Tuesday, September 29, 2015

From "First 12 Weeks" To "Second 12 Weeks"

Dear Family,

This last week has been crazy. Guess what? We are going to split Scenic Hill, again! I split it last transfer, but it was canceled, but this time it is not! This time we had to scramble to put everything together because they told us we were splitting after we did weekly planning. We had to use our meal times (after we ate) to put together the new Area Book. I am now serving in Scenic Hill A, and Scenic Hill B will be Sister Missionaries. Here is another surprise! I am Training! The purpose of the "First 12 Weeks" training program is to have missionaries be good enough to train right after their own training. Well, I guess it worked. I want to call my new training curriculum the "Second 12 Weeks." Elder Nelson is being transferred to Graham to be a Zone Leader and I am staying here, in a newly split area with a Trainee. Oh, and now Scenic Hill A is a car share area. Yep, so I will be biking half the time! So, I am the only one with experience here. I have just got to say, I am pretty nervous! Transfers are happening in a few hours, so I don't have my new companion, yet. I have found out who my new District Leader will be, though! It will be Elder John, who happens to also be from Kaysville, Utah!! When I say, "I used to work at Bowmans", he actually knows what I am talking about! He used to work in Fresh Market, just across the street from Bowmans. Who would have thought we would serve together in the Washington Federal Way Mission!

Okay, cool experience from this last week. Hmm... Oh, I got it! On Wednesday, Elder Nelson and I had a lesson with Lili Tuiloma! We set it up to be in the Stake Center, but we couldn't find a 3rd male to come with us. Our fellowship for Lili was Sister Weiderholt, whose husband was at work this time. We eventually had to call Brother Jackson. He is retired and can't drive by himself. So, we had to drive to The Village to pick him up, then drive to Sister Weiderholt's apartment, guide Sister Weiderholt to Lili's apartment, then all drive up to the Stake Center. It was pretty crazy. When we got there, we found out that the Zone Leader Trio was there having a lesson in the foyer and some Sister Missionaries were outside having a lesson! It was awesome to see so many lessons at the church at the same time!

The day before that, we got to go on an adventure! We found out on Tuesday that Stella had a flat tire. Elder Nelson put his garage skills to work and replaced that tire in 10 minutes! We had to go to Auburn to get the tire fixed. We were there for 45 minutes. We decided to still proselyte, so we walked around in nearby neighborhoods in Auburn. I found out that the addresses in Auburn are really weird. We heard from the Sister Missionaries that serve there (We happened to run into them) that there were 3 different 16th Streets in Auburn. I am glad that Kent's addresses actually make sense.

Well, I am going to have a very interesting next week. Wish me luck with my trainee! Wish me luck taking over this Area. Wish me luck with biking! I love you all!


Elder Steiner.

P.S. Due to lack of time, I will post Ellineta Smith's Conversion Story Part 3 next week

Q and A:

Will you be able to view conference? How? Will the time of the Conference be different for you?
* Yes, in the Kent Stake Center or in Member's homes.
* The Conference will start at 9:00 in the morning because of the time change. In other words, I will be watching it at the same time you are.

Did the transfers effect you this time? If so, who is your new companion? What is he like? etc.
* Oh, yes. I am effected.
* I don't know who my trainee is, so I will save this question for next week.

We got to see the Supermoon Eclipse! Did you? It was actually really lucky that the sky was clear that night.

Since Elder Nelson is leaving, we got the excuse to take pictures with the Ainuu Family!

We have FHE with a less-active Samoan family, the Ainuu's. They gave us Lava-lava's (They call them Iae's). They kind of match, so we wanted a picture of them.

You may have to turn your head to see this one. Our last picture as a companionship. I am almost going to cry. I will miss Elder Nelson. He gave me this "Posterity Tie," telling me that I must give it to my Trainee. The next morning, I was called to be a trainer. I guess I won't hold on to this "Posterity Tie" for very long.

We tried to make bread because we heard that it only took 49 sense to make it. It did not go very well at all. It didn't expand like it should have, the whole inside wasn't cooked, and there were air bubbles everywhere. We both concluded at the end to save bread baking for after our missions.

Time to split the area again.

My desk at the end of a crazy week. It actually doesn't look too bad compared to Elder Nelson's desk. Oh, by the way, since I will now be the Senior companion, I have inherited the Master Chair and Master Desk. You can kind of see them in the top picture. My trainee will get this desk.

Monday, September 21, 2015

The Miracles of Missionary Work

Dear Family,

I feel that God has been our guide this week. I have seen many miracles. On Tuesday, we felt prompted to contact at the Scenic Hill Neighborhood. We have no investigators there. It has just been a void in our map of people to visit. While we were contacting, we actually ran into a Less-Active member! She was running away from an abusive home, and I assume she was just calling upon God to help her, when we showed up. We were able to give her the Bishop's phone number, so she could find help. We also gave her a Book of Mormon because she had forgotten to pack hers. I pray for her and hope she is alright now.

On Wednesday, we were struggling to find fellowship for our lesson with Lili Tuiloma at the church. The Ward Mission Leader had contacted everyone he knew might be available, but no one could be there. About 15 minutes before the lesson, Elder Nelson felt prompted to call Brother Finch. It turns out that Brother Finch was already at the church doing some work, and had just finished. He was able to stay there and be the fellowship for this lesson! I know that God will help us when we do our best to do His work!

There were more miracles on Friday during exchanges! We finally re-established contact with former investigators and were able to teach some! We also had a lesson with Sister Smith again! We still faced trials, though. We struggled with getting fellowship for Sister Smith's lesson, too. Eventually, the Ward Mission Leader himself came to fellowship. We were all outside the church building ready to go in. When I pulled on the handle of the door to the church, I remembered that it was locked. I have no key. Elder Nelson had taken his key with him on exchanges. I asked Elder Gonzalez, who was with me this exchange, if he had his key. He had left his key in the Spanish Elders' car. Then I asked Brother Woodruff, the Ward Mission Leader. He left his key at home because he rushed to get to the lesson on time. We had no key to the church. So, we taught the lesson while standing outside the church. I am grateful to have taught Sister Smith one more time. She is moving this week to a different stake. I don't know if it is even in our mission. I am grateful to have been a part of the huge change in her life.

I found a scripture that really applies to this week. 2 Nephi 27:23 says, "For behold, I am God; and I am a God of miracles; and I will show unto the world that I am the same yesterday, today, and forever; and I work not among the children of men save it be according to their faith." I know that if I continue striving to show my faith, God will bless me, even with miracles.

I love you all!


Elder Steiner.

PS: Sister Ellineta Smith's Conversion Story, Part 2; As said by Ellineta Smith, written by Elder Steiner, with some details added by Elder Nelson.

One night, Ellineta had another dream. She saw the men in white again. This time one spoke to her, "You should join the Mormons." When she woke up, she told her room-mate, Fatima, that she would join the Mormons.

Later that day, July 24th, a Friday, the missionaries came by again, but this time there was a new missionary. Elder Steiner was Elder Nelson's new companion.

Ellineta welcomed them in and let them share their message. The told her about Jesus Christ and how His Gospel has been restored to the earth! She had this feeling when they were there. She explained it as, "goosebumps." She then told the missionaries how she knew that, "God is good." The missionaries asked her if she would follow Jesus and be baptized. She accepted, but her room-mate was hesitant and didn't want to. Ellineta agreed to set a goal to be baptized on August 29th. The missionaries set up the next appointment and bid her good-bye.

The missionaries gave Ellineta a call on Sunday saying they were going to be late for their lesson, so they set the lesson for 30 minutes later, at 6:30. The missionaries were unable to contact the fellowship to tell her of the new lesson time. Cecile Laude (Pronounced: Loud-ie) showed up at Ellineta's door at6:00 instead of 6:30. Both Ellineta and Cecile were from the Philippines and so became great friends in those 30 minutes.

The missionaries came at 6:30. This time they taught about the Book of Mormon and Sister Laude shared her testimony of it. The Missionaries challenged her to read all of 1 Nephi in 10 days.

The next few lessons Ellineta had with the missionaries were all at either the church building, or at Sister Laude's house. They started calling Ellineta, Sister Smith. She struggled with reading the Book of Mormon daily, but she kept letting the missionaries teach her.

On August 10th, the missionaries taught Sister Smith in what they called, "The Mission Home." She met President Eaton and Sister Eaton. President Eaton entertained her son, Josh, and Sister Eaton helped with the lesson. They taught about repentance that night.

Sister Smith worked very hard to do what the Elders taught her to do. She slowly read more and more of the Book of Mormon. The missionaries invited her to a Mission Devotional on August 16th, but she wasn't able to attend. She had to go to Auburn to get her car fixed and stay at a friends house over night the same night as the Mission Devotional.

To be continued...

This is probably the tallest wall of trees in my area. This is actually where the hill starts, if the road were to continue, it would go up hill, pretty steep.

At this time of day, Elder Nelson always has the sun in his eyes, whether he are driving towards the sun, or away from it.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

A Walk of Faith

Dear Family (That now includes my niece, Melody!),

Welcome to the family, Melody! I am glad that everything turned out okay! I have been praying for you!

This week has been a little on the harder side. Many people dropped us this week and we didn't have any lessons on Thursday, Friday, or Saturday. There were still miracles, though! On Wednesday, our schedule suddenly had a big hole in it because one of our lessons fell through, and the others all called and canceled. Elder Nelson told me that Heavenly Father has something else planned for us. We said a prayer and asked to be guided to those who were prepared. We felt impressed to stay in Meridian Green Apartments and contact there. While we were contacting, I felt impressed to knock on a door. At first I doubted because I thought we weren't allowed to knock on apartment doors. When I told Elder Nelson about it he said, "No, it is not allowed. Which door did you want to knock on?" We ended up knocking on it anyway. The man who opened the door was very open to us and he said we could come back! Elder Nelson explained later saying, "It might not be allowed, but to Heavenly Father, if it means saving one of His children, it is allowed." Over the next hour, we followed the Spirit and found two more people who are willing to take the lessons! I felt the impressions of the Spirit so strong that night. That is one miracle that has happened this week! We like to call it our Faith Walk, or our Walk of Faith.

Elder Steiner.

PS: Sister Ellineta Smith's Conversion Story, Part 1

Ellineta grew up in the Philippines. Her first contact with the church was by the missionaries there. She was very young, but she remembered them because they were the only white people she had ever seen, while growing up. When she got older, she traveled around the world for a few years, but eventually settled in Kent, Washington, USA.

She had a dream one night, where she saw men in white. One of them touched her forehead and she felt like she was paralyzed and couldn't move. From that dream, she wanted to learn more about God.

She looked online to find a Bible. She came across a website called Mormon.org, where they offered a free Bible! She typed in her address and requested the Bible. She expected to receive the Bible in the mail. Instead, a pair of missionaries, Elder Green and Elder Nelson, showed up to give it to her. Since she lived in Village Green Apartments, which are in-door, they had to ring her bell from outside. Ellineta actually worked there, too, as a janitor. She was working next to the front door when she saw them. It was raining outside, where the missionaries had to wait. She opened the door and asked them who they wanted to talk to. They said ,"Ellineta Smith."

Ellineta had heard that Mormons don't believe in Jesus Christ, so after telling them she was Ellineta, she asked them, "Do you believe in Jesus?" The missionaries said, "Yes," and gave her the bible. They also said they wanted to come by and teach her about Christ. She told them she was busy and closed the door.

Several more times, the two missionaries came back. When she actually happened to be home, she would always ask, "Do you believe in Jesus?" The missionaries would always say, "Yes." She didn't ever have time for them to come and teach her. They would give her small assignments like to read their pamphlet or to search on Mormon.org, but she never did them.

One night, Ellineta had another dream. She saw the men in white again. This time one spoke to her, "You should join the Mormons." When she woke up, she told her room-mate, Fatima, that she would join the Mormons.

Later that day, the missionaries came by again, but this time there was a new missionary. Elder Steiner was Elder Nelson's new companion.

To be continued...

​This is my Zone! Elder Nelson and I are on the far left. The short Elder is Elder Gonzalez, and the funny Elder in the middle is one of the Zone Leaders, Elder Andrasko. The other Zone Leader is Elder Mousser, on the far right.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Labor Day Weekend

Dear family,

Honestly, I haven't even considered what to write in this email yet. I am sorry I didn't end up sending a letter home, it turns out I didn't have time to write it.

This week has been pretty good. We got another promising investigator. Her name is Valaauina, but she goes by Ina. She is Samoan and just turned 18 on Sunday. She is currently living at her Aunt's house, who is Less Active. It was a great experience when we contacted her. It was late at night, about 8:45 pm, it was dark and we were looking around our complex before we turned in for the night. Elder Nelson and I were walking. I saw Ina in a dark corner in front of her Aunt's apartment, and Elder Nelson saw the two guys wearing reflective vests walking under a light. As we passed Ina to go to talk to the two guys, all I managed to say was "Hello", and "Have a good night". The two guys weren't interested and after our conversation ended, we continued walking. I felt prompted to go back to Ina, even though I had already said good night. When I told Elder Nelson, he didn't even notice she was there. We went back and talked to her about the Gospel. She was prepared to hear our message. It was then that we found out her name and a little about her. I know that if I didn't follow the prompting from the Spirit, we might have never seen her again. We have since then had 2 lessons and she has committed to be Baptized! Here is a funny thing, during our first lesson with Ina, her aunt came out and said to Ina, "You should be baptized." Her aunt was Less Active. I hope that this baptism will reactivate their family!

Here is a lesson I have learned from that: Talk to everyone. Not just the ones in shiny, reflective vests. Chances are, there are some prepared people who aren't wearing shiny, reflective vests. Everyone is a Child of God and is in need of the Gospel.

I love it here! I know that there are people out here that I can help! I love you all!


Elder Steiner
Q and A:

Did you do anything special today? (Probably meaning Labor Day)
* Nope. I did a lot of Proselyting, though. It was pretty great! Everyone was either out of town or had family visiting! I think mostly everyone had family over. There were also a ton of great smelling barbecues going on!

Do you have a guess for the weight of Brianne's baby?
* Yes. 7 lbs and 12 oz. Is that the right way to guess a baby's weight?

Did you get our package? If so, when did you get it?
* Yes. The Zone Leaders actually went to the Mission Office on Friday (The day it arrived), so I actually got the package on Friday instead of tomorrow (Wednesday). :)
* Thank you for the Cereal. It happens to be pretty expensive out here. I also loved the Milky Ways. They didn't even last one day.

​We found a full rainbow! It was so amazing. Elder Nelson took this picture while I held the umbrellas.
This was taken today, just for you. I am supposed to get my haircut today, too. Wish me luck!
​I feel like we are always stopped at Gowe street... maybe the next street is a little Meeker.
Those clouds look so fluffy! Sometimes I think Washington has the prettiest sky.