Monday, July 25, 2016

Death Interview, Death Dinner and an Amazing Temple Trip - Two More Days!!! - 07/25/2016

Hey everyone! The end of my mission is here. It has been an amazing experience being able to serve the people in the DC area. I have been very blessed for all the experiences, both good and bad, that I have been able to go through. I have been able to meet some of the most amazing people and see their lives change because they chose to follow Jesus Christ and His example. My testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ has grown exponentially. Because of the things I have seen and the things I have felt I have a much greater understanding of what the Gospel of Jesus Christ is all about. Thanks to all of those who have followed me on this journey. I appreciate all the emails that have been sent and I am look forward to talking to all of you guys!
This week has been pretty great. We had our death interviews and death dinner with President Johnson and we had an amazing temple trip as well! Have an amazing week everyone! I will see you guys this week! 😱

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Single Digits....9 Days Left - 07/18/2016

Well this week has been petty interesting. It has been hard meeting with the people that we are working with because it seems like everyone is out of town with their family vacations. We have been checking on a bunch of new move-in referrals with no luck, so far.

Needless to say it has been a pretty slow week. A couple of pretty cool things did happen though. We were going through a bunch of names of members that the ward wanted us to visit. We finally got a hold of one of those family's and they said we could come over. So we went over there and introduced ourselves. We had an awesome conversation with them and got to know them pretty well. They hadn't been to church since last year because of health problems. They have been pretty lonely due to being house-ridden and so they are always open to having visitors over. They shared with us a few stories from their lifetime, they shared some of their hobbies that they enjoy, and after all that, we were able to share a spiritual thought with them. That may seem just like any normal visit, but that visit helped remind me how simple missionary work can be. One of the hobbies this member was into was 3D printing. He totally said he would make me a 3D printed name tag.
This week we also had a solid lesson with a less active member and his family. People have been asking him to come to church for a while now and he hasn't budged. We ended up focusing on some of the Christ-like attributes that are found in Preach My Gospel. We focused on trying to excited commitments that will help build his faith so he will have a desire to act. It will probably take a couple more lessons, but I think he will be coming back to church soon.
President Johnson and sister were making their rounds this week. I had pretty short interviews with both of them because I will be getting my departing interview this week. It's pretty crazy to think about it haha.

In other exciting news, I was able to visit with members in the Gaithersburg ward. I am trying to visit a lot of people before I leave and it is kinda getting hectic, especially with the distance. I am hoping I will be able to visit a good chunk of people this week.
Sunday was the Why I Believe fireside up at the temple visitor center. President Johnson and sister Johnson spoke and it was awesome! The more around them the more I like them. It think they will do great things for this mission. After Why I believe  I got to talk to tons of members of past wards and got to say good bye to them. It was a pretty great night. 

Thank you guys for the support see you all in 9 days 😳

Monday, July 11, 2016

Moving Party, Epic 4th of July P-Day, and Meeting the New Mission President - 07/11/2016

What's up everyone! I hope you all have had a fantastic two weeks! Sorry about last week! It was a pretty epic pday, but I will get back to that. The week before the 4th was a pretty good one. We
were able to meet lots of families in the ward through our meal appointments. This ward is really good at feeding the missionaries and not only is it great because of the food it makes it a lot easier to
meet the ward. Most wards, the missionaries pass a calendar around, but this ward, the mission leader assigns people to feed the missionaries, so we are getting fed every single night. We have met some awesome family's who love to do missionary work.

I named him Otto the Tick...Yes mom I pulled the whole tick out, I contacted the doctor and the bite is doing fine :)
One of these awesome family's called us up one day and asked us if we would help move one of their non-member friends. Our roommates and us headed over to house and surprised these people, who were planning on moving all over their stuff by themselves. It was a sweet way to kinda introduce the Church to them. Later that night the family who had asked us to help them had us over for dinner and they invited the family we helped move over. We were able to talk and visit then, we shared a spiritual thought about the importance of family's. It was awesome! That same week were able to get a hold of most of our investigators in the area book! It has been pretty hard to get a hold of them since we have been in the area, but things are finally starting to pick up.
One of the biggest highlights from the last week was the 4th of July! This year the 4th of July landed on a P-Day and our new Mission President, President Johnson, gave us an all day P-Day and let us stay out till 10:30. Unfortunately we were not allowed to go to the National Mall (where the Washington monument, Lincoln Memorial, and that kinda stuff is) so a bunch of us missionaries got together and had a big barbecue a the Holmead chapel in DC. The chapel is really old and they only use it for young adult actives so it worked out perfectly. Once it got late, we made our way to a high school which over looked the mall. Unfortunately everybody and their dogs were lighting of all these little fireworks and that made the air so smoky that we couldn't even see the fireworks going off at the mall. Fortunately there were a bunch of apartment buildings lighting off fireworks on top of the buildings, so we could still enjoy them. We packed up around 10 to make it back to the DC Zone Leaders apartment so we could be in on time. There ended up to be around 11 missionaries trying to sleep in this tiny studio apartment that had no carpet. Needless to say it was a very long night and most of us only got a couple of hours of sleep because of the uncomfortable sleeping conditions. The next day, Elder Schank and I made our way out of the city to a stake center, via metro, to pick up our car and made the long drive back. Surprisingly we were able to make the whole day with out taking a power nap. We spent most of that day just checking on potential investigators.

Another huge highlight of the week was that we were able to meet President and Sister Johnson. They seem awesome and they will do great things for the mission. You can for sure tell they have that greeny fire and they are ready to rock and roll. Not going to lie it is pretty hard to attempt to build that relationship with them when you have a pretty short time left, and when they are focusing on the younger missionary (which is a good thing). They will do a lot of good for the mission. The rest of the week has been the grind. We have been able to work with a lot of the focus family's in our ward and we are continually meeting with our investigators. So far we have not seen too much progress with them, but we are still working hard at inviting them to come unto Christ.

Thank you guys for all the support!

Have a great week!

Elder Tyler Johnson

Epic Rope Swing!!!

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Busy 4th of July...07/04/2016

Hope you all had an awesome week! I'm very sorry but today has been a really busy day. We have had an awesome and safe Fourth of July I will all update you on my we next week! 

Have an awesome week!!

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Arlington National Cemetary, DC Traffic, Departing Dinner With President & Sister Cooke, Final Interview With President Cooke, Elder Brimhall Heads Home, & Meeting the New Ward - 06/27/2016

Sorry for the late email. We have been away from WiFi all day...

Hello Everyone! 

I hope you all are having a wonderful day and I hope its week as been great. As for me it has been very crazy.

On Monday we had our Arlington trip with President and Sister Cooke. It was a pretty amazing experience. I have been to Arlington before, but it was pretty cool being able to go with a bunch of fellow missionaries. We also were able to do a couple of things that we would usual not have been able to do, without President Cooke. One of those things was being able to into a chapel they have and sing our mission song. This chapel is off limits to the public for a couple of reasons. One of those reasons is that the actual chapel is located inside the compound where all the military personnel live. During our visit were also able to go to the tomb of the unknown soldier. We watched the changing of the guard which is always great. Another awesome thing that we were able to watch was a reef laying ceremony. President and Sister Cooke had bought one and they were able to lay it on to the tomb. It was chilling experience. Unfortunately as of right now I do not have the video of that, but I will be getting hopefully sometime this week. After Arlington I stayed on an exchange with some other missionaries for the rest of the day.

On Tuesday I met my companions, Elder Schank, and Brimhall at the new missionary training meeting. This meeting was an all day thing. It started at 9 and we didn't get out till 4. And unfortunately the drive back into our area is a long trip so it took up almost all of our day. On our way we got stuck in the nasty DC traffic and on top of that we got caught in a massive rain and lightning storm which caused even more delays. We had to move our dinner back an hour just so we could have some time with them...

Wednesday was a pretty interesting day. We got to go into Virginia for an appointment. We showed up a little early so we decided to take a nice drive through DC. Unfortunately there is no such thing as a nice drive through DC and I was also the one driving. What we thought was going to be just a nice smooth drive turned into me aging 5 years. Once it was time to head to our appointment we maid our way back over to the Virginia side of Potomac. After the appointment had finished we headed out and traffic was already starting to get bad. We had a pretty hard time trying to get back home. The traffic plus the Virginia road system makes it for a long day. We did finally make it home. Wednesday we spent a total of 5 hours in the car.

Thursday is our meeting day. We had our district meeting which went really well and for after distinct meeting the senior couple who is serving where I am took me up to the Kentland's chapel for our departing dinner with President and Sister Cooke. It was a really fun night with lots of great missionaries who I have been able to share a lot of time with. During this dinner each missionary (about 30) took 60 seconds to share a story from there mission. I shared the story about Igor. Towards the end of the dinner President Cooke presented us with our coins. It was an awesome night.

Friday we had our final interview with President Cooke. It was a pretty surreal experience. It brought back some memories of when I first met him. After interviews we worked on scrapbook pages for the Cooke's. Friday was also the day that Elder Brimhall headed home. He had been dealing with anxiety for the past few years and it had gotten really bad on the mission and so he decide to get it taken care of at home. It was really sad to see him go, but I know that he will get some much needed help. After interviews, we headed to lunch/dinner with this single lady. She took us out to Texas Road House and it was awesome! After we had finished with that we were able to meet with one of our investigators! Yay!  His name is Steve Berry. He is an awesome guy who is very interested in the gospel. When we first showed up he pulled up this Word document that looked like research paper he had been working on for months. It was all his notes and questions that he had been taking down since he had been meeting with missionaries. He had a bunch of random questions about the Book of Mormon that he asked us. After he had discussed that we told him to do his studying from the Preach My Gospel manual and to study the 5 lessons that are found inside. It was awesome! He pulled up Preach My Gospel on and started reading through the first lesson. One of the first things it has in that lesson is a list of baptismal requirements and he had a little self evaluation moment and we now know what we need to focus with him on. He then told us that he will read through the lesson and come up with some question that he has about it for the next time we meet. I have not taught anyone this way before and I don't necessarily recommend it, but it seems like it is going to work for Steve.
Saturday was one of our very first days that we have been able to spend the entire day in our area. We spent some time checking on referrals. We also had a bible study with three people which was awesome! When we showed up, we found out that we were kinda in charge of leading this class. So Elder Schank and I taught a 45 min class and it actually went really well. We then spent some more time trying to get a hold of people to set up appointments for the rest of the week.

Sunday we had our church service and it was the first time we were introduced to the ward. So far everyone that we have met has been awesome. They are very excited to have Elders back in the ward. The members have been loading us up with names of people to check on, so that should keep us busy for good while. After church we had dinner and then we once again set out trying to contact our referrals.

Love you all have a great week!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Shipped Off to Amish Country, Zone Activity, Patuxent Ward, A Trio of Companions, and the Cooke's Last Why I Believe - 06/20/2016

What is up everyone! I hope you are all doing well on this fantastic Monday afternoon. This week has been pretty hectic with all the things that were going on. 

Monday we had the opportunity to go to the Marriott's house for our zone activity. We got to got together and played lots of sports like volleyball, Frisbee, and catch with a baseball. It was pretty great. Later that night I found out that I would be getting transferred to the Patuxent Ward, which is located in southern Maryland and I also found out that I was going to be in a trio. Once I found that out, I started to pack. 

Tuesday Elder Crandall and I spent the entire day visiting different family's in the ward. I am really grateful for the time I have been able to spend in the Kentland's Ward. Some for the names of the family's we visited were the Carvers, the Martinis, the homestead, and for dinner we went with the Clark's to Cafe Rio. While we were at dinner a few other members of the ward were there. After dinner we went and visited Marie to say goodbye to her and then we ended the night at the Blewett family which was a really bitter sweet moment. 

Wednesday we woke up early and finished our packing. We drove to the church to drop off some last things to Sister Blewett and then we headed to the church for our transfers. I received Elder Schank as one of my new companions and Elder Schank got called to be a trainer for Elder Brimhall. Both of them are really cool guys and I am very excited to be with them. At first I was really not in the best of moods when I found that I was going to be white washing in the outskirts of the mission in a trio, but I now feel like that is where I am suppose to be because of s few reasons. After we we got all packed up into the senior couple's van we made our way down to our area which is about 2 hours away from the temple. That first day in the area we were able to meet with the ward mission leader and with an awesome family for dinner. The ward mission leader is an awesome guy! He seems to be very dedicated to the ward mission. One of the great things he does is he assigns family's to feed the missionaries. That way we are able to meet the whole ward.

Thursday we stared our days off with some studies as always. And since Elder Brimhall is a new missionary we get an extra hour personal study which is great. So far the feel to a trio had been kinda strange. This is the only one I have been in and it is quite a bit different, just because you have to balance things out between all three companions ships. For example teaching a lesson with two people feels different then teaching with three people. Training a new missionary in a trio also feels a lot different then just the normal 2 person companionship. After our study's we drove 45 min to get to our 12 week meeting for Brimhall and our zone district meeting. Meetings were pretty good. All we did was play games, which is fun for a few minutes, but then you start to feel like you are just wasting time. It was good though. The zone I am in now is very young, so I don't know too many people and he games helped me get to know them a little better. By her time we got back to was time for us to go to Dinner with another awesome family. We stood around there house for a little extra time so we could meet their son who is thinking about serving mission. It was a very fun evening with the Ray family.

Friday we spent a lot of time trying to set up appointments for the up coming week. We also tried getting s hold of our investigators, but unfortunately they didn't pick up. After we had finished planing we tried knocking on some of our investigators doors, but nobody was home. We then proceeded to dinner and after dinner we dropped in on members in the surrounding area. 

Saturday we spent most of our time checking on people who the sisters had been trying to work, but we had no luck. We had dinner with another awesome family for the ward then we headed an hour up the road to our stake center for the Saturday session of stake conference. Stake Conference was pretty great! President and Sister Cooke both gave the same talks they gave in the Stake Conference that I went to two weeks ago and even though it was the same, Sister Cooke's talk hit me. She talked about how if we are struggling, to take the focus off of ourselves and help that person is having a harder time than you. I have been put in my area to help my companions reach their potential and to obviously preach the gospel the Patuxent Ward. 

Sunday we had the Sunday session of Stake Conference which was also really good! We were not able to meet very many members of the ward unfortunately because of how many people were in attendance. After church we drove to our house, ate and then we drove up to a members house to take us to Why I Believe. The keynote speakers was the Cooke family because this is their last Why I Believe. The fireside was awesome and it makes me really sad that they are leaving here very shortly. Sorry for the super long email!

Hope you all have an awesome day! Byeeeee. Oh yeah there is also Amish that live down here.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Elder Crandall is Heading Home, Transfer on Wednesday, Saying Goodbye to Ward Members, and Sacrament Meeting Talks - 06/14/2016

Hey everyone! It's that time of the week again when you receive an email from your favorite missionary. Hope you all had a great week!

This week has been a very bitter sweet experience. We have been spending lots of time saying goodbye to the members. Elder Crandall is going home and I am being transferred Wednesday. And tonight I found out that I am going down to very bottom of the mission. It should be interesting.

Some of the highlights of the week was able to spend time with the Hanson family. They are one of my favorite family's in the ward! They are a family of all boys and they are pretty funny. We were able to spend time with the Blewett family. They took us down to a Canal down near their house. We walked with them for a little bit and that was very fun. We were able to go to the farm and have some fun there. 

On Sunday Elder Crandall and I both were assigned to give talks during sacrament meeting since we were both leaving. We took the place of the youth speakers so the talks were very short. It was very weird though.

It felt like I was giving my departing/homecoming talk. It was very surreal. Thanks for everything you guys do. 

Have a great week!

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Marie is Progressing, Stake Conference, and a Mission Fast - 06/06/2016

Happy Summer! Another enjoyable week on the mission! It is getting pretty crazy to think that it is going to be wrapping up hear shortly. My companion, Elder Crandall, goes home in 9 days, which is also very weird. Anyway here are some of the highlights from the week. 

On one of the days we were able to meet with Marie. She is still doing pretty well in progressing in the gospel. She is just going at her own pace, so it may be a while before she is baptized, which is fine with me. If she takes a little longer than most, then that's okay. We don't work with God at his pace, he only works with us at our pace. At the end of our meeting she even told us that we have helped her out a ton in her life, and she  said that when some of her life situations are figured out, she wants to be baptized. We are hoping that is coming very soon. 

Another big highlight of the week was most definitely stake conference. Every single talk was given so well. Sister Cooke gave an awesome take, President Cooke gave an awesome talk, and another person you all may be a little familiar with, Dick Marriott (guy who started the hotel business) spoke as well and he gave a very good talk as well. The spirit was definitely there. 

One of the highlights of the week for me was our mission fast. As a mission, we all fasted starting Saturday evening and ending Sunday evening. We all fasted for our areas and some personal things. All my life I have been struggling with fasting and I feel like I haven't really put to much effort into it. This time a tried to do better and it really paid off. It was a much better experience then ones I have had in the past. And over the next few weeks we will see the blessings coming from the fast.

Thanks for the emails everyone! Have a great week!!

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Memorial Day, Last Zone Conference & Death Testimony, Mariachi Baptism, & BYU Football Coaches Fireside!!! - 05/30/2016

What up what up! Hope you are all doing fantastic! Happy Memorial Day!
I hope you all had a wonderful day!

This past week has been pretty great, if I do say so my self. Monday we had a pretty chill day. We went down to a pretty nice mall. We mostly windowed shop cuz we ain't got money for dat. We did how ever get comp shirts for Memorial Day.

After our P-Day we were able to meet with the Gress's. They are a super awesome couple in the Kentland's ward. We were fortunate enough to sit down and get to know a little bit about them. Sister Gress has been an active member her whole life. Brother Gress is a convert to the church and he has a pretty cool convention story. Brother Gress is really into nature and this involves fishing. This led to us talking about Alaska for a good chunk of time haha.
Tuesday was a very long and bland day.  We spent a big hunk of our time running back and forth from the police station and our apartment trying to get all the things we needed to be able to file a police report for my wallet, that I lost a two weeks ago.

 Wednesday we had our Zone Conference which was awesome! All the training's that were given were really well done! It definitely has given me some new ideas on how to better my area. The conference was also very weird because this was mine and the Cooke's last one. At the end of the meeting they usually have the departing missionaries give their death testimony. And since I don't go home this transfer I thought I was safe... Wrong! They decided that all the people that are going home in July have to bare their testimonies as well. It was the weirdest feeling ever! Going to be honest, it doesn't really feel like my mission is coming to a close, but when I got up there, crap got real haha. After the zone conference we rushed back home to get to our area for our meal appointment. After the meal appointment we attended the baptism of someone the sister missionaries were teaching, it was pretty great.
Thursday was a service day! We were going to go out to the farm, but I sounded like they had nothing for us to do, so we helped Mary Ellen in her yard. While we were helping out we were able to talk with her non member daughter, who is visiting for the summer. It was great, being able to meet and talk with her. We are hoping that she will continue to have positive experiences with members of the church and hopefully she will start to become more interested. Crazy thing is, she will be going to school at UVU next fall so she will be surrounded by members.
Friday was a blast! Elder Crandall had his death dinner with the Cooke's, so I was able to go on an exchange with Elder Combs and Elder Porter. Us three came out on to the mission at the same time and I have been able to serve around both of them and they are some, best guys! We had a lot of fun while we were working.

Saturday I was able to attend another baptism of someone in the Gaithersburg ward! It was great to see a lot of the ward members who I use to be close with. For the baptismal program we were located in the chapel. At the same time as the program was going, the Spanish ward was having a full out fiesta! So right when the first speaker was baring her testimony, Mariachi music blasted from the cultural hall. It was pretty funny! We had to run and tell them to turn down the music till we finished. After the baptism we were able to the Landrith family for some fondue.

Sunday we had our normal services which are always great. After church we went to dinner at the Turley's home. The Turley's are an awesome family in the Kentland's ward! Sister Turley is a pretty accomplished singer. She played Cossette on Broadway for a number of years and since then she goes and speaks to large groups of women for Dessert Book. Brother Turley is an awesome guy! He was the first ward mission leader I had on my mission! Later that night we were able to attend a fireside put on by a bunch of BYU football coaching staff and players. It was pretty awesome! Afterwards they had a meet and great with all of them and a member from our ward gave me a football for all of them to sign it was pretty sweet! Thank you all again! Have a wonderful week!

Taysom Hill

Ty Detmer

Kalani Sitake

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Rain Rain Go Away, Junkyard Dog's, Interviews with President Cooke, Baptismal Interviews, District Meetings, Working on the Farm, and Blessings for a Family in Gaithersburg - 05/26/2016

Hey everyone how are you all doing?  This week has been kind of long as it has rained the entire time and it seems like we haven't seen the sun for the past month. Anyways some of the highlights from this week start on Monday. We went to a junkyard. There were a bunch of old cars we took time to scavenge through and we were looking for old seat belt's  that we could make belts out of. That was really fun! After that we went to lunch, and after lunch we went to a family's house and we had a birthday party for Elder Crandall because he was turning 20. 

On Tuesday we had our interviews with the mission president which went quite well. President Cooke is winding down here as the mission president in the Washington DC North mission. He will be done around the first of July. After he is released he and his family are taking a vacation to California for a month then they're coming back to their house which they bought in the same ward that they were serving in. It seems because of his short time he was making the interviews a little bit longer than usual which was quite nice. It was really cool just to be able to talk to him and be able to get to know him a little bit better. 

On Wednesday I was able to interview someone for baptism which was a pretty cool experience that I'm very glad that I was able to have the spirit was very strong. 

Thursday we had our district zone meetings.  

On Friday we spent the day at the farm working on various tasks that they needed to finish up. We spent a lot of time finishing the staining which took place last week, we also took time to take the ponies from the field that they were in and bring them up to the barn and then we brought them back when they were done. After we were finished at the farm we went to dinner at the Blewett's home. Another family from the ward was also there which made it a really fun time.
We were able to meet the Blewett's daughter who is a nonmember.  She is about 23 and she plans on attending college at UVU in the fall. She has been hanging out with lots of missionaries as of late and it really seems like the Lord is working on her. As of right now she is out in Maryland for the summer working at the summer camp that some members own. We are hoping this summer, that she will create some solid connections with some other members and hopefully she will start becoming more and more interested in the church. 

On Saturday I was able to perform two more baptismal interviews and just like the first, they were a great experience full of the spirit. Later that night I was able to go to Lacsamana family who are in the Gaithersburg ward. I called them up a few nights before and told them that I need to see them before I leave. It turned out that it was an answer to their prayers. I know they're going through some hard times and none of the missionaries in their ward right now don't really understand what is going through their lives right now. Personally I don't completely understand what is going on, but I was in the ward when a lot of the things that they're dealing with right now were developing.

During the night we had dinner and I was able to give sister Lacsamana and her mom a blessing. Those blessings were one of the most spiritual moments on my mission. That night helped me see that God really does care about everybody and their circumstances. That something that we say a lot and sometimes I feel like it's kind of deluded because of the repetition, but when you seeGod's work in someone's lives it really does bring a much greater meaning. 

On Sunday we had a meeting with all the missionaries for mission leaders in the stake at 7 o'clock in the morning we talked a lot about what was going on with the efforts of missionary work in the stake after that meeting we went to church and enjoy the services it was for conference we had opportunity to hear from the stake president and a bunch of the stake leaders. Another great highlight of Sunday, we are able to meet in new family in the ward and have dinner with them. On my mission I have appreciated the opportunity to get to know people a lot more than I did at home. I love talking and listening and hearing people's differences and their different points of view. As you listen it really does broadens your perspective and you have the opportunity to learn from them and their lives.

Thank you so much for all the emails and all the love and support. I am so sorry for the late email once again. 

I hope all of you have a wonderful week thank you so much much love!

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

New Suit and the Tie is Almost Done, Bible Study, Continued Work With Marie, and Service on the Farm - 05/16/2016

Hello everyone! This week has been pretty good! It has been filled with similar things that we have been doing for the past few weeks. We have been helping out with a bunch of service. We helped up at the farm, we spent an entire day organizing the mission sheds with a bunch of other elders. We also helped on of out members with cleaning out one of his storage rooms, so that was kinda fun.
Investigator wise, Marie is still crawling forward. She has been reading the Book of Mormon which is still a huge step with her. She still has not come to church in quite a while, so we will be focusing on that in the up coming visits. A really cool experience we had this week was that we were able to attend a bible study hosted by one of our members. All the other people (about 5 or 6) who attend are non LDS. Usually the bible study is just one guy talking about the reading that everyone should have read before coming. This time at the end of the bible study, the main guy started asking us questions about what we do as missionaries and what we believe in. We were able to give him a brief rundown before we had to end. We will be heading back over this week hopefully to be able to continue to share what we believe in an open environment.
On Sunday we had the Why I Believe fireside. It was awesome! The keynote speakers were the Turley family, who are from our ward. Sister Turley is pretty well known. She played Cossette in Les Miserables and now she goes to different parts of the country speaking and singing for something called Timeout for Women. She bore her testimony primarily through song. The awesome part of this Why I Believe is that her whole family was involved. So she had her 4 kids who range in age from 2 to 10 sing which was pretty funny, then they had brother Turley bear his testimony at the end! It was a great fireside.
In other news I got a new suit and my tie is almost done Yay!

Thanks for all the emails have a great week! And sorry for the late email once again! Byeee

Monday, May 9, 2016

Mother's Day Facials and Call, Kentlands Days, and Knitting a Tie??? - 05/09/2016

Happy Mother's Day! Hope you all had a great week and you all spoiled your moms. This past week we have had lots of fun! I'll let the pictures do all the talking! Hope you all have a great week!

Mother's Day facials.... We spent Mother's Day with a family off all boys. All the mom wanted for mother's day was do girly stuff with her boys, so we were a part of that experience... More pictures to come of that:

(Saturday) Great day at the Kentlands day. ( kinda like steel days but much smaller) our church had a booth set up where we talked to people about the different things that our church offers like the relief society for the women, and scouts for the young men. While we were there we realized that we scare people away, so we kinda stayed away from our booth for a while and went to talk to people at the other booths. This picture is of Elder Crandall and I checking out some of the cars they had at the event.

Mother's Day call:

Knitting a tie:

Some other highlights that I don't have a picture of is being able to meet with Marie! She wasn't at church because she wasn't feeling good so we dropped off some flowers to her. It was a really nice brief visit. I feel like she is coming closer and closer to being able to commit her to baptism. We also have been meeting with lost of the members trying to help strengthen their faith. Anyway thank you all so much for the emails! Keep them coming! 

Elder Tyler Johnson  

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Zone Activity, Electric Long Boards, Temple Trip, District/Zone Meetings, Service, and Last Transfer Next Week - 05/02/2016

Hey everyone! This week has been pretty great! 

Monday we headed down to a zone activity in silver spring. We had a chalk fight and then we played a bunch of sports. It was pretty fun. After the activity, Elder Lee came on exchanges with us up to our area. We had dinner and family home evening with some awesome family's.

Tuesday we did a bunch of service for members. We helped this older lady with some yard work. We then helped another member with his garden. While we were doing this we started talking about things that we liked to do at home. Long boarding came and one thing led to another, he let Elder Crandall and use his boosted boards. They are self propelling longboards that are controlled by a blue tooth controller that you hold on to. It is way sweet and they go pretty fast. They told us one of these P-Days we can take them down into DC! We will for sure be taking them up on that offer. After we had finished with them we had a great dinner with some other awesome members.

Wednesday was our temple trip and that is always great!  After we had finished we came back into our area and visited a few members then we had to drive back to the temple for a lesson with Marie. We watched Joseph Smith, Prophet of the Restoration with her. We then had a really good conversation with her, talking about what she needs to do to build her faith.
Thursday we had our last district meeting of the transfers. Everyone in the district gad the opportunity to bare their testimonies. After the meeting we walked across end the street to the temple to take our District and Zone pictures. 

Later that day we had dinner with a family. One of their son's is getting back from his mission very soon and another son is getting married only a couple of weeks after the other one gets home. On top of all that this family is getting ready to move down to South Carolina, so they are very busy. It was really nice of them to take time out of their crazy schedule to feed us.
Friday Elder Crandall and I went on an exchange to the farm that we work at weekly. That day we spent pretty much the whole day pouring cement for a horse barn they are putting in. We then spent the night with a bunch of other missionaries. It was pretty exciting haha.
Saturday we we worked on the farm for a couple of hours then we headed back to our area. We went to the Blewett family for, you guest it, more service. We spent pretty much the entire day shoveling dirt and spreading it all over the lawn. It was actually really fun. The Blewett's are one of my favorite family's that I have met on my mission. Mary Ellen and Rick have been members for almost two years now. They were baptized on Mother's Day in 2014 so just a few months before I came to the Kentland's Ward for the first time. They are the only two members in their family. They have two kids who are in their early 20's that we are trying to work with. We are hoping that over time their hearts will soften and they will be willing to listen.
Sunday we had our regular church meetings. It was a really great fast and testimony meeting, with awesome lessons the cap it all off. After church we had our study's then we went to dinner with another solid family in the ward. Once we had finished, we spent the rest of the day checking on less actives and we were able to actually have a really great visit with one of them. All in all it has been an excellent week!
This Wednesday will be transfers and Elder Crandall and I will be staying together in the Kentland's Ward.

Thank you so much for all the support you guys give me. Hope you all have a fantastic week! Byeeee!

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

100 Days Left!, Thank you cards, Service at the Farm, Cherry Blossom Parade, Ward Dance Limbo, and Why I Believe with Senator Pressler - 04/18/2016

Hey everyone! Sorry for the late email! It's weird how fast the weeks go by. I don't really know what to say anymore because I feel like I've said it all by now. In emails and in person. We did a lot of service this week, and because of that, I now have some color to my face and arms. 

Tuesday we did a few check ups on members and a few others. We figured it'd be a good time in the afternoon since school gets out around 2:30 and we'd catch a few at home. We did our best but only some of the Carver family was home so we had a good chat and talked with them about Sister Carver's conversion and about the work. We're doing this new thing where we made some cards with our pic on it, writing something like a thank you in it, and leaving it at all members so it's a reminder to do missionary work that day (assuming they put it on their fridge and see it before they're out the door). 

Wednesday we had service at the farm and it was great! Helped move some dirt around, sprayed for weeds/bugs, trimmed trees, and had a great time serving. The guy that runs the program there is Mark, (I don't know his last name). He's a real nice guy. We met with Marie, one of our investigators, that evening and brought Mary Ellen Blewett along with us to meet her. We talked a lot about how the church makes life better and Marie agrees with all we talked about. Now we just gotta get her to act! :) read a bit from Mosiah 2. Mary Ellen is a great missionary and actually taught most of the lesson haha. Good stuff. 

Thursday was meetings,  then we helped Kevin Clark do a few things and then they fed us dinner. Such a nice family. After dinner we head up to the farm for an over night exchange.

Friday we were at the farm most of the day and it was good. Did a lot of weed spraying and weed pulling. It was actually pretty fun. We then hustled over to the Chipman's for dinner then helped set up for a Ward dance for Saturday. 

Saturday day was pretty cool so listen up. Sis. Cooke was able to set up a sweet service opportunity with Events DC for the whole mission, so about 150 18-20 year old missionaries. We got to help out at the Cherry Blossom parade on Constitution Ave. downtown. Some missionaries were ushers and some balloon holders in the parade. We had to be there at 8 am and we got our green long sleeve volunteer shirts. We wore them over white shirts a tie and had our name tags on the front so people easily identified us as LDS missionaries. Sick right? We did that for the better part of the day til mid afternoon. We visited some investigators that have been giving us the slip lately and had some success in contacting some of them. We attended the Ward dance and only participated in the limbo pole song haha. Was good to talk with people there. 

Sunday we attended the meetings and they were fantastic. Teachings of the priesthood and prophet. Some great questions were asked then answered. Dinner at the Elliott;s was so much fun! :) We had Why I Believe and the speaker was Senator Larry Pressler from the Chevy Chase Ward. He was baptized last year on 19 April, 2015. He spoke about his story of becoming baptized and it was over a 30 year period. 

Over all it was a great week! I love being able to serve people and I feel like it is one of the most affective ways to do missionary work. Thanks for all that you do! Have a great week! Byeeeee

100 Days Left!!!

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Improving Missionary Work in the Kentland's Ward, Pony Rustling on the Farm, Dinner With the Pattersons, a Good Meeting with a New Investigator, and Igor's Baptism - 04/11/2016

Hey everyone! 

Hope you all had a great week, it's been awesome to read your emails so, thank you so much for sending those. This past week has been kind of tough but, it was also pretty fun. 

On Monday Elder Crandall and I pretty much chilled for the entire day. We went to one of the nicer malls in the area and looked at all the things that we can't afford. It was actually a lot more fun than I thought it would be haha. After we had finished at the mall we went home, ate some food, and then we went to the Miller family to have Family Home Evening. It was really fun! We shared a short message and then we played games with the family.  

On Tuesday we checked on a bunch of less active members but unfortunately nobody was home. We did drop by one of the members the missionaries had to been teaching and we had a nice discussion there. After we were done visiting with her we had dinner at our Bishops house. We met with his family and got to know them. After dinner we had a talk with our Bishop about some things we can try to implement in the ward to get people excited about missionary work. For a while now, the Kentlands ward has been really slow in the area of missionary work, so we are trying to come up with some other ideas that would be beneficial for the ward. It was a great meeting and I think it will help the ward out a lot. 

On Wednesday we had service at the farm. It was really exciting to be able to go back to the farm and to work. We spent most of the day trying to catch a pony so, we could hook it up to a cart. It was pretty frustrating, but it was pretty funny. We have a few videos of us trying to lasso this pony. While we were doing this I actually got a massive rope burn on my hand. One of the missionaries was able to get a lasso around it's neck but, the pony pulled loose. The pony started running in my direction and so, out of instinct I went and grab the rope. The rope slid right through my hand and now I have a massive rope burn. After we got done at the farm we had dinner with one of my good friends!
Levi Patterson and his dad were in DC for the week and they got in contact with us and said they wanted to take us out to eat. It was awesome being able to see them! After dinner we went and checked on some more people but unfortunately nobody was home.

On Thursday we had our district zone meeting. The meeting went pretty well, I did not have to plan too much because the zone leaders were planning on taking most of the time, so that was nice. After our meeting we met with a family in the ward for dinner. After dinner we had an appointment with one of our investigators, Marie. This was the first time I had met with her and this was the first time Elder Crandall had met with her since being back in the area, so we went into the appointment with the plan of introducing ourselves and building a relationship with her. It went really well. She is very nice and is very open to us and about her concerns. We are pretty excited for her and we feel like she will be able to start making those steps in the right direction. 

On Friday we had our weekly planning session and then we went out and knocked on doors and checked on some less-actives. 

On Saturday we did some of the same things with really no results. We were able to make some contact with a few less-actives in the area, so that has been nice. 

Sunday we had our regular church service and after that we headed down to my last area for a baptism. Igor finally got baptized!! It was so awesome! I am so happy for him! I was able to give the talk during the baptismal service. After his baptism we spent some time getting caught up with Igor and with the other missionary's in the White Oak Ward. Once we had finished we drove back up to our area for dinner with some members and then we went to the Miller family for a family home evening since they were going to be busy on Monday. And that was our week! 

Thanks for everything guys! 

Have a great week!

Igor's Baptism

Look who we "bumped" into...

Rope Burn...dang pony :)