Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Big news from transfer week

As you have probably figured, this week is transfers. And after 5 transfers here in the wonderful land of Providence, I am sad to say that i will be leaving. But it is not to a place i was expecting. But i will get to that later....(oooo i bet the suspense is killing you :) )

This last week and a half was insane! One of my goals that i set for the week was to just survive. And we did, barely. We had exchanges with the newport elders, zone conference (had to drive an hour in a crazy rainstorm to get there)-tangent- while there we found out that Clayton Christensen is now the 1st counselor in the mission presidency. i don't know if you all back home know that when a mission president comes out, they choose to counselors from people that live in the mission to help him out. So we will be seeing alot more of C.C.

We also had a few district meetings to go visit and then on friday we met up with Elder B and Elder W who are serving in Connecticut and drove together up to Lowell, MA in preparation for WATER FESTIVAL! Yes its already here and gone again! We ate dinner at some members house that we knew from the last time we were there and then slept over at the elders place. Saturday we were with all 9 Cambodian Elders along the Merrimack River and we set up our booth and Book Of Mormon display and got to work contacting everyone ;) It was a lot of fun and the weather was nice and so were the people. I didn't talk to nearly as many people as i did last year but i feel like I had way better and longer conversations about the gospel with them. I spoke alot of khmae and bought some cool things (but not much because there weren't as many booths this year). There were Thousands of Asians tho and I loved it. Plus i got to see some old friends from Lynn and Lowell and even got to see M one of my recent converts! She is now almost 16 and such a different person. She is super outgoing and there is this glow about her countenance and she is happy. The gospel really does change lives! It was so fun being with Elder G again and elder A and the other khmae missionaries. One of the newbies is Elder C and he actually helped coach at Bountiful High with Marty in Lacrosse! Crazy small world huh? It seems as tho that day is already like a dream to me.

Oh ya and in the middle of the day i receive a phone call from President Packard (so keep in mind that day was the day for the transfer texts to come out and so if president calls, you know something is special is happening to you like becoming a zone leader or a trainer.) So my first thought is that, oh i will finally get to be a trainer, seeing as i have gone my whole mission without being one. But then he said, "Elder Johnson, the Lord has called you to be the next..... Assistant to the President." i was completely shocked. I of course said yes that i would fulfill that assignment and then ended the call. So i will be replacing my very dear friend Elder P as he is going home and i will be serving with Elder M who also happens to be from St. George, and we will be serving in the Cambridge, MA area! You wanna know whats super crazy? Elder M and I have been on opposing teams in basketball since rec league bball all the way to Varsity B-ball in high school (he went to Snow Canyon). And now we are joining forces as the Assistants to the President. Its gonna be such a blast! We are already such good friends and im stoked to get to spend alot of time and work closely with President Packard. The hard part was that i couldn't tell anyone until they saw it on the "T-texts" that night.

Now the past few days I have been saying my goodbyes. I love this area and this ward so much. It is like home to me. I know i say that as i leave all my areas but this place has been the very best by far. The people and the experiences here have changed my life in a way I can't even begin to describe. I love it. I love being a missionary. Saying goodbye however, is not fun. I felt alot of love as i stopped by different members and recent converts and investigators houses. As a missionary you always hope that you will be able to help change peoples lives and help them be better and sometimes you even think you are doing so, but its such a humbling thing and special thing when those people tell you what you have done for them. Its at those times that you really feel like you have fulfilled your purpose as a missionary.

It was especially hard to say goodbye to A, C and V-my 3 Liberian little brothers. Im gonna miss those kids so much. They have so much potential. Its gonna take alot of support but in roughly 10 years, i could see all 3 of them out serving missions. I will never be able to forget them. Our good ward member friend D was hard to say bye to too. i can't wait for you guys to meet him.

Well thats about it. Tonight i will be leaving Providence for the last time (well i might be back cuz we do alot of traveling as the AP's. but...) Its really sad having to leave this all behind but i was reading in the Conference Ensign of this year and David Baxter said the following, "As you move forward in patience and in faith, Providence will move with you." Isn't that cool, and timely? The memories will always move with me.

So things are going to get pretty busy as an assistant and so i can't promise that i will write big emails any more but thats ok cuz the next 4 months are going to fly by.(i will finish my mission in cambridge im almost 100% positive.) Thanks for everything, your love, letters, prayers, and support. I love you!

Elder Brady Johnson

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