Tuesday, December 31, 2013

December 30, 2013

Querida Familia,

I can't believe how fast this transfer has gone by!  Transfer calls will be on Saturday and I'll know by next week if I'll have a new companion or stay with Elder Allen.  I have a feeling that nothing's going to happen, but anything could!  I'm excited either way.  I always feel a ton of motivation toward the beginning of a new transfer.  It's been great being with Elder Allen though.  Lots of funny stories, probably shouldn't share them over e-mail though haha.  It was so good to see all of you and your bright shining faces!  You look awesome!  Mom, I would say that sending a son back out on his mission and sending your last child out on her mission were amazing things!  Also, I would say that all of the help in cleaning up were amazing!  You spoke at Myles' BAPTISM!  That's amazing..  You also took an amazing trip to Italy!  You probably went on more trips than any other year of your life, right??  That's AMAZING!  You seem like you've become an amazing missionary in 2013!  I just wanted to let you know that from my point of view, you did way more than one amazing thing this year!  

I don't really know what I'm going to commit to do this year yet for a new year's resolution.  Probably get in shape haha.  I want to find and help a family into the church before I leave the mission field.  Wherever I am, I'm confident that the Lord can help me to feel that I have had a very successful mission if I finish strong!  I still remember setting the goal that I was going to write in my journal every day of 2012, and I did it!  That was a great day and I've still been writing in my journal every day since.  

Adrian came to church again this week.  It's hard to tell if he's really serious about being a member or just being nice and liking coming a lot.  He told us that he's moving back to Mexico in September, but I figure there's probably a church somewhere near him out there.  We have been stopping by Sunday mornings to remind him to come to church.  We walked him home one day.  He's awesome though when it comes to wanting to live according to the standards of the church.  He hasn't had a problem or serious doubt yet.  He is scheduled to be baptized this week, so be praying that he has a mighty change of heart!  I'm still happy to be out here!  Not trunky.  The members down here are treating us well :)  We brought cookies to several families and they all loved them!  Thanks so much for all of the presents as well!!  I have enough candy to last what seems like a lifetime!  

Les amo mucho, ya'll!  

Elder Moore

Monday, December 30, 2013

December 23, 2013

That's some really depressing news, I'm crying too, but I'm glad you told us.  She's sitting on Jesus' lap, just like Hannah said.  I'm also with Hannah in wishing that I had been there during her last days.  I don't really even feel a connection with the pets that much anymore, but Molly had a really close place in my heart.  I don't know if I already told you, but I'm probably going to get a Westie as well.  Whenever I'm finally able to own my own dog, that is..  Speaking of pets though this morning I was cleaning the house and went outside and heard these little meows, so I meowed back until I could find where it was coming from and I looked up in a tree and there was a poor little kitten looking down from one of the highest branches.  I didn't want to climb the tree, so I got another Elder to do it and we rescued it!  We set it on the ground and then we were getting it some food but when we went back out front there was this big dog sitting in the yard, so I'm hoping it ran away.  Hopefully it wasn't eaten or ran back up the tree!  
So, anyway, onto relevant things!  We reset Adrian's baptismal date for the 4th of January.  I tried to convince him how cool it would be to be baptized on the 1st, but he wouldn't go earlier than the 4th because he works throughout the week.  We have been teaching him and on Saturday a bunch of his friends came over and we taught them all.  It was a lot of fun, a little bit overwhelming!  They like to talk!  We invited one man to pray at the end and mid prayer Adrian jumped in and finished it and then Adrian's brother wanted to say his own prayer, so it was just a cornucopia of prayers.  Adrian came to church the next day!

We taught Sergio and Elizabeth's family again this week and most of them have been having a hard time reading because the print is too small, but Sergio has been reading ever since we gave him the Book.  We taught them the Plan of Salvation with the Araujo family and we're just hoping and praying that the Lord will show them what they need to do!  

Pearson had a parade this week and the Ward had a Christmas Party.  Last night was pretty cool!  We got to attend a baptist church at the request of one of the members of the Pearson Ward and I played piano for one of the songs.  Ever since my ability to play piano has been discovered last week, I've been approached so many times asking to help out!  I guess you could say that's PRETTY COOL.  Did you get it?  I'm going to send you some pictures of us with Santa and maybe a few others!  I need your Skype name!  I don't remember it..  Something about Hans?  :)  Haha Hans Joy Moore...

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!  Thanks for sending those presents again and for the treats :)  We'll be caroling and delivering tomorrow night!!  I also made peppermint bark for us!  Delicious!  Thanks for teaching me to cook great things.  We also made fried chicken a couple of days ago.  Blessed South!  Love ya'll  :)  Les amo muchisisisissiisisisisisimo

Elder Moore

Friday, December 20, 2013

December 16, 2013

Merry Christmas, ya'll!

I'm thankful to have such wonderful people to write!  This week we had a Christmas Conference and Interviews and President Cottle asked me who I write on P Days to make sure that I'm still loved and I don't ever feel any amount of doubt about knowing that's the truth :)  I love you all so much!  It sounds like Hannah is doing amazing down in Brazil!  I'm so proud to have such a dedicated Sister and that she's not "that guy" that messes it up for everyone.  ha  That's the way she put it last week at least.  
I agree with you, Mom, about the gifts that we each have.  I think that you were exactly right.  Something I have been realizing is that I feel like I have that same thing that you were saying about Hannah especially though.  Believe it or not, I have a pretty active conscience.  The gift of tongues is the only explanation for being able to learn a language as fast as missionaries do.  It's inspiring.  

This week we worked a bit more with Adrian.  He told us that he'd start reading the Book of Mormon, but he has a hard time seeing the letters so we ordered him one of those GIANT triple combinations.  Haha hopefully the pages aren't too heavy to turn.  He didn't come to church this week, which was a little bit frustrating, but we think it was probably because the member that gave him a ride last week didn't come either.  We hope to see some more miracles with him this week.  

I don't remember if I told you about Elizabeth last week.  When we taught her, I was thinking that she was the head of the house, but we met her mom and dad this week and got to teach them all the restoration.  We've been teaching using pictures and pamphlets a lot lately at the request of President Cottle, and it's been cool to see how people are completely able to teach themselves the message of the restoration if we just ask the right questions.  They didn't receive the message as well as Elizabeth did, but we're going to get Elizabeth to be the pioneer in the family or something.  The mom told us that she would join another church if the Lord showed her where to go.  So there's a lot of hope there :)  

There aren't many people in Pearson, but the Lord has been providing us with things to do and people to teach.  It's been different than any other place I've served by a long shot.  It's always nice that no matter where I serve though, there are always loving members of the church.  This week we're having the Ward Christmas party and I'm going to be playing the piano.  We made up an arrangement of Silent Night that we sang as a district/part of the zone for the Zone Conference and the four Elders in Pearson will be performing it on Wednesday!  

I got the Christmas package you sent me and looked up a lot of the scriptures.  I think gummy worms are in one of them, but I couldn't tell with the others..  I put all the presents under our little tree :}  I'm even more excited for the day to come :)  I'll let you know next week, I guess, what time I'll be available to talk.  I don't really know whether I should make it close to 11:00 or a few hours later because of Hannah, but it'll work out.  Ha I wish I could just call you to set it up, but President Cottle told us that we could only call on Christmas Day.  Let me know what you want by next Monday and I'll make it work!  

I love you!!!  Have an awesome week :) 

El Hijo Mejor, 

Elder Moore

Sunday, December 15, 2013

December 9, 2013 (Pictures)

Elder Moore and Elder Allen--Adopted Trainee

Elder Huckvale and Elder Moore

Elder Wright and Elder Moore-Trainee

Selina from Beaufort

Welch/Hatfield Family, Beaufort

Horse in a trailer park

Elder Allen and Elder Moore--Christmas in Pearson, GA 2013

November 4, 2013 (Out of order)

Dear Familia:

It was a great week!  I don't know if I've really told you a whole lot about them, but there is a family that was baptized about a year ago with two different last names - Hatfield and Welch.  I think Leah wanted to keep her name because the Hatfields are a really famous family because of something called the Hatfield and McCoy feud that happened a little while ago.  She tells us CRAZY stories about her grandpa and great grandpa..  But anyway!  Leah and her two kids were baptized last year and Nate, her husband is still investigating.  I've taught them several times and really get along with them, but because they're English-speaking only, we gave them to the Sisters but they gave them back so we've been teaching them a while.  Haha that was really long and boring I hope you understood though.  So, we've been teaching him lately and the lessons have been more powerful than ever.  We got him to say the other day that when he comes to know that the Book of Mormon is true and that Joseph Smith is a prophet of God that he will be baptized.  We taught him a little bit more about the significance of the first vision and testified of it's truth and the spirit MUST have told him it was true.  He was impressed because we had just been talking about how the argument of whether the trinity is one or three could go on forever, but he understood that the first vision would clear that up as well if it really did happen.  We invited him to read the Book of Mormon every night to show the Lord his desire to know the truth and he said he'd do it.  I'm excited to see what will happen in the next few days!  Elder Wright and I both bore testimony about being in the sacred grove and feeling that special spirit there, where the first vision actually occurred.  Did I ever tell you that Elder Wright played Laman in the Hill Cumorah Pageant last year and that his dad is the one that choreographs the fight scenes?  I thought that was awesome!  He's from Orem though, not Palmyra..
We had a great fast and testimony meeting yesterday and Leah Hatfield actually invited Elder Wright and I to stand in the circle to bless her new baby.  It was tender!  It reminded me of when Sadie was blessed and there were like 50 hands under her haha.  Big families are a blessing!  A bunch of nonmembers got up to bear their testimonies at Parris Island and talked about the spirit they feel and everything they're learning.  It's always cool to hear that.  It never gets old.  I told President Cottle last week that I hope I serve here until the end of my mission!  He told me probably not!  Dang!  It'll be fun though to come back!  It might sound touristy, but I heard last night there's a 3500 pound great white shark at Hunting Island just waiting to attack.  Maybe we'll see it one day when we're running over the bridge!

Chris has been really sick for a while.  We haven't been able to see him as often as we'd like, but we're still praying and working with him.  They know most of the ward by now though.  We've taken a different couple over there every time we've taught.  We're still hoping they find their niche in the ward.  We're having troubles meeting regularly with Luis because he's been pretty busy in school and cross country, but he came to church this week.  What's really been helping more than anything is asking his friends for help to set things up.  It's been amazing to see the youth hard at work spreading the gospel!  I think I said that last week as well, but this week a family came to church because of the invitation of one of the youth!  It's cool to hear about that group of teenagers from Hannah.  It's getting even simpler to share the gospel because of things like Facebook and Mormon Channel.  Maybe that has something to do with it.

Well, that feels like a lot of writing!  I hope you had a good week, too!  I love you!!!


Elder Moore

December 9, 2013

Isn't it wonderful?  We were talking about how much we love Christmas and everybody keeps talking about how it's "coming soon," but isn't the best part just the spirit of the whole season?  Everybody seems happier and nicer and more thoughtful.  I've been thinking about ways that I can bless the Elders in our district a lot more because everyone else just seems to be more thoughtful probably because of this time of year.  Thanks so much for sending those things to give to our investigators!  We'll be making the cookies probably sometime next week and delivering them caroling.  It's so amazing how powerful that was the first time we did it.  Everyone loved the treats and singing!  Do you remember me telling you that it made one of the members cry it meant so much to her??  Whoever came up with that idea was a genius.  And I figured it wasn't you saying stuff about Texas in the letter :)
It was a great week!  We had a wonderful miracle happen on Friday.  A man named Adrian was walking by the library as we were coming up and HE APPROACHED US to tell us that he wanted to come to church, but the missionaries had never called him back, so we invited him and he came yesterday!  He told us all about how much he loved every minute of it and told a bunch of the members that he'll be coming back.  He's a cool guy though..  He works in a blueberry packaging company, but on top of that he's also a CLOWN!  (payaso)  So, you can only guess that he's pretty out there haha.

We made some snowflakes and set up a Christmas tree and lights and we even have Christmas scented candles.  Living in that house makes us all feel right at home.  It's been a lot of fun listening to Christmas music, too!  

I have been having a lot of awesome experiences lately while studying and also looking over my journals from past experiences I've had on my mission.  I'm so grateful for this.  It's hard, but so worth it!  It's good to hear that things are going good for Jordan so far!   

I love you!  Have a Merry Christmas season!  It's only the beginning of another great year though, right?  That Christmas devotional was awesome!  Elder Nelson's reaction to the video of the children singing I am a Child of God reminded me of Dad watching uplifting Youtube videos.  Ha he was SO happy and excited about it.  I'm jealous that you're over there in cold weather kind of.  It means you get to bundle up.  I was thinking though about how crazy it would be if you got the same amount of snow this year as you got rain!  Let's pray it's not that much though haha


Elder Moore

Sunday, December 8, 2013

December 2, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving, ya'll!

 I'm down in Pearson, GA. It's at the very south end of the mission on the east side. It's 3 hours from Beaufort and actually seems like it's pretty close to Jacksonville. There's an area in the Jacksonville Mission called Waycross that's only 30 minutes from us. It's a lot smaller than Beaufort, but there are a LOT more Hispanics. There are probably around 1000 or 2000 people in the whole city and it seems like probably about half of them are Hispanic.

There are a couple of Spanish-speaking families that we got to meet this week and this guy named Jose that has just recently started coming back to church. We're teaching a family named the Ayalas and their daughter came to a volleyball activity we had in the church on Wednesday night. We got the whole family to kneel down and the dad prayed. It was really cool. We haven't been able to teach them since that day though because every time we go over they give us food and then we have to leave... Frustrating, right? Haha I'm not complaining about being fed though! We're also teaching a lady named Eufrecina. She understands everything that we read with her out of the Book of Mormon! She wanted to come to church but had to work and even told us that she wants to be baptized after she learns more. Her husband wasn't incredibly supportive, but we'll have him converted soon anyway :)

My companion's name is Elder Allen from Kaysville, UT. He's like the polar opposite of Elder Wright, but we still get along great! We found out that we have a lot of the same interests and I'm really doing everything I can to help him to feel hopeful and optimistic about the area. I honestly have never served in an area like this before, so it's going to be a lot different than any transfer ever, but I felt the same way about Beaufort when I got there and now it's one of my favorite places in the world!

 We have to be more creative down here about how to find because pretty much every Hispanic in the town of Pearson was at least talked to last transfer by the other Elders. It's Elder Allen's second transfer, so I'll be finishing up the 12 week training program with him, so he's like an adoptive son. Haha he's a lot of fun and always has something to say. Adjusting to new areas is always weird, but I'm sure I'll be used to this in a few weeks. The accent down here is THICK! Our address is: 336 Pearson St. Pearson, GA 31642

One more thing!! I'm so sad to say it and I'm going to try to get it out, but that shirt you sent me that fit so perfectly and was so beautiful and wonderful was ruined! I used my PEN to scratch my back, thinking it was closed, and it wasn't!!!! So I have big toddler pen marks all over the back of that shirt now. I could wear it as long as I have a suit jacket on. Or a sweater. Is there some way to get pen out of a white shirt? :(

 I love you a lot! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! That's awesome that Madison still has the missionary spirit and pass along cards :)

 Love you, Elder Moore

November 25, 2013

Beaufort District
Elder Bingham holding Fried Chicken and Cheddar Bay Biscuits that they made
More Beaufort District
Elder Moore and Elder McCullough on morning walk to the bridge
Elder Moore with Brother Clark and Brother Mock
Happy Birthday to Elder Moore, 11/20/13
With Elder Moyo
The Easthams
With the Assistants and Group Leader at Parris Island
Querida familia,

 MAN! I just found out last night that I'm going to be transferred and finish up another Elder's training. I'm not sure what his name is, but I'm speculating that I'll be down in Southern Georgia, kind of near Tallahassee. At least it's part of the Tifton, GA Zone. I'll let you know more about that next week when I'm away from Beaufort :(

It's been an amazing time spent here in Beaufort. I got to get up and bear my testimony in front of the ward yesterday and I realized that I feel completely at home in this ward. I feel like I know everybody in the ward and love them all so much! It's going to be hard leaving and going to a new area, but I'm completely sure that the Lord has prepared people wherever I am sent that need me at this part of my mission.

We are still working with Nate Welch and he's still reading the Book of Mormon. We set up a lesson with them tonight at 8:00 so that we can set him up for a date. He'll be baptized! I know it! I expect to see great things when we come back to visit from everything that's happened in these past months.

We have been working as a mission to contact at least 10 people a day, per missionary, so hearing from Hannah that she is contacting 60 a day is absolutely making me feel like we're not doing anything! We'd have all of Beaufort down in like a month if we were talking to that many people! Did you know that Elder Ballard promised all missionaries that if we would talk to at least 10 people a day that we would baptize twice as many people on our missions as we otherwise would have?

We have been having an awesome time contacting a lot more people than usual lately. We went to the Flea Market on Saturday and met a Salvadorian cowboy ha and also this lady that gives out cookies to homeless people. We were able to get a couple of phone numbers, but everyone forgot their home addresses haha. We also got free sodas at this place for contacting a bartender haha. I got to go on a trade-off with two different Elders this week. We talked to a lot of new people this week, but really didn't have a ton of success teaching lessons with people that we already know. Things usually pick back up though. No worries!
 I'm excited to hear how Elder Wright is with his next companion.

Thank you sooo much for the birthday package! I love the tie and the shirt especially. I wore them both today! Thanks for getting me that CD too. It really does bring back good memories :) Charlotte also sent me a care package and I got a card from her family as well!! That was awesome! I feel blessed and very loved. I'm happy that this week is Thanksgiving. Everyone, including President Cottle, has been focusing on gratitude! Best holiday ever :) I'm especially grateful to be serving a mission for the Lord and to have such a wonderful family! I love you so much and hope you have a great Thanksgiving!!

Oh yeah, and by the way this is the last day I'll be on Facebook. I'll be just a normal missionary again starting tomorrow when I'm put with my new companion.

Con mucho amor y besitos,
Elder Moore