July 8, 2013

First ANGOLA, LUANDA Mission Conference

back l-r Hobbs, Merkley, Marequell, Tingey, Fontaine, Garn, Chatwin, Wilhelm, Wilson, Stewart, Montgomery, Clifford, McCune.
middle l-r McAllister, Kearny, Dunkley, Yeanoplos, Hannay, Hansen, Cafferty, Brown, Banta, Hyde, 
President and Sister Merrill, Elder and Sister Abdo
front l-r Chandler, Castleton, Pimental, Tilley, Ferguson, Whitaker, Money, Dredge.  

Brothers Clifford, Hyde, and Montgomery

ola minha familia!!!                                                                                                                             July 8, 2013

 FIRST OFF, CHELSEA!!!!!!!!! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I LOVE YOU!!!! I SEN TOYU YOUR OWN EMAIL:) 
So this week was yet another one that seemed to pass like a whirlwind!! So the first part, or all of the week it really felt, was mission conference with President Merrill and all the other missionaries. We had elders from Lubango staying with us, (Kearney and Hansen) so that was fun! The fourth of July we had a mission conference all day with trainings from President and Sister Merrill and a get to know you session with them too. That was super cool. I LOVE PRESIDENT AND SISTER MERRILL!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and they are totally from Arizona haha loved it.
President Merrill has basically the mindset that as we are obedient and do everything we can to follow and seek the lord’s counsel, it will be given to us and we will receive blessings. He talked about rules and that common sense was the biggest rule. If we think we shouldn’t do something or we don’t know if it’s ok or not, then don’t do it! haha I loved that. 
It was also really good to see all the other missionaries. Sorry I didn’t get pictures with President and Sister individually, but I did get one with Elder Clifford and Elder Hyde they are literally my brothers!

President Merrill and the assistant still haven’t had like new goals and stuff like that, but I’m sure within the next few weeks they will do those so we can see them. His philosophy is basically that we are going to grow this mission the right way and the lords way, even if its slow- ya we could go out and baptize a thousand people a month, but then the church would collapse form not enough support form older members and stuff like that, so he said were gonna follow the lords counsel and grow the church how the lord wants, which right now is real growth. Baptisms and retention, not just a ton of baptisms. I don’t know if that all makes sense or not. but ya. 
BUT something really cool was then Friday we had mission testimony meeting. all the missionaries and president and sister bore their testimonies. it was really cool. i loved hearing all the other missionaries bear their testimonies, something we don’t get all to often. but then after the testimony meeting, 
President Merrill gave our mission a blessing. He stood at the pulpit and basically said as the mission resident he had the power to invoke heavens blessing upon us as missionaries and upon our work. HOLY COW. Spiritual overload. so so cool. He gave us collectively as a mission a priesthood  blessing and blessed us to have the spirit as we obeyed and to have health and strength and to have the ability to follow the spirit and bless the lives of others and a million other things, and then as he closed the blessing he sealed it upon the mission just as your open with the authority in a normal blessing. The spirit filled the room and I was so grateful to receive that blessing. Even though it was to everyone I felt like it was to me individually. really cool. I didn’t know he could do that but he holds the keys over our mission, just like p
Pres Monson over he church, to invoke the powers of heaven and give us blessings according to our obedience and worthiness. SUPER cool. President Merrill is a spiritual giant. I love him!

I got to have an interview with President on Saturday, and I won’t give details but all the counsel he gave came from Heavenly Father, it was amazing. I know it was exactly what I needed to hear! I was very humbled and felt so loved amazing experience for sure. 
I have definitely been humbled for a few personal reasons this week! The lord is throwing tests my way and giving me the strength I need to overcome them, but it’s not easy! BUT during mission conference we watched a video Elder Holland giving a talk to mission presidents, basically to the effect that missionaries will at times say why why why why why President is this or that not easy, work, investigators, companions all that,  and Elder Holland THROWS DOWN about the Atonement. "The reason missionary work isn’t easy is because its not supposed to be easy! It was never easy, it’s not ever going to be easy, because it was NEVER EASY for the Savior in the garden, on the cross. everything. " that’s not a direct quote but you get the picture. wow. very humbling. I will work a little harder and complain a little less this week. 
So I’m so jealous about PC! you all look like you’re having a blast. I hope I get to join in the festivities someday! ahaha make sure mom and dad you guys get together with the Hyde’s too!.
random stuff: 
Anyways, I can’t think of anything else to write, but I love you all! I hope this week is fun, and you all keep enjoying PC without me. have fun! I’m very jealous. just take lots of pictures!.
oh ya, I heard about the fires too. wow. so so sad. I’m grateful for those who have given their lives in the fire service, and more grateful that you dad, were always protected and watched over. If you know any of the families give them my love. 
Love you all! Have good weeks, Chels have a sick bday today, and everyone give the kiddos my love! Graham love you! Claire love you! Beau love you!!! 
ate proximo semana! loves.
com amor,

Elder Montgomery

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