Monday, January 18, 2016

Greetings from the middle of nowhere! Currently Elder Johnson and I
are sitting around at the Branch President's house typing emails while
doing our laundry. There isn't much to do since we life 47 miles away
from the rest of the zone and we can't spare all those miles so we
just hang out here. Oakridge is a nice little branch with a lot of
potential. When I got here we had 1 person on date and Elder Johnson
had made a goal to have four people on date so we worked hard this
week and we got twenty three lessons in and four people on date for
baptism with two more on the way!!

On Monday I got on the transfer van and arrived in Eugene after
catching up with a couple of my old MTC friends and spending my last
moments with Elder Earl (my super awesome zone leader in Roseburg) and
Elder Holman (my favorite Canadian of all time). When we arrived at
the 18th street building we started unloading all the stuff and saying
goodbyes and hellos. I then met my new companion Elder Johnson and we
hopped into our 2014 Subaru Legacy and drove to Walmart and shopped
our hearts out. Then we went to Oakridge and taught two lessons with a
young boy named Brody and a 15 year old girl named Silvia who's on
date for baptism. Elder Johnson told me he had gotten chastised by
President earlier that day about having daily contact with people on
date. He said that we always have to have daily contact with all our
investigators that are on date so they don't fall off date. So we have
been having daily contact with all our investigators now.

Tuesday we hit the streets hard and set up all kinds of lessons and
trackted a few streets. And had a way successful day. I met our Branch
Mission Leader who is actually less active but there's a lack of
priesthood holders so he got the calling. He goes to lessons with us
and is really nice but doesn't ever seem to make it to church.
Wednesday and Thursday were the same story we trackted and taught a
lot and had great success.

Friday we went to district meeting and since Elder Johnson is the
District Leader he taught us and had us do some role plays. The AP's
came to our District meeting and I think it was to see if Elder
Johnson might be Zone Leader material but we aren't sure. Since we
live so far from Springfield we have special permission to go shopping
on Fridays since we are there already anyway so we bought some
groceries and drove back home. Fun fact about Springfield; the town in
the tv show The Simpsons is based off of Springfield. That night we
had a lesson with our investigator Shauna who is living with a
excommunicated member. They are both way nice people and want to be
baptized but first they have to get married. Shauna is really stubborn
and she asked us why she couldn't go to the temple. I tried so hard to
explain why but she didn't accept any of my answers and I felt like
such a dingus and was about the give up then Elder Johnson swooped in
and used an awesome analogy of colleges or something and suddenly it
clicked for her and she understood. After that we taught a great
lesson and Shauna and Troy both commented that we made a great team.
After that I asked Elder Johnson where he learned his analogy and he
just shrugged and said "That was all the spirit" it was pretty cool.

Saturday was a hard day because our plumbing backed up and now our
toilet and shower are down and made a huge mess. We wasted a ton of
time having to call Property Management and getting someone to check
it out. They couldn't figure it out so they called a plumber and he
didn't show up until today so hopefully when we get home it's fixed
because I need to shower. The rest of Saturday was way slow and we got
cussed out a couple times which always makes me cranky. The next day
we went to church and the Branch President must like me because he
made me say the opening prayer. We had great talks from high
councilmen and we learned a lot. The rest of the day we taught more
lessons and saw a lot of people.

So things are good here. The people are interesting but they're good.
I love the Branch President, he is here with his little grandson and
he just told him, "It's our job as MEN to fix things so if you can't
fix things then you're a little baby. Do you want to be a baby!?"
His grandson shook his head then President Allen turned to me and said
"What if you don't know how to fix something what should you do Elder
My answer was "Figure it out?"
And he said "There's a good man!"
So now I'm feeling good about myself and feeling pretty manly not to
be prideful or anything.

Well I guess that's all! I love you all!

Elder S. Jackson Martin
Oregon Eugene Mission
Oakridge Branch

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