Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Last Week

This is the last email which I will be sending home. I guess I'll be there soon enough that I can probably keep it short and just fill you all in when I touch down in Canada, but for the benefit of those who wont be in Calgary, I'll give an accounting of my final days in the Mission. 

Last Week was incredible! We had some great lessons, Wonderful Sacrament meetings, Fabulous meals, and 2 beautiful Baptisms! It was a huge blessings to be able to have both Jack and Sunny enter into the covenant of Baptism on November 10th. Strange to think that 2 years ago from that day I was entering the MTC with dreams of doing that very thing. Jack's Baptism was well attended by the YSA's and the spirit was so strong. It was amazing to think that his whole life has change in just the past 5 weeks. But he was prepared and happy to receive our message. His parents and grandmother drove up to see it and it was wonderful to me to see how his bold choice has had such an overwhelming effect on them. The Gospel of Jesus Christ Blesses Families. This I know without a doubt. Though we work with only singles here, we've seen how their families have grown with them. I'm so grateful that because my family has been so blessed that I've been able to help others experience the happiness that has meant so much to me. 

Yesterday we continued to teach. I'll admit its getting more distracting. Everyone knows I'm going home and many goodbyes are being said. I love the people here. One of the reasons its so tempting to come back to SVU is simply because of how great everyone I've met are. The Bishops, teachers, Students, and locals have won a huge piece of my heart. I will always miss this place.

Now I think I must come to an end. I'll put it in the words of the Apostle John in his Second Epistle:

 12 Having many things to write unto you, I would not write with paper and ink: but I trust to come unto you, and speak face to face, that our joy may be full.

And now I bid unto all Farewell. I loved my mission. I love The Lord, and I love each of you.

Elder Sunada

Monday, November 5, 2012

Hello Sandy

Hey Everybody!

So I forgot to mention last week that we had a trip to Charleston on Tuesday for my last Zone Leader Council. Which just so happened to correspond with the land fall of Hurricane Sandy. So we left BV at 5:30am that morning with the Lexington zone leaders with us. Through Virginia we had several small flurries and it was chilly, but not too bad. As we climbed in elevation up to West Virginia conditions got worse and snow started to stick. The ploughs hadn't made it out yet so we were left to travel in the ruts of the few cars and trucks who'd gone a head of us. On one particular section of road we noticed that the other side of the median that both lanes were blocked by trucks who'd lost traction climbing a hill and remained stationary. There was no going back anytime soon. Shortly after we received an text from the assistants stating that President Obama declared that West Virginia was in a sate of emergency and that our Zone meeting was cancelled. After we informed them that there was no turning back President told all those who were on there way to Charleston to continue on and take our time. Lets just say that we made it there safely, but Mud and Sand tires just don't cut it in winter driving. 

Power was out at both the Mission office and the Mission home. We ended up having a modified zone meeting once all of us had arrived safely. We were informed that we'd be spending at least the night in Charleston till things cleared up. After our meeting we went to the mission home and had one of the best days I've had in the mission. President taught us some doctrine in a level of depth I had never even considered. Elder Holder and I went with the Assistants to Target to get some lights for the night as we only had a flashlight, 1 candle and my headlamp. After returning we ate burgers from the barbecue then gathered in the Living room for a Testimony meeting. It had been years since I'd had such a powerful and intimate meeting with these Elders Which had become my brothers. Truly one of the most sacred experiences of my life to sit in a dark room with some of the greatest and hear each bear testimony of Christ and how he'd shaped each of us to become far more than we ever thought we'd be. At the close we settled down to bed and went to bed being full both temporally and spiritually. By the Next morning things had cleared up and we were permitted to return to our areas. 

The Rest of the week has been interesting. I've never been one to count down the days, but when its this close there's not much you can do about it, realizing that this may be the last time I do this or that. Thankfully I'm surrounded by good friends who've been able to help me keep going. We had an exchange with Roanoke where Elder Muirbrook came back to BV to spend a day with me. We were the oldest companionship in the mission at that time. It was pretty cool.

Jack and Sunny are both stoked for their baptisms next week! Jacks will be at 10am and Sunny's at 7:30. Its going to be an awesome anniversary. This last week its going to be weird but I think I'll make it alright. Speaking of which, much too do. Little time! 
Much Love!
Elder Sunada