Monday, November 30, 2015

Getting Colder November 30,2015

Boy is the temperature dropping. In the antelope valley its like 10 degrees colder than Bakersfield. It went from me last week wearing short sleeves in Bakersfield to sweaters and at night a jacket here in Lancaster. Lancaster is a city right off the hills (what they call mountains but there too small to be mountains) so the wind goes right off of them and hits the city. So its been like 30 degrees but with the wind chill at night it gets down to 20. Its so cold. But hey no complaints because I'm able to serve the Lord. So now to the new area. I am super excited to be here in Lancaster. I see this area having a lot of potential. This week was super busy. We had transfer meeting Tuesday at 11 and that went for about an hour and a half and then we had to drive home. The drive was almost two hours. Once we got home we had to get situated and get everyone else in the zone figured out. In our zone there at 3 people that just got on there mission and 3 people who have only been out for 6 weeks so we have a really young zone which is nice because they can be trained in an environment where they start off with the expectation to find teach and baptize (which a lot of the older missionaries that have gone home these past few months didn't have). But Elder Boy and I hit the ground running this week. We only found 6 but they are some very prepared people. We knocked into this one lady who has talked to missionaries in the past but moved and the missionaries never gave the referral off so she lost contact. But anyways we asked her what she remembered and she remembered almost all of the restoration. She has already prayed and knows that Joseph Smith is a prophet and knows that the book of Mormon is true. Can we talk about finding PREPARED people. Her and her son both have baptismal dates for the 26th of December. The big push our mission is making right now is giving the savior a gift in December by baptizing someone. While were on the topic of the savior please watch this video. It is amazing. It brings the spirit so strongly. 

So also this week we played in the Turkey Bowl. That was so much fun. Other than me being sore the next two days after that. We got fed a really awesome thanksgiving dinner. It was so funny. The members that we ate at made two turkeys. Its funny because as they started to cut one it fell on the ground. The little boy goes "oops dad might say a bad word again". It was hilarious. Well we are super short on time. our mission president has switched our emailing time to no more than an hour. So we will keep it to that. 

The spiritual part for the week was this. 
There is a great song that the children sing that apply to us. 
I Will Be Valiant #162
The Lord needs valiant servants,
To do his work in the latter day,
Who follow the teachings of Jesus
And serve his people in a loving way.
I will be his servant
And keep my cov'nants valiantly.
I'll stand for truth. I'll stand for right.
The Lord can depend on me.

-Elder Loertscher

​Picture from  the turkey bowl

​my ping pong rival. Played my last game with him before transfers

Gettin Transferred November 23,2015

So we got transfer calls on Saturday and I am leaving to Lancaster. I will still be a zone leader. My new companion will be Elder Boy. He is super cool. I know him well. We will get along great. This past week went a little slower in our area because we had to work in our area and in Elder Kaspers area. Its been a good 4 1/2 months in the Monica ward. We had 2 baptism and taught a lot. I've learned so much from this area. But now I'm super excited to go back to the Antelope Valley. Dang this week a member took us out to eat. It was a very well off restaurant. Amazing food. Its been forever since we've have ate out. But we saw an awesome Maserati. Sorry for the tangent I love cars. For my birthday today we are packing and getting ready for transfers, having a zone activity, and saying bye to members. Sorry this is super short and not very spiritual we are super short on time. 

The scripture of the week is Jeremiah 29:11-13 

11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

 12 Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you.

 13 And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.

I love how it emphasizes will all of our heart. We cant do it only half way or holding back a portion of us. We need to give him our all. 

Well happy thanksgiving. I hope you all have a great week.
-Elder Loertscher

​Elder Boy is the one in the front on the right. 

Tri-companionship November 16, 2015

Man this week was very entertaining. Let see where to start.On Tuesday we met a man from Syria. He is so cool. He speaks very little English. His main language is Arabic. He taught us a little. He came to church yesterday which was awesome. He reads from his Arabic Book of Mormon every night. Literally such an amazing man. We also found this family. One of the very few families i have ever taught on my mission. They also came to church. There was 5 of them. So we had 6 people at church yesterday.First time in a long time we had that many. We had interviews this week with President and Sister Wilson. It was nice to be able to talk with him and his wife. As we were proselyting this week we saw a huge gas explosion. We took some amazing pictures. There was a big switch up in our zone. These 2 elders needed to get split up so we now have one of them with us. So we are in what they call a "trio". He will be with us till transfers which are in a week so not very long.   His name is Elder Kasper we know him very well. Let me tell you how weird it is at first to try and teach with 3 people. Knowing when to switch off and who is going to pick up is a little shaky at first but then you get the hang of it. We found 8 new people and 6 of which will actually progress. That has been the hardest thing lately. We have found so many people to teach but a lot of them flake after a while. This next week will be also entertaining. I turn 20 next Monday. Does that mean that i have to quit acting like a teenage?? ;) 
We have transfers the day after my birthday so we will find out this Saturday what is happening. i hope i don't get transferred because it is two days before thanksgiving so if i leave that will be a weird adjustment to a new ward. Anyways i hope all is going well with you all. Sorry its a short email. It was way more eventful but we are low on time. 

-Elder Loertscher

​Our newish companion

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Getting out of The Comfort Zone

Boy did this week get me out of my comfort zone. We will start with Wednesday, we had Mission Leadership Council (MLC). I got asked to give a talk on How to Recognize the Holy Ghost. Can i just tell you that it is a little intimidating giving a talk in front of the mission president and his wife, 19 other zone leaders, and all of the sister training leaders. It went super good though. The focus of the meeting was on commitments. It is super cool to go to these meetings because there is so much revelation received for our individual stewardship. After MLC we had to then plan Zone Training Meeting (ZTM). We had our ZTM Friday, Sister Wilson came so that added a little bit of un-needed stress. Our ZTM also went well though. We talked a lot about how our zone needs to make finding a priority. No one in our zone really finds new people to teach except Elder Fernandes and I. Its super frustrating to see our zones potential and then to see how much we are limiting ourselves from what God wants us to achieve. We talked about how we can help people better progress when they understand why we are here. Which is to baptize them. People are unlikely to change unless they are invited to do so. When we extend commitments for them to change that's how they can evaluate and look for areas of improvement. We went on exchanges this week with one of the district leaders in our zone. I went with Elder Johnson my old companion. We saw a ton of success. We had a super cool experience. We went to this apartment complex to knock doors and when we showed up there was a lot of kids out in the front playing games. When we walked past them they asked us if we knew magic. We told them yes. (not knowing any magic tricks of course). We then remembered we knew black magic. So with all of these 7-12 year old kids we played black magic. They thought that it was the coolest thing ever. It was so funny. Also this week one our recent converts dogs had babies. They are the cutest little things ever. You will see a picture here in a little bit. Sunday we had our ward primary program. Hearing all of those kids sing brought the spirit so strongly. In gospel essentials class the teacher was sick so i had to teach the class. The lesson was on the spirit world. There was some investigators there so it was a nice refresher for them. We talked a lot about how we need to pray and look to change now rather than later. Alma 13:27 I love my mission so much and the opportunity I have to serve where I am. I've learned so much. Have a great week. 
-Elder Loertscher

​I had to take all the stuff out of my pocket for him to fit. Perfect picture moment too. It was him yawning. 

Some of the bros. taken at MLC

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Happy Halloween

Holy cow this was a eventful week. Where to start. On Tuesday we went on exchanges with one of our district leaders in our zone. We had a really successful day. We were able to find a lot of new investigators. That night we had splits with our ward. All of the youth came out on visits. Elder Fernandes and I took 2 priests with us and went and visited their friends. It made me so excited to go home and share the gospel with my friends. This week we also went on exchanges with the Assistants. We both went into their area. We saw a lot of success. Had some super funny stories from this exchange. Here is one of them. We taught this lady the whole restoration and she stopped us as soon as we got to the Book of Mormon. She said now I agree with everything you have stated up until this point but "I'm a baptist". We said that's great but let us explain the Book of Mormon. She said again "I'm baptist". We said if you agree with everything we have said then you will understand the need for the Book of Mormon. She said "I'm baptist". We said okay what if God told you not to be baptist anymore what would you do. "I'm baptist' It was probably one of the most frustrating things ever. There is a level of complacency and she was too comfortable where she was at. That is where the growth cycle comes in handy.(will be shown later on in email). This Halloween we had a stake party. There was a lot of people there. There was some awesome costumes. In the picture below the guy in the back ground (Bro. Munn) didn't dress up. That is his real beard. It is crazy long. Our curfew Halloween night though was 7:00pm. So we had to be in a little early. Elder Fernandes and I got ice cream and watched Meet the Mormons ( for the 100th time) (its still a good movie). In church this week the Sunday school teacher was sick so we taught the lesson. We talked about the family responsibilities. It was really good to get a reminder of what things I need to do as a son, future father, and future spouse. In priesthood meetings we talked about goal setting. I love the quote by Henry Ford "if you always do what you've always done, then you will always get what you always got". We need to be adaptable. We need to look for change if our results aren't what we are looking for. During testimony meeting I got up and bore my testimony on the Book of Mormon and the Holy Ghost using the part of the intro. to the Book of Mormon. There was a lot of learning experiences I had this week. I love the things a mission teaches you. The spiritual part of the email will be with the Growth Cycle.  

-Elder Loertscher

​This was at our ward Halloween party. There were some pretty sweet constumes.

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