Tuesday, August 26, 2014

August 24, 2014 - "Crazy" Week

A picture of the best assistant to the ward mission leader ever!! And me too.

Elder Ward playing piano

Lizard in the Pisa

We also redecorated - thank you HGTV

Wellington getting baptized!

We cleaned - alot!

¡Buenas tardes!

Well this week has been CRAZY.

Let me explain...

On Monday we took the ayudantes to the airport for the zone conference up in A Coruña (my old zone!!). Everything went fine with that. That afternoon we had two awesome lessons with Vladimir and Baltazar (a new investigator who is just awesome). The lessons went well! Vladimir still doesn't feel like he needs to get baptized but he is learning a lot every time we meet with him. Baltazar is just a boss. He understands so muuch! He's great and my new favorite person from Ecuatorial Guinea.

Tuesday! We had a lesson with a new investigator named Guillermo in the morning.  He is super nice and really open to learning about God. One thing that he liked alot is that we invited him to look for his own answer from Heavenly Father. I think that makes sense though. Not many people are going to believe in a few kids from America but if they can just kneel down and ask Heavenly Father if what we are sharing is true, they can receive their own answer. They can know for themselves if this is the path that God wants them to take. I really know that God answers our prayers and that He really loves us. Later on we had to pick up President Jackson, Hermana Jackson and the ayudantes from the airport. President and Sister Jackson are just awesome. They love us so much. That night we had another lesson with Baltazar and again, just a boss. We talked about the importance about the Book of Mormon and he really liked it. He told us: "I am going to go far away on foot. Then I will kneel down with my Book of Mormon and read alone. That is when God will tell me if this book is true. And I think He will tell me it is true." Just a boss and kind of hipster in a Guinean kind of way.

Wednesday we had district meeting and office meeting! That means little time to do some actual work! Buuut we did have a super sweet lesson with Lucy and Emilio! We talked about the 10 commandments which they loved! When we talked about the no bearing false witness one, Lucy literally said "That's a commandment?? I like that one!!" And then continued to basically bear her testimony about the importance of that commandment. They are awesome! That night, I went with Elder Chapple (senior couple missionary) to the airport to pick up some Hermanas that went home on the 22nd!! We had a little half transfer to get the missionaries going to college home before college started. We picked them up, dropped them off at the mission home, and then hit the bed!

Thursday was just a lot of stuff with the missionaries going home. It was hectic but everything went well. 

Friday morning was CRAZY. 16 missionaries had to be either at the airport or the train station to get home and I was in charge of making sure no one missed their train or plane. We had some complicated/awesome shuttling plans and at the end of the day, it all worked out. I really saw the hand of the Lord in my life helping me along as well. It was a cool/sad experience to see some great missionaries go home. I'll miss them!

On Saturday we had some good stuff and in the afternoon, an investigator of Hermana Bennett and Hermana Shurtz got baptized! His name is Wellington and he will be a great addition to the ward of Alcobendas. He got baptized in our bishops pool which was epic of course and the Spirit was there strongly. Oh and sorry if my grammar makes no sense...

Sunday was good but kind of hard. Vladimir came to church!! That was a blessing for sure. Lucy and Emilio are out of town but doing good reading and praying as a family every night. In the afternoon, everything fell through but we had a lesson with a man named Jose. He's really... gallegan haha. He's from A Coruña and its kind of known that the gallegans like to argue a lot and are stuck in their ways. Well that's Jose! All in all it went well though and I think I learned a few things during the lesson.

Sobre todo, ha sido una semana muy edificante. My testimony of the Church seems to grow more and more as we get yelled at in the street, as residency problems and travel problems arise in the office and as I see Satan working against our investigators. I know this Church is true and I know that I am here in Spain to serve our Heavenly Father in this great and most important work. I have also am learning every day that Jesus really is the Christ and our Savior. I love you all!! 

Elder Franklyn

Monday, August 18, 2014

August 18, 2014 - Some new investigators, some miracles, and some early mornings!

Helloooooo Champions!!!

(I guess that intro is funnier if you know a member named Juan Blasco from Alcobendas. Super Spaniard, doesn't know how to talk in a normal, not-yelling voice, calls everyone a champion, and just awesome in all ways. )

Anyway, this week has been good!! Some new investigators, some miracles, some early mornings as well. Lets see...

On Monday, we moved apartments!! We switched pisos with the assistants because we need a bit more room. Talk about living out of a suitcase... I'm still not unpacked. I also got my hair cut which was great. It's suuper hot here!! In the afternoon we did some crazy split magic and had Elder Ward go pick up some missionaries in the airport while Elder Cahoon and I had a great lesson with Guillermo and his friend Iliana who is a new investigator! She was really interested in the Book of Mormon so we will see how it goes.

Tuesday!! We had the mission council!! We woke up a bit early and headed over to the mission home. Then we did some picking up of all of the Zone Leaders and Sister Training Leaders. Everything went well and according to plan (that's a first!). In the afternoon we did some more crazy splits with some of the zone leaders from the north and we had a few great lessons with some awesome investigators! Then we dropped of the Zone Leaders at the train station and went to bed.

Wednesday we had our Zone Training Meeting!! It was really good and our Zone Leaders focused a lot on how to get from the first lesson with an investigator to the second lesson. We talked about a lot of really good things and we are going to be putting them in practice soon. That night we fiiiinally met with our investigator named Yonaisi. She has been working a tooonnnn but we were soo happy to see that she still has desires to come to church and to get baptized. She is incredible and is doing so much for her family. 

On Thursday we had like the split of all splits. It literally took us like 30 minutes to figure out how in the world we could hit all of the lessons we had planned and drop off President and Sister Jackson at the airport. With the help of the Lord we made it through and had some awesome experiences along the way. We found two new investigators, Balthazar and Jose who both seem to have some potential. We also had a lesson with Lucy and Emilio and they just continue to amaze us. Here's a miracle... So a while back Lucy had decided that she wanted to stop smoking. She had been smoking around 10 a day and dropped down to like 1 every week. She continued to smoke one every now and then when she had a bad day. Three days before we had this lesson on the Word of Wisdom, she decided that she wanted to stop smoking completely and she did. When we brought it up in the lesson she was amazed and told us of the impression that she had just three days earlier to quit completely. There is no doubting that the Lord has had a hand in the life of this family. I can truly see the Lord preparing them in so many ways to come closer to Him and be baptized. It is just amazing. My testimony has never been stronger. 

Friday was awesome! We ate with Felipe and Isabel's family and we've got great news!! Isabel is pregnant!!!!! We are all so excited!! They are such an amazing family to us. They mean a lot and I always just feel so welcome in their home. I can't wait until they are married and Isabel is baptized. I really hope I am here for it!! We had family home evening as well which was great!

On Saturday a lot of our plans fell through but we contacted a ton and received a lot of great references from some great people.

Sunday was good but a lot of our plans fell through again. August is hard sometimes. We worked hard until the very last minute though and got home tired.

Today has been long!! We woke up at 4:15 and had to drive a senior couple to the airport!! We got back at around 6ish and went back to bed. We woke up at 7, got ready and studied a little and then headed out at 10 to take the assistants to the airport. We played a little soccer down by the temple which was fun and bought some food like the usual. 

I am really excited for this week. It is going to be probably the craziest week of my mission!! I have been making plans and buying tickets all day for the upcoming zone conferences and the first one is today. President Jackson and the assistants will be getting back tomorrow night, we have missionaries flying in on Wednesday, missionaries flying home on Friday and a lot of lessons to be had in the middle. I am trying to up the quality of work I do as a secretary and I see things running smoother as I do so. Thank you for all your love and support. I know that this is the true church of Jesus Christ on the earth today. I love you all so much!!

Elder Franklyn

Monday, August 11, 2014

A Baptism and Transfers! 8/11/14



Senior Segundo and I after the Baptism!

The Old District!

Me finishing transfers!!

Family and friends!

Forgive me for not writing a letter last week!! It was transfers  and so I was kind of running back and forth from the airport and the train station and everything -  it was super hectic. This week was great though!!

So transfers ended smoothly and we got a new companion!! His name is Elder Cahoon. He will be taking Elder Ward's spot in 5 weeks but he is going to help us a bit with this transfer because it is going to be hectic. He is great though and adds some great flavor to our companionship.

The missionary work this week has been slow. Lots of investigators and members on vacation... Unlike the United States, the Spaniards ALL take their vacations during the month of August so it is kind of hard. One awesome miracle though is that Lucy and Emilio are killllling it. Emilio holds the record for most consecutive ward activities. We met with them on Thursday at 6, they came to the english classes at 8, they came to family home evening on Friday, Emilio played soccer with the members on Saturday morning, they all came to a baptism on Saturday night and they all came to church on Sunday. They are soo great!! Oh and in reply to Bishop Dalton's request, they have a baptismal date for the 6th of September! They are more active in the church than I am!! 

So on Saturday, our ward had a baptism and our little chapel here in Alcobendas doesn't have a font so we have to travel to temple square to have the baptism there. Alain was the one who got baptized and he is from Congo!! He is so awesome and so humble. He doesn't speak a lot of Spanish and so Andrés, a member here, memorized the baptismal prayer in english and it was soo great. Right after he was baptized he looked up towards the ceiling and the whole room just filled with the Spirit. Lucy and Emilio were there and we did a temple tour with them which was great. We walked around and just looked at how beautiful the temple is.

I am so blessed and grateful to be able to be here in Madrid, Spain and to be able to see the temple often. It really is an iconic building and you cannot deny that there is something holy and eternal about it. I love this work and I am so grateful for this opportunity that I have to be here. I am sooooo grateful for my parents as well who have helped me spiritually and financially to be out here. I will be in debt with them for years to come. Keep praying for missionary experiences. And when they come, act upon them!!  Dooooo some missionary work! Don't be afraid! I know that we are blessed as we serve the Lord. Keep working hard and never give up!!

I know that this Church is true and that I am a child of God.

I love you all,

Elder Franklyn