Monday, July 2, 2018

JUNE 25, 2018

Hey y'all, 

This week was another great one for the books! 

We volunteered at a bowling alley this week to help special needs kids bowl, and cheer them on. That was super fun, and so great to see them smile. Some smart kids that is for sure! One guy threw a gutter ball and then hacked into the system, erased the score, and bowled again hahahaha. Have no idea how he did that, but was pretty impressive! Also, learned some pretty eye opening bowling form. I never thought you could be that creative in bowling and still hit strikes. My favorite form was one kid throwing it up about 3 feet and smacking down on the floor halfway down the alley. Hit a couple strikes too. If it ain't broke don't fix it I guess. haha was awesome!

Yesterday was Stake Conference here in New Orleans, and the stake president reserved the first row in the chapel for investigators :) It was so awesome!! We were able to sit up front with Patrick and Michael. Also, Patrick brought his friend Gala with him as well which was way cool. Just the man. He is so excited and has been telling everyone about his baptism this Saturday the 30th.

Patrick sent us a message on Saturday morning after we had taught the word of wisdom on Friday saying, "Sirs, I got a water at Denny's and am going cold turkey with the coffee and tea. Hope you are proud of me sirs." Haha just so proper and wants to do everything right. It has been amazing to see his progress. Just picture the most respectful man wearing a suit and tie coming to church every week for the last month and a half. And then picture the stud that he his in medical school with his white overcoat helping his friends pass the exams with the study sessions he holds. Literally every lesson he tells us all about about how his friends still call him asking him for study ideas, etc. And he absolutely loves talking about medical school haha. Usually takes us a good 20 minutes before starting the lesson, because he has to tell us the news with the medical schools in the Caribbean and what not. Bless his heart! He fits right in with the people down in the south. I have learned so much from being here in Louisiana, but one thing is definitely being able to just sit down and listen to someone talk for a good minute hahaha. (the hard part is just staying alert. hehe) 

Miracle: This week was filled with teaching miracles, but last Sunday Brother Bell introduced us to his friend Juan at church. He had attended church with Brother Bell for many months prior to being sick the last few months that I have been here. Also, another member Brother Larsen  has been helping with the lessons and he is apparently a "Seventy" in the church because back in the day many people were just called to the priesthood office of seventy for missionary work. We have to keep him dialed in, but it keeps things interesting with his deep doctrine views haha. Just keeping us on our toes that is for sure. No worries though, the church is still true down here.
Anyways, they came to church this last week and told us that Juan is ready to be taught! We were stoked. Heavenly Father is seriously just blessing this area and people are coming out of the wood works just ready to be taught. It has been unreal. We had 2 lessons with Juan already this week and so cool how he already has friends helping him. Juan's wife unfortunately just recently passed away in the last few months, and so has been really seeking God for help. Brother Bell experienced the same thing about a year ago, and so a blessing that they have been helping each other. We had a very spiritual plan of salvation lesson with them, and Juan shared how he wants to do anything he can to live with his faithful wife again. He has already prayed about The B.O.M and Joseph Smith as well. So prepared. We invited him to pray right then and there about continuing with the lessons and preparing to be baptized. He finished the prayer with tears in his eyes and a desire to take the steps with dedication. I am so grateful for the knowledge of the savior Jesus Christ in being that pillar in the plan of salvation. It is only through Him that we may be saved and return to live with our Father in Heaven again and our families.

Update on Michael: He is doing sooo good!! He has been able to make it to church faithfully, and everyone in the ward just loves him. He is being recruited to play wide receiver at Ole Miss too so that is pretty cool! We have had several lessons in members homes and different families just keep inviting him over. I want to share one of the lessons with Michael. We taught the Plan of Salvation and related it all to a game of football. ---> pre earth life is the locker room, putting the jersey on and getting on the field is receiving a body and coming to earth, Jesus Christ was the MVP, kingdoms of glory is the hall of fame, etc. It was awesome! Michael loved the analogy and was like, "How do I sign the contract to be on the Lord's team?" HAHa let's goo!! We invited him to be baptized and are planning for July 7th!! He is way excited :) He has been working out with several members of the ward during the weeks too and they have been doing crazy workouts haha. Like pulling Jeeps with a rope, and high jumping the jeep haha, He is a stud! We had a lesson with Michael at the Bishop's house right after church as well, and talked about the commandments/law of chastity. Just so cool finding Michael and seeing his life change. It is hard to express the joy that comes from seeing someone turn closer to God and be that example for the rest of his family. He has such high goals for life, and is getting himself out of some societal pits down here. So great! Next thing will be getting the man a missionary name tag :) Maybe a few months!

I could go on and on. I love this work, and am so grateful to be here. Hope you have a great week!! love y'all ya hearrrrd me!
Love, 
Elder Wilson

JUNE 18, 2018

Y'all it just keeps getting better!! This week was another one for the books.

We started off the transfer with setting some high goals to reach toward. Not only just as the 3 of us, but also with the other 2 elders in the apartment with us. (Yes, we are like sardines down here, but all good times) We talked about setting some goals for church attendance that may be a little ambitious, but we all felt the spirit excite us! Our motto is 4th quarter! Let's goo. Just laying it all out there since the game is on the line. It was amazing to see the Lord already blessing us even in just a few days as we sought his guidance and expected his help. After all this is His work. 

We began with our first lesson with our man himself, Patrick Orange. We had such a bomb lesson with him, and as we read Matthew 7---> 2nd Nephi 31 we were able to invite him to be baptized on June 30th! He is so ready and has been being prepared by the Lord for many years now. He just didn't know it until now. Amazing to see how everything just falls into place at the right time for the individual. He doesn't cease to impress me by his sincere desire to follow Christ the rest of his life. We had another 2 lessons with him at other member's homes during the week and they were just so good. Patrick is from Thailand and so English is his second language, and so it is still funny sometimes when he can't seem to find the right words to use. He also brought dessert one of the nights and kept trying to get us to eat the chocolate rum cake. That was pretty funny, bless his heart. 

Brie Engle was confirmed  a member and given the holy ghost in sacrament meeting yesterday, and Elder Woody was able to perform that. It was a special experience for all of us, and so amazing to see the gospel enter back into a family's life. Such a sweet girl.

Michael Dailey is doing way good as well, and we had some great lessons with him. He has been working out with some of the members in the ward. One is also african american and a recent convert so that has been awesome. (I'll share more next week on Michael)

Trio Tracting: Well, first and foremost one of the funniest things is biking in a trio. When people see us they just seem so confused hahaha. And you know you're in trouble when you are the one that gets stuck biking in the middle after a ruthless rock, paper, scissors battle. Who would've thought that following one elder, and one elder following you all on bikes could be so nerve wracking :) especially with the New Orleans drivers/traffic. But hey usually someone's got an extra bike tube, so that makes popping a tire a little better. Bless Elder Woody's tire. 2 popped tires in a week. He's a good man IRregardless. Also, one day it was pouring rain sooo bad, and we were biking through lakes of water it felt like. Just soaked/buttered up to the bone, but it was classic. Also great preparation for taking a soak!

Anyways, so tracting in a trio is pretty hysterical. First off, when someone opens the door and they see 3 white guys in white shirts and ties (for whatever reason)  they immediately get nervous and sick and grab the nearest weapon of defense they can find. (Not sure who would rob someone in a white shirt and tie, but I guess it is NOLA haha) We only had one lady grab a cane though so no worries there. (Almost thought I was going to look like the guy on RM after getting hit with the walker) Once we introduced ourselves as missionaries the tension died down. 
It also makes it interesting when you go to an apartment complex and can hit 3 doors at the same time with multiple people answer ;) "We are just going around inviting people to a neighborhood bible study. And actually we were thinking of doing it right here...... in one of your homes. " LOL 

It was awesome though, because we were talking about the NBA and how being in a trio is like drafting another super star to the team. Then this lady answers her door, and I just hit her with "Do you like the NBA?" Elder Woody and Bailey were looking at me like I was crazy at first, but next thing we knew we were teaching her the Plan of Salvation on her porch relating it completely to the NBA and everything. It was actually way awesome. We talked about how John the Baptist was the forerunner to Jesus Christ joining the team. SUPERSTAR! She told us how she hadn't been to church in many months and really wanted us to come back. We'll see what happens! Just making it fun and working hard. 

I want to finish with my testimony. I have been studying a lot about obedience and sacrifice,and the miracles that come from them. As the scriptures share, "I the Lord am bound when you do what I say, but if ye do not what I say you have no promise." D&C 82:10  This and many other scriptures share this thought. Ultimately following God inherently brings blessings from Heaven. 

In addition, through reading the miracles the Savior Jesus Christ performed I came to see that in each case there was either obedience/sacrifice/or both demonstrated by those involved. I know that as we are obedient in any aspect of our life that we will see the miracles from Heaven. I have no doubt in my mind that this is true, however, obedience requires sacrifice. I know that God lives and he loves us. He wants so badly to bless us in our lives, but must first see if we will do our part and show our faith. Ether 12:6, "Ye receive no witness (miracle) until after the trial (showing of obedience/sacrifice) of your faith." 
I love y'all and hope you have a blessed week!
Love, 
Elder Wilson
(sorry for long one, but I will read it in 20 years :D)

JUNE 12, 2018

Y'all this week was incredible!! 
Before I begin I will share the transfer news for my last hoorah. President called me several days before so I have been able to mentally prepare luckily! So Elder Woody and I are staying here in Kenner together to continue to churn some butter, but we are adding another elder. Looks like I will be finishing it out in a trio! We are bringing in an elder that goes home with me, Elder Bailey. This is going to be interesting and definitely a challenge, but I know that with the Lord on my side I can do it! I pray for his strength and help. Bless Elder Woody's heart though, killing two birds with one stone. I am humbled with the additional responsibility, but am a little nervous. All I know is that I won't be holding back on the throttle so here we go! A wise man once said, "You can come willingly or unwillingly." (this was in reference to the family thanksgiving turkey bowl, but I have seen it apply to many things :D)  Haha just kidding it will be great! Also, my boy Elder Hoopes is coming down and will be in the district to finish up so I am way stoked about that!

I forgot to mention earlier, but our man Taysom Hill who is playing for the Saints lives in New Orleans and actually just got called as the ward mission leader over there in the ward I started at. Of course I missed him dogonit! Him and Manti Te'o are in the New Orleans ward. Bummer I missed him, but anyways he is in this area! So on Sunday night Taysom Hill and his wife Emily were having a Stake youth/young adult fireside at the church. Michael Dailey loves the saints and was so excited about this event. We brought him with us, and made sure to get some pics. I told Taysom, "We better get a picture so I can send it to Grandpa Longmore." He laughed, agreed, and also asserted that President Longmore is the man. Honestly a great devotional as they shared about overcoming trials and always putting trust in the Lord no matter what. 

A Little culture: We headed over to Downtown NOLA for P day last week and had a good ole time jamming out to the Jazz music on the streets, hitting the street car, having beignets, and browsing the french market shops. Home sweet home over there where I started. Just over the riverbend!

Our guys Patrick Orange and Michael Dailey both were able to attend the baptism, and seemed to love it. It has been so cool and kinda funny the progression of these guys. Patrick's first Sunday he came in regular clothes, the next Sunday a white shirt and tie, and this Sunday a full suit. What a man! This Sunday Michael came in a fresh white shirt and tie as well, just looking fly. Patrick asked us after the baptism if he needed to purchase a jump suit. Haha who is this guy? We have been meeting with him several times a week and about ready to put him on date for baptism. He has been reading the Book of Mormon with his RM roommates every single night. 

We have been teaching Brie Engle and her family, and it has been amazing to see them come back to church and help Brie prepare for her baptism. Sometimes the spirit just has to remind us. That has made me smile teaching her, reminds me of my younger sisters. It has been very great to see the progress in her mom as well as we have invited her to read and pray. The dad isn't a member and is pretty stand-offish, but is okay with them coming back. The Mom, Jessica, has been bringing her 2 daughters to church with her now though. It is honestly a miracle seeing the spirit and light change in their lives. Along with this though I want to share the miracle this week. 

Miracle: I want to call it the miracle baptism. Even though every baptism is a miracle and have many leading up to it, this one was a special one. At the beginning of this transfer Elder Cannon and I came from other areas and had the idea to present for the 4 of us elders.  As a quad we committed to find 100 new investigators and asked that in return for our efforts that we would be able to see and take part in the baptism of one of Heavenly Father's beloved children. We committed, put our Faith in the Lord, endured the struggles of finding at times, and expected a miracle. My testimony has only grown that God truly does provide and always keeps his end of the promise if we keep ours. We gave it our all and achieved our goal. And here we were, the last week in the transfer and a special girl, Brie Engle, was prepared by the Lord to be baptized. A miracle finding her so soon in the transfer. The process of teaching her and bringing her family back was truly amazing. Luckily for us she had been taught the lessons before, but many months before. As prepared as they come. And interesting enough Elder Israelsen one of the elders in our quad is going home this week, and actually participated in teaching Brie many months before. What a great way to leave the mission field right? He was able to baptize Brie his final week, and we all felt a huge part in the miracle. The lord has provided so many people that we have been teaching that I know will be ready here in the coming months, but He knew with the time allotted that we needed someone already prepared. He sent us where we needed to go. It was a miracle baptism and the spirit was so strong :) It was right after church on Sunday and Brie's Dad and her extended family all came. We are going to keep reaching out to them, and she will be confirmed next week in sacrament meeting. 

I know that God answers prayers. He is there and loves us. He is willing and desires to make promises with us. How joyful He must be when we keep our promises. I love my Savior Jesus Christ and the path I have been able to walk with him. This time is precious to me.
Love, 
Elder Wilson

JUNE 4, 2018

What a week! It has only been a few days, but I will share a few highlights. I just keep wondering how it could get any better, but I never cease to be amazed.

We have been teaching Brie Engle and she is doing so great. She gave the closing prayer in one of the lessons this week and had prepared several days for it :) We all showed our family pictures and she opened right up. She attended all of primary this week too, and seemed to love it. Going to try and help her get involved with the activity days. 

Church this Sunday was incredible, but so hectic! We had over 10 investigators there this week. The Lord is just blessing this area sooo much. They are just walking themselves through those doors, it is incredible. The short bus turned into a full size yellow school bus this week, it was unreal. We were running around all over the place, but it was awesome. 

We met with Kristian/Renika and family this week, and they expressed how 3 hours of church was just too long for them. After a great lesson where the spirit was present, they still made it to church! Apparently Kristian bore her testimony in Relief Society about how how she was so grateful she came even though she had complained about it the night before. 


Community Cultural Event: 
Just picture this: 20,000 yellow mini rubber duckies floating across New Orleans City Park Lake for the annual Duck Derby. The community was raising money for the Food Bank, and we were able to volunteer scooping them up and taking down booths, etc. It was out in the blistering heat, but I resisted the temptation of taking a soak! It was awesome though and we were able to just get out there  and talk with tons of people. And it doesn't get much more cultural than with Rubber duckies. I mean especially the mini ones.. Just a good family friendly event in NOLA :) All sorts of butter being sold, and ducks to be floated. Good time!

Miracle: We received a referral of this guy named Patrick Orange that was attending medical school down in the Carribbean and was rooming with a RM. Apparently he attended church with this guy like 3 or 4 times. He just recently returned home for the summer break, and got in contact with us. We are way excited about him. He made it to church in his white shirt and tie and everything!! The man is so prepared. He came up to us at church with the pamphlet he had read along with a TYPED up 4 pages of additional study questions/notes that he had answered from the back. Quote from Patrick himself, "I love to type." hahahaha what a guy! He texted us later Sunday night telling us that he had read Alma 17 and 18 with his RM friend Santa over the phone. Let's goo! He then texted saying, "I think I have found the church I have been searching for for over 30 years." Just can't even believe it. These quotes must be coming straight from PMG itself, I'm telling ya. 

Well, I will leave with my testimony. I had an eye opening experience this week. It is rare down here that I have the opportunity to teach someone that doesn't believe in any form of a God. We asked this man many questions about spiritual experiences in his life and even about having his 2 young kids. I am sad to say, but his answers just seemed so depressing. It was like nothing really mattered to him. Anyways, it really made me think about what my life would be like without a knowledge of a God/eternal families. I just can't imagine it. Whether we have questions about certain things or not, I feel like it would be hard for many of us to deny the happiness of these simple gospel truths.  It was a further testimony to me of the happiness and joy that come from the restored gospel. I love y'all and hope you have a blessed week! Ya herrrrd me?
Love, 
Elder Wilson

MAY 30, 2018

Hey y'all, 

This week has been crazy with Memorial Day on Monday and Zone Conference on Tuesday, but it was a great week! I never know where to start, but honestly everyday as a missionary is a highlight so we'll see what I pull out this week. 

A few highlights:

Exchanges: I had the chance this week to go down the BAYOU  of Louisiana down in the Houma/Thibodeaux area. Just straight Cajuns down there it was awesome! Tons of turtles, and ventured to see our friend "Big AL" a big ole gator. One example: We were helping this guy get turtles out of this pond with a rope/cage, and then weeding around it. And out of no where we hear him yelling across the grass, but had no idea what he was saying. We found out shortly he was saying "Cooley get the turtles out of the cage." But it sounded more like "Cullooo geda turdas frm da cashge." haha and that doesn't even do it justice. 


So Rodney Hollis turns out to be one of the greatest member missionaries this side of the Mississippi and he doesn't even attend church haha. Let me just help y'all re picture this man. 5 foot 1, like 250 lbs totally jacked out of his his mind. Total swoledier. He showed us this video of him benching 500 lbs. Just good gravy. Anyways, loves the bible and loves the Lord. Also the funniest guy. He told us that when he was baptized, "They had me in a nice warm swimming pool and had me up on the big screen broad casted to Salt Lake City. " Lol we think he was talking about the big mirror above the font :) I love the South. Some of the quotes from this man are just too good. 
We show up for our meeting with him, and he invites us in only to introduce us to this 18 year old kid that is preparing to go into the marines in the fall. Rodney's first sentence, "My brothers this is Michael and he is hungering for the Lord. Teach him the gospel." Hahaha let's goo!! We were so stoked! Let's just say like many down in the South Rodney isn't a man with few words, so the first lesson we were mostly just quoting bible scriptures and gaining that trust with Michael. Rodney just starts preaching too haha. So at the end of the visit, we were like, "Rodney you gotta come to church with us tomorrow, and bring Michael with you." Rodney was like, "My brothers in Christ, I have other commitments at another church, but y'all take Michael with you." haha we will keep working with Rodney bless his heart, because this man could bring some influential Louisianians into the church. And he has already set us up! After the lesson Rodney said he wanted everyone to see us with him, so he started waling down the street with us haha. At one point he was yellling down the street saying, "These are the Lord's anointed sharing God's word." Just imagine this man yelling that :D
We got Michael a ride to church, and he loved it. He is sooo prepared it is incredible! As we walked into the church with him, he stopped outside and just stared at the sign "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints." It was familiar to him, which isn't surprising, but way cool. We asked him what he thought about church, since it was kinda a lot all at once. He said, that the moment he walked in he felt something different: the spirit of the Lord was there, and he recognized it. 

Miracle: 
We were tracting a few streets that we had prayed about, and were having great success. We felt like we needed to hit a different street, and ended up knocking on this door and this older lady invited us right in. (Always a pleasant surprise when someone just up and lets you in without even introducing yourself) Well, turns out she is a member of the church, and immediately asked us: "So y'all are here to teach Brie right?" Elder Woody and I turned to each other having no idea what was going on haha. Turns out Brie had been previously taught by missionaries and their family is semi active. Brie was visiting her grandma that night, but isn't usually there since her house is on the other side of town. So we are going to start teaching her since she is almost 10, and hopefully help her family start coming back to church. She is a way nice little girl, and she has a 13 year old sister as well. Brie's dad isn't a member either, so we are going to try and make steps there as well. It was a total miracle, as we had no idea that this family was ready to receive the missionaries. They made it to church too :) I love being in the service of the Lord, being guided by him each and everyday. There is just no denying the guidance we receive on the Lord's errand, it is amazing. 
I love this quote by President Monson and I think it doesn't just apply to missionaries, "Whether it is the best of times or the worst of times, He is with us. He has promised that this will never change." I know we have a Heavenly Father that is very aware of each of us. 

I could continue to share the spiritual highlights, but I will close with my experience yesterday at Zone Conference. It was a powerful meeting, and spiritually refreshing. Many testimonies were shared, and that was a spiritual high for me. The spirit was so strong and I was grateful for the reminder of my own personal love for my mission as other missionaries bore testimony at the close of theirs. I will forever cherish this journey, and am so grateful I can continue to serve Him. Glad my mission call has been extended to 2020 ;) Now I will really become a Southerner. Hahaha jk don't worry Mom! I love y'all and I love my Heavenly Father. 

Love, 
Elder Wilson

MAY 21, 2018

Hey Family and friends!

This week was just another incredible week! So many amazing experiences to share, and the good times just keep rolling down here in the South. 

First and foremost, just picture this: A white and orange short bus (like literally a bus haha) pulling into the church parking lot with a family of 5 dressed and ready for church. Just a sight to see let me tell you. It was awesome! Heavenly Father has really been blessing this area already. We have been doing this neighborhood "bible study" which just ends up being a Book of Mormon study haha, and all the neighbors trickle in and out. We went one Saturday, and told the family we'd be back in 20 minutes, and to invite everyone they could. We came back and several other neighborhood kids were over ready to study. It turned out great! We have been studying a lot together about the Savior and his Atonement especially in Alma 7. I mean everyone down here loves Jesus, so what better topic am I right? So this Saturday we really invited for church, and luckily a member has a big bus and was willing to go and pick everyone up for church. :) It was way awesome, and they seemed to enjoy it! It was the mom, Kristian, her daughter Renika, son Benny, and 2 younger daughters Lamyra and Mylove. Definitely a little different from what they are used to being Southern Baptist, but we think they liked it and felt the spirit! In Elder's Quorum we were talking about priesthood blessings, and Benny asked if he could receive one. So right there in the middle of EQ we performed a priesthood blessing for Benny. That was way cool. He is 18, and we invited him to the game night and volleyball YSA activities this week. 

I received a call from Chris and Paige ( investigators up in Mandeville) saying that Chris is really making those steps to be baptized, and Paige is not far behind him. They said that they have been praying about getting married, and are willing to just do whatever they need to do. Apparently Chris was like, "well I immediately went over to the courthouse to figure out the paperwork I need to sign and the stuff I need to do to make this official so that I can get baptized." haha let's gooo! Anyways, so I was way excited to hear that, but the shocking thing was when they told me that I was an ordained minister, and that they want me to perform the wedding.....!!...Like what? So we'll see what happens with some counsel from the mission President, but sounds like it might be a possibility. Apparently Elder Jensen talked with President Varner and it sounded like it could happen. Haha so I may or may not be conducting a marriage ceremony in the next few weeks and marrying them! Can you just imagine that? Good gravy. Haha who knows though bless my heart, but how cool would that be? Regardless I was very touched when they told me they wanted me to do it if I could. They are amazing!

Miracle:
We were out contacting some LA members, and came across this lady named Diana. After some hard struggles she hasn't been to church in over 20 years. She hasn't even had contact with anyone in the church for years. However, her son actively attends every week. She has been telling her son the last few months that she will be coming back to church soon. She had made a resolution with Heavenly Father that she would be coming back to church this summer. Well, what does He do? He sends the missionaries on May 20th in the summer! She invited us right in and we had a great visit with her. She recognized the miracle of us being there, and we testified using the scripture in Alma 26:37. I know with all my heart that Heavenly Father answers prayers. One of the most incredible feelings of joy has to be being led by the spirit to answer someone's prayer.

Elder Lynn G. Robbins of the Seventy came to the mission this week and had a MLC meeting with a group of us missionaries. I was grateful for the opportunity to attend, because it was such an inspiring meeting. He was dropping some serious spiritual nuggets that is for sure. I will share a few highlights:
-In order to BE like Jesus Christ you must first DO as he does. 
-Success is going from failure to failure without any loss of enthusiasm. 
-The battle is His, so leave the worrying to him.
-Teach the doctrine and leave the investigator at the cross roads with the influence of the Holy Ghost. The decision is theirs, but the Holy Ghost is the master teacher to help them make the right decision.
Those were just a few of the incredible insights that I believe can be applied to any aspect of life. So many personal insights for me, and I am so grateful for how the answers to life's questions truly are found in the scriptures you just have to look for them in the right way.

Love y'all. Stay prayed up and blessed!
Love, 
Elder Wilson

MAY 14, 2018

Hey y'all, 

It was so great skyping the family yesterday!! Looks like everyone is doing so well. Happy Mother's Day, love you Mom. Could hardly recognize Chris and Mike, but with the weight gain and everything down here in Louisiana I guess I can't say much haha ;) Things here are really turning and burning, but I will just share a couple experiences for this week. 

Miracle:
We were doing service at the Food bank in Metairie, and one of the members of the ward came with us. We met so many way cool people. So Nohemi (one of the members) gets talking to this girl working there with us and invites her to get some food afterward. So we end up going to a little fast food restaurant, and Jess (the volunteer we met) came with us. We had a great time talking with her and getting to know her and then like 30 mins in ( even after we had been explaining our missions/leaving for 2 years, etc) she tells us that she is Catholic, but after moving out and going to school at LSU she started questioning it. Anyways, we end up asking her if she had ever attended a Mormon church, and she immediately gets red in the face, eyes widen, and her mouth drops. She was like, "Wait....y'all are Mormons?" hahahaha!! We all busted up laughing, because she had no idea we were Mormons (and Mormon missionaries especially haha). She seriously thought Mormons were crazy weird people and was so confused, it was so funny. The miracle of the story though is that she attended LSU, and after we told her that I served there  1 year ago she said she remembers me on Free Speech alley!!! It was funny though, because she admitted to taking a pass along card and just trying to avoid all eye contact every other time she walked passed and we were there. Haha! She was so embarrassed, but now realizes she just had no idea what we were all about and what we were doing. She expressed interest in coming to church next week too, so we are excited. Been thinking about how cool that would be if I was meant to teach her, and just took a couple opportunities. 

Funny tracting story:
We we were down in the hood of Kenner, just minding our P's and Q's, out walking down this street. We made sure to park our car in a different location as well and hit the road on foot haha. So we are trying to contact a people on the roster, and street contact, etc. One of the names we are looking for is this guy named Rodney Hollis. So we are talking to tons of people and eventually come walking passed this car with a few people standing outside of it. One guy waves at us and basically tells us to keep up the good work and the people down here need Jesus haha. We decided to stop and talk with him of course, and turns out the man's name is Rodney. So I'm like, Rodney Hollis? And everyone goes silent, and he was like, "My brothers!! You remember me!" It has been a decade and y'all are still out doing the work of the Lord. (I honestly think he thought we were the same guys that taught him like 10 years ago haha) The funniest thing was the wife standing right next to him with the most shocked look on her face because we knew his last name. Rodney hit us with like 5 NOLA hand shakes and invited us back this week. Gotta love it! Just getting some street cred down here. 

I will keep it short this week. I am loving the work down here, and know that it is true. Love y'all. Have a blessed week!
Love, 
Elder Wilson