This past week has been a interesting week! Elder Baird has been a little sick, so we had a few days where we were confined in our apartment. Needless to say, I am very grateful for the fact that missionaries are now allowed to have little DVD players and church approved/produced videos that we can watch. (After all, you can only study the standard works for so many hours of the day..) While that made this previous week a different than I every expected when going on a mission, life is still pretty good here in Owego.
This past Tuesday was pretty exciting. Our mission has a new zone meeting that happens once a month called "Zone Training Meeting". It's really awesome, because we actually get to see more of the Zone on a fairly frequent basis. That's awesome! So we went to Elmira for ZTM and learned a lot about the Holy Ghost and it's purpose in converting people. One thing that I've been learning more and more on a daily basis is that this Gospel depends on the Holy Ghost. Everything we talk about would seem kinda crazy if it wasn't for the confirmation in people's minds and hearts from the Holy Ghost. "By the Holy Ghost, we may know the truth of all things". So being worthy of having the Holy Ghost in ourselves and our homes is essential to staying strong within the Gospel.
There was one lady that we met with on Wednesday. She is moving to Ohio, so we were going to help her pack up a few things before she left. She was a hoot! In previously talking to her, I found out she used to be on the radio here in New York and had a political talk show. That was fun talking to her about her previous radio career and she told me I had a good face for TV.. I like that compliment! ;D But it was good to see her one more time before she moved.
The rest of the week was pretty uneventful. We were able to make it to a few appointments that were close here in Owego, but besides that, Elder Baird was able to catch up on sleep while I came up with the perfect missionary scripture set-up, practiced drawing, studied, etc. It's really funny to watch the older church videos, like the one titled "Together Forever". They're super cheesy, but entertaining. (Disclaimer- Don't think I'm being a lazy missionary, I've done about as much study as I possibly can.. In fact, the Zone Leaders felt bad I've been stuck in so they gave me a few more videos (IE The Testaments) to watch.)
Then yesterday, we had one really exciting event happen. Elder Shane M. Bowen, from the Quorum of the Seventy, came to do a mission tour and met with all of the missionaries. Luckily, Elder Baird was feeling up to traveling to Liverpool NY for the 1/3 Mission Conference, so we were still able to go. Elder Bowen was an awesome teacher and helped me realize a little bit more how important that the temple really is in our lives. That's something that I think I will always be learning more and more about in my life. Elder Bowen worked in the insurance biz before being a member of the 70, so I was thinking there was a very slight chance Dad might have known him, but he was living in Idaho at that time. It's funny seeing how small of a world it is- He was actually Elder Baird's older brother's mission president! How funny is that?
Now, today is our P-Day and we're heading to Sayer PA to get this problem with Elder Baird fixed (hopefully...). It's kinda funny... We're some of the only missionaries ever to have permission to actually leave our mission boundaries.. Pretty exciting. One weird thing about this side of the country.. While the people don't always live their lives very religiously, there are a TON of signs of religion everywhere- Jesus fish bumper stickers, almost everyone owns shirts saying things about religion, and the hospitals all have chapels that people can go wait in with non-denominational preachers found in them.
Besides all of that excitement, there isn't much new going on for us here in Owego. The leaves are starting to change colors, so I'll be getting some neat pictures soon! Also, today is a very rainy day.. But it'll still be a great day. Hope all of you are doing well at home! Thanks for all the love, support, and prayers! They really make a difference.
Love you all!
-Elder Mitch Hussey