Brennen Week 9 ‘Sick Gnars and Javier!’

Salutations errbody! This is yo home boy elder bdiddy eisenhut! Sounds like u had an awesome time in oc! I’m totes jealous. Make sure to shred some sick gnars for me. And shralp some nectors too if u get a chance. For those of u who are not fluent in surfese, that means ride some large and enjoyable waves that give you a pleasant adrenaline rush and boost the rate at which your blood is pumping through your body.

Well the mish is still going great! We had a really interesting experience the other day. We were at a wad party at the church Saturday night, and the bishop pulled me and elder Anderson aside and introduced us to a man named Javier. He had been looking for a church, and he saw the sign on our church that says ‘The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Visitors Welcome’ and he felt God prompting him to come in, so he did. He’s a pretty hard core guy. He told all about his hard life he’s had in gangs, and most of his friends are in jail now, so he decided it was time to fix his life up. He’s never been to church, but he has really strong faith in God and Jesus Christ.

We talked to him for a while that night and he came to church yesterday. He loved it! He said he felt really happy there and he knows it is the house of the Lord. And he wants to be baptized! So we are going to teach him, and if he makes all the changes in his life that he needs to, he will be able to be baptized! woot woot!

I’m so excited for him. It was such an amazing miracle that God lead him exactly where he needs to be. I know this church is true and that God knows us all individually. I love u all!

Week 8 ‘Elder Baxter and a Baptism!’

Hola Familia! It sounds like the beach has been awesome! Cameron Carpenter told me the waves have been huge lately, like 30 feet at the wedge?! What the heck!! I miss the beach a ton haha. But it’s all good I’m loving it here!

Well this week has been a lot of fun, but also full of disappointment because we lost a good amount of our investigators this week, and we haven’t been able to find anyone lately who is really ready to accept our message. We’ve been teaching a lot of lessons, but most of the people we are teaching right now still have no desire to change. But I know we will find people soon who are ready to join the Lord’s true church!

So we had another interesting experience this week. This week a member of the Quorum of the Seventy came and spoke to us for stake conference. His name is Elder Baxter. He’s from Scotland and his accent his super cool! His talk was really awesome. He talked about how we need to choose to be joyful all the time, no matter what our circumstances are. He said that Satan is trying harder than ever before to make us depressed, and we can’t let him do that to us. We need to be patient with ourselves. We need to look in the mirror and like what we see. He said one way to get out of a depressed state is to make a list of things to be happy about. It helps you realize how many awesome blessings you have in your life. But the best antidote to depression is serving others. When we focus on others, we forget our own problems and are filled with the joy of the Spirit. It was such an awesome talk!

Last night we went to a baptism for a girl named Janette. She is a really nice girl around 20 years old, and she was taught by some sister missionaries in my district. It was so cool to be at her baptism and see how happy she was. She never stopped smiling! It got me really excited to help many more people be baptized so they can experience that same joy. Well I love you guys and I miss you a ton, but I’m loving the work!

Week 7 ‘Attack Dogs and Bullets’

Hola family! It sounds like everything is going pretty well over there, that’s great! I’m glad the second reception went well, and that’s so cool that you guys got to see Elder Roster!! I miss my Foster brother!

Well everything here is going great too. I’m loving it. I like it ten times more than the MTC haha. It’s a ton of work and a ton of fun. My body still hasn’t really gotten used to all this work, so I fall asleep a lot when I’m studying in the morning or sitting in meetings, but I’ve been getting better throughout the week.

My companion, Elder Anderson, is awesome. He served for eight months in the Dominican Republic and he had to go home for a little over a year cuz he got super sick. So then he was called to McAllen to finish the rest of his mission, and he’s been here for about a year. He’s a really awesome missionary and I’m learning a ton from him. And we have a lot of fun together!

I’m really loving missionary work. It’s so cool. I was pretty nervous when I first got here, especially about having to approach people on the streets, but its a ton of fun! The people here are really friendly and a lot of them are willing to listen to what we have to say. The members are really friendly too. I haven’t gotten to know any of them really well yet, but they are always happy to have us over and they always wanna feed us!

So a few funny things happened this week. A dog ran after me and was trying to bite my legs but I kicked him and used my bag to defend myself like an old lady, so he eventually backed off. Yesterday we were teaching a family in their yard, and we heard gun shots pretty close by, and then a bunch of bullets came falling out of the sky all around us! They came straight down like rain, so someone had shot them up into the air and they were landing around us. The gun shots kept going off, so we stopped the lesson and left, so we’ll teach them more this week. It was the randomest thing ever! We were laughing afterwards cuz it was so weird!

Also, yesterday we started talking to a kid who looked around 14 or 15 who was in his front yard, and the only word in his vocabulary was ‘no’. When we asked him things like “have you ever seen missionaries before” and “do you have a few minutes to hear a message about Jesus Christ” or “do you know anyone around here we could teach” that’s all he would say. He wouldn’t even shake our hands! So we were joking around after saying we should have started asking him questions like “do you want 50 dollars” or “will you marry me”. Good times.

Well it’s still hard for me to understand Spanish, but I’m getting better. Elder Anderson is really good at Spanish so he helps me out. But a lot of people speak English here too. When we meet knew people and teach lessons, its probably Spanish like 80% of the time. But a lot of people speak both English and Spanish so that helps a lot.

On Sunday we go to 7 hours of church! We go to the Spanish ward at nine, the young single adults ward at 11, and the English ward at 1. And church gets out at 4, so its a long day, but it surprisingly went by really fast! All the missionaries in Edinburg go to the same wards, so I go to church with like 11 other missionaries!

I’m running low on email time, pero les amo muchisimo!!

Brennen’s Sixth Week

ugust 27, 2014

Hey Mama! I’m allowed to email a little bit today since I’m leaving on Monday. I’m leaving the MTC at 3:30 in the morning on Monday and my flight from here to Dallas is at 7:30. I’ll get there at 10:30 and then I’ll have a few hours until my flight to McAllen. I can’t remember the exact hours right now and I accidentally left the flight plans in my room! But I’ll have lots of other missionaries with me the whole time. There’s a ton a people going to McAllen! And I’ll be with my companion Elder Baum until we get to Dallas, then he’s headed to South Dakota. He’s the only one going to South Dakota!

I’m honestly doing great right now. My teacher Hermano Castellanos has helped me a TON. He helped me realize that a lot of times when I teach I’m more worried about making a good impression on the investigator than just trusting the spirit to guide the lesson. He helped me learn more about charity and humility, so this week I learned a lot about teaching with pure love and a pure desire to help the investigator and letting the spirit teach through me and not worrying about the things I’m gunnu say or what the investigator will think of me if I make a mistake. He also taught me to enjoy the experience through the hard times and easy times, and to be happy with myself even when I know I’m struggling in certain areas- enjoy improving. I still have a lot of improving to do but I’ve made mucho progress!

Food here isn’t the best, we eat a lot of meat but its all pretty low quality, not very fresh tasting haha. But we have Costco pizza once a week! And they have bananas and peanut butter and salad and watermelon and lots of other good fruit so I eat that a lot.

I can’t believe I’ll be in McAllen in two days! I’m kinda nervous but I’m really excited! It’s gunnu be so amazing. I love you and miss you so much Mama!

September 1, 2014

Padre! I’m glad u guys got the dress! That’s crazy! Well I’m here in Texas now. It feels so surreal. It hasn’t quite hit me yet that I’m actually a missionary.

Yesterday the Assistants to the President taught us a lot about the McAllen mission. We all met individually with President Maluenda and he is really cool. He’s gunnu be great for me I can tell. He and his wife are extremely loving. All us newbies ate dinner at their house last night, then I spent the night at some missionaries’ apartment and this morning we had breakfast at their house and then we went to the church building and found out our new areas and trainers.

I’m serving in Edenberg East within the McAllen North Stake. My companion Elder Anderson seems great. I haven’t gotten to know him great yet but he’s really nice and funny. Today we are emailing cuz they didn’t get to email yesterday cuz the library was closed. Then we are gunnu go grocery shopping, and we are gunnu go visit some members and investigators later.

I had a pretty cool experience in the Mexico City airport. Me and another elder went and sat next to a man and started talking to him. He eventually asked us why we had been in Mexico and we explained that we are missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He thought it was great that we were serving missions and he told us that he is baptist and his son has served a few missions for the baptist church. We had a great conversation about the similarities between our beliefs, and I eventually showed him a Book of Mormon and told him a little bit about it. He said he has read it before and he doesn’t really believe that Joseph Smith is a prophet and he doesn’t think there can be just one right religion. We told him about the apostasy and the restoration of Christ’s church and God’s priesthood authority to run the church and perform saving ordinances. We also told him about the Moroni’s promise to us that if we read the book of Mormon, ponder over it, and pray about it, Heavenly Father will tell us that it is His word and Joseph Smith was truly a prophet of God. He still didn’t buy it too much but he still expressed his gratitude to us and wished us all the best on our missions. It was so cool how friendly he was and how much faith he had in Jesus Christ. I felt the spirit so strong as I was talking to him. It felt so easy to follow the spirit to know what to say, and I really felt pure love for him. It was so cool. It got me so excited for missionary work!

Also we met a catholic monk which was really interesting. He was wearing a black robe, and before I met him I thought it was a Snuggie. He was so cool. He was probably in his thirties and he was super friendly and hilarious! I didn’t get to talk to him too much cuz we had to start boarding the plane, but it was cool to meet him briefly!

I’m still feeling a little nervous, but I know I’m gunnu love my mission. I know the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is truly Christ’s restored church on the earth! And I’m so excited to share this with the people here cuz I know they will find true happiness through this message. I love you all so much and I miss you!

Brennen’s Fifth Week

Aug 27, 2014

Hola familia! I can’t believe holly’s married! what the heck!! That’s so crazy. I ‘even believe it! I’m glad everything went well with the wedding, it sounds like everyone had a great time!

I can’t believe this is my last week in the MTC! These past few weeks have gone by crazy fast. I’m so excited for Texas!! It’s so hard to think of stuff to tell u guys cuz every day in the MTC is almost exactly the same! But I’m sure I will have a lot of exciting things to tell you when I get to Texas.

I’m still working really hard and having a lot of fun! I’ve learned a ton in the MTC its crazy! The first lesson I ever taught in Spanish me and Elder Baum just read out of Preach My Gospel cuz we had no idea how to say anything. Now I can teach the gospel pretty comfortably and fluently in Spanish! I still sound like a gringo and it’s way slower than the Latinos, but I’ve improved a ton! It’s still hard to have normal conversations in Spanish cuz we pretty much only study gospel related vocab here, but I know I’ll get a hang of it eventually in McAllen!

I think I might be able to email on Saturday since I’m leaving on Monday, but I’m not 100% sure. So u might get another email from me on Saturday! I love you guys so much and I miss you all a ton! Hasta luego!

Very cute email Brennen sent to his sister Katelyn:

Katieeeeee!!! I miss u so much! Ya I set a record for most hospital trips at the MTC haha. I’m the only one who has ever had to go twice here!

I don’t know any of those teachers but I hope they turn out good. And don’t worry about Spanish- when i get fluent I can help you!

The MTC is pretty good. The food isn’t that great though haha. Most of it tastes like it came from a can… but its ok cuz they have bananas and peanut butter so I eat that a lot haha. We have 50 minutes of gym time every day and they have a weight room so its great! And on Pday we play a lot of sports. My companion is really cool. He’s really funny and outgoing and we have a ton of fun together. We´re always laughing. All the people in my district are really fun. There are 11 people in my district. A district is the people who you do everything with, its like my class.

The best advise I can think of for sophomore year is advice that can make any situation great…have an attitude of gratitude and always focus on others. If u always try to find ways to serve people, you will be happy all the time. Last year every morning I wrote down three ways I would serve people during the day, and it made school a lot more enjoyable. When u focus on others you forget about your own problems. I don’t know if this helped cuz your already really good at serving others, but that’s the best i got right now haha.

I miss you a ton! I love you!