Saturday, January 16, 2016

1/26/2015 from Elder Gary Crye

Something the Mission President has been pushing lately is the faith involved in doing rather than just trying. Trying means you're relying on yourself. In this work, we're joining arms with the Lord and doing His work.  

Honestly, apart from the day or two I've been sick, I don't think I've had a "down" day out here. Some days are really amazing, and others are also pretty good, though perhaps not quite as notable. Often the difference is how fervently I've been trying to follow the Spirit. Really though, I've been doing pretty well out here. Thank you for all the love!

Culture, eh? Not really. (See what I did there? :P ) I now instinctively take off my shoes when entering a home. The accent is not very different. People say "washroom" instead of "bathroom" and drink milk out of bags rather than plastic jugs. That's about it. We meet quite a few people from around the world though. Here, it's not quite as diverse as Brampton, but you still get your occasional Danish brogue or French accent.

New experiences? Lots of new food. Nothing weird yet though, but I've heard quite a bit about missionaries eating balut (not really sure how to spell that), which is an egg with the hatchling partially formed.
Struggles? Not really. There are some people that just aren't ready for the gospel, but they don't understand what they're turning down. Waking up in the morning is much easier than it was at the start of my mission.
Inspiring experiences or miracles? Plenty. The mission is full of them. Just last night, we just had some finding (tracting) planned for after dinner, but while praying as we left the residence, it just didn't feel right to go finding. Instead, we started praying about who we should visit. We ended up deciding to visit this active member, after deciding that it felt right. When we got there, he graciously let us in. We started to talk about the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and he just started bawling as we went on. We had a super spiritual lesson. It turns out, he had been feeling very lonely since he and his wife recently separated. He only sees the kids every other weekend or something. He had been praying for some comfort. That's exactly what we shared with him - a message of God's love for him and his purpose in life. We gave him a blessing. That was a special night that went in my journal.

I know a few more details from when I was in Brampton. The Mission Office is where we get our proselytizing materials from. It's where some of the service missionaries work, namely, the mission nurse, our financial coordinator, the mission secretary, and our vehicle coordinator. It's also the location President Clayton and the two Assistants are at when they determine transfers. Concerning mail, Zone Leaders generally visit the mission office about twice a month, usually while they're in town for leadership meetings. When they're there, they pick up letters and packages for the missionaries in their zone. Zones meet together at least once a month for Zone Conferences, but usually see each other more often than that for other meetings or to just play sports together. Here in the Oshawa Zone, we usually see everyone from our zone each week. That's when Zone Leaders distribute mail.

The Church has been renting out a place in a commercial building. Since there were some renovations already planned for a chapel at Creditview and Wanlass (the address listed), it was decided to move the mission office into the Creditview chapel at the same time. That chapel is still pretty close to the mission home, mission office, and Ontario Temple. The renovated chapel is about the size of a stake center, but instead of having offices for a stake presidency like a stake center might, it will house the mission office.

It's suggested that we don't make our residential addresses publicly known (so don't stick it on the blog), but I can tell you that I'll be at the following address for at least the next 14 days. We're beginning week 5 of 6 of the transfer. The last day I know I'll be in Bowmanville is Feb. 9, but I could stay here for another transfer. I'll let you all know of course. :)  We live in the basement below some members here.

Hmmm... The last time I was able to do a session through the temple was just before October's General Conference. However, I hear that's an opportunity just for those that are pretty close to the temple. Perhaps for April's I can try to have a name prepared.

I love you too!
-Elder Crye

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