Monday, April 23, 2012

Time for a Rebound!

This week certainly was an up and down week. First, our baptism cancelled. It cancelled about two hours before the baptism. The kids' biological father, who lives in Norway, called and denied permission just hours before after previously giving permission. It was disappointing since the whole family had made so much progress in returning to the gospel. We will continue to meet and focus on helping them progress.

We also received our numbers on Sunday...and are only looking at 7 baptisms in our zone next month! With that, we have been in overdrive to motivate and train our missionaries to increase that goal. It's actually a good thing for me -- as I've noticed I respond better under pressure than when things are going well. There's something in my mind that likes to fix problems. The easier route, though, would be to simply not allow those problems to develop.

I also got the chance to speak in a ward last Sunday. Funny enough, there was a returned missionary there who I had met in the Chippenham Ward in Richmond -- Elder Green. It was enjoyable to be able to talk about all of the friends I have from back home and how they are doing. It truly is a small world.

Even with the challenges, I am excited for the upcoming week. Nothing energizes me more than a good challenge...and we're excited to see what happens with it!

Elder Bolling

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Sick Week

It's been almost 10 months in the field...and I had my first sick companion. My companion came down with a flu bug which put him severely out of commission for three days. You would think that three days off would be a welcome change...but no sir! After half a day I just wanted to get outside of the house and work. We were able to find people to split us up so I could still go out and work. However, we toughed through it and still had a great week.

This upcoming week will be interviews with the mission president. What that means for us is that we get the opportunity to train the missionaries as they're waiting for their interviews. It is actually one of the most exhausting days as a zone leader...because it's 9am to 5pm of training with only a few breaks. Nonetheless, it's a great opportunity to see our whole zone at once so we will take advantage of it.

We're also having lots of success in our stakes. We found many new people to teach and have also been working closely to try and get those that have not been to church in a while back. As we've done that we've met many new members who have been able to help us find more non-members to teach. It's funny how when you simply serve others and help them how your objectives get met as well.

Elder Bolling

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Reworking the Boundaries

Last Wednesday was transfers. I received a new companion. His name is Elder Lakner and he is from Slovenia. He is also a convert to the church. His story is impressive since there are only 200 members in his entire country and he is the 12th Slovenian to serve a mission. He is a great missionary with a great spirit about him. Our zone also was rebuilt. Actually, it grew. It still contains all of Sandy City but also now includes Cottonwood Heights. This is the result of some reworkings to make the new mission boundaries happen. Next transfer the zones will be adjusted again so that the south mission has a new look. It certainly is an exciting time to be a missionary here!

We also had a baptism on Friday night. Our investigator had been meeting with missionaries for 6 months and had begun to feel the spirit more strongly in his life. It is a testament to the power of the Holy Ghost in conversion. We were excited for him to begin his journey as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ. We also continue to work with two more families closely and many others who are promising. We hope to have at least three more baptisms in April.

The weather is also getting a lot nicer. I have always been a fan of spring, summer and fall over the winter, so it's nice that this 6-month winter is finally over. Utah is a wonderful place but I don't know if I could handle the winters for more than two years. Two and a half month winters sound good to me!

Elder Bolling

Monday, April 2, 2012

Growing Pains

This week should be an exciting one. Transfers are on Wednesday. But more than that the UT-SLCS mission will be going through a realignment. Our zones, districts and areas will all be changing in anticipation of the new mission that will be created in July. We don't know the details but we do know that "many of us" will be moving or being transferred. We will be having a meeting tonight to talk about the changes and iron everything out before the mission-wide announcements tomorrow.

It was a different week than last week. With all of the baptisms last week we had significantly lower teaching opportunities. However, it was enjoyable to continue the recent convert discussions with our new members and to look for new people to teach. It's the cycle of missionary work and it continues to roll forward. We are preparing for a baptism this Friday for a YSA that we have been teaching for 5 months now. It will be a welcome sight to see him finally baptized.

It's also approaching the one-year mark of me starting to date Sara. It's quite a funny thing how it seems as though we've gotten closer over the 9 months of the mission. Hopefully she would agree. (I think she would) Either way, the date gives me an opportunity to reflect on how fast the year has gone by. It also builds a testimony that when you are devoted in the service of the Lord all other things work out. Even though I only communicate with her and family once a week...somehow it seems to work out how it is all designed. The blessings of the Lord always seem to happen that way.

Elder Bolling