Monday, 31 October 2016

Monday October 31, 2016 - The One with Whipped Cream, Chili and Seven Baptisms!!!

Holy Cow Batman! What a week! And I don't even have time to tell you all about it because we are doing a Halloween Party/Zone Activity today. Should be a blast. 

Okay. Let's begin. We had a District Activity on Monday. It was pretty fun. We went to Chik fil a after. Tuesday was Trainer Trainee Meeting. It was so good! The meeting seemed to go by so fast. 

Wednesday was crazy! So we went to a District meeting then did an exchange. We did service at Loaves and Fishes. Then we had to exchange again within the exchange because of some technical things. The Elders we were on exchange with are the ones teaching the Beam Family. This is the family that Elder Peterson and I found in the restaurant parking lot. Well their baptismal interview has to be preformed by someone who didn't teach them and since I already had, I couldn't do it. Well Elder Rasmussen, due to the exchange was lined up to teach them, meaning we would have had no one to do the interview, so we had to exchange back for the lesson (so I could teach them) then re exchange afterwords. Antonio was interviewed for baptism that night also and it went so well. 

Thursday night was also crazy. We had five baptismal interviews to do. But they were on opposite sides of the stake. So I went with a member down to the Catawba Indian Reservation to do two of them and Elder Rasmussen and Merrill went to the Stake Center to interview the Beam family. Initially we had planned to meet up at our lesson this night but the Beams showed up an hour late. So I had to plead with our member for him to come teach with me. So I taught a solo lesson. Woot woot. Set a baptismal date nbd. (not to brag) :)

Friday was our interviews with President Alexander. They went really well. He told me I was getting ready for the 'big transfer' and that I needed to start thinking about going home. Not exactly what I wanted to hear or was expecting. But it's okay. We went on another exchange afterwords. Elder Merrill and I were with Elder Barton. We had to go to another District Meeting right after we exchanged. One of the districts moved their meeting to Friday so we were able to go to it. 

Saturday was quite the day! Antonio's baptism was this morning and it went really well. He was super excited and I was so happy because Elder Merrill got to baptize him. We were also able to go to the baptism of the Beam family that afternoon. It blows my mind to think that Elder Peterson and I met him five weeks ago. He was baptized exactly five weeks after the initial contact. 
Antonio's Baptism

The Beam's baptism

Our ward Halloween party was a blast that night. It was a chill cook off and there was lots of stuff for the kids to do. Elder Merrill participated in a pie eating contest and managed to get away with very little on his face. I fixed that afterwords by picking some of the cream up and hitting him in the face with it. Him and Antonio chased me outside, around the building and I locked myself in our car. 

Fun at the Ward Halloween Party

Sunday was the confirmation. Everything went well. They did show up late because of their ride but it happened and that's what counts. 

Well I'm super busy so I gotta go
Send me pictures, read your scriptures,
Love you!
Elder Galvin. 

A Really Cool Picture!

Just Messing Around

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Monday Oct. 24, 2016 - The One where I learn the evils of Energy Drinks

So this was a pretty decent week. Lots happened. Let me tell you about it. 

So Tuesday I went on exchange with Elder Holman. He is the missionary who replaced me in Albemarle. Love the guy! He is really down to earth and a hard worker. He is actually from the same place as my pervious companion Elder Stephens. They were in the same ward back home I think. Or at least same stake. We did a lot of tracting that day. Like a lot. We did get to ride the bus and the train which was fun for me. I'm sure it was just an average day for him but this full car Elder was loving it. He took me out to this super great restaurant. It was right off the train platform. It was called Futo Buta and it's this hip little place that does home made ramen. It was so good! I should have got a picture of it. 

The next day was district meeting and service which was pretty decent. We had a lesson with Antonio that night and we planned his baptism. We were like, "Who do you want to baptize you?" and he was like, "Elder Galvin", and I was like, "are you sure?" and he was like "yes," and I was like, "what about Elder Merrill?" and he was like "are you sure/" and I was like "yes."  So Elder Merrill is going to preform the baptism and I'm going to confirm him :)  I really wanted Elder Merrill to have this experience early on in his mission it will set the tone really nicely. 

There was one night this week we got to our dinner about fifteen minutes early and there was a target right across the street and long story short Elder Rasmussen convinced me to buy an energy drink. Now let me clear. I have never before drank an energy drink in my life. And based on my experience I will never do it again. So I get all hyped up and crack the can open and drink about two thirds of it before our dinner. Now I'm not 100% sure if it was the energy drink that caused this but I see no other explanation, but during the dinner I began to feel a little sick. Like I need to use the toilet sick. And to spare you all the gory details let's just say I had to go before we left. I typically hate to use the washroom at people's houses but in this case it was an emergency. 

We had our typical bi monthly pizza night at a ward members home. This time while the pizza we're cooking I hopped on the piano grabbed a book of Christmas songs and the three of us had a jolly good time. Elder Rasmussen sassily suggested we sing "I'll be home for Christmas" to which I responded to with a glare. We did sing a bunch of others though. ''Twas quite a hoot. 

Pizza Party!!
Friday night we got to go on another exchange. My illustrious previous companion Elder Peterson came back to Pineville with Elder Merrill and myself. In the words of the hymn oh blessed reunion.!! We had a really good day that Saturday. 

We exchanged back at Angelica's wedding reception. Oh my gosh was that an experience. We walked in and got stared at so hard core because we were the only white peoples there. Now I'm used to the stares because missionaries and stuff but it was awkward. Maybe because they were blaring music, maybe it was because the music was in Spanish. Regardless it was great. We hung out with a bunch if our friends there and exchanged back with the assistants. The five of us stayed for dinner. Both Elder Peterson and Blanco served in Pineville so it was a little pineville reunion. 
At the Wedding reception
Overall it was a pretty good week!

Send me pictures, read your scriptures,
Love you!
Elder Galvin
Doing the Dew!

Monday Oct. 17, 2016 - The One with the African feast!

This was another really good week in Pineville. Things are trucking along wonderfully. This was one of those meeting filled weeks but we were still able to accomplish a lot. 

Last Monday night we had a "Canadian" Thanksgiving dinner of chicken wings with the Hernandez Family. It was super good! They bought a ton of wings from his place in town and we just had two giant boxes of them at the table and went for it. So good!

Tuesday was the beginning of all of our meetings. We dropped Elder Merrill off with the Elders in the Sharon Ward and drove to the Hilliard building for MLC. It was a pretty good meeting. Got to see a lot of friends as usual which is nice. Elder Peterson was there. We had this crazy three way type lesson later that night (once we were back from MLC). We were teaching Antonio, our investigator who is getting baptized on the 29th, his mom, Angelica who is a member and their friend Edith. Since they are all at different points in the gospel there was one point in the lesson where each one of the three of us, all speaking at the same time were teaching one of the three of them. We were crossing over and extending invitations and everything. It was great! Elder Merrill got to invite another person to baptism and they said yes so he was super exited about that. 
Us Crazy Pineville Elders!

Wednesday morning we planned for Zone Meeting with the Sisters. Before we went to the church we stopped by this place called Smoothie King where I literally spent $8.00 on a smoothie. It was super good though and had protein power and weight gain power and a whole bunch of stuff in it. Zone Meeting planning went well. We get off topic a lot and I feel like the bad guy when I have to tell people to focus. But whatever. The meeting got planned. We did our typical service at loaves and fishes afterwards. It was great!

Thursday was the first exchange of the transfer. After our weekly planning session we met the Catawba Elders at a diner, had lunch, then exchanged. Fun side story. In the middle of the our planning session a spontaneous water fight broke out. For exchanges, Elder Merrill and I stayed in Pineville and we got Elder Johnson who was actually in the MTC with Elder Merrill. So we had two new missionaries and a seasoned vet! We went tracting for the first time on Elder Johnson's mission and found two new investigators! Hopefully it was a motivator. I lead for a bit and afterwords sat back a little and made the new Elders do the talking. Elder Johnson was a little nervous but Elder Merrill seemed very comfortable. We also taught this one less active man that night the restoration to "practice" and I just had the two new missionaries speak the entire time. I think it was a good experience for both of them. 
Elder Merrill, Johnson and myself

Friday was Zone Meeting and it was incredible. I trained on the Book of Mormon and it actually made Elder Simpkin cry, Elder Simpkin! He never cries. He came up to me afterwords and say he's become a woman in the last two weeks. He says he is super emotional all the time. It is his last transfer. I hope that doesn't happen to me. 

Saturday was full of a lot of service. After studies we went to help someone move. It was a family in our ward who was moving just down the street from their current house. The move started at 8:00 and  we didn't leave until 12:30.  We didn't get there until 10:00 because we wanted to do studies first. After that we went and helped Sister Hernandez move some stuff in her house. 

We had a dinner with Linda and Lisa on Saturday night. She invited the Sister's over and her ward missionaries and we had an African feast. She didn't make anything American. It was really good. Some of it was a little weird, butt it was tasty regardless. We had peanut butter soup with tripe and goat, coco root and plantains, smoked turkey and a spinach sauce, chicken in sauce and some different kind of rice. 

Sunday was a typical Sunday. Had Antonio and some others come to church. It was the primary program which was incredible. Totally cried like three times. After church and dinner we came back to the church to help teach mission prep. It was super fun. 

Overall a pretty good week! 

Send me pictures, read your scriptures,
Love you!
Elder Galvin

I almost forgot!!  The Ince family (friends from Ontario) and SISTER INCE were in the area and looked me up !!

Monday Oct. 10, 2016 - The One Where we teach a Blind man

So this has been a pretty good week in Pineville. Not much has changed except for my companions. So I have two new companions that I got on Tuesday. Elder Rasmussen from Highland Utah who was my Zone Leader Back in Greensboro. And we are training Elder Merrill from Gilbert Arizona. They are both really great. Elder Merrill is the most solid new missionary I have ever seen in my life! 

We had a really great first day together. We went to see one of of our investigators and Elder Merrill got to invite him to baptism and he said yes! We also found a man who lived at the same place he does who was blind. He started to talk with us and asked if he could join in on our lesson. He is a really nice guy. 

We did service at Loaves and Fishes twice this week. It was pretty fun as always. It's nice to be able to spend time with other missionaries. 

We are still teaching Antonio. He is the eleven year old son of a less active member. His whole family came to church this Sunday and it was so great! He is such a great kid and really soaking everything in. He remembers everything. Like literally when we taught the gospel of Jesus Christ we asked a follow up question about repentance and he recited by memory all of the steps to repentance. So great! 

The family brought two of their friends to church with them. They are both interested in learning more! It's so great we are teaching them this week. 

Not sure what else to write about. Things are going well. Have a great week!

Send me pictures, read your scriptures
Love you!
Elder Galvin

Elder Peterson saying goodbye to the Hernandez Family

The new Pineville Elders...Elder Rasmussen on the left and Elder Merrill on the right

Pineville  District Missionaries

Monday Oct. 3, 2016 - The One with Miracles Abounding

Okay. So this week has been great. But first the transfer news. Elder Peterson is getting transferred to be an Assistant! My new companion is Elder Rasmussen and we are going to be training! Hopefully for real this time. Elder Rasmussen was my Zone Leader back in Greensboro so I already know him. 

Miracle Story! Last Monday night we had such a crazy experience. So here's the back story. A couple of weeks ago we had to go to an eye doctor so Elder Peterson could get some contacts. We had initially set up an appointment with one place but decided to call another to see if they could get him in earlier. They could so we went the next day. While there we met this lady who took the pictures of Elder Peterson's eyes. We talked with her for a bit while we were waiting for some stuff and she knew a bunch of members of the church from a previous office she worked at. We tried to see if we could teach her and she respectfully declined. Fast forward to last Friday. We get a call from the Elders in another ward saying they have talked with this lady who wants to hear more about the gospel. She lives in our area so we decided to go and find her. It was late one night and dark out and when we got there we realized we had a building number but no apartment number. Saying to heck with annoying people we decided to knock every door until we found her. Literally the last door we knocked there was a voice from the other side asking who it was (Side note: I've gotten really good at talking to doors on my mission), after the typical response of it's the missionaries she said now is not a good time. We asked if the person we were looking for lived there and we got no response. We asked again and she said she had moved. We tried to see if we could come and teach her and she said come back Monday night. So we set up a teaching appointment with a voice behind a door. We come back on Monday and are met with the same response of who is it from behind the door. This time they open up it was the lady from the eye doctor. It turns out the person we were looking for happened to be her daughter who moved to Gastonia that weekend. She let us right in and we chatted for a while. She showed up a picture of her Mormon coworkers and we saw a ton of familiar faces. One was the wife of our wards bishop and the other was the son of a Hmong member in Albemarle I met last thanksgiving, once while tracting and another time at a party. It was crazy all the connections and circumstances that lead to that encounter. She expressed concerns for her daughter and cried a ton. She wants to be taught and we are going to bring our bishops wife to teach her. Try and tell me God didn't make all that happen. 

So here's an additional miracle. Remember the guy I told you about last week who came up to us outside a restaurant? Well he is basically the most solid person on the face of the planet. Here's the story. Well after meeting him at Cici's he called us during church the next day asking for a Book of Mormon. We called him back and got his voicemail and left him a message. Wednesday we had Zone Conference. After we got back from the meeting he calls us and says he wants to meet right now. We tell him to meet us at the church in fifteen minutes. We have possibly one of the best lessons I've ever had with him. He told us how he has been drawn to the church for a while now. He sees the good that comes out of it and wants it for his family. We gave him his Book of Mormon and he texted us the next day telling us he was done the first two books. He came to Conference this weekend and he loved it. He has reread 1 Nephi, watched videos to understand it, watched meet the Mormon's, and researched a ton of information. He texted us and said that he has almost convinced his wife to join the church. And we only taught him once! Unfortunately he lives outside our area so we had his missionaries come to the session of conference with us so we could introduce him and transition him over. 

In other news. Zone Conference was this week. It went pretty well. Our ride got us there way late so we missed our meeting beforehand. We walked into the chapel and right onto the stand. Everyone was wearing their matching ties which was great. We looked so good together. Sister Champagne from Albemarle did the food and it was so good! Dallas and Brother Doyle were there too! 

We went on an exchange this Friday to Saturday. I brought an Elder Eaton to Pineville. He is the best. Possibly one of the kindest, sincere, and genuine people ever. We had a good day. We were able to teach this really fun lesson together. We are teaching this boy named Antonio who is the son of a member. He is super excited for baptism and we taught him the plan of salvation. Well he and his sister had a bunch of their friends over so we ended up teaching a lesson to six people under the age of twelve. We drew it out on a piece of paper and they took turns reading scriptures. It was a lot of fun. They asked so many great questions about God. 

This weekend wasn't the most productive for missionary work. But it was really good regardless. We were really busy in between sessions with appointments and helping people get conference set up. We had to do a baptismal interview last night. She was such a great girl. Super outgoing.

Overall this was a good week. Things are going to be busy today with getting Elder Peterson ready and prepping for a third missionary (again). Pray nothing crazy happens this time. We're also going to this really nice mall with another set of Elders. 

Send me pictures,
Read your scriptures,
Love you!
Elder Galvin

Our Miracle Guy from the Restaurant!

At Zone Conference

An Albemarle Reunion!!  So fun!

Monday Sept. 26, 2016 - The One with the Blue Haired Boy

This was a pretty good week here in Pineville. 

I'll share a couple great stories. 

Saturday night we had dinner with a member and they took us out to a restaurant. After we were getting into our car and this man comes running outside and stops us. He talks to us for like fifteen minutes and he cries and everything. He's had a rough life and military background and he has been wanting to get into church with his family. We left him with a pamphlet and our number and he called us the next day asking for a Book of Mormon! 

We found this really great part member family we started to work with. The mom is a member who is getting married soon. All of her kids are unbaptized and they are interested. Should be good! 

We did go on one exchange with the Elders in Monroe. They have been struggling a bit. The exchange wasn't too bad. I enjoyed myself. I redecorated their apartment for fun. And cleaned it because there were spiderwebs all over the place. It was pretty gross. They live in a big house. Like four times the size of Danville. And there is only two of them. But basically anything is bigger than our house in Danville. 

We also met this kid while knocking on doors. He had bright blue hair! He was really kind to us and seemed pretty interested. He goes to school with members of the ward. I have been so impressed with the young people I've met in Charlotte. They are really exceptional people. Very driven and motivated. 

There was this lady who we met in Walmart the other week who came to church yesterday. She is super nice. She is super outgoing and came in really early before we were out of ward Council. She just went up and started talking to a lady in the ward who meets before us and asked for the missionaries. So the member went and got the missionaries in that ward and she was all like,  "Nope those are the wrong ones. Those aren't the missionaries I fell in love with."  She was happy to see us when we found her. 

So I'm sure you've heard about all the craziness happening in Charlotte. Luckily I'm pretty far away from all the riots and stuff. We've basically been told just to be cautious. I'm sure everything has died down now. The riots went on for quite a few days so we hear. We have some missionaries not too far from where it all was going down so we made sure they were safe. 

Overall this week was pretty good but very typical. We found people, taught people and blah blah blah. Hope you enjoy Conference this weekend!

Send me pictures, read your scriptures, 
love you!
Elder Galvin