On Monday which is our Preparation day we had finished the laundry and were on our way to do some grocery shopping when we got a call from the Relief Society Counselor asking if I could go with her and the Relief Society President to do a food order. They don't have the luxury of a bishops storehouse here so it is a matter of someone paying for the order and then being reimbursed for the amount. Only the IGA store will take a voucher and they are so much more expensive than Walmart that this branch needs to do it this way. We met with one of the ladies Andrea and she had the lists for herself and the other lady Laura who had gone to the hospital. Laura has a lot of health problems so had just given her list to Andrea. Because of room issues and time issues we just took the list and went to Walmart and got what we could without the sisters. What a blessing it is to have a bishop's storehouse and so much easier.
Because we were having FHE at our house and we fix a meal for all those who come I needed to get back home and get things finished for dinner. One of the Sisters who we have become good friends with came over early and helped me get things ready and Evan had chairs all set up. We had 15 to FHE and showed Elder Ballard's talk on missionary work. I think that even more than the lesson's that are given it is the time for some of them to really get together and visit. Because some of them live so far out and don't take the time on Sunday to visit this gives them a chance to just talk to each other. Two other families hold FHE on a rotating basis and they both live quite a ways from Tell City but there are about 9-13 people who make the effort to go each Monday. We carpool which helps with the travel and gives us even more time to visit.
Tuesday we spent the afternoon working with the Elders. They are teaching an older sister so need us to be there with them. Her name is Nancy and she seems to be quite interested even though on our first visit her husband Bud didn't seem to be. Nancy asks a lot of questions and is reading what she can. She is blind in one eye so Evan gave her his large print Book of Mormon so that she can continue to read. I thought it was just one extra thing to bring when he put it into the car but it is serving a great purpose. Nancy's son is living there and he would walk into the kitchen and then stand at the door to listen for a minute and then leave. He finally came in and sat on the floor and listened and asked some questions. He accepted a pamphlet so we will see next time if there is really any interest. After that we went with the Elders to teach Keith. He must have been taught before by someone because he certainly asks insightful questions. We also had a meeting set up with a part member family but by the time we got through with those two it was later and when I called the family they had just gotten home so we set up a meeting for the next day.
Wednesday Evan had to take the car in to find out why our air conditioning is not working. Unfortunately it doesn't look positive and we might have a very hot summer if they can't get it fixed. Pray for miracles. We went and visited with the Skeen family. Eva Mae Skeen is the Relief Society President. She has one daughter who is the Primary President and then a son and another daughter who are less active. She also has a granddaughter Brittany who the last couple spend many hours with but never had luck getting them to come to church. Brittany was there at her grandmothers so we had a chance to get to know her. Brother Skeen had a stroke at age 44 and is paralyzed from the neck down and has been that way for over 30 years. He only talks a little but seems to have a great sense of humor. I can see why Sister Skeen needs some company and we will go back just to visit. After leaving there we went to another family who are endowed, have had their children sealed to them but have become less active. They are raising a bi-racial granddaughter and someone said something that hurt their feelings at church and they haven't been back. The man has had a liver transplant and the ward said there were certainly miracles that happened in his behalf. We certainly want to help them feel the spirit and return to church. This little branch could use people like them.
Thursday we had a downer day when we couldn't seem to find anyone home. We did get to go back to Nancy's with the Elders. They committed her to coming to church and we will pick her up on Sunday. Her husband came in just as we were getting ready to leave and Evan talked to him about the tractor he was fixing up and he opened up well. We probably need to go do some friend-shipping there so Bud can see that we are just normal people with a great message.
Because the Elder that was here on splits found out that I had been making bread for our Elders that are here, he wanted some and because we were having district meeting on Friday, I made a double batch of bread which would give each companionship two small loaves.
Friday we left for district meeting at 10:00. Elder Stohel and Elder Crichton(Zone Leaders) were there so it meant I was short two loaves of bread so told our Elders that they could get some on Monday when they come for breakfast. They still had some from last Monday so were okay with that. I really like how our meetings start out with reciting our purpose from PMG and Doctrine and Covenants 4. It is good to see some of the work that each companionship is doing as they do their accountabilites. Our meeting was all about working with ward and branch correlation meetings and what our role is there. Elders Davis and Gerrard had done up an accountability sheet with star wars names for our new members and a ward list of other characters. It brought some humor into the meeting but also brought some focus as to how we need to fill out our sheets for the council meeting so that it is clear what each new member or investigator needs. One of the Sister companionship's shared the miracle they had happen in their area with their girl that was getting baptized. It is hard to put into words the feeling we had as they told of how the spirit worked to make things happen. Elder Stohel, the zone leader also told of his miracle going to a different area than he was planning and how they found someone ready to listen because they listened. The companionships were all thrilled with the bread. We all went to Wendy's for lunch afterwards and then we got back to Tell City in time to tell our sister Christine who is moving to Missouri goodbye. We certainly pray that her new ward will take care of her and keep her active because she loves the gospel. The Elders wanted us to go to three different lessons with them but one by one they canceled so we ended being able to go to our meeting with the branch mission leader. It works better for him to have the meetings at his house on Friday rather than on Sunday because of his family.
Saturday we went to visit a part member family. Sister Burst is 82 years old and joined the church 16 years ago. Two of her kids are also members but less active. After Sister Burst and I left to look at her quilts her husband opened up to Evan and told him that he almost joined once but was afraid of what his mother would think. His mother was a single parent and raised him and his two siblings and he doesn't want to do anything that would displease her. Evan told him that he needed to pray and find out what his mother would want him to do now that she has been gone for so long. They have lost 5 of their 10 children and Sister Burst is such a strong person with a wonderful testimony of the hereafter. We had such a wonderful visit. It is so inspiring to hear of the conversion stories of the people here.
Because of the health issues Laura has been having and that her and Andrea are such good friends and the fact that the Elders weren't able to give Andrea and her son Matt the final discussions their baptism which was originally supposed to be on Saturday has been pushed back. I believe that it will still happen but just don't know when.
We had an investigator to the women's conference and 4 investigators to church today. Nancy was ready and waiting when we got over to pick her up and she asked several questions and said that it was different than she was used to but she enjoyed it. We will see on our next lesson with her how it goes. The young couple, Jared and Cassie who are investigating are just having their second baby. It would be such a blessing in their lives to find the gospel. The young girl Allison knows a little of the gospel because her grandma is on our less active list. She actually asked one of our members who was substituting in her school class about the gospel. She says her grandma probably hasn't been to church in 20 years. It was Fast and Testimony meeting today and so many of those who born testimony were of members who have been in the church less than 5 years.
We love you all and pray you will each find missionary opportunities and take advantage of them. The world needs to hear this message.
Love Elder and Sister Fullmer