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Monday, December 30, 2013

December 30, 2013 Happy New Year!

Dear family,
It has been a wonderful week with Christmas!  We had a wonderful Christmas.  I guess I didn't really tell you what I did on Christmas when I called, and if I did I'll tell you again.  They moved p-day to Christmas so it was just a really relaxing day full of food.  We went to one of our ward mission leaders home in the morning.   They fed us breakfast.  Then we went to the Dilles and called and they fed us lunch.  Then we went to another members home for dinner.  After that we went to the church and watched a movie with our zone.  It has been a great Christmas season.  I thought that this past week it would be really hard to catch people at home because everyone would be busy.  It turns out we have been able to talk to more less actives, members, part member families, and investigators than usual.  We were able to talk to some people that we have been trying to contact for a couple weeks.  December is an awesome month to be a missionary!
One of our investigators has been sick for almost two weeks now, but she has been feeling better the past couple days and made it to church yesterday.  She is doing very well and is on date to be baptized on the 11th.  All of our investigators are doing really well and progressing in the gospel.  We also have a couple really great potential investigators.  There are some people that have asked us to come back after the holidays when they are not busy, so we are really excited for this next week when we can talk to them.  

It is amazing to see how we are guided and put in the right place at the right time.  Sometimes we don't always notice the perfect timing.  This week we stopped by our ward mission leader's home just when a recent convert, who we have been trying to contact, also came over.  We passed by a less active member's home just as he was taking his trash in from the street.  We stopped to check our mail and ran into another less active member also checking her mail.  There are so many more experiences I could also tell you.
I have also been thinking about when you asked me what we do all day, and I think I forgot to mention one major thing we always try to do.  If we don't have investigators, less actives, or recent converts to teach, we teach members.  This not only helps us improve our teaching, but we hope to inspire the members to do missionary work.  As they bear their testimonies about the gospel it builds their desire to share it.  The best way we can find people to teach is through the members.  We were talking to one of the counsellors in the stake presidency and I realized something about our area.  I realized that in our one square mile area we have three wards and several hundred active members.  I guess I already knew that, but I didn't realize how many members we have to work with compared to other areas in the world.  Our wards are doing great at fellowshipping our investigators and opening their homes for lessons. 
I have some exciting news that we found out this week.  Elder Holland is coming to speak to the Mesa, Scottsdale, and Gilbert missions on the 11th!  I'm so excited to hear him speak!  It's also getting closer and closer to the open house!  I'm sure I have already said this before, but it is an exciting time here in Gilbert!
Thank you so much for all your love and prayers!  I love you all so much!
Elder Joshua Gandy

Monday, December 16, 2013

December 16, 2013

Dear family,
So I'm staying for another transfer in the Highland East stake so my address will stay the same.  We will find out on Wednesday if our area is staying the same.  We are thinking we might lose a ward and go down to two wards.  I'll let you know what happens next week.   

We have a really exciting week ahead of us.  We have transfer meeting on Wednesday and a mission temple trip and Christmas conference on Thursday.  I believe we are going to be taking a picture of the whole mission in front of the Gilbert temple after transfer meeting.
We had another great week!  One of our investigators is doing very well and is very prepared for baptism.  She came to the ward Christmas party and the ward is fellowshipping her very well.  She is still on date to be baptized on the 28th.  I'm glad I'm going to be staying for that.  We were also able to have a lesson with our other investigator and his less active girlfriend.  They are planning on getting married in March and they want to be sealed in the temple.  The ward has also fellowshipped them very well.  

We have several potentials that we are working with and hope to start teaching soon.  We also taught our recent converts a new member discussion and taught them about the temple.  Everyone is so excited for the open house.  I can't wait to go see the inside.
Thank you so much for all of your prayers and your love.  I love you all so much!
Elder Joshua Gandy

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

December 9, 2013

Dear family,
It's been another great week!  It's actually starting to get a little cold.  When we left our apartment this morning around 10:00 it was around 40 degrees.  It has also been interesting to see people covering their plants with blankets so they don't freeze.  

We also had a zone conference this week.  It's always great to be taught by President Nattress and the assistants.  I learned a lot from this zone conference and I'm excited to apply everything that I've learned.
The missionary work is still going great in our area.  We got a new investigator in one of our wards that we have another lesson with this week.  She just moved into the area and is friends with one of the members.  She also has a son who is around 10 so hopefully we will get to teach both of them.  The investigator I told you about last week is doing great and she is getting so close to being ready for baptism.  Another one of our investigators is also doing well and they love coming to church.  We were able to have seven lessons this week and five of them were with members.  We were also able to show the temple presentation to a non member for the first time.  It also looks like we are going to be able to show another one tonight.  I'm really excited to go to the open house!
We found out this week that Dawn, who was baptized in November, is already doing missionary work.  She has been out of town visiting family right now and has been receiving the new member discussions with the missionaries there.  Her family has been sitting in on the lessons and have been asking questions.  Her mother and brother also came to church with her yesterday.
Just to let you know that this Sunday is transfer calls, so I'll let you know next week what is happening. 
Thanks for all your prayers!  Love you all so much!
Elder Joshua Gandy

Monday, December 2, 2013

December 2, 2013

Dear Family,
It's been another really exciting week!  Thanksgiving was a normal day for the most part except we had dinner around 2 pm.  We mostly stopped by to see members on thanksgiving and just shared a short message about being thankful and about the temple.  We also had our temple trip this week.  It was nice to go to the temple and feel the spirit there after talking and teaching about it for the past couple weeks.  I'm so grateful that we get to go to the temple once a transfer.  I'm really excited to see the inside of the Gilbert temple.
The missionary work in our wards has really picked up this week.  We had four lessons with a member present.  We have been meeting with one of our investigators since the beginning of October.  We have been trying find her a fellowship in the ward, but she always said she was too shy to meet other people.  This week she finally took our offer of having a lesson at a member's home.  So we had three lessons with her this week at a members homes.  She also came to church this week and committed to prepare to be baptized on December 28th.  She has come a long way since we met her at the beginning of September.  She was telling us about how before we met she was praying to meet good christians to talk to since she was going through a hard time.  It was great to hear that we were able to be an answer to her prayers.  I remember we met her while we were looking for a referral and I accidentally wrote down the wrong address.  

We met with another investigator who we haven't been able to meet with since the beginning of October.  The lesson went very well and it's amazing to hear how our Heavenly Father has led them to this point in their life.  We also have a few potential investigators that we should be meeting with this next week.
We have another exciting week coming up.  We have zone conference and many lessons set up.  It's getting close to the end of the year so I'm hoping that we will see ipads coming soon.  I try not to get too excited for that. 
Thank you for all your prayers and support!  I love you all so much!
Elder Joshua Gandy