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


Strong Week

May 28, 2012

Hey Family,

What a great week it's been in Plymouth Minnesota! I'm grateful for the good experiences we've been having. The week was wet and stormy! No wonder it's so green here! I can't believe the rain we've been getting. It literally rains all night long. There was one point in the week where it rained for 48 hours straight. But it was a strong week with our numbers for we had a good balance of finding and teaching this last week. We are pleased with our efforts.

The lesson at the mission home went ok. No baptismal date with them yet. We went into the lesson really prepared and confident that it would be a spiritual experience. The stage was set and the pressure was on. This was my first time teaching with President Clements’ family in his home! President said we did a great job teaching. The problem is the lack of desire that Jen and Doug have. President gave us some good inspiration though on what we needed to do. He called us later that night and felt impressed for us to teach them a certain commandment. The spirit bore witness to my heart that this was what was holding them back. We looked at our teaching record and found that they hadn't been taught this commandment! President is truly inspired and i know he has the keys for missionary work in the Minnesota area. It was really a neat experience to bond with President Clements. I have really enjoyed being close to the mission home. I've developed a greater relationship with President Clements being in the cities again. That's one of the nice perks, you run into and communicate more with President Clements here!

 The reason this week was so successful is hard work of course! We found another family! We tracted them out and taught them last Saturday. This is great news because we're trying to build our teaching pool in Weaver Lake. We'll continue to build our teaching in the Plymouth and Weaver Lake wards.

Our date sets are doing great! Kaylee and Jeff will be baptized this Saturday at 2:00. We went over the baptismal interview questions and to our surprise they were able to answer most of them. I guess we did something right while teaching them =) Kids are usually the most difficult to teach. The ward is super pumped. It has been a joy to bring members to their home, for that is the best way for people to get in the missionary spirit is to join and experience it for themselves. This has been one of the best experiences: working with members to bring souls to Christ. We'll be breaking the dry spell that hit the ward. I'm grateful too because the Plymouth ward is probably the most elite all around. Eden Prairie and Plymouth are very good all around in fellowshipping strong families.The ground is ready to be harvested here.

 Ann is doing well and she's still on track for the 16th for her baptism. We taught her the word of wisdom. She had a worried face when we talked, but courage was among her countenance. She accepted to live the word of wisdom. The kids were all for it, they were happy to follow God's health code. Ann came to church and sat with the Lee family and really connected with them.  Ann was able to finally drop off her daughter in nursery since she turned 18 months, and this allowed Ann to really participate in class and to have a spiritual experience. We learned about the spirit world this week and she loved it. Ann text us after church and told us how much she enjoyed church! It is so important to continue to concrete their fellowship and testimony. Ann also gave us a referral for one of her friends! She's been sharing the gospel with her friends.

Elder White and I received a phone call on Friday. It was a member of the bishopric asking us to give a talk in sacrament meeting because a member dropped out last second. We only had to talk for 8 minutes so it wasn't too bad. We both were assigned to talk on the plan of salvation, a topic i'm very familiar with +)

This week we'll be having leadership training. I just know President Clements will be cracking down on us. He's a very talented man and knows how to solve problems. I'm excited for the training, this will take place tomorrow 8-3.

Exciting news, Elder White and I with a member will be attending a Twins game today. It’s the only monday game during day time hours of the season, and that’s a bit of a tender mercy. If it wasn’t for the day time hour we wouldn't be able to attend. I figured this might be my only opportunity to go to a baseball game, let alone a Twins game that's in Minnesota! We bought 45 dollar tickets hoping to have a descent experience.- as much as a baseball game will offer =) It's no NBA basketball game, but it will be my first time going to a professional baseball game. I'm looking forward to it. A member is driving us and attending with us. I'll send pictures next week.

A special shout out to Amber and JT for I wish them the best this week and i'm happy for both of them! They are perfect for each other.

Have a great week!

Elder B Browning


Last Transfer Begins

May 21, 2012

Hey Family,

 I can't believe I've made it to this email -this will start off my last transfer. I have a great up-date. I'll be staying in Plymouth to finish my mission. Elder White will also be staying and helping me finish strong! Both Elder White and I were hoping we would stay together and see these 4 dates through. I get emotional thinking about how this is my final transfer. I have to finish strong and make sure our 4 baptismal dates go though in June.

 This week was a blast, full of highlights, and it was just a big improvement overall from last week. We were able to find 2 new investigators and teach 10 investigator lessons. We're really being blessed right now and we are really enjoying the work right now. We've had beautiful weather to tract in and it should be another hot week here.

We ended up pushing back Katie and Jeff's baptism to June 2nd. They are great kids. Katie is starting to get involved with the young women and Jeff loves his age group and plays with other kids his age in the ward.

Our other two baptismal dates are coming along great! Ann and Jarom came to church and are really starting to feel comfortable at church. Jarom is 10 years old, but has the wits of a 20 year old! I love this kid. He's super smart and funny, super social and fun to be around. We brought them to cub scouts this last Wednesday and Jarom loved it! He's part of the pack. His younger brother Jason had a good time at scouts. (Jason will be 8 in august.) The ward is doing a good job of fellowshipping and reaching out. We continue to introduce members to Ann's family. This family is such a blessing. They really have been prepared! Ann wants the best for her children. She has great morals and standards for her kids and has taught them well. Members of the ward have commented multiple times how well behaved her kids are.

My district meeting training went well with President! I must say i was a bit nervous to present, but i think it went well. I had a couple comments on how others benefited from it. President Clements is a wonderful mission president. I look up to him so much. So at the end of each district meeting we get to role-play with one another and practice our teaching skills. Well i had Elder White and I role-play with President! Haha, that was quite the experience. President Clements received some revelation for our investigator as President Clements pretended to be our investigator and we were the missionaries. This particular investigator has struggled to keep commitments. We came to the conclusion to have her come to the mission home and be taught! Yep that's right our investigator committed to come to the mission home to be taught with our president's family. And the appointment is today and 7:30! Keep us in your prayers. Elder White and I will be leading out in a discussion for our investigator in the mission Presidents home. President Clements and his wife will be there, along with their 18 year old daughter who lives with them. The stage is set big! We'll be inviting them to be baptized. Elder White and I worked pretty hard today during companion study to come up with a lesson plan. We both have left it in the Lords hand with our efforts to make a powerful lesson. We'll be teaching out of the scriptures. The scriptures have the most powerful conviction out there, and are far more eloquent than 2 young missionaries.

Well family i love you all, keep up the good work in Shelley. I'd like to invite you guys to invite a nonmember family to our home for dinner. That's the simplest way to be a missionary-- let the spirit of our home testify. I'd like to commit you to do that this next month! I'll be following up.

Love you all!

Elder B Browning


Hard Rocky Week

May 14, 2012 

Hey Family,   

What a special treat it was talking with everyone. I'm so grateful that my family is safe and healthy, what a blessing that is. Everyone looked great. Not too many changes in looks, other than Juju. =)    

This week was a big downer. I forgot to tell you i was sick for 3 days, Tuesday-Thursday. I was able to give a training for district meeting half sick, and go on a exchange with Elder Holmes in Minneapolis. But when i woke up Wednesday morning I was feeling terrible. I had a high fever with congestion, coughing and the chills and I wasn't able to work at all Wednesday. I lay sick on my bed the whole entire day, it was a super long day not doing anything. This was my first time being sick on the mission. Thursday was a bit of an improvement, my fever went away and my headache was manageable. I was able to work in the afternoon Thursday and in the evening. I've noticed my allergies have kicked in, and i remember this was the exact time last year when my nose clogged up. Whatever plant blooms at this time of the year, it gives me a hard time breathing. Elder White is letting me try some of his clairiten tablets. The weather has been beautiful though, too bad i can't smell the new flowers with my nose. =P .  

Anti Mormon material came at us hard while i was on the exchange with Elder Holmes in Minneapolis. Their investigator had a lot of material prepared for us. He had us watch a 6 minute clip of an Eagle Rock Pastor on his lecture. It was about how Mormons are not Christians. It was really bad. This pastor interviewed a bishop from the Oakdale ward and made him look like a fool over this clip. After the anti, and going through the questions, we asked him how he felt. We asked him if he felt peace, and if it helped him come closer to Christ. He said no. We were able to wrap it back to praying to God and receiving our own spiritual witness. He had so much crap about Joseph Smith i wanted to puke right then and there. We told him, "You and I haven't met Joseph Smith personally, so we can go off mans carnal mind and thoughts, or ask God."  He agreed to investigate without the anti material and decided to read and ponder about our message and ask God. This experience strengthened my testimony of the restoration.    

Our numbers suffered because of my sickness,with the help of appointments dropping and people being flaky. We did horrible this week. Sadly zero investigators showed up. I'm not sure what happened there, but it was a very sad experience sitting alone at church with no investigators. We are worried about them, especially our date sets. Hopefully I'll have better news about them next week. We had a couple of investigators drop us for whatever reason. However, we did pick up 3 new investigators.    

Well family i love you and wish me luck this week giving the training with President Clements present! This will be my first district meeting with my mission president attending.   

Well i love you all and have a great week!   

Elder B Browning


Boom to the past

May 6, 2012

Hey Family,

 It's been a boom to the past this last week. The high light would have to be Stake Conference. It was a wonderful event. First, Ann came to both sessions of Conference! She really enjoyed both sessions. Ann is taking in the gospel and is really enjoying the peace that's coming with it. A key factor has been her fellowship family, the Hanburg family. One of the best fellowship members i have witnessed on the mission.

It was great reconnecting with members from the Eden Prairie ward. I was able to talk to a good amount of them. Boy no wonder heaven will be amazing- we'll all be there together in the gospel. This has been a great blessing, brothers and sisters in the gospel with a common faith.  I didn't realize how important that principle is.  I have learned this lesson on the mission. I also learned how fast time goes, and how fast things can change in such a short time.

I had my first taste of Chicken feet! It was a great experience. The whole entire foot simmers in this green mushy seaweed stuff. And yes it tastes like chicken =)

Thunder and lighting has taking its toll here! The crazy Minnesota spring weather has come at full force. Just like Tanner described in his last email, i was also awakened by a crash and boom that shook our entire house. When it rains it rains! We took a trip down town Minneapolis for a district leader conference and the roads were slightly flooded! It was kind of crazy. The west never has to put up with this. We have great weather now, but it's been unpredictable so we'll see what happens.

We've been working with the area book lately. We've been stopping by old addresses and hoping that someone in the area book is ready to receive the gospel again. I like taking this approach when i first come into area. You have far better chance increasing your teaching pool quickly in a short amount of time vs knocking doors all day. We had a really good experience yesterday. We met a lady who was a great Christian, and we were able to teach her for the first time on her porch. We found her after stopping on a former investigator, then doing 10x10 (knocking 10 doors in each direction). She told us that we had the spirit of Christ, and that Christ was trying to tell her something about our visit. At first she was very hesitant to talk to us and listen to our message, but we were able to have a good visit. She told us we could come back again and would enjoy learning more- miracle yo.

Well family i'll be able to do the Skype thing. We're going to be at one of our favorite members- Cullimores- for dinner and skyping. Since you guys don't get home from church until 5 my time, we'll try and go for 6pm central time. Looking forward to it! Maybe you can record something from Tanner!

Love you all so much,
Elder B Browning