Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Hello everyone!
Wow! What a week. It was as very good week too! Well, I mean it had
its ups and downs of course, but that is mission life. You have to
look at the average. And although it was a good week, it was very
hard. But I learned so much this week and felt the Spirit so much that
there is no way this week couldn't be good.

Rather than do a weekly play by play I will just tell all the good/bad
stories from the week.:)

Contention in the home:
Okay. This happened last Monday. This shows that contention really is
a bad thing. It will drive the spirit away instantly. It doesn't
matter on the subject, or the reason. If you are contentious, the
Spirit is gone. Here is the story. So we were on our way home from the
East New York chapel last Preparation Day and we started having a fun
conversation. We were trying to convince Elder Brown Santa was real.
It was fun! But then I started to notice Elder Brown was getting
realllllly into the conversation, and actually thought that we thought
that Santa was real. But Elder Larson kept going. At this point I was
just laughing because at that point it was still fun and games. But
then Elder Larson started just trying to prove Elder Brown wrong and
get him to admit he was wrong. And at the point the Spirit just left.
The thing about Elder Larson is that he has spent 18 months of his
mission with Elder Brown, and Elder Brown in those 18 months has
probably never admitted he was wrong, even when he was. So sometimes,
Elder Larson who is a very quiet patient person gets really really
frustrated with him. So that is kinda what happened. The spirit just
dissapeared. It doesn't matter the topic, the Lord hates contention,
and will not support it in anyway. So please be careful. Now, of
course we can have discussions, and debates, but as soon as you turn
to anger, the Spirit will be gone, and no one can win the argument.

Departing Workshop!
Sister Provard is going home with Elder Brown, so she gave the
workshop in district meeting! It was super good, and she talked about
hope! It was very similar to the workshop that Sister Rice gave in the
MTC. It was so good! It filled me with a lot of hope! Hahahaha I'm so
funny. But it was great, because I had to interpret for the Workshop,
and I did awesome! The gift of tongues is so real, because there is no
way I could have done that without it. After, Elder Brown gave a high
five and said I have improved so much. So that was awesome! Woohoo!

Interpreting again!
I had to interpret for Institute on Wednesday. I was very very very
scared, because the last time I interpreted for Institute was a
totally nightmarish train wreck. So yeah. Naturally, I was not eager.
But I did good again! Talvin didn't even ask Elder Larson to clarify
what I was signing once! And after the lesson he said I had improved
so much! I was so happy, and so thankful I could have the spirit with
me to help me. Because he was definitely with me. No doubt about it.

These next few stories are all from Thursday.

Deep Clean: These are the words that strike the fear into the heart of
every child. Deep Clean. This is the thing that made it so I couldn't
go over to David Abbott's house to play (at least as fast as I wanted
to) It involves much grease, cleaner, and scrubbing. Well, things
definitely haven't changed. Except for the fact that I was excited to
clean. I literally cleaned the whole kitchen, did all the dishes, and
cleaned off the stove (that was realllllly nasty and greasy and gross.
And all the counters were oily and stuff. But not anymore! It took a
loooot of work, but I did it. And the whole living room was clean.
After that, I just felt this burden lift off my shoulders, one that I
didn't even know was there. I just felt so much happier. So I learned
something from deep cleaning that day. The Spirit will be more present
if you are living clean, both physically and spiritually. I felt so
much more happy! It was crazy how different the before and after felt!
You know when parents tell you you need to clean your room, and you're
like "Why?!? No one is going to be going in there!" Well, the real
reason is you need to clean your room so the spirit can dwell with
you. Parents don't always tell their kids that. But they should. I
think that will make the child/teenager understand the reason for
cleanliness much sooner in life, and you know, not when they get to
college/the mission and are trying to survive on their own. Just a
thought for all you parents that read this.

Study Study Study: So on Thursday, in addition to the 4 hours of Study
I get in the morning, I also got 3 hours that night. After Deep Clean.
Sometimes we are planning to go do lookups, and Elder Brown just
decides no. Can anyone say Trunky? Except he has been like that his
whole mission according to Elder Larson. Anyways. I got 7 hours of
study on Thursday, and could've gotten more if it wasn't for a nap
during and after language study... oops. 😬 but hey! It was still
awesome! And despite being frustrated for not going out and doing
anything, I had the best studies of my life I have ever had! So I am
happy! I learned so much. I read about Alma going to preach to the
Zoramites, and I was like THAT IS ME! Cause New York is the
reincarnation of Babylon haha. You have no idea haha:) So yeah! And
there was just so many things I read in Preach my Gospel that were so
good. Also, I have been studying the Book of Mormon with the Institute
Manual, which has really helped my studies. I will basically read a
passage, and then read whatever the Apostles have to say about it,
cause they usually give two or three quotes about it! It is so good!

Questions help study:
One of the reason this study was so good is because I went into it
with a question. And that has changed how I study. It is amazing.
10/10 doctors would recommend. I can't believe how much it has helped
to find something specific I want to change in my life, and then find
out how to change it from the scriptures. Its amazing.

Well, thats all the really important stories. But one more thing I
want to talk about

My language studies have improved so so so so much! oh my goodness! I
just got this determination on Friday to really learn the language, so
my language studies have gotten awesome! Also, on Saturday, we spent a
lot of time with Pedro, and I was able to practice what I have
learned. Also, he told us his whole life story pretty much. So that
was awesome! When Deaf people get talking, they WILL keep talking:) I
love it! My language has improved so much! I can't even describe to
y'all. It is awesome! :) I am so happy:)

SO yeah! That's my week! I miss you all! Have an awesome week and be
safe, and remember that Christ suffered for your sins so we could
return to Heavenly Father through great faith and righteousness:) I
love you all.

Elder Wright
"History has its eyes on you"

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

January 3, 2017

I saw this picture in the subway. "When diamonds aren't forever" well
guess what? They never are forever! Marriages can be though! 

Cool picture I took on Brooklyn Bridge

Some of the cool street art you can find here.

A fun little Deaf comic😁

Hello everyone! It was a pretty good week here! Not as good as it
could've been, but good. So lets start with how my week happened!

Tuesday: This was kinda a awesome/frustrating day. So we have this
member named Jamil that we usually go play basketball with often. But
this hasn't happened lately, like, the entire time I've been here. But
this time he texted us and told us we need to play basketball. Kinda
cussed at us actually haha. So we spent pretty much all of tuesday
doing that and district meeting (which was good. But not really
eventful.) So we headed up to queens around 3:00 and got to the church
they usually play at. One thing I didn't realize is how many people
will show up to this. But when we got there, there were 2 people
waiting for us, and I was like cool! So we changed, went and got
donuts and Subway (thanks for the gift card momma I love you) and as
we came back, there were like 12 people waiting to be let in! All
deaf! And the other two didn't see them, and if they didn't see them,
they definitely weren't hearing them. But it was good cause that way
we didn't have a bunch of unsupervised people running around in the
church. (We shouldn't have even let those first two in, but Elder
Larson seemed to think it was fine.) Anyways, in total we had 32 Deaf
people show up!!! Most non members!!!! It was so dang cool! A huge
finding oppurtunity, right? But we didn't really do any finding. So
that was frustrating. Because I am still too scared to open my mouth
on my own, and my comps weren't doing any finding. But I did introduce
myself to people, so that was good, right? Look at me improving πŸ˜‘
Anyways, it was all fun and games, until two people start getting in
each other's faces. Then a fight broke out! Yay. And then it took the
most of the people there to pull them apart. So that was pretty crazy.
We kept playing, but it wasn't very fun for me after that. And it was
actually interesting to feel the spirit withdraw as soon and the fight
started. Literally just left right then. So that was awful. It makes
me sad. And then this guy named Freeway showed up. He was okay, until
we were finished and cleaning up. Apparently he had been fouled in the
final game, so he was mad at this other guy, and was (both ASL and
English) Cussing up a storm. In a church. So that made me really
upset, so I asked Elder Larson what we should do, and he said "there
is nothing we can do." After that the crazy guy left, so it was fine,
but I was still not happy at all. So that was a pretty bad night. I
just didn't know what to do in these situations, so I was really
bummed, especially cause I didn't do something about it. So yeah. Not
a good day.

Wednesday was awesome. We had interviews with the president, which I
totally love because I got a ton of support and comfort from my
mission president, so that always helps of course. Then that night we
taught Talvin about tithing, so that was good. In between and after
that, we really did nothing, so that was great....

Thursday was awesome! My morning studies have been incredible this
past week! I have been learning so much! I love it! It helps start the
day off on a good note. Then we went to service, and did more
cobblestone work, which was good. But it was raining the entire time,
so it was super muddy. And that made everyone else stop working,
except 3 of us. And some people would sometimes go get dirt. But hey!
I felt proud of myself for working. And we finished the cobblestones.
Sorta... They don't look the best. So I think we will be fine tuning
that later. Oh, and the ground there is ridiculously uneven. So that
makes it super hard. But I love service! After we went and got 2 Bros.
Of course, and the came home for dinner. And then we didn't really do
anything that whole night, cause I had to finish 12 weeks cause we
didn't do it in the morning, so that gave us the excuse to not do
anything apparently. ugh. Whatever though, cause then I had a super
good signing conversation with Elder Brown! I am learning a ton, and
my signing has improved so much! So I did really good with that! And
then my study that night was incredible! So that was a successful
night for me for sure!

 I want to share an awesome experience I had!!! A few weeks
ago on the subway, I talked to a guy named Akin. (Akeen? pronounced ah
keen) He was a super cool dude, and we had a good conversation, and
then I gave him a card. So I saw him in the subway again on Friday! So
I got up the nerve to talk to him (he hadn't really noticed me) and we
had another great time talking. I just talked to him like he was my
friend. Which he actually is. I like him! He is super nice and cool!
Unfortunately he hadn't looked up our website yet, but I told him to
do that. Then he got of the train. Maybe I should've gotten contact
info, but I was okay, because I was just happy I ran into him again! I
just really hope he looks into it. I just want him to be happy. So
that was a wonderful experience.

Saturday: Correlation, and then we had to be in at 6. We were gonna go
to another Elder's apartment, but that didn't happen so whatever! I
just studied and chilled. it was good.

Sunday: I was talking to people right and left! had good
conversations, and understood what was happening! So that is always a
huge plus! Then that night we did phonegames

Monday: Eh.... Lets just not. It was a dumb day. Had district meeting,
then sat around at the church forever and wasted the whole day.

So that was my week! Not the best it could've been, but definitely improving!

The language is going great! I have improved so much, and can
understand so much better. (For reals. D District, you would be proud.
I can't wait to sign with y'all when we all get home. Love you all.) I
still have a long way to go, but I know with prayer, fasting and
practice, I will soon be a pro! I am so excited for that day. It shall
be glorious beyond all description!

Things are definitely getting better here. Now the challenge is to
stop Elder Brown from becoming even more trunky these next 3 weeks.
Cause then he goes home. So send your prayers for me and him. I love
you all! Stay safe and remember to change someone's life!

Elder Wright
"History has its eyes on you"

Sunday, January 1, 2017

December 26, 2016

Hello everyone! Merry Christmas πŸŽ„πŸŽ⭐️πŸŽ‰ I hope your Christmas was
incredible and you all had the opportunity to stuff your faces with
candy and delicious other food!

Well where shall we start? Well, let's just start with my week

Monday: Preparation Day! Was very good, and we spent most of our day
thinking of ideas for our skit for the Christmas Devotional. Oh. Also,
we got Chinese food. It was pretty dang good! Not as good as Happiness
Garden but not bad. The pork fried rice was really good though. That
is kinda the normal think to get here. And it doesn't have peas or
carrots or any of that stuff no one should like. Nah. It has pork, and
that's pretty much it. It's great😊

Tuesday: Normal stuff. District meeting, look ups, etc. But here is
one funny story. We got to the chapel, and Sisters Provard and Rokes
had ordered Chinese food. Weeeell the Zone Leader saw that and wanted
some so they ordered. Then when they were eating, we decided we wanted
some. Now understand. This Chinese place only has one delivery man. So
he came and left 3 times in a row! To the exact same place! I feel
kinda bad for him haha πŸ˜‚

Wednesday: It was good! We did the normal service routine, laying
cobblestones again too. That was good, but the dirt was frozen solid!
Like, we had to use a pick axe to chip it away! It was super hard
(Heh. Puns) but still okay. But it made my hands sore for the rest of
the week. So that hurt. They swelled up like crazy. Best part of the
day though? I tried something delicious. It was an Arizona drink. The
flavor was Mango Lime Rickey. It was to die for. My new favorite
drink. Mm so good.

Thursday: we practiced our skit, and then had to head out to the
mission office so we can figure out what to do for Elder Brown, cause
he is trying to fly straight to Orem, but they said he needs to go
home to Tonga. His flight is gonna be so long. I feel sorry for him.
NY to San Fran to NZ to Tonga. With a 2 day layover in NZ. So yeah,
going to the office took all day.

Friday! It was awesome! We had the Christmas Devotional at the mission
office!!!! It was so funny! The skits were great and we just had a
great time! We had some cool musical numbers and all that, so it was
way good! Some of the skits were.... very poorly executed. So that was
great. Even the Bermuda πŸ‡§πŸ‡² Zone participated! They made a parody of
the song (I think it's called Kokomo? You know.... 🎡Bermuda, Bahamas,
come on pretty mama🎡) anyways. They made it all about missionary life
on Bermuda. All I can say now is that I hope I get to go there. But
literally every missionary says that. But I can dream!!! 😊

And now comes..... the 24th?!?!? 🎡1 day to Christmas, 1 day to
Christmas, not enough time to do your Christmas shopping 🎡 (it's from
She Loves Me in case any of you were wondering. Get educated!😊) The
opportunity to sing that only comes 1 time a year! Had to do that. It
was such a good day!!!! We went to the Buckner's for
dinner!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The Buckner's are my favorite! We met them at the
Hill Cumorah Pageant. They have incredible views, and Denzel
Washington lives in the building next to theirs. πŸ˜‚ it was awesome. We
had a Christmas devotional and all that fun stuff. The food was
incredible, and the Pelo Family was there too!! A perfect way to spend
Christmas Eve.

Christmas! Skype time! We had church, and all that fun stuff. We went
out to the Bushwick chapel, so we didn't have to time to travel there,
back, there and back (for dinner later) so we just chilled there, some
Skyped their families, and just waited until 4. Then we headed to the
Schull's house. He is the Brooklyn Stake President. So we had dinner
and all that delicious stuff, and I Skyped my family! It was so weird
to be the one on a mission this time. But really cool still! We had a
great time😊 I love my family! It was great. Then I headed back down,
we played games, and then we were about to go home, when the Zone
Leaders begged us to go to another dinner with them, because they told
her that 9 missionaries were coming and some had cancelled. So we went
to that. It was Mama Cherry! (But not Elder Cherry's mom, dangitπŸ˜’)
she is a really funny Jamaican lady! She taught us a fun word, but I
will not repeat it in order to not offend people. She also made good
food, but we were all so full that we could barely eat. It was rough.
But the meat was good (but also reallllly spicy. Welcome to Jamaica

Well, I really can't think of much to say. I told my family everything
last night, so my brain is drained of all that. The language is
progressing... yeah. I don't even know. I love you all. Have a great
week and a happy New Year! πŸŽŠπŸŽ†

Elder Wright
"History has its eyes on you"

A picture of me and President Buckner!!!πŸ˜„

The inside of the Buckner's beautiful home

The view looking down on Columbus Circle (the picture doesn't show the
true beauty)

The view of the rest of Manhattan (once again. Can't even describe)

A cool little market in Central Park that happens every year

December 19, 2016

Hello everybody!
It was an interesting week. But overall, not super bad.

Lets start the weekly rundown!
Monday: This was a good day! Preparation day obviously. So we went to
go play basketball with some of the Haitian Creole Elders (Not Elder
Watson though. Bummer. He is out in Jamaica, not Brooklyn. But I have
seen him around a couple of times) We went to Pier 2 in Brooklyn. This
is not a typical pier (or maybe it is. I've never been to another pier
though.) because it is actually a outdoor rec center! It has
basketball, shuffleboard, roller skating, wall ball, and all that
jazz. It is super well cared for too. So that was really fun! I got a
ton of cool pictures. So that was successful. It was probably one of
the coolest views I've ever seen in my life. I tried to put in a picture and failed, so sorry!

Check it out! So cool. I couldn't put the panorama in, but out to the left, you have the Statue of Liberty, and to the right Brooklyn Bridge, so that was spectacular. And out behind us we have "The Watchtower" (JW headquarters) and a ton of ridiculously expensive apartments. Like no joke. Easily over 30,000$ a month. So yeah, when I'm all rich and famous, you know where you can find me hahahaha prolly not in my lifetime. It was way cool. Unfortunately I am not super good at basketball (I can play defense, but really can't shoot) so that wasn't the best part. But hey, I made a basket. Go me.

Tuesday was transfers! that marks the end of my first transfer! (Disclaimer: I've only been in the field for 4 weeks at that point, so I have not actually served a full transfer. But my first transfer is done ✅.) It was a bummer to see all the missionaries that fshed 🐠🐟 their mission leaving. (For those who don't know ASL, when you sign the sign for finish, you say *fsh* So that is a funny thing that we make jokes with.) Elder Garcia headed home, which was a bummer because he was such an awesome missionary, and a nice guy. Ah well. 

Wednesday: Wednesdays are prolly our least busiest days. We go do service in the afternoon after studies, and then by the time we get home there isn't really enough time due to travel time to go see someone or go do lookups because we have to go teach Talvin at 7 and then we interpret for him at institute. Which brings up a story! It was my turn to interpret! Yay. I thought it was going okay, but then after awhile, after everything I said, Talvin would look over to Elder Larson to interpret because he couldn't understand what I was saying, so that was a little heartbreaking, but hey. I can use this as a experience in the future to improve myself. So I'm not to devastated by it anymore. But man, that night was a rough night for me. True-biz.

Thursday: All afternoon that day was spent heading out to the mission office (like a 1 1/2 hour trip there.) so that Elder Brown could resolve some issues with his passport because he isn't going home to Tonga after his mission, but is going to Orem to go to UVU and play rugby for them. So we had to fix issues with that. Then on our way back we tried to look up Jaqueline to see if we could teach her a lesson. I don't know if I told you about her. She is someone we found when we were doing a lookup. We went to go look up someone and she pretty much just shooed us away and was like "Get out go away" that sorta thing. So as we were looking down that hallway to the elevator, down the opposite side of the hallway we saw a Deaf doorbell, and went up and rang it, and met Jaqueline! she is super nice and friendly. Unfortunately we are going to give her as a referral to the Sisters, so that is a bummer to me, because we still haven't had one lesson with an investigator or nonmember my entire time in the field. So that is a bummer. I just want to teach the restoration to someone for once. But oh well. This time when we went to look her up she was too busy cooking dinner for her and her husband, so we headed out to go have dinner with Elder Merkley and Elder Faucett. But they were super late, so we ended up just eating at Popeyes, and then going to their apartment for a few minutes, so that was a complete waste of an evening. So that was not fun. But hey, I had a fun experience with a crazy guy named Twin! He talked to us for like 20 minutes while we were waiting for the other Elders in a Deli. He would stop talking to us, and then walk back up and start talking to us again. He told us that he didn't care about Jesus, and then later said that Jesus has already saved him. Oh, he also told us about how he killed someone or something (It was hard to tell) and went to jail for 20 years. Oh! He also said he could order us up a prostitute for 25 dollars if we wanted, and it was like ummmm no thanks lol. But he kept saying that everybody know he is, and if we asked people if they knew Twin, they would say "oh yeah! I know him" But I sorta doubt it because, in order to prove his point, he went to the guy at the register and started talking to him, and the guy basically yelled at him and said "I told you, I won't sell you anything! Go away!" So that was a fun day.

Friday was a complete waste of a day. Our lesson with Jose Pagan fell through (no surprise. Its not really his fault though. His wife Layla is super against the church. And crazy. She ripped out their videophone so we couldn't contact him.) so we just ended up sitting in our apartment until 2:30. Then we went to go take the Sisters something at the church. That was something we were just gonna do on the way, but then Elder Larson realized he forgot our phone at the apartment, and we needed to call someone to let us into the East New York chapel, so because of that Freddie "cancelled on us" In other words, because we were 45 minutes late to the lesson, he got sick of waiting, but Elder Larson just said he cancelled on us. And all of you may know I hate being late (thanks for that Dad :)) I especially hate being late when it is a meeting or an appointment. And its great for me, because we are literally late to every appointment. So i guess patience is something I need to learn. But I don't think I want to learn it to that extreme. The only good thing that came out of friday is we got to go to the Spanish Branches Christmas party, and the food was incredible. Homemade Horchata and Jamaica juice. I was delicious. But then I couldn't get Elder Larson and Elder Brown to leave fast, so we got home at 10:50, and I was really really upset about that. So Friday was pretty much miserable.

Saturday was good! We had the Branch party all day! wooooo! 2 til 7! When Deaf people party, they party for a long time, that's for sure. It was a lot of fun! I had a great time :)

Sunday was good mostly We had church, which was good of course. I am getting a lot more confident in talking to people, so that's good. I still can't understand a lot of what they are saying, but hey. Its a work in progress. After church we came home and had dinner and did phonegames, which was good. We planted seeds and stuff like that, so that was awesome. Until we ended. After we finished, we got a callback, so we answered it. I was a guy, who actually ended up being a baptist preacher! He was super nice and told us he doesn't have anything against Mormons!! And then he put his wife on the phone. She started asking us questions and bashing. Normally, what are we supposed to do? Testify and not participate in bashing, right? Haha not with Elder Brown and Elder Larson apparently. They fully engaged. At a certain point I could feel the Spirit go out of the room. So I kept telling Elder Larson (who was off screen) that we needed to turn it off, but he kept ignoring me, and then eventually just told me to shut up, so that was great. I at one point almost ended the conversation and got out of there, but then after I said "Have an awesome day tomorrow" She kept asking questions. So because of this, we missed planning. So that was not a good time for me. Needless to say, I was upset. Then there was arguing, and then I went to bed. So it was a rough night for me. Don't argue with people about the Gospel, people. It only takes the Spirit away, and then you are just two humans having an argument. Just simply testify. Its all you can do, and a testimony is more powerful than any questions you can ask, or any scripture you can show. So that is my word of advice today.

Wow, this is a very long email. (Sorry, not sorry haha) I love you all. Have a good week, stay safe, choose the right, and BE STRONG! The Lord is with you and will help you. I hope you all actually read my letter, even though it is long. Either way, I still love you all. Make it a good week.  
Pictures:  1. Us heading to Brooklyn Bridge
2. A snazzy picture I took at the pier we went to play basketball at.
3. The beautiful sunset over Manhattan
4. Manhattan at night!
5. This one I saw on Facebook. It made me laugh, because I always
either play old men or racist people. So that is fun :D
6. Picture of Lady Liberty with the sunset in the back. We got some
good pictures that day obviously.