Tuesday, February 11, 2014


Happy Valentine's Day!

It has been a pretty good week. One thing I forgot to mention last week is that the missionaries in our ward are doing a musical number in church next week with me playing the violin. It has been fun to play at the practices. I have missed being able to play these past months. We have had more snow, which has made things interesting. The main streets of our area get plowed, but all the side streets (where people actually live) get left full of slush, which makes biking difficult and slippery. As a result, we've had to do a lot of tramping through slush while walking our bikes. We had some good lessons this week and invited a lot of people to be baptized and work towards a baptismal date. We have seen some progress in people as a result. B. is still very enthusiastic about the church and came to sacrament meeting yesterday. Because of the snow though, someone hit a powerline and the church lost power shortly before the meeting. We had an abbreviated sacrament meeting with the emergency lights. It went well enough and I think B. had a good experience. Someone told him about the singles ward and he went there later in the afternoon to see what it is like. We will have to talk to him and see which he prefers. I'll be sad if we have to pass him off to the other missionaries, but it's his decision. We also had a good meeting with M. this week, though he couldn't come to church because of work. He plans to read a lot of the Book of Mormon this week before our next appointment, though, and I really think he will. We also had a good lesson with B., who is making some slow progress.
One fun thing we are doing as a ward missionary unit is making a missionary work "commercial" for the ward. The part that we filmed yesterday was a "how not to do it" of getting a member to a lesson. In the video, Elder Cole and I "kidnap" the ward mission leader (We actually shoved him in the trunk of a car) and take him to a lesson bound and gagged. It was pretty funny and I'll have to find some way to show you guys when it's done.
I'm glad you guys had fun at Disneyland and that things are going well. It's a bummer that Cam didn't get that job. It sounds like ward conference was good.
Transfers is next Thursday the 20th, so preparation day is on Wednesday the 19th. We will find out then who goes and stays.
I love you guys and hope things keep going well.
Have a blessed day,
Elder Ethan Schow

The Great Thaw!

February 3, 2014
We have finally had a couple of warmer days, which has made biking much easier. We'll see what happens this next week, but with those couple of days, the Lord accomplished some great things through us. Earlier this week we started teaching a single mom named V. and her six kids. They are a super nice family and are willing to learn, but V. has some concerns with some doctrinal points of the Church. We are hoping we can help resolve her concerns; we don't want to lose them. If you could pray for them, that would be great.
I got the package on February 1st (It was a nice half-birthday present :) ) It was great and I love the stuff that was in it, especially the minion Twinkies :) In the words of Gru, the whole thing was "como un burro." Thanks a lot! :)
On Saturday evening, we visited a guy named M. that Elder Loosli and I found months ago. Elder Cole and I re-found him a couple months later, but we haven't really been able to meet with him much. Anyway, we visited him Saturday night and invited him to church and he came! He even stood up and bore his testimony of Jesus's love in Sacrament meeting. He also said he didn't feel like there was a true church on the Earth, much to the surprise of the Stake Presidency member on the stand, but you've got to cut him some slack-- we haven't taught him that much yet :) He stayed after church with us to watch an 8 year old baptism and he plans to come to church again next week and bring his girlfriend, too. After church, we went and contacted a media referral from church headquarters. The guy, B., really loves the organization of the Church and is anxious to be baptized ASAP. We just have to help him gain a testimony. He is so golden that it seems to good to be true, so we will have to be careful just in case. Even so, there ARE golden people out there and he could be one of them. We also contacted another media referral on Sunday who is anxious to learn and willing to consider baptism. In all, we were led to 8 new investigators this week, which is a record for our area.
We are slowly working with the people we had before. We are starting to get a huge teaching pool. The trick now is going to be to get them all to church and help them progress!
I hope things are going well there and that everyone is okay!
Have a blessed week,
Elder Schow

The Apocalypse and other sundry items

January 27, 2014
Dear everyone,
It has been a cold week indeed (single digits and below). That fact, combined with the six or seven inches of snow we received in the past couple of days has rendered biking nearly impossible for a fair portion of the week. Nevertheless, we had a few good things happen. We had a good lesson with a guy named J. that we met the other week. He had a copy of the Book of Mormon that he had been perusing with some interest. We talked with him about the Plan of Salvation and helped him understand our beliefs concerning the time before this life and the time after. He only disagreed with a couple of things we talked about, and those were mostly matters of semantics. Anyway, he is going to keep reading the Book of Mormon and pray about it. At the end he went into a long spiel about how the end of the world is coming quite soon. He cited phases of the moon, political turmoil, and the fact that this was one of the coldest weeks in Columbus on record. It was interesting.
We were able to have dinner with J. and his wife E. at the home of a nice couple in our ward. It went pretty well, and I hope that having friends in the ward will help J. and E. get to church. Incidentally, they didn't come yesterday, but that was mostly because of the weather. The blizzard-like conditions resulted in all meetings but sacrament meeting being cancelled in our ward. Only 40 or 50 people ended up coming total. It was a good meeting though.
It sounds like your stake conference was good. That is always nice. I hope Watson's foot is feeling better and that things are settling down in the ward following the split. That is too bad about Joe Green.
I have had the chance to read a lot of conference talks recently, and I am definitely a fan of Neil A. Maxwell now. We have heard from several people about the new mission president, but we don't know a whole lot about him. I guess we will learn. There are rumors that our mission will have ipads by the end of the year, but who knows? I can't think of anything specific I need in the package. You guys seem to know good things to send though :)
Here's to a warmer and drier and more productive week!
Have a blessed day,
Elder Ethan Schow