Wednesday, December 28, 2016

2 Weeks of Emails!!

DEC 19:

So it's now been a week since I took the train up to Newcastle - and
it has been a way eventful week!

To start off, I got to Newcastle on Monday - and we have a car, but my
new companion Elder Charman (from Kent) doesn't have a drivers
license! So I watched a ten minute video about safe driving habits and
then got in the car on the opposite side of the road and started
driving! It was pretty scary for the first day or so, but now I'm
basically a pro.

I've gotten a bit of a taste this week of what is involved with being
a Zone Leader. On Thursday we had President Kearon, the Europe Area
President, come and visit our mission and speak to the missionaries,
and the meeting was in Billingham for the North Zones. To get there,
our Zone took a coach from Newcastle at 7:30 in the morning.

Then on Wednesday evening at like 5, the Assistants called us and told
us to get all of the teams to sleep over at a missionary flat as close
to Newcastle as possible. So we had to call all of the teams and get
them to leave their areas ASAP and get over to Newcastle that evening,
it was stressful but it worked out in the end.

Also on Friday we had a special Mission Leadership Council for all of
the Zone Leaders and Sister Training Leaders with President Kearon,
and I was in Huddersfield! So we had to drive from Newcastle to
Huddersfield and back! Which is like 2.5 hours each way...  so long
story short I'm pretty good at driving in England now after that.

Things are pretty hard right now though in terms of missionary work. I
don't think the members of the Newcastle ward have particularly liked
the Elder's they've had in the ward recently, and so we had no
Christmas plans when I got here, but I've sorted that out not to
worry. Hopefully in no time the members will love the Elder's again!

We have one investigator to work with here - so I'm really going to
push Elder Charman and I to find more people to teach.

I definitely have my work cut out for me here. We don't have many
people to teach, I got put into a new area right before Christmas
where the members don't get along super well with the Elder's, and I
have to learn how to lead a Zone of missionaries - but it's ok. I will
have to work really hard, but I know it will be worth it.

Love you guys!

DEC 26:

This week has been pretty busy, but I'm going to try to make this
e-mail a bit shorter than usual, so I'll just give the main

On Tuesday was the Mission Christmas Social in Billingham and that was
sweet! I sang a little as well!

On Thursday night we went Christmas Carolling at the hospital in
Newcastle! It was amazing, there were people that cried... it was
really touching.

On Friday the AP's came on exchange with us here in Newcastle, and we
went with them to visit some missionaries in the zone - and that was
amazing. I learned a lot.

On Christmas Eve we drove to Leeds to pick up all of the Christmas
packages for the Elder's and Sister's serving in the Sunderland zone!
We left Newcastle at like 5:30AM so that we could go all the way down
and back in time to deliver them all! It was cool - we felt like
proper Santa's haha.

And then it was Christmas yesterday!! I was able to speak with my
family and it was so awesome! I miss them so much, but there is a lot
of work to do here - and I'm excited to keep working!

It may look like rubbish - but it's everyone's Christmas presents that we picked up from Leeds

Some new additions to the desk
These pictures are from Coleman's mission Christmas party

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

A little late this week (I was doing some Christmas baking instead)

Hi guys!

First important news this week - I've been transferred.....  again.

I received a call from President Turvey on Friday night, and he asked
me if I would accept the call to serve in Newcastle as the Sunderland
Zone Leader, and my first reaction was "no!"

But that's not what I said. I said that I would do whatever was needed
of me. When he asked me how I felt about it I told him that I was
upset about leaving Bradford after just a month or so, and that I
would have loved to stay here longer to continue working with Elder
Kearl and the people we've been teaching here, but I would go if I
need to go.

Heavenly Father has different timing than us. My Dad told me his
thoughts on my new calling, which I really needed to hear, and he
managed to wrap all of my jumbled thoughts into one succinct sentence.
He said: "The building blocks in church leadership are not always what
we expect but what both we and those we serve actually need. The Lord
will guide you. Love you!"

So I'm excited, but also really sad to leave Bradford. Let me tell you
some of the other amazing things that happened this week, which are
making me doubly sad about leaving as I write them out.

1. Okay first thing - something crazy. Last year when I was serving in
Huddersfield I talked to a guy on the bus going from Huddersfield to
Leeds. His name is Jacob and he is attending the University of Leeds.
I gave him a Book of Mormon and got his address and contact details to
send to the missionaries serving in Leeds. Long story short - Jacob is
planning to be baptised in January! He's being taught by the
missionaries in Leeds 1 Ward! Sometimes I think that all this talking
to people about the gospel I do has gone to waste - but you never know
who's life you may have affected by a small simple action or

2. There is a guy in Bradford that Elder Kearl and I have been
visiting named Malcolm. Malcolm is 81 years old and was baptised only
a few years ago after his wife of 51 years passed away. Malcolm was
strong in the church until he started suffering heavily from Dementia,
and he can't remember much of anything - like why he came to church
etc. We visit him because he's lonely and he likes to chat, and when
we read the Book of Mormon, he starts talking about the gospel and how
much he loves it, only to forget a few minutes later. Malcolm has
travelled all over the world - he lived in Canada, Bermuda and South
Africa for a number of years, and has sailed around the world in a
boat that he built 3 times! His stories have inspired me to live a
fulfilling life. Anyways we visited him on Saturday and I told him I
was moving and if he had any advice for me for the rest of my life,
and he said in a moment of clearness and wisdom: "just keep going on
the path you're going. Stay in the church, marry a girl who belongs to
your faith, and have a jolly good life with her."

Thanks Malcolm,  I plan on it.

3. There is also a family we have been meeting with recently who are
part members. I've spoken about Sharon before, and about how she has
some concerns with the church but is really open to learning more
about it and visiting with us. She really likes the missionaries and
feels like she is the "missionary mom". This week she took us to
Nando's on Friday! Her daughters boyfriend works there and so we got
free Nando's! So that was awesome. Then after she found out I was
leaving, she also took us out to lunch the next day to say goodbye and
gave me some Christmas presents, and we were able to have a good
discussion about faith and the gospel. The last things I shared with
her was something that my Dad told me the last time I saw him before I
came back to England. I said "anybody who read the Book of Mormon
sincerely will know that it is the word of God." I told her that that
was the promise that my Dad knows is true, and that I also know is
true. Having only been here for a month, Sharon was pretty devastated
to see me leave. I hope I've made some sort of lasting impact with
that family.

4. Another family that I'm sad to be leaving - there's a woman named
Julieanne  who was baptised
some 6 years ago or so. In the past few years, she has rarely attended
church, but as Elder Kearl and I have been visiting her and her kids
for the past few weeks, she's come to church twice - including
yesterday! The reason she came the first time is because we challenged
her to do it and she pinky promised haha! Also a funny thing about
her, she was taught by David Brewerton when he was here in Bradford 3
or 4 years ago, and apparently he fainted one time in her house! Ask
the Brewerton's about it mama. But she was really sad to hear that I
was leaving as well so she invited us to have tea at her house on
Saturday and it was really nice - I'm really sad to be leaving these
people behind, I feel like I've been able to really make a difference
here even though I've only been here a month or so.

5. There's a man who we've been teaching recently as well named
Richard. His wife is a member and we've been teaching him every week
since I've been here. He has been coming to church for over a year,
and has just recently begun making progress on taking the lessons with
us and deciding whether or not he will be baptised. On Friday we had a
really powerful lesson with him about keeping the Word of Wisdom, and
it was one of the most powerful lessons I've been in, and he committed
to keeping it! It was amazing. I'm really sad to be leaving that
family as well.

6. On Friday I took an Elder in the district on exchange with me -
named Elder Taufanga, who is from Tonga! It was really good. Recently
I've been thinking a lot about the influence that righteous leaders
can have on the people they lead, and Elder Taufanga and I had a
really awesome exchange, and afterward he was telling me that it was
really great and he learned a lot from it - and it surprised me a
little bit, because we'd just been doing what we were supposed to be
doing - but he seems to look up to me a lot. I hope that as I move
into Zone Leadership that I'll be able to make some sort of impact on
multiple missionaries lives.

There are so many more things I could write about this week. It has
been so full, Elder Kearl and I have been teaching loads and having a
lot of fun, and the missionary work in Bradford is going really well!
People have been so sad to see me leave Bradford, and so am I! I love
this place and I will definitely come back some day.

When I came back to England, the thing I decided that I wanted to
accomplish was to make a difference wherever I went. I didn't want to
go somewhere and then be forgotten. I wanted to make some kind of
imprint on the people I interacted with - and I feel that I
accomplished that goal in full here in Bradford. My heart is full as
I'm leaving this place.

Most of all - the people in Bradford have changed my life for the
better, and I'm glad that the Lord decided to send me here, even for
just this short time.

Much love,

Elder Thompson

P.S. I found out that my new companion is named Elder Charman, and
he's English. I haven't met him yet but I'm told he's cool, but that
he can't drive! So we have a car and I'm going to have to drive it
around, but I've never driven in the UK before...  so I'm a tad
nervous about it, but also really excited.

P.P.S. The plan to get to Newcastle was to catch the train from
Bradford to Leeds at 9:35, which gets to Leeds at 9:56, which would
give me about 12 minutes to get through Leeds station (which is
insanely busy all the time) to catch a 10:08 train to Newcastle.
But....  the Bradford to Leeds train didn't get into Leeds until
10:05!! So I got off the train with my two suitcases and backpack, and
ran through the station, checked what platform the train was at, and
ran to the platform, only to see the doors close and it roll away! I
missed the train by like 10 seconds! So then I had to wait until the
next train came at 10:43. Anyways, I'm on my way now.

P.P.P.S. This train ride is really long. If you want to see how long,
go on google maps - the train stops at Leeds, York, Northallerton,
Darlington, Durham, Chester-le-Street & Newcastle. It left Leeds at
10:43 and gets to Newcastle at 12:15.

Sharon took us to Nando's

Carolling in Leeds a few weeks ago

We're smiling, but I'm sad to be leaving

Breakfast at McDonalds!

Elder Fife

Saying goodbye to Elder Kearl in Bradford -- I'm gonna miss him

Monday, December 5, 2016

There is one bad word in this post

Sup fam!

How's the week been?

It's been good here, except it's been getting really cold, and the sun
sets every day at about 4 PM, and we can't really knock on doors after
the sun goes down because people get annoyed - but it's all good!
Bradford is sweet.

Let's talk about some funny things people have said while Elder Kearl
and I knocked on doors this week:

"How's it going man?"
"Sorry guys it's a really bad time"
"Oh why's that?"
"The baby's just shat everywhere"
"Oh ok, good luck with that"

Another one:

"Hi, how are you?"
"NO, not how am I.... WHO, ARE, YOU?"
"Ok, have you met Mormons before?"
"I certainly don't want to meet them again!"
"Oh no, were they nice last time?"
"That's for me to know, and NOT for you to ask!"

Another one:

"Hi, how are you?"
"I'm good thanks guys, how are you?"
"We're doing great!"

I thought I would put the last one in to show that not everybody is
that rude haha, I just remember the funnier things people say
sometimes! We've mostly met nice people this week though!

Oh, something nice that happened this week! On Monday (maybe? I can't
remember...) I got a call from the Bishop of the Wharfe Valley ward! I
used to serve in that ward back in early 2015, and Bro Flinn, who's
now the Bishop, knows that I'm a good singer. Bro Flinn is actually my
friend on Facebook at home and I had some good chats on Facebook with
him while I was home. Anyways they called to recruit me for Stake
Choir, for stake conference on Sunday.

So on Friday we made our way to the Wharfe valley chapel in Menston
and practiced for Stake choir - which was really great! When we got to
the practice Sister Flinn who directs the choir asks Elder Kearl
straight up: "can you sing on pitch??" And he was like... kind of, and
I backed him up, so he sang with the choir as well haha.

Side funny note about choir rehearsal, there was one part where Sis
Flinn didn't want us to breathe, and so she kept saying "no breath!"
But in her Yorkshire accent it comes out like "nae breath" so that's
what I kept thinking.

Also there's a member of our ward (who's house we're going to on
Christmas) named Dave, who's really funny, and he sat beside Elder
Kearl in the choir practice - and somebody in the bass section did a
big scoop and Sis Flinn got annoyed by it, so she was like: "nae
scooping" and then the rest of the practice Dave get being like: "hey,
you scooping" it was just really funny...

We're working with an investigator right now who's wife is a member of
the church, and they've been married for just over a year. The wife
really has hopes that her husband will gain a testimony of the church
and desire to be baptised and so we've been teaching him and that's
been going really well - his name is Richard.

On Sunday (Dec 4, which happens to have become a significant day for 2
reasons - #1 is that it's Alex's birthday, and #2 is that it marks one
year to the date that I flew back home to Canada last year) was Leeds
Stake Conference! And guess where they held it...   at the
Huddersfield Stake Centre, so I found myself on a bus that took us
from Bradford to Huddersfield early Sunday morning  to get to Stake
Conference. It seems like I can't get away from that place...  I love
it there.

There was a seventy that came and presided and spoke at the
Conference, named Elder David P. Homer. His remarks hit me more
powerfully than anything that I've heard recently, which is saying a
lot seeing as I've been to meetings with Elder Nelson and Elder
Moreira not too long ago.

He explained a story about how the greatest gifts are the ones that
require sacrifice from the giver. He told a story about him growing up
in Utah and receiving a generous Christmas gift from his parents who
were struggling financially, and how he had been selfish in asking for
it, but appreciated the sacrifice they made to get it for him.

He also told another story, and it was interesting because it was
Alex's birthday, and so I'd been thinking about her already that
morning. The story was of a friend of his who'd had an older sister,
who when she became old enough to live on her own, left her family and
started living a life contrary to gospel teachings. The story was long
and full of heartache in the lives of the other family members as
well. The mother of the family passed away in a tragic accident, and
later the father died of related injuries from the accident. At the
funeral a family friend spoke and the older sister felt touched by
something he said, and eventually decided to return to the church of
her youth, just the once. She did and was met there by a loving
Bishop, who cornered her before she could leave, and she eventually
returned to full fellowship with the church.

I'm definitely not saying that I hope something that tragic happens to
our family, but sometimes it takes events of a great magnitude to
touch someone's heart.

The story continued in describing how the woman who came back to church
helped her husband and children join the church as well, and they were
sealed in the temple as a family. Just something in the way he said it
really struck a chord with me, and I felt a real pain in my heart and
hope for my sister that she might one day remember the joy that can
come to one as they enjoy the blessings of the gospel.

I know that families can be together forever because of Heavenly
Father's plan for us. The Priesthood power of God has been restored
upon the earth to the prophet Joseph Smith, and the keys that he
received have been passed down to the prophet today. I know that the
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the Lord's church on
the earth again, and that because it has been restored we can be free
from the burden of guilt and shame that comes from sin, and we can
feel love and peace towards those around us. I'm so grateful for the
opportunity I have to share that with people, and to help them to
reconcile themselves to God, and abide in his peace as well.

Love you guys! Go check out the light the world page on!

Monday, November 28, 2016

Hello from England

This week has been amazing! Every Sunday night I sit down to write out
my e-mail to you guys and I talk to Elder Kearl and we try to think of
all the things that we need to put in our e-mails home, and I remember
some, but there are just so many things that happen that I couldn't
possibly put them all in!

On Tuesday was Zone Conference! I think I sent a picture (a blurry
one) that was taken at the meeting of all the missionaries in the
Leeds, Huddersfield, Sheffield and Hull zones - but the conference was
really good. This was my first Zone Conference without President
Pilkington and I was thoroughly surprised at how different it was! The
AP's called me a few days prior and asked me to open the meeting with
a talk about the new mission Vision that President Turvey has given
us, and that went really well!

On Thursday I took some of the missionaries in the district on
exchange! So the rules for exchanges have changed since I was gone;
what we used to do was we would do an exchange where one missionary
from my area would switch and go and work in the other missionary's
area for the day and vice versa, Now however, what happens is that we
switch companions for the day, but both sets of missionaries work in
the Leader's area. So basically on Thursday we got double the work
done because we had 4 missionaries working in Bradford instead of just
2 - so that was sweet!

On Friday night the Priesthood in Bradford had an activity where we
played football! They rented out a pitch and we got to go and play
football! It was so much fun and a really good missionary opportunity
as well, there were quite a few non members and less active members
that came as well and had a good time playing with us. English people
are all really good at football...

On Saturday the whole Leeds Zone got together in Leeds (so about 36 or
so missionaries I think...) to go and sing Christmas Carols in Leeds
City Centre! We set up these tables full of Church swag like copies of
the Book of Mormon, / Christmas cards, joy to the world
DVD's etc. and we took turns going out and talking to people that were
listening and giving stuff out to them while the rest of us sang
Carols! It was so much fun! And it was such a good missionary
opportunity! Leeds is really really busy, especially on Saturday
afternoon while we were there, it was really sweet! I had such a good
time singing too. We're going to be doing it again in a different area
of Leeds in a few weeks from now as well!

Saturday night we went to visit an investigator named Sharon. So
Sharon is married to a member from Tonga, and her son Ethan was
recently baptised. Sharon really loves the missionaries and what we
do, and really likes to take care of us and help us feel at home when
we go and visit the family. She has a few concerns with the church,
and doesn't come, but loves to talk about it, and is really opening up
to the idea of joining. Earlier in the week she called while we were
out one day, and she didn't sound too happy, and I could tell over the
phone that something was wrong, but I didn't know what - but I offered
that we could come and give her a blessing. She didn't really know
what a blessing was and so I explained to her over the phone a little
bit about the Priesthood, and how it is the power of God given to man
to act in His name, and we can use it to bless people. After I
explained I asked if she wanted one, and the phone was really silent.
I realised that she was becoming a little teary, and after a long
pause she said that she would really like that. So on Saturday we gave
her a blessing, and she was really grateful. She has a lot of faith.

On Sunday we went and visited this family from the Congo that we'd met
on the street a few days prior - who don't speak English very well,
but they speak French!! We just taught the wife and the oldest son
this time, and I brought them a French Book of Mormon, and taught the
Restoration to them in French! It's been a long time since I've spoken
that much french, or talked about the gospel in French, but it just
all came out - I didn't really have to think about it that much! It
was really cool - and the wife, Leonie, is going to talk to her
husband about the Book and we'll be going by again soon!

There are so many more things that happened - but those are the major
highlights! I love you all so much and I hope your week has been
amazing too!

Oh - and if you haven't already, or don't know about it yet, the
church has released a new Christmas Initiative! It's called
#LIGHTtheWORLD! You can go on to learn more about it, but
every day they're going to be releasing new videos and suggestions for
how we can offer service the same way that Jesus Christ offered
service while he was on the earth! Go check it out, do the suggestions
on there and share it on social media! Jesus Christ is the light of
the world, but he needs us to do his work.

This is a little canal boat in Saltaire. Last week we helped do service by planting a bunch of flowers in the park and we took a picture in front of this boat because it looked cool. It says saltaire on the side - that's the town right next to where we live - it's an old mill town that used to be run by a guy named Salt

The whole Zone went carolling in Leeds city centre on Saturday! We set up this sign and a table full of church swag and gave it out to people

We gave out hundreds of cards, all of the candy canes and 6 copies of the Book of Mormon

Monday, November 21, 2016

This Week's Email

Hey guys!

This week has been amazing! I don't even know where to begin.

The week has actually gone by so fast, like I can't even believe that
it's already Monday again! Elder Kearl and I have been having so much
fun! We just laugh and joke around all the time, but we are talking to
people and visiting people all the time and doing really serious work!
But when we have all this energy that we get from joking around with
each other, people can feel the happiness that we have! It's really
awesome actually.

We started this week out with 2 days of meetings in Leeds. On Tuesday
we had a mission leadership with all the district leaders and zone
leaders across the mission meeting in Leeds, which took up most of our
day. We slept over at the Leeds 1 Elders flat the night before where
Elder Rodriguez and Elder Vickers live! So I got to talk to them about
some people in Huddersfield again, which was sweet.

The next day we had zone training in Leeds as well - followed by
district leader training as well. Which took up most of Wednesday!
(See the pictures below of the zone at zone training)

On Wednesday evening though we went to the home of this woman who was
baptised about 4 years ago, but who is less active - but wants to come
back and have her 9 year old son baptised. She is really awesome and
Elder Kearl and I get along with her and her family really well. It's
really fun to go by and laugh with with them, but also explain the
importance of the gospel.

We also started teaching another less active / part member family with
a 14 year old daughter that wants to be baptised! Her name is Sophie.
We taught her for the first time this week and it went really well!

Bit of a odd happenstance, we were at a tea appointment with a member
family, and he mentioned that there's a less active girl named Shona
who moved in not too far from his house, and he asked if we would go
visit her with him. So we did and it turns out she was baptised
earlier this year by Elder Wayt, who I just lived with for 4 weeks in
Dewsbury - so that was pretty cool. She just moved into our ward and
hopefully will be coming back to church soon.

Ok we also taught another part member family. There's a couple in our
ward where the wife is a super solid active member of the church. She
served a mission a while back and married a non member guy named
Richard about a year ago in Leeds. Now they live in Bradford in this
outlying town called Queensbury - and even when it's just raining in
Bradford(which it did a lot this week - it was freezing) it's always
snowing out there. So we took a bus out on Saturday evening to go
teach Richard, and there was like a foot of snow on the ground! It
looked like Canada! It actually was really awesome!

But yeah we taught Richard, and we also brought another member with us
to help teach. We were really just trying to resolve the husbands
concerns - he's been coming to church every week with his wife for
about a year, and even goes to help out in young men's every Tuesday!
We were asking a lot of questions to try to understand his
perspective, and the spirit was really strong. It's interesting to
learn how people view things - I'm learning a lot from the people we

Anyways on the way back from the lesson, Dave (the member that came
with us) was pointing out the good questions we asked and the fact
that Elder Kearl and I teach together in unity really well. He said
that "we bounce off of each other quite well" and that he "felt like
he was watching a segment of the district". So that was pretty sweet.
Dave's also hilarious btw. Like on Sunday before sacrament one of the
counsellors in the bishopric asked me if I could bear my testimony in
sacrament and then Dave came up behind and whispered "busted" in my
ear and for some reason it made me laugh so hard.

Funny story - one morning we were getting ready to go out and I was
looking for my red Canadian mittens (the old ones Mama --side note:  he says this because I just bought him new ones and I'm always on him about losing things

which I usually bring with me because it's cold - and I could only find one! I
realised I must have lost it or left it somewhere. So we set out as
usual and we were walking down the road in Shipley and I was joking
with Elder Kearl as usual, and we just happened to look over at this
little stone wall, and on it was my mitten! It was soaking wet because
it had been out all night in the rain - but someone had found it and
left it on this wall, on a road that I hadn't even walked down the day
before! I have no idea how it got there, but I got it back!

Also one evening we were walking to a bus stop and we ran into Naomi,
a YSA in our ward coming home from work - and we talked to her briefly
- and then when we got back to our flat that night, a pizza delivery
guy came to our door with pizza ordered and paid for by Naomi! That
was really awesome!

Oh and last but not least. On sunday night we were coming back to
Shipley from an outer town on the edge of the area - so we had to take
a bus into town and then a bus back to Shipley, but when we got back
to town in the bus station we heard all this really loud music coming
from the city centre - so we went over to see what was going on, and
it was all these Asian/Pakistani people gathered in like this big
outdoor venue sort of thing in the town centre area. So there was like
a big stage and music playing and stuff, but it was all like Arabic
music (classic Bradford). So we talked to a few people and were about
to leave - when all the sudden the music just drops and goes "turn
down for what!" And turns into this mix of Arabic music and popular
dance music! It was so funny! We laughed so much and it was really

I love Bradford! I love being a missionary! The ward here is so great
and there are so many members that are super willing to come out
teaching with us I love it!

So it's been a great week! It's pretty cold and rainy but things are good!

Love you all!

Monday, November 14, 2016

More from England

Hey guys!

This week has been so awesome, there are so many cool things that have
happened! I seriously doubt that I'll be able to remember everything
or be able to write it all in this one letter, but I'm going to try
really hard! But honestly, to summarise, I've been super busy and
Bradford is so awesome!

So on Sunday night I got a call from President Turvey telling me that
I was going to be moving to Bradford on Tuesday to be the District
Leader of the Bradford District. So not even back out for a month yet
and he's asked me to be a district leader, which is ok. But on Tuesday
that meant that I had to go to a meeting in Leeds for new District
Leaders, which was really really good actually. We talked all about
qualities of example and leadership and how we can be good leaders not
just as missionaries but for the rest of our lives. One thing that
really struck me about the meeting is that one missionary was saying
that it is statistically known that a certain percentage of returned
missionaries end up becoming less active or leaving the church, and we
as district leaders can help them grow enough from their missions
right now to possibly prevent that from happening. Anyways I was just
struck again by how important a mission is for the rest of my life,
and the lives of the people around me. Also, I learned a lot of ways
to be a better example/leader in the meeting, so it was great.

Tuesday morning I got up and left to go catch a train to Bradford! So
I went with all my bags and everything down to the train station and
took a train to Leeds. The Leeds train station was crazy busy when I
got there though, and I had to get to a whole other platform to catch
my train to Bradford which left less than 10 minutes after I got there!
And I had 2 big suitcases and a guitar on my back! So I was worried I
was going to miss my train - when all the sudden this guy (a member
from Wakefield it turned out) was like "do you need help with your
cases Elder?" And I was like thank goodness! So he helped me catch the

I made it to Bradford alright and met my new companion! His name is
Elder Kearl and he is 18 years old! He graduated from High School in
Ogden, Utah earlier this year. He's been out on his mission for 3
months, so he just finished being trained, and he's super ready to go
and work really hard! Which is so awesome! He has so much energy all
the time which is so great, and we are getting along really well.

Anyways on Tuesday we went and taught this investigator named Adrian.
The lesson was really great and Adrian has just overcome some of his
concerns about being baptised and committed to be baptised! Here's the
catch with Adrian though, he is deaf! But Elder Kearl knows sign
language! And as it turns out, Bradford Ward is where all of the deaf
members church from all of Yorkshire come to go to church! In
sacrament meeting there's a sign language interpreter that sits up
front! It's really cool! So Elder Kearl and Adrian are teaching me
sign language, so hopefully I'll get it eventually.

The biggest thing I've been feeling this week is just that the Lord
has been leading us exactly where we need to go. Like we will make
plans on where to go, and then sometimes it changes, but things have
just seemed to work out exactly how they were supposed to anyways!
Like on Thursday we went and volunteered for the Poppy Appeal, so
basically we sat in a supermarket (Morrison's) for 3 hours selling
poppies to people, which was super great! And after that we had
planned to go see an investigator. But while we were in Morrison's he
texted and we moved the lesson to Saturday, so we had no plans after
the volunteering anymore. But then this member came into Morrison's
and came up to us, and asked us if we were busy and if we could come
visit his family after! So we did, and while we were there, he
expressed how much he wants to help with missionary work and so we
invited him to come teach our investigator on Saturday who we had
rearranged with just a bit earlier!

Anyways there's another lady who we've seen a few times this week who
runs a discount store in a market in Bradford City Centre. She works
there 6 days a week and it's not super busy so we just go and visit
her there. Not too long ago one of her nephews passed away, and it hit
her really hard. She now has started being involved with a charity
organisation for suicide prevention, and her view on God has changed
dramatically, and she is super interested in the Plan of Salvation. We
are working with her as well, and we've seen her a few times this

We also met this older fellow named Allan. He ran into the
missionaries in Bradford City Centre a few weeks ago, and remembered
that he used to meet with them in the 80's. So this week we gave him a
ring and he invited us over. His story is interesting and he is so
funny! Elder Kearl and I had such a good laugh with him, and we
invited him to be baptised next month! He accepted on condition that
he come back to the church to see what it's like, but I'm so excited
to meet with him again!

The Bradford ward is also amazing! There's just so many things that I
could write about but this is getting a little long already so I'll
cut to some of the funnier things that happened.

Well first off it snowed here on Wednesday! It was still pretty warm
and it was all gone by the next day, but after district meeting we had
a bit of a snowball fight! It was really awesome!

Also, everybody that we talk to when they find out Elder Kearl is
American they're like "so how about Donald Trump?" I'm so annoyed
about people talking about him. This girl at the bus stop the other
day was getting so riled up and being like f*** Donald Trump over and
over again. It was pretty funny.

Also we were talking to this guy on the street and some random other
guy came up to us and like interrupted our conversation to be like:
"Hey do you need any toilet rolls?" And we were like "uh.. No..." And
he was like: "cause I'm selling some in my car really cheap if you
want" so that was pretty funny.

Also this one mailman we were talking to was telling us not to slip on
the stone, and he was like: "wouldn't want you falling and hitting
your head, then you'd go back to Canada and be like 'I had a smashing
time'" hahaha.

Another quote from this drunk guy. I was like "are you happy with your
life man?" And he was like "yeah I'm happy, I'm drunk, I'm stoned, I'm
making money and I'm going home" and then walked away... Funny stuff.

Also in our flat it's just me and elder Kearl, and during morning
exercise We have a big exercise ball and it flew up and smashed one of
the light bulbs and it exploded haha. I've been telling people all
week that Elder Kearl broke the light, and they all believe me because
he's 18, but it was actually me...   We got a new light bulb today
though so it's all good.

There are so many more things that happened and funny things that
happened! Elder Kearl and I have been working really hard and laughing
all the time! We get along really well. It's going to be such a good

Love you all!

No worries -- we're Mormons!

Haters Gonna Hate

This nice lady from Keighley Ward took Elder Kearl and I to lunch at 5 guys!!

I (Janine) google street viewed Coleman's place!

Monday, November 7, 2016

A long email this week!


This week has been so sweet. Lots of awesome things have been
happening and missionary work is really fun! I love it here in

The big news for this week - I've only been here for about 4 weeks but
I'm getting transferred already! I'm leaving tomorrow to go to
Bradford and I've been called to be a district leader again.

I don't know any of the Elders that will be in my district -
apparently they've all come out in their missions while I was home, so
it should be interesting. But my zone leader is Elder Rodriguez! I was
his district leader when he first came out on his mission in October
of last year! So I'm excited to work with him again!

But back to the beginning of this week! On Monday it was Halloween and
for the evening we weren't allowed to go out and work, so instead we
had to spend the whole evening deep cleaning our flat - which I didn't
mind because missionary flats can be pretty messy. So it looks great
now! But I'm moving...

On Tuesday morning we went and visited this fellow named Ray. Ray has
several children and recently went through a long divorce process that
lasted over a year and consumed a lot of his life. He just finished it
recently and has a lot more free time for his kids etc. He is also a
devout Catholic, so we went over and taught him about the restoration
- but he didn't agree. We bore our testimonies about the restoration
and urged him to read the Book of Mormon to find out for himself, and
he said he would! So hopefully Elder Erickson and his new companion
will be able to follow up on that!

Later on on Tuesday we went and taught Kevin with a member of our ward
and he has some pretty crazy concerns about the doctrine of our
church. It was honestly one of the weirdest theories about God that
I've ever heard.

Oh - this week we also had the Area Book Planner App introduced on our
iPads! So that made the week a little more disorganised because we are
trying to wrap our heads around using this new app! It's actually
going to be such a useful tool so I'm really excited about it! One of
the funny things about it though is that in order for us to be able to
use it in the UK, we aren't allowed to include a lot of specific
information on the app, so it's a little complicated in what we're
allowed to store on the App. But it's good! It's weird though because
we don't use planners any more, or area books once we transfer all the
records to the app, snd it's kind of weird to be a missionary without
having a daily planner on me, but I think it's a good change! Moving
into the future for sure. President Turvey is a lot more technology
savvy than President Pilkington, he actually worked in a computer
technology company for his living, so he's trying to introduce a lot
more technology into the mission.

And then on Wednesday Jenna's parents came and picked up Elder
Erickson and I and took us to a restaurant in Dewsbury! It was so
awesome! Jenna's family aren't members of the Church but they know a
lot about missionaries and the church and what we do, so the dinner
with them was great! They took us to this Indian food restaurant and
they knew the owner no all the staff and it was just really really

Oh and that morning was district meeting and the topic was member
involvement in missionary work - and Elder Wayt asked me to do the
instruction. It was actually so good I talked a lot about things that
happened in the YSA ward with Sam and Tegan in Calgary and in Dad's
ward with Mark and Diane. I also talked about being a member going out
teaching with the missionaries and how we can do a good job at it
here, involving members. So that was great too.

Thursday was great too, not too much happened, we had ward
coordination. Oh and it's starting to get really cold, and it was
daylight saving this week which made it start getting dark really
early as well! The sun sets here now at like 430-5 ish which makes it
hard to do any finding after it gets dark, so we've been scheduling
most of our appointments for the evening time!

Friday we taught this born again Christian guy named Matt, and he had
some concerns about our church and he Book of Mormon specifically. One
of them was that he believed in the bible and he thought that it was
not realistic that Nephi could have received so much revelation when
other prophets in the bible didn't receive as much revelation. We
talked it over with him and urged him to try to understand that God
speaks to all his prophets and that it's totally feasible for some to
write down more than others. We bore testimony of Joseph Smith and the
Book of Mormon and encouraged him to read it, so I hope he does!

On Friday was Guy Fawke's Night / Bonfire Night here, and for the past
two years that I've been here we've had to be in early for it, but for
some reason this year that wasn't the case! But all week I thought we
were going to be in early so I didn't make any plans for Saturday
evening! It turned out to be okay though we went and visited this
former investigator who Elder Diaz taught when he was in Dewsbury last
year named Andy! He is super sweet and agrees with the Restoration and
wants to come to church! He told us that he's had some hard times
recently that have opened his mind more towards the idea of God and
wants to learn about our church! Sometimes it's just the right time to
meet someone! So I'm excited for him, even though I probably won't see
him again.

We did have some time outside that night though and oh my gosh it
sounded like a war zone! In England you don't need a permit or
anything to shoot off fireworks, so this whole week, but especially on
the 5th, there were like loads of fireworks going on everywhere! It
was actually pretty crazy, like we were in this area called
Heckmondwike and we were walking along the main road and some kids
were shooting fireworks off down a side street, and the firework stand
fell over and shot down the street and exploded on the ground it was
cool but kinda crazy.

And then Saturday was Huddersfield Stake Conference! And Elder Moreira
from the seventy came to it as well! He's the same general authority
that came to one of the zone conferences last year in our mission! So
that was so awesome! Afterwards he also did a new member /
investigator session, and we brought Kevin. So it was just a few
people all gathered in a room listening to Elder Moreira basically
just bear his testimony! And president Turvey and his wife came as
well so that was awesome!

Also at Stake Conference I got to talk to a bunch of the members from
Huddersfield 1 ward! And that was so awesome! I saw some families like
the Vousdens, and the Pollentines, and the Greys, and the Tomlinsons,
and the Meads, and the Siswicks, and the Scotts, it was really cool.

There was so much more that happened this week too but I can't
remember it all and it's hard to type everything out! But just know
that I'm having such a good time here, and so many experiences with
helping people out and meeting new people it's awesome.

Tomorrow I'm moving to Bradford to a whole new zone and stake and ward
and missioanaries. So I'm going to be meeting a lot of new people! My
memory and skill with names is really going to be stretched, but I'm
excited to keep serving people!

Love all you guys!!