen

One more thing.  The ward mission leader of the Elders we lived with in Hermiston is planning on going down to Lehi.  He was dropping off a package for Elder Goebel, another elder than lives in Lehi.  He said he could bring one down for me.  So The Teegardens should be calling or stopping by or something.  I gave them the address and your phone number.  I'm not sure when they will be going down but soon.  There are two boxes full of journals and books and cold weather stuff.  So be wataching for that!!  Thanks!!

Elder Taylor, Elder Mortensen and Elder Shumway. I dont know where Elder Goebel was.
We had a lot of fun in that apartment in Hermiston!

Missionaries getting transferred out of Hermiston!! 

Elder Mortensen, Elder Shumway and T--, an investigator we were teaching in Hermiston.
He wanted a picture he could remember us by. So we took a great one!

Haha!  Being in a walking area get you pretty tired!

The day before my birthday Elder Goebel made cookies and instead of celebrating turning 20 we celebrated the last day of being 19 because that was the candle we had and the day we had time!

Elder Anderson Came To Visit The Mission

Last week was so crazy i forgot to write about Elder Anderson coming to visit the mission! it was super awesome! Its cool to see an apostle in a different setting than General Conference because its less formal and you get to see more of who they really are. He is so awesome!! He is for sure an apostle and knew just what we needed to hear. He said he didnt really know what he was going to say but the morning of in his prayer he received all that he planned on saying. he talked a lot about finding. He said he is not worried on the way that we teach, he is more worried on the way we find. So right now that is a focus in the mission of how we can find more people to teach! he said right now it isnt going to be through the active members of the church. It will be through the part member families, the less active members and the youth. Also that we have to do more personal finding. So I am really excited for the focus on finding. We have been doing a lot of work with the part member families.

Washington Kennewick Mission in Front of the Columbia River Temple

Can you spot Elder Mortensen????  Third row from the back, third from the right!

Monday, June 12, 2017

It's Amazing To See What The Lord Can Do If There Are Just People That Are Willing To Put Some Faith In It And Go To Work

Well hello!! 

its good to hear from you again! Well the least i can say about this week is it was crazy! It is super weird getting moved into a new area. It was actually super overwhelming. But i have worked my way into it. For some reason with a big change like this i feel like i should be completely worked into it like the first or second day, i dont know why, i guess i am not super patient. So i had to remind myself that it was going to take a little time. But i feel like i know what i am doing now. But its still crazy. So here i am in a walking area, well i guess we have bikes to, so kinda a biking area. Its been weird. The first day we got here and i unpacked some of my clothes and we headed out. We were going to find our Elders quorum president. It was at the top of a big hill. our area is long and skinny North to South. The ward is the Southgate ward. For the Boemans, it covers most of canyon lakes Loop. We live in some apartments called the highlanders. The address is like 3030 4th ave i think. I am not to sure about that though. Then it goes a little more north than us. There is a super wealthy area then a normal area. Lots of the members are pretty well off so they live on the south end of town up the hill where it is hard to get to.

So we actually didnt get doubled in. They said we were but Elder Winuea was actually here last transfer too. he is super awesome and super humble. He is from a island called Kiribati, It is kinda a part of the Marshal islands but not really. He says its close to Fiji. He has been out for like 20 months. Him and his grandma are the only members of the church in his family and his mom and siblings are taking the lessons right now! They will probably get baptized he said. He had to learn English but knows it really good. So ya we are in English work.

The missionary that i took his place it was his last transfer and he really didnt want to work. he was ready to go home. So coming here there wasnt to much stuff going on. We set a goal as a companionship to baptize at least one this transfer. On Thursday we went looking for a new member family that just moved in to the ward. We found a man named M--. He is not a member. growing up his parents never wanted him to believe in God and never really went to church. We had a great lesson with him and invited him to baptism. He said that he is starting work this Sunday and thinks that he is going to have to work every Sunday. But that he would like to be baptized.  So we didnt put him on date yet. We invited him to church though. He came! Later that day we went back to his house to introduce the Book of Mormon and help him know how he can know its true and why that is important. It was a really good lesson. He is now on date to be baptized on July 15th. It was such a miracle! Its amazing to see what the Lord can do if there are just people that are willing to  put some faith in it and go to work. So the area is already doing better than it was. I am super excited about that. That was the best thing that happened this week.

The Birthday was great. I really liked the package you set. Thanks for that. I didnt do much celebrating other then getting out to work! I guess there really isnt anything better to do than go find people who need the gospel. so thats what i spent the day doing and the day before and the day before that and the day before that and tomorrow and the next day. So i guess everyday is great!

Its awesome to see all the fun things that you all are doing back at home! they all look exciting! Its crazy to hear everyone going on missions! especially Kyle going to China. Thats crazy!

Thanks for the quote. That is something i really love because its something i really rely on. Without the Holy Ghost being with me i really cant teach. It doesnt work well. One of the things that i have learned on my mission that will effect me the most is i have learned to recognize and follow the prompting of the Spirit. It helps me everyday and it is the only way really any effective missionary work gets done. Its super exciting. Well i hope you all have a great week this week! I love you all!!

Elder Mortensen

Sorry for not having pictures. I cant put my card into the computer like the last one and i didnt bring my cord. But i will next week!