December 24, 2012

Hello All,

This last week has been a really great week. I have a companion who really wants to work and we have been working our butts off trying to find people to teach. With Elder Sio, this is the hardest I have worked my whole mission. Elder Sio is my new companion. He is 28 years old and is Samoan, he was born and raised in Sydney. But he is a work horse and we have been working super hard. We taught 12 lessons compared to the usual 5 i had with Elder Kay and we got 4 new investigators this week when we were lucky to get one. It definitely makes a difference having a companion that wants to work just as hard as I do. We are still on the bikes until after the new year and I have started to lose quite a bit of weight. I am hoping to get back down to the weight I left home. Anyways. The work is going great

We got a new investigator we started to teach and his name is Donny. He is a Philipino man and he said he needs to start doing something new in his life and he thinks the gospel might be that thing. We taught him 2 lessons during this week but he was not able to come to church, so hopefully he will be able to come next week.

We also started to teach a 7th Day Adventist family. They are confused people. But we made the agreement with them that if we come to their worship services on Saturday, then they will come to ours on Sunday. Basically what 7th Day Adventist believe is that in the Old Testament God made the Sabbath day the 7th Day. But when Jesus Christ was resurrected on the first day, he said to worship him and have the sabbath on the first day. So basically what they believe is that Jesus Christ cant change the day that we worship him. Jesus said to worship him on the First day, but they 7th Day Adventists say that they don't believe that Jesus Christ could change the Sabbath Day. They are really knowledgeable about the Bible. We are teaching them about the Book of Mormon and we are hoping that it might go somewhere.

We also found some Lost Less Active people. Since there are 600 people on our branch list where only 150 people are active we decided to start visiting some of these people and we are now working with a couple of them to see if we can get them to come back to church. I am excited for one of the families we started to work with because it is a part member and the kids are thinking about being baptized. So we aren't going to be meeting with them again until the new year, but I am quite excited to see where it goes.

I am excited to talk to my parents on Christmas tomorrow! I miss you all and I hope you have a great week!

Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson

December 17, 2012

Hello All,

On the 13th of December I hit my 6 month mark on the mission. I have made it far!! So I burned an ugly tie that I found in my apartment to celebrate the 6 month milestone on my mission! Pictures are attached. I have a video of it as well, but I cant email that one. My companion was saying that I am a pyro when it comes to burning things. oh well. It was lots of fun! We made sure we were safe and we had a bucket of water next to us. I have made it pretty far! I love being a missionary! It has been a great 6 months.

On Saturday I received a new companion. Elder Kay has been up here for 7.5 months, so it was his time to go back down to Brisbane. My new companion is Elder Sio. He was a missionary in my district in Ipswich, so now we are companions. He is a really good guy. He is a Samoan Australian, he was born and raised in Sydney. He speak fluent Samoan, so I might be able to start learning the language again! He is great. We have been together for 2 days now. He is my 4th companion and all my companions have been from different countries. Elder Oto was from Samoa, Elder Paia'aua was from New Zealand, Elder Kay is from England and Elder Sio is from Sydney. I wonder if my next companion will be from a different country. Who knows.

The work has been starting to move really slow because everyone is going away for the Christmas holidays. Most people leave Townsville for Christmas, so it is going to be a pretty bare place. Except for a few people.

We were able to teach the African girl again this week. Her name is Mire and her mum Marie sat in on the lesson. they said that they were going to come to church next week. So I hope it works out. They thought we were Jehovah's Witnesses til the 2nd lesson, so after that things started to work out better. We will hopefully be able to go see them sometime this week.

We also went around to lots of less active members and we decided to make Christmas card and drop them off to as many less active members as we could. It was hard since the branch list has 600 names on it with only 150 active members. A lot of the work we are going to be focusing on is getting those less actives back to church. I am sure there is at least one family that is ready to come back to church.

We also tracted into a less active member who was baptized in Townsville 16 years ago. We talked with her for about an hour and set a return appointment. She said that she will think about coming back to church, which is exciting news! Her name is Cassandra. It is exciting to run into people like this when you tract for ages trying to find people. My work is going really well up here and I am excited to see things to start taking off once the new year starts! I miss you all and I hope you have a great week!
Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson


December 10, 2012

Hello All!

This week has been pretty good. First I would update you all on all the crazy things that have happened to me here in Townsville in my first transfer here. The transfer is almost over and have been an eventful 6 weeks. First, We had a baptism and we had to empty out the font with buckets because the pump was broken and the water would not drain. Then the next week our apartment was broken into while we were asleep, they realized we were poor and just took my wallet. I would of rather had them take anything else because they took my drivers license and my companion doesn't have a drivers license so we had to go on bikes until I could get something figured out. The same day I was able to get a drivers license, the other missionaries crashed the car because the other driver didn't yield in a roundabout. So we are on bikes for another 3 weeks waiting for the car to get fixed. But after all one of the cops that came to the crash was a lost in active member and we are going to try and get him to come back to church. I believe all of this happened for a reason because we had many opportunities to share the gospel with people while we were on bikes instead of a car. We got to talk to more people on the streets and I was able to become a better missionary because some pretty terrible things happened. Everything happens for a reason. I learned great lessons not having a car, and we found people we wouldn't have be able to find if we were in the car. None of the people are progressing, but we hope to make them progressing sometime in the future. I am kind of thankful that it happened because it has helped me grow as a person. We are going to be on bikes for another 2 weeks, so I am going to continue to lose some weight I gained from being stuffed by Samoans for 4.5 months. And we can share the gospel with people on the streets. So lots of crazy things happened in the last 6 weeks and I am learning from them greatly. Blessings can always be disguised in terrible things happening.

Anyways, This week has been a pretty slow week. We did a lot of tracting with not too much success, but we were able to teach a couple of people. We started teaching an African Girl. She is 15 and her parents told us we could start teaching her. We have only taught her the first lesson, but she said she would come to church next week, so we will see what happens with her. Her name is Mira. We also taught Qayyum one last lesson before he left. All that need to get done is his baptismal interview and then he can be baptized when he gets back in January. I am really excited for him. He already has plans on serving a mission and he isn't even baptized yet. So he is going to be a really strong convert, and it is all because A member invited his friend to come to church. I think sometimes members are afraid to share the gospel with their friends because it might ruin friendships, but we have to share is the greatest news that we have in this lifetime. Many people don't know what the purpose in life and that the same church that was on the earth in Jesus Christ's time is on the earth again today. I would love to encourage all of you to at least invite your friends to come to church with you because Qayyum just had to feel the spirit once in order to learn more. He knew he had to join right when he felt the spirit in the meeting. So it is easy to just invite your friend to church, because it makes missionary work a lot faster because missionaries don't know anyone and they rely on the members to share the gospel because conversions are so much greater when the members are involved.

I also had a miracle occur this Saturday when we were tracting. We came to a door where this guy was smoking on his front porch, He told us he had a lot of problems, we gave him a pamphlet and gave the regular sh peel about the restoration. We gave him the pamphlet and went on our way. As we got to the end of the street I felt like we needed to go back and talk to this guy. So we went back and talked with him and he said he just needed someone to talk to, So we talked with him for about an hour while sharing the restoration message. We all got along really well and formed a friendship fast. He said that he wanted to continue taking the lessons and he said that we came just at the right time and he recognized that God had sent us to him and that he needed to come to church. The only thing was that the next day he was flying and moving to Sydney. So we referred him to the missionaries down there. So if I ignored that prompting to go back and talk to him, he would have moved away being in a terrible mood about life, and since I followed it and went back to talk to him, he wants to learn more about the church and I hope that the missionaries down in Sydney will do a good job with that. I will never know if he gets baptized, but I hope that even though he moved he can still learn more about the gospel. This strengthened my testimony that the God does give missionaries promptings. And it is important that we stay worthy to receive those promptings. I love being a missionary and doing to work. That experience is just what I needed after a very long unsuccessful week.

Yesterday I had to chance to go to a small town named Ingham which is about 1.5 hours north of townsville. They hold a sacrament meeting up there once a month, so once a month a member of our bishopric and the missionaries go up there. I gave a talk in the sacrament meeting and the spirit was really strong. There was a total of 6 people at the sacrament meeting and there are 2 investigators up there the other missionaries are teaching. And they are great people. Some people who live in small towns are pretty crazy though. I guess this is good but one of the crazy old ladies said that she saw angels as I was giving my talk... so I guess I did a good job. It was a good experience to help out in the places where the church is just lingering, and growing slowly. North Queensland really struggles with the church, but with the influx of missionaries coming in, more missionaries will be able to go to North Queensland and some of the small places will be able to grow. I am excited to see what is going to be happening up here in the next couple years because there are going to be so many missionaries up here soon because of the age changes.

That was my week. I miss you all and I hope you have a great week. I attached some pictures of me on Mt. Stuart overlooking Townsville, a picture of me on Santa's lap at our branch Christmas party, and a picture of the tree we made out of wood, chicken wire, and garland.

Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson

 
 
 
  

December 3, 2012

Hello All,

My week has been pretty good. It has been starting to get really hot here in Queensland and I have been drinking water a lot in order to stay hydrated. It is December and is hot. So whenever I hear the song in the shops that says it is beginning to look a lot like Christmas. I think it is insane to play that song. But it Australia it starts to get really hot when it begins to look like Christmas. My week went really well. And I am really excited to see what is going to happening here in Townsville. Both companionship's here have really increased with success. We just had a baptism and both of us are going to be having baptisms in January, so things are going really well for all of us. Last Sunday we got a referral from our district president for his brother in law who is not a member who wanted to start taking the lessons. They were so excited they had us teach him 3 times in a week. So it was pretty exciting. He is from Thursday Island (and island between Australia and Papua New Guinea) and they don't speak proper English. The English they speak is broken up, so we can understand the jest of what he is saying, but he can't really understand what we were saying, so our district president would translate for us. He let us know that he wanted to be baptized and we had some really good spiritual lessons with him. We were going to set a date for baptism this week, but they just told us they are going to move to Cairns tomorrow, so we told the missionaries up there about them and told them that they are going to be teaching a really good guy with lots of faith in god. It is going to be exciting to see what happens. I hope he will be able to get baptized up in Cairns. It is always exciting to be able to teach people with so much faith. He was just in a car accident and it was a miracle he survived, so he said only God was the one who kept him alive and that the gospel is what he needs right now in his life.

For our other investigator Qayyum, We taught him the last missionary lesson before he get baptized in January. He leaves to go to Tasmania this week to go visit some friends for the Summer Holiday off of school. He is really good and ready to get baptized. He faith in God is really strong for such a young boy. He told us that he is going to be reading the Book of Mormon in all his free time while he is away and he is going to grow as much as possible while he is away for a month. It has been great seeing him grow and seeing how much he has learned. The first lesson we taught with him, he knew it was all true after that lesson, so he has loved learning about the gospel. I wish I studied the gospel as much as he does at his age, 16. I cant wait for him to be Baptized on the 5th of January.

Then on Saturday we had our Branch Christmas Party which was a lot of fun. All The Auxiliaries had to make a Christmas tree out of recycled materials. We made a tree out of wood, chicken wire, recycled garland and egg cartons. I will send a picture later. It was really cool. We did not win the contest, but it was definitely the one that looked more like a Christmas tree compared to the rest of trees that were made. I also got to sit on Santa's Lap (Our Branch President) I will also send a picture of that. It was a really good party and I was able to get to know some of the members a little bit better.

The rest of my week was pretty much tracting. Anyways. I miss you all and I hope you have a great week!
Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson

November 25, 2012

Hello all

My week was pretty good. Nothing too interesting happened. Our investigators all decided to go out of town for some reason. So we did lots of tracting. We tracted for 20 hours in the hot humid heat and we found 12 people who asked us to come back. So that was basically our whole week. This week we have a lot of our investigators back in town so we can teach them. This Sunday at church. There is a family where the wife is a member and the husband is not. The husband came to church and has decided to start taking the missionary lessons. So we are going to start teaching him and we will see what happens. We also will have to follow up with all the potentials that we found. The work is moving faster here than it has in years. So we are all really excited. We are all working hard. And some imaginable things are happening here with us missionaries here. So good things are in the future

Also another excited thing happened. We got a senior couple to come serve with us here in Townsville. They are from Idaho their names are elder and sister miles. They are really good and they are going to be doing a really good job I love them and they are really good people and I can't wait to start working more with them to see what we can do with the work here.

That was all the exciting stuff that happened this week. I miss you all and I hope you have a great week!

Love
Elder Kyler Powelson.


 

November 19, 2012

Hello All,

This week was a good week! We ended it with the first baptism in Townsville in two years! The person who got baptized was Sarah Drabsch! She has a really strong testimony and is going to be a really strong member in the church! She is a former Jehovah's Witness and she knows that the J-dubs are wrong and that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in the only church that has the fullness of truth on the earth today. The spirit was really strong at the baptism and you could tell that she was really committed and ready to get closer to God and Jesus Christ. She said the reason she knew it was true was because you could feel that it was true in her heart, and that it is the only church she has ever been too where she feels close to God and Jesus Christ. She has a strong testimony and she is definitely going to be a strong member. I just really want her to stay active. Most of the people I baptized in Raceview have now gone less active, so here I am going to make sure that the people have a strong testimony before they are baptized and make sure that there is a lot of fellowship, so they have reasons to keep coming to church. The Townsville branch has done a really good job fellowshipping Sarah and making her feel welcome which is good. I can tell everything is going to be good with her. Sarah's Daughter Anna has also been influenced by the church. When I first started going to Sarah's to teach her Anna would just go to the other room and ignore us. After Anna went to the Baptism of Sarah and felt the spirit, she has started really liking the church. She started talking to us. She is starting to come to church. And she came to the fellowship potluck we have at our branch presidents house every week. She likes our church more because no one is pushing her to do anything like they did in the Jehovah's Witness church, so we are going to take time with her and let her feel comfortable with everything before we commit her to baptism. But everything is going well with them. I am hoping to be able to baptize her sometime in the next 6 months while I am here, but we will see. It feels so good to have a baptism here. The branch had all of a sudden become more supportive of the missionaries and helping us out a lot more because they can see that we are actually doing work and not just sleeping all day like the last missionaries did.

As you can see with the pictures I sent we had to fill up the font with a fire hose and we had to empty it out with buckets. Funny story. We went to the baptismal font on Friday night to make sure everything was working well and it was really dirty because of the lack of baptisms so we cleaned it out and we thought everything would run smoothly the next morning when we went to fill it up. But everything that could go wrong with the font went wrong. The tap in the font was only at a trickle because the pump that put the water in was broken, so as a result of that we had to get the emergency fire hose and fill up the font with that. We got changed and got everything ready with 5 minutes to spare before the baptism starting at 10 o clock after getting to the chapel at 7 that morning. Then after the baptism we went to go drain the font and found another problem. Since the drain in the font is below ground level and the chapel is really old. They have to have a pump that will pump the water out of the font and drain in outside. So another thing went wrong, and the pump that did that was also broken, so we we had to empty the font out with buckets. One of us would stand it the water. Dip the bucket in. Had the bucket to the other person and then they would pour the water out the window. It took quite a while to do that. But it got done and everything was OK. They are going to fix it sometime soon, so the next baptism wont be so complicated. So it will make a great story to tell. Not many people can say that they had to fill the baptismal font with a fire hose and then empty the water out with buckets. We had fun with it and it was a good time!

We only have one progressing investigator now. His name is Qayyum and he is going to be getting baptized in January. He is amazing and has a really strong testimony. We also have a lot of really good potential investigators. So we are going to be working hard this week to find more people and make some of the potential investigators progressing. I love Townsville and everything about it. Its a harder area, but everything about it is wonderful. I hope you all have a great week!
Love
Elder Kyler Powelson


 

 

                   Elder Kay, Sarah and Elder Powelson

November 12, 2012

Hello All,

This week has been spectacular in Townsville! Elder Kay and I have been getting lots of work done. Work hasn't been done in this area for a long time. There hasn't been any baptisms for 2 years and the last thing that has been done was over a year ago according to the area book. Lots of people have the conception that they can come up north and since they are so far away from the mission president they can just be lazy. Which is dumb. But we have started working hard and have set 2 baptismal dates. One which is this Saturday. The one for this Saturday is a philipino lady named Sarah. As we taught her she said she has never felt happier in her life. She grew up as a Jehovah's Witness and she told us that they worry about how everything is logically. I don't understand this because I have learned of many scriptures in the Bible that prove their doctrine wrong. We tracted into a Jehovah's Witness and all they ever want to do is try and prove us wrong. So what I do is try to prove them wrong. Which I did really well. There are so many scriptures in the bible that they just seem to ignore just because it proves them wrong. Whenever I brought a scripture up, they would forget what I just said and try another thing that would prove us wrong. They could never prove any of our doctrine wrong. But we could prove almost everything they said wrong. It was a big waste of time, but it was just so much fun proving them wrong over and over again. I was telling them the truth and telling them in a really nice way that their doctrine is incorrect, and at the end of being proved wrong many times they just told us to have a nice day and we left. They just don't make any sense. That what I like about our church. It makes complete sense. Now going back to Sarah, the Jehovah's witness went to visit her to try and get her to not get baptized, and she said that our church made more sense and that she felt in her heart that it was the truth. So, they left and she is getting baptized on Saturday which I am way excited for. You can tell that she has a strong testimony and is ready to become closer to God! It will be Elder Kay's first baptism. I have been really privileged to get as many baptisms as I have because most missionaries get less that 5 baptisms their whole mission. So I am glad I have had the experiences I have had. He has been out for almost a year. He is excited beyond belief because he has been working for a baptism for 10 months and now he is going to have one. I am really excited for the baptism. The branch is really excited and it is going to be a really good one.

As for our other investigator that we set a baptism date with. His name is Qayyum. He is a 17 year old boy. He friend is a member in our branch. And he is a really strong person. We have taught him 3 of the lessons so far, and he is really strong. The spirit is really strong in the lessons we have taught with him. When we committed him to baptism the spirit was really strong. Another time the spirit was strong was when we asked if he prayed to know if the book of Mormon was true. He then said something that most missionaries would not expect. He said that there was no need for him to pray to know if the Book of Mormon was true because he knew it was all true the first time he prayed with the missionaries. He said it was really calm when that happened and he knew he needed to join the church because he knew it was true. He is getting baptized on January 4th because he is going on vacation for Christmas, but he is really excited to be baptized afterward. I am really excited for that to happen!

As for everything else that happened. We tracted a lot. We found a couple potentials. And I am loving it up here. Even thought I am far away from other missionaries the members here are amazing. I feel right at home here. On P-Day last week while we were at our branch presidents house playing some board games with him and his family I just had the feeling of home and it was a great feeling. President and Sister Ferguson remind me a lot of my Uncle Delbert and Aunt Roxanne. They treat us like their own children and they are great people and I am so happy to be here. I love it in Townsville and I am looking forward to the 6 months I am going to have here. I miss you all and I hope you have a great week!
Love
Elder Kyler Powelson

November 5, 2012

Hello All,

I have been transferred. I am both happy and sad about this. It is always good be able to see new things and have good experiences. My new area is nothing like my last one. I am in a town of 200,000 people called Townsville. It is in Northern Queensland. And I am far away from everything. To start off last Wednesday I got a call telling me that I was going to serve in Northern Queensland and that my plane will be leaving the next morning at 6 am. So I had barely any time to say good byes to the people in Raceview and I had to wake up really early in order to catch my flight to Townsville. Yes, I was transferred by airplane. That tells you how far away I am from the city, the mission president and most the missionaries in the mission. There are 4 of us missionaries in Townsville and the closes missionaries to us is a 4 hour drive away in Cairns. Basically its the four of us missionaries in a city that is in the middle of nowhere and you have to drive 4 hours to get to the next city.

There are two parts to the Australia Brisbane mission. There are all the areas by the city, and then there are some areas spread out in the north. Most missionaries who serve down south including myself think that it is a terrible thing to go up north. So I was not too excited at first when I got the call. But now that I'm up here I am enjoying it a lot. We wont have as much interaction with many of the other missionaries, but that is all good. The Branch here is pretty amazing. I love all the members here. The branch has about 100 people attending and is part of a district. There are not any stakes here. We might be travelling a lot because there are small branches we will be visiting that are 2 + hours away. There are some good sights and we might go look at the great barrier reef of a P-Day sometime now that I am up here. I am really excited to be here. The branch hasn't had any baptisms for 2 years, so lots of our work will be re activation except a miracle came to us my 2nd day here. A lady just moved up here to townsville from a small place called Mackay and wanted a lesson from us. We committed her to baptism and she really wants to get baptized on the 17th of November. So I am really excited for that. I am excited to work in the smaller branches. They treat the missionaries the best. The members are amazing and treat us like their own children. I feel right at home when I am here because the members always have us in their homes and are always so nice to us. So don't worry mom. The members are taking good care of me. I know I am going to love it up here. I know I am going to have a good time and working hard to find people who want to hear the gospel. The missionary work is a lot harder up here in the north, so they send the missionaries they trust and the missionaries they know will work up here. So the mission president decided to send me up here because he trusts me. Also, mail will take longer to get to me because the office will have to send it up here to me. The weather here is really hot and really humid. I think I am going to be losing lots of weight now because here it is tropical hot and humid. It gets over 100 degrees F without the humidity. So the Humidity in Iowa will be nothing compared to what it will be here. I am excited about everything though!

My new companion is Elder Kay. He is from England. And he is cool. We are going to have a good time. I will try and send some pictures home. I don't know how soon it will be because the computers here don't have the slot to put the memory card in,
I am going to have some fun up here doing the work. I know it is going to be harder than it was before, but I am looking forward to the challenge ahead of me. My companion is really willing to work hard with me. So everything is going to be good! They keep the missionaries up here for a minimum of 6 months, so I am going to be here for a while. I am probably going to have some pretty good experiences while I am here. I am just excited to work as hard as I can. I think that the success I have up here will be more meaningful because I have to work a lot harder to have it. I am looking forward to everything that I am going to be doing here.

On Thursday I went Cane Toad Hunting. Cane Toads are a pest that gets into peoples lawns here and kills the grass and they are poisonous. So what we did to hunt them was we had to hit them with a bat to stun them and then we grabbed them by their back legs and threw them over the fence to the street, so the cars will run over them. We did this in one of the members backyards and was lots of fun. I will try and have the member email my mom some pictures of it.

Anyways, that was a little summary of my new area, I love it so far and I think things are only going to be getting better. I miss you all and I hope you have a great week!

Love
Elder Kyler Powelson

October 29, 2012

Hello All,

My week has gone pretty well. It was also a really busy week with other things that wasn't missionary work. But I will just let you know of some of the cool things that happened this week. On Friday we went as a zone to our temple trip. It is always good to be able to go to the temple. I love going to the temple. We continued to teach Braxton. She is getting baptized on the 17th of November. I don't know if I will be here for that or not. Transfers are going to be this week. I will find out if I am leaving or staying on Wednesday, and then I will find out where I go on Friday. So this week will be a week of mysteries. I hope I can stay, but I also want to see what the rest of the mission is like in different areas. There were also 2 miracles that happened in the work this week.

The first miracle of the week was a testimony builder that the priesthood can heal people. Sandy, one of our recent converts was really sick and had a low blood count. The next day she was going to be going to the doctor to receive a blood transfusion. So that night she called us and told us she was really sick and that she wanted to have a priesthood blessing. I was on tradeoffs at the time and Elder Sio was with me, so we went right away to her house and gave her a blessing. Elder Sio did the anointing and I did the blessing. The miracle occurred the next day when she went to the doctor. The doctor said that he had no idea how it happened and was in amazement. The doctor told her that something he could not figure out happened and that she didn't need the blood transfusion anymore. So priesthood blessings work! The priesthood is so powerful the doctors cant even figure out how it heals people. So that was a great experience for me and definitely strengthened my testimony of how the priesthood can heal people!

The next one happened when we went to visit one of our investigators, Navy. He wants to get baptized, but he isn't married to his partner, so that has been a struggle for us. He lives with members in our ward. And Sister Le Pau the member's mom was visiting from Samoa. We shared a spiritual thought and had a prayer and afterwards Her mom said that she wanted to get baptized. Sister Le Pau said that she opposed the church when she joined and that it is a miracle now that she wants to join the church. We were going to try and teach her and baptize her, but she goes back to Samoa on Friday. In order for her to be baptized she has to attend church twice. So we sent a notice to the mission office to send missionaries to her moms house in Samoa. But it was a really good experience for me.

Anyway, that was my week. It was really good. I will let you all know what is happening with me this week next Monday to see if I am transferred or not. I miss you all and hope you have a great week

Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson

October 22,2012

Hello All,

This week hasn't been too exciting. But there was one really good thing that happened. We found out that there was a girl coming to church for 4 weeks and had been asking about the church and things to the Young Women Leaders. So the 4 weeks we were at church we thought she was a member who was visiting. So after 4 hard weeks of hard work and tracting and having to drop some of our investigators, we were able to start teaching this girl. And we set a baptismal date with her for the 3rd of November. I don't know if I will still be in the area, but there is a high chance that I am going to be transferred on the 2nd of November. I guess we will just have to wait and see what happens. The girls name is Braxton. (Braxton is a girls name in Australia) I thought it was kind of weird at first, but then I accepted the fact that it was a girls name. I really love it here in Raceview. I have been able to get lots of things done while I was here. But it seems like it is time for me to leave and have a new adventure.

Another miracle happened with my Recent Convert Sandy. She was going through a hard time and was trying to leave the church. She was saying that she wanted us to delete her phone number and never visit her again. Hearing this made me pretty sad and it made me want to do anything I could to bring her back and change her mind. So me and my companion did not give up with her. We kept calling her and visiting her. She let us in her house and she let us show her one of the Mormon message videos. And the one we showed her applied to what she was going through at the time. So she decided to not leave the church. She started coming back to church again. At a later appointment we taught about temples and we are trying our hardest to make it so she has the ability to get her limited use temple recommend and go to the temple to do baptisms for the dead. She said she really wanted to go. And she started telling all her friends that she was going to go to the temple. So she is really excited for her chance to do that. She watched the conference talks and loved it. And everything is going really well with her again. It makes me happy to see that everything is going well with her again. It is crazy to see the growth of someone from the time we knock on their door, to the time they get baptized, to the time that they are going to go to the temple for the first time. In a year she is going to be able to be sealed to her family, and I hope that she makes it that far. That experience made my week really good!

As for the rest of the week. We did lots of tracting and lessons for potential investigators. We didn't have much success with that. We have a busy week this week. We only have 3 days to work because on Thursday we have a training all day. On Friday we have our temple trip that will take most the day and then the things we do to prep for transfers is next week, and transfers are also next week. So I'm keeping busy and I am really enjoying my time in the Australia Brisbane Mission. I miss you all and hope you have a great week!

Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson

October 15, 2012

Hello All,

This week was pretty good. Nothing too exciting happened this week, but that's part of missionary work. Hopefully things will start to get moving again this week. On Monday, We had our P-Day with all the missionaries in the district. We had a district lunch and then played sports at the chapel. On Tuesday, We had trade offs with the Zone Leaders. So Elder Marshall who is from Arizona came to Raceview and worked with me. We had a pretty good day. We had a lesson with a New Investigator named Sam. I cant tell how interested she is because we were only able to teach her a short lesson at her doorstep. We are going to go back sometime this week to see how interested she is. We then went and saw our other investigators named Pa'i and Ntarewa. He is a Cook Islander and she is Moadi. They really want to get baptized, but they aren't married, so this week we are going to try to set a wedding date with them and then a baptism date soon after that. We then had an odd experience when we went to visit a less active who is on our less active list. This man answered the door and he is a non member, his daughter was the less active member. But he invited us in and he said that we were not allowed to be in his house if we were going to discuss religion. They are still in contact with missionaries from over 15 years ago, but I guess they don't want to join the church. Soon realizing it was a waste of our time to visit them because we are missionaries and it is a waste of time to talk non religion stuff. That was our lessons for the day and it all ended good.

On Wednesday, We had a Zone Conference all day, so 5 zones in the mission got together and had trainings from missionaries and the mission president and stuff. It was good.

On Thursday, We went on splits with a couple of the YSA's preparing to go on their mission. We had earlier received a referral to a lady who lives at a mental disability institution. I was scared to go inside, but went in and tried to find the lady we had the referral for and found out that she no longer lived there. We talked to a guy who was interested in the gospel. He said he had short term memory loss, but we still decided to set an appointment for this week, he said he was going to call us later that night to talk about the gospel. I guess he forgot about it though because we never got a call from him. So i guess we will see what happens this week when we go back to visit him. We then went to visit one of the potentials we tracted into ages ago and he let us in and we taught him the restoration. It went really well. He said he was happy with the church he was going to now, but we set a return appointment after committing him to read and pray about the book of Mormon. So we will see how that goes this week.

On Friday, all of our lessons fell through, so we did some tracting and stuff. We were able to find a couple of potentials.

On Saturday and Sunday, we watch general conference and it was really good. I enjoyed it a lot.

That was my week. I miss you all and I hope you all have a good week!
 
Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson

October 8, 2012

Hello All,

This week was a pretty good week. It was the 2nd week with my new companion and we worked really hard. We have some new investigators we are working with and are hoping to set some more baptismal dates. On Sunday we had another Baptism. One of Sandy's kids turned 8 last month, and she was really excited to be baptized. Sandy is doing really great! She is active and she is going to be going to the temple to do baptisms for the dead in a couple of weeks. Her kids really like the youth program in our ward and really enjoy being with all the other members of the church. Her daughter Tijnara got baptized and she was nervous at first but we helped her build up the confidence to get into the water, and she did a really good job getting baptized. I was the one that confirmed her. A member in our ward baptized her. His name is Floyd and he leaves on his mission to Adelaide next month. Most of the people that go on missions here stay in Australia for their mission, or they go to New Zealand. Not many people go anywhere else around the world. He has been coming out with us all day everyday, and has been a really good help for us and being able to get a lot of things done.

This week we also had a mini missionary. A mini missionary is someone who lives nearby in a different stake and they come and spend a week with the missionaries to see how it is. Floyd's brother Brandon also came out with us a lot and we went on splits almost all week. Most weeks we only get 5-8 lessons in, but this week we had 16 lessons between the two of us going on splits, so lots of things got done. The members are starting to like the missionaries here more and we have started to get lots of referrals from the members. We got a referral for a Samoan family, who doesn't speak English. In a nearby area we have a missionary from Samoa and he is going to teach the family the lessons and then we will have someone translate for them at church. Another big thing this week is we received a Media referral which means that someone went to mormon.org and requested the missionaries to come and teach him. We were able to teach him one lessons and we are going back to see him tomorrow and try to commit him to be baptized. He was really receptive to everything that we taught him and hopefully he will start to progress. I am really excited to see where he goes. His name is Nick.

Another good experience that happened this week is when I went tracting with the mini missionary. I didn't know where to go to tract, so I gave him the map and told him to pick a street to tract. So he picked a street and so I drove to that street and we started to tract. Across the street from where we were tracted there was a house with screaming kids running around, and something kept telling me to go across the street and tract into that house. So a lady answered that door and listened to everything we had to tell her and we set a return appointment for tomorrow, so I hope all goes well with her because it was a good experience.

We are also working with two couples who aren't married, but want to get baptized. So we are trying our hardest to have them set a marriage date or start to try and get married, so they can be baptized. I hope they start to think about getting married soon. A big problem with people in Australia is that they think it is OK to start a family and live together without getting married, but they have to be married if they want to get baptized, and some people don't understand why. We will keep working with them and we hope good things start to happen with them soon.

As for conference, it isn't shown in Australia until next week, so we cant watch it until then. We did hear about the missionary age lowering. That is pretty crazy. I would have gone on a mission a year ago if I was able to. I like how women now have a chance to go when they are younger. So go on missions everyone! It is a good experience and you can feel all the blessings that come from it. On my mission is the only time I will receive blessings for waking up at 6:30 every morning. The blessings are felt by yourself and you family at home. Since the age requirements were changed I would like to see more of the women going on missions.

So those are the good experiences I have had this week and hopefully I will have some more experiences soon. I miss you all and I hope you all have a great week!

Love
Elder Kyler Powelson
                                          Kyler and Elder Paia'aua
             Elder Powelson, Sandy, Tijnara, Floyd, Elder Paia'aua
 

October 2, 2012

Hello All,

The reason I am writing today instead of yesterday is because yesterday was the Queens Birthday, since it is a holiday the library was closed, so we had to wait another day to do our emails. My week was really good though. I received a new companion. His name is Elder Paia'aua. He is from New Zealand and is Samoan. His Samoan isn't the greatest though, so he won't be teaching me much more of it. It doesn't matter though. All the people we teach speak English anyways. So its all good. He is a really good companion. We get along really well, and are becoming really close friends. I get along with him a lot better than my last companion, so I am really excited for the next 5 or more weeks. We will just have to see what happens with next transfer. Anyways this week went alright. On Wednesday, Thursday and Friday we just went around the area having my new companion meet some of the members and our investigators and just helping him become familiar with the area and everything in the area. Then on Saturday we did a service project at the chapel. We whacked the bush weeds out of the grounds of the chapel. It took a couple of hours to do, but it was not too bad. Then on Saturday afternoon we went to a Joesph Smith Musical fireside and took one of our investigators. It was really good. It was people playing music and singing and telling the story of Joseph Smith. I really enjoyed it. Then that night we got a mini missionary. He is spending this week with us and he is pretty cool and we are having a good time with him. Then on Sunday we had church and taught some lessons. This week we are hoping to turn some of our potential investigators into progressing investigators. This next Sunday we have another baptism with another one of Sandy's kids which really exciting. She is really excited and I am really excited for her. I will make sure to send a picture of it next week with my email. Nothing too exciting happened this week, but we are hoping for some exciting things to happen this next week. I miss you all and I hope you all have a great week

Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson

September 24, 2012

Hello All,

This week was my companions last week on his mission, so he went with one of our zone leaders to all of his old areas instead of me. So I went to the other Zone Leaders area and we worked in his area. So I served in the Brassall Ward for a week. His name is Elder Marshall and he is from Arizona. It was nice serving with another American for a little bit. Tomorrow is the transfer meeting, so that is when I find out who my new companion is going to be, so I will let you all know who he is in the next email home. I'm kinda nervous to see what happens. But I love the area that I serve in, even though it is hard to understand some of the members, but they show love and respect towards me and treat me like a king which is really good. Even the people that have gone to the break off Samoan church take care of me greatly. First the break off church is a break off of our Church. About 5 years ago they took away all of the Samoan speaking wards and made them all English wards. Lots of the Samoan people didn't like it so they started their own break off church where they meet and do everything in the Samoan Language. They don't seem to realize that they have no authority to do the things they do and they are just wasting their time going to those meetings. They think since they hold the priesthood, so they can still have the authority to bless and pass the sacrament and to baptize people. We visit them to try and encourage them to come back to the church with the authority. We went to one of their houses to share a message and have a talk. Right when we knocked on the door they were eating lunch and they all stopped eating their food, set a place for us and had us eat. The respect missionaries so much that the missionaries eat, and then everyone else eats. So mom, don't worry about me, the members take care of me really well, and I love this ward. At this lunch I tried some new food. I had raw fish, and Octopus. They cut and clean the raw fish and then they soak it in coconut cream. So all the bad stuff is cleaned out somehow and it tastes really good. I really enjoyed it. The octopus was also pretty delicious. Ive tried some crazy foods since Ive been here, and it all ends up tasting really good. A family told me that next time we come over they are going to have me try some Dog. Yes, Dog. I'm kinda nervous, but they said it tastes like beef, but better. So I will make sure to let you all know how that experience is.

So I didn't do any work in my actual area this week, but next week there is going to be lots of work getting done. I am hoping to set a couple more baptismal dates. One more of Sandy's kids are getting baptized on the 7th of October. Its good to hear from all of you and see how your week goes. This week is going to be eventful so I will let you all know of the events this next week.I miss you all and I hope you all have a good week!

Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson

September 17, 2012

Hello all,

This week has been both good and rough. All of our investigators either decided to stop learning from us or decided to go to New Zealand for the School Holiday. All the schools in Queensland have a 2 week break so lots of people have been going on vacations. So this whole week was trying to find people to teach and try to visit some less active members and just finding more people to teach. But we will have some more success coming. Anyways that is pretty much our week until Sunday. Then Sunday was a really good day. We baptized one of our investigators named Khayla Gibson. She has been taught since before I came here. Her boyfriend is a member in our ward. And she has been a really good person to teach. I love being a missionary because it is cool to see how much someone can change just because someone brought the gospel into their life. She was an example of someone who gained a testimony of the gospel and changed her life around after that. She changed to friends she hung out with and totally changed her whole lifestyle. Which is cool to see as a missionary. It was a really good baptism the whole chapel was full of people supporting her. After the baptism, right before the refreshments Max, her boyfriend proposed to her and they are planning on getting married in the Brisbane temple in a year. So it was a pretty cool experience to see. Serving a mission has been a big blessing for me because I will remember all of these experiences for the rest of my life. This week is my companions last week on his mission, so the mission president gave us permission to visit some of his old areas this week. So between some of the lessons we have this week, we are going to be traveling around some of the areas of the mission. So this week will be mainly visiting his other areas and seeing his converts. So it will be a good week. So on the 25th I will receive a new companion. I don't know what to expect, but we will see. I am having a good time on my mission and am having lots of experiences that are changing my life, that I will always remember. I miss you all and I hope you all have a good week. The members in Raceview are amazing and I am really liking being a missionary here. I hope everyone has a good week and maybe I will have a few more stories in the next coming weeks.
 
Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson

     Elder Powelson Khayla Gibson Max(Khayla's Fiancee) Elder Oto

September 10, 2012

Hello All,

This week was a good week. On Monday right after I finished emailing one of our investigators named Khayla called us. She said that she didn't want to get baptized anytime soon, she just wanted to wait to do it. So when she called she said that she wanted to be baptized on the 16th of this month. This made me and my companion really happy and excited. We thought she was going to become one of those eternal investigators who never gets baptized. She decided that she wanted to change her life around and she realized that baptism was the first step on doing so. Her boyfriend is a member in our ward and now they are planning on getting married in the temple next year. Which is pretty exciting to hear. That was one of the highlights of the week.

On Tuesday, we received a referral from missionaries in another area that one of their members gave them. Her name is Jennifer Lopez. Not even kidding about that. She is an Islander, not sure which Island though. So we went and visited her and she let us in for a lesson. We shared the message of the Restoration with her. The spirit was really strong in this lesson. I felt the impression to talk about baptism after we talked about the Saviors Earthy Ministry and after I shared some things about baptism I did the baptismal invitation, and she said Yes even before I finished the invitation. We tried to go back and see her on Saturday, but she was sick, so she didn't attend church, but we have a lesson with her tomorrow, so I hope all goes well with her and we are able to set a baptismal date with her.

On Wednesday, we went to the temple. It always good to do an Endowment session in the temple. It takes a long time to travel to the temple because we ride the trains and it takes awhile when the train stops at every stop on the way going to the city. It takes about 1.5 hours to get to the city by train where it only takes like 45 minutes to get to the temple if you drive. But it is always good to go to the temple.

Thursday and Friday were finding days, so we just followed up on potential investigators we found and tracked and visited some less active members/

On Saturday I had a trade off with Elder Huch. He serves in a different area and came to my area for the day and my companion went to his area. We got a call from other missionaries in the Zone next to us and they said two of their investigators moved into our area. So we went and visited them, and they are ready for baptism, they just have to get married first. So they are planning on getting married in November. Their names are Pa'i and Ntewa.

On Sunday we went to church, had a lesson with Kahla and visited some of the members and went to a baptism.

That was my week and I hope all of you are having good weeks and I miss you all.
 
Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson

September 3, 2012

 Hello All,

This week was a really slow week. All of our progressing investigators got baptized, so now we have no progressing investigators. All the other investigators we have, don't have an intention on getting baptized anytime soon. I'm keeping my head up and I have faith that we will be able to find more people soon. I only have 3 more weeks with my trainer and then I take over the area. Our Zone Leaders said there is a high chance that I am going to become a District Leader and/or a trainer. There are 17 new missionaries coming in, so I guess I will see what happens. Since our area has been the most successful area in the mission there is a high chance I will be one of the two. We tracked a lot this week with not much success. We have some potentials but we will see what happens. That is about it for the work. This Sunday was crazy though. We had 7 confirmations and a Baby blessing in our fast and testimony meeting. There was a record amount of people at sacrament meeting with 270 people. I confirmed Sandy and we had members confirm all of her kids. It was another good experience that I will never forget. Sacrament meeting was already supposed to be over when the passing of the sacrament started. So it was the first testimony meeting Ive ever been too where there wasn't any time for testimonies. I'm am grateful to have a convert like Sandy's family. I will never forget them and I will stay in contact with them throughout my whole life. That was basically my week though. We tracked heaps and I cant believe I have already been out on a mission for 3 months. It feels like I just left home last week. I will be done before I know it. I miss you all and I hope you all are having good times. I am having a good time. I am grateful for the success I have had. Its weird to have this much success. Most people are lucky if they can get 10 baptisms on their whole mission here in Brisbane, and I have already had 8. We just have to see what will happen. I miss you all.
 
Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson

August 27, 2012

Hello All,

This week has been a really busy week. We had a total of 7 baptisms this weekend breaking the mission record for the number of baptisms in a week by a companionship. We are going to have dinner with the mission president and his wife sometime in the next couple of weeks and our picture is going to be put on display at the mission office. It was a really good experience. I'm glad I have had some of the experiences I have had. I have attached some pictures of the baptisms we had this weekend. The Baptism we had on Saturday was Blake. Both his parents are less active members and he really wanted to get baptized when we tracted into him. So he was really excited to be baptized and his baptism went really well. Then on Sunday we had the baptism of Sandy and 5 of her kids. She has 3 more kids but they are under the age of 8. It was a really good experience. We tracted into Sandy and she said that the night before we knocked on her door she was praying for what she needed to do with her life. The next morning we tracted 3 houses and her house was the 3rd one that we tracted. She said we answered her prayers when two guys knocked on her door with smiling faces. So it was a good experience teacher her and all of her kids up to the point of being baptized. This is going to be a rememberable baptism for me. I baptized 2 of the kids and 2 other members in the ward who fellowshipped them baptized the others. The kids names are Tyrone, Liam, Tahlia, Melanie, and Jackson. So I baptized Tahlia, and Liam. I was really nervous doing this for the first time. I had to baptize Tahlia 4 times because her dress would not go under the water. She had to end up tying the dress in a knot so it wouldn't go to the top of the water. But eventually we got it worked out and she was baptized. The mission president and AP's came to the Baptisms and he said it was the biggest baptism he has had so far in the 2 years he has been mission president. There were 141+ people attending the baptism. Usually only about 20-30 people attend a baptism, but the whole ward wanted to support the great family. The ward said that they never have had a baptism that big. There were heaps of refreshments and the ward has a really good time. I will never forget this baptism or this family. The coolest part of being on a mission is that I will have a connection with this family forever. It was a really good experience. I will never forget it. So my whole week was spent preparing these people for their baptism. And this week we have no investigators with a baptism date, so we are going to try and set at least one more this week. Our teaching pool is once again low so this next week we are going to be doing lots of finding. I miss you all and I hope you all have a good week this week.
 
Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson
    Elder Powelson  Tyrone  Liam Melanie  Tahlia  Jackson Elder  Oto
                                                          Blake

August 20, 2012

Hello All

I had some more good experiences this week. We taught quite a bit of lessons this week. But the good experience for the week happened this Saturday. I was on a trade-off with the Zone Leaders on Saturday, so it was my first time in my area with someone who didnt know the area. So I had to lead every activity we did and get around. I did really well. I was surprised how well I knew the area. I never needed to get around on my own before. So I was with Elder Marshall who is another American from Arizona. In the morning we went to follow up on a potential who we had taught a lesson to and was really interested. We were planning on setting a Baptismal Date, but when we talked to her, she said she was not interested anymore and told us to go away. So we left. And as we were walking down the street a miracle happened. An older lady came running towards us saying "Stop! I have been praying and I think you two are the answer to my prayers." We were both really surprised and we went to her door step and taught her a 15 minute version on the Restoration. She said she had been praying for years to find a church to accept her, and she saw us walking and thought we were the answer to her prayers. The spirit was really strong as we taught her. She said she went from being in a really bad, negative mood into a very happy mood. She knew that God had answered her prayers. She said she never worked on her garden, but she felt like she needed to today. If she was not outside working on her garden, she would have never seen us walking down the street. It strengthens my testimony that missionaries are led to places and to people who are ready to hear the gospel. There is no way that it is a coincidence that she was working on her garden right at the time we were walking by. The Lord inspired all of us to be in that place at that time. She then went to church on Sunday and she also came to our baptism. She said it was all Amazing. We are going to try and set a baptismal date with her on Tuesday. It is true that God does inspire his servants. That was definitely a testimony builder. Her name is Kathy
So we had the baptism on Yaige Taito yesterday. His uncle baptized him and he is really excited for church and everything. This Saturday we have Blake's Baptism. Both his parents are less active members and he is really excited to be baptized. Then on Sunday we have the baptism of Sandy and 5 of her kids. They are all really excited and I am really excited! Well that is my week. I miss you all and I hope you all have a really good week.

Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson
           Elder Powelson  Yaige's Uncle  Yaige Taito  Elder Oto

August 14, 2012

Hello all,

This week has been pretty good. We have a baptism this Sunday which is really excited and then we have 7 more next week. I am really excited for them to happen. The one on Sunday is a 9 year old boy who is part of a part-member family who was never baptized. Then next week Sandy and all of her kids are getting baptized. It is really cool to see how much they have changed in the month that we have met with them. It is really cool having a miracle convert this early in my mission. If we were lazy missionaries and didn't tract, then we would have never found her and it would not have been as good of an experience. So hard work does pay off on the mission. Anyone who gets mission calls or has exciting news make sure to tell my mom so she can email it to me. We taught quite a bit of lessons this week. We have been doing lots of work to prepare everything for the baptisms we are having soon. The work is going well and Raceview is growing to become one of the better area in the mission. We had no one to teach when we got here, and now there are heaps of people to teach. We hope to keep finding more people and teaching more people so the work can keep getting better and better here. I am excited and I am having some of the most spiritual experience I have ever had in my life so far. We have a few potential investigators that are really interested, so we will see what happens this week. We have already had 2 lessons this week and we have 10 more planned for the rest of the week. That is really high for this mission, so we are definitely keeping busy. That is as far as the work goes.

Now for some good experiences that I have had. Last week I went to a Samoan birthday party. Since we were missionaries we were automatically guests of honor. So we sat at the big table and got served our food. The people kept coming and putting food on my plate. I don't have to worry about going hungry in this area. The members always make sure we have food. There was lots of people singing and dancing. It was all in the Samoan Language so I could not understand a thing, but the food was really good. Samoan food is really good.

So 5 years ago they took away all of the Samoan speaking wards and some people didn't like that because it is hard for them to understand English, so they decided to make a break off church of the LDS church. We call them the break-offs. Well we went and visited them and they started to realized that the spirit isn't in their meetings and that they didn't have the authority from god to do all the things they do, so some of them decided to come back to church even though it is in English. So that was a miracle for us to have people come back.

Well, that is about it for my week and I hope everyone else is doing well. I miss you all and I hope you all have a great week!
 
Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson

August 6, 2012

Hello all,

Not too much has been going on this week. Sandy and her kids came to church yesterday and are really excited about being baptized on the 26th. Blake who is a part of a part member family is also excited to be baptized on the 25th. We have been teaching them a lot this week to prepare them for baptism in a couple of weeks. It is really cool. But yesterday we had a surprise text. We talked to a member in our ward at church on Sunday and she said that she that her nephew wanted to start taking the missionary lessons. So we set up a time to meet with them on Wednesday. Later in the day on Sunday we got a text message saying that this boy wanted to get baptized as soon as possible and they set up the date on Aug 19th at 6pm. So it was really cool getting an unexpected text like that. Our zone is going to break the Ipswich Zone record this month. The record is only 10 baptisms in a month. and in our zone we have 17 baptismal dates set for the rest of August as a district. 8 of those are just from me and my companion. We also met with some other investigators that aren't progressing very fast. One of the biggest problems for people in Australia is that they live with their partners, but are not married. So one of our investigators named Navi really wanted to get baptized next month, but his partner doesn't want to get married for another year. Our investigator Rachel is still having problems with her family letting her be baptized. We found a couple of potential investigators this week. We have some lessons set up with them this week, so hopefully we will have some new investigators at the end of the week. That is about as far as the work is going. We are really busy and August is a really busy month for everyone one in the mission. I am privileged to start as a missionary in the zone I am in because people actually listen to us when we try to talk to them. There aren't very many rude people. I haven't learned much Samoan this week because we have been really busy with missionary work, but I have picked up on a few things. Who knows if I will ever be able to become fluent in it. But that doesn't matter as much as the work does at this time. The missionary work is keeping us busy. Even though all the Samoan people feed us a lot of food I have lost 6 kg's so far on my mission. I don't know how many pounds that is, but it is over 10 lbs. We are keeping really busy and I really like doing all the missionary work. One of my goals is to try and enjoy tracting as much as possible. the 7 of our baptisms were people we found by tracting. So even though everyone doesn't listen us there is that occasional person who will listen to us. Overall the missionary work is good and I am learning a lot. This is the last week of my first transfer (6 weeks) and so I only have 6 more weeks with my trainer. The mission president said I will probably be serving in Raceview until January. It has been getting down to 0 degrees Celsius in the mornings and so it has been pretty cold. The people who live here think the world is going to end at that point. But I have survived a lot colder. That is about it for this week. I will let you all know of my busy week next week. I miss you all.
 
Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson
 
 
 

 

July 30, 2012

Hello all,

The reason why I am writing on a Wednesday instead of a Monday is because once every 6 weeks one of our P-Days is on a Wednesday so we can go to the temple. So today was my first day going to a temple outside of the United States. It was a good experience and I have some pictures attached. The pictures are of me at the temple and one of the is me standing at the bridge with the City of Brisbane behind me. We spent some time looking around the city too. It is about a 1.5 hour train ride to the city to go to the temple from Ipswich. It was fun. This week was a miracle week. We have tracted into lots of people interested in the gospel and we have scheduled 7 people to be baptized in August. One of our investigators that we found tracting is named Sandy. She is a single mother and has 8 kids, and 5 of her kids are over 9 years old. She was a miracle. We tracted 3 houses the day that we found her and after teaching her twice she shared an experience with us which is really cool. She said the day before we knocked on her door she was praying and wondering what she needed to do with her life. She said we were an answer to her prayers when we knocked on her door with smiling faces and excited to share the gospel with her. She said the gospel is just what she needs in her life right now. So we were sharing the Plan of Salvation with her and when we got to the Celestial Kingdom part we said the only way to live with her family, Heavenly Father, and Jesus Christ in the Celestial Kingdom was to be baptized. After saying that she said "I want to be baptized and I want all my kids to be baptized too. It was a really good experience and the spirit was really strong in our lesson. The coolest part of being a missionary is sharing the simple messages of the gospel and seeing how it touches the lives of people. So we are going to continue teaching her and her family until the end of August when they are going to get baptized. Its really excited to have an investigator commit to baptism and see the gospel touch their life. The 1 other baptism we scheduled was also somebody we tracted into. We knocked on their door and the lady who answered the door said that her and her husband we both baptized when they were 8 years old but don't remember the last time they went to church. So they have a 10 year old son named Blake, and he wants to get baptized, so we are going to baptize him in August also. His parents are also going to start coming back to church. Which is good. Those are the really good experiences I had this week. We also did lots of tracting as always, and we are going to be teaching a lot of people within the next week. So I am pretty excited. The missionary work is going well. I am used to the Australian culture by now. I can now talk a little bit in the Samoan language. The members here are really great and I get along with all of them really well. All is well with me and I am having lots of good experiences here in Australia and I hope everyone is doing well back at home.
 
Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson

July 25, 2012

Hello all,

The reason why I am writing on a Wednesday instead of a Monday is because once every 6 weeks one of our P-Days is on a Wednesday so we can go to the temple. So today was my first day going to a temple outside of the United States. It was a good experience and I have some pictures attached. The pictures are of me at the temple and one of the is me standing at the bridge with the City of Brisbane behind me. We spent some time looking around the city too. It is about a 1.5 hour train ride to the city to go to the temple from Ipswich. It was fun. This week was a miracle week. We have tracted into lots of people interested in the gospel and we have scheduled 7 people to be baptized in August. One of our investigators that we found tracting is named Sandy. She is a single mother and has 8 kids, and 5 of her kids are over 9 years old. She was a miracle. We tracted 3 houses the day that we found her and after teaching her twice she shared an experience with us which is really cool. She said the day before we knocked on her door she was praying and wondering what she needed to do with her life. She said we were an answer to her prayers when we knocked on her door with smiling faces and excited to share the gospel with her. She said the gospel is just what she needs in her life right now. So we were sharing the Plan of Salvation with her and when we got to the Celestial Kingdom part we said the only way to live with her family, Heavenly Father, and Jesus Christ in the Celestial Kingdom was to be baptized. After saying that she said "I want to be baptized and I want all my kids to be baptized too. It was a really good experience and the spirit was really strong in our lesson. The coolest part of being a missionary is sharing the simple messages of the gospel and seeing how it touches the lives of people. So we are going to continue teaching her and her family until the end of August when they are going to get baptized. Its really excited to have an investigator commit to baptism and see the gospel touch their life. The 1 other baptism we scheduled was also somebody we tracted into. We knocked on their door and the lady who answered the door said that her and her husband we both baptized when they were 8 years old but don't remember the last time they went to church. So they have a 10 year old son named Blake, and he wants to get baptized, so we are going to baptize him in August also. His parents are also going to start coming back to church. Which is good. Those are the really good experiences I had this week. We also did lots of tracting as always, and we are going to be teaching a lot of people within the next week. So I am pretty excited. The missionary work is going well. I am used to the Australian culture by now. I can now talk a little bit in the Samoan language. The members here are really great and I get along with all of them really well. All is well with me and I am having lots of good experiences here in Australia and I hope everyone is doing well back at home.
 
Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson




 
 

July 16, 2011

Hello all,
This week has been pretty good. I have learned a little bit of my Samoan. It is not necessary to learn, but I want to learn it because all the missionaries here talk to each other in Samoan. and when we visit a lot of the members they speak Samoan with my companion and I just sit there, so I really want to learn it. I have been doing good. They all take care of me in this ward. I am in the Raceview area. but it isn't on a map. so if you want to see where I am on a map look for Ipswich. The Samoan people feed us all really well. For my brothers and sisters, I talked with my mission president and it is OK for you to email me with the updates in your lives. I might not be able to respond to all of them personally because we only get an hour in the computer lab at the library. Last Monday was my first P-day. We did our email shopping and all that fun stuff. I learned how to play some new sports. They call it Touch Rugby. It not like any sports they have in America, but it is pretty fun. Kind of like football. The rest of the week we did a lot of tracting. The area here has not had a baptism since March, so me and my companion are putting a lot of efforts in finding people to teach. So far we have found 15 potential investigators tracting that we are going to try and contact this week. And We also got one new investigator that I tracted into. Her name is Deb. When we went up to talk to her she was sitting on her porch with her little annoying dog. At first we were going to skip the house because the dog would be really disruptive trying to talk to here, but we still decided to go up and talk to her. She was interested in what we told her about the Plan of Salvation at the doorstep, so we went back an taught here the Plan of Salvation lesson. It was a really good lesson and the spirit was strong as we taught here. We are going back to teach her some more later this week. There were a couple of investigators that were here when I got here. Their names are Rachel and Kayla. Kayla is the girlfriend of someone in our ward and we are going through teacher her all of the lessons. Then Rachel is a girl who is friends with someone in the ward. She has a really strong testimony of what we have been teaching her. She really wants to get baptized, but she doesn't have the approval from the Aunts that she lives with. We have faith that her aunts will approve her decision to be baptized. It is just really cool to see someone who had no faith in God and Jesus Christ and in just 2 months have great faith and know that this is the gospel that brings true happiness and peace. She will probably be getting baptized sometime in the next month. So far my mission experience has been really good. We found a lot of people tracting who wanted us to come back. I did a ton of tracting in this last week. They put me and my companion in an area that hasn't had a baptism since March, so we have put a lot of effort into finding people to teach. We found 15 people who were kind of interested and wanted us to come back and teach them more. So hopefully we can get some new investigators this week. The member support is really good. We have had 100% member present lessons so far. The YSA's here preparing for missions are really good at coming out with us when we go to teach. It is really easy just to call one of them to have a member with us all the time. Our meal roster for dinners is completely full, so I am having lots of good dinners by the Samoan people. I have never eaten so much in my life. When we get to their houses for dinner, the table just has a ton of food on it. They put lots of food on our plates and make sure that we are eating a lot. The fill us up on all the food they give us. We tell them that we are really full and that the food was really good, so they bring our dessert. I try my hardest to eat it because they would think that it is really rude if we don't eat it, and they wouldn't like us. So I have put more food into my stomach this week then I thought was even possible. Driving on the left side of the road has also been going really well. It was a lot easier to adjust then I thought it would be. Driving here has become really easy for me. Now it would seem weird to drive on the right side of the road and be on the left side of the car. Being on the right side of the car driving has become really easy for me. Driving here is weird though because everyone follows the speed limit and is really courteous when they drive unlike it is in America where no one follows the speed limit and there are a lot of rude drivers. So that aspect of driving has been pretty nice. Anyways that is basically all that has been going on with my life and I am hoping for a really good week this week with missionary work. I will make sure to let you all know how it is. I miss you all and hope that you all have a really good week.
 
Love,
Elder Kyler Powelson