Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Happy Christmas

Hello Friends and Family, 

I know this email is coming a tad later today, and that is due to the fact that I have been puking my guts out since 5am this morning. It has been pretty rough, I'd give you more details but they aren't super pleasant. 

This past week has been filled with so much stuff. Last P-Day I met a crazy guy at Fred Meyer while trying to buy groceries who was telling me about how he can talk to animals and he cooked breakfast for a group of deer once. He also said that one time in the woods he had a swarm of bees come and make a beard on his face. I asked him what he did for a living and he said he was a mushroom picker, things started to make more sense then. 

On Wednesday the mission had a Christmas Gathering in Yakima with all of the southern zones in the mission. The house was HUGE and the food was so good and it was great to see other missionaries again, especially my MTC companion Elder Nelson. Each zone put on a skit and we all watched Meet the Mormons and then they passed out t-shirts and mail to everyone. It wasn't the same as spending Christmas at home, but it was nice to spend a day with the mission family. 

Thursday we got a TON of snow. I'd guess at least a foot. Coming from Texas, it was pretty cool to see. Elder Brassanini and I spent the whole day shoveling snow for people in town. It was a day filled with hard work, but a fun type of hard work. 

On Saturday we had Paola's baptism, which was such a cool experience. She was so excited and looking forward to it, and she really wanted her Mom to be there to support her. Her Mom had been supportive in the beginning and was planning on attending, when at the last minute she backed out and told Paola that she didn't think it was necessary and wasn't going to be there. Paola broke down and was devastated. Her Mom means so much to her and really wanted her support. Paola looked at us and told us that she still knew that it was the right thing to do and was the right path to take. Her faith in the face of adversity was a great example to me, and reminded me greatly of one of my favorite scriptures: Helaman 5:12

*In the voice of Ron Weasley* Happy Christmas, everyone. 

Mi amor por ustedes es mas grande de la luna. 

Con Mucho Amor, 

Elder King

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

The Best Burger I've Ever Had

Friends and Family, 

As you can read by the subject of this weeks email, I must tell you all of the marvelous experience I had this past week. My new trainer and I had a meeting Tuesday in Yakima, and the member who drove us up decided to take us out to lunch afterwards. In Yakima, there is a burger place known as Miner's. I've heard things about it and it's always kind of been this fantasy mystery land that missionaries talk about here and there. It's almost a missionary folk tale here in Yakima. And let me tell you, it lives up to the legend. 

This burger was incredible, and I'm talking truly incredible. I can honestly say, as a missionary, that this burger is a little piece of heaven on earth. I just needed to tell all you people about the greatness that is Miner's. Just like that one episode in Spongebob when someone jumps up on the table and starts singing about a Krabby Patty, that was me after eating the burger at Miner's. 

In other news, this past weekend was Stake Conference. To my recollection, I don't think I've ever attended a Stake Conference that didn't experience technical difficulties. The sound system at the Stake Center wasn't working, so everyone in the stake that could possibly fit tried to cram themselves into the Chapel and the gym to hear the speakers. Despite all of the chaos going on, it was still a great conference. 

On Saturday I got to see Gary's baptism. Gary is this man that Elder Wilson and I found knocking doors a couple weeks ago and talked with him for a little, and referred him over to the english missionaries. He is such an awesome guy, and it was really cool to see the fruits of our labor. Our investigator Paola was there, and had such a great time. She kept talking about how beautiful it was and is planning on being baptized this Saturday! She is so excited and eager to come one step closer to her Savior. There have been so many miracles that I've experience while teaching her. She is so awesome. 

Two of my students in my English class received their first graduation certificate for attending for 6 weeks! They are learning so much and it's so much fun to work with them as I help them learn English. The biggest struggle for all of my students is the letter 'v'. We had a fiesta to celebrate Christina and Haydee's 1st graduation with vegetables and vanilla ice cream to help work on their v's. There is a total of 4 certificates that people can earn, and everyone loves coming to the class so much and really wants to earn their certificates. 

I hope you all are having a great holiday season, and I invite you all to check out the video online called "A World Without a Savior". It is very powerful, and a great Christmas message. There are so many great videos coming out this time of the year, so if you're looking for anything to help procrastinate whatever you should be doing I'd recommend those. I love you all!

Con Mucho Amor, 

Elder King

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Crazy Week

Hello friends and family!
This past week has been such a crazy week. Wednesday was transfer day, and from last weeks transfer calls we were under the impression that Elder Wilson and I would be staying together and working for this next transfer here in The Dalles. We received a call from the mission president at about 8:00am on transfer day informing us that Elder Wilson would be emergency transferred up to Brewster in Washington and that I would be receiving a new companion to finish my training.
Man oh man, as happy as I was for him to have the opportunity to serve in a new area I was so sad to be losing him. Over the past 6 weeks I have grown to love him so much. He was an amazing missionary, an amazing trainer, and an even greater friend.
Interestingly enough, that day our area was covered in snow and ice. We called our zone leaders and they told us to wait until the afternoon to try and drive our way up to the transfer site in Goldendale and that the Assistants to the President would be there that evening to pick up the missionaries that were getting transferred. We made it up there very carefully and there were 5 of us waiting at the new cabin where the Goldendale Elders were living. We did some service in the area, shoveling snow and helping people move stuff out of the basement and whatnot until 7:00when we received a call from our mission president informing us that we were essentially stranded in this little cabin in the middle of nowhere for the next 36 hours. All of the roads were completely frozen over and we were not permitted to do any driving and were told to hold out there until somebody could come and get us.
It was a series of crazy events, but truly a blessing in disguise. I got to spend an extra day and a half with Elder Wilson and Elder Jarvis, having fun and doing our best to not freeze. It was so much fun.
If there's one thing I've learned thus far in my short time that I've had living life is that sometimes people leave. And sometimes unexpectedly. Mourn the loss, take a deep breath, and start living again.
I hope you all have a great week this week and don't end up stranded in a cabin in a frozen forest for 36 hours! Well, I guess if you do I had a pretty good time so maybe you will too. Love you all!
Con Mucho Amor,
Elder King
Pictures: The first one is of me with this giant truck at an orchard after Icemaggedon. The second is the final picture I took with Elder Wilson at the transfer site before he left.