Monday, October 12, 2009

My Last Letter Before Going Home

12 Oct 2009
Dear Family,

Thank you for your wonderful letters this morning. I really feel appreciative of how you feel about my service. The apostles always are so humble in how they feel about their assignments and how they feel inadequate.

This week wasn't too bad. I still did my best to put forth as much effort as possible even though I will not immediately see the fruits of my work. I got sick this week. For the first time on my mission i spewed after shortly after receiving a blessing from Elder Jenkins. I am feeling much better though right now. I will just need to stay well so i am fine on the flight. I think it may have been some meat i cooked.

Elder Jenkins is doing well as usual. He's a funny character. He's been able to keep me going. President Porter said he's convinced that i can marry anyone and that I'll get along with her. But I will still choose the right one. Man am i going to miss the missionaries in this area and especially President Porter.

General Conference was amazing. I was able to attend all sessions. We had three sessions on Saturday and it was pretty long. The other two were on Sunday in the avo. I can't remember them all, but i enjoyed the ones by President Uchtorf, Elder Bednar, President Eyring, Elder Holland, and Elder Callister( who is the our area prsdncy). I am going to have to reread them all and take better notes. I get an idea and then try and write it down and then forgot how it was worded.

We had some investigators that we've been trying to get to church that were able to make it to the conference. They were able to come to the last session of both days. Patrick is a member and Moka is not a member. We are going to have another lesson with them tonight. They've been taught awhile. We also have another invstgtr, Lez Walden, who wants to get baptized this weekend. He said he was rereading the pamphlets and he said everything is really starting to click together even greater than before. He is just working on keeping some other commitments.

On Wednesday, I will be having my interview with President Porter for the last time on my mission. I want to have my packing done before Wednesday. Most likely i will be finishing the packing on Wednesday. I got an iefaikaga(don't know how to spell it) , but i won't wear it until i get home. I will be getting a couple more things today but i don't want to spend too much.

I love you all.

Elder Cashmore

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Full of Joy & Finishing Strong!

5 October 2009
Dear Family,

Thank you so much for your letters this morning. I am full of joy in reading your letters and desire to finish strong here and continue strong and faithful in the next stage of my life.

If we are planning on getting back from SB @ 8:30, then we might reschedule for the next day. But I would prefer to meet with him that night, if its possible. I guess he doesn't release missionaries every week, so he might be flexible, but i know he is busy. Of course, I'll be flexible. I'll leave it up to you and President Ridgeway.

This week went fairly well. It was a bit hard due to the many indicators that my mission is coming to a close.

The highlights of this week were our baptism on Saturday for the Tusa family. Monica, Maria, Jasmin, and Emmanuel were all baptized and confirmed and they are really solid. The mom bore a powerful testimony of her family coming to church and how happy she is.

The fast and testimony meeting was packed for Balmoral ward. I don't think i have ever seen so many people waiting on the stand to bear their testimonies. I hope the work continues forward in this area and that my last week and a bit I only help the work move forward and do not hinder it.

I also had a very wonderful interview with President Porter. I am going to miss him a lot. I probably got to know him a bit better than President Cook, but i love them both very much. President Porter has helped me overcome some of my challenges. He gave me some very wise counsel that i hope to follow every day. I have been working on trying to follow the Spirit better and understand impressions better.

I am also looking forward to Gen Conf. this Sat and Sun.

To answer Camilles question, i probably won't have much of an accent. The only time it comes out is when i am in lessons, teaching or reading from the scriptures. If you want, i will try to give an impression when i get back of how kiwis speak. I will definitely have some vocabulary that you will catch me saying that I've picked up. You'll enjoy that!

Thank you Blake for writing. We should exercise together in the morning.

The last thing i wanted to do was to write in my testimony. I know that God lives and that he knows me. I know who Jesus Christ is better than before. When i feel the Spirit i begin to think, feel, and act as the Savior would. I know Joseph Smith was and is a prophet and that Thomas S. Monson is our prophet today. I love the Book of Mormon and know that it really is for our day. I am so happy and hope to remain humble and steadfast.

Thank you again. I should be able to receive your emails next week.

Love, Elder Cashmore

Thursday, October 1, 2009

New Zealand Temple Trip, Sept. 2009

This was Elder Cashmore's last time to go to the temple before being released. It was a wonderful day for him. This was one-third of the mission. The other pictures are on the mission blog link in the side bar. Elder Cashmore is on the top row, fourth elder from the left. Click the picture to see an enlargement.