Monday, March 12, 2012

Hello family and friends!

How is everyone doing! Things have been going great here in Stockport. The work is moving along! This week has had a lot of different things going on!

I had the opportunity to go on an exchange with one of the assistants to the President. It was amazing. It honestly changed my entire mission! He took diligence to a new level i didn't even think was possible! We would knock on a door, he would hear a car door slam a hundred yards away and i would turn around and he was already sprinting to go talk to that person. haha. In these last two months i think I've ran more in dress shoes than i ever did in basketball shoes. We're constantly running to be places on time as well. He set such a good example for me and taught me some very valuable lessons.

I got to teach herman again while i was with him too! he's doing so great! He scheduled for baptism in a few weeks!

I got to go on an exchange with Elder Webster this week too. He was in my same mtc group so we had to brand new missionaries out together. haha. luckily we had quite a few service project already scheduled so we didn't get lost. haha that was quite the experience

We've continued working with Stephen. We pushed his baptism date back to the 24 because he's struggling to grasp some of the concepts we're teaching. it's something that's a bit foreign to him. we've taught him the Word of Wisdom and the law of chastity this week and he responded well to both of them. He really wants to be baptized! We're making sure he wants to be baptized for the right reasons and not just because he likes us. haha always calls us up wanting to know if we want to go catch a movie. He's told us quite a few times that we should be prophets haha. After he says that we go into a discussion about what a prophet is. haha :). we've had that conversation quite a few times. You just never know what he's going to say. It's hilarious.

I remember before i left on my mission and at the mtc i was concerned i was going to get fat... let's just say that's no longer a concern haha. at the mtc i weighed myself and i weighed 226. I got the chance to weight myself earlier this week and i weighed 212! I've lost 14 pounds just since I've left the MTC! I was wearing a suit when i weighed myself too! What the.... haha

We had a great turnout at church on sunday too. We had 4 less actives show up plus the investigators for both companionship's. Our gospel principles class was as full as it could be. Next week they're probably going to move us into a bigger room! haha BOOM! Hopefully we can get even more to show up next week! If we could get all of the less actives in the ward to show up we would double our sacrament meeting attendance. It's something we're really focusing on.

We've got Training Camp coming up this week on Wednesday which I'm pretty excited for. Never can have too much training. We'll also get our mail and packages that were sent to the mission office. Rumor has it that mom and dad sent me a quality size package. haha I'm really looking forward to it. Mail is the best!

Not much else going on out here. Just going day to day and trying to do my best. it's hard to believe my first transfer as a missionary is almost over. Our transfer day is next Wednesday. i won't be moving but on transfer weeks our Preparation days are moved to Wednesdays instead of Mondays. So I'll be emailing next Wednesday

I miss and love you all very much! I pray for you everyday! Keep me updated with everything that's going on

Love Elder Ford!

Elder Webster and I doing some power washing for a member.
I fell asleep during our nightly companion prayer so Elder Corbin decided to take a picture! haha. I was out of it.

A view just outside our flat on the main road in stockport.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Hello everyone! :)

I hope everyone has had an amazing week! things have been going pretty good out here. The work is just moving along!

On Monday night we met with a less active man in the ward named Robert. He blew me away! He had such a strong testimony! he served his mission about ten years ago and he just shared all his experiences with us. it was amazing. He said he just got burnt out of actually attending church. So Elder Corbin and I decided, if he loves missionary work so much, let's get him to work with us. haha. We're going to teach an investigator in his home tonight and we're going to get him to go out tracting with us. He really loves having us around. I think it just takes him back to so many good memories that he had on his mission. He's so close to coming back!

We also had our Specialized trainings this week with the entire zone. Best part of it was of course receiving the mail. ahaha. The package from Mom and Dad was amazing. There's nothing like American candy and food. :) The food out here is not even close to as good as American food. I would kill for some Cafe Rio and Panda Express. Don't take it for granted! haha. I also got quite a few letters which was really nice. The only bad thing is that we only have our conferences about every two and half weeks so you don't get mail to often. don't hesitate to send letters to the flat. I'll be there for at least another eight weeks, probably longer. I couldn't believe how much shipping was! Rip off.

I had my first exchange this week as well. I was with Elder Herrin from Sandy, Utah. Exchanges are the best. You get an opportunity to see how other missionaries work and pick up on little tricks that that work for them. I've already learned more in these last few weeks than i have in my entire life!

There are definitely some hard days though. I swear sometimes the whole country must wake up and decide to be grumpy some mornings. haha. probably the lack of sunlight. some days no one wants to hear us. we'll have people yelling at us to go get jobs and stuff like that. haha. On the days were there is heavy opposition is when we see miracles though. We know Satan is just trying to discourage us because something really good is about to happen. We just push through it.

We also got a new senior missionary couple in our area! They're amazing! They had us over for dinner then went and fellowshipped at a lesson with us. They have insights and advice that no 19 year old missionary could provide. they're going to help out here so much!

The investigator we're really working with right now is Stephen. He's dated for baptism on the 17th and he's already attended church twice. He has a strong desire to follow Christ and be baptized. Our challenge as missionaries is to make sure he understands what we're teaching him...a lot harder than it sounds haha. the first few times we met with him he didn't understand anything we said. it's been a real learning experience for both of us. We're going to try and meet with him 4 times a week to make sure he's ready for his day. Pray for him and us!

We got the approval on March 1st that we didn't need to wear our suit jackets anymore! i was so excited! I've been trying to look for another suit but all the stores don't have any that fit me. i need a tailor and they're REAL expensive. I was looking for a nice grey one but no luck. luckily we only have to wear suits to our church meetings until November so i won't need to worry about it for a while.

Things are going real good out here. I Love and miss everyone so much. I pray for you everyday, don't forget to pray for me and the people of Stockport too! Keep me updated with everything that's going on. Love you all

Love Elder Ford

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Hi everyone!

I hope everyone is doing amazing! Things have been going really great here. Every day i get a little more used to missionary life and I've seen big improvements in myself in just these last few weeks. Good things are definitely happening in Stockport!

This past week has been pretty eventful. It's hard not to have an eventful week when your schedule is so jam packed. haha. I've seen miracles, had odd experiences, and seen a lot of crazy things already.

At the very beginning of the week we ran into one of our neighbors from just a few doors down who we've met quite a few times before at the bus stop. We've approached him before but he seemed uninterested. On Monday, we met him and he asked us "have you found any customers yet". we told him he could be the first. haha he told us we could stop by later and we ended up teaching him. we taught him again throughout the week and he came to church as well. he's progressing very quickly and we have high hopes for him. he's said that he has a strong desire to follow Christ. He really just likes our company too. haha. He's said that he is already planning to add me on facebook....oh stephen.

We had an odd experience as a companionship. We do a lot of our contacting on buses. We both hop on and then split up and start talking to people. I sat next to a man and just started talking to him. It was horrible. He was one of the most mislead men I've ever met. He sat there for about a half hour and just started letting me have it. He was way off the deep end. but I've learned already that when heavy opposition is thrown your way something good is about to happen. At the exact same time i was talking to this man, Elder Corbin met a young kid named Brad. We ended up getting off the bus together and teaching him on the spot! We also taught him again a few days later in a members home. He has a lot of potential.

We also had to hand of Herman, one of our investigators who was dated for baptism, to the assistants to the president because he was YSA age. That was really hard to do. He was so prepared! haha

We had an amazing lesson with Gerald! We were teaching the Word of Wisdom which was really big because he had a tea problem. The spirit was so strong! we asked him if he would live the Word of Wisdom, he took a deep breath and said " If it's for the salvation of my soul I'll do it" BOOM! haha. He gave us all of his tea bags and we got rid of them for him. Elder Corbin and I were high fiving all the way home. ahah

After that things kind of started going down hill unfortunately. I got way sick with the flu Thursday night. i was throwing up all night! Completely miserable. We ended up staying in most of the next day because i felt so sick. I started feeling a little better so we decided that we should go to our ward coordination meeting. on our way there we got a call from Gerald. He had attended a Catholic funeral earlier in the day and had suddenly decided he was going to stay catholic! That about killed us

We met with him the next day. As soon as he opened the door i could tell something was wrong. The light he had as we'd been teaching him the previous few weeks was completely gone. Something must have happened at the funeral but he wouldn't tell us what. he told us he didn't believe our church was true and that he didn't believe the book of Mormon. which was completely the opposite of what he had been saying. we found out that he hadn't really been praying to know whether it was true or not. He told us he was going to stay Catholic and that this was goodbye. it was pretty safe to see we were bummed out. He was sooo solid!

But even though we lost gerald we met many new investigators! there are still plenty of people to teach.

I'm starting to get a lot more comfortable with just going up to people and talking to them. something just clicked for me yesterday.

Today is P day and I'm really looking forward to it! We usually go grocery shopping, sometimes we go play basketball, sometimes we go look at all the shops. it just really depends what we're in the mood for. P day only lasts till six then it's just a normal night again.

I look forward to hearing from everyone soon and i hope you all have an amazing week! i pray for you every single day without fail.

Love you all so much
Elder Ford

Picture description:
Me getting rid of geralds tea bags
Elder Corbin decided to poop with the door open
One of the rare clear nights
Vimto and moutain dew. greatest drinks ever. The mtn. dew is the same here but because the caffeine is so high it's considered an energy drink. haha