Wednesday, June 1, 2016

55 - Family history, service, vacations

Email address (preferred): 

Mission address:
 Sister Rachael Geniel Clark
 California Long Beach Mission
 6500 E Atherton St.
 Long Beach, CA 90815

This week we had so many last minute meetings with President Tew trying to figure out if we would have a training on family history with the whole mission, or if we were going to do something else, then what would it be on, and what would be the next big step to helping the mission with retention of information and new converts.

Lately it has been hard with so many new converts who have little to no access to the temple or family history centers, but we hope to reverse that and hopefully help people not only stay active in the church, but happy and progressing to the full blessings that the temple can bring to their lives. In the past it was very hard for converts to get a limited use temple recommend and a calling, now we hope to have that are available right after baptism. So many people we teach and meet are so thrilled to have the opportunity to serve others and go to the temple to serve as well. We even have been trying now with President Tew to see new converts go through the temple fully after 1 year of baptism too. That is the most exciting thing ever to help with, that is really the end goal as missionaries, not baptisms so much. Lately, missionaries have forgotten that and haven't helped other missionaries' recent converts with their progress towards the temple for themselves as well as they should be doing. It is lack of experiences with recent converts and lack of passing on knowledge to the next generation of young new missionaries that could be the cause.

We also want to help with the newly made family history center in Huntington Beach that is a miniature visitor's center for family history for the entire family. They have tons of great learning materials and things to show and share. It's the first of it's kind in the world so it should be interesting to see what happens in the future.

Other than family history, we had to let go of Librada sadly. Due to lack of diversity in our particular ward (which was quite diverse considering all things) and lack of a full on bible study, she decided to go back to her church. We are happy to hear she is going back to a church, just sad it ended that way. I worry it may have also been due to some comments in a class we had, but that can't be helped. everyone is on their own spiritual journey back to Christ, you just have not take offense of what others say because the gospel is true, people are flawed.

Everyone is having vacations, so almost every lesson has cancelled this week. We did however help out with a member who is moving soon and needed help weeding her back yard and fixing a palm tree which needed trimming badly from a neighbors yard hanging over. (I figured out I really dislike palm trees; messy, pokey, dirty trees that really look horrid if you don't trim them regularly which cost an arm and a leg to get done. They also don't like to be trimmed without a chain saw, and their leaves are designed to repel any attempt to cutting the branch off from the tree. We had to use tree nippers) We had a third of the zone there to help clean up the place, and by the end we almost had no weeds left.

We also helped Sister Spencer paint her home, literally, and put in mulch and a garden so that they could put their home up for sale. They had to move out by Thursday, and so half the zone came to help tackle the project. Brother Spencer got a job designing theme parks for universal Beijing, so he will leave for Florida for two years, then to China for the rest till the park is finished I imagine. I don't think I could ever do a move like that, and I took Chinese for a year. I will miss them in the ward, they are great.

The Dlaguits moved, but thankfully it was just down the road a ways to a house instead of an apartment and are still in the ward. Sister Fox is leaving soon as well for Colorado, I will miss her, too. Everyone great in the ward is leaving it seems this summer.

We have already seen some fireworks shot off, during the daytime mostly. We even caught a glimpse of the fireworks at Knotts as well. Boy do they celebrate here in California, everything gets decked out in fourth of July decorations in June. In Utah not so much, but then agin, most people are going to the gravesides and cleaning them instead of vacationing like here (as far as I have noticed).

Miracle of the week:
We bumped into George who we met a long time ago with Sister KJ, and he said he would come to church. HE DID! Not only that, but he said he loved how genuine everyone seemed during the talks given, and despite the children all around us, he said he would like to come again. Next time he would make arrangements to stay longer! It is a rare day someone keeps their word when they say they will try to make it to church, so I am impressed and thrilled.

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