Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Last Week with Elder Jolley!

Week 8:

October 28, 2014:

Tuesday Oct 21st 2014

Today was the day of our apartment cleanliness check! Haha which wasn't a big deal cause our apartment is clean almost all the time, there's no reason for it to be dirty because we aren't in here that often. Haha and that took some time after district meeting which was about social meeting and how Elder Bednar said that we should "sweep the Earth as with a flood." With social media stuff that are good, authentic and uplifting messages. And of course use #sharegoodness on your posts! Social Media can be used for good if we use it right, and it should be used for the Lords work in uplifting and making people happy with (what I like to say) Christ like messages of goodness! It would a perfect training for me as I am about to receive training on Facebook so I can apply this training to my Facebook when I get it. It's gonna be interesting using a Facebook on a mission but it is definitely something that could be very very useful if it is used correctly and not abused. At this point in time, social media and technology is at its impetus for the gospels progression. We have so many accouterments to use that can be very beneficial to the Lords work but only if we use them unrequitedly. And when we don't... That's when the adversary jumps in, cause he will every chance he gets. Which gives rise to the saying, there is opposition in all things, whether we think so or not. To every Light there is a Darkness. It's funny how the Lord Has set up things, because natural light cannot be taken away... (Not including a black hole) It can be hidden... It can be covered... But not taken away. Darkness on the other hand, can be taken away, when a candle is lit, it takes that darkness away and fills it with light!! Why do you think that is so?!? Because that's just how it is?! Or how about because God is Light and can never be overcome, and Satan is darkness and can very well be overcome, all it takes is using the Light of Christ that we ALL possess. I have no idea why I had the desire to share that with all y'all I just thought I should. :)

Wednesday Oct 22nd 2014

Wow, not much at all exciting happened today. We had the usual studies, ate and then had a lesson with sister Kardel at the usual time and place. Then after that we biked to Amity's to have a lesson and that went well as usual, she is super strong spirited and can't wait to receive a call. It's great to see new members so active and we can only continue to keep her excited in this wonderful work. Then we just contacted potentials we had to see if we could set any appointments up with them. Then we knocked some doors as well, just to see if we could find anyone new. Not really any luck though! :( then later we had missionary correlation meeting and talked a little about our gators and how we can work to get them to come to church or to continue teaching them, or obviously to baptize them. But our main goal is get the, to feel the Holy Ghost so they can start the process to change their lives. Cause this gospel really does change people for the better and I know it has changed my life and they way I look at things. I just know EVERYONE can benefit from this gospel because it IS true!!

Thursday Oct 23rd 2014

So far this week has been really slow and somewhat stressful because appointments keep falling through and disappointments and stuff like that. One good thing that came from today was a lady we have been teaching named Faye. She has to lay in her bed and she has a wheelchair because she has polio. She is a nice lady and loves when we talk to her, sometimes she doesn't understand what we talk about so it can be frustrating because we are being as simple as we can, but some people just don't see it the same way we do. But we taught her and at the end we invited her to be baptized and she said she would!! It was a great thing that we were able to get her to recognize the importance of it and her blessings she has had in her life. She also said she had fell off her wheelchair a couple days ago and her shoulder was hurting and she hadn't moved it in a while or when she did it really hurt. So we asked to give her a blessing and in the blessing I felt the need to say she would feel better and after the prayer she tried to sit up and she said her shoulder wasn't hurting anymore. It was a massive boost to my testimony that this Priesthood is the power of act in God's name and if we are worthy and we have received it by the proper authority then we can use it to heal and comfort. It's so true, I am a living witness to that!! Things like that make the day no, matter what else happens!

Friday Oct 24th 2014

So today an investigator wanted to take us to lunch. His name is Juan and he is very religious studies a ton and talks about deep Bible doctrine all the time! Kinda funny actually, it's not contentious in any way, it's just discussion. But we really don't say anything cause we shouldn't get involved with any of that stuff. But he was still a cool guy fun hanging and talking about Church stuff with him for a little, then when we got back we just did the hour of Facebook, which I should be getting pretty soon. Sadly I am only allowed to add direct family members, and of course elders in my mission and investigators. And of course it's Friday so its weekly planning, which took super long cause we have a really busy week cause there is a huuuuge Halloween party that a member puts on for the community and we are gonna be there all day setting up and such. And even elders and sisters from our district will be coming to help. The members house is basically on a huge abandoned air strip. So it's way cool!! But that's the 31st, and it's gonna be cool. After planning we went to Bill and Scottie's and talked for a little but they were just heading out for dinner which was a bummer, but it's still awesome to talk to them even for a little because they are so fun to talk to, and we get along so great, so it's awesome. And apparently I look exactly like a friend of Bill's who was in the marines with him. Who was a machine gunner!! Haha which is super awesome to me, he said it's crazy how much we look alike. After talking with them for a while we decided to bike down to the south of the island and ended up eating at a Subway, and for those who do not know the South Island is the rich people! Haha So this subway is super nice! Haha but afterwards we met this amazing 95 year old man who did not look like it at all!! We were going to the bathroom in a gas station that was connected to the subway. He seemed to have life figured out, and could solve all the worlds problems. He was great, just so kind and loving! And then we biked all the way home and that was about time to be home, and with the time we had left we just laid out and looked at the stars. Parts made me wonder, there has to be a god, because Science just can't explain how this universe was made Ex Nihilo, it's just crazy. There has to be some higher power involved, no random explosion, all Gods power!! Its just crazy to think how we were all spirits and how if we live righteous to His commandments we too can create worlds someday.

Saturday Oct 25th 2014

So our Breakfast/Lunch was pretty interesting! Haha we sautéed some peppers and made some quesadillas, and put the peppers inside, which was delicious! Haha we also cooked some bacon in case it didn't turn out as good as we thought. Haha after we ate we went over to Jeans to have a lesson and she was just being very difficult. She just denies her feelings so much and her problems with her family is holding her back from getting baptized and it's a bummer. Not to mention I totally botched the lesson with her because I thought the story of Lehi would help but it was not a good one to use. So that really bummed me out, and my companion knew it. So what should we do to counteract my sadness... Tract apparently!! Haha but it turned out to be a little better, at least we met some okay people and a old Texan named King. Who said he reads the Book of Mormon and travels a ton and he's pretty interesting but said we probably won't be able to talk to him because he is never around. But it was good nonetheless. Jean was the first real disappointment I've had and it was hard, but I know there are many to come, for example when I gave Jean a blessing for some Kidney stones she was passing she said it worked and her pain went away and yet she still doesn't understand!! Ahhhh but it's not on my time, it's on the Lords time and that's something I need to understand. So that was tough, but the rest of the day turned out fine.

Sunday Oct 26th 2014

Well good news, Jean came to church today as she promised so that was good to see that she is making an effort. However it's hard when she doesn't feel the need to be baptized yet. But everything comes in the Lord's time, not ours. After church we had Ward council for a little and then they dismissed us and talked for a long time and we just sat out of the room and waited, cause brother Lasker was our ride and he was part of the meeting. But it was fine, got a chance to read some more. Then a couple hours after that we had a dinner scheduled at the Bishops house. They live north island so it was a bit of a ride, but it was worth it. We had pork chops, mashed potatoes, asparagus and some other vegetables and it was good. I love this Ward so much because they feed us and they are so kind and always making sure we are taken care of. Then we talked a little and headed out to see a family with a less active member, he was in a really bad car accident a while ago and is still in rehab kinda. But they are the Mclaughlins, he is a really funny guy and has lots of car stories, cause he is obsessed with older cars, I can't even count how many he's owned! Haha but we were able to have a lesson with him and his son (Adam) who is also less active, and a little later Adams friend came over and joined the lesson and we taught him a lot as well hand he was totally into it and we ended up giving him a Book of Mormon and that was super great news. It was a good night, cause we taught a lesson to the Mclaughlins and the kid (Jake). So it was a good night, got some stuff done which is always fulfilling!

Monday Oct 27th 2014

Today was an emotionally and physically exhausting day. So almost the whole morning we were just cleaning and packing the apartment for the move, which was tiring. We also had to pack all of our clothes in case we are being transferred. But luckily we had to do that anyways cause we are moving into a house. That took about half the day and then after a tedious process we decided to eat at a southern bbq place by our apartment called Sonny's. It was actually really good, I got a Beef Brisket sandwich which was amazing, especially when you put all the sauces they have. It a cool country restaurant environment to be in. Playing old country music and such, and the people are southern too so it fits. Haha Then after that we went to the Church to do Facebook. And that's always fun for an elder that doesn't have FB yet. Haha but then we got picked up by the former Elders quorum president Nick Lasker to take us to his house for dinner. And me and Elder Jolley were both happy cause we hadn't received a call from president that Elder Jolley was getting a leadership position. Which usually he doesn't call any later than 3 or 4. And it was 6!!! And so we were talking about that and what do you know, President calls and Elder Jolley is gonna be the new Zone Leader of the Gainesville area. Which means I get a new companion and I have to lead the area... Umm I've only been here a month and a half. Either president trusts me or he is crazy, and I hope it's cause he trusts me. Haha  so we were both super bummed at dinner because we get along so well and are really good friends, and we are about to get a car and the work was gonna pick up so well, and now in the blink of an eye I have to get to know someone else. Bummer!!! But it is what it is, it really sucks but that's the way the cookie crumbles sometimes. So after all this we have to wait till 9 to listen to the conference call to see where we all are going and who our companion will be. Turns out my new companion is Elder Walt who is from San Diego, I've heard he is a very outgoing and cool guy and that he's nice. So I'm hopeful that we will get along and I hope all of this turns out well. But I know of I trust in the Lord he knows what's best for me. So my hopes are high, pray for me and pray for my mission y'all.

(three pictures above) This is as close to the beach as we can get

Elder Jolley and I at our last district meeting

A pretty view from a bridge

(Two pictures above) The first alligator in the swamp and 
now there's hundreds because of this guy, who is dead now!

a canoe and some pretty scenery!

with an alligator!

Monday, October 27, 2014


Week 7:

October 20, 2014

Monday Oct 13th 2014

Well today was a very spiritual day for me. After Pday we were able to
speak to two investigators! Which is very good!! Pday itself wasn't
very good. haha We didn't really do anything, we went grocery shopping
cause we needed too, and went to Chick fil a because a member gave us
a gift card for 10 bucks. Which was super nice of them! I haven't even
met the person! haha Then we came home and ate it and just sat around
to figure out what we should do. Eventually we decided to ask the
sisters if we could borrow the car for a little portion of the day.
They said we could from 4 to 6 so we went to the church to do emails
at that time, cause it was only 2. Then once we got the car we went to
a surf shop. Elder Jolley just wanted to see what was up. But
everything there was super expensive!! Like 60 dollars for a button
down Hurley shirt. haha no thanks!! Then we went down to the skate
park to see if we would see anyone we knew, cause we have a few gators
who skate. There weren't any of them there but there were a few guys
who we met at the skate shop there. One guy was really good and fun to
watch. But in my head he was no Tony Hawk!! hahaha jk he was good
though!! After that we went to a less active members house to say hi.
He is a funny guy who loves cars!! Especially old cars, he has bought
so many its not even funny! But then we had ti  give the car back ti
the sisters so we went back to the church. After that we proceeded to
talk to a lady named Shirley Raper where we had an extremely powerful
lesson with her! We watched Uchtdorf's talk from conference and talked
a little about that. She then said that It seems like when i talk
about the church that i have been doing it all my life!! That it seems
so easy for me. Which is an extremely good compliment to me!
Especially as a new missionary!! Then after that we went to a young
couples house where we talked to a guy named Jerrod!! Very nice guy!
We then had another powerful lesson with him!! He is struggling to
believe that its true and doesn't know if there is a God but we
convinced him to pray with a sincere heart to know if what we are
teaching is true!! He has the desire, but needs to put in the effort!
He will know that it is true and that there is a God if he just prays
sincerely!! Then we came home and cooked up a frozen pizza and now I
am here. And that concludes this Pday entry! haha

Tuesday Oct 14th 2014

So today I am in Folkston Georgia for the day because of exchanges. So
after district meeting we go back to my apartment to grab all of my
stuff and me and a companion from that area switch for the day. We got
a ride from some senior missionaries named Elder and Sister Strait who
are the coolest senior couple ever!!! haha Sooo funny, on the way
there we stopped at chick fil a and after we got ice cream cones and
Elder strait said"Wanna know how to make a saddle-horn?" Then he puts
his mouth over the ice cream cone and uses his lips to form a
saddle-horn in the ice cream! haha it was hilarious. I love them so
much, they're great! So Folkston is definitely a different area, way
more southern. But still not bad, from what i saw. We just went to an
old folks home and talked and visited with some people. This area
originally opened as a service only mission but with time the
missionaries were allowed to teach. So it is a very very new area. So
that is pretty cool. We also had splits with ward members, I went with
a Brother named Justin Fazen who served in the Jacksonville mission 4
years ago. Which had somewhat to do with why he moved back here. So it
was really cool talking to him and getting insight from him. He may
even know my cousin Daniel Stevens who served here as well! But I'm
not sure, could just be the last name was familiar. But then after
that we went home and got to bed. It seemed like a really quick day,
which is both good and bad in different ways.

Wednesday Oct 15th 2014

So today i came back from Folkston and we met at the halfway spot from
Folkston to Fernandina to switch companions. But I didn't get my comp
back, i got the other Elder, because we needed to do two exchanges
this week because the exchange reports needed to be turned in by the
end of the week. So I led my area again, and this time was a little
more frustrating because plans kept falling through and some
appointments rescheduled and it was annoying. But it was something
that all missionaries need to know and be able to adjust and endure
through it. We did have a dinner appointment with two older couples
where one was a member and her husband is nor. It was super good and
the guy is obsessed with trains and football. It was nice talking to
him and he was very respectful to us as missionaries and said he
really admires what we do. So that was really cool to hear. We then
met a couple of other cool people and one was at the end of the day.
His name was Johnathon and he was just outsude smoking and we talked
to him about the restoration and he was very accepting and liked it.
It was cool, he said he had a recent scare in his life and that he
prays and that it was good to hear what we had to say. Then we just
knocked a couple more doors and nothing really came of it, so by that
time it was time to go back home so we did, and that was pretty much
the extent of that day. haha

Thursday Oct 16th 2014

So after me and my companion get back together and get back to
Fernandina we had a lesson with a lady named sister Kardel. Very nice
older lady who got baptized a little bit ago, then after that we
figured out a way to fill out my companions exchange reports because
we need a computer that is capable to read a certain file and the
church laptop that we use sometimes cannot read that file. So we rode
to a members house who has a computer and we used theirs and it worked
out great. However it takes a couple of hours so that was the bad
part. Just time i use to look up talks or talk with the members or
watch mormon messages. haha After that we went to a gas station to see
if we could see a guy that works there that my comp has met before. He
is from Syria but is Christian so he is very accepting of us and wants
us to come to talk to him. It was a very cool experience and he even
reads his Arabic Book of Mormon that was left for him last time. Which
is really cool

Friday Oct 17th 2014

Today we had a Train the trainees meeting in Jacksonville. It was just
to see how the training was going and stuff like that, it was cool we
got fed lunch and I learned some good stuff, so it was awesome. And it
always good to see President, he's such an awesome person with an
amazing spirit. I love him and his wife and they are perfect to
inspire this mission and group of missionaries. It was a good meeting!
After we got home we did some planning and then went to lesson with a
new part member family the Smiths. We met her for the first time and
she is super funny, both of them are awesome and we are trying to get
her back to Church so Bill can come to church and hopefully be
baptized! They are both in the Military and are just great people!!
Today was a quick day because of the meeting but it was a very good
day and a powerful spirit was brought!!

Saturday Oct 18th 2014

Well today was rather eventful! We had a service project for Amity at
her house doing massive yard work. We mowed, trimmed, cleaned her roof
(of course I was on the roof haha), ripped down some old fences,
cleaned up brush and beautified!! Haha and here in Florida it's okay
to burn all the clippings and fences, and stuff!! So we had a massive
bonfire basically!! And our loving Ward mission Leader brother Lasker
caught on fire!! It was intense, it was for a quick second and we were
all laughing after it was over and he was okay. Haha After that he
said, "well I guess that makes me the coolest member of the ward!!"
Haha it was fun and the project turned out awesome and it was very
cool to see Amity happy and see the wards love for her and the
fellowship. Then after that we had to do our weekly planning which
took a very long time as usual cause it's planning for the next week!
But it went really well and I led that so its a little harder and I
have to really go by the spirit in order to know who I need to plan
for and what we need to teach them and hopefully we feel the same way.
It's very important for us to be in sync and be on the same page,
because it really helps and unifies us as a companionship as well! So
that was essentially our day but it was very exciting with the whole
fire thing! Ohh and while I was ripping down a fence at Amity's and
there was a snake right in front of my face, and that was pretty
scary!! But it was no biggy, just a slightly startling experience!
Haha but that was my Saturday, fun day, good to do some service every
once and a while!

Sunday Oct 19th 2014

Today we woke up and of course went to Church and we were able to
confirm Amity and give her the Gift of the Holy Ghost, which was an
amazing thing. Elder Jolley is so in tune with the spirit it was a
very powerful blessing and it was great!! I am thankful to be trained
by him and learn from him and the spirit that he brings! Then after
Sunday school I was able to teach Young men's on the spot because they
didn't have a teacher. Haha so me and Jolley played Rock Paper
Scissors to see who was gonna teach and I lost, just my luck. Haha but
the lesson actually went very well, it was on gratitude and always
giving thanks to our Lord about all that we have, no matter how small.
It went well and I'm glad I'm getting comfortable teaching on the
spot, it's crazy to think how far I've come in such little time! It's
great!! Then after choir we had a dinner appointment at a members home
named the Colemans who are awesome. She is an amazing musician and
singer and is our choir leader essentially, haha and she's cool
(raised in Hayward ;) haha and he is a Nuclear Submarine Commander
which is waaaay cool!! And amity and her daughter Aria were there
because we are starting the new member lessons with her. Dinner was
great, and then we went out on the back porch because it was a
beautiful day and had a super awesome lesson about the restoration.
Once it got dark we were teaching by candlelight which was cool! Haha
Then after an hour or so lesson we had another member lesson with a
member named brother Johnston who is younger and has lived here for
five months now. He works in Epidemiology, which is something I
haven't really heard of! Haha but he is way cool and super sincere
about the gospel! We had something set up with Jerrod but he wasn't
there so we didn't get to teach him sadly. Cause it would have been a
great lesson! But then we just tracked a little in our apartment
complex for a little but didn't have any luck. :( then it was time to
go home and call all the other Elders and Sisters in our district for
their weekly numbers. And now I am in bed for the night, goodnight
Friends and Family!! Love you all!! :)


So this was a service project we did, tearing down fences, hardcore
weeding and, just all around fixing the yard. And as you can see there
was a huge bonfire!! Haha that's what's cool about Florida, we can
just burn all the clippings and what not. It was for a recent convert
we just baptized. We did the big stuff so she can manage the little
stuff on her own. And as you can see I got an artsy shot of Elder
Jolley. The fire was so so hot on the group picture, we were far and
it was like we were standing in it cause it was so hot! Haha and our
mission leader accidentally set himself on fire briefly haha but he is
okay, just a little whoopsie accident with a gas can. Haha

The Holt Journal discourses for the Jacksonville Florida Mission 2014-2016

Week 6:

October 13, 2014

The Holt Journal discourses for the Jacksonville Florida Mission 2014-2016

Tuesday Oct 7th 2014

So today we had the usual wake up and get ready, but we have a
District meeting every Tuesday around 10 in the morning, so that was
today. We start with an opening song, then prayer, then we do
something called recitations, which are things we try to memorize on
our missions. It's 3 Nephi 5:13, D&C 4, the standard of truth, and a
mission motto. Then after that we go over district goals. Then we do
training, which are always good. I've done one training already last
week on Christlike attributes. Which is rare for a new missionary to
do. Haha but I guess I did a good job!! Haha the training is usually
15-20 minutes each, (two of them) and then 15 minutes of role play
applying what we just got trained on. So it's really good and it helps
a lot!! Today was good, it was about be united as a companionship and
how to piggyback off each other and support each other and testify to
what each of the missionaries are sharing. Then after that I usually
go on an exchange with a missionary from my district, right now I am
in Kingsland, Georgia with Elder Rodriquez from L.A. Haha he's cool
and very easy to get along with. So it's been fun so far. We just
finished service for the habitat for humanity and that was cool. Just
being able to help in such a good cause was good, and people see
missionaries helping and that's good for us too!!! We are now getting
ready to go out proselyting! So we are back home now and we walked a
lot and it was different from a bike, a lot more tiring!! Haha but we
didn't really get to talk to anyone, they all weren't interested so it
was sad. Haha but we went to chick fil a and it was delicious. haha
that kinda ended our day, we walked a ways so it took more time out of
the day. But it was a good day still, cool to meet a new missionary
that I got along with. Now we are just back in the apartment looking
up Populations of cities just for kicks and giggles!! Haha but we had
a super long convo about redwood trees and how big they are and then
we tried to figure out if 36 ft in circumference would be bigger or
diameter would be!! Haha missionaries are so weird!! But it's bed time
now, all in all a good day!! :)))

Wednesday Oct 8th 2014

Today was interesting to say the least. Me and Elder Rodriquez
attempted to blow up a bike tire tube, cause it had a leak. But we
couldn't! Hahaha we had it in the bath tub while the curtain was
closed and we were outside the curtain. Haha it was funny, we were
scared something bad was gonna happen, but nothing did, it just
deflated. Then we rode back to Fernandina cause the exchange was over.
I had received my package that my mom had sent me and expecting my new
shoes I got everything but that! Haha I got bed sheets, some candy, a
first aid pack she made, some shoe shine, and some thank you cards
for the people that gave me money!! Haha but no shoes! :( but it's
all good, it was cool getting a package, it was refreshing!
After that we talked about an investigator we were concerned for
and then went to a lesson at the church at 1 with a lady named
Betty Kardel. Super nice, we went over the commandments,
she is baptized but we go over the lessons again when
they are recently baptized.
Them after that we went to lunch at a Mexican place

called Barbaritos. It's almost like a chipotle style but
not as good! Haha but good enough, it's funny me and Elder Jolley
laugh a lot! Just about random stuff!! He is almost like a Mark
Cadwallader, in a weird way, idk it's cool though. Haha then after
that we went to another investigators house and talked for a really
long time then we had to go to mission correlation meeting, then by
the time that was over it was almost nine so we had to be back in the
apartment. Today was just a random day, It was just weird!! Haha
coming back from exchange is always weird. Now we are just listening
to music and chillin, probably go to bed soon. We started a fast for
the "gator" we are concerned for. Hopefully all goes well!! I know the
Lord will help if we have faith and do our part and she does her part.

Thursday Oct 9th 2014

So really the only thing that is worth talking about today is a lesson
we had with a guy named Bill Smith, superrrr cool guy. Kinda younger,
married with a kid on the way. He was in the marines and his wife is a
less active member but he's not a member. The lesson was just realllly
good, we talked about a lot of stuff that he was interested in and
seemed super receptive!! He was asking questions about the
organization of the Church and apostles and stuff and I was really
into it and said a ton of stuff by the spirit that was crazy, it
really testified to me that teaching by the spirit is so much more
powerful than by our own words!! I truly hope he felt that way and
hope he wants to hear more!! Cause he is awesome, very nice. He let us
in without a question and we just took off from there!!
Today was a good day because of that lesson!! Bad thing was some pot
roast juice which another lady we talked to today gave us, leaked in
my shoulder bag :((( but it's all good, haha wasn't a big deal. Still
a very good day!!

Friday Oct 10th 2014

Today was a cool day, we woke up and I had my weekly conference call
with the President with all the new Elders and Sisters I came out
with. Them after that we decided to clean our apartment cause it was
looking somewhat messy, and now it looks super awesome and I did so,e
rearranging at it looks even better!! Haha we had some time waiting
for Brother Teller (non member) to pick us up and take us back to his
house to help Sister Teller (member) make some posters and stuff for
the annual Halloween party that another member puts on. Supposedly
very big! Haha She also makes us food which is always excellent!!
Great cook and always sends us home with something! But the posters
and eating took a big chunk out of our day. So when we were done we
eventually went to help a lesser active member named Michael Potts
move furniture into his house. He is suuuuper funny. Kinda crazy and
is obsessed with FBI, CIA, and Scuba Diving. I think he is somewhat
special needs but still obviously functional to have his own place and
such. He's an older guy, he thinks everything is Mormon. Mormon juice,
Mormon candles, Mormon tv!! Hahaha it's hilarious. Then after that we
went over to Amity to go over some recent member lessons and that
always take awhile cause she talks a lot about whatever. Kinda a
hippy!! Then after we came home and now I'm here typing this!!!
Looooong day, seemed very quick though. Not sure why it seemed that
way, but it was a cool day. A more relaxed day, not sure how I feel
about that. Haha

Saturday 11th 2014

Today we went to help a Lady named Lindsey move some furniture. Her
family has members and she knows about the church so we thought it was
a great opportunity to be able to do service for her and eventually
teach her and hopefully baptize her as well. She has a special needs
daughter and she is humbled from that and really nice. Her aunt was
there and told us she wanted us to work on Lindsey. Haha
After that we went to Historic downtown Fernandina (North Island) to
do our weekly planning because we were already in that area from
service. It's a really awesome place, lots of History, cool landmarks
and old fashioned looking places. Somewhere I would love to live
around and be near, harbor, tours, restaurants, shopping. It's just
awesome!! Haha but we just found a bench and planned for a while.
After that we ate at a popular place called Tasty's. Super good, real
hamburger, it's authentic and very good service and just feels like
old fashioned burger place. So after we ate we were on our way to
Amitys house and we saw some young black kids playing street ball so
we rode over and asked to play. Haha we played a game with them us two
verse them three. We would have creamed them but they restricted Elder
Jolley cause he was too tall. Haha we played with flat ball so that
was difficult! We placed a bet that if we won we could teach a lesson
to their family and if we lost we had to buy them a new basketball.
And we.... Lost. Haha it's difficult guarding three people! Haha so we
have to get them a basketball but it was a cool and fun experience
nonetheless. Then we went and talked to a religious crazy lady where
Jolley was getting super mad cause she wasn't understanding why we
need more doctrine, she thinks that the bible is the only way. It's
the Amy girl I talked about a while ago. She's crazy, then after that
we went to Amitys to give her daughter a blessing cause she was sick.
Then we talked for a little and had to bike home cause it was late.
But it was an all in all good day!! Lots of stuff happened! Haha the
key to missionary work is attitude. And sometimes I have a bad
attitude, and I know that's something I need to work on.

Sunday Oct 12th 2014

Today was a very simple day, woke up, got ready for church where I
finalized my talk on fasting, then we got picked up and went to
church. I really wasn't nervous at all. I guess that comes with being
a missionary, there is really nothing to fear in talking about
something you love. It was a piece of cake!! Haha I went over a little
but what else is new!! ;) haha everyone told me it was good, and so
I've learned to roll with that instead of thinking they are just being
nice. Haha cause maybe it was and it was just my self doubt which I
need to fix as well. Then we went to choir after church and it's
really fun!! Not just singing in melody but parts as well. I'm singing
as a tenner, whatever that means!! Haha but we are practicing Mary Did
You Know? Which is a really cool song!! Haha then we had a ward
council which is always good. Them we went home and planned some more.
We ate dinner and then went to see some investigators, we were only
able to talk to one person who has a baptismal date but then his mom
came home and we were talking to her and the spirit really was there.
It was amazing, as soon as her schedule frees up she is gonna come to
church because she's been looking but feels all the churches she goes
to is all about money! And ours isn't, it's like ooh ooh pick ours!!
Haha now we are home heating up chicken pot pies, and making candy
almonds! Haha  and that's the current time!! Haha

a tiny frog that somehow got into our apartment! :)

crazy comp!!!! Hahaha

 members house front porch and back (view from their dock)
amazing!!!! Their names are the Tellers.

Hola Everyone!

Week 5:

October 6, 2014

Hello world!!!

The beginning of this week was a little tougher, I have been
struggling with breaking out of my shell, but me and my companion had
a lengthly talk about it and it really helped. I have just been
feeling like the words I can say aren't good enough!! But every time I
have ever said anything the spirit was there stronger than ever and my
companion has said that! And I have noticed that throughout the week
so it has gotten a lot better and the work is moving forward and I'm
really happy about where I think things can go if I give myself fully
to the Lord.

So since my companion is the DL he has to go on exchanges and this
week I was left to take care of my area, and every lesson we had I
took the lead and taught it, so that was really good and boosted my
confidence in teaching lessons. So I really don't like putting if the
mission is tough or not cause that is depressing, but sometimes I feel
I need to or my letter won't be very long. And I got in trouble last

letter for a short letter!! Hahah

Biking around is the best!! I love biking and my bike is great and I
love biking along the beach and when I'm not by the beach I am in the
jungle!! Haha the Spanish moss is really cool and the humidity has not
been bad at allll!! It was actually colder today with like no
humidity! Like Cali!! Haha there has been a couple of storms but I've
only been in one storm biking. It was quite invigorating!! Haha but I
can't use my umbrella while I am biking and my poncho ripped so that
was of no use!! So eventually I will have to get a jacket of some kind
of rain protection.

I will send a picture of what my days are like, we plan them out and
anything that happens along that way aka the spirit. We add those in
the iPad later. Cause our iPad Is our area book. On pday we can do
lots, sports, sight seeing, shopping, cleaning. Lots, everything but
the beach. Haha sad day. Schedule routine is pretty much the same as
before. Up at 6:25, get ready, eat, study and training till 11 then
out the door. The rest is history!! Haha the food situation is
delish!!! I have gained roughly ten pounds!! Haha but there are no
signs yet. Haha if I keep eating so well it will start to show. Haha
this ward is seriously amazing, everyone in it is so willing and
helpful and great. Without willing members to help, missionaries jobs
would be a million times harder, so help them all you can, if you
don't have time... Make time and the Lord will bless you for your

So I think my emails are messed up cause I feel like I have already
sent an email about my schedule, but there it is again!! Haha I think
this one is probably better though!! Haha I will be adding a bunch
more pictures, so get ready for some emails. They come with 5 pictures
at a time. Haha and I have a short video of the storm. And I want mor
pictures guys, come on now, we have the technology, smart phones and
such, I like to save them on my iPad, if I can send some you can send
me some. And make sure these emails are getting to family. Unless they
are your personal ones!! Haha

I do know what I want though, I need a keyboard iPad cover cause
typing on this iPad will for sure give me carpool tunnel syndrome!!
Haha and then I could type longer emails cause I will be able to type
faster. Haha :) but that's for a later discussion, haha Christmas is
coming up!! ;) haha

Soo I had my first baptism on Sunday in between conference sessions,
and it was fantastic!!! Being a missionary really does open your eyes
to the importance and blessing of baptism. She is a wonderful lady and
she was so ready to take this step and her daughter is already excited
to get baptized... She is 6. Hahaha

I want to share with all of you at home the importance of bringing
people to church. If they have the desire and are interested in the
church but are struggling to make commitments and are unsure, do
EVERYTHING you can to get them to church, cause 1 out of every 2
people who come to the church and feel the spirit are baptized. And
they will feel the spirit, and that is powerful!! Church is essential
and baptism is even more essential, and if church leads to baptism,
then how important is church to non members!? IMPORTANT!!

That is my testimony to you and I testify that that is true, we are
all missionaries and we all must be courageous and not afraid to share
our faith, because this isn't our religion, it is our life!! I love
you all so very much!! Let me know if I missed anything! Haha


Elder Holt or as Siri calls me (captain) hahaha

3 of us in my district going to Jacksonville, one in the grey suit was my companion.

so this is the MTC, if you look at the buildings that look the
same, my building was in the middle row very left!! Haha


Food Desk!!! Haha

two of them going to Accra, Ghana

Our whole district, not including the sisters.

our teacher, brother Marsden. Awesome guy and teacher!

me and comp, last day at MTC.

Original copy of the Book of Mormon!!

Another Teacher and me and my comps mock investigator!

just a view! Haha

First arrived on my way to Fernandina Beach, just one of the
many bridges! Haha

My standard missionary on a bike picture!! Haha

A super cool dog at one of our investigators house named Sitka!

Our whole Zone... Find me!! :)
watching conference at a less actives!! (That talk was amazing)

beautiful beach that we can't walk on! Haha

quote I made from President Monsons talk.

typical week scheduled out.

first Baptism!! :))) her name is Amity, and her daughter Aria
and my companion!

Pday tennis like a boss!!!!

Week 4:

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

First Week out of the MTC

Week 3:

September 22, 2014

Well I will add pictures and descriptions on a second email, it works better that way!! 

A lot has happened since the time I was able to talk. I enjoyed my roommates very much they were all good. One was a little handful but it was okay, he just thought he knew everything and thought he had to be in charge. But it's okay. I really did enjoy my companion he was a goofball but when it came to teaching in the MTC he was serious so it was good. Elder Riley was his name, he's from Kuna Idaho. Funny guy, loves to sing and is very kind. He is big guy. Haha no general authorities in the MTC however the Tuesday we left someone was suppose to be there, so I just missed them. Sad day! But this Tuesday we are going down to Jacksonville because Brother Golden is coming to talk with us. 

I love Fernandina Beach, this place is absolutely beautiful and it really is an island, looks and weather. Noises as well! Lots of frogs, crickets, birds and such. I have not died from the humidity yet, but it hasn't been that bad yet. However the other day we biked through a storm and got soaked so it was bad. But according to my companion and trainer Elder Jolley, that was nothing compared to what he has seen. 

Well I want to tell you about the coolest experience that's happened to me so far. So we have been talking to a kid named Xavier and he is 21 and just got out of jail. He wasn't in for very long but while he was in there he needed a change and felt like God could help him. So yesterday while we were teaching him on the steps outside his apartment about the plan of salvation he was very interesting and seemed to understand all of it. And after me and Elder Jolley taught him I asked him to be baptized and he agreed!!!! And that's not the best part, so after that I said a closing prayer and after I said amen he said, "I swear every time you pray it's like God is talking directly to me, it's so weird!" It was such an amazing experience and it's something I will never forget!! The power of the Holy Ghost is real and it's powerful!! 

I'm looking forward to getting a package soon!! :) I would hope I get my shoes by oct 12 cause I give a talk in sacrament that day. Haha the ward I'm in is very small, including us Elders there was 5 of us. Haha but that just means there is more to do in the ward. Everyone is so nice and friendly and I am now in the ward choir! Haha I'm a tenner or however you spell it. Ohh and I will have the bike my whole mission so it needs to be nice enough to last but I don't want an expensive one!! 

Love, Elder Holt