Last Dinner Appointment with the Neilson Family- July 2, 2012


Short and Sweet

Aug 15, 2011

Hey Family,

I just talked to you a couple of days ago! But a lot has gone on in the last couple of days. We had a successful week and a busy one as well. We're starting to teach more and fill our schedule which is fantastic news for the Hudson area. Also we set a baptismal date with our investigator Harvey! It happened last night and it was amazing.

Harvey is a African that speaks French. He's been looking for the truth for some time. The light of Christ speaks volumes with his character, and i have always been a fan of this guy. He hasn't been to church yet, but we had a really good Joint Teacher at the last appointment. So hopefully that will solve his fears for coming to church or at least be able to break the barrier. We also picked up 3 new investigators. Gene and Barb are an older couple, probably 50's, but they know God sent us to their door step. We found them through the area book. Missionaries in the past have taught them, but due to miscommunication, they were dropped for no good reason. They're going through a hard time right now and we testified boldly that this gospel was for them.

We've also been working with a part member family, the Albright family. It's hard to see broken families, for it truly takes a toll on the kids and their behaviors. The kids were pretty grumpy. Josh and Christian, two teenage boys 14 and 13 had really no interest talking about God. We spent some good time just relating with them. Josh really likes NBA basketball, so as you know i was all over that topic. And Christian really likes Halo, so i was over that discussion as well. It really helped them soften up and listen. I think they have our trust now.

Well Zone Conference is this week. We'll be training the missionaries in our zone. We also made a zone logo! I'll send it too you.

Well family sorry this is short. I keep praying for all of you. I wish Carly Boyce the best! I can't believe Jordan is engaged. I have the best cousins and it's sad to see them fly away with their soul mates. must come.

Scripture Matt 22:35-40

Elder Browning

Busy as a Bee

Aug 11, 2011

Hey Family

Sorry for the late email. Elder Horgmo and I have been running all over the place! It feels great to be as busy as we are, however every missionary needs a day to rest. We had ZLC this last monday which was amazing. Then on Tuesday we helped a companionship in Chippewa Falls. We've burned a lot of miles the last 3 days.

Zone Leader Conference was wonderful. It was all about the relationship of the district leaders and zone leaders. We've figured out a big hole in our mission--we haven't been using our district leaders to their fullest potential. It was very helpful and useful training meeting. President Clements is a very smart man and is definitely qualified for the position. He has a style that i love and gets straight to the point. I understand his style more than President Howell's. Zone leader conference is pretty intense. There are so many good missionaries and i look up to a lot of them.

We then went to Chippewa Falls and helped a struggling companionship. We saw so many miracles. It was just a hard knock door day but we saw progress in their area. The Chippewa Falls elders were grateful for the help and encouragement. It has been a special treat to be able to help missionaries. I have a strong testimony of exchanges and strengthening missionaries. The Chippewa Falls elders had hope after our exchange which was cool because they were really down in the tubes before.

Haha funny side note, when i was on the exchange we got in a huge Bible bash. Now i usually don't try to accelerate these conversations but after talking to people all day, and feeling very bold we told her how it is. I felt like the missionaries in the Book of Mormon battling with the unbelievers. I felt the power and authority and we had no fear. It was a stubborn lady that believes the Bible is all we need. We basically told her she's limiting God to the Bible. I'm so grateful for the restored gospel because these people have no idea what true doctrine really is. We have the truth! We spent a good hour in a heated dicussion. I'll try not to do it again, but sometimes you have to defend the faith. =)

We had a cool Zone activity. Right after our district meeting we had a conference call with the whole entire zone in prayer. After the prayer we went out has districts to work in one area - 3 districts 3 areas. It helped with the zone unity and it helped build faith. It has felt great not to work in our area. The Lord has still blessed us despite out efforts in our own area.

The work in Hudson is going great. We've seen a lot of small miracles which has given Elder Horgmo and I hope. About two weeks ago we really lost all of our investigators, but the past week we've picked up 4 new investigators! The Lord will bless his servants if they do the simple things, stay obedient and find. Why is that? Because those are things we can control. Things we can't control,for example, we can't control our investigators coming to church. They have their freedom to choose. The Lord will bless us and make a way though for it to happen.

Hey one cool side note about our latest investigator (Mike). We had a chapel tour with him Monday. Mike was a referral from Sister Crowski in the Virgina ward. The cool thing here is Elder Horgmo served in the Virgina ward for 7 1/2 months. Once sister Crowski knew elder Horgmo would be my companion she knew it was a sign from God and she had to introduce the missionaries to Mike. Cool details that the Lord is obviously over. The church tour went well. He's a super awesome guy that needs the gospel. Sis Crowski came all the way from Virgina (3hours away) to fellowship. Member referrals are always the most promising.

Another Investigator we picked up this last week her name is Amber. She has a two kids and had tons of questions about the after life. We taught her the plan of salvation and how families can be together forever. We tied in the Restoration and gave her a Book of Mormon. I love teaching people who have a real desire to learn truth.

Just last night we had a crazy experience with one of our investigators Roxane. She's been dealing with health challenges and actually she received 3rd degree burns on her legs from lawn chemicals. We talked to her a couple times throughout the day and as the day went on she got more and more sick over the phone. As we showed up, a man next door told us an ambulance came and picked her up 20 minutes before we arrived. Thinking we had come too late to help we thought to visit her in the hospital and give her a blessing. We did, and she was so grateful to see us. Her husband had no idea what was going on due to work, and she really had no support or help. I was able to give her a blessing and it was a powerful experience. President Squire (stake presidency) was with us also.

I love you family! Thanks for the pictures of Julia. I'm keeping her and the family in my prayers. I'll be writting you soon!

Scripture 1 nephi 6: 4-6

Elder Browning

A New Baby Sister and a New Companion!

Aug 1, 2011

Hey Family,

I have a new baby sister! This is great news, grateful to hear that Julia and Mom are healthy and doing well. This whole situation is surreal. Julia will be about a year old by the time i see her! The pictures are darling and i await more patiently. What a blessing to have a new child in the home. Julia is innocent and straight from heaven.

This news adds a lot on what happened this week. Transfer calls were today and I'll be staying in Hudson for another 6 weeks. My new companion is Elder Horgmo, and he's been a zone leader for a month. The Hudson ward and I are sad to see Elder Bowen leave. He's one of the best missionaries this mission has seen and I've learned a lot from him the last 3 months. Now i'm going to talk a little bit about Elder Bowen and basically praise him for a minute. What an awesome missionary. Since he's 25 years old he knows the real purpose of being out here. He's super bold and cares about each individual. I have learned a great deal from this Elder. I hope one day you'll be able to meet Elder Bowen. We had a great run together, and now it's my job to step it up and lead the Oakdale Zone.

I'm happy to be able to stay in areas for a sufficient amount of time. I've been able to develop a lot of friends and good relationships the past 2 transfers. This will be another growing transfer, but that's what the mission is all about. Our zone was sliced big time in transfers. We knew this transfer would be interesting with this being the 1st transfer change for President Clements, so we didn't know what to expect. Every team was changed except for one. I'm looking forward to building this zone and improving the unity of the missionaries. I have enjoyed working with missionaries and handling numbers and helping with transfers, i have grown a lot these last couple of months. I'm coming up with goals for this transfer that will help me improve.

This last week was tough, due to the fact we've lost most of our investigators. We don't have a lot going on right now, although the two transfers have been fruitful with two baptisms. The best surprise came to church. A potential investigator! His name is Eli, and a great big tall black guy we met tracting. People tell us they'll commit to come to church all of the time, but they usually go back on their word and don't ever show up. So we didn't think anything of it when he said he'd try to come to church, but he made it! Our ward is super friendly and a missionary minded ward. Tons of people introduced themselves and welcomed Eli. I love 5th Sunday's because everything revolves on missionary work. Two weeks ago we brainstormed ideas with bishop on what to address on our wards combined third hour meeting, and our efforts paid off i think.

Something else that happened last week-- we had a lesson with a drunk woman on her porch (that was interesting)! She's commited to read but was she really all there? Time will only tell. We also did some service for a non member at his farm. There is nothing better than rolling up your sleves and picking beans! The farms are beautiful out here and it reminded me a lot of home. The roads are tiny just like Shelley Idaho roads.

The Monical family just had a recent complication (last week) with their family. Their family has been dealing with an abusive father for some time, and now they'll be going through a lengthy court case and a ugly divorce ( they have 7 children and their son just returned from his missionn). I did not see this coming, because the father and whole family were happy sitting in the church 2 weeks ago. The father was actually a ward missionary that worked with us, and there was always a weird spirit around him and i now know why. Our ward has done a terrific job rallying around the Monical family- for that's part of the covenant that we made when we're baptized that we must bear each others burdens. Elder Bowen had the great idea to cook for the Monicals. So instead of them cooking for us, we cooked for them (scary i know two missionaries in the kitchen). They were humbled and grateful for the service and love that we showed. It makes me so warm inside when i do simple kind acts of love. I know the Savior would have done the same thing.

Well family with a new baby, i love you all! I can't wait to hear the updates with baby Julia. Continue to pray for me as i pray for all of you. My scripture of the week would have to be D&C 50: 23-25. It talks bout obtaining the light of God to chase away darkness from us.

Elder Browning