Monday, November 23, 2009

One last adventure...

A few weeks ago Brent had the chance to go explore some caves with Elder Watterson and a couple priests, Kevin Schmidt and Dan Ellis, from the Duncan Ward. He said the caves were "tight," and that it was nice to get out and go on a rare outdoor adventure while in Canada. Here are few pics from the caves...

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Final weeks in Duncan

Brent received news this week that he would be leaving Duncan a little earlier than his release date of November 19th. He said his Mission President has asked him to come spend the last week of his mission with him, to work along side him and do some planning for the future of the Vancouver Mission; or something along those lines. He was a little vague in his email, but it was clear that while he was excited to work along side President Nelson, he is really going to miss the Duncan area, and especially the people.
Here are his last emails from Duncan...

"So it is now November exciting huh? :) Let's see, the confirmation went so good yesterday. The ward really loved it! It's always good to hear the ward get up and bear testimony of a couple missionaries who are sitting in the congregation. Haha! Even though a testimony is of the Savior or the Gospel, but its still good! I can't tell you how much I will miss the Duncan Ward. I do love the people here! It has been good to see people grow in the Gospel. The Bekke family is so solid! Calvin is doing so good! He is now the secretary for the sunday school, and Natasha should soon have a calling! We picked up another baptism date this week. He is a 40 year old guy named Stewart, cool man for sure! But that will be December 13th, so I will be gone, but it's good to see! Other than that things are good time is winding down and I will keep workin hard!"

"I am not sure I could explain my thoughts right now! I am not even sure what my thoughts are! I am so excited to see you all soon! It seems unreal! But yes this is my last full week in Canada! This last week was so good! And it ended with a good zone conference. It's my last one and I was able to bear my testimony with another couple missionaries going home! But the best part was that Elder Ringwood of the Seventy was presiding! It was good! I will use some of what he had to say in my homecoming talk, so I wont spoil it! But things in Duncan are good! Sunday was hard, I cant lie. It is a weird feeling, and I love the people here! I know I will miss being part of such a great cause, but I am excited for what comes next! I can't explain how excited I am to see you all! I always say it, but I am one lucky kid though! I have amazing family, and one amazing girl back home! How can I not be excited to see you all! But that is coming, I guess for my last email i just want you all to know how much I love the gospel! I know it's "good news" that everyone needs to hear! This last full week here in Duncan should be good! Sorry this is so short! I will be seeing you soon, then we can talk all we want. :) I love you all, and Hey the Church is true!"

Willy's October

Brent hasn't sent any pics home lately, so I thought I would add a few of the emails he's sent over the last few weeks. This should give you an idea of what he's been up to, as he comes down to the end of his Mission in Vancouver. Here ya go...

"Well I guess it's Monday already. It's been a good week! The work has been good, and we will be having a baptism on October 23rd with a girl named Natasha. She is a friend of a member we started teaching a while ago, and its cool things are happening! The bishop is a very good guy, and we are trying to help him as much as we can. Every time we work for him, I just get excited about coming home and helping Dad out, bishops are busy busy guys! Oh and Bishop Bowler feels Dad needs to get a chevy truck. When we were cutting wood with him, he kept telling me I need a chevy truck to be truly happy. :)"

"...The mission is going very good. I loved conference, maybe one of the best conferences I have ever watched! It was so good to hear the talks, and the people we are teaching loved it too! After conference Erwin, a guy we are teaching, asked me to come outside the church with him, and he just started asking what it all intitles to be baptised. So I let him know, and now he has committed to be baptised before I leave! I am so pumped, and he is a guy who goes down to Arizona with his wife a lot so he already asked if he can stop by and see my family and all the people back home. He would love to meet Candice, and he always ask about this girl waiting for me back home! So oh yeah baby! But yes then our other investigator Maggie, the 50 year old, pretty much is the same thing, it's crazy! She leaned over as President Monson was speaking and said she really likes that man. Then we told her, "Maggie, that is the prophet." She just smiled, and she has committed to baptism as well. Her date isn't set yet though, but Duncan is a good place to be..."

"...Let's see I guess I better update you on the mission. Things are good, we will be having Natasha's baptism this Friday, and Bishop will be doing the baptism so we are pretty excited. It has worked out pretty good, and we found if you get Bishop involved he gets more excited, and then takes more of an interest in these people. Not to mention, activity in the church is a whole lot higher, and that is why the Canada, Vancouver mission is moving up! We aren't the highest baptising, but as far as retention goes we are about 80% so that is dang good! President Nelson calls every Friday and we talk about the island zone, then we talk about how we compare to other missions! I realize I work better if it's competative. I know we are all fighting for the same team, but I love comparing where zones are at! Sorry, I know this probably means nothing to you guys, haha its just random facts to see where we are!"

"What is up everyone? Well another week past, and things are good! Natasha's baptism was very good! We didn't get to confirm her because of stake conference, but that will take place this next Sunday! Nothing too crazy this week! We did have stake conference for the Nanaimo Stake this week! Elder James C. Perry of the Seventy came and it was very good! It definitely was a meeting that strengthend my testimony, then Sunday morning he met with just a couple of us missionaries. He talked a lot about post mission stuff, and I guess it made me think a lot! But it was good!
Something I have been learning a lot lately, and it goes along with Boyd K. Packer's qoute,"The study of doctrine will change behavior, quicker than the sutdy of behavior will change behavior." So really, too much we foucs on application we always talk about you have to do this or have to do that, when really we should be discussing the doctrine and the principle behind the doctrine. Then after people understand the doctine the application will come! Just something to think about. :)"

Monday, November 2, 2009

17 Days and counting...

Now that November is here, the countdown can "officially" begin, although I'm sure for some (i.e. Mom & Candice) the countdown was on since the day Brent left. Brent emailed us this morning and gave us the official details, so here you go...

November 19, 2009

Flight Departs from Vancouver: 7:00 AM
Arrives in Salt Lake City: 10:10 AM
His ETA into Hooper: ?????? (Noonish) :)

He will speak Sunday, November 22, 2009, at 11:00 AM
Location: (Hooper Stake Center)
Homestead Ward
5375 S. 5900 W.
Hooper, UT

Ready or Not...He's coming home!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Exchanges in Victoria, BC

Brent had a chance to go on exchanges with one of his former companions, Elder Brown, who he served with in Prince Rupert. They spent a couple days in downtown Victoria, and snapped a few cool photos. Not sure if they were out tracting or touring, but judging by the photos the only thing they could get close to were a flock of geese! :) Once again no exciting stories to go along with the pics, but enjoy some awesome photos of downtown Victoria...
And here is another one from the collection of Willy's "awesome" sunsets from somewhere in BC...

Willy & Elder Dallin H. Oaks

Back in August, Brent and a few other missionaries were blessed with the opportunity to spend a few hours with Elder Oaks. I'm sure Brent kept his fingers cross this time, hoping it would work out, given that a few months ago he was left "patiently" waiting on another visiting General Authority, who, due to bad weather, was not able to attend. This time it all worked out, and he was able to have an awesome experience listening to the counsel of an Apostle. This is how he described this experience...

"Let's has been a different week, pretty crazy, but just tougher on the Duncan area. We didn't get to do too much work in our area this week, but we still taught some good lessons. We had Zone Leader Council in Richomond on Monday and Tuesday, and then we held a Zone Meeting with the whole island on friday. It went very good, but ok, enough of the nonsense let's get to the big business! Guess who got to rub shoulders with Elder Dallin H. Oaks, of the Qourum of the Twelve...well just Elder Wilson. Haha :) No, it was a very cool experience! He came to Canada to hold a huge meeting with all of the Bishops, then on Sunday he did a Stake Conference in Victoria, and we didn't get to see that; it's a different stake. But there was a meeting from 12 to 1 for the Elders in Victoria only, and Elder Watterson and I got invited! So it was 10 missionaries and Elder Oaks, how sweet is that! It was a little intimidating cause every time he asked questions, it's like he already knew the answer, but he would look at me and Watterson and be like this seems like a very good question for some Zone Leaders. But he is hilarious! He gave some honest advice, and let us ask some questions! It was a cool experience, one for the books for sure!"

Mission Life with Willy & Watterson

Here are a few pics Brent sent home, along with a short email to go along with them...

"So just wanted to send a few pictures, one of Watterson and me on the ferry to the mainland! The other one pretty much explains missioanry work, the motto being "ZERO FUN SIR!" :) The last one is of the biggest studs I know out here, Elder Watterson, Elder Brown, and Elder Lemon. Actually that picture was taken on Candice's birthday. To celebrate her birthday we got some dinner! Hope that was ok for us to celebrate your birthday candice? Ok, love you all, and hope everything is going wonderful!"

Poor guys! Looks hard, doesn't it!??? :) I guess almost 2 years on a mission isn't long enough to teach someone how to make his bed...