Today was a great day! This morning we went up to Post to meet our students as usual. We went to the company where three LDS students live. We were waiting in the CQ area when we saw one of our students walk by; we didn't get a chance to pull him aside, but then he walked by a minute or two later and we pulled him aside and had a chance to visit with him for a moment. We wished him a Merry Christmas and ensured that he was going to be able to go home for Christmas, he said he was and then he went on his way to his morning duties. We then were looking for another fellow when we saw a fellow walk by and on the back of his camel back we saw his name; we reached out for him and said, "Are you brother Hart?" He said he was. We had an opportunity to visit with him too. We always invite them out to church; and remind them of the time and place. The last fellow would not come down out of his room. He said he was packing, which was fine, at least we knew he was going home too.
We then went over to another company to find another individual whom we had met for just a moment. We found him too and had a nice visit with him. He would be traveling home and he also said he would come out to church. We hope all these young men keep their word.
We were also able to visit with Brother Downs for a moment and Sister Ferre. Then we headed over to the 73 Ord BTL. We were looking for a brother Thompson, who we had not yet met. We found out he was checked out to the PX; so we hopped in the car and headed that way. We had a feeling that we would find him. After looking around for a few minutes two men walked by and we noticed his name take; all we could see was 'mpson'. We knew that must be him. In the PX we cannot ware our name tags. So Elder Gowans went up to him and said, "Are you Brother Thompson?" He answer, "I'm a brother Thompson." Elder Gowans then said, "I"m Elder Gowans." We had a nice visit with him and got acquainted. He is different than the normal troops. He is 35 years old. We look forward to getting to know all these knew troops better. Heavenly Father certainly helped us meet those who we wanted to meet today and others, who needed our visit too.
This afternoon we drove out to Aiken, SC. We had an appointment with a family with the last name of Ahlers. A member of the High Council and his family live out that way too and invited us to lunch. He grilled hamburgers and they were delicious! We had a real nice lunch with them and then drove over to the Ahler family. We arrived at their home just before they did. They had been out and left a note on their door, but we didn't think it was for us. Can you believe this, it said, "Elder Dougal"! I cannot believe that they mistook our name Gowans, for Dougal and that name being the name of our son in law and daughter. They were very friendly and cordial. We learned that he is indeed deploying in February time frame with his Nation Guard unit. She is expecting a baby and will deliver in April. We tried to impress on them that they could call on us at any time and we would do our best to do all that we could to help. After our visit with them we drove over to two more families and just had a short visit with them, giving them a Christmas card, and wishing them a Merry Christmas. Both those families were prior military, but we wanted to drop in on them, introduce ourselves and let them know that we were there in case they ever needed our assistance.
We love our work and are so grateful that Heavenly Father guides us to those who need our ministry.