Monday, March 23, 2015

Bear With Patience

Oh mom, I miss how into all of the holidays you get! It's definitely good to see from the picture with the waffles with all of the chocolate candy around that the family's eating healthy! ;) The bad news is that with this lactose thing or whatever it is it's been getting worse and worse to the point now that I can't even eat chocolate! At least I'm not allergic to gluten though right? (at least I hope I'm not…)

Ok it's so weird seeing pictures of E home because first off she looks like the same happy go lucky E! and second it doesn't even feel like she ever left! That's definitely a little awkward timing where I left before she did and then she came home before me. It looks like she's super happy though so that's great! I'm sure she was an awesome missionary. I can't believe that you're in the top 5,000 for the brackets!!! haha that's so funny! Watch you'll end up winning the whole thing. Those would always make me so mad because the people who had no idea about what was going on would always be the ones that would kill me! I'm so glad that Utah's doing so well! We'll have to see how the big game against Duke works out... I'll pray for them ;)

This last Monday we flew up to Fairbanks and stayed there until Thursday morning. It was so much fun being able to see some of the people that I taught and got so close to while I was up there! The Gibbs that Elder McCusker and I taught are doing so great! It was so cool to see the long term complete transformation that the gospel has had in their life. I spent all of my time with good old Elder Jolley so it was a blast being able to catch up and be with him again. Fairbanks has the international world ice sculpturing competition that everyone from around the world comes to see so we got to volunteer at that. It was pretty impressive. I have some pictures but I'll have to send them to you next week. Definitely the highlight of the trip was when Elder Jolley and I went to go see Rick. If you remember Rick was the blind man that I was teaching the whole time while I was up there. In our lesson with him we were able to put him on date to be baptized for next month. He was the one that had a dream that he didn't get baptized while I was there but then I flew back up and baptized him. It was kind of cool to see, in a way that dream get fulfilled! He's the man :)
We had a really cool experience this last Friday! So all day long we had been trying and trying to contact people but absolutely no one was home or letting us in so it was super discouraging. It was about 4:00 and we had ran through all of our plans for the day. I was almost to the point where I was about to give up but I said a little prayer that some how I'd be given the strength to just make it through this day. Well we starting tracting on a street that we felt was right. Long story short on the one street we ended up finding a Part member family that no one knew was there who wants to be taught, and 2 others that we have return appointments with this coming week to teach! That night at dinner the members had a friend over that committed to start taking the lessons! Needless to say there were so many miracles. It really built my testimony that just when we think that we cant push on, when we think that we're all alone and are about to quit, that he'll always give us the strength to push on and keep going. 
27 Now when our hearts were depressed, and we were about to turn back, behold, the Lord comforted us, and said: Go amongst thy brethren, the Lamanites, and bear with patience thine afflictions, and I will give unto you success.

This week's going to be busy busy busy. Tonight we fly out with President and Sister Robinson to go to Juneau for exchanges then from there we're flying to Ketchikan and then on Thursday back up to anchorage. Then on Friday we drive down to Soldotna and I'm going to go visit Kenai, my place of birth! The Southeast is supposed to be so beautiful so I'll be sure to take a bunch of pics!

So the travels continue...

Love you guys!

P.s. tell Liz that I'm so proud of her for not wearing anything Immodest to the dance. She's a champ :)  

March Madness

Family Family

That's terrible the Vanuatu got nailed by that Cyclone. I feel so bad for them and for Kate. That's got to be hard leaving a place especially one where you've grown so close to all of the people only to have it hit by something that big. I'll pray for them and I'll pray for Kate! That has to be a mission president's worst nightmare having to worry about whether or not all of the missionaries are safe and where they are!
I heard about the Utes loss to Oregon the other day... what a bummer! But I'm excited to see how they do in the tournament! Not that I'm home sick on bit but I'm excited that this is the last March Maddness that I'm going to miss! WOHOO!
This week has been pretty A-Ok! Yep talking with people is always a riot. There are some real nuts out there. Sometimes I feel like Alaska has more than it's fair share... At the beginning of my mission I was terrified of all of them but now it's pretty comical! What I want to do is get an Ariel camera to get  sky view for when I walk through crowds at stores and places like that. It's like I'm Moses parting the Red Sea everyone does a huge loop around us which I guess makes it easier so that I can get to places a whole lot quicker! I got to go on an exchange with Elder Clark (I served with him for a transfer in Bethel) which was so great to be with him again! This week has been a little brisk so the temp's mostly been around -10. We did a lot of jog tracting where you jog from house to house just because if you stop moving around then you get cold! 

This Saturday we did a service for the Special Winter Olympics which was cold but really fun! I'm not sure if you've seen the movie the Ringer but if you have then it was actually exactly like that! It was so much fun being able to help out with all of the special needs people and they actually were really good. They totally could put me to shame on a pair of skis! 

Yesterday Elder Babb and I went up to Eagle River to go to Doug's baptism who was a guy that Elder Jensen and I taught last transfer when we were together. He's such a cool guy! I'll try and send you some pictures... 

Anyway tonight we fly out to Fairbanks to go on exchanges with some missionaries up there and then we're going to come back Thursday morning. I'm going to go with Elder Jolley for a few days in Fairbanks 3rd ward so it's going to be awesome to be able to go back and see all of the people I taught up there!

Well that's a little taste of what's been going on so I hope things are great in good old B-Town!

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Transfer Madness

Thank you so much for all of the Birthday wishes and for the package! That's so nice of all of you guys to think of me during my birthday. 

Well you know how much I hate attention so I had a picture perfect birthday! Friday night I drove up to Wasilla to go on exchanges with the Zone Leaders there so the good thing was that no one knew it was my birthday until a few minutes ago when I opened my birthday package haha. My plan and goal of flying under the radar and not having anyone find out was perfectly executed so I was a happy camper :) Thank you so much for the scriptures!!! They're perfect and exactly what I wanted! Also I don't know how you read my mind but I've been totally craving smores so I'm pumped to have a little s'more party this week!

Hahaha sounds like a picture perfect lesson you had yesterday mom! What age of kids do you teach? Good thing is I'm sure you pulled it off just fine. You don't even need notes! So since you grabbed Liz's clothes instead of the treats did you give those out? The winter up here has been pathetic. Since there's no snow they had to move the start of the Iditarod up to Fairbanks. They did a ceremonial start in Anchorage but had to haul in truck loads and truck loads of snow and even then the snow was melting.

This past week has been really eventful and so much fun! On Monday the new shipment of missionaries came in so we went to the airport to go and pick them all up. It's so weird seeing all of the new ones come in because it feels like it was yesterday that I was coming off of the plane but then at the same time it feels like it was forever ago! It's kind of a really weird feeling to describe...After the airport we took them to the office to go through new missionary orientation and then took them to the mission home to eat dinner and get all settled in for the night. We slept at the mission home and then the next morning all of the new trainers came and and picked up their trainees and we had a meeting with them! Later in the day we had transfer meeting which was a pretty interesting experience haha! Man I'm pretty bummed that the link I sent you didn't work so you weren't able to watch... next time! I conducted and then later Elder McCusker and I sang for the last time before he was exiled to Sitka so it was fun! All of the videos turned out really good and I wish I could send them to you but they're like 2 GB so I'll have to show you when I get home.
The rest of the day we were running missionaries all around the place. At night we had the final bye bye dinner for the departing missionaries and then their last testimony meeting...  at 12:30 at night we went to the airport and dropped them off... holy weird. After the airport we went back to the mission home and got a little bit of sleep then woke up and had to go set up for MLC which is a meeting with all of the Zone Leaders and Sister Training Leaders in the mission. When that ended we made our last run to the airport and things finally calmed down a bit... Holy cow I've never been so tired in my life. 
Saturday like I said I went up to wasilla on exchanges which was a blast! When Elder Ballard came to our mission he really focused on talking with 10 new people every day. In Alaska there's really not a whole lot of people of people just walking around town on the streets so we've been getting pretty creative haha. My new favorite thing is getting people to roll down their windows at stop lights and talking to them or else sometimes we go into stores like Home Depot and walk around acting like we're looking to buy something and then just talk to people. We've been able to see a lot of miracles come from it so it's pretty cool!

Well I'm super sorry that this email was super long and boring but there's just been a ton going on! 
Mom to answer your questions I'm not in the office (thank goodness!) They don't really have missionaries do that anymore and mostly just have Sr couples come in and do that. Most of our time we spend traveling around the mission and going on exchanges with other missionaries. This transfer I think we're going on about 20 so I'm only with my comp Elder Babb like half of the time. It's a lot of fun though! Next week we're flying up to Fairbanks and then driving down to Soldotna and Kenai and then the week after that we're flying down to Junea and Ketchikan (islands in the South East) so it's going to be a blast! The rest of the time we get to spend working in our area then just helping President Robinson plan trainings and anything else he needs. 
Oh yeah and we found out that we're getting iPads in May so turns out I'm going to get to use them for about a month... I never though I'd see the day!

Love you guys!

-Elder Brown 

Monday, March 2, 2015

Logistical Nightmare

Hello Hello Mother!

That's so awesome that the Braves took state! It's going to be so much fun going to all of the state games when i get home!

Holy Smokes this week has been so busy and my head has just been spinning. Monday and Tuesday were pretty normal and I spent most of the time saying my goodbyes to all of the amazing people in Beach Lake and packing up all of my luggage. It's crazy how much junk you can accumulate... It's going to be pretty hard skinning it all down to fit in two bags when I get home. On Wednesday President and Sister Robinson came and picked me up in Eagle River and then took me into the office. Elder McCusker and I were reunited and got to spend the week together which is always a blast :) We were in a trio with Elder Babb my new comp. Every day just seems like it all blended into one. It was kind of a weird change because with how busy we were we only had MAYBE 1 hour a day to go out and proselyte. Before Saturday we had to put together all of the logistics for all of the missionaries coming into and then leaving transfer meeting. So pretty much we have to plan 3 day trips for 130 people and figure out what time their plane leaves, who's going to take them to the airport, who's going to pick them up, where they're going to stay, etc. etc. Oh man It's a nightmare! Friday night at 11:30 we finally finished it all up and then Saturday was spent calling all of the missionaries and letting them know. Hopefully everything all works out and no one gets left haha! 

This transfer our mission has been doing something pretty cool! We had all of the missionaries send in videos and pictures holding up a sign that answers the question "I feel courageous when"  This week when we weren't doing logistics we were filming some different shots and then making the video! I think it actually turned out really well! It's going to be making it's premiere tomorrow at transfer meeting! We send out the transfer meeting over webcast and Elder McCusker and I are going to be singing so you'll have to watch it tomorrow so you can see the video and hear how bad my voice is... the thing that man makes me do... haha! Transfer meeting starts at 1:00 Alaska time (I can't remember if you're 2 hours ahead or behind us...) So it's at either 11 or 3 your time! The web address is Http:// so you'll have to watch! 

Well the new shipment of missionaries comes in in a few hours so we're going to go and pick them all up and have new missionary orientation and get them all settled in so today's not going to be much of a P-Day but it should be fun! I know it kind of sounds like a lame week but it's been a blast! 

Hope that everything's going great back at home base! 

Love you guys a whole lot!

-Elder Brown
Twinning is winning.
Logistic nightmare….still in the office 11:30 p.m.