This week has been interesting. First I’ll start with church. This week was important and we were given instructions by the Branch President to get everyone to church this week. We did our best, but many still did not show up. We did have about 15 people there though because the stake president was there along with the branch presidency and someone from the high council. They switched up the meeting and held only a 2 hour meeting. We started with Sunday school. They did this because they had some really bad news to give us. They closed down our group in Cordele. My companion and I were pretty upset. They did it because their is not enough priesthood attending. Only one Melchizedek priesthood holder attends every Sunday along with one other who comes occasionally. They spent an hour talking about why and that they have prayed a lot about this. Here is the surprising thing though. We were expecting the members to be really mad and decide they were done coming to church. This is because now we have to go to church in Americus which is 30-40 minutes away. The members here don’t really have the money or transportation to do that. Anyway, during fast and testimony meeting the members got up and bore powerful testimonies about how if this is what God wants that they will go to church in Americus. One said she had been praying already about this and knew it was coming. She said if this is what is suppose to happen then she will continue going to church in Americus because thats what she is suppose to do. It was awesome and it blew my mind. Unfortunately, many will now not make it every Sunday because of issues but they said they will be doing their best and the branch presidency has already offered to set up rides if need be. I am really sad they are closing the group, but like the members said, it is for a reason and we just have to trust that.
I had another really cool experience yesterday during zone conference. I met a couple who is on a mission down here in the Southeastern United States. They are doctors and cover several missions. Their names are Elder and Sister Allgaier. Apparently, they and several other LDS families way back when moved on a street together and called it Moroni Hill. One of the other families was my great grandfathers family. His name was Wylie Goodsell. I guess this Allgaier family grew up there and went to church, but the parents never got baptized. The kids all did, but no one knew the parents never were baptized. It wasn’t for years later that Wylie Goodsell extended the invitation to them. (If any part of that story is wrong, I’m sure my Grandpa Goodsell will correct it) It was really cool to meet them and talk to them about it. I did not know the story. We talked for a good while and it was awesome hearing their stories. The mission presidents wife thought that was the coolest thing that we met there. The Mission President had them and myself get up during zone conference and tell the story and related it to what we were talking about. After all of that, I finished the great day off with an amazing meal from a Polynesian family who stuffed us and then sent us home with food.
It’s been a good week and I still cant believe the testimonies of the members in the small group. They were sad to see it closing because they had a tight bond there, but to see their faith in what was happening was truly amazing. I’m really glad I could experience that. Thank you again everyone for your support and helping make this mission experience great.