Monday, January 25, 2016

Mississippi is good at Speaking in Tongues!

Hello Everyone!  How are you all doing?  This week was pretty good!  We did a lot of good work!
Photo bomb by the Deer!
On Wednesday we were able to go watch the missionary broadcast.  I guess all the missionaries throughout the world were able to watch a broadcast from the General Authorities.  It was really good! After that we went and talked to Joseph and had an awesome lesson with him!

Thursday we went and gave Sister Luckett a blessing (good news… we didn't get a gun pulled on us by her husband this time haha).  Remember the first week I was here in Canton?!?!?!  She is a member but her husband isn't.  Luckily when we got there she was outside and we didn't have to knock or anything!  Then we went and talked to Joseph again and taught him the Word of Wisdom, he chews 10 cans every 2 days!!!  But he said he would give it up.  Hopefully he will be able to!  We were teaching a guy named Kendarious and we had been talking to him for like 15 minutes and then his mom walked in and was like "Can I help you?"  We told her we were missionaries then she continued to kick us out of the house haha… people.

Friday we had a pretty good day!  I don't remember what we did though.

Saturday we went to Carthage to go visit a lot of less actives.  We first went to President Comans house for cake and ice cream and by the time we were heading out to visit everyone, they had all cancelled on us… so, we just went to 2 families houses that we hadn't planned to see and had a really good visit with one of the families!

Sunday we were debating going to Madison or Raytown and we decided to go to Madison because we hadn't been there in a while and then we got a text at like 11:30 telling us that Sister Bonney and her kids, a part member family we have been working with,  came to church!  Which was really good that they were there but I was sad that we weren't there with them!  She said that they would be back next Sunday so that is good!
Dinner with the Bradburn Family!

So this week we were at one of our investigators house and we were having a really good lesson with them.  Wanda has been going through a lot of hard things and had been really sick.  The whole lesson kinda just led to them asking about the laying on of hands for healing so we taught them about priesthood blessings and gave her a blessing and while I was giving her a blessing she started yelling in tongues…I was so confused and had no idea what to do.  I felt like I had been violated because of it, like I didn't have the spirit with me anymore.  I felt sooo bad after it happened.

What do you do if this happens?!?!?!

I have learned a lot since being District leader!   It has been good for me!  Elder Pierre- Louis is awesome.  He is a funny kid.  I have really enjoyed being with him!  It's been a good change!  We are meeting with Joseph again tonight.  Wonda has been doing alright.  She is crazy haha but her fiancĂ© is cool and normal:)  It was pretty cold here the other day, it actually snowed for a little bit!  But it was like for a few minutes and not really even a snow.  Elder Pierre-Lois hates the cold!  It really wasn't that bad and it's supposed to be back up in the 60's this week.  The weather is soooo weird.
Elder Pierre-Louis doesn't like the cold!

I'm great!  The only thing I need is to start eating vegetables haha.  I haven't eaten very good lately…

Hope you are all doing great!:)
I will talk to you next week!!:)  Love you , have a great week!   Thanks for all that you do!:)
Love you!
Elder Larsen

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

New Companion, Elder Pierre-Louis!

Hello everyone!! This week has been great!

Tuesday we were able to go get our new companions. Elder Pierre-Louis is awesome! He is from Haiti but has lived with a few different foster families here in the U.S. for about 4 years now. He speaks 5 languages and loves to play soccer.  He is a funny kid and is really outgoing. So that is good.  We get a long really well, it wasn’t a hard adjustment at all.  He has been a member his whole life. His parents were converted before he was born.  He was actually electrocuted when he was younger and has been getting medical treatment from people here in the U.S. that’s why he has been with Foster families!  One of his friends flipped on the Electric meter outside of their house and got electrocuted and then another friend touched him and then he touched his friend and got thrown back and so it sounds like it was a pretty scary story!
My New Companion, Elder Pierre-Louis! 

Wednesday we had District Meeting and the lesson I taught went pretty good. No one said anything to bad about it and we did a fun practice so that made it better too!

Thursday we had to go to a training meeting and then we had interviews with President. It was good to talk to him again and let him know how things are going!  It went well. We just talked about rules and how we needed to help other missionaries keep them. 

Friday we had a decent day of proselyting and taught a few lessons! Crazy to think that I have been out for 6 months!

Saturday we taught 2 Spanish families and I just sat there and listened to Elder Pierre-Louis talk to them haha it was pretty funny!  2 years of High School Spanish didn’t do much!

Sunday was ok, we got bailed on by two people at church but we were able to go out after and visit with some less active members. Hopefully some will start to come back to church!

Yesterday we went and played basketball at the church for a while because everything was closed. MLK day is a pretty big holiday down here! But basketball was fun! It was a great week!

MLK Dinner with The Alhalteh Family!

We had a crazy story happen the other day though haha!...

The other night we were tracting and we knocked on this door and it was a white family. They were like "Hey your Mormons? Come on in!" So we were like dang this is awesome right. One of the girls was like "We have never had Mormons here before but I have a Mormon book." So we were like dang even better... So we started talking to them and they were asking about the church and stuff and about Christ so I was going to read a verse from 2 Nephi 2 and the Dad was like "I don’t think that would really help me or apply to me at all because it isn’t the Bible."  So after that comment things just went downhill. He started asking questions about being saved by grace and stuff. And I was pretty done with talking to him so I said "Hey were not here to bash we are just here to invite you to come closer to Christ".  Then he was like "I don’t want to bash either but I already know Christ, He came to me and saved me."  He went on to tell his huge long story about how he used to be a drug dealer in Mexico and be the drug lords body guard (he is like 400 pounds and like 97% body fat) then he said since you don’t want to listen to us lets just pray together.  So he raises up his arms, and starts speaking in tongues.....  His daughter gets up and came and put her hands on our backs and started blessing us, and speaking in tongues. The other 2 ladies were like yelling prayer talking... That was the hardest I have ever had to try not to laugh on my mission. I was dying hahahahahahaha... and the funniest part is they are from a Pentecostal church that is called something like Church of the Vine, and that sect of Pentecostals have poisonous snakes that if you claim to have the priesthood they will make it bite you to see if you will die, because of this verse in Luke 10:19-  Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.   They are crazy... When I walked out of their house I was dying!  Like you know when you are in school and something funny happens and you know you shouldn’t be laughing but its just to funny, that’s exactly how I was feeling. It was the craziest thing.

The weather has been good!  Last week was a little rough for us on dinner appointments but this week we have dinner almost every day! So that is good!:)  I have hardly had to buy any groceries the past few transfers because of Raytown feeding us so much:)  They are awesome!  Joseph is doing good. We talked with him today and have an appointment with him tomorrow!

I was going to ask you for my birthday could you send me some more pants and also could you send me a new bible?  I got both of my suit pants taken care of, the blue ones are fixed and then Sunday I ripped the gray ones again in a different spot. The fabric is terrible or something! I was sooo mad haha.  It doesn’t make any sense because they are my loosest pair of pants and they are the ones tearing....

I am doing great! Being a missionary is awesome. You really do learn so much not even just about the gospel but about life in general!  I have learned a lot!  It's almost like people down here have a learning disability.  They don’t really comprehend what you are telling them.. So it’s hard but its all good!  My favorite part has been the knowledge and the spiritual companionship I have felt!:) The hardest part is definitely the success rate. It’s so hard to see success down here. The funniest story is probably the one I just sent to you hahaha oh my gosh that was so funny hahaha:)  The most spiritual experience was probably when we taught our investigator Wonda and she told us she knew the Book of Mormon was true and Brother Ueki bore his testimony about it too. That was probably the best lesson I have been in!:)

Hope everyone is doing well!:)
I will talk to you next week!!:) Love you and thanks for everything!:)
Love, Elder Larsen

Hey Dad! Things are going well! Teaching has been a little far and in between but its been good! I got your email and I will go and check it out! President told me to start studying the Doctrine and Covenants so I have been comparing your insights to the ones I make and its kind of cool to see that the scriptures can be interpreted so many different ways!

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

6 months and Transfer Week!!

Hey Fam!  How is everyone??  This week was pretty good!

Elder Clement and I at the Fellers!

On Tuesday we had probably one of the best proselyting days of my mission so far!  We taught a lesson to Joseph who has been investigating the church for a long time now and we set him with a baptismal date.  He bore a super strong testimony about Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon!  Then we had another good lesson with some people we tracted into.  It was a guy who is in a wheelchair and his mom, and both said that they noticed that their church was more of a social event, and straying from the teaching of the Bible.  Then we met with Wanda and her fiancĂ© TJ, with Brother Ueki.  That was an awesome lesson.  We read the introduction with them and TJ loved the part that said "I told the Brethren that the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth."  He also noticed that there were truths missing from the Bible and that churches were straying from the truth that was in the Bible.  I was like well this is just perfect!

Wednesday and Thursday were just alright!  We went on exchanges with the bike Elders and Elder Crouch and I went and played basketball for a little while, it was pretty fun.

Friday we went and talked to Joseph and we taught him the Plan of Salvation again and when we got to the spirit work he freaked out haha!  He had to go put water on his head because he was feeling hot. He doesn't really like spirits so I think that freaked him out.  Then we went and saw the guy in the wheelchair again……His cousin was there and just started going off on the Book of Mormon, how his mom was a pastor, how we needed to study and learn more about the Bible, and that maybe we could learn a lesson from him.  He was swearing up a storm and saying how false the Book of Mormon was.  I don't think I have ever been so mad in my life haha!  And to top it off when we were getting up to leave he wouldn't even shake my hand.  Just Elder Clement.  Because I was a white guy and he didn't like our message.  I was sooooooo mad.

Saturday we did a lot of tracking and we decided to go and contact a referral and turns out this was the only day she was home all week.  So we taught her a good lesson and then we also taught 2 more people in her apartment complex!  It was a good day.  Then we got transfer calls and Elder Clement is getting transferred and I am staying here and being the District Leader.  Poor Elder Clement he was pretty sad.  He started crying and stuff.  He wanted to stay here longer.  He will be just fine though!  Hopefully I don't run the District into the ground haha.

Sunday we went to church and came home for Elder Clement to start packing!

My new companion is from Haiti and his name is Elder Pierre-Louis.  He speaks English and is actually a Spanish missionary, so maybe I will pick up some Spanish while I am with him!  We actually run into a lot of Spanish people so it will be good!  Our District will be fun.  We got 1 new Elder who will be fun and I don't know the other 2 sisters!!  I'm nervous.  But I feel good.  I don't know how to plan district lessons but it will be alright!  I was kind of ready for a change.  Elder Clement is going to South Jackson and his companion is Elder Roberts.
My new companion, Elder Pierre-Louis from Haiti!

I got to talk to Elder Ah Ching today!!  He is in Jackson now so we are in the same zone!  We are going to play basketball right now and going out with Brother Ueki tonight to teach some people!
Reunited with Elder Ah Ching!

It was a good week!!  Hopefully you are all doing well!:)
I will talk to you next week!!  Love you so much!:)  Have a great week!!:)
Love, Elder Larsen

Monday, January 4, 2016

Happy New Year!!

Hello Everyone!  I hope you are all doing well!!
Christmas Eve Dinner with Zone

Christmas Eve Party/ Picture with some of My Zone

Monday we didn't have a lot planned and sadly we didn't even have a pday so we just did a lot of tracking.  One of the doors we knocked on called me to repentance!  It was some racist guy that just started talking a bunch of crap on me haha…

Tuesday we had an alright day!  We had a chance to play some basketball for a while with some people.  We walked by and they were like "Hey y'all wanna play?"  I told them that we would beat them haha and then they said "Is that a challenge"  and started freaking out.  It was funny they didn't think we could play because we were in church clothes, and none of them wanted me on their team cause I was white but by the end they were calling me Kevin Love so it was ok!

Wednesday we went on exchanges with the AP's and that was good as always!  I always learn a lot from other missionaries that have been out for longer than me.  They are just better and smarter, at least the missionaries in leadership are.

Thursday, New Years Eve, we went to the Fellers with all the other missionaries and had a little party.  We had waffles and then launched some fireworks.  It was a good night!!
New Years Selfie!

Friday we had Brother Devine come out with us for a few hours and we went and visited a less active and then to one of our investigators.  It was good to have him with us.  People seem to listen and understand members better than us missionaries sometimes!

Saturday we only taught one lesson and it was to a lady that we talked to on the street. We introduced ourselves and just started talking to her and then she just started crying and telling us all of her health issues and problems so we were able to share a few scriptures with her and give her a Book of Mormon and told her we would be back tomorrow to talk with her about it!

Sunday we had a good church meeting, our investigators bailed on us but that's alright.   After church we went to see Wanda(the lady we met Saturday night) and surprise surprise…she was outside waiting for us and had read 2 chapters of the Book of Mormon!  We had a good Restoration lesson with her!

Christmas was great!  It was so good to see my family and hear their voices!  I did good and didn't get homesick or anything after!

Christmas Day with the Bradburn Family!

Investigators are alright, no one is really progressing and it's hard cause no one really likes supporting themselves, they just all live in Gov. housing and let the church buses come and pick them up for church because no one has a car.

I set a goal to be more Christlike so I have begun studying the Christlike attributes.  Hopefully that will pay off for me haha!  This week while we were on exchanges with the AP's, Elder Hendrickson told me that he was surprised how well my teaching skills are for how long I've been out.  He said some nice things to me that made me feel good because I have always worried whether or not I was actually improving as a missionary cause I never had and older missionary to learn from other than the 6 weeks I spent with Elder Ah Ching.  So I was glad to hear that my hard work is showing and that I'm actually progressing!

We are going to play some football with the Zone in Madison today!  Transfers are next week so I'll be letting you know if I'm being transferred or staying here!
Elder Clement and I!

It was a good week.  Hope you all had a good holiday season!!:)
Thanks for everything, hope you are doing well!!
Love you:)
Elder Larsen
Holiday Dinner with The Alhalteh Family!

Christmas Gifts from The Alhalteh Family!  They are an awesome family!