Monday, July 29, 2013

Week 7-29-13

Dear family and friends,
Its been another solid week in good ol' Paradise. We had a really busy week and a lot has happened. We went down to Gridley the other day for a trainer, trainee meeting with President Weston. It was about an hour and a half drive for us. It went really well. I always love hearing from President I'm pretty sure the guy is going to be a future apostle or something. I got to see all of my buddies from my district in the mtc at the meeting. I hadn't seen any of them in the mission field previous to the meeting so it was a lot of fun. Recently I also had interviews with President Weston. The interview went really well. We asked when were gonna be able to start using I-pads and he says he knows but he's not allowed to tell us.
Since my companion is the district leader we go on exchanges with the zone leaders every once and awhile. So I had the opportunity to go to Chico for the day to work. It was a lot of fun and it was a lot different from Paradise. Chico is a college town and there's a much bigger population there so we were able to do a lot of street contacting which I haven't really done in Paradise because you would hardly run into anyone. It was also my first missionary experience on a bike. It made me feel a little grateful to be a car area. We OYM pretty much everyone we came across and we picked up 3 new investigators. Its too bad there not in my area so I won't be able to continue to teach them.

So we have this investigator named Jerry and I haven't told you guys much about him. He's been to church about 3 times now and we had a lesson with him a couple of days ago. The spirit was really strong there so we challenged him to be baptized. He told us he had a desire to be baptized but he wouldn't set a date yet. So were really excited for him. He seems to be progressing really fast. He's an older man and he has a hole in his neck from some gas thing when he was serving in the army so he said if he gets baptized it'll drown him. So were trying to figure something out.

We had probably one of the most successful weeks this past week since I've been on my mission. We taught a total of 27 lessons this week and we picked up two new investigators that were going to start teaching. One is Roxanne and she's a super nice middle aged women. She was one of our potential investigators and we knocked on her door and she invited us in. She told us that she was looking for a church to attend in Paradise because she misses having that spiritual aspect in her life. We gave her a lesson on the restoration and we gave her a Book Of Mormon. She even called us the next day to have us do some service for her and she's already starting reading the Book of Mormon and has gotten really into it so were really excited for her. The other Investigator that we picked up this week is Katrina. We were walking to this less active family in our ward to talk to them and we found Katrina walking home from work and we ended up talking to us for over an hour and seemed very interested as to what we had to say. We're gonna go meet with her again next week.

We've been focusing really hard on member-missionary work and getting the members more involved. We've been having a lot more members come to lessons and we have some members that have been awesome fellowshippers for our investigators. I really do believe that part of the reason we have been able to be so successful is because of the members and there efforts. People are a lot more likely to accept the gospel if one of there friends talks about it instead of two random guys in white shirts. So we have been asking for a lot of referrals and it seems to be helping. 

The members house who we live at have been on vacation for the past week so me and Elder Harper have had the entire house to ourselves so its been kind of fun. P-days are always a blast. We always go up to chico and our zone and another zone always meet up and play basketball and dodge ball and its a blast. I'm loving the missionary life.

Our baptism for Saturday with Jacob is still on and he's really excited. As for Marie we're not sure whats going to happen for her if her baptism date is even going to go through. She hasn't been to church for awhile and her mom keeps canceling our appointments with her so its making it really hard. I think she wants to be baptized but its hard when your family doesn't support you. 

I love and miss you all.

-Elder Rosenbaum 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Week 7-22-13

Dear Family and Friends,

I'm glad to hear everything is going so well! Thanks for calling smiths for me and asking me. I was really sad to find out that Levi Poulson passed away. what exactly happened? He was one of my best buds at smiths and we would talk all the time. He had problems with drugs and stuff but he was just an all around good kid though. Everything is going super good still! We have a trainer trainee meeting tomorrow up in Gridley so I get to see all of my district from the mtc so I'm really excited. We had a really strong brotherhood and we became super good friends in those two weeks so it'll be fun to all be back together. 

We had a really solid week. I can't remember everything I tell you week to week so sorry If i repeat a few things. We have this potential investigator that we have been fellow-shipping and we have been doing a ton of service for her. We mowed her lawn, weeded her garden, and stacked and split wood. I have a lot of hope for her hopefully she's willing to hear and learn about the gospel. Jacob Tiffany, our main progressing investigator is absolutely on fire. He does every thing we ask him to do. He reads the Book of Mormon, he prays, and goes to church every Sunday. I'm really excited for him. His baptismal date  for August 3rd is still a go. August 3 is right before the transfer gets over so it'll be a perfect way to end the transfer. I'm so excited! Jacob is seriously one of the coolest guys I've met. He's about 40 years old and he loves college football so we talk a lot about that and Me and Elder Harper I feel like were just really able to connect with him. He's been meeting off and on with the missionaries for about 8 years. Its truly been a miracle. Our other main investigator, Marie Campbell, has been kind of a struggle. Her mom is really controlling and she won't let her go to church a lot. She's only 13 years old and i'm not sure how badly she wants to be baptized. Just keep Marie in your prayers. Her baptismal date is Aug 24 so were just gonna continue to work with her.

I went on exchanged a couple of days ago and I went with Elder Schaeffer. Elder Schaeffer and been in this area just as long as me so I had to take over the area for the day. And i only got lost a couple times. I'm getting the area down though! We had a really successful day. I had one of the most spiritual experiences with him that day. We had a less active in our ward, Wendy Anderson, call us so we could go over to her house and give her a blessing. She has this disease which makes it so she can't control her muscles and is unable to stand very well and just doesn't have a lot of mobility. Its really bad. And she recently had her neighbor make a citizens arrest on her and its just been a huge mess. We gave her a priesthood blessing and I've never so strongly guided by the spirit as to what to say. It was the coolest experience. She was in tears by the end of the priesthood blessing. Only time will tell what will happen now.

In the past week, I've ran in to 3 anti Mormons that wanted to bash and argue with us. It can be really hard at times. We show them scriptural evidence from the bible and from the book of Mormon for what ever they tried to used against us and they just refuse to listen. All 3 of them basically told me i was wasting two years of my life. There's a lot of churches up here that preach anti Mormon stuff and i'm starting to run into a lot of people that go to those churches. I've found myself the past couple weeks studying the scriptures harder than I ever have before. I feel like my testimony has really been able to grow through these experiences though. 

Me and Elder Harper continue to get along great and we're having a lot of fun while doing the work. We get to go golfing so i'm pretty excited for that! A member owns the course so we get to go for free. I love and pray for you all. Have a fantastic week!

Elder Rosenbaum

Monday, July 15, 2013

Week 7-15-13

Dear Family and Friends,

First off, those pictures that the Montgomery's sent you were this non member family and they absolutely love the missionaries. They fed us all we could get ribs and we played some games with them so were hoping they come around to accepting the gospel. But whenever we go over there for dinner they always take pictures of us so expect some more pictures in the next couple of weeks from them. There some of my favorite people I love them. But they aren't the people were living with. We're living with a family called the Reeves. There super nice and friendly people but she is very particular and wants things done her way. She even sat me and Elder Harper down for 2 hours and talked to us and how she wants things down. and we have to help with chores and cleaning the house on p-day which is kind of obnoxious but its only fair for us to help if were living there. And I have a couple of questions which is kind of random. can you look up what population and size of Spanish fork is and what the population and size of paradise is? I'm just curious i think there about the same size of town. I'm learned the area a lot better now and I feel like I know everyone fairly well in my ward. I feel like I know what i'm doing. Which is great. Elder Harper, my trainer is awesome and he's really taught me a lot. We have a blast. We're getting along super well and we have a lot of the same interest so there's always something to talk about. But I'm loving it.  Oh and can you send me BYU's football schedule i'm just curious to see what it looks like. 

Anyways, its been a crazy week and me and Elder Harper have been working super hard. Our two main investigators which I was telling you a lot about last week are both doing great. Jacob Tiffany and Marie both made it to church and Marie's date for her baptism on Aug 24 is still a go for now. Were going to try and get a date for Jacob but we don't want to push him because previous missionaries have and he's been offended by it. But Jacob is an awesome guy  I love teaching him he does every commitment we ask him to do and he'll read whatever we ask him to read and he's really progressing really fast and its been a real blessing. I hit my record this past week for lessons we taught 26 lessons which is my companions record too. But what were really focusing on is finding new people. With the new way of missionary work and working with members we've been trying really hard to focus on that and get referrals and do less tracting. We're teaching this guy named Onorio and he's really not progressing but i feel like i'm counseling him with his wife dying and its really hard knowing what to say and he just vents about his life and how sad he is and depressed and we've tried to explain how much joy he can have from the gospel but he never does anything about it. It can be frustrating. Most of the people we teach don't follow up with there commitments. 

But I've met some amazing people. We've been working with this less active guy named mike. He's a freakin stud. And he's going to feed us bear next time we go over.  The people here are weird. But I'm really growing to have a love for them and I really care about them. We have a goal as a zone to get 17 baptisms this next month. We even did a zone fast so we could find people to teach and achieve that goal. Everything is going great. Oh and I got my charger thing in the mail so thanks. thanks so much for always keeping me in your prayers. It means a lot. I love you guys.

Elder Rosenbaum

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Week 7-8-13

Just to let everyone know Ben's P-day's are on Mondays.

Dear Family and Friends,

So there's so much going on I hope I can remember everything. So for our 4th of July it was just a normal proselyting day. We went to a ward breakfast that morning which was really fun. They don't allow fireworks here in paradise or anything like that. It was pretty much just a normal day. But it was a really slow day because it was the 4th not a lot of people wanted to talk to us but the rest of the week was fantastic. 
Particularly in this last week I've experienced 2 huge miracles. The biggest one is this investigator were teaching named Jacob Tiffany. The missionaries have been teaching him for about 8 years and the bishop told us to stop teaching him because he thought it was a waste of time. So the missionaries hadn't been over there for a bit but we felt like we should go over there and teach  him again. We weren't sure why. We starting meeting with him a ton and he wanted to meet almost everyday. And a couple of days ago he told us he wanted to be baptized. The spirit was strong as I've felt it before. He's been coming to church and keeping all his commitments. Its truly been a miracle. Were going to try to set a date with him for his baptism when we meet with him tonight. We've also been teaching this 13 year old girl named Marie. And her parents finally gave her permission to be baptized and we set a date on August 24th. Its my first baptismal date! And i'm really excited about it! We went and knocked on this door and this lady started yelling at us saying she hated mormans and stuff but we ended up having a really good conversation about the bible and I think she might be interested in the book of mormon so we'll see what happens when we follow up. The funniest things happened the other day. We went to go visit this guy because he's a less active. And there was a lock on his gate but the lock wasn't locked so we just walked through the gate and went and knocked on the door. He started yelling at us for trespassing and we apologized and he accused us for breaking in and he escorted us all the way off his property yelling at the top of his lungs the entire time. It was really awkward but we had a good laugh about it once it was all over. 

Me and Elder Harper have really been working hard. We had 24 lessons this past week. The work in paradise was really slow for the longest time. And its finally starting to pick up. I really feel like the Lord is blessing us for working hard and having the faith. We moved backed into the members house that were staying in. Its kind of weird I sort of feel like I'm living at home sometimes. Its a really nice place it even has a swimming pool and its a super nice place. I'm still struggling to learn the area and I only know where I am like half of the time but thats okay. Paradise has been kind of weird. I guess i'm used to it now. but its a retirement community so there's a lot of old people here and the people that aren't old are usually weed growers or something like that. But I love the people here. Our ward is amazing! The members are so nice and friendly. Our ward mission leader is super into tennis so we always talk about tennis and he's been updating me on Wimbledon. So that's been kind of fun. On p-day's we always play basketball. We meet up with chico 1 zone and chico 2 zone and we have some pretty competitive basketball games. Its a blast. We also play a ton of ping pong!

All is well here and I'm so glad to hear that everything is going to well. I love you all!

-Elder Rosenbaum

Ben at The MTC with some Elders
Ben at the Provo Temple with some Elders

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Week 7-1-13

This is his first official email from the mission field. He has sent other emails before this they were addressed the the family only. He said that in the email that he sent Holly that he would try to send some pictures next time.  so enjoy

 dear family and friends,

Alright so I have a ton to write about and a ton to update you guys on. So tuesday night when we got to California we had about 18 Elders all stay in this apartment for the night and it was super packed! but it was way fun. The next day we all met are companions and we had a tesimony meeting. It was a really spiritual experience. I love our mission President he's a awesome guy and you can tell he really cares about. He asked about my 3 years of spanish in high school so i thought he was going to change my assignment to spanish speaking but he didn't. My companions name is Elder Harper he's from American Fork but grew up in las Vegas. He's way awesome we get along great already and we have a blast! He's korean and just a funny guy and he's just a really good trainer and has already taught me a lot. They have this 12 week training program that they have all new missionaries go through so I have an extra hour of study time every morning.

I've been assigned to serve in a city called Paradise. I serve in the 1st ward here. I'm serving in the Chico zone. Paradise is really far north so after our meeting on wednesday when we met our companion we took like a 3 hour drive to our area. We have a small district because its just not as populated where i'm serving. We have a car in my area. I received my bike but i haven't even rode it. We live in a members house there names is the Reeves. There really rich and i basically live in a mansion compared to most of the houses here. They have a swimming pool and everything even though we can't swim. and they have ping pong too! But they have a lot of rules we have to follow and obey so i kind of wish i lived in our own apartment but I really like it there. There really nice and amazing people. We did get kicked out of there for a week though cuz they have a ton of family staying over for a little bit so we've been living in Elder Peeks and Elder Scheffers apartment for the past few days and its really crowded and there's only one bathroom but its been a blast. My district here is pretty cool although I liked my district in the mtc a ton better!
And i'm not sure if what i had was the flu or what it was. I thought it was food poisoning. I never went to the doctor although i probably should because i wanted to go to California and i  would have had to stay in the mtc for a week longer. But i got a blessing and was able to make it to california! And i feel great now so all is good!

We've been hard at work ever since i got into my area. I've had some interesting experiences. We've taught 17 lessons. We don't have a ton on investigators althought we do have a couple. But were working with a ton on nonactive people. I taught this 60 year old man who was in his briefs the whole time and he might have been drunk and we talked with him about the gospel forever. The first time i went tracking the first door i knocked on this lady answered and we talked with her for about an hour and the gospel and her religion and she seemed kind of interested so i have a lot of hope for her. I love members here there all way friendly. I had to give a introduction and bear my testimony on sunday in sacrament. that was fun I was told by several people that they thought i had been out on my mission over a year by how well and confident i was so that made my day. I'm loving it here. its amazing. its insanely hot here though. its been like 105 degrees i believe.
I love you guys

-Elder Rosenbaum