Thursday, June 16, 2016

june 19, 2016: spencer's homecoming

Spencer's homecoming will be held on June 19th at 9:00am. The address of our church house is 1176 North 730 East Pleasant Grove, UT 84062.

Following sacrament we will have a breakfast to celebrate his return at our home!

june 15, 2016: spencer returned home

Here are a few pictures from when Spencer returned home from the airport!
We are soooo happy to have him home again!

june 13, 2016 letter

Dear Family:
It was another great week this week. I have had a lot of spiritual experiences preparing to return home and a lot of comforting ones as well. I got the oppurtunity to go to the last MLC, which is the 14th one I've been able to attend. It was an amazing and motivating day. We stayed the night and woke up and went to the tech training meeting which has really prepared me, as I return home, about how to use my electronic devices. I was able to bear my last testimony at MLC and the overwhelming thing I felt as I bore my testimony was extreme gratitude for my Savior and Heavenly Father for giving me this opportunity to serve. I'm grateful that the Lord even allowed me serve Him.
If I were to sum up the feelings I have at the end of my mission, it would be that I'm so grateful for the Savior and His gospel and His Father who sent him here to suffer for us. I hope to keep applying these principles as I return home and continue to be a disciple of Jesus Christ. With His love and guidance, I have my future set out in front of me, both temporarily and spiritually.
I'm excited to see you all!
I love you!
Love, Elder Romney (:

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

june 6, 2016 letter

(We didn't get a traditional letter from Elder Romney this week, just a couple of messages.  But we did get pictures!)
Hey! I probably will do part of my emailing right now, but we might be heading out soon. I am going up to Newberg to get a haircut from Sister V's daughter which will be sweet! And free! Haha. But I'll send some pictures right now.

(I asked Spencer when he would be leaving his apartment and going to the Mission Home next week, in preparation to fly home.)
Tuesday morning we leave to the temple with all the other departing missionaries, while our companions go to the transfer meeting, and then we go to the mission office and weigh our luggage and everything, and then we go to the mission home and have dinner and then have a devotional and then we sleep there and wake up and go to the airport!

(About 9 1/2 hours later, I finally got this message:)
Hey, sorry Mom, I got really caught up in Newberg and then we taught an amazing lesson to one of our investigators and I wasn't able to write a full letter. Hopefully I can maybe handwrite one and send it through the mail, as I won't have my email open the rest of the week.
I plan to buy another suitcase from Goodwill (its like the D.I. here) so i can fit all my stuff in it. Apparently we can have two big bags checked in and a small carry on. right now I only have 1 big bag, a carryon and a backpack. It would probably be cheaper than sending things home through the mail.
I love you so much Mom, and things are going awesome here! At 6 pm today, the time I normally write, we put someone on date for baptism on July 3rd!! It would be sweet to see them baptized!!
Love, Elder Romney (:

(So, Elder Romney is keeping busy working and teaching right through his last days as a missionary.  I can't be mad about that!)


Elder Searcy and me after our exchange.

We randomly did service for this family moving stuff and then they bought us and the elders we live with pizza! And then their little boy wanted to sit with us. Haha. He has a pass along card in his hand of Jesus Christ that we gave him.
We took a family to the temple!!

The only ones that are members are the two on the left in green. They were recently baptized. The one on the far far left is the mother of the 3 year old girl sitting next to me and the one with the white cardigan. She is also the sister to the lady in the green that is a member. The two members have a son, and he is the young boy in the middle. The 3 other girls (two in pink, and the one in the green Portland Timbers shirt) are all daughters of the male member's sister. We are waiting on permission from her to be able to baptize those three girls. So they all want to be baptized, and it's just a matter of time! It was super fun and spiritual(:

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

may 30, 2016 letter

Dear Family:
It has been an awesome week! I have had some really cool experiences and I am going to miss having these on a regular basis! I got to interview someone the other day to be baptized on June 11th for one of the sister companionships in my district. I had known these people from over a year ago and loved them a lot and was happy that they had made the decision to be baptized. After I interviewed them I had this weird feeling and it went in through the night, but I kind of ignored it because I didn't exactly want to known what the Lord wanted me to know because I knew it was going to have to be something about postponing their baptism. Their interviews went pretty well, so I kind of just brushed it off until the next morning when it was bugging me enough that I finally said, "Okay Heavenly Father, I'm ready to listen to you." I was instructed to push her date back a week. We had a meeting with the sister missionaries that same morning about being accountable for their goals for the month of May and I brought it up with them. The Hermanas told me that they were actually feeling the same thing, but didn't want to say anything, either. So I learned, that whenever you are feeling that weird feeling, you can't just talk your way out of it and ignore it, because it will always come back. I felt the spirit as I talked to the Sisters and knew that was what the Lord wants accomplished. I also came to know even more that this is His work, and not mine. 

The mother and father that I interviewed that I told you about before, asked me if I would baptize them. They said that they just felt the need that I baptized them. So I plan to baptize them on June 11th and I am so humbled and grateful for that oppurtunity as it will be the first time that I personally will be able to baptize someone for themself, and not for someone deceased. It will be an awesome oppurtunity and we will see if that is still what the Lord wants me to do and if they will get baptized that day. So, that's really cool.

We also had 7 people at church which was awesome! We are teaching the niece's cousin and her mom. The cousin's mom told us the other day how grateful she was that we came and taught her about the prophets and how excited she was to come to church. We also had someone else new come to church who I just really love.  She will probably be baptized this month. There is so much success going on in this area I can't even explain it! I know I probably won't see a lot of the fruits, but as I have seen in the past, the Lord will always keep his promises and bring His people unto Him. 

I am also excited for this SaturdaySaturday from 10 am- 12 am President Russell M Nelson will be visiting our mission and having a special meeting with all the missionaries. He wants to shake all of the missionaries hands personally and then he will spend 2 hours teaching doctrine to us. Ahh I'm super super excited. The whole mission is fasting the day that he comes, and president promised us that if we spiritually prepare and look into his green eyes as we are shaking his hand, that we will receive a confirmation from the spirit that he is an Apostle of God. I also get to be part of a 27 missionary choir that will be singing "I'll go where you want me to go" to President Nelson and the entire mission. It is going to be awesome!  It is such a huge blessing that he is coming just before I leave! The last time I shook an apostle's hand was at Aspen Grove when president Monson was the senior apostle. And now I get to shake another senior apostle's hand who very well could be the next President of the Church!  I was reading about Elder Nelson's accomplishments and he has accomplished a ridiculous amount of things and is very successful. I look up to him a great deal and can't wait to meet him! We will also be taking a mission picture after, so it will be nice to have a picture of everyone just before I leave. 

This last Sunday President Aguiar, who is the 2nd councilor in the mission presidency, went out to teach some lessons with us after he had spoken in our sacrament meeting. He wanted to stay with us for 2 hours, but we ended up spending 4 and a half hours with him. We had a ton of awesome lessons and saw so many miracles. It was awesome to be with someone who loves the gospel that much and is willing to take of his own time to be with the missionaries. It was a true example to me of how to keep the Sabbath Day Holy. He didn't just rest, we went and taught and visited the lonely and the sick, and lifted the hearts and hands of the downtrodden. It was awesome. We even drove out to a hospital and taught someone who had just had a baby and wanted to learn more about the gospel. At the end of the night we were waiting for the Abuelitos (they are a senior couple that I can't wait for you guys to meet. She is the only person in the mission who has been given permission to hug elders. They have taken such great care of me and we will have to make a stop to see them when we come back to Oregon) to enter in to a home of an elderly double-leg amputee.  When they arrived, we went and gave the sacrament to this man who had lost his legs and gave him a blessing. It was such a powerful little meeting and humbling to all who were there. 

The last cool experience that I had this week was with a council meeting that we were holding as leaders in the zone. The objective of the meeting was to find out our strengths and our weaknesses as a zone and figure out how we could correct them. We went on for about a half hour and it just felt wrong, like we weren't getting to the root of the problem, so I kept quite and waited for an opportunity from one of the zone leaders to speak. They asked me what I thought and I told him that what we were talking about just wasn't right, and we were just skimming the surface. I told them that I felt we were missing the spirit and unity in the council. We all knelt and prayed for the spirit to be with us and the spirit immediately entered into the room. I think that often times our sacrament meetings are like that. Ill prepared on both the bishoprics part, the people who are speaking, and the people who come to attend the meeting. I have sometimes found the rest of the church meetings to be even more spiritual (except the sacrament) than sacrament meeting, and that's not the way it should be. I think that the prophet's putting an emphasis on the sabbath day is so inspired, with the worship within the home and the worship within the church. It such a different meeting when everyone comes prepared and we are all able to be spiritually uplifted. I don't know where I was going with that, but it was an awesome opportunity in that meeting to figure out the real problems within the zone, and we needed to be unified in the spirit. 

I know this church is true without a doubt, and I am dreading the day that I have to take off my tag. 
Love, Elder Romney

By the railroad tracks in Woodburn.  Ever since I was in Albany, I have always made sure to have a Book of Mormon in my hand whenever I am out. It is one of my "things"

Elder Carbajal, Elder Gessel and me at zone conference. It was awesome!

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

may 23, 2016 letter

Dear Family:
It has been a great week! We have been teaching a ridiculous amount of people! When I first got here, we were only teaching 4 people, and now we are teach about 49 people! It has been so amazing to be able to follow and listen to the spirit. 

I think there are things I learned from each of my areas and my companions. In the MTC I learned about the atonement and its ability to heal mentally, spiritually and physically, and the understanding that God gives us trials and allows us to struggle for our eternal growth because He loves us. While I was in Woodburn the first time, I learned the gospel and what it means; the need to be humble, and the Spanish language . In Forest Grove I learned how to lead and care for missionaries; to talk openly with companions and humbly take correction, and to change a group of people and their culture.  In Albany I learned to hold on during a rough patch, that God loves me even when I'm not perfect, and to love missionaries that are harder to love. In Newberg I learned how to really teach doctrine and how to manage the things that are most important, compared to the things that are not, and how to correct missionaries with love.  Now that I'm back here in Woodburn, I've learned the need to work hard and follow the spirit with exactness, and that it doesn't matter what I do, if I don't do it with charity. I have learned many other things through my experiences and my leaders, but those are the ones that stick out to me the most in each of my areas. 

It has been awesome listening to the spirit and seeing the fruits that come from it. I have a testimony that when I follow the spirit, that I'm blessed. I am working my hardest and we are seeing so many miracles.  We are teaching the nieces of a recent convert, and his son as well. We are just waiting for approval from the niece's mom and they will be baptized! 

I know this church is true and that Joseph Smith was a tool in the hands of the Lord to restore the Gospel. 
I love you all! 
Love, Elder Romney (:

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

may 16, 2016 letter

Dear Family:
It was a great week this week! It was awesome, as always, to be a part of MLC. The two topics we discussed this time were "Choosing Happiness" and "Charity". It was a great oppurtunity to learn more on how to gain charity and how to choose happiness in hard times. I love President Samuelian because his view for us as missionaries goes far, far beyond the mission and what we will do here.  He often trains us on things that will affect us here, and also after the mission, and not just strategic things as missionaries. I have a greater desire to develop more charity for the people with whom I work. That MLC meeting will be one of the things that I will miss the most when I return home. I will miss the spirit and the wisdom of my leaders and to be able to learn at the feet of the Savior. My biggest concern about being home is not feeling the spirit with the frequency that I have felt out here. I obviously won't, as I won't hold this calling any longer, but it will be a hard transition back into the world! 

We had an amazing experience the other day tracting. We felt impressed to knock on the door across the street from one of our investigators, and a man opened the door and after a few minutes of talking, he invited us in (that still blows my mind that I am a 20 year old kid knocking on strangers doors and then entering into their homes... Haha) and we were able to share one of the most spiritual lessons with him about the restoration.  I was really able to grow in my ability to teach and understand the gospel when I was in English for close to 9 months of my mission, and I have felt slightly impaired when working in Spanish at times, because of the inability to perfectly express what I wanted to say.  I never felt less than confident, nor a lack of the spirit, but I didn't feel I had the same ability that I felt when I taught in English. I have realized this last week that I feel I have finally come to that point with my Spanish proficency and my ability to teach in that language. More and more frequently have caught myself expressing things as I would in the English work, and it has been such a big blessing. We ended up teaching this man an amazing lesson and he accepted a return appointment and the challenge to be baptized. 

I know this church is true, and that if we listen, the spirit will guide us to where we need to go and what it is that we need to say. 
I love you all!
Love, Elder Romney

Our District