Thank you so much for your birthday packages! I got them on Saturday night when President Leavitt came to do personal interviews. I'll be sure to make those brownies you send me soon. Most of all thank you for the birthday cards you sent me. Those were really nice of you.
While we were knocking last Monday night we ran into a lady that was a member but hasn't gone to church in 12 years. She was kind enough to let us in. She said that she left the church because of hypocrisy. So we just sat down and explained to her that the doctrine of the church is perfect but the people aren't. We also taught her about the message of the restoration. She said she was going to the Church in Saint John before she left. She also had questions about the Book of Mormon, and the plan of salvation. She seemed pretty receptive but she still has issues about some of the doctrine and the members. Her name was Lorna Graves. She wouldn't give us her number. But she told us to stop by whenever were in the area next. We didn't get chance to stop by this week but we're going to try and see her this week. She lives in Quispamsis and we're only there two days a week which makes it a little hard for us to come and see her.
Later on this week while we were knocking again in Hampton on Thursday, we ran into a man named Dan Reed. He was also a member of the church but hasn't gone too church for 3 to 4 years. He didn't tell us why. He was pretty busy when we ran into him. So we didn't get to talk to him for long. But he did tell us to come by whenever we're in the area next. He was very nice to us about it. At Church yesterday during Ward Council, Bishop Russell said that before he didn't want anything to do with the Church. He said that he wouldn't allow home-teachers to come by before. So the fact that he invited us to come by another time is a huge step.
So this week we ran into two less actives while we were knocking that haven't been to Church in years. I'm starting to think that maybe the Lord wants us to bring these people back. It made me thing of my setting apart as a missionary.
As far as our investigators go, Rhonda Fox is still smoke free. She hasn't smoked in 8 days. So we're feeling pretty good about that. Now we just need to teach some of the commandments and she should be good to go for baptism. But her husband Andy who is a member is smoking sadly. The really sad part is that Rhonda wants her husband to baptize her. But he can't baptize her if he's smoking. We offered to help him stop smoking but he declined. He is a really nice guy. He comes to Church every week and everything. He just has a problem with smoking. It's funny because every time we go over there they have these cats that like to crawl up on my lap. They seem to be really attracted to me. When we leave their apartment there have been a couple of times where I have been covered with cat hair on my tail-bone and also on my legs. But i'm usually fine . I don't get an allergic reaction at all. Anyway, Andy actually referred us to his sister Cathy Fox who is a less-active but her husband is anon-member and then she has her niece there. They were really nice to us. Her niece is in a wheel-chair actually. So we just kind of introduced ourselves because she was busy with dinner. They told us they want to quit smoking. So that was really encouraging. We did have an appointment with them yesterday but it ended up falling through. But we're going to reschedule for another time this week.
President Leavitt, in my personal interview with him on Saturday, said "Ya know what, you're exactly obedient aren't you Elder O'Brien?" He also asked if I was a good student in high school. He said let that continue on into my mission. He also asked if we did companionship inventory and I said no.. we don't :/ He then told me to start doing companionship inventory every Friday during weekly planning. It makes a difference. During the interview I told him that I was working in an office for a year. He asked if I would be comfortable working in the mission office in Dartmouth at some point and I told him I would. So we'll have to see what comes of that. It was a really good interview I had with President. At the end of the interview though when he was getting ready to leave we asked him about the "Meet the Mormons" and he said it's likely that we'll be able to see it once it comes to Canada.
So this week I'll be spending four days in Saint John from Sunday-Thursday. We're doing exchanges with the Saint John Elders tomorrow and Thursday. Tomorrow I'll be working with Elder Quinton; he's from Magrath and be's been out for about 5 months. On Thursday I'll be working with Elder Allsop; he came out with me. But in case you're wondering we're going back to Hampton tonight for dinner and then Saint John elders are coming up later on to do the swap tonight. So I'll have three companions this week. It should be a good experience.
Tonight we're having thanksgiving dinner with the Downey's. So that should be good. Brother Downey is the
second counselor in the bishopric.
I am thankful for my family, I am thankful for their such loving support for me, I am thankful for the way they've
raised me, I am thankful for their examples to me, I am thankful for being a missionary, I am thankful for the new area I am serving in.. I am developing a Christ-Like love for the people in my area, I am thankful for the atonement. I am thankful for the gospel of Jesus Christ, I am thankful to be able spent a part of Thanksgiving e-mailing my family, I am thankful for the missionaries in this mission. They've been so supportive and have made me feel comfortable. Elder Jason actually phoned me the other day to see how I was doing.