Monday, May 2, 2016





WEEK 43 Rohnert Park 3rd Ward-

Family and Friends,

Is the whole "cloud-nine" thing a figure of speech, or is it real? I
think it might have to be. This past week was and had to have been a
literal definition in every essence of the word. There's no other
answer to it because, we've been on it. We've landed and found
ourselves a nice place on that soft, billowy cloud. Figuratively, of
course.

Elder Everett and I have been seeing so much success. We've been so
richly blessed and the work here is continuing to be blessed by our
Heavenly Father. We come home with full hearts and stand amazed at the
tender mercies that are bestowed upon us each time we walk out our
front door. I have felt so loved and genuinely cared for as The Lord
has openly rewarded us for the diligence and efforts in which we've
given our best. Although we are nowhere near perfect and face all
sorts of adversity, and personal frailty, I would probably best
compare it to a scripture in The Book of Mormon. [Alma 26:12] reads -
"Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore
I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his
strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we
have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever."
This verse couldn't ring more true to us as a companionship. It
especially hits me to the very core of my heart and means a lot as my
feelings are such. God is good. I know that He watches over us. He is
at the helm of this very special work. He is why we're seeing so many
great blessings here in Rohnert Park.

Molly's baptism was beautiful. It couldn't have gone better. Molly is
personally very afraid of water and doesn't like getting her face wet.
This was a huge concern of hers throughout the process of getting her
ready for baptism. As soon as she set foot in that water, the spirit
enveloped her whole body and worked a miracle. She was baptized by
immersion and soon after was confirmed a member. What a special day.

By far the coolest thing that happened this week was on Saturday when
Elder Bednar (Quorum of the 12 Apostles) came to visit our mission. In
hearing the announcement and being told that this special man would be
addressing our mission as a whole - we began to guess and throw around
ideas as to what he might share. We laid in bed at night and counseled
with one another and both prepared mentally and spiritually for this
marvelous day. Preparing for what was to come, Elder Bednar asked that
we read four of his previous conference talks and be ready to share
some insight while we were together. In just the short amount of time
we had, Elder Bednar did indeed go over and highlight the most
important parts of his talks. He later opened up the rest of his time
for conversation and asked what we might've learned and taken away
from the conference talks. The spirit taught me so much and I was more
than thankful for what I learned. But the event that followed was of
more importance to me than any word that was spoken in those four
hours.

Closing his remarks and explaining that he had more meetings to
attend, he insisted that every missionary come to shake his hand
before leaving the building. With all one hundred and eighty six of us
- we made our way around the chapel and eventually came to the
opportunity of shaking hands with whom we (as members of the church)
believe to be a special witness and Apostle of Jesus Christ. When I
reached out to grab this mans hand, I felt something like never
before. I saw something that I've never seen before. It was quite
literally a shock-wave of emotions that overcame me. Peace, happiness,
comfort, and love all filled my whole entire being. It felt familiar.
It felt like something I had known before and felt before. It felt as
if I wasn't even attached to this world, in those very few seconds
that I had firmly been in contact with him. Right then and there - I
knew. There was no denial. Elder Bednar was and is on The Lords
errand. He is representing The Lord in the high and holy calling in
which he was appointed. I know this. I know that each and every one of
The Lords representatives are doing the same.

I affirm my witness that God lives. He has called Prophets and
Apostles to lead and guide this church. He knew I needed this
experience with Elder Bednar and he granted it unto me. It wouldn't
surprise me if every other missionary in that room felt the same
thing. Thankfully, through the restored Priesthood Authority and our
Priesthood leaders, we have hope. We can one day return and live in
the presence of our supreme creator. Until that day, I know whom I
will serve. I would encourage you to do the same. For at the end of
the day, we've all got on the same jersey united under one cause.
#LordsTeam [Moses 1:39]

See you soon. GodSpeed.
-Elder Schaefer

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