Monday, June 30, 2014

June 30, 2014 ~ Week 49

Dear family and friends,

It has been another exciting week here in the Wilkes-Barre ward! This past week has seemed like the longest week I've had in a while. A lot happened! Let me expound my week to you day by day.

Monday: A bunch of Elders from the Scranton ward came down and we played basketball all p-day. That night we were able to see Jimmy one last time before he slipped back off to Utah. It was pretty awesome.

Tuesday: We did some service for a member in the ward. We worked on his yard for a couple hours and we saw a less active member that is almost reactivated. His name is Julius and he is such an awesome guy. It is so cool to see how quickly I am able to develop relationships with people as I teach them he gospel, and help them come closer to Christ. The love of Christ is real, and He shares it with us! Then we had dinner with the bishop, and we went with a member to give another
sick member a blessing.

Wednesday: We had interviews with President Anderson. That guy knows what he is doing. He is such a great mission president. He loves to mess with us though. It seems like he is always dropping really vague hints about upcoming transfers, and then you and all the other missionaries just start to speculate and everyone goes insane. For example, for the past 7 months, every interview I've had with him he
has asked my companion if I'm ready to train, and he always tells me that there are a lot of new elders coming in, and lots of opportunity for leadership coming up. Then when your companion keeps bringing it up over and over again it gets under your skin big time. Needless to say, transfers stress me out big time. They are next week btw and having just doubled in, I would assume we are both staying for one more, but vague hints got me thinking otherwise, so we will see. Anyways, after interviews we drove back to Wilkes-Barre, and we got a call that someone needed help moving. So we went off and helped this less active, and her investigator boyfriend (other elders) move for most of the day. It was a cool experience though because they kept asking me why I was so happy while I was helping someone move, which to them is a reason to be miserable I guess. It was awesome as I was able to teach them from my actions, and attitude about the scriptures. I shared with them some of the scriptures about happiness that I love. (Mosiah 2:412 Nephi 2:25, 2 Nephi 10:23)

Thursday: We had district meeting, and then planning, and then dinner
with a member, and that was Thursday. Not much ended up happening.

Friday: We had a lesson with Marlo, who I believe I've told you about.
This was the first time we were able to actually teach her so it was
nice. Our WML and his wife came with us and we taught her the Restoration. She has a lot of questions and she knows how to talk, so sometimes it's hard to stay on topic, but all of her questions are sincere and awesome. She has a lot of hard stuff in her life, and it's cool because she really wants to know if the church is true because she can see how it will help her through it. She is solid. We set her with a baptismal date for August, and we will see how it goes. She's been reading the Book of Mormon and taking notes and praying, and it is so awesome. Investigators that are eager to keep commitments are such a refreshment because the gospel is true and anyone who actually takes the time to search it will know it. So it's awesome!

Saturday: We went and played basketball with investigators and members up at the church... Basketball is fun. Basketball is fun because I am good at defense... Really good. But let's just say that no one usually passes me the ball. So I basically just guard people and try and get in the way of the other team as much as possible... But that is besides the point. Saturday morning we got a call from the Bishop. He messed up and forgot to get speakers for Sunday. So he asked us to
give talks. So we went home and wrote our talks, stopped by some people, and found a new online investigator from Nigeria.

Sunday: We gave our talks. It was great. It really was great. I'll send you a picture of my talk. I wrote it in my study journal, but then I ended up not using it much. So I'll send you the rough draft of my talk. But then we had some fun adventures. One thing that is happening to me that I never ever thought would happen, is I love talking to people that want to bash. It's terrible... Well it's pretty great actually. It's terrible because I put us into situations that Elder Pintor sometimes doesn't like and because we aren't supposed to bash. But it's awesome because I've learned how to bash in a non- contentious way... I love it to be honest... It's really good that I'm not serving in the south, or in a place with tons of bashers, because I have way too much fun with them. Anyways, this email has been a little longer, my mom always asks for more details... So there ya go! 

The church is true, and the work is the best thing anyone could possibly ever do! Love ya!

~Elder Jorgensen

Elder Jorgensen and Elder Pintor

{Here is the talk Elder Jorgensen referred to in his letter.  
You may need the Urim and Thummim to translate.}  :)

Monday, June 23, 2014

June 23, 2014 ~ Week 48

How's it going?  That's good. I'm doing pretty good. How has your week been?
Well that sounds super exciting!

My week has been alright, I've noticed something funny... Before I was a missionary, I almost never ever got sick. Now it seems like I get sick once a transfer. I spent most of this week trying to get over a stomach flu and a cold. It was strange because I didn't have them both at the same time, but they kept switching off. One moment I would have a cold,the next I would have the flu. It was really strange. So I went on exchange with Elder Bevans, over in Wilkes-Barre south, because he was sick as well. We drank a lot of juice... And a lot of NyQuil....In the end we all got better though! 

So due to the sickness we really didn't get much done. We did however have our last lesson with Jimmy before he headed back to Utah. I don't remember if I've told you much about him, but he moved out to Utah about a year ago and had this huge life changing experience. We started teaching him because he was back at his aunt's house, who is a member. But Jimmy is one of the most prepared people ever. I love that guy so much. He's one of those guys I'm gonna go hangout with after my mission because I can. He lives in Salt Lake and he even said he's going to get me lifelong season passes to Brighton so that'll be sweet. Honestly though I'm so excited for him to go back and tell all his friends that he wants to get baptized, and he is too. I love it. That is why, even in Utah, you need to do missionary work. 

One fun thing is this... Before my mission... Anyone ever seen me play basketball? Nope. I don't think so at all. But I play so much basketball out here. I'm not that bad actually... Besides the fact that my wrestling instincts sometimes kick in... And people don't like that too much.... Oh and I can't shoot, or dribble... I can run around real fast though! And I play good defense. So it's a party all day long. Anyways. That's my week!

The church is true! Being sick sucks! But one of my favorite scriptures is this...

23 Therefore, cheer up your hearts, and remember that ye are free to
act for yourselves--to choose the way of everlasting death or the way
of eternal life. (2 Nephi 10:23)

Be happy! It's your choice! Either choose to be happy, or choose to not be.

Love you all,
~Elder Jorgensen

Monday, June 16, 2014

June 16, 2014 ~ Week 47

Dearly Beloved, 
Today we are each here for a reason. My reason is to tell you how my week went and how awesome being a missionary is. Your reason, I do not know, but I would hope that the reason you are here is because you love me and care about my life, and because you want to be a better member missionary. 

Now I of course am not the perfect expert missionary. Far from it actually, but I do do this 24/7 and have picked up some wonderful ideas along the way. So first off, being a missionary is great. Every single day begins with determination, and every day ends with determination. In order to stay happy and healthy, you need to be going, and doing, and teaching, and learning, and preparing all day long. It is the best feeling in the world when I feel like I'm just about to reach my limits, but then I keep going... And going... And going... I have no clue how it works, but God makes it work. 

This week has been absolutely full of miracles. Almost every single night when we sat down to plan we had an empty day ahead of us, so we plan some stop by's and some finding and go to bed. Every single day this week has been chalk full of lessons, and appointments and service. It is absolutely incredible to see how when we are willing to work, God blesses us with work. One miracle in particular I would like to touch on, Saturday morning we were just preparing to leave the
apartment, and I just had the thought to call Marlo, a potential investigator that Elder Pintor had found on exchange several weeks ago. We called her, and it turns out that the next day was her birthday, and she was going through a really tough time. We invited her to church, and she was so excited. She told us how she really wants to learn about the church, and get involved, and how badly she
needs it right now for her family. She told us she had talked it over we her dad, and her fiancĂ© and that they all decided that they wanted the Gospel in their lives. So she is super prepared. At this point she still thinks we are just another church because we haven't had the chance to teach her anything yet, but I am so excited for our lesson with her on Tuesday! There was only one problem about church though...her fiancĂ© was working so she needed a ride. So we went and visited Linda, a sister in the ward, to ask if she could give Marlo a ride. Boy is it a good thing we did, because Linda straight up told us that she was debating whether or not she wanted to apostatize... Me and her had a good talk about it. It makes me sad because 100% she just is straight up rebelling. It's not dwindling in unbelief, it isn't her making excuses because she's lazy. She straight up said that she knows the church is true, she's just not sure if she wants to go anymore. That aside though, she was willing to bring Marlo to church. So Sunday morning Marlo ended up getting the stomach flu. Legit. Not an excuse. But we still got Linda there, and Linda talked with the Bishop, and everything got better, and she realized Mosiah 2:41. So that's good. 

It's amazing to see the miracles that come from heeding the promptings of the spirit. Because I had never met Marlo before. I had never met Linda before, and yet I was able to be guided to help them at a time where they really needed it the most. It was incredible! That is one of the reasons I know what I'm doing is right. This is one of the many reasons that give me an assurance that God does love me, and my brothers and sisters on this earth. The church is true. It always has been, and as long as we have a prophet leading us with priesthood keys, it always will be! So my missionary advice to you this week, is to pray to know how God could use you to bless the life another, as you do that, you will be given opportunities to serve, and to love others that otherwise would have been lost. Again, missionary work is the best. Have a great week you guys!

~Elder Jorgensen

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Happy Father's Day FB Post & Letter

Do you see this guy? This guy is the silliest, goofiest, hardest working, humble guys that has ever existed. But so much more than that, he is my dad. Through his example I have been able to see a glimpse of who my Heavenly Father is. No one could have taught me better what it means to work hard and serve others.

{Letter Elder J sent his dad on Father's Day.}

Dear Dad,

Happy Father's Day! Thank you so much for being a great dad. Times have been not always the greatest, and you have had to work very hard to support and care for your family, but it is all worth it in the end. You have always been there for me. You've taught me how to fish, how to play bomber man. You've taught me who the big wiener is, and I can't tell you how many times you've taught me how to walk up a hill.

You are such a great example to me. You've kept me safe from the terrible things going on out in the world, and you have a testimony of the gospel, of which I am so thankful. Thank you so much for taking me home teaching, and teaching me what a great priesthood holder should act like. You are amazing dad and I love you so much. Thank you for helping me get a glimpse of what our Heavenly Father is like,through your example. I want you to remember one thing...God knows all the
evil that is going on in the world.

17 Wherefore, I the Lord, knowing the calamity which should come upon the inhabitants of the earth, called upon my servant Joseph Smith, Jun., and spake unto him from heaven, and gave him commandments; (D&C 1:17)

If you follow the commandments that have been restored to the fullest of your ability, you will be kept safe from all the terrible things that are happening around you. The Gospel is restored. Use it.

With all the love in the world,
~Elder Jorgensen

Monday, June 9, 2014

June 9, 2014 ~ Week 46

Family, friends, future friends, acquaintances, colleagues, NSA, random people of the internet,

I send greetings from the city of Wilkes-Barre! The work in Wilkes-Barre is progressing! We are being blessed with so many miracles and Heavenly Father is in our work. This past week we were able to find 2 new families to teach and I am very excited for that. One we still haven't had the return appointment because it fell through and the other we taught them the restoration.  It was such a powerful lesson. I've really come to love teaching the Gospel so much. I am never sad, frustrated, anxious, or self critical when I am teaching. During that lesson there was a moment where the conversation had gotten a bit out of hand and without even taking about it I stood up in front of 9 people, holding a Book of Mormon in my hand and was able to bear testimony of it... Dan Jones style... If I had been looking in on that lesson, I would have never ever ever guessed that it was little ol' Elder Jorgensen teaching it. I scared myself so bad... It was amazing though. God is in my work and He helps me do things that I never could do myself. There are so many tender mercies in my life, from receiving revelation in a lesson, to finding that one scripture that had been evading me during studies, to finding my favorite Chapstick at the gas station. Life is amazing. God really does place us where we need to be. If He didn't, I wouldn't be here, because I am exactly where He, I, and those around me need me to be.

One incredible bit of revelation I have received recently is that God doesn't give us strength to overcome difficult trials or assignments before they are given. He qualifies the called. He give us trials to show us that we really can't make it... Right as we are about to fall, to fail, that is when he gives us the strength we need to rise up and succeed. I am so grateful for my mission. I would be lost without the lessons I am learning and I want each and every single one of you to know that the church is true, and if you think otherwise it is because you aren't keeping the commandments. Obedience brings understanding. I never want any of you to be unhappy. And moreover, I would desire that ye should consider on the blessed and happy state of those that keep the commandments of God. 

"For behold, they are blessed in all things, both temporal and spiritual; and if they hold out faithful to the end they are received into heaven, that thereby they may dwell with God in a state of never-ending happiness. O remember, remember that these things are true; for the Lord God hath spoken it." (Mosiah 2:41)

As for the funny subject line, we were at a members house, and there was a fly buzzing around, and I grabbed a law of Chastity pamphlet out of my bag, and killed it with Chastity. Keep fighting the good fight!  Love you!

~Elder Jorgensen

"Inner courage also includes doing the right thing even though we may be afraid, defending our beliefs at the risk of being ridiculed, and maintaining those beliefs even when threatened with a loss of friends or of social status. He who stands steadfastly for that which is right must risk becoming at times disapproved and unpopular."
-Thomas S. Monson (Prophet, Seer, Revelator)

Monday, June 2, 2014

June 2, 2014 ~ Week 45

Hey everyone! 

This has been a crazy week for sure! So Tuesday morning, Elder Goates and I got up, headed over to Steve's house, said bye, then Brother Yoder drove us down to transfers. While at transfer meeting, I was able to find that I was doubling into Wilkes-Barre North...which was a sisters area... So we went and found the sisters that were there before, got the keys and our address, and printed off directions to our new home. So I am the designated driver, so I then, along with my new companion, began the 3 hour car drive up to Wilkes-Barre! It was great! It felt almost like I hadn't driven regularly for 10 months...So that's fun. We got home, went inside, and found little cute, girly sticky notes everywhere... Hooray! Also there was next to no food. We did have a dinner appointment though, so we called them and got some directions. Everyone in the ward is surprised because we aren't sisters. It's fun! We have been just trying to meet all of our investigators and less actives this week (lots of less actives, not very many investigators) along with the members. So it's exciting!

This area borders my old area in Scranton and everything is very similar. We cover the boonies of the ward and I LOVE IT! We are up in the mountains and driving around on the roads are so much fun. Everyone here is so nice too. We've been doing a lot of tracting, which originally I hated, but now it's one of my favorite ways to find people. What I really want to do is a lot of family history tracting. The area here originally was pretty segregated as far as nationalities go, so there are certain towns who are Polish, some that are Welsh,
some are Irish, and I want to find some ancestors who are of that nationality, so I can knock and be like, "Hey! Do you know anyone who has Polish ancestors? I've been learning about my great grandpa so and so and I wanted to find out more about the Polish people." 

I'm excited to be able to get to work here. It's gonna be great. My comp is Elder
Pintor.  He has been out for 17 months and he is from Las Vegas, Nevada. We work good together. Oh! The first night we were here we were laying in our beds, and I just said, "It smells like girls in here.." Because girls used to live there, and yeah... It smells like girls. 

Anyways! The gospel is true! Joseph Smith is a prophet! The Book of Mormon is the word of God. There is no way I could ever deny any of these things, I hope you have an amazing week. Stay strong.

~Elder Jorgensen

Stole this picture on transfer day from a FB friend.  :) Thanks Dianne!

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Happy Birthday to My Baby Sister

Dear young man,
I see you have expressed a desire to take my baby sister on a date. As a big brother, and seeing as I am unable to interview you in person, before Kylie may accept a request for a date, she must receive emailed permission from me, her big brother. In order for her to receive permission, I need you to send me an email in which you will answer some questions. I check my email every Monday, so be sure to send your request in advance. My email Thank you so much for your cooperation. (Failure to answer a question correctly does not immediately deny you the opportunity to go on a date with my sister. None of us are perfect, but God looks upon rebellion a lot different than weakness, and so do I.)
One last thing to remember before you begin! 

34 Wo unto the liar, for he shall be thrust down to hell.
 (2 Nephi 9:34)

1: Are you a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints?
2: Have you been ordained to the office of a priest?
3: Do you take part in the administration of the sacrament every week?
4: What are you planning to do with my sister?
5: How many other couples will be accompanying you?
6: When will she be home?
7: What is your favorite scripture? Why?
8: Where do you hope to serve your mission?
9: Are you attending missionary preparation classes?
10: Do you have a desire to follow the guidelines given to us from modern day prophets, and apostles regarding dating found on pages 4 and 5 of the For the strength of Youth pamphlet? (Provided)
11: Will you begin and end your date with a prayer?

{From the For Strength of Youth} A date is a planned activity that allows a young man and a young woman to get to know each other better. In cultures where dating is acceptable, it can help you learn and practice social skills, develop friendships, have wholesome fun, and eventually find an eternal companion.
You should not date until you are at least 16 years old. When you begin dating, go with one or more additional couples. Avoid going on frequent dates with the same person. Developing serious relationships too early in life can limit the number of other people you meet and can perhaps lead to immorality. Invite your parents to become acquainted with those you date.
Choose to date only those who have high moral standards and in whose company you can maintain your standards. Remember that a young man and a young woman on a date are responsible to protect each other’s honor and virtue.
Plan dating activities that are safe, positive, and inexpensive and that will help you get to know each other. Go only to places where you can maintain your standards and remain close to the Spirit.
Young men generally take the initiative in asking for and planning dates. Always be kind and respectful when you ask for a date or when you accept or decline one. While on a date, be courteous as you listen to others and express your own feelings.
As you enter your adult years, make dating and marriage a high priority. Seek a companion who is worthy to go to the temple to be sealed to you for time and all eternity. Marrying in the temple and creating an eternal family are essential in God’s plan of happiness.

1 Corinthians 11:11; Doctrine and Covenants 46:33

 Thank you so much for having the courage to ask a girl on the date. I wish I had dated more in high school. It is a important part of growing up, and I am so thankful that my little sister is able to have fun, and learn new skills. She is so special to me, and you should know that if I approve your request, I am trusting you with one if the most valuable people in my life, and I expect her to be treated as a princess. I want you to know, that the standards which have been given to us to follow will keep you safe as you have fun and enjoy being a teenager. I know that there are living prophets and apostles on the earth today who truly do receive guidance from Heavenly Father. Joseph Smith really did restore Christ's church to the earth, and that the Book of Mormon is the word of God. I invite you to read it, and pray about how you can apply the things it teaches to your life. 

15 And upon these I write the things of my soul, and many of the scriptures which are engraven upon the plates of brass. For my soul delighteth in the scriptures, and my heartpondereth them, and writeth them for the learning and the profit of my children.
16 Behold, my soul delighteth in the things of the Lord; and my heart pondereth continually upon the things which I have seen and heard. (2 Nephi 4:15-16)

One last thing to remember!

45 Let thy bowels also be full of charity towards all men, and to the household of faith, and let virtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly; then shall thy confidence wax strong in the presence of God; and the doctrine of the priesthood shall distil upon thy soul as the dews from heaven.
46 The Holy Ghost shall be thy constant companion, and thy scepter an unchanging scepter of righteousness and truth; and thy dominion shall be an everlasting dominion, and without compulsory means it shall flow unto thee forever and ever.  (D&C 121:45-46)

With love,
Elder Jorgensen