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Archive for February, 2010

Christophers Baptism

Christopher’s baptism was wonderful. We had a good attendance and members brought their support and enthusiasm to comfort Christopher. Our Bishop was the one Christopher wanted to baptise him and it was a really special moment. Especially when Bishop Adam announced during his remarks that it was the first time he had baptised. The ward primary president sister Petchey shared with Christopher her love for him and a heartfelt testimony. He has been fellowshipped into the ward so well. On Sunday it was such a satisfactory emotion, to see Christopher running around playing games with primary kids, Members chatting away with Gail, and our other investigators torn from us by the ward. That is definitely one of the best feelings associated with missionary work… when the members completely take over as soon as they see investigators at church. I sat in sacrament just looking around at the congregation and as I assisted in Christopher’s confirmation, I felt a great sense of the Saviours love for all these faithful saints. So that about does it! Our wards amazing! Our week has been wonderful though. I had a couple of exchanges with our Zone Leaders and also our District Leader. I absolutely love exchanges; missionaries come in all different shapes and sizes! They’re all so different and all so faithful. Elder MacDougall and I are doing fabulously (if you didn’t guess), and I’m grateful for the things I learn from him. He’s the kind of typical Scotsman that keeps you laughing night and day. He puts a lot of effort toward being a greater missionary and I’m grateful for his efforts. Our area is continuing to flourish. It was interesting to see the power of testimony this week. I distinctly a certain man we contacted on the streets in Moss Side who wasn’t interested. He walked away from us and as he did we bore testimony to him. He turned around and looked at us and then said ‘what did you say?’ I could sense the spirit working within him. I wanted to share this with you because I always feel the spirit greatest when testimonies are bore. Most of the time, people don’t remember what you say. If it was a spiritual discussion, they’ll remember how they felt and that is how conversion takes place. It always reminds me of what Nephi says when the ‘spirit will carry the message to the hearts of the children of men.’ Bear your testimonies frequently… I do it every day! Your testimony has such a powerful effect to others. It hits them deep and they cannot deny what you testify of. As you do this you WILL receive revelation as well as blessings. I can’t tell you how much doctrine I have come to understand as people have bore their testimonies. It’s incredible. As I teach and bear mine I come to understand things profoundly. I hope you’re all doing well! I love you all Elder Kersey

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Thank you for all the wonderful emails of encouragement and love. I love you all! This past week has just been amazing. Elder MacDougall and I have worked hard and we’ve seen the blessings involved as a result. We found and committed another investigator to baptism end of this month as well as a middle-aged man who was a true seeker for greater happiness.

During the week we managed to have a chat/lesson with Gordon (Christopher’s father) we taught him all about baptism and the importance of it. He understood quite clearly about what our church is and who we represent. He gave it the full okay for us to go ahead and baptise Chris next weekend! He is also now (somewhat) investigating the church and is excited to come to Chris’s baptism. Gail is also doing well. She is a strong member already and continues to impress us by her faith.

Onto the miracles of this week! On Saturday we were privileged to teach a young women of 21 in Leyland. I felt the spirit strongly when I street contacted her a week ago. She is a religious moral individual who has a strong faith and trust in Christ. She understood the apostasy and the need for a restoration perfectly. The fellowshipper we had with us (a returned missionary serving in Ireland last year) felt impressed to share an example from a friend of his who does translation work. He briefly explained how meanings are lost through translations (mum and dad I’m SURE your aware of this…) and the need for a second testimony that is pure. The nail was truly hit on the head. Danielle showed a great deal of interest in reading it. She told us as we wrapped up the lesson that she would spend the rest of the day reading from it! (It was 10 in the morning when we taught her! As well as that, when I extended her an invitation to be baptised by priesthood authority, she responded with a solid, ‘absolutely.’ She accepted to prepare to being baptised on the 6th of March. She is also excited to come to church.

On Sunday we felt impressed to see our recent convert Mary who was unable to come to church. The fellowshippers who were asked to accompany with us were unable to come and as we tried to explain this to Mary she exclaimed to us on the phone, “don’t worry! My friend John can come over!” We immediately changed our plans to teach the Restoration. John is a middle-aged man and listened intently. When we asked him to teach back the first vision to us he responded by saying, “I’ve noticed many contradictions within my religion, but what your saying makes sense.” Another miracle! I just honestly can’t express in words my gratitude for the blessings we consistently receive! John was excited to read the Book of Mormon and committed to ponder about baptism and if he’ll be ready. He struggles with alcohol abuse and is searching for that happiness. He strongly felt… this is it.

I love you all and I couldn’t be happier

I apologize for my grammar but I am in a rush… got to get to Preston for 1!

Lots of love

Elder Kersey

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It feels quite a long time since I last wrote to you all. Transfers was busy, hectic, and … well busy! Lots has happened so I need to think where to begin really…

Well I guess I can tell you about my companion. Hailing from ‘Scotland the brave,’ Elder MacDougall has joined me in South Ribble. I was excited to serve with him when we were told as he was in my MTC group. We had plenty to chat about when he first arrived but he’s also excited to be here. He was originally serving in Wrexham. It was sad to see Elder Rosenberg go home as he’s now back in Finland! It was quite odd as we were teaching Gail to hear Allan telling us that he just had a chat with Elder Rosenberg on Facebook!

Speaking of Gail, she was baptized last weekend. I wish I could send you all pictures but it was such a humbling, satisfying event. While hearing brother Wright bear his eccentric talk, I felt a strong confirmation that missionary work works! As I sat there reflecting on Gail’s conversion it struck me how special this event is. Gail was delivered to us by inspiration and look at the result. It was a very sacred moment as I stood there in the font raising my arm to the square. I’m grateful for this event in my life. To make things even better, I know there are many more of these experiences to come in the mission!

Christopher is also doing fabulously. Christopher’s baptismal date is still scheduled for the 20th. His dad, who Gail is divorced too, has given the approval. (He is quite hesitant though). Gail organized a dinner for us and Gordon (his dad) tomorrow in which we can have a brief discussion. From what we have heard he has a lot of mixed feelings towards us and feels his son is about to be ‘brainwashed.’ A comment that is frequently heard while proselyting… and also what I was just barely accused of while coming here to the library on the bus.

A drawback we are trying to work with currently is the loss of our car. South Ribble has always had a car because it is quite spread out and the bus services are … terrible. There are many rural areas and petit (there’s some French for you) villages. The Preston zone had two areas in the North combined. The Kendal and Barrow areas combined so the car was sent there instead. Because of the Bus routes, our area is now limited. The ward is helping out with church and also appointments. The even better thing is the lord has helped us tremendously. Every appointment we have set has been within our geographical limitations. Marvellous! And seriously… who needs a car when you’ve got a Scottish companion and comfy shoes?? plus more people to talk to

The Members have a great amount of excitement right now also. Since Gail’s baptism they have constantly been asking us about investigators and what they can do to help fellowship. I also didn’t realize that literally half our ward is Scottish? Including our bishop… so my companion didn’t exactly have to do a lot to fit in…

But I am excited… for this new transfer. We’ve got new investigators, people are happy, the sun is SHINING! our flat needs a clean. Everything is just super. Well I’m going to go home and cook something nice now… and try and do some cleaning… maybe

Love you all

Elder Kersey

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Interim Email

so glad your all doing well. I wasn’t able to do all the emails today as it was transfers yesterday. We came to the library today and once we got on the computer we found out it was shutting in 30 minutes. I’ll send all the emails tomorrow. Just briefly i’m doing very well. I’m now serving as a senior with Elder Macdougall from scotland he’s a joy to be around. He was actually one of the 11 missionaries going to manchester that were in my mtc group. so i think you’ve actually already got a picture of him. as they were combining to areas in the north president bullock saw that they needed the car so we lost ours! but i enjoy taking buses. the bus companies however are not very effective in south ribble so we may get bikes. Anyway i’ll speak to you all tomorrow.

love you lots

Elder ollie

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I hope your all spectacular… which I’m sure you are! Our P-day today consists of heavy flat cleaning and packing as Elder Rosenberg returns home to Finland next week. This last week (the whole transfer actually) has been very productive. We had to drop a few investigators last week as they just weren’t willing to commit to anything. The time and effort we dedicated toward teaching them was no longer effective. The Lord blessed our decisive actions with many new investigators at the end of the week.

The snows finally all melted! As a result, finding is now easier and people are no longer using that as an excuse to not see us… (a pathetic excuse right?! It was maybe half a centimetre). Church this week was very successful as multiple investigators attended. It was also very satisfying to hear Gail’s baptism announced for this weekend. She has done fantastically… what more can I say? Members have fellowshipped her perfectly and Gail is already showing as a strength to the ward. She gave up smoking, alcohol and tea on the spot and has not conceded to her cravings since. It will be my privilege to baptise her.

Allan is also doing wonderfully and his partner is also expressing interest. It’s remarkable to see the Lord preparing all these people. On top of that we will hopefully be baptizing Christopher (Gail’s son) next month. Last week actually we arrived at Gail’s for a scheduled appointment. The fellowshipper was a bit late so we tracted some doors in the neighbourhood until they arrived and Chris came with us! He loved watching us and now accepts me calling him ‘future missionary.’

We have good solid new investigators also. They are sincere, humble and prepared. ‘Jason,’ a divorced father was found in the final few moments of a cold evening, a young Nurse named Simon (pronounced like the girl lion in the lion king), and a young mother also. All been found by inspiration. Its eye-opening to see what happens when spiritual promptings are obeyed.

Love you all lots

Elder Kersey

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I hope you are all well seriously! The calamities are endless! I’m relieved that everyone is safe and content (from the earthquake). The snow is hitting Europe quite ferociously by the sound of things (but it’s nothing to Utah don’t worry). Elder Rosenberg and I try not to laugh when we see newspaper headings screaming Arctic Blast hits South Ribble! We both find this amusing as we are both accustomed to large quantities of snow. My purpose is not to describe to you the weather don’t worry. Our week has been marvelous. We were blessed to see Gail, Christopher, Allan, and Geoff at church. The new gospel principles manuals are amazing! They are perfect for investigators. Gail has a copy of her own and she loves reading it. She even looks up all the scripture references. The church has definitely taken milk before meat, approach these next two years. Prior to this substantial change, we had investigators losing interest in lessons as it was too intricate and just complicated for them. With these simple powerful lessons, they look forward to church during the week and feel motivated to participate in discussions. It’s wonderful! Gails son Christopher has shown a sudden interest and commitment to church and our visits. As a young man of 8 years old he was initially uncertain about church and his mum being baptized. He announced to us last week that he wants to be baptized! During our church meetings he felt welcomed and involved at primary, and showed great enthusiasm to return the following week! We explained to Christopher that his baptism will take place during February as we both feel to date him after Gail is baptized in two weeks following Gail’s baptism. He’s a very intelligent kid, he asks very intellectual questions and he loves the missionaries. I feel like his big brother!

As well as multiple other lessons we taught Cameron, he has quite the conversion story. While street contacting back to our car I saw a young boy outside a house and asked if his father was home. Following that we were let in and listened to an interesting conversion story. Cameron was originally Muslim but converted to Christianity after lots of dreams he had about Christ. We could tell he was a sincere and shared the restoration with him. He’s a dedicated father and willing to complete the commitments we extended. Our other investigators are doing fabulously. As we have had to drop quite a few elder Rosenberg and I are working on building our teaching pool again. The Christmas and New Year season has left us dropping the old/unwilling and finding new people so we wait the coming weeks with excitement!

I love you all

Elder Kersey

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It’s been a good, solid start to the New Year. We had Gail and also Allan come to church finally and they thoroughly enjoyed it. We are all actually quite happy the festive season is over as we will now be getting back in contact with most of our investigators. Plus the days are now somewhat getting lighter again which is good!

During church, quite a remarkable thing happened actually… During a very spiritual testimony meeting, Allan approached the stand and bore his testimony about the church! He expressed HIS knowledge that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints is the Church of God. It was a truly remarkable moment. What was comical about the situation was that Allan obviously wasn’t aware of how to close a testimony he didn’t really know when to stop but once he did and started to leave the stand with the congregation speechless, the bishopric then simultaneously said a loud ‘AMEN’ followed by the congregation. Regardless of that it was a very faith promoting experience.

We had quite a memorable experience teaching a potential this weekend. Her name was Elaine and the lesson turned from teaching the restoration to her condemning the three of us for celebrating Christmas in December… it was initially a good discussion about prophets. As she began to be a bit to contentious we decided to leave her some reading materials and leave.

It was a good start to the New Year though. Our New Years Eve celebration consisted of a bottle of Shloer and the scriptures. On New Year’s Day the entire mission was confined to the barracks, (as the entire country is recovering from the previous evening) unless we had lifts to and from teaching appointments as well as extended dinner appointments with members. As elder Rosenberg and I had only one appointment with Geoff we enjoyed a 9 hour scripture study session, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and a good meal at home.

Apart from that, not a great deal to report on. We found some good new people and taught some lovely lessons. I hope your New Years celebration was fabulous and I wish to send special congratulations to the Bradshaw’s! (If you continue how you are we can all name your family the ’12 tribes of long court drive’ … I’ll think of something more inventive next time.

I’ll spare you from my dreadful humour and leave it at that.

Love you all

Elder Kersey

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