Wednesday, September 7, 2011

July 4, 2011

Hey everybody!

Well, I am excited for this new area! There is mounds of potential ready to happen. I can already name about 7 people who we need to work with who have a lot of potential to be baptized. It's a rough transition for me because in the past 9 motnhs, I have been focused on finding through our own efforts and haven't used as much of the members as we could've. Now, I'm learning a lot because there is a much more limited resource for me to find through our own efforts. I am learning how to work effectively with ward mission leaders now and am focused on spending much more time working closely with them.

A little bit about Cardston... it's exactly like Manti: middle of nowhere, tons of members, a temple. We cover a whole stake (7 wards). There's 2 stakes, 9 buildings, 4 missionaries in a ton of about 3500! There's lots of work to be done and it's only going to be done through the members and our diligence with working closely with them. Brother and Sister Leavitt should know all about it
The members down here have a lot of faith. In the past few 7 days we've extended, hardly anyone has been able to identify anybody but they always say, "We have faith and will do our best." We have a lot of members scheduled for this week who do have people for us to teach. We'll let you know how it goes.
I like the new 7 day program. Before we challenge them to find us people to teach, we given them a 10 minute version of the first lesson. Members have complimented us especially during the first vision. They're really able to feel the Spirit and I know that it builds their confidence in us as we show them what kind of teachers we are. I've never given such powerful 10 minute firsts in the whole time I've been on a mission. Role playing it everyday has helped me understand what principles are the most important for investigators to hear, what parts I need to slow down on and check for understanding and also how to teach around commitments to people so that they can understand the importance of accepting the gospel.
We had a pretty sweet miracle where we went through the first lesson with the bishop in the Glenwood ward. We extended the challenge and they said, "We'll do it... tonight!" My eyes lit up and we found out that they were visiting a part member family who had just moved in. Bishop Smith visited them and invited them to come out to church. We were a little disappointed in our follow up visit because they hadn't invited them to take the lessons. On Sunday, they were both at church, and Bishop visited with Tom (less active) in his office. We found out that his wife, Jen, had taken the discussions twice and that she is a logical person. Bishop asked Tom about his testimony of Joseph Smith. Apparently, there is more than one soul to save in that home. We're excited to work closely there and see some miracles.
I love the work. I am excited to work with Elder Mott. He's from Tooele, UT and is going home this transfer. I get to kill off another missionary! I feel more inadequate than ever but it's like President said in my interview, "The Lord doesn't care." I guess I need to stop whining and get to work.
Elder Madsen

P.S. The mail strike is over so you can expect some letters now! Thank you for the pictures from Ham's wedding! That's pretty awesome! The cardboard cutout is sweet!

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