Thursday, February 28, 2013

This evening we went back out to visit the Gonzales family to see how they are doing, and to read with them from the Book of Mormon and to introduce to them the Plan of Salvation. We began the evening by reading from the Title Page and then from the 1st chapter of 1 Nephi. We discussed several of the verses in depth and then read the entire chapter. At the conclusion, we committed them to continue reading on their own, hopefully they will do so. At that point, we told them that the next time we come over we will discuss with them the 3 great questions of life: Where did I come from, did I live before I came to this earth? 2. What is my purpose here on earth. 3. What will happen after I die, is that the end? Hopefully, they will think about and ponder upon these questions.

Afterward, we went to see sister Budge, however, we did not find her at home. So we went down to see Sister Mitton and find out how she is doing. We had a nice visit with her, then gave her a blessing and off we went.

Elder Gowans then treated Sister Gowans to Tutti-Frutti.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

This morning we left the apartment at 0600 to drive out to Harlem to pick up two Sister Missionaries and drive them out to Lexington, SC for a 3 zone conference with Elder Nash of the 1st Quorum of the Seventy. We had a wonderful conference with him. During the morning we heard from President and Sister Holm, 3 missionaries, Sister Nash and then Elder Nash. He put out questions and then had the young missionaries answer them. After lunch we gathered back together and he then answered questions that the missionaries put to him on a wide range of missionary topics.

Here are some photos taken at our conference with Elder Nash during our lunch break.

 Elder Lavulo

 The Berrys

 Elder and Sister Nash and President and Sister Holm
Elders Dixon, Lavulo and Tonga

This evening we went out to meet with the Rockhill family. They came out to church once or twice during the fall, since then we have not seen them since. We have met with them in their home from time to time; he finally confided in us that his wife does not feel comfortable in coming to church because she knows nothing about it, even though she has been a member all her life. So, he asked us to come and teach her; that is what we began tonight. We taught her about the restoration of the gospel and challenged her to read the Book of Mormon and Pray.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The fantastic news for the day is that George Dereoun is going to be baptized on the 9th of March. He asked this evening if he could be baptized on Thursday! He is so anxious and ready. After our meetings this evening we drove out to pick up the young Elders to take them up to George's apartment. When they got in the car, we asked them what we were going to discuss this evening with him. They did not know, the Spirit had not made it known to them. After arriving at George's and after a few minutes of small talk and after the opening prayer, we sat and looked at each other for about 5 seconds and George speaks up and says that he will go first. So he proceeds to tell us about his anger issues that really concern him and whether or not he could be baptized having these issues, he went on for several minutes talking about them. Then we all shared some thoughts for a few minutes. We then asked him where he was in his reading of the Book of Mormon; he stated he hadn't read since Sunday, but he had read up to 2 Nephi 4. At that point the Spirit whispered, "The Psalm of Nephi". We said that would be perfect, this chapter will really help you. So we all read together the 4th chapter; it was obvious that it touched him, he truly felt the Spirit of the Book and of Nephi's doubts about himself and then his confidence in the Lord. We talked about it for a few more minutes and then read the final verses, Nephi's prayer. Again, George was truly touched. At that point we concluded the lesson and this is when he asked to be baptized on Thursday. Reluctantly, we asked him to wait until the following weekend so we could get everything ready for him. He immediately got up and wrote it on his calendar. Our entire experience with George has been wonderful!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Today was a very typical Monday. We started off the day at the Hospital doing our Red Cross service. We learned that one of the Red Cross Volunteers in the office is moving to Alaska soon. She simply decided to take a dare, put some excitement in her life, so off she will go. She has no job, no place to live, knows no one there; what an adventure. We wish her the best.

This afternoon, Elder Gowans worked on Friday's institute lesson, it will cover Section 20, the organization of the Church. It should be quite an interesting lesson; we look forward to it.

We then attended Family Home Evening. We had a good turn out. We have two students who try to attend everything they can. It is fun to have them around. Brother Palmer is a life long member, but had never received the priesthood, he has been working on that for the past two  months and will most likely be ordained on Sunday. He is very excited and even more excited about going to the Temple with us next month.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

We had a wonderful turnout today at our Servicemen's Branch. We counted 16 soldiers in attendance, which is great. We love these young men and will do all that we can to help them grow in faith and activity.

This evening we went out to visit one of our military families. The husband separated from the Army, but his wife is still active duty and very pregnant; she is 8 months along. While there he asked us to explain the beginnings of the church to his wife; we told them we would be happy to. We talked about our Heavenly Father, prophets, Joseph Smith, and the coming forth of the Book of Mormon. The entire evening was wonderful, a pleasant, comfortable Spirit was present with us. We gave her a copy of the Book of Mormon, and a copy of Elder Gowans' book, too. She requested a priesthood blessing, so we gave her that just before we left.

Afterward we went to visit the Edmundson family. He just returned from deployment as his wife began premature labor about 2 or 3 weeks ago. It was good to see them and see that she is doing well. It was their lawn that Elder Gowans mowed all summer long.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

This morning we took President and Sister Estep and Brother Marzof to visit our AIT students. We found several and found out that several were in their Saturday Financial briefing that they must attend sometime after arrival and before graduation. It was nice to for the Branch Presidency to see what we do and how we go about visiting these young men and women. In the last 3 weeks, we have had 3 new female soldiers arrive.

This afternoon we took the Anthonys with us to the Battle of Aiken, a battle that took place back during the Civil War. Apparently Augusta was prepared for the arrival of the Yankees, so the Yankees made a detour around the City and the Confederates caught up with them in Aiken, so a battle commenced.

This evening we attended our monthly FRG, it was quite a success. We had about 70 people show up. It was a potluck and many sisters really out did themselves.

Here are some photos from the Battle of Aiken: These photos are of the Battle Field

 The Soldier's Camps

The Battle!

 The Fog of War

The Anthonys: Marshall and Aimee