Monday, February 2, 2015

Week 100

Well, this is it! My last P-Day. I don't really know where to start, but I guess the best place to start would be with a funny little adventure yesterday. We went to go visit an investigator named Roberto. Roberto has this really rambunctious but super cute border collie mix with something else dog. Well when we opened his gate the dog went out. Or flew out was the better word, and by the time we got to the car Pancho (the dog AKA Fransisco) was already down the street and so we got in the car and we each said a little prayer in our hearts. My prayer was "Please let us get this dog and that it doesn't get hit by a car." Well about half a mile later we caught up to it and opened up the car door and Pancho was really really really excited for a car ride. He got in shotgun and Elder Beeston moved to the backseat. Of course on the way back everyone and their neighbor was outside and I can only imagine based on their puzzled expression what they were thinking seeing a missionary driving a truck and a dog sticking his out of the passenger side window. Well we got Pancho back, our investigator wasn't there, and since we didn't have a way to vacuum our car we lint rolled the heck out of it. 

This last week we also had a half-mission conference in Santa Rosa. Elder Brent H. Nielson of the 70 came and spoke to us. It was really awesome, he and his wife were amazing speakers! I learned a lot. President Alba spoke to us about living after the manner of happiness and it was full of good stuff and advice for being at home. As far as Elder Nielson goes I can give you guys the neety greety later, but his two best quotes were "Raise your hands if while you're out in people's homes you've found anything better than the church. That's right, because there isn't." And "If you don't have any trials, the plan of salvation isn't working in your life." All in all it was a really cool experience and I got to see a ton of friends like Elders Fonseca, Smith, Dunlap, Sabin, and AP Wright! By the way, President and Elder Wright are going to be there for the sealing. 

Finishing my mission in a 7 week transfer is like peeling off a band-aid slowly. But I'm going to end with no regrets and make sure that this area is getting left better than I found it, and I feel like that's where it is right now.

My mission has meant a lot to me. I can't believe it's over, I feel like just the other week I was writing you guys my very first email from the MTC. Even though it feels short, when I look back at who I was then compared to who I am now it's changed me a lot. Of course I still like punk rock and Pokemon and superheroes and Star Wars, but I have my priorities straight. As sad as it will be to stop being a missionary I'm excited to put into practice all the things I've learned and to see you guys again. I'll always remember the amazing miracles like the baptisms of Lupe, the Diaz family, and Grace. I'll also remember all of the challenging companions and struggles and how they helped me grow. There will always be a special place in my heart for companions like Elder Wright, Elder Lopez, and Elder Hansen. My first day in the MTC I don't think I had the hope that I could ever speak Spanish. So many of the people that have influenced not only my mission but how I want to live the rest of my life were people who didn't speak any English. I'll miss Vallejo and the members that taught me so much, Crescent City with a Brother Tinsley and all of the investigators and success that we saw. 

I'm really excited for the sealing of the Diaz family! I can't express in words how much that family means to me and the love I feel for them. They really are just like family. I'm excited for you guys to meet them, and they are really excited to meet you! If for nothing else (and there is a lot else) I'm glad that I came on a mission to help the Diaz family get baptized. I really do love them with all my heart. Keep them in your prayers as they finish their preparation to enter into the temple. I can't wait for their sealing. I'm excited to see you guys, but I'm just as excited to come back and see them take the next step. They are life-long friends.

Just like Alma "... did rejoice exceedingly to see his brethren; and what added more to his joy, they were still his brethren in the Lord", I'm going to be really happy to see you guys. See you next week! 

Elder Foster

Week 98

So this is Steve's dog Jesse. She is the stupidest dog that I have
ever seen. I hope you like the video, and just know that Kit is a way
better dog!

(The video did not transfer--short email this week.)

Week 99

Well this week we did Mission Possible, which was contact 20 people
every single day for the whole week. Easy-peesy, except for the fact
that we're in Clearlake. But it's cool, the whole zone did it and it
was way fun.

I went on exchanges with Elder Cowley this last week and we had the
funnest exchange of all time. I mean I've had some fun exchanges, but
we just joked around and it was the most fun I've had in a long time!

So while we were tracting we found a 90 year old black lady and we
raked her leaves! It was really cool. She was just chilling and
drinking lemonade and telling us funny stories about her life.

We also finally taught Yessica and her friend was there Angelina and
we taught them the restoration and they said that they would be
baptized! So just pray that they will come to church!

So Mosiah 3-5 is cool.

Sorry this email stinks. I'll tell you guys all the cool stories when
I get home! Love you guys!


Sunday, January 11, 2015

Week 97

Hey family! So this has been a wild and crazy week. I don't really know where to start, so I guess we'll get the big story out of the way.

It was early Saturday morning, around 1:33AM when I wake up to THUD THUD THUD THUD THUD THUD THUD "OPEN THE DOOR!" There were a few more seconds of silence, I thought I might have been dreaming until I heard THUD THUD THUD THUD THUD THUD THUD "WE CAN SEE YOU THROUGH THE BACK WINDOW, WE KNOW YOU'RE IN THERE, OPEN UP OR WE ARE BREAKING THE DOOR DOWN!" So at this point I'm thinking "feeeeeeetch" because there were two things that were sure- there was more than one person outside and we were going to have to put up a fight Clint Eastwood style. and I wake up Elder Rasch and I tell him "there are people outside trying to get in!" So then we wake everybody up, Elder Rasch grabs his lacrosse stick, I grab my knife, and Elder Whitaker grabs a dumbbell with no weight on it while we put Elder B and Elder K in the bathroom because, let's face it, they can't fight. So we are crouched down, I grab the phone and dial 911. I tell them the situation and the address, and their response is "you should probably open the door, it's the clearlake police." So then we were like what the heck? And so it was actually cops and they had a K-9 unit and they were trying to get into the upstairs apartment but since they were knocking on the door with a baton it sounded like they were knocking on our door. Anyway, we didn't have to crack any skulls, but I think I've played enough Legend of Zelda and Morrowind to know how to knife fight. Anyway, I couldn't sleep because of the adrenaline pumping. 

We also picked up a new investigator and then dropped him a few days later. Basically what it came down to for him was that "There is only one Cheese! There is lots of churches, but there is only one cheese!" He was trying to say Jesus, but he was just too Mexican. 

So there was another cool story! On New Years Eve we were out proselyting and we had so,e formers named Yessica and Paulina with absolutely no information  about them, so it was the last house we decided to try for the day. We knocked on the door and this old Hispanic lady answered and so we asked for the names and she was like "niƱas, les hablan" and so this teenage Hispanic girl comes to the door and so then we had to have that whole awkward "oh well we promise we weren't trying to find the teenage girls to enter into polygamous relationships, but anyway we are servants of Jesus Christ..." So they let us in to say a prayer with the family, we left a house blessing and the adults told us they were Jehovah's Witnesses and they weren't interested, and we had to head to dinner but then one of the daughters, the older teenage one, said "wait, I'm actually interested." And so basically it turns out that she hates her parent's religion and knows a few Mormons from her school, and it was super duper cool and we are going back Tuesday to teach her!! Pray for Yessica and Paulina!

Well that was the week. Love you guys!


Week 96

There is a Flight of the Conchords song with the line "No I am not a large water dwelling mammal where did you get that preposterous hypothesis did Steve tell you that perchance? Grrr.... Steve...." Well there is a member here named Steve. He is a little... Fried. And he believes  EVERYTHING on Scifi and History Channel about aliens. And so at dinner last Monday he started to show us this show called Ancient Aliens. Of course we told him "Steve! We can't watch TV!" But he wouldn't let us not watch it, he was all "Just wait! I have a question!" And so he fast forwards to this part of the show and the first words we hear are "our next encounter takes us to Palmyra, New York..." And it was then that I knew that we were in for a wild ride. Well they went on to talk about how Moroni was actually an alien from the Pletus Star Cluster. So first off, on the show they didn't even like question the fact that Joseph Smith had seen am angel, that was totally the believable part, they just wanted to know where he angel was from. We need to find some investigators like that! Well the point is, now we say "No, Moroni was not an angel from the Pletus Star Cluster,me here did you get that preposterous hypothesis, did Steve tell you that perchance? Grrr.... Steve...."

On that note, this week was really fun! I'll give you guys the details about Christmas. On Christmas Eve we went caroling in Middletown (we = Elder Whitaker, Beeston, Rasch, Kay, and I and Sister Clawson and Burgess) and it was a lot of fun! We ate with the Kings and just relaxed. 

Christmas was awesome, too! Thanks for the scriptures, they are way cool. I used some of Grandpa's gift card to buy a case for them. And you guys know me too well, Fig Newtons, Oreos, fake Samoas and protein bars? It was a good Christmas. Talking to you guys made me excited to go home! We were able to carol in a rest home, and then we helped out with a dinner at a Methodist church. After that we went to the Jessips for dinner and oh my goodness it was so good! Sweet potatoes with pineapples and marshmallows, green bean casserole, deep fried turkey, ham, jello salad, rolls, and then on top of all of that they gave us each a box of homemade and decorated cookies! They are the greatest family of all time. 

We also picked up a new investigator Tony and Elder Beeston taught him on the doorstep! He was flustered, after we taught him he said "I didn't know what to do! No one ever wants to listen to us!"

And the Mendoza family came to church!

Well love you guys! 


Week 95

So this week has been super crazy. So it started off with driving to
Santa Rosa with Elder Wright, Herrmann, and Ford. It was fun going with the newly called AP Wright. And then I had the super duper best 2 day sleepover of all time with my best friend Elder Spanish Smith! It was the best being in Santa Rosa. It's the promised land. On Wednesday we had a sweet time at the Christmas party. I got to see all of my best friends, Hermana Fernandeth, Elder Sabin, Hastings, Mortenson, Mallory, Contla, Fonseca, Teran, Stuart. It was just way fun, they're
the best ever.

Week 94

The 5 week transfer is finished! Now we are in week 1 of a 7 week transfer, my last transfer in the field. As far as transfers goes, the biggest news is that Elder Wright is going AP! That's right, I raise my boys right! Anyway, I'm super proud of him and he's going to be the studliest AP. Here's a picture of me and him at the temple this last Wednesday

Elder Ford and Elder Herrmann are going home. Elder Rasch and Elder Kay are staying the same. I will be getting two new companions- Elder Whitaker who is the only Spanish Elder from my generation and I will be training. President Alba wants us both to be district leader, but I'm going to ask him if I can just focus on training since I'm the assigned trainer and then Elder Whitaker can be the DL. Being in a trio sucks, but just one more transfer. 

I don't know if you guys have been watching the weather, but it rained really really hard up here and the city of Clearlake flooded. So we filled up a couple hundred sandbags in the pouring rain, filled up people's cars with them, and we took about 30 for us to help out some less actives (Alma Hernandez, one of the Spanish less actives that we helped came to church!). 

Pretty much every street looked like this. Thank goodness for trucks! There was actually a lot of home damage to a lot of people... Pretty much everyone flooded so it was sad but it was cool to see the ward band together. 

On Wednesday we went to the temple. It was really cool, my last temple trip of the mission! Afterwards we went to Applebee's in Napa. The lady that seated us asked where we were all from and it turns out that she is from Orem! We had a different waitress, but while we were waiting for our food the girl from Orem came up and told us she was a member but her husband wasn't and she didn't know where to go in Napa for church and she wanted her husband to listen to the missionaries! So we gave her a card and the address of the church and the Napa 1st Ward elders.

We also made delicious hamburgers, steak, and sausage. Check it out.

Propane. Taste the meat and not the heat.

This week has been good, but because of the flooding and all the rain on a daily basis it has been hard to visit investigators, but this next week should be awesome. Love you!

Elder Foster