This last week was packed full of awesomeness!! I can't even remember in what order everything happened. The temple was awesome last Tuesday! Then later that night we had a lesson with the Muslim man, Adil. We put him on date for April 19th. It was super cool! Then Thursday was interviews with President Chambers. That was good. Then on Friday we had the mission fireside which was awesome! One of President Chambers cousins and close friends came to speak to us and tell us about his experience climbing Mount Everest. He related it to goals and how sometimes we have to take it step by step and things like that. So that was cool and then we had like an hour to visit with everyone. So I got to talk to all my old companions and other missionaries I've served with. That was really nice. No Ipads yet, but they are coming. Supposedly in June. That's the rumor at least. I just want to be able to use LDStools. That would make things so much easier! Anyways, then we had a lesson on Saturday with a man that we had already reactivated but Bishop asked us to keep working with him so we have, but this time he had his daughter there with him and she isn't a member and so we taught her and put her on date. She wasn't at church though because she was sick so she's not on date anymore but we have a lesson with her again on Wednesday. We also have an investigator that we found in the Samoan ward and he is on date for April 13th right now. He is cool and really understands how much the gospel will help him. He also has a really strong support system in the ward. Alfred I. is still on date for this Saturday. We are going to have the baptism earlier in the morning so that it doesn't interfere with conference. He won't be able to be confirmed until the next Sunday though since it has to be in Church. Adil since that lesson where we put him on date however, has said that he no longer wants to meet with us. He knows its true, he's just afraid of change. But there is still a lot of work in this area and I'm really excited! This week is going to be awesome as well! We had 10 lessons this last week, that's the most I've had in one week so far. We are going to beat it this week :) I can't wait for conference!! I don't get to go again, but I don't mind. I know I will at some point. We were going to try to take Adil, but then he said he didn't want to go and so now we aren't going. I hope you all take advantage of this opportunity to listen to the word of the Lord. This chance doesn't come very often and it is for us now in this day. Take heed to what they say and apply it in your life. It will bless you immensely. Have a wonderful week everyone! Love you all.
Tuesday, March 25, 2014
This week has been great! I have learned a lot and we have found a lot of good potential in the area! We are going to the temple today, hence the P-day on Tuesday. Sorry I forgot to tell you last week. I'm excited for that though. I love the temple. I get to go to the Draper one this time too. I have only done initiatories there before so this will be my first time going through a session there. Just a quick update on the investigators we have. Alfred I. the father of the father of the family that got sealed a month ago is on date for April 5th. He is progressing well and has been to church twice now and had good experiences both times. Adil the Muslim we have only had one lesson with, he is stuck on Mohammad and so we have to address that concern and put him on date. Then we are also working with Samantha M. She is 9 years old and is a daughter of one of the women we reactivated. We are really trying to work on getting her to open up to us and accept a date. Those are the main investigators we have right now but we have several potentials that we should be picking up within the next week. Upcoming events we have are a mission fireside this Friday. The first time since I've been out that the whole mission is getting together. They used to do it more often with the old mission president. We also have interviews with President Chambers coming up this week. Plus the temple today. So it's a great week! Emma is also going to go to the temple soon, possibly this Saturday to do baptisms for the dead. Since its her first time we are allowed to go with and watch. We can't participate but it will still be cool to see that. There is also an Elder that came in this last transfer that I knew from California. His name is Elder Hamm. We went to EFY together actually if I remember correctly. I'm not entirely sure the situation but I think he was in another mission and for medical reasons I think ended up coming to this mission after a couple months. So he's in my zone now so that's cool. This week has really helped me to understand that True Happiness comes from living the Gospel. Though things may appear to make us happy for a short while, the effects are never lasting. I know that living the Gospel will enable us to become more than we are now and will help us to be happy and successful. It will bring blessings that will help us in our hard times and will prepare us to return to live with Heavenly Father again. I know that is true and I know it shows our love for our Heavenly Father who has always loved us from the beginning. I hope and pray that you all have a wonderful week! -Elder McKinney
A Sister Bowers sent this to our email the day she fed the missionaries...so thoughtful of her!
Monday, March 17, 2014
It has been a fantastic week! Transfers were on Wednesday. Elder Niupalau went to the mission office with the rest of the departing missionaries. They had testimony meetings and stuff and they also got to go out to visit former investigators to invite them to be baptized. So I'll tell you about someone Elder Niupalau went to in a bit. My new companion is Elder Knowlton. He is from Orford, New Hampshire. He came out a transfer before me and he is now the new District Leader. This is his first time being a district leader. We will be able to work great together I think and find a lot of success. The Midvalley stake is starting to pick up. One of the people Elder Niupalau went by on Wednesday to invite to be baptized was the father of the family that he went with to the temple to be sealed. His name is Alfred. He didn't fully commit to a date but he set up a return appointment for us to come the next day. So Elder Knowlton and I went and we taught him briefly about Church Prayer and Reading the Book of Mormon (CPR for the soul) and put him on date for April 5th. He came to Sacrament this week so he is progressing! We also had President Chambers interview a man named Adil for us to teach. President Chambers had to interview him because he is Muslim and he had to make sure that nothing bad would happen as a result of us teaching him. We got approval to teach him and we will be putting him on date later this week. There are also a couple other really good potential investigators that we have that we should pick up this week as well. John K came to church again as well and so that was awesome! He is continuing to do really well and there isn't much more we can do for him. Emma's baptism was on Saturday! After trying like four other buildings we finally found one that wasn't being used for regional basketball and had the baptism there. We had to go early to fill up the font so we just did our studies there. There were a ton of people there at the baptism though! It was really awesome. Most of them were her friends from school or the ward in Draper but there was a decent amount from her ward here so that was good. It was a great baptism! Her uncle flew in from Washington to baptize her. After the baptism they had lunch at her house. After the baptism we helped a couple people move and helped an older couple clean out their garage. We have done quite a bit of service the past week or so. More so than I had ever done before that point, at least here in Sandy. It has been good though. The work is starting to pick up and I am very excited about what will happen. I'm finally getting a haircut too. I haven't gotten one since I've been in Sandy. I'm going back to the lady who cut my hair in Kearns. Might go visit some people while I'm there. We can go anywhere in the mission on P-day so that'll be fun. I think that's about it to report for right now. I'll send a couple more emails with pictures. I can only send one at a time so it's kind of annoying. I might send most of them to my mom and have her put them on the blog. The address for the blog is eldermckinneysmission.blogspot.com. I hope you all have a wonderful week! I'm excited for this transfer, a lot is going to happen. Love you all!
Monday, March 10, 2014
Transfers are this Wednesday. I'm excited to see what happens. I have no idea what to expect. My companion goes with the rest of the departing missionaries on Wednesday and then they go and do activities then spend the night in the Mission Home and then fly home Thursday morning. I will find out who my new companion is on Tuesday and will get him on Wednesday morning. I'll probably get someone who will be the new district leader since Elder Niupalau was it before. As long as I get to keep the car :) (even if it is a corolla) It's going to be a great transfer though, I can already feel it! The wards in the Midvalley Stake are starting to catch the vision and we should start to see an increase of work soon. Emma J. will be baptized this upcoming Saturday so that will be great! It was hard to find a building for her to be baptized in though, because although Utah has churches on every corner, they are also being used for Regional Basketball this Saturday. Not a problem we would have had in California ha. Its cool though, we finally found a building after like four tries. She is doing really well and she is definitely prepared. We have also been working with John K. who has been less active and he is doing so well! His ex-wife was baptized in December and that kind of rekindled the flame in him and he has come so far even in just the past two weeks! He has a really strong desire to change his life and follow Christ. I'm really hungry right now. I want food. We are going to lunch today with a bunch of missionaries at a Chinese buffet place. That'll be good. Oh yeah, tomorrow is my 6 month mark. Crazy. I can't believe it has gone by so fast. It's weird to think that that really isn't a long time and that I'm still new out, but at the same time that's a fourth of my mission. Only three more of those? That's not a fun thought. I know time will only continue to go faster too. The weather has been really nice lately, nice temperatures. It's rained a little bit here and there but nothing too bad. I'm fine with that, I can live with rain. Other than that we still are looking for more people to teach. I'm just so excited for this transfer and for the potential that it holds, especially with some of the wards starting to catch the vision. Its going to be awesome! I know hard times come, but they will also go away. Never give up and never forget that the Savior is there to help you in your individual trials. I know that He is and I know that we can find great power and strength in and through the Atonement. Have a wonderful week everyone! Love you all. Keep sharing the gospel with everyone :) -Elder McKinney
Monday, March 3, 2014
I have no idea where February went. It came and left before I even knew it was there. Luckily the weather this month has been really good, but I know we will still get a few snow days here and there. This week was good. Went on an exchange with the other elders in our district. I was with Elder Hall in my area and Elder Niupalau went with Elder Egley in his area. It was a good exchange and I had fun. Elder Hall is just a big goober. Every time I try to take someone out for lunch I get more money than I pay. I have so much extra money left over from last month I have no idea what to do with it. There is a lady that Elder Niupalau reactivated and she buys our groceries for us basically so I haven't spent my money on that stuff, I probably will have to though after he leaves. He goes home in less than two weeks now. It's crazy how fast this transfer has gone! I have no idea what is going to happen this transfer, the only thing I think is safe to say is that I will stay in the area, other than that I have no idea what will happen with everyone else. Transfers are on March 12th. We had to drop the couple that we were trying to get married and baptized. They weren't progressing and we couldn't meet with them very often. So we handed them over to the senior couple in our stake. Emma is still doing great though and is still on date for March 15th. This week was also great because I got to go back to Kearns for two baptisms. Andrew was baptized and so was Seth who Elder Bennett and I taught back in my first transfer, Elder Cleveland taught him a little as well but the sisters finally got it to happen. Figures. I got to go back for both of them so it was awesome! Seth was baptized by a young priest in the ward and Andrew was baptized by his foster parent. They were both great baptisms! I gave a talk on baptism at Andrew's. Elder Niupalau was also able to attend the temple with a family he worked with, they were sealed on Saturday. I wasn't able to go because I went to the baptisms but it was great that he got to go. We are still working hard and looking for the elect. I know the wards are going to start catching the vision and help the work move along. Have a great week everyone! Love you all. -Elder McKinney
The Solomons, Sister Missionaries, Elder Cleveland and Elder McKinney