Monday, October 28, 2013

October 28, 2013

How are the wards configured now?!!! Whose ward are we in?  Who is the bishop? Is there any particular reason they changed it? That is really strange. Oh well, life will go on.

Angela has been doing a lot better. We got to teach her twice last week and I think it really helped. We taught her on Friday(purposefully right before the weekend) and she has been praying and reading the Book of Mormon. I think she is doing really well. She even accepted a date to be baptized! November 10th is what we are shooting for. Now we just have to get her to kick her boyfriend out...
News Update! I am getting a new companion. Elder Meline is leaving and I am going to be training another brand new missionary. I can't wait to meet this one. It will be interesting to see how different he is from Elder Meline. My companion has been pretty dang awesome and I am sad to see him go. I know the Lord has more in store for him so I can't wait to see where he goes. Oh, and since I don't meet my golden until Wednesday and the transfer meeting is on Tuesday, I have to stay with another Elder for one night. I am just lucky enough to get to stay in Frankford for that night. So I get to return to my roots. I hope I get to see some of the members and investigators that I knew.

Today and this last week we have been helping our ward mission leader pack :( He is moving to Utah for work. We are definitely going to miss him but I know his replacement will be just as awesome.

Love you. Have fun in the rain! Get some rain boots and go puddle jumping! It is really fun.
Elder Engelman

Monday, October 21, 2013

October 21, 2013

I didn't get your ghost email. It's funny how fickle the internet is sometimes.
I have been thinking of the song Autumn Leaves by Ed Sheeran. It's just really pretty and,obviously, he sings about autumn leaves. The colors are beautiful. I expected it to all change at once but it is a slow process. Different trees shed their leaves at different rates.
Our primary program is next Sunday and I am so excited. The children are so adorable and I can't wait to see them just do silly stuff while they are singing. I love the song "A Child's Prayer"! I actually sang it at a zone conference last transfer with a sister missionary. It was a little weird because I did the first part(usually sung by a child). It was pretty awesome though. The sister missionary is a super good singer so it sounded good.

So far I don't really have signs of poison oak. Let's hope that will hold true.
Go ahead and wait on buying another shirt. I'm not in a rush.

Angela is not doing awesome. I'm getting a little stressed out because she seems to regress every weekend. I think living some of the commandments is going to be really hard for her at first. I'm sure you can guess which ones are usually hard for people. She is awesome and she definitely keeps feeling the spirit but once she goes home and encounters stress she kind of forgets about everything. It is really frustrating, especially when she sends us semi angry texts. Sorry, I guess I'm just venting because I see so much potential but she doesn't see it. She is afraid that it isn't going to be worth it and that she will lose her boyfriend(which she doesn't seem to really love) and that she won't be as happy. She did go to a members house for dinner last night. I am pretty happy about that and the member told us it went really well.
I love you! Have a great day.
Elder Joseph Engelman

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

October 16, 2013

This last week was pretty fun. We had P-Day today because of Columbus Day. On Saturday, as well as yesterday, we did a bunch of service for a member of our ward. We first went to rake her leaves because there were a ton of them and then we ended up going back to do the rest of her backyard. She can't do much so her yard has gone shambles and so we hacked through the bushes. We are pretty sure there was some poison oak in there so I used the special soap stuff I bought when I got home. I would really love it if I never had to deal with poison ivy ever again. We actually needed a machete but we forgot to ask one of our members for one. 
We had another lesson with Angela and we taught her the 10 Commandments. We showed her hand signals to remember them and it was awesome because it turns out that she knows sign language! The lesson went pretty well and she actually had some concerns with evolution(mentioned in Exodus 20 in commandment #4) and the members resolved it perfectly. It was pretty amazing.
Sorry, we are running out of time. Love you, Got to go.
Elder Engelman

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

October 7, 2013

When does Catherine head off to college? It's not until November or December, right?

Inline image 1
This is our district! No, I'm not standing next to my companion because he was working the cameras. The other two Elders are our Zone Leaders
They are pretty awesome.
General Conference was epic. The talks were really awesome and I learned so much.
Angela was able to come for part of a session and it was great. She said she loved it but she had a lot of questions so we answered some when we saw her this morning. It is going to be a long process because she isn't sure about her faith in God anymore. It seems like she goes through spurts of happiness and faith and then she will seem to regress over the weekend, when we don't see her :( I know it will get better, we just have to take it slow.
How is life at home? anything crazy happening?
Elder Engelman

September 9, 2013

You got Layla and Pheobe? That is soo cool. It is great to know that Billy and Jacquie let you take them to church because they realize it is a good thing.  We are slowly gaining investigators. Right now, it is still a little slow but I think our ward is starting to catch the vision of missionary work. Their friends, family, and acquaintances need the happiness the gospel brings. On Sunday, one of the members of the congregation spoke on happiness. He is probably in his 70's and he is just about the happiest person I have met. He is quite positive and he talked about how positive thinking is what got him through cancer. One of the things this member talked about is how thinking actually has power. If we decide to be positive, we can actually be happier. I loved that because our Heavenly Father has given each of us agency. It is up to us to use it to either be happy or miserable.
I have heard from a few people. Right now I have three letters that I have written but I think I am out of stamps. Either that, or I have just lost them among my things. I need to buy some more so those people are going to be waiting a bit.
Sooo you may have heard about the change in dress standards for missionaries. We are supposed to start using shoulder bags to look more professional.
I love you. I will send some pictures soon :)
Joseph Engelman

September 30, 2013

I am doing great. Did I tell you that I got to interview someone for baptism already? It was pretty awesome.
Yeah, so another shirt would be nice. I promise not to burn this one too...
Catherine is done with girl scouts? That is crazy! How will I get cookies?! I am sooo proud of her, waiting till the last minute! That's my girl.(wiping away tears)
Our investigator came to church on Sunday. She stayed all three hours and basically she is just awesome. We kind of forgot that she has never been to church growing up so EVERYTHING was foreign to her. Prayer was only normal because we had taught her about it.
So one of the sisters in my district is an opera singer. Pretty crazy, right. The sad thing is that she lost her voice right when she came out and she still can't sing. She has had blessings saying that she will get it back but I'm sure that is pretty depressing. I can't imagine what I would do if I couldn't sing. Another sister in my district(also serving in my ward) has celiacs disease. So she can't eat gluten. A few weeks ago(I know, I should have told you this a while ago) she was poisoned at a members house on monday night. The members thought everything was gluten free but it turns out it wasn't. So the sister missionary was pretty sick Tuesday night at our ward missionary coordination meeting. She asked us to give her a blessing. Usually she is sick for about two weeks and she can't think very well and she feels terrible. In the blessings the Lord healed her. It was pretty cool because that next day she was way better and she told us that usually the 2nd day is worse. The priesthood is real and it works!
Love you,
Elder Engelman

September 23, 2013

So this last week came with a few changes. Our district was split into two districts because of how many missionaries got added to the surrounding areas. I was made district leader and didn't find out until Wednesday night, the day before District Meeting. So I had less than 24 hours to prepare to teach a district meeting(which last an hour and a half), but with a lot of help from the Lord it ended up pretty good.
Yesterday, I went to prison. Yes, you read that correctly. I went to prison to visit someone but it turns out we have to be on a special list. So we will go back again in a week or so.
Elder Meline and I have also been able to meet with Angela. She is the property manager at our apartment complex. It was an awesome lesson! The member that we brought with us helped us a ton. He testified of how God has helped him in life and it was very powerful. We are actually planning on teaching her again tomorrow night at a members house. She told us today that she is wanting to change and "be better". She also told us that she has been seeing people more as brothers and sisters after we talked to her last week. It is pretty cool to see her change little by little. Teaching people about Christ is awesome.
I am glad your calling is treating you well. It is strange when you don't have big calling after you are used to that. I agree, it is nice to be able to just focus on your piece of the puzzle. God made it that way for a reason. Often times we can learn the most from simple things.
Elder Engelman

September 16, 2013

Yeah I don't think the whole broadcasting thing is going to work perfectly for awhile. I am glad it was uplifting! 

So we have had a few cool things happen recently. This last Friday, we had Elder Bowen come and talk to us. He spoke for General Conference a few years ago. A talk he gave has been turned into a Mormon Message. It is called Reclaimed.
He is pretty awesome and he taught us about who we are. We talked about the covenant we make at baptism, the Abrahamic covenant, the gathering of Israel, and the oath and covenant of the priesthood. It taught me a lot about those that have gone before me and how that relates to me. He was pretty cool.
The most recent things is something that happened today! This morning, when Elder Meline and I left to buy groceries, we were stopped by the property manager at our apartment. She is new there and she is only 22. We had invited her to an "Ice Cream Social" activity our ward was having on Friday. We gave her the address on a pass-along card and she said she would love to come. It turned out that she didn't but she has been really curious about religion recently so she has been thinking about the card all weekend. When she stopped us this morning we got to talk to her a little about what we believe and how she can know if Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ are real and love her. It was pretty awesome because we could truly tell that she wanted to learn more.
Oh, and I have a little bit of a funny story. So I ripped one of my shirts the other day on a barbed wire fence. You know, running from a pitbull. Okay, not really but I did rip my shirt on a fence I was walking past. I bought some interfacing, ironed it on, and sewed up the rip perfectly. However, I noticed that the glue on the interfacing hadn't melted to the shirt so I started ironing it some more. Well, long story short, I put the heat on the iron up too high and I burnt the sleeve of my shirt. My companion was laughing at me because he said it was funny to watch me get angry because I don't actually do anything and it didn't even seem like I was mad except the fact that I kept saying, "I'm so mad that I burnt my shirt!" Soooo, I will forever remember to check what material the shirts I iron are made of.
Elder Engelman

August 26, 2013

I am doing great. It has almost been seven months! It is pretty crazy to think about.
They can totally get baptized. I have wondered about that as well but President Schaefermeyer mentioned that Christ didn't excuse anyone from the need to be baptized. "Except a man be born of water and of the spirit." So yes, they still need to be baptized. It is kind of weird to teach them but we all need exaltation. In Frankford there was a recent convert that was bipolar. We didn't know until after but it was pretty weird. 
We do have an investigator family that we are teaching. There are two brothers and one of them is married so we are teaching his wife as well. They are all super awesome. We also just met a lady last night that is really cool. She is in her thirties I think and she told us we could definitely come back. We couldn't go in because we didn't have a male but I cannot wait to go back.
I cannot believe that brother Richardson was released! He is so awesome. I am sure David will find a love for the scriptures as well. 
How has nursery been?
I'm not really focusing right now so I'll just talk to you later.
Elder Engelman

August 19, 2013

This week has been pretty fun. I did get a new companion and I think I told you about him already. He is still learning but aren't we all? I am having so much fun! My Zone leaders are both from other countries. One, Elder Taylor, is from Canada and is almost done with his mission. The other one, Elder Tahn, is from Malaysia. Elder Tahn just became my Zone leader and before him both of the Zone leaders were Elder Taylor. Pretty crazy, huh?
My health is doing pretty good. Don't worry, I am doing great. Did I tell you that I have totally gained weight? 20 pounds and I have realized that I have a bit of a gut now so I am going to start working out harder. My companion is a work out freak. Not in a bad way, he just loves working out. He is pretty ripped and he always talks about how he wants to be bigger.
I am glad to hear to got to drive down memory lane. Hey, you went to Mesa High, right? I thought you did but I'm not sure. Anyway, a missionary from here is from Mesa. He was actually my first Zone Leader and we figured out you would have been there at the same time as his parents. There last name is Dana. Just curious is you knew them.
I am pretty surprised you didn't stop to take pictures. speaking of pictures, did you get the ones I sent last week?
So we have been visiting a member that is in a behavioral Health Facility and it is on the third floor of a hospital. When we went to visit him it was lunch time so we couldn't. We had to go in the back entrance and we realized it was because everyone was gone for lunch. Well, when we tried to go back the way we came in the door was locked. So we got trapped in a seemingly abandoned hospital. We went all the way up the the top floor looking for someone because there wasn't anyone on any other floor. It was quite eerie. When we finally found someone she was just sitting alone on her phone. It was pretty embarrassing when we had to ask for help to get out of the abandoned hospital.
We don't have any investigators that are progressing right now but that is okay. We just need to learn to rely on the Lord.
Yesterday was a cool at church because there were three youth speakers and they talked for the majority of the time. They all spoke on different things that related a lot. My favorite point one of them made is that we can't always alter our situation but we can always alter ourselves. This is definitely something I have realized myself.
Well, I love you, I'll talk to you later.
Yours Truly,
Elder Engelman

August 12, 2013

Sooooo some crazy stuff has happened. Okay, not really crazy. Just sort of surprising. It turns out I am training a new missionary. I found out on Monday night last week and it was a total surprise to me. On Wednesday I got to go out in Philadelphia for a few hours with the new missionaries and contact people. I took two new Goldens and we tried to contact some people. One of the guys we talked to ended up being a person that had talked with the missionaries before. He had just been thinking of when he met them and then we said hello to him. It is crazy how God puts people in our path. I met my Golden later that night. My new companion is from Pleasant Grove, Utah. His name is Elder Meline and he has pretty much come pre-trained. Elder Meline is a super good teacher already and he isn't afraid of talking to people. I am excited to see him grow.
Love you :)
-Elder Engelman

August 5, 2013


You took the lessons three times? Wow you weren't giving in without a fight :)
Our investigators have come to church but this week they did not. I know we will get them there consistantly. The problem is that their mother isn't usually home so we can't really get parent involvement :(
One of the missionaries is going home tomorrow and he is from Peoria, AZ. Super cool guy. We had a mini party at the soccer game on Saturday and the Spanish Elders had an investigator there.
We have been doing service of some kind almost every week. It is pretty fun because I never got to do that in my last area. We even got to move someone yesterday because they had an emergency move. It was cool because we got to actually work with almost the entire Elders quorum as we played Tetris, trying to fit everything in the van.
One problem we seem to be having here is this ward is a lack of family-ness. Growing up, our ward was always pretty close, I knew everyone and talked to most of the people. Here, that isn't quite the case. All the members are SUPER nice but it just isn't as close-knit. A member got up yesterday and talked about how she feels alone sometimes. It is exactly what the ward needed to hear but it couldn't come from the missionaries. God prompted her to share her thoughts because it will make an impact. Moral of the story is follow the promptings you receive.
Another cool thing I have just noticed is the tendency the gospel has to make people happy. A less-active members son, we will call him John, just started coming to church. His mother has health issues that keeps her from coming but he decided he wants to come. When John was first coming to church he was quiet and it was a struggle to get him to tell you how he was feeling. Now, he smiles and makes comments in class. He is reading talks in his free time. It is pretty amazing what the simple gospel of Jesus Christ can do.
My companion is getting transferred. It has been really short but I am excited to get a new companion. I'll keep you updated and I'll send you pictures soon.

Elder Engelman

July, 29, 2013

This week has been pretty good. I don't have much time to talk but I will give you the lo-down
We have a new investigator but I'm not sure  how committed she is. This summer was better than I thought it was going to be. I was seriously afraid it was going to be blazing hot but it has been totally bearable.
I'm probably going to sing in church in a few weeks. Just for fun, ya know.
I've been cutting some missionaries hair and luckily, I haven't messed up like I did on David.
I gots to go.
Love you,
Elder Engelman
p.s. sorry it is sooooo short but we have a zone activity that we are heading to.

July 16, 2013

I had the fortunate experience to lose my voice this week!! I was annoyed but there wasn't much I could do. So I whispered a lot. It was awesome.
We got three new investigators this week with baptismal dates! They are really cool. The ages are 13, 11, and 9. They have been reading the Book of Mormon and two of them came to church yesterday. The oldest one had to work. Yes, they ALL work. They are all super mature for their age and pretty independent. I can't wait to continue teaching them.
We have been focusing a little bit on less actives because there are a lot of them in our ward.We have just been stopping by a few people every day to know if they have moved or whats up. Five of the people we have recently talked to came to church yesterday. I didn't even realize that until now.  It was pretty cool to see them walk in.
We played soccer again yesterday and I was super grateful for those socks! They worked really well. One of the spanish elders is super good at playing keeper. He only let three goals past and had a ton of shots on him. He isn't even super athletic. He definitely found his niche.One of the recent converts kids was playing with us and he is crazy!. He is only 7, I think, and he just kept slide tackling everyone. Before that he was playing keeper and he blocked a ton of shots!
Anyway, how is life back home? I hope it is going well. Did you get the scripture I sent to you?
Elder Joseph Engelman