Friday, June 26, 2015

WEEK 98: The Boy Joseph

May 31, 2015 


We're in the mission home tonight with the 20 departing missionaries. We just had dinner, and President and Sister Spendlove are chatting with them all now. We'll wake up tomorrow at 5am and take them to the airport. Then at 4pmtomorrow, we'll pick up the new arriving missionaries fresh from the MTC! We'll be running all over the place, and won't have time to email, so I'll send a note now.

With transfers on Tuesday, my time has run short here in the Downtown Pioneer YSA Stake. It's been an incredible 6 months. It's an area of miracles. Here, I have seen that the Lord truly does lead people to Zion to learn of the Gospel. Most of these people don't know at first, why they decided to come to Salt Lake. But, they quickly come to find out that the Lord has much bigger and much better plans for them than they could ever imagine. Almost everyone I have taught here has been from out of state or out of country. They come from all over the globe. I've been able to learn and grow exponentially here. It's been an honor to work so closely with some of the greatest men this world has to offer, President Hansen and President Spendlove. They have both made an everlasting impact on my life, and I know we'll be friends for a long time. The Lord has blessed me with companions and friendships that have taught me a ton. Especially about myself.

I'll be transferred to and spend my last go in a family stake here in Downtown SLC. My new companion is Elder Palhegy (it's like apology, without the A!), from California! He's great! We lived together for a transfer awhile back. He's been out almost a year.

We were able to attend the Salt Lake Temple on Friday, with all the departing missionaries. The Temple is the House of the Lord. There's something about being inside that words just can't describe. Go to the a Temple often. The blessings are great (Alma 26:6).

The Area

Danny (from my previous area, but still in the stake I'm in now) was baptized on Thursday!!! He's evidence that the Lord leads his children to Truth. He's from California, and he was curious enough to wander on Temple Square 6 months ago, when they invited him to come to our YSA ward. He showed up, and now he's an official member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. He's able to now partake in all of the blessings the Lord has in store for him.

Alex was also baptized this week! He's a student at the Westminster College that we cover. He also ordained to the Aaronic Priesthood today! He told his friend (who's also a recent convert) that he likes the Mormon church and wanted to come to Institute with her. We started meeting with him and in the first lesson, he wanted to know what it took to be baptized. Alex is awesome, and has worked hard to get where he is today. He is evidence that we all can be changed by the Atonement.

How spectacular it is that, even today, in our time, the Lord is merciful enough to establish His Church and Gospel on the earth for us to partake in. With the Priesthood Authority, covenants, ordinances, Temples, continuous revelation, official missionary work, Prophets, and everything else that is included in the Fullness of the Gospel. This is the Church of Jesus Christ. There is "one faith", which is God's, and this is it. I would like to testify of the reality and divinity of the calling of Joseph Smith.

Joseph Smith

The boy Joseph, at age 14, was curious and humble enough to seek out God. He believed that He was there, through valiant scripture study and pondering. He attended church services as occasion would permit, and tried to learn all you could to make an educated decision. He came to realize that a boy, as young as he was, would not be able to figure this out on his own. He heeded to the prompting of James, and prayerfully asked of God.

What we have now, because of this crowning event, has changed the history of the world, forever. Joseph translated the ancient of the Book of Mormon. It is physical evidence today that he was a Prophet called by The Divine. He was persecuted for claiming to be so, and eventually martyred.

"For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator." (Hebrews 9:16)

The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ is true. I can and do testify confidently that it, coming from its divine origin, can more so impact anyones life, in coming closer to their Creator, than any other book. It contains the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It contains the recipe for peace and joy in this life. It explains more in depth than any other book, the Atonement of Jesus Christ. If we can come to more understand the Atonement, we can more so use it in our lives everyday.

Read the Book of Mormon, and ask God if it's true. Do it with real intent of following the answer received, with a sincere heart, and with faith in Christ. It's that simple. Be persistent. Show Him that you really do want to know. It can and will change your life.

This is Christ's only church. I know it. Study, pondering, and prayer can take you a long way. Search Him out, and He'll show himself to you.

Stay close to him.

~Elder Carroll
Danny's Baptism

Alex's Baptsim

Temple Day with Pres. & Sister Spendlove

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