Wednesday, June 27, 2012

It's Salt Lake City -- Central Mission Time!

Transfers are on Wednesday. I don't know if it's just my luck or if it's related to the new mission but President Miller has been calling us quite a bit about transfers. First and foremost, I found out that I will be staying as a Riverton Zone Leader with Elder Stensrud for another transfer. Hooray! I've grown to love Riverton.

We've also spent a lot of time "preparing" other missionaries for new assignments they will be receiving. We have 120 of our 200 missionaries who will either be new missionaries or trainers as of June 27th. That means many young missionaries will be stepping into leadership roles. With that being said, we are taking careful attention to make sure everything is ready to go on Wednesday.

In our area, we took one of our investigators to Temple Square for a lesson. We asked him to pray right there about his scheduled baptism date of June 30th. He prayed and received an answer to be baptized. He has grown up Catholic and over time has said how he has noticed that the LDS faith is just "more" of what he grew up with. He originally thought becoming a Latter-day Saint meant that he was changing religions, when really he now knows he's just adding on more truth to what he already knows. It's exciting to see the transformation.

Finally, the new mission is being created on Sunday. We find out Wednesday where everybody will be going. There will be a farewell luncheon for all of them as we will no longer see them as part of our mission. While it is sad to see 80 missionaries's exciting to see the work move forward.

Elder Bolling

Monday, June 18, 2012

Triple Digits

It was a hot week in Utah. We hit 100 degrees for the first time! Though if I'm being honest the heat out here doesn't hurt nearly as badly since it's a dry heat.

It was a special week because I found out that two former investigators from my old area got baptized. One was a young single adult from Sandy who we stopped teaching because she wasn't ready for baptism. She called the missionaries up, thinking it was myself and Elder Hipp, and was baptized! Then in my first area somebody we taught for a few weeks finally made the decision to be baptized and confirmed a member of the church. Those are certainly tender mercies when you see your work continuing onward.

The zone is starting to see fruits from our efforts. This week we had six baptisms which is helping us to be on pace to where we want to be. It's already transfer time and we're talking and working to ensure that there will be a smooth transition with the new mission. We're working to prepare many missionaries for new assignments that they don't even know about yet! It should be a busy time in the zone. And to add some suspense...President Miller even told us to "shore up the zone because we won't be together for long." Is somebody getting transferred!? Who week until we do!

Elder Bolling

Monday, June 11, 2012

Moving Higher

There's a principle in the scriptures. Whenever you are about to experience blessings from the Lord, Satan always tries to thwart you with increased trials. We have seen that this week in our zone. There have been numerous situations arising that have caused some of those preparing for baptism to push their dates back. Our challenge is to help them receive their witness that the gospel has been restored and be baptized so they can receive the blessings of the gospel.

We are still looking to have a wonderful month and have seen great growth in our zone. However, we're not discouraged and know the higher goal that we set is still possible. It will be an exciting challenge to see how we respond, lift our sights and achieve what is before us.

It was also my birthday on Friday. I was pleasantly surprised to receive a birthday cake from a family who knows my family. I also got a nice package from Sara and should be receiving one from my family today. We also went to Chili's so I got the free chocolate molten lava cake. Unfortunately, the other Elders seemed to devour that before I got to it. Funny how that works out!

Elder Bolling

Heating Up For June

The weather is hot. I guess that means summer is here. Luckily, I really enjoy summer. I enjoy it a lot more since there's no humidity and the heat really doesn't make you sweat. That's also great for missionary work because more people are outside and available to just stop and talk about the gospel. The yearly transition is also happening to the mountains. The lush green mountains are now "burning out" to become the arid brown desert mountains you would come to expect in a place like Utah. It's certainly a different environment than Virginia!

I continue adjusting to Riverton. It is a great area. I'm starting to learn the roads and areas around the place. For those who know Utah, my area actually includes Riverton, Bluffdale, South Jordan, Herriman and Daybreak. There is a lot of variety in the area. It provides many opportunities to teach different types of people. Right now we're teaching one family and 4 young single adults who are preparing for baptism. We held a baptism on Friday night for an investigator we had been teaching. He has overcome quite a lot to be ready to join the Church. His sister joined the Church ten years ago but he went down a different road and got caught in some negative things. However, with lots of love and care, he began learning about the gospel. He overcame those problems and is now the newest member of the Church. Stories like his are always the most rewarding in missionary work.

It's also my birthday this week! I'll be 25. That seems weird. I certainly don't feel 25. But I think everybody says that when they have another birthday. It's also weird to think that I'll be 26 when I come back to Virginia from my mission. Time sure does fly!

Elder Bolling