Monday, October 28, 2013

Elderes Zwick y Pino

Well this last week was quite the week. Well I guess there wasn't a whole lot that actually happened, but it was still huge! That probably has to do with the fact that we had a mission wide meeting with two general authorities! What a sight and feeling it was to have every single missionary in our mission in one place. I have never felt anything like it before. The meeting was absolutely amazing! Sadly it was about 45 minutes shorter than expected because of plane delays and the general authorities were late. We were so excited to hear from them though. And Marci, I would definitely agree that the best mission presidents feel like you are actually learning and interacting with Christ himself. I would say the same for President and Sister Bernhisel. It is amazing to hear such inspired goals and focuses from them. They are truly inspired.

The work here continues to grow as well. Our teaching pool is young and fresh, and beginning to show fruits. One investigator named Erika has a baptismal date for the 16th, and she is awesome! We honestly haven't taught her a lot yet, but there is such a strong foundation of trust between us. We are trying super hard to make sure she is ready by the 16th so Elder Sullivan can be here for her baptism. After 5 transfers here in Cary, he'll finally be leaving. I truly hope that I can stay here as long as he has as well, because this area is so prepared. The members are amazing! And there are so many good people here. I have no doubt that before my mission is through our branch can turn into a ward.
If you could pray for anyone this week though, I would ask that you pray for Gricelda and Mia. We love them a ton. We have done what we can, and are trying so hard to see what we actually need to do to truly help them.

I love the people here. I love the work. I love my companion. I love my area. I love the fact that I am not perfect and that I get to keep learning, though that is definitely hard and I may not think that in my head at times. I know that the gospel is a gospel that teaches us to be disciples. It teaches us to love everyone!

I love you all so much! I am sooo excited for you Mike and Lindy! Andre, you may have to find a different nickname for me...haha. I am so happy to be a part of our wonderful family! Last night we ate with a few families and six missionaries, and there were 17 people there. I couldn't help but think of our 20+ family gatherings :) Have a fabulous week! :)

Elder Johnson

Gorgeous leaves and butterflies are appearing now.

This was the gorgeous morning drive to Fayetteville for the conference.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


Well I don't even remember writing about Magdalena and her baptismal date, but...she got baptized!!! She was on vacation until this last monday, and we were not 100% sure if we were going to be able to put together the interview and make all the arrangements because of an English class that she just started. But hey, that doesn't really matter in the end since she got baptized anyway! The baptism itself was a miracle as well. Magdalena got to the church about 20 minutes early, which is super unusual for the Hispanics here. And then the rest of the people that showed up came at the usual 15-20 minute late mark. So we were there with Magdalena without hardly anyone waiting for quite a while. We got kind of nervous. But people showed up! And the investigators that we were expecting showed up as well! We were definitely blessed to have everything work out. Oh and I forgot to mention that we had a dinner at 5:00 to go to that we somehow made time for and still had time to fill up the font, make the programs, and get everything put in order for the baptism. What an exhausting but amazing experience.

Another miracle of the evening was that we were able to have a lesson with Travis and Erika after the baptism. They are going to get married!!! We don't know exactly when that is going to be able to happen, but soon! We are so excited for them! And Travis holds the Melchizedek priesthood we found out, which makes us even happier that he has decided to come back to activity and make these decisions.

Keep praying for Gricelda and Mia who are still in Mexico and California and won't get back till saturday. Vacations make things difficult. But we are ever so grateful for facebook and the ability to be able to communicate still with them and teach.

A new investigator that we now have is another Erika! She is a friend of a member, and is super golden! She has a baptismal date and we haven't even taught an actual lesson from preach my gospel yet! Sister Damares has been working on her for a while, and it has paid off. Member work is where the true growth in the church happens! We are very excited to get her going towards the 16th of November!

I am so grateful for the opportunities that we have had this week to see so many miracles. Miracles do happen. If you don't believe me then you need to go read Marci's letter about her Windows of Heaven program. When we can show faith that the Lord will lead us to those he has prepared, he will do that. I am very blessed to be able to be a witness of those miracles every day.

I hope that you all have an absolutely fabulous week! And don't forget to thank the Lord for changing seasons! What a blessing!

Elder Johnson

Her smile is contagious!


Monday, October 14, 2013

Cruz, the Cruze

Well one of the great highlights of this week, is that we got a full time car!!!! :D We called her Cruz, the Chevy Cruze. Oh boy have we been enjoying that. Until now we have been sharing a car with the other Spanish elders to be able to cover the whole Apex stake. We made ends meet, but generally ended up staying pretty close to home to proselyte. Already with this huge blessing we have been able to find great potential in Garner and in Fuquay-Varina. It is a material thing, but I am so grateful for it. I am so grateful for the resources that we have been given in our world today to be able to hasten the work.

Well as for the true highlights of this week, it was a good week. We have been able to make some good progress with our investigators to be able to help them to repent and to actually progress. The hard part is that one is in Mexico right now, and the other is in Virginia. But! We have been very blessed this week to find some new investigators with good potential. The work is always happening somewhere. We truly just need to find where to get on the wave to be most effective. Obviously, that is with the members. We have been seeing such success as we have continuously tried to work with the members better. One potential that we have is named Erika. She is a friend of a member that has actually come to church twice now. For some reason it wasn't until now that we have actually been able to set up an appointment with her. We already have a super great trust with her and we haven't even taught her! That I believe is attributed to the service that we have been able to give as the member asked for it. The day of transfers Sister Damares (Erika's Friend) called us to ask for help with some court papers. We were gone so we sent the other Spanish elders over. They helped for 2 hrs! It turns out that it was forms for Erika's brother Vlas! They trust us so much for the simple service we were able to provide. She seems super elect and we can't wait to teach her today!

The last thing I wanted to say in this letter is how much I love the members here in the Cary Spanish branch. We had a very sad experience just yesterday after church. We were asked yesterday to help out a brother in the church move out of his home, to prepare to move back to Acapulco. We moved him out in front of his wife and daughter. There have been struggles for a very long time, but it is super sad to see him go. He said that he is moving back forever. I was heartbroken. He has only recently come back to church after having a change in work schedule, and he immediately asked if he could teach gospel principles! What a character he was! We will miss him and his classes so much!

Now not to leave on a low note, I just want to reemphasize that I love the people here. I love people. Every single person is a son or daughter of God. The scriptures are true. "And if it so be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this people, and bring, save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father! And now, if your joy will be great with one soul that you have brought unto me into the kingdom of my Father, how great will be your joy if you should bring many souls unto me!" (D&C 18:15-16) I already feel that joy for these people, and I am so excited for when we can rejoice together on the other side as well!

I love you all so much! I love you even if I haven't met you! (Most definitely including new/future family members! :D)

Have a fabulous week and enjoy the weather! :)
Elder Johnson

Monday, October 7, 2013


Well as you all know, the highlight of the world's news this last week was that we had General Conference! It is so sad to me that only a small percentage of the world knows that there is a prophet that spoke to the whole world yesterday. If the world were to know that God talks to his children on the earth, there would be an even greater hum of excitement on conference weekend.
What made conference weekend even better than usual, was the fact that we were able to get some of our investigators there!

Magdalena: She was able to come to two sessions of conference. She really liked it! It is crazy how much she has changed since we have gotten to know her. She truly is gaining a testimony of the gospel. The one single thing that she quite hasn't gotten a hold of, is reading! We are working so hard to get her to read! She loves reading too! But when it comes to the Book of Mormon, she has a really hard time. We are working on that. She has a super solid date for the 19th!
Jesus is hanging in there haha. Church is a new thing for him as a 14 year old. He's not super motivated to do a whole lot, but in the end he is willing to do what he needs to. They are hopefully going to go to church so he can take the sacrament this weekend while on vacation!

Mia and Gricelda: So Mia is the daughter of Gricelda. Mia is most likely going to be getting baptized the 19th as well! It all depends on when Gricelda gets back from Mexico after her trip. She is super solid! The youth are so amazing!
Miracle for this week with them was that we had not been in contact with them for a few weeks. We are working on that haha. But as we have worked with their fellowshipper Alejandrina we have been able to get back up with them. Alejandrina will be very involved these next few weeks to help prepare them. She has been a saint! We finally got in contact with them, as Mia and Alejandrina showed up to conference! We knew they would be there, but it was so good to see her. Then in the middle of the session Gricelda showed up!! She said she did not want to go, and wasn't coming! But Oscar the 6 year old convinced her in the end. He and Mia are solid. They are helping their mom so much in the very difficult situation she is in right now with her marriage. Gricelda will follow them soon. She wants to be baptized, but there are things she feels like she needs to do beforehand.

Well that is about it for this week! Conference was absolutely amazing! I loved how much focus they put on the family and missionary work!! I hope you all have an absolutely amazing week! :)

Elder Johnson