Monday, October 31, 2011

A year ago I litterally was in Halloween Town. HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!‏

Well the big news is that transfers happened and I finally got a new companion and he reigns in from Burbank California right where basically any movie studio you can think of comes from. His name is Elder Perry Stevens. If you have ever seen Gods plan of happiness, an old church movie that sometimes missionaries use. His father is the main character in that show, the narrator as it were. Also another ironic story is that Bro. Bagley a member in my ward served in his ward ten or so years ago and has a picture of my companion when he was 11 in his house. Kinda cool and crazy.
Also an Elder Hansen from South Jordan moved into my apartment. He's hilarious.
First off we are still working with Nicole but she didn't keep two commitments we gave her so it has been a little bit harder. We are going to talk with her as soon as we can. She still really appreciates the things she learns from us but it is just so hard to discern what she thinks about things.
I don't know if you remember the 17 year old Ben Kleidman we were working with. But Elder Stevens and I saw him while we were walking and I said "Hi Ben." He runs over to us and asks if he can talk to us. He said that when he told his parents that he wanted to be baptized they told him that he wasn't allowed to talk or see us anymore. It felt really good getting some closure on that. He looked super sad and I could tell he still wants it but they'll have to wait until later. I was worried about that from the beginning. But Heavenly Father truly is aware of all situations and was able to bring peace to my soul on the subject because it truly had been bothering me ever since he had to drop us because he was so awesome and solid and both of us plus our members really grew to love him.
Lastly we had a miracle on Sunday in which we got a call during church from a guy named Mario. Elder Prince and I had lost contact with him about a month back. We met them while we were trying to figure out the Cleveland bus system home and Elder Prince ran over to them to talk with them. Well we ended up missing the bus we were supposed to take but we got on their bus and they mentioned they were just barely engaged married. Then we found out that they didn't have any money to do so. We mentioned that our church does it for free and they really liked that idea. Then we called them and couldn't get in contact again. However they called us and we met with them yesterday and had a wonderful first lesson with a member present in the church. We are meeting with them again tomorrow. Their names are Mario and Sierra and they are both really funny.
I love you all so much and I hope you are having a wonderful Halloween.
(*)<~Elder Sumsion

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

"Barriers keep us from reaching something, bridges overcome barriers." ~Pres. Doneque (Kirtland Stake Presidency)‏

Well I have had just a wonderful time working with Elder Rangel and Elder Bills. We've tried to work out going on splits with the members as much as we could this week and we have mostly succeeded but only really at night. Some of the days we've spent together we have felt truly exhausted at the end of the night which always feels quite nice actually.
Well things with Nicole have been going quite well she is still interested in meeting with us and has been making some life changes. One night we went to her work because that is where we usually teach her. Which is not ideal but she works so much and her boss is fine with it. But we talked with her about happiness and she said "I wouldn't be meeting with you all if you didn't make me happy." That was super awesome to hear and really shows that she has been changing.
Leonard has been super sick and that has made it pretty much impossible to meet with him. We have an appointment tomorrow and he said he's feeling better so hopefully that one works out. He comes to sacrament meeting pretty regularly though.
We had to drop Gary McCoy sadly because he said that he wasn't interested in reading the Book of Mormon on his own or coming to church. He's comfortable where he's at.
The area is doing well and I'm very excited for Nicole. I think she will fit in well with the ward. Her fellow shippers are really good. So depending on her work schedule, baptism on the 12th does seem very possible.
We had stake conference on Sunday. That was a treat. First time I've ever had church in Kirtland Ohio, let alone stake conference. None of the investigators could make it which was a bummer but Sis. Jackson came and she is such great member that we've been working with for quite sometime. It was a wonderful step to see her there.
Elder Rangel is being transferred out of the apartment, so I'll be missing him. But Elder Bills and I will both be getting new companions so there will be some new missionaries that we get to know.
I love you all and this work is true.
Make sure that everyone of you is finding someone week in the spirit and taking them with you so that they may be edified in all meekness. That they may become strong in the spirit. (D&C 84:106) It's a promise we made to Heavenly Father at baptism. This work is true and we can really help someone and some family.
(*)<~Elder Lance Sumsion

Monday, October 24, 2011

Monday, October 17, 2011

Flying solo X three.‏

The beginning of the week has actually been pretty awesome. Elder Prince and I had been devoting a bit more time to working and teaching people right on the spot in which he is just very talented at. We ended up teaching 7 other lessons this week and most of them are attributed to that reason. We also kept up pretty well on working with our current investigators.
Things have been going quite well with Nicole. She is a very wonderful person and I feel very blessed to teach her. We actually teach her most of the time while she's working at Jackie Chens Wok. But she been keeping commitments and has been doing awesome. She came to church for the first time this week with her son Shaundell and I have high hopes for later on. By the way none of this would have been possible if it weren't for her awesome fellowshippers. This ward is just brilliant and so helpful in that way.
We have been still working with Leonard and we set a date for him in the future when he is eligible for baptism. He did come to church this week so he defiantly stepping in the right direction
Lastly we picked up a shaker square original (as in we see him all the time but have been unable to teach him until now) named Gary McCoy and he's a little different at times but when you get him feeling the spirit you can really tell that he wants to change. He also has a date for baptism.
The most surprising that happened this week however happened Friday night and Saturday morning. We got a call friday night and it was from the Ap's. He told us that Elder Prince was being transferred tomorrow at 7 am. I was shock-ed. It turns out that of my former companions was going home and I'm super impressed with him in that way because he was a good companion. But anyway Elder Prince was transferred to my dear old ward Ashtabula. I was super jealous because I love that place. So Saturday morning we were basically driving most of the morning/day being a sort of transfer taxi system. Elder Prince is going to end up training in Ashtabula.
I am currently tripled up with the zone leaders Elder Bills and Elder Rangel. We are working the Shaker Heights ward, the Cleveland 3rd ward and The university singles branch until transfers on the 26th. I think it's safe to say I'll be staying for that transfer. But the weirdest thing is I went to church by myself yesterday and just flocked from priesthood holder to priesthood holder. Kinda different. Well I love you all and I'm excited to see what happens over the next few weeks.
(*)<~Elder Sumsion

Monday, October 10, 2011

The leaves be falling on my BOOTS!‏

We were able to give a non-member service twice this week which was probably the most enjoyable thing we did among many enjoyable things. He pulled up to us while we were leaving an appointment with a less-active. He asked if we were Jesus boys. We replied yes and he asked for some help with moving and cleaning up his new house. We said that would be great and this week we started helping him, they are a good couple and very excited about the gospel. I think if we play our card right we can help them come to love the Book of Mormon and from there the church. Most of our success however has not come from non-members this week but just some awesome less-actives in the ward that really want to change. Specifically we've been helping Andre Thomas who is just to hard on himself, Sis. Burgess who just loves feeling the spirit and Sis. Galica Gray whom we finally taught with both of her daughters Saturday night. It was pretty awesome we've been working with her for quite some time and she's very solid and now her daughters are more receptive.
Nicole did not come to church however. Elder Prince and I are starting to doubt how actually interested she is now. We're gonna keep working with her a bit longer but we're going to have to see what happens.
There are plenty of other people we've been trying to teach and one of them Gary McCoy might start working out soon. He's a little bit different but we see him all over the place and he accepted us coming over. We've taught him twice and I would say it's going well so far. Just getting and them keeping appointments has been the difficulty with those we've been teaching.
Oh and I don't know if any of you remember Pam. We were teaching her a while ago and then she dissapeared. Well we found her, I texted her daughter and she told me she's in the hospital so after a little bit she told us where to go to see her. Well that didn't totally work out because she was very much to out of it to even speak. She also had a tracheotomy(?) thing in her neck.
OH and I bought new boots that are very steel toed and awesome and very much crush any type of nut that just so happens to be under my foot. I feel very powerful walking around in them.
Well have some pictures of Zoned out as well. These are all of the ones with me in them and one of them almost not but you can see more at kws-ohiocleveland.blogspot.com.
Love you all,
(*)<~Elder Lance Sumsion

Monday, October 3, 2011

The true bus system of Cleveland Ohio.‏

This has defiantly been a different week. We have seen tons of success in getting members out with us and with them teaching and they have been just awesome with all the help they provide us. We however have not seen much progression with those that we currently were teaching. I don't think they aren't interested though just busy making it very difficult to follow up with commitments but I'm planning on making an added effort to make sure that works out this week.
General conference was so inspiring and such a blessing. Sadly though sisters my favorite session was priesthood because it was awesome. I'm super excited about the new Provo temple. Just crazy stuff.
We've been working with Jeanetta a less-active and she has just been awesome and referred a lot of people. They seem kinda promising, but they were unable to attend conference. They did however attend other events.
Biggest story of the week and possibly the whole time I've been in this area. Although I tell this story for the purpose of not being mean but it defiantly is the most interesting slash hilarious experiences I've had on my mission. So don't think ill because we did fulfill our baptismal covenant in doing this.
Yesterday morning we were invited to go to a members home and watch conference with them and they let us know if we find anyone they can come with us too. Well after we woke up in the frigid apartment yesterday we did our studies and then decided to go out a contact whilst we walk to the Hall's home. While we were walking there was nobody in sight so we decided to hop on a bus and talk to the people on the bus. Well...We see this lady that we had talked to previously and my bold and fearless companion decides to very loudly invite her and basically the whole bus over to our members home with us. She declined and then after about a half a minute the guy in front of me asks if he can come to church with us. At first I was kinda surprised and almost said no because he had a cigarette in his ear and didn't want to bring that into one of the members homes but I decided to ask why he was on the bus. He replied "Because I'm going to church with you." I was confused but said "Oh...OK." Then we have to get off the bus but before we do I discover than our new friend Donald has been shot twice in his life.
That was defiantly not what I expected to hear as a conversation starter but while getting off the bus I realize that one of those bullet had permanently damaged his walking and he had to walk with a cane. Well... we get off the bus and call the Halls and they say it's OK that he comes and watches conference with us. Bro. Hall picks us up and we go to their house.
When we arrive Sis. Hall says that she'll make us some lunch and starts preparing it. We decide to teach Donald about prophets and he gave some pretty intelligent responses but was very distracted by the food and such to the point where I told him "Donald, over here." and then he started falling asleep so we ended the lesson so we could eat.
After the food which was very yummy we went to the couch to watch conference and Donald sat down on one of their recliners (but he didn't know that). We got through the opening him and the opening prayer and in the middle of the second hymn after the prayer he laid his head on one of the armrests and fell asleep and stayed asleep the whole two hours.
The story ends with a journey around Cleveland to find a homeless shelter to drop him off at. We were unable to get any contact information because he didn't have any so I don't think we'll see him again. It was a good Christlike experience but defiantly not what we expected for our Sunday morning conference session. I'd also like to publically thank the Hall's for there amazing generosity.
Anyway, that was the most exciting thing to happen this week next to conference. I love you all and can't believe that I've only got one more of them left until I'm home. By the way the April Conference is my last Sunday in the mission.
Love you.
(*)<~Elder Sumsion