Monday, September 28, 2015

I Work Because I Love The People And I Will Always Work Harder Because I Love the Savior

Hey everyone!!

If anyone was wondering my mission has been great!! i love it so much even though it is for sure the hardest thing that i have ever done in my life already. i am excited for it to come but i don't anticipate it to get any easier, but i am up for whatever this place has to throw at me.

But ya with the car, the only thing i get to do is back up my companion, so thats fun. he always drives. i dont know if its a rule but thats just how it is. but i am fine with it. it gives me a lot of time to mess with him. Not being mean but he is probably one of the worst at parking that i have seen. haha its funny, i always say its alright the parking spaces must be different here then they are in Honduras. so ya i guess that shows we are getting along well. it is working out to be a good companionship. we work really hard because the work here hasn't really picked up that much yet. its hard with Spanish missionaries here because the people all work like all day and we always find Americans that want to hear. we have had a lot of referrals for the other missionaries, more then we have had for ourselves. but what is really important is doing the work and helping the lord out. that is one way that i think of it to make it easier to work.

I do get time to workout every morning at 6:30 to 7. its kinda a hard time because you just want to sleep. but i have found ways to get my self out of bed and start to work out. i do a lot of push ups and ab stuff. i don't know what i want to do to stay thinner, because that is my goal, but we will see if it works. that's about all though, i haven't ran much. i only time i really run is on preparation day. we get together as a zone and play games. last week we played ultimate Frisbee, that was a lot of fun. especially because i am kinda new and i haven't gotten that much out of shape yet like the other missionaries. so that makes it even easier for me. i kinda just ran circles around them. someone also had the idea to go back to our little kid days and play tag. haha that was fun to, no one could catch me.  that really makes me feel like i am in 3rd grade when i say that. we Play some soccer. today we are playing chair soccer, and thats a ton on fun.

we haven't gotten any more meals. they are trying to be worked out with the zone leaders and the wards but i dont know what is up with those. its all good though. less time for me to get fat from actual food. the two meals that i have had, one was fresh caught fish from Mexico with the bishop. the other was pork chops with the young mens president. they were both really good. i am thankful for those kind of people that are so willing to do that for us.

so we work in the meadows and sandstone ward boundaries but all the spanish in the stake boundaries goes to hermiston ward. so all our investigators come to hermiston ward as well. we all just sit in the back and one of the missionaries translates through head sets. so that will be fun when i am the senior companion and i have to do that maybe. i hope i don't turn anyone from the church because of what i am saying. because i don't know if its always what i am actually trying. but at least i am trying.

the biggest challenge is talking to everyone. but its also where you see the blessings come from and find success. when you do this you talk to so many more people. i have faith that for the people that the lord is preparing, part of it is them being out side and us finding them. then it is just our job to talk to them. this week we found someone that is being prepared i feel. his name is H--. we found him in a small house. when we met him he hides his Book of Mormon because it is so important to him. when we meet with him you see so much love and charity in him. he takes care of a homeless guy and calls him his best friend and wants us to go try to help him and teach him. he has been an example to me of charity and how important it is. it is one thing i know everyone can always work on.

life in lehi sounds great! it sounds like there is just always a lot of good things going on and happening. i am glad to see you are all having a great time. i remember those good times.

i am so excited for general conference. i hope that i learn from it being in spanish and all that. it should be good though. i am excited to hear about the new apostles! its too bad three have to be called because we have lost three. but i am excited to hear about all the things that the lord need his people to hear and learn. this all really is a great time and an amazing privilege.

my favorite about this week is the Book of Mormon and reading it from a new perspective. i am reading it looking for humility. that is the thing that i have been trying to develop this week. i need to forget about my will and follow the lords will until my will is in line with the lords. its important to not just change behavior but to change your personality and how you think. if you change how you think you will change how you act and you will be a better disciple of the lord. i was reading at the beginning and i really liked how much humility nephi had. i never thought about how humble he really is until i concentrated on it. he does everything because it is what the lord wants him to do. he follows the lords will and because of that he receives so much power and sees so many miracles. that is what i hope to have. i need the power and authority of god to have any success in bringing his gospel to his children.

thanks for writing. i love all of you so much. i loved you all a ton before i left but being here i have found so much more love. i will never forget how to love because that is how i stay motivated. i work because i love the people and i will always work harder because i love the savior.

Elder Mortensen

sorry i dont have any other pictures of here yet. but these are my mtc teachers. they helped me so much. one is hermano sanchez and the shorter one is hermano caranza

Elder Mortensen and Hermano Caranza

Elder Mortensen and Hermano Sanchez

Monday, September 21, 2015

I Love The Book Of Mormon So Much And Hope To Love It Even More


wow before i read Briannes letters i think my life is crazy, but really, no its not at all. i don't get to drive a broken bike around or anything like that. i drive a 2014 Chevy Cruz, so its kinda like a upgrade. the down side to a car is i think that i am going to get fat while i am here. it hasn't started yet, i don't think at least, but i can feel it coming. But ya my area has a lot of English, we talk a lot in English. when we tract we bring English and Spanish Book of Mormons. when it is an English person i do mostly everything but when it is in Spanish my companion does more than me. because my Spanish is still struggling. its mostly driving around and looking for the Spanish communities.

if you didn't find the place my next hint was going to be we live under a smoker and next to a goat! but glad you found it though. me and my companion are getting along really good. i lucked out that he is a native spanish speaker. i think he might be getting sick of always helping me throughout the whole day, kinda being my walking dictionary. hey but it helps me! so i am happy for it. he is from a place called el progresso. i dont know where that is, i just know thats what it is. we have two dinners with the ward. because we are new and the bishops are still confused, we haven't been getting them, but we should a lot more starting this week. its all good if we dont because i make some pretty amazing food!! what i have everyonce in a while that i like a lot actually is, i make a sandwich with a few slices of ham, a few of turkey, some cheese and you cut two hot dogs the long way way in half, cook them and put them on the sandwich. its pretty good. i expect you to try it everyone! or at least Jaxsen.  i eat lots of sandwiches and eggs and cereal. i did have spaghetti today for lunch though, and that was good.

ya we have a walmart like right up the road so that is really nice and makes it super easy. so i don't ever struggle with having food to eat. i hope it will be like that always. even though these two weeks have flown so fast, i only have been here for two weeks so we will have to see how it works out.

but thats nice of you to send a package. you didnt beat the peerys though. but ya send it through the mission home and they will forward it to me.

the boundaries are weird i serve in the sandstone ward and the meadows ward, but us and all our hispanic investigators go to the hermiston ward so i guess i am in the hermiston ward. its pretty big we almost fill a normal sized chapel. they have a lot of really good members here that's for sure. i love them all. especially the Spanish members. i am convinced they are for sure the nicest people i have ever meet. its so awesome. maybe i will pick up on some of that. that would help me out.

my favorite thing was like the weirdest thing of the week. we were tracting and we knocked on this door and there was two kids, a brother and a sister. they were Hispanic but spoke english. but they were catholic like the rest of the people we talk to. its so crazy when someone says they arent catholic it really throws me off. but we talked to them for 2 hours on their door step!!! it was the longest thing and it was so cold. then she gave us a water bottle because she was worried that we needed some because we have been talking so much. i am thankful for nice people but, my hand i think just about fell off. and this had to be on like the only cold night of the whole week. but it was awesome. we talked about so many different things. i had time after time to answer their questions and testify what i knew to be true. at the end we said a prayer and the spirit was so strong. it was hard for them to accept it for sure but we are going back sometime later. i gave them a book of mormon and they are going to read and pray about it so that's a good start. another favorite part was we knocked on this door and a guy answered it. we were invited into his house. we learned that he  talked to a member like two years ago and he got a Book of Mormon. he was hoping that we would be able to show up again eventually. he never read the Book of Mormon but he said pointing to a locked up chest, thats where i keep everything that i have that is important to me. he hasn't even read it yet! and he knows it is so important. it made me think what i thought about the Book of Mormon. how much do i really cherish it? from this i know that when i read in this book i need to love it more then i do now, because it really is so so important. i love it so much and hope to love it even more.

this is all for today but thanks for writing i love you all so much.

Elder Mortensen

Sister Bartholomew and Elder Mortensen at the Mexico MTC

Elder Mortensen and Elder McIntosh at the Mexico MTC

Hermiston, OR

Monday, September 14, 2015

She Told Us That She Knows God Sent Us

hello family

wow! what a great letter!! those are a lot better to receive than to have to try to write. but thanks for that. its always fun to receive a throw-up letter, i guess you could call it that. The west mountain cabin sounds fun like always. you said that you don't know why the bear tracker stopped working, well i do!  it was missing its driver! i am over here in Oregon!!

but Thanks for that quote. (Note from mom.  Here is the quote:  "We are in a period of stress across the world. There are occasionally hard days for each of us. Do not despair. Do not give up. Look for the sunlight through the clouds."   --Gordan B Hinckley).  its kinda how being here has been. me and my companion Elder Laffiteau, from Hondurus, are opening up a new spanish area. so there was no work for us to start with. we had to go knocking, looking for for Hispanic people.  but the work has been a ton of fun.  one of the best things is talking to everyone. it doesn't really sound like me before the mission but i have learned to love it because its where you see the miracles. even though there have only been a few people that have wanted to hear more and most of them were english so we wont even teach them, but its fun. you always know that you are doing what you need to. the hard thing is trying to follow the spirit. a cool experience is we were stopped at a 4 way stop wondering where we should go next. my companion asked me what i was feeling and this one house kept standing out to me. i told him we should go over there so we did. we knocked once, nothing happened. so we knocked again and i was so excited because i was thinking that this is the person we are going to teach because its where the spirit told me to go and i was sure of it. so the guy opened the door and said through the screen door, oh no i have already tried you. i don't want it again, and shut the door. not going to lie i was a little disappointed. but we walked down the road and followed it around a corner. we came to this lady that was on her porch. we said hi to her and started talking to her. after we talked to her for a little, i bore my testimony and she told us that she knows god sent us. she said, how else would my new car have broken down, and i have to make a call so i am sitting here on the porch. i knew that that was the reason that i was told to go to the house that we got shut down at. it was to point us in the right way for this lady. her name was F--. she was less active and wanted to start getting into church again, and this is how she is going to she said. i gave her a Book of Mormon, my first one and that was a good feeling.  it helped me feel more confident and a few minutes later we talked to a 16 year old and he said his family talks to the missionaries some but he didn't pay attention. he said he would read the Book of Mormon after i gave him one and pay attention to the missionaries. i hope it all works out for them both. i learned that this work takes the spirit and confidence. with that it will all be okay.

my area is Hermiston Oregon. its a nice little place. because i know you stalk the missionaries here is some help. i live in a place called south gate village just off of first street. i am in the south east apartment on the bottom. in the corner of the u shaped apartment complex. you are welcome.

but ya i love it here. i hope you are all doing great. i pray for you all all the time. love you all

Elder Mortensen

PS i did get the doughnuts on Friday, thanks a ton they were amazing and i did see spencer a few times

Elder Mortensen and Elder Laffiteau

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

He's Here!

Dear Missionary Family,

We are delighted to inform you that your missionary has arrived safely to the Washington Kennewick Mission.  We already love them and are excited to serve with them.  We have enjoyed becoming acquainted with them and are confident that they will become an effective instrument in the hands of the Lord in sharing the gospel with the people of Washington and Oregon.

We have assigned them a companion who is an experienced, devoted, and motivated missionary.  All of our missionaries understand that one of the greatest privileges available in the mission is to train a new missionary.  This first companion will be a special person in your missionary’s life and will help give them a great start here.

We feel that our greatest responsibility is the care and welfare of your child.  We want to assure you that we will be in regular contact with them.  We will be observant of their physical health, happiness and spiritual well-being.  We will work closely with them throughout the mission to help them succeed and fulfill their calling as a representative of the Church and as an ambassador of the Lord Jesus Christ. 

Please be assured that we will be in contact with you if we encounter any concerns that would call for your attention.  We see you as a great asset to the success of your missionary while they are serving here and will work closely with you if the need arises.  You would help us immensely by informing us of any changes to address, phone number or email for you, your bishop or your stake president.  We want to keep our records current so that we can keep in touch whenever necessary.

Attached are photographs of your missionary taken with us at the welcome dinner at the mission home, along with a map of the mission.  Please feel free to contact us at the mission office with any questions that you may have.

Thank you for the sacrifices you are making at home to have your missionary in the field.  We have seen the Lord bless the families of missionaries who are serving in untold ways.  We know that His blessings will be upon you as well.

With love,
   Pres Ware                                        Sis Ware
President Boyd S. Ware                                                       Sister Linda P. Ware

Sister Ware, Elder Mortensen, President Ware

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

He's On His Way!

Brad and I got to talk to Josh today on the phone while he was at the San Francisco airport.  He flew from Mexico to San  Francisco, and then San Francisco to Pasco.  He sounded so happy and was so excited to get to work as a missionary in Washington.  He flew with 7 other missionaries. Now, we will anxiously wait to get his first email from Washington!

Monday, September 7, 2015

Leaving the MTC


i only have just a couple of minutes today. i am just letting you know that i will be landing in San Francisco at 10. i will be able to call from there. i don't know how long the call will be but at least i get to. i am going to call your phone mom. and that time is san Francisco time. i don't know when that is in Utah i think its just an hour difference. but any way i look forward to that because i don't know when i will get to email you next.  these are some pictures from the slide show on Sunday night. they have one every week for the missionaries leaving. after we sing god be with you til we meet again. and that got me so excited. i was so happy to just get out there i cant explain. but love you all thanks for all the support while i am out here

Elder Mortensen

PS that's Jaxsens tie

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Before You Ask For More, Remember The Blessings That You Have Already Received

hey family,

thanks a lot for the email. this is always the best part of the day. i am glad you were able to finally get the missionary bear. i didnt know when that was going to happen for sure. most of the people in my district are from utah, most of the people in the mtc are from utah. but there is a sister from california that was at byu for a year or two and the other two sisters are from utah one went to byu the other utah state. there are two elders from arizona and one from alabama. another from georgia but lived in utah for the last two years and one is from wisconsin. my companion is from bountiful. there are 9 out of the 11 missionaries going to kennewick. the other two are going different places in california. oh and i dont know if you heard but a few weeks ago my mission got split. i think we are just still the washington kennewick mission and i think that other one is yakama or something like that.

my spanish is coming along a lot better. this week we had elder D. todd christofferson come and talk to us. it was super cool for all of us to be with him in such a small devotional like that. the thing that stood out to me the most about what he said that helped me with spanish is, he said before you ask for more, remember the blessings that you have already received. i was thinking of the part of when i got set apart by the stake president. he said that soon enough i will be able to pray and bear testimony in spanish. i just had that in my head through out the week. i realized that i can do a lot of the spanish that has to do with the gospel. i can bear testimony always without really any problems. i can also pray good enough that it makes sense. the conjunctions arent always right but i have had those prayers answered so i know they are understood. later that day after the special devotional we went to trc. this is where we meet with members usuallly. we get to know them and try to teach to their needs. it went really well. at the end they share a little with us and answer some questions on a paper on how we did. she told me that even though my spanish isnt all the way here, she said i have a big spirit about me. she said that is what is important and that i am a great missionary. that made my day tons better just knowing that as long as i have the spirit with me i dont really have to worry about anything else. i still have to work hard, study and plan and all of that but i know that i am just fine. that was a real answer to my prayers.

ya i have talked to kaylie a little. she seems to be doing really good. i got the letter and the card, thanks for doing that. i used the card today to see if it will work and it did. so it should be good for the flight to washington. ya i said bye to jordan sunday night. it was actually pretty hard. its great we are all on missions though. it just weird not having him in the mtc for the last week. but that last day i got to talk to him for a bit so that was good. something he mentioned was, this is like when the sons of mosiah were traveling out of the land and eventually got to a point they had to split. it is cool to know we are all serving the lord though.

thats awesome to hear that so many people got calls. missions really are just the best thing ever. but i cant think of anyone i want to know about and dont know, but thanks.

home sounds like a lot of fun. good job jax on scoring a goal in your game. its good to hear ali is taking up the teasing while i am not home. what would life be without that? glad to hear you had a good week mom getting older. brayden being in school is good though. to bad hes not on a mission like me though. but both are good i guess. i am glad to hear all about brianne. if i can be as good as her as a missionary i will be so lucky and super well off. 

but thanks for that quote. it is what i have been thinking alot about this week. (Note from mom.  Here is the quote:  He is the Comforter (John 14:26). As the soothing voice of a loving parent can quiet a crying child, the whisperings of the Spirit can calm your fears, hush the nagging worries of your life, and comfort you when you grieve. The Holy Ghost can fill you “with hope and perfect love” and “teach you the peaceable things of the kingdom.”) i know that it is true. with the spirit, i have learned that it is more willing to teach you when you are willing to be taught. just rely on the spirit. it is so important. the spirit is how anything good comes on this earth. i know that to be true. we learned that the grace of god comes by the spirit. that was an answer to my prayers. we talk more about the forgiving part of the atonement and not the enabling  power. elder christofferson taught me that. i felt it was said because the lord just needed to tell me. i have even a stronger testimony of the leaders of this church. i know they are amazing men because of christ and they are called of god.

a quote from earlier is "every man eventually is backed up to the wall of faith, and there he must make his stand." we all have those times.  i have had more than one in my life. but please put up your best fight. when you cant do it alone i promise christ will always be there to help if you just ask.

this is my last p day here! i will probably be able to call from san fransisco. that is like at 9:40 i dont know for sure. i will call moms cell for that. so thats california time so i dont know when that is for sure at home. but its been good to be here. i will have to write more from kennewick next week.

Love you all and thanks for the support and prayers.

Elder Mortensen

Elder Mortensen and Elder Rowley with Matching Ties From Their Friend, Josh Lambert

Elder Mortensen and Elder Mackintosh