Monday, March 27, 2017

Week #83

Week 83:

A PORCUPINE. YES a porcupine is included in this week's update.

Monday was grand as we had our usual day. We then had a dinner appointment at 6 with a member family from the family ward. Now an interesting fact about them as that they're notorious for keeping the missionaries well past their hour we are allotted. Last time we were there we didn't get out until 2 and a half hours later and this time we needed to get to FHE at 7:30. I just want to testify that miracles do happen as we were able to make it to FHE on time. It was really cool too because the guy in charge of the activity had gotten these pills that you dissolve on your tongue and by the time you're done they will make anything you eat taste sweet. So then we went in two teams and you had to put blind folds on and try different foods and guess what they were. I ate a lime that tasted like an orange and just to show how legit these pills were one member drank vinegar and thought it was sprite. It was awesome!

Tuesday we went out to the LaFrances place which is in the boonies to help cut some wood and we were in a forest and it was just so peaceful and warm out it made me pretty pumped for this spring. We were in his bobcat thing in the bin and we were driving and then all of a sudden Elder McBride spotted something and it turned out to be a porcupine right in front of us so we stopped and got pretty close to it. This kind did not shoot their quills out so it was ok.

On Wednesday we decided to do some tracting near the campus and saw a guy smoking across the street and I went over and said hi to him. He's from this little Island off the coast of Africa called Mauritius. He was interested in hearing more so we set an appointment to meet up. We then we to coordination meeting which was slightly sad because our branch mission leader Caleb was having his last one due to the fact he's going to Quebec for some schooling. It was good and we got some funny pictures including a First Presidency shot.

Thursday We and a couple other people and went to Caleb's house for dinner.

Friday we had a zone conference in Toronto. We got to see the new Easter initiative which comes out this Friday. It's called #ThePrinceOfPeace and you can view it on Also got to see this video from a mission in Germany where they do interviews where the missionaries answer the questions without talking or making a noise. Just by facial expressions and you can see their answers just in their face and see if they have the countenance of Christ upon them. It was really good. Also got to see one of the missionaries who I trained and also the Elder who he is training who is from south Korea. That was good. We then went on exchanges with the Coburg elders out in Coburg and it marked the final area in the zone. Being here for a while I've been able to go on exchange in every area or serve there. Some which used to be sister areas when I was in Lindsay and vice versa now. It was good and I went with a young Elder just out of training. We went tracting that night and he got into his first house since being in the mission and we both had the same impression to share with this guy about the book "Jesus The Christ" by James Talmage. The next day we exchanged back and taught one of our investigators and read from The Book of Mormon and really applied it to his life and told him how awesome gospel principles at church W was( cause he had never stayed past sacrament.)

The next day we had fast and testimony meeting and I bore my testimony about how those we serve we come to love and told about how I used to go bless sacrament for a Brother Sommerfeldt in my ward and how at first it felt like a burden to us 16 and 17 year olds, but as I got to know him I ended up growing to love him and really loving the opportunity of doing it each Sunday after church. Service really can change hearts. So at the beginning of my mission I did not want to ever serve YSA and I think I vocally prayed that I never would and then ended up here and how I really now love it and all the members and I shared this as well. I think my Charity really has developed since I've been here and I love it. It makes everyday so much better. At the end of the night we found a man who used to be a muslim but converted to Christianity and we told him about prophets and invited him to general conference and we will be seeing him this Friday as that was something that really sparked his interest. You should all go check out General conference this weekend as its going to be super awesome! Go on (for real not kidding, not even trying to advertise it haha) Have a great week everyone and enjoy the Spring! OH WAIT THERES MORE So earlier today we went and played some squash with a couple members Josh and Daniel. 
It was super fun but super tiring. No jokes!

Monday, March 20, 2017

Week #82 "Success is going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm."

So this was a fresh new week of a new fresh transfer. It was a week I think I really learned a lot and how to deal with life and some of the cheap shots it dishes out.

This Monday was interesting because it was the day that the missionaries who got their transfer calls say good bye to everyone at the zone sports and where everyone does sign journals and all that fun stuff. It was interesting seeing all the missionaries who were in this zone the second time I came back finally pack their bags and move on to other places. For FHE they played this trivia game to do with the scriptures and prophets and other things like the church. It was really well done.

Tuesday we were visiting with a member and were talking about some fun doctrine (teachings) and his friend who we had shared a little bit with ended up showing and he joined in the conversation and we ended up teaching some of the restoration and plan of salvation which went really well. We made it kinda like a discussion and asked questions openly to everyone in the room but they were pretty much asked for him and at the end we gave him a plan of salvation pamphlet and urged him to read it and we are going to try to meet again and answer his questions. We also were contacting the same day at an intersection and there was this one guy about to cross the other way and it was inconvenient to go and talk to him just with the lights and stuff, but I felt I needed to and he ended up listening to what we had to say (which is really just a ton of awesome things and you should all meet with some Mormon Missionaries and hear it but thats just a little subliminal message haha) and we set a time to meet and exchanged some info.

Wednesday we had a meeting and we talked about having effective studies and why they were important. We're kinda in a sense like a well. We are a well and we can learned or develop things and that's like the water. So the more we do the more we fill those wells. Then when the time is right while teaching others the Spirit draws from that well and uses what we have and expands it, but it's a lot harder if we are not filling that well. Therefore we need to do things that fill ourselves so we can help others. We also had dinner with one of the counselors in the branch. He is a former stake president and so he has a lot of cool stories and has met a lot of people like President Monson and Elder Bednar. Before we got to his place we had a little time so we knocked some doors, which is something you don't do as much in YSA work because you do more talking to people outside by the university. We got into a house and a couple guys were playing NBA 2k16 and so we started talking ball and turned the conversation into the gospel and shared how there is a living day prophet on the earth today. We then asked if we could come back and share some more and the one guy agreed. Super cool though, fact: Talking sports with sports people softens their hearts.

Thursday we went and say a couple people but nothing too spectacular sharing-wise.

Friday we did a lot of finding and ended (I think this was on Friday at least?) talking to this older gentleman who looked like a hardened war vet and it turned out he was and had served around the world and had worked for the U.N. He then wanted to talk to us and took us to a Tim Hortons where he got us some doughnuts. This guy was pretty interesting and sounds like he had some intense situations. He was eating a doughnut while we were talking and the weird part is, he was using a pocket knife to cut his doughnut and then was stabbing the pieces and eating them using his knife. Man we might as well gone camping cause that was pretty intense haha. Oh the crazy things that happen.

The next morning I went on exchange with an Elder Carroll who I had served around when I first started my mission and we did the exchange in Brampton which has 60% Indian people. He had been there for a while so while we were contacting he could say some phrases in Punjab and it was so fun seeing their reactions and how much they enjoyed him speaking their language. I believe when we take an interest in people and their lives and their culture they in turn are more receptive to what we have to say. For dinner we cooked up some chicken hearts which was pretty good. Different texture but overall pretty good. We also taught one of their investigators from Jamaica and ended up sharing the Word of Wisdom with them which is always fun cause Jamaica is notorious for some of the substances the Word of Wisdom warns us of. Overall the exchange was super good.

We then had church and later had dinner with the LaFrances. This week I'm not gonna lie was a tougher week, but I saw a quote from Winston Churchill that really applied that I would like to share with all of you it says "Success is going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm." I feel like as we keep our attitude well and positive we can enjoy life no matter what it throws at us. Keep being happy! Love you all and have a stellar week.

Elder Toly

So heres a pic with Jasper our buddy from the branch 

Monday, March 13, 2017

Week #81

Week 81:

So this week is pretty vague in my memory, but I'll try my best to let ya know what happened.

So this Monday we had our preparation day. So some more details about that.... We get a couple hours to email to family and friends (I guess thats you guys, either you're my friends reading this or it's an extremely good piece of literature, or you just feel bad for me but I'm just gonna guess it's the last option haha) We also then go to Wal-Mart and being missionaries and all we just have a cart full of great value products. The nice part is one of our YSA mom works there and she's a non-member so we also go through her checkout lane and she just loves us and knows the drill how we always put the purchase on two different cards. We then take the previously said groceries to our place and are laundry is doing its thing as we do all this. We then generally play some sports as a zone. Then we have family home evening which is where a bunch of the people in the branch meet up and we have a spiritual thought and then have some activities.

Tuesday we met with our new convert who was having a hard time having charity and so of course we taught about charity. We explained how it's easy to love people that are your friends and who you get along with but the real test of charity comes in when we need to love those who are less than friendly to us. Anyone can love their friends, but the real test comes when we love our enemies.

Wednesday we had district meeting where we learned about faith with finding. The district leader asked if we had faith to find and of course we all said yes and so he said well then you have 20 minutes to find someone new to teach. We frantically went out of the church and we were able to have a really good conversation with a lady that had been to Alberta and of course I love talking about that, but we were in terms of our goal unsuccessful. We then came back and it was explained to us that true faith is doing something without seeing the result. We also learned about the Wright brothers who were the first ones to create a plane that could fly and how they had to have faith. We also had our coordination at Dairy Queen with our ward mission leader and his assistant. It was pretty good and we were able to review the past missionary efforts in the week and I got a sundae so win-win.

Thursday we went out to Uxbridge and were able to visit a couple girls that were interested in learning about the gospel. One of which is set on being baptized which I personally am never against.

On Friday we had another meeting about the importance of baptism and how really essential it is to really being able to receive all the blessings that God has in store for us. We also attempted to try our Journey of Becoming a man part 2 but it didn't work out too great haha The temperatures here have been just terrible with the wind which is like a dagger to my soul. I've really come to dislike the wind which is funny because I grew up in Lethbridge.

Saturday we met with an investigator where we taught about Christ and the importance of doing what he did because he was the perfect example. So we talked about baptism and how it is so important. It seemed to hit him a little bit because he said that he needed more time to think about it. It went well and the spirit was there as we and the member we brought bore testimony. We also went and read with another investigator 1 Nephi 13 which talks about the future troubles and wickedness we see now in our day.

On Sunday we had church and it was good in the class after sacrament and talked about the restoration and why its the first lesson shared and it because it teaches people about how they can communicate with God and how they can receive answers and recognize them. He then compared the restoration with the new Zelda Game ahhahaha. Welcome to YSA. It was awesome. We also got our calls and I am staying in Oshawa for a 4th and its my 8th in the Oshawa zone so that's pretty crazy.

Loves -Elder Toly
One of our members made some homemade headphones 

Monday, March 6, 2017

Week #80- character building

Week 80: This week was very good. It was what I would call a character building week where I learned an important life skill that I can use not just in my mission but for the rest of my life.

For Monday we had our prep day and decided that our zone would go bowling, not all of us came but it was super fun. I found out Elder McBride was actually very good so he taught me a lesson on humility (still not the life lesson I learned haha) since I guess I generallly expected to win. Expect the unexpected is all that I'm gonna say on that one. Life 1, Elder Toly 0. haha but it was good and after we had a dinner with the Whitsitt family who are basically one of those generational families in an area that everyone knows cause they've always been here. It was awesome though and they have two ysa kids so we got to talk sports which is something I won't say no to. After we then went to fhe and got to give the lesson. We taught off a cool idea Elder McBride had about prophets. We had a game of telephone which is when you start at one end and have to say something and repeat it to the next person by whispering it to them. And as always the message got distorted by the end. We shared how if we had a prophet that this would never happen because he always receives the answer straight from God .

Tuesday we went out to Coburg to give a baptismal interview. The lady was super prepared and it was a extremely good experience where the spirit was felt. After that we had to drive all the way out to Brampton to stay there for the night for a meeting the next day. Right before we all went to bed someone gave a devotional on Christ and then a whole bunch of us got to bear testimony on Christ. Its moments like that when I see around 20 18-21 year olds bearing testimony about Christ that really gives me that feeling this is true. Super cool and amazing stuff.

Next day woke up early and went and played some ball. The meeting ended up being really amazing as we focused on the why of why we do things or have certain rules and guidelines. There was a huge emphasis on the Savior and how he is that reason. Really great and made me do a little self evaluation on ways that I can improve. The next day we went contacting and it was super cold that day and we had a lot of time. So we went for a fairly long walk towards the University campus. In my planner I called it "the journey of becoming a man" twas super cold and we spent a good while talking to people and got a couple potential people who might be interested. We also gave our number to another girl. Later on we got a text from that girl and she had a couple questions and she was down to meet up the next day. The next day we had zone council which was very well. We then had interviews after with President Shields. He is such a funny and real guy. I quite enjoyed it and really know thats hes an inspired guy. We then and met up with that girl who gave our number to at a mall while on exchanges and we taught the restoration and invited her to read the book of Mormon and she accepted and said she would come to church. After the lesson she texted us saying thanks which was pretty cool as well.

The next day we went and did some heavy lifting for service and and exchanged back. Later we had a ysa activity and ended up playing basketball. A couple nonmembers came and played which was really awesome. The next day was church and we also had dinner at the LaFrances! . " We shared an interesting message where we asked questions like, how do you describe the taste of salt without using the word salt, can God make a rock big enough that we can't move it, and wheres Kolob. None of them really had definite known answers and then we explained that we don't have most of the answers and that we won't while in this life but that if we rely on God in faith we can find out more and eventually obtain all of them. So if you don't know whats what don't be too hard on yourself cause you can't know everything but still seek to find. Also the lesson I learned this week was learning to be happy in unhappy circumstances or really having a good attitude in any circumstance. Anyone can be happy and positive when the situation is happy and positive but the real secret is being happy when nothing around you is. That was something I learned this week is that we can choose to have joy whenever and that the only thing holding us back from it often times is ourselves. It was a miraculous thing I was able to learn."

That was the week though. I hope you're all surviving through the cold weather. Stay warm, have fun, and be smart. Love ya!