Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Lots of Lessons!

Dear family,

I survived transfers. I am still in Livermore with Elder Trent. The only real change that will happen this transfer is a new apartment. I am glad for this. I like living with another companionship, but it can make it difficult to focus on the work. It also makes studying a little bit more distracting. I will be glad when we finally move. Rumor has it the new apartment is a sister's apartment. I'm not sure if that means granite counter tops, but I have heard from a reliable source that there is a fireplace.

This week has been busy with many lessons. We have some investigators that are really getting close to baptism. Unfortunately, they haven't accepted baptismal dates yet. This is something that I don't like at all. We are working very hard to change it. When these people do get baptized, it will happen fast. We are really hoping that General Conference will help these investigators prepare for baptism.

As always, the week also had its trouble. We had some investigators drop us because of family situations. It is always a tough situation when the family is in opposition to the missionaries. There isn't a whole lot we can do. One of these investigators even told us that he wanted to get baptized, however, his wife was opposed to the idea. It isn't anything too new. It just means we need to get out there and find the people that are ready to receive us. They are out there. It will take faith to find them, but we can do it.

Also, this is a note to all cousins. I have sent cards this last week. They should be arriving tomorrow or the next day. Please notice that I said I would pay any dentist bills for cavities for Halloween. Please take note that this was a typographical error. The cards should read that Uncle David (Ely) will pay for all dental bills incurred through an excess intake of sucrose within the weeks leading and following Halloween.

Also, to Lizzy... (For Lizzy's eyes only ;)


Elder Christopher Badger

Monday, September 20, 2010


Hola familia,

I am doing well in Livermore. Things are continuing to improve. We have been teaching many lessons and really seeking to get the branch involved heavily with the missionary work. We know that all of the hard work will pay off soon.

This last week we had a mission conference with Elder Golden. It was very interesting. He is the type of person that can expound on four verses of scriptures for three hours. He did just that. It was very interesting. I felt like a learned a lot. I can't imagine how somebody can be that smart. I was amazed by the deftness with which he completely pulled apart a scripture, dissected it, then put it back together into one cohesive thought. Being from South Africa, he frequently used words like "cheeky" and "Balderdash." Needless to say, we were all entertained as well.

Much of his focus was on the choices we made that put us here at this time in this place. It really made me appreciate just how special everybody is. Even though we get frustrated with ourselves, other missionaries, and investigators, we must remember that they are our brothers and sisters.

Everything else is going well for us. We have had to teach some pretty tough lessons. Namely, the Law of Chastity. It's a hard lesson to teach when you know somebody has a problem with it. Luckily, I was on exchange with my district leader, who speaks Spanish, he helped out immensely. Also, the member we brought was able to offer a wonderful testimony about how he had been blessed through his marriage. Fortunately, our investigator didn't drop us and is praying about the commandment. The next obstacle we have is helping her accept baptism. It is much harder to teach the Law of Chastity before somebody accepts baptisms. I am saying a lot of prayers for her right now.

I have begun to receive letters from friends at BYU who were away for the summer. I can't believe BYU is stinking it up so bad. What happened? Anyway, I can worry about that in two years. It is nice to hear from old friends. As I grow older, the world shrinks. I keep running into missionaries that know mutual friends. For example, my zone leader saw a wedding announcement I received from an old roommate. The roommate married someone from his freshman ward. I guess the BYU bubble spreads to San Jose as well.

I am glad to hear that all is well in Lakewood.


Elder Badger

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Oh... it's fun to find all the time... especially from 6 to 9

Dear Family,

I am glad to hear that all is well. I have heard the news. BYU lost to Air Force. Que Paso. I can't believe it. Air Force!!!! GAG

Ok, I'm done.

Life is going well for me here in Livermore. The area continues to improve. We still don't have anyone lined up for baptism, but we are working really hard to find someone. It's been a little while since I have been without someone progressing towards baptism. Planning priorities change a lot when you have someone who is scheduled to be baptized. Hopefully we will find someone soon. Needless to say, the majority of our efforts are scheduled on finding. We end up contacting a lot of English speakers. Last week alone, our English referrals led to three new investigators for the sisters in the English ward. I'm glad that the hard work is yielding some fruit. I'm hoping that we find some prepared Spanish speakers. We found four new investigators last week, which is very good. Unfortunately, none accepted baptismal dates. I know that there are people out there who are ready to be baptized within the month of October. We will find them.

I finally received some mail from my friends. Tell Thaddeus thank you. I will write him soon. And Matt, tell that bum to get on it. I have yet to hear from him. Anyway, it's nice to know that everyone is doing well. I have another e mail out there with some requested addresses. I realize I haven't been as diligent on my letter writing as I should have been.

Yesterday we had stake conference with Elder Golden of the Seventy. Luckily, he didn't tour our apartment. It was a very interesting conference. He talked about some pretty deep scriptural stuff. It would have been deep in a BYU religion class. I liked it. It was a little tough for some of our investigators to follow. I could tell that the translators struggled too. All in all, it was a good conference. We have a mission conference with him on Tuesday. I'm excited. These conference are always good places to receive ideas about how to be better missionaries.


Elder Badger

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

¿Where are we?


Greetings from Livermore. I must begin by telling you something. This week we took a wrong turn while looking for a former investigator from our area book. We learned the hard way that we need to bring a map. Our wrong turn took us through a neighborhood that reminded me of DuPont. When we exited, we found ourselves surrounded by vineyards. It went from suburban to rural within a block. After pedalling about a mile we found ourselves back in downtown Livermore. It's very weird to be so close to the country.

The work here is continuing to progress. We spend the majority of our time finding. The mission has set a goal of 85 baptisms in October. We can do it. We really want to contribute to this number, but will have to work very hard to do so. In August we broke a mission record with the number of baptisms. It's very rewarding to know that we are pushing the mission to a new standard.

This upcoming week we have stake conference with Elder Golden of the quorum of the seventy. He will also be touring the mission and holding two zone conferences, one with each half of the mission. We are a little intimidated because we hear that he wants to tour some apartments. We spent the majority of our preparation day cleaning and making sure that everything was ready. We have a feeling that he might be visiting our apartment since we live in the stake having stake conference. Say a little prayer.

Once again, the work is progressing. We are beginning a new finding technique as a mission that utilizes the Book of Mormon as referral source from members. It has been immensely successful in the San Diego mission. We hope to put it to good use here. I know that we will see success from it. The Book of Mormon is the most powerful tool we have as missionaries. Almost every concern that we encounter can somehow be tied back to a lack of testimony about the Book of Mormon. Sometimes we have to help our investigators realize that they have a testimony by teaching about the Book of Mormon. It really is the most correct book on this earth.


Elder Badger