I'm so sorry. This is another wimpy letter.
So, last Tuesday, after I wrote you guys, most of our epic day fell through, but not all of it! Some great stuff happened! Wednesday, we thought we were actually going to do some REAL missionary work! We were SOOO excited! Then, the phone call came... We got another sister in the zone! This officially makes us the largest zone in the mission!!! So, we spent the afternoon picking up and dropping off a mattress for Sister Hodgkin (no, I'm not joking) to sleep in. So, she arrived that evening (during which we did get to do work) and we went from there! It's been pretty crazy having her in the zone... On top of the name... She was serving in the temple square mission, so she won't be here long, but she's from Germany, and lived in ROSEVILLE for a few years before her mission! It's kinda awkward. People keep slipping. I've been here for a while, so people are finally figuring out how to pronounce my name... Then she shows up, and well, my name just rolls off the tongue. President even said in a prayer that he was grateful to have Sister Hodgson here with us.... haha
Thursday was that day of wonderfulness we call MLC. It was fantastic! As always. It was Elder Gustafson's first, too, so that was fun.
Friday, was Zone Conference! Whoo!!! We went over a lot of the basics of teaching, which is great. I always love doing that and getting a reminder of the important things. Not to mention how many new missionaries we have! Man, at one point, I dropped my pen on the ground, and President ran over and stomped on it! Just snapped it! Turns out, he meant to kick it, but lost his balance... so I'm a pen short now... :P
Saturday was our big day. We had the WHOLE day to just work! It felt soooo good going out and just teaching and finding! We had 3 people set days for their baptisms that day. It was so exciting to see people feeling the Spirit and recognizing the steps they need to take to come closer to Christ.
So, you're probably wondering, 1) why this is so short. 2) What this title is about. Well, we've been having trouble in the mission with people getting their cars towed. It's costing missionaries a lot of money. Well, recently, we discovered a state ordinance that could potentially save missionaries a bunch of money. President asked us to investigate, so we've been spending some of our internet time looking up Virginia state laws, and emailing lawyers in the ward. If all goes well, we'll be able to save missionaries hundreds of dollars.... Fingers crossed!
Hope things are going well! Love you!
Elder Matthew Hodgson
I ASKED OUR MISSIONARIES HOW TRANSFERS GO IN THEIR MISSION…if you are interested keep reading
So, it all starts as far as we're aware 2 weeks before transfers. Before this time, President and sometimes the Assistants will begin prayer and pondering. Leadership is usually considered as in who should become a new leader, though locations of those leaders are often not considered this early on (so I have been told). New missionaries are also considered, and trainers initially selected. (the trainee situation is adjusted and switched as necessary, sometimes even the night before once President interviews them). Anyways, 2 weeks before is when we get involved. The District Leaders prayerfully consider their district and recommend who stays and who goes. They also recommend potential trainers and district leaders. The Zone Leaders take those outlines, pray over them, make necessary changes, and submit a zone outline to President Riggs and the Assistants. This also includes potential zone leaders in the mix. President and the Assistants take those outlines, and they go to work! Eventually, everything is "finalized." Leadership calls go out Monday evening (New trainers, district leaders and zone leaders). President often does these calls, but has been known to delegate to the assistants (at least in cases of District Leaders and Trainers). Tuesday evening are the "transfer calls." The Assistants call each of the zone leaders and simply say who is staying and who is going. Essentially "pack" or "don't pack." The Zone Leaders call the District Leaders and pass on specifics about their district, and then the District Leaders call each companionship in their district. Thursday, at 8:30, the trainers and the trainees meet at the church. The trainers meet in the relief society room and the trainees in the primary room. They each have a meeting designed to help orient them or prepare them to train. Then, the "sorting hat ceremony" occurs. they all come into one room (the chapel recently, since there's so many new missionaries) and get assigned to their trainers. Finally, at 12:30, the rest of the mission gathers in the chapel sitting and singing hymns until the newest companion ships join us. We all stand when Sister Riggs enters, and by 1:00, the transfer meeting is underway! It typically involves some training from President, Sister Riggs and the assistants. Sister Riggs introduces the new missionaries, and President reads off the transfers! By zone, he reads off who will be with who and where, including necessary addendum such as who will be senior, who will serve as district leader, etc. Then, afterwards, we gather in the parking lot, shift suitcases into new cars, and we scatter! It's pretty awesome!