Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Merry Christmas! Week 100

Elder Hagood and me in front, Elder Prestera and Elder Naylor in back

drinking a coconut

Well it was a fantastic Christmas week! 

We had an awesome week this last week. We spent Christmas eve doing some service in the morning which was really good fixing up someones lawn and we spent that night caroling in the neighborhood around the senior couple's house! It was tons of fun! On Christmas day we spent the entire day at sister Persauds house skyping family and eating and helping her out! It was an awesome day and it was so great to get to see everybody! ​

On Saturday it was Boxing day and we were able to go with the branch President of the Siparia branch to one of his close family friends house to have a little lesson with all of them about gratitude. They had this get together because they were thankful for a great year! 

Sunday Elder Naylor and I went back to Siparia and spent the whole day there. We went to church and spent all day visiting members there in Siparia. The branch is really close to shutting down because of how much it has been struggling and so they really want us to focus our efforts on priesthood holders to try and get them back so that the branch can stay open. One family in particular we were able to see just knew everything about the Restoration! Even the kids knew most of the facts, they were 11 and 8 and they remembered everything from when they were taught years ago. It was an awesome day and I'm excited for another one ahead! 

Thanks for everything! Have a great day!

With love,
Elder Dorrance

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

New Missionary and Christmas - Week 99

So this week was pretty hectic for sure! We had a ton going on and had a ton of fun adventures! 

We did a lot of service and I got to skype with Elder Hagood (new missionary) on Tuesday to get to meet him which was super sweet! We also had to drive back down to Point Fortin to pick up the elders because one of them was getting transferred to Guyana which took all night long... haha Brother Ramesar and Elder Hunsaker and I all drove up to Chaguanas to drop off Brother Ramesar because his six weeks were up and headed up to the mission office to drop off Elder Hunsaker and pick up Elder Kong and Elder Hagood and spent the whole day driving around. Apparently Elder Hagood got a phone call because his luggage got lost so we drove like 20 minutes to the airport to find out that the airport didn't actually have his luggage and so we made a few phone calls and found out that the lady who did have it had taken it by mistake and so we drove to Arima to go pick it up at this ladies house which was pretty awkward...

On Friday we had Zone meeting which went pretty well and had interviews all day long with President Egbert which was really great! It was funny that night when we went to check up on a less active member and ended up painting her house in the dark which we hoped looked good...

On Sunday we spent the whole day after church in Siparia and we had a bunch of cool lessons with members down in the little branch. One in particular with a member and his wife who is Catholic. We had a great lesson about the plan of Salvation and she had a ton of questions for us! 

Yesterday we had a big get together in Valsayn with all the missionaries in Trinidad and Tobago. We went caroling at a mall for like an hour and then had Christmas lunch and a devotional and watched "It's a wonderful Life" It was a super sweet day and I'm excited for this Christmas weekend! 

I hope you all remember the reason for the season and Keep the Christ in CHRISTmas!

With love always,

Elder Dorrance

Zone Christmas Party "It's a Wonderful Life"

Our district: Elder Naylor, Elder Prestera, Elder Hagood, me

Caroling at the mall

Screen shot of us trying to recreate a white Christmas with a cup of fake snow and a tiny tree.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Sorry so short. Week 98

Haha so I'm really late because we went from Point Fortin and then to Curepe to get Elder Naylor's package and we got caught in awful traffic. This week was great. I'm training this next transfer for my last 6 weeks and I couldn't be more excited. I'm going to miss brother Ramesar and I sure love Christmas... #randomemail #onelove

Love, Elder Dorrance

Ward Christmas Party:

Elder Prestera

Guess we ate too much at the ward dinner

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

A lot of Driving - Week 97

Merry Christmas!
This week was a lot of the same old same old... We are really trying to get a lot of contacting in but we can't seem to be in the place where people are home or interested... haha so lately it's been a lot of yelling at houses that aren't home or aren't too interested. (Instead of knocking, people in the Caribbean just yell into the house for people to come out)

But on Tuesday we headed down to Point Fortin in the morning for district meeting and then I was able to go on a tradeoff with Elder Hendricks from Point Fortin and it was really good! We were able to visit with an older member who is kind of sick in her legs and so she can't come to church but we had a sweet lesson with her about the restoration and invited her to share it with her friends. She said she would try and talk to her friend who owns a shop down the street! I've really seen that it's the doctrines of this church that change people, it's not the missionaries or the church, but it's what it teaches and what it really stands for that help people to want to change.

On Wednesday we dropped Elder Hendricks back down in Point Fortin. It is like an hour and half drive so that was pretty fun, but a long time in the car for two days. We spent the rest of the day in Princes Town with Brother Williams visiting members there who are all so close to coming back to church.

On Thursday I was able to go and get my stitches out of my toe which was nice. It definitely made the pain chill out a bit but that took a while and so after that we had a coordination meeting and had an awesome lesson with a part member family who the dad is a Presbyterian and who knows everything we teach to be true, but can't bring himself to leave his church which is pretty sad, but he's a great guy and loves his wife! He would be an awesome member of the church! 

On Friday I was able to head up to MLC (Mission Leadership Conference) in Valsayn at the mission home with the other Zone Leaders and Sister Training Leaders to talk about the mission and what President Egbert wants us to do to help it to grow. It was really good. We focused on the Book of Mormon and how it is so powerful in conversion. We had an awesome lesson with a woman that night as well with her 3 children about the Book of Mormon and it went super well with them also!

On Saturday we started our fast and went to pop in on a less active woman and her friend was there! So we taught them both about the book of Mormon as well and had an awesome lesson with them and they both said that they'd come to the Christmas dinner later this month at the ward! Another thing that we talked about in the last Zone Conference was about teaching the members about the doctrines of the lessons and so we were able to go and teach an active family about the gospel that night and it was cool to show them the evidence of what they already knew in the scriptures and helped them to understand it more and more!

On Sunday we had really good church and we actually had a really awesome group meeting in Siparia with a sister who invited a couple of her friends over for a lesson and it went super well. But Siparia is super far away so we visited them as well as another member family there in Siparia and made the long drive home! It was another long day of driving, we had a couple of them this last week! 

Hope you all have a great week! 

With Love, 

Elder Dorrance

Map of all the places we drove this week. Our area is huge!

Friday, December 4, 2015

Sorry...Week 96

Sorry, but this week's email will be pretty short. We had another all Trinidad Sports day today and we are having Thanksgiving dinner at the Mission President's home in about 4 minutes it's supposed to start... so...
This week was really good. We have really been having to build up our area a ton because we have just been having a really hard time getting anyone to stick. But we had some cool lessons with some members and have really been trying to help this area to grow.
 We had thanksgiving this last week it was good! Have a great week!

Elder dorrance

Crazy party for a cute 2 year old: 

Monday, November 23, 2015

Last Zone Conference! Week 95

Waiting to get the toenail cut out.

So this week was pretty hectic... A whole lot went on.

On Monday night we had a cool lesson with a woman named Girly who we found while looking through our area book, she seemed pretty interested, but it will take a bit to help her understand the importance of the Book of Mormon.

On Tuesday we got a phone call to go and give a blessing to a members brother at a medical clinic in San Fernando which was pretty rough. He was pretty physically disabled and looked like he was having a hard time. He had a ton of family all around him so that was really nice. Then we had a nice lesson with a recent convert about faith and exercising our faith because she hasn't been to church in a while. It was a nice lesson and I thought she got the point, except for when she didn't come to church again... haha it's always frustrating when people have their own agency and don't want to do what you feel that the spirit is telling them to do! 

On Wednesday we had our zone conference up at the mission home! It was pretty great! It was all about ward councils and working with our auxiliary leaders and how we help them to know their responsibilities. I was also able to give a departing testimony that all missionaries give at their last zone conference. It was hard, but it was good to be able to testify of the lessons I've learned as I've served the Lord over these last 2 years! But by the time we got home after interviews and what not it was about 8:30 and we had to go give a blessing to a sister missionary who was sick so that was basically the day.

On Thursday we had our weekly planning and had some lunch, then Elder Naylor and I headed over to the medical clinic down here in San Fernando to go and have surgery on my ingrown toenail. Finally I had it removed permanently! It was not the best experience of my life, but I got some pretty strong anesthetics so I didn't feel a thing! (If you want more pictures of my toe you just have to ask) But that put me out the rest of the day in some of the worst pain of my entire life... It was pretty bad... 

Friday I sat on my bum all day babying my toe.

On Saturday, there's the emergency trip to the medical center again because my foot was pretty swollen, but the only doctor there was a gynecologist.. Yeah... So He looked at my toe and told me it wasn't infected and sent me on my merry way to spend the rest of the night on my bum just twiddling my thumbs again...

I did get to go to church on Sunday which was nice but after church I got a call from some sister missionaries informing me that because they couldn't get their car out of their driveway because the power was out and their gate wouldn't open, they decided to climb fence and one of them tried to step on one of the spikes and stabbed through her shoe into her foot. So I got a phone call that they needed some rubbing alcohol to be able to clean this other wound. So yeah, our week was a little bit ridiculous. But I am doing well all bandaged up on my toe and walking around today! 

Hope everyone has an awesome turkey day this upcoming week! I sure know what I'm thankful for and love sharing it with the good people here in Trinidad! 

With love, and blessings

Elder Dorrance  

Trinidad South Zone Conference

Monday, November 16, 2015

Crazy Week 94

Wearing a Hindu Sari

Tore my favorite bag - bummer

This week was pretty crazy for sure! 

a few highlights because I'm out of time...

We contacted a lot this week with not a ton of success but Wednesday night I was ready for bed just laying down and got a call from the sisters in a panic telling us to come over and that it was an emergency. So I freaked out and we all hustled over there just to find their pipe burst open and water spewing everywhere! Haha it was pretty funny because of how worried we all were for what happened to the sisters...

We did two service projects on Friday and I've been sore ever since. We moved a ton of dirt for some members and it was just the two of us. Brother Ramesar shoveling and I pushed the wheel barrow up this little hill, it was rough. 

We also were contacting on Saturday and found a big empty parking lot and it was just a big Remote control Car track with these two grown men talking smack to each other and racing like a couple of kids. They were just living my dreams.

But Sunday was really great. We didn't have any investigators at church again, but we spent most of the evening finding and found a bunch of really sweet people to go back and see this week so we should hopefully have some more solid appointments this upcoming week!

Thanks for all the emails everyone! Love you all! 

Bless up!

Elder Dorrance

Friday, November 13, 2015

Pointe a Pierre Wildfowl Trust - Week 93

Mormons helping hands Trinidad day of service. Pointe a Pierre Wildfowl Trust

This week was pretty exciting!

On Tuesday we had a combined district meeting and lunch as a zone, even though only Elder Parker and Elder Albis were leaving. But we had some decent lessons and had our whole night fall through. We found ourselves walking around at night on all saints day. All saints day is kind of like our memorial day, except it's not just for soldiers, its for everyone. But we found two super sweet families just out on their porch with candles all around in remembrance of their loved ones. So it was just a prime opportunity to share the message of the restoration with people helping them to know how they can be with their families forever.

On Wednesday we had some plans in the morning and had them all fall through and went finding again to get back to the apartment to meet up with Elder Prestera and Brother Ramesar, our new missionaries in San Fernando! Brother Ramesar is my new companion from Chaguanas Trinidad. He's just a temporary missionary for these 6 weeks but he is just a hoot! He's always got a joke to tell and it's really amazing because he's only been a member for a little over a year! We also got 2 more sisters in the ward and they cut our area in half to include them so we had to spend the rest of the day showing them to different members in their area but it's really cool to see the work in Trinidad, especially south, just exploding having 8 missionaries in the ward here in San Fernando!

On Thursday we had weekly planning and we had to drive the other elders to a baptismal interview for one of the sisters investigators(ish). She has been coming to church for like 15 years now since she was like 3 or 4 but never had permission to get baptized. So Thursday was her 18 birthday and she had stuck through it all these years and was interviewed and passed with flying colors! We also had an exceptional lesson with a family we met while contacting on All Saint's Day who were curious about eternal families. It was an awesome lesson about the plan of Salvation with them and it really struck home with them! 

On Friday we went finding in the morning and were fasting for President Egbert because he had to have surgery on his eye while he was in the Dominican Republic. But we had an awesome lesson after a day of finding with a member family about testimonies and bearing their testimonies to those around them and being a light unto others! 

We were able to go to the baptism on Saturday morning and it was even cooler to have her uncle, the stake president, come down South to baptize her. It was an awesome service and because she's been in the church for over ten years everyone knows her and it was a huge turnout to witness this special ordinance. We also got to go spend a day at a non-profit wild fowl trust cleaning and spending a day of service as a ward! It was a ton of fun spending time with the ward and cleaning up the trust! It was a super beautiful place! We also had another sweet lesson with a family we contacted recently about the Restoration and they really understood it and committed to baptism! It was sweet!

On Sunday we had church and a LONG ward council and had the rest of the day completely cancel on us. We spent some time contacting and met a few semi-interested people but that night we tried to check some other investigators and we were able to push this truck up a hill in TORRENTIAL rain. This truck couldn't get up because the road  was too slick so we got to help him up the hill! It was pretty fun! 

This week was rough, but I'm excited to be here with Brother Ramesar and to be staying here in South Zone. I love San Fernando and I love this chance I get to serve the Lord here in Trinidad. I know this church is true and I will tell anyone that wants to hear it! Thanks for all the emails and love! 

Have a great week!
With love and blessings,

Elder Dorrance

Monday, November 2, 2015

"These Meatballs are Super Meat" -Elder Albis Week 92

Aden - The Bishop's rock god of a son  

Well this week was pretty righteous! We spent some time with our members this week really trying to work with them and help them to get excited about missionary work and had some cool success!  But i'll start with a  story...

On Monday we played a little basketball and ended up having Elder Albis roll his ankle pretty badly. He bruised it pretty bad and it was way swollen so on Tuesday he couldn't walk very much and so he toughed it out with me in the car all day and it was sweet! I sure love Elder Albis! He's seriously going to be an apostle, this kid really knows his stuff! He's from the Phillipines and so I get to learn a little bit of Tagalog which is fun! Our biggest success for the day was with a woman that Elder Parker and I contacted, we'll call her K. K is super cool with a Adventist background and has A TON of questions! Elder Albis and I were able to sit down with her intending to teach her about the restoration but Elder Albis felt inspired because of her questions about Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon to read the testimony of the prophet at the front of the Book of Mormon. It was such a powerful lesson! She read the whole thing and each time we had her stop she would sit there quietly for a few moments re-reading it and answering our questions about it! It was so awesome! She agreed to baptism if she finds it to be true! The only problem is that she's a single mother going to school and working, so it will be hard to meet with her. But it was such a powerful experience!

On Wednesday we didn't have anything in the morning so we got to go do some finding and actually just walked right up to a house and started painting the house with this guy which was pretty fun! We did service for them for about two hours and set up another time to sit back down with him and his family which was cool! Then we had a fun day with a member who came teaching with us for a few hours but the best part was that night we had everything fall through and talked to the first person we saw who was a really nice woman who owns a nail salon in town. She used to be taught by missionaries in the past but was willing to have us come back to teach her and her husband and they have two young children! So a sweet young family! 

On Thursday I kept making jokes during weekly planning that Elder Parker would have a great time acheiving the goals we were setting with his next companion just kixing with him, but it was pretty funny, he didn't think it was as funny as I did... But we had a long afternoon of getting just hammered by the rain and that night as we were walking to an appointment we got called out to by a lady to go talk to her who told us that she is a member that lives in that area now! Super cool of her to talk to us, so we got her number and invited her to church, which she didn't come to, but we will visit her this week! 

On Friday we did a service project at a members house in the morning using an auger and drilling holes for a couple of fence posts which was fun! Elder Albis and I were able to work together again and we had a really nice lesson with a member family about prayer that night and talked to them about anyone they knew who would like to have a better relationship with God! It was cool to see one of the daughters commit herself to give us some names of her friends to take us by! It was a huge success! 

On Saturday we had a baptism down in the Point Fortin branch which went really nice and also got our transfer calls. I'm staying here in San Fernando and I was supposed to get a new missionary but because of visa complications the Elder who I was supposed to train can't get into the country. So I'm getting a temporary companion for this transfer from Central Trinidad who is preparing to go on a mission! So that should be pretty fun! Elder Parker is heading back to my first area in Rosignol, Guyana! So that is pretty sweet! I'll be writing some notes for him to send to some members down there! So that was pretty exciting! But the other cool part on Saturday was as ElderAlbis and I were still together walking out of an appointment a gentleman stopped us and introduced himself and told us about how he is a member from Nigeria who got baptized like 5 years ago and hasn't been to church in a long time. He has had some issues in the past with people and so we were able to have a kind of mini lesson with him about forgiveness and invited him to bear his testimony at fast and testimony meeting yesterday and he came! It was awesome! He bore a super powerful testimony!

Sunday was pretty cool!  We were able to meet a ton of really cool families contacting! Here the first and second of November are "all saints days". I think that's what it's called, but everyone is home and around! It was pretty cool to see all these families out and about! But we met a ton of super cool people!

I'm excited for this upcoming transfer, it should be a great one, I know I say that every transfer, but it really should be ;) haha Thanks for all the support! 

Bless up, one love.

Elder Dorrance

Baptism in Point Fortin

Recovering our keys from inside the locked gate of the Senior missionary couple's house

Sister Baker (Senior Missionary) fed us breakfast with REAL MILK (not common in the islands)