Write to Elder Reiley

Washington Vancouver Mission
2223 NW 99th St.
Vancouver WA 98665

Monday, June 13, 2016


Dear Family,

Thanks for the email. Here is the update from Portland.

Robert got a car this week. A nice member of the ward gave it to him. Robert has no excuse to go less active because the ward has done everything it could to help him. He is stoked about his car though. He is telling everybody. He calls us all the time wondering if we need a ride somewhere. It is pretty funny. He made it to both sessions of stake conference so that was cool. 

I had a big lesson to learn this week. We got a golden referral on Tuesday. This guy just got out of jail. He met a member while he was in jail and this member taught him the restoration and they read out of the Book of Mormon every morning. The member gave him a priesthood blessing while he was in there, too (I'm not sure how this member was in jail and was worthy to give priesthood blessings, but I didn't ask questions.) So he came out and he was ready to go. We met with him on Wednesday. His name is David. I was impressed with him. He has a lot to learn,but he is very enthusiastic and he already loves the gospel. Then we got thinking. He is 21 and single. So after much prayer and pondering, we decided to hand him off to the YSA (Young Single Adult) ward. It was painful because being able to teach nonmembers as prepared as him are so rare. So I have been cursing YSA wards all week. W do we even have them? What's the point? Can YSA people not handle being in a family ward? I thought for sure he was an answer to our prayers. This was at a time when we have been working hard at finding people to teach. Well, as soon as i hung up the phone with the YSA elders, we got a call from an active member in the Portland mission. He told us that his less active brother and nonmember wife just moved into our ward and for us to go visit them. But even if that didn't happen, I think I have enough perspective now to realize that we are all on the same team and we are all winners and we all get trophies (not that far, but you know what I mean). The important thing is that David progresses in the gospel. Having said that, it was still tough to see him come to stake conference with eh YSA elders. Haha. And we did visit the other couple. There is some promise there. They just had their baby blessed and they want home teachers, so hopefully we can continue to work with them. Their names are Keith and Misty.

Stake conference was this weekend. It was way good. Elder L. Whitney Clayton was there and Elder Miskin of the Seventy was there. I got to talk to them both a little bit before the meetings. You would never know they were general authorities just talking to them. They were both normal, humble guys. The Saturday evening session was all about observing the Sabbath Day. It is pretty easy as a missionary, but I definitely have some work to do when i get home. Elder Clayton asked a few questions and then microphones were passed around to the members so it was more of a discussion so that was cool. 

Bishop Dickey is the new stake president. I am pretty bummed that he won't be our bishop anymore. But he is the man for the job. The 2nd counselor was the high councilor over missionary work and he is also in the Sunnyside ward so we know him pretty well, too. So in the mission there are 9 stakes. Six of the stake presidents have been the stake president for less than a year. Also, we are getting a new mission president and wife and a new temple president and wife this year. Change is necessary for growth. 

Here are some of the highlights from stake conference. The old presidency and the new presidency all bore powerful witness of the Savior. There were about 15 investigators there and I felt totally comfortable that they knew that this was the church of Jesus Christ. President Dickey said that he went to the temple the morning before his interview and he got the impression that if he was called to serve, do it. Elder Clayton loved that. If you are called to serve, do it. Elder Clayton talked about always accepting your assignments to serve, even if it is hard. It is okay to express concern and even talk about things that would make it hard to serve, but never say no. So it's cool that Doug's talk was the same weekend and he talked about a lot of the same things. (from Marilyn... for those of you that don't know, my brother was called to be a mission president in Brazil. This is a 3 year calling. He is taking his family and fulfilling that calling in a few weeks. He and his family spoke in their sacrament meeting last Sunday. Their talks were based on President Manson's talk about choices.)  I was really uplifted and edified. It was a good conference.

Elder Labis fixed adobo (a Philippine delicacy) for those nonmembers that fed us that Thai food on Mother's Day. It was really good! They have almost no interest in the gospel at this point, but they are so nice.

The 24th would be a great time to do my report in sacrament meeting. I am looking forward to going to President Taylor's homecoming on the 17th. 

Thanks for the updates from home. It sounds like the summer life is underway. It is definitely not as structured as the school year, but just as busy!

Thanks for the info on the mission calls too. The Driggs, Idaho stake is sending out a force! There are a lot going to Arizona. Thanks also for the pictures of the faily. I love my family. That is cool that you all got together at Doug's place. It sounds like it was a powerful sacrament meeting. Doug is a really good speaker and he will make a great mission president. I will be sure to pray for him a lot this week.

Thanks again for another email. I love you all and I hope you have a great week. 

Love: Jaxon 

Pictures of the Portland zone! (We had zone meeting this week.)
We talked to this crazy lady who was super into mannequins and she made us take a picture next to hers. You can tell how uncomfortable we are. All I could think of was that episode of Seinfeld when George finds that mannequin that looks just like Elaine. It was weird.

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