Thursday, March 10, 2011


Date: Mon, 7 Mar 2011

I did get the oranges, and they do taste delicious! That was the right amount that you sent too; none will go bad. You can go ahead and sign me up for the room with Brady. Even if I do need surgery again, recovery for meniscus surgery is only a few weeks, so I'll still be good to go in September. I'll be released July 21st.

It's good to hear things are going well! (Aside from the usual trouble-makers) I hope things get figured out with Megan and Tucker. It's good to hear about Jordan's volleyballin'; please keep updating me on how that is going! And I love to hear about Hannah too!

This past week was good. We have two people preparing for baptism, but neither will be before April. Akilah is a new investigator, and we had a great lesson with her last Monday. We brought Matt with us, who was confirmed in church the day before. He was able to look her in the eyes and testify of the gift and power of the Holy Ghost. He told her, "I know this is true because I know how I felt yesterday before my confirmation, and I know how I've felt since." Matt is an example of how to "receive the Holy Ghost". During and after the lesson, he talked about how he felt like he was teaching himself - Akilah was responding and feeling the same way he did as he was just starting to be taught. We taught her about the Restoration of the Priesthood, and we ended up giving her a priesthood blessing, which we don't usually do during a first lesson. No two lessons are ever the same because everyone's needs are so different. So, at the end of the lesson, despite her fears and anxieties of praying aloud, we knelt and she offered a sweet, sincere prayer. It was answered as the Spirit filled the room, and she felt a peace that she had never felt before and wished she could always feel. She knew it was right and she needed to be baptized.

We also had two trainings this week, one for the Hmong elders and one for the zone leaders. They went well. During our zone leader council, we put our personal training skills to use and did a fun role play for them. We also had two exchanges with both Milwaukee zone leaders.

Thank you for your love and prayers of support. I love you!

Elder Vogan


Mon. 28 Feb, 2011

I hope everyone had a good week! So to answer you questions about where I live; no one lives in the office. The mission office is just a nice unit located above a bank. We live a 6 or 7 minute drive away in a shared apartment with two other missionaries. Elder Carter and Elder Jones are awesome! I took Elder Jones out contacting on his first day four weeks ago or so. President and Sister Jones live in the mission home, which is also a few blocks away. We don't always have to be in the office. We come when we have things to do, but the only time we are required to come is Sunday night. We do stop in probably 4 or 5 times a week and work on things, just when we decide we need to. That's great to hear that Megan is kinda potty trained. I hope that can be completely true soon!

Matt Wilke was baptized on Saturday and confirmed Sunday in church. I was an amazing experience with a huge turn out. He was more blown away by anyone at how many people had come to support him. It was such a spiritual meeting, definitely up there with the most spiritual baptisms of my mission. I know that is because of his complete trust in the Lord (humility) and his sincerity. He wasn't doing it for anyone but his Heavenly Father. From the first time we taught him, we could tell he was taking the seriously - as it should be. Sometimes, I don't think people realize the magnitude that a baptism has, but Matt did. He had questions, but no road blocks. As we taught him and invited him to keep commitments and commandments, he thoughtfully and sincerely committed himself and stuck to it. He experienced the power of the Atonement through true repentance, and he was excited to show the fruit of that that on Saturday by being baptized.

Gloria felt like she was starting to get too attached to the missionaries, so she decided that she wanted to take a break. She didn't want her relationship with them to influence her decisions. She will be praying a lot about everything during her time without them and seek God's will for what she should do. I was initially sad to hear about it, but I feel good about that now, as the missionaries there feel. She's been so high and so low, back and forth, she needs to be able to make a firm decision.

It was good to work with Elder Cottle without any trainings or exchanges this week. We were supposed to have a zone leader council on Friday, but President Jones had to go to the hospital for intense kidney stone pain. He has six in each kidney, so he is still dealing with that now. But even with that, he rescheduled the meeting for this Thursday. This week, we do have meetings and exchanges, but our major goal will be to get back into contact with former investigators and find new people to teach. We want to keep helping all these people that we know are willing to accept the Gospel, and we've already seen many of those people this year.

Thank you for your love and support! I hope everyone has a wonderful week!

Elder Vogan