Monday, July 26, 2010

Baptismal Delight!!!


Once again, I greet you from wonderful Redwood City, "Climates Best By Government Test." Now you know the cheesy motto that I see every time I drive through downtown. I see it everywhere. They have arches that make it impossible to forget. I still wonder who determines what the best weather is. Call me a little bit of a cynic or maybe just conservative, but I'm not sure I trust the government to determine the best weather. I'll leave it at this, the weather here is good.

Even better than sunshine is baptisms. This weekend we had the baptism of Adonay Luna. It was amazing to hear him talk to us after his confirmation. He told us that now his life is different; he has the help of the Holy Ghost. I'm glad he gets how important the Baptism and Confirmation really are. It was really nice to see the baptistry of the Menlo Park Stake Center full with members ready to greet him as a new member of the ward. I really have been spoiled in my first area with a ward that is eager to help. We rarely have problems getting members to appointments or getting them to give talks at baptisms. We have begun to use some of our recent converts in some of these roles as well. It's very nice to hear them share their simple, yet powerful testimonies as they progress as recent converts. The progress they make in a few short weeks is remarkable. It increases exponentially once they receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost.

I'm glad to hear that things continue to go well at home. Kate, please be aware that I prepared a discourse of why you need a car this year at BYU. It is in the mail and should arrive "muy pronto." My favorite reason is so that it means that it would be my turn to have a car in about 17 months. I tease. I still have a long time to go. Do whatever you want as long as you make sure to contact Matt and Thaddeus and tell them what bums they are. I haven't received so much as a postcard from those guys. For all I know Thaddeus could have grown a beard and is under deep cover in Afghanistan. Matt could have.... well...heaven knows what Matt could have done. I think I'll just wait for him to tell me. It's probably better that I not guess.

Love you all,

Elder Christopher Badger

P.S. Please tell people that letters are greatly appreciated. I still have about six inches left in my shoebox of letters. I've got to fill it up before I get transferred.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

We Have A Go!!!

Hello once again,

Things are bright and sunny in the San Jose California mission. We've been working hard, teaching lessons, and preparing for a baptism. I love weeks like this. They tend to be the busiest. I don't know how we're going to have time to eat dinner this week. I think we'll just have to get it to go. I don't really mind. I will do just about anything to make sure a baptism goes down smoothly. These are some of the best weeks in the lives of missionaries.

The man getting baptized this week is Adonay Luna. He was a referral from the English elders. He's from El Salvador and drives a truck for some construction companies. (Side note: construction is a good job for our investigators, it means they usually don't have to work Sundays). He remembers taking the missionary lessons as a child in El Salvador. His family never did get baptized, but jumped at the chance to bring the Spirit that he remembers from when he met with the missionaries years ago.

It's amazing to hear his understanding of the Gospel. All we have to do is teach for a minute or so, ask a good question and let him go. We find that we end up learning more from him then we could ever teach. It's as if someone is feeding him conference talks.

I've hear that there is some inner tubing going on back home. I'm a little jealous. Then again, I am doing better things. I'm sorry this letter is short.


Elder Badger

Monday, July 12, 2010

I don't speak that Language!

Hola familia,

Once again, the work progresses here in Redwood City. Things have been a little bit of an adjustment since getting my new companion. It's amazing how much I got used to leaning on Elder Tidwell's Spanish to fill the gaps. I realize I still have a long way to go. Luckily, my understanding is very good. I'm just waiting for my mouth to catch up. I can translate from Spanish to English comfortably, but thinking completely in Spanish has yet to come. I guess it probably won't come completely, due to the fact that we use English a lot.

Right now we are teaching men. This is a nice change. It will be nice to baptize some prospective priesthood holders into the ward. Every ward can use more priesthood. Each investigator has very unique challenges that make teaching different in each situation. For example, we're teaching a man named Abel who lost his eyesight in a construction accident. We spend a lot of time stopping by and reading the scriptures with him so that he can gain a testimony of the Book of Mormon. He has such strong faith. We taught him the Law of Chastity and asked him if he wants to get married to his girlfriend of three years. He said "Of course, if God says so, I need to do it." We then asked him if his girlfriend wanted to marry him, his response was, "I sure hope so." I can't wait for his baptism.

Also, we are beginning to teach a man named Moclovio. He is deaf but knows ASL and reads Spanish lips. With the help of the ASL Elders we hope to be able to teach him. It makes things very interesting because there are a lot of languages flying around the room as we teach. Sometimes I get confused and forget which language I'm speaking. I also find I make things worse by trying to talk with my hands. It doesn't help the situation.

To top it off. We're teaching a man that broke his leg playing soccer. There you have it. Blind, Deaf, and Lame. We got it. All are wonderful people and have already begun to see the changes that come through the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Love you all,

Elder Christopher Badger

Tuesday, July 6, 2010


Hola familia,

Once again I write you from sunny California. I'm doing well. Happy, healthy, and ... I can't think of any more H words. Anyway, here's the big news. I survived transfers. I'm still in Redwood City. Elder Tidwell went to Marina with a companion from my group. I have a new companion that came in a transfer after me. His name is Elder Metcalf, he's from Draper and seems like a pretty nice guy. I have learned to avoid transfer meetings like the plague. Unfortunately, the odds are I will probably go to next transfer meeting and get a new area.

The work has been progressing well. Elder Tidwell and I began teaching a man on Friday. He had an accident working in construction and lost his eyesight. He accepted a baptismal date on the spot and was very excited at church. He should be baptized on August 7th. The cool part is the fact that he wants us to teach his family. This would be the first complete family I've taught. It's also very good that he accepted the date first. Usually when the head of household is baptized, the family follows. The rest of our investigators are progressing very well and we are set to have quite a few baptisms in August. August should be right now three are very solid while one is kind of up in the air.

I realized how different it is to have a different companion after four and a half months with Elder Tidwell. Last night I completely forgot how to speak Spanish for about ten seconds, even worse, when I remembered how I had forgotten the lesson we were on and almost taught a principle from lesson 5. I guess it was funny at the time, but I'm sure Elder Metcalf must have though "This is going to be my companion." I guess I just need to relax, when I get nervous I forget everything I have learned.

I'm really trying to relax after yesterday. With all of the hype that gets added to transfers it really can make one tense. This morning is much better. I can feel myself beginning to settle into the routine of missionary work. I'm sure I will still have to make adjustments, but the biggest one is out of the way.

I'm glad that the family reunion went well. It sounds like the tardiness was perfectly in line with some of the meetings in the Spanish program. Sacrament meeting can be pretty empty when the world cup is on.

Les Quiero mucho y espero que esten bien. Disfruten su semana.

Con Amor,

Elder Badger