I am in Cheney Washington. It is a little college town about 30 minutes West of Spokane. It is home to Eastern Washington University. Its awesome! I love this little town. It is super pretty out here. I know I said that about my old areas but this one is much more pretty. Its got that small town feel. On the edge of the town there are very active railroad tracks so we have to stop and wait for trains all the time. Just outside of the town there are lots of rolling hills and pine trees. 2nd reason why Cheney is awesome: there are lots of people walking around even when the weather is cold (which it very much has been). Its sweet! Its really easy to street contact. Plus its a small town so you see people that you know all the time and its a great way to build relationships with them and follow up with them on their commitments. 3rd reason why Cheney is awesome. Almost everyone here has a Book of Mormon! I have no idea how or why but it is sick! About half the people that have one have read a least a little of it. Its really easy to start teaching about why it is so important and why they need to read it. 4th reason. The ward is awesome. Family History is key in the ward mission plan out here which is how it should be. I didn't know that family history was so important in missionary work until fairly recently. Now I don't know how I did so much of my mission without it. It is our number one way of contacting people on the streets and getting return appointments. It is also one of the first things that we commit progressing investigators to do because it sets the expectation that baptism is just a step in the ultimate goal of getting to the temple. Once investigators become recent converts they get to be the heros for their family by baptizing their ancestors.
This week was intense. For lots of reasons. I taught more lessons this week than any other week on my mission! And it was freezing cold all week and we spent hours outside walking in it.
But now for the story of my first District Meeting as a district leader. Several days before Wednesday (the day of D-meeting) I began putting together a plan for what we would train on. Wednesday morning at about(personal study time) I was putting the finishing touches on my training, when we got a text from the Assistants to the President that all district leaders needed to be infromed that today in district meeting they needed to have a church tour with a real investigator or less-active member.
AAAAHAHAHAHAHAHA! My district meeting was in 2 hours. So I started calling people like crazy. By the way the my companion was feeling pretty sick that morning so he wasn't much help to me. Which was a problem because I'm so new to the area so I don't know a lot of the people in our teaching pool yet. Well after 30 minutes of no one answering we called a lady named Cindy and asked if she could help us out with a training we had to do for other missionaries and she said she would be willing. Fast forward to . I had just told the missionaries in my district that we were going to practice church tours by doing one with a real investigator that will be here any minute. We got a call from Cindy that she and her son had arrived at the church building but they had a flat tire. So we changed plans again and went out and fixed her tire. Then we came inside and did the church tour. It went super well though! They are both on date for baptism! It was a crazy first district meeting.
Missionary work is the best. You should all be really jealous.
-Elder (Andre) Johnson