Monday, December 12, 2011


So this week has been pretty good.  Mostly because we have been trying a bunch of different things and we've had some interesting experiences, but it's still been pretty disappointing because we still don't have any progressing investigators.  But we have some promising contacts that we are excited about. 
PS, I'm actually writing this from the mission office today, and a drunk guy just walked in asking questions about our church.  We set up a meeting for tomorrow, but we'll see how that goes.  I've got his number and I'll definitely call him tomorrow morning. 
So no transfer this time around as expected.  With the new training program there is a specific 12 week timetable of things you have to complete studying and applying as a companionship, so except for the occasional exception, trainers stay with their new missionaries for 2 transfers.  But next transfer I'm pretty sure I'm going to be out of here.  So we'll see.  Some there are some really good missionaries going home this transfer, and less and less of the "older generation" are left.  Elders Drasso, and Eborn are both going home, along with the best American Russian speaker in the mission, Elder Septon, and a couple others including the assistant, Elder Stewart.  And there are a few coming in too.
We did a few cool new finding methods this week.  We invited everyone at English group to a big "group lesson" in a comfortable setting.  Not a big turnout,  just 2 eternal investigators, 1 active member and two less active members.  The sisters, Elder Hyde and I taught together.  It was fun, we tried some fun, thought provoking ways of teaching.  Like writing the names of gospel principles on a plate, breaking the plate to symbolize apostasy, then showing how you can't put the pieces together- you have to restore it.  The only problem is that Sister Trottier tried to throw the plate into the trash can (in order to control the shrapnel) and couldn't get it to break. Like 3 times! Then the people there were like "No we get it! its a good plate don't break it!"  It was really funny. 
Then we also had a movie night. Just to watch Finding Faith in Christ, there were like 4 nonmembers there so, it's not too bad.
Here is quite the interesting experience.  We met a guy contacting.  An old little guy with a huge beard, really friendly, he's an artist and invited us to his art display.  So we were like sure we'll swing by, because he seemed pretty interested in hearing from us.  So we show up, and it turns out it's more like an art club.  Or something weird like that where there were like 10 oldish people and they were displaying this women's pictures. It was really weird, but anyway, we had no idea what was going on, but turns out, one of the people there is an inactive member who the sisters always try to get into contact with but she ignores them, and she likes us so we might be able to get to her.  And the oldest guy came to our movie night, then to church the next day, so I don't know, it's crazy how this has been. 
Then, I conducted my first baptismal interview this week.  It was tough because he didn't understand one of the commandments, and we had to postpone it.  It was crazy because there are only very loose guidelines, in PMG and there are no time requirements for any commandments and stuff.  I called the zone leaders to get their opinion and they basically just said it's totally up to you, which I admire, but it made it really tough.  Good news is we'll have another chance to do it right soon.
So we are allowed to use Skype or anything we want to call home, including video features.  And the Webb's are offering their computer for us.  So they have an iPad and suggested we do Facetime. they said it works even better than Skype.  So, if you will email me back what I have to do to Facetime call you, we will do that.  It will be Saturday night your time, I don't know exactly when, but I'll get you a time in next week's email.
Don't worry, I haven't opened the presents yet.  It sounds like it just might be our district at the Webb's (for Christmas) which will be great. 
Elder Topham