Monday, August 31, 2015


Longview Zone Conference with Elder Brase

Another week has gone by and I loved EVERY SECOND.  Well, almost.  It rained a whole lot.  The place where we are staying had a garage sale and we picked up on some Mormon CDS and a Mormon missionary card game.  Every day I have been checking the merchandise like a bargain bin shopper.  The rain sort of collapsed the tarp over the sale and everything is wet.  But that's the good old northwest.  At church on Sunday we had a lesson about how the TECTONIC plates are going to shift and blow the northwest out of the country.  So, naturally we have begun to store top ramen and diet Pepsi in our 72 hour kit.  What a great week we had.  Boy did we repent this week and fix some of our LAZY WAYS.  We decided to tract a whole lot this week and things really changed.  We had a whole different attitude and have really met some great people ready for the gospel.  We are teaching Emily and she wants to get baptized more than I wish GANDALF the Grey was real.  She asks us for gospel study homework and wrote us letters telling us thank you for changing her life around.  It has been cool to watch her change.  Things like this make a mission all worth it.  And to make it even better her boyfriend is a less active member that has decided to return to full activity. #GladHappyTidings.  Most of this week I have been applying Icy Hot to my lumbar area liberally.  It has helped quite a bit.  Although investigators may question my minty scent at times, the church is still true.  Great week.  Love you all.

Monday, August 24, 2015


Shelly's baptism

THIS WEEK WE HAD A BAPTISM.  One of my most favorites ever.  Shelly was already engaged in lessons when I arrived here in Kelso & I have had the honor of finishing the lessons with her and participating in the baptism.  The baptism was chaos.  But, the best kind of chaos. When everyone started arriving we had no prelude music or anything to calm the crowd.  It ended up being a full-on mingle / yell / munchkins frolicking about session until about 10 after the hour.  When the baptism commenced one of our talks fell through and we had to assign one of the other missionaries here watching the baptism to give a short talk on baptism.  When they entered the waters to be baptized we realized we neglected to teach them the correct techniques of performing the baptism ordinance... 5 minutes later we had them positioned in the correct manner.  WHEN ALL IS SAID AND DONE WHO CARES we had a baptism and I felt the spirit and the happiest feeling in my heart for this young lady.  This week I purchased a hat that has a large bass on the front and says "BASS" in large stitched lettering.  What a day that was for me. We have really had a test of faith this week with trying to manage time and manage the schedule.  With two wards we have had much to do and not enough time to do it. We felt the need to go check on a potential investigator named "Brenda" and when we arrived she seemed slightly happy to see us but not really interested in much... BUT the spirit said "ask for a referral"  and we did.  We were referred to a relative of hers that was going through a rough time.  A few days later we found extra time to go check on this young lady and it  turns out she has already been baptized and wants to be reactivated.  Her husband said he had been praying for the missionaries to show up because he really needs them right now.   What a blessing it is to be a part of this great work.  In sacrament meeting yesterday we had a DAY OF HYMNS.  Yes, that consisted of an hour of singing and belting out our most favorite latter day tunes.  Each person turned in a paper listing their favorite hymns and the bishopric randomly selected about 10 to come up in front of the congregation and bear testimony of the song.  About mid-meeting a young lady came up and said "I don’t know any hymns, but I selected this song because I just love America... (slight pause)  then energetically says " AMERICA" with the pound of a fist and scutters back to her seat. I could not contain the laughs.  How spiritual indeed.  I love my mission and I know that I am supposed to be here right now at this very moment.  Jake McFarland came to Kelso to visit some of his family.  It was awesome to see him.  He took my companion and I out to lunch and told us all about his mission.  So good to see a buddy from back home.  It was just like old times!!
Jake Mcfarland and Elder King.  Just like old times!

Monday, August 17, 2015

Being a Missionary is the Greatest Thing in the World

The Loch Ness monster (caught by Brother Bloomfelt)

It has been an exciting week again in Kelso / Castlerock are.   I will start off by saying being a missionary is the greatest thing in the world.  The first thing that happened this week was serious tracting in downtown Kelso.  We came upon a home full of people slightly under the influence making banshee cries at us and wailing and gnashing teeth. The situation seemed common but we felt like we should ask for referrals.........  These great people directed us to the neighbors whom just moved in and we sat down with all 4 of them and taught the restoration a few days later.  Really cool experience that illustrated the importance of having faith even when the situation seems hopeless.  On Tuesday President Marshall (the stake president) took our whole zone out to lunch!!  President Marshall happens to be the old bishop of the Parkers Landing ward I just came from so we had to chat about the Washougal endeavors as of late.  This trip to Wendy’s actually proved to be a fatal mistake for my day.  Something contained in a small #8 with a diet cherry vanilla coke rumbled the stomach.  I will be avoiding that menu item for the remainder of my mission.  Later that evening while trying to contain my stomach issues we taught Sister Potts (investigator) whom is married to Brother Potts ( a very active member of the ward) with our ward mission leader.  An hour and a half later I was walking out of the lesson feeling exhausted from the concentration and from the spirit!!  I said some things in that lesson I have never said in all my life and I know the spirit is guiding every step of the work here.  Throughout the next few days we fed spiders, bought tums and tried to exercise all the faith we could muster.  On Thursday we ate with the Hornbeck family and they have ice cream eating contests quite often but you're not allowed to use hands or a spoon....  Another great thing that happened was after weekly planning we went to the shell station to get a mid-day beverage for lunch and I was distracted by the good looking curved brim USA cap on the wall and I have covenanted that I will buy that by the time I leave this area & all of this day it rained.  Haven't seen rain in about a month.   A very cool thing happened this week actually.  A great family, The Vorses took us out to dinner on THEIR ANNIVERSARY... they took us out to get all you can eat prime rib from the Red Lion Hotel.  I love these Washingtonian folks and I love being a missionary.  Some of our investigators even showed up at church this week and we have been buying cinnamon cookies and cinnamon mints for one of our investigators to help her keep the word of wisdom.  We occasionally go to the Grimes home to see who is there... it is sort of an open door policy and we can usually find 2 or 3 new people every time.  A man yelled for us to come and help him.... & when we arrived we found out he had large blisters on his toes and wanted us to pop them for hi!.  How spiritual :):)  & yesterday at dinner Brother Bloomfelt caught the Loch Ness monster and offered to cook it up for us at dinner.   The Church is true, America is the best & let me know if you have any evidence or insights on sasquatch finding.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Kelso and Castlerock Magic

Saying Good-bye to Washougal with Elder Johansen

Hello Longview and new companion Elder Briggs


 I don't even know how to describe how great this new land/area/place of proselyting is.  Already fallin in love with the members, people, restaurants and scenery around here.  There just so happens to be a RED LOBSTER in my actual area.  I have already planned the days I will be fine dining @ that great establishment... My new companion Elder Briggs hails from the area of Dylan, Montana (or somewhere around there) & Elder Briggs is really awesome.  He was roping the rocking chair  outside a couple nights ago around 10'oclock at night.  Just had to relieve some stress and bring the ropes out.  We have been recruited to chop lumber twice this week already and Elder Briggs just gets a lil spark in his eye when it comes to work like that. Currently he is roping a chair in the stake center.  I just love that guy.  We had a great week this week and all week I felt a little bit like Peter when he went out to walk on water and find Christ.  Most of my mission has been just greenie fire so far and now I have been given more responsibility and a few little tides have come in... and I took my eye off Christ for a day or two!! It's easy to do that.   But sinking in the water is the worst feeling.  As I have turned my head, thoughts, and eyes back to Christ it feels like I have been strengthened ten-fold. Kind like a little pre-workout or something and now I am getting jacked in the gospel.  We have been teaching a lady named Shelly who will be baptized on the 22nd and the lessons with her have been amazing.  Spiritually intense sounds like polar opposites but it HAPPENS.  When we walk out of the lesson we have to sit in the car for a few minutes and review what just happened.  We teach her at a member’s home and the members are named the GRIMES family.  Each time we have returned they have had a new investigator in the home for us to teach. PEOPLE are so humble.  So so so very humble here in Kelso and Castlerock Ward as well.  Two sessions of church on Sunday was awesome as well. Really used to having a Pepsi about mid day on Sunday but THOSE DAYS ARE LONG GONE.  Keeping that Sabbath Day holy now.   Even though sometimes I am a little tired.  Okay, big email is concluding.  I am nicknamed the Relief Society President because my district is all sisters except my companion.  These sisters rock though, and they are teaching like crazy.  Out-working me and Elder Briggs most of the time...

Monday, August 3, 2015

Bye Bye Washougal

Surveying the Columbia River while hiking.

Yet another week passes by and I quite enjoyed it.  This week we taught many lessons and at least two of our investigators told us that they were going to "kick satan’s A"  which provides a very spiritual experience.  We have been playing risk with the other elders in our apartment every night and one of the Elders (whom I will not name) has been very frustrated because of our secret combinations we have formed against him.  Unfortunately I am leaving the Washougal area as well I have received a call to serve in the Longview area as a district leader and I will raise my district up to be fellow warriors of the shire.  Elder Johansen has been left in the Parkers Landing area finishing training with another Elder whom has to finish training as well.  This week we had a number of swell things happen one of which was a lesson with Brother Gorman Grey in his backyard while it was 105 degrees outside.  Gorman sat on a cardboard box which broke in the middle of our lesson when the spirit was certainly at its strongest. Gorman is a good man but refuses to listen to the words which we speak.  Real cool story just real quick.  We taught a lesson @ the church and we ended really early... so we were kind of wondering what the heck to do next because the Lord must have something in store... as we leave the church Brother Don Cox pulls up saing that he " just had a feeling someone was at the church and he wanted to play the piano so he came down "  We started talking with Don and taught him a lesson while he soothed us with the Jazz sounds of the south.  Today I bought a ten dollar backpack from Ross which was definitely a highlight of the week and we had a lesson with a man named Dustin. Who doesn't really like me... or so I thought... somehow we had an incredible lesson and he was sad to hear I was leaving and it quite made my day he even wanted a hug.  One investigator that likes the gospel and needs it is worth 203958409427580498 doors being shut.  The church is true my friends.  LOVE YOU ALL.