Cody portrait

Cody portrait

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

"Blessed with abundance here in Chester"

Hello Family! 
First off, Rangers go back to back?  I'm telling you it is the genius of Ron Washington... The man is a master mind!  Haha! 
Its also interesting to here about Mitt Romney. Nobody over here seems to bother, but that is good news!
We currently have 6 people dated for baptism, (Lorna, Nicky and Mathew, Richard and Bianca, and Barbara Lawson) and what a miracle that is! We are being blessed in abundance here in Chester! Every week is a full week of teaching!
Lorna is doing marvelous. She has had a setback this week by spraining her ankle.  So we have only been able to see her twice. 
On Sunday morning we didn’t know whether to expect her at church or not. But as she always does, she amazed us by coming to church and fighting through the pain. Although she won't tell you that she acknowledges that the Lord blessed her to be able to attend.  
Our lessons with her this week were incredible! You would not believe how great she is! We start off the lesson by following up on her Book of Mormon reading and she pulls out a pad of paper to review her notes/questions. I might add that these notes were over all of 2 Nephi, including the Isaiah chapters. She loved the Isaiah chapters. While going through the questions she would continually express the joy that the reading has been to her. And even said, “Its sad that there are people that wont read it! As Nephi says, its plain, filled with plainness... ah! It just makes everything clear!” …Amen Lorna, amen!
We then went over her notes on 2 Nephi 33. This was a chapter that she was really excited about. She said that it was the chapter that had hit her the hardest. And while discussing, she paused for a second and then bore down in pure testimony, “I know that this is truth. ” She spoke with great emotion and you could tell that it had really hit her. “This is the chapter that has done it for me” she said with tears.
It was quite the experience to be apart of and one that I will always remember. That is what we call conversion folks. She had asked the Lord in prayer, and through her diligence and faithfulness received a confirmation through reading the scriptures. That is what this work is all about!         
Because we have Stake Conference next week, she will be baptised in two weeks. 
Oh, and in the second lesson we watched “Prophet of the Restoration” and afterwards  bore testimony of the Prophet Joseph Smith. Every lesson we teach her is so rewarding!
Nicky is doing very well. She has a completely different personality than Lorna. Nicky is quite, shy and reserved. And with her not having a background in religion is progressing at a slower rate.  But she and her two kids (We taught her daughter Catherine this week) are still coming to church every week and keeping commitments. She also is quite the pastry chef. Honestly, about every time we come we leave with a cake in our hands. She is so great!
Richard and Bianca continue to do very well. They have cut off smoking for good! Bianca has gone from 30 a day to zero! How great is that? And she feels a lot better for it. The only thing we are struggling with with them is when are they going to get married.  Because their family has to come down from Scotland, and they can't do that till January.  So while they are working that out we continue to teach them 3-4 times a week. We also are working on getting them integrated more into the ward. As they are quite reserved. We want them to come and stay in the ward and that is why integration into the ward is so crucial!
Barbara Lawson is also getting on well. We have been re-emphasizing the restoration with her lately as she is catching on well, we think. She is such a nice old woman but sometimes can struggle with the fact of one true church. To help her we have used many analogies and scriptures from the Bible and Book of Mormon. It seems to be working, as she came to church this week and loved it. Teaching an older woman is something that is new to me, as it is a first on my mission. It has made me become more versatile in how I teach because I know that I can't teach an older woman the same I do to a college student. 
Speaking of college students, we were able to teach a room full last night.  We set up an appointment with two of the girls, and then ended up teaching the entire house. It was a really good lesson. Only one of the girls had a faith in God so we centered most of the lesson upon how a belief in Christ benefits us. They had great questions and caught on pretty quick. We also found out that one of the girls is a good friend of a member in the Liverpool ward. She used to go to church with her when they were younger. Wow! 
We will see them again Wednesday!
Chester University is now in full attendance, and we are definitely seeing the fruits of it.
I don’t know if I have told you much about Elder Thomas, the missionary that Elder Hopper is training. They are the Chester B missionaries and live in our flat. Well I was able to go on an exchange with Elder Thomas for two days, and wow what a person he is. 
His story starts a couple years ago where he kicked the game winning shot against the Real Madrid 19 and under team. Yes, Real of the best teams in the world's youth team.  Elder Thomas is a star athlete, but the thing is that he has only been a member for 1 year and 2 months (I’ve been on my mission longer than he has been a member of the church). 
He played football with some missionaries, called them up the next day to have them teach him.. and was baptised despite no one in his family believing in God. A couple weeks later he went to General  Conference with a question.  His question being “God, what do you want me to do with my life?”  He had the opportunity to play for a football club, and earn 6,000 pounds a month but he wanted to see what the Lord wanted him to do.
Well the first speaker was President Monson and as we remember said “Every able young man should prepare to serve a mission.”  He said that he knew that was his answer, and from that day prepared to serve. One year later he is serving the Lord.
How incredible is that?  That is what I call an example of exceeding faith!  He is doing so well, and from him, I have already learned so much. I enjoy asking him questions throughout the day and even having him show me some “soccer” skills.
This week I was able to also go on an exchange with the Rhyl Elders. Oh, it was so great to be back in Rhyl. Such a blast from the past and a classic area. I was able to stop by Liam and see how he was doing.  He was happy to see me and I as well to see him. I tried to get him to let the other missionaries to teach him, but he still is doubting himself to ever believe..  Its too bad, but one day, one day, he will…
I hope you can feel in my letters how happy I am! It is such a fun time being a missionary, and being able to serve the people around me.  I just love it!
Have a fantastic week! 
Elder Eliason

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