Thursday, May 26, 2011

New Area: Lynn

Wow sounds like alot has gone on at home just like a whole bunch has happened this week.  I think this will be a long email.  First off my new address:
207 Ocean St. #2
Lynn, MA 01902
Im am so proud of/excited for All my friends that are going on missions!  that is so cool.  It makes me so happy to know that they are making good decisions and going out to serve the lord.  They will become apart  of a brethren of missionaries that are united in one cause.  I can't wait to hear about their successes and experiences.  Satan is just gonna get dominated by all of these amazing guys going on missions. Hoorah for Israel!  

Ok i think i covered everything now to my life. So i will start with thursday, the day of transfers.  There were about half of the missionary companionships in our mission at transfer meeting.  A ton of people got transfered.  So how it works is that we are all in a chapel and then they read us off one by one where we are getting transferred to and who will be our companion.  I was thinking that me and Elder W would be going to Lynn with Elder G (my mtc companion for 3 months)  Well it turns out that I am companions to Elder G and elder W got transferred some where completely random and now english speaking.  Ya talk about huge shocker.  Crazy.  Elder G is the driver because my license was stolen a few weeks ago as you all know but if i get it back then i can be the driver, and i really really really want to be the driver for 3 reasons.  One i love driving.  Two Elder G is a little sketchy and three, i don't want to die, which has almost happened multiple times in the last few days haha.  So Mom i hope you are on top of that and will get my new license to me asap! :)
As you can see by my address i am very close to the ocean.  actually it is like 200 yards away from our apartment.  It is really cool.  I love driving down the coast every day.  We live in an apartment on the 2nd floor with the Zone Leaders that speak spanish:  Elder D and Elder T both from Utah.  They are both way awesome and all four of us get along really well and have lots of funny moments and lots of laughs already.  It is so much fun living with more elders.  the people that live below us are a less active hispanic couple with some kids that love soccer. We play soccer with the kids and the parents feed us often or just give us random food.  There are also alot of hispanic kids in the apartment right next door that love soccer so you can bet that we play alot of soccer.  I feel welcomed here already :)  I'm actually really stoked about this transfer because of all the soccer we are going to play, living with Elder D and Elder T is gonna be awesome, and E. Greer and I are working with the Sisters in our ward to make our ward a missionary minded ward.  Not gonna lie i wasn't too happy at first especially cuz i had to leave Lowell, my birthplace.  But now i see that The Lord is giving me some help in adjusting to the new place.  The hardest part is that Elder G and i don't know cambodian all that well....
The teaching pool is alot more shallow here and none are cambodian.  There is only one active cambodian family but they know english really well so we don't translate.  But they are awesome... well at least the  woman, S.  She is so solid in the gospel.  She feeds us every single friday and goes to the temple every single saturday.  And she has been doing that every week since forever! or something like that :)  She is cool and she helps us with khmae cuz we can ask her in english how to say a word and she will tell us how to say it in Khmae. 
Along with having no cambodian investigators, President E has told us to pretty much ignore the english people for awhile and only focus on Cambodians.  Its way hard cuz we spend all day finding/tracting and just go to doors that have a khmae name on the mailbox and nothing really comes out of it cuz the cambodians are spread all over the area.  (oh by the way we cover Lynn, Revere, Malden, and some other cities that i forgot)  So pretty much we do lots of work but don't have much to report as in numbers.  But it will be worth it in the future if we keep working hard now and can get a good pool of cambos to teach. 
In the mean time we have a whole family of Hatians that we are teaching.  They are so golden!  They are actually getting baptized this upcoming sunday, all except one cuz she is too young.  So pray for them that they will meet that date!  I'm way excited for them. 
We also taught this guy from Albania (speaks perfect english) just yesterday.  He came to church last week with a member friend and wanted to learn more.  So we taught him in Bro. B's home and taught lesson 1 and he just soaked it all in!  He was asking questions to be clear and he was taking tons of notes!  It was so cool. haha.  I extended a baptismal date and he accepted!  He will be baptized in june.  Awesome huh?  Pray for him.  He is super golden and he kept saying that he has been confused on what church to join for so long and never felt like he belonged to any church but now he feels like God led him to us and he feels like he belongs.  He said he has never felt so welcomed and loved before.  Im so excited for him as well. 
So ya don't worry about me.  I'll be fine and i fit in well here.  I love you all and am so grateful for your good influences and for all that you do and have ever done for me.  I love my family so much! they are the best!

     Elder Brady Johnson

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


         Boston on P-day, finish line of Boston marathon
           3 Elders share the apartment in Lowell. 
                     Easter fun in Lowell
First off i just want to thank everyone for their letters/emails.  You have no idea how much they strengthen me and help me be a better missionary.  Thanks so much!
Second i found out that i am getting TRANSFERRED!  Crazy huh?  Im pretty sad about it.  I mean i've only been here one transfer and i had just gotten the hang of things here, the members know me now and i know the members and now im leaving.  It was a big shock to all of us sitting around waiting for the "T-texts" (transfer texts).  We were all thinking that Elder W. was going to leave which he is, but no one expected me to go.  We think that we are both going to Lynn and will be with Elder G. again (my comp from the MTC.)  Transfers are tomorrow so that is when i'll find out for sure.  So send mail to the mission home i guess.  I'm a bit confused with this transfer.  It just goes to show that you NEVER know what God has in store for you.  Im gonna miss Elder A. so much!  I just unpacked 8 weeks ago and now i have to pack everything back up today.  
The thing that adds to the bummer of being transferred is that we finally have some solid investigators.  D.  loves having us over and expects us each week.  Hasn't come to church yet.  N.  loves learning from us and always welcomes us in but is not to willing to make any commitments yet, but she is reading the BOM.  Then there is R. who we found just last week.  We met him while tracting a street and he happened to be looking at some houses there and told us to come to his house and we can talk more.  So we went the next day and shared a really spiritual first lesson about the Restoration.  He said that the way we were explaining things that it just made sense.  He also said he can totally relate to Joseph Smith.  We committed him to be baptized on June 12th and he said he would.  He told us that he was getting the chills when we were talking to him and that he is going to read the BOM and come to church.  Im sad i won't be here to see him continue to grow and get baptized.
I'm way sad that D-Hills lost their soccer game.  I feel for them.  It sounds like a tough loss but i've learned from experience that life goes on.  There is no point dwelling on it.  Its just a good way to make you work harder for next year. 
Mom im glad you got a little taste of missionary work last week with the sister missionaries.  Now take those 2 1/2  hours and extend it for all day every day and that is what i do.  And we usually get that one good person probably once every two days or so.  But we do get dinner with the members which i am so grateful for.  But ya, its hard going to appointments and drop-bys and meeting no one huh?  haha Thats how it goes tho.  No worries we keep on keepin on and find those good things, however small they may be.  Elder A. is so good at just being positive and happy about everything.  I've learned a ton from him.  He always says "Don't worry! the Gospel is still true!" 
I got the package of music you sent and love the cd's already.  Music is such a wonderful thing!  Oh speaking of music. A sister here gave us a cd with tons of cambodian music that i can't wait to listen to after the mission.  Brock you are going to love this stuff! maybe i'll send it home for you so you can use it.  
Lastly i just want to ask for some advice from all you returned Missionaries on how we can work with members to get them more involved in missionary work.  We've tried some things but we can do more.   So if you have any ideas or suggestions that helped in your mission, i'd love to hear them and try them out here.  Thanks!
Alright i have to go pack and do some last things in Lowell before I go tomorrow.  Hopefully my leaving so early in the mission means that I will be coming back to Lowell sometime later.  Who knows?  I sure don't, ha.  I love you all so very much!  Keep being the best you can be.  Remember that "Missionaries are the full time teachers, and Members are the full time finders"(Preach My Gospel)
     Elder Brady Johnson
ps it is still cold here, like 45 degrees!  Its May and i haven't seen the sun for like a whole week cuz of rain.  I miss the STG sun and heat!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Mother's Day

Hey Everyone!
This email will be pretty short since i talked to the fam yesterday.  Yesterday was so awesome!  I love my FAMILY!!!!!!  Thanks for all that you do for me and for all the prayers.  I can feel them daily.  You guys are the best!  I don't know what i'd do without my wonderful family.  I LOVE YOU ALL!  Mom, once again, you are the best! thanks for everything you have taught me and thanks for making me who i am today.  I love you! 
Just some stuff I forgot to tell you about:  I continue to translate more in sacrament meeting.  I even said the sacrament prayer for the bread which is super hard and fast ha, and I translated a talk.  Now you must realize that when i translate talks I probably miss 50% of it,  but the point is I'm trying. And plus only like two people use the translation.  We have committed a 21 yr old guy to get baptized once he knows these things are true and he accepted.  We have no date yet tho.  We met with Y., our Thai friend and had a good review of lesson 1 and he remembered everything and even prayed for us!  He invited us back next Sunday and said he'd try to come to church.  Good stuff!  N. is a middle aged cambodian women that we've met with 3 times and she is progressing and likes learning from us but has no desire to go to church.  Hopefully that will change as she continues to feel the spirit. 
We had an awesome lesson in Elders Quorum in the Heritage Park YSA ward about thinking on the positive side and having a good attitude.  It really made me want to be better at being positive in all situations.  Ya alot of the days are rough but i learned from Elder A, my companion, that no matter what we deal with, "don't worry, just do it".  We just keep going and find the good.  If we are looking for the good, that is what we are going to find.  My goal is that whenever I start to think bad about an event or about another person is to stop and think of the good things about them or it.  I've already started to do so and i've noticed how much more happy I am.  I also try to always have a smile on my face. Smile more everyone!
Lastly, good luck D-Hills soccer DO WORK!  Take State!
I love you all and hope your week is filled with joy.  Keep a smile on your face.  I promise that it affects the mood of yourself and those around you.  Love life, it is such a precious gift! Talk to you later!

     Elder Brady Johnson

Monday, May 2, 2011

What a Week!

I guess i should start with the big news of the week..... We had a BAPTISM....just kidding, i wish that was the big news.  But nope the big news is that we got ROBBED on Wednesday.... sooooo what happened was that we got back from a dinner appointment and went to our apartment to go to the bathroom and then head out for our next appointment.   Elder W didn't lock the car cuz we would only be a little while in the house.  We were in the house for 15mins and came out and got in our car and i realized that our gps, and all of our backpacks were gone.  Yup stolen.  Just splendid.  For me my back pack was stolen which had my wallet (which includes debit card, missionary credit card, temple reccomend, drivers license, cash, gift cards, etc.) my nice Khmae triple combination was in there too along with pamphlets and what not.  Kinda a bummer huh?  We called the cops and of course they showed up an hour later.  Elder A was ticked at having to wait for them cuz he wanted to go out searching for the theives cuz if you didn't know he was on the SWAT team in Cambodia.  Eventually we did go walking around and searching with Team Portugal (Elders P and S) but no luck.  I did however get to call home and talk to mom for a bit so she could cancel my cards.  So that was nice haha.  Talk about fun, right? Elder W felt so bad the whole night and was pretty distraught, but for me I was just like, well, thats too bad.  I guess we should lock the car huh? Looks like i should find a new back pack and wallet.  haha I guess you could say i took it quite nicely.  It really wasn't a big deal to me.  More of just an inconvenience.  But hey, maybe the robber reads the pamphlets or book of mormon and becomes converted and his story will be told in General Conference in 20 years or something haha :)
Well besides that good news we had quite the successful week with tracting/handing out copies of the BOM.  Our total was, if you count the 4 BOMs that were stolen, we gave out 16 BOMs.  Not too shabby  haha.  Ironically enough, Tuesday, the day before Wednesday (as you know) which was the day of the robbery, was probably the best day of the month.  It was just an all around good day.  We met tons of new people that were interested in learning more, people who we have trying to meet were actually home, and people we had lost contact with finally answered their phones.  It was way cool.  We were just on a roll!  It was a very sweet feeling.  Im excited for the next few weeks when we will meet with these new people more and help them on their road to salvation. 
So about M...Well lets just say things have got yet again more complicated.  But he still loves having us over and letting him teach him.  I know eventually he will be baptized, but just don't know if it will be this year or 5 years ha.  But we'll keep trying cuz thats what we do.  He complimented me on my khmae this week too so that was really nice.  Still nothing from C.  There was so much potential there.  I just don't know what went wrong. 
We had some awesome dinner appointments this week with members.  Good news, when i was at one of their houses I found out that I can still do standing back flips on the ground.  After like 8 months i did 2 backflips and landed perfectly.  That was cool.  Elder A jumped on the tramp for the first time and it was the scariest thing ever cuz he is super uncordinated and fell off the tramp once ha.   If Trevor Thompson is reading this, it was just like watching Palm on the tramp.
We taught N on Friday who is a new investigator that we met while tracting on Tuesday. He recently moved here from Cambodia so he mostly speaks Khmae.  He is awesome.  He is so friendly and we were able to teach all of lesson one (the restoration) and he just soaked it in.  He wants us to come back.  He didn't come to church but he told us beforehand cuz he was busy.  I feel like he will be the first guy to get baptized out of all our investigators. im really excited for him.  
Hmmm what else? Oh ya next week is Mother's day and i can skype!  Im excited to see/talk to you all!
Just an fyi, a women in my ward here went to St. George a few weeks ago and brought me back some red dirt.  haha.
Yesterday, like most Sundays, we were at the church from 7:30am to 5pm.  We had ward council for Lowell, church, ward council for Heritage Park, church, then a break-the-fast dinner.  Thats a long time to be in one place.  
I hope this email finds you all doing well.  Have a lovely week and here's an early Happy Mother's Day to all you wonderful mothers! Especially mine who i love very much and am so grateful for all that she does! Thanks Ma I love you!
There you have it folks.  Have a good one!
     Elder Brady Johnson