Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Adjusting to Mission Life

I'm going to start off by telling you a little about my area. I was assigned to open the Rotterdam/Schenectady area. We are located a couple of miles northeast of Albany. We are a walking mission but we do have access to cars from the other elders in our district. The neighborhood Elder Skouson and I live in is a little rough. The apartment we live in is nice but the rest of the neighborhood is pretty trashed. There are a lot black and Indian people. There are a lot of broken homes in the area around us. When I walk around the streets, it just feels like there is no hope. I think that is why Elder Skouson and I are here... to restore that hope and help people turn their lives around with the gospel. We are also trying to reactivate some members in our area. The neighborhoods around us are more middle class, it just varies depending on where you go. 

Because we are opening a new area, we do a lot of tracting.  It's fun to go and connect with the people. I connect with a lot of the black people because I play basketball. They love how tall I am.  They are always wanting me to dunk it for them, so I do. Elder Skouson and I have played basketball a couple of times while we were out tracking and it's been pretty fun. 

I had the chance to go to stake conference last week and I made some cool connections. Many members and missionaries knew Chris Miles while he lived here in Albany this past year. I wish I would have had the chance to see him and his family here in Albany but they moved out west a couple of months ago.  I just barely missed them. Brother Fredette is actually in the stake presidency there. He is Jimmer Fredette’s dad. This past pday I had the opportunity to play basketball with a couple of other missionaries in the same gym Jimmer grew up playing in.  That was pretty cool. Those are just a couple of the connections I've made in the Albany First Stake. 

The work is great.  We had and investigator named Fereza commit to baptism on October 30th so I'm looking forward to that. I'll tell a little more about her in next week’s email. 

Finally I want to talk about my companion Elder Skouson. He is an awesome guy and a great example of trying to be obedient to the mission rules. He is from Enterprise, Utah and has been out on his mission for a year and a half. We are simalar in personalities. We are both introverted, easy going, and like to laugh every once in a while. We have already seen the blessings from striving to be obedient and will continue to do so. The Church is true, the sky is blue (most of the time), and life is good. 

Love, Elder Carlile


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