Same Area, New Companion

This week has been absolutely crazy! On Monday night we got a call, Elder Castellano and I needed to go to Boise and so we left at 9:30 in the morning. We weren’t sure the reasoning but found out soon enough. After leaving Elder Castellano with the President Bartlett, I was made companions for 2 days in Kimberly with Elder Stokes and Elder Ethington and it was great! They are great missionaries. I am so humbled to serve with so many awesome, obedient and spiritual missionaries, IBM is the greatest mission in the world.

On Thursday I finally received my new companion Elder Cooke and man he is awesome! He is like a carbon copy of me except he is tall and lengthy and I am somewhat short and, ummmmmm, husky. He LOVEEESSS GOLF and Ping pong, and played baseball his Freshman year, and picked up golf late when he was a sophmore. He listened to rap a lot before the mission and loves people, and honestly is sooo cool, man I love him!

I do miss Elder Castellano, and it was an honor to be companions with an Assistant, thats right! He got made assistant!

Elder Cooke is from Hannibal, Missouri by the way and yeah he is so awesome. We were able to teach the Gallegos and tried to resolve some doubts but now I know that what we have to do is shower them with lots of members so they can feel how much love the ward has for them so they feel welcomed and now that the Lord will take care of everything.

I know that this church is true and I am so grateful that I have the opportunity to declare the word like the sound of a trump. I love the Spanish people and hope that the Lord will help us to find people that are ready for the gospel. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Con Amor,

Elder Saunders

 

Elder Cooke and I

Staying Focused

We had a good week this week. On Monday we played Ultimate Frisbee and that was way fun (see pictures). It is always an interesting balance the week leading up to transfer calls. You try and stay as focused as possible but its hard not to have your mind wonder about what might happen. I am just thankful the Lord is the one who oversees this important work and I know I am and will be where I am supposed to be.

We were able to have the Gallegos come to church for all three hours and we think that they enjoyed it and they are back on the train to baptism and we are really excited for them! We hope that we can resolve any doubts and teach them the rest of what they need to be ready for baptism.

This week we were able to also have the Barrett’s come to church and we had a great lesson about the importance of the sacrament.

I invite you to read the talk from Dallin H. Oaks Sacrament Meeting and the Sacrament. (https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2008/10/sacrament-meeting-and-the-sacrament?lang=eng). There is such great spiritual power that comes from being able to worthily take the sacrament each week. I have seen this in my life many times.

Thank you for all the love, prayers, and support. I testify of the sacrament and the importance of the sacrament. I know that he suffered on the cross and in Gethsemane for me, and for that reason I thirst after righteousness so he doesn’t have to suffer more than he needs to. I know that Jesus Christ is my friend and that we have a loving Heavenly Father. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Con Amor,
Elder Saunders

First Week in Acequia!

Great week this week and I am so excited to be here in Acequia.

My new companion is Elder Castellano and he is such a homie and we get along good. I can’t wait to see what the Lord has in store for us and the area. We have met a lot of people and we have also been able to see some of the blessings of being obedient. Not too many lessons this week but just trying to get to know the area as well as the people.

The goodbyes were hard to say in Raft River and Malta but I know that the Lord has some great stuff in store for us. Elder Castellano also served in Malta and so we talk about people there and yeah that is pretty cool.

I attached a picture of me with Luis y Marycruz and Emita and also some other pics of the new area. We had a great program at church as well and we had the opportunity to translate and yeah it is really fun and I hope we can find a lot more new investigators in this area.

Right now we cover 5 wards but I know that we will be able to find who is prepared and the spirit will help them to work towards baptism.

Thanks for all the prayers and support!

Con Amor,
Elder Saunders

Week 9-The Things I am Learning

Hola Familia,

Another great one, that is another great week. We have transfer calls today and that is super sketchy and has gotten me anxious but yeah I will be good.

Monday of this week we went and milked cows and it was nasty but soooooo fun! I got in there with no fear of them and I learned every step of milking the cows so that was great. After that we exchanged and I stayed in my area and Elder Duran came and we had a great time! We taught a new family that parents names are Norberto and Erika and they are such golden investigators and it was one of the best lessons I have ever had! Unfortunately, they will be moving to Mexico today for a month but then they should be coming back. I hope they do because they just look like members.

Tuesday while I was on exchanges with Elder Duran, we got so much work done that day including a new investigator and contacting an investigator.

Then on Wednesday we just taught a couple lessons and contacted a new referral.

The rest of the week we just taught some lessons and they went pretty good. We have currently been teaching about the Christmas Initiative, how God is our Loving Heavenly Father, This Gospel blesses Families, and how we can pray to receive answers and recognizing the spirit.

Yo testifico con poder sobre este Evangelio. Esta iglesia es la unica iglesia en el mundo que es verdadera. Yo se que por conducto de Jose Smith este evangelio ha resturado. Se que Dios es nuestro amoroso Padre Celestial sin duda.

Thank you for all your support.

Con Amor,

Elder Saunders

Last Minute Update: Elder Saunders and Elder Jones will be together for at least one more transfer, thank goodness.

Pics of my awesome Zone.

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Arrival in Boise, 1st Area

Quick update email when he arrived in first area:

Hey I will email you on Monday just wanted to say that I got here safely and I am currently in Raft River area if you want to look it up I live on a ranch it is in the middle of nowhere look up the area on lds.org but yeah I also need two usbs 8 or 16 gb so I can get music for our car. Thanks so much love you.

First official field email:

I actually am in a bilingual mission area right now so we are the only missionaries  so we cover both the English and Spanish. I will be serving in Raft River Ward for the next twelve weeks, not Cassia Branch. Elder Jones is from Queen Creek, AZ which is outside of Gilbert. He has been out for a year now but I am his first greenie. He is here for the right reasons and strives to first make me better then he focuses on himself, which is a good thing and a bad thing. I love him and he is such a great example to me,  I can’t wait to spend these next 12 weeks with him. I did get all my packages that you have sent so far so we are good on that. I absolutely love President and Sister Bartlett, they are both so awesome and

I absolutely love President and Sister Bartlett, they are both so awesome and can’t wait to work with them more. I am adjusting really well to being in the field it is way fun and can’t wait to see the success that Elder Jones and I are going to have here in Raft River. I can’t wait for Kaia and all the success she will have in San Diego, she will be one of the best missionaries ever as will Brian Hair.

This week we settled into our Ranch and really love living there minus the thousands of bugs, literally. We had dinner with the ward mission leader on Friday night and then with their kids the next day. It was great! Elder Jones and I had the opportunity to meet with Bishop Garner yesterday after church and he put us in charge of the Harvest Dinner which is like a dinner that celebrates the great success of the harvest season. I dug up potatoes, carrots and onions already since all 120 houses in our ward have something to do with agriculture minus one house. It is pretty crazy how rural this place is. It is so rural that we actually are allowed 2400 miles a month instead of the normal 400😅Now that is rural. Yeah seriously nothing but land so super fun. If you look up my address we live in the building that has a green roof and is surrounded by a ranch. We have a pet deer named Daisy and a pet coyote named oscar.

I am super pumped to meet more of our investigators. We were able to teach two lessons to a guy named Felipe and another to a family. All of our investigators right now are Spanish speaking so that is why they needed bilingual elders. I cannot wait to see the people here accept the gospel. I will keep praying for yall and hope everything is going good there as well.

I will send pictures next week of all the cool things out here but yeah cannot wait to see what success we will have out here.

Con Amor,

Elder Saunders

My trainer Elder Jones and me

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