Monday, December 26, 2016

Tooele Week 2: Snow with a Side of Christmas

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Dear Family and Friends,

Merry Christmas!! Christmas has come and gone again! This Christmas was amazing! We had a HUGE snow storm come in on Christmas Eve and dropped well over a foot of snow all over Tooele and we were walking in it, well up past our knees!! It's great though and it was defiantly a very white Christmas! A few missionaries gathered together at 6 to open our presents and such and it was awesome! I got a lot of cool winter gear and a ton of rad socks!! haha!! Thank you to everyone that sent me stuff for Christmas. It was awesome! I love you guys so much!

We went caroling with the youth in one of our wards (congregation) and went by a few families in need in the area and dropped off some goodies for them which was pretty cool to be a part of. It was just really cold!! Haha! We also had a lesson with someone new this week. It was a family that are less actives and they have an 11 year old daughter and 9 year old son that want to be baptized. So we got to know them and the dad said the daughter had to wait till she was 12. :/ But it's alright, we are gonna keep working with the family and see if we help them out and such. A lot of our investigators are out of town so we weren't able to do too much last week.

But, the best part of my week was being able to Skype home on Christmas after Church which was awesome!! It was so cool to see everyone and to talk about the last 6 months together!  And I didn't cry at all (just kidding haha) but it was great. The next time I get to call home will be on Mothers Day!

I love you all and I can't wait to hear how all y'all’s Christmases went!

Elder Bowie
Tooele North Stake
Salt Lake City West Mission

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Skyping Home

my family’s view

zachary at Christmas

my view

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Sunday, December 18, 2016

Tooele Week 1: Winter Wonderland

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Dear Family and Friends,

My first week here in Tooele has simply been one of the best weeks on my mission. This is a great town that is about 45 minutes west of Salt Lake and and I am in the Tooele North Stake. The area is about twice the size of my last place in Kearns. We cover from Vine Street all the way to about 2500 N around Main street if y'all want to look at online. It's basically all the north part of Tooele and the Stake is great. There is a lot of less active work here which is good. We have two people that we put on date for January. So we should have some baptisms this transfer which will be fantastic!

My new companion, Elder Lester, is great. He is from Fayetteville, Georgia which is south of Atlanta. He is a baller and he doing a lot better than I did my first week for sure! Haha! My District leader is Elder Quinnelly who is, for those who remember six months ago, was my original MTC companion!! Now were in the same district which is awesome!! We went out to lunch and we were able to see each other again which was awesome and he seems to be doing pretty good. So far, Elder Quinnelly has been in the Tooele area his whole mission, so he knows the area pretty good. Elder Lester’s MTC companion is here in the district, too. So it's pretty good. We have a fairly young district, and we only have one other Elder that's been out longer then me.

Elder Kozakevitch was moved from Kearns to Tooele as well and he is my new Zone Leader along with Elder Blatter. We had Zone Training last Friday and he is doing really well. He was super nervous about being Zone Leader, but he is doing a ballin job!

We have already had a blizzard come through our area. So it's been very very cold here and snowy!! They says the winters here in Tooele are worse than the ones in Salt Lake, so it look's like I'm in for a treat! Haha! Well, I hope y'all have a Merry Christmas. Just remember your freezing Elder. haha! (just kidding, mom)

Love,
Elder Bowie

Monday, December 12, 2016

Kearns Week 23: Christmas in Tooele

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Good Morning! I have some very exciting news for everyone! So transfers will be this Tuesday! They are finally moving me out of Kearns sadly! I'm going to miss everyone here, but I'm super excited for my next area! So I'll be heading off to Tooele for Christmas! It's a small town just west of Salt Lake City on the other side of the mountains! So I'll be sure to let everyone know my new address next week when I'm there! My new companion will be Elder Lester and he will be coming right out of the MTC, the Missionary Training Center, and I'll be his trainer!! So, I'm super excited! Of course this means I'll be white washing, which means I'll be going in blind to my area since we're both new. So it's gonna be great! It's suppose to be colder in Tooele since it's higher up then the city. So it's gonna be freezing this Christmas haha!

Other then packing all my stuff again, this week has been really great! I have been saying good bye to some people and had a lot of great last lessons with some people! I'll probably come back when some of them get baptized, because I just have befriended a lot of people here! 

It's been great and I'm super excited now for Christmas! It's one of my favorite holidays. We had a mission devotional last night, and it was super great. We brought one of our investigators to it, and it was awesome for him! 

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission

Monday, December 5, 2016

Kearns Week 22: It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

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It's another chilly morning here in Utah!! It's been a great and quick week here in Kearns and I'm super excited because it's just been about six months since I started my mission! It's crazy how time flies!! We had a lot of recent success here in Kearns and we had two new investigators come to Church last Sunday and one of them bore their testimonies in Fast and Testimony meeting!! It was so awesome! It's crazy that it's already almost Christmas and that was the last Fast Sunday of the year!!

I hope everyone has been doing well back home and staying warm since it's starting to get cold. Here in Utah their seems to always be snow on the ground now haha. We're suppose to have even MORE later this week, so hopefully I'm not a popsicle by Christmas!

We recently had the Christmas Devotional that the Church does every year which was great to hear and I really appreciated Elder Craig C. Christensen comments because he said, "There is no Christmas without Easter". Which is so true, because without realizing the Atonement in Christmas their is really no point to it. So, It was very inspiring to me!

We also had an another devotional from the whole missions and Elder Rasband of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostle came to speak to us. He was very inspired and I was able to shake his hand which was a huge honor! He talked about being a Light to the World. He shared a Scripture from the New Testament in Matthew 5:14-16 which says, "Ye are the Light of the World...". His words meant a lot to me and he gave us a challenge: To go to the Index of our scriptures and go to Jesus Christ and to from now till Christmas to use all the references it has to Him and to study it every morning to get to know the Savior and that by doing so we can be more successful as missionaries. "That the more you know Him the more you will love Him and the more you love Him the more greater desire you'll have to serve Him.", is what he said.

I hope all y'all week has been great! I love each and every one of you guys! Thank you for your support and love! I hope you all have a great Christmas season! Also transfers are just around the corner, so we should see next week if I'll be here in Kearns from Christmas! I'm crossing my fingers!! Love y'all!

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Kearns Week 21: It's like a symphony, just keep listening.

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Good morning everyone! It's currently snowing outside, and it won't stop until Wednesday! So, it's officially winter here in Utah. Luckily, I have plenty of winter gear, so I think I can survive just barely. Haha.

This past week has been great, and we didn't have a whole lot of lesson's since most of everyone was out of town for Thanksgiving and what not. But we did have some powerful lessons with people and we have been starting to share the new Christmas Video that the Church releases every year. I really love this year’s one. It's about Lighting the World through our actions. It's really powerful. Go to Christmas.mormon.org to watch it or watch it right here.

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Thanksgiving Hike | Ensign Peak

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Monday, November 21, 2016

Kearns Week 20: The Power of Conversion

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Good morning everyone! It has been another fantastic week here in Kearns, Utah!! We recently had a change of leadership in a few of our wards and branches (congregations), so we are getting with the new leadership to set some goals that they have and to establish a relationship with them! So, it's been a great experience this past Sabbath!

The work is going great, and yesterday we had a refugee family come to one of our wards and they said they want us to read the Book of Mormon, with them, and we will be meeting with them hopefully tonight or later this week! It's amazing to be a witness of that and to help other families in unfortunate circumstances. It's very humbling to be here in Kearns, like I have said in previous emails. I love everyone here, and it's fantastic!

We are going to have a baptism in the Spanish Branch this Saturday and we invited the Stake President to be there. She is super excited to be baptized! It was great to help her get there, even if it was just a little bit! Our first weekend of December we should have two more baptisms which will be great to see as well! It's amazing to see the fruits of the harvest finally be here, and we are still working hard.

This is Thanksgiving week and I will be spending it with a Hispanic family which will be fun! I'm excited for that! It also snowed this week so it's finally winter here in Utah!! Got my thermals just in time! Haha

I love y'all! I hope everyone is well back home and are staying warm! I am thankful for everything y'all do! Thanks for the emails and letters! Y'all are great! Stay warm, and have a happy fall y'all! 

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission

Monday, November 14, 2016

Kearns Week 19: New Beginnings

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Well, it's been another great week! So after all the chaos that is always involved with transfers it turns out that I'm gonna be in a trio! I'm now serving with Elder Sipaque from Guatemala and Elder Balboa from Chile, so we cover English and Spanish. It's still the same area, but now I'm trying to learn Spanish! Haha! So that's fun, but we get along great and it's cool to be in a trio. I'm still staying in the same house, but it's nice with just the three of us. We did a lot this week, but unfortunately we didn't have too many lessons. We helped a few people move. We also recently contacted a refugee family from East Africa and we just gave them a Book of Mormon. We are starting to teach which is an awesome and a humbling experience. I was recently reading on IWasAStranger.lds.org which talks about how to help refugees families and it was awesome to watch all the videos on there on how we can do simple things to help them. I would asked all of you to go on there because it is really humbling. We also have a car now so now we can get places faster which is a huge blessing! It was so nice! We can now take care of ourselves which is awesome!

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission

Monday, November 7, 2016

Kearns Week 18: It’s a whole new world.

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This week was awesome! It was fantastic! So we got transfer calls last Saturday and I will be staying here in Kearns until December 20th, so I'm super excited for that! We hopefully should have a few new converts by next transfer! So I’m glad to stay here! I will have a new companion. I'm not sure who I'll be working with yet, but Elder a Eason is leaving. So I'll be missing him! But this week we have been contacting a TON and we found two new people to teach and it's epic! I'm am so grateful to be in this wonderful area! So we will be working with them next week and we will see how it goes! I love the work. We had a blast this week! Keep moving forward!

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission

Monday, October 31, 2016

Kearns Week 17: Counting Stars

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Good morning everyone!! It's been another great week here in Kearns and we had a blast! We taught quite a few people this week and we are working hard to find a few more new investigators to teach, so that's been good. We also had zone interviews with President Palmer, our mission president, and it went really well! We just talked about how Elder Eason and I have been doing. He gave me some great counsel as always! President Palmer is the best and I am lucky to have him! We met with Angela this week as well after our interviews and talked about how she's been doing. She recently went to the hospital and is now on oxygen and so that is helping her not to smoke which is a positive benefit! It's awesome, and Elder Eason had the opportunity to give her a blessing which was epic! I love seeing the Lord work and to bring people back to the fold!

A few days ago I felt prompted to talk to this kid on the street, so we talked with him and his mom came outside after a bit and we start talking with her. It turns out that this family is less active with two kids of age to be baptized and they wanted to come to church, but didn't know where to go for sacrament. So we gave them the info and set up a return appointment with them so we can get the two kids baptized! It's crazy how the Lord works through the spirit! It's very humbling to witness that!

We also had a Fireside in one of our wards and we were gonna be the main speakers in it and only four people showed up! But we made a circle and started talking about being excited for the gospel and preaching the gospel. We had our elders quorum president give his conversion story and talked about his family. It was so powerful!! It made me so grateful for what I have! So we talked about how we can get the rest of the Ward excited about preaching the gospel! So we challenged everyone there to pray for opportunity to serve and to share the gospel and then to give their experience in fast and testimony meeting! So that's what we are gonna do! It was awesome and a epic spiritual experience even though we only had a few people. .

Hard to believe this is already the last week of the transfer! Next Preparation Day I will know where I'll be for the next six weeks! I hope y'all are having great experiences as well! I love y'all!

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission

Monday, October 24, 2016

Kearns Week 16: I want to be the very best.

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Alright guys! I hope you all had an excellent week! I know that my week was simply amazing for me! I am loving it here in Kearns, Utah! It's getting very cold and the locals say it's actually a warm fall, so now I'm even more scared for the winter that's to come!! I have lots of winter gear from missionaries and what family and friends have sent me! So don't worry! I will be warm hopefully!

Regarding missionary work, this week has been just great! We taught a TON of people this week and got a few new investigators that want to be baptized now! So, that was great to be a witness for! The Spirit is leading us and that is so awesome to be a part of! For example, last night we felt prompted to go by one of our less actives and we went by and only her grandma was at home! Then as we were saying good bye to the Grandmother we saw their truck pull up and she and her husband get out and we all go inside and start talking. It was really awesome that we caught them because she has been going thorough some very very rough times right now and we were able to talk with her and hopefully comfort her a little bit and schedule a day to come back later this week! But not only that but, afterwards we decided to go home a different way and we met another of our less actives, that we have been working with, and she was in the parking lot of a park and she just recently moved so we had NO idea where she was at and she gave us her new address which is in our area!  So we will be going by there later as well! It's awe inspiring to be part of the Lord's work and to see how he guides his servants! It's very humbling to me!!

We also got one of our dead wards that has in the past had hardly any work there up and going. We spent three days in a row just contacting names and trying to get return appointments with people and we managed to find quite a handful with the help of the ward mission leader, and other members who went out on splits with us so that we could cover more ground. So, it was awesome to see the Lord open that dead area for us and we are gonna try the same method in some of our struggling wards. So, I just love how God provides a way and that is something that I really have learned this week!

Sunday we got to one of our wards for Sacrament Meeting and I noticed that no speakers where on the program. I turned to Elder Eason and said, "Look's like we are speaking today," and not five seconds later the bishop comes up to us and said that he would like us to bear our testimonies. So, that was awesome to have the chance to bear my testimony. It was really good because one of our investigators was there in attendance and it was good to kinda focus a message a little towards him as well. We were assigned to speak in another ward right after that one as well. We talked about how to be Christ like. I talked about being excited about the gospel everyday and how you should be happy because you have a opportunity to serve in the church. So that was fun as well! After church we felt prompted to go by a former investigator of the church and we went by and he was home for once and we talked with him for a good 30 minutes and we got a return appointment and he said he wanted to be baptized so that was amazing to see the Spirit do that!

We did a lot of other activities as well this week but other than that this week was really another powerful witness to me of the divinity of Jesus Christ and how he is our Savior. I love all of y'all and I hope everyone has an another fantastic week here! Thank y'all for all the letters and emails. They mean a lot to me! Keep on doing the basics and know that I love y'all!

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission
Kearns Utah

Friday, October 21, 2016

4 Months

 

Monday, October 17, 2016

Kearns Week 15: Zone Conference

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This week has been very pivotal for me! We had a baptism this Saturday for a mother named Gloria. I never really had to plan out a baptism service before since Elder Dunham knew how to do it previously. Since Eason and I are new to it, it was a little stressful. I prayed to know how to and to make sure it would be good. Then last Tuesday, at Zone Conference, they talked about baptism and how to set up the service and it was sooo helpful! I was so happy they talked about it!! I texted our Ward Mission Leader then and there and met up with him the following morning and set up the whole thing! I was so blessed! He's a great Ward Mission Leader and he helps me feel a lot more comfortable in doing it. Last Saturday the baptism went great! President Palmer, our mission president, came to it which was awesome! The spirit was so strong, and the baptism was beautiful! I gave a talk on the Holy Ghost and I had watery eyes the whole time! So it was awesome to be part of it and to see how much she has changed to be at this point. It's humbling for me. I was able to confirm her yesterday at sacrament meeting which was very cool as well! It was my first time confirming someone into the Church and it was awesome! The spirit is so strong and it was a huge testimony builder for me!

Eason and I have been working hard and we recently found a guy from the Marshall Islands and he is LDS and has a ten year old daughter who wants to get baptized. So that was awesome and it was great that we were able to met him and to help him get back to church. We also came across another family of a similar situation, except they aren't Islanders, and hopefully we will have two more baptism by the end of this transfer in November if all goes well. The Lord is blessing us and it's awesome, I love being in this area!

Kearns is a great place and their are lots of humble people here for us to find and teach. We are having a blast and the work is pressing forward so it's awesome! I love hearing from y'all! Your letters and emails really do mean a lot! I hope all is well back home and that it's not too cold down there yet. Because it's freezing here, the mountains are already white with snow. So ya, but my sweater game is on point. :D I got lots of winter gear from departing missionaries and from home, so I'll be warm hopefully! Lol 

Love,
Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission

Monday, October 10, 2016

Kearns Week 14: Don't stop believing!

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Good morning!

This week has been another great week out here in Kearns! We are having a lot I'd good success out here and I am enjoying the work! We have been knocking like crazy this week and as a result we have been able to find potentially a few more new people to teach! I hope all is well back home! How has everyone been doing? I love hearing from y'all!

This week is going to be my 4 month mark and it crazy how fast it's flying by! The weather is getting into the forties and the mountains are white with snow!! It’s crazy to think that summer is already over! I have to wear warm jackets now or I'll freeze to death! The trees out here are loosing their leaves and it is suppose to snow soon! But besides the cooling weather the work has been going well! We had a decent amount of people come to us and we will now help them out. We helped someone moved into some apartments yesterday and that was fun carrying multiple beds up three flights of stairs! But it was good and we are going to try to work with the family this week so it's awesome!

Elder Eason is awesome and he's been helping me learn a lot as well. We have been learning and growing together and it's been awesome. We have been knocking a ton this week on people doors and we were able to find three whole new people to teach! So that has been a miracle this week! I love Kearns and their are a lot of humble and prepared people that we just have to dig for a little. But it's been awesome!  Our stakes are awesome and we have been receiving a lot of support from the leadership and it's been ballin to say the least.

But other than the work life's sweet and I love every moment of it. We ate with two Samoan families this week which was a huge blessing because it's like having an all you can eat with good homemade food. They gave us all the left overs so now we are set for like a month lol. Also when we were coming home to put the food in our fridge their is this Hispanic family that lives near us and we gave them some of our food since they aren't in the best of circumstances to say the least. So it was awesome to see how happy they were when we gave them some Samoan food. One of the kids said, "This is SO good! I'm gonna eat it all in one bite!" So it was awesome to do some service this week!

But ya, I love my mission and it's a huge testimony builder every single day! I wouldn’t trade it for the world! I love my companion and we preach the gospel. So I hope all of y'all have an awesome week! Love y'all!

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission
Kearns Utah

Monday, October 3, 2016

Kearns Week 13: Praise to the Man

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Good morning everyone!

This week has been simply amazing! Elder Dunham went back home in Georgia last Tuesday and it was, to say the least, very emotional for him and everyone. He was an awesome missionary, and I'm going to miss his example. He was the best trainer ever! I am officially done with the training program, 12 weeks, and I get to do it again with my new companion! His name is Elder Eason and he is from Southern California near San Diego. He is a tall dude and he is a pretty awesome guy! I'm blessed to be able to serve with him! This was our first week together and we did awesome! We had a lot of lessons cancel on us more than usual but what can you do?? We taught 3 new people this week! Doug, Kelsey, and Sarah!

So ya we had another good week this week! We got a lot referrals this week so we spent most of our time knocking on doors and out of the many, many doors we knocked we ended up getting two return appointments so that was amazing!! Both of them were less active families that wanted to come back more to church, so it'll be great to work with them and to get them reactivated again!  Being the Senior Companion is kinda weird, I am going to admit but it's fun. Because now I am the one who knows all the streets and names and what not so I have to teach Elder Eason all the stuff that Dunham taught me! So it is an interesting experience for me, and makes me have a lot of appreciation for Elder Dunham for everything that he taught me!

So the best part of my week (besides the work) was General Conference!! It was so cool to watch it as a missionary! It was awesome to hear their message and it made more sense than ever before! It was cool to catch scripture references and to know where that was and what it talked about! I just loved it! The Spirit is always strong when I watch General Conference and it was sooo cool to be able to understand it more and now to apply it in my life! I love having the chance to hear from our modern day prophet, Thomas S. Monson, he is truly a man of God! I am grateful for everything that the church gives us! Joseph Smith is a prophet and I love how reading the Book of Mormon brings eternal joy into our souls! It teaches of Jesus Christ and He is my Savior! It's awesome to be an missionary and to see people read the Book of Mormon and then realize: Why are we here? Where are  we going? and Where did I come from?

Our very purpose of life can be found in the pages of the Book of Mormon and it is a true book. "A man can get closer to God by abiding by it's precepts than any other book." I love this calling as a missionary, and I would not trade it for anything this world has to offer! Seeing people change is the most rewarding experience ever! Just this week we had an investigator watch conference for the first time and they said they felt of God's love. We had a less active family who's mother watched it for the first time in her whole life and recognize that President Monson is the prophet on the earth today! It is amazing to be part of it and to help people change. I love it!

Kearns is a very humble place and I am grateful that I started out here to see how low people can go before they come back up. I love this gospel. I want to invite everyone who reads this to read the Book of Mormon. Because that is how I got to know all of this. My purpose, being a missionary, everything. Joseph Smith was chosen to be a prophet of God. We have a prophet today who directs the church his name is, Thomas S. Monson, and he too is called and chosen of God.

You are a child of God and He knows you by name. I love General Conference for the opportunity to be reminded of that wonderful truth and to feel of God's love more in my mind and heart. Sorry that I am kinda rambling on, but I just want to make sure that everyone who reads this knows that I love this Gospel. I am so blessed to be out here in Utah and I love every passing second. Of course I miss home and my friends but I wouldn't pass this up for the world!! I appreciate all the love that you guys send me when y'all email me or send letters! It is great to hear from y'all! I’ll do better to stay in touch with all of y'all this week!

Also today is my Mom's birthday so shout out to mom! I hope you have a fantastic birthday party without me!! Send me some cake. lol

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I love all of y'all and I want y'all to know, no matter what you’re going through, that God loves you, and knows you personally!  Pray to him and listen to what he has to say. #Godsnotdead

So ya, keep up the emails and letters and remember that I love you!!

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission
K-Town Ballers Area

You can listen to the talks from General Conference right HERE.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Kearns Week 12: Transfers, Miracles, and More!

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Hey everyone! How's has life been? This past week has been amazing! It's hard to believe how much has happened since last I wrote! In case some of y'all didn't know this is my last full day with Elder Dunham!!  He is going back home tomorrow morning to Georgia and we have to be at the mission home at five am tomorrow, so that will be fun! I already know who my next companion is! We got together as a district Saturday night and the zone leaders told us who our new companions are and our areas. So they told me that I'll be staying in Kearns! Which is awesome! My new companions name is Elder Eason. I haven't met him yet put he's been out for six weeks so I'll be training him which is weird because I just got finished with my training this week! President Palmer, my mission president, said that he felt like I was mature enough to train so I guess I'm ready! It's gonna be a lot of fun and I can't wait to met him Tuesday and tell y'all about him next Monday!

So besides transfers a ton of stuff has happen this week! On Friday one of Elder Dunham's old companions Elder Manu came for breakfast. Friday morning, we were driving towards Salt Lake with Tanner Manu, Elder Dunham's previous companion who's already home, and it was raining and we got on the interstate with two lanes. In front of us was a mini van and on the side of it was a big semi truck. The lanes were merging because of road work and we didn't know because we couldn't see past them. The van did and randomly veers into the side of the semi and was literally a inch from hitting it and slams on its break. Then we hit on our brakes but becomes it was raining we couldn't slow down in time and the van gets inches from hitting us. We turn off the road to a lane that's under construction and hit a cone and slid right past the van without any damage. We have no idea how we didn't get hit because we were literally bumper to bumper when we veered into the cones. The Lord provided a way for us to live. It was a pretty packed highway and we would have been hit real bad. I immediately said a prayer thanking the Lord. He protects his missionaries and its good to witness that. After we got back on the road Manu said, "good thing I was with the missionaries" and we all started laughing so it's good.

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But ya, besides almost hitting a car this week has been very successful! We were able to teach a lot of people which is good! We had a huge cold front with some intense rain this week which was fun to walk in! It dropped down to the forties and it snowed up in the mountains and that was cool to see as well! So ya I got to try out that rain coat that Papa sent to me and fits really well! There was also a tornado in Salt Lake because of the storm which is super rare for out here. It wasn't a huge one but it destroyed a couple of homes up north of Salt Lake I believe. So ya, walking in the cold rain was fun! I got to try out the winter gear everyone's been sending me which was awesome! We've taught a lot of new people that we found last week so that's been great! We mainly found less active members which is good. We had two lessons with a black girl named Lucinda, who is 25, and has a boy who is five (who is the funniest kid on earth). They’re an awesome family and Lucinda is trying to get her life back in order which is great and it's been awesome to get to know her and help her get back to church! We met also with the Eaton family who is also less active. The kids want to come back to church and are awesome! The husband works graveyards so it's hard for him to come to church. We tried just setting goals with them so that they can be eventually sealed in the temple! We look forward to working with them.  We also met with the Tialavea family again and they are solid kids! They have been coming to church for a few months now and it's awesome to see how far they have come! I love it!

We did have a baptism for last Saturday but sadly they had a problem with word of wisdom so now it's pushed back two Saturday's! It's ok we are just trying to help her, it's mainly with coffee. She hasn't had one this week so far so she's been going strong. Her name is Gloria, and she a great person as well and we have been only working with her for a little bit but I know she can do it! We taught CiCi this week as well, Paula's sister. We just taught the plan of salvation with them and during the lesson she brought up baptism on her own which was awesome! She also came to church with us for the first time which was amazing! CiCi is 14 and it's been awesome to work with her! She is learning so well it's amazing! She will get baptized eventually and I can't wait to see the day! Also, another less active that we taught came to church! It was fast and testimony meeting and she bore her testimony which was amazing!!! Her name is Kelsey and she has the cutest baby ever and wants to come back so it was awesome to see her come out! It's been months so it was great to witness that!

I love being a missionary! It is literally the best thing in the world! I'm gonna miss Elder Dunham but I can't wait to meet my new companion and to preach the gospel! Utah is epic! The mountains are white and the weather is nice! It's gonna be all 60s & 70s this week! So looking forward to that! Thank y'all for all the emails and letters! It's hard to write letter backs because I run out of time! I try to do at least one a week! But ya, I love to hear y'all’s emails! It's been "ballin" here in SLC! Everyone have a great week! I love all of y'all!

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission

Monday, September 19, 2016

Kearns Week 11: Temple Run

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Good morning everyone! It's been four days since I last wrote but we have had a ton happen this week! We went to the temple last week which was awesome! It was a great experience and we went to the Bountiful temple and it was huge!

We had a lot of miracles and spiritual experiences happen this week. Monday evening a week ago was a really amazing! So it was at 8:40 at night and we didn't know where to go. So, we prayed and we felt like we should follow the wind. We followed it and made a few turns and walked down the street were I felt prompted to knock at one house. However we had knocked at that door previously and the lady that lives there just yelled at us. So, as we walk past it with the wind and I told Heavenly Father if you really want me at that door then blow the wind back to the house. As soon as I had thought that the wind howled back towards that house and we went up and knocked the door. This lady who usually yells at us and tells us to go away, opens the door and we have an actual conversation. So that as amazing to me! So, I'm gonna try to be a little better at listening to the Spirit. 

We found a bunch of new people to teach this week! We had someone move into a apartment in our area, named Gloria and her husband DJ, and they were being taught in West Valley before they moved and they have a baptism date and everything. So we just had to teach the final lesson with them and talk about her baptism. So that was really cool! Her date is set for this Saturday, so we're gonna have three baptisms in a row this transfer which is so epic! I would have never even have thought of when we first started! Gloria's only big concern is the word of wisdom. She's been trying to stop drinking coffee and is doing pretty good so far. Hopefully it all goes well though and she can overcome it. We'll be dropping by tomorrow to talk with her about it as well as setting up the baptism.

We had a lesson with Paula and her sister CiCi as well and we had Jason Giles from the Ward come with us and it super good. We taught the plan of salvation and got to the spirit world with them and they had a lot of good answers and questions so it's really neat to be part of their learning process. Jason is going to the Little Rock Mission soon in November, so he's been asking me how Arkansas is like. His mission only covers southern Arkansas and eastern Tennessee so it's gonna be a bunch of fun for him!  His missing out from Northwest Arkansas sadly though . :P

Like I said earlier we went to the Bountiful Temple Thursday, and it was huge! We went as a zone at the 7:30 session and it was awesome! We did some work for some peeps and then we took some awesome pictures outside when we were done. We ate for free at waffle love and I got churros! They were so good! But it made me feel fat afterwards though.

We also went to the Abrams on Friday and the dad, who is in the military, is home now which totally changes the atmosphere of the home. We had a good lesson and we read from Helaman 5 which was ballin. Jayin has been taught all the lessons but just hasn't been to church three times, which is the requirement, so we are trying to get him to come out more but he gets sick a lot which can be a sped bump some times for him. But he's a really good kid and he wants to get baptized.

We also went to the Salt Lake City Temple on Saturday because one of the people Elder Dunham taught in his last area, was getting his endowments! It was so cool to go in the Salt Lake City Temple for the first time! It was so beautiful! After the temple we ate lunch with Elder Perkes and then went out contacting. We had a great baptism Saturday night for Jaiden and I talked on Baptism which was awesome! When he came out of the water he said, "I feel like a light bulb" and he was so happy. We're so proud of him! His dad baptized him and it's great to see all the family now start to be more active!

Then finally Sunday, we talked in a general priesthood meeting in the East Stake this morning and we walked around and interacted with the crowd which was cool. We talked about being excited in the gospel. How to be missionaries and how to be more effective basically. We read from John Chapter 21 with the whole lot and talked about what it meant by feeding my sheep and how Peter ran to Christ immediately as soon as he sawed him. We invited them to pray and to ask God to tell them someone or a family whom they can share the gospel to. It was epic!

We talked Sunday in one of our wards and they just asked us to bear our testimonies for 15 minutes each... it was awesome though. I didn't really prepare anything for it but as I was sitting on the stand waiting to talk I remember what I read in 1 Corinthians chapter 13 about charity and faith as well as Ether 12:27 which talks about being humble. So I talked a lot about that and how I have learned to rely on the Spirit through out my mission so far. Omar didn't show up for his confirmation today! We'll get him eventually because Bishop talked to him and he should be good for next Sunday.

But ya that was my week, so much has happen and we have met so many new people it's awesome! I love being on a mission and it has taught me so much! It's hard to believe it's been three months as of last week! It's gone by so fast! This is my last week with Elder Dunham before he heads home in Georgia! It's been great to be with him and to learn so much! I'm excited to see who my next companion is going to be. I'll probably stay in Kearns with a new guy but will see. I'll know for sure this Saturday when they call me. But ya, I know the church is true and it's amazing to see how everybody's deep doctrinal questions can be answered through the Book of Mormon! I love it! I hope all of you had a great week as well! I love reading your replies and letters! It means a ton! 

With love,

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Kearns Week 10: Families 4Ever

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So our P-day got moved to Thursday because we have a temple trip that we did this morning. So that's why y'all didn't hear from me Monday. I'll talk more about the temple trip next Monday.

But ya, how's everyone doing? This week went by really fast and it's hard to believe that's it's already P Day! I hope everyone's been doing good back home! Kearns has been going great and I've had a lot of experiences this past week! Yesterday we had a Salt Lake City Regional conference which was really cool. It was two hours long but we were able to hear from Elder Ballard, from the 12 Apostles, which was great and he talked about Pokemon Go in his talk which was very funny! All the talks were great and it was awesome to hear from everyone who was there!

But ya, it was a great week and we had a baptism this week! Last Saturday Omar got baptized by Elder Ruiz, who had been working with him before we moved to the Kearns Stake, and it was a great experience! Omar is a 17 year old Hispanic guy, who doesn't know Spanish, and he is a really cool dude and I'm so glad that he's been baptized now and has been coming to church. It's really cool to be part of people's lives and I love seeing the change people make so that they can finally know what true happiness and joy is! Besides the baptism we had a lot of spiritual experiences this week. One of which is this cool stake carnival that we went to! It was really cool and all the Samoans made some epic hot dogs that were really good! It was a lot of fun just to see everyone from the stake and eat and chill. They us and the Spanish Elders give a small presentation about missionary work which was fun. We didn’t have a very loud amp so it was kinda hard to communicate to everyone but it was really good! We basically talked about how it's not hard to do missionary work and we did a role play where I showed them how they could ask somebody out to church. It was really cool and they really likes it.

But ya lots of miracles this week. After Omar's baptism it was 8:30 and we weren't sure how to finish our evening so we said a prayer to ask what to do. I immediately thought of one of our Ward referrals on the other side of the stake. After I said that Elder Dunham was like I was thinking the same thing! So we walked in the dark to this lady's house and it's like 9 at night and we knock. No answer so we knock again. No answer. We knock one more time with our fingers crossed. Then the window slides open and she pokes her head out and started talking to us. We ended up setting a return appointment to teach her. She said she has been coming to church and she's seems like a good person for us to teach so I'm excited for it.

But ya, that's about all I did this week and it's been awesome here in Kearns. I have been having a great time so far and I'm learning so much!

With love,

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission

Monday, September 5, 2016

Kearns Week 9: Do you believe in Miracles?

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Happy Labor Day!

It's my first Labor Day away from home (I'm doing alright though) and today we have an all day P Day because of the holiday! So I get to email y'all all day today. My week was really good and went by fast! I feel like I just had P Day but it was great. We had probably one of the more successful weeks and it was miracle after miracle! Elder Dunham went on exchanges with Elder Hernandez on Wednesday and me and him had a slow start. Because our washing machine broke last Monday!!  So I have been running very very very low on clean clothes... But ya the guy that the mission office got to fix was an hour late... So we just watched some Mormon messages till he finally showed up at one. Then after twenty minutes working on it he said nothing was wrong with it. I threw in a load to see if he was right and it worked fine. So ya, we didn't get out till around 2 or 3. Once we got out we had a great evening. We got along really well and we taught two less actives. They were powerful lessons and we talked about spiritual CPR. Which is church, prayer, and reading. Both of them have been going through hard times and want to come back to church. We talked about praying about their situation and for God to fight there battles. Both of them were crying at the end and it was a humbling experience.

Last Thursday we went in splits with the Elders Quorum Presidency of the Kearns 6th Ward to visit some less actives and to invite them back to church. I went with President Arnesen and everyone on our list to visit either had moved or said to go away. We prayed and choose a family who was anti Mormon to go by. We knocked on the door and I had no idea what to expect. A 17 year old guy answered the door and he let us in. He was one of the sons and the parents were gone with his sister practicing driving. We talked about coming to church and we had a great conversation. Then the parents came home and they came on and were like, "oh the missionaries" with big eyes. They sat down with us and we actually talked with them about coming out to church. It was nice and the spirit was there. It was a miracle even to talk with them! The Lord provides the way! Then later that day we were contacting people off the street near our apartments and we said a prayer and not five seconds later we run into this lady whom we previously talked to before but had brushed us off. She motions us over and starts actually talking to us. We find out she is a less active and she has a cousin moving in a few doors down who wants to be baptized and that she wants us to come and teach her and her daughter. It was an amazing experience! We'll be going by later this week!

Saturday was so epic and I witness many miracles!! First once we got back we met with Paula and her two sisters and it was a great lesson. Once we got started we taught the Restoration from start to finish! Her sister Ci Ci said she would come to church and Paula has to work unfortunately...  But that was a great lesson and we have both of the sisters reading and they said they would pray to God to see if Joseph Smith is a prophet. I'm pumped for them. Right after our lesson we went over to the Abrams and they have been having a real hard time recently. So it's a mom and her two boys with her husband gone in the military. We have been mainly teaching the son so that he can be baptized and his name is Jayin. We teach the whole family and recently her husband had a stroke and is currently in the hospital and is recovering slowly. He had some kinda brain damage from cancer on top of that. So it has been really hard in the mom and especially the boys. She can't even go see him because the registration sticker to her car are missing. She is a strong mom though and she shared this story with us. So she took her car to go to 7-11 real quick and come back and in the process she hits some one. The woman who she hit at first was angry but she told her story and the lady forgave her and when she got home the big dent in her car was gone like she didn't even get in a wreck. It was great to hear her testimony even in this troubling time, it gives me strength. Knowing how much better I could be handing my small personal trials. It's a broader perspective for sure. That's why I love serving a mission is stories like that. We also taught the Greenfeilds. They are a new LA we just picked up and they are very similar to the Abrams.  They had a rough path through out their life and at one point they were living off the streets but because of the kindness of one member they have slowly changed their lives for the better. Every member a missionary. Cami her daughter has a great attribute of being so wise in gospel. They are a solid family and it'll be good to have them grow closer to God.

We had Zone Training this Friday as well! Me and Elder Dunham gave a quick training on how to teach with understanding and resolving concerns that investigators might have. It was a neat experience and my first time training at zone training. We shared a story from the Book of Mormon about when Alma was teaching Zeerom (Alma 12) and we talked about how he was able to confound him and teach him wi understanding. We talked a lot about listening for the resolving concerns part. We played telephone with the whole zone and we talked about the importance of just listening and how we need to rely on the spirit to fully help people over come speed bumps. But ya, Zone Training was the best and we have a big zone so it's awesome. The West Jordan Zone is the bomb. lol.

Also, I read this really cool talk on religious freedom this week and HERE is the address to it if y'all want to listen to it. It's by Elder Rasband one of the new apostles! It was a great talk about our role as citizens and talking about religious freedom.

We picked up a lot of new people is week to start teaching so it's been great! Sunday was the cherry on top because I was able to bear my testimony three times at all of our different wards we cover. One of our appointments fell through after church so we went to Primary instead because their theme this month is missionary work and they wanted us to introduce it to all e kids. It was really cool and kids were really funny and this one Hispanic kid would say no to our questions while everyone else said yes. He was a funny dude. A lot of our lessons fell through afterwards but we were able to teach Jaiden a 13 year old from the new stake and we taught him the commandments and it went really smooth and he's a solid kid. His parents are active so it's been nice to have their support. He's going to get baptized on the 17th which will be awesome! He plays football and has no time for us to come over besides Sunday. It's been cool to teach him though. This evening was completely free so we contacted some referrals with no luck. Before we gave up finding people this one lady walked up and said Jesus wanted her to talk to us. We were like yes! We end up finding out that she is a member has been going to a LDS school but she was converted at the age of twelve. She asked us how to know when your forgiven? She still felt guilty for last mistakes. We talked about the Holy Ghost and how if you can feel the Holy Ghost constantly in your life then you know you are forgiven. It was awesome to talk to her and to see the Lord provide people at the right moment.

That's my week in a wrap but ya today is a all day P Day so I have all day to email y'all which is awesome! We're gonna go to a BBQ for lunch but other than that we don't have too many plans for today! But I hope all is well with band, life, jobs, or whatever! I miss you guys! It's the most rewarding experience being on a mission! I love every second!

With love,

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission

Monday, August 29, 2016

Kearns Week 8: The Best Two Years

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Good Morning Everyone!

This week has been great! We taught a ton of people this week and it was great! Our new Zone Leaders Elder Peniar and Vizzini are great and we went on exchanges Tuesday. They cover the YSA (young single adult) Ward in West Jordan and it was fun to go out with them. They are both from South Africa and they have some rad accents. Both of them are white and they are epic.

We had our quarterly interviews with President Palmer, our mission president, on Wednesday at 11:30. One of our Elders in the District, Elder Hernandez,  was sick this week and his companion Elder Leavitt had an interview as well so me and him went together to the interview. It's was cool and I really like President Palmer, we talked about how me and Elder Dunham was doing. He said that since Elder Dunham is leaving and that we are getting a lot of new missionaries next transfer that I might be training next transfer! That caught me off guard. He said that he felt like I was mature enough to do it, but it's crazy to think about it!

But ya, besides the interview, we did a lot of work this week. We mainly just contacted a bunch of people in the new stake we picked up. We got a few new people to work with and that has been really good. We are meeting with this couple that live near to our apartments and they are doing good. They are less actives and they want to come back out to church and get sealed in the temple.

It's hard to believe that's been 2 1/2 months but I'm learning a ton out here! I'm glad that I'm out here in Utah! There are so many people out here that just don't have a fullness of joy in their lives. It's been a great experience to be able to help these people have happiness with their families and to help them draw nearer to God. I've been loving every second out here so far and it's gonna be the best two years! 

Elder Bowie
Salt Lake City West Mission

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Kearns Week 7: We’re Soaring We’re Flying

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This week was fantastic!! We had transfers Tuesday! As I said last week, I'm still staying in the Kearns East Stake, however they added on the Kearns Stake to our area. So now we are covering two stakes! It's a decent size area and we cover a lot of ground on our bikes everyday! What fun! We spent till 3 pm on Tuesday helping other missionaries in our zone move and stuff like that. Our K-Town(Kearns) district is spilt up, but we still have Elder Kozacavitch, the Brazilian, and a new Hispanic moved into our apartments and I forgot his name. He's cool and he has this epic skate board thing! I rode it like a boss. The work is doing good as well and we got our feet wet in the new area of the Kearns Stake! It was fun.

On Wednesday we went by a ton of people on the Kearns Stake and had one out of our three lessons actually pull through. We had ZLC which was fun and I got chill with them even though I'm a Junior Companion. We got Dunham's new iPad so hopefully we can actually plan now because it was an issue before that thing was messed up. We saw a lot of families mostly Hispanic... But it was awesome. There are a lot of Hispanic families to teach but they aren't the best at keeping commitments. We also met with Bishop Fellows and he was a great guy and I felt pumped after talking with him. It brighten by day even more so. He's from the tenth Ward so that's cool. Lots of work with four or five people on date and like ten investigators! It's ballin. As they say in K Town Ball is life!  

On Thursday we played volley ball with the Samoans today which was epic! I loved it! And we played uno with the Spanish Missionaries! I beat them so bad though. They keep saying that I cheat but it's pure skill. We had District Meeting on Friday. I learned a ton from it this week. They asked good questions and comments like: Are we learning not earning heaven? Are we changed by grace? Friday was really productive though and we saw a taught lot of people. Tialevea family was sick so we went by Saturday instead. We taught Paula again and it wasn't really a lesson. We talked and got to know her family more. It was good. We were out til like 9:45 so it was a long day. We bikes up the hills back like animals!

We helped this random family move into their new home in the stake on Saturday. We saw and talked to a ton of people. Paula unfortunately canceled on us again... Barbara too... We haven't seen her in like two week! I hope she is alright! We taught Tialavea about Helman 5:12 and it went well but it was at ten in the morning on a Saturday so the boys were super tired! It went well though! This evening. We saw more of the Kearns Stake WML, Ward Mission leaders, and bishops and we got to met the President Weaver. He a great guy and he is awesome to work with! Also almost forgot we made these epic pancake sandwiches for lunch! It was the best!! We did it with Elder Leavitt and Hernandez! It was fun!  

Yesterday we spoke three times in different congregations! We got picked for all different topics as well. Mine were: How Repentance helps us keep covenants, Book of Mormon, and then Choices. It went good though and it was just us two speaking in two of the wards so we had to talk long. It was a cool experience though. But ya, that was a week in a pinch. We didn't have too many lessons this week but the ones that we did have were very powerful and I learned a lot this week. In fact we met with our new investigator, Tanner, from the Kearns Stake and he is really solid. We talked with him about why he wanted to meet with the Missionaries. He told us that he had received a blessing from a member and the feelings felt which was the Spirit was so strong that he knew then that he needed to be baptized. He told us that he already read through the Book of Mormon once! He is currently trying to stop smoking because he has been addicted to it since middle school. Last Sunday then we talked about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and how if he relies on Christ that he will be able to overcome smoking and be baptized. He's a great guy and he's 22 years old! He's been coming out to church for the past couple of weeks and I'm really glad for him! Because it's people like this that make all the rejections worth it! Loving the work though! We are the ground troopers in our area and we're so blessed to be here in Kearns. It's gonna be a great six weeks ahead of us!

Elder Bowie
Kearns & Kearns East Stake
Salt Lake City West Mission

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Mission Vid | She Didn’t Feel Like It

Monday, August 15, 2016

Kearns Week 6: Transfer Week

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How is everyone doing? It's been a great week over here in Utah! One of my Zone Leaders, Elder Whitehead, was called to be AP, Assistant to the President, and we was taken up to the Mission Home in West Valley to get his training and what not. So Elder Leavitt our other Zone Leader got in with us for the week so he wouldn’t be alone. So we have been working in both of our areas this week. Elder Leavitt covers the YSA in West Jordan, and he has a car so that was nice. We did a ton of stuff this week and it was fun to see how the Zone Leader does things like deliver supplies and what not. It was a great and productive week.

We've been sleeping over at Elder Leavitt's place. He is with members and they are a sweet family named the Algers. It's been fun to get to know them. We taught the Abrams again and they are doing really well. Right now we've been talking about commandments and it's been really awesome. The two kids are great and give awesome answers. One tells these funny jokes every time we visit  and it cracks me up. The other one is doing good as well and really wants to get closer to Jesus. It's been awesome to help them get there. They came to church for the first time this Sunday. Also Etti passed the sacrament this Sunday! He was the first baptism that we had and it's been awesome to see him get the Holy Ghost and the priesthood. His family is really good and he loves the gospel. He's from our Samoan Ward and I love the Samoans a ton! Their great and humble people. How they talk cracks me up. We taught them about the commandments last Sunday and it went great! Their really solid kids and I love teaching them! Jared and Etti are great converts!

Also we are still meeting with Barbara and she's been doing. pretty good. She wants to be baptized and loves the church and everything we have taught her. Recently we have been teaching about the Atonement and how to forgive. Since her divorce with her ex husband she is having a hard time forgiving and moving on in life. We spent an hour talking with her  about Christ’s Atonement and how  to move on in life. She began to cry and it was a emotional and powerful spiritual experience.  She's progressing a lot and we're proud of her for her commitment to keep on learning and growing. The Tialevea family is also doing really well! Josiah the boy that I was able to baptize is doing really good and is growing a lot!

We have been working with a lot of Elder Leavitt's people this week and that has been a fun experience as well. Elder Leavitt has been out for a while so he's been a great teacher to me and I've loved his company this past week. He'll still be in my district next transfer so that'll be awesome! Also, speaking of transfers, as I'm sure you're all wondering about it, we got our transfer calls last Saturday! I'm gonna be staying here in the Kearns East Stake with Dunham but we will be picking up a new stake, The Kearns Stake. So, now we have two stakes to cover. Basically the mission put all the Hispanics Elders in Spanish wards and we got the rest of the stake. We're still on bikes! We're one of the few English missionaries that are still on bikes so that's awesome! I love biking over here in Utah. It's a ton of fun. This is Elders Dunham's last transfer so I'll be killing him. I'm gonna miss him, because he has been a great trainer. Our Zone, the Kearns Zone, is now  a district and is part of the West Jordan Zone. Most of our zone was Hispanic so now their part of the new  Spanish Zones. Elder Kozacavitch is still with us so that's great! He's with Elder Walker now and is still is speaking in Portuguese. Our ZL Elder Leavitt is also in our district. So it is just the three companionships in our district, so it's really small which will be cool. Elder Leavitt's new companion is Elder Hernandez. Both of our new Zone Leaders are from South Africa and they’ve got this wicked accent, so it's gonna be a great next six weeks!

Also, for my friends who don't know what a transfer or zone is I'll tell you. A transfer is how my time in the mission is divided. It's every six weeks. After that you could either stay where you’re at or move to a new area with a new companion. It's to help you move around more. And a district is a group of missionaries in an close area. The Kearns district for example is all the missionaries in the town of Kearns. And a zone is two to four districts near each other. So there's a district leader who makes sure everyone is alright and what not. He goes to the Zone Leader for any big issues or for supplies for the district, like pamphlets and books. So that's how the mission is organized. Hope that makes sense. Ask me if you have any other questions.

So that about it for the week! I love you guys so much! I miss you guys and your letters and emails keep me going! It's been a great two months! I'm excited for the next 6 weeks! It goes by fast! I hope y'all do good in college, band, life, or anything else your working on! Keep moving forward! See y'all in 22 months.

Elder Bowie
Kearns Central & East Stake
Salt Lake City West Mission

Monday, August 8, 2016

Kearns Week 5

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Good morning everyone!

I hope y'all’s week was as good as mine was! This has been a great week! On Tuesday we walked down to the Stake Center to wait for the trio (Elders Kozakavitch, Soares, & Hurtado) to pick up Elder Dunham's bike because it had a flat, and we needed a ride to pick it up from the mission home. We met two guys along the way, Scott and Kevin. Scott needed help moving and Kevin just wanted to hang out later to talk with us. It was cool because after we got Dunham's bike we went over with the trio to Scott’s home and helped him out with some service. He told us that he was asked to leave his home and they gave him a very short time deadline to move out. So it was good for us to help him out by cleaning out this giant room of trash, and I found a trombone in the back and he let me take it. It's super old and not very good but ya I got a T-Bone now. It's not very good though. lol It's very hard to play on.

We also got to teach Paula last Wednesday as well. So ya, it was nice and we were able to teach Paula abut the spirit and it went really  well even though we were short on time. We challenged  her to read more and to pray to see if the Book of Mormon is true and I know  she'll get an answer! She's nice and I hope she gets baptized next transfer! She's pretty solid just needs a witness of what we have
taught her. We had Zone training Friday and it was a ballin experience . I learned a lot and I loved it! We talked a lot about the Temple and the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It was a good experience and I loved it.

Saturday was the one of the best days of my life. I was able to baptize Josiah T.! It was the coolest experience and an amazing time doing it. Seeing their family come so far from missing so many simple things like having a supportive father, and for me seeing how  they came from that abusive relationships just like a month or two ago and just seeing how far they have come from it and to see how the Gospel has changed their lives in so many ways. We helped them come back to church and now they can have peace. It is a wonderful feeling. I am so happy and proud for them. The mom gave her testimony after the baptism and she started crying as she told her past experiences over the past 2 months and how the Kearns 4th Ward has helped her so much and to have a family again. She started to cry and I was just overcome by the Spirit. It was amazing. I love their family and the spirit was so strong and the kids were awesome! I gave Josiah a big bear hug and it was awesome! It was the coolest experience ever and I felt like I actually worked with this family. It was just awesome! It was so epic!

Yesterday at church was awesome! I got to bear my testimony in the 16th Ward and heard many great testimonies from members. One of them just recently had a daughter go to Vietnam and how this sister from our Ward went there with the first missionaries to open the mission there and in a few short weeks they have baptized many souls. Now the gospel is spreading like wildfire in Vietnam. Also, Sister T. gave her testimony and it really touched my heart. It was amazing to see her come so far in a short amount of time. I'm really happy for their family and I can't wait to see them be eventually sealed in the Temple. So ya, I love you guys and all the letters and emails you send! I love hearing from y'all! I hope your week was great as well! Transfers will be next week. So next Saturday I'll know if I'm staying or leaving Kearns. I kinda hope I stay but will see. I love you guys! .

Elder Bowie
Kearns East Stake
Salt Lake City West Mission

Monday, August 1, 2016

Kearns Week 4

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Good morning everyone!

Can't believe that it's already August!! It's been a month and a half since I've left home in June! This last week went by really fast! I know I said at last week but this week didn't even feel like a week. The saying weeks feel like days is so true! So I’ll tell you what I did this week.

So, Tuesday we had a training meeting for all the new missionaries. I got to see Elder Quinnelly and Maltos again which was awesome. We got to hug and to be able to talk about how the mission was going so far. It was a cool experience. President Palmer, our mission president, is a cool dude and he gave us some great training and how to be successful missionaries. I was so pumped afterwards.

On Wednesday we went on exchanges this time I was running the area, with Elder Sandoval, who is from Texas. :3 We mainly just contacted all day long and biked at least ten miles. It was good though. We got a few return appointments so it was really successful and we got a lot of work done.

My testimony was so strengthen and it's getting easier and more enjoyable every day. It goes by fast, it hard to believe how fast it goes. I miss band and my friends, of course, but I wouldn't trade this for the world. Seeing families trust in the Lord who can't even put food on the table is the greatest feeling ever. Our investigator Barbara, recently got kicked out of her home and is trying to find a home right now for her and her three kids. They have been like this for over a week. Yet, she still wants to draw closer to God and to be baptized, and I am so grateful to Heavenly Father for allowing and entrusting me to help her draw closer to Jesus Christ.

Throughout the rest of the week we met with more people. We have a new investigator named Noah who is nine years old. His mom is a less active but wants to come back to church and to get her son baptized. The first lesson went well and we had Brother Seipert come with us and he was great help. She said she left Church because she felt judged, so I hope we can get around that barrier she put up. We also met with Richard. He's the air borne veteran of many wars through out the 50s and was born 1934 right before WW2. He hasn't been coming to church so we been trying to get him out of his house. His house is really well decorated as well because he's a craftsmen and has like a couple dozen projects all at once. Yesterday he painted a new bench he made, who knows what he's doing today. :D

Me and Elder Kozacavitch went on exchanges in Saturday and it was a blast. We're both greenies and we taught three lessons that went well! He is from Brazil and knows Portuguese. His great great great grandparents are from Ukraine so that's why his name sounds Russian even though he's from Brazil. :P He never rode a bike before so I had to teach him how to ride a bike. He only crashed maybe 5 times. Nothing bad happen. I only lost him once. He could barely bike up hill so I accidentally left him behind so I had to go back to find him. It was all good though. We found a potential investigator that we will go back later this week. We also ate Samoan Pancakes from the Samoan family. It is the best thing ever here is the recipe:

2 cups of flour
1 cup of sugar
2 teaspoons of baking soda
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

So you mix it all up and make a good size ball, a little smaller then a baseball, and then you deep fry them. At first they should sink then float. Cook til they’re nice and brown and crispy. We have a dozen back a the house and they're so good!

We also have been talking a lot recently about depression and how to get out of that cycle of asking, "Why Lord, or Why is is happening to me" Elder Hurtado talked to this one guy in his Ward about it. He said this life is like a game. It's a virtual reality. We have been alive for eons and we're just playing a quick game here on earth. When you die it's when you take the goggles off. It was just a game but at the same time it isn't. You have to stop asking why, instead ask, "What am I learning from this". This life is short termed. We are going to go through trials and pains and bad things will happen. But if we have this eternal perspective then when you go through trials and ask what instead of why then you will truly beat the game. Because when you take the goggles off and you lived this life as a different or fake person then when you wake u and realize what you were. It will be instant hell for you because you can no longer live up to it. But if you humble yourself and have that eternal mindset then when trials come you simply won't care because you'll trust in God and ask what will I learn.

Sunday was great as well and we got to do the baptismal interview from Josiah and Josh from the Samoan Family that we have been teaching. They will be baptized next Saturday! I am so excited! They want me to baptize them and I'm super nervous and excited to do it! It's amazing to live with peace in this messed up world! To bring people to Christ and to focus on the good and be the good in the world but not of the world! I love y'all! I miss y'all! I can't wait to see y'all in two! Just keep the letters coming! Just kidding! I love y'all!

Elder Bowie
Kearns East Stake
Salt Lake City West Mission

Monday, July 25, 2016

Kearns Week 3

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(first bike wreck…ouch!)

Good morning everyone!

This past week went by super fast! It's been awesome out here in Kearns, UT and today is Pioneer Day out here in Utah. So, everybody is shooting fireworks and their will be a big parade in SLC, but we won't be able to go. Our Mission President, President Palmer, said that we couldn't go due to the recent shootings and such. So instead we're going be hiking at Doughnut Falls today til around 1pm. Since it's a holiday we get an all day P-day so I can email a little bit more today instead of stopping at 6. It's been great though and I my third week here went really well! I went on exchanges for the first time with the trio, Elder Hurtado, Soares, and Kozacavitch, on Tuesday and me and Elder Soares switch places for he day. They are Portuguese speaking so I was nervous at first but most of our appointments that day spoke English as well so it wasn't too bad.  We have two blessings Wednesday which was cool! One to a guy named Danny and one to a sister. It was super spiritual and it was something that I needed, I was so blessed by it! Loved it! We met up with Mark, a less active, and then read Alma chapter seven with him and his brothers and he promised to finally read the Book of Mormon, he's been really bad at keeping commitments, so I hope he's for real! On Saturday, we did a lot of knocking on doors at LARC (less actives, recent converts) with some success. It was good though. Elder Leavitt broke my bike, so we took the mission truck to go and get it fixed up. We then ate lunch with this one Samoan couple at Five guys, and it was alright . An hour after lunch the bike was fixed so the ZL's took us in the truck to go and get it. We got it and went to the Stake Center and got Elder Dunham's bike. The work went much faster with the bikes. We didn't have dinner so we took an hour long nap which was awesome! I wrote out a few emails for P-day and then we went out again till bed time. We met this girl named Jen who needed some help so we'll see her tomorrow. Also Elder Dunham showed me how to find true joy:

J: Jesus first
O: Others second
Y: Yourself last

So ya, awesome right? Put Jesus, then others first before yourself and then you can find true joy. Also, we may or may not be baptizing the Samoan family this week. Their father (not the abusive stepfather but the real dad) just back from jail (idk why he was in jail) and is at their home now. We're just making sure he's on board with the baptisms. I could be an issue because he does have he power to stop it since he has legal rights over the kids and such.  There is a lot of info that we don't have so we're just trying to figure it all out. Hopefully it goes smoothly. But ya, that's my week in a pinch, and I hope you guys had a great week as well! And Happy Pioneer Day!

Elder Bowie
Kearns East Stake
Salt Lake City West Mission

Monday, July 18, 2016

Kearns Week 2

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Hard to believe it's been over a month now! It's been great so far in Kearns, Utah and I've met some really cool and...interesting people. But ya, it's been awesome out here and I can't believe it's P Day again! Can't wait to read all of y'all’s emails! My Companion, Elder Dunham, is also just simply an awesome dude! Or elder... Last Tuesday he felt promoted in our planning to go by the park and when we went the following evening and we met so many great people. This guy Cameron who we just meet planned to met with us the following day at 6:30 at the park. He doesn't have a solid understanding of what God is or his role in his life so it was great to talk to him. Also everyone is playing Pokemon Go around here. It's really weird. Like their will be just random people at the church because it's a gym in their game.  It's cool though and we already got a few people talking to us because of it. Who knew that video game could help preach the gospel. Because now they come to us. ha ha!

Also, we had Zone Conference last Thursday! Our STL, Sister training leaders, Sister Wendt and Heywood talked to us about the Atonement and it was awesome. Elder Dunham was asked to do the push up atonement thing. Where you did five push-ups per person so that they could have some candy. It's was really a humbling experience and it really put the sacrifice that Christ made more personal to me. Unless your applying the Atonement daily when challenges come you will be stuck there till you develop that virtue and faith. We are fishers of men and are to gather his sheep and draw nearer to Him. The atonement is how we draw back to Him! So ya, it was amazing to see him do what ended up being over 300 push-ups.

On Friday we taught Barbara, a African American from Western Sahara.  She has three kids with the oldest being four. She was prepared by the Lord for sure! She came to church last week and said she felt uplifted and free! She has felt God hands in her life so much, and used to be in a homeless shelter and He gave her a job and a family. She is so grateful for her children and her family. She never felt the Spirit at her old church and wanted to feel that Love that God has for us. Not saying that they don't but without that Spirit they can't have a fullness of joy and love. She felt that here at the church and said that she felt it now even while we were teaching her! She was an angel. I recited JSH 1:15-17 without ANY problems and it reads, "I saw a pillar of light exactly over my head, above the brightness of the sun, which descended gradually until it fell upon me. When the light rested upon me I saw two Personages, whose brightness and glory defy all description, standing above me in the air. One of them spake unto me, calling me by name and said, pointing to the other--This is My Beloved Son. Hear Him!" I have been working on that the past two weeks and it was the first time I was gonna use it in a lesson. The Lord helped me so much. I've been having so much trouble trying to memorize that. And I was able to with out a second thought. We both also felt like we should invite her to be baptized. I invited her to do so on August 13th and she said YES! I was so happy for her and my eyes were so watery. I didn't cry though, just inside... But it was awesome! I am so thankful and grateful for the Lord to provide her a way to come closer to Him, and I can't wait to see how she goes. I love this gospel and the church is true. I know that Joseph Smith did see God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ. You can find out through reading and praying about the Book of Mormon and finding out for yourself if it true.

Also besides meeting with Barbara we had a baptism! Jared and Etti our two brothers from the Samoan Ward were baptized at 3pm on Saturday! It was so awesome. I got to say the closing prayer which was cool. He whole service was in Samoan and it was a ton of fun to be at. The spirit was so strong there as I saw these two awesome children of God be baptized! Our Mission President, President and Sister Palmer, were there as well as the Zone Leaders, Elder Whitehead and Leavitt, and they were a huge support! They're awesome, and on the program they misspelled my name so it said Boonie not Bowie, because the Samoans are too good at English. lol It was so funny and the ZL were cracking up about it so now it's my new nickname, and I'll accept my fate for now. I'm just really so proud of Jared and Etti and they came to Church yesterday!! The Gospel is so true!

The rest of our week went well and we went to the family we had been teaching and taught the commandments on Sunday. It went well and the kids took it well even though we weren't very focus. But it was pretty good over all. Rob, a local member, was there and it was great to have him in the lessons. We also taught got to teach Barbara again and taught her the Plan of Salvation. We had the 16th WML, Ward Mission Leader, to come and help teach and he was awesome! It was great to have him bear testimony of the things we were teaching to her. She is still going strong and it's awesome to see her come out to church and to want to be baptized! It's only been two weeks but it is just simply awesome out here! I hope all is well back home! I love you guys! ♥️♥️♥️

Love,

Elder Bowie
Kearns East Stake
Salt Lake City West Mission