Thursday, August 17, 2017

08/15/2017 - And I just hear, "Hi missionaries, wait that is THOMAS!"

Heyo everyone. 

Well this week flew by. And had a lot of weird stuff happen, and some cool stuff. First off, it was really weird that I saw the Tongas, a family from my home ward. Let me describe what happened. We are walking down the street, and I just hear, "hi missionaries, wait that is THOMAS!" Which was weird because I hadn't heard that name in forever. Anyway they ran across the street because they were across from my area and sure enough I was standing right there in front of someone from home. It was the weirdest thing I have experienced. I apologize to them however, as I was shocked, and in my mind I wasn't supposed to really see people I knew.  So it freaked me out and I said we had to go kinda quickly.  But one thing I did learn was that I cover where Sister Tonga grew up. So that is cool. 

Anyway this week we were still trying to figure things out and meet up with investigators who seem like they probably will drop us because we aren't the sisters. But that was expected. We are currently working with quite a few LA's (less actives) because finding in Lethbridge is really hard. We also called all the Part Member Families in the ward to try and pick up some new investigators. So we have quite a few lessons this week. We are worried however that they are just really nice old people who just like to have company. So we will see if there is anything solid. But that has been our work here.

This week is zone conference, which I am excited for. And before I go I wanted to tell a story of the last zone conference in southern Alberta. So we get people thanking us for what happened all the time, but last transfer the craziest thing happened. All of the south, basically all the missionaries that don't cover Calgary got together. Near the end of the conference someone felt inspired to leave. Sure enough outside across the street they see smoke rising from a retirement center. They rush back into the zone conference and all the missionaries rush across the street to help evacuate all these older people into the church to get them out of the smoke and away from the fire. It was a miracle, honestly many lives were saved because of someone listening to the holy ghost. So I hope there won't be a fire this week, but I know that our Savior is leading this work, he guides us if we seek it and we can find those he has prepared. love you all!

Note from Mom: We received this video from the Tonga family shortly after they saw him on the streets of Lethbridge.


Tuesday, August 8, 2017

08/08/2017 - Can't Wait to Get This Work Moving

Well I have unfortunate news. I am no longer serving in Calgary...

I got transferred, haha. So this week has been absolutely crazy. And I am going to do my best to explain the situation in the mission right now. The past few days have been a headache of just weird stuff going on. so let me try and explain this and I hope you follow.

So last week was the huge transfer and I apologize I heard an incorrect number, only 29 missionaries came our way last transfer, one of which is my MTC comp Elder Henderson! he is back from tearing his ACL. I am really excited for that! But also nearly 40 missionaries went home. Including my mission dad and mission mom. (my trainer and the oldest sister in my district when I was being trained) So it was crazy. I got transferred. I am now serving in the Lethbridge Zone, which is down south.

Lethbridge is a college town of about 100,000 people. And because it is a college town there is weed everywhere. Especially cause it is legal. But let me tell you about what is going on. They just re-organized every stake in Lethbridge and created a new YSA stake, the first one outside the states by the way. So a headache of trying to figure out new boundaries and things. But let’s add to that. I was purged in along with my companion. So we are replacing sisters who were here., sort of. What happened is there were two companionships of sisters. Each had a family ward and YSA ward. Well President pulled a companionship out and put me in, so we now cover both the family wards (Coulee Ridge and Chinook wards) and the remaining sisters now cover both of the YSA wards. I hope that  made sense. So the past few days have just been a headache trying to figure out what our area is, who we teach, and just a whole bunch of other stuff. But to add to that confusion, almost every single companionship in our zone is opening a new area because of all the mix ups. We are the pinnacle of all the change. So as my zone leaders said " this transfer is going to be goofy." So this week is truly weird. 

But it is cool. We are replacing sisters, so of course our apartment is way dope. Way nicer than my last one. And my new comp is Elder Vea, from TAYLORSVILLE UTAH. He lives on the other side of Truman elementary on the other side of 47th. He lived just down the street from me. Crazy small world! But love you all. Can't wait to get this work moving. And I know Christ lives!

In an email to his dad: We only figured out our boundaries yesterday. But I like it. It is a small town, which is awesome, Calgary was too big for me. But it is going to be tough here. This city was settled by Mormons, like much of southern Alberta, so everyone knows who we are, and tracting and street contacting is really ineffective because of that. People either love us or hate us. No in between. So we are going to work hard. I am only worried our wards will take some time to warm up to us. At church I can't tell you how many times members would say "we are going to miss the sisters."  But we will change their mind. I am way excited for this. I can't wait to start finding and teaching. Most of the investigators we had weren't super solid but I am really excited.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

08/01/2017 - I Love Him and Will Follow Our Savior Anywhere

Hello everyone,

Well this week flew by. So first off there is still no surety that I am leaving. Elder Wiwchar didn't get a training call. So we find out tonight if I go. I have this sneaking feeling I will stay. Which would be a long time in my first area. But as for that I have no idea what is going on. But I trust the lord knows what he needs and knows where I need to be. So regardless I trust that I will be where he wants me to be.

As for that this week was odd. To be honest I don't even remember what happened. Like I don't know what we did. All I remember is we tract a lot, talked to a ton of people and the Zone leaders called us this week and asked us to raise our people contacted goal because we have been absolutely crushing it and the rest of the zone. Last tuesday we contacted more than the zone combined. I am a little proud of that. But when you work hard time flies. And it has been such a joy to work hard. And honestly this is really weird I can't remember much about this week. I just know we worked hard. But one thing I know, we must keep pressing forward with faith. I know that our savior leads this work, I love him and he absolutely loves us. Regardless of what we do or say. I love this gospel and will follow our savior anywhere. Because I trust that he knows what is best, it might be hard but I will always seek to do what he asks. I love you all, please remember our savior always, if you take the sacrament you have promised you would, so try. He lives, he loves you and I love you all. Miss you and have a good week.

Elder Ollis

In a letter to Mom when asked if he's getting any more dinner appointments: We are fine. We had some cool experiences. Honestly multiple times this week members of other wards we saw on the street would stop us and give us cash or give us food. It was cool. Some less active guy wants to take us this week too. I am not worried.

07/18/2017 - P-Day with the Zone

07/29/2017 - Brother Nagtalon, a good member Elder Ollis helped move

07/31/2017 - Elder Ollis and Elder Wincher with investigator, Adeline, and her dog Savannah

07/31/2017 - The Berkes, a couple the missionaries helped build a fence

07/31/2017 - The "Funeral" for an Elder who is going home

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

07/25/2017 - It Was Heartbreaking To See Her Go...I Just Hope She Gets Baptized

Well another one gone. I can't believe the time. Today is a special day, it is exactly 6 months since I left. So happy birthday to me! But actually we had a really good week. It was another bitter sweet one.
07/23/2017 - Kathy, our member contact, Elder Ollis, Elder Wiwchar, and Hue

One of my favorite members is moving saturday. So we worked hard all week and have seen all sorts of tender mercies. But sunday we had to say goodbye to our Vietnamese investigator, Hue. It was so sad. We met with her saturday and taught the restoration. And she seemed like she wanted this gospel. It was heartbreaking to see her go. But we talked about the church there and our fellowshipper is a convert from Vietnam. So they talked and Hue wants to go to the church in Vietnam, and she wants missionaries there. I was incredibly happy and sad. I was so grateful that we could find her, and so grateful for being able to help grow a newer mission. Finding a convert in Vietnam. It was especially sad because she emailed both me and Elder Wiwchar at 2 in the morning haha. I just hope she gets baptized. As for that our ward has been odd lately. We don't have hardly any meals so we had to buy a ton of food today to last the week. And we have been struggling to meet with many of them. But Sunday night we met with our WML (Ward Mission Leader), Bro Wenzel. He is the best, and we talked about how these next few weeks we are going to set some new goals, which is exciting.

One personal goal is that I have really been trying to bring the spirit and let it guide us to 
where we need to be. I felt I have always struggled with that. And we had a cool experience that I would like to share. Last night we were tracting, one of the last things for the day. So kinda hard. Anyway, we were trying to hit our daily contacted number and the street was rough. We picked a bum street where most of the people were not friendly. Well the whole time I was just praying that we would be able to be guided to hit our numbers and so we could go in. Well I have never quite experienced it before, but we were going to finish the street and I just felt we should flip around. Sure enough I do and speed up another street. Elder Wiwchar is wondering what in the world I was doing but I pick a house and we start knocking.  Literally the last house we were going to knock on this kid answers the door. And sure enough we start talking. His name is Lucas and has relatives who are LDS.  His family is catholic and wouldn't like us but his family was gone. So we are going to meet with him next week! But the best part was it was a house right across the street from a member! They watched us and invited us over right after and really wanted to help us. It was really cool. So that’s all for the week!

07/18/2017 - Elder Ollis with his Zone on P-Day

07/24/2017 - Chalkboard farewell postcard for Elder Christiansen from Elder Ollis

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

07/18/2017 - It Is Amazing How Confused She Was, But Brothers and Sisters We Are Not!

Hello from up Norf! So this week was bitter sweet and it flew by. I can't even remember what happened because time is absolutely flying right now. But it was a good week. We contacted tons of people this week and had zone conference! So we got to hear from President Miles! Which is always good. We got TIWI's in our car, so we have some voice yelling at us now, haha not really they aren't too bad. But we have to log into the car before we drive so that is weird. (Note from Elder Ollis' mom: I asked Elder Ollis about this. It is a Teenage Independent Witness system which has a GPS system and alerts the driver if they are driving above the speed limit, etc)

But we did have some sweet success! We met with those turkish guys, last night. And sure enough there were two more of them who seemed interested and wanted to learn more. So we picked them up as new investigators! They keep appearing! It has been hard though because some will be there and others won't. so they aren't all at the same speed for what we teach, but we are trying to work through it. But as for the Bitter, we met with our Vietnamese investigator on Saturday and she came to church but at the end of the lesson she told us she can only meet one more time because she is going home. I was so sad. But I am going to get her address and refer the missionaries in Vietnam so she can get baptized there. And I will have a picture next week with her. Also it was funny at the end of the lesson she said she wants to come to our weddings when we get home. So I hope she can go in the temple! And that was our week! 

But I wanted to leave you with a thought. This week we tracted into some crazy lady from another church. She loved what we were doing and after a few minutes she offered a prayer before we left. It was strange to hear another prayer of another faith. And the thing that struck me is how grateful I am to know about our father in heaven. She had no idea who she was praying to as she used words like Father, brother, savior, maker, all interchangably. It is amazing how confused she was. But Brothers and Sisters we are not! We know who our God is, he is our Father. And he loves us. And we know this because Joseph Smith witnessed it!

Love you all and hope you have a good week.