Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Don't Poke the Buffalo

Being a trainer is super awesome! I've had so much responsibility put on me and didn't really know if I was ready but out of all the lessons we've had this week I realized I'm more than ready. The spirit was so strong during one particular lesson and I was looking up scripture after scripture (which is crazy because I think I have like 2 scriptures memorized :p) and answering every question thrown at me. I just knew the spirit was there helping me out! Yeah I'm still here in Sheridan, the best city in America! My new companion is named Elder Ehlert. He's 6'3", 18 years old, part Viking apparently?, he's from Salt Lake the heart of the missionary factory, but the think I like most about him is how super smart he is! He knows so much about the church and can teach so incredibly well. He's so great!
New trainers: new dads
New Trainers: New Dads
I love those lessons where you just talk straight from your heart. They're always the best and the spirit is able to work on people so much better that way because you're testifying pretty much the entire time!
We're at the end of the payday cycle too!! I have 2 dollars I think haha but we're doing fine because our members are the best and always feed us! We should be getting more money this week too! We have to rely on some "manna" from heavenly father a lot sometimes but it just always seems to work out.
That's a ton of books! Holy cow! And not the easiest reads it sounds like either! I have a huge book list that I'm making for after the mission. I'm pretty excited about that!
That's super cool that the boys are taking the lessons. I can see how much Sam's testimony is building and I can't explain how much that means to me. I need to finish the letter I'm writting to you guys that I started like 2 weeks ago. I'm slacking a little but I'll get it! It makes me so happy to see you guys geting so stongly rooted in the gospel!
I love you!
Elder Autrey
So no more red hair huh? Ight we'll see. haha
That's super cool about all that family history! We've been asked to focus on family history this month so I've been looking up family history a lot! OH MUH GOSH I JUST REMEMBERED SOMETHING I HAVE TO SHOW YOU! So I was looking up a story about Edward Partridge and it totally makes sense why I'm here in Sheridan!
"Whatever his motivation, the legacy continued with his family. Among his living monuments is an unbroken line of bishops and other Church leaders to the present day. Two living General Authorities—Elder James E. Faust and Elder S. Dilworth Young—claim his ancestry. Tangible monuments to Edward Partridge are the old and new Church office buildings in Salt Lake City, the architects of which were a grandson (Don Carlos Young), and a great-grandson (George Cannon Young), respectively. Furthermore, Edward’s descendants played a prominent role in colonizing Millard and San Juan counties in Utah, and the Big Horn Basin in Wyoming.[That's Sheridian!!!!!] But the greatest Partridge legacy is intangible—the “steadfastness and patient endurance” that face hardship, trials, and adversity without flinching."
So yeah! That was super cool!
I love you guys so much! Hope you're doing great!
Elder Autrey!

Buffalo Poking

*pregnant pictures with Elder Johnson because we're both becoming "Dads" (trainers). and another selfie with a Buffalo. I poked this one :)*
This was when I was down in Gillette waiting for Elder Ehlert to arrive. We were doing a TON of yard work for this family. It was super fun!      

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Story, WY and tranfers

This past week has just been super fun. Nothing real big but there just weren't many problems or disturbances which was kind of strange. It just felt like a goodbye week. We went down to Story, Wy earlier this week to help a lady move BUT she hired movers so we couldn't help because of legal stuff with the company so we went down to this fish hatchery down the street and looked at fish! Story is SUPER pretty! SISTER DUFFY GOT BAPTIZED!!! It was soooo amazing!! She asked me to do the confirmation which was so cool!  
Sister Duffy's baptism

D&C sec 18:15 
And if it so be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this people,and bring,

 save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father!
 16 And now, if your joy will be great with one soul that you have brought unto me into the kingdom of my Father, how great will be your joy if you should bring many souls unto me!
This scripture was a big push for me to come out on my mission. I love this church! 

So, the day of the baptism was transfer call day. Elder Richards got transferred to Rapid City, SD. He's going to be a district leader up there. He's going to do so great he was the best trainer ever! Probably one of my best friends now! I'm training a new missionary! I believe I'm the only one from my MTC district that's training. It's a huge responsibility that I'm going to knock out of the park! I'm so excited!! We're down in Gillette right now until the "transfer train" gets here on Wednesday

Fish Hatchery in Story, WY
Fish Hatchery in Story, WY

Elders and Fish Hatchery in Story, WY

That's so sweet you're trying to get to the temple every week! That's what I've been planning on doing once I get home to try and go once a week. We have the Billings, Montana temple but it's not in our mission boundaries so the only temple we could ever go to is the Bismark, ND. So I probably won't be able to go to the temple for 2 years but hey, I'm called to do the work for the living, not the dead.

About a month ago at a funeral Elder Richards and I were able to sit on the stand with the Bishop! Like son, like father? Hahaha :) Don't forget to wear a suit jacket or else you'll look pretty funny up there!

I'm hand writing a letter but I haven't been able to finish it quite yet, but that letter Mom sent about Sam bearing his testimony was THE GREATEST thing I've ever read in my life. I'm so happy his faith is growing in the church. That made me so happy I can't even describe it. I'm so glad I'm able to be that example for him.

Welp, I think that's it for now. I'll try to send as many of these sweet pictures I took. I love you guys so much! Pray for anything and everything! Heavenly Father is waiting to bless us, we just need to ask.
Love you!
Elder Autrey

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Montana and Demon Chickens

Albino Rabbit
We're teaching a TON of people now! We broke up with Matt because he can't get rid of his alcohol addiction and he lost his desire. Sister Duffy is getting baptized this Saturday!! I'll have pictures next week! :) We're teaching a 19 year old named Jacob who has this adorable little girl named Cammy! I told him if him and his wife ever get a divorce that I'll be in court with them to try and get custody of her! He'll be done with the lessons this week as well! Hopefully he'll want to be baptized sooner than he does now. He told us he wants to read the entire Book of Mormon before he's baptized, which is fine but I think he'll figure it out faster than that. We'll see. :) We met a guy named William probably 2 weeks ago now, he was being taught be the missionaries in Colorado but then moved here. We finished up the lessons with him but he's struggling a bit with some things, so he has to wait a little until he can be baptized. We taught Chris, who's about 26, the Restoration about 2 weeks ago as well. We've been trying to get a date to come back and teach his wife as well. He finally got back with us on Friday and said we can come over next week! We went with a member to give his
Bed Racingdemon chickenfriend Laura, a blessing because she just learned she has cancer. We went back about a week after to see how she's doing and said she feels amazing and during the blessing she felt a beam of light go through her body. We told her we can explain what that was so we're going back to teach her next week! Yesterday while I was on exchanges in Ranchester, our investigator William brought a friend and his friends wife to church. His friend is related to Sidney Rigdon, still has the same last name, and is very aware of it hahaha :) But we're going to go teach them sometime this week now. And FINALLY one of our ward missionaries has been working with her friend Tonya, who used to be a member but is wanting to come back to church and be taught by the missionaries. But not just her, her husband is super interested as well! So we're potentially working with about 10 people here! Which is HUGE because when I arrived here 3 months ago, we just had Matt. Heavenly Father has really been helping us out. But the members have been such a big part of this I can't even say enough how much I love this ward!

We were in a bed race on Friday. The city blocked off main street and we raced these homemade bad car things. It was so fun but exhausting! We got a new car! :) A 2014 Toyota Corolla! It's super nice and fancy! While I was in Ranchester, we drove out to this farming community and got attacked by demon chickens! That was awesome! Oh also in Ranchester this little boy made these Minecraft things out of beads. So I had to take a picture for Tate! I told him Tate was an admin and he thought that was super cool. We also caught an albino rabbit BUT forgot to lock the door on the cage so it got away...

I still have Elder Richards with me this week. Transfers are this Saturday so we'll find out then if he'll be leaving or not. This Wednesday is my 3 month mark! Woo! I liked the random stickers and party streamer in the letter haha! 

Umm I don't remember much else about this week so there you go! :)

Elder Autrey!!!

We also went to this 100+ yr old church! It's super legit!

July 7th

This week literally felt like an hour so I don't even know what to write anymore. Time is flying by so fast! We went up to the Equestrian center/ Polo fields where they had a huge fireworks show. I think the entire town of Sheridan was there! It was awesome!! We've been teaching a lot! We became like best friends with this part member family. They're only 19 and have a 6mo old baby girl. Erins a member but Jacobs not so we're teaching him. He's just about done with the lessons but he wants to finish reading the Book of Mormon before he's baptized. They read it together every night and pray and they've now been coming to church faithfully for 3 weeks now! :D He came to 2nd hour for the first time yesterday. We taught them 3 times last week on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday and we're going again tonight. So every other day hanging out with friends and teaching the gospel! Not a bad deal! :D

Sister Duffy's doing great as well! We taught her twice last week and she just has a couple commandments left until she's done with the lessons as well. She has her baptism interview this Friday and is getting baptized next Saturday on the 19th!! She tells us after almost every lesson our parents must be so proud of us as she's crying. It's the coolest thing. Next week is my last week of training then Elder Richards is probably leaving me... :( but I'll get over it I guess. I'm totally copied & pasted this from Alannah's email because I don't want to type it out again. I actually do that a lot. :) I wonder if anyone has noticed yet :p

Saint Herkster
I met a crazy guy that travels the U.S. in his car recording cops on video and recording devices to catch them abusing their powers and putting them in jail. This dude was a nut. I have 3 videos of him giving speeches to my companion and I about the world and church and what he does. He calls himself Saint Herkster. You can google him and find out about the junk he does.

Anyway's I've been being safe and being a good boy. Having a blast! Sheridan is probably the best place in the world! There's always stuff going on. There was a car show this week. It was so sick! There was a ton of super nice old cars. GTO's, mustangs, just sweet hot rods, but they also had some SWEET modern cars. There was a decked out 2014 Camero, a 2008 Dodge Viper, 2014 Stingray Corvette. I was loving it! It was 100 degrees that day though so it was a little rough.
Herkster's car

Last night at 10:30 during the middle of our companion prayer, we got a phone call from a member asking if we could come give her son a blessing. So we suited back up and activated missionary after dark mode!! Haha we got home at 11:30 then crashed. Waking up today was rough but we managed. I finally did the dishes too. I miss having a dish washer... :D But that's my life so far! Just doing the Lord's work one day at a time having a blast every minute! I love having the best calling in the church! :)

I love you all! 

Elder Autrey

A deer at the Church

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Down by the Tracks

Wednesday- Today was such a great day! We started out with lunch at the Rib & Chop with Dan Lick who runs the food bank and the Sisters and the Second ward Elders. I had a Buffalo Burger this time (Last time I had a Yak Burger). Pretty sweet! Then we went to the park and taught Peter the bird the Restoration while he was eating bugs. Then his friend James the bird came after we finished so we taught them both the Plan of Salvation. We asked them both if they would be baptized and they started chirping like crazy so I'd take that as a yes! :) We went to unload the truck at the food bank again at 4. As we were finishing, the Sisters called and said that Jacob and Erin want to have us over for dinner. So the Sisters picked us up, we changed back into our Proselyting clothes in 2 minutes and 10 seconds, then went over! We befriended them both and will be meeting with them again soon! Jacob is now officially an Investigator!! Erin is already a member! :D WOO! haha Right after that dinner we went to our already planned dinner with Sister Rousch (this older lady who had a potential
investigator over as well. We had a HUGE thanksgiving dinner for some reason but it was super good. We then taught Christ eh Restoration. It was a super good lesson and he wants us to come over and teach him some more. So that's 2 new investigators today!! We now have 5 investigators! Matt, Susan, Patricia, Jacob and Chris! The ward has really been stepping up their game recently and it's making everything so much easier! I love this area so much! Evelyn called us yesterday! She read the first chapter of the Book of Mormon finally! She's going to Dallas on the 1st for a week which is totally making me jealous. So not fair... We told her we'd take her and some friends skydiving after our missions so that'll be fun if it happens!

Thursday- Well honestly today started out a little rough. It's weekly planning day so we were at home the majority of the day which is no fun at all. We realized we need to kick it into gear with Sister Duffy! She only has 3 more weeks until her baptism date! I'm so excited!! Elder Johnson and Rucker came over for lunch and brought salads they got from the food bank yesterday. They were actually pretty good. We then continued planning for an hour then we helped them move this guy in their ward. We saw Sister Gilmore real quick after we were done with that and read her this story about a blind horse and another horse that has a bell. We ate some super good pork ribs at the Yates house. It started raining and it was only 8 o'clock and had no one left to see so we went up to 5th street, headed east, and just went as far as we could on our bikes. We took a bunch of sweet pictures out in the grass fields and on the train tracks. Then booked it back home down the hill! It was such a great way to end the day!

Saturday- We went over to Dying Mike's house to help him out with his sale. He actually put us to work loading up trailers. We unpacked his shed and put it on two trailers for him because he lost his home so now he's going to live in his camper. His kidneys are failing him so he's just slowly trucking along. It started pouring when we were finishing up so we just rode our bikes home since we were already drenched. We beat a train coming which was fun. (We were already at the crossing when the bars started coming down so don't freak out mom) :) It started hailing as well so it just wasn't a day that was nice to missionaries. We come home and accidentally fell asleep for and hour..we felt pretty bad about that. Then right as we were about to head out the door again because the weather cleared up, it starts storming really bad again. So we waited some more until it finally cleared up then we went to go see Laura ( the lady with cancer who we gave a blessing to) to check up on her and see how she's doing. She told us she feels perfect, find, nothings wrong. She said during the blessing she felt a beam of light go through her body. She's going back to the doctor on Monday so we're going to come back next week and explain what she felt and teach the restoration. Another new investigator! Then almost at 9pm as we were walking home, we were right across the street from our apartment and Matt is whistling at us from the Wells Fargo parking lot. We run over to him, see what's going on and talk a bit, then a jeep pulls up with a guy in it. He asked, "Where's the LDS church around here?" So I told him, then we got talking and got his information and gave him ours. His name's William. Turns out he was being taught by the missionaries in Colorado and is half a lesson away from being able to be baptized! So we're going to finish him up on the lessons! ANOTHER new investigator! That's 4 new Investigators this week! I don't know why the work is picking up now but I can't complain, it's so great being out here doing the Lord's work.

Sunday- We had Sister Duffy, William, and Jacob came to church! We had 3 investigators at church 2 weeks in a row now!! :) The talks were super super good! We didn't have a dinner but the Bujans saw us after church, like way after church when no one was there anymore an invited us over for dinner! I love our ward! They're the best! :D So we now have 7 investigators total and have Sister Duffy and William on date for the 19th and the 20th. 

Thanks for all your prayers and love! I love you guys so much! I'll continue praying for you all!

Elder Autrey :) 
Oh and Saturday the bar next door had a band playing all night so we got no sleep but I got to hear some cool songs?? And got to see a lot of drunk people dance! That was amusing!

I'm still with my trainer for another 3 weeks or 9 weeks depending on if he leaves this next transfer on the 19th. On the 19th I'm done training and my district and zone leaders keep telling me I'm probably going to be training someone so I may be a trainer soon. 

So we got 4 new investigators this week which is HUGE for this area. We now have 7 total that we're working with. 2 of them are getting baptized on the 19th and then the 20th!! This week flew by so I'm glad I wrote in my journal because I don't remember any of it. We went to the labyrinth again this morning and I taught a little experience about love to the other elders. They said the spirit was super strong in that moment so that was cool i guess.

I'm trying to save up my money for an emergency fund right now so I'm learning to just buy the essentials. I spent $30 shopping today and took out $100 to save and for fast offerings. 

The days feel like minutes and weeks feel like hours. It's so crazy. Time is flying by so fast. I hit my 3 months in 2 weeks.
Sheridan is probably the coolest place in the world. I love it so much. There's always something going on and the people are so nice. I wouldn't mind spending my whole mission here!

I love you Dad! Good luck with the new calling!

Elder Autrey