Friday, August 24, 2012

August 24, 2012

Hey Mom... I really hope you get this soon!!!!! BUt guess what?!? We got our travel plans today!!!!!! We leave September 3rd! We leave the MTC around 6 in the morning. So we will probably get to the airport around 7:15 I am guessing? And by the time security is over and everything it will probably be around 8? I have no idea, but that is just my guess. So I will get to call home around 8 I am guessing!! Should I call home or your cell phone or dads? Please dear elder me as soon as you get this so I know!! I can't wait to get to hear from you all. I will email dad too just in case you don't get this in time. I love you all!!! Thank you so much for the package!! It has been such an amazing week already! I will talk to you later!! I love you!!!!! Elder Parker

August 20, 2012

Hey mom!! thank you so much for all your advice and all the news that is going on back in Hurricane!! wow the weeks keep going by faster and faster! I was talking to one of my teachers here about how crazy it is that he is already been back for 8 months off of his mission. He said when you get out to the field the time even goes faster! He said don't let a minute go to waste, do everything you can every day to serve the Lord, because the time is so fast. He said it felt lilke a month and he was already back home! So I know that it will be fast out in the field because it is already so fast here at the MTC. I missed out on stake conference it sounds like !! But I am so glad that you were able to feel the spirit and have some good experiences with it. Well I am pretty sure everyone in our district got their visas except for the two that were supposed to go to peru three weeks ago. But I am glad they are still with us because they are both great elders! I went to the temple today and this older sister came up to me and started telling me, I think the world of you, you have no idea how many people you will bless. She said, you leave your family for two years so that you can help families be together forever. Wow she started crying and it made me tear up, also. She had such a strong spirit about herself. She is so right!! Sometimes I think of the family and realize how much i miss you all and how much I love you all, but then I think, I get the opportunity through the Lord to help people have this same happiness and knowledge that we have. I always have visions of families I am going to meet in Mexico. I cannot wait to share the gospel with them and help them come unto Jesus Christ. It gives me tears just thinking about it. So I heard with packages and letters and stuff if you put mary stickers on them, that the people leave it alone? I think that is true, but I am not sure. Thank you so much for the Hawaii package!! I loved it and so did my district. I am so spoiled, but I absolutely love it and feel so much love and peace when h receive things from my family and my mom :) So on Tuesday, we had a Devotional, and the lady talked about a story in her home ward. She said, a little boy got up and bore his testimony. He stood there, she was thinking he didn't know what to say. But then he said, I am so thankful for my brother being on a mission, I know it is hard, and I miss him so much, but the people out there need him. It was so powerful and I thought of my family, and especially my little brother Nathan. It turns out the Elder in my zone, it was his home ward, and that was his brother. It was so amazing to hear that story, he has been here for two weeks, and has been struggling with home sickness but that helped him, now he is doing so well. But after the devotional we have a district devotional review with a member of the branch presidency. Brother Jones was in our meeting this time. When it was my turn to bear my testimony and share my thoughts about the devotional. I couldn't talk. I started crying so so much, and it just wouldn't stop. I had to just keep saying sorry, because I couldn't talk at that time. But finally I could talk somewhat and I said how much I missed my family, and how much that sounded like my little brothers and how much I miss them. I cried throughout the whole testimony of mine. Brother Jones and Sister Jones, started crying also, and when they bore their testimonies they directed it towards my thoughts saying, "Elder Parker you are so right, I know it is so hard being away from your family, but imagine how many blessings they are receiving. Imagine if you didn't come on a mission, your brothers wouldn't think they would have to either because they follow you in everything and love you so much. He said your family is being blessed more than you know, thank you for being such a good example, and thank you for blessing your family. It was so so spiritual and it was such a good night!! Should I send some stuff home before I leave in 2 weeks? Thank you for the stamps and for the pictures of Hawaii!! I bought a picture album in the bookstore and put all the pictures of you and dad in it!! It is so cute :) So thank you so much. OH yeah, Kizzy wrote me and said she is playing volleyball in Nicaragua for the championships. So she will probably be somewhat close to Court!! I love you so, so much, tell the family I absolutely love them!! I have realized how much I am blessed to have this family and realized that I love you all so very much!!!! Please be safe!! Can't wait to get to Mexico!! We should get our travel plans sometime this week!! Then at the airport I can call whoever I want! So guess what... I am going to get to call home :) I already bought my minutes card for the phones!!! I can't wait. I love you!
Elder Parker

Thursday, August 16, 2012

August 13, 2012

Mom!!! Como Esta?! I am doing so good here!! I love it! My p day has been really good so far! The temple was really spiritual like always!! We have the same district throughout the whole MTC stay here. We now only have 10 elders in my district because two left to Peru, the other two were supposed to but they don't have their visas. So we have 10 for now. I will have the same companion this whole time!! No, they usually have a companionship be the Zone leaders, but President Cosgrave our Branch President said that they are doing something different, because that was what they were prompted to do. So elder Taggart and I are Zone leaders. Which our companionships are in the same room, so that made it really nice. There were 5 districts in our zone but this morning the oldest district left, so now we have 4 districts in our zone for now. We are now the oldest district!! We have three weeks left, it is really crazy how fast this has gone. I will miss it here, but I cannot wait to get to Mexico!! We are all getting really excited. My responsibilities are to welcome the new districts when they come in on Wednesday, have a meeting with them on Thursday nights, then give them a tour of the MTC that night. We then interview all the district leaders, to see how each district is doing. We have meetings all Sunday morning, and Tuesday nights. So it is pretty busy. Then every night we go to everyones room and talk and say goodnight. Which I really enjoy just helping out the other elders in our zone. It has been a good way to keep from thinking about myself, it keeps me positive. Wow, that is so amazing that Chalice was baptized, I wish I could have been there!! I am so glad you had a spiritual experience with that. We went to a devotional, and the speaker was talking about how people these days don't know how to recognize the spirit. Most people don't think they've felt the spirit in a long time, but the chances are they have, they just haven't recognized it. I am so thankful for Dad and how he has the priesthood. So guess what?! The young women in our ward sent me a package the other day! It was like Sister Bussberg, and Sister Isom and the leaders and young women. They had sent me a bunch of items with cool sayings on each one. Like toothpaste, and cake mix, and socks, and gum, just a ton of stuff! It was so nice of them, and I absolutely loved it! It made my day. So can you tell them thanks for me! I might write them a letter later if I have time, but if not, let them know how much I loved it! Thank you so much for the package "hold to the rod" my whole district loved it!! And thank you for the Yellowstone Package!! I am so lucky! Yesterday I saw Elder Covey, he was Timpviews quarterback two years ago! We met before at his house when we stopped there before we played Skyline! He is such a stud, and he remembered me. Dad, the new elder in one of our Districts is Elder Judd, he said he had you as a teacher and said you were his favorite! Well I am doing really well here! Leaving September 3rd once again! My investigator has a baptisimal date in two weeks! I am so excited, then our other one is getting really close to accepting, and our other one is a little harder to teach. But I feel myself progressing and gaining more and more faith and experience here. Boston says hi, I just talked to him at lunch, and I told him I was on my way to go email, so he says hi! It is really nice to see people I know. I love my district. We played the new district in volleyball, and beat them! It was really fun, they had some big kids that played volleyball in high school, but somehow we still beat them. hahaha I will let you know if I need anything else! I hope the family is doing great! I love you all so much! Court and I were talking about how we are so lucky to have the family that we have! I am so blessed!! Estoy agradecido por mi familia, especialmente mi mama!! :) Amo usted.
Love Elder Parker

Pictures from the MTC

I am glad to have the opportunity to serve as the Zone Leader, not for recognition, but for service. I feel like I know what the newer elders went through the first few weeks, so I am a big help for them I believe. I am trying to make the most if it here. The spirit is so strong, and I actually love this place! But I am more excited to go to Mexico!! Thank you for the scripture and the advice!! Thanks for the update on the olympics, wish I could have watched them, pero esta bien.
I know the language won't come all at once, and that it takes time. So I have been a lot more positive on that part.
Thank you so much for everything, and for preparing me for this Mission. I couldn't have done it without you.
Also, way to bless the sacrament at church. I miss doing that, but hopefully I can soon, in spanish that is.
I love you Dad!
Love Elder Parker

August 10, 2012

Hey mom!! That is so awesome that you and dad are in Hawaii!! I am so jealous, but I am so happy for you!!! It sounds like you are having a blast, making many good memories, and meeting new people!! I think I might send home my card on my camera so you can see some pictures and i recorded a few videos so you can watch those also!!! THis week has gone by so so fast!! I have some good news for you, but you will find out when you watch the video that i am sending you!!! I am glad you met some missionaries and talked with them. I saw Jordan Bozarth here from snow canyon basketball, konnor murdock from pine view football, he asked if i was going to play with him at suu, he was really nice. Then I see Boston and Kyler and Josh a lot!! I got to see both of their parents like you already know!!! So thanks for the yellowstone package, my whole district loved it so much!!! It was nice to get some things from yellowstone, made me feel like I went. So we celebrated hump day two nights ago, because we are more than halfway done with the mtc. We had been saving up like 40 bags of chips and then that night we ate them all and drank some soda! It was really fun, and just a good night. We have had two new districts come in already, and one last one coming in this wednesday. Then we will have a full zone again, because one district is leaving next monday. I was able to go to the temple again today, that was such a neat experience, the spirit is always so strong there!! I never take it for granted. I just barely got Courts email you sent in the mail along with the ant story! Thank you so much, that is a neat story about diligence. I am glad Court is doing good, we email every week! Which is a big help to me because we both know exactly how each other feels. So we got a new investigator last week. His name is Gabriel from Chile. During our second lesson, he bore his testimony of prayer. He told us a story that goes something like this, when he was working one day, his son had severe pain in his legs and arms and they didin't know what was wrong with him. Anyways at work, he heard the spirit whisper, go home your son is sick take him to the hospital. So he listened and took his son to the hospital and he had cancer. They said if he wouldn't have brought him in that time that he would have probably died soon after. He started crying during this story, which surprised me because he looks like a really tough guy, which in turn made me cry. I then bore my testimony of how prayer is so powerful and with the poder del espiritu santo anything is possible. I told him how much i love mi familia and how this gospel can make our families become even closer and we can always have that love. It was such a spiritual experience. I just love being here so much!!! Sunday and Tuesdays are probably my favorite days here. Because they are both so spiritual and we have devotionals on those days. Sunday nights, we watch videos, like this sunday i watched the testaments video. It is nice to have a break, and watch some movies. Wow I love you so much, I am so blessed to be in this family of ours. Thank you for preparing me for this oportunidad to serve Dios!! Estoy agradecido por mi familia!! Thank you so much again, and I love you!! Don't you ever forget. Brother Jones who is in our branch presidency, his wife reminds me of you, not looks, but just how she is always happy. She gets really excited to see me every night they are here. She comes up to me and says with a smile, its our favorite Quarterback missionary!! She asks how I am doing and I say really good, which in return she said of course, you are always happy and always have a smile on your face :) I just love it so much. Seeing the wives and women just remind me of you and being at home, which brightens my day. I love you so much, and hope you and dad are safe in Hawaii!
Love Elder Parker

Thursday, August 2, 2012

July 30, 2012

Hey Mom!!! How are you doing? I am so glad that you were able to go to Yellowstone and have fun!! I am having a really good time here! It feels like just yesterday I was writing home. The days here kind of go slow, but the weeks go by really really fast!! Last night we sang "God be with you till we meet again" to the two districts in my zone that left this morning. I will miss them so much. They were so loving and were good examples to me. They lived on my floor, and I always talked to them. There was an Elder from Lone Peak who walked onto Byu, he is a big linebacker. His name is Elder Newman. He is such a cool Elder. Then his companion played basketball for Weber State he is 6 10. And their other roomate is a swimmer for Byu and then another elder was a professional surfer. They left this morning!! I have been staying busy learning the language. In one of my lessons with our investigator, I had the impression to bear my testimony about oracion (prayer). When i started bearing my testimony to (Waldina our investigator) I started crying because I know we can receive answers to our prayers. The spirit was so strong in the room, and she started to cry. It was such an amazing experience!! I know have 4 investigators that I teach. So it keeps me really busy preparing lessons and practicing them in Spanish. But i wouldn't have it any way. One of my investigators might actually not be a member of the church. I find out on Tuesday if he is or not, which I hope he isn't so that way we can teach him about the gospel and help bring him unto Christ. This week has gone by super fast and has been filled with so many spiritual experiences. Elder Jones in our district had his birthday on Saturday. His mom sent us cake and snacks, it was a fun night!! We got a new district last Wednesday and will be getting one this wednesday also. So now my district is the second oldest in the Zone now . Elder Taggart, who is in my room, his mom sent us district ties, so we all have matching ties. It is funny to wear them and see how people react. I hope the family is doing good!! I miss you all and love you so very much. I hung some pictures up of our family and relatives which is nice. Everyone says I have a cute family, and they say i have cute sisters hahaha. I'm used to that by now. So this afternoon we get to go to the temple for the first time being here!! I am so excited, it will be my first time in the Provo Temple. When i get back from my mission I want to go to every temple in Utah, which by that time will probably be 14 I believe. I love being here, because the spirit is always so strong and I will never take that for granted. Trevor Nelson leaves the mtc tomorrow, he is going to Florida. I was able to see him and say goodbye!! I see jeff staples a lot, he has changed and I love talking to him. Thanks for all the letters, and for the doughnuts you sent me!! They were so good and I loved them. So it really just depends on when I write my emails home. Because we now have temple schedule on pdays so sometimes i feel like doing it in the morning while my laundry is being done, or sometimes i feel like doing it after. So sorry if i ever keep you waiting or something. There has been rumor of a shooting in colorado at the movie theatre and Dwight howard got traded hahaha. We hear lots of things through letters and emails. Well just want you to know all is well here!! Thanks for helping me to prepare to come out here. It is a lot different than what i thought it was going to be like, but that isn't a bad thing at all!! Well I love you and let the family know how much I love them!! God be with you till we meet again!!

Love Elder Parker

July 23, 2012

Hey Family!! How is it going? This past week has been really really good!! There have been some hard times, but the good times outweight the bad times by far!!
So guess what.. Yesterday I was made District Leader!! I am so excited to help provide and serve my district. I am really excited!! So i saw Elder Mckeighan from Desert Hills basketball team last year!! Him and I talked for like 15 minutes, he is a really awesome elder. Yesterday i saw elder Wilstead from pine view, he came
up to me and was like elder Parker!! We talked for a few minutes. I see Jeff Staples a lot!! Jesse Bettridge gave me a book the other day called "The Book of Hurricane" Corey started it and it gets passed around to the people from hurricane here at the mtc. It is a funny book, but has very spiritual sayings and testimonies in it.
So far Corey, Colton Barney, Taylor Frost, and Jesse Bettridge have written in it! I will pass it on to Jeff Staples. So I was able to consecrate oil, that was a neat experience. Then the next day, Elder Gooden was sick and needed a blessing, so I gave him one, my very first one. It was really spiritual, and it worked!! I know i will be giving so many more blessings in my life. Mom, thank you so so much for the package of new shirts, shorts, and new socks, and all that pirate stuff!! My whole district loved it we got a picture with our eye patches on!! Just dont feel like you have to send me things, or if it costs too much money, I will be fine. But I really do enjoy receiving packages and it makes my day. :) so thanks!! We went to a fireside yesterday and brother Alan talked to us. He talked about the song Come Come Ye Saints. It was so spiritual, he talked about the pioneers and how we will be okay. "All is Well" He had us sing it like 3 times through, and it meant a lot to me. After we watched the Joseph Smith movie. Sundays are really spiritual here, but also, every day is!! I now have two investigators I am teaching in spanish. Two elders from our district are leaving tomorrow for Peru. The other two haven't received their visas yet. Our district has really come together. During gym, since basketball court is closed, we go play sand volleyball outside together. That has been so much fun, plus i abosolutely love sand volleyball. Me Kizzy and Stacey would always play it.
How is the cabin?? I bet you are having so much fun, but don't worry, i'm having more fun here :). Tell all the relatives hi for me!!
I have now gotten used to the schedule and things like that, so nice it is much easier throughout the day. Yesterday we went to the temple and took a lot of pretty pictures. I think next p-day we will be able to go in the temple :) I sure hope so, because i miss the peace, spirit, and comfort the temple brings for me.
I miss you all so much!! And i just want to tell you how much I love you and appreciate everything you have done for me!! Please do not worry about me, I am doing totally fine!!
The Lord is here with me, I have no doubt I am being blessed and being led by the Spirit. I am so blessed having this experience to be a missionary of the Lord!! I will not let Him down.
I want to do everything so that when I get to Mexico I can invite them to come unto Christ and receive the restored gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and his atonement, repentence, baptism, receiving the gift of the holy ghost, and to endure to the end. We are so blessed to have this gospel in our family. Please never take it for granted!
Dare to be a Mormon,
Dare to be alone,
Dare to have courage,
Dare to make it known.
I love you all so much!! Y estoy agradecido por es experiencia!!

Amor, Elder Parker aka Taydog!!