My new companion

My new companion is Elder Jared Smith.  He is from St. Anthony, Idaho.  It’s kinda cool, because his previous area actually is right next to ours and we went to the same church and everything.  We knew eachother really well and he was practically part of my district.  It was really nice because he already knew what was going on with me healthwise and his area covered part of Lake Jackson too so he knew alot of our area already.  He has been out for about 9 months.  He’s a good guy.  He’ll do fantastic.  This is his 7th transfer and he has been with a new companion every transfer.  The longest he’s been in an area is 2 transfers and this is already his 4th area. He is super nice and I think we can do some good work together.  In fact, I think you already have a picture of him and me and an Elder Pehrson.  He’s a good guy.
Elder Esplin went to an area called Baybrook.  It is by Friendswood, Texas and is a bike area.  He seems to be doing well even though he probably feels like he was dumped right into downtown houston, even though the rest of us missionaries know that he is not even close.  He seems to be doing well I saw him on Saturday.
Elder Oliver is now a Zone Leader!  He was saying that he can’t wait for us to be companions…. hopefully one day!  His last area was Pasadena!  he lived with the Dimmicks and everything!  He is now a Zone Leader over that same zone so he still gets to see the Dimmicks and Sister Blevins every now and then.
We get to go to the Temple this Friday!  I’m so excited!  Oh and I also had a really cool experience this past Saturday.  We had a tri-mission conference where Elder Costa from the presidency of the 70 came and spoke to us.  I got to see Elder Bollwinkel (my trainer) and my MTC comp Elder Packer as well as Elder Lundell (in our ward) and alot of my East mission friends.  We all got to shake Elder Costa’s hand, and also all 3 of the mission president’s hands and their wives.  As soon as I got to President Moldenhauer he gave me a big squeezing hug and would not let go.  Sister Moldenhauer said that if it wasn’t illegal and if a general authority wasn’t watching she would give me a big hug right then and there.  It was good to know that they still remember me.  I hugged them then shook the houston mission president’s hands and his wife’s, then I got to President and Sister Saylin, as soon as I hugged President I knew that it was where I needed to be.  I miss the Moldenhauers, but I need to be with the Saylin’s.
I’m glad that everyone else is doing well.  I’m doing fine.  I love the Lake Jackson ward.  They are really taking care of me.  The Bishop is always asking how I am doing and is wanting to make sure that the Ward is taking care of me.  It makes things alot easier to know that I’m in good hands.  I’ll keep you updated and let you know what all happens.  Make sure you tell everyone that I love them and give those little grandbabies lots of hugs from Uncle Blake!
Love you lots!
Blake
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One Response to “My new companion”

  1. Lindey Misner Says:

    Hi Blake –

    Enjoy reading your updates. I think of you often, especially during each Stake PEC as missionaries report to the Stake Presidency and High Council. I have been Stake Executive Secretary for nearly ten years so I have seen many missionaries coome and go. I make the appointments for missionaries to get set apart and two years later make the appts to have them released ; my how time flies. It is amazing to see the spiritual growth in missionaries after serving the Lord for two years. Missionaries come back different people. I am sure you are a spiritual gaint yourself. Sounds like your Ward is taking care of you. There is hardly an empty day on the dinner calendar in our Ward. A few years ago our Mission President actually complained his missionaries were eating too good and getting fat.

    The Stake is preparing for a visit from Elder Russell M. Nelson next Sunday. Very exciting as this is the first time an Apostle has visited our Stake since it was formed ten years ago. One of the blessings of my calling has been the opportunity to meet many General Authorities durng Stake Conference. We have always had a member of either the Presiding Bishopric or Seventies, but never an Apostle. Elder Lance Wickman was here last November to reorganize the Stake. I noticed at the last General Conference that he was released and made a General Authority Emeritus. Announcements like that have more of a special meaning to me especially when I have had the opportunity to spend some one-on-one time with that person. After one confernece I even had the opportunity to give a blessing to a visiting General Authority, a very humbling experience. For Elder Nelson’s visit we expect nearly 1,500 people to attend the meeting at the Stake Center – maximum capacity. Because I am knee deep in the planning and coordination next weekend will be a very busy time for me.

    Missionary work is a hot topic in this part of the vineyard, as in all parts of the world. Our wards are really working the 5-5-5 program and their efforts are paying dividends. Our Stake has been baptizing 14-17 people per month for the past three months. For some reason the Stake starts off slow in the beginning of year, but always finishes strong at the end. Perhaps the missionaries work better when they are under pressure :). Anyway, wards are growng and Sacrament attendance keeps going up. Colorado Springs probably has about 12-15,000 members now. Temple attendance is up as the Denver Temple President said capacity is way up. You can never find a place to park at the Temple on Saturday. Temple attendance is a primary focus for our new Stake Presidency.

    Time to finish the agendas for Presidency meeting. Bettie and I were very glad to hear from your family that your health has improved. I am sure the Lord wil find a way for you to finish your work. You will have work to do all the way to the last day. Keep up the great work as you are blessing many lives, not to mention your own.

    Happy Halloween and Happy Thanksgiving while I am at it. Don called last week and said he and his family may come to the Springs for Thanksgiving, weather permitting.

    Take care of yourself. I want you to know that there is always mention of asking the Lord to watch over the missionaries in every opening prayer in our Presidency meeting. We hope our prayers help keep you safe and also help lead you to people whose hearts are soft and ready to receive the truths of the gospel.

    Love Lindey and Bettie.

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