Sunday, September 28, 2014

Employment news

This past week, as is in most weeks, sometimes we're busy and sometimes not so much. When we stop and "see" and listen and "hear" we notice the Lord's hand in his work. Take for example the days in Gastonia and Shelby, Thursday (25 Sept. 2014). Sister Slade and I went to the Gastonia stake building for a career days, it was set up sort of randomly by the ward employment specialist. We were ask to be there by 5 pm and meet with whoever came in, now this is not how it is normally done, we usually have set appointments. We were there at 5 set up and ready, nobody is there nor comes at 5 or 6 or 7, but while we are waiting President Poole (Gastonia stake president) comes in and and we introduce ourselves. He tells us he is having bishopric training and ask would we come and do some training with the bishops. I said no thanks, ARE YOU KIDDING, I said I would love to. So I spent the better part of about 30 min. talking to the bishops about what we were there to do ( as far as our mission).  I expalined to them using a train analogy, here it is so bare with me. I explained that the engineer on a train controls the train movements, he can apply power and move faster or reduce power even apply brakes to slow down, he is in control of the movement of the train. Trains now have multiple engines (helpers as they were called but now is called distributed power) throughout the train, they have engines on the front (lead) entrained (middle) and at the rear. All these engines are controled from the lead engines, got it? Ok. The lead engines  are the priesthood leadership            ( stake press. or bishop), we respond to the priesthood, the middle and or rear units are the Hp group leaders, EQ pres. or RS pres. employment specialist and employment missionaries, the train is the ward members whether using welfare service or not.. Here is how it works the lead engines can try to move the train all by themselves they may or may not move it but either way it's a strain on resources. So the lead engines use the additional power to help move the train forward over the tracks sometimes your pushing hard and sometimes you back off, it all depends on how much the priesthood needs helpers, I told them if the lead engines don't use the power (helpers) at all they not only don't help but actually become dead weight. I said I do not want to be dead weight, so use us. After that the bishops started asking questions about what we did who we have been working with. I told them we need to get each priesthood leader (all of them) signed up on as leaders so they can effectively search and help. We (missionaries) email or call on the phone to our candidates every 10 days or so, they see them every week in person, they have a close, and personal relationship with their own members. I told them I am not trying to re-invent the wheel I just want to get the wheel rolling gain. Anyway that's a lot of info, but the point is the Lord's hand is in his work He supplies the engines (power) to each train, He knows how much is needed and how hard the terrain is. We just need to run the train effectively as He directs us. Love you all and Keep the faith.

Can't pass this picture up

I forgot 1 picture from the Cook Shack, I saw this hanging on the wall:

Saturday, September 27, 2014

27 September 2014 several pictures

Couple of things to mention, 1. we received a letter from our wonderful stake presidency, this letter was given to all the missionaries from our stake but it still is nice to hear from them. 2. President Thies said that we need to record those spiritual things that happen while on this mission. So I am writing things down in both my journal and this blog. My journal is not as "filled" as it should be, but, between that and this blog I feel I am covering most things. I am enjoying writing this blog I hope whoever is reading it, enjoys it also. So anyway this past week was busy with different events. I want to post some pictures and then tell the stories.
This was a zone conference in Gastonia NC. Gastonia is about 25 miles due west of Charlotte. I had offered to help Elder Hunt (he and sister Hunt are one of the senior missionary couples). He has responsibility for the cars and bikes and things like that. Whenever there is a zone conference he goes to the conference and checks on the cars such as oil, brake fluid, coolant, tires etc. as the missionaries come to the conference. So I drive the cars to a spot to get the tires checked for pressure and we check the lights, flashers, brake lights and such. When we are done (this is the last thing we do) I drive the cars back and park them. I have helped them a couple of times and when I park them I try to get creative about how I do it. Sometimes by color or I would park them opposite of each other. So this day I parked all the Chevys first (7 cars) from dark to light then 1 VW and 1 Toyota then 4 Fords from dark to light. They get a kick out of it as I am setting up the order. The picture below is a picture of those cars.  I know, silly isn't it, but it is fun.

By the way at Gastonia I had my first NC Bar B Que served by the Relief Society, it was good!
So Sister Slade and I had appointments in Sheby NC (which is about 20+ miles west of Gastonia). We had a career days to do. The pictures below are from Shelby, NC. I saw this in the side yard of a house. I thought it looked like a camp site. Everything is so green! The next two below that are of houses in the neighborhood near the Shelby chapel.

So today was a P-day and Sister Slade and I along with Sister and Elder Hunt went on a short road trip to Union Grove, NC. We had read about a cafe that was run by a family for about 60 yrs.and every Saturday they get together and play music and invite anyone who wants to join in. So the pictures below are from the Cook Shack. The first one is of a young man who brought his guitar and joined in. He was really good "pickin" his guitar. if you look close you can see his tattoos, not talking bad but it was different. The next one is of the front and inside with sister Slade and sister Hunt and Elder Hunt. Then of the group (band) together.

So it has been fun, but not without many great experiences. I'll add some later. Keep the faith

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Elder and Sister Reidhead

This is a picture of Sister Slade and I with Elder and Sister Reidhead. The Reidhead's are from Mesa Az., well actually from Heber Az. They are friends of Tim and Jamilyn. Of course the cup on the ground is Sister Slade's. This was taken in Greensboro stake center. The Reidhead's serve in Greensboro on a MLS (Member Leadership Service) mission.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Greensboro, North Carolina

Friday September 19th Sister Slade and I drove to Greensboro North Carolina, first to help at the zone conference, then for Career days. We signed up 3 candidates for on Friday. Following that on Saturday the 20th, we assisted the Stake employment specialist with a career workshop. There were 5 sisters in attendance. As I have mentioned before the workshop is designed to help people with job interview skills and resumes and such. While we were there three others showed up to be signed onto Also sister Griffin (SES) asked me to do the mock interviews. We do this by filming each candidate as they "interview" for a position. I really enjoy this in part because I am usually the interviewer, which I did for a few years as the hiring manager in the Sunset Service Unit for Union Pacific. I like thowing in a curve once in awhile. Anyway I always tell them prior to the interview ( the real one) to do re-search on the company so you know what they need or are looking for in an employee. I always mention for example at UP safety was very important. So in this case you would maybe say that you are very safety conscience or something like that. So when we started the interviews sister Slade and I went into a room to set up and she wrote on the chalkboard Safety First on the Job. The idea was that when the candidate came in they would see that and maybe mention something about safety. So each person gets interviewed and nobody says anything, after each one sister Slade adds something to the board, until she finally writes Look with 2 arrows pointing down to safety first on the job.

Befor we are all done the employment specialist says to me you should tell them about what they are interviewing for so they will have an idea what to say. I said wait till I'm done, after each had an interview I took a picture of the chalk board and asked did anyone see this, 3 said no and 1 said yes but I didn't think it was important. I said what do you think now. We all enjoyed the day, and all in all it was pretty productive. We will get the other stakes during the next month or so. We really love serving a mission and are getting into the employment part. Will write again later. Keep the faith.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Ward activity

This evening we attended a ward activity a "fiesta dinner" turned out to be some pretty good mexican dishes. I guess it would since our ward has the spanish branch in it. Anyway a fun time visiting ward members. The pictures are: Top - a shot of the group, the couple in the middle (standing is President Kitchen and Sister Kitchen) He was raised in Snowflake Az. and she was raised in Mesa Az. To the far right is one set of of Elders in the ward. Pretty good turn out. Middle -  is a picture of this adorable little girl, she was walking by me and stopped and looked at me. I asked her mom if I could take a picture and by the time she said yes the little girl walked away so her mom picked her up and said give kisses and that is what she is doing. Below is a picture of the two them again standing with Sister Brinley (left) with her son Aiden. Brother and Sister Brinley are the ward employment specialist By the way the other sister is Sister Wyeth ( I hope I spelled it correct) but I didn't get the little girls name. Anyway just a short post, we are loving the mission. Keep the faith

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Employment work

I do want to say a few words about the employment part, which we have been called to do. We are still learning the processes, but we seem to be having some success. Working with some employers we have found work for some folks. As is about everywhere not everybody who says they want to work really do, but that's not my call. We are enjoying the mission experience and I truly believe we are where we need to be, which is serving a mission, anywhere! We have already seen blessings. Thaks for all your support, whoever is reading this. Keep the faith.

Mission Tour

Today was a mission tour, this is when a general authority comes to the mission. Today our speaker was Elder and Sister Wilson of the seventy also Elder Parker (area authority).  Started at 9am till 12pm for lunch and then picked up for the afternoon session at 1pm till 4pm. It is always great to listen to the general authorities. Most of the time was spent on the Book of Mormon, which I love.
We were asked to be seated by 8:15-30am, then at 8:30 the Assistant to the President got up and gave some of the "general rules". Then they practiced going up and shaking hands with the general authority, this was only so they would be able to keep an even flow. Anyway it was enjoyable. Sister Craven was the 1st speaker her and President Craven were asked by Elder Wilson to bare their testimonies about the Book of Mormon, both gave great testimonies. I really enjoy them (Sister and President Craven). Elder and Sister Wilson both also gave great messages they sort of team taught about the Book of Mormon. Elder Wilson talked a lot about the Bof M being the greatest converter to the gospel other than the Holy Ghost, I agree. Elder Parker was very enjoyable to listen to. He teaches like a baptist preacher, this is what Sister Slade says I always do, so I really liked to listen to him. By the way he is a convert, his father was a baptist preacher and his brother is now. I would say he knows his bible. I think he is from Atlanta, he did have a accent. He would move his hands and arms and really get to preaching, I loved it. In the picture below you have 5 elders on the floor then on the 1st row sitting the 8th from the left is Elder Parker (leaning forward), then Sister Wison, Elder Wilson, President Craven and Sister Craven. That group photo is 1/4 of the missionaries that were there. They took four groups like that. Something else when the elders and sisters started to arrive they would meet up with old companions and run and hug each other, no shaking hands. Brothers and sisters don't shake hands, brothers and sisters gotta hug. Fun day. I need to post some other things, but I'll start another post for that. Keep the Faith

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Sept. 2 2014 Transfer day

Today was transfers, what an interesting day. Over 100 elders and sisters were there, some being transferred, others going home and some just starting out (1st day).For some it's reunion time, what a wonderful day all the way around. Anyway we attended a presentation given by Sister Craven (wife to President Craven), she made them feel at home and in some instances straight to the point. I told her she was just like their moms, kind, loving and authoritative.  I won't write down the gruesome details, funny as they were. But I did write some things down:
1. Today, tomorrow and forever, this is the way the mission will be.
2. Something President says to the missionaries, before you say it, or do it, think, where will this lead to..
3. Careful Vs. Casual-- Dignity and demeanor -
a, langauge/slang  keep it dignified, be careful rather than casual
b. appearance
c. maners
All of these will turn out better if you are careful rather than casual.
Anyway just a short piece to write down. The picture is of Sister Craven standing next to Sister Slade. Keep the faith

Monday, September 1, 2014

Purty ain't it

I am always telling everyone how pretty it is here, and they say send some pictures, so here are a couple. This is a road we drive to get to church, but most of the places look like this.

Below is a MCDonalds that was once an old church, at least that's what I was told.

Keep the faith

Labor Day dinner with the the elders in the ward we attend.

Sister Slade and I, once in awhile, take out either a set of elders or sisters on a night out for dinner. This evening we took the elders from the Sharon ward, which is the ward we have been assigned to attend. There are 3 elders, we asked where they wanted to go and they chose the All American Burger. We were talking about what we were going to order and I challenged either or all of them to try the "Road Star burger" which is 4 1/3 lb pattys between two buns and whatever else you put on it. Only Elder Phelps took me up on it, and he ate it plus some rings and a milkshke for dessert. They gave him a T-shirt for finishing it all. That little gal standing with him was about the bubbliest gal I've seen in awhile, cute as a button, not bigger than a corn nubbin.

Below is a group picture 2 of the 3 will transfer tomorrow. We'll be there for transfers.

Keep the faith