Excited About the Gospel

Letter from August 29th, 2016

Dear Family,

Hey hey what’s good? I can tell you what’s good in Arizona,  Jacob got baptized!!!! It was most definitely  the highlight of our week.  I’ve never met an eleven year old so engaged and excited about the gospel. It’s cool! His whole family came to support him! And Debbie (mom) said she couldn’t stop crying. She loved the service and so did his brothers and sisters!  It was nice to get to know the rest of his family more and we invited them all to join us for Jacob’s new member lessons!  Crossing our fingers they will sit in.  We did our  ‘jumpsuit jam’ with him before the baptism to get him all pumped up.  It’s a cute little dance we do with investigators while they are in the jumpsuit and after we take pictures. Haha, he thought we were a little crazy but it’s a fun tradition.  His Sunday school teacher, Brother Finck, baptized him and another one of his teachers confirmed him.  Jacob was glowing the whole day and his confirmation the next day in sacrament meeting was beautiful.  We wrote it down for him so he could always have the blessing with him and show it to the rest of his family.  That kid is going to serve a mission.  He is already talking about it and about how excited he is to get the priesthood!  We love him!

Sister Waldron also got to see her first tarantula this week!  And this time the hairy dude was just chilling on our wall by the bathroom!  Not sure how it got in… It seems too big to fit through any cracks but somehow…there is was.  She totally freaked out it was so funny. And luckily we got Brother Bingham to come up and get it off the wall.  I can look at it and nudge them into a box but there was no way I would touch a wild one.  I’ve heard their bites hurt like crazy!

So to answer your questions about our service on the ranch, we actually found it through the website Justserve.org.  We are asked to aim for ten service hours a week.  So we volunteer there every Tuesday morning for a few hours.  The ranch is a horse rescue that is run completely by volunteers.  They have 51 horses right now.  And then they also have the cows. So we just do whatever work they have for us. Grooming, feeding, poopy duty, cleaning out sheds or bridles, and fixing fences.  We all love it!  And we love the horses!  It’s been fun to interact with the other volunteers too.  A lot of people don’t know much about LDS missionaries!  Service opens a lot of doors and helps us meet more people.  Sister Waldron and I also fill our service hours by volunteering at the food bank, working on post, and whatever else comes up during the week!  We have gotten some interesting compliments this week.  Elder Phippen, one of the senior missionaries, told us at zone conference that we were some of the most laid back missionaries he had ever seen and then just laughed at us when we asked if that was good or bad?!  Then Sister Falcon told us we were weird…but gung ho. Hmmm, compliment right?! Haha.   The Falcons are awesome. They have kind of adopted us as grandkids!  When ever we come over to teach them we never leave without some sort of food in our hands. They are such a fun couple to work with. They are returning  to church and working towards the temple!  

I got to speak in sacrament meeting. Again. Different ward this time though.  We both were asked to speak on missionary work.  The youth speaker and Sister Waldron took up enough time that I only had to talk for about five minutes, maybe less!  I promise I did prepare a talk but I think I used maybe three line from it!  By the way Mom- I totally used “cookie Friday” as an analogy for sharing the gospel and talked about how we have the cookies of eternal life and we need to share them with all our friends. What a great recipe we have! I did find a cool scripture while preparing and shared it as well.  The prophet Ezekiel prophesied, “Woe be to the shepherds of Israel that do feed themselves! should not the shepherds feed the flocks?” (Ezek. 34:2.) we are the shepherds.  And we can ask ourselves- Do I as an active member of the Church stay so busy feeding myself in my Church classes, meetings, and activities that I am ignoring the rest of the flock?  So there is my plug on missionary work for the week😜  We also had to talk for about ten minutes at ward standards night.  We made the mistake of asking the Bishop if there was anything we could do for him Friday night at dinner. Just kidding,  we love doing stuff like that. We talked about modesty!  I actually appreciate modesty a lot more on my mission than I did before as a youth. So it was a good topic for us.

You asked about personal scripture study as a missionary.  It is one of my most favorite parts of the day!  I love it. One thing that helps with my study is as I read from my Book of Mormon,  I have my iPad open to Gospel Library and I have the Institute Study Manual pulled up.  It gives a lot of insight!  Try it out!

Here’s to another good week!  Love you all!  Sister Packer

Finding water in the dessert.

These roads are why we drive “Teancum” the mission truck!

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Jacob’s baptism

Moving our friends to greener pastures.  Sister Waldron, Elder Deyarmond, Elder Potter, Elder Jorgensen, Elder Jordan and me

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More furry friends, yuck!

Last week at opening ceremonies of Zone Olympics!

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