Well, President Lewis called last night and... I'M TRAINING!!! I will go to the mission office tomorrow morning and pick up my new missionary. I am so excited and nervous and humbled to have this opportunity. I think back to my first couple transfers and remember what an influence my trainer, Elder Forster, had on me. I hope that I can be the best trainer I can and keep the work in this ward moving. With the Lord's help everything is possible and we definitely have the Lord's help.
So, about transfers. A lot of change is happening. First, my companion, E. Gurr is going to Jackson/Ione!!! He will be E. Crager's last companion before he goes home. Two of my favorite companions are serving together -- miracles are going to be happening there. Elder Forster, my trainer, (who is a zone leader here in Stockton and I see all the time) is going home this week and will be going up with me to the mission office as he leaves the mission and I pick up my boy, to keep his posterity alive. He's a grand-dad! AND, Elder Amos is going to be a zone leader here in Stockton! He only has about 5 more months on his mission. Well, I think that's about it. Fun stuff, huh?
This week was great. We found a new investigator; her name is Julia. She's black, about 80 or so. Her husband has Alzheimer's and is hard of hearing and Julia has been overwhelmed with caring for their house and yard, so we came over and helped her move furniture around and weed-wack and clean up her yard. Julia is Pentecostal and is very involved with her church, but she loves talking with us "about the Lord." In middle of lessons she'll raise her voice and say, "AMEN! PRAISE JESUS! HALLELU--JAH!" and sometimes she just suddenly begins praying. She's the kind of Christian that mumbles "um-huh. amen. thank you Jesus" as you pray. At one point she started speaking in tongues, which is what happens when the Holy Spirit comes down upon you so powerful that you can't stop from saying "habajubadamomikakamossamussudentihaba." Yep, sign of the Spirit right there. Julia is so funny, we love her. Anyways, we invited her to church at our ward at 12:30pm this Sunday and she said that she'll try to make it after her service in the morning. Well, she walked into fast and testimony meeting a little after sacrament and sat down right up front. Elder Gurr and I were pretty excited to see her! After a few minutes, Julia stood up and started walking up to the podium. E. Gurr and I looked at each other and thought, "Oh boy. Are you ready for this?" She stood there and said how much she appreciated us helping her out with her house and she said that we are servants of the Lord. She said that she feels the Spirit here and will be coming back to church. She spoke about Jesus and His Atonement, and then sat down. Wow! After that, the whole meeting and testimonies were focused on Jesus Christ. It was such an uplifting testimony meeting. And another one of our investigators, Jacob Lemon, got up and bore his testimony. We were so proud of him! He is 12 and his mom is a returning less-active in our ward. Church was amazing. After that E. Gurr and I had the Gospel Principles lesson and that went well too.
A side note about how the mission is doing -- in June and August we exceeded our baptism goals of 55 and 67. We are on fire! Elder Holland's promise to us is being fulfilled, that "the next few months will be the greatest in the history of this mission." We are working hard and sacrificing more, and the Lord is blessing us immensely. What a great gift it is to serve at this time.
Well, life is good here in Stockton. The Church is true!
Elder Chris Andrew
California Sacramento Mission
8267 Deseret Ave
Fair Oaks, CA 95628