Tuesday, October 9, 2012

General Conference like Christmas

Hello Family!
I hope all is well.  Hopefully everyone enjoyed General Conference as much as I did! I felt like a little kid on Christmas Eve the whole time.  The night before I couldn't sleep and I was up early and really excited all Saturday morning.  I wish I could have been this excited about it growing up too.
This week went really well!  The first two days we were on exchanges and so they were really interesting.  The first night we had 6 people in an apartment and only 5 places to sleep so I slept on the floor so I would get "the real missionary experience."  It wasn't bad at all.  The next night I was in "The Wilton House" which was completely different.  Wilton is a really nice area that is kind of the equivalent of "Royal Pines" in Black Forest so it's really nice.  The missionaries that work out there live in the guest house of a rich old lady.  I was on exchanges with the Zone Leaders but they are with another companionship in the zone for 10 days because one of the missionaries is having hand surgery and left for a few weeks.  It was really nice.  I had quite the opposite experience from the night before where I slept on a nice bed with memory foam and it was great (:    When we woke up in the morning we were in the middle of nowhere and the sun was shining and it was a beautiful morning and just awesome altogether.  We had some really cool experiences that day.  We were in a tri-panionship with one elder from Wilton and Shelton areas, one Zone Leader covering Young Single Adult and an Elk Grove Ward, and then me in the Spanish ward.  The first appointment that we had was for the Shelton area and instead of meeting an 18 y/o guy named Oleg we found his 16 y/o brother who was also really interested in what we shared.  It was really interesting because all 3 of us like to talk so we had to figure out how to take turns in that lesson.  Afterwards we went to visit a house where a member had just moved from and we wanted to see who had moved in.  It turned out to be a Spanish family that had just came up from Los Angeles and so I taught them and they were really nice as well.  Then we went to visit a less active member in the Elk Grove ward.  We asked him if we could teach him a practice lesson just to help us out.  He said that would be fine and gave us a couple of days to come back.  As we were walking away Elder Muir turned around and asked him if any of his neighbors might be interested in listening to us as well.  We ended up talking a lot more and he invited us in to sit and talk.  We found out that no-one in his family was a member of our church because the family we were looking for had moved away.  They were really nice and really respected what we do and wanted to learn more.  At first we thought they were members and we ended up finding a really interested family to teach.
Later in the night Elder Rivera and I went out to visit President Martinez, the second counselor in our mission presidency.  We are planning a really big activity for all the Spanish wards in the Sacramento area at the temple so we were meeting with him and his wife to eat and talk about plans.  It was really cool.  He and his wife are really nice and it was good to get to know them.  They asked me about what I was going to school for and what I wanted to be later in life and they thought I had some really good plans.  They told me I should consider being a lawyer or a politician because I guess I'm really good at talking.  We were at a Chinese restaurant and the fortune I got said "You will win success in whatever calling you adopt".  I thought that was pretty cool considering the conversation we had and so I'm hoping there's more than just coincidence to these fortune cookies (:
There wasn't a whole lot more that happened this week but it was a really great week.  General Conference was amazing.  I learned so much and took so many notes.  I can't wait to get the Ensign when it comes out and read them again.  There were lots of things said that were answers to my prayers.  I really loved Elder Holland's talk as well! It was great.  I was also very surprised to get the news about lowering the age for missionaries but that is perfect.  I hope that qualifies a lot of new missionaries for the service! Now the Elders can leave right after high school without too much time to make mistakes in college and girls can't use the excuse "I'll go if I haven't found the right guy to marry by then" ha ha.  I'm really excited to see a lot of sister missionaries in the mission because they are some of the best workers I've ever seen.  They bring a great spirit to the whole mission and people are a lot more willing to open their doors to sisters than they are to us.  I can't wait to get the news of friends and family who make the decision to serve missions soon! The mission is really the greatest thing in the world and there is no greater blessing or a better place that any young person around the age of 18 or 19 could be.
Love you all, hope all is well!
Les Quiero!
-Elder Gaskill

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