Monday, November 28, 2011

November 28, 2011


Thanks for the great emails! Sounds like you had a week full of thanksgiving and family. That's wonderful. Our Thanksgiving lasted about an hour and a half :) it was perfect. We went over to a family's house named the Spurgeons and ate with them and their non-member neighbor. It was delicious and a good time. We were taken care of, don't worry haha. But then we went right back out and got our work on. Holidays on the mission are super weird haha. It's not even a holiday. It's just another day of missionary work. Love it.

We had a great week though. Fullllllll of miracles. Sister Old accepted a date for the December 17th and is working towards that, trying to get over a few roadblocks but she's is doing great! Very sincere and willing to follow Christ.

We met with Ruby again on Wednesday and it was the most amazing lesson ever. The member family that was supposed to have her over at their house cancelled last minute, so we had to call another family to see if they could help us out. They accepted and we were SO thankful for that. We ended up teaching Ruby about the restoration of the gospel. During the lesson things were a little hectic. People were getting up and sitting down, texting, the dog was moving around, and other things were going on. The Spirit just wasn't there like it needed to be. So we finally got to Joseph Smith and popped in the Restoration DVD. It was perrrfect! Because it provided an environment where everyone present could focus and feel. After the video, we asked Ruby how she felt and the Spirit swarmed the room. She said things like "I've never felt this before! What is this!?" and "My chest feels tight!" and "I feel different, but joyful!" and "I feel light!" She went on and on about how amazing she felt. We invited her to be baptized and she willingly accepted. She said "I know this is what I need to do." It was a miracle! We've taught her a few times since and she is on track for the 17th of December. She and Sister Old both came to church and loved it!

We also met this family that is going through a rough time together. We are trying to help them work things out through the gospel. The father's stepmother was a member of the church and his father's funeral was at the local chapel. They have two teenage daughters also. We will be teaching them more this week. Good stuff.

Other than that we are just working our tails off trying to sow while we reap. The Lord has blessed us a ton since we've been here and we don't want to slow down because of that. The Winter Garden ward has only had 2 baptisms this whole year. Compare that to a few years ago when they had about 30 baptisms in one year. There is so much potential here. It's a great ward! The ward and the missionary efforts just need to be united and things will blow up.

I'm so stoked to be here you have no idea. And being a district leader again is so fun! We've had some spiritual district meetings so far. It's great. So yeahhh. But Sterling Stolle! At RiteAid! I lived with him when I first came out. I thought he looked familiar and then we both found out that he worked at the Orem RiteAid and I had gotten prescriptions from him before hahaha. It was crazy. But when you see him, tell him I say I love him!

Oh yeah and the thing with Uncle Larry won't work out. Sorry. You shouldn't even try haha. All those cities are out of the mission and there is no way that is happening haha. It would be cool though. I'll have plenty of opportunities to do stuff like that after the mission :) I LOVE YOU BOTH! Have a great week!

p.s. The pictures still aren't working. You'll have to suffer a little longer ;)

Elder Austin Gable Engemann

Monday, November 21, 2011

November 21, 2011

Everything is great. My new companion's name is Elder Dawson. He is from Plainfield, IL. He is a boss hogg outlaw missionary. Love him. He has such a sincere desire to share to gospel and help other people accept it. He is the man. Our new area is good. It has some ghetto parts and some rich parts. We saw miracles this week. We worked out little tails off.

Our first day we met this guy named Jose, who lives in our apt complex. We set up an appointment for the next day. We went by and he asked us how he could know God was really there. He believed he was but he just didn't know. We read a little out of Alma 32 and the Spirit was so strong. We invited him to be baptized on December 10th and he accepted, willingly. The next day we texted him to see how he was doing. He texted back and said that he wanted to stop our meetings because it wasn't the right time. We think his family was involved in we were a little bummed but it didn't stop us.

That same day we went out and saw this lady named Kathy getting out of her van with two young kids. We stopped and talked to her a little and asked if she had 20 minutes that we could share something with her. She accepted and we sat out on her front lawn. We found out that she is married, has 5 kids, AND has a car! What more could we ask for? So we taught her about the restoration of the gospel and invited her to be baptized on December 17th. She accepted and cried after she said the closing prayer. Sunday came along and we went by her house before church to double check and make sure she was coming. She answered the door and said they were getting ready to come. We were so excited! Then she texted us 20 minutes before church started and said that she and her husband "changed their minds about coming to [our] church" and to "not come by [their] house anymore." It was another kick in the face but we didn't let it get us down. We just kept moving forward.

A non-member daughter (49 years old) of a less-active woman that we met earlier in the week came to church though! We were very happy about that. We are meeting with her tonight with one of the sisters in the ward that knows her. We will see where it goes. Then last night we found this wayyy cool girl named Ruby who is a senior in high school who says that she always feels judged at church and never has friends. So we set a dinner up with a family in the ward that has two daughters around her age that she can be friends with on Tuesday. It will be great.

Church was good. The ward is nice. We have been praying for them a lot to get more stoked on missionary work. Please say a prayer for the members and the Bishoprick. On Saturday we went back to Buena Vista for Gabriella's baptism. She asked me to baptize her. I was so excited :) I love her. She is going to be the best member in the world. Pharrell.

So yeah, I'm a district leader now and the district is awesome. We had district meeting this last week and set some goals as companionships for baptisms this transfer. Good stuff.

I'm sorry to hear about Mike Aiken and Grant's father. The news of the gospel is great though. They are happy. Send my love to the Heaton family. I am very grateful for Mike and all the letters he sent me. I was really really really really really looking forward to thanking him personally for all the thoughtful letters he sent me on how I could improve as a missionary. Now I will have to wait a little while but I hope Aunt Emily and all of her family knows how much I love and appreciate Mike and all that he did for me. It really meant a lot to me. Just to have someone, besides the two of you, who wrote on a consistent basis.

My address is 180 Windtree Lane, Winter Garden, FL and I don't know the zip. For Christmas...I really don't need anything. If I could ask you to do one thing it would be to go make someone who is less fortunate happy. Not even in a big, extravagant way. Just something simple that will help someone to feel the love of our Heavenly Father.

I love you both so much and am so thankful that you are my parents. I am such a baby. I feel like I cry about everything now hahaha. I cry during hymns, during testimonies, during baptisms, everything hahaha. It's crazy. But I really love you a lot. I hope you have a very happy Thanksgiving. And please give my love to all of the family and friends that you see. Talk to you next week!

p.s. This computer isn't letting me attach pictures for some reason. Sorry!
Elder Austin Gable Engemann

Austin's New Apartment Complex in Winter Garden

Monday, November 14, 2011

Big News, November 14, 2011

Hey Mom and Dad! Crazyyy news.

When we met with President on Saturday after I emailed you, he said he knew exactly what needed to happen with transfers. There were some pieces missing and he received some revelation at the mission president's seminar he had been attending. They were talking about Assistants and they said that the best thing to do for an Assistant is to send them back out into the field to train their last 2 transfers. So he told me I'm going to whitewash an area

(clarification: That means that ALL the missionaries from that area will be transfrered out and the area will be "reset" starting from scratch)

and train a new missionary haha! I'm stokeddd. Back on the grind. Biking and sweating and all that :) I'll be in the Winter Garden ward and my preparation days will go back to Mondays now. Crazayyy change. I feel like you told me a long time ago that one of your friends or associates or something was in the Winter Garden ward. Or maybe it was the Winter Park ward. I don't remember. Anyway...we're going to pick up the missionaries at the airport in a few hours and then tomorrow I will find out who my companion will be. I'm going to miss the Buena Vista ward a lot but I know that the Lord has a purpose for this change. I know that this is how I need to finish my mission. There are things I need to do in Winter Garden.


Elder Austin Gable Engemann

Saturday, November 12, 2011

November 12, 2011


So sounds like things are great back home. I can't imagine the snow and cold weather's perfect here :) it was actually pretty chilly last night though. We spent last night at the bus stop with Cindy contacting people for about an hour and a half. It was so fun. She gave out a BOM! She was so happy. It was great. I love the members in the ward. I think I say that every email...but they are the best. Really missionary minded.

Nick is in the MTC!? Laura Sudweeks is going on a mission to Italy!? What is this! I am SO happy for them. I didn't know that Laura was going on a mission. Could you get me her address by next Saturday? I would love to write and congratulate her. I'm also really happy that you were able to spend some time with Ty. I love that guy. He's probably dazed out of his mind being back in Provo haha.

So this week was wonderful. Week 6 of the transfer. Each transfer goes by so fast. Ugh. We went on two exchanges this week. One on Tuesday with the Cocoa ZLs and one on Thursday with the Orlando South ZLs. I am so thankful for all the good friends that I have made out here. We have the best missionaries in the world here! Literally. We also did a lot with Transfers. A lot of things happened last minute that have changed some things. We are meeting with President one last time (most likely) later today to finalize it all. I love being involved with transfers. I have gained a very strong testimony of companions, areas, and leadership responsibilities all being for a reason. It's amazing how Heavenly Father does it. I know without a doubt that every companionship in the mission is together for a reason, because the Holy Ghost confirms it as we discuss and pray about transfers. It helps me to know that each area I've been in, each companion I've had, and each leadership position I've held has been divinely appointed. LOVE IT!

This week we mostly taught members. We are trying to get them all pumped up again so they can continue with their missionary work before they leave in the beginning of January to go back to school.

Gabriella is doing AMAZING! She has such a strong testimony. She has had some struggles with her family accepting her decision this week but each time has come from it knowing that she is supposed to learn something. She will be getting baptized this next weekend! She is solid! Carlie is back home in Washington right now for a couple more days. She needs some prayer. Her family isn't very supportive of her decision. She is still trying to find out what to do. Kristen was supposed to get baptized today...she hasn't texted or called us back for the past week. So her baptism fell through. We're not really sure what happened. Something did though. Either with her family or friends or something. Not sure. We have been praying so hard and so much for her and so that we can contact her. Hopefully this week we can see her...Right now we are in the process of trying to find more people to teach! It's a little rough but it will pick back up soon. The Lord has blessed us so much recently. We have absolutely no complaints! Our patience is being built. Two scriptures I've read recently come to mind:

Hebrews 12:1-2
1. Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
2. Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
James 1:2-4 (JST)
2. My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into many afflictions;
3. Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.
4. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
I love how James' reading says "let patience have her PERFECT WORK". Every trial of faith we go through is for a perfect reason because it was set forth by a perfect Being. Remember that when you go through your next trying time :)

I love you both! Hope you have the best week everrrrrrRrRrRrr!

p.s. How are things going with the food storage stuff?

Elder Austin Gable Engemann

Saturday, November 5, 2011

November 5, 2011

Helloooooo Mom and Dad!

Another great week in the FOM. Very busy. We had Zone Conference on Monday and Tuesday. Elder Larry W. Gibbons of the 2nd Quorum of the Seventy came to the mission and taught at each one. It was un...realllll. He taught us so many important things. A lot of it had to do with "real growth" in the Church. Basically retention stuff. As well as a lot of things about member work and working with wards and stakes. Good stuff. Elder Gregson and I also did some teaching and role plays on member work.

On Monday night Elder Gregson and I had the opportunity to go over to the mission home and talk about a few things with President and Sister Hall and Elder and Sister Gibbons about how we could make the next day even better. We also both had a private interview with Elder Gibbons. It was AWESOME! He asked me some things about the mission and other stuff. But at the end I got to ask him a few questions. He had some great advice about things that had been somewhat on my mind lately. It was an amazing opportunity.

Wednesday was a miracle day! Here's a story for you: We had an appointment with Carlie on Wednesday. She was originally supposed to get baptized today, but we had some feelings that we needed to move it back a week so she could meet the Bishop and just feel more comfortable and confident in her decision. So we call her before our appointment and she explains to us that her friend Gabriella will be there with her as well. So we were thinking "Great! The more, the merrier." So we go to teach them at the pavilion and this is what goes down (give or take a few words):

: Hey! How's it going? We are Elder Engemann and Elder Gregson.
Gabriella: Hi! My name is Gabriella.
Elders: So where are you from?
Gabriella: I am from Washington. Carlie and I used to hang out back in Washington; we were roommates. I used to meet with missionaries too!
Elders: No wayyy! That's great! (double high fives)
Gabriella: Yeah, I've waited for this for a long time. Now there is nothing holding me back. Things used to always get in the way of this but now is the right time.

Our jaws practically dropped. It was pretty much the first thing she said to us. The Lord has been preparing her for this for a longgg time. All her friends when she was growing up were members. She used to go to church, seminary, FHE, everything. So we talked for a while and ended up setting a baptism date with both Carlie and Gabriella for next Saturday (we later found out that Carlie would be out of town next weekend so it will be on the 19th). The Spirit was strong. They both have amazing backgrounds and stories. Pretty similar too. Please pray for Carlie and her family. She needs it right now. Pray for both of them. They are so amazing and ready for this. And the Lord, in His tender mercy, provided a way that they can both be here on the College Program to accept it together. Then after the pow wow, we invited them to go on a Temple tour that night. Carlie could go, but Gabriella had to go to work. She really wanted to go, and in the closing prayer she asked God to provide a way for her to be able to go. She called her manager, who never lets people off, and he said she could have the night off. WHATTT...miracles. So they both came, along with tons of other people from the ward, and loved it. So great. Thursday we had ZLC. Talked about a lot of good things.

Friday we went on another Temple tour with Dave and some peeps from the ward. Temple tours are great. So that was our week. Good times. Kristen will be getting baptized next weekend. She was out of town this week for a funeral but is here again and we are excited to meet with her. She is awesome. Please pray for her.

In response to some of the things you said to me in the email: 1. Yes, I did lose some friends from the Stuart move. But I'll see them soon, most likely. 2. Dad, you were correct. I was right next to Sister Parker when she was on the phone with you about my Social Security card/Birth Certificate hahaha. 3. I don't know if I'll finish as AP. You really never know haha. But Elder Gregson and I will stay together another transfer. Four transfers with the same companion. Doesn't happen too often. Stoked. My guess is that after this next transfer Elder Gregson will go back to Spanish work (which he is dying to do hahaha) and I will finish off my last transfer with someone else. I don't know...but the Lord does :) 4. Tell Ty and Brett that I LOVE THEM! And any of my other friends you see.

So thank you for all of your prayers for our investigators and us. I know it helps. Prayer changes things. The weather here is cool. And so is missionary work. Love you both! Tons and tons! Have a wonderful week :)

p.s. Brother and Sister Gregson, if you read this...I love you. And your son is a savage missionary!

Elder Austin Gable Engemann

Photos, November 5, 2011

Temple tour party

Temple tour party take 2. Elder G shock, Me, Tommy, Dave, Kaitlyn

Dramatic shot: Walking in the Church