Monday, November 4, 2013

Week 18 - Winter Wonderland

Hello All!

    I hope you're all having a fantastic time!  It sounds like the weather down in Sunny St. George is just beautiful, so that's nice. Haha, it's beautiful here as well, just a little colder. ;)  Really, though, the weather is beautiful!  We got plenty of snow and ice last Sunday, and then the rest of the week was really pleasant- which gave the kids a really nice Halloween- and then the snow just piled down on us again yesterday.  Good stuff!
    The weather isn't nearly as important as the awesome things that are happening up here in Raymond, Alberta, though!  The week started out a little rough with a lot of appointments falling through, but we've been blessed in the last few days to have been able to find a couple of the people our Heavenly Father has been preparing and get some great things moving here in this tiny town.
    One of our new investigators this week was well-known to us already.  Her name is Sam; Meagan, Caelin, and Ethan's little sister.  She just turned nine recently, and we met with her for the first time this week.  She's a great little girl, and she absolutely loves the church!  She's been going to church practically every week with her aunt, and loves to go to primary as well.  We just continue to hope that her father's heart will be softened, and that they'll all be able to stay strong despite this challenge that they are being made to go through.  There's no way we're giving up on them, though.  Even if it does take years; they've got way too much potential for that. (As do we all.)
    We also started teaching another nine year-old last night.  His name is Ryan, and though we were on splits, and I didn't get to be at the lesson, I've met him before, and he's such a sweet little kid.  I believe his family is somewhat less-active, so he hasn't been baptized yet, but I'm sure it won't be long before he is.  One of his biggest heroes is his neighbor, Brother Wihnan, who was just called as the High Priest Group Leader in one of our wards, and I'm sure he'll be the one baptizing Ryan in a couple of weeks.
    Joe continues to do well.  I wish he could get baptized right now, just because I know that being baptized and having the Holy Ghost with him will help him so much in his continuing progression; he's really grown and changed a lot since he's been here in Raymond.  It's alright, though, March 2nd is going to be a very good day for him. :)
And of course, there was Shaidon's baptism this Saturday! (Hooray!)  It was wonderful, and a lot of his family was there to support him, many of whom are less-active.  I was privileged enough to be able to perform the actual ordinance (my very first baptism, and I didn't mess up!), and his grandfather, who is a really great man, confirmed him.  It was a really beautiful blessing, and I really hope that Shaidon's example will have a powerful impact on his family.
    This week, I had the opportunity to read a talk by Elder Orson F. Whitney on called "Built upon the Rock".  In it, he said something that really stood out to me:

 "Whatever is done by this Church is because God, speaking from heaven in our day, has commanded this Church to do it. … That is the constitution of the Church of Christ."  How true is that!  People, including us, at times, have concerns about the church.  We look at some of the differences that make us so peculiar, and the things we do or don't do that set us apart so much from the world, and we often wonder about them.  Some of those things may even be unsettling to us.  That is totally normal, and I've done it myself, but we don't need to worry or doubt.  This is Christ's church. He leads it through his apostles and prophets.  He will not lead us astray.  After all, He is the Lord, our Good Shepherd.  We most certainly are not. 
    I love you all so much!  Have a fantastic week!  Good luck to the cast and crew of "Peter Pan" with all of your performances this week!  I'm sure you'll be awesome.  Be good!  Have fun!

Elder Hafen

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