Monday, April 29, 2013

29 April 2013

Dear Family and Friends, 
Transfers are May 5th so if you plan to send anything, probably do it today or tomorrow, and if not by then then send it to the mission home. That address is 1871 E. Del Rio Drive, Tempe AZ 85282.
This was a record breaking week. We beat our own record for street contacts/OYMs and set the mission record, and our zone also set the mission record for most OYMs in a week. The total zone number was 1,828. Elder Allen and I got 604 of those. We walked a lot. A lot. We also got pretty good at turning OYMs into street lessons and set another record with 59 lessons on the street.
The APs noticed and are coming on Thursday to have a 'sit down talk.' We'll see what that means. 
A quote that stuck out this week. "Just because you're tired doesn't mean you deserve to rest."
It has been getting quite hot this week. According to our car it hit 100 twice. Both of those days we walked over 8 miles. We walked pretty far this week.
We stopped at one home to speak with a family and their backyard fan had melted and all the blades were bent downward.
In one of our street contacts this week we went up to some teenage guys talking at a corner. We introduced ourselves briefly and as we were saying what we did one of them yelled, "Want to get sacrificed?? Then keep moving!" The other one started to yell obscenities at us as we offered them a card and then the other one flipped us off. Fun times with them. 
We picked up four new investigators this week. Three of them were spanish and things looked really really good. We taught them a lesson and they thoroughly enjoyed it. We went by the next day and they said they were moving to California, didn't know when, and didn't want to set up a return appointment. 
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Huge red moon this week.
This past week the sisters had two baptisms. One of their investigators getting baptized invited a friend who happened to live in our area. She loved the baptism and came to church last week. We are meeting with her on Tuesday and have high hopes for her. She is spanish. The ward reached out to her really well at the baptism and she already has quite a few friends. This is the one we've been waiting for!
This upcoming week we have planned to go by every single one of our former investigators. We have over 60 names planned out; one of those has to go through.
In what's called 'Little Mexico' (two streets worth of Hispanics) we went and OYM'd two women sitting outside. One of them interrupted us and said, "I'm not interested, I'm a witch!" Haven't heard that one yet so we weren't how to respond haha. There's a first for everything.
In that same area someone told us that they caught a rattlesnake in their front yard a while before that measured out to nine feet. Their son wanted to keep it but when it attacked him they "had no choice but to cut it's head off." Why you would want to keep a rattle snake 9 feet long is beyond me!
I got a note from Elder Sawyer this week. He is serving in Mesa right now and finishes his mission next week. One of our recent converts, the one who baptized his family, is getting the Melchizedek priesthood soon and is a counselor in the Young Men's presidency! Their next stop is the temple! Such good news. It's crazy to think that he is going home soon.
On Friday night we were going around talking with some people on the street and inviting them to learn more about the church. We spoke with one man and his very first words were, "Well, the fact is that you are a cult who doesn't worship Jesus." Things went downhill from there on both our sides. My biggest pet peeve is when people tell me what I believe when they obviously have no idea. He went on and on about how faith was all you need to be saved and that we were going to hell. It wasn't a very good street contact.
On our way back to our car, we took a shortcut through a golf course because we were short on time and it was around after 8pm. There are no street lights anywhere in Queen Creek. The suburbs are also built all around golf courses. Peoples back yards are often part of the course. Anyway, we took a shortcut across this course in pitch black joking about snakes and alligators. Elder Allen noticed a long white shape on the ground and said, "What's that?" Just then we heard a really weird loud gurgly sound and something jumped from the ground. I was in the front and saw it first so I turned and ran and Elder Allen yelled, "RUN!" A few feet down the grass we turned around... Turns out it was a high power water sprinkler. I almost died! It could have been a gator!
Speaking of golf courses and backyards, I was walking down the road and a stray golf ball flew past someone's house and hit a tree 6' from me. I almost died! 
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Proof that Queen Creek is unique. Something in the above picture isn't normal...
Stake conference was yesterday. Elder Villareal from the 70 came, President and Sister Howes were there, the Mesa temple presidency, and the stake presidency. We were pretty sure that a stake split was going to happen but nothing of significance happened. Some quotes I liked:
"Those who seem to deserve love the least deserve it the most." - P. Howes
"Being temple worthy automatically makes you mission worthy, but I'm not sure sure if the other way is true." P. Porter (of Mesa temple)
There was a big emphasis on family temple trips, even if to just see the grounds.
President Porter spoke about how people shouldn't stop going to the temple because the Gilbert one is opening soon. Apparently a lot less people have been going recently.
A really cool comment from E. Villareal was that apparently announcing the age change to 19 for sisters wasn't pre-planned and Elder Cook told Elder Villareal that it was an example of prophetic revelation. Chevere.
On a similar note, the mission will be gaining over 20 sister missionaries in the next 3 months. That makes more spanish Sisters than Elders.
Anyway, thanks for the letters,Gpa J, Gpa Wm Annie, Mom and Dad, Eric, Will, Jeff R, Natalia, S. Hines, and Tanan! Hopefully I have time to write you all back today! 
With love,
Elder Johnson

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