Saturday, August 31, 2013

FIRST TRANSFER, DONE. Wow. Well, I am done with my first six week transfer! We got the message last night and me and my companion are both staying here together in Columbus for another transfer! We are so excited. We have so much good things coming with our investigators and the ward loves us and was so happy to hear we are staying, we are truly changing the area, it's amazing! 

I want to add a little more to this weekly email so you can all understand my experiences here better, I want to talk specifically about each of our investigators. We may not have much, but they are all awesome people!

Arturo y Ana: Love them! They have been to church for a month straight. They are the people I helped cater a Quincinera for. They love to feed us and their kids adore us. Their boys all attend Scouts and it's awesome to see them being fellowshipped. One of their sons is almost in his teens and doesn't like Church as much as the younger 2 but we believe that he will eventually come around when he sees the awesome changes in his dad, Arturo and the sweet spirit his mom has in her earnest search for the truth. They are an amazing family and I truly have so much love and care for them! They also have a dog named Coquetea (It means "she flirts"! haha!) and we all call her my girlfriend because she loves me. She is a small little I don't know what kind.... She did pee on me though, whoops.

Luis y Marilu: They have two young kids and we tracted into them (knocked doors and found them). They have no religious background so it's definitely a different experience. We are providing their whole foundation for faith and we have to talk it really slow with them and help them understand the basics like prayer and scripture study. They also have to ask us how to pray, it's crazy to see that some people really just have no basic religious beliefs in their lives. They have come to church once and we are working on trying to get them back!

Ulices: Single guy who kinda lives with his girlfriend. Yes, kinda lives with her. It's weird because she has a store where she sells dresses attached to the house so he is forced to let her stay there but I don't know what their relationship is like because most hispanics just call a girlfriend their wife but he calls her his girlfriend, so who knows. She doesn't like mormons though so we teach him on the porch. He hasn't been progressing but last lesson was so powerful and he accepted a baptisimal date, so we will see!!!

Francisco: Kinda the same deal as Ulices! But he has actually been reading and loves the Joseph Smith story! He is super cool and humble and this week he said he had no desire to drink! He constantly asks if he is a good person and really tries hard!!!

Manuel y Ninel: Former investigators that we knocked into and found again. They are hard to get to keep commitments but they are such a cool family! They have two kids who seriously are obsessed with us!!! I always look forward to visiting them! They accepted baptism invitations but haven't really progressed past that.

Zaida: She kissed me in church! Haha! Zaida is an awesome Puerto Rican lady in her 50-60's, no se. She is super interested and loves church! We haven't been able to teach her lately because it's been raining when we go over and we can't teach inside the house because the daughter hates people, literally, and Zaida lives with her daughter so we can't go in. Sad. But, I think all is well there!

Well, that's about it on investigators.

I will briefly just now give some highlights from the week....

Flew off my bike and flew 10 feet and it flew over me and hit me in the head and I scraped up my elbow, all on one of the main roads in town, yes, everyone saw and it was embarassing. Tore up my shirt and ruined it but all else was well. My companion was dying laughing. Lucky me. 

Had dinner with the Hind's family on Tuesday and they found out how picky I am with food and Sister Hinds was convinced it was a texture problem I have so she asked me "Do you like to roll around in blankets because it feels great on your skin?" Everyone started dying laughing and it was very interesting, haha! 

At Boy Scouts on Wednesday we were playing a game and in it I picked up Guapo's (our ward mission leader) son a little and swung him to the side and accidentally swung him into Arturo y Ana's son and knocked him to the concrete. Whoops. 

Thursday the Richard's feed us CAJUN PASTA, delicious!

Friday we had zone meeting and after we went with the Sisters to Texas Roadhouse and I about died of happiness. 

Fell asleep a little in a lesson. Cool.

Taught Arturo y Ana with the Nehrings (family we live with, branch president) how to hold a Family Home Evening. We played Apples to Apples and one of the cards was "Masculine" so you have to put in the most masculine card, so Sister Nehring puts in "Cleaning the Bathroom" and Ana picks it as the most masculine to make Arturo thing that would make him look manlier if he cleaned the bathroom, haha!

Sunday was Arturo's birthday!!!

Well, that sums up my week!

Love you all, have a great week!

Yo espero oir de ustedes SOON!

Con mucho amor, Elder Groseclose!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Day..... 76! Wow! I go home in exactly 21 months from today. That's weird...
Anyways, lets do this again!

MONDAY: P-Day, as always. We played Basketball and Volleyball with the other Elders and one of the guys we teach, Arturo. He's the guy I cooked for and he's just totally awesome. Afterwards he had us over for dinner and we had the most amazing BBQ pizza. Seriously divine. 

TUESDAY: Exchange! I was on an exchange with Elder Combs, who speaks no Spanish and we were in SPANISH area. We had our district meeting in the morning and then it was off to work! So I was completely in charge of everything. It was scary. I taught 4 full lessons all by myself in Spanish. I was amazed that I was able to do it. It's crazy how these missions work! We had dinner with Familia Mijangos in the ward and they are just such an awesome family!

WEDNESDAY: Today we had an entire missionwide training in Fishers. It's about an hour and a half north from where I serve in Columbus. Elder Switzer (from the 70) and his wife came. It was a great training and we learned so much but it was 6 hours and 6 hours of anything is exciting, especially when I had to drive home after. Blah. OH! So there is no Panda Express in Columbus or near us but there was one in Fishers so I FINALLY got my first Panda since leaving home! It was AMAZING. I got a 9 dollar box of it to go also, LOL. That night we helped a family move out, they're moving to Wisconsin where his Hot Sauce company is based.

THURSDAY: So the guy we helped move, he totally underestimated how much stuff he had and so this morning me and my companion and the other elders in their ward had to pack another 17 foot truck. Just us. It was a lot of work to say the least. Everyone who helped Wednesday night didn't  come to help the next morning so it was purely ELDERS. Haha. After we went with the other Elders to China Buffet for lunch and it was great as always. That night we had dinner at the Richards and we had Shwarma (spelling?) It's like Mediterranean Tacos. They were awesome! We then had two lessons with Familia Jaimez and Nanez with Bro. Richards. It's so great having members come, they just have that experience!

FRIDAY: I forgot to write in my Journal for Friday.... What did I do... Hmmmm. Looking at the numbers it wasn't too productive. We went by a lady named Sister Lopez in the ward and she is older and so she doesn't understand all the rules so while we were doing service for her she spanked me.... Like a nice playful one.... So weird. lol. Only taught one lesson and it's to this lady named Zaida from Puerto Rico. She just got out of a coma where she says she met God so she's like super open to the message. So that's cool... Ha. OH! I remember! We went tracting in Area 2 and this lady talked to us for an hour and a half about her religious beliefs and like trashed the church and it was just incredibly interesting. 

SATURDAY: Happy Birthday Mom! Today we taught some less actives Felix y Angelica and they fed us dinner which was awkward because right after we went to Seymour which is a town full of Hispanics about 30 minutes away and one of the sisters there from our district had her birthday that day too (like mommy!) and so went to Cracker Barrel to dinner and my companion said "What the fetch is Cracker Barrel?" hahaha yes, we say fetch... LOL. The hispanics LOVE Groseclose and always laugh at me and make jokes about it. This guy in Seymour called Chocolate (right?!) was making jokes nonstop about Groseclose, ha!

SUNDAY: Welp, Sunday! It was a great day of Church. Zaida and Familia Nanez came. When Zaida walked in, I shook her hand and she pulled me in and kissed my cheek. I hope no one saw. My companion was dying lying. It was funny but.... different. Not used to the culture... or kisses on my mission lol. That night we taught Familia Jaimez and visited our Ward Mission Leader because we think he has Lyme's Disease so he's super sore. 

All in all, another great week. I am absolutely loving it here. I love Columbus, my ward, and the people I serve. It's definitely difficult, but I am finding the good. Spanish is Spanish. Better every day. Working hard. LOVING IT. 

Elder Groseclose

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Day 69! What a crazy week. Wow. Wow.

MONDAY: Monday was preparation day, as always, and it was a totally awesome one! We played lots of volleyball (YAY!) It was a low net so kills were easy so it wasn't TOO legit, but it's a start! I made some cherry chip cookies and shared with the family we live with and they loved them! 

TUESDAY: Today was my first exchange! So the mission is set up where there is a Mission President who is over the entire mission and he assigns all the missionaries to their areas and their companions and all that jazz. He then has two Elders who are his assistants, his "go-to" people and they send out all the announcements to the zone leaders. There are about, I think, 5 zones. Those five zone leaders then send announcements to the district leaders in the zone, and finally each district leader gives the messages to the companionships in his district, SO ANYWAY, since my companion is a district leader, I spent Tuesday on an exchange with one of the zone leaders speaking English for the day, yay! We taught a man named Brother Fillmore and when we walked in I heard the Investigation and Discovery crime channel little jingle and he was watching my favorite murder mystery shows! I about died! I miss that channel!!! We gave him a blessing after and it was just an awesome experience. 

WEDNESDAY: Today we had Zone Training. The zone leaders just give a training for 3 hours and we just learn how to become better missionaries. Afterwards a bunch of us missionaries all went to a place called China Buffet and it was awesome, I miss asian food (well, amereican asian food...) and then after China Buffet we went home for study and then had dinner with Hermano Bejar. We taught Manuel about requirements for baptism and hope he received it well. It's so hard to get the hispanics to follow through on commitments, grr! Then at the Nehring's (where we live), the Nanez family (investigators) brought their 3 sons to Boy Scouts and we got to teach them in the Nehring's house and we had El Guapo (the Nehring's older son who runs Boy Scouts, yes everyone calls him El Guapo, haha!) and Sister Nehring in the lesson with us. It was an awesome lesson, I loved the experience. 

THURSDAY: Today Elder Oliva (my companion) had a training for District Leaders in Indianapolis so I went on an exchange with Elder Russel in Franklin. I got 5 new ties from Goodwill for 10 bucks and we taught these people in their trailer and it started out awkward but the people completely opened up and you could just see the change in them and it was SUCH an awesome experience. I loved the people, it's crazy how fast you come to just adore the people here. 

FRIDAY: Another exchange. Wow. Since Elder Oliva is district leader, he conducts exchanges within our District so I was in English land. It was a pretty awful exchange. Nothing happened and we just biked in heat for hours to have no one answer their door. Solid. We did go to an awesome family for dinner though and the mom was so sassy and sarcastic and it totally reminded me of home! 

SATURDAY: We taught people and it was just a cool day. You don't want to hear all my lessons so I'll refrain, but it was a good day! We did however have a difficult lesson with Familia Nanez, but it just gets me more motivated to really help them understand gaining faith through prayer!

SUNDAY: AWESOME DAY!!! Our branch hasn't had more than 2 investigators at church in YEARS and we managed to get 5 investigators there! The branch was so excited! Zaida, Familia Jaimez, and Familia Nanez all came, we were stoked! We had dinner at the Nehring's house with the Zone Leaders and taught an investigator, Francisco and I hope he keeps his commitments. We then just visited with a part member family in the branch, Catalina and David.

All in all, a great week! My emails are strictly missionary work related, no comedy or anything, sorry! It's probably because missionary work is ALL WE DO! Haha! Se amo!

Elder Groseclose

Friday, August 9, 2013

Week 3 in the field!

What is this? Week 3 in the field? Not sure but I know it's day 62 and everything is blurred together, haha! 

Let me go day by day, starting on of course, last monday!

Last monday was just another beautiful P-Day, man these Preparation Days are miracles! I am so thankful for them, they happen right before I am about to lose my mind! For P-Day we played Basketball and Volleyball with 2 other companionships and it FELT SO GOOD! Even if I did have volleyballs flying at my stitched together wrist. Annnnd, nothing else happened on Monday.

Tuesday we had interviews with the mission president and then the zone leaders did a training on how to more effectively use our planners and the Area Book to find former investigators. Then we had another solid lesson with Francisco. He is so humble and desperately wants to be able to consider himself a "good person". 

Wednesday we had a District Meeting. It was all about adjusting lesson plans to fit the needs of your investigators. It was a good reminder that we teach people not lessons! Then we did service at the house we live at helping their son build his trailor for his recycling business. Just out there drilling together a trailor, who knew? That night we went to the Richard's family for dinner. They made us fried rice and we passed around the volleyball, man I miss it! We then just shared them some quality scriptures and then Brother Richards and his 8 year old son came out and just went around the trailor park with us getting to know people, no lessons, sad.

First day of August! Today we did service at Sister Lopez house. We pretty much just build her garden for her 2 hours a week, it's exhausting. After that we had Taco Bell, YES. Then legitimately nothing else happened. People cancelled appointments, no one answered doors, and we just had our weekly planning session. We did find one family though and they seem good, but time will tell.

Happy Anniversary to my sister! Today we did service for some investigators, Familia Nanez. My companion had to cut 300 pounds of meat into blocks that I then mixed in with garlic salt and this AMAZINGLY DELICIOUS secret chili sauce! Brother Nanez was catering a quincenera. Today we also had a Tri-Ward pool party and Familia Nanez and the family we found Thursday night came and the members of our Branch did AWESOME with fellowshipping, it was awesome to see. 

Today we finished up our Familia Nanez service and just finished prepping for the Quincenera. They fed us lunch with the food we made, and let me say, I am a BOMB meat mixer! It took 4 hours (whoops!) and then so we started study at 1 PM and about an hour in, the other Elders called us because their bike tires popped and they were at the shop getting it fixed and they forgot their wallet so they had us go get it so we never really got our studies in today. It was just a bizarre day in general, BUT we went to Buffalo Wild wings for dinner, so all is well on planet Indiana, ha.

SUNDAY: Church! And for the first time in MONTHS, (from what I have heard) Investigators came to church! Familia Nanez came and it was so exciting! Today was fast sunday so after church we all went (the branch) to the Hammonds for "Break The Fast". It was pretty much just a huge feast and Familia Nanez also came to that! It was cool to have the opportunity to get to know my branch better, they are so awesome! All our night appointments fell through though, sad, but we did teach Francisco! 

Overall, number wise, we didn't do much, but it was another awesome week in the field. 600 days to go, HAHA!

Love you all! 
Elder Groseclose