Thursday, January 28, 2010

January 24, 2010

If you are counting, it has been two stinkin' weeks since we've heard from our missionary. Finally, a letter today! Here are a few of the highlights:
  • Wesley admits to being a 6th-grade stinker. (I complained to him about my students and asked for his advice on how to get them motivated.) He had some advice, but the best part was him owning-up to his stinkerness!

  • He is concerned about his friend, Brady Fourr, who will soon be leaving home to serve in the Los Angeles California mission. He's not worried about gang activity or earthquakes. No, Wesley is thinking that the real danger for Brady is getting lost on the LA freeways.
  • He is walking and biking everywhere now.

  • People in Blaine are renting out their houses getting ready for the Olympics, which are just 20 miles away, just across the Canadian border.

  • Transfers are February 9th.

  • Mission baptism goal for 2010 is 1000. According to Wesley, "very do-able". If every companionship has 1 baptism/month, it they would surpass the mission goal. They want at least 84 baptisms each month, but 1 per companionship would be 94. Very do-able!

  • Wes and 12 other missionaries SANG at the adult meeting of Stake Conference! They sang "Brightly Beams Our Father's Mercy" to the tune of "If You Could Hie to Kolob." According to Wes, it was "waaayyyy legit...even made a few people cry...THAT GOOD!" (Should I tell him that some people actually tear up when they are laughing really hard?)

  • Sunday session Stake Conference was packed, so Wes and his companion sat in the back of the cultural hall and had quite an interesting experience. Halfway through the meeting Wesley heard a "drumming" noise. He said the noise got louder and louder until a lady with "bushy black hair" jumped up and started hitting the guy next to her. In addition to pummeling the guy, she was shouting profanities. An investigator from another ward who was sitting in front of Wes turned around and said "Looks like the front row seats were in the back!" It turns out that the sister is schizophrenic and the people who know her understand, but it was quite a show for our small-town elder.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

January 10, 2010

I'm not ignoring this blog, but written communication between Elder Whipple and the family has been sporadic since the middle of December. We had a telephone visit on Christmas Day, which was NICE! Wes was upbeat and very positive. (His mommy was worried that the phone call would make him homesick, but that was not the case.) We gave Wes a Garmon GPS for Christmas. Apparently, a GPS is THE gift to give for today's missionaries. Both Wes, and his companion, Elder Cramer, had just received the same Garmon GPS. When we talked on Christmas Day, they were having some fun learning how to make this technology useful for their work. Also during our conversation, Wes asked his Dad and I to attend a baptism on January 2nd. One of his high school buddies, Colton Kennedy, had been meeting with the missionaries and was ready to take "the plunge."
This is Colton on the left (winking) and Josh Davis, another buddy, before the baptism. They thought the "thumbs up" picture was just what Wes would want to see, and sure enough, Wes was thrilled. It's good to see your friends accepting the gospel.
We received a letter today, dated Sunday, January 10th. Here are a few of the highlights:
  • He claims not to have a weight problem. His new companion, however, is under doctor's orders to lose some weight, so they are walking and biking everywhere. So long to the car!
  • His sporadic writing is due to being a busy missionary.
  • Some investigators are "flakey" and don't want to make and keep committments, so they haven't had a baptism lately.
  • Wesley has had lots of opportunities to bear his testimony about the blessings that the gospel brings into our lives. (He sounds almost APPRECIATIVE of his upbringing!)
  • The missionaries in the Everett Washington mission all get to go to the Seattle Temple tomorrow. This only happens twice a year, so it is exciting.
  • And as usual, Wes has a list of things he wants sent from home, including a pair of football cleats. What in the world does a missionary need with football cleats?