Monday, July 2, 2012

Happy Canada Day

Elder Galbraith & Sis. Poulton, who worked in the office.  She left 10 days ago to return to Boise.

I'm sitting here at the computer next to the fan because it is so muggy here. My hands are balmy and sweaty and I'm inside. Sheesh. We are expecting thunderstorms soon and it has been really muggy lately. I kind of like it because I have never experienced humidity to this extreme before but on the other hand....well, it's hot. It was 33C the past few days, and with a lot of humidity, that is a lot of heat. So...that's about 92F, and in February, just over 4 months ago I was in  -51F....still getting used to that.

This has been one weird week. Need I say more? Pres. Thomas comes in, Pres. Paulson leaves. Busy schedule just got busier. Pres. Thomas is an outdoor-loving guy who is more relaxed than President Paulson on some measures. It will take some getting used to. Elder Deeble and I got Pres. Thomas's new ride all nice and shiny for him (2012 Traverse). Looks good. The Paulsons took the Thomases around Winnipeg on Thursday as we got things ready back in the Office for them. While out with the Thomas', Pres. Paulson saw a plane in the air and did the unthinkable and asked the piercing question that every new missionary gets asked: "Pres. Thomas, how far away is that plane?"  Pres. Thomas: "Oh, maybe a mile or 2 in the air". Pres. Paulson: "Try 3 years." Haha, I was laughing so hard when I heard he did that. Elder Woods, my trainer, asked me that my first week or 2 in the field...

Looks like I'm heading to Saskatchewan a little earlier than planned. Pres. Thomas wanted to go and visit the missionaries in SK to see their faces as soon as possible. I advised against it due to time and that we are already going out for Zone Conference in 2 weeks, but after a night to sleep on it, Pres. Thomas said he felt like he needed to go. When the Lord's anointed speaks, I go and do, no questions asked. He is the inspired one and I can chip in my 2 cents. So I am heading out to SK on Friday and will arrange for meetings in Regina and Saskatoon on Saturday, and will attend a family ward in Regina on Sunday, then drive partway back to Brandon, MB and do a baptismal interview at 5pm, then drive the rest of the way home that night. That is AFTER ZLC Wednesday and Thursday this week, and the following week is Zone Conference and interviews in Manitoba which will take Tuesday through Thursday. Friday I exchange with an area in the northeastern part of Winnipeg and travel to Kenora that night and exchange in Kenora for most of Saturday and return to Winnipeg that night. The next week we head out to SK again, this time exchanging, prepping everything so President can do interviews in Saskatoon Tuesday and Wednesday, Zone Conference Thursday and exchanges and travel back to Winnipeg Saturday night. The following week is packed with Pres. Thomas' first Transfer Planning (a 3 or 4 day ordeal) and that nearly takes me to the end of July. I will assist in training the new assistant to replace me until the final hour in Canada. Sound busy enough? I didn't include all the exchanges I will be doing here or the work in my own area. I am so busy that I had to cancel an exchange down to I-Falls today. Bummer.

I found out yesterday that missions are completely changing a few ways we do missionary work. It causes a little stress for Elder Deeble and I because we don't know everything that is happening or when it is happening. I thought some of these changes would be weeks down the road, but I just found out they are taking effect immediately, so it is causing some juggling on our part. I can't be too specific yet, but I can quote Pres. Thomas who is quoting the brethren who spoke to them at the MTC: "We can expect major changes in missionary work and major miracles in the next 6 months." They are starting now. Are you excited? Who knows what will happen...I do know one thing: the Church is embracing technology like never before and that the restored gospel is in every country in the world, meaning that there are members in every country in the world right now.

Our investigators....well we finally met with Jessica again and she is trudging along. She is becoming somewhat noncommittal. Kelly called us on Tuesday and had to reschedule to this week. I have not had much time to work my area to be honest.

Dad made me laugh a lot this email. "I'm a hero" was perfect (I solved an electrical problem for a lady this morning). But, most of all, I loved hearing about Dad's new calling: ward missionary. Of course it is my fault, but I am happy for you! (He sent me one of his name tags for Fathers' Day, and said he hoped I could use it someday). It was a good thing you said to stop snickering because I was doing a whole lot of that! Ironically I was talking with another missionary yesterday about how important ward missionaries are. Without knowing what they do at all, I used to think that ward missionaries were a cop-out calling. FAR FROM IT. They can help so much! As the Book of Mormon teaches, "when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God." From a missionary's viewpoint, I find it helpful when ward missionaries come to Ward Missionary Correlation (meeting with Ward Mission Leader and missionaries and ward missionaries). They provide some input that helps and I feel it helps them know how to better understand how to help out. I'm excited for you! You will be given even more opportunities to share the gospel, more than ever before! You have that nametag...just kidding, don't use that. Ward missionaries don't use nametags. Haha, word must have gotten around that you received a nametag. On a serious note, "there is no growing in comfort zones and there is no comfort in growing zones". I know that you will do well. Trust in God and go and do. I recommend including PMG in your daily studies of the scriptures. What an opportunity you have!

That is all that is on my mind other than I played dodgeball today at p-day activity. I love dodgeball.

Love you all,

Elder Galbraith

 Pres. & Sis. Paulson as they departed.

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