Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Elder Coles' investigators

Nov 21, 2011

Dear Family,

I got a letter from Brother Inskeep, and Decker this week! I was so excited, up until this point Elder Roberts has been getting all the mail.... (You guys email me,so you are exempt...)

Wow, a lot of questions today! I only have an hour to email, but I will try to answer them all.

Everything is going great! Life is good. I need to concentrate on losing myself to the work, and working as hard as I possibly can.

We do have many investigators, but I haven't talked about them much. We have:

Ja: Ja lives in a sobriety house. He is a recovering drug and alcohol addict. He has a baptismal date for this weekend. He is struggling to quit smoking, so I don't think he will make his date.

H: Struggles with the courage to come to church even though she has received a witness from the Holy Ghost that the Gospel is true. She is making good progress.

Ji and J: Ji is a member who is a recovered drug addict. His parents are active. It is amazing to see his testimony grow. Struggles with the reality of the atonement, and self guilt. He is working on becoming worthy.

J is an investigator, she is Ji's fiance. She is progressing really well. Both need to quit smoking. We had a lesson with them last night. They are amazing people.

Hu: We tracted into Hu. He is reading the Book of Mormon. He has some doubts. Probably because of his "Other Research." He is sincere though. It is so nice to be able to direct him to Pray to know if it is true, and he actually does it.

T: T is a former Drug Dealer. He is a big softie, though. We found out recently that he was on Amphetamines.... That was fun... He was excited to tell us the other day that he had been clean for 3 days! Extremely sincere, just has a lack of understanding. I am worried that he is on probation...

I can't think of any more. Although I know I forgot someone...

We teach pretty much everyday. I am becoming more used to mission life. I am not nearly as scared as I was at the beginning of the transfer...

We do have Walmart. I promise not to use Gramps and Gramms' Christmas Present for groceries.

I did get your package. Thank you so much! I loved it!

Thank you so much for telling me about Suzanna! That is awesome! Tell her that she has my congratulations!

This life is very temporary. The nice thing is that we know where we are going.

Interesting fact about Turlock, CA: "Turlock was once in the Guiness Book of World Records for having the most churches per Capita." We met a preacher on Saturday night.... That was interesting. I think what really made me mad was how condesending he was and how much he denounced our belief, when all we wanted him to do was read the Book of Mormon and ask God if it is true. (Which it is) I was really angry. I did bear my testimony to him, although I was angry, but it was still my testimony. He started praying in the middle of it as if I were the Antichrist or something. Oh well. Hopefully his heart will be softened someday... I have taken to calling him Ecclesiastes.

I can't think of anything else right now.

You guys are amazing! I love you all!

I know the church is true. I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet. I know that Thomas S. Monson is his rightful successor and that he has been called by God.

Elder Coles

PS- There are a lot of seagulls that have migrated here. In the evenings whole flocks of them camp out in the trees. Yesterday we came out of an appointment into a carpet bombing....


Thank you so much for that. You are an amazing man. I appreciate your great example. Do you have any tips for avoiding bashing with people?

I hope Riley Nelson is OK... Collapsed Lung? Wow.

Keep it up

Elder Coles

Nov 28, 2011

Dear Family,

First off, we cover two wards, Turlock 1st and Turlock 3rd. On Wednesday (Transfer Day) They are splitting our area. Elder Roberts and I will remain in Turlock 1st. It is fairly disheartening, but such is the nature of the Life of a Nomad... (All of the investigatiors with Baptismal Dates are in Turlock 3rd...)

Ja is doing well. We are trying to get him to stop smoking. He came to church this weekend, which was awesome! He is progressing.

H Also came to church on Sunday. She wants to be baptized and is working on that. It is awesome!

Ji and J They are living together, which will need to be worked out. We are working on getting them to stop smoking.

Hu- We have not met with him since.

T- His phone was disconnected. He is homeless. We are scrambling to find him before wednesday. (He is in Turlock 3rd).

It was really sad. We were talking to a woman the other day who seemed extremely prepared, but declined a Book of Mormon because her Priest had counseled them not to read it. There is a Catholic Church in our area and we have recieved permission to talk to the Priest to ask him why he doesn't want his congregation to even read it. If he is so sure it is not true, then it wouldn't hurt people to read it.... (Turlock has an immense number of churches, there are at least 12 within a half mile of our apartment (Catholic, Lutheran, Assyrian Catholic, Assyrian Presbyterian, Assyrian Evangelical, 2 Different Nondenominational Churches, A Jehovah's Witness church, and several others). It is pretty interesting. ) There is actually a fairly large "Anti" Population here. Some of the nondenominational churches teach that it really doesn't matter which church you go to as long as it is not the LDS church.

There are several congregations here in town that teach their people to argue with us and to try to "Take down" the Church. They also show "The God Makers," So I've heard. Yet the church is still growing. A testament to me that "No unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing."

Other than that, I have not wrecked on my bike this week.

The Church is True!

I love you!

Elder Coles


I remember you dragging me around the softball field. That was fun. I actually told Elder Roberts about that this week. Funny you mentioned it...

Thanks for the advice. I needed it. You can definitely tell when someone wants to argue. They don't let you speak, generally.

I know the Church is true. I know Joseph Smith is a Prophet of God. I know that Christ lives and that I have been called by God as a representative of Christ. I hope to magnify that calling to the best of my ability.

Love you!

Elder Coles

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