Mission changes and other madness

So this week was crazy, but it was crazy awesome! We had a ton of changes and meetings this week, which made for a ton of fun.

On Monday we had a normal P-Day. Like usual we did sports with the West Columbia Zone and all that good stuff.

Tuesday we went on exchanges with the Zone Leaders. I went to the ZL’s area with Elder DeG., which was a lot of fun. It was kinda cool going on exchanges with him because he was my ZL in Greenville Zone as well. We had a lot of adventures navigating through vast trailer parks after dark and I spent a lot of time trying to understand Spanish.

Elder DeG. and I also spent a lot of time picking up trash on the side of the road as a service project. I have come to realize that if people would just obey the Word of Wisdom we would not have nearly as much litter, because pretty much all we pick up is cigarette cartons and empty beer bottles.

That was pretty much most of our exchange.

On Wednesday we exchanged back and then went to a Worldwide Mission Broadcast that the Church put out. In the broadcast they had a couple pretty big announcements. The first one was that the mission schedule would be changing. That wasn’t too big of a surprise because we had already been expecting that. We now do planning in the morning instead of night, and we don’t do companionship study in the morning anymore. Along with this change, we basically have the ability to change our schedule to our needs. After 9 we don’t have to worry about planning anymore, we simply get ready for bed and write in our journals, etc. The other really cool schedule change is that P-Day’s now start at 8, so we get an extra 2 hours added to our day! It is super nice and gives us a lot more time to get stuff done.

The other big change came by surprise. Not even our mission president knew about this one beforehand. We now only report 4 key indicators to our leaders each week. Which is a huge scale down from the 9 that we used to have to record each week.

Anyway, these changes were pretty cool. After the broadcast we did some service for PAALS, the animal training place, and then we spent the rest of the evening driving to Charleston to sleep over with the Charleston Elders. Elder Clayton of the Presidency of the Seventy was scheduled to tour the mission on Thursday so we decided to drive down at night instead of waking up at 5 to get there on time from Columbia.

The mission tour with Elder Clayton was really cool! Elder Clayton is a really awesome guy, and you can definitely tell that he has been set apart as a general authority. He had a very strong testimony about him and you just felt happy being around him. Halfway through the meeting when we were about to break for lunch, he asked for a prayer on the food and President Turner just randomly volunteered me out of nowhere. I was pretty surprised when Elder Clayton grabbed me by the arm and started talking to the mission with me up there, and then let me say the prayer. Some random missionary took a picture of me up there and you can definitely tell that I was scared. (Scroll to the bottom of this post to see it). Anyway, overall it was an awesome meeting. We learned a ton and I am super glad that I got to meet him.

Friday was pretty slow. We had a bunch of planning to do and then when we did get out it was not for very long.

Saturday was good. We helped the Ch. family move to their new place in Elgin. They had a back shed that their daughter used to live in before they kicked her out for using drugs. We helped them clean it out, and man that place was filthy. I don’t even know how to describe how disgusting it was, but it just looked like someone sat there and did nothing but drugs for months and months without cleaning.

After we helped the Ch.’s with moving, we visited the L. family. They are a less active family that really should not be less active. They are super nice, but their reasons for not coming to church is that the “sound system is bad,” and “people won’t take their screaming babies out.” I tried to explain to them that the reason why we come to Sacrament meeting is for the Sacrament, but I don’t think my point got across.

Sunday was fine but it was a little slow. We didn’t have too much success talking to people and our usual Sunday appointment with the W.’s fell through.

That was the week. I don’t really understand why people actually like reading these emails. Maybe it’s just mom.

Elder Clayton talked about something really interesting at the mission conference. He said that if we are discouraged, we are being self-centered. That really hit me hard, because I find myself getting discouraged all of the time out here and I really never looked at it as myself being self centered. It is good to remember that being discouraged and negative is what Satan wants you to be. He wants you to not only be unhappy but also be self centered. Anyway, just a thought.

Whelp, that was mah week. Tune in next week for the same update puked out in different colors and patterns.

MUCH LUVS

Elder Jeremiah Brown

Some info. he sent in answer to questions:
The ward I am in is pretty small. The members are pretty helpful. We rarely get meals, simply because of the member meals policy. We are pretty used to that now though.

Elder Brown with Elder Clayton

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