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Friday, January 21, 2011

From Elder A. Goff - "My week of weeks"

Hey Family,

Boy do I have a story for you…well maybe a couple of stories. Ok…I have like 10 stories for you. Starting with the Newby family. The Newby family has a couple of foster children that have been coming to church with them since early November. Their names are Dana and Kiesha. Dana has even been going to seminary. Dana is 15 and Kiesha is 14, and they really want to learn. We had dinner and a lesson with the Newby’s on Monday and it went really well. We talked mostly about faith and what it takes to help our faith grow. Relating it of course to a seed and comparing to Alma 32. I think it helped them to understand what it is they are feeling. They can feel their faith becoming a plant, instead of just a seed. So that has been really neat. We met with them again on Saturday and taught them about the Restoration and even had some time to watch the restoration video with them. We asked them at the end of our lesson if when they know the church is true if they would be baptized and they said yes. So that’s a happy story.

We spent Tuesday in Bozeman for training. It went really well. Facebook is all working out better than we had expected. There are a few Elders and Sisters who are new to it and are doing well. Our average lessons per week have gone up since we introduced the new online proselyting. They are even recorded separately. The lessons that we teach offline are at 17.84 lessons on average per companionship. We are really excited to see the improvement. So not only are we teaching 17.84 lessons per companionship on average a week, but we have additional lessons that we teach online that we count separately. Hopefully that makes sense.

We also went to the far east in the mission; Glendive, MT. After our meeting there we went on team ups with the Zone Leaders and got to go to the only town our mission covers in North Dakota called Beach, ND. It was pretty cool. So I have been to all 3 states that our mission covers. :) Woo Hoo!

On Saturday before our appointment with the Newby’s we had some time and tried to contact a few former investigators. After our third former with no answer we decided to tract the rest of the apartments next to this former investigator. The first door we knocked on right next door was a man named Aaron. We was a little perplexed and didn’t really know what to think about 2 fellas with white shirts and ties on, but he came out on his porch and talked to us for a good amount of time and eventually invited us is. We taught him a little about God and Jesus Christ. HE never grew up going to church and doesn’t have a very good understanding of who God is, or even if there is a God I guess. So we were able to teach him a little about it. Before we left we set up another appointment for the following day. Elder Heywood and I went with a member, Weston Merrell, to go see Aaron on Sunday. We talked about Jesus Christ and what Faith means. We watched the Finding Faith in Jesus Christ DVD with him and he was able to learn a lot more about what Christ did. IT WAS AWESOME!!! Then to add to that… I have another story.

So Gina Butterfield in Worland has had a baptismal date for January 27th. I think I had all ready told you all that. She is doing so well and is keeping every commitment that Elder House and I gave her and many more after I left. Well I got a call last night from Elder House and Elder Rogers. They had just finished a lesson with her and wanted to call and ask me if I could be in Worland on January 27th to baptize Gina Butterfield!!!!! AHH!!!! I felt like crying when they told me. Every time I think about it I still get butterflies. My entire mission I have wanted to have that opportunity. To experience what it’s like. I have been able to be a part of people being baptized, but I have never personally been in the water and baptized someone. And to baptize her!!! I’m so happy! We go to Worland tonight and have our meeting tomorrow, and they set up an appointment with her so I can teach her again too. :) Mark January 27th on your calendar… It will be one of my happiest. I will finally get to do it. Elder House asked her how she would like it if I was able to come back and baptize her and she thought that was a great idea. So that makes me very happy. I only got to teach her a couple of times, and yet she wants me to baptize her. :)

So those are my amazing stories for this week. :) I would also like to give props to Tiff for being a missionary to the young lady she is working with. Good job sis. Practice makes it easier. :)

I was sad to hear about Brent Thurston passing away. What a great man and family. I was never super close to him, but I always looked up to him, and to Tyler. They are all in my prayers. I hope they are all doing all right. Let them know they are on my mind please. I love you all.

Love, Elder Austin Gene Goff

Current Area: Billings, Montana
Current Companion: Elder Heywood

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