Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Six months gone in a blink!

Hola familia,
I can't believe that I hit my six month mark this week. I can't be in the middle portion of my mission. They say that the middle year is the best year. I hope that's true because the first six months have been better than I would have expected. I have loved every minute since arriving in Redwood City. I have even better news you won't believe how good it is. I would make you wait until next week to read it, but I just can't contain myself...... Drum roll. Ok, the big news is.............................Mexico lost! I know I shouldn't be excited, but it will do wonders for the work. The only thing better than Mexico losing will be when the whole World Cup is over on the eleventh of July. Please don't misunderstand me, soccer is a wonderful sport and Mexico is a team made up of find children of God, but soccer isn't conducive to missionary work. I don't know how Dad survived in Spain when they hosted the World Cup. The first six months of my mission have been more than I would have ever expected.
I also can't believe that I am rounding my two year mark since I was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma. It's been an interesting two years. It's amazing to contrast the feelings from when I found out I had Hodgkin's to the feeling I've had in the first area of my mission. Baptisms have really proved to be one of the best experiences of my life. We are excited by the continued work. We continue to find new people and have another man set for July. He is really solid and began coming to church even before we started teaching him. With any luck, July and August should be a repeat of May. Each interview, President asks me how I like the area. My response is always a fervent "I love it." Unfortunately, things can't stay the same forever.
Elder Tidwell and I have a feeling that next Monday (transfers) will bring change. I have a feeling he will be a Zone Leader in San Jose to finish his mission. This means I'll get a new companion and will have what we refer to as your "breaker." I'll adapt. It will be good for me to see other ways to work; although we've enjoyed every minute of our time together in Redwood City. I'm pretty sure that I'll be here until late August when they bring in sisters. This will put me at a total of four transfers in Redwood City which tends to be the average for an area. Usually if you are doing well and working hard President will leave you relatively unchanged. The only reason he tends to change things around is to help spread the good work around. Tell everyone I love them and wish that I could be at the family reunion. You'll just have to have another one in two years when I'm back.
Elder Badger

Monday, June 14, 2010



Once again, we have had a great week in Redwood City. It has been well into the 90's and hot. The work has been about the same. This week we've really been concentrating on contacting everyone. We're running out of supplies from all the contacting we've been doing. As the week has progressed, we've gotten bolder and bolder. One of the things I have begun to apply in my street contacting is extending the baptismal invitation on the street. Amazingly, it's not a bad contacting technique. It's yielded a few appointments and some church attendance. Five months ago, I would have never tried to invite somebody to be baptized after meeting them thirty seconds before. I realized that once I began trying this, a lot of the fear I have had about talking to people on the street has evaporated. I try to talk to everyone. As I get better at talking to people I begin to notice little clues that help to strike up conversation. Things like soccer jerseys, mops on balconies, imagen, and all sorts of things have made it a lot easier to identify clues about everything from religion, work, kids, and school.

At times these clues have been deceptive. One mistake I made this week was contacting a Filipino man in Spanish. He was wearing a jersey from a Mexican soccer team and looked like he was rushing home to watch the world cup. Turns out he spoke Tagalog and a little English, but absolutely no Spanish. My greeting was lost on him. Anyway, we still contacted him in English and referred him onto the English elders.

Speaking of the World Cup, we're a little afraid what that will do to our work. Already, we find people sitting in their front yards with their TVs watching the latest game from their team. It may make this week very hard because we'll be contending with the largest religion in Latin America, outside of Catholocism, futbol!

With our added emphasis on contacting, we've still managed to baptize this week. Gloria Castro was baptized on Saturday. It was a very nice service. Our recent convert Dina shared her testimony and we had several members comment that the spirit was strong. Gloria had been preparing for along time. She began attending church back in March when we first arrived in the area and hasn't missed a week since. She loves the emphasis that the church puts on the family. She also likes that she can really feel the spirit without any excessive show ore pretenses.

I hope all is well back home.


Christopher Badger

Monday, June 7, 2010

Voy a ganar!

Hola mi familia,

Once again, greeting from Redwood City. We have enjoyed another wonderful week filled with future stories.

My favorite story of this week is in regards to our recent convert Dina. This week Dina gave one of the simplest, but most heartfelt testimonies I have heard since starting my mission. Her testimony was centered on the promises contained in the Book of Mormon. She talked about how she knew that Joseph Smith was a prophet because she had read and prayed about the Book of Mormon. It was so powerful we have asked her to share her testimony at next weeks baptism.

We were also pleased to see the ward thank her for her sweet testimony after the meeting. They were touched as well. We were glad because it resulted in referrals after church. Many ward members have recently been very eager to introduce us to their good friends. It has helped bless some of the the other elders as well because many of these referrals happen to be in their areas, so we get the opportunity of passing them on.

I have been healthy and doing well. A few elders in our Zone have been hit with a small bug. Fortunately, we've been spared from any illness.

Also, this week Elder Tidwell and I have made a competition between us to try to talk to more people. We keep a simple tally each day. The loser has to share the spiritual thought at the next dinner appointment. If there is no dinner appointment, the loser is required to make all of the phone calls the following day. We find that we try especially hard on the days when it would involve phone calls. (Phone calls are not our favorite thing).

I hope all is well back home. I hope Grandpa is feeling a little better. I have a CT scan today and a doctors appointment at the end of the month.

Hasta Luego,

Elder Christopher Badger

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

85 Degrees and Hot!

Hola family,

Once again, we have had a pretty good week. For the first half of last week we had to host another companionship of elder's in our apartment. We have one of the larger apartments, but still found it quite crowded. Fortunately, they left a few days ago and are now in their own place. It is nice to have the place back to ourselves this makes it much easier to practice our Spanish and prepare for lessons in our own space. It also makes it easier to keep clean.

I'm sorry to hear that Grandpa isn't feeling well. I hope he's feeling better. One thing I also learned this week is that there is a Dr. Badger in the Menlo Park Stake. I was a little dissapointed to learn that I won't be the first.

I also learned through exchanges, that no one can tell the story of Joshua having to fit in the shoes of Moses like Steve Young. We heard him talk about how he had to fill Joe Montana's shoes. It was probably one of the best sunday school lessons I've been in.

I'm sorry, but I don't have a lot of news for this week. Elder Tidwell turned twenty-one yesterday and we celebrated with a rousing game of Monopoly City. I happened to win. After four hours of playing I decided not to make any missionaries cry so we put away the game and finished Preparation Day. No baptisms this week, but we should have one on June 12, 2010. I hope all is well.


Elder Badger