Monday, December 5, 2011

New Car!

So it's been a while since i've last updated my life. but here it is...

We have a new car in the family it's a 2001 ford focus and is a nice bright red, but there is a problem... it doesn't have a name so here is the time for suggestions of a new car. my thoughts have been ray bradbury. but i would like to here your suggestions. ( a very similar looking car)







the other big news as far as i know is that now i'm in logan living at the BKE and i'm having such a blast up here and just getting along with everyone!



Thursday, November 10, 2011

Tay-Hass



so it's been a little bit since my last post and here's just a couple of things that have happened since.

So a few weeks ago i was able to visit my dear Francisco Fambly in San Antonio, and I arrived in the middle of the dark on a Friday night, where Jan picked me and took me to her house which i had never seen before and which a give the highest regards, and so that night ended. which lead to the next morning where i heard the scampering feet running down the hall to go down and see what was for breakfast, then scurrying back up the stairs to play with toys while breakfast was being finished. so as I stumble out of bed still a little disoriented. I came out of the bed room and see the kids which screamed with delight to see Uncle Matt. So we got ready for the day by taking cocoa the Boxer Rottweiler mix out for a walk with all the kids after a delicious breakfast. As the day's went by i found out that this was the usual routine that the Francisco's had. so i was really impressed with them and what they do on a daily schedule.


After all the excitement of Uncle Matt and being new to the area, life went pretty normally and that Saturday we went on two big adventures, the first was the trip down to Guadalajara state park which was a lot of fun and full of rock throwing, picnics. and other grand adventures. than a short drive back to the house where we got ready for the trunk or treat party at the ward house, which was rather enjoyable and a lot of fun to meet a lot of new people, one of the best highlights in my opinion was the chance to talk to the elders of the ward and in a weird way get back int

o the grove of being a missionary again, which was really satisfying in a weird kind of way... anyways Saturday was a big success.

Which than leads us to Sunday which was a great day and just again relaxing nothing special other than a great time at church and being able to be apart of it was good. which leads to this picture. now like most people you wouldn't think that texas wouldn't be cold at the end of october and well your right, it wasn't cold. Jan and Ben both needed a fire in there house and so it was done.



Outside Temperature: 78 degrees.

so Sunday was really good and with three helpers the jobs around the house get done a lot quicker and that means there is more time to have fun... so that's just what we did, we went on a walk to the "exploring place" and carved pumpkins and so many other cool things. when all was said and done, Jan and I played the game Blokus in which we both had a good time and just catching up on old times.

Monday was quite a day indeed... it started off with getting the kids to their respective schools and then doing all the little odd jobs that needed to be done, but just couldn't be done due to time restraints, after that we got the kids together after the morning school and then went off to the zoo at San Antonio and saw all the animals but we needed to get back in a hurry before it got to dark, because it was HALOOWEEN!



Myra as a turtle Clark as a Bat Eva as a Princess

so as we hurried back to the house and started getting ready for the evenings adventure to arrive, the kids had such a great time out trick or treating and stayed out "really late"

Tuesday was another adventure which was quite fun and we were able to watch a kids movie and soak in the hot tub and do all sorts of random things that just needed to be done, so as the day started coming to a close as was shipped out to the airport where i needed to be to catch a flight back home and remember the good times that were had in Texas and start finding ways to visit again...


Friday, October 21, 2011

A Week Back


well this week hasn't been much of a change from last week, except for the fact that i'm no longer a missionary, well anyways the highlight of this past week....


well i got back on Thursday and wasn't released until Friday morning so in between arriving and being released i played two games of basketball with Pops. then started getting back in to the swing of everything with a wonderfully planned pumpkin carving COoompation which was really cool to start seeing everyone again. (pictures can be found on facebook.) so as the night of friday came to a close it was time for me to get ready for a sacrament talk, and reporting to the high council, which i was nervous for but i think it went pretty well. The subject that i tried to focus on was doing the small things in life, because when we do those things than we are more on track with the rest of our lives.

which leads us to the after party where i met up with the old buddies that i have going from left to right Richard Wilkins, Me, Eric Swindlehurst, and Richard Wilson. with the unfortunate leaving of Sister Beetle and Brother Thad.




so that was sunday in a nutshell, and it didn't quite feel real that i either i left or i was supposed to be back, but i think that i'm adjusting pretty well.

Monday it was just a normal day i think, just kind of bumming around the house finding little odd jobs to do and cleaning up a bit and getting reorginized. than going to my first FHE at the YSA ward that i'm supposed to be a part of and that was weird and different, but cool to see one of my old companions and seeing new people in the ward and another chance to catch up with old friends. one for example was Spencer Hatfield and going over each other's mission stories and then also seeing Kayla Hunter and catching up on good time with both of them.... so all in all a good time.

Tuesday i woke up in the morning and got out and did a shift for Mom at the Cannery and i shoved over a ton of pork cubes. yes that was my job shoving pork... pretty cool i think... and other good news i got a phone, so send me an email and i'll let you know what the number is.

Wednesday was just a good day where i just relaxed and started the Lord of the Ring Trilogy, which i think is a great movie to start back into the swing of things. and not seeing anything for two years it really opens up the movie again and i think i'm getting more out of it.

Thursday, was the day of cleaning up the house again and starting on a couple of projects, and going fishing which was a lot of fun, just having time to enjoy nature and getting to know the jethrobyn clan again, which ended up with a nap on the floor of their house.

Friday just finishing a couple of projects that are around the house and getting ready to go camping tonight with the young scouts. so it's going to be fun and interesting to see what happens.


Matt Gillespie- out

Monday, October 10, 2011

Twas the P-Eve before Home-Eve...

Hello everybody!

Guess what it's my last time writing as a missionary in the mission field and i'll update you on what's happen this last week so, we had kind of a crazy week where we had to pull together a baptism in about 10 days which isn't bad. so we got the rest of the lessons taught and got everything ready for this great baptism of this girl who's dating a member. so we have everything done... now you just don't want any baptism, so we took it upon ourselves to make it the nicest that a missionary could do, so the interview for baptism is on Wednesday and she passed with flying colors. so now it was on to the next phase... cleaning the font, now a couple of weeks ago i told you that the font was out of order for a bit. so we had some professionals come in and clean it up for us, but for some strange reason there was still a funny odor that was floating around. so we went to investigate, and we think that the smell was coming from the grout and Elder Bluth being a former janitor and working with chemicals all his career found that we best just by scrubbing the grout and then cleaning every little nook and cranny that might potentially keep the smell in there. so off we went to work and we worked and worked just trying to get that smell out and by the end of the whole thing we found that the smell had been eradicated. which i thought was pretty cool. so the next day on Saturday we went up to the church and started filling the font and it was just such a great opportunity and not only that but it was really spiritual.  what i thought was the coolest was the fact that every  time that we taught her she just seemed to be a little bit happier and a glow about her that i had never really noticed before and just how much learning about the gospel and applying it would make you happier. it just made me realize how much happier we all can be with the truth of the gospel in our lives.

Well on to our next story of the week, so this past couple of weeks we had a great time and had a chance to teach a little girl who's 8 years old and in a less active home so we had the chance to teach her and her family more about the Gospel and taught all the lessons and just had a really good time and helped her with everything that had a question about.  even though she really didn't have any questions at the time, and yet she just soaked in everything that we taught her, incredible how the human mind can just accept knowledge without a problem and make it work with all the other things inside the head at the same time. so anyways we taught her everything that she needed to know and what the bishop wanted us to teach her so we had a good old time with that, and then we set the date for baptism of October the 9th right after church and so we came early to church right after we finished with the baptism of the night before and started the font, which ended up just right. so I was able to have 2 baptisms right at the end of my mission, which has been a great ending to my experience here, in fact i wouldn't want to be in any other place right now i just feel like I'm home.... which all it means to me is feeling the spirit and having people around who really do love you and want you to become the best that you can become.

So that's the final ending to my story here in the Florida Tallahassee Mission as a 19-21 year old who was scared out of his mind, but has grown into a better person than he thought he could become and loves the gospel with all his heart might mind and strength. I love all ya'll

Love
Elder G.

a fort we built

baptism of sammy

baptism of cassie

Monday, September 26, 2011

Baptism!

Hellooooo Nurse!


So with that introduction I'll let this week start to unfold to ya'll so this Monday was a great one where we deep cleaned the apartment again and just made it all spic and span. after that well that night faded into the next day Tuesday

Which happened to be Zone conference and which would be my last one as a missionary here, so it was a very interesting and weird feeling that would be the last one that i was going to have in a long while. so that was a really good and uplifting experience to end on as far as zone conferences are concerned, and started bring up the fact that my mission was going to end soon. The lesson though that i learned this time was the fact that it really doesn't matter who's the missionary, it's the fact that I'm being open enough to let the spirit work through me to help bless those around me. That is the biggest thing that i got out of this last zone conference. That night we had another great lesson with the large group of members and we had the lesson of the plan of salvation which ended up having a lot of different questions which we needed to study to try and get the answer to their questions. But it was an awesome time to finish the day.

Wednesday was just another day just working hard and long trying to find, teach and baptize people and that day we were working all over and ended up working with a member and seeing a less active and trying to restart a fire in her life to come back to church where you can be happier. After that we went to another member's who fed us some pizza which we hadn't really gotten a lot of lately so we had a really good time there and taught that family about prayer and getting them to again to come to church, which is another part member family and we again had a really good discussion about the plan of salvation. So it's been interesting about what we've been studying and what we are trying to answer.

Thursday, that was a really slow day, we tried everything we could to find people contact investigators do anything and it just seemed like nothing was working. So we just kept working with what we had and kept moving forward and it'll pay off when it's the right time.  That night we had dinner with a member family whose son is going on a mission in about 8 weeks so it's going to be really cool. They might even call to see what's going on and see the sights in Utah.

Friday we finished getting everything ready for the baptism program that afternoon, and worked as well as we could we everything going on, some of the highlights were, starting to teach a family the gospel, which went really well, and we think that it's going to go somewhere. Then we went to the font and cleaned it out before the baptism that we were having the next day.

Saturday worked on inviting people to the baptism and then started the font and getting everything set for that which was really good. It was really spiritual as well, and it was a good boost to keep me going and see and feel the happiness that the gospel really does bring to families.

Sunday we were just enjoying life, having a really good time and just having a good time when the bishop comes up to us and starts talking to us and brings a family over, so we talk a little bit and find out that a little girl who's 8 wants to get baptized, well that's a great time for us to be there and come to find out that they want her to get baptized in two Sundays which i was stoked to find out and that would just make a great ending to my mission which God has been so gracious to let me be a part of. So just another little miracle of the day and mission which I'm looking forward to.

That the week in a snap shot. I'm excited to see what happens in the coming weeks.

Love Elder Gillespie

Monday, September 19, 2011

Poop!

Life is going really well and Elder Bluth and I are getting along really well and happy to be out here.

this week has been pretty weak, we've done a lot of tracting, a lot of trying to see people, and a lot of walking around to find new people to teach.  the best story i have would of been last weeks when we were able to find a lady who knows the church and getting open to the idea of coming, which she literally lives down the street from the church.  we were able to have a really spiritual lesson with her, and found out that she's been told about the book of mormon from a sister and brother in-law.  it was really a great lesson and i think we'll get her pretty close before i leave to coming to church and understanding more and more about the church.

So! story of the week, we have our investigator getting ready for baptism and everything is going well we are making the program and getting all the final preparations finished for this great event that we are going to have on saturday, and as we get everything figured out we find out that the facilities of the church aren't working the way they are suppose to and with that the baptism needed to be postponed until the plumbing could be figured out and changed.  which we would find out that it wouldn't be until saturday evening when everything was figured out that all pipes were fixed. so with all that we got everything moved to where it was suppose to and then kept working with what we have.

besides that we had an amazing lesson with a investigator who actually wanted us to come over and teach her and one of the member families who are befriending her. in the process of teaching we had her in the lesson but also the grandfather of the family who also isn't a member and participated in the lesson. it was a really good lesson and everything went really well, although it's really intimidating to teach like 6 members who are older than you and have been in pretty distinguished callings, and teaching the lesson in such a way where all can benifit. i don't know about you but it was a little scary in my opinion. and we also feel like she'll be able to come really quickly into the church.

besides that life here in the little town of pearson isn't to bad, i've got everything i want and everything i need.

Love to all

Elder Gillespie

Beetle, sounds like a lot of fun, and i've got the request of going to the temple on friday morning... i think that would be a lot of fun.

Toni, i loved the notes from anna and your probably right with her understanding and it's going to be a lot of fun when i do come over, as far a missionaries. you'll have to be the one to decided what kind you want in your house. to make it eaiser just wait a little while and get settled in, but if they show up to your door, get to know them by asking questions, they like that.

Jan WHAT! when did this little suprise come up, and am i the last to know?  anyways i'm excited to see ya'll soon enough. tell ben he's doing awesome.

Robyn those pictures looked awesome and I am impressed. it's so weird to think that cousin brian is already married. keep up the good work, it's paying off.

Dad you sound like a very busy man, you should relax a bit so when i do come home i'll have a project or two to do while i'm just around.

Mom your letter was awesome and i hope that you'll see the things that you already knew were inside, but just needed sometime to be refined.

Love Ya'll and i think i'm turning southern.

Matthew Gillespie

Monday, September 12, 2011

Sulfur Water!

This week has been awesome and it's been a lot of fun as well,

So let's start this off right and let you know what's been going on this past week,

Monday was a day of cleaning, we spent the entire day cleaning top to bottom of our little home in Pearson, getting rid of all the bugs that we could get rid of and dusted every nook and cranny, both high and low, listening to some great spiritual music, well, because that just makes the day go smoother.  So that was the Monday,

Tuesday we were able to have a good old time and we had a good district meeting and then we were able to set a date with an investigator that we've been teaching for the last couple of weeks,  he's going to be baptized this Saturday, which is going to be the same night that we are doing a movie night at the ward, which will be really cool and awesome. Later that night we went on splits with a member and we were able to see a few people that we really wouldn't have been able to see without his help. so it was a really cool night

Wednesday was my 23 month marked, it's weird to think that it's been that long but at the same time it doesn't, I really do love it out here even in the extreme heat that we get. So to celebrate we went tracting and worked all day and did what you would of done any other day, and that was a good time and a good day where we were able to meet our goals that we set for the day, which was a great feeling. to accomplish something that we wanted to do.

Thursday, we had a funeral in the ward and it was good to hear that there are still good people in the world and who do the right thing for the right reason just like the man that they were honoring. Then we tried to do as much as we could to work afterwards and do our weekly planning, which didn't quite work out according to plan but it was still a good time.

Friday, finished weekly planing and went out and saw an investigator who know quite a few people in the ward, so we are hoping with her we will be able to start teaching her quickly and that night went and saw quite a few people with another member who was very gracious to take us again to people that we don't really get to see. it was a great time... in fact i saw a tractor that looked a lot like our old one so i grabbed a picture.

Saturday was a day where you work and work and work and nothing seems to work out for what you want to do... but in the end it was a day where you learn that i doesn't always have to work out for you, you just have to do your part and in the end you will be blessed for what you have done, it may not happen the way that you were thinking but it will happen for the best, also it helps you understand that you are more capable of doing a hard task rather than just quitting before the day is up.

Sunday... and it was good. it's been a good time serving here and it's starting to come up to the ward trusting us and letting us into their homes with their friends and family and so that's been the coolest thing that's been going on lately. so this work keeps going forward and it doesn't matter really that i didn't baptize as many people as others, but that i was able to become a missionary and a better son of God. so that has been a good help to me to understand the bigger picture.

Love
Elder Matthew Gillespie

P.S. the water here Sucks, and tastes like the title....

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Smells like Football. . .

Hello Everybody!

So last week i was short changed with time, so i'll try to fit in both weeks as much as I can.

Last week we found out we had transfers. and Elder Kennington was getting moved from Pearson to Destin, FL which i hear is a really good area, so with him moving i got a new Companion Elder Bluth, I had never served around him or heard really anything about him so working with a clean slate no prejudgement made. So that day we spend most of it packing up  Elder Kennington with all his stuff. which leads to Tuesday where we worked in Douglas because the transfer people needed to leave from Douglas at 6 AM so we would spend the night up there and then wait till the transfer people would come back, which happened to be at 1030 PM so that day we worked in Douglas again. which was a pretty good time.  The next day being Thursday we got everyone situated and i got Elder Bluth and all his stuff and headed back down to Pearson and from there we started working getting used to the area and getting everything working how it should be done. So that was really good,

A little bit about Elder Bluth, He's from Mapleton Utah and has a twin brother who worked at the same grocery store i did, Buy Low market,  It was really cool to find that out. He also graduated from Springville High 2009 and has a great family, he's really really funny and in my opinion is kind of like a lost brother. and he's got one transfer after me, so it's really cool to see how this is going to be a great ending to what has been a really great mission experience.

Since we've been together, we've cleaned our little house from top to bottom on P-day and got rid of all the nasty bug problems, for the most part, and we've stocked the apartment with all the major necessities. We've worked with a lot of Less actives and started finding more people to talk to and we've had some pretty stellar studies together, which really make a day go so much better. If you actually study the scriptures at the beginning of your day and feel the spirit, than everything else just falls into place.  I would definitely recommend that to anyone and everyone. Other things we've accomplished is to see a lot of the investigators we were able to find this last transfer and talk with them and see what we can do to get them closer to Christ, and what we can do to get them baptized.

Let's see, what else has happened this last little bit as far as mission work is going on. umm... this is my last transfer and so far I've had 15 companions so i think that's pretty impressive. (including the MTC).  We are working with a family right now which will have their child baptized pretty soon and then get some of their extended family studying so we can get some more who could be baptized.

so that's about it for now.

Love you all

Elder Gillespie

Monday, August 15, 2011

Not enough time

Hello Everybody!!!

So guess what? it's another day where we can come closer together and listen to the stories we all have.

So i'll start off.

This week has been pretty good and recently we have been going over the roster that we have and we have started finding people who are part members and have started to work with them and get them interested again in the gospel.  We've found a few people who seem like they would be pretty interested. Along with that we have also been going down through the roster and trying to meet everyone we can, and lo and behold a lot of people have been moving and just don't live there anymore, but it's still on the roster, which means that this area just needs some help with their home teaching, as soon as they home teach the people they will start coming.

Well anyways. Tuesday was a great day we had zone conference and I realized that i finally am coming close to the end of my mission which was a weird thought and something i'm trying to get out of my head, because i don't want to focus on the fact that I only have "this much time left" i just want to put my head down and keep working and get everything i can out of this experience. So that's a little inside bit of my head. Anyway, that day we had trade offs with the district leader and had a really good time with him and got to meet quite a few people. One man who we ran into was just sitting on his porch and we came up to him and just started talking to him and getting to know him a little bit and then we were able to give him a Book of Mormon and directions to church, and he said he was going to be there so we were really excited.  That same night we were able to find a couple of less active people who just need a little help coming to church, and that blended into Wednesday which was another good day, where we were able to walk pretty much all day and get to know the town a lot better and again try to find people who either don't exist or we just don't know where they lived.

Thursday agin jus a good old day where we just tried to do as much as we could along with all the other days.

Times getting short and i've got to get going, but i'm loving it here and i'm excited to be alive and working for the Lord, i'm doing my best with what i've got and trying to get a better understanding of how we can help.

Love
Elder Gillespie

Monday, August 8, 2011

False Doctrine!

Hello Everybody!

So what's new on this side of the world, well it's still probably one of the hottest years that has been on record in Georgia and I'm sure feeling it. not like it wasn't bad last year, it's just as hot.

So this week, finally starting to get a grasp of what's going on here in Pearson. and where everyone lives and who is who.  Most of this week has been following up with people that we saw the last week and now see, where they really want to go, and that's what we've been doing here in Pearson.

Monday we were invited to have FHE at a members home which was really fun and answered a couple of questions that just dealt with the Book of Mormon and it was really interesting and fun.

Tuesday was a day we decided to go out and walk around town to go visit people and also knock on a couple of doors which was another really hot day so not so much fun in the sun. then again seeing members and it was just really fun to go and meet a couple of the members, it was interesting to see how timing worked out that day, and who we were able to see and get more information, so we can help them come to Christ.

Wednesday, it was a projects day and what do you know, everyone was gone... well most of the people were gone, we were able to get a few people to talk to and then set up some appointments for later in the week, after all that we went with a member on splits and he took us to an area where we have no map for and we are trying to get to know the area but we couldn't just go out there for the fun of it and try to figure it out for ourselves because we then wouldn't have any miles for the rest of the month. because Georgia is really really spread out. so we got in a few members homes and got to talkin about life and general and all that goodness. and then had dinner out there. which was pretty good southern style cookin.

Thursday another great day where we had an appointment and got teach a good first lesson.  and then had a good little time just sitting on the porch, and of course i was sweating like i was in a steam room, because it's the middle of the afternoon. in 100+ degree weather. Then did some other things around town where we could until our dinner appointment/splits and then had a really good time again trying to get to know members who are just a little too far for us to go visit on a random day.

Friday we had a good district meeting, and we almost got lost on our way up to Alma Georgia which i didn't think would be hard to find but who would of guessed that. so after that we came back down and then had a fun time in Axson which we've been told is one of the first LDS church that was built in the south and they called it little Utah. There's a little memorial built to it. so that was pretty neat to just be a little part of history, well anyways we did a lot of member visits down in that part of our area. than came home after we had tried to visit all the people in that area. and then came home for dinner and then we went back out and we able to clean up some errors on the roster that we have which will really help out the ward and next set of missionaries.

Saturday we decided again to go walking and didn't get back till it was about 2 pm in again 100+ degree weather. so that was interesting again sweating so much that i could actually taste a difference in my salt level from the beginning of the day to then. Also our toilet handle broke so that was a little project that was fixed that day. and then back into a car where we could get to some of the places that we needed to go, and we had a little discussion with a investigator family and got to know them better, and then started answering some of their questions. which is always a good way to enter, in my opinion. and then more driving around gettin lost trying to find people that their addresses have changed.

Sunday just a relaxing day where we were able to just enjoy fast Sunday and it was really cool to see all the people just come to church who we invited actually show up. and it was cool also on a personal note to have a great fast Sunday where i wasn't doubled over in pain for the lack of food. and then had a great dinner with a member and the entire extended family showed up and a great little discussion about things that people try to add to the bible, which aren't even in there. so clearing that up. After that going on another goose chase finding people on the roster and discovering that a lot of people are part members, so some people to work with.

that's a week in a wrap.

it didn't seem like it was all of that but as time goes on life gets smushed together.

As for things I've learned it's that sometimes when we try to force things to be a certain way we may miss out on opportunities that could only happen by waiting. and when we over look those opportunities that do come our way we miss out on the miracle that happened for that to happen. or in simpler words being in the right spot at the right time.

I love you all no matter what else is going on in this life.

Love
Elder Matt Gillespie

Thad my advice is to do something random everyday, ex. eat something new, do something new, go somewhere new,  or try out life in a different way.

Beetle broken foot sucks. but soon enough you'll be back on your feet and that's cool you got a RM room mate. that makes life so much easier. and you'll have to take me on a tour next summer.

Jethrobyn congrats on a successful birthday, and getting ready for the school year and you had some pretty cool pics of your trips, i love the one with Lincoln on Jethro's shoulders.

Toniben. sounds like quite an adventure. and Toni your going to be the best drive the north east has ever seen. and i hope you can feed the missionaries when all this is settled down. and I'm looking forward to a trip out there.

Janben you are two really hard workers and i hope that they let you sleep enough. both the kids and the hospital. and i can't believe that Myra is almost walking. that's so cool.

mom you are awesome and i love your letters they always make me happy. keep up the good work

Dad we have some good time coming up soon that much i do know. 

Sophie Lee. your letter was a good help to me and yes I'm enjoying my mission but i never thought that it would be like it was and is, but i wouldn't trade it for the world. and it's good that your keeping up with your school work, because that's important, and quit graduating. but really do graduate. (maybe by the time i graduate learn how to spell...)
A destroyed trailer

The bunch that came out with me.

Elder Kennington

Logging trailer

Our house

Monday, August 1, 2011

MUNNS!

Hello Everybody!

What is it like in Pearson? well to tell you the truth... it's pretty sweet. the members are really nice to us and are excited for us to be here in the area. and the other cool thing is that the roads are mostly just dirt roads. so it makes life interesting as we get the average rain fall for the day and we are heading down those places. well anyways the highlights of the week:

So this past week we have been able to make a map of where all the members live, which helped us out to understand what we could do to use our time wisely. which is interesting.  The other thing that's interesting is that the more and more we get to know the members we start to see that the members are all related some how to each other. and we are starting to get to know the jist of most of the members. so that's another cool thing that we are doing.

This last Friday we actually had an area 70 come and teach us what we could do to make the mission grow and how we can help others receive the gospel.  It's really funny because all the teachings were right out of Preach my Gospel which is what this mission's big goal right now is to become. and it's getting there and things are starting to work in all the areas and the people we are working with in the mission are getting more and more excited about the work. I'd say that we are going to easily make the goals that we are setting as far as this mission. So the area 70 was Elder Munns of the 6th quorum of 70's and we were told by him that the areas we are working in need the gospel and that people are ready for the gospel, and as we work hard and smart that we will find them and help them receive the gospel and get baptized. and it's really by doing the small things and being obedient not only to the rules but also to do the inspired things that we have received or what the leaders of the church have received. and as we do that we'll start to have more and more revelation of what can and should happen and also the teachings of the church and it's doctrines.  so that something i learned this week.

Then the very next day we had a pioneer day where we had a celebration on the church grounds and a whole lot of people showed up and we had food of course and then decided to get a big old water slide as well for this thing. and it was just so fun to see so many people who just wanted to have fun and get together. big fun.

than it's Sunday and we had the opportunity to speak this Sunday about forgiveness. which was fun... I at least learned a lot about what is forgiveness. and elder Kennington did a really good job and just to tell a little bit about him, he's from San Diego, California. and was serving in the Macon Georgia mission until they dissolved the mission. and he's been out about a year. so a little bit about him. that was a lot of fun and we got to get to help out where we could in the third hour about doing missionary work and what are the new rules and such... and all that goodness.

that's pretty much the highlights of the week. it's been kind of a blur and I'm excited to keep working and love the people.


Love
Elder Gillespie


Mom your awesome and it does sound like it's been a mad house over the last couple of weeks send dad my best at Schofield.

Robyn you're one busy lady and it's sad to see people go but we'll all have fun during reunions.

Jethro I'm willing to debate and I'll throw in some southern reasoning into our discussion.

Thad instead of sending google invites could you at least send something personal...?

Happy birthday to all the in laws too!

Love you all

Monday, July 25, 2011

PEARSON!

Dear Parents. life is going good. my address is 1042 old Douglas Hwy, but if you want to keep it simple just send it to the mission office and it'll get to me.

so this week has been interesting for sure and after finding out that I'm getting transferred, i spent most of the day just getting everything ready for the next person to come in, which in this case was a new missionary.  We spent most of the day just deep cleaning the apartment and then getting everything spic and span, not saying I'm dirty but that there was a lot of extra stuff that needed to go. so continuing that day we went and said good bye to a lot of the families that i really liked in Chipley.  So it was a sad time but also good,  kind of weird going back to an area and then leaving it again.

so transfers.... we had a very different transfer this last time, the Tifton guys cam down pretty early with the AP's and what was weird was that the members who live in the tifton area made arrangements for the missionaries to stay with them while transfers were happening.  so kind of weird, transfers happened and then we went up to tifton and what was weird was we got to Tallahassee at about 7pm and then when we got to tifton it was 9pm which i thought was really interesting.  Georgia is a lot more open than i would of thought it's kind of like the feel of Alabama but nicer like Florida, anyways completely different than any other area I've been in. So long story short, we spent the night in tifton at a members home, to get ready for the next day and that was quite a trip. So as we are driving me and elder Kennington started talking and it was really quite interesting to get to know who he was and everything like that.  we get to Pearson and then find out that the town has only two stop lights and a small grocery store and there is a ward in this area which i was amazed at so that's Pearson in a nut shell, small but really happy to see us because there hasn't been missionaries here in over a year so they are starting to really help us out.

I love you all and things are starting to pick up

Love
Elder Gillespie

Monday, July 18, 2011

Raining Raining Raining

Tifton Here I COME!

Well that's the biggest news for me, that I'm now going to Tifton and serving at Pearson Georgia. with a missionary from the Macon Georgia Mission,  So a little bit of a background on that... so this last year this mission found out that they are dissolving the Macon Georgia Mission and with that breaking it up into different missions and for us in Tallahassee mission we are getting the Tifton stake which appears to be quite a large area and the area I'm going to be serving in seems to be pretty large, with just a few people kind a like Chipley. so I'm excited to get to another area and find out what it's like there and how the other mission works and how i can improve. I just hope i can get that through my thick head.

So back to Chipley.  This week has been like a small tropical storm and it started about Thursday. and it kept raining and raining, so anyways this week has been flying by.  Monday was just regular Monday with getting ready for the week and all that other fun stuff. 

Tuesday we needed to get to Crestview for Elder Cluffs' medication which a doctor in Crestview is a member and gives a huge discount for missionaries. So we took a little trip to Crestview which is where Cluff was serving before here and we went and saw a couple of people that he was working with while he was there and it was really neat to see the progress that everyone was making. Then came back and tried to help some people out around in Chipley, like our investigator Joel and his girlfriend, and we were able to help them understand what a prophet's role is and how it works with the rest of the world. It was cool to see him get the concept about a prophet.

Wednesday. we had a good old time trying to see people who of course didn't want to see us, which isn't bad but man it gets annoying pretty quick. The other thing I've noticed is that a lot of the people around town are out on vacation which means that they really can't answer the door if they aren't home. So we deal with what we've got. but that day we were able to see Joel again and see if he was able to get the whole prophet thing and had him explain it to us and he did a really good job with it. then had dinner with one of my favorite members just because she reminds me of grandma Spencer, so humble and so happy about life. It just made my night. than we went and did some church hopping and we got to see just how close our church is with their church and how they are run, but they just don't quite understand how exactly it is connected which is interesting.

Thursday again another good day had a lot of things fall through, but we did have a good time and this was when the rain started, and we actually were able to help out with a member who needed some good help, and able to involve some members who could actually do something. which was really good.

Friday, so this was a cool day, so we have been talking to a Muslim and able to just kind of go over basic beliefs from each other and he actually invited us to go to their service which is on Friday

sorry got to go

Love Elder Gillespie

Monday, July 11, 2011

Movies

Hello Everybody!

so this week has been quite interesting and that's for sure... it started out with the whole 4th of July and then going to district meeting... where we had a great discussion about listening to others as well as our companions and then also speaking of stating our purpose for why we are doing what we are doing, which went pretty well. that day i then went on trade off's with the zone leaders well one of them and from that we had a great time, i went back down to PCB and then saw a couple of people that i hadn't seen in well over a year, which was really kind of weird, and it was interesting to see how our lives don't really change all that much over the course of a year. so i had a great time there and it brought back a lot of memories, and guess what the entire time i was down there we walked every where which was totally different than the last time i was there. so that was really weird but cool at the same time. so leads us to Wednesday... we traded back and i came back to chipley and realized that we were going to have a movie night in two days and we needed to spread the word even more. so me and cluff went and tried to visit as many people as we could that we don't usually see in chipley so off we went. spreading the good word of the movie to all that we could. which then ended that day, except the final things we did that night was we went to another church and had a lot of fun there and then we went and gave a blessing to a child who wasn't feeling so good, then left back for home. so over all a pretty good night.

THORsday. we did our weekly planning and started getting more and more ready for the movie night, so we finalized some of the plans and everything that we needed to do and finished with visiting again people who don't really come to church all that much, and trying to get them to come to this movie thing.... I'll tell the title when we get there.  so before all that we had a lesson with a guy and he had some questions about life and what his purpose in life was so we spent a lot of time again on the plan of salvation, and then tying that in with the the gospel of Jesus Christ and then we were able to set a BCD with him and help him get on his way towards his baptism now it's in a couple of months, but it's a goal to shoot for.  then we went to see our cancer patient to see how she is doing and we get to the door and we find out that she isn't feeling well and doesn't want to be bothered. so we start writing a note for her and as we finish it she comes to the door and looks at us and then tells us that she isn't going to be in chipley anymore and is going to move with her son, just because she can't take care of herself. so with a shattered heart we head back home to help some other person, with some brownies. so we finished the brownies and started again to give out more and more fliers to the movie night, and give the brownies to a member who's been going through a really hard time. which ends this Thursday.

Friday...  the big premier. so that day we did our usual things on Friday like the service we had at the habitat for humanity and the chance to talk to one of the volunteers about the church some more and she is actually really interested in the family history side of the church and is getting more and more in depth with that and hopefully will be at our church on Tuesday during the hours that the family history center is open. so after all that we went off again to see people and invite them to the big movie thing. and the night approached we went to the church to set up everything and it turned out to go perfectly we had both bonifay and chipley people come to this event. We had pop corn, drinks and cookies and all sorts of treats  it turned out really well. and we watched Joseph Smith. Prophet of the Restoration.  and we got quite a few people to cry.

Saturday was a day that just was like all the rest, trying to see those people that we once contacted and then also trying to find new people, and trying to teach those who we have who want to learn more. so it's been a good time for all.

and then Sunday where i learned that if I'm feeling the spirit and being lead and guided by him then i therefore must be at least worthy to have that companionship and if i continue to push forward and keep becoming better than everything is going to work out for the best. Then we had a great little program and learned a lot and then had a lunch appointment with a member and we were able to have a great discussion with a member who is really inquisitive. We went over the first two lessons with her and in greater detail so that she could better understand a lot of her questions. and it turned out really well. and then the final place for the night we had a great hour and a half discussion with a guy who is really trying to better understand his purpose, so hopefully we'll get somewhere with him.

Love you all

And keep up the good work

Elder Gillespie

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

FIREWORKS!!!!!

Hello everybody!

This has been a interesting week, so for the Monday of last week i went on a trade off, with elder Jenkins in Bonifay, him and I got along really well. which was cool. well then after that we had Tuesday where we had dinner down in the Vernon area and we went biking down in a town of less than 1000 people and it was just really fun to go out and be in a different part of town. which we don't really visit just because we don't have miles to go down everyday which is the hardest thing in this area to do, budgeting our miles. We had a lot of fun just biking around town knocking on doors and we were able to see a really cool part of the country with a crystal clear stream and then a great dinner with a member and he showed us around his big old property, which was really cool. then off to splits, and it decided that night to have the bottom of the bucket fall out and there was so much water that i was getting nervous about falling off the road. then off to home and we needed to just park the car at the house and bike for the rest of the days that we had in the month.

Wednesday, it was quite a day and we were really able to enjoy the journey that we had with going about the town of Chipley. We had a lesson with Willie who we've been talking with for a while, then just asked him a question if he had any questions about life, and low and behold it was all about the 2nd half of the 2nd lesson about the plan of salvation so we were really able to help him understand the question that he had which was really cool. Then had the chance to knock on a door get invited in and then teach a lesson and gave the baptism invitation which was really cool to see on the first visit. and i think that we'll be able to help her come closer to God when she gets back from Chicago. That night we had splits again and this time a guy named Peter came and then Travis so we both went in two different directions.  I went and tried to see people that Travis needed to go visit, and the other guys went and had a great time visiting other churches which i heard went really well. and i had a great time with Travis and i relearned the importance of staying focused on the other people rather than myself. which was cool to hear from a less active and who wanted to just be honest with his life.

Thursday, was the first day in my entire mission where I've had to help pour cement (you know what i don't think I've lost any of that information that you've taught me dad.).  That was a great time just enjoying life. Then after that realized that we had a dinner appointment in an hour and we needed to bike there and it would take that hour to get there. So on we hopped and away we went, and I'll be honest I've never felt so tired and energized in my life afterwards than i did at that point. It was weird but really cool. We were about to bike back but the members wouldn't let us. but oh well.

Friday we had one of those days where everything that we planned just fell through which isn't cool but in the same instance we were able to see the miracles that happen because we were in an area at the right time but then just was moved a little bit so we could actually get some of the work done. and that was a night that we had a great lesson with a investigator. and it just was so good to see some light in someone's eye that was starting to grasp the gospel. It was just really cool to see that and then was able to get it and then we were blessed to give this investigator a blessing for her migraine which was bugging her for the last 24 hours, which was really cool.

Saturday in the park i think it was the 2nd of July... so that was a day of following up with everyone that we made contact with over the past couple of weeks to see if they would be interested more in the gospel. and there was some interest but not a lot and that's what we are trying to work with.  but it was really good to follow up with everything. and it was just a really busy day. nothing really exciting that sticks out.

Sunday was a good day we had a great sacrament meeting  and splits with another member and we were able to see a lot of people that we couldn't have seen just because of the miles problem again but it was really good to see the people that we did and to help others the best we could and i learned that if you really want to care and help others you need to understand what's going on in their life so you can help them

Monday a day of cleaning and getting ready for parties that we were invited to. and we had a great time with some members who brought an investigator over and we just showed that we were having a good time, and we are all just people trying to do our best for our Heavenly Father and trying to make the most of our lives.

I love you all

Elder Gillespie

Monday, June 27, 2011

Watermelon Festival

Hello everybody

Life here is going pretty good and again I'll just say i haven't been drinking more water in my life than i am right now. so I'll have to make this kind of short but this week has been pretty cool we had days where the lord blessed us to make our goals and helped us find new investigators one of the people we are teaching now is an old lady who has terminal cancer and we helped clean up her yard and we were also able to give her a blessing and we both have a good feeling about this and now we are starting to get her to understand what we believe and then help her make a commitment to God. some of the other highlights that have happened this week, is zone conference which i'll be honest doesn't feel like it's been this week but last week, but we were able to talk about marriage and what we need to prepare for when we get off our mission, which i'll be honest is kind of a interesting thought, but it's the next progression in life. and the biggest thing i got out of it, is that first it's about friendship and then after that everything else will fall into place, we just have to be willing to make it part of our life.

Oh the biggest thing that this little town is all about is the watermelon festival it's probably bigger than Christmas, it's like the 4th of July in Provo, but just think of it as the a mini version of that where maybe a stake gets together for a celebration, that's about the size of this little town. and we have seen so many people that were actually friendly to us. i couldn't believe it.  but it's been a good week, and i've got to get going unfortunately

Love

Elder Gillespie

Beetle that was a good update, you'll do fine just make a plan and stick to it.

Mom I love you and i'm doing my best to keep motivated. i've got a good companion for that.

Jan, it's ok, just let me know what is new that's going on. it may not seem like a lot is, but look for the small things, they make the biggest difference. 

Monday, June 20, 2011

Oppressive Heat

 Hello everybody this week has been pretty interesting. so I'll try to make it into words. so first of all it's been HOT. and i don't mean like normal western hot i mean even the Floridians are saying it's too hot. and for them to say that makes me nervous, well because I've got 4 months of heat. yeah i doesn't really ever cool off... so for your details which you probably don't want to hear about but i want to say anyways is it's been over 100 degrees everyday until the sun goes down then it may go down in to the mid 80's so all the plans we had to do a bon-fire-side was postponed until it really cools off so we won't melt next to the fire. which make me thankful for AC.

Alright so this week Monday we ate with the family, who's father was searching for 20 years and we had a wonderful meal with them and tonight we are suppose to have  hotdogs which is making me excited about life. and at this time Elder Cluff's thumb who was starting to get infected and we didn't think it was going to be a big deal, so we went to bed...

Tuesday we get up and Cluff's thumb is getting bigger and bigger and we continue through our day we visit some members and investigators and then set up a service for the next day and go off on splits with a member and it went really well we were able to get a lot of thing accomplished. even talked to a member who native speech is Spanish and the guy who came out with us spoke Spanish, which was wonderful. so it ended up being a really awesome experience. and remember that Cluff's thumb is getting bigger and bigger. so we head to bed and wait for the morning sun to peek through the window which it always does way too early in the morning.

Wednesday. woke up and started getting to move some metal before it get's too hot. so I'm all ready and i look around and Cluff is just laying on his bed holding his thumb up trying to get the pressure off. but it isn't happening. So I gave him a blessing, and the coolest little miracle happened, as soon as it was over all the pain was taken away and we headed off to service. to move probably a couple tons of metal for this member who didn't really need it any more. Finished that, taught a lesson and then got ready to go and was able to give a blessing for the member who was really down on their luck. so we then left to get some epsom salt and started to soak the thumb. and it was soaking and soaking. So we eventually headed off to get some stuff for a member who's family's house was burned down and needed supplies for them. and then after that for a little fun and also to see if anyone was interested we went to an ol' fashion tent revival with a preacher who's been doing his preaching for over 40 years. and it was pretty interesting. Then made brownies and took them as a midnight type gift for some members.

Thursday, was the day of fixing the thumb. and this time Cluff's thumb was at least twice the size it should have been and as he was soaking it the infection finally surfaced and popped through and low and behold a whole lot of something was oozing out of him, which he said is normal. i disagreed. so after it's all drained the swelling doesn't start going down the way it's supposed to. so we headed to the doc. and got the doc to look at it, so I'm kind of a chicken so i decide to just stay out and wait. well I'm sitting for about an hour and a half until he finally comes back out and the first words out of his mouth were these. "That was the most Painful thing I've ever had done".  so a little bit baffled I asked what happened. and he explained that underneath the infection there was blood just sitting under the infection and the doctor needed to drain it so he gave him a shot that was right up under the fingernail and after that sticks a knife in and realizes that it's not numb sticks the needle back in his thumb, until it's kind of numb and then sticks the knife back into the thumb and cuts it open so the blood is now coming out. so after that for the next 30 minutes he squeezes on his thumb and pushes all the extra crap out of his finger and then wraps it. and then we are off and trying to save the world.

Friday was a pretty good day nothing really exciting.  we did our habitat for humanity service where we just move some stuff, vacuum, and any other odds and ends that they have for us. then just go out and knock on doors and trying to find some reply for "i'm happy with my religion" so it's been really interesting. and then we decided to go out and tract, and low and behold the bottom of the bucket fell out and it was pouring rain!  it was so cool we got into so many doors just for the fact that it was raining so bad and we were able to help people out a lot during that rainstorm. and I've never been so soaked in my life. i was wet to the bones. 

Saturday we saw a lot of less actives and all sorts of other things. but we were really lucky to stay out of the sun pretty much the entire day, which kind of makes it feel like we didn't really do anything but at the same time it was really cool to have the chance to visit and have everything work out.

Sunday just another day of visits, and getting to know more about what happened to people and why they don't want to come back to the church, and just as an FYI if you're called to do something and it doesn't work out the way you would like it to happen just keep trying, don't be mean about it.

Well that the week of Elder Gillespie in Chipley Florida

Love
Elder Gillespie

Toniben I'm impressed with your whole decision and you'll have a lot of fun out there, now as far as the ward you're probably right with the tightness, unless you've got wards like down here where everyone is related to each other, so it's a family reunion no matter what ward function you go to. but I've had wards where it isn't all in the family and those wards are really tight, the main thing I've seen is you make what you want out of your ward, if you want it to be close you have to make it a close knit group. but you'll do fine.

Jethrobyn, it sounds like it's pretty dang cool right now and your having a blast with your life. so keep up the good work and Robyn feel better.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Thunder and Rain

Hello Everybody!
 Well here's the update of the week from the people in the south...
Monday night was an awesome thunderstorm that just went off for like 3 hours, not a drop of rain but tons of lightning.
So Monday and Tuesday we said goodbyes to everyone in the ward, at least all the people that made a big difference in Elder Banks life, and it was really neat to see the love that the ward members had for him. After all of that we got ready and sent Elder Banks off to see his trainer again, so he's been out for 2 transfers and is now on his 3rd so one with Bentley, one with me, and one back with Bentley. something that doesn't happen all that often... oh wait that happened to me.
 Elder Cluff is from Layton Utah and yes there is a "T" in Layton.  and he's been out for about 5 months now. the youngest of 4. so anyways,  Picked him up and then got him settled in Chipley and then started showing him around town and some of the members. and he's just getting in there and doing his thing, which is really cool to see him not have any fear with whats going on.This week has been hot, and dry it's really felt a lot like Utah where it's just miserable, except the sweat doesn't help. but finally on Sunday after church where one of the newest converts gave a talk on how he came to know what the true church is after 20+ years of searching. It was really cool. so some more information about this guy, he's gone to the bible college here in Florida for 3 years trying to find the right church and getting to know what the bible is really all about, and causing mischief the entire time he's been there. and then he decided to open up a homeless shelter for men in chipley and then after a year or so was shut down because it wasn't making any money for the churches around town. and his story goes on and on... a really cool guy and extremely humble and just wanting to do what is right. So after his wonderful talk we had dinner where they were there along with one of the bishopric, the Krisers. and brother Kriser sounds a lot like a baptist preacher and knows his scriptures and those two just went back and forth pretty much the entire night. and what was cool was when brother Kriser started talking about rain and the need for it, Bro. Lucky keep telling stories about how thing would just fall into place, and low and behold it started raining not 15 min after that little exchange of words. Lucky for a last name, must be something more to that.

So other than that our week was full of appointments that fell through and then biking about every other day around the little town of Chipley.

So it's been another interesting week, and while we are tracting we are also trying to get the ward members excited about a family mission plan, much like a ward mission plan. just letting them set their own goals of something that they would like to accomplish. and then some other things we are trying is doing fun activities, like a volleyball night and we are thinking of a game night at a members house. just different ways to help people to come unto Christ or invitations to come unto Christ. that's the other thing we are starting up. and we might even try a movie night at the church. we are trying to be creative because this way we are working now is repetitive and boring and everyone else has heard what we have said. but we keep moving forward.

Love you guys and feel free to send pictures, post cards, letters, anything to let me know your alive, but i know you all are, so keep up the good work. thanks for the post cards that were sent.

Love Elder Gillespie

Toniben WHAT Moving?  is this a joke? when, where, what, why, how? Toni you know there are a lot of things that are happening in your life that aren't boring, you just need to find the things that make life worth living.

Thad, your right 10:30 is awesome I'm getting really good at just having my head hit the pillow and then waking up 6 hours later, and I'm working on sleeping while standing, let me know of any tips.

Jethrobyn. I'm excited to see the photos of the big get together for grandma, and the painting you did Jethro.

Beetle what's it like in the grand staircase? what's going on? where did you go?

Janben. what's it like to finally have a vacation? Ben when do you start your work? how are the kids?

Love you all

Elder Gillespie

Monday, May 23, 2011

Panama City

Hello Everybody and welcome to the east side of the Mississippi where there is nothing higher than the trees around you... well anyways it's not that bad. but this last week has been interesting and it's been quite fun as well. First on Monday we went out and had dinner with some great old country folks down near Vernon, which apparently has a movie made about that town I'll have to look it up next time. and it was quite a fun time down there. and something that we taught down there was the importance to look for the small things in life that make life worth living which i really have been trying to pick out in my own life but it seems like everyday there is something that just makes my day just a little bit better, so that's my next challenge to all y'all. so Monday was a good day and i must admit the south KNOWS how to make some good nana pudd'n.
 
Which now leads us to a Great old Tuesday, after sleeping off the wonderful amount of nana pudd'n. Tuesday usually is a meeting day where we have district meeting, Well this week was a special case where we had zone conference on Thursday which is way good. So Tuesday was a day where it seemed like everything that we tried just didn't work and everything was falling through. which leads us to Wednesday where it was pretty much the same thing just trying to get things moving forward and nothing seems to be moving it that way. But we had a nice meeting with our assistant Ward Mission leader, and we put our heads together and we started coming up with a plan where we can implement it into our ward, and then work it down into a family level.  so we through around the idea of coming up with a family mission plan, and then having a ward mission plan, where they can be moving the church forward. which is always a good thing, so we are working with that. all of these ideas and we just need to move them forward. so we are excited about starting this and now it becomes
 
Thursday... ZONE CONFERENCE which is always good. and you know when it a good conference when you feel like you could be living up to so much more and your potential is so much greater, so in other words you feel like a bush that got cut way back. It was super good and the funny thing about this zone in particular is that there are 9 of us that are over the 15 month mark and there are only 15 in the zone. So we have a way old zone. most of the people who came out with me are actually in this zone so it's a reunion of sorts. It's weird to see all of them again. but really cool in the same instance. so after getting this spiritual high we go out and work our little buns off trying to find new people, which are out there it's just really hard to find, small towns are your best friend or worst obstacle.
 
So now we are into Friday which is usually a good day; this week was no different.   We did a lot of work with getting organized and getting thing ready for the coming week. That was Friday
 
Saturday was another really hot day where i just can't stop sweating and really don't want to go out and tract all day, but we were able to meet a few new people that i didn't know, so that was neat and we had a member who wanted to come out with us for all our little adventures. so it was really a good day to just try and help other people.
 
Sunday was a really good day and it's really good to just recommit to God.   It's just really refreshing and then just again trying to help people realize what they are all here for.
 
So that's the week in a nutshell.  Time is up but i love you all and have a wonderful week.
 
I love you all because you are supporting me, by reading this somewhat funny entry.
 
Love Elder Gillespie

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Sand trips and chainsaws

Well this has been an eventful week that is for sure. The start of the week was actually pretty normal. P-day was fun, district meeting on Tuesday was great and still talking about the fireside that we want to hold with the youth, and we want it to be a bonfire and just have all the kids just relax and chill for a night and then we at the end will just do a story time on how we got on missions and how we are regular people who just live the gospel of Jesus Christ everyday and that's what is the real difference in our lives compared with everyone else, it's doing the little things over and over again trying to become the best we can and being better than we were yesterday. so that's our next big push with the youth of Chipley and Bonifay so that's what we are trying to accomplish.
So now the rest of the week, so it's now Wednesday and we, me and banks, are feeling kind of drained but we still wanted to work. so we headed out to go and see a referral that we got earlier in the week the only reason for not visiting is the fact that they live 15 miles from Chipley so we headed down there with a GPS and everything is going great and when we are like half a mile a way the GPS tells us to turn left, as I was looking at what we were supposed to turn down which was a road that you would find in southern Utah going to visit the goblin valley with red sand, i didn't quite trust the GPS at this point, after a little debate with whether or not to go down the road, we decided that we could make it. so we started down the path and the further and further we got off the road the more and more we realized that this was a bad idea.  As the car slowed down the more and more my heart and stomach started sinking, until we were in a dead stop. we looked out and saw that much like it is, we were stuck like we were in a bad snow storm, and that no matter what we did we couldn't get ourselves out. We started digging trying to get out and get something under the tires, but nothing was working.  After a few silent prayers we finally saw two guys in two tractors that would grade down the road came putting up and looked at us, laughed a little bit and then got out some rope for us to get us out. Now it wasn't as bad as it could of been because we were only out there for about 20 min before they came and pulled us out, and we really weren't that far from the road, maybe 75 feet. but still that's a long way to try and push ourselves out. After all of this we decided that we would be just let the postal service take the bible to him. We came back home and washed up and got ready for dinner which we had at the state park, falling waters. which was really cool.  I've really missed just sitting out in the wilderness and just talking to people with out the busy schedule, just a nice break from the hustle and bustle. After that wonderful dinner we were voluntold to come to a service project for a neighbor of a member where a tree had fallen in their front yard, and much like the one in Tallahassee just imagine a tree that was four times that size, and we were helping move tree limbs that we couldn't even wrap our arms around, so you get the picture a BIG tree, we worked and worked and worked till the sun went down and we had about half of it moved by the time we were finished, and there was still a lot left to move. Thankfully the guy's house didn't get hit so we were just cleaning up the yard.
Some of the coolest members are here and they are all just such a cool example to me and everything that they are doing, life is going really good. One of the members volunteers at the state park where we ate and they are just such an example of eating everything up in the gospel. Another lady is working so hard to keep her young family together and just so open to become something so much better and willing to work at it even though she is exhausted after work.  It's just that everyone here is building their faith and making the most out of their situations.  It's really cool to see this happening here.
So that was our major day of the week, moving and getting stuck and putting up some fence.
Some other highlights. while me and Banks realized that we really just got the sickness that's been going around this place and now we are on the mend and back to full health which is really cool. but yeah that's the major things going on in chipley. still trying to find people and the people we visit are moving... slowly but still moving.

Love
Elder Gillespie
Beetle you've got the good old mission spirit back in you and it's going to be learning about ROCK! you just need to see it ROLL and I'm excited to hear about the adventures.
Jethrobyn you've got some really cool stories and your just so hip and with it, I'll need to take some lessons. and the pictures are so adorable. and I'll need to take lessons on that too.
love you all

Monday, May 9, 2011

Oh what a night. . .

Hello everybody
 
So it's been a pretty good week full of service and just knocking on doors. but a really fun week. most of the mornings now we are doing yard work for little old women who just can't do it by themselves. and it's just been really fun we are working hard and right now there isn't a lot going on, but me and Elder Banks are doing really well, and we are working really well with the ward and trying to get them back on board with missionary work which is really awesome, and i think that it's what needed to happen. so things are going really well, we are just getting the wheels startin' to turn. so we are excited about that and everything else.
 
so for those who didn't talk to me yesterday just talk to my parents they let you know that everything is going well and that i sound just about the same and all that other good stuff.
 
but this has just been really weird to think that i'm really on the down ward slope, my only concern is getting tripped up so that won't happen though.
 
Love
 
Elder Gillespie

Monday, May 2, 2011

Chipley 2.0

Hello Everybody
 
And this Email might be a little bit short because I'm now under a time limit, so I'll try to get all the good parts. First the beginning of this week has been preparing tally for the new guys and getting all the info that they needed to move forward instead of backwards. so a lot of time was doing damage control and writing to make sure that everything was going to work out for the best. For example Sis Simmons was very disappointed to hear that we were leaving and then the fact that two new guys were coming in, as well as the bishop, and president Campbell and many others who we became very close with and then to just up and leave, and that was probably the hardest part for me, along with saying goodbye to so many wonderful missionaries in Tallahassee. Well that was most of the days until Wednesday where i packed up on the transfer bus and then headed over to the "new" area of Chipley.  My companion is really cool, he's only been out for a transfer which is 6 weeks but is from Texas and reminds me a lot of Thad just kind of goofy but still super excited and loves to work and to get to know people. Elder Banks is his name and is from the Dallas-Ft Worth area and loves the Mavericks and Cowboys. but besides that he's awesome. It's just been kind of really fun to be apart of this companionship, so the weird thing about going back to an area is the fact that I'm older and for some reason a lot of the people didn't quite remember me and i just thought that was surprising,
 
What I thought would be the biggest hurdle to get over while I'm here would of been when people did remember me that they would think back to the time that i was here and have the bad memory of the missionaries i was with and then associate that with me and not think about what I've become since that time, of course my concerns/fears never really surfaced and people just remember me as being one of those missionaries that served here. Now as for serving out the rest of my mission here i don't know, i think I'll be here for another transfer for sure but after that they might want to move me.  My thinking is that they'll send me up to Georgia when we get the Tifton stake in our mission, because they are closing down the Macon Georgia mission and splitting the zones between missions. That would be a really cool goal that I'm thinking could happen for my last 3 months. Oh. and the other cool thing that happened around here is there where quite a few white washings, and our district that I'm in now is with Bonifay which has always had some great elders are brand new to the area so from the last transfer to this new one there is only one person who was part of the last district. 
 
So now for some new stories that you haven't heard before, 1st! we went tracting by downtown Chipley pretty exciting, and we knocked on a door and we found this awesome lady who told us to come back in a couple of days which we did. so when we came back Elder Banks and myself had a great first lesson which is the restoration and it really was powerful and we were really thinking that this was awesome so we set up to come back in a couple of days and then talk about the plan of salvation. So we went back and then talked to someone there and come to find out it's her little brother.  He told us that she wasn't home and to try back later, and so we went back on Sunday to see her and we knock on the door and we hear this guy's voice telling us to leave so we decide to leave a note, ( now this is a house which are two different houses like a duplex)  and as we stick the note and head out to leave we are told not to come back or else our heads were going to be shot off.  The person who was saying all of this seems to be in his early 20's and is always holding a bible in his hands kind of like a small child would hold a teddy bear to his chest. and every time we try to talk to him face to face he runs back inside and has the window open and starts talking loudly to us to leave. so my guess is he isn't all there. 
 
So now another story about one of our investigators. Fletcher. he's 16 and is super excited about everything and is super active, and reminds me a lot of Craig Swindlehurst when he was younger. and anyways Fletcher is really intense about everything he does especially sports and what's cool is he invites us to come with him to do activities, and we're smart and teach before we play so we do our job and he still has a lot of fun, now to list some of the games we've played it's be waffle ball, basketball, football, and probably another sport that he can come up with, I'll try to get him into Frisbee but i don't know how well that will happen. so I'm going to be well rounded when I'm done here
 
Well that's about the best highlight that i could think of I've got to get going but i Love all of you and am really glad to be back in Chipley strangely enough.  
 
Love Elder Gillespie

Monday, April 25, 2011

TRANSFERS!!!

Hello everyone. Here is a big update of what's been going on here in the City of Tallahassee. first this week we picked up Elder Hammond's parents on Thursday and had a wonderful time while we were with them and it was really neat to just spend some time with them and it really just felt like it was just another ward family that wanted to be apart of our life so it was really cool. and they were really nice to us and brought stuff that was really Utah-ish for example Fry Sauce and Cinnabears which were both made in Utah. So that was cool, but I'm jumping ahead of the story, Tuesday we had Zone Conference which was the last zone conference for 5 missionaries in our zone. which was weird to see, because I've seen them my entire mission and now they are going home, so it's just been a little weird to see them go. and that day Drew Sussman was Interviewed for his baptism which was really cool to see and he passed with flying colors. So for that night we had dinner at this Japanese fusion place called Kiku. and i got a couple of rolls which were pretty good and than other people couldn't finish theirs so i had to help them out. in fact two members came to eat with us, one was a less active member and we have just been really trying to help him come back to church but he's really doing it all by himself which is a huge blessing in his own life and really neat experience to have. The other member is a really strong member who will help us out as much as he can, which is a lot. and we try to help him out in the same way.  That night we went on splits and i went with the active member while the other guys did their studies  which was really good for both of us.

Wednesday. which was a normal day for us, Hammond just started to pack that day and make sure everything was going to fit. and then just saying goodbyes for Hammond. so that was really cool to have with elder Hammond saying his goodbyes.

Thursday was basically doing service at the capitol and then leaving to pick up the parents at the airport. which Elder Hammond was really nervous about and it was really cool to see just kind of what it'll be like at the airport just the opposite way.  It made me a bit trunky I'll be honest. but that night we just took the Parents around Tallahassee and saw a little bit of both major campuses FSU and FAMU. then had dinner with the bishop of the ward, with everyone, the english set me, Hibbert, Hammond and his parents, and then Spanish, which is 4 guys. so that would be intimidating to anyone who is supposed to feed 7 missionaries and 2 adults and then your own family. but everyone got enough and the bishop and his family really enjoyed talking to Hammond's parentals. and then we had to take the parents to the mission home where they would be staying but not with elder hammond...? but it was interesting because apparently I'm the only one in our companionship who paid attention on how to get to everywhere. so the Hammond's had no idea because they don't live here, so it was just interesting, we got lost and then we met back up and everything was good.  then had a wonderful night.

Friday we had a great day with just me and Elder Hibbert and went to do our work, and had a great time doing it. i really got to know elder Hibbert a lot more and found out that he is definitely a one on one type of guy so this being the first time with just being with him since we first got together i found out what's been going on in his life so that was really cool and then that morning we finished getting everything we needed for Drew's baptism. and got everything ready for that so it was a really fun time we had and had a great time with a member for dinner and just had some Grilled Cheese sandwiches which was really nice to have a little break with eating really fancy meals. and that night again we had a Yoga night which i found out i really do enjoy and love to just do that. and then that night we found out what was going on with transfers this time. It was surprising, pretty much all of Tallahassee is being flipped and the old guys that have been here are leaving, including myself. yup after 6 wonderful months here I'm going to the lovely town of Chipley, now if that sounds familiar well that's because it is, i was there about 14-15 months ago. and that was quite the experience for me last time. so this time is going to be just as fun. and Elder Hibbert is also leaving after 7 and half months he's heading to Bristol/Hosford. and they are white washing this area with two of the finest missionaries. but again it's white washing so that's not so fun. so now we have to say goodbye as well to everyone in this area, an area which I've really grown to love and it's going to be hard to leave. 

Saturday we had the baptism for Drew which was really cool and really nice to have and see before we left, then sent Elder Hammond off on his way to the rest of the mission and it was really sad but good to see that he's not afraid to be moving forward. So I'm more ready for the next area I'm going to.  Then to finish off that day we helped a member clear his back yard of nasty little bushes and shrubs, then had dinner with him so it was really fun to get back into the whole chopping out crap. so i had a wonderful time.

Then Sunday where we had a great time at Easter Sunday with so many people coming to church, well it seems like it because they are redoing the floor in the Gym and putting in a wood floor but right now we can't walk on it because they are trying to let it get use to the weather. so for the last two weeks we been packed in there like sardines, which feels really tight but really nice, kind of like family so it's getting people out of their comfort zones and letting them talk to each other.  we actually had a lot of people come this week which was really cool but also sad because again we are leaving and can't help them keep coming. but it's their choice anyways.

So now I'm going back to the Chipley area and I'm going to miss Tally town but i know that this is where I'm suppose to be, and it's really cool that I'll get to see so many wonderful people. and the address hasn't changed

774 Hoyt Street apt 8
Chipley Florida 32428

See you soon and love to hear the updates of what's going on.

Love

Elder Gillespie

the three amigos going home

food that we've eaten here.

Drew's baptism

a family i'll miss

Monday, April 18, 2011

"Mormons would make great Baptists"

Hello everybody!

It's so good to hear from all those who wrote, and I'm glad you're all doing well. This week has seemed like a blur, but I'll try to hit all the major things that happened this week.

so Monday we had dinner with a member who's son has befriended a great guy who goes to school with him, and is really interested about church and what it is all about. Clark is his name and he's originally from Taiwan, and Loves how the school system is set up here and really isn't worrying about getting through the next set of hoops. He's even come several times without being asked to come, which is really cool the hard thing though is that he's only a freshman which means his parents might not be willing to let him get baptized. but we'll still teach him and it'll work out. so that was really a cool thing/miracle that happened on that lovely Monday.

Tuesday was a pretty normal day with district meeting and a lesson with miss. Surly Ann Simmons. and we were able to have president Campbell come with us, he's a member of the stake presidency who lives in our ward, and i think might be assigned to her for home teaching. well either way it was really cool to have him there and interesting to see his power through his humility and service to others. this is the president who we report to every Tuesday about how the zone is doing and how they are working together, and who they have seen as far as less-active's. so it's really cool and important to report to him about this stuff. so yeah that's really cool, and then to top everything off. we had dinner with Drew Sussman who came up to us after General Conference and was like yeah I'm ready for this whole conversion thing again and I'm ready to be baptized.  so dinner with him was fantastic, and i really got to know him better, and he's just such a cool guy who wants to just do the right thing, and it's cool to see how he was prepared even before he came to us, like he was telling his dad that he was converting and his dad already thought that he had converted, and he told us a couple of other people in church were the same way, they just assumed that he was already a member. so that was really cool, and that finished the night

Wednesday...., Wednesday was good, we had a great time with Bonnie and trying to help her with her situation, and it seems like she's getting a hold of it and has come up with a plan and is continuing to do the small things which are going to make up the biggest difference. For instance she's starting to realize that just being around certain people are making her act in ways that she doesn't want to act, and by just staying away she's not going to have those problems. then that night we thought about going to the Parks for dinner, but as you would have guessed there was a mis-communication and we ended up not having dinner there that night but the next night so we had a little fiasco but low and behold it worked out for the best.

Thor's Day  the day of days where everything just falls through. and all the back up plans do too. We ended up talking to a Korean veteran who is a deacon at his church, and a very nice man who really is a true christian just trying to be the best he can and helping others where he can. it was refreshing that is for sure.  not to bash on anyone but to just talk about how life once was and how important a belief in god is. and told us that Mormons would make great baptists, and then that night we had a great dinner and little lesson with the Parks with the "puzzle" of the plan of salvation and i think that they are starting to get it more. 

Friday, we had an interesting morning with a Less active member, Kyle Sweat. who recently had a girlfriend who dumped him and has been trying to become better, and get back into the basics, isn't it amazing how much power comes from doing the little things over and over again. and how it seems that all the problems that happen are just realigned to show each of us what the most important things are. so we helped him quit worrying about the things that he couldn't control and just focus on the things that he could control and get him closer to God.  we had dinner with some wonderful members who are just so nice to us that i almost feel out of place because i shouldn't be with them because they are so nice. and they've got the best accents too. and then we played a game with a less active coming back to church, and it's this wonderful game called Quelf. it's definitely fun and a lot like curses except different and really fun.

S-A-T-U-R-D-A-Y. we went to a baptism of the Spanish guys and it was really neat to see, three little kids get baptized, funny story so Elder Hibbert did the interview's for them and the little girl told him that she wanted him to do her baptism, which kind of threw everyone for a loop because they thought one of the Spanish guys would have done it. but it's her special day. so we went and had a great time then had a little tail gate party because the garnet and gold game was going on and some members asked us to come along and it was really cool to have that opportunity, and it was much different than what looked like the Blue and White game. we finished with a great little dinner with Sis Lanigan, someone who we have been working with and is trying to get her family more involved in church, and we had Elder Hammond's favorite meal, Lasagna which was really good. then we just headed home after a fun filled day.

Sunday. the big event of the day was cooking Indian food with a member and it was really neat, i was the grill master and i apparently did a good job with it. but this brought me back to the old days of Panama City Beach where we would eat Indian food every Thursday for lunch. and low and behold this tasted so much better and it also had the same type of seasonings, and I never knew how long it takes to really put on a feast but i can say it was a lot of fun.  so that's the week in sound bytes.

Love you all

Elder Gillespie

Dad your spring break sounds like nothing like it does down here. but i like yours much better, bobcats, cement breaking, wiring, all really fun to do. and also sounds a lot like Utah,

Mom i knew something was different about Florida compared with Utah, and now i know that it's the flowers, we've seen all the daffodils bloom and then are done, and now it's getting a lot more like summer, with not a lot of flowers but more heat. but the snow pack seems amazing and something that i know Hammond is going to be really happy about, he was concerned about not being able to ski for 3 years. but looks like that's not going to happen. make sure to take a picture of timp with all that snow if it's a new record might as well be in photographic form. it's so cool that Greg and Jolyn are in Utah now, defiantly a bonus and so cool to hear all the cousins coming together to work.

Jethrobyn... being sick sucks but it's really good that you were able to have it land on a vacation break with Jethro. keep up the good work and i know that the kids are going to be so much fun, especially little Sophia talking to herself, priceless. and having so much fun with the rest of the family. 

Beetle. your right boys are poops, but you can still be different and be cool at the same time and it's ok to break the mold, and don't be stressin' you'll be happy with a cali boy soon enough... haha...

Love ya all.

Elder Gillespie

Baptism of the three Spanish children

Cookin' on Sunday