Tuesday, April 21, 2015

April 20, 2015

Dear one and all
We thought spring had come to Indiana but that just means rain, rain and more rain.  We were helping a couple move two weeks ago.  They moved about 35 miles away so we made a number of trips there as it was just a matter of loading their truck and taking a load.  One load we were about half way there in a town called Rockport when sirens were going off for a tornado warning.  The elders got a call from Elder Moulton from the office saying there were tornado warning’s in Tell City so to get somewhere safe and to let us know.  Because we were together we heard it all.  The rain started to just pelt down and the wind was really bad.  I though Laura would pull under the station awning and try and keep her furniture dry but she just headed out for Hatfield.  The wind and rain were really bad for about 10 minutes and then cleared off.   When we got back to Tell City we learned that a tornado had struck about 15 miles up the road in a different direction from where we were taking out a number of trees  and picking up a shed and moving it without damaging the car or truck that were sitting inside of it.  I must admit that I would like to see a small tornado just for the experience if it didn’t do any damage but just went through.  Of course because we are in Indiana where the forests are so dense it would be hard for a tornado to set down without taking out a lot of trees.  We helped that family move two different days then drove them home on Sunday because their truck broke down after church and then made two more trips on Monday to help them out.  We were both pretty tired after that week and are finding that some days we just really need to have some time to rest.
Last week we again spend part of two days helping another couple move.  Luckily they only moved about 6 blocks and they had already moved a lot of stuff so we just helped with some of the furniture.  They took us to lunch both days so that was a nice way of them saying thanks. 
With transfer meeting last week we at it made for another long trip and very early morning.  We left at about 5 a.m. to be in Evansville by 6.  We went there because Elder Riphenburg was transferred to Henderson and where it was an in zone transfer we just took him over there and met his new companion Elder Staley.  We then took Elder Weyland and Elder Stewart to Louisville for transfer meeting which was 100 miles in the opposite direction.  It poured rain the whole time they were switching out luggage and then all the way to Louisville.  We got there by 9:30 Kentucky time so they had some time to visit with their friends.  Our new Elder is Elder Gould.  He has only been a member for 2 years and has been on his mission for 6 months.  He is the only member of his family other than his step-mom and he has a step brother who actually served in this mission.  We really like him already.
We had FHE at our house again tonight because the family who were supposed to hold it this time is once again behind water covered roads.  We had a really good turnout to FHE because Alex Gerard who served here when we first got here and his family were in town and everyone wanted to see him.  I spent a good part of the day fixing food for a large crowd and it was all appreciated.  I was glad it was still cool so that I could make soups which are easy for a large group.  We had such a good time talking and laughing. 
When we went to the temple on Saturday I had Family Ordinance Requests for seven different people to get temple cards printed.  Some of them aren’t even active but are interested in getting work done for their family members.  It has been such a good experience to help people do their work.  I just begin to feel that I understand all of Family Search and then they make some changes and I have to learn some new things.  I have called the Family Search missionaries several times but now know how to do things and can teach the sisters when we have our next class.  They all got excited about 5 years ago when a senior couple was helping them but didn’t learn the program well enough to continue on their own so I really want them all to feel comfortable using Family Search before we come home so they will continue after we are gone.
We love you all and promise you that as you help the missionary work in your area you will be blessed.  Every Senior Couple we have talked to (and we feel the same way) say they are going to be better member missionaries when they get home now that they see how important members are to the missionary work.  The full time missionaries can’t do it all alone nor should they have to.  We each need to do our part.  Hastening the work takes all of us. 
Elder and Sister Fullmer

Monday, April 6, 2015

April 6, 2015

This email goes specifically to Levi, Erika, Brett, Derek, Justin, Nathan, Hyrum, Maya, Emma, Joseph, Jesse, Becky, Aaron, Samantha, Amberlee, Matt, Max, Zane, Nephi, George, Sarah, Hannah, Brendan, Jeremy, Andie, Hailey, Madelyn, Landon, Andrew, Brayden, Kylee, Korben, Logan and Brooklyn
We have learned through the grapevine that our emails aren’t very interesting to some of you so I thought I would try and make this one especially for you.
We live in Indiana now.  Some days like last Friday night the rain comes down so hard you can hardly see across the street and the lightening is so loud it wakes you up from a deep sleep.  We have sirens go off to warn us of flash flood.  We live right on the Ohio River which has so much water in it that especially this year has been flooding a lot.  The water was so high for a while that some of the roads were closed.  We have now had so much rain that the river is rising again and the parks down by the river are under water again.  We have very large bridges around us crossing the Ohio River going from Indiana to Kentucky.  The Ohio River is the border between Indiana and Kentucky.
There are fun places here like the town called Santa Claus where every store has a Santa in front of it and the amusement park with all the rides is decorated in red and green.  They have an awesome Santa’s Candy Castle and the Santa riding stables and a lake with Santa cottages around it.  The Santa Store has every kind of ornament, nativity, nut cracker and music box you can imagine.  It is like having Christmas all year round.  The town was named in 1856 and has the only post office in the world that has the name.  If you mail a letter there at Christmas time you will receive a reply from Santa Claus Indiana.
Indiana has the Abraham Lincoln childhood home where you can learn all about Abraham Lincoln.  There are lots of trails to hike, camping and fishing.
There is the baseball museum we want to go to one day when we have the time.  We can get small bats made there.  There are many deep underground caves to go through and see the stalactites and stalagmites.  Kentucky and Indiana are really beautiful.
Grandpa and Grandma spend their days trying to encourage people who have lost the desire to come to church to find their way back.  So many people have had their feelings hurt in some way that they think they don’t want to be a part of the church.  It is sad to see that they have lost their way and have let something keep them from feeling the joy of the gospel.  We also do lots of service.  We have helped several people move, some more than once.  Grandma makes lots of bread and goodies to take to people.  No one shuts the door in your face when you are carrying goodies.  People always love treats but they especially love the feeling that someone cares about them.
You can stop reading to the younger ones here.  The rest is for those grandchildren who are ages 18 down to 12. 
A mission is hard.  Sometimes you are tired, sometimes you don’t want to work and sometimes you get discouraged trying to find people.  Sometimes you just want to yell at people and say “Don’t you get it?  The truth will make you so happy.”  Sometimes you don’t want to study your scriptures but just watch tv or go to a movie.  Sometimes you are homesick and miss your family and friends(especially your grandkids).  Things just seemed easier at home.
BUT.  A mission is also the most, best wonderful thing you can do.  When you see someone really change who they were and become someone who loves the Lord and will give up whatever they have to so they can be baptized, all the hard, boring, giving up of things is worth it. To see someone who didn’t even believe in a Heavenly Father or a Savior become someone who understands the love that They both have for them and want to please them is the best feeling in the world.  Better than being with family and friends, better than any tv show or movie, better than having all the time to do just what you want, better than anything else in the world.  We have learned so much about just loving people as we have been here.  We can all be missionaries by the example we set and how we treat other people but there is nothing quite like actually sitting down with someone and helping them understand about the gospel and how it can change their lives.
We especially want to encourage Levi, Derek, Nephi, Justin, Maya, Emma, Joseph, Jesse, Brendan, Jeremy, Samantha and Amberlee to set a goal to serve a mission.  As each of you draws closer to the age to serve a mission, think of all that you have been blessed with because of what the Lord has given you and know that you can make a difference in the lives of others.  We believe that we each promised someone before this life that we would find them and help them find the blessings of the gospel no matter how stubborn they were.  There are people out there who will be touched by you that no one else can reach.  Don’t think that you are giving up two years of your life to serve a mission but instead are trying to repay a tiny part of what the Lord has blessed you with.  The growth you see in yourself will bless your life for the rest of your life.  We have seen the growth in the missionaries we have served with.  Some of them came out because their parents wanted them to but have learned how great it is to serve as they have seen people change.  Some have come out being the only member of their family or from homes where the rest of the family is less active but they have felt the spirit and want to share it with everyone and they make super missionaries.
We know that you will never regret serving a mission but you will regret not serving at some point in your life.  Simply because of how a mission strengthens your testimony and your knowledge of the scriptures and of the love your Heavenly Father has for you it will bless the rest of your life.

For all those friends and family who also received this email, the information is for all of you as well.  We should ALL consider a mission to be one of life’s top priorities.   NO REGRETS
Love to all
Grandpa and Grandma

Elder and Sister Fullmer