Tuesday, September 13, 2016

September 12, 2016

Mark Owen Vickers

Sep 12 (1 day ago)
to me
Sorry, I realized I never responded to this. I'm still here in Westfield with Elder Yanzon. :) I'll likely be here for at least another transfer after he leaves. That will put me at 6 months here. No complaints. I love Westfield. :)

Mark Owen Vickers

Sep 12 (1 day ago)
to me
Hi Everyone!

We are about halfway through this transfer cycle and Elder Yanzon is gearing up to go home to the Philippines. It's been a great experience sending my last two companions home. They are great examples to me of finishing strong and doing all that the Lord asks of us. 

We have come in contact with some awesome people this week who are receptive to the message of the restored gospel. We had a commitment from our mission president to find twice as many people from the previous week to teach and we were able to accomplish it! 

We also had the opportunity to serve in the peanut butter factory again this week. We were just about to start our morning studies when some sister missionaries called us to say that the volunteer shift for that morning had not shown up. Could have been quite a disaster but we were able to muster up another companionship and cover the needed posts. Such a cool operation. We were able to can about 5,000 jars of peanut butter for the Houston Food Bank. 

I am thankful for this opportunity I have to serve in Houston Texas, for all the wonderful people and experiences. I would not trade this time for anything. Love you all. Find someone to serve this week!

All the best,


Monday, September 12, 2016

A Passion for Conversion

To the Missionaries of the Great Texas Houston Mission,

We just got back Sunday afternoon from a wonderful mission president's seminar where we learned wonderful things and had confirmed to us that the things that we are doing in this mission are what the Lord would have us do. Great miracles are happening and it is exciting to be able to participate even in small ways to the great work the Lord is performing among His children.

Sometimes we can lose sight of this in our efforts from day to day, particularly when we have to sift so long for what seems to be so little. It was the Lord who taught through Jeremiah:

"and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion" (Jer 3:14).

In other words, it was intended to be slow. There is great wisdom in the way the work is unfolding. It requires faith, hope, charity and love, virtue, knowledge, patience, humility, diligence and obedience. All of these attributes are required to make something of us. Because of this grand design and the difficulty of the journey, the Lord in our day encourages us when He says:

33 Wherefore, be not weary in well-doing, for ye are laying the foundation of a great work. And out of small things proceedeth that which is great.

34 Behold, the Lord requireth the heart and a willing mind; and the willing and obedient shall eat the good of the land of Zion in these last days

Elder and Sisters, the prophet Joseph Smith, is a wonderful example of thriving in adversity. In the midst of some of his most challenging adversity in Liberty jail, he penned these words:

13 Therefore, that we should waste and wear out our lives in bringing to light all the hidden things of darkness, wherein we know them; and they are truly manifest from heaven—

14 These should then be attended to with great earnestness.

15 Let no man count them as small things; for there is much which lieth in futurity, pertaining to the saints, which depends upon these things.

16 You know, brethren, that a very large ship is benefited very much by a very small helm in the time of a storm, by being kept workways with the wind and the waves.

17 Therefore, dearly beloved brethren, let us cheerfully do all things that lie in our power; and then may we stand still, with the utmost assurance, to see the salvation of God, and for his arm to be revealed.

Elders and Sisters, let us have a passion for conversion and allow our work ethic and our enthusiasm reflect our love of God, our love of His work and our understanding that it is only as people understand this message and accept it that they can have a hope for salvation. We challenge each of your to seek (contact) until you find new investigators. If you can't contact AT LEAST 15 people 6 days/each week, increase your passion and desperation. We are only kept from greater miracles by our faith and efforts.

We love you and would not rather be anywhere else than working shoulder to shoulder with you in this great cause!


President and Sister Mortensen

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