Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Goodbye to Elder W

There you have it, Elder W is finally going home. Well technically he is getting transferred to Revere, MA for two weeks and then going home, but anyway, he is leaving me. Its weird seeing my trainer go home. I'm so glad i got to spend these last 5 months serving with him. He is an awesome missionary and a great friend. I couldn't have asked for a better companion! He actually is having a family reunion this august in ST. George so he is going to be stopping by. I gave him your info and he will contact you. Wont that be fun?! Providence definitely won't be the same without him but life goes on.

My new companion is Elder M and he was in my district back in Revere and I went on exchanges with him a couple of times and he is a really cool guy so im excited to serve with him. Should be an awesome transfer because we have alot of good things on the horizon. For example, we got J and S (the twins whose parents said they can't meet with us) back and all is good between us and the parents. Apparently it was all a big misunderstanding but we went over the other night and I talked to the mom and explained alot plus she saw us and how we had fun with the kids and how the kids really like us and so she told us that she wants them to meet with us and go to church and maybe she will follow. She is definitely down for listening and learning so it should be really good.

Other big things that happened this week, this has been one of the best weeks of my mission. It would take way too long to talk about everything but here is just a bit. First off it has been hot and humid and I love it!!! Second, the evenings are so perfect-temperature wise. Third, Y Hatian and A got baptized!!! Lots of the members showed up to support and the water was CLEAR! *please note that every other baptism here the water in the font is brown and rusty and you can't see the bottom, but for some reason it was clear that day! MIRACLE! A's Dad came and he was the one who a year ago dragged him out of church on the day of his baptism so he wouldn't get baptized (yes we were nervous that would happen again) but everything went well and after the baptism the dad said to me, "Thank you for working so hard to get amos and for working with him so much. I see now that this is the right place for him and I am not worried." We are hoping to start teaching him soon too. Y was so happy when it was all over. We was just glowing. It was a fantastic day.

Funny story: Brother M, one of our members who is hilarious and the most sociable person I've ever met, baptized Y and he is a strong guy but Y is a big man. So after putting him into the water you could see it was a workout to get him back up and when he did, Bro. M flexed his biceps and said, "I knew lifting weights was good for something!" and then gave Y the "good game" butt slap as he was leaving the font. Haha maybe you had to be there but it was the funniest baptism I had ever seen :)

This week was also spent saying goodbye to lots of people cuz Elder W knew he was leaving. It was really cool to be around and just see how much of an impact he made in their lives. I hope that when I leave this area that I can have a similar experience. This really is the best area in the mission and I hope i don't leave it too soon. Well we have lots to do with Elder W leaving and needing to pack and what not so this is short. But I love you all and will write to you shortly! Bye!

Love, Elder Brady Johnson

Monday, May 21, 2012

Another school year gone by

Wow what a fast week. I can't believe another school year has come and gone. I've been graduated from High school for 2 whole years! WOW (imagine me spelling it with my hands in a "w" and and mouth making the "o"-you know how I showed you last week on skype?) That means Brock and Stacy have alot more free time to email/write me :) Hurray! Im super jealous of your fun trip you are going on to North Carolina and Tennessee! Take lots of pictures cuz it makes it more fun! How come no one ever told me my cousin Jessica Johnson is getting married?! I better be invited haha.

 This week was a good one. We did exchanges with the elders in Groton, CT (an hour away) and i stayed down there with Elder S. It rained the entire time but it was fun walking around getting soaked. Groton is home of the major Submarine base for the U.S so that was cool to drive by. We also got to go out with the Stake President, Pres. Hutchins and he is the man!

We had a leadership training, meaning all the zone leaders, district leaders &comps, and sisters came together with Pres and did trainings and roleplays and discussions and one of the major things that came up is that the biggest downfall of the church here in New England is that hardly anyone does home teaching or visiting teaching. I am willing to bet that the church would explode and flourish out here if people started doing thier visits. So everyone who reads this, Please do your home/visiting teaching!!!!!!!!!!!

Y is doing so good these days. We actually bumped up his baptism to this week (the 27th). So he and A will be baptized on the same day! We asked Y in one of our lessons, "Since meeting with us and coming to church, have you noticed a differenece in your life?" He just laughed and with a huge smile he said, "YES! I am 1million and 5% happier these days and my friends and family are noticing it and asking me whats different." How cool is that? He is going to be a great member of the church and a great leader. A is solid too. We taught him 3 nights in a row and had the interview and he's all set! He is excited. 
Lastly, this weekend was stake conference. It was marvelous. Our stake presidency is so focused on missionary work and good things are happening. Our Zone, which covers the stake, is leading the mission in baptisms and baptismal dates. Its pretty awesome.  Pres Coates spoke (we teach alot at his house) and he had alot of good things to say about Elder W and I. Pres and sis Evans also spoke Saturday night. but the best speaker for the adult session and general session was Pres. Hutchins. That man speaks with power and authority but with love. Like i said before, he is the man. He has 10 kids, the oldest on a mission, and has been the stake pres for only a year, and he goes out with the missionaries at least once a month, plus he works for Fizer(sp?) and is pretty high up in the rankings. And he does it all. And he does it really well. He really knows how to inspire peolpe. Another cool part about the conference was a 12yr old recent convert of 2months, this young african/american kid with a Huge fro spoke about the blessings that have come to his life since joining the church. His talk was one of the best given and he gave it professionally, without using any notes. It was so cool!

And now I am sitting at the Boston Public Library, in down town Boston emailing you all. Yup we got up here again and I love this city. I could totally live here and work here. Its just got a really good nice clean feel to it.  I love you all and cant wait to hear about your trip!
Love, Elder Brady Johnson

Monday, May 14, 2012

Happy Mother's Day

That was so much fun to see all of you on the computer yesterday! One of the little boys that was waving to you on skype said to me after the call with the fam, "your mom is pretty." haha and i was like, "yup i have a pretty mom." Then When talking to Karli, Elder W. told Brother Don that i was talking to some babe and he was like, "what?! He can't do that!" but then i explained, that it was my sister and my new nephew. Good stuff. Oh before i forget, an elder in our district told me to tell my mom hi from him, so Hi from elder S!

I forgot to tell you cuz i totally spaced it but we (elder w and i) gave a talk in church yesterday. And it went really well. I don't think i have ever received more praise and compliments from any talk before like we did after those talks. Alot of the members told us to make sure and tell our mothers Thanks for all that they did to make us great and get us here. I talked about the Untold Stories of Mothers-the things we seem to over look. I asked everyone to think of all the great prophets, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, Nephi, Mormon, Capn moroni, Mosiah, ect. And then said, "Now think about the mothers of all of these great men and imagine what they were like. I know that their mothers were a huge role in making these men so great because that is exactly what mothers do." And... a whole lot more was said but i don't really feel like writing it all out :) But i love you mom!

I told you my release date has been set and it is December 28. This means I will be able to make it to school in Jan without too much rush (one week is plenty of time.)  Well im gonna go cuz we are making the road trip to Boston today to play some Soccer! Bye! love ya! Write me people:)
    Elder Brady Johnson

Monday, May 7, 2012

I'm an uncle!

Hurray! I'm an uncle now!!!! It feels good. Congrats to Blake and Karli! and Congrats to Mom and Dad for being old.... i mean for being grandparents! Yay!!!! I can't wait to talk to all of you and see the little guy. I will most likely call on Mother's day around 6-7pm my time so about 4-5 your time? but it could be later. We are going over to our bishop's house and helping with dinner for his wife and then we will call. Should be a good day because Elder W and I got asked to speak in church on Mothers :) So momma I just gotta say, you are amazing! Thanks for everything!

As for the week, it was quite eventful. We had zone leader council so that means breakfast and lunch provided by Sister Evans. But then we got a special treat because that night we met with the Providence Stake Presidency along with Pres. Evans and afterwards he took us out to dinner! It was awesome. Pres. Evans is the Man! I'm really sad to see him leaving in the next month but its ok cuz he lives in Bountiful and so I will get to visit him often. He is such a humble and really funny guy. Meeting with our Stake Presidency was pretty awesome. Every one of them is like a CEO of some big company and so the meeting was very business-like and could've been intimidating but we came prepared and we held our own in there haha it was cool. I've never seen a more missionary minded group of people. And they don't just talk the talk. They are out there working with us missionaries and constantly challenging the wards and members to step it up and share the gospel. Its a great time to be a missionary in the Providence RI stake. Good things are happening and Great things are on the horizon!

Y is the one investigator with the most promise and progress. He is just solid. He is reading the Book of Mormon pretty faithfully and comes to church every week and is loving all of it. We had a lesson with him this week and he told us that he definitely recognizes that the spirit is with us(the missionaries) whenever we come to his house. He feels so good after we come. He also asked a really good question, "Is it ever going to get easier?" He said this because he, on his own, decided he wanted to quit a bad habit and so he did a few months ago. but the temptation is still there. Even when he is now closer to God than ever, he feels a stronger temptation. He is such a good guy and really wants to do the right thing and it is very inspiring. We talked about Enduring to the End and how that word endure lets us know that its not always going to be easy but if we stay faithful to God he will never forsake us. 

We have Zone Conference coming up this week and we as a zone have decided to "Forsake the World", by choosing one thing that we will sacrifice in order to better fulfill our purpose and become better missionaries, to prepare for the Zo Co. Elder W and I decided that we will sacrifice our english. Meaning that we will not talk to each other in English except with other english speaking missionaries or members around. So this is what we do. We talk in spanish with each other and if i don't know how to say a word or don't understand something he says, then we use cambodian. Its pretty awesome. I've already seen the blessings. My spanish has gotten way better-its still very bad but its improving. I prayed in spanish at a members house who is dominican! It is definitely really hard to not speak in english and it gets quite frustrating at time but its all going to be worth it in the end!

So i challenge you to all do the same, that is choose one thing that you will give up, let go, or change in order to become more like Christ. I can promise you that its not easy, but it will be worth it and you will be happier!  I love you all! See you next week! Please think of things that you want to talk to me about and ask me!
Love, Elder Brady Johnson