Jared and Elder Williams at transfers on August 25th.
Good Morning/Afternoon everyone,
Well I have some massive news for everyone. For a while now we have been trying to find another place to live. Our members granddaughters have been staying with them and we can't live with anyone who has young girls living at home. There is literally no one in the ward who can house the missionaries. We have asked everyone. We have been searching for apartments, but the only ones they have are for low income requirements or they are renting out houses. On Thursday President Greer called me and said that he wanted to talk. He said that he has been working with the Stake President in Walla Walla trying to figure this out and they have decided that the only thing that they can do is to pull the missionaries out of Dayton. I was devastated! He said that we would leave at transfers and the Walla Walla missionaries would get our car and take over the area. They would come out probably only 1 or 2 times a week and come to church probably only once a month. That was a major bummer for Elder Williams and I. We have found so many new people to teach right now. This last week we also had an amazing lesson with James and Danika and we set a baptismal date for them on September 11th. I will talk more about that later though. President Greer said that he has been really proud of all the work that we are doing. He then said that he wanted me to be a Zone Leader in the Vancouver West Zone. And that took me by surprise. All I could say was, "A Zone Leader?" He said yes and asked if I would accept the calling. I told him that I sure would. I did not think that would happen. Usually missionaries are District Leaders for a few months before they become a Zone Leader. I am very excited but super nervous at the same time. My new companions name is Elder Prowlitt. He actually served in the Ukraine, but had to come to the states for some reason. He has been serving in this mission for a little over 6 months. Everyone says that he is amazing. President Greer said that he expects a lot out of us. I believe Elder Prowlitt goes home soon which means that he will probably train me to be a zone leader for the next 1 or 2 transfers and then I would take over the area and become the senior zone leader after that. I seriously don't feel ready for this right now, but I guess Heavenly Father thinks I am. Without trials we can't grow right. I think I will be doing a lot of growing the next few months haha. I have been told that I will be over 6 sister missionaries. That will be different. I haven't really even served around sisters and now I am going to be a zone leader over 6 of them. I'm not sure how many elders are in our zone either. I figure there will be around maybe 14-16 missionaries in our zone. I will find out for sure tomorrow. And I am going to the big city of Vancouver. People have been showing me pictures and I had no idea that it was that big. I guess its a suburb of Portland. So I will be around a lot of people. I think there is a lot of work to be done over there. Wish me luck everyone and keep me in your prayers. I am going to need it.
Well with the sad news that the area is closing down we have been doing a lot of preparations so that the Walla Walla missionaries can take it over. We have done a lot of updating and paper work. Packing has been horrible. I sent a small package home with some of my old letters and my jazz hoop. I have never played with it so I figure I'd just send it home. For our last Sunday we wanted it to be the best Sunday ever. We invited James and Danika to church and we picked them up. We also had Ashley and Anthony Razzolini come (John Janovichs daughter and son-in-law/Trisha Razzolini's cousin). Did I tell you guys that we have been teaching them too? It has been going really well with them. John was a church by himself on Sunday because his wife was feeling sick. The Razzolini's came in late and they sat by John. He got the most surprised and happy look on his face. It was so great to see that. So they all came to church and it was perfect because it was the Primary Program. The ward has been so sad lately since they heard we were leaving. We have been going around saying goodbye to everyone. I literally love everyone here. It has been great serving here. I have gained so much experience and so much knowledge. I have gotten to know everyone in the ward and almost the whole town.
Well like I said I would tell you about James and Danika. We went over there with our ward mission leader and had a lesson with them. We talked to them about the plan of salvation. I was pleading to Heavenly Father that I would know what to say to them. And then I had something come to me. I explained that we are on this earth to learn and progress. We are separated from our Heavenly Father's Presence. I then said, "James and Danika, How do you think Heavenly Father feels that we are no longer with him? Have you ever thought about that?" They both replied no, but then they started to focus. They were really starting to think. We talked about how we are separated from God, but he loves us so much he has provided so many ways for us to get back to him. We then talked about the Atonement and Baptism. We then asked James how he feels about the plan that Heavenly Father has provided for them. He said, "It is the greatest plan I have ever heard." We then talked about how even Jesus Christ was baptized and we asked if they would follow His example. They said yes. Danika was all teary eyed and she said, "We'll be to church on Sunday." It was so great. They came to church and enjoyed it. I hope that they can continue to progress after we leave.
Saying goodbye to everyone has been really rough. We stopped by the Janovich's. Their whole family was there to see us. We talked to them for a while and then we had to go. Sister Janovich gave me the biggest hug as she always does and she said, "If we get married in the Temple in a year, will you come back for it." I told her that not "if" but "when" they do I will definitely be there. They are so great. That family is truly amazing. Last night we met up with the whole Huxoll family, Caysie, Lorns, and a few of the Huxoll's friends. We went to the park to see Hank skate and then we said goodbye to everyone. Caysie was just crying. I felt so bad for her. I hope that she can realize what she needs in her life. We said goodbye to the Huxoll's and that was heartbreak #2. We went and said goodbye to Trisha and Destiny Razzolini. They have changed so much in the past couple of months too. They are doing so well. We took pics with them and left. Heartbreak #3. Then last night we went over to Jim Bob and Laurel Bloomfields place. We talked to them for a long time. They gave us a pamphlet for Bloomfield Beef to remember them by. As we left big Jim Bob gave me the strongest hand shake and rapped his arm around me. I went to give Laurel a hand shake and she just hugged me. Ah killer. We left there house. Heartbreak # 4. It has been so hard. I literally haven't felt this way since I left home and had to say goodbye to the family. I was searching the scriptures and found these. It describes exactly how I feel. Alma 26: 15-16 and Alma 29:17. I have been thinking about that a lot lately. It will be a great day.
Well I love you all. Take care and have a wonderful week. I will talk to you next week and give you all the new things that are happening right now.
Elder Jared Garrick