Monday, July 18, 2016

July 18, 2016 -- Frogs, BBQ, Teaching -- No Matter What, The View is Great

Where do I even start with this past week. Well... lets rewind to last Sunday.  I got to speak in Church so that was fun. My theme was on modern day pioneers so I decided that I would focus on how living the gospel of Jesus Christ makes up pioneers. It sets us aside from the worldly things and we pave the path for others to follow.

We had a lesson with Ann and her friend Andrew this past week.  They are investigating the church and we started teaching them last week.  Ann was kind enough to cook us all dinner.  It was a yummy sausage casserole dish.  For dessert we had Burn Dairy's Heavenly Hash ice cream and lets just say that it felt like heaven eating ice cream as wonderful as that. We had a really good lesson as well. We taught about the doctrine of Christ. When we talked about baptism, they were a little confused but we tried to explain it needed to be done by the proper authority. I think it went very well and they were able to understand it better. This happens a lot with people the missionaries teach in New York because a lot of them have been raised Catholic or Methodist or Presbyterian and so on and so forth. I am grateful that we know the truth. The proper priesthood authority to baptize was restored through Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery by John the Baptist.  It's neat, though, because Andrew recognized our Church through the famous violinist Lindsey Sterling. He is a huge fan of hers and could talk about her for hours. Funny to see how the Lord prepares people to hear his gospel.

During one of our lessons with Wayne this week he said "I think it's time I go to church within the next month."  This was huge!  We have invited Wayne to church a couple of times but he was a little hesitant because of his foot that doesn't seen to get better.  He won't be able to drive but he said he is going to try and get his wife to drive him.

We had a branch BBQ at Elder and Sister Lee's parents cabin in Old Forge, New York. They have a cabin right on Otter Lake. It was super fun to kick it with the Oneida Branch. We were inviting a bunch of non members and less actives as well. We rode up with Berla and Steve to the BBQ and enjoyed the hour and a half ride with them.

Anyway the sky is blue, the Church is true and life is good.

Elder Carlile
Latest Frog Catch

Otter Lake

Car Wash Clearance

July 11, 2016 -- Celebrate Good Times, Come On

I can't tell you how much cake I've eaten this past week!! I'm one year older and hopefully wiser too... This past week has been amazing though.

Monday was the 4th. We were invited to a little get together by a lady named Penny.  She is not a member. Some people she knew came and we enjoyed some pizza and snacks with some good conversation. We thought it would be a good opportunity to talk to people about the gospel. One man there named Tony brought his bongos and asked if any of us jammed. I thought for a second and then said, "I have a guitar that I can go grab really quick." We just lived right down the street so I went and got it. I went back and played some guitar while Tony played the bongos. I started singing some gospel related lyrics and then other people start singing as well. All of the sudden this lady started singing about how Joseph Smith was a prophet. This shocked Elder Burton and me a bit. A non- member singing about Joseph Smith out of the blue. Her name was Jeanette. We started talking to her about Joseph Smith and what she knew. She recognized who Joseph Smith was from meeting with the missionaries over ten years ago. We continued talking and asked if she wanted to learn more. She agreed and we are now teaching her about the restored gospel. Hopefully all goes well. 

On Tuesday, Berla and Steve took Elder Burton and I out to dinner for an early birthday treat. We went to a sports grill and had some delicious wings and burgers. We had a good time and even had some lava cake with ice cream for dessert. Lets just say I was full after that dinner.

Thursday was my Birthday. Elder Jorgansen was on exchange with me in Oneida. We also had a zone training meeting that morning. It was super fun to see all of my mission buds on my birthday. They were all wishing me a happy birthday, It was great!! I went out to the car after the meeting to find that a big happy birthday sign was on the front of it along with a giant decorated rubber duck with a nice birthday card signed by everyone in my district in the drivers seat. Some sister missionary in our district put this together and it was definitely a huge surprise. I thanked them and everyone in the district for their kindness. After that Elder Burton and I met up with Brother Stevens and Mama Stevens from up north at the Oneida branch for a nice birthday lunch. We had some waffles with bananas and ice cream. They drove all the way from Lake Pulaski just to have a lunch with me. It sure made me feel loved and special on my birthday. That night Elder Burton and I met up with Mama Lise, Papa Lise, Stephanie, and Taylor to celebrate Stephanie's and my birthday. We all went to the Knotty Pine for dinner and afterward went back the the Lise's place for cake. We all had a good time laughing and talking with one another. I am super grateful that Stephanie was kind enough to let me share my B-day with her family. Over all it was a birthday to remember. I experienced some memories that I will never forget.

On Sunday night, Wayne had Elder Burton and I over for dinner. Before dinner we has a lesson with him on faith. We talked about how faith is a principle of power and how it is essential to God's plan for us. Wayne is coming along really well.  He has kept every commitment that we missionaries have left with him.  He is truly the elect that we missionaries have been sent to find.  For dinner we had some delicious steak that his wife prepared. Before we left, we got to see some of Wayne's old cars.  His collection includes a 1967 white Cadillac, a 1970's red Oldsmobile convertible, a 1970's Pacer, and we also saw his 1939 Dodge Durango.  He sold that recently but all these cars are in pristine condition.

Anyway it has been a good week and I am so grateful for the chance I have to proclaim this gospel while being a dedicated servant of the Lord. The sky is blue, the Church is true and life is good.

Love, Elder Carlile
Birthday Duck
Birthday Cake


New Birthday Basketball Gear

Thursday, July 7, 2016

July 4, 2016 -- Boom Boom Happy 4th

Happy 4th of July!!!  It's a great time to be alive in Upstate.  I have enjoyed hearing the fireworks every night. Since we have been around a holiday this week, the people have been in a better mood. Elder Burton and I have been talking to a lot of the people on the streets. We have been passing out cards about the Hill Cumorah Pageant that is coming up. I am grateful that we are close enough to Palmyra so we can use our pass along cards.

Berla and Steve have been super kind to Elder Burton and I this week.  One night they had us over for some Alaskan King Crab that we helped prepare. Let me just say it was super yummy in my tummy.  We had a good time cracking the crab legs and the slippery crab claw only shot out of my hand once when I was trying to crack it.  They always make sure we missionary are well taken care of.

Elder Burton and I had the most amazing lesson with Wayne this past week. In the lesson the conversation turned to Christ's atonement and what he willingly went through so all of us could return to our Father in Heaven.  As Elder Burton and I told the story of the Atonement, the Spirit filled the room. I am so grateful that we have a Savior who loved us enough to take on the unfathomable task of the Atonement. Willingly he suffered for our sins in the Garden, took on death in His crucifixion, and finally broke the bonds of death by His resurrection. The Atonement is the center of the gospel.  It makes everything possible.

The sky is blue, the Church is true, and life is good.
Elder Carlile
Elder Burton

Crab Legs with Steve