Sunday, June 8, 2014

June 8, 2014

   Our mission is enjoying great success.  The weather has turned beautiful and it allows all of us to provide service to the community.  The Bedford and Manchester Wards organized a service project for the City of Manchester where we spent last Saturday morning painting the iron fence that surrounds their cemetery.  All of our Manchester missionaries were there and we had a great time.  Even President and Sister Stoker came.  That is President Stoker in the middle of the lower right picture.  I hope we got more paint on the fence than we did on us.
  Then on Saturday afternoon, Miriam and I decided we would drive to Gloucester MA.  We had heard it was beautiful down there.  It was the best day.  The weather was beautiful.  The beaches were magnificent and the Mexican food we got was wonderful.  We had a grand day.
    We had the most interesting week.  Lots of joys with some sadness.  We had another missionary go home for medical reasons.  It is always sad when that happens.  We also, for the first time saw President Stoker have to send home a couple of missionaries for disobedient problems.  We could see the toll this took on President and Sister Stoker.  They work so hard to do everything they can to help all the missionaries complete their missions. 
   We can see that we are getting many more Sisters than Elders coming to the mission.  In the July 1st transfer we are getting 4 French speaking Elders and 5 Sisters.  In the August 12th transfer we are getting 1 Elder and 8 Sisters.  It just keeps going like that.  Then from the August transfers on, we send more home than we have coming.  The surge is over.
   Now we are closing some areas and getting ready to close more.  We are not sure where the count will be.  I understand that before the surge there were approximately 130 missionaries in the mission.  At our peak we had 217.  I hope we don't go back down to 130. 
   But the work continues and it is wonderful.  I sat by Gene(our new convert) in church today and it is amazing what the Gospel does to ordinary people.  He is progressing so well.  He does splits with the missionaries 3 or 4 times a week.  He is so on fire!
   Our testimonies continue to grow.  We love our mission.  We love the Lord so much.  We thank him daily  for this opportunity we have to serve here.

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