Sunday, April 3, 2016

February 29th, 2016

Dear Family,

The second round of zone conferences was much better for collecting
phones. We are down to five phones we need to collect. We will be
having zone leaders bring them to MLC. Hopefully we will be able to
ship the phones off this week. There is a 40 Lbs. box of phones plus a
few other boxes of cords and chargers that we are wanting to finally
get out of the office.

In district meeting this week, Elder Johnson had us brainstorm some
ways that we can make the work we do more fun. I learned that role
plays don't have to be a set block of time or in a rigid structure. It
can be as simple as asking "How would you teach that principle?" or
"Put yourself in their shoes. How would you respond to this
situation?" This helped me realize that role plays and practices can
be scattered through the whole companion study and doesn't just have
to be 10-15 minutes at the end. I also liked something that Sister
Alius said in district meeting:
"When someone says they have already been baptized, we aren't just
telling them they need to be baptized again. They need more than
proper authority; they need immersion, the covenants, and the
sacrament. This gives an opportunity to teach other doctrines than

The Powell sisters, the other trio in the mission, got their car stuck
deep in some mud. After about thirty minutes of trying to dig it out,
they realized it might be a good idea to call the vehicle coordinator
and ask for help. Elder Long was just going to call a tow truck, but
we were sitting right here in the office and Elder Winkler realizes,
hey we have a truck! So we grabbed a tow cable and went to help them
out. When we got there the sisters were soaking wet from the rain and
had mud all over their skirts and shoes. After Elder Winkler got his
slacks all muddy attaching the tow cable, it only took about ten
seconds to pull the car out. The sisters learned they should just call
the mission office first next time.

The changes to iPad payments has been working out really nice. We have
already seen confirmation emails that several of the missionaries
coming in next transfer have already paid for their iPads. The ability
to pay online for iPads has already proven useful as Elder Vario
needed to pay for a replacement iPad and could do it right on his
iPad. Now all that is left is to deal with the iPads that have been
taken home and not paid for. We called the missionary department
inquiring what the official procedures should be for trying to reclaim
those iPads. The person I talked with said that we should work with
the individual, then with their stake president/bishop, then if things
aren't resolved and the individual is not cooperating, the mission
office files a police report to reclaim stolen church property. We
asked how long we should wait and how many times we should get in
contact with them before filing the report, but they said it is up to
the discretion of the mission president and is dealt with on a
case-by-case basis.

We had another lesson with Bill, a less active member in the ward. He
has been trying to forgive someone that has hurt those he cares about,
but is having trouble letting go of the anger. We shared the bible
video of Christ's crucifixion and also the Mormon message about the
man that lost half his family due to an accident with a drunk driver.
We shared with him how Christ forgave those that were killing him.
Elder Winkler also shared a personal experience that was really
powerful and connected with Bill.

We have been increasing our finding efforts this week. We know we
don't have a lot of people to teach and we have been determined to
change that. We have been asking everyone we talk to for referrals and
it has been interesting to see how willing people are to help with our
efforts even if they themselves aren't interested in our message. We
got a referral this week from the Powell sisters that was a former
investigator. We were able to talk with her for a brief time on her
doorstep and we found out she is still interested in hearing the
message we share. There are also a couple other people we knocked into
we are hoping to teach this week.

I really like how this ward is missionary-minded. The ward mission
leader has done a great job motivating the ward missionaries to want
to go out with the full time missionaries and help with the finding
effort. The ward council also has been really inspiring. I can tell
that they genuinely care for those that are in their quorums and
auxiliaries and want to help reach out to those that need help.

I started reworking the Stake Report spreadsheet so that the formulas
draw directly from the IMOS report instead of needing the indicators
to be entered manually. This should make creating the report a 5
minute process instead of a 30+ minute process that requires data
entry. I have enjoyed learning more about Excel as I have been able to
explore ways to make our work more efficient. My experience with Excel
in the past was on smaller sets of data, so I have never had the need
to look into using functions other than Sum and Average. Now I have
been using conditional and lookup functions to sort through a complex
data set. The skills I am learning in the office are going to be a
great benefit after the mission. I am grateful for the opportunity to
learn these skills.

We got to play some frying pan ping pong, or pan pong as we have been
calling it. If our ping pong setup wasn't ghetto enough, now we are
using frying pans as paddles. We already were using two closet doors
to form the table. The Frying pans make a much louder sound when the
ball hits it.

Elder Aaron King
Ohio Columbus Mission

We needed to get some sample photos for our documentation that show
what photos are appropriate or not appropriate to add to our mission
wide photo share. Here is Elder Marvin being a rebel.

Another photo for that documentation. You would be surprised how many
missionaries send in photos wearing sunglasses, flashing gang signs,
being dangerous, or taking bathroom selfies. Some missionaries think
the photo share is Facebook.

This is the picture we used as an example of what missionaries should
send in to the photo share.

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