Tuesday, December 6, 2016

WEEK 74 Eureka, McKinleyville Ward & Humboldt YSA Ward 
Family and Friends, 

I stand all amazed. As much as this is a common theme for each of my emails, I mean it whole heartedly when I say it. This week was definitely up there with some of the better weeks I've had on my mission. The Lord has blessed our area so tremendously. We weren't around for a couple days, but things unfolded wonderfully. 

At the beginning of the week, Elder Adamson and I put a great amount of emphasis on working as hard as we could due to our week being shortened by the Mission Leadership Conference we had in Santa Rosa on Thursday & Friday. We scheduled as many appointments and set up as many lessons as those in our teaching pool would permit. We had a couple really great lessons with some of our Less Active Members, but those of our investigators weren't able to find the time to meet. That was a bit of a bummer. 

The week started to pick up quite a bit as Elder Adamson and I made our way to Santa Rosa on Thursday Night. The drive down was absolutely spectacular, but the meeting we had was phenomenal. We counseled together as mission leaders regarding certain topics and areas of improvement that this mission could potentially see. I was so touched by the spirit as we talked about a ton of different subjects pertaining to missionary work. It really made me appreciate my mission a whole lot more and all the work that is put into it. The greatest part of all was seeing the large increase of numbers throughout our mission. The missionaries here in the California, Santa Rosa mission really are working hard. The Lords work is progressing drastically and the numbers are there to prove it. 

Fortunately, on Wednesday (before we left for MLC) we were able to set up an appointment with President Wright to Skype us for a baptismal interview with Tessa. There were some slight complications we had to make our way around, but with the help of President Wright - she was given the 'go ahead' to be baptized a member of the church. We couldn't have been more excited! We had a lot to prepare for, but the baptism turned out SO wonderfully. The entire Humboldt Branch was there in support of Tessa and it certainly brought a wonderful spirit to the baptismal service. One of my most favorite parts of it all was seeing my great companion baptizing her. That brought me so much joy! 

As though it wouldn't have seemed to be enough in just having Tessa baptized this past weekend - we set ANOTHER three baptismal dates with our investigators for this coming Sunday. Christiana, Tala, & Zanai will also be entering the waters of baptism on December 10th, 2016. We've still got a couple lessons to do with each of them, but we plan on getting them done within the next few days. The 'fruits of our labors' really are manifesting themselves in many ways. We will be praying that all goes well for next Sunday

Another highlight of the week was the amazing Ward Christmas Party we had here in the McKinleyville Ward. As my companion and I weren't in our area for a couple days to spread the word about it, the members in our Ward really stepped up to the plate. There were a combined 7 Less Actives and 3 Investigators at our party. What an amazing thing to have seen! We were absolutely delighted as to the work that had been put in while we were gone. The cherry on top of it all was that EACH person that attended the Ward Christmas Party enjoyed themselves so much that they showed up for church the next morning. It was one of the most amazing things in the world. 

Looking back on all that happened - I can't help but grin from ear to ear. I am so thankful for all that The Lord blessed us with over the last week and over the last two transfers. As we're going into the last week of the transfer and the last week of my companions mission, we still have a lot of work to do. There a lot of loose ends we've got to tie up. We're going to finish this out strong. 

I'll forever be thankful for the time I've had to serve with Elder Adamson. I've learned a lot. I've grown a lot. These have undoubtedly been some of the greatest times I've had on my mission. I look forward to twenty years down the road when we're sitting in each other's basements watching football and talking about the time we served together. What a glorious day that will be. Until then - here's to another week full of memories and hard work. 

I'll see you all soon enough. Be safe. GodSpeed.

-Elder Schaefer

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