Monday, June 24, 2013

"Well, I certainly will miss Omagh terribly. Especially Tom...and all the other members. And Gertie..."

I'm going to Scotland! 
I'll be serving in Dundee in the Liff district leader?!
Almost died when President Brown told me that. I don't feel ready. But oh well, we'll see how it goes. 
I'll be going to Edinburgh on Wednesday for training on how to be a district leader. My new companion will be Elder Meyer, from Australia. 
So I'll be the least experienced elder in the district, attempting to train them and help them improve their work...very nervous! Advice?
Anyway, this week was grand so it was. (I'm gonna miss N. Ireland!) 
Last Monday after a bit of missionary work we drove to Derry and stayed the night again, then drove to Belfast for a zone meeting. 
Then we exchanged--I went with Elder Kinnard--then drove back to Derry then back to Omagh. 
We have a "Sat Nav" (GPS) in our car, and we decided to take a scenic route home from Derry...only added a few minutes to our travel time, and it was super beautiful like. 
Had a decent day after that of just tracting and stuff.
Wednesday the same, except we saw Alan and Nigel and went to the Lee's. It was Elder Gomez's first time there, and when he told his love/conversion story, Sister Lee started making gagging noises and stuff. It was hilarious, because that's how I feel every time he tells it. It's so sappy. 
Couldn't tell if she was being sarcastic or for real, but she would groan whenever he would say a ridiculously cheesy line about his girlfriend/fiance. 
Sister Lee: "Why don't you carry a picture of her around with you to show people?" Elder Gomez: "I don't need a picture because she is always in my heart." "Uuuggghh please stop it!!!" hahaha I was dying. 
He says he doesn't care when people make fun of him for it, because he knows she's the one for him and that's all he cares about. But nonetheless, I will miss my crazy Spaniard companion.
This week I wanted to try to contact a bunch of former investigators, who had been taught (the missionary lessons) between 1-6 years ago and we still have their records. 
I had a good feeling about it, particularly one lady who seemed promising and I thought for sure we would find her and she would be prepared from the foundations of the world to receive the gospel...but nope. She moved. Dunno where to. Same with most of the others...either moved away or not interested anymore. Oh well.
We went to Enniskillen as well to visit the members out there with Tom. The G8 craziness had all cleared up unfortunately. Apparently they had 2,000 cops from all over the UK supervising it.
Our friend Lisa, the super quiet, innocent, sincere 18 year old girl who has mild special needs we think, texted us to say she can't continue meeting with us. We think it might have been the parents forcing her to. But oh well. Elder Gomez was devastated; he was under the impression that she will not receive celestial glory now. I told him that wasn't true, but he insisted that it was doctrine that if someone rejects our message they can't achieve exaltation. Rubbish. 
I told him that, but he insisted and so I just let him think that. I couldn't be bothered arguing.
Saturday was interesting. There was a pipe band competition, so we saw men walking around all day in kilts all over town, walking to the competition. I'll probably see a lot more of that in a few days. 
Also we (I) decided to go apologize to Sandra for being negative about her church last time we saw her...she said she wasn't offended but she was touched to see that we cared. Boom, seed planted.
Brian Johnston, the first investigator I taught, has been avoiding us lately, saying he's busy this week and to save our visit for later. But we were determined to see him one more time: to teach the law of chastity. 
The whole time I've been here, he has a photo of a naked woman on his wall that we have to turn our backs to. It doesn't bother us, because once you know it's there you can avoid it. But we decided to tell him that pornography is bad. 
He understood the whole law of chastity, even pornography, but he didn't consider it to be breaking the law because it was a rare collectors item. (Apparently it's a calendar from Pirelli tires, and only two people in N. Ireland have them...) 
We gave him a picture of Jesus, which he loved, and we asked if he would replace the bad picture with a picture of the Savior. He kinda laughed...told us he would surely hang up the Jesus picture but he kept giving excuses, like how the other picture looked better on the wall, that the Jesus picture would be too small of a frame for that particular wall...etc...but he said maybe he will. So we'll see. 
Well, I won't see, because I'm leaving, but hopefully elders in the future will help him to repent even if he doesn't join the church.
Well, I certainly will miss Omagh terribly. Especially Tom...and all the other members. And Gertie...and some of our other people. 
We met a really sweet less-active member yesterday, who has no intention of returning to activity anytime soon, but is living the commandments and reading her scriptures from time to time...and her 21 year old daughter seems quite interested in coming to church and learning what we believe. They are super nice, and I am sad that I just barely met them before leaving.
That's it for this week. I am very excited. And nervous. And a bit sad. Elder Holm told me that I'll cry when I leave my first area...not sure about that, but maybe when I get on the ferry to Scotland it will hit me. D'awww.
I love you all!
All the best.
Elder Burt

Letterkenny district: Elders Dustin, Kinnard, Burt, Gomez-Castillo, Mills, Eastham. Sisters Ryan, Cardon, Moore.
Another Belfast mural.
March Against the G8!
Flippin beautiful scenic route from Derry to Omagh. (two photos)

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