Thursday, December 13, 2012

November 19, 2012

Thanks so much! Great to hear from you.
I already feel I get enough challenges, but thank you...  :)
Once again, it's PDAY and the weather is really good.  :)
We had a busy week, our most productive and definately our best teaching week of this and the last transfers together.  I'm really glad to be knowing a bunch of the people out here. I've met a ton of good folks. People who are cool, and friendly!
We were inspired to go tracting on a certain street and place, and we ended up finding a whole family of members that moved from Rapid City a couple months ago. They were needed to be found, so we were led right to them. We hope that they'll be inspired and fed spiritually so that we can start to see them come to church with us soon.
A similiar thing happened but the girl kinda found us. We were knocking on a door in a big apartment bldg. and the guy was like, "It's the men from your church!" to his wife, pretty loudly, she didn't want to visit. But way down the hall this girl with blue hair and a lip ring heard the whole conversation which was pretty darn amazing all in itself.  But she is 14, she stuck her head out the door as we were walking by and we started talking, she is a very smart 14 year old, and pretty spunky and such. Her and her mom just moved in about 1 month ago from another ward. The mom is going through a divorce.  It's a bit crazy situation, but we found them by following the Lord and doing his work and we were led to her and her mom.  We'll be going an visiting both of these families with some other members of our ward coming up on Tuesday.  Awesome.
We're both doing pretty fine, and the Wyoming weather has been fantastic.  :)   Happy Thanksgiving!  I love you all, hugs and kisses and God bless you!
Good job on the Stake Conference Music mom and dad!
How long is Roger staying and everyone else?  The boys are growing up quick.
Love you guys all.  Bye

November 12, 2012

Hello!! Howdy do?!
It's great to hear from you! I'm glad to hear you guys will get to participate in Conference you both are so amazing and I'm proud and happy for you. I love you both.
Yeah so feel free to send some pictures this way from you guys.  How many kittens are you down to yet?
We got snow here also. We're walking now instead of biking.  We're getting rides and help from members fairly often too which sure helps and makes it funner and easier.
We've been blessed to continue to be working with good people, like Robin, who's making progress toward getting baptized in December. 
We had a great Sacrament meeting yesterday. It was very heartwarming and powerful with the spirit.  I left feeling very uplifted and grateful to be apart of the gospel and the church in this vast world.  What a great benefit of friends and strength --  and good people.  Of course the Gospel of Jesus Christ lifts us all in it's own.
Lately my reading of the Book of Mormon has helped me to feel more peace and joy in my life and in this service.  It's so true that a real study and feasting upon the words of the Book of Mormon draws us closer to our Father in Heaven so that we can be stronger and more powerful in life and against the things that can make life seem very hard.
I'm glad you had your primary program, ours was weeks ago.  They are great.
I'm also glad that Dennis has been visiting a lot lately. I hope to hear from him.  Tell him and Lavell hi for me if you see them soon.
I want to say that my District is awesome.  I will say that they are some of the if not the best and coolest Elders I've met in the mission.  There are some others in the mission that are pretty cool dudes but these guys are great.  Today I met one who says he's a pro skateboarder from New Mexico. I'm impressed. 
Casper is marvelously entertaining and a fun place to be. It's all those things and we don't even hit the town on Friday nights.  haha. We keep to the rule book pretty close   ;) 
ThanksGiving will be great, I don't know exactly what will be going on other than we do have a dinner planned with a very sweet and special family that is really good to us Elders. The Cordova's.  Remember last year, I ate with the Rich family?  That was the family that had the 73 year old dad, and the 13 year old son: the same age gap that pappy and I have. 
When I get home and have kids you guys need to stick around for another 10 or 20 years. plees don't you forget it.
Thanks fam for all your prayers and love and support.  It really won't be that long before we'll be talkin on the phone fro Christmas.
I'll write you again soon. Love you,
Elder Ensign

Thursday, December 6, 2012

November 5, 2012

Tell Uncle Tom Happy BDay for me.  How's all the family?!  I finally got some letters wrote. I'll have more coming. I'm sending you a postcard in the mail. On the postcard I requested you to send me a bike headlight, but I really changed my mind and decided that I will just buy a new one.
We've been working hard and seeing blessings.  The ward is really being supportive and helping us fellowship and teach. That has been so great. And I just love so many of our ward members.  One of the fun things about being District Leader is I get to exchange with each Elder in my District once per transfer.  So we get to switch and have a change of scenery or pace you might say for a day or so a week.  That is nice. 
Last night we met a guy named Josh who owns a gold Toyota Corolla just like mine. We've been trying to get in and visit him for some time now. We had a really good talk and lesson with him last night. It seems like he was very open to the message and he was accepting of the message. He has faith in God and Jesus, and looks to embrace the truth of the restored Gospel.  I like the gospel a lot and the insight and knowledge that it gives us. And the Hope!!!  Meeting with him was really good. He's 31 years old and single, he has two little kids that live with their mom.
Their is another guy named Josh we've recently met, this Josh is a member who used to skateboard, really got into some bad crap throughout high school and middle school, and has been off the path since. He's 21.  I got all happy when he was telling me that he skateboarded and stuff. Man it felt good to reminisce a bit. Then last night I dreamed about skateboarding.   This guys family are very nice folks and they are active in our ward. We had a visit with them and shared a quick message last night. I'm so excited to be working with the people we're working with. I love'em and am stoked to see them get the Spirit and light of the gospel and Jesus Christ in their lives.
 I'm praying better and more than I have yet.  Thanks for your prayers.
Wow, this Presidential Election is a big one. People are pretty nervous about Obama getting in again here. They say he'll stop all this oil drilling and then that would really stir things up for some people. This area is some of the best -- job wise in the country.  This and No. Dak.
Love you.
Talk to you again soon!!! 

Monday, October 29, 2012

October 29, 2012

Sounds good that the missionaries spoke in your ward. I bet they're good Elders.
Yeah, this morning at 6:30am when I rolled out of bed, my body was exhausted.  But the Lord does sustain, and through diligence and dedication we perservere and have made it.  P day is going good today. 

This past week we taught the most lessons of any week so far together. I was our best week in number of lessons. We met with and taught a bunch of great people and felt the spirit, during our lessons and otherwise also.  We were guided to find certain families and individuals as we went about our work.  Tonight we are going to Bro. Park's house, and we're going to teach him the Stop Smoking Program. The same one we taught to another lady, Sis. Davis,  who is smoke free and working towards getting her Temple Recommend!!  It's awesome.  Robin, an investigator we're teaching has been on Date for Dec. 1. And she is doing pretty well. Her friend Vicki, a less Active member, or has been less active, is coming back to church and also she has committed to living the Word of Wisdom and quit smoking and coffee!   We're going to teach her the program too, that will really help her make the switch. 

One cool experience we had last week was we were going to an appt. when we were going to the apartment, and we saw two ladies moving stuff from a Moving Truck and into the bldg.  We told them(3 of us, one young man that was teaching with us) we could carry the heaviest item they had up the stairs but we had an appt.  So we carried up the big wood table they had, and went to our appointment.   The people we were going to see lived next door to the ones moving in, and they actually weren't able to meet with us, So we hurried and started helping the ladies again. We came to find out that it was a young couple from Oregon who were moving in, and the girls mom lives here in Casper and was helping.  The husband was just getting off work at Wal Mart and he showed up as we were helping, but they are both members!  So it was perfect, like Heavenly Father wanted us to be there at that time to help some of his children get settled into their new home and have a welcoming hand from us Elders.  We were able to give them the Church meeting times and location and everything and we expect that we'll be seeing them more soon -- A great family.
We have been blessed to meet with a man named Chris.  We actually met Chris as we were searching for a less active member who lives in some other Apartments in our ward.  And He had a huge moving vehicle full of his stuff---tons of hunting stuff.  We were able to help him move in and got another couple of Elders to help too.  After a few weeks we went back and visited him, we shared the first lesson with him and gave him a copy of the Book of Mormon.  He accepted to read and learn more about it. The spirit was strong there, it was a good lesson and he was pretty receptive and open. He is a great guy we hope to see him soon.  We know for sure the Gospel will bless his life.
Much other good has been going on.  We are going to be working with our Ward Council even more to help them get involved and the ward find those who are ready and that the Lord's prepared to accept the Gospel.
Congrats to Robyn and Dallin!!! That is great!
We might go to a member's Halloween Party, but it depends on exactly what the party will be like.  If it will help us be missionaries and fellowship and meet non-members and help the work then we'll go there. But if not, then we'll just be home taking it easy/having some fun.  So it'll be good either way. 
Preparation is so important. I know that's true. I know that Heavenly Father has many blessings ready for us, he is just waiting for us to think about, and ask and they shall be obtained. 

Love You all.
God Bless, thanks for the letters and love!!!
Happy Halloween

Elder Ensign

October 22, 2012

Hellooo!! Howdy Momma.  I sent you a card but was bummed out that it got sent so late!!! It should be there by now.

I had a really cool experience yesterday. We had Stake Conference, and as we were walking to the Stake Center, an older Gentleman named Alfred (Ned) Price stopped and picked us up.  He said, "He(talking about Heavenly Father) said  Stop and pick up those young men!"  So he did. He was headed to the same place. He is apart of 5th ward here.  He taught us some really good lessons and we talked for about 25 minutes before Conference.  One of the coolest things about meeting with him is that he was from Huntsville, and a farmer, and he owns land there still.  But he know Grandpa Tom and company, and he knew that Uncle Tom was the last dairy farmer in the valley.  Cool huh!!?   One question he asked Elder Steiner and I was, "Who do you want to meet in the next life?"  It was right after we talked about Grandpa Tom, and of course I thought my Grandpa Shupe.      Ned said he wanted to meet Paul.  I liked his idea too.  Then I got to thinking more and many others have come to mind.   But I do love to think of my grandparents and to feel and imagine what they were like.  Thanks for reminding me that it is Grandpa Shupe's Bday on the 20th also. That is so cool.  Lanae emailed me today or yesterday and told me that they talked to Ned Price's wife, and she asked Lanae if she knew me. She said yes. Now I find out that this Ned Price is related to Lanae and her husbands family.  Sweet huh.
One thing he told us was: Mormon's are like belly buttons.  Some are in and some are out."  What he was saying that sometimes we aren't the best people toward each other and don't treat other members and people the way we should.  I believe that if we truly are friends and use our hearts to love other people, especially when it comes to people inside of our faith and wards, then there will be more activity and more members of the church - - especially of those that have fallen away into inactivity.
Oh and that is so cool that it's Uncle Bill's bday too.  I love that man.  He's so awesome.  Sometimes I feel like they are so close to us.  Even as I think about Grandpa Tom and Uncle Bill.  I can feel their love.
Happy Birthday!!!  I love you.  You are so sweet and have been so sweet to me. Thank You.  I have been getting your letters and packages and you help me out a ton.  I love you mom.  Thanks for being so supportive and awesome.  I still haven't gotten a camera.  I don't really miss having one to be real with ya.  It would be nice, and I should get one.  That will be good. But I don't know what I'll do yet. k. 
So it sounds like the Ukelele guy was good! That's cool.  There is a guy called 'Uke Man' I believe and he plays LDS music and sings. You should really check him out. He is good and he has a really good testimony. Check him  :)   Maybe Youtube or something.
I need to write Katie, she wrote me not too long ago, and Tammy.  Then like I said Lanae emailed me today. That was so cool.  I love those gals.
Thanks mom, I wished you a Happy Birthday and Elder Steiner did too out loud on Oct. 20! I hope you heard it
Oh yeah, Stake Conference was so good. It was regional, a broadcast covering Wyoming, Colorado, and Montana. Elder Nelson spoke and some others. It was so powerful and uplifting.  Some of the things we learned about were keeping the quality of our prayers really good.  The amount of energy we put into our prayers will be about the same amount we get back. Kinda like if you hit a raquetball with a racket into the wall softly, it will return with less speed and less momentum, on the contrary if we hit the ball fast, with energy, and momentum, it will return in a like manner.
Elder Steiner and I are having a pretty good time.  He is a good young man!  We work hard. We bike a lot and walk sometimes. We work with the members as often as we can. We are truly blessed here.  Some really cool things have been happening lately -- Every so often we are amazed at the goodness of the Lord and his blessings.   :)
You're awesome mommee.  Happy Halloween coming up.  Can't you send some better pics of Pops than that!!!?   Cute kitties. I like that cream one...It has some pretty crazy eyes.  And the one you were holding is really cute too.  How's stumpy?  Love ya

October 8, 2012: Howdy!

Hello Mom!

General Conference was really good!  I loved Pres. Uchtdorf's and Pres. Eyring's talks a lot. Also Pres. Monsons was good. I love to hear from those brethren.
That was quite the announcement.  People are pretty excited here too. Pretty crazy, I guess they want more people out there serving. I'm sure that it will be good. 
It snowed here last week!! It's been chilly, I've been wearing my thermals.  Sheesh.  But it's warming up again, today it's pretty nice.  I'm sweating as we speak because of the thermals I have on!
There are a ton of Bertagnole's here. I know Leland and his wife, they're in the 60's ish.  Then there is Dixie Bertagnole  who is older, and her husband passed away some years ago.  Do you know them at all?  They are both in our Ward.
The Buskers I don't know much at all about. I asked someone and then they started going off on a tangent trying to remember who was a Busker and who wasn't. I didn't really get any leads on them.  Anyone in Particular you want me to look up that might remember you?
We haven't yet healed the blind, or parted any red seas lately, but we are doing pretty good and working with people and helping them make great changes in their lives.  One lady quit smoking this past week using the Program that we teach and support her with. She is awesome and doing good. We're teaching a few groups of people, one which is making some great changes in her life and repenting and being more Jesus Christ-like.

Tell Dad I say hi and that I need his prayers for me morning, noon, and night.  Breakfast lunch and dinner, and that anything less than that needs more.  :)   Pray that I can inspire the Elders in my district and be a good person as to lead them with love and happiness.
Pet Stumpy for me and have a good day and week. I love you guys, and look forward to seeing you again soon. 
Christ is true and real, and he Lives. May we tap into the power within us and feel the love and joy of God and life and live each day with Happiness!!
hugs and kisses and kisses and kisses and hugs.   :)  bye

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Monday, September 24, 2012

That's so cool!!  Thanks for sharing that!  2 years wow, I can remember when they announced the Brigham City Temple, and then they picked out the spot for it, then started building it up and they put the barriers around the site and eventually we started to see it rise up!  I even remember the day that they put the angel Moroni upon the top, I was working at that time in Ogden.  IT was windy up there.  :)

The dedication and cultural celebration sounded amazing.

When do you get to go through the temple officially??

Yes one year coming up soon!  I'll have a mini celebration.
My new companion is coming on Wed. straight from Provo,  I don't know who he is until tonight.  He's going to be a Spanish speaking Elder so along with his new missionary training, he'll be doing language study every day and I'll be working with another set of Spanish Elders to help him get that training.  I'll be the new District Leader over 3 companionship's including the Z.L.'s! This will be fun and a good experience.  I'm grateful for the new duties I have.  Wow this is going to be crazy and fun.  Pray that I can be the best trainer ever for this guy and make this his best time ever! 

My time with Elder Hooker was good and we saw and did some great things together!

Yesterday we did have some a couple investigators at church!  IT was awesome.  We met these two ladies who are sweet and enjoying learning.  They are in their 30's ish, and really nice.  We've taught them twice so far and they came yesterday, it's so good.
We're working with some kids too that their parents want us to baptize. Hopefully we can help the whole family feel more comfortable with the gospel and coming to church.  The dad of this family has a 

Handwritten letters are great, I'll write you guys some more too. I'm glad you got the Postcard, it was a good one wasn't it!?

Love ya, God Bless!  You guys rock, and you're awesome. Thanks for all you do.
Elder Ensign

Ephesians 4 is a good chapter. Of course I love the Psalms.  You should check em' out if you have spare time, nice Book of Mormon reading!

Monday, September 17, 2012

September 10, 2012

Peach Days eh, that's fun. I didn't realize it was going on at that time. 

I like the pictures. I might be coming across a camera from a family that we are working with. We have some investigators right now. Some really good people.  I see some progress being made and real steps toward Christ and the Gospel.

This new area is really fun and good. The members are great! 

My companion is from Washington. I forget the exact town. I think Tacoma area.  He is a pretty nice guy.  We are doing pretty well together.

I love you guys! I hope to see some more pictures soon.  Thanks for everything. Things are going well here! we're doing great!

Love, Elder Ensign

Monday, September 10, 2012

September 4, 2012

Wowee!!! What some crazy news you've sent me. hahaha.  That is a lot of cats.... I hope my little stumpy is doing well  

Yesterday, Labor Day, we had dinner with a sweet family named the Flanigans.  They are very nice and cool, good to us missionaries.  They own 3 Labrador dogs that live inside.  It is the funniest thing,  the dogs kinda remind me of cattle haha.  They last night grabbed a laser pointer, and it was hilarious to watch these three pooches chase it non stop altogether.  I wish you could have seen it.

But I hope dad is doing great! and having much fun.  
We're doing good here in Casper. I like being here a lot. 

We're having a good time working with a bunch of less active families and finding new investigators. 

Congrats to Tim Eaton!
Thanks for sending love and writing me so much, I love it.

Congrats to Matt!!

It's very dry here.  I love the warmth! I want it to stay warm all winter long.

The Mission Pres. came down this past weekend and had a meeting and we got interviews. He is a really nice guy,  he reminds me a little bit of Bishop Packer.  Love you, talk to you again soon.
Love Elder Ensign

August 27, 2012

Hey, I'm having a blessed time in Casper. It's really a nice place with many wards and members and it's a fun town.  We are working a lot with the converts of yesterday, the less actives of today.  Hopefully we'll help bring the spirit back into some people's lives and help them to feel welcome at church.  Also we hope and pray to find investigators along with them.  So far we've been blessed to have referrals from ward members and we have some nice people we visit time to time.

Yesterday I was talking with our Ward mission leader about the Uintah's and I brought up Red Castle.  He hike a 75 mile trail, the High Line trail that runs across the high country all over the Uintahs.  It was fun to talk about.

The people are friendly here in Casper....most of the time. hehe. 

Love ya

August 27, 2012 at 11:46 AM

Sanfords pictures

August 27, 2012 at 11:44 AM

a happy day ;) just kidding of course I don't hope my companion gets eaten by a shark :)'

August 27, 2012 at 11:42 AM

lost my camera, these were taken last week by a member

August 27, 2012 at 11:40 AM

Sanford's pictures

August 13, 2012

Hello family,
Wonderful to hear from you.
I'm glad that the wedding went well, except the power going out!! Yikes!  hehe.  That sounds pretty interesting. 
I'm heading to Casper Wyoming!!!!  Land of the missionaries and Church members.  It's supposedly one of the best places to serve in the mission!  There are 6 wards in Casper. I'll be serving in the 4th Ward.
I'm pretty excited. My new companion will be Elder Hooker.  I hear that he's a good guy.
So I cleaned up my bathroom and cleaned up my trailer(where we've lived for my stay here) today and it's ready for the new missionary except I haven't packed yet. I'll be doing that tonight then we leave tomorrow for Bismarck.
Yesterday I saw some people and said some goodbye's, then we're going to have some fun today playing basketball and maybe play on an Indian Drum and sing (Pow Wow style) before we visit some other families and people this evening.
It's been a blessing to be with these people and live here for this time.  Trials and Tribulations...Yes. But great experiences and good times, great people.  I've seen much and learned much. 
This past weekend was the big Pow Wow of the Reservation. The big shindig at the end, kinda the Grand Finale of the Summer Pow Wow's, at least on this reservation.  But it was a great time and a really fun way to end my stay here.  I got to go to three Pow Wow's and we met great people at each one and made friends and were able to let people see us and enjoy our company. 
I'm grateful for the Gospel, it's changed my life.  I realize the blessings that come from obedience to it.  Over time, and step by step, more and more people are accepting it and finding the safety and joy that comes with it.   I feel like I did my best here and tried so hard.  I know Heavenly Father is pleased with my efforts and my wants to help people.  I learned much.
Love you guys.  If I didn't lose my camera I would send some more pictures. But oh well.  Maybe it'll still turn up, It's been missing for a few weeks.
see you later

August 6, 2012

I saw the picture of my big cardboard me. It's awesome! I love it.  :) 

Today we went to Theodore Roosevelt Natl Park today for Pday.  It was pretty fun. I caught a lizard and my friend, Elder Edwards sat down on the ground, looked about 6 inches away from his leg, and there was sittin' a cute lil' baby rattler snake!!    That was sorta intense. He slowly and very carefully sat there then pulled away very gently and there was so big problem.  haha wow.
We have transfers at the end of this week, I'm excited, I'm pretty sure I'll be transfered. I hope. 

The past week was a tough one.  A lot of our appts. fell through.  It was weird. The rains came near the end of the week, it was pretty nice but people weren't really home.

We got to spend some days with members who drove us around and assisted in our lessons. IT was great. I've been blessed to meet some wonderful people out here. 

I learned this week that along with the Book of Mormon being the keystone of our religion,  the Doctrine and Covenants is call the Capstone of our religion. I learned that from a talk given by Pres. Ezra T. Benson that he gave in 1987' the conference before I was born.  We had a great Sunday Church service yesterday.  One of the things we discussed was the 2000 Striplings of Helaman, they're obedience, and the special ones they were.  We are like them today!  And we learned the value and power of example and love in the lives of those around us.  Our examples and our love are some of the greatest ways to teach and influence others.  I love that. I love the good examples I see around me in my life. You are such a strength and good example. Thank you.
Thanks for everything, I love this life.  I love having good friends and family.
Success and good tidings for the wedding and all that!  Love you and ttyl   :)  Give Alison my best!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

July 30, 2012

The Lord has blessed us so much.  While at the Pow Wow last week we met a sweet lady.  Also we were introduced to a bunch of other people who are prepared for us to teach them! 

I've met a bunch of people in this area who I think are awesome, and ones I will want to be friends with for long time to come.  That's some of the best part. 

I read a sweet article in the Ensign this morning, Pres. Monson's last address at Gen. Conference.  It was so good.

Much love to you. Hear from you again soon
 Love Elder M. Ensign

July 16, 2012

Hey,  I think I can survive this.  Hopefully all this is worth it. 

I'll just keep telling myself that. How is Dad doing?  If I were to ask him how would he rate his overall well being: 1-10?  I hope it's a 9 or 10.  Same with you mom.  Our new Mission Pres. is officially here. I guess I might have told you that before. 

Sorry to miss Sarah Jo's wedding.   Sorry to be so far away.

I got in a car accident last week. That sucked bad.  Sometimes I feel cursed being out here. dang evil one.  It seems like the more I try to be obedient and keep the missionary commandments that crap things happen. I'm not sure what the message is. It might be that I need to stop being so dang strict --  or straight arrow I guess you could say. That is tough for me.  I just need someone to let it loose too. I just keep bottling up the emotions or pain inside cause I can't really talk to my companion about these things.  I'm pretty sure he hates how much I want to do what's right.  Ahg.  Love you. 

Thursday, June 28, 2012

June 25, 2012

Hey, nice to hear from you. The weather up here has been pretty awesome really.  It's warm in the day, and cool at night. Or it will be cloudy and a bit rainy but then it will clear up and be nice and warm again!  It's pretty cool. It rains like once a day.
  Yeah 8 months.  It seems like it's been a while for me.  This stuff is so tough.  It's not what I thought it would be like. 
  We went to a pow-wow this last weekend. It was so cool.  I liked it.  The announcer called us out a few times and mentioned we were there to everyone.  Both times we went we were with a members.  Man, it was pretty fun.  All the dancers with their colorful outfits and jingles and bells.  Then you have the men gathered in drum circles and they sing the Native singing.  It's fun.
  Yesterday we had a pretty cool lesson experience. We rode up with a member almost 2 hours away to meet up with another member family and we had dinner and a lesson with a family.  There were like 6 adults there that we shared our message with. We taught the lesson, and they weren't super super open to it but it was a good experience and I feel like I learned a lot.  Then we drove back home and went to bed.
  I did get to play some hymns for our new Branch yesterday. About 40 attended. It was the first week of the new New Town Branch.  We have the Stanley Branch to cover also as I told last time and we might go up there soon for Church. Supposedly they did fine there also.
  I opened up the hymnal to 'Be Thou Humble' and played it a few times this morning. It's an easy one and I like it. I just wish that it was easier to be a truly humble person all the time.
  Thanks for all you do.  Thanks for the prayers, I need them like you wouldn't believe.
  Tell Dad hi for me.  I haven't written another letter to Lavell yet, but if you see him tell him hi for me. Make sure he stays around for a few more years at least.
  Tell Karlee congratulations. I don't think I remember knowing she was getting married.  That is awesome.
   Good Job on the Book of Mormon.  It's a joy to read it. 
  Yesterday in Sunday School we had a sweet lesson on Alma 5 and having a change of heart. I wish more people could feel it.
I love you all,
from Elder Ensign

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

June 18, 2012

Sounds like you're all doing very very well! I'm glad.  
   The Temple trips sounds super good.  I did hear from Sarah about her new job, and I'm glad to hear. I hope that it's great for her.  I got a package from Meredith today and it was super sweet!!!! It had all the goods. I love the pictures and the tie and the treats, the talk, definately the drawings too.
  Lori has been treating me so well too! She's a hero for sure. Others are sending their love and I appreciate it so much!
  I hope you feel my prayers and feel my love.
  We had a pretty good week in our service.  We had a new investigator attend church with us yesterday, he is a fireball of a guy. 20 years old and in love with the gospel.
  Our Branch split yesterday. So now we cover two branches, the New Town Branch here on the Res., and the Stanley Branch which is about 45 minutes north.  We'll go back and forth according to the needs of our investigators and the area.
  New Town is a fun place to be, and it is especially exciting with all the rapid expansion and growth.  There are tons of people from Idaho and Utah here. It's fun because people are very friendly and nice.  The Gospel is making an impact on a lot of people's lives here and now. 
  We rode our bikes out across the bridge today,  It's a beautiful ride. The picture of the bridge is running East to West and on the left is 4 Bears(Casino and a small community out there), to the right would be New Town; The lake Sakakawea you see there.
  I'll check out D&C42:61.  I like how you said all roads lead to the Temple, and I am and will do my best to have the guidance and strenth always of the spirit.
  Thanks for talking them, my old buddies for me. That meant so much.
  And it was my companion that got me to play golf. We had a pretty fun time. I did really good on the last hole!
Take care, ttyl. Love ya,
Elder Ensign

June 11, 2012


Well I'm doing my best to be as obedient as I can be.

I think one of the hardest things is to beat pride.  I read a talk by President Uchtdorf about Pride and the Priesthood.  It was touching.

A member from our Branch is letting us borrow his conf. edition of the Ensign because we never got the latest one.  I'm grateful he let us use his.

Last week Elder Greco and I went to a Native American funeral of a less active member of the Church from around here.  He was 40 and had 4 kids.  We were able to speak at the funeral, we were invited to as a matter of fact, and it was a good experience.  This man passed away on my birthday.  I mentioned that in my remarks.  His mother's name is Delma Fox, and she reminded me of you a little bit and Aunt Janae.  She is nice.  And here sister in law was named Mildred(grandma's name), and she is an active member of the church and we got to know her.  It was a cool, and interesting experience.   Their funerals are a bit different that the way we normally see, but quite similiar.  They have what is called a Wake, and that is like the viewing.  They feed everyone, and they stay up/awake all night and with the body.  We left at 9:30pm.  Then the next day is the service where we spoke, and the burial.  We were also able to dedicate the grave and bless it at that time.  I was grateful to been able to do that.  There was a big bunch of people throughout all this.  After the service everyone goes back and is fed again. They gave us tons of food. And they give out blankets to certain people. A lot of blankets.  We had the honor and opportunity to receive blankets.  I'll probably send it home soon.

There are going to be some big changes here in the Branch.  The area, because of the oil boom has grown so much they are spitting the branch here. So the Natives will have a smaller branch here, and many of the people up north will have their own.  On Sunday, most of the people in attendance are white people, even though we're smack dad on the Res.  With this change, it will open up the building a lot more, and I hope and pray that the people here, the Natives, will feel much better about coming and worshipping the Lord on the Sabbaths.  This is their right and priviledge.  We hope to help them see that.  The Natives are such nice people, and spiritually powerful too.
Tell Jason Nutt Happy Birthday for me will ya!?  I don't know how you would exactly but if you can please do. Oh, and Smith too. Joshua Smith.  Maybe you can get in touch with their parents or something.
I read a few chapters of Mosiah yesterday and today about King Benjamin and his big exhortation from the tower.  And how we can have a change of heart, and no more disposition to do evil but to do good continually.  To not have a mind to injure one another, but to live peaceably and lovingly.  I'm grateful that is what we can and do, and will have when we live the gospel.  It's my prayer that you can feel my love.
Thanks for the prayers and the love.  I got the card in the mail! I loved it!  Although, there was something fishy about that...... haha. Seeya later, talk to ya later.
Love your Elder

May 30, 2012

Wow, what an interesting time it's been.  It is a great blessing to have our name.  It means a lot to me, and it helps me want to be my best, and to be true to faith of our fathers and of Christ.  My last companion gave me a tie and signed the back of it and put :" Ensign of Christ to the Nations"  haha. I liked it a lot.

My Companion has been out almost 5 months.  His last trainer didn't keep him too strict at all, actually quite opposite. He does have a strong testimony and a good knowledge base of the Gospel.  He takes a bit of prodding sometimes.  He is good with talking to people. We do pretty well there.  I try to keep him in line with the rules and stuff.  Our studies together are improving, he and his last comp. didn't study together really at all it seems. The Lord is blessing us as we work and plan and strive.   He is a good guy.  He cooks food for me quite often, the catch is I 'get' to clean up.....We have fun with each other.  We are amazing.

We went out teaching with a member last night, Bro. Pinto.  Bro Pinto is here working in the oil fields and He is a Native American from New Mexico.  He has such a strong testimony.  He truly loves the people here, and loves serving them.  He wants to do all he can to help his lamanite brothers and sisters and we get to serve with him quite a bit.  We went over to Sis. Simmonds house last night with him, she is a member who served a mission in New Mexico like 40 years ago. Crazy eh?  But she hasn't been to church for awhile so we like to go over and invite and have lessons with her and her granddaughters.  We started our lesson not knowing that her granddaughter Hayley hadn't been baptized yet, and she's 10.  The lesson was focused on Christ and his earthly ministry and then it ended up really spiritual and we invited Hayley to be baptized.  She'll be praying about it and talking to her grandma and we'll see them again soon.  We think she'll want June 30 as her date.

I love serving the people here in New Town. The Natives are special people.  We work in another city called Stanley that is mostly caucasion people and we have some awesome investigators up there that we're working to see more.  Stanley is about 45 minutes away from New Town.  Most of the active people in our Branch come from the Stanley area and beyond.  We learned this week that they are forming a Branch in Stanley this summer!  That will make everything very different here.  New Town is going to undergo some big changes. I can see the Lord's hand moving and shaping this area and setting things up in place.  

Yep my bday is Monday!  Our District is going to have a Pday together and we're going to Theodore Roosevelt Park(Not sure if it's National or State, but I think National)  That will be awesome.  We have some cool Elders in my District.  I will plan on emailing at 10:30am Monday morning and seeing if you're on too.

Elder Salmon is a nice guy I met him during one of the mission prep. classes I had.

We get to talk to a fair amount of people. probably 10-12 on average a day.

Congratulations on being through for the year!!!!!!!!!! Yay!  Have the best summer ever!

Love you all.  I'm excited for Sarah!   

Monday, June 11, 2012

May 21, 2012

I'm getting Elder Greco, from Pocatello Idaho as my new companion in a few days. Being with Elder Barney was a challenging but good experience.
I read Alma 36 and some of 37. I'll go over those again later.
That's great that people are doing good there. The name Boston is a good one. I like it.
I like that 100% obedience deal too. One lesson I've learned lately that Obedience is better than Sacrifice. It was an Old Testament story that I read the other day of Saul, and I thought a lot about it today during study for some reason. I feel like it's so important to be obedient but it's truly a test sometime. Always worth it.

You are so awesome. Thanks for being so great! The Gospel is the way to the Abundant Life. Tell Dad I love him too. I will pray for all of you. Choose the Right, when a choice is placed before you. Choose Jesus Christ and remember Him.

 Love you, Sincerely, Elder Ensign

Monday, May 14, 2012

May 14, 2012

It was so good to talk to you guys yesterday. I hope you had a great Mothers Day. I love you all. Thanks for the advice, and I will keep doing good and my best!

I went on a mile jog today. That was good. And my companion will not even desire to sing in Sacrament meeting. So, that won't be happening this week. haha

I did get a letter from Dad today. That was good.

I am stronger now that I've ever been, that is true. Tell Dennis Hi for me. The Lord will help me, and you, He will help us! I will continue to be humble and teachable and powerful and mighty. :)

Ever since the start of the mission I have tried to find and reach out for youth. The younger people have soft hearts but the catch nowadays is all the adversity around them. That's why we're strong and can do it!

Thanks for your love. I'll continue pressing on and doing our Father's will. Thanks I love you.

--Elder Ensign

We took his picture on Skype.

May 7, 2012

Hi. Being on a mission is so full of ups and downs, then you have to step back and wonder 'What am I doing that is contributing to my surroundings'. The more selfless I can think and be, the better everything around me seems to go. The natural man is an enemy to God and has been from the beginning, since Adam.

Tell every other family member hi for me and I love them, like Leigh and everyone.

 Hugs and kisses!
--Love Elder Ensign

April 30, 2012

Dear Mom and Family, friends too,

This has been an amazing week. Many wonderful things happened. Elder Barney, who is from Paroguna(Spelled something like that, by Parowan), and I had a wonderful opportunity to give two people Priesthood blessings. There is a couple that lives here in New Town, a fellow named Cody and his girlfriend Sasha, that we know. Cody is a member working out here in the Oil fields. He is a member who is really looking towards becoming active in the church and having the Spirit in his life more. She is living here also and he has been sharing the gospel with her, and together they are working to progress and have the Lords blessings in their lives. So we each were able to give a blessing for them before they made a trip back to Idaho where Cody is from. It was a great experience which I felt inspired and guided in their behalf.

Another wonderful thing was that we're working with Virginia and her husband Trajen. We visit them at least twice a week and Virginia has a date for her baptism on June 2nd! We're so happy for her! They are a special couple of people and family. Trajen is a member and he is getting ready to baptize her. We had some good lessons with them, and they were at church yesterday for the whole thing! It was great.

We have other great things happening like we're planning to hold a Bible study group in a trailer park/man-camp outside of Stanley which is north of New Town a ways. With the oil boom a lot of men and people are living in actual man-camps of 5th wheel Trailer type homes. So this will be a good opportunity to help many people who are away from home, and not too close to a church or family for strength and support. We hope that it will lead to many people feeling and knowing Heavenly Father more in their lives.

I am glad to say that Jesus Christ lives. It means everything.

Thanks for the updates on the Temple. That sounds so amazing about the big event that is taking place. WOW! Tell Bro. Barton hi for me. Minot eh? What was his mission again?? That is cool. Tell Sarah that my District Leader is Elder Hanson, and he used to work in the boot dept. at Smith and Edwards! Cool huh. I was talking to him and about how we went to Smith and Edwards when I bought my boots for the Meat Shop and I'm almost certain that I saw him at that day. Haha. Then I showed him a picture of Sarah and he knew her. Sweet huh.

Love You guys, Love you dad, I got your letter just today and thank you so much.
Yeah, Mother's Day -- coming up quick!

Love Elder Ensign

April 23, 2012

My comp. is Elder Barney like the big purple Dinosaur. ;) 'I love you, you love me' That one.

This morning is beautiful here. It's nice. When I left Marshall Mn everything was growing and green and super springy, then up here it's still quite brown and it's been cloudy and windy the past week(for the majority). But today is supposed to be up to about 80 so I'm happy!! The grass is getter greener and the trees are showing life.

Our investigator that has a date for baptism didn't make it to church yesterday but we still believe she'll make it and keep growing. We have met others who want to be baptized including a 10 or 11 year old young fellow.

There is a huge growing bunch of dandy buggers right outside our trailer house. Dad would flip. I think about taking care of them but then I think about it and stop caring. Well I hope you guys are doing great.

Lately for some personal reading and study I've hit the Old Testament. I read all of Deut. and am going to finish Joshua in the next day or so. The Lord proved his might, and his strength and power in these books. We need to keep the commandments so that He'll help us fight our battles. Without Him we lose.

I love reading the Bible. I have done more and more of it lately. It's wonderful. But I must say that the Spirit comes so strongly from reading the Book of Mormon and reading the talks and words of the LatterDay Prophets and Apostles. It's profound. We're blessed.

So we cover New Town here, and South of New Town, also to the east and west quite a distance. But Our area goes all the way to the Canadian Border. There is a city up there called Portal that is half in the USA and half Canada. It's like 2 hrs away!!

But this oil work up here is no joke. It's a huge deal going on.

My Allergies haven't been too bad the last couple weeks. I do feel it a bit. I'm trying to get eating healthier again and adjust to the different living up here.

Love you. You're so great. Are you working to help the missionaries there? They always need your help. They need referrals and people who are prepared by the members and people who know the area. Keep your eyes open. I met a Don Collet who is from Brigham City. Also I met a relative of Patriarch Hillam out here. :)

Love ya.

Elder Ensign

Monday, April 9, 2012

April 9, 2012

Dear Family and Loved ones!

I'm getting transferred tomorrow!! A new area! My new area is NewTown. That's what it's called. It's on an Indian Reservation, at least Newtown is. It's in North Dakota, about in the center of the state, and my area goes all the way up to Canada! Interesting huh. My new comp. will be Elder Barney. He goes home in 6 weeks so after the next transfer, then I'll get a new comp. This will be my 2nd area in the mission. It sounds pretty good.

I love the twins so much! I had a dream about them the other night it was nice. They made me so happy!

I am anxious to receive the Easter package!!!! I will get it sometime this week, maybe the very end, or even the start of next week with transfers. They hold onto stuff around transfer time. I feel bad about being slow with my correspondence to my dear friends and family. I hope that you all know I love you so much and think about you often, I pray for you too!

So I'm saying Goodbye to good old Marshall Minnesota for now. It's been a good place. And Hello North Dakota. It's up around the oil boom towns. It's a big deal up there now.

The church is true. We've been working with some people here that have shown really good potential and desire lately, also the members have been stepping up here more lately.

Tell Dad and everyone hi for me! I love you all tons and look forward to hearing from you again soon! And remember, "He is Risen!"

Elder Ensign to the nations. haha

Monday, April 2, 2012

April 2, 2012

We're definately planting seeds like you said. :) Conference was great! I really loved Saturdays sessions and of course all of the others ones. I don't have any dark glasses so in that pic I just wore my regular ones. I really meant to send more pics but it didn't work out. Next week I'll send some more. Elder Neilson is the one in the most middle of the group I would say. His glasses frames are blue, that's the best description I could give. But the other two missionaries are the District Leader Elder Thomas, and his comp. Elder Cook. I think you've seen pics of them before.

So I'm not sure but this could be my last week in Marshall Mn. It's possible that I stay here but it's likely that I go to a new area very soon. I know that good things are happening around here as we speak. We're working with a few people who are pretty awesome and teachable. One wants to be baptized so we'll see what happens! :)

We're working hard, and having some fun too. This week should be a fun and interesting one for us. We have a few days planned to work with members outside of Marshall, in our surrounding towns. Much of it will be with Part-member families. It will be good.

Thanks for all the letters, love, and support. Tell the family I love them all! The Book of Mormon is true, and the Bible is also the word of God. These books are so good, but really it is God that is Great and good!!! I'm so thankful for the blessings we all have and enjoy. Wasn't Elder Russel Nelson's talk during conference helpful to recognize our many blessings?!

The Lord promises to bless us and prosper us upon our odedience to keep His commandments. What a awesome deal! I love the Lord. I love knowing that one day we'll live again because of Jesus' Atonement. Happy Easter!!!!! Hopefully we all can enjoy remembering Jesus' Atonement.

Love you!

Saturday, March 31, 2012

March 27, 2012

Hey Love! Thanks for everything!

Yes, I believe and know we've had a lot of success lately. Some great experiences have been had this past week. One night we were tracting and I had a clear thought come to my mind to go towards a potential investigators house we met a couple weeks ago. Elder Neilson and I hopped right on our bikes and zoomed over to the other side of town. As we were approaching the Big Catholic Cathedral we saw a couple kids skateboarding down the street so of course I got all excited and we stopped and talked to them. They were 14 and 15 year olds. Both parents weren't active in any church. One of them had earrings in both ears and braces, and he was the more golden of the two. He is a nice fellow named Lestat. We haven't talked to them since but we taught the first vision and gave them cards with our numbers. We were able to bear our testimonies of the restoration and tell them why we're here. I am so grateful for that chance to meet them and share our message. Heavenly Father placed us in their path and allowed us to use our strengths and experiences, like me being a skateboarder for so long, to understand each other and relate to them and incorporate the spirit of the Lord into the conversation. It was a good time. I know that was meant to be and it was a pleasure. I pray that we'll hear back from Lestat and be able to share more with him. I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet. He saw God and Jesus Christ when he was 14. I know God answers prayers.

Yes I know it's spring! The pollen has been killing me lately. I think I'm doing better today. Yes I also know it's spring because it's been so warm and lovely here. A couple or more days a week it's clouded up and rained and that's been good too. I do like it warmer of course. I need to eat more fruits and veggies, I think that might help with allergies.

We have found some great new people to teach. Our teaching is always improving and we've had some really great lessons with people. It's great to be around people who want to do what's right and are striving every day to be better.

How's dad?! What cat is having kittens?! Didn't you give momma cat to Uncle Tommy? How are the cats? Is Stumpy doing ok!!? Tell Sarah I love love love her. And Meredith and her Family!!

Life is good. I'm really looking forward to Conference. It's good to have Easter around the corner also. I like this time of year, especially when it's warm.
Bye Love you all,
Elder Ensign

March 19, 2012

Love ya! It's true that even the smallest things that we do, and the smalls things we do for people, can make such an impact on their lives. If not now, today, or yesterday, it could years and years later.

I played in church yesterday too. Did dad have fun? I did pretty good. I think I'll be able to take some time off of that now. It's time consuming to have to practice. I like the time to read, study, and write during that time.

St. Patty's is quite a bit bigger over here than there. They had a parade here, it was a short one. I'm glad dad had a happy Bday!

I sure do love the Nelson's. I intended to send a few photos but didn't have the right cable for the computer here. I'll try again soon.

The church is true. Conference is coming up soon!!! Continually hold to the Iron rod!!! We don't have anyone on date for baptism at the moment but we're teaching some good lessons and doing our best to bring the light to all.

--Love, Elder Ensign

March 12, 2012

Dear loved ones, especially Mom and Dad and Sarah,

Thanks! Actually Elder Maskell tinkered with my bike awhile ago and fixed it! It's in pretty decent working condition to say the least. I could send some pictures soon! We went to a town called Redwood Falls this past weekend and spent the night at our Branch Mission Leaders place for a couple nights. It's a beautiful place!! I'll send a pic or two from there. The Branch Mission Leader is an interesting fellow. He sells gold for his job.

Elder Maskell went to Ft. Yeates, an Indian Reservation to be a District Leader!

The Lip Sync sounds funny a cooky. haha. I'm glad Sarah could go and help/hang out a bit.

Sister Dustin sounds really nice! That's awesome!

That sounds like fun for Sarah to go to New Mexico with Reese!!

With the Biking and walking and practicing the piano and studying and working etc I must admit that writing letters to my loved ones and friends is not an easy task. But I'm working and making moves toward accomplishing more letters sent.

I'm not sure who has my address from the Ward back home but I do receive letters from a good bunch. It wouldn't hurt to get it out somehow. I'd love to write Bishop Packer and those good fellows sometime soon. Maybe you could send his address.

Thanks for helping with my taxes. Thanks for everything!! I'm working to get dad a letter sent today for his BDay!

I love you guys so very much. The church is true, the Bible is true and the Book of Mormon! I know this.

--Love Elder Ensign

Monday, February 27, 2012

February 27, 2012

Hey Hey!

Great to hear from you! We are in the middle of a transfer right now so I'm waiting for my new companion Elder Russel Neilson( I think that's now it's spelled). He's from St. Anthony, Idaho. He's been out for about a year!

A big big blizzard storm is supposedly blowing in tonight like a foot of snow, so we're staying with the Z.L.'s for a few days we think.

We played a bunch of basketball today with the zone. It's fun. Back in Marshall we have one person who accepted to be baptized on Apr. 7! His name is Mike. We have work to do with him still but he has a great desire to know the message and church is true!

I think I was semi-prepared. The greatest thing to do would be truly know Preach My Gospel front and back. For a person to do that would mean a ton.

I hope to get some letters written and sent by the end of the week.

I hope dad has a great bday!!

Oh yeah, another thing is we're not going to have a car in Marshall for this next transfer. They have cars on the way but somehow the President said they don't know where they are. So we're going to be walking a lot. Also the member work will have to increase. I look forward to that. I hope this new Elder has a bike, and I hope that the blizzard misses Marshall and goes around leaving it dry and warm. ;)

Well the church is true. I look forward to a new transfer and new week ahead. I hope the Lord blesses us all. I know He will. Psalm 103

Oh yeah, I'm eating pretty healthy off and on also. I love eating healthy and keeping the Word of Wisdom as much as possible. It helps us to feel so much better and think more clearly. I'm happy to hear you had a fun week with school and all.

Give dad a great big "Hello" and "I love you". Bye guys! love ya!

--Love Elder Ensign!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

February 21, 2012

This week has been good here too, we had Zone Conference on Friday! So we had some great training and lessons from the Z.L.'s and Pres. & Sis. Layton. It was great. Sis. Layton shared such great talk on being the best that WE can be compared with OUR potential, not compared with the potential or efforts of others. That was awesome and touched my heart. We all have a great ability to do amazing and wonderful things. When we work our hardest and improve towards our very best selfs then life is magnificent!

People here are so great. We met with a lady named Paula on Sunday! We talked to her about a Prophet and how important and beneficial it is to have Bishops, Pastors, leaders, etc. But how even more awesome it is to have a living Prophet of God on the earth today! We meet with her again soon. She is dealing with some obstacles in her life right now, but she want's very much to be baptized and follow God and receive strength.

Our Branch here is awesome, just like it is back home. People are great. They have been feeding us so willingly and regularly, and helping with our missionary efforts. We went out late Sunday night with a Bro. Macdonald who is a great guy. We taught a good lesson about baptism and the gift of the Holy Ghost and he shared his story and testimony to a couple we meet with named Carol and Jerald. It was very nice. The members are the key to helping others into the church.

I got the package!! I got two this past week actually from some very loving and wonderful people! :) Your package with the cd was sweet. I have laughed a little as I've listened to it. I believe it was made in the year 1979. Haha. Maybe you noticed that. It's great!!

Dearest friend Kristin is doing some amazing things in her life I hear and I'm so proud of her and thankful for her support. I have a list of people who I want to write to very badly but I have stayed quite busy, especially this past couple weeks.

I learned a new hymn 85 How Firm a Foundation last week so I could play in Z.C. for a district musical number. When you told me about singing ''Jesus the Very Thought of Thee" I felt the spirit well up inside of me. I love that song. I bet it was so amazing and good. I don't recall the other two sisters but you sing so beautifully. So I do try to sing the hymns pretty regularly. More is better. I'll read 2nd Nephi 9 later today or tomorrow.

I sure love you guys. We have transfer calls this week, most likely Elder Maskell will be leaving to another area. It snowed yesterday. haha. It's been just a beautiful gentle winter here. The moisture was appreciated.

I know God lives and loves us and answers our prayers. We have the great blessing and priveledge of calling upon Him, and he hears us! I'm so thankful to Him and Jesus Christ. God is wonderful, and caring. He makes everything good as we rely on Him.

Love you guys. I really really do. Bye now

February 13, 2012

I've had a cold the past few days also, so we've stayed indoors and rested a lot. It's been good because I feel like it's easing up pretty quick. It's given us a good chance to listen to talks and scripture and practice hymns and feel the spirit, also rest has been good.

Church was great yesterday. We learned a lot about being an example to others, especially to our kids. It reminds me of a quote that Tony V. gave time ago that 'Teaching by example isn't just a good way to teach, it's the only way.' I believe Einstein made mention of that.

We have Zone Conference this week, Friday, so we've memorized some scriptures and been preparing things for it. One of the scriptures is Alma 37:16-17, "But if ye keep the commandments and do with these things which are sacred according to that which the Lord doth command you,( for you must appeal unto the Lord for all things whatsoever ye must do with them) Behold no power of earth or hell can take them from you for God is powerful to the fulfilling of all his words. For He will fulfill all His promises which he shall make unto you for He has fulfilled his promises which he has made unto our Fathers."

I like that scripture. It's true.

So I got Sarah's and Dad's letter the other day and that was fun. Sarah wrote her's on her Bday! That was nice. We did have some good lessons last week but it seems like it's been forever. We went to WalMart on Sat. and we saw a bunch of people there that we know and have been working with and seeing. It was awesome. It's so great and important to be friends with people and really care about them, that's the great part.

Many apostles have emphasized being an ensign to people around us, showing our love and our message. I know that is what the world needs and the people all around us. People are always learning from us and watching.

I love you guys. We stand on the firmest foundation there is: the rock of Christ.
God bless.

February 6, 2012

We've been so blessed lately from our Branch, they feed us every night! The Branch Pres. made up a new schedule so we are fed regularly now. It's such a blessing.
I thank you for fasting for us.

I was reading about King Benjamin last week too. I loved it and him. He was awesome. I love you both and will write later this week but I have to go now.

Love Elder Ensign

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Monday, January 30, 2012

I hope you're doing so good. The Lord is always trying to bless us with more and more, it's only a matter of are we willing to reach out and accept.

The Church is definately true. I love you guys all so much. Thanks for the continuous love and support from far away. I hope that everyone keeps having good health and does well.

One thing I thought about is maybe you can get dad to exercise his priesthood more. Help him to give you some blessings or something. One of the promises of the Priesthood is that we receive a renewal of our bodies when we exercise and fulfill our calling/duty.
I'm so glad Sarah is doing well! She deserves to be happy! So do you mother!
'Arise O God and Shine' is a great hymn! that would be a great one to sing I think, maybe get a powerful few people who love to sing to perform it with the Organ or something.

Elder Maskell is very partial to music. For a few weeks there he would sing with me and we had some fun with it. But he doesn't open up too much in that way. He's a nice man.

I love you all, please send dad my best and let everyone know I love them.

Make sure we yield to the holy spirit and our hearts to God. It makes life so good! Hel. 3:35

Love, Elder Ensign

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Monday, January 23, 2012

Sarah: Sorry people for taking forever to post these past 4. I didn't even see a couple of them until just recently. Enjoy reading them!


It's been a bit hard to write any letters lately but I have many people in mind and hope to get some out this week. I did write one and sent it today for you guys, Sarah Jo especially. Elder Maskell included one too for her. Please give Aunt Janae another visit and hello for me! :)

Hey Dad! How are you? I got word you played the organ in church this last sunday?! I got to play in my Branch too!! We're the great Ensign duo that like to play hymns. Tell him not to forget breakfast, lunch, or dinner. One of my newest favorite hymns is Arise O God And Shine 265. I would love to play that one in a Sacrament meeting sometime. Or An Angel From On High(13 I think or 15). Do you guys like those ones? There are some awesome hymns that we just don't hear enough.

Well it snowed here last week pretty good. It's pretty white outside.

We're praying hard for some baptisms. We had a less active Brother from our Branch attend Sacrament yesterday! It was awesome. He's a great guy we've been visiting many times and it's a joy to associate with him. He's the only member of his family. He's married and has a couple daughters but they're mostly Lutheran. He know's the church is true. We read the Book of Mormon with him.

Did you know that Repentence is a Divine Gift? It really, truly is. A talk given by D. Todd Christofferson makes it clear and fun to learn about. It was given this last conference. Sure repentence isn't something we want to do, mainly because we like to do things right the first and every time. But if we see repentence in the correct lens, it's something we want to do and we can do it willingly and joyfully. It gives us true joy. The essence of setting New Years Resolutions or any goal is practially repentence. Especially when we're doing it to truly improve our lives and bring them in harmony with Christ and Heavenly Father.

I love the Gospel, and it loves us! Heavenly Father loves us. Another talk was given by Robert D. Hales 'Waiting upon the Lord'. You are good examples of doing what he talks about in there.

Love Elder Ensign

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Tell congratulations to Matt for me. I'm happy to hear about Jack and Steph and JJ!

That's so nice of you for looking for that book, thanks! It'll come when the time is right and if you keep looking.

I haven't gotten a letter from Dad lately, how is he doing? He's probably busy. I hope that all is well there.

It is sunny, clear skies, cool temperatures with a high of 0 degrees here. I believe the current temp is around -14 give or take. The weather has been crazy here. It snowed just the other day and supposed to bring a blizzard in tonight till tomorrow. That's what they say anyway. It's very calm and dead cold out now.

This week has been pretty good. The past two weeks we've found new investigators and have taught them very good 1st lessons and left them with commitments. These people I talk about are really nice and show great potential for baptism and conversion. Their names are Carol(an older woman who's married, we teach them both.), Kristin, and Nathan. They are great people.

We also have had some great visits with some recent converts in the Branch and some less active members and they are working hard! Reading the intro. to the Doctrine and Covenants was fun. The other day we read it with a member from the Branch, a line in it says, this book is "of great value to the human family and of more worth than the riches of the whole earth"! I thought that was cool.

We've had the opportunity to give some blessings here and support the branch. It's been good. I'm on scheduled to play again for Sacrament meeting this Sunday in Church!

I love you. bye -- Elder Ensign

Monday, January 9, 2012

We had a day last week where the temp. was in the 60's!! It was so amazing! Everybody in Marshall was happy and so friendly! The light was truly shining in a physical and spiritual sense. We met a bunch of new people that day who invited us back!

Elder Maskell has lost 40 lbs.! He is showing real dedication and discipline as he works to maintain goals for himself and for our companionship.

Have you all been to the temple lately? Please do.

Thanks for the great example you set by reading the Book of Mormon and being you. Keep it up!! :)

I can't tell you how much it means to receive the gifts of love and support that so many of you give to me. I pray that you may read the scriptures and be led and guided to the promised land of much happiness and joy, and success. Ah, I love all of you, so much.

The prophet's message in the Ensign this month is one I recommend for you to read, then every page after it :)

I received some awesome Emails this week from some people I value and treasure so greatly. Thank you. If they could send me their address at home I would definately write them back.

Mother, thanks for being there and dad, thanks for sharing you testimony. Thanks for your prayers. Please say hi to Beth, Lori, Alison and all our Bros and Sisters. I'll write Jack a letter soon. Please give my love to aunt Janae and tell her hi for me!

As we read of the life of George Albert Smith the love of God comes through its pages so thickly and purely. Serving the Lord here in Marshall Minnesota is so amazing. Christ is our Savior. He loves us.

--Elder Ensign

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Dear Family,

Yes, we made it through the New Year! Last year was a great one wasn't it!? I think and look back and can just be so grateful for the things that have come to pass for so many of us! Elder Maskell and I went to bed on time and woke up on time New Years Eve and Day and we had a good Sabbath a couple days ago. It was thrilling to get the new manuals for Priesthood, the new Prophets of the Church manual: George Albert Smith. I opened that up and knew right away it was inspired and the right stuff for us to know. One line in the Introduction Chap. was when a fellow of Pres. Smith's spoke at his funeral and made the quote, "God is Love. George Albert Smith is love." He was (and is) a true Prophet.

To go along with that thought and idea of the scriptures being used in our lives and how they can be used as an umbrella, was something I heard in church this week, Everything we do either moves of closer to, or farther from God, the question is: At what speed?

So I'm glad you had a nice few weeks off mother, I hope you are enjoying the time with the kids again. And yes the early hours aren't bad. And studying really is great. I'm focusing on becoming a Preach My Gospel Missionary that Elder Bednar gave a talk on recently. It emphasizes many things including letting the spirit do the real teaching, and listening, observing, discerning, THEN teaching(talking).

We have met a gentleman by the name of Alfredo recently! He is a good person who is from Mexico originally but has lived here for some time. We have met a couple times with him and taught him and he has started reading chapters of the Book of Mormon! Heavenly Father definately loves him and we can feel that and he is a great fellow. We will see him again later this week.

I hope hope hope that Aunt Janae is doing good!! That is very sweet that she is at Alpine! Sounds like a great opportunity to help and see her. She's probably grateful to be near you and other family! I love her, she is so sweet.

I have inquired about my bike and Pres. Layton has actually been working on the bicycle matter so I'm not sure what's going on, but he mentioned to get it in working condition and make the repairs if needed.

We have been tracting a lot. We've had some very nice experiences last weekend talking with some people(two separte families at two different homes) who attend an Evangelical Church a small distance from town. They were so nice, pleasant, and warm hearted! It was a blessing really, and we shared with them our message and left them with cards so they could contact us in the future if prompted. Even though they didn't invite us immediately back it was an uplifting and edifying experience to meet with them. The spirit and the love of the Savior was felt.

Well bye for now. Thanks for the prayers and letters, and packages, and love. I hope you feel of my love and testimony. I know that God lives, and His son is our Savior and they are guiding and helping us along, even more as we allow them too.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Tuesday, Dec. 27, 2011

Heyyy! It was great talking to you on Christmas. It was fun. Elder Maskell was happy to get a smile in and see you all. I showed him a few pictures before then.

Please tell Dennis 'Hi' for me. I hope he sends me a letter that way I'll have his address. Thanks to all the wonderful, loving family and friends who share their love with me.

With it being 2 days after Christmas, it stills feels like the holiday and that means a lot of people are hosting family and enjoying the break. Yesterday we worked for a few hours and talked to a few nice people and that felt good after the break.

I'm very pleased to hear Sarah sang in the choir. That sounds so fun! Yes they have a Branch Choir but we don't get too involved because of the practice involved. Maybe we will in the future.

I sure love you all. Here's a nice scripture to read: 2 Nephi 4:35(30-35)