Monday, 30 December 2013

And a Happy New Year!

Dear Everyone,
This past week has been challenging with Christmas and everything and now getting back to missionary work. I'm learning a lot about how to rely on the Lord. The first few chapters of the Book of Ether and the Jaredites leaving their homes in rudderless/sail-less barges was really instructive this morning and I'd recommend a study of that to anyone.

I'm sending off the memory card with a bunch of pictures and stuff in a late Christmas package home soon so you'll have to wait on pictures until someone at home can get all of those up. The only picture I've taken with the new memory card is attached here. It was funny because there is no California College (of which I'm aware) but they were selling this shirt at Tesco and we saw it on Boxing Day. At the same time as thinking it's really funny how California has this big reputation and fame about it, I'm really missing the California sunshine amidst the cold/dark/wet which has gotten worse here. I've also heard that despite my wishful hopes that winters in England were earlier than in California and Utah, the worst is in fact quite a bit off in the future. However, I'm comforted knowing that each day from here until June it's getting lighter, not darker. Yay!

The week in missionary work has been a bit slow. But let's play Missionary Alphabet
A dropped us. Ao is a Chinese guy we're going to teach for the first time at the library in town tonight.
B is getting back in contact after the New Year.
C was dropped.
D, S's son, really wants to go to church apparently. Also, Da is a Less Active Member from Ghana who hasn't been to church in years who was miraculously run into and we're going to reteach him.
E is J and T's daughter (see J and T). Also, Ew, the Less Active Member came to church but had to leave after the first hour because his sister got back from Hospital with her new baby.
F is still unable to really contact us but will get back on track hopefully soon.
G was an A.U.F. who we found. We're going to reteach him if he ever answers the phone to set up an appointment
Houghton (me) woot woot!
Indian food is the best! Thanks be to the Sidhus, Masihs, and Randhawas. I love it so much!
J is a new Investigator from yesterday who we found miraculously. He's from Latvia and he's great. We'll see how it goes.
K is a cool guy from Barbados who sees a lot of hypocrisy in other churches and is super solid. We're going to teach him a first lesson after the new year.
L is the Ghanaian lady who we've been teaching who finally came to church. She can't read though so we'll see how it goes. Also, Luke (me again), my first name which I hadn't been called in a long time until Elder Unice (below) found it out because some of our mail got accidentally delivered to them from the mission and he jokinly called me Luke a few times and then skyping with my family (which was really weird... I seriously struggled to connect "Luke" with me...).
M is a uni student who will be back after the Holidays but who was blown away by our belief in a living prophet and really excited. We'll see him hopefully soon.
N is a Chinese student we found in City Centre who another team may teach.
O has been on Holiday in Bristol and has been hard to stay in contact with.
Qu'ran, the holy book that most people on our street believe is the word of God.
R is a newish Investigator from Afghanistan. Also, R is L's daughter.
S is alright but we haven't seen her in ages and she never answers the phone. Ugh. The S's have been under the radar for a bit too.
T and his wife are still on Holiday for two more weeks.
Unice is Elder Unice. He's a new missionary in Coventry and he's a legend.
V, a Potential Investigator from Togo
W is a Potential Investigator we need to call. She's from Ethiopia... I think...
YZ. A Less Active Member we keep trying to visit.
Z is a Chinese guy we met in City Centre. We may be teaching him soon. We'll see.
I could think of a P if I took long enough. We're working on filling in X... We'll see how it goes...
So, that took a long time to type out so it's most of my email. In other good news, my amazing pocket warmer from Aunt Lisa is awesome. I'm really hoping that Lighter Fluid isn't expensive so I can keep it running. Also, still a bit unsure of the fireproof qualities of my trousers. Pants on fire takes on a whole new meaning in England where pants are underpants. I've been striving to be a bit more honest lately for fear that my trousers could actually catch on fire in a cruelly ironic way... Just kidding, the pocked heater is catalytic so there's no flame. I've also been thoroughly impressed with the longevity of the Christmas goodies my amazingly wonderful family sent me. It was funny to explain to someone how the contents of that package they sent me are of such great value. It was not enough to justify that my family sent me a lot of sweets and paid a tonne for shipping.
I'm really looking forward to going to bed at 10:30 for New Year's Eve! It's going to be so great to be alive, awake, alert, and enthusiastic while the rest of the country is asleep, groggy, and/or hungover. I'm also glad that our schedule has been arranged so that we're off the streets for that night and morning. I am a bit worried that the fireworks at 00:01 will be a bit loud so I'm going to wear my earmuffs to bed! Ouch, there goes the pocket warmer singeing my trousers...
I'm rapidly running out of time so have a great week!
Elder Houghton

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