Lucas Bodine

Lucas Bodine

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Sleepin in Stettler

Hello everyone from back home or people in Utah Ghana, Scotland, Philippines, Argentina or wherever you are. Doing good here in the deer (Red Deer). That is the nick name I like to call it haha. This week was a good one I would say. Last week on Monday night my companion left me alone in the lone and dreary wilderness. He went up to Edmonton for 3 or 4 days for training with all the trainers and missionary leaders in the mission. But I was in a trio with Elder Boatright (from mesa and in my district) and Elder Taylor a missionary from Utah.

We started out going to see a guy me and my comp. E. Chappell came across. His name is Alfred and he is a huge native guy from Oklahoma who loves football. But we went over there with my trio companionship and we had an amazing lesson and he committed to prepare for baptism for the 7th of august. This week have been trying to get a hold of him but he has canceled and not showed a couple of times but were still working with him. But then Tuesday we covered my area of Red Deer 3rd ward. It was bad I hardly knew where any of anyone lived but we made it through a day and I held my ground in my area for a day.

On Wednesday we covered Red Deer 1st ward and so Elder Boatright had all the plans for that. But we talked to 3 old ladies that pretty much do nothing so it was nice to visit with them. Then that night we traveled an hour to Stettler. On the way there I did have a comical moment in the car. I decided to take a little 10 minute nap and I awoke to my other two companions screaming and pounding on the brakes. Then I woke up being completely startled and they started laughing so hard. Man they sure know how to make me not want to take a nap in the car ride anymore. But I've attached a picture. This is what I saw when I was awake going to Stettler. Bright yellow fields of Canola. Yep. It was really pretty to see so I got a picture and captured the moment.

But let me tell ya about Stettler. It is a cowboy town. And Elder Taylor is a cowboy in Utah. So he loves the place and I not much of a cowboy or a country boy but I got a feel of what it is. There was this one lesson we were on the patio around 3 o’clock in the afternoon, it was about 90 degrees the flies and mosquitoes were buzzing. Then my comps were talking to this old couple about cattle, farming, horses, rodeos, more horses, war, politics and more about farming. I didn't want to take anything away from the conversation so I didn't say much so I was very quiet. That caused me to be very very sleepy when our lesson came around. I think I might have fallen asleep, cuz I don't remember a thing said. haha but I got the feel for Stettler. It is still a great town though. I am just very glad to be back in red deer.

I love the city allot. And red deer only has about 95,000 people in it so it’s kinda like a mini mesa. And where I live wow we have the whole basement of the members home and it’s awesome. But I love this gospel. I love seeing true conversion with my investigators, especially Gaylord. He is coming to church and committed to stop drinking coffee and he is reading the book of Mormon. I know the gospel is true and I am seeing it change people lives. Love you and I feel your prayers.

Elder Lucas Alan Bodine

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Fourth of July in Red Deer

Week two in Red Deer. Its been great so far. I am still green but I am learning allot out here. My companion Elder Chappell is an awesome trainer and he knows his stuff. This week was a huge week in lots of different views. Missionary work, holidays, weird food and baptism dates.

It’s weird to think how close missionaries become friends. I am such good friends with Elder Richards and Boatright (Mesa elders) as well as other people in the district. This week we have been doing lots of finding and teaching. We made some great progress with some of our investigators.

So Thursday was a big day here in Canada. It was Canada day. Kinda a bummer that we couldn't proselyte but we had our weekly planning that took space. Also we had a really nice ward breakfast that we went to with the zl's. We also taught two awesome lessons and then could relax. So we celebrated by playing a couple games of pool in the basement of our really cool house. And we drank sparking juice. Have I told you about the mosquitoes here? Oh man they are bad haha but I got my bug spray so it’ s not as bad as earlier in the week but still its just crazy how many are here haha.

Oh yeah Friday we met our new mission president. His name is president Campbell. He, his wife and 16 year old daughter are from Ogden, Utah. He has never been called as bishop or stake president but he is a really awesome guy. Allot different then the last mission president. The old mission president was really stern and reserved but when he spoke he ment what he was saying, like apostle or the 70 kind of power he spoke with. Our new misson president feels like a dad almost. He was joking around with us and he was allot more personable. Not to say that President Rhodes wasn’t good but I am just so excited to work with President Campbell for these next two years.

On Saturday whew wow. I extended my first baptismal commitment. "will you follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized by someone holding the priesthood authority of god?" Welp I guess I should say that more because he said he would. Me and my comp. in my second day picked out a day for the baptism. We didn't know who it would be but someone is willing to prepare for baptism for the 24th of July. This guy is named Gaylord he is a 30 year old man from the Philippines and he is awesome. He lives with 3 other Pilipino men that are working in Canada to send money back home. But he has come to church 3 weeks in a row so he is really progressing and I am so excited for him.

Also missionary work world wide is having a little change. Preach my gospel 2! Yeah that’s right I said it. It’s going to be a supplement to PMG 1. It’s going to focus on how missionaries can be better teachers. Also zone conference and interviews are held on a quarterly basis unlike a 6 week basis. Also there will be a new PMG dvd for us missionaries. I am so pumped to receive this material. My comp and mission leaders/trainers get to go up to Edmonton for 4 days to have trainings on how to implement this new program of PMG 2. It’s exciting to be one of the first missionaries to use it, in the field! :)

And then yesterday was 4th of July. I celebrated my independence by proclaiming the gospel and going to church. In honor of the 4th we sang the star spangled banner and on Friday I bought a Jones today. So last night we sang our patriotic songs I drank a Jones soda and ate a hot dog. A little different on how I would do it at home but all the fireworks go off on Canada day and not July 4th.
But this work is so great. I am loving it. True not every person has a open heart to the message but once you do find those people who are ready and willing to accept the gospel, that is where the happiness is. My love for this gospel is growing every day. I love the lord, I love my AMAZING family and friends, really you are! But I need to get going.

Love ya,
Elder Lucas Alan Bodine

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Canada Here I Come: Red Deer to be Exact!

Its official! I can now say that I have been tracting, used mission funds, given missionary lessons, given pass along cards out and all that jazz. Last the world has heard of me I was in Provo, Utah. I sure had a great stay there and I learned so much great things. But now I am in Canada!

On Tuesday I woke up at 2 in the morning to leave the mtc at 3 and catch a flight to Denver at 6. After a quick 1 hour flight I had the chance of talking to the greatest parents in the world. Even though it was 5 short minutes it was some of the best minutes that I have had since leaving home :) After arriving in Edmonton one of the elders got caught up in the visa areas because he didn't have a passport book but a card. Long story short we waited for him for about an hour... fun...

Soon after that we met the assistant to the president and also the mission president and his wife. We first went to the mission office got our paperwork and other office things settled. After that we went to the Mission president’s house. We wrote a quick letter home while president had some interviews. If you didn't know this already mission presidents see your picture since you get your call. Even before the 7 elders came he picked out a trainer to work with us and the area where we were going. The interviews are for a confirmation of what he felt was right after getting to know the person better. That was a really cool experience by itself. After some interviews we had a nap and awesome dinner and then a sweet fireside. It got me pumped. Tuesday to Thursday I was not feeling well at all but I persevered (sorry). The next morning we met and I found out who my companion would be and who would be and what area I would serve. I am with Elder Chappell from Wayne County Utah; he says it’s as Podunk as it sounds haha. He had been on his mission for 20 months and he is going on 6 months here in red deer 3rd ward. I am also his 3 straight training comp. I just hope that he doesn’t leave me for the wilderness next transfer in 6 weeks. But Elder Chappell is an awesome guy. We work really well together. I just hope that I can be just a little bit as wise as he is.

I also found out that I am going to Red Deer Canada. It’s about and hour and a half south of the big city of Edmonton. But it’s a pretty big city it’s self. It’s kinda like Mesa but not as densely populated. After getting my new assignments we had a transfer meeting. Since this was the Rhodes last transfer meeting it was pretty special. President Rhodes gave an awesome, awesome talk, when it’s really good we call it prophesying. But after that we took a ride to Red Deer and off I went. I dropped of my bags and started going to work.

The first door we knocked we met Ben, a guy from the Philippines who works here for the oil. He hasn’t been following up on his appointments but it was awesome that the first door I knocked on that we had a lesson and possibly a new investigator. My first meal was at the Zamnos family. A family from Mexico, I don't think I could have eaten more food in one meal, She just kept on bringing more and more dishes haha but I loved it!

The next day we had district meeting and it was awesome sauce. There are 3 missionaries from Mesa. Me, Elder Ben Richards from Mesa High(worked at Milano’s) and Elder Boatright (a person’s older brother that was in chorale with me). But yeah I am already finding myself using eh and hey. The older generation uses eh and the younger generation is hey. So whenever I talk to Elder Chappell I am always adding an hey at the end. But yeah there is even different food here, a donar and protein and some other stuff.

The one thing that I have been surprised about is about the culture. I have met Phillipenos, Mexicans, Indians, Canadians, snowbirds, Chileans, Brits, Sikhs. You name it. And I am not even in Edmonton where it’s even more diverse from what I have heard. It is really cool though. I am glad that a Mexican family said that they would make me some Mexican food to make me feel at home. When I tell people that I am from Mesa either they know what I am talking about or think about cowboys...oh gee.

I am in a driving mission. We have an 08 or 09 Chevy Malibu. It’s nice to get around but we walk allot too. We have to be under so many kilometers. Oh yeah I am still in American measurements. I have some work to do when it gets to meters, liters, Celsius and all that stuff haha.

Mission work is work. From what I've heard from everybody is right, the mission is where you will get the best sleep of your life. It feels like a short nap but every night at 10:30 I am out. My comp. said that the other night it took me about 3 minutes to get to sleep haha. But my first Sunday was great. We had 2 investigators come to church. I really think 1 of them will get baptized. Gaylord is a man from the Philippines who has a wife and 2 kids back there and he just a great, humble man. He is making some real progress. Last night we met with Brother Walters. I don't think I have ever learned about so much oil in any visits here in Red Deer yet haha. But his wife is a great member but he isn't a member. His wife said that he wouldn't even step foot into church and now he goes every Sunday in a white shirt a tie. He is reluctant to make that change but he as already made some changes so why not a little more?

Also this Sunday was the anniversary of Joseph Smith's death in Carthage. My testimony about him has grown soo much. I am grateful for him. He has helped bring the fullness of the gospel into our lives. We have the fullness. My testimony of faith has grown too. Allot of people I meet say, I have faith, I believe in Christ so I will be saved. But Faith without works is dead. Faith is good but if we don't have the works that go along we don't have the faith. I love this gospel I love being a missionary I love my savoir Jesus Christ I love the lord, I am a child of god and he loves me.

As a missionary my main purpose it to cry repentance unto people(DC 15:6) How do I do that? Through commitments according to PMG. So I am going to give everyone a commitment today in this email. Will you think of people that could benefit from the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ? If so get a hold of the missionaries and get them lessons. If not...well pray about it to get some names. This is the MOST important work in the world and without members helps a missionaries life would be much harder. I love ya and pray for you!

Till next Monday Godspeed.

Elder Lucas Alan Bodine

Experiencing the MTC

So this is my first official letter! Wow, the mtc has been so great. It feels like I have been in the mtc for a month already. Time is flying by, the days are long but when I look back at it is flying by! well the airplane ride was good, ashlyn and anna picked me up and we went shopping for their apartment then had some inn n' out, made my last phone calls and I was at the mtc!

While getting checked in I saw Elder Despain! It was pretty cool being able to see him. Actually I have seen so many people who I know. I have seen Elder Sterling Jones, Cameron Farnsworth, Alec Porter, Micheal Christenson, Kyle Lyons, Zach Cook, Tanner Neilson, Joe Udall. The list could go on and on and on. But going to the mtc was not hard for me at all. It was like a big reunion for seeing all my friends.

After the first day I have really learned that I wasn't most excited about seeing all of my friends but that I am a missionary! Bert gave me an awesome letter about what a great thing it is for me to wear my plaque. I have made it out here to be a missionary for the church of JESUS CHRIST of latter saints and I am representing and doing what Christ would be doing. What a great thing for me to know! Thanks for the letter bert ;) It actually helped my comp. with some homesickness.

Oh so you prob. want to know about my comps. I am in a trio. Elder Gardner, is from Pleasant Grove, UT. He is a pretty laid back guy he kinda reminds me of Simon Nisson actually. But a cool thing about him is that his dad wrote some words to Press Forward Saints and This is my beloved son and other hymns look at Marvin K. Gardner in the Children and Hymn book! you would be surprised. I was actually singing this is my beloved son in my room(because you can't listen to music in the mtc) while write my journal and he said "you know my dad wrote that?" its a small world. My other Companion is Elder Miller from Eagle, ID. If anyone knows marshall davis, he is like a mirror image of him I think but yeah he is about the most muscular guy on the whole floor. If someone disses me I know he has got my back! He is a really humble elder. He worked on a farm in Idaho and played football and track. In my district we have 7 elders and 4 sisters. All of us except 3 sisters are reporting to Edmonton. Besides my comps we have Elder Brereton from Utah and Elder Larson who is going to be a Theraretical Physics, he went to Colombia in NY and he is a genius. Elder Remer from Nevada he is cool.Elder Brown is from Utah too. The sisters are awesome as well.

On Wednesday I was made District Leader! It was a humbling experience talking to my branch president. But I am lucky because I get to pick up all the mail so yeah! Umm so this is my pday Monday anywhere from now until later this afternoon you could expect an email from me so yeah. Since coming into the mtc I have memorized D&C 4,my missionary purpose in PMG(preach my gospel) and I have read the 85 p. mission handbook individually and as a companionship. I am still getting used to this whole companion ship thing but I am working on it. We are really open with each other and are getting along great. One thing that I have been learning is work and obedience. These are two things that I am trying to be great at. There are so many weird rules but that’s not up to me but to follow them. I have gained in my testimony that as we are 100% obedient that we gain more faith. Also, talking about work. I don't think I have been physically and emotionally worked. We are studying all the times and we have the whole 6:30-10:30 times to get used to but I have been put to work. I know that I am motivated and I am glad of it!

I am so grateful for Heavenly Father and that he loves us so much. I have felt this many times in my mission and I am growing so much. I love all you family and friends back in Mesa or wherever you are! I feel your prayers and I am working hard for you in return!

Elder Lucas Alan Bodine