Palmyra Temple

Palmyra Temple

Friday, May 22, 2015

Week 19

HI :) It's so good to hear how well you guys are doing! I love our family TOO! And I think that everyone is growing so much:) I am doing pretty good:) I am now feeling a little tired these past few days just because it's now getting hotter, but I am trying to focus on turning those service opportunities into teaching appointments ;) and holding on to the rod even when we cannot see the light ahead. We are unstringing our bows today! So this week my journal has been kind of neglected haha so I'm going to have to write based on he highlights I can remember! Monday we went hiking along the gorge and it was so incredible! The water up here is a lot more greenish blue and there is a lot of history up here! We haven't been getting much rain this past week, but Monday night we did! It was pouring harder than I have ever seen haha I almost felt like I was in a tsunami. You could look out the window and it looked like you were going through the car wash! I got a migraine that night that lasted for about a day but it's all good:)
Tuesday helped in the Alzheimer's unit and fed them lunch, haha that is always a good time when they can only remember who you are for a minute! They are the greatest, I can wait to see these people on the other side of the veil when they are resurrected and be able to associate all together:) We visited potentials in the afternoon and It is interesting to see that when you show the Lord you want to find those who are ready to hear the gospel often times you will run into someone in another way that you weren't originally doing or expecting! We had a great lesson with J and are continuing to prepare for her baptism this Sunday! We spent an afternoon at this Catholic school. It was kind of awkward being in a strictly Catholic school and a Mormon Missionary sitting on this bench. But I had a nice conversation with the front desk Lady and she seemed to really like what we do as missionaries! Wednesday we had district meeting and had a discussion on looking for clues in teaching according to someone's needs, whether it be in a lesson or you just met the person on the street. I really liked the training Elder Fields gave! The rest of the the afternoon we spent finding people to teach and talking with A B about his testimony of the Gospel and his excitement to be baptized. Thursday we had interviews with President and then taught the APs the laws and ordinances lesson. It was nice to see president again. We helped brother G move that night. Friday we made a ninja move to get some supplies to A B. We gave him a triple combo, KJ bible, finding faith in Christ, and the rest of the pamphlets) it was nice to see him in person since I had seen him with Elder Willis:) Saturday was a pretty stressful day considering we got a text from A B revoking his testimony because he thought we are a polytheistic religion and he got into some anti-stuff! But we were able to resolve his concerns with man, becoming like heavenly father. We went to the farmers market off Robinson and Payne, and had a great time with M inviting people to our ward's strawberry social that they have in the summer! There were a lot of really cool farmers and merchants there including the Amish with all their homemade goods. I may or may not have bought some gluten-free cupcakes. We then visited some people on Grand Island and proceeded to head to the adult Saturday night session of stake conference which I have to say might be my favorite meeting we have in the church. We had an area 70 come and join us for the conference and what a pleasure it was to have them there. I will share some of the things that I learned by the spirit or by various comments that were shared. I learned that any form of repetition even in ordinances can either lead to increased the learning or complacency. And that the sacrament is the only ordinance that we partake of more than once for ourselves, we should strive to make it our priority to make the sacrament a sacred experience. Elder Perkins shared an experience of his early family counsel l while him and his wife were serving as mission presidents in Taiwan they thought of having family court haha and you would have an accuser and and defendant over dumb things like "Johnny looked at me cross eyed." and pretty soon their children thought the things they were fighting about were kind of dumb. I also wrote down that by doing family history work we keep the chain going both forwards and backwards, we will receive spiritual strength and added protection as we unlock the gates for those in the spirit world. We will become more like the Savior, as we become saviors up on Mount Zion. Think about it you're actually doing as Christ would by inviting others to partake in ordinances of eternal life it also United earthly family and causes them to work together:) sometimes we think about breaking the chain forwards if we don't live the gospel, but we can also break the chain backwards if we do not save those who have gone before us. Sunday the conference continued and it was another great meeting! We were in the choir sight reading and it was great! We sang "This is the Christ" and "Praise to the Lord", both very powerful pieces! The Church is true, we must all keep holding on to the Old ship Zion as tight as we can because that is the only boat with Heavenly Father at the Helm.
"Oh be wise; what can I say more?" -Jacob 6:12 Love, Elder Crowley

Thursday, May 21, 2015

We be skypin yo

Hello hello again! Yesterday it was so good to talk to you guys:) and like I said just think next time that we skype it will pretty much have been a year :)
I can't remember all we did Monday so.. Tuesday! Haha Tuesday was just kind of regular day but it was been one of my favorite days because pretty much everything we did went well. We had to cut our morning studies early because we scheduled our service at the Riviera Theatre earlier. We helped N. gate with their cinco de mayo party, it was fun making tacos with them. A was not having a good day she said "oh good thing you guys are here, Get me OUT of HERE! Go call he police and we can run away!" Poor girl :( Later we visited one of our potentials whose house almost burnt down! In my studies on Wednesday I learned about how when Jesus was sleeping on the boat in the storm it was a sign that he was in a good healthy condition to be able to sleep through something like that. "He lived according to the laws of health, yet never allowed the body to rule the spirit; and His daily activities, which were of a kind to make heavy demands on both physical and mental energy, were met with no symptoms of nervous collapse nor of functional disturbance." -James E. Talmage. We must realize that we are human and must follow Christ's example even in temporal affairs. We had district meeting in the bed of our truck outside while E. fields gave a training, it was time for something different. Thursday we mowed A 93-year-old lady's lawn. Her son called and asked us to, even though it was out of our area. We realized that after we had committed to do it, but it was only 2 miles out so we figured what the heck! We got there and her whole lawn was covered in weeds! And all she had was an old-fashioned push mower Haha it was fun though:) Friday we helped J with his car and changed the oil. I am grateful for the opportunity to learn new things and him helping us develops talents. We had a great lesson with J that night on the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It was good chance to teach someone according to their needs again. Saturday we helped the GI (Grand Island) Rotary club with their adopt a highway clean up. We caught a snake! And E. Rushton resolved hat he would "never litter again." Haha our outdoor work was not done for that day because we went to the H and helped them clean up their flower gardens around the house! It was 90 degrees plus humidity! They have this old piano from the 1800s from London that I am determined to buy one day! Haha we told them that we would meet them at the Olympia (the Greek restaurant) Sunday HAPPY MOMMYS DAY! You guys know everything that happened that day :) Love YOUS, (everyone in New York says "Yous guys" haha) Elder Crowley

Peter Whitmer Farm Training

Hello! I'm still alive! And only a 41/2 hour plane flight so I'm really not that far away:) I am feeling really healthy and my stomach has felt a lot better since being out here! I stopped eating apples and that has stopped my stomach aches and I try to stay away from dairy but when I do have it I eat it with one of those lactose pills. I take a probiotic once every three days usually and I think that has helped as well:) So Monday we went to the Niagara Falls aquarium. It was fun and we had some good laughs:) Tuesday we had exchanges and I went with Elder Fields to Lewiston. We had a great day street contacting in the falls! We gave away a ton of cards and I was able to give two Book of Mormons away on the street! It was awesome because that doesn't usually happen in N.T. Haha Wednesday we had a two and a half hour drive for our specialized training at the Peter Whitmer farm! It was such an awesome training and it was great to be right where the church was organized. I also got to see Sister Taylor Hunter again!
We had different rotations into different rooms throughout the day. I will just describe some of the things wrote down. Some of my favorite scriptures that we studied are Alma 5,7,58,2Nephi 2. In the Peter Whitmer log home we were given a tour by the Oslers (the site directors) it was pretty familiar to me and it reminded me of coming with the family. I wrote down that when Joseph was translating he was always ready to translate based on the next word, he never had to read the paragraph before to understand where he was at. He could just continue where he left off. I also wrote down that the Urim and Thummim were clear stones that he would look into, and sometime he would put them into a black hat to see the words better. Emma said that when he would come to a name he would spell it which meant that he was actually seeing the words. But Joseph always said that he translated by the gift and power of God. He translated it once and was done! President Francis talked to us about having Elder Holland come and speak to them at the new mission presidents seminar when they fist got called. To paraphrase E. Holland said that "when your missionaries ask, why is his so hard? Why is this painful? Is there some other way to do missionary work? You tell them that we must all feel a part of the Atonement because salvation isn't cheap!" President Francis went on to say that time is not relevant to God, it is only something that we understand here on earth. Which means that those three hours that Jesus spent suffering in the garden were actually longer. Jesus paid for each of our sins individually and also our infirmities. It was a performed ordinance, an individual ordinance performed for each of us by the Savior. When we ask "Why is this so hard? Why do I have to go through this?" Remember someone has already asked that before when he cried out "Abba!", and that person was also the most pure and perfect of us all. Thursday we helped out at Northgate like usual, we took A (the polish lady) for a walk and she loved it!:) I know that her and I will be good friends in heaven. My driving record came, so I sent it in to Elder Clement! We gave a Ukrainian man a copy of the Russian bible and Russian restoration pamphlet. We street contacted along the canal. We went out to a Chinese buffet for dinner with M and ended the night with a POS lesson with J and A M. We sorted books with J on Friday at the N.T. Museum. We had a great discussion with her about different Gospel topics and resolved all her concerns, it was awesome! She really likes the atonement because she thought that we all have to be perfect to go to church haha. I can wait to see where she goes in life, I think she will be a great mom and a great addition to God's army! We had a full day of service on Saturday! We went to Grand Island early to help set up traffic cones, tents, and barricades for the lawn mower race that happened in front of town hall. J came along for our missionary shenanigans pretty much all day. It was nice to do service all day, and we made contact with a lot of people. In the afternoon we helped with the Rotary club's hotdog sale at the same lawnmower race event. It was really cool to watch these "lawnmowers" more like go carts zip down the road! I think the top speed was 75mph. The Rotary club it didn't sell as many hotdogs as they would have liked to, but the old man were fun, the local band was okay, and it was such a beautiful day. After that we did service for the Riviera Theatre! We had to book it back home and then change into our proselyting close while eating dinner on the way. We got to the show and we're ushers. The show was "yesterday "A tribute to the Beatles. J came with us and it was so fun all these old ladies ushered with us, and at intermission people were really starting to get weird after a few visits to the bar ha ha. But we still got out in time to be home so that was good! We're going to be back on Tuesday to clean so that should be fun. I love old historical things especially theater, so this is really fun for me. Some last minute things that I have learned this week are to do what you love but don't be stupid, take time to enjoy life, love people, and if we are in a situation where our faith is being tried we should rejoice because that means we are on the right path. My favorite quote from the week is... "In the end, we are all pilgrims seeking God’s light as we journey on the path of discipleship. We do not condemn others for the amount of light they may or may not have; rather, we nourish and encourage all light until it grows clear, bright, and true." -Dieter F. Uchtdorf Love, Elder Crowley

Service and Studies

Hey you crazies! :) I have loved learning more about Jesus Christ. Between reading Jesus the Christ, watching the new bible videos, and studying scriptures on Christ I feel like a whole new world has been opened up in my gospel understanding and looking at the same situations from a different angle. I'm really trying to use this time to become a "master teacher" as President Francis would call it, so I can teach my kids one day! Tuesday first thing in the morning we went and gave S a blessing before her surgery. We came back to our apartment to do studies and I learned about the desire of our hearts in Alma! Such a cool subject! We filled out E. Rushton's accident report online. We had dinner with M and went over to the N to discuss some things with his investigating friend! We got our truck(which I like better) in place of our Toyota, but we will drive our Toyota to Fayette for the specialized training, and drop it off to get fixed! And our new phone came, what a blessing! We spent a long time transferring contacts over because there was over six hundred contacts and most of them were totally random. I don't know why but in my journal I wrote about the importance of developing talents, skills, and abilities. Because that is why we are here on earth to learn, and to find enjoyment in our experiences. I also wrote about life being fragile, M and a few people in our ward are having health problems suddenly and are really seeing that we are not immortal yet. I am grateful for my healthy body! :) Thursday I focused my study on the ministering of angels. It was a very good opportunity to be directed and taught by the spirit! One of the things I learned is that much like Christ's visit to the nephites he could not explain all the subjects he spoke about fully, and some could not even be written. Instead the spirit of faith, and revelation can teach us the things in between the broader subjects. M went in for surgery on his stomach in the morning and we went and helped the R move in Niagara Falls. They live in this old house that they have made into this fun little artsy and family centered home. It was a big move but I'm glad we were able to be there to help them! While I was shredding some paper their little daughter C wanted to help. I suddenly felt the feeling of what it would be like to be a dad, so I was enthusiastic about her helping. As we continued to shred I felt Christlike love as she didn't talk but just smiled, and giggled. Later that night we helped make dinner for M! We went over to the L to teach J a lesson and it was the best lesson! But before it we hung out with J for a minute before the girls came home. When the girls came home C F had spent the afternoon with them getting their nails done! Yay for fellowshipping! We had a lesson with C, J, and us lit by a candle lamp because the lights weren't working. We focused on gaining a testimony of the Book of Mormon, she was really feeling the spirit and even got a little teary eyed. As we testified I felt power. C was an amazing help in the lesson and knew exactly where we were leading....So drum role please....J is getting Baptized! We are so excited for her! She even wants to go on a mission already and we haven't taught her the Plan Of Salvation yet! Haha My Saturday morning studies were truly inspired because I am studied the conference talks "The Greatest Generation of Young Adults"- M. Russell Ballard "Where Justice, Love and Mercy Meet" - Jeffery R. Holland And "Like a Broken Vessel" - Jeffery R. Holland we talked with J that morning while helping him with chores about how to combat life's setbacks. I figured that just like anything else we have to sometimes, not think about it and quoting Nike here... "just do it!" Whether it be with our marriages, reading scriptures, going to school, work, family home evening. "Angels speak by the power of the Holy Ghost; wherefore, they speak the words of Christ. Wherefore, I said unto you, FEAST upon the words of Christ; for behold, the words of Christ will tell you all things what ye should do." -2 Nephi 32:3 Sunday we had a regional broadcast and it was very spiritual and uplifting. My favorite talk was by Linda S. Reeves on helping others and ourselves use the the atonement:) Love, Elder Crowley

Car Accident!

Hello hello hello! Twenty more days and we be skypin yo! Tuesday: We went to Northgate, we did service with J at the North Tonawanda museum, Street contacted, and practice our song "Brightly Beams our Fathers Mercy" for the stake musical fireside! When we practice the first time we all sounded awesome on it, and I'm really loving acappella men's quartet's! Wednesday had a lot of success with street contacting and we confirmed our service with the Riviera Theatre, I'm so excited! While we were on the street a lady talked to us and she knew quite a bit about our church, but she grabbed my hand and said "now I have the gift of discernment and of the Holy Spirit is telling me that you were going to be a great leader, you are a light that people want to have and you're going to do great things in this world because that is who you are." Lol I don't know if she was half crazy or what but I wrote down what she said so I could remember it! Elder Fields gave a great training on finding people to teach. Just like anything else showing the Lord you're willing to work hard, follow him, and are willing to try allows him to bless us. Journal writing shows we appreciate what we have learned, contacting shows we want to find people to teach, prayer shows we want to learn his will and be guided, etc.… We walked on Grand island while it rained and it felt like we were on the English countryside. We had dinner with the Y Family. J the son is working on his testimony but got chills while we testified of the restoration, and challenged him to pray for himself. Friday was a good day but wasn't without its road blocks. We had a great morning with studies and weekly planning. We went street contacting, we stopped and looked at this old graveyard and some graves date back to the 1700s! I was just thinking that all those people are now having a chance to be taught in the spirit world. We went and picked up N N and took him to our new member lesson with J, J, and S. She is progressing and I'm sure she will get baptized! We then went home and had some ice cream with N and talked with him a little more about his home life. He is one of the nicest kids I have ever met and is super positive and happy. It makes me want to help people like that and gives me a greater appreciation for what I have been given. That night we decided since we were 20 minutes away from Dave and Jake Fowler we would meet up with them! We went out to dinner at this restaurant in Lewiston, and it was really good! Writing in my journal that night was really good and helped me see how the lord had blessed us that day! CHURCH IS TRUE! Recap of Saturday....I had awesome studies in the morning! I studied the scripture "Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you." Matthew 5:11-12 We helped M clean up the backyard. We had the birthday party for J and it was the! She had friends there, And J said "J what happened to you? You seem happier!" #thegospel And now for the Grand Finale! Yesterday was the most effective, yet busy Sunday I've every had in my life! We all have Sunday hangovers as well! So the morning started out early like it always does and we went to missionary correlation meeting, then we did a split and Elder Tanner and I went to the the Falls to have a less active follow us to the Church while the other Elders went to ward council! We all came back and had a awesome sacrament meeting! We had the whole L family, less actives, investigators, the whole building was full! So it was nice to see some of the fruits of our labors! J was so engaged at church and was asking questions, participating, and we ordained him to the office of Priest in the Aaronic Priesthood! :) We took the lady back to the falls, practiced our song for the fireside! And then cleaned up and went to Lewiston's apartment to have lunch. We then ran to go set up for he Niagara Falls meeting downtown! We rented out a room in this place called the Naac! Which is Niagara Falls arts center but used to be the old high school so it has a lot of history! It was a great meeting and we got a glimpse of what it must have felt like when the church was first organized when only six people were there. So cool! Elder Tanner and Brother R gave improvised talks, and Elder Fields somehow had the talent to bust out a little piano! (Miracles happen on a daily basis) then we kicked it into high gear to get to downtown Buffalo for the musical fireside! We got stuck in traffic and literally walked into sing! So that recording of us was like 2 minutes after we got out of the car! Stressful! And President Francis, President Pace, all the missionaries in our zone, members, and investigators were there so I was praying that we would do well! haha It was a great meeting and the spirit was felt (lots of talent, and lots of singing from the heart;) ) After the meeting we talked to everyone and their dog! President was like a super star! We introduced S and her daughters to President and he was so excited to meet them and President told J "I want to know when your baptism is so that I can come to it! Ok?" Even though she hasn't committed yet haha. We were able to get back to the Lewiston Elder's apartment where our car was! So after we finally got to our car we left thinking we could relax, nope! We got T-boned right on center street! Ouch! I got hit on my side but we are all good, no airbags went off! The girl who hit us was balling and thought she killed someone! And our cell phone broke Saturday so we had to use her phone to call president and he was in the middle of figuring out transfers! Haha the other Elders came running down the street since we were only about two blocks away from their apartment! And I ended up driving home because Elder Rushton was a little shooken up! But M checked our eyes and we are all fine! So don't worry mom:) the Lord was seriously watching out for us! Well here we are tired as can be, we got transfer calls and Everyone is STAYING! The work is good and I love the Lord! -Elder Crowley

Go get me some baptisms boys!

Hey guys it's finally P-day! And tomorrow will be 3 months! Less than a month until Mother's Day! President Francis says we all need to unstring our bows so they don't break like Nephi's did. We must have a foundation on Christ! If you look at the solution to our problems the answer always ends up being the same! Look at that talk that Elder Holland gave last week called where justice, love, and mercy meet. I always read the words to primary songs (because Elder Bednar said every truth of the Gospel and everything we need to know can be learned the the primary songs) and the last phrase to one of the songs is "have faith, have hope, live like His Son. Help others on their way. What does He ask? live like His Son!" I think that is so true and we need to remember what it's really all about! And for those who have a testimony and a stronger knowledge of Christ's role in our lives need to sometimes take a step back for a minute and cut out something from our own life so we can make time to help another person. Cutting out something small in our lives could mean being the piece that fit into somebody else's life! But let's not get discouraged and hopeless, be OPTIMISTIC! We are a believing PEOPLE! "We believe all things, we hope all things!" -Articles of Faith and one of my favorites from Elder Holland "FIRST, AND FOREVER, FAN THE FLAME OF YOUR FAITH. BECAUSE ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE TO THEM THAT BELIEVE." P-day was awesome this last week we got a lot done and we played ultimate Frisbee with most of our zone. Tuesday we went to Northgate and a man came and played the piano at the request of all the residents. He sounded just like Louis Armstrong! I knew all the old songs, I'm such a nerd. Haha And I seriously need to learn how to play the piano! A B (one of our texting investigators) texted us asking questions like he usually does. He loves the Scriptures and is such a golden investigator I teared up when he called us and said that he read D&C and is now following the word of wisdom, and he says he feels happier! When Elder Willis and I taught him it was one of the best lessons that I have ever had! And then the rest of the afternoon was filled with more discouraging finding activities! It rained all day Wednesday and Elder Rushton and I walked in it hahaha. We were so soaking wet and now I have a cold from it. But I'm doing better:) we went to Bishop's house for dinner that night all the way up in Wilson. They have the cutest little family and I love how they help their kids develop testimonies. They encourage them on their answers to questions and always try to stay positive. One thing that stuckout to me was when bishop said to his five-year-old son "do you WANT to say the prayer? "And he sat and thought, and then with a smile nodded his head yes. I want a family like that! Thursday I woke up with aches and pains and everything that comes with a bad cold so we slept in and I was knocked out! We went to lunch with Sister C in our ward and her friend, then came back and slept some more! M fixed us dinner and we confirmed some appointments for the weekend. The Lord truly blessed me by providing meals when I was sick. :) And S called us and had an awesome experience with prayer where she was able to find J ID and a random $300 check in he trash! She was like "power of prayer!" The Lord really knows our needs and wants to help us! Friday was dusty! We did service for the North Tonawanda museum. They had a ton of really cool artifacts and history! We mostly lifted heavy cabinets up to the third story. S daughter J came and helped too! We left before her and while we were gone she was organizing books and guess what the first book she picked up was? The Book of Mormon! She told her mom she thinks it's a sign, and she came to church on Sunday! I'm telling you we can baptize again between J and A! I know the Lord is helping us so much and we just need things to fall into place. Elder Rushton and I talked a lot about what he has learned on his mission so far. After a lot of finishing details, rides, old missionaries flying in, and preparation M was finally ready to go to the temple! A lot of people from our ward were there and all the missionaries that had taught M (which I saw bear their last testimonies when they left, and have gotten to know pretty well) they are awesome! They had lots of good advice for how to keep at it, and reassuring us that our efforts aren't in vain:) Sister K was in the session! She says in the Celestial room "There's my boys!" She always says "go get me some baptisms boys!" Haha we love Sister Kennedy! We decided to head home with the H! On the way home we stopped for dinner with them and had a blast just laughing about dumb things and just talking simple. We got on the topic of tithing and how you always pay your tithing first and how crazy blessings come from it the usual. Well Brother H told a story I will never forget! He said that he was offered a job which consisted of combining the pipe organs from two churches into one and he would get a huge payment from it! J N (who just left on his mission) was doing chores for them said he didn't know how he was going to pay for his mission. So Brother H made a promise to him that if we would work for him as his organ apprentice full time, he would pay for his whole mission! J was so happy and could not believe this opportunity had come...but then the next day the big deal fell through. So Brother H was in a bind he didn't have the money he thought he would anymore and he had made this promise to J! So long story short Brother H. Was working on an old piano that one of his client's just bought and had not touched yet. While working on the player piano one of the belts broke and out fell an envelope with $9,600 dollars in it!!! CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT!? He figured out that it didn't belong to anyone and the owner of the piano only took $300 of it! So the money was cashed into the Bishop a couple of months ago and J left for his mission on Wednesday! As he told us that story he started crying and we all ended up shedding a couple of tears in the restaurant. The spirit was strong! :,) "27 Now when our hearts were depressed, and we were about to turn back, behold, the Lord comforted us, and said: Go amongst thy brethren, the Lamanites, and bear with patience thine afflictions, and I will give unto you success. 28 And now behold, we have come, and been forth amongst them; and we have been patient in our sufferings, and we have suffered every privation; yea, we have traveled from house to house, relying upon the mercies of the world--not upon the mercies of the world alone but upon the mercies of God." -Alma 26:27-28 Relying on the Lord! Elder Crowley