Wednesday, June 3, 2015

June 1, 2015

Dear Family,

Well a lot of crazy things have happened my second to last week in the
mission. I guess I'll just get right into it. So on Saturday we were
at this guys house named Jerry. Jerry is a younger guy in his 20's of
whom we have been working with for a bit now. He's a less active
gentleman who hasn't been to church in years. He doesn't really live
the gospel but knows its true and always sticks up for it. Well we
were at their place this week teaching his girlfriend the first
discussion out on their porch when out of nowhere this other gentleman
from across the street starts yelling at us at the top of his lungs
saying the most vain things, cussing us out, and saying the most
derogatory things towards us as missionaries and towards our church.
He made it pretty clear that he wanted us out of his neighborhood and
didn't want us to come back. I won't hide around the bush, quite
frankly he was persecuting us, and threatening to come beat us up and
possibly kill us. We didn't know if he had a gun or if he was sane in
the head so we decided to leave our discussion and get out of there.
Unfortunately to get to our car we had to go closer to where he was at
so Jerry said he would walk us out to our car. As we were doing this
the gentleman went to far and I guess ticked Jerry off a little bit so
he started to retaliate and defend us and himself and started saying
some remarks in return.(Jerry definitely should have tried to control
himself it would have saved a lot of drama) They were by no means very
quiet so by this time all the neighbors had heard and had come out and
were watching  being eye witnesses as to what had happened. So at this
time we pursued forward to call the cops because he continued to
threaten us. The cops arrived and the gentlemen who was persecuting us
continued to retaliate and cussed at the cops. We listened to the cops
orders and told them that we had recorded much of what happened if
they wanted any video evidence. So fortunately no physical harm was
done to us at this point. So later in the day(when we weren't there)
Jerry went out to get something in his car and the gentleman
blindsided him and started to attack him and beat him up. So in self
defense, Jerry apparently gave him a pretty good beating. They had
some eye witnesses and at that time the gentleman who was persecuting
us was arrested. We were definitely watched over in this experience.
Out of all the people throughout my mission who have rejected us or
didn't have anything nice to say to us this one is definitely one to
remember. I think as well it was a learning experience for Jerry. He
was able to stand up for us, and for the church and was put in this
situation and its cool to see someone we're working with stand up for
what we teach in such a way.

Its definitely weird to think that I only have about a week left and
am about to start a new chapter  in my life. Recently I've been doing
a lot of pondering about my experience the last two years and the
things I've learned. I think a lot of the times we learn line upon
line precept upon precept so I think the growth I've received
throughout my mission as been like wise and looking back I feel like I
have changed, I have grown, and most importantly my testimony has grown
as well. There were times when I felt like giving up but I didn't and
continued to push forward. The lows throughout your mission no matter
what they may be and what challenges you face, there may be more lows
than highs but the highs throughout your mission definitely outweigh
the lows. And make it all worth it. You often hear that people learn
why they were called to a certain mission. I was recently asked if I
knew why I specifically was called to the California Roseville
mission. And I think I can confidently answer that question yes.
There's been people here whom I've met and people who have changed my
life. I feel of a surety that there were people here specifically for
me who I was suppose to teach and those experiences and people are
something that I'll never forget.

I will continue to work hard for this last week and make the most of
my opportunity to put on the name badge every morning. The rest of the
work here is going great! We had a great week and are continuing to
find and teach a lot of people recently. I look forward to seeing you
guys soon!

Elder Rosenbaum

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

May 25, 2015

Dear Family,

Once again its been another good week here in Gridley! We had a zone
conference this past week down in Yuba city. It was super good and I
really learned a lot. It was good to see some former companions and
former missionaries I've served around. I also had the opportunity to
speak at the zone conference to give my departing missionary
testimony. I remember going to my first zone conference and seeing
those missionaries giving their departing testimonies and I thought
that day would never come but it did. This past week we also had the
opportunity to travel down to Antelope to our mission office and had a
trainer/trainee meeting with our mission President. I had the
opportunity to meet with President Marston afterwards and get a temple
recommend interview.

As far as the work goes this week we saw a couple of miracles! Before
I was telling you guys a lot about Brendall who was on date and
preparing to be baptized. Well he moved and didn't have a cell phone
so we lost contact with him and hadn't seen him in awhile. Well we
were tracting this week and out of all the houses we could have
knocked on we happened to knock on his house and find him again. Its
amazing how the Lord can put you in certain places to find and teach
certain people. He moved into his friends house and we even picked up
his friend as an investigator as well.

We're working a lot with a part-member family named the Fui's.
Chrystina the wife is a recent convert less active who we're working
with and we're teaching her Husband and her 11 year old son named
Dustin. Dustin is on date for June 20th and preparing to be baptized.
The only problem that we might run into is getting Dustins
Biological dad to give him consent. But we randomly ran into Dustins
real dad this week and we explained to him what we do as missionaries
and asked if we could come over and explain and show what we're
teaching Dustin. Hopefully we'll be able to soften his heart and he'll
let Dustin be baptized because if the rumor are right, he's in favorable of
him being baptized.

We're working with a good amount of other people. The biggest problem
we are having with everyone right now is just commitment. I look
forward to seeing you guys soon! I'm having a lot of mixed emotions as
my time is coming to an end as a missionary. I'm just trying to work
hard and finish on a good note! Hope you guys have a great week!

Elder Rosenbaum

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

May 18, 2015

Dear Family,

Hello its been another good week here in Gridley and Biggs. Its
definitely been a lot different this past week being that we have 3
Elders in our companionship now. Teaching, finding, door approaches,
and just all aspects of missionary work are a tad different but we're
figuring things out and making them work. Elder Sanborn, the
missionary that me and Elder Hudson are training, is from Boise Idaho
and a super good guy. He has a lot of fire and is far beyond what I
was when I came out into the mission.

Gridley had what they call Red Suspenders Day similar to what Fiesta
 Days is to Spanish Fork. So on Saturday we had the chance to go to the
city's parade and go to down town Gridley and just street contact
people for the longest time. It was actually pretty sweet. My whole
mission I've never really had the chance to just have so many people to
talk to. I've never picked up so many potential investigators in one
day before. Since Gridley is such a small town and we're basically out
and around talking to people every day it was crazy to see how many
people there I knew. But all in all it was a pretty good day.

We also had the chance to volunteer at a community event in Biggs and
we got to barbecue for everyone at the event. It was super sweet and
just a chance to get us out in the community and for people to see us
and a good chance to just talk with a lot of people.

I think our biggest thing we're struggling with right now is getting
our investigators to church. Our teaching pool is doing pretty good
and just trying to get them to progress. I'll try to share more about
them next week but time is short!

My time is nearing and being that I have only a couple more weeks I'm
definitely feeling a lot of mixed emotions but I'm definitely excited
to see what the future has in store!

Have a great week! Love you guys!

Saturday, May 16, 2015

May 11, 2015

Dear Family,

Although I already said it skyping I'll start off by saying Happy
Mothers day Mom! Hope you had a fantastic day! I appreciate all you've
done and continue to do for me and the love and support you always
show me!

A lot of what I say in this email might be a little repeat from what I
said skyping but thats okay. I got pretty big news! On Wednesday we
got a call from our mission president saying that the next day he was
gonna be in the area and wanted to meet with me and Elder Hudson. So
we weren't quite sure what to expect but he informed us that there was
a new missionary coming into the mission midway through the transfer
and he wanted us to train him and there would be 3 missionaries in our
companionship. President was pretty sincere and said he did a lot of
praying about who should train this new missionary and our names kept
coming up. Elder Sanborn is his name and he's a super cool guy. He was
originally suppose to be come out a couple of months ago but went home
from the MTC because of sickness, anxiety, and depression. But he's
been cleared to come back out so he got off the plane Saturday and we
went and picked him up! This will be my 3rd time training so it will
be a good way to finish my mission. We had our baptism for Duo Lin on
Saturday at  2 O'clock and it was an amazing baptism! The spirit there
was tremendous. Seeing someone enter into the covenant of baptism and
go into the waters makes everything worth it. It was definitely a good
day. Right after the baptism we took the road trip and headed down to
the mission home. It was kind of weird, it was the first time in my whole
mission being at the mission home. President always gives the trainers
some training when you pick up your greenie, so we did that and than
had dinner with the mission president and his wife. We had to work out
the logistics and find another bed and dresser for our apartment but
everything worked out and Elder Sanborn is now settled in. Being a
trainer always gives you that extra faith and motivation because you
want your companion to be successful and have a good start to his
mission, so there always seems to be good things that happen.

Well thats about all for this week! The work is continuing to move
forward and we're working hard trying to find the elect and get the
members involved. I'll try and tell you more about the people we're
teaching next week! Have a great week!

Elder Rosenbaum



 

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

May 4, 2015

Dear Family,

Well its been another week and a lot good things have happened but
we're still fighting through a lot of sicknesses. This week
fortunately was good for me compared to last week but my companion got
the worst of it this week. We spent some good time this week on
exchanges and taking turns babysitting Elder Hudson so we could hit
all of our appointments between our area and the other Elders area.
But we were still able to get a lot done this past week and work hard.

Good news! Duo is still good to go and will be getting baptized this
Saturday at 2 pm! We taught her twice this past week and will be
having dinner with her family tonight and another lesson tonight and
her interview for baptism will be tomorrow. Duo is pretty excited. Duo
even told us this week that when she comes backs to the united states
to go to college she wants to go on a mission. We've been so blessed
to just teach someone so golden and so prepared! Its been super cool
just to see her progression and see her being able to connect with
heaven.

We participated in a lot of service this week. We have what they call
mormon helping hands. Its basically when the ward finds a service
project somewhere in the community and they try and get involved. Well
the project that we did was at some community hall performance center
place we  basically painted all the inside of it. It was cool and a
good time just to be with everyone and be able to serve. It looked a
ton better afterwards

Our teaching pool is doing alright. It seems we have the quantity its
just it seem we need better quality. The only people were teaching
right now that will come to church is Duo and Bailey. And Bailey
didn't receive permission from her Father to be baptized.  We've had
to drop a few people which I hate doing and find some new people we
teach. We found a investigator the other week named Austin. He's a
senior in high school and we just talked with him while he was playing
basketball outside. Well we've had a couple of discussions with him
now and we went back to visit him and his mom answered the door and it
turns out that she's a member! What are the chances of that? Anyways
Austin is doing pretty good and we're pretty excited about him
hopefully he can continue to progress.

My time out here is short but i'm continuing to work harder than ever.
Knowing that it eventually has to come to an end I don't want to go
home with any regrets. There's no greater calling than being a
missionary!

Love you guys I hope you all have a great week!

Elder Rosenbaum
Sent from my iPad

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

April 27, 2015

Dear Family,

It has once again been a pretty good week! Not anything too crazy has
happened but I'll get right into it. We had a zone blitz recently.
Where all the missionaries in the zone do work for just one area and
help them find and visit less actives. But we didn't do it for an
English area. We blitzed the mong branch. The mong people are like an
asian ethnicity and for some reason or another a lot of them have come
and settled in northern California. There's only like 3 or 4 missions
in the United States that have mong speaking missionaries.  There's 3
mong branches here in my mission. It was a pretty cool experience. I was
on exchanges with a missionary who spoke mong pretty fluently. We were
able to get into a couple of houses and although I couldn't understand
a word that was being spoken the spirit was still really strong no
matter what the language. The dinner was a big culture shock as well I
ate a lot of food that I really had no clue what it was. haha But I
survived and it was a pretty good day.

We met with Duo a couple of times this week and she's as excited as
ever for her baptism on May 9th. Since our mission president speaks
Chinese he said he wants to join us for a lesson or two before her
baptism.

We have an investigator named Eric as well. Eric is a good guy and
Sunday night we had one of the best lessons on my mission. Just a lot
of tears and testimonies were shared. Eric is trying to change his
life around and is going to be on probation for another year and a
half. Usually the way it works is for someone to be baptized they
usually have to be off of probation. But we've talked with our mission
president and in this situation he's gonna interview him and send a
request to the first presidency to get approval to be baptized so he
doesn't have to wait that long. Whether they accept it or not isn't up
to us but hopefully Eric can get baptized soon. His testimony of the
gospel is just super strong.

Just a random side note we've been working with people in the church
and organizing early morning basketball. There's been tons of
nonmembers and a few members going to it and its been a super
effective way for us to find some people to teach.  We had like 15
people come last time and only like 4 of them were members its been
super cool.

All 4 of us in our apartment  are trying to stay healthy and it seems
like we've all been sick and we're trying to recover. The Spanish Elders
got food poisoning and it was pretty nasty and me and Elder Hudson
have just had a little bit of everything.

Elder Rosenbaum

Thursday, April 23, 2015

April 20, 2015

Its been another good week though. Its so good to have a companion
that's a go getter and just works super hard. Duo Lin, our Chinese
investigator,  is doing awesome. All the logistics are figured out and
she has been given permission to be baptized from the foreign exchange
program facilitator and from her parents back in China. In our lesson
this week we invited her to prepare to be baptized in the later end of
May but due to scheduling conflicts, she wanted to be baptized on May 9th
which is a lot closer. So we're all very excited. Tonight we're having
family night with Duo and the family she's staying with and also the
stake presidents family who have some young women who are helping
fellowship Duo. It should be a good time.

In other news, our investigator Brendall, who was preparing to be
baptized on May 2nd has moved. He was super pumped and our lessons
with him were always so spiritual but I guess he wasn't getting
along with his parents and since he's 18 he got kicked out. There's
always something that stops people from progression.

We're teaching two families who I just love! One is Beverly and her
family. They're an African American family. Beverly loves meeting with
us and is getting close to making the next step. Her grand kids who
live across the street always come over and join us. They're all sorts
of ages between 8 and 15. They're just a super tight family. We had a
good lesson with them this week and taught the plan of salvation. The
other family is the Valachez family. We went over on Sunday night and
they even fed us a super good Mexican dinner on the spot. We had a
really good lesson with them!

All is well, thank you for your support and prayers in my behalf! Have
a great week!

Elder Rosenbaum






Friday, April 17, 2015

April 13, 2015

Dear Family,

Its been another eventful week here in Gridley and Biggs California.
We taught a foreign exchange student from China this week named Duo.
She's staying with an active family in the ward which has been a
tremendous influence on her. Well the family she's staying with hasn't
been pushy at all and really hardly at all ever mentioned anything
about church unless she had questions. Well Duo dropped a bomb on
 Sister Walton and told her she wanted to be baptized and join the
 Mormon church. So we taught Duo a couple of times this past week. Its
been super neat teaching her. Being that she's from China she really
has no background revolving christianity whatsoever. So a lot of our
lessons have just been very basic stuff about who God and Jesus Christ
are, how to pray, etc. Duo prayed in one of our lessons and it was the
first prayer she had ever said in her life and the spirit was just
really strong. Duo was telling us how at school she's attracted to the
10 to 15 mormon kids and knows who they all are. She says she's
impressed with them and how they carry themselves and there maturity.
She said none of them cuss unlike all the other kids. Duo said there
was something about those kids that made them stand out and she wanted
to be like them. How cool is that? It just goes to show how important
being an example is and living your standards because you never know
who is watching. There's a lot of logistics involved when you're
teaching someone who's a foreign exchange student and if with the
program they're in if they are aloud to join any religious affiliation.
Also the fact of who's guardianship consent she needs to be baptized
whether its her parents back in China or her temporary guardians here.
Our president said the handbook of this situation is as big as the
bible(I'm sure he was exaggerating a little bit) and being from China
makes it a bit more complicated. But he's actually in the process of
getting approval from Salt Lake so Duo can get baptized. Hopefully
we'll be able get approval and be able to put her on date soon. The
unfortunate part is this summer when she goes back to China she'll be
no where near a Mormon church. Fortunately after she graduates from high
school she's gonna be back in the United States for college so she
could be involved in church again.

This week we were able to get a bike rack for our car. Gridley and
Biggs are both area's capable of being biked, its just going to and
from each city that's the hard part.  So this week, with the bike
rack, we were able to do a lot of biking which was nice and just talk
to a lot more people. We did lots of finding and street contacting and
got a whole lot of new potential investigators to start working with.
Hopefully we can benefit from some of it and have it transition over
to teaching more.

We were able to teach a good amount of people this week like Beverly
and her family, Rosie, Brendall, and the Valachez family.(all
investigators)But sometimes you wish people didn't have that darn
thing called agency. It always makes our job a lot harder.

We're working closely with this less active man named Brother Chand. We
watched conference with him and just keep pretty regular contact with
him. Well he surprised us and came to church! What surprised me even
more was he tapped on my shoulder and said if he bears  his testimony
than I have to bear mine. haha So we both ended up sharing our
testimony's which was really cool.

I've now hit 22 months... I'm trying hard not to blink because the
time keeps going faster and faster!  We went on a hike this morning
with our Zone and had a barbecue. It was all a pretty good time. We
went to Bald Rock Mountain and we got to free climb some pretty sick
rocks.   Love you guys! Hope you all have a great week!

Elder Rosenbaum

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

April 6, 2015

Dear family,

It's been an eventful week, a lot of good things have happened along
with a few unfortunate things, but I'll go ahead and just dive into it.
We're working with a man named Brendall. He's about 18 years old and
his parents are both inactive but he has active grandparents in the
ward which has been really good support for him. Anyways, we've been
teaching him and the lessons have always been really good. Some people
you teach seem to just catch a fire for some reason or another. Well
Brendall committed to be baptized at the beginning of May. Hopefully
he'll continue to feel the spirit and be able to make it. Keep him in
your prayers!

We taught our investigator named Baylie again this week. She committed
to be baptized last week and set a date for April 18th. Well Baylie
went to her dads house this week(divorced parents) and was gonna ask
for permission while she was there. Her mom, who is a recent convert,
texts us and told us the news. Its always hard to hear news like that
but we'll see what happens from here and continue to help build her
faith. Its crazy how the Lord works and is always preparing people for
you to teach. Shortly after we got a text from a member saying that
her foreign exchange student from China wants to be baptized and join
the church. We have dinner with them tonight and will be teaching the
first discussion.

We had our whole mission temple trip today! It was a wonderful
experience being in the house of the Lord and to feel of the spirit
and to be able to strengthen  my testimony. It was a good time and it
was good to see a lot of my companions and people I've served around
throughout my mission.

Conference was good as always. I got to say the family and importance
thereof was a pretty big topic and focus point through it. If I had to
choose a favorite it would probably be Elder Holland he never seems to
disappoint. Elder Brent H Nielson spoke in conference and he has come
to our mission to speak to us twice in the past 8ish months or so. So
it was cool to see him speaking. We got to watch conference with some
less active members we're working with. They were even kind enough to
feed us a couple of meals before conference sessions.

Happy late Easter to everyone. Let us all remember our Savior and that
he does indeed live today!

Elder Rosenbaum




Wednesday, April 1, 2015

March 30, 2015

Dear Family,

Week two in Gridley/Biggs with Elder Hudson has been pretty good. Its
one of those weeks where we just did so many things, so much happened
its hard to remember it all. I'll start with some of the highlights.
We're teaching a family named the Hawkins. Brother Hawkins is a
returning member and his wife was baptized 6 or so months ago.
Anyways, we're teaching their 15 year old daughter named Bailey. Bailey
has been to church both weeks I've been here and the young women are
really taking her in. Well we had a super good lesson with them this
week and Bailey committed to be baptized and set a date for April 18.
Which isn't really that far away. Keep her in your prayers and
hopefully it will go through.

For those that haven't seen the churches new Easter video, you need to
watch it. We've been having so much success just showing it to
everyone we street contact and everyone we visit. We've gotten in a
lot of doors through it. I always love Easter time and especially
Christmas because everyone is much nicer to us and there's always so
many little miracles.  One more cool thing that is on my mind, we're
having a mission temple trip a week from today! How cool is that? I
guess its like the first time our mission has ever done this.
Basically the first half of the day the temple will be reserved for
our mission and the rest of the day the Sacramento mission will be
doing the same thing. So we're pretty excited.

Elder Hudson and I were able to find 7 investigators this week which
is near the most if not the most I've ever found in a week  on my
mission. The Lord has just been really good. We were able to get in a
lot of doors this week and we were just able to teach a lot which was
awesome. The thing about Gridley is I guess it was founded or
originally settled by Mormons. So there's a high population of Mormons
here so people here who aren't Mormons have generally already met with
missionaries or they've already been asked to meet with missionaries,
or they've talked to missionaries before. Its a lot different than all
my previous areas.

Have a great week!

-Elder Rosenbaum