Then on Wednesday we held our monthly Mission Leadership Council meeting here in Calgary. It was a great day-long meeting. There was such a wonderful spirit there, and these zone leaders and sister trainer leaders have a real desire to unite our mission and work hard as a 'mission family'. We had such good discussions on how to help any of our missionaries that might be struggling, and how to build faith. We love hearing their input and truly 'counseling' with them. One thing we have begun doing is praying for hearts to be softened and to be able to find families and others to baptize. It is amazing how Heavenly Father is answering our prayers. So many missionaries have called to tell us about a family they just happened to pick up! The Lord really is giving us miracles. Last week one set of elders told us a family of 8 just randomly came to the church on Sunday! They are now teaching the entire family! We are trying to exercise our faith by being more obedient, and more diligent in our personal and companion studies, and in our weekly planning, and working with our members. We are trying to show the Lord that as we do our part we know He will help us find those He has prepared. We are really seeing His hand in this work--especially when we pray specifically to find families. It is so exciting!
Thursday we wanted to see the area of Cochrane in west Calgary--so we called our elders serving there and met up with them (Elders Varble and Simmons). We were able to drive around Cochrane and see it (and how huge it is), and then we took the elders for a bite of dinner since they didn't have a dinner appointment that night. We are excited to see the work that is going on there--they are going to baptize a family this next week!
Then on Friday we wanted to see the Coventry area of Calgary, so we met up with our two sisters serving there (Sisters Creech and Horning) and talked about their area-since they 'whitewashed' the area and are trying to get to know their members and get the work going. We had them choose a place for lunch and we went to a fun little Thai restaurant.
We just love meeting with our missionaries and talking with them about their areas and see what they are doing to get the work going. We are proud of our missionaries and their desires to work hard and try to work with the members. We have truly found that our success in finding is by working with our members. When a member introduces their friend to the missionaries and brings them into their home for the lessons, it is incredible to see how many accept the gospel. We are trying to help the members not be so fearful and to look for opportunities to share anything about the gospel to their friends and neighbors.
On Saturday we spent much of the day preparing for zone conferences which are this week and next, and we can't wait for those! Then on Sunday we drove to Lethbridge for a meeting with President Lowe in the Lethbridge Stake and two bishops and ward mission leaders and our missionaries, Elder Moffitt and Hawkins, to discuss the work in their wards. These are always great meetings.
Following that, we picked up Elder Kelly, to bring him back up with us because he went home today. He was one of our assistants when we first got to the mission, and so it was with sadness to send him off. Since he had to go home a tad earlier than his usual release date because of some extenuating circumstances, we had a few of his close companions that are still here come to say good-bye on Sunday night. After dessert and some fun conversation, we asked Elder Kelly to share his testimony one last time with these elders. He bore such a powerful testimony of the Savior and His atonement--it was very touching. Elder Kelly is a convert of only 3 years--so of his 3 years in the church, 2 have been as a missionary. He is so grateful for the atonement and it's power to change people's lives--especially his. He never in his wildest dreams thought his life could be like it is, and he is so appreciative of the Savior's sacrifice. That is what this gospel is all about. That is why we invite people to learn of Jesus Christ--because their lives can be transformed! It is so amazing.
|Saying good-bye to our visa waiters, Sisters Oickle, Ince an Elder Poirier|
|Visiting Elders Simmons & Varble in Cochrane|
|Lunch with Sisters Creech & Horning in Coventry|