Monday, April 11, 2011

Email from 4/11/11

Hello Family!

So, how good is Delaney at the violin, anyways? It sounds like she's pretty much a master violinist - I'm pretty excited to hear her play after all the hype she gets. Apparently she's a master scholar, too. Way to go on the 34! Peyton also plays the violin, right? (Note: Delaney received a "Maestro Award" for Outstanding Soloist at her Orchestra Festival in Seattle last weekend, and got a 34 on her ACT test)

Congratulations to Cody on surviving week two of swim practice - sorry you get beat by little girls all the time, though. That's always tough on your pride. I remember when little girls could beat me at swimming, too - it was frustrating. Don't worry - after a couple more weeks the little girls won't be able to beat you any more. Keep working on the six pack - I expect it to be rock solid by the time I get home.

With regards to the Hanny family, it was just the husband and wife that went through the temple a couple weeks ago. The children are in the UK, but they are active members of the church as well. Bro. Hanny recently made a trip back to England and had the sacrament passed to him by his grandson!

I haven't followed up too much about Robbie, Esther, and Yazmeyne since their confirmations, but I know Robbie spoke in Sacrament meeting a couple weeks ago.

Yes we did attend the commemoration of the temple dedication. It was amazing and inspiring - the holders of all the keys that were restored in the temple were present and spoke. It was really cool that the Community of Christ allowed the picture to be taken in the temple - that's a really rare occurence.

I think there are 159 young missionaries in the mission right now. It's hard to keep track - we just sent two more elders home this weeek and we're getting a Sister from Temple Square to serve in our mission for two transfers this week. The numbers are always changing.

Yes, I have seen the John Tanner story video - it's really touching and powerful.

The work is coming along pretty well - we've stopped teaching a couple of our invesigators, but the ones we are still teaching are pretty solid. We've had a lot of finding opportunities this week, and we anticipate starting to teach a couple of new investigators in the coming few days. Our next baptism isn't scheduled until June 24th, but we are hoping that Bro. Schroth will be ready pretty soon as well. We are having some success reactivating people as well, but we worry about how much effort we have to put into some of the families that we are teachng to help keep them active and wonder if they will keep coming if the focus is taken off of them.

No, I will not likely remain an AP for the rest of my mission. I anticipate that I will be released at the end of this transfer. So probably in 3 weeks or so we will be in a triple-up with the next assistant, who will be Elder Hunt's companion.

I tried to think of some cool "small things" experiences from this week, like you asked for. I thought back on what a great week this was, but nothing particular seemed very impressive. I kind of realized that the things that are really cool and impressive and powerful for me, probably wouldn't sound that interesting in an email. The type of things that happened this week are like "we were teaching and testifying to an investigator, and the Spirit bore witness of the truth!" - it doesn't sound that cool, but it is amazing to be there in the moment. I don't know if that made sense at all. Sorry if it didn't.

Elder Matthew Smith