Week 5, ASL Brighton Area

Oct 19th
Gift of tongues/hands
Sunday’s are always the best. I love church because I get to see and
talk with everyone but also I have realized how important the
sacrament is after listening to Elder Hamula and I now crave the
opportunity to be cleansed again and start fresh every week. Also in
Deaf Sunday school my companion didn’t voice for me so I had to try to
understand what the teacher was signing and I was surprised when I
understood everything! I was also called to give the
closing prayer in sign and I did it without hesitation or mistakes. The gift of tongues
also applies to hands I guess.

Oct 20th
Exchanges pt 2
Pretty chill P-day. It’s starting to get cold in Rochester which is
cool but also bad. It also rains a ton down here which is pretty cool.
Anyways normal P-day, played basketball and volleyball all day. Also I
just started exchanges with Elder Minaga which I’m really excited
about. Tomorrow is going to be sweet.

Oct 21st
Elder Minaga
I can honestly say that exchanges are one of the best parts about my
mission. Elder Minaga and I just had a great time. I took this
opportunity on exchanges to go tracting because
Elder Longhurst doesn’t think that it’s “effective” but I’ve
come to love tracking.  We went to this richy-rich neighborhood which
is usually the hardest area to find people because they are satisfied
with life and they don’t need God BUT out of the 6 doors we knocked on
2 of them became new investigators! Which means we taught a lesson and
got a return appointment. Also while tracting this other neighborhood
we met this deaf monk for the Catholic Church and he was a
super nice guy. He wanted us to come back and talk with him not about
the church but just for fun. Also might I just emphasis on the fact
that Elder Longhurst wasn’t there so I got to put my signing skills
into action. Then we got rained on and that ended our tracting day.

Oct 22nd
Power of prayer
Exchanges part 3 today with one of the zone leaders and even though I
had to go to their area it was awesome. During personal studies this
morning some lady came by and knocked on our door. She was this middle
aged small round women that went on about how her day was going and
about how yesterday went, then she gave us both a hug, then left.
After that Elder Littlefield (my zone leader) told me she was a recent
convert to the church that lives in the room a crossed from us and
everyday in the morning she’ll knock to chat and give them hugs. Super
sweet lady. Later for lunch we went to subway that was owned by a
member so we got a foot long on any sandwich, chips, cookies, and a
drink all for FREE.99. We ate our lunch super fast so that we could
spend the rest of our lunch hour at Savers which is like a D.I. And we
bought a size 60 pair of jeans cuz idk, which both me and Elder
Littlefeild fit in. Anyways the funniest part of the day was when we
went to this catholic nursing home to help push the old people in
wheelchairs to mass. One person that I helped was this older lady that
couldn’t hear very well. When I got her to mass and she was all comfy
and settled she asked me what my name was and I told her “Elder
Holmberg” and she said “what?” So I said a bit louder “Elder Holmberg”
and of course she still couldn’t hear me so I took off my name tag and
held it close to her face and pointed to what I thought was my name. I
then realized her eyes getting all teary and she look up at me and
asked “You’re Jesus Christ?” I quickly fell to the ground laughing my
head off. This grandma then watched me on the ground laughing with
this confused look on her face and then I think it just clicked in her
mind or something because then she gave me this toothless grin and
started bursting out laughing as well. Both me and this grandma were
laughing our heads off in this Catholic Church and it was one of the
best moments of my life. On a spiritual note we had a super cool
experience where Elder Littlefield and I got to see the power of
prayer in action. We were sitting in the car looking through about 200
potential investigators names to find someone to go visit. We were
getting nowhere just clicking name after name and not picking someone
to go see till we decided it would be best if we had the spirit direct
us, and so we had a little prayer asking for help to pick someone from
all these names that were ready to hear our message. When the prayer
was finished the name “Mary” popped into my mind. I asked Elder
Littlefield to look it up and there just happened to be a Mary in
there. We had her address so we decided to head over there. While we
were heading over there we got stuck behind a corvette going 15 under
the speed limit which put us 25 min behind schedule. Anyways as we got
to Mary’s house all the lights were turned off BUT there was a car out
front. It was risky but Elder Littlefield decided to say a prayer before we went and
knocked on her door asking Heavenly Father directly that she will be
there and have family with her so that we can teach all of them. I
thought to myself that it’s going to be really disappointing if she
doesn’t answer because that was the most direct prayer I have ever
heard. So we headed up there and knocked on her door… nothing, rang
her doorbell… nothing, knocked one last time just to make sure…
and still nothing. With disappointment we walked away from her house.
Elder Littlefield then thought that maybe we were sent here to find
someone who lived around Mary so we knocked on all of her neighbors
doors and not one person answered EXCEPT for this black Baptist guy
named Lewy. We talked with him for a while and we ended up teaching
him the whole restoration on his front porch and giving him a copy of
the Book of Mormon! He became more and more interested in what we had
to say the more we talked to him! And than he said these golden
words… “Will you come back and teach me some more another time?”. I
didn’t think it was possible for people to actually say that so when
he said that I froze and had a mini heart attack. Elder Littlefield though
quickly came in and saved me and set up a return appointment with him.
As we were walking away from Lewy’s house in rejoice back to our car I
had this strong impression to knock on Mary’s door one more time. This
would have been stupid though because we were in a cul-de-sac and we would
of seen Mary pull into her house if she was home and nothing had
changed about her house. The lights were still off and the car was
still parked out in front in the same place. But without thinking my
body just started walking back over to Mary’s. Elder Littlefield
thought I was crazy for walking back over to Mary’s house so he just
hopped in the car and as I got to the bottom of Mary’s driveway this
lady and this guy walked out from the side of Mary’s house. When I saw
this I got a bit excited and yelled out “MARY” and this lady looks up
at me and said, “how do you know my name?”. To make this super long
story a bit shorter Elder Littlfeild quickly jumped out of the car and
we started talking to them and found out they were working in there
backyard and they were just about to go to the store. That guy that
was walking with her was her husband and he was an inactive member.
Such a testimony builder wouldn’t you say? If we hadn’t got stuck
behind this corvette we probably wouldn’t have caught Mary when we did
and if we didn’t get the prompting to go knock Mary’s neighbors we
wouldn’t have met Lewy! God does answer prayers, I know that without a
doubt.

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Oct 23rd
Gun or Book of Mormon?
Saw some black guy smokin a cig on the porch today and as we were
walking by him on the other side of the road he yelled out to us “who
are you guys?” We looked back over at him and yelled “LDS
missionaries!” And as we were yelling this to this man we started to
walking towards him to talk to him. When he noticed that we were
approaching him he had this terrifying expression on his face and he
held up his hands and said, “don’t come any closer!” Then quickly ran
inside. It was one of the weirdest things I have ever seen, I think he
thought we were cops or something… Anyways I also got interviewed by
my mission president today and  he seriously is one of the coolest
guys I’ve ever met. I love my mission. On the other hand we found out
that Elder Minaga got his visa today so he’ll be going to Argentina
next Tuesday!

Oct 24th
Lame
We were told today by our zone leader that we needed to walk all today
instead of using our car. So for the first three hours after lunch we
walked and it was a beautiful day, problem was everyone was super rude
to us. Only one house we knocked on listened to what we had to say and
we gave him a BOM. Other than that today was poop.

Oct 25th
ADHD Matt
Pretty awesome crazy day if I do say so myself. Started the day off by
teaching Jason Mahon (a person who had a baptismal date but fell
through a couple of months ago) at brother Piede’s house which went
really good. After that was Matts baptism and I had the opportunity to
confirm him! Problem was Matt could not sit still to save his life at
his own baptism. He was yelling and running around but when I
confirmed him he was completely still, it was the coolest thing. When
Elder Longhurst tried baptizing him Matt lost his footing on the
ground and so he thought he was drowning so he clung onto Elder
Longhurst super tight it made everyone laugh. After the baptism we got
a call from the sisters in Pittford saying that Yania went to the
mission office trying to find where me and Elder Longhurst lived
because she went to the address that she sends all her letters too. No
one in the mission office understood sign language so they were
freaking out calling us. Yania is completely nuts. She paid $40 to
take a taxi there and she had no ride or money to get back. We had to
clean this whole mess up which was super stressful but our stress was
relived when we got to go to the church trunk or treat Halloween party
that night. It was super cool because an investigator named Alicia
Wright came and met tons of new people from the ward. After the party
she said she loves our church and wants to meet with us again! This
girl is solid and I hope things progress with her.

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