October 3, 2016

Hello from “The Valley”

This morning my companion and I made the drive down to Alamosa, a sub 10k population town. It is in the San Luis Valley, the very southern part of our mission. We are gonna go to some sand dunes to go sledding and sandboarding for pday today, with some mission buds that are serving down here. Hopefully I’ll have some good pictures next week for ya.

Last week was good. We went on exchanges with the Pueblo Zone Leaders. I went to Pueblo for the day with Elder Hagman, who came out with me. It was fun to be with him for the day. We had opportunity to bike a bit, which is always fun, but also had some super cool experiences teaching. The first one was a first lesson with a man they had previously found tracting. This man is mid 20s and has a 2 year old son, raising him as a single father. The kid was insane. He was running around, in and out of the room, pulling on our hands to come with him, then taking his dad away. We just could not get more than a word or two out at a time. After this epic battle between teaching the Plan of Salvation and a treacherous two year old had gone on for about 15 minutes, with the two year old definitely winning, I decided something must happen. The child grabbed my thumb trying to pull me away, yet again, and i figured I would give it a try. So I stood up, went to the other side of the room with him and played with duplos. It meant my companion was completely teaching on his own, but it worked! My companion taught the entire Plan of Salvation and set a baptismal date with him, all while i was playing with children’s toys. It was probably the most unique lesson ive been a part of.
General Conference this last weekend, was totally awesome, as expected. For Saturday’s sessions we went to the house of a part member family with the other missionaries in our district. Its was a good time for sure, they made pesto pasta with chicken for lunch. The nonmember is the husband and hes been showing some interest lately. He does workouts with us on Saturday mornings at the church. Its way fun, but her works us pretty hard.
In between the Afternoon Session and the Priesthood Session, we heard about the tradition called “Prophets and Brats” where a bunch of people bring grills and meat to the church parking lot and have like a tailgate party pretty much eatin meat and hanging out before the session started. So we totally showed up. There was a guys there cooking moose burgers and i got one! Oh my they were good, and huge! I fell in love with the tradition and now want to have a bbq between afternoon and priesthood every year.
Im so grateful for Prophets and Apostles of the Lord who are able to share with us the messages that the Lord needs us to hear. I got a reassurance from the spirit of the lord that those who spoke to us truly spoke for God here on the earth. How powerful that is to know. I look forward to rereading the talks given, because i felt like I was trying to drink from a fire hose the last couple days…  I love you all and because of that I encourage you to head to LDS.org to check out some of the amazing talks given this past weekend.
Elder Stark

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