Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Happy 4th of July...Written 6/29/2015

Well this week has been fun. Tuesday my companion (Elder O) and I went on splits with the Elder's Quorum President and the Ward Mission Leader to do some Home Teaching since the program kinda died in the ward and we have a new Elder's Quorum President. We were just helping them know what to do so that they can train the Elders in the ward and get the families assigned. I was with the Elder's Quorum President and we were able to visit 2 less-active member families that we are trying to reactivate in the church. We had awesome lessons and 1 of the families came to church this week and a few members of the other family came to church as well.

Thursday we had our Zone Conference which really was mostly explaining our new Tiwi systems. You might ask what a Tiwi is; a Tiwi is a computer installed in every mission vehicle to monitor our speed, location, and driving skills.
 Tiwi System-What is it?
It gives alters on aggressive driving, speeding and not wearing seat-belts, etc. They take a bit of getting used to and figuring out logging in and out of the car but overall it's a great program that will help a lot and luckily I'm already a pretty good driver so I'm not getting any violations. It was a good zone conference and I enjoyed learning some new things. 

Anyways, now to the part that will get you jealous; also on Thursday the Mission had the opportunity to go to the Strathmore Music Hall and
attend the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Concert. It was their opening concert for the 2015 Atlantic tour. The choir were accompanied by the Orchestra at Temple Square and guest singer Alex Boyé performed two solos during the concert. When we heard that we were going to this concert I was super excited naturally but I thought we'd probably be sitting in the nosebleed section since tickets for this tour range from $15-$200. To my shock when I got my ticket I was sitting in the Orchestra Section second row from the front in front of the 1st Chair Violin. It was awesome being so close to the performance and getting the surround sound feel of the choir and
orchestra. All the music was wonderful and the choir sounds like one voice. The music was wonderful and you could really feel the Holy Spirit testifying throughout the performance. We also were able to briefly talk wit the people sitting behind us who were not of our faith. We explained a little about what we believed in and out purpose as missionaries which was a great missionary experience right before seeing the choir. After the concert we were able to talk to a couple members in the choir and thank them for the performance. 

Not all the missionaries were in the first two rows. Some were on the sides in the back of the orchestra seating, others were on the mezzanine level, and some were in the nosebleeds depending on when you picked up your ticket. But every missionary and senior couple went to the performance. The concert was great and it was cool to be so close to Mack Wilburg and Ryan Murphy conducting. Alex Boyé stood right in front of us and in between songs he whispered hi to all the missionaries in the front. The first chair violin was amazing and it was cool to watch her at times.
On Sunday, my companion, Elder O and I were able to go to the Young Men's class and talk to the boys about why we chose to serve a mission and what blessings a mission brings. Since this month is about Priesthood and Priesthood Duties the Young Men's President (who is a Returned Missionary of 2 years) asked us to help teach. A lot of the boys in the class have never thought about going on a mission and a couple were unsure. I think it was a great opportunity for us to help them out. There are some great guys in that class and a lot do have desires to serve a mission.

If you want to know what the weather here is like, imagine it getting up to the lower 90's with high humidity and then in the evening have huge clouds come in and dump rain and lightning. The weather here is basically bipolar and you get used to it quick. There is a lot of rain here and there have been a few flash flood warnings but nothing has happened here. Don't worry about me in the weather here because I'm doing just fine. Plus what are you doing anyways watching the weather in Maryland, the capital of Colombia (Washington D.C.) is closer.
As for the 4th of July, sorry I won't be getting any pics of the National Mall. President Cooke has felt impressed that it is too dangerous for us to be at the National Mall this year. We can be in DC until 6:30pm and then we have to start heading home. We found this out last night so we are still working on our plans for the 4th this year. It still should be fun just a bit different than last year. We can't see the fireworks in DC but the zone leaders are working on getting permission to see some around Silver Spring.
The ward here is pretty diverse there is a bit of everything here. Generally in the mission there are a lot of people from El Salvador.

I did get your mid week email and tell Grandpa thank you a ton for me. Tell him I'm working on Family History and have indexed around 300 records in Spanish (per request of my stake indexing coordinator--aka my Mom).

Dad, I'm glad that you had a good week and that everyone enjoyed the classes you taught on Sunday. It sounds like it was a really great Sunday with all the missionary farewells and tell everyone I say Hi back. 

This week has been nice; my companion and I kept pretty busy. We've been working with a lot of people and trying to get them all to come to church (less-actives and investigators)

Dad, I want to wish you a happy early birthday! I hope you have a great birthday this week and a great 4th of July as well. I hope you can have a stress-free week and enjoy yourself.

Tell my oldest brother congratulations on getting his Patriarchal Blessing and to keep working on his Bird (Eagle Project).

Elder Braden Dahl

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