Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Nick's Dog Bindi, She likes to eat carrots.

University of Washington Library below.

A giant crane off of Ravenna and Roosevelt. The picture does it no justice. This crane is HUGE.

Sunrise this morning. Sunrises here are amazing! Sunsets you can't see....

Monday, November 24, 2014

Nov. 24, 2014 Seattle Week 4

I can't believe a week has passed already! It seems just like yesterday I was sitting at the computers typing last weeks email.

After I emailed last week we had "Zone Sports Day". Our zone is allowed to get together once a transfer and play sports. We had a blast! Our zone is awesome.

Tuesday we had a district meeting in the Morning. Elder Hillman is the District Leader and so the morning was spent getting ready for that. We had lunch, then did some online training a the library and then went tracting. I really enjoy tracting and contacting. People are HILARIOUS and very unique. It's the teaching I struggle with.

Wednesday was filled with appointments and contacting. I got to meet our investigator's dog Bindi. She LOVES carrots and eats them just like treats. What an odd dog. We are having a hard time with this investigator. He is progressing but OH SO SLOWLY!

Thursday was weekly planning (which takes up most of the day) and then we met with the Roy family (who is awesome!) and exchanged with Elder McBeth and Eler Ford. Both Elder McBeth and Elder Ford serve in the YSA ward so they live on the Ave and almost all of their time is spent at the institute and on Red Square. Red Square is on the campus of the University of Washington and is exactly what the name suggests. It is where all of the students walk, study, and socialize between classes. No one there is very open to religion but I loved contacting people and hearing their excuses no to talk to the missionaries. MyFriday was spent there. I was slightly apprehensive about exchanges at first but I had a blast! Elder Ford is awesome and I learned a lot from him.

Saturday and Sunday flew by with dinner appointments and contacting. We met a family last night who has been inactive since there son was born 7 years ago. They want to start coming back to church and retake the missionary discussions as a refresher. How exciting!

Nam is still on date for December 6 so hopefully I will have a baptism then. 

Until next time!

Love always,
Elder Thacker

Monday, November 17, 2014

Nov. 17, 2014 Seattle Week 3

Hello once again! 

Seattle is still great. People are crazy though! I love it.

We have a baptism set for December 6! He is a little 8-year old who loves the gospel and is super knowledgeable. We went to teach him the Plan of Salvation and his sister and him practically taught us the lesson. It will be good. He just has to keep coming to church!

The couple who fed us last Monday are from Lyman, Wyoming and she has relatives in Duchesne! (Hailey Allred is one of them) What a small world it is.

This week has been crazy busy with meetings

-Monday was P-Day
-Tuesday was New missionary orientation at the mission home on Mercer Island. That was fantastic!
-Wednesday we had a Zone Meeting/Conference. Everyone in our Zone is in our Stake. Kind of cool. I love our zone. They are all really awesome.
-Thursday was weekly planning AND apartment inspection so we didn't leave the apartment until like 2:00 that afternoon.
-Friday our zone had interviews with President and Sister Choi at the stake center.
-Saturday night was the first session of Stake Conference
-Sunday was Stake Conference and then that night was the Member/Missionary Fireside that the mission puts on every month. That was excellent. They had a lot of new converts bear their testimonies. AWESOME!

When we weren't in meetings this week we were studying, planning, teaching and tracting.
On Saturday something exciting happened though. 

The stake center is in our area and 3 investigators live near it. We were in the area when the zone leaders called us and asked us to get to the stake center ASAP. They had a baptism planned that day. We got to the church and the zone leaders were carting water from the kitchen to the baptismal font in big pots on a cart. We quickly found out that the cold water was frozen coming into the building (due to unusual weather) so the font was filling with warm water, just half as fast as it normally does. I wish I had pictures to show you! SO we dove right in and helped and as soon as the font was full enough, we left the zone leaders to their baptism and we went off to another investigators house. Just another day in the life of a missionary!

I hope all is well at home!


Elder Thacker

(Also, I'm in a walking/bus mission. We have bus passes but mostly we walk. Our area is big to walk but too small for a car or bikes.)

Monday, November 10, 2014

Pictures from Seattle Nov. 10, 2014

Moss on his balcony.

The weather in Seattle.  Below is 1 hour later.

Seattle Week 2 Nov.10, 2014

Hello once Again!

The first week here went by really slowly but also very quickly and I am adjusting to missionary life outside of the MTC quite nicely. I don't care what anyone says, the MTC and actual mission field are quite different.

I have met some very interesting people here in Seattle. Most people we attempt to contact on the street are either not interested or just avoid us entirely. BUT! My first official street contact turned into an appointment to tour the church and talk (a sneaky way of teaching the first vision/restoration:) but unfortunately the investigator never showed.

We are also teaching an investiGAYtor. Figure that one out for yourself. He has promise and is progressing (I feel slowly) decently. Most of our investigators and contacts are all YSA referrals because most everyone in this area is single and going to college. I found out yesterday that our ward has A LOT of young couples. (It's really weird compared to my home ward. Most people we teach are over 30.

I am learning to navigate here! I had issues with north because I'm so used to having the mountains there to guide me. Here there are mountains but 99% of the time they are covered in fog and clouds. The sun has shone for almost 3 straight days! It's a lot colder here when the sun shines because the clouds aren't there to hold the heat in.

I find it interesting that in this area there are a lot of converts and baptisms but the issue is retention of those. There are A LOT of inactive members in the are. Never fear! The missionaries are here!

I don't have much else to say right now... I'll try to do better next week! I love you all!

Go forth and Serve!

Elder Thacker

P.S. This is a link to a talk my mission president gave in General Conference in 2009. I haven't read it yet but I'm sure its great!

I forgot to add a couple of things to my email.

The ward mission leaders daughter is named: Emma! Crazy right? It gets better. His next door neighbors (the Walkers I think) daughter's name is Tessa! I just thought that was odd:)

Also, Elder Hillman and I had to speak in Sacrament meeting this week. Nothing serious, just our testimonies but it let the ward get to know me 

Nov. 10, 2014

Elder Thacker and Elder Hillman

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Nov. 4, 2014 update

HEY! The name of my new area is Ravenna Park. I still don't know my address yet..... One cool other thing is that my companions first name is Nathan, just like Tathan.... and his middle name is Alma, just like Brother Burton!

Nov. 4, 2014 Arriving in Seattle

I made it! I am in Seattle. 

Today has been a VERY long and tiring day; full of excitement and also very overwhelming.

Seattle is weird. Everything is so wet and so musty. Like, everything. And the trees are absolutely COVERED in moss. I'm just not used to that much water.

President and Sister Choi are fantastic!! I love them. He is definitely an inspired man called of God to the be the Washington Seattle mission president and also a member of the 1st Quorum of the Seventy. 

Our morning started extremely early. Our district got up at 2:30 AM to shave, shower, and finish packing those last few items. We went to the travel office at 3:30 AM and we were on Utah Frontrunner and then the TRAX at like 4:30 AM. We finally made it through airport baggage check and security at about 7:00 AM when I finally got to call home. It was so fantastic to talk to you! I love you! The flight went really well and before we knew it we were touching down in cloud-covered and rain-soaked Seattle.

We arrived in Seattle at approximately 9:30 AM local time (10:30) your time and were immediately met by President and Sister Choi, the Assistants to the President, and the office Elders [Elder Carter (Dad, he said his dad would email you a picture)]. They had us sing "I'm a Child of God" to random people while waiting for the van. Nothing like diving right in!

We went back to the Mission Office where everyone else in the mission was already waiting for transfers. They had transfers (but didn't tell us who our companions were) and then had a training for the new trainers. We had a class with the AP's, a finance guy, a driving coordinator, and, of course, interviews with President and Sister Choi.

After what seemed (and was quite literally) forever they finally called us in to meet our new companions/trainers. My new companion is Elder Hillman (pictures to come some other time). First impressions: I really like him, he is very enthusiastic. I hope I can keep up.

We went back to the apartment and dropped off my luggage and now we're quickly emailing. Mondays are normally P-Day unless, like today, there are transfers. Don't expect to hear from me until Monday!

I don't officially know the name of my area yet or my mailing address. If you need to reach me, send it to the mission home (address on the blog). I love you all! Thank you for your support!

Elder Thacker

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Nov. 1, 2014

Hola All!
Another week has passed here at the MTC in Provo Utah! I can't believe in three days I'll be gone and landing in Seattle! We have to be at the travel office on Tuesday morning at 3:30 AM! That's early.

It's crazy how slow, but also how fast time goes by. It seems like just yesterday I got here. But at the same time this week has dragged on! The new district that arrived on Wednesday is really awesome. There's a sister from Queensland Australia and her accent is really cool. :-) it's really weird to me that the new district is going a variety of places. Some back to Australia some to California and some to Chicago Illinois when our district and the other district that arrived last week with us are all going to Seattle.

There will be 15 of us flying to Seattle on Tuesday. I believe we have one Russian speaking sister going to the Seattle mission as well. How cool is that? Let's start from the beginning. Sunday was really great. After church and meetings we had a temple walk with Brother and Sister Harris from our Branch Presidency.

Choir practice was awesome and Elder Allen's talk was amazing (at Sunday Night's Devotional). Elder Allen is the church managing missionary director. After the devotional on Sunday we stayed in the same building and washed talk given by David A. Bednar from the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles on Christmas Day 2011. He spoke on "Character of Christ." It was absolutely amazing! I wish I could get a copy.

We had classes on Monday. And on Tuesday, we had another devotional. The choir actually got to perform at this one and we did an amazing job if I do say so myself. Rosemary M. Wixom the Primary General President spoke as she, too, did an amazing job.

Wednesday rollaround and we have classes in gym and then the new district was here. It's crazy to see all the new Elders and Sisters with the little orange dots on their name tag everyone yelling, "Welcome to the MTC!" I simply could not believe that one more week had passed.

Thursday was tough for me. Teaching with our investigator Meghan has not gone very well at all. She's not very receptive or open to our questions and she doesn't want to participate at all. We finally had a breakthrough with her yesterday though. Elder Jennings and I are learning to work together excellently and slowly.

One of our other investigators, Chaela, had kidney stones and was in the ER on Wednesday and resting on Thursday so we only got to teach/see her twice. It's really very sad because we really really liked her! She was very bubbly and happy.

Friday we had In-Field Orientation where all missionaries leaving have a 9-hour class about planning and working with members and etc. It was long, but good. Halloween in the MTC is no different from another day. Thank you for the candy and packages though!!

Today we had P-Day. Laundry and temple are on our list to do!!

With love always,

Elder Thacker

Nov. 1, 2014 Pictures