The past couple weeks have been great! We had a really great experience with Elder Arnold. He came in guns blazing it was pretty cool. As he came through he challenged the Jackson Branch to be a Ward in the next year. So everyone seems to be on board and ready to get things going here!! It is interesting to be around a General Authority. He was very time aware, very loving, very direct, bold, he listened to what seemed like every prompting he felt and rolled with it, and was very inspiring. He had a ton of life experiences that he shared and had learned so much from. Its interesting to just watch who they are, you learn so much! He taught all of us about what things we need to do better to increase the effectiveness of our missionary work. Being able to be with Elder Arnold was fun, he’s such a gentle hearted guy. They always have such strong testimonies of the gospel!!:)
This week we had another transfer cycle. I don’t know where the time goes. We are just go go go and all of a sudden its halfway through December! I was excited, that I’m staying. I haven’t gotten tired of Jackson its probably been my favorite area. Definitely the most dynamic area I have had. Its always fun taking the missionaries to the airport on their way out. They are always so confused about how they feel. We picked up 7 new missionaries this transfer.
Our area has slipped a little bit since we basically were gone for a week and a half. So we have done some work trying to get it back to where we were. Luckily Troy and Maya, children of Tamara are getting baptized on Saturday. What a way to celebrate Christmas! They will always remember that day! Super awesome!! We have been working really closely with a few other people that were able to come to church on Sunday. Its always awesome when people are able to come to church and feel the spirit! The branch has been increasing in numbers which is awesome! Our small little dental office building is now bursting with people. We had a Christmas party and there was roughly 100 people there! Not that many at church but we will get there! We also sang in sacrament on Sunday:) There is a family here who has been members for their whole lives and recently moved in. They have basically carried the Branch on their shoulders because everyone else is so young in the gospel and a lot of other things have been going on. They have 2 little kids and I don’t know how they do it all but they are awesome! It would be kind of fun to move to a place like Mississippi just to help the church out. Lots of opportunity to serve.
The Christmas season is always a great time of year to look outward and see what you can do for others. Its kind of fun being here and having a missionaries perspective on Christmas. The Church is true.
Love you all!!Elder Larsen