Monday, September 28, 2015


Hello Everyone,

It hasn't been long since my last email, but not too much going on these past few days. A lot of good appointments though. Oh and Transfers are coming up! Although Elder Meraz is training me, and he should technically train me for two transfers, he has been in the area for 7 1/2 months! Usually you say in an area for 4 1/2 and sometimes 6 months. So I think I may get a follow up trainer. Elder Meraz doesn't want to go, he said he received revelation the other night in a dream that he isn't leaving haha it's very possible that he won't get transferred.

We have been blessed to find a lot of new investigators and potential investigators. We've also been successful with our progressing investigators. We have also had some decent success with some reactivation's! One in particular is a young family, in their early 30's, that just moved into our area. The husband was excommunicated and he's working his way back to being re-baptized. It was an awesome experience. We just taught the First lesson, the Restoration. He really opened up to us, he kept telling us he doesn't talk about it much, but that he felt he needed too. Every time he spoke it was profound and the spirit was felt. It was a neat experience. 

The Vycitals are progressing well. Sister Vycital is completely active again in the church after 7 years. Bro Vycital is progressing well as we meet with him. We're getting him closer and closer to baptism every week. He told us right now he is still in the healing and recovering process from the loss of their baby and he wants to be 100% when he gets baptized. Most of his concerns are on the Temple. We are making that the center of our next lesson and getting the Bishop of the 3rd ward, Bishop Christensen, to come with us. 

We got a media referral a couple weeks ago and we went to contact on Friday. It was an apartment Building with 4 different apartments, the referral only had the Building number not the apartment number... So we knocked every door, hoping every door would answer so we could talk to them about the church, but out of 3 of the 4 apartments, no one was home. Ironically, the last door opened, a lady answered, we asked if she was Nicole and she was. She told us that she had been a member when she was really young but we don't believe that she was baptized. So we set up a return appointment for Tuesday (tomorrow). Excited to see what's in store.

The downside of this week though is that out of 5 people we committed to coming to church, and they said they would, no one showed up... One thing we are trying to figure out is why people don't just tell us they aren't going to come. The funny part is, when we asked why they weren't able to make it, 4 out of 5 of them said they were sick, NO ONE COME TO IDAHO THERE IS A PLAGUE, haha. People are weird yeah we are 18 and 19 but we aren't that dumb haha. We are working together as a companionship to hold people to their commitments. Wish us luck!

I would just like to end with my testimony of the Book of Mormon. I know that that Book is the Word of God, as is the Bible. As missionaries we try to help people understand that the Book of Mormon is there to help us return to our Father in Heaven, just as the Bible does. Whats better than 1? 2! We have 2 books to help us return to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. I am very thankful for the opportunity to study the book everyday, to learn and to grow, spiritually and mentally. I invite everyone to read the Book of Mormon, just a couple verses, then get on your knees and ask God, in prayer, if the Book of Mormon is true, even if you already have done so, President Eyring, of the First Presidency of the Church, once said that he prays every morning to know if the Book of Mormon is true. I end my testimony with this, The Prophet Joseph Smith once said "...the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts, than by any other book.” In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Love y'all,
~Elder Stevens

Thursday, September 24, 2015


It is so exciting to see Jaden embrace the work of a missionary & to not only embrace it & work hard, but to love the work. I love this young man so much & am so proud of him.

Hi Everyone,

Last Tuesday, a week and a half ago, we woke up at 6:00 for basketball at the church with old guys, it's the only exercise I'll do because I hate just running. Anyways, I sprained my ankle pretty bad, a guy fell on my leg as I was coming down from a rebound. It hurt like crazy but weird enough after three days the swelling and pain to walk on it went down. I can assure you though it didn't limit much of the time we worked though. The members we live with, The Hartley's, are great and they took care of me.
The Hartley's son has been on his mission for about a year in Nicaragua. They are in their 50's. Brother Hartley is a big dirt biker he's one of the funniest guys I know. Sister Hartley is the best mission mom, she's a nurse (just like Kelly!) She really takes care of Elder Meraz and I.
Here in Idaho it's hard for missionaries to go out to eat with out getting paid for. Everywhere we go members like to pay for us and do! The members here in our wards' are awesome. In the Greenhill ward the area is rapidly progressing, but the Ward Mission definitely needs to kick it up. for the 3rd ward it's the opposite, The Ward Mission is awesome, but the area isn't really progressing much, until last night! Bro. Riley, the ward mission leader, is on fire! He really enjoys Elder Meraz and I and he told us that out of all the missionaries he's worked with, we're his favorite! He said he can feel the strength of our spirits so strongly. Switching gears a little bit, the other day, Saturday, we saw a bunch of the deacons in the 3rd ward  going around passing out Books of Mormon, with our phone number in them, in the Riley's neighborhood! Awesome, I'm not too sure that I would have done that at that age.
Last night we went on splits with the 3rd ward ward mission, Elder Meraz split up with Bro. Riley and I with Bro. Rolling. Bro. Rolling just got off his mission 6 months ago from Nashville, Tennessee. I asked him what his craziest experience was... he was robbed at gun point! haha Crazy! Anyways.... splits... We went to go visit some new move ins and some less actives. We got 2 returns! We were going to visit a Less active, we knocked on the door waited, then rang the door bell waited... no answer so as we were getting in the car a lady came to the door and stopped us. I had asked her if she was the lady we were looking for... she wasn't... They had moved a year earlier! I quickly told her that the church Christ established on this Earth has been restored through a Prophet and then I asked when a good time would be for us to come back and share more of the message with her. To my surprise she said we could come back next week. I got her name and number. The Lord works in mysterious ways.
Now for Greenhill ward. The work, as I said has been rolling quickly. This last Sunday Elder Meraz and I fasted for the purpose of success in the area... we were getting tired of "No". So the very next day, we decided to bike to a contact. The contact wasn't home so we tracted the area. We went straight to the back of the neighborhood, I was feeling good about the area. We hit a couple houses and no one was too interested, one guy came to the door with only boxers and a beer in hand, before we could say anything he said no (he was drunk) and closed the door. We turned around a laughed, a funny part was that it was only 10:30 in the morning! On our way out of the area Elder Meraz said we need to talk to this person. We get to the door, knock, and she answers. We get to talking with her and find out she had met with missionaries before! She had also received a blessing from some where she felt the spirit very strongly. She told us we could come back on Friday ( tomorrow) and share more and that she also would like her family to be there! We turned around got on our bikes, all in silence, then we laughed with joy, we were pumped! Another similar experience, Tuesday we were going to an appointment with a less active family in an apartment complex but not to our surprise they weren't home, we turned around and I walked over to the door across the hall and knocked. A young man answered the door after talking with him we learned that his name is Steven, he's Catholic, 26, a computer wiz, and he's very smart about the Bible. After a little, per say, "bible bashing" between Elder Meraz and Steven he out of the blue told us to come in. Now I was skeptical of what was about to happen. He grabs his Bible, tags and sticky notes hanging out all over the place, and sits down with us. We talk then slowly move into the restoration pamphlets. He told us a few times he doesn't believe that much of that happened, but here's the thing... He said he'd read the Book of Mormon in two days! (So today he should be finishing it) He told us he could read about 800 WPM! We then invited him to pray to God to know if the Book of Mormon is true. He is doing so and we are returning nest Tuesday! Can't wait!
The status on the Driskell's baptism is crazy, Satan is really working hard on them! Sister Driskell went in to the doctor for some spinal injections... they made her worse she says. We are going to have to wait a little while more. UGH! We met with them on Tuesday night during splits with the Greenhill Elders quorum. Elder Meraz and I stayed together this time but went with President Dietchler, Elders quorum president. We had a good meeting with them stressed that after baptism and confirmation The Holy Ghost will hush their worldly problems. Now remember as I've said before Bro. Driskell, age 70, is an inspiration to me. This was President Dietchler's first time meeting the Driskells. After the meeting with them, President told us that he received confirmation that Bro. Driskell has a great spirit and that if he doesn't get baptized her on Earth he will be taken care of in the life after.
Sorry that I'm all over the place but there is just so much to talk about! On the 16th we had New Missionary Training at the mission office with President and Sister Winder. It was great to see all the Elders I was in the MTC with and all the progression they have made!

I love this work! I love the scriptures! It's so cool to wake up every day and not knowing what's going to happen the next day. I know that this work "will go forth bodly, nobly, and independently". My job is to help everyone hear of the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. I know that our redeemer lives. I love and miss y'all!
~Elder Stevens

Monday, September 14, 2015


Hey everyone and go Cougs!

This week has been a true missionary week. Lots of tracting! Our zone has a goal of 10 Personal contacts, or talking to someone we've never talked to before about the gospel, a day for the whole zone, Elder Meraz and I decided to go out and get 10 on our own. We took turns talking to people we talked to at least 20 people, out of those 20 we were only able to hold a conversation with half of those. Out of the 10 we got 2 returns! Mike and Heather.

We saw Mike in his garage painting some shelves, he is in his late 50's.We talked with him about Jesus Christ and how his gospel has been restored again on Earth, he was somewhat interested he set down his paint and brush and listened to us, he said that he has LDS friends and if he were to join any church it'd be ours. We left him a restoration pamphlet and our number on the inside and we are set to return any time this week.

We knocked on Heather's door and her and her 3 kids came to answer, she is in her early 30's and just had a baby about 3 weeks ago. I shared with her how we know that our families can be together forever and she really liked that. We left our number on a pass-a-long card and are to return on Wednesday.

Funny story time! The Driskel's, the elderly couple who we have been trying to help them feel an urgency for baptism, are finally getting baptized within this week! On Thursday we were over there meeting with them, answering questions they had and clearing up different thoughts that the anti-mormons put in their head. This was my first time I was able to meet with Brother Driskel, he is an awesome man! He Just turned 70! He is on hospice right now and they estimate that he has about 6 months left to live just because of his poor health. He is a retired doctor. We were talking with him for a while about his birthday when Elder Meraz asked him if he could do anything different in his life what would he go back and change, he told us that he wish he was able to find the Gospel sooner, immediately the spirit entered. He is an inspirational old man. Anyways, back to the funny story his wife is a character, Sister Driskel is brutally honest and will interrupt you mid-sentence in what is supposed to be a spiritual moment. She was telling us how it is going to be so hard for both of them to get up in the morning to be baptized because of their poor health. We assured her that she can be baptized anytime during the day. She said that due to the way Elder Meraz and his past companion phrased it she thought it had to be done in the morning! So for 2 months Elder Meraz has been waiting for them to be baptized all because of a mis-understanding. Goes to show how important it is to be 100% clear.

I have now gained 4 pounds... not a lot but it's not good for how tight my suit pants are. Our exercise consists of basketball everyday, I think by the time I get back I'll be able to enter the NBA. Altitude here is still killing me haha. I've started to play piano again whenever I can get a chance, it is definitely teaching me patience haha I'm super rusty. 

Our ward mission leader for the 3rd ward is super on top of his game he is awesome, he Facebooked Kelly and talked with her and keeps her updated on my every move! He also is a BYU fan which makes him 20 x's better, he keeps me posted on all the stats! He is one of those tech geeks and for whatever reason likes to stalk his missionaries haha. We were sitting down with him one day for a correlation meeting and he told me that he knows all my soccer stats, He looked me up on everywhere possible social media and all haha.

It's crazy that it's been a month! So much has been done! We are super close in all sorts of ways. I love to go into the scriptures and learn especially in the New Testament. I miss everyone and hope all is well.

~Elder Stevens

Monday, September 7, 2015


Hey y'all,

This last fast sunday I bore my testimony in both wards. I guess I said y'all in the greenhill ward and the elders quorum kind of teased me about it, haha. We also, due to teachers not being at church, had to teach gospel principles, 16 year old sunday school class and Deacons quorum, all of which were told to us 10 min before each class. It was a rough weekend though... College football has started and that's all I heard about on Sunday. So if I heard correctly Taysom Hill broke is foot... but the back up threw a hail mary with 1 second left to beat Nebraska, that's classic BYU. People here are either a die hard Boise State fan or BYU fan so you can only imagine whatnext Sunday is going to be like with BYU v. Boise State on Saturday. My companion, Elder Meraz is from Arizona and I guess they played A&M! 

Elder Meraz and I are working hard, but it's been one of those weeks where everything seems to have fallen through. At the beginning of the week we found out Walter, the chinese 17 year old, said he doesn't want to continue meeting with us because of too many rules that the church has. We are going to try to just be friends and hang out and do stuff with him on P-days. His mom Gelly told us she just wants to go to the Chinese church because it'd be easier for her to understand, but she went and said she didn't feel the same as she did when we were teaching her so we are trying to locate Mandarin speaking missionaries for her to take discussions from, but we doubt there is any because it's just Boise, Idaho. And Teresa has told us that she isn't interested. 

The good. The Driskel's are still planning on being baptized, just waiting on them to wake up and feel good. There is a younger couple that has been taking lessons for a while, the Vycitals. The Sister Vycital is a less active, but her husband is close to coming to the waters of baptism. He attended gospel principles last sunday but was late to sacrament meeting. We were a little nervous because the Thursday before we had a great lesson on D&C 121, the spirit was very strong, and we committed him to coming to church just by himself for once. Sister Vycital is a nurse and works on sundays and he only came when she came, until this last sunday. He even bought himself a quad (a Book of mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, Pearl of Great Price, and the Bible all together) with his name engraved on it!

The days are busy but short. It's a great feeling to know that I am exactly where the Lord would want me and doing exactly what he'd want me to be doing. I'm thankful for Jesus Christ's ultimate example for us. Throughout his ministry we see constant love and service for others even up until his last moments on the cross. As a missionary, I plan to do exactly as Christ did, have constant love and service for others, after all I do have his name on my chest.

~Elder Stevens