Monday, August 14, 2017

Leon's baptism and fun p'day

This week was busy with planning Leon's baptism and interviews with President.  It was super fun though! 

The baptism was I quote "Among the best we've seen." -Assistants to the president.

We had some really inspired talks on faith and the Holy Ghost. They were perfect for Leon. 

I had quite the time preparing for the baptism. So the sister missionaries in our district don't have a font in their building so we had their baptism at 11am and ours was at 1pm. Friday night before the baptism we went over to clean the font out and prepare a few things. Well we filled the font up about 6 inches so we could wipe it all down and clean it up. It was SO dirty the water looked like a bad cup of tea with no milk. Rusty and gross. At the end we went to go drain it and the font pump didn't turn on to pump it out....... so it's 9:00 at night trying to drain some gross font water out.... didn't work. We had to leave to make it home by 9:30 and we left the font pump on over night praying it would drain. So we arrive at 8 am Saturday and I take a peak in the font and... it was full of the gross water still. Ahh panic. Our only option was to use the trash bins and scoop the after out and pour it in the toilet. Got it all out and mopped up with towels and it was finally clean! Hit the button and 50 min later the font was filled all nice and clean!  

Leon was helping haha it was so good we really enjoyed the day. 

Leon's baptism
Let's jump back to the actually baptism now. The service was all-star and really good.  We had some excellent music choices and like I said, best talks. So I've pondered how I can describe Leon's baptism the best to you all. I think the only way is to just tell you how it went. After the talks I said Leon let's go he said wait now!? Haha we walked from the chapel to the font and as we entered the toilets he was shaking and way nervous. We said a quick prayer and entered the font. It was warm and he was overwhelmed but I just said it'll be fine. Quick reassurance and I said I'm going to start. Nailed the prayer and the dunk was 10/10. He came up and said that was nice. 

Sitting during the rest of the meeting he leaned over and said, "I feel really really happy." I instantly felt so much love. I can't even describe how happy I felt. I love you all. I love the power I felt being able to baptize Leon and helping him make covenants. It's amazing the love I have been able to have with Leon and the spirit and my testimony. I felt so much cleansing as I baptized Leon. The love of God overwhelmed me. It was a pretty great day!

Today we went hiking. Man it was pretty. Good quality time with the district. One thing we discussed was that it seems like everyone is going on a mission, like girls and guys. 
Hiking Pen-y-Ghent in the Yorkshire dales.
It's about 2,300ft high haha.
 





Have a great week everyone!



Elder Pilling 

Sent from the land of lads

Monday, August 7, 2017

Step of Faith

Mates, there is a baptism in Keighley!!!

Leon Spearman will be baptized on Saturday at 1 pm.

This week, as always, has been really good. I continue to see blessings and miracles everyday. Leon our investigator is a walking, breathing miracle. He has received so many different answers to his prayers. He is an example of being prepared and he has accepted most things. A few were difficult for him to understand and difficult for him to follow. When we first met him he had an addiction to every single part of the word of wisdom. Teaching repentance has been a key part of his conversion. He knows his saviour loves him and he knows that through Jesus Christ his burdens can be made light. Only through Him can these blessings be brought forth. By taking a step of faith he quickly felt Heavenly Father's love and was able to feel the cleansing power of the Atonement. His mind was a mess and he was not in a happy place. But through the teachings of the Saviour his desires and thoughts became clear. We have put a temple focus on and he is quite close to having a family name prepared to take with him . Should be able to attend the temple quickly after his baptism, which is so exciting! Such a bummer we are not allowed to go with, but the members will take care of him. 

This week we finally began teaching a potential named Ingrid.  She is a Slovakia Lady and is so kind. She went to church in Bradford a few times but due to health she could no longer investigate. I was prompted to drop by one evening (Tuesday).  She accepted us with happiness and was over joyed to see the Book of Mormon in Slovakian for her. She thanked us and started reading right away. She is scheduled for the 2 of September and is so excited for it! She found her old Book of Mormon in a dresser and is now reading with her husband! She has the funniest kid named Patrick. Not to be stereotypical but many Slovakian kids are majorly overweight. Patrick is no exception. He's 5 and easily could pass for a 9 year old (minus his reading and writing).

We had the funniest first lesson with them. We got there early and started teaching before our Slovak Skype started. Patrick had a neighbour kid over and they were playing. He is 8 I think and so we were trying to talk to him but he didn't really understand. We tried to figure out what language he speaks.  Patrick didn't know and Ingrid didn't know haha. So we used google translate and didn't really understand any of the languages. Closest we got was Czech maybe? 

Oh I almost forgot. On Wednesday we had a visit from some general authorities and an Apostle. It was a mission-wide conference.  Specifically Elder M. Russel Ballard, President Patrick Kearon and his wife, President Johnson and his wife, Elder Nielsen missionary executive director, Elder Summet and his wife. Wow was it cool. Our mission had the most successful July EVER. Like ever recorded. In July, 40 were baptized, they had a record number of people at church, and most new investigators in a week. They really praised us for our efforts. Because most of them served in England they had noted that the Leeds mission had been struggling for a while and they were very pleased with the hastening that is happening. We had a question and answer time as well. Not much new stuff. My favourite was Elder Ballard or Sister Kearon. She's such a beauty - she did a little instruction to all of Europe and it was on how ward council is like an engine. All parts need to work. Super coolio.

Elder Walker from Calgary

My MTC friends 

My trainer goes home in a week!


Bye bye for now,
Elder Pilling
Sent from the land of lads

Monday, July 31, 2017

Wellll...

It's a pretty day here in England... sorta hahaha. 

My days are packed with appointments and we are so busy. I admire those who when faced with the adversary turn to the light of the gospel. This has been a view our mission president has seen as Satan takes extra time to attack those preparing to be baptized. He makes things very difficult for them and yet we see how prepared people here are. Heavenly Father is sending us some extremely talented people to bring into the gospel. 

Over the last 9 months my testimony has grown and I have had many experiences where I have seen the hand of God in the work! My favourite part of this whole mission thing is seeing how our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ are at the helm of this ship and he is looking after us all. He has a plan for each one of us and has given us what we need to be successful. 

In my mission life it is such a blessing to be able to assist in this great work. I have been able to follow the prompting of the Holy Ghost this week. Leon has had some really rough times this past week. It is not so much trials directly on him, but it is more that his friends have had some hard times.  Since he is so nice and caring (extra caring since we met him ;)) he has felt the pain and the suffering of all his friend's pains and it's been hard for Leon.  Leon is literally a friend for life. I feel like we have helped him out so much. He really likes the temple and is excited to go!  

It is hard to explain all these experiences and share all I want to share in just a short email.


We played some games and went bowling as a district today.

Byyyeee,
Elder Pilling
Sent from the land of the lads

Monday, July 24, 2017

Hey Fam Jam

Well it's a bit of a blur this week. Just keep swimming was a common thought I had as we worked. Nothing happened in terms of finding new people to teach so it was slow. I spent an awesome day in my DL's area with Elder Tsosie who was in the same district as me back in Beverley so we've been on exchanges before... it was some good times. We seemed to miss the bus every time we went to catch it so lots of walking. And it was HOT hahah so good. 

My favourites for the week have got to be another meal from Leon, our investigator. We got a strawberry fresh cream cake! Man I died and went to heaven. Leon is doing really really well. We have so much in common, it is quite crazy at times. Best part of all is that we learn the same way so I just give him all the tips that I use when studying and it works! He even eats the same breakfast as me.... Wheatabix :) 

Elder Davies is doing well. He is slowly getting used to this crazy ward! There's a member named Michael who I have talked about before. But we did some hard core bargaining with him last night haha he is funny. 

Our investigators are Leon and George who are the most solid (as in we see them weekly if not more). Leon has a date for baptism set at August 12. He is 33 and pretty funny.  He has had some seriously tough moments in his life. Just so many things have happened.  He was taught by missionaries a few years ago but the elder who he really understood and got along with got moved, so that ended. One day we were walking down his street when Leon was prompted to talks to us. We had a short 5 min conversation with him and carried on with our day. 2-3 weeks later we were walking down a street and he was on the bus.  As it drove by we waved and were kinda laughing haha it's Leon. Then sure enough 8 minutes later he popped around the corner. He said once again "I feels like I need to talk to yous".  We gave him our number and he said he'd call. 2 weeks later and nothing. We had some spare time one day by his house and decided to drop by. Well that was an interesting meeting. He unloaded his life story. We testified of the peace, direction, and happiness following Jesus Christ can bring. He really felt the spirit as we shared experiences with him. And that is Leon. Now he has a date for baptism and boy is he excited.! He loves how grounded and happy the members of the church are and wants that for himself!

I have given much thought towards the organization of a mission and the leadership and the opportunities to grow and learn. A mission is the foundation on which a life of growth and happiness in the church is built upon. I want to share something I've been thinking about - being happily obedient. If you look at the commandments that we have received as restrictions and regulations and you always have in the back of your mind that it would be better without, let me tell you the grass is not greener on the other side. Life has challenges wether you are a member or not. It is tough! Now the gospel of Jesus Christ is there to ensure that we as spirit children will be able to live with our Heavenly Father again. Although we have a loving Heavenly Father and his son Jesus Christ, it does not mean that God will make our lives a walk in the park. We are here to grow and to learn. It is up to us wether or not we take it as a growth period. We can be bitter or dull when trials come our way or we can choose to be HAPPILY obedient to God's commandments and love the things he HAS given us. Take a moment to say a prayer and thank God for all he has given you. I think you'll be surprised 😊

I love all that you guys do for me. The prayers, the letters, the love- it all makes a difference to me!


A pic of my companion

Elder Davies (not sure what this is a pic of)
Love,
Elder Pilling
Sent from the land of the lads

Monday, July 17, 2017

New Companion

Fam friends fans,

Writing you from a loud double decker bus traveling to Leeds :)

Some stories of the week. Man, Friday I gained 5lbs probably. So there's a super nice 92 year old in the ward from Switzerland named brother Karl Kägi. Every 2 weeks he takes us to a Toby carvery.  So much food. So so much, but I can usually handle it ok. But Friday evening at 6 we went to our investigator's house for 🍝 spaghetti. He gave me enough to feed a small family. It was crazy. After a quick lesson with him he said ah I hope you have room, I bought a cheese cake from the eggless cake place..... BEST CHEESE CAKE I'VE EVER HAD. So that's me gaining weight like usual. 

Let's chat a little about my companion. He's 6'2" and about 19 stone hails from a village named Sandwich in Kent which is down south England. He and most of his family were baptized when he was 14 which was about 6 years ago. He has 2 sisters I think. One moved to Whistler to work at a hotel 2 weeks ago. He has about 4 months left on his mission! He's had loads of companions but most importantly he's already had an Albertan! And he also lived in the same flat as Elder Walker :) His interests are rugby. He injured his knee pretty bad so that's a bummer. We are running once again! Love it!

I did some of my finest door knocking I've ever done this week.... met a lady named Hayley who answered and said I don't believe, don't go to church, there's just no point. I taught and testified about how the gospel will bless her. At this point I didn't know much about her but the Holy Ghost guided me to talk about families. I testified how families can be together forever and how it has brought me so much peace and happiness knowing that truth. After she said ya ok I see how it can help me. 20 minutes later she's our newest investigator and is reading a little blue book we gave her! 


Leon is doing so well. He really really wants to do the right thing after all the wrongs he has done in his life. He is excited to be baptized but at the moment thinks he won't be ready. I said well you won't be until we teach you more about Jesus Christ! I've attached a few pics of him!

Also, yesterday I had to say goodbye to Simon and Daz.  They are moving to Nelson which is out of our area and out of our mission :/  Hope the missionaries will treat them well.



Leon

Simon and Daz

Raspberries!
Off to Ilkley, Guisley, Otley, and Menston for exchange today tomorrow and Wednesday. I am excited!

I have heard it's been hot! That must have been nice. Weather here isn't too shabby either, currently short sleeve and sweating. 

Byyyeee for now,

Elder Pilling :) 

Monday, July 10, 2017

Transfers!

Hello everyone.

We had transfers and it was crazy. Our zone leader got called to be assistant
Thursday.  His name is Elder Peck. His companion Elder Buckoff can't
drive here because he has no license, so we drove him around and tried to make
all our appointments.  It was crazy fun.

So I am staying in Keighley and my new companion is
Elder Davies from England! Seems like a good guy. I am really excited.
Some good goal setting and some really good investigators too.

Found an old guy who lost a leg in a motorcycle accident. He is still in
pain. He describes it as an elephant stomping on his foot (that isn't there)
while someone is stabbing his knee with a knife. So when we met him ( 3
months ago) he said I don't believe in God. Then over the past 3 months he
has began to accept that there is a god and that God has a Plan for him. He
said I think I need to take a step into the fog. He was referring to
step of faith. He said this on Saturday. His step of faith was church.
He attended sacrament and really liked it!

Also on Saturday we found a guy named Leon! He left the church a few years
ago but things have happened in his life that have lead him back to
church. Although he is going through some serious trials, he has looked
for God to help him! He loved church and stayed all 3 hours. Loooved
it.

Now the important thing is, I love this church. Reading up on the
mission presidents seminar I have noticed how important it is to
recognize that the work is hastening. It is not a next year thing, it
is now. Everyone needs to hear the restored gospel now. People are
more prepared than ever before. I have been called to serve. Assigned
to England Leeds Keighley area with President Turvey guiding us. The
Holy Ghost is my most important companion.  Reading the simple
but powerful faith that Joseph Smith had is what started this last
dispensation. Jesus Christ is our Saviour and Redeemer and he loves us.

Hope everyone enjoys the Stampede and summer. Catch ya mates next week!

Michael our member friend
 
Elder  Pilling 
Sent from the land of lads

Monday, June 26, 2017

Time Flies

Well well well. There's one thing I sorta knew before my mission but didn't really take much notice to that I wish I had realised. 

Being a missionary is hard! By far the hardest thing you will ever do. I don't think it gets easier either. You reach some of your lowest lows out here AND some of your highest highs. All you future missionaries, do not go into the mission thinking it'll be 2 years without exams and without stress. It is hard, really hard so prepare yourself now. 

This week has actually been really enjoyable. I loved it. Met a really cool member from Saint Helena...  10 points if you know where that is haha. It's in between Africa and Brazil in the south Atlantic Ocean. He is really cool guy and worked on the American base in ascension so he loves American food and knows where to buy It as well! 

I had a really cool experience yesterday. We were visiting with a member who has always helped the missionaries she is like the missionary mom. She just makes sure we are alright :) Anyways, we got to reading her testimony book which starts in the 1970's which is when she was baptized. Reading a few here and there looking where they are all from then we saw.... Elder Spackman from Midnapore hahahaha! It was dated May 1987. That was a special treat. We followed up the lesson with our own testimony meeting. I love when I get to share my testimony of the restored gospel. We both were touched and the spirit was so strong. 

Let's see...the weather has been pretty normal. Not too chilly. Today is beautiful 


We had a new format for interviews with president where he and the assistants visited our district meeting. We received instruction from both and were able to learn how to increase our efforts with friends coming to church. Making sure they feel welcomed and at home! I love my mission president.  He is very in tune with the spirit as he counsels me in my work I can tell it is right from Heavenly Father. 

Got some free ice cream :) 



Met a professional musician. Apparently ukulele playing is really popular now so he is in a few ukulele bands and some rock bands. He's a Mike Oldfield fan ;) THE really cool part is he read the Book of Mormon in the 70's ! He is still interested and is just a happy 83 year old. Also met a bloke that was 100 1/2 years old! He still had a full head of hair too!!! I would have guessed 80's. 


These next few weeks are really packed and busy. Going on exchange with the traveling assistants tomorrow. Exchanges on Thursday and next week as well. 


My new favourite thing is post cards! So if you see one on your travels send it to me! 
My favourite little lad! We had matching hair! 




Elder P

Sent from the land of lads

Monday, June 19, 2017

Here a little, there a little

Helloooooo

It's pretty warm here. I didn't even know England got this warm. It has been nice and sunny the last 4ish days I think. Everyone here goes crazy when it's hot like this. They sit out, drink alcohol and sometimes barbecue.... it's not bad though.  People are really friendly and happy (occasionally you get an old grouch). 

Last week I was sick and it wasn't great. I then gave my cold to my companion so we are both coughing and sneezing all day. He's much worse than me though. For the most part we have just worked through the sickness. 

We met some genuinely nice people, you know those people who are happy and look for the good in the world. I don't want people to think English people are all sad but you don't meet too many really nice people. Like genuine caring people. The work is a challenge. We have a few Slovak investigators and I don't speak any Slovak but I am already developing a love for them.  Then there's our little bit of a challenging friend, Jackie. The atonement is what we teach to them all. It is something I am growing to love the more I learn. 



Funny picture of the week

Our Slovak family


A members dogs. It's the weirdest breed ever. German Shepard mix thing. It's so short and long with a massive head. 


I have been really enjoying seeing the good that people do. I read a little snippet on
lds.org called How I learned what it means to lift where I stand. 
It talks about how the small and simple things we do every day add up and build us into the followers of Jesus Christ that we are all striving for. 

We gain a testimony line upon line precept upon precept. Here a little there a little. And the hardest part is if you don't use it or continue to grow it you're gunna lose it really fast. You cannot sit idle in life. The kingdom isn't building itself. There is always something more you can do. Heavenly Father always challenges us so we can continue to build up or testimonies. I have been that idle person, going through the motions and not really trying to do better. I call it coasting. You may be the person who sits idle and really thinks of ways to improve your efforts, but the hardest part is changing those thoughts into action. What is motivating you do do better in this life? It may be your family it may be the knowledge you have of the plan God has for us. Whatever it may be, use it to push you to really use all your potential to grow your testimony. Maybe even find your testimony. 

I love this work, especially when it's sunny and hot out ☀️  

Hope you all have a fab week. 

Love E. Pilling 
Sent from the land of the lads


Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Thank you!

This week was interesting because we spent lots of time traveling which is unfortunate. We have an investigator who is really struggling with addictions but does see that she needs to change her ways. There are a few challenges with this friend. She lives 25 min away by bus in a place called Haworth, it's the worlds first fair trade village. Mostly touristy things. The famous literary Bronte sister lived there so people from all over the world visit. Our friend lost her phone so the only way to contact her is by knocking on her door! We seem to rarely ever catch her home but it is all ok. 

Wednesday we had a special experience being sort of survey video interviewed. They called it a focus group. Brother Glenn from Salt Lake City came and videoed a few missionaries. He asked us questions ranging from family history work and missionary work to how the ward interacts with new members as well as asking what church headquarters can do to improve the efforts in missionary work. His son, Elder Glenn was able to attend which must have been super weird. I can't imagine my dad coming and asking questions. I had some very interesting thoughts come to mind but at the end we all agreed that the church has already created many things or programs that can easily take care of all the issues we have noticed. A few I will share with you. Home teaching and visiting teaching is so so so incredible, it really is inspired of God. But also embracing the gospel in our own lives really makes the biggest impact. Becoming converted to the gospel means not only knowing the gospel and its teaching but living it! Don't just know God answers prayers, say your prayers. Don't just know Jesus was an example to us, actually live the teachings of Jesus Christ and be an example to others. 

Thursday we spent a lovely day in Huddersfield at zone conference. We received instruction from President and Sister Turvey. What a blessing it is to have them both.  We were instructed on church attendance and how we can make the new visitors feel welcomed. We had a few examples of when president Turvey would travel for business to California. When he attended church there, not a single person welcomed him or said hello to him. He attended all 3 hours. We received many different ways we can help our friends feel welcomed and at home as they attend church. We are all brothers and sisters so why not make them feel like it. Inviting them to FHE or a meal are some excellent ideas. 

I am sick. I have a horrible cold and it just won't go away. Aches, stuffy nose, cough, headache, chills.  You know the whole works :) I am pushing through though. 


So not many people actually know what my new area is like. I have mentioned how hight the population of Muslim people is. But that's about it. Here's a picture from my flat window.


My area is called Keighley (Keithley).  it is in the middle of three valleys that join together. The aire valley as it is called. Very hilly but also very pretty. There are quite a few council estates which are government funded housing. This is where all the chavs live :) In our area there are a couple really nice villages. Haworth, Silsden, Steeton, Riddlesden, Oakworth. The ward is shrinking. There are about 50 active members. 25 of them are related to each other. Many people are moving out but not many are moving in. The missionary work is completely different than Beverley. Some may know but we didn't do lots of teaching in Beverley. In Keighley we do lots of teaching. We have 5 friends who are scheduled for baptism. With a total of 7 friends who are learning about the church. Now a common issue in England is smoking and alcohol. So I have taught lots about repentance and addiction recovery. Turning to God for strength and seeking the good to over come the bad. 

I really am happy. It is a mission though, it's not easy but I am loving serving the Lord. I can not believe I am actually a missionary. Growing up in the church I always knew I'd eventually have a black badge. Now it's actually here and I don't even know what to do. 

I thank all of you who support and give me encouragement.  I really appreciate it. I promise I will at one point write a letter to those who have sent me something. At the moment I send about 1 letter a week. 

The famous Malham Cove

A beaut of a bike


Love Elder Pilling :) 

Sent from the land of lads

Monday, June 5, 2017

Open the door

Well I'm not really sure what happened this week. I'm not sure if it's
because of all the cleaning fumes I've smelt today or what.. we spent
5 hours deep cleaning our flat. Like it's perfect now. But I also have
a headache :)

I do remember we went to Piano Guys. Unfortunately our investigator
was not in the right state to go, so we left her behind. It was really
good though. They shared their testimonies and played some music. I
now have a stronger testimony of Jesus Christ and the Book of Mormon.
This last week I've studied the New Testament and the Book of Mormon, 
reading about Jesus Christ and his ministry. It's so powerful when you
can recognize the good he did because he loves us. He completed the
hardest thing ever done. He sacrificed his will and ultimately his
life for us. He felt ALL of our pains, trials, afflictions and struggles.
He knows us and loves us.

Some of you may have served a mission, some may not have, but
there is one thing evident. There is no way I could be doing what I
am doing without the Saviour. He is my strength and my light.
It gets so lonely and dark on a mission. All you have to do is open the door.  

He will lift and lighten no matter how dark and lost you feel. I love my Saviour. I love this work and I love this gospel. I encourage you all to open the door. Let his light fill you, it is a glorious feeling. 

Things are good.  We are teaching loads. We have 5 people scheduled
for baptism in June. The sun has been out tons. I saw Elder walker yesterday and Elder Thompson. It's good to catch up
with them.  

Some of my friends.


We did a lesson with the young women, there only 2 active girls. 


Some advice for my brother (who's getting ready to serve his 
mission in California) is something that I have been learning the last little
while.  Prepare yourself to change. Let the change happen. It's so
hard and change is often uncomfortable but it's what the Saviour wants.
Change is what the gospel is. If we allow the gospel to change us, we
are truly converted to it. The mission is all about sharing your testimony in
a way that will influence others to act. It's about helping them find God in their own life.

Until next week...

Love Elder Pilling 
Sent from the land of the lads

Monday, May 29, 2017

Sunshine

First off, we had transfers and I'm staying with Elder Bailey :)

MY BROTHER IS GOING TO CALIFORNIA ON HIS MISSION!

My week was so warm. It was a beauty felt like I did a 2 hour ride I was so sticky. Wednesday and Thursday were like 25-27 and sun. And humid ha nice 🌞  Being the last pday in the transfer we went to a place called Malham so no time to email.... I'll get pics next week for that.
I'll just share some pictures of the week.  Any of my doctor friends can email me for details but our friends, Simon and Darren have had a rough week.  Darren, the dad, spent most of the week in the hospital getting tests on his heart and kidneys. Not good. But they finally returned home Friday evening and we were able to visit them. I have some quality selfies taken by Simon the 8 year old.  I have so much love for this family and for their persistence and dedication to learning about the gospel.  This is the kind of love missions are made of. Pure joy :) 

Moving along we have a beautiful drive out to a village called Stanbury so pretty :) 




We have some people to visit and teach I gotta run  :) 
With lots of love,
Elder Pilling 

Sent from the land of lads

Mission life is the life to have

As much as I love fishing 🎣 and biking and camping ⛺️ the mission life is hard to beat!  Helping others to come unto to Christ is an amazing work. 

Super special week :) Monday evening we spent some time on exchanges with 2 very good missionaries. They are in a unique leadership position called traveling assistants. They just work with other missionaries all day, everyday. They don't have their own area. So Monday night Elder Rhea and Elder Thompson picked us up to go to work! Elder Thompson and I (being both from south Calgary) had some really good fun. 

We taught Darren and Simon! Simon is the smartest 8 year old. We shared how the gospel blesses families. You know as I sit here trying to share my experience with them I am struggling to put it into words. I have never felt a deeper love for an investigator. My testimony was strengthened and I know Heavenly Father blessed me with my family :) 

This week as per usual went fast but it was good. Up and down with our investigator, Jackie.  She's really struggling with the challenges life has given her. It is hard because I know what the gospel can do to help her find peace and strength. 

One of the real good times this week was when an older member took us on some back roads in the country side. We drove on a road called the Yorkshire bumps. Haha so good it's not bumpy as in rough it's just kinda whoopy up and down. It was similar to Red Rock road sorta but way better. We full on caught air haha some good memories.


Rashid, a recent convert. He's the best!





Love Elder Pilling
Sent from the Land of Lads 

Monday, May 15, 2017

Sunshine and some friendly faces

Hello all!!

This week was pretty  cool 😎. Met another old guy, went to a funeral,
and got free ice cream.

To start I'll share about an old guy I met on the bus. Don't even know
his name but this story starts a few weeks back. One day while riding the
bus some old bloke noticed I was a missionary.  He started
blabbering on about some guy named John Browning who lived in Utah. I
had little time to say much at this point and I just squeaked out
I've got a Remington. Then the barn doors flew off. We talked about all
sorts of stuff; guns, dogs, birds. It was exciting. Unfortunately we had to get
off without getting any details. Fast forward to now. Today I was
pondering on what to say to you all, thinking I could share about that
old guy. Then of course he walks on the bus haha. He said he got a book
about shotgun history and thought of me :) so nice. So we had another
chat.

Interviews happened this week as well as a exchange with the Wharf Valley

elders. Here's a picture.  

His name is Elder Erickson from Palm Springs California! His dad is a tennis coach haha. Anyways he's a funny lad, we had a good half day. Met an old lady who loved to hear about what we are doing all the way over here. Ate some biscuits with her...yum! That evening we ordered some chicken balls which are an exchange tradition.



As for spiritual thoughts. 

Hmm during the Skype with fam jam I was asked about advice for my younger brothers. It lead to a quick pondering of the things I have learned. I will attempt to share my feelings. Serving a mission is unlike anything else in this world. A bunch of 18-23 ish year old young people of the church leaving all things they are comfortable with; family, friends, entertainment. They dump them into a strange world sharing the gospel with people they have never met before. People who are not members of the church think we are crazy. Well, it's kinda true.  It shouldn't work. We shouldn't be able to completely dedicate 2 years to serving the Lord. I have developed deeper feelings about my time here. It is a special time where I am changing. I am changing a lot. My values that my family has taught  me are strengthened. I have developed a relationship with our Heavenly Father and our Saviour. It is a blessing to come closer to them and feel of their love and strength. 

I love all you people back home. I do feel the love and support. 


Here's a picture of Rashid a recent convert! He's so funny!




Elder Pilling 

Sent from the land of lads

Monday, May 8, 2017

The People You Meet

People of the forest, 

It has been warm and chilly and just pretty normal here in Keighley. Met some drunk people, someone burned our rubbish bin and I ate some shortbread👍🏼


I have been requested to tell cool stories haha. Well TBH Keighley is full of People from the Middle East. Like over half the population is Muslim. And Keighley has one of the largest drug markets in the area. So there's always something crazy going on. There's housing estates here called council housing. Missionaries nickname them chav estates and they tend to be a favourite place for missionaries to go. Here's a really good definition:

Chav (/ˈtʃæv/ chav) (charver in parts of Northern England) is a pejorative epithet used in Britain to describe a particular stereotype of anti-social youth dressed in sportswear. The word was popularised in the first decade of the 21st century by the British mass media to refer to an anti-social youth subculture in the United Kingdom.[4] The Oxford English Dictionary defines chav as an informal British derogatory, meaning "a young lower-class person who displays brash and loutish behaviour and wears real or imitation designer clothes".

So now when I reference a chav you will all know. 

Some cool things from this week:
We met an older lady in a nicer area (hard to find) she said oh I have traveled all over America and Canada I love it there. So of course I asked if she'd been to all the typical places like Orlando, Toronto, California. And then she said I have even been to Salt Lake City! Now I was getting curious. She had a pamphlet from temple square and everything. Further along in the conversation I asked her favourite place she's been. She said, "I really like Montana and Idaho." I'm like whoa. When I asked her why, she said, "I love the national parks." Turns out she has been to every single national park in North America. Yes even Waterton. That was neat.

We were knocking some doors in a super historical town. I'm not sure, but I guess it's where the famous Bronte sister wrote some books. Idk but this bloke said, "No, no I met some lads from Germany and America last time and I'm not interested." I told him now he can cross Australia and Canada off the list. Then he told me he's Australian and his wife is Canadian. What are the odds?!

This week we had a multi zone conference.  Unfortunately Elder Walker is now in York zone so I didn't see him :/
But this whole day was based on the Teton dam bursting, how it all started with little cracks that grew and grew. We were asked to identify the crack we have in relation to being obedient and to repair the cracks and to be fully consecrated to the work. Examples given were; we must see companions iPad screens, clean up our vocabulary and don't use replacement words. In your weekly emails to President we need to put some time in and share about our area and companion and also help him see what he can do to help us. I really enjoy the emphasis on obedience as it is always a good reminder as to he sacredness of this calling. To be representatives of Jesus Christ is a big deal and we must honour and treat it as such.

Family and friends I know the Book of Mormon is true. Joseph smith saw God the Father and Jesus Christ. I know Thomas S. Monson is called of God. I love the work and love God's plan for me. 

Love elder pilling 
Sent from the land of lads

These pictures are really toaster but that's ok 


Wednesday, May 3, 2017

See others in a new light

This week I have been studying chapter 4 in Preach My Gospel. I have spent some extra time on the light of Christ. As part of my studies I have been reading a talk by Boyd K. Packer titled The Light Of Christ. Things which I have forgotten have been brought to my mind. First and probably the most important is a quote by President Joseph Fielding Smith.  He spoke of the teachings of the Holy Ghost and of the Spirit of Christ: “Every man can receive a manifestation of the Holy Ghost, even when he is out of the Church, if he is earnestly seeking for the light and for the truth. The Holy Ghost will come and give the man the testimony he is seeking, and then withdraw; and the man does not have a claim upon another visit or constant visits and manifestations from him. He may have the constant guidance of that other Spirit, the Spirit of Christ.”

As missionaries we are to aid in helping people receive a manifestation of the Holy Ghost, but also to help people fan the light of Christ into a roaring fire, one which compels all to do better. 


Boyd K. packer said, "Every man, woman, and child of every nation, creed, or color--everyone, no matter where they live or what they believe or what they do--has within them the imperishable Light of Christ."

Being a member missionary is hard yes. But if we try to see all the people around us in a new light, we can see we all know people who have burdens which can be lifted through the gospel. Find the light of Christ in those around you and help them see it! 

In Psalms 145:8 it says, "The Lord is gracious, and full of compassion; slow to anger, and of great mercy." Find love for all people. I am loving being able to develop love for those people I teach.  

The work here is a challenge. We have a few Slovak friends and I don't speak any Slovak, but I am already developing a love for them. I can already see the light of Christ in them and it is such a blessing being able to help them see and feel it as well. 

We have a friend named Jackie. She has gone through some seriously hard things in her life. She gets anxiety and is easily scared off. We love working with her because deep down we can see she has that light of Christ and she can recognize it as well. As of this time she is going to be baptized middle of may. 

The weather is crazy on this side. It has steep hills all around so the weather changes so drastically. But I always stay dry in my MEC coat! 

I saw the tour de Yorkshire roll through yesterday! Ha, it was a long steep hill and they were dying haha.  It was fun though. Cycling is so popular here too. 


I don't have any pics today...my companion is camera shy. 

Thanks for your support everyone!

Elder Pilling
Sent from the land of lads

Monday, April 24, 2017

New Area, New Companion

This week I learned missions are actually fun. I LOVE my new comp.  He is
the funniest and we just have the best time haha.

Yes it was very hard to leave my Beverley family behind. I felt a bit
lost for the first few days here. I didn't know anyone and didn't know
where to go. The ward here is completely different. About the same
number of people, 60 ish active. But more young families which is so
new to me. The area is so different. You are either going up a hill or
going down hill, it is never flat here haha. No bikes in this area and I can
see why haha. If you look up Keighley on an elevation map you will
quickly find out they are steep. There are loads of Muslims around. I
think there are 3 mosques and a 4th being built or something crazy. The
over all average income here is much lower than Beverley. Loads of
chav estates hahaha. Makes missionary work interesting. Right now we
have a few investigators but looking to find some real solid ones.
Should be a interesting week.

My companion is from near Wollongong Australia! He turned 20 in Feb
and did 2 years Uni before coming out. He likes to work! Man we work
so hard and he's super diligent with all the people he's found and
names and interests. He knows so many names of people. He just got out
of training so still learning. We are both learning! Always learning
new things. I love being able to serve with a new outlook on the work.
We test out new ideas all the time.  Some are horrible but some are so
good.




My favourite part of the day is personal study time. Over the past few
weeks I have had some thought about the priesthood and our duty to
serve and how it directly applies to our work. My studies are mostly from 2
separate talks. One talks about Aaronic priesthood and how it is the
preparatory priesthood. I look back to the times when I was preparing
for the Melchizedek priesthood. I see the times when I was truly
preparing and the times when I was coasting or even braking my
progress. The things that helped me prepare:
Dedicating time and diligently visiting my home teaching families. How similar 
this is to serving a mission!  Also serving those members of the
ward who need help. Being kind and offering that service always.
Even seeking service outside young men's service is best. Learning and
growing as I served the other young men. Being a leader helping them
exercise their priesthood. One of the things I wish I had was more of an
opportunity to exercise my priesthood and to actively pursue ways to
use it. After all, we do not have the priesthood to benefit ourselves but
to benefit others.

I love the organization of the church. I know God has called Thomas S.
Monson to be a prophet.  Have a great week!


Love Elder Pilling
Sent from the land of lads