Wednesday, May 21, 2014

      Last week was a busy week of missionary work.  We had some great experiences out among the people. We went into homes of active members to spread the word that we are full-time missionaries ready and willing to help them with their missionary work.
     We visited one family that are converts to the church.  They joined several years ago.  The husband explained that it was the spirit that guided them to the church.  He was searching for the truth for a long time.  With fervent prayer to Heavenly Father, he made a connection with a man with whom he worked (member of the church)  that studied doctrine with him and gave him several gospel topics to seek out in his study.  It was an amazing journey for him.  His wife at the same time was studying with the missionaries and gaining a testimony.  The husband was working away from home so their quest for the truth was separate, yet they both found the gospel.  Presently they have a daughter serving a mission and a son who served a mission previously.   It was a very spiritual meeting with them.
     Just this morning we received an email from a sister who had us to dinner last week.  After dinner we gave the family a short lesson on being member missionaries.  It was fun to visit with the children about being missionaries. The sister said in her email:  "Oh how we enjoyed having you over!!!!  I have to share what your example encouraged my children to do.   On Sunday, Bodey was walking home from church when he saw a friend of his out playing.  He asked Kayson if he had been to church that day in which Kayson replied, no 5 year olds don't got to church.  My Bodey replied back well I am 5 and I went to primary today, it was fun you should come too!!!!  Thank you for setting a great example for my children, we hope you and yours can be in our home again soon!!!!" 
     We feel so blessed to be of service in the Lord's work.

Monday, May 12, 2014

May 12, 2014

This is what it is all about!
Two dedicated missionaries find a family, two boys are baptized by their father and a younger brother given a name and a blessing. The family is now looking toward the temple as the next step in their eternal progression.
On Sunday we met in our missionary correlation meeting with our ward mission leaders, and full time missionaries. Then we met with our Stake Presidency and the Hyrum Stake Presidency to try to figure out how to keep the work going smoothly since we lost a set of Elders from the Hyrum Stake in this last transfer. We have a lot of planning and organization to do in order to keep the order of the work moving forward. We met with our sisters and the couple from Hyrum Stake on Monday to correlate the schedules that had been discussed on Sunday.
 We had a senior couples meeting in Ogden on Wednesday. What a great meeting! There were 68 couples at the meeting. What a wonderful, sight to see all these couples dedicated to "Hastening the Work of Salvation." After we came home we were invited to our Stake Bishop's training meeting where we were officially introduced as full time missionaries and participated in a discussion of how to go about doing the work of the Lord in our Stake. The Stake Presidency shared their vision of this work with the bishops of the Stake, and how we can work together to meet the goals they have in mind.
  We drove our sisters to Ogden for a sister training session on Friday.After we helped to prepare the luncheon for the sisters we then went to a local restaurant for our lunch. One little girl kept looking at our badges and Sister Castleton engaged her in a conversation about being missionaries. It was so sweet and thoughtful. Made quite an impression on the little one. As we were leaving another family came in and another little girl immediately pointed to our missionary name tags and her mother explained that older people can be missionaries as well. The mother explained that both she and her husband had served missions and the little one was enamored with missionaries.
Following the baptism on Saturday, we celebrated our 51st wedding anniversary with a temple session and a dinner at Olive Garden, thanks to the generosity of our daughter. Wow, the food was great and the waiter asked about the occasion since we were dressed up. Later the manager came by and told us to order a dessert on him to celebrate. How kind was that? We ordered the strawberry cheesecake. What a delicious rush to finish off a wonderful meal.
 We spent Mother's Day with our family in church and then had a nice meal at our home, and enjoyed visiting for the afternoon.
This week will be much busier because we are splitting some meal dates and visits with our sisters, so along with the normal meetings of the week, we have a pretty busy schedule. Looking forward to a great week.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Well, another week full of excitement. We spend a lot of time with our sisters planning visits and correlating our work. Wednesday brought a big change. We have two stakes in Hyrum, until Wednesday we had a set of missionaries in each stake. Some adjustments were made on Wednesday which left us with our sisters with the responsibility to cover both stakes. On Thursday we met in a zone meeting and enjoyed meeting most of the other missionaries in the south area of the Valley.
Friday was our biggest day. One of our sisters had the opportunity to go to the temple with someone she had worked with and so we went with the other sister on teaching appointments and follow up visits. Wow, a big night but fun time. The most exciting time was meeting with a sister in our ward that was baptized last Saturday. She is from the Philippines and wanted to know about family history, so we talked about some of the scriptures on the topic and Sister Castleton  registered her on Family Search and showed her some of the basic things on Family Tree. We really enjoyed the evening.
Today was a huge day! We had a stake missionary correlation meeting which is usually held every Sunday at 6:30 a.m. Because of the loss of our one set of missionaries we met with our Stake Presidency along with the Hyrum Stake Presidency and others to see how we could cover the gap left because of losing the other set of missionaries. Our stake president and then decided he wanted to meet with us, our sisters, and our stake mission leader to fine tune what could be done to get the work accomplished in some sort of orderly fashion. We then had the opportunity to go to a sacrament meeting where three young people who were baptized last Sunday evening were confirmed. We then went to our ward for priesthood meeting and relief society. This afternoon we have studied, planned our week and vegged out a bit.
We have another busy week ahead with meetings and training so we look forward to more good things ahead.
We are so grateful to the Lord for His blessing us with the stamina and health to accomplish what He has for us to do. We appreciate the faith and prayers of leaders and our families to keep us in the right way, and hopefully doing what we should to build the Kingdom of God in our area.
Have a good week. Be Faithful, Be Obedient and the Lord will bless you as well.
Elder and Sister Castleton