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