Monday, September 21, 2015

First Week in Washington

Dear Everyone,

This week has been a crazy one. It's crazy to think that just a week ago I was sitting in Provo Utah in the MTC in a classroom full of computers and now I'm sitting in a church house in Poulsbo Washington in the family history center typing this email today. I love Washington. I'm in an area about an hour and a half north of Tacoma I think? Idk I'm still trying to figure out how Poulsbo is first before I extend my realm of understanding. It is a "mini Seattle" as my companion called it the other day. It is rich and lots of people aren't very humble but they are nice to talk to even though they aren't very interested. We had a lady argue with us for half an hour about how we are wrong to worship on Sundays because it isn't the Sabbath. The county I'm in, Kitsap County, is said to be one of, if not the most, atheist counties in the entire country. It is crazy to see how many people have different beliefs! I love it so far though.

We have a car every other week. The other half of the time we are on bikes or walking. We had the car the first week so we'll see how this next week goes. Having a car was really nice because in my area there are a lot of steep hills that on a bike honestly will suck. I'm excited for those days though where I'm dead tired and can just keep pushing and be tested because I feel like it's too easy right now. Our area is huge. Yesterday my companion, who is Elder Piel from South Jordan Utah (which is crazy because he's my second straight companion from South Jordan and they don't know each other) and I went up to a small city called Port Gamble which was super pretty and I experienced my first "Washington rain" and we were totally soaked. It was fun though and soooo pretty. All of Washington has really pretty areas but Port Gamble and the rain is definitely what I pictured Washington to be like.

Here's a little more about Elder R's companion from another email: 
My companion is Elder Piel. He went to Herriman high school and lives at home out by the Oquirrh Mountain Temple. I know that isn't exactly how it's spelled but oh well. He is really nice and he pushes me to be better every day. I'm glad he is so smart so when we knock on the door of some crazy people's houses, he knows what to say and how to say it so that I don't look stupid. I love it. 
The first few days here were crazy. Tuesday morning we had to be at the travel office at 3:30 in the morning. We didn't go to bed on time either cause we were packing and cleaning so was a long day Tuesday. We got to Seattle at 10ish and we kinda went sight seeing. We then went to transfer meeting where the entire mission was there. A LOT of missionaries where we did some really crazy things. If i wasn't a member of the church and I walked in...I definitely would think that this is all a cult. hahahahaha it was cool though and the mission has the best culture that fits my personality perfectly. We say the recitation or D&C 4, The Standard of Truth, 3 Nephi 3:15, The missionary purpose, followed by we are the WA-TAC and we baptize. When the entire mission comes together we sing Amazing Grace and we did at transfer meeting and wow...this gospel is so true and having so many people with your same purpose. It is special and I love it so much. (you can see what Elder R is talking about in this YouTube video of the same thing back in November 2014)

We then headed up to Poulsbo even though I didn't even know which area I was going to...but the drive was good. It was cool to drive down the freeway. Many of the new Elders have zone leaders and are in foursomes but it's just me and my companion. I'm in the Poulsbo 2nd Ward in the Silverdale zone of my mission. We have a pretty big area with lots of doors.  We got doubled in. It sucks kinda but leaves open a lot of awesome opportunity because we have no expectations. For those who don't know what being doubled in means that my comp has never been in the area that I'm in now and neither have I so we know absolutely NO ONE. We also had stake Conf this Sunday so we didn't even get the chance to meet anyone from the ward. Which kinda sucks but things are going so great. (:

My companion and I get along well and we really enjoy laughing and things together. The first couple days I wasn't myself but now I am and it is great. I love teaching and talking to people about the gospel. Our mission definitely focuses on Baptism. Please pray for us as a mission to be able to find and have 800 people baptized by the end of 2015!! It is such a special opportunity for people to enter the waters of baptism and feel of their saviors love. We pray about that in EVERY single prayer we offer and it would be awesome if you will do the same because as we invite people to be baptized they will feel of the spirit and be willing to enter the covenants with their father in heaven. I have a testimony he will bless all of us including you as we do this.

Me and my comp have two people on date for baptism in the next three weeks. (: Hopefully they can keep commitments and prepare themselves for that very special day. I love you all, I pray for you every day. I love this gospel. I love the Wa-Tac!! Where we Baptize!

With much love,
Elder T Reynolds

My Address is:

20371 1st Ave NE
Apt. D12
Poulsbo, WA 98370

Hopefully I didn't miss too much even though I missed a lot. I'd love to hear from everyone. Love you all lots!!

Here's a pic with more at this DropBox link

Tacoma Narrows Bridge from Gig Harbor in Tacoma. Prettiest thing ever. I love it!!!

As Elder R mentions, he attended Stake Conference.  Follow this link here are some pictures on the mission blog of all the missionaries in the Stake getting together for an ice cream party.

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