What is a Mormon?

Sunday, December 22, 2013

The Changes

December 10, 2013- ...the people that we found this week are yearning to change. K wants to get rid of his alcohol dependency. D has gotten off alcohol completely! and is working hard to loose smoking. And then J is carefully growing more and more in the gospel. She enjoys church more and has told us that she feels the difference in her patience with her autistic boy as she reads and prays often...

The Bible Bashers

November 26, 2013 - Transfers came and went, I stayed. I spent the holiday with the Pickerings. They are from New York and will be moving to the states this summer. Elder Pollock will be my new companion. The Hull Zone is also being split into two zones. I ordered Donner Meat, which I believe I've talked about before, if not don't look it up ...it is suppose to be "lamb, but not many would say it is. But it couldn't be as bad as Hot Dogs.
 Any ways, as we were walking to our flat one night a child, no more than 10, began to yell at us mockingly, "Bible bashers! Jesus Believers! and laughing and just generally mocking us.  His sister was 4 years younger, caught on after a few more chants by her example of a brother and the parents were just on their porch drinking a lagger.  The young boy then began to sing a chant about how we were idiots and the Christ was a fairy-tale, that he just died and was nothing now and we are stupid believers.  That stuck the most. We didn't think much of the taunting and we just continued into our building. When we got in the flat my heart went out to the boy and the younger sister.  "how could they say that? What child would hold that kind of conviction? What is there I can do to help him?" so many questions I had no answers too come to my heard, and some hostile to the parents for such teachings for surely the boy didn't learn it by his own understanding. 
(they aren't only Bible bashers, and proud of it- they know their Book of Mormon too!)

The Restoration

November 4, 2013...we were looking for apartment 57, but right where it should have been there was an empty lot...frustrated Elder D wanted to leave, but I just said I wanted to know why it was gone...lot's knock the ones next to it...so we did just that and on 59 we found Martin...We told him on the doorstep that we had an answer for some of his concerns if he would like to listen for 5 minutes (: We've taught him twice since Tuesday.

Halloween we had to be in by 6:30..Guy Fawkes Day...fireworks and parties. [Guy Fawkes, also known as Guido Fawkes, the name he adopted while fighting for the Spanish in the Low Countries, was a member of a group of provincial English Catholics who planned the failed Gunpowder Plot of 1605] Anyways we found a woman. She is such a smart person and when we found her she only had questions about prayer and why there were so many churches if there is suppose to be 1 God... Elder D and I shared the restoration and taught her about prayer and how she could develop a personal relationship through prayer with her Heavenly Father.

Click here to learn more about the restoration.

The Simplicity of Faith

October 21, 2013...it's getting tougher, but that's what mission does, isn't it? ...I have wonderful morning studies on Christ like attributes every day...One great thing that I love is that faith is so simple yet very complicated and praying for a stronger breeze to cool you down is an easy prayer for Heavenly Father to answer (: if there is faith (;

The Frustration

Oct. 7, 2013

Big news is that we have no investigators, well we have that family, but right now that is it. So that is kinda frustrating. We get some really good potentials, but then they just send us away after the first lesson.
The baptism was great though and then the next day Elder Dotschoat and I did confirmations. Wow! I really enjoyed that...

Saturday, October 26, 2013

The Family

The Family is one of the greatest gift God has given us.
From the very beginning the Lord has established the importance of the family organization for us.

Elder Tom L Perry of the Twelve Apostles said in the 2003 Conference:

“Husband and wife have a solemn responsibility to love and care for each other and for their children. ‘Children are an heritage of the Lord’ (Psalms 127:3). Parents have a sacred duty to rear their children in love and righteousness, to provide for their physical and spiritual needs, to teach them to love and serve one another, to observe the commandments of God and to be law-abiding citizens wherever they live. Husbands and wives—mothers and fathers—will be held accountable before God for the discharge of these obligations.” 1

That is why Elder Ivins was so excited to have a miracle in England. 
While on a blitz in his area he and his companion found a young man knocking on doors. They chatted for about 5 minutes and asked if they could come in and share more about who they were and what they do.  
"Sure" The man said. Then as they walked in
a woman walked in with a baby in her arms and a child.
A family to TEACH! 
After a lesson prayer and how it is such a blessing to be able to pray and how it could bless them as a family and individual, they set an appointment for the missionaries to come back.
They gave them a Book of Mormon.
Such a nice little surprise...The Family.

Here are some tips from LDS.org on how to be the best family you can be:

  • 1. Pray together
  • 2. Have Family Home Evening (click the link to see what that is)

Sunday, September 22, 2013

The Logical Ones

...our last appointment for the day was to teach a 7 year old girl and her mother about our church. Her mother took the lessons in 2005. 
"We are not sure that evolution is the thing we came from?" 
...so we taught her the plan of salvation. The girl had intense questions and is very logical (maybe her mom told her to ask). This lesson 1, turned into 4, then 5. Then the whole family was listening.  The father was skeptical at first, and when the plan of salvation lesson wasn't going so well we switched to the restoration by spirit. Incredible. The spirit was in the room. The oldest son prayed for the close of our meeting and he is 13. Afterwards, he was just beyond excited to have talked to God. 
"How do you feel?" 
The kids were begging to have us back everyday. This was just the answer to our prayers.  

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The Bike

...another miracle was on Sunday night and we had chosen three streets the night before. Then we got to the first and totally forgot to watch for it. We turned around and then my MTC teacher voice came to mind, 

"if you forget something you felt was good once but you still forgot...that's the spirit telling you now that it's not what should be used." 

    Confused, I told my trainer and he said, "okay. Let's skip it." As we walked to the third street we came across a man on a bike. I waved and said, "Hello Mate. How are you?" 
He was an ex-communicated member 12 years ago and wanted to get his life bake together. We expressed to him that it was no accident that we were guided to him this night. 

Monday, September 9, 2013

The Field

England Leeds Mission

6 September 2013

Mr. & Mrs. Erman Ivins
10126 Millbury Way
Sandy, UT 84092


Dear Brother and Sister Ivins,

It is with pleasure we welcome your son, Elder Isaac Caleb Ivins, to the England Leeds Mission.  We find him prepared and committed to serve the Lord and to share the message of the Restored Gospel.

Your son's first companion is Elder Dotschkat who was prayerfully selected to ensure the best introduction to missionary work for Elder Ivins. They will be serving in the Hull 2 Area of the Hull Zone.   We are confident their relationship will be a mutual blessing.

Weekly encouragement from home will certainly help inspire Elder Ivins' missionary effort.  We encourage you to write him once a week with your letters uplifting in spirit.  Please let other family and friends know how important it is to write positive, encouraging letters that support missionary work.  Your son's permanent address is now:

Elder Isaac Caleb Ivins
England Leeds Mission
Lister House, Lister Hill
Leeds LS18 5AZ

Families and friends are asked to not visit or call their missionaries in the field.  Such calls and visits will undermine the effectiveness of missionaries and their companions.  Please feel free to call the mission president in the event of an emergency at home.  Missionaries are not to call home without the president's permission.

Any anxiety of the missionary about finances will hinder the work.  Please do not send excess funds, too much money can be as detrimental as not enough. Personal, practical and inexpensive gifts from home for birthdays or Christmas are encouraged.  However, because missionaries move frequently, and space is very limited; large, heavy or unnecessary items are discouraged.  Your missionary is limited to two bags and a briefcase.  The best gifts are consumables, such as ties, socks, small personal items, and goodies.
Also, if sending packages from abroad that have a large declared value (US $50.00 or more) there may be extra Duty and Tax charges incurred, which may cause unnecessary expense and delays.  It has been our experience that packages sent by US Postal Service and Parcel Post usually arrives without any further charges.  Please do not send via Federal Express or other ground delivery service.  This may incur duty charges for which your missionary will be billed before the package will be delivered.

I want you to know that Sister Pilkington and I consider it a privilege to serve with your son and promise to help all we can, and strive to direct his efforts in the Lord's way.  We are available at all times, and Elder Ivins' physical, emotional and spiritual welfare is of utmost importance to us.

Sincerely yours,

Graham Pilkington


Saturday, August 31, 2013

The District

This is the district in England. Here is the nice letter we received.

The Tag

well i cant even send the one improtant thing which is a picture of me and my companion but it is all right, you miht get worried because he is literally just like Rob...i mean the guy even lookslike him AND acts like him, really it is strange but so awesome becaue we arre bes friends already ahahaha but aside from that we are also a killer companionship. we teach "investigators" in a room dressed as a living room and it can seriously be a challenge, especaillly the first time which was out second day.the second day! mostly i put this all in my journals and i now have to tell you so much in suh a little amount of time -_- i love it here and the people are...ineresting. there is oe elder in my district that reminds me of harison and that is just...yea not good ahaha. but then there are tons of interesting and eciting people ive met too like our French, Elder Neville, who is having a blst learning english and will serve in texas haha he loves the word fart and such hahaha but his accents makes it sound like fawt ahaha really we all just get along great and try our mbest with all our investigators. man the keyboards here are terrible and they have diferent keys... ummm well we also taught a "gay" investigator that was just impossosible. we had no clue how or what to say i mean...once he said "yea i like men, i mean girls, women, men, no definitely not men im not gey...you look gey." and that was all uninterupted haha. just bizarre really. im not too home sick. found a lot of things i deffinitely did not pack like a sand bottle landon made and a few notes but it was cool finding it (: Audreys gift helps a lot too and he dads package. i have so much more i want to tell you but thats all that comes to mind... the MTC is not a prison here we really can go and study just about anywhere and outside is always best because the AC sucks in England with all the cold they specialize in heaters... the siters in my district are way fun too because one is from tonga and the other australia...just lots of diversity..im friends with a duth, a german, and tongan, 2 austalians, and an austrian, and then there are just tons from Utah...and one elder from china haha. shoot! 5 min left and i still need to email audge,
tell kaylin i do miss everyone and that im sorry that i needed to go.
i love and miss everyone! seeya again next week and ill let you know my next pday should be wednesday but it could change once im out in the field.

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Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Post

It's not always easy saying good bye to your brother or sibling for 2 whole years.
Today my oldest brother, Isaac left to serve a full time mission in England Leeds. It was the hardest day of my life. 2 years is a really long time. But I know they will go by fast. Bye the time he comes home, I will be 15, Jaida will be 17, landon will be 13, and last but not least marissa will be 6! Isaac will miss everyone's birthday atleast once or maybe twice. But I know it's for a good reason. I know he will be a Great one! He is a big brother and example. I will surely miss him a ton. But when he returns with honor i will be able to give him the Biggest hug. People are going to love him. I know it. He got to call us to tell us he got to Chicago safely. We didn't have much time at all but it was worth it! It was great to hear his voice again. Well I just want to say that I'm very proud of him and I know he will do great and be watched over and pretected. Love you a bunch big brother! Or known as Elder Ivins!

The Funeral

Elder Ivins left today. It feels a bit like a funeral. Kind of like a death in the family. You try to be happy but you can't do anything but wonder what he would be doing if he was home right now. I know he is where he is suppose to be. He phones from Chicago and had met up with about 14 other missionaries all heading to Leeds! I am happy for him! His brothers and sisters miss him. I would have to say that it was extremely helpful to have an RM here with us, Zac, his cousin. He helped answer all those little questions.Thanks to all the support of friends and family!!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

The Graduation

Our Grad Graduation Invitation
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Sunday, April 7, 2013

The Call

Isaac's Later Day Saint Mission Call

Isaac got his call on Wednesday, April 3 2013. It is averaged to take 1 1/2 weeks to get it from the time it is sent via internet to the Presidency from the Stake President. We called to have the post man hold our mail so I could have it in hand, but he held the wrong address.
We got it and Kaylin was most excited. Isaac was trying to be COOL. Kaylin and I ran inside. Isaac simply had a grin from ear to ear. I took it and put it in my drawer right away so we wouldn't want to open it. But, then I had a great IDEA....look and see the first letter of the mission? I tried to not look at the whole call. But I got to the first letter and I couldn't help it. E....ngland Leeds Mission.
I told him it started with an E. thoughts ran through his mind....Eugene Oregon Mission, Egypt, Ethiopia...everything but England.
I had to leave and while I was out, Jaida walked in on Isaac attempting to look at the SECOND letter....But Jaida stopped him. Landon got a good look and he saw LAND. I don't know if Isaac knew. I knew I knew. We tried to hold off for the opening on Thursday, and for the MOST part we did. The other exciting news was the date he would be going into the MTC. August 22, 2013. And he would be going straight into the MTC in England, not the usual Provo, Utah MTC. The reason being is that the Provo MTC is overcrowded now with the age change of missionaries from 19 to 18 for boys and 21 to 19 for girls! There are over 44,000 missionaries out now, 20,000 waiting to enter the MTC, and 6,000 in the interview process.

How do missionaries receive their call?

October 2010 Conference Talk:

... Each Apostle holds the keys of the kingdom and exercises them at the direction and assignment of the President of the Church. Elder Eyring was assigning missionaries to their fields of labor, and as part of my training, I was invited to observe.
I joined Elder Eyring early one morning in a room where several large computer screens had been prepared for the session. There was also a staff member from the Missionary Department who had been assigned to assist us that day.
First, we knelt together in prayer. I remember Elder Eyring using very sincere words, asking the Lord to bless him to know “perfectly” where the missionaries should be assigned. The word “perfectly” said much about the faith that Elder Eyring exhibited that day.
As the process began, a picture of the missionary to be assigned would come up on one of the computer screens. As each picture appeared, to me it was as if the missionary were in the room with us. Elder Eyring would then greet the missionary with his kind and endearing voice: “Good morning, Elder Reier or Sister Yang. How are you today?”
He told me that in his own mind he liked to think of where the missionaries would conclude their mission. This would aid him to know where they were to be assigned. Elder Eyring would then study the comments from the bishops and stake presidents, medical notes, and other issues relating to each missionary.
He then referred to another screen which displayed areas and missions across the world. Finally, as he was prompted by the Spirit, he would assign the missionary to his or her field of labor.
From others of the Twelve, I have learned that this general method is typical each week as Apostles of the Lord assign scores of missionaries to serve throughout the world.
Having served as a missionary in my own country in the Eastern States Mission a number of years ago, I was deeply moved by this experience. Also, having served as a mission president, I was grateful for a further witness in my heart that the missionaries I had received in New York City were sent to me by revelation.
After assigning a few missionaries, Elder Eyring turned to me as he pondered one particular missionary and said, “So, Brother Rasband, where do you think this missionary should go?” I was startled! I quietly suggested to Elder Eyring that I did not know and that I did not know I could know! He looked at me directly and simply said, “Brother Rasband, pay closer attention and you too can know!” With that, I pulled my chair a little closer to Elder Eyring and the computer screen, and I did pay much closer attention!
A couple of other times as the process moved along, Elder Eyring would turn to me and say, “Well, Brother Rasband, where do you feel this missionary should go?” I would name a particular mission, and Elder Eyring would look at me thoughtfully and say, “No, that’s not it!” He would then continue to assign the missionaries where he had felt prompted.
As we were nearing the completion of that assignment meeting, a picture of a certain missionary appeared on the screen. I had the strongest prompting, the strongest of the morning, that the missionary we had before us was to be assigned to Japan. I did not know that Elder Eyring was going to ask me on this one, but amazingly he did. I rather tentatively and humbly said to him, “Japan?” Elder Eyring responded immediately, “Yes, let’s go there.” And up on the computer screen the missions of Japan appeared. I instantly knew that the missionary was to go to the Japan Sapporo Mission.
Elder Eyring did not ask me the exact name of the mission, but he did assign that missionary to the Japan Sapporo Mission.
Privately in my heart I was deeply touched and sincerely grateful to the Lord for allowing me to experience the prompting to know where that missionary should go.
At the end of the meeting Elder Eyring bore his witness to me of the love of the Savior, which He has for each missionary assigned to go out into the world and preach the restored gospel. He said that it is by the great love of the Savior that His servants know where these wonderful young men and women, senior missionaries, and senior couple missionaries are to serve. I had a further witness that morning that every missionary called in this Church, and assigned or reassigned to a particular mission, is called by revelation from the Lord God Almighty through one of these, His servants.