Tuesday, December 6, 2016

November 2016

Nov. 7, 2016

Aloha, I hope everything is going well. It is pretty great out here on my mission. It seems like it is speeding up and honestly my mission is going by too quickly. We have been really busy this week. We went to the Temple on Wednesday, had interviews with President and Sister Mendenhall on Thursday, had exchanges on Tuesday, had a meeting all day Friday, and Sunday we had a Multi Stake Conference. I also found out some new changes to the mission - we are going to be having interviews and Zone Conferences every Transfer starting next year. They are also going to extend a transfer next year by a week. This will be the second time this will happen, which means I will be out two weeks longer. I'm not sure how that will work for school. A couple missionaries that came out with me are going home a transfer early but I don't really want to.

Monday was Halloween. We were going to have a Halloween themed Zone P-Day but the Church was closed, so we had to cancel it We went to 16th street mall instead and went through some of the shopping centers, which reminds me I think I am going to need some new pants pretty soon.

Tuesday, I went on exchanges with Elder Watkins. He is from Iowa. What is really cool is that right now he covers U-hills and Bible Park, so I got to serve in my 1st area, although it was in a part that I didn't cover. On exchanges, I realized how much I have grown. I feel I am a lot better at sharing the gospel and talking to people. I was glad to be able to use the skills I have acquired to help Elder Watkins in his area. While we were there I had dinner at the Mortensen’s and he is actually President Mortensen's Nephew, so that was pretty cool – Small World. While we were in U-hills we were praying with a surveyor who let us teach her and right after these kids asked us if we could pray for their brother. We started talking to them and I learned that their brother was only a teenager and he was in prison. It was sad to hear but I had hope because I know the Gospel can help their family through a tough time.

Wednesday we woke up for a 6:00 am session at the temple. It is always great to go to the temple and feel the Divine Spirit inside. That night we had a lesson with M. We are currently handing him off to the YSA missionaries and it was a really powerful lesson. We were teaching him and at the end of the lesson we invited him to pray. M is from China and when we first met him he had a small concept of faith. It was amazing to see he has grown in faith enough to pray and it was a very powerful prayer.

Thursday Interviews were great. I am so grateful for President Mendenhall - he is an amazing man. We had a lesson with the Brother D. He has met with missionaries for a while and his wife is a member of the church. We tried to help resolve some of his concerns and help him. I see that he is really close to being baptized.

Friday we had MLC's. it was a great meeting. Training was on the Book of Mormon. It is so important to remember that the Book of Mormon is the way for us to gain a testimony of the Gospel. Also we saw the new Christmas initiative. It is going to be really cool. We also met with B that night - we tried to resolve some of the concerns he has. The lesson went well and I think B is definitely growing as we meet with him.

Saturday we met with a lot of people. One was R.  He is from India and is Hindu. The lesson we taught was focused on prayer it was really spiritual especially as we knelt in prayer with him he told us he could feel the spirit. We also met with T - she seemed really interested and prepared by the Lord to receive our message. We promised she could strengthen her faith in Christ through the Book of Mormon.

Sunday was a Multi Stake Broad Cast and it was all of the Stakes in our Area. They broadcasted it from Salt Lake City and Elder Rasband was there along with Elder Soares. We had some of the F kids and J G at the meeting which was really exciting.  At the end of our night we met someone who was going through a really hard time. She was frustrated at God because she couldn't see how he would let her lose everything she had, but it was still very powerful to see how God placed us on her path to testify of the Atonement to her.

This week is the last week of the transfer which is crazy. Hope yall have a great week!

Nov. 14, 2016

Aloha! It’s crazy that transfers are this Wednesday. It feels like the transfers keep flying by faster and faster. I found out that I will be returning to Aurora to the Sable ward. It is right next to the Peoria Ward that I served in for 4.5 months. I actually have already served in that ward for three days on exchanges. I am pretty sad to be leaving Greenwood Village. We have been having so much success in this ward and there will be some really exciting things happening soon, but I guess I will have to carry the momentum over into the Sable Ward. This week has been amazing and I have learned a lot since I have been here. A couple exciting things that are happening this week - J will be baptized this Saturday. She has really embraced the Gospel and is willing to follow Jesus Christ. Also, S is going to be baptized. He is getting baptized in the Maplewood YSA Ward but he has asked me to baptize him! Some really cool things happened this week.  First B came to church with us. It has taken him a while to come to church but thanks to the fellowship of the ward he felt a lot more comfortable coming to church. He really enjoyed it and he has made a lot of progress. Also, A was at Church as well and so was J. We had Stake Conference this week so it was really special being able to hear the great talks that were given. We had some great lessons this week one was with M. He is from China and he has been recognizing the spirit as we teach him and as he reads from the Book of Mormon. He has been going through a hard time right now but I have seen the Gospel help him through it. Each time we teach him it is very special because we have to teach so simply. We also met with S. He amazes me with how much study he puts into the Book of Mormon and his desire to know if these things are true. S is really excited to prepare for baptism. I have learned the importance of talking to everyone no matter what. We met a man who asked a lot of questions and as I listened to the questions he asked and the things he said, he told us he was struggling. He wanted to better understand his purpose here on earth and we were able to help him. It was a very special moment. I am grateful for this opportunity I have to serve others. Sharing the Gospel brings me so much joy and I have learned to love those around me. I am currently studying about Captain Moroni. I love the Scripture in Alma 48:17 “Yea, verily, verily I say unto you, if all men had been, and were, and ever would be, like unto Moroni, behold, the very powers of hell would have been shaken forever; yea, the devil would never have power over the hearts of the children of men."

Nov. 21, 2016

Hello, This week was really great! I love it back here in Aurora. So many good memories and there are so many great things happening here in the Sable Ward. I swept into Sable with Elder Dale because the missionaries in the area before, Elder Ah Nee and Elder LaRue, finished their missions. We walked into a great ward. They had four baptisms before we came in and there are three people really close to being baptized. The first is the F family. I actually knew Brother F from the Peoria ward. He is from Liberia and was baptized here, but he had to wait for the rest of the family to join him so they could learn about the gospel. Well, since I last saw him, his family moved into the States and his wife and his daughter are preparing for baptism. The other person is E. She has been working with the missionaries for a long time and is ready to be baptized. I actually met her quite a few times at one of our service projects in Greenwood Village. I was able to say good bye to B before I left. He was a little sad because he was having us over for dinner on Friday. Elder Krulish told me it was really good. B actually used to work as a Chef. Wednesday was a little crazy with transfers. We are driving a brand new Chevy Malibu, but it made it hard to move everyone's luggage. We had to throw our stuff in the sister's van and take another set of elder’s luggage, who were also sweeping in. We were planning to get our luggage that night but the Sister’s lost the keys to their car so we didn't end up getting it until the next day. It all worked out. It was a little crazy walking into a sweep because that Friday we had to coordinate a service project for our zone. It was pretty fun. We helped set up for a huge fencing tournament. We have been having a lot of success finding lately, so we can keep the work going in the Sable ward. Sunday was an amazing experience. I had the opportunity to Baptize S R. Elder Bake and I found him in Greenwood Village and after a lot of miracles he was baptized in the Maplewood YSA ward. I am grateful for the opportunity I have to serve as a representative of Jesus Christ - it is an amazing opportunity. My Go To Scripture this week is Helaman 10:4 "Blessed art thou, Nephi, for those things which thou hast done; for I have beheld how thou hast with unwearyingness declared the word, which I have given unto thee, unto this people. And thou hast not feared them, and hast not sought thine own life, but hast sought my will, and to keep my commandments."

Nov. 28, 2016

Howdy y’all! This week has been a great week we have been pretty busy with exchanges and other stuff. Elder Dale and I have been having a blast together here in the Sable Ward it is just crazy how much work there is to do. So pretty cool thing I found out, Elder Bake he is down in Parker and he got a refferal from John Washington to teach his Brother Matt and Elder Bake was able to make that connection which is really cool. So on Tuesday I was on exchanges with Elder Hinckley we stayed in the Sable Ward and had a great day. We met with E. She is getting ready to be baptized pretty soon. We haven't taught her much but she has already been through the lessons twice so we are just making sure she understands everything. We also had a lot of time to find and we were able to teach a lot of new people. We met a lady named H and I don't think I have ever met someone so excited to meet with the missionaries. After I started talking to her she told us she had been waiting for missionaries to knock on her door. She wanted to know what brought us so much joy and we are going to start teaching her. Wednesday I went on Exchanges with one of the Assistants, Elder Olsen - he is from Dallas and is good friends with Sterling Boyd. We were able to teach two Brothers in the Savory Ponds Ward and they accepted an invitation to be baptized. It was really a sweet experience. I learned a lot that day. I realized that I need to focus on the people in front of me and teach more to their needs. On Thanksgiving day we had a meeting for the Zone where we introduced the Light The World Video. We had a little bit of difficulties showing the video but it ended up working great and this new initiative has really helped our finding efforts. We had a great Thanksgiving dinner at the Ploman’s. There was really good food and they cooked a turducken. Most of the day we went out to talk to people walking around we went over to a recent convert’s house for an hour. Friday we got flu shots - the mission had everyone get them at one of the church buildings. Also we contacted a referral at a hotel and the lady at the desk was actually a member of the church. She just hadn't gone to church in a long time and so we invited her to church and she came! Saturday we were able to meet with the F's and we taught them about the commandments. They are excited to be baptized. We are just trying to help them keep their commitments. Also, I was able to attend the Baptism for J. She got baptized by Elder Krulish and I was able to speak at that baptism. It is really cool to see the fruits of my efforts. Sunday E was able to make it to church and a couple other investigators. We were able to find some new people to teach. Well things are going really well and I am excited to keep them going. Hope y’all have a great week.
Love, Elder Blackham

Monday, November 7, 2016

October 2016

Oct. 3, 2016

This week was really great. Elder Bake and I tore it up! First we found out about transfers. Elder Bake is leaving to Parker South and my new companion is Elder Krulish. I am going to miss Elder Bake it was great serving with him. Elder Krulish was in my MTC district and I am really excited to start serving with him. For our P-Day last week we got out of the routine of playing basketball and went to the museum of nature and science - it was a lot of fun. We made plans this week to talk to every person we saw. A couple things that helped were that we kept track of our streak with talking to people and also we asked each other if we fear man. We said “no” to each other so we talked to people. At first, with our streak we got it up to about 20 and then we let someone pass by so it went back to 0. After that the rest of the week we didn't let anyone pass by and if we did we went back and talked to them. Our streak at the end of the week was 88 people. We had a lot of success in our finding efforts and had some cool experiences come from that. We said “hi” to a really friendly lady and she came up to us and introduced herself and we are going to be teaching her. We also taught a family that is Born Again Christian. It was pretty hard teaching them but part of it was that we didn't set the best expectations. We were walking in a park and we saw these guys playing soccer in these tennis courts. We decided to start talking to them through the fence and they were really interested in what we taught. I was really excited for Friday night because we’re going to be teaching the family we found last week and another investigator that had a lot of potential, but both lessons fell through. At about 8:45 that night we were ready to go home and then I looked at Elder Bake and I said "Fourth Floor Last Door." We decided to try a potential family that lived in the same building we were already in and the wife answered the door and we set up a time to teach their family the next day. We taught them and they are really interested in learning the gospel. It really helped me appreciate the importance of enduring to the end. Even though we had appointments fall through this week, I am starting to realize that it happens for a purpose, so we can meet those who the Lord puts on our path at a specific time. My Go To scripture fits well with this experience it is Alma 26:27 “Now when our hearts were depressed, and we were about to turn back, behold, the Lord comforted us, and said: Go amongst thy brethren, the Lamanites, and bear with patience thine afflictions, and I will give unto you success.”


One thing I forgot to mention was how great General Conference was. It was great to hear the Prophet’s voice. As a missionary the exciting thing was that I saw a trend that it was focused on the simple gospel and a lot was what we teach as a missionary. Elder Stevenson talked about how the Book of Mormon is the Key Stone of our religion that is so true and I am grateful for a testimony of the Book of Mormon and would invite you to follow the commitment he left to read from the Book of Mormon

Oct.  11, 2016

This week was really great and some sweet miracles happened this week. Tuesday we had one of the members of the Stake Presidency coming out with us to an appointment. The appointment ended up canceling but as we were heading back we met with a guy named C. He has gone through a lot in his life and was in a rough situation as we talked with him he wanted for us to come by and help him. We also met with B and we brought a really cool member that is a really good fellow shipper for him. He really wants to come closer to Christ. We just have to help him see how he can. Wednesday, Elder Bake left and I met up with Elder Krulish. I am really excited to be companions with him. We taught A about the restoration and the lesson went really well. On Saturday I went on exchanges with Elder Sekona in the Savory Ponds Ward. It was really great. We were able to find a lot of people to teach. One of them got really frustrated but he ended up wanting to come to our church. Also a Lady came up to us and told us her mother was a member that wanted to meet with us. We met with the whole family and they
wanted to start coming back to church and we invited their children to be baptized. Sunday was pretty crazy. G was able to make it to church about 30 minutes into gospel principles class and we had to leave a little bit afterwards because Elder Krulish had to go confer the Aaronic Priesthood to someone he recently baptized. G had a really great time and enjoyed church. Also we met with M right after church. He is from China and doesn't have a faith and so we started from the very basics of who God is and what it means to have faith. We were able to meet with the F Family and it was a really amazing experience. There are five in the family and we met with
four of them they were really receptive and their daughter E was really excited. She read the pamphlet to her siblings and she watched General Conference at her home. They all accepted the invitation to be baptized which is really exciting. I am really excited for this week and for opportunity I have to share the gospel. I am very grateful for the experience I am having as I am able to serve the Lord is a great blessing from God.


Oct. 17, 2016

This week has been a very great week. Elder Krulish and I have really been working hard and it is really paying off. Elder Krulish really likes to work out, so we have been waking up at 5:45 in the morning and going to a park where they have some basic exercise equipment and we have been working out for about an hour or so. I feel like it
actually gives me quite a bit of energy for the rest of the day. A couple big things happened this week as well. First the Fort Collins Temple was dedicated and so they broadcasted it to all of Colorado. That was my first temple dedication and it was really cool. President Uchtdorf was there along with Elder Renlund, Elder Soares, and Bishop
Waddell and a couple other General Authorities. There were some really great talks about the blessings of the Temple. One of the things I learned is that Christ is the Cornerstone and everything points towards him. The other three cornerstones of the Church are the first vision, the Book of Mormon, and the restoration of the priesthood. It
was a very special experience to see the Dedication of the house of the Lord. Also we had Zone Meeting as well and I learned a lot. We had some pretty sweet things happen. First, the F kids that we met with were able to go to the youth activities and really enjoy it. We had some really great lessons this week and we had quite a few members with us, which made a huge difference. We had quite a few lessons where when we had a member the lesson fell through, but we had back up people to drop by and it was amazing to see how the Lord made it possible to still teach someone with the members we were with. One example was when our lesson with a new person we were teaching fell through, so we walked over to another person we are teaching and she was in her car about to drive out when we saw her, but we were able to talk with her in her car and teach her. What is really cool is how members play a huge role in being able to relate to the people we are teaching. We have quite a few people that fit perfectly. We also have kept our finding efforts up and we are continuing to have success in our finding. We have some exciting things lined up for this week so it is going to be great!


Oct. 24, 2016

This has been a crazy week! A lot of good and not so good things have happened. I went on exchanges with Elder Severn this week. It was a really great day we had an appointment in the morning that fell
through and so we went finding and we met four new people we are going to start teaching. That ended up being the story for the whole exchange. We had quite a few lessons fall through but we had a great
time as we were out and about talking to people. Elder Severn is a really great missionary. The sad part is Elder Severn ended up going home this weekend because he has been dealing with stress and anxiety,
I hope he will get better and return soon because the Lord needs a missionary like him. We also took our car to the shop and ended up getting another car - this is the third car I have had in this area. With all the logistics we had to deal with, it was a miracle how many people we taught this week. The work has been on fire here in Green Wood Village. We are continuing to find and teach a lot of people. We received a referral from a former Mission Presidents Wife from the South Mission. When we taught him our lesson went really well. He is a single father and his daughter is 3 years old. His ex-wife is actually a member and one of the reasons he is investigating is so he can be a better father for his daughter. He wants to make changes in his life and right now and is really willing to progress in the gospel. We handed off one of our investigators S to the YSA ward. He is excited to be baptized and for him the gospel is making a lot of sense. We haven't been able to meet with the F Family and we have to start meeting with them more often so they can progress because there is so much potential. I feel I am growing as a missionary. There are a lot of things that I am starting to improve on. One thing that has helped me in my studies is I am asking questions before I study and searching for answers as I study. It definitely helps me keep my studies focused. Also, as we have been teaching I have been praying for my companion as he teaches and it has helped the lessons go well and kept me in tune with the spirit. I am really excited for another great week of serving the Lord.

October 31, 2016
This week has gone by quick and it was a really great week. It was filled with some exciting events and a lot of hard work. That is what I have been realizing this week is the blessings of hard work. The difference with right now and in the past on my mission is that I feel that I am more persistent, especially with people we meet. Even though someone may not seem interested I do my best to not give up on them; especially when it comes to teaching people on the street. I feel that if I don't teach them then or do everything I can to continue to meet with them that I am not giving them the perfect opportunity to accept the gospel. A couple different ways that we teach people no matter what is if someone is not interested, we ask for a referral and then try to teach about how our message could help the referral. If someone is busy we ask to come back another time and then we leave them
with a pamphlet with our info, and while one of us is writing our info we begin to teach. I feel that when I am the happiest on my mission is when I am teaching someone. By the end of this day I am pretty exhausted but it feels good to give everything I have got. We have been bringing a lot of the members with us to lessons as well. As a
missionary there is nothing better than bringing a member because they are able to relate a lot better to those we teach. Sometimes we have lessons that fall through and when that happens we take the member to another person in the area and it is pretty cool how the Lord makes things happen. An example this week was when our lesson with M fell through we decided to go to E and as we knocked on his door no one answered, but right then when we were about to move on E came up the stairs and we were able to teach him. We rescheduled with M and had another member come out with us. We knocked on M’s door and he told us he had to go pick up his wife and would be back in 15 minutes. Instead of just waiting around we went to H's house and his mother answered. We began to teach her and she allowed us to come back. When we came back she accepted the invitation to be baptized and she also went to church with us on Sunday! We met with S this week and he is doing great. He really wants to continue to learn and he is working hard to live the word of wisdom. Also we met with the F family this week and taught the Plan of Salvation. They are really excited as they learn and they committed to be at church this week. Also, S is doing great at the YSA ward and we handed off a couple more investigators to YSA. We had a hand off lesson right after the Maplewood YSA Ward got out. While we were waiting I saw Coulter Brown. It was pretty cool but really weird just because I know him already and I'm not used to that. The work is going really great!
Elder Blackham


Tuesday, October 4, 2016

September 2016

Sept 6, 2016

This week went really well even though not everything went the way we would have liked. I felt like we did our best to accomplish those things. We had a lot of meetings this week which took up quite a bit of time, but we managed to keep things going. We spent quite a bit of time finding this week and towards the end of the week we were able to find some new investigators. It took a lot of work to find them but it was definitely worth it. One funny thing that happened while we were finding in an apartment complex - a man walked out and I tried to talk to him but he wasn't having it and he blew smoke in my face. Even as we walked away he was cussing at us and I kept a smile on my face the whole time. Maybe earlier in my mission I would have let that affect my attitude. This week we were teaching a Catholic lady who was really devoted to her faith. As we began to teach her she brought up a lot of objections at first. I tried to respond to them through the Bible and by teaching her but I realized that the best way to respond to her objections was through the Book of Mormon. She wouldn't read the Book of Mormon which was pretty sad. There was also a baptism in our ward. We didn't get to teach her because she wanted to be taught by sisters, so the sisters in our zone taught her, but hey we are all on the same team. This week we are going to be able to meet with some of our investigators that we haven't met with in a while so I am really looking forward to this week. Also, Elder Bake and I are giving a training on “planning” in Zone Conference this week, which is humbling because I am realizing how much I need to work on planning. My Go To Scripture this week is D&C 112:28 – “But purify your hearts before me; and then go ye into all the world, and preach my gospel unto every creature who has not received it.”


Sept. 12, 2016

This week has been really good. We had Zone Conference this week and the theme was Luke 22:32. I learned a lot on how I can improve as a missionary. Elder Bake and I gave a training on Weekly Planning. I was a little nervous just because it was going to be given to the whole mission. It went well though and if anything we got a lot out of it and realized what we can work on in our planning. Also a lot of missionaries gave their departing testimonies and it is crazy how many are going home in the next couple transfers. We had a really cool experience on Thursday. We had been finding all day and we were pretty diligent at talking to everyone and then at about 8:45 we met a man named E. He was really humble and interested in the message that we shared. The greatest part is that if we hadn't been talking to everyone we saw we probably wouldn't have found him. Those are the days that feel the best when we work all day and the Lord rewards us at the end of it. We had to take in our car on Friday so we have been on bikes lately. We were able to teach B also. We focused on helping him read the Book of Mormon and the lesson went really well. I could see how much the Gospel could bless him in his life. The best part was he committed to the invitations we left him. We are going to start helping at an English Class put on by one of the wards in the mission. It is focused on helping refugees and it should get pretty big because there is a large amount of refugees and a huge need to help them in Denver and Aurora. We met with M and she is showing a real interest in knowing what is right for her and her family. Sunday was great we had a special stake Conference because Bishop Causse from the presiding bishopric spoke to the Stake. What is cool is that he was at the MTC almost a year ago to speak to us there. He spoke about how some people believe that churches or religions are pretty much the same and how that is not the case with our church, especially because of the first vision, the Book of Mormon, and the restoration of Priesthood keys. I am really excited for this week. We are working with some really great people right now and hopefully we can find more! My Go To Scripture this week is Romans 1:16 16 - “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.”


Sept. 19, 2016

This week was a good week. I am realizing that every week in the mission is good. There may be some weeks where things don't go the way I want, or where it feels like I have to work a lot harder to teach people, it is always good. We had a Zone P-Day on Monday. It was a lot of fun and we were able to play whiffle ball. Tuesday we had a Car-Fast where no missionary in the mission drove their car from 10:30 to 5:00 - it was nice to be out. We were down in the south part of our area doing service when my bike got a flat tire which slowed us down a bit. We also did a lot of finding. We were tracting in a nice neighborhood in the middle of the day and there were a lot of people home. It was pretty unusual for a week day. Everyone was really friendly that we met. We were able to find a new investigator this week named F - she is from Sierra Leon. We were only able to teach her but hopefully we can teach the rest of her family. Wednesday we had Zone Meeting and I learned that I can have more positive thoughts and I can cast out doubts that I have. We taught N. We found him working on his car a couple Sunday’s ago and we taught him the restoration. He seems to have a pure interest in learning and seeing if it is true. One way I could tell is that the questions he asked were very thoughtful and sincere and we are excited to keep teaching him. Thursday I went on an exchange to downtown Denver. It is a pretty crazy place. There are a lot of people and that can be a good thing because there are many opportunities to share the gospel, but towards the end of the exchange I started to feel overwhelmed and didn't do the best at talking to everyone. We had a cool experience towards the end of the night. We were walking outside and a guy in a sushi truck called us over to talk to him. We were able to teach him the restoration and he seemed really interested in learning more. We went to the English class again and there were a lot of people there which was really cool. They said we are going to be teaching next week, we will see how that goes. We had the Denver Stake Fair which is a pretty big deal and apparently there were a lot of non-members there. It was cool because I saw a lot of people from Bible Park Ward. They had us help scoop ice cream. After that we taught G. She is from Africa and was raised Christian but now she believes that Christ is more of a philosopher. As we taught her she was really involved, but she seemed to understand that she could learn if it was true for herself. On Sunday, I realized I was making excuses and I decided to talk to at least 2 people I didn't want to. After I talked to one person that I didn't want to it made talking to every one way easier and we were able to talk to 31 different people that day. Also I realized I need to testify more frequently because when we talk to people sometimes I can get a little frustrated and try to convince them, but I think the best way is to just testify. My Go To Scripture is D&C 6:31 – “But if they reject not my words, which shall be established by the testimony which shall be given, blessed are they, and then shall ye have joy in the fruit of your labors.”

Sept 25, 2016

There have been some amazing things happen this week that I am very Grateful for. First off on Saturday Brother Vouama baptized his wife and his daughter. I baptized Brother Vouama in the Aurora Highlands Ward about 9 months ago. I am so excited for them and what is cool is that my trainer Elder Sevilla is in that ward and helped prepare them for baptism! Some of the Highlights this week - On Tuesday we had an appointment with E but he told us he wasn't feeling well. Later that night we were walking in his apartment complex and I saw someone and went over to talk to them. Well it ended up being E. He was picking up his mail and so we talked to him and he read the pamphlet we had left him.  We gave him a Book of Mormon to start reading. He enjoyed talking with us and he really wants to meet with us. Wednesday, I was on exchanges with Elder Fry and we had a whole day of finding lined up. We were able to talk to a lot of people and set some times to meet with people but we hadn't found a new investigator. Towards the end of the day we still hadn't found a new investigator and then we talked to a mom and one of her kids. It was really cool because as we were talking about how the Gospel blesses families, the Daughter said "do you have any handouts because we really need to go to church." I thought she was going to say we really needed to leave but we were blessed by the Lord. We are really excited to start teaching them this week. I feel that they are really ready to hear the gospel. After that we were about to leave the same place when I saw one of our investigators that we hadn't been able to get a hold of for a month. We taught him and recommitted him to meet with us - it was really great. We helped with a huge service project for the Rocky Mountain Down Syndrome Association on Saturday. They were setting up for a huge 5k run fundraiser and we helped set a lot of it up. We had a couple less active families attend church this week that we were really excited for, but we are still trying to help our investigators attend church. It’s a good thing we have conference this weekend because it will be a great opportunity for them and for myself as well. My Go To Scripture this week is D&C 15:6 – “And now, behold, I say unto you, that the thing which will be of the most worth unto you will be to declare repentance unto this people, that you may bring souls unto me, that you may rest with them in the kingdom of my Father.
Elder Blackham


Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Aug. 1, 2016

This week has been a great week even though it was hard. We have had many appointments cancel, and times when no one would answer their doors, but there have been a lot of cool things happen as well. First, we set V and B on a baptismal date for September 10th. It was really cool because we were a little nervous about extending the invitation and after we extended it we realized it was all fears that we had built up. We also found some very solid new investigators, one is an older lady but she lives next to a family in the ward. We tracted into her and she wanted to learn more. We also met a man named R. He is from Jamaica and is super cool so we taught him and he is going to continue to meet with us.  Also, I was able to go on exchanges this week with Elder Fry in Cherry Creek and Piney Creek. We put in a lot of work. We had quite a few lessons set for the day and all of them except one fell through, but we used that time and we were able to find four new investigators so it ended up being a great day. My Go To scripture this week is 1 Peter 2:9 “But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.” I feel it is important to remember the Priesthood we are entrusted and the power by which we are set apart.


August 8, 2016

Hello. This week was a great week - we were really busy. First off our car has had some problems. We drove up to downtown Denver to do exchanges and when we started up the car. It wouldn't start so we got it jumped by the senior missionaries that live pretty close. That morning the car wouldn't start again and so we got it jumped and took it into the shop and they told us the battery was fine and that the starter needed to be replaced. We took it to the Chevy dealership and they ended up just fixing the key and it works great now. Our car also has 6,000 dollars’ worth of hail damage so they had to get another estimate because they might end up just selling the car. So I went on exchanges with a new missionary, Elder Gonzales - it went really well. One of the things I realized is that the adversary will create fear before you try to talk to someone who is receptive. We were knocking on a door and then a lady walked into her apartment. Part of me said to go talk to her and the other was telling me to mind my own business. Any ways we went and talked to her and she was interested with meeting with us and wanted to learn more about the Fort Collins Temple open house. We got to go to the temple this week and it was a very special experience. Even though it is hard to wake up for a 6:00 am session it was definitely worth it. Thursday was Mormon night at the Rockies. We didn't get to go, but we set up a booth on the 16th street mall which is really close to the stadium. We had missionaries rotating in and out throughout the whole day. Friday we had MLC's.  It was my first time going which was really cool. There were some really powerful teachings and it will be exciting to relay the teachings to the rest of the zone.  A barrier we are seeing in our area is that the investigators we have found are not keeping their return appointments. It’s been a struggle lately and so we are trying to find ways to help them keep their return appointments. One Investigator that seems really solid is B. He has had a rough past and used to be an alcoholic, but he seems to have a lot of potential, which is great. My Go To Scripture this week is John 16:33 – “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”


August 15, 2016

Dear Family,

This week was a good week and it ended really well. I was able to buy some Oakley sunglasses on Monday. I didn't know what kind I was going to buy but I really like the pair I got. They were pricey but they are cool and the lenses are polarized. We also found two new investigators the first one is Ch. He is an interesting guy. When we first met him he wanted to take a picture with us and post it on facebook but he was willing to listen and so we taught him. I will tell you about the other investigator later because it is a really cool story. We moved the M family to the Arapahoe Stake. We are teaching their daughters who aren't baptized. The really exciting thing is we get to go to the Fort Collins Temple open house with their family today. I am really excited because I don't remember ever going to an open house. We had Zone Meeting on Thursday. It was a Great Zone Meeting. A video that I really like that I had never seen before is "Staying Spiritually Fit". We made a program for it. I'll send it to you if you want to see it. We have been teaching a former member and it has been very powerful teaching him. Each time we are there the spirit is very strong. Saturday was really cool. My District Leader Elder Fry had committed the District to study Charity each day this week. On Saturday as I was studying and I was looking over some notes I had made on Compassion specifically the Parable of the Good Samaritan. As I went over that things just seemed to Click and I realized how well it relates to talking to everyone and how we can't pass by people. I like this quote from Jesus the Christ "When the Samaritan came along and saw the wretched state of the wounded man, he had no excuse for he wanted none." I really felt the importance of talking to every one about the gospel. Later that day we taught our investigator BJ. We had tracted into her but her neighbors were members as well so we brought them. It was a very spiritual lesson as we taught the restoration. We even sang Joseph Smith’s First Prayer to her and it was really cool how it brought a special spirit into the room. We also arrived to one of our investigators places at the perfect time. We were just dropping by to see if he was there. As we got there he walked out with his dog and so we were able to teach him and he accepted a baptismal invitation. We were really excited. I had a really great experience Sunday night as we were ready to head home and as we walked to our car a man walked out of one of the buildings. We walked by him but we should have gone to talk to him. Elder Bake had gone in the car and was about to start backing when I thought that we needed to talk to this man. So we turned off the car and walked over to him and taught him and now he is a new investigator.  I am so grateful for the things I am learning in proclaiming this gospel. I am not perfect by any means but I can see the improvements I am making. My Go To scripture is Luke 10:33 “But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him."


August 22, 2016

This week has gone really well. Monday we were able to go to the Fort Collins Temple open house. We brought the M Family with us. It was a really cool experience to be able to tour through the temple, but what was really special was taking a family with us so that they could hopefully feel the spirit. We also had a hand off lesson with them where we went with their new Elders and introduced them to the Elders in their new ward. After that our week flattened out a little bit but some cool things happened. We were walking around in an apartment complex talking to people outside and then this lady from the HOA kicked us out. Well as we were walking around in the complex next to it we met a lady that had been having a rough day and was actually a member that probably hadn't gone to church in a while. It was a great experience to be able to lift her spirits up. We had interviews with President Mendenhall as well. It was really cool. He asked me how I was relating the Book of Mormon to myself? I shared how I had been studying the book of Mormon and he asked me what my relationship with my Savior was? I shared with him what I felt and then he explained that I had just testified personally of the Book of Mormon and Jesus Christ without saying "I know" or "I testify." It was really cool to see how I can make my testimony more personal. Saturday was really great. That whole week we had struggled with finding new investigators. We were tracting and I was getting a little discouraged because we hadn't found any one yet when someone let us into their house. They are a family from Nepal and we are going to see them again tonight. After them we were about ready to head to dinner but we decided to knock two more doors. The last door was a new investigator and we were able to teach them the next day which was really cool. They are from India and are Hindu. When we taught them we were able to make connections with God and parts of the Gospel so they could better understand. We also taught our Investigator B. We brought Brother Nelson with us and it was really cool because he made a huge difference in that lesson. B is really close to accepting a baptismal date as well so we are really excited for him. Also this week is transfers and I am staying with Elder Bake in Greenwood Village! I am really excited for this transfer. My Go To scripture this week is 2 Nephi 2:27  - “Wherefore, men are free according to the flesh; and all things are given them which are expedient unto man. And they are free to choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil; for he seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself.” When we look at choices we make this way it makes it a lot easier to choose the right.


August 29, 2016

I had a really good week and it started off really well. With transfers on Wednesday we had to spend most of that day moving missionaries around. It will be an exciting transfer. We have quite a few new missionaries in our zone. We have been able to find quite a few new people to teach and we were able to meet with a couple of the people we have been teaching lately. Some of the highlights this week were when we were able to teach L. As we taught her about Jesus Christ she really had a desire to learn and even a couple times she had us stop to re-explain some of the things we were teaching. We had more success meeting with some of our investigators but we haven't been able to meet with people enough to really help them progress in the gospel. It’s made it a little bit harder to find because it seems like every one we find has been really flakey. I was talking about this with my District Leader and he told me that I should pray to find someone who is prepared to hear the Gospel. So I did that Saturday night and on Sunday we found three new investigators. One of them I felt is really ready to hear the Gospel. It’s amazing how we were led to him. Earlier that day we had reached the goals we set for new investigators and total lessons but we were still dedicated to use our time effectively. It was about 8:00 pm on a Sunday night and we were walking around an apartment complex. Not too many people were out and we saw a guy in his garage working on a car. We went and started to talk to him and as we listened to him I could feel how much the gospel applied to him. It’s something I am still trying to get better and better at talking to everyone no matter what. I feel that I am definitely improving. I am really excited for this week and my Go To scripture this week is D&C 123:17 Therefore, dearly beloved brethren, let us cheerfully do all things that lie in our power; and then may we stand still, with the utmost assurance, to see the salvation of God, and for his arm to be revealed. “


Elder Blackham


Monday, August 1, 2016

June 20, 2016

Sorry I haven't emailed you the past two weeks. The first week I wrote Josh's Philmont Letter and then last week I had to write a rather long email to President talking about my companion and I. Hopefully I can manage to sum up the past three weeks. My Companion is Elder Parsons. He has been out for 19 months and is from Chicago, Illinois. He served in Aurora Highlands a couple transfers before I did. Our companionship is interesting because he is very open when he is just with me or when he is with members, but when we are talking to people on the streets he struggles and a lot of times he won't say too much. I have been dominating the companionship too much and I need to give him more opportunities to talk, even if it means that very awkward and painful moment of silence. That is something I need to work on. We have been on bikes for the past two weeks which posed a challenge because our area is very large and we have appointments lined up. Saturdays are the hardest because it seem like we just bike all over the place. There are some really great opportunities that come from it by talking to people that we see on the street. This week I went on exchanges with Elder Gray in the Sable Ward. It was a really good experience. Elder Gray is very good at talking to people. We were tracting and we ran into these guys and the first thing they said was “hey do you want to smoke a joint?” We said, “No,” but then Elder Gray started talking about Marijuana with them and talking about different strands and the thc and cbd ratio and stuff like that. He learned all of that from an investigator we were teaching. It was pretty cool because the guys really opened up and really liked us. They gave us there business cards - it was pretty funny. When you can relate to people they get off their guard. We taught A M this week. Her baptism is going to be July 2nd. We have been working on reading the scriptures and she read all the way to 2 Nephi Ch.4. She was marking verses - that’s pretty good for a ten year old. We also met with A. She is from Rwanda and we taught her and her family. She was a referral that we got over three months ago and we finally got to teach them. We had a really cool experience on Saturday. We had been tracting and people weren't opening their doors. As we were heading back to the car someone pulled up in their car. It was a member who was from the Marshall Islands. She hadn't been to church in a long time and her cousin was with her and she wasn't a member so we scheduled a time to meet with them. After we were about ready to head home because it was 8:50 and I felt prompted to ask God if our work was finished. After we prayed we were walking and I saw a potential I had met a week ago and we started talking to him. We came to find out that his mother was in town and she was a Holocaust survivor. We are planning to meet him and his mother later this week. Also we got a car on Friday which has been a big help. Sunday was great - we had A, V and A at church. I have been studying about Abinadi lately and I am amazed at his commitment to his mission that the Lord gave him. Even though he knew he would die he was determined to deliver his message to King Noah. My GoTo Scripture is Mosiah 13:9  “But I finish my message; and then it matters not whither I go, if it so be that I am saved.” The message that we have is so great! I desire to be as determined as Abinadi to share this message with the people here in Aurora.


June 27, 2016

This week seemed to start a little slow. Lately we have been finding a lot of people to teach but when we show up for the return appointment many of them just haven't been home. We still had some really exciting things happen this week. We met Sh last week and we dropped by and taught her.  As we were teaching she talked about how she wanted to make changes in her life and start to turn her life around. We were able to set up a church tour with them for next week which is exciting. We also taught our investigator Ar he is currently trying to find a place to move to in our ward and we taught him in the church. It was pretty cool as we were showing him the church we showed him the baptismal font and he said that he would probably be the next person to get baptized. We taught him the restoration in a class room and then we stepped out in front of a painting of the first vision and the spirit was very strong. We found a lot of new investigators this week. I think the one with the most potential is W. It was really cool how we were led to him. We were knocking on doors and some kids asked us if we were going to knock upstairs and we were like yeah. We followed the kids upstairs and they got their uncle and he started talking to us. At first he didn't seem too interested and then he asked if we had some basketball league?  I told him that they played every Thursday night at our church. He got excited about that and then we started talking more and he really saw how our message could help him in his life it was really cool. Also A M will be getting baptized this week and I am really excited for her. She has done a lot to prepare and she is really excited to get baptized. The really cool thing is that every  companionship in our District is having a baptism this week. I am very grateful for the opportunity I have to serve the lord. My GoTo Scripture is Isaiah 52:7 “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth!” It is so great to be here in the mountains of Denver to share this gospel

July 7, 2016

Happy 4th of July! Wow this week was so exciting. First we were helping A prepare for her Baptism this Saturday. She was very excited. It was a little stressful getting the program ready because we procrastinated but in the end it all worked out and it was a great baptism. I had the opportunity to baptize her which was very special. It is a really great experience to be able to baptize someone and for me it is really hard to describe. Elder Parsons confirmed her on Sunday which was also really cool. Not to mention we had one of the best fast and testimony meetings that Sunday as well. What was also great was that the other two companionships each had a baptism this
week so our district had 3 baptisms this week. I interviewed the Sisters investigator Av, last Sunday and I got a call later that night that Av wanted me to baptize her. So, I was able to Baptize Av on Friday. With so many baptisms this week I was reminded of a quote in Preach My Gospel by Elder Henry B. Eyring “The Lord sets His standards so that He can bless us. Think about those blessings: He promises those who meet the standards the help of the Holy Ghost. He promises personal peace. He promises the chance to receive holy ordinances in His house. And He promises those who endure in living His standards that they will have eternal life. … Because we love the people we serve, all of us want to do better in lifting our Heavenly Father’s children to the faithfulness and purity they need to have all the blessings of the Lord. … You begin by holding up the Lord’s standards clearly and without apology. And the more the world drifts from them and mocks them, the bolder we must be in doing that” We have high standards so that the Lord can bless us.

We also taught our investigator V this week. She is doing great and she gets really excited about every new thing that we teach her. We had to move her date back to July 23rd but she is really excited to get baptized. We also taught our investigator Ar he is really excited and willing to learn. A member that hadn't been to church in a very long time called us and he wanted us to give his neighbor a blessing. We began to talk to the member and he told us how he should have been giving a blessing but that he wasn't able to. It was a reminder for me about how great of a blessing it is to bear the priesthood and to be able to use it to help others. He wants us to start teaching his daughters so that they can be baptized. Another really cool thing happened on Sunday night. We lost contact with our investigator Al for about six weeks. It was pretty hard because he had a lot of potential and he fell off the face of the earth. He called us Sunday and we hurried over to meet with him and we met his girlfriend as well and she is also really interested in the church. The Fourth of July was a lot of fun. Our whole zone got together at a members home in Bennett. In Church we sang the Star Spangled Banner and I like in the third verse the line that says "And this be our motto: "In God is our trust!"" It is important to remember that this land was prepared by God for the restoration of his Gospel so that we can all worship him freely.

My GoTo Scripture this week is D&C 59:23 "But learn that he who doeth the works of righteousness shall receive his reward, even peace in this world, and eternal life in the world to come" These are great blessings of the gospel, blessings that everyone deserves the opportunity to receive.

July 11, 2016

Hi, So I got a call from President this week and he asked me to be a Zone Leader. I responded and asked if that meant that I was leaving Peoria and he said “yes.” I am sad to be leaving Peoria. It is such a great area to serve in. I am going to be a Zone Leader in my birth Zone in Denver. I will be in the Green Wood Village Ward serving with Elder Bake. I haven't served around him much but from what I hear he is a really great missionary.

This week was a great week. We found quite a lot of new investigators. One of those is a family from the Marshall Islands. There are a bunch of family members that live in this same apartment and two of them are members of the church. The rest we are teaching even though at times it can be pretty hard because their English isn't the best. We weren't able to teach V this week but she attended a baptism in another ward with us. It was really funny because the convert was bearing his testimony and he mentioned how missionaries are really persistent and V said out loud "I know right!" It was pretty funny. She also came to church and in Gospel Principles the Ward Mission Leader mentioned that it was my Birthday and V was like “we should sing him happy birthday” and so she led the whole class in singing happy birthday and even added a second verse that I had never heard. Something really exciting is that the Fort Collins Temple Open House will be in August and September. We are trying to invite members to attend the open house. I have been dropping by and saying good bye to the people we have been teaching. It is really sad to say good bye especially with so many good things happening but I know it is the Lords will. Brother Valentine bought me a cookie cake and I got all the presents that you sent and I really appreciate it.

Hope you have a great week!

July 18, 2016

So My New Companion is Elder Bake he is from Missouri He has been out 6 weeks longer than I have. Greenwood Village is a lot different from Peoria - for example we live with members in a really nice home and they buy all of our groceries which is really nice of them. The best part is we have air conditioning! So there are some really wealthy parts in our ward and there are also still a lot of apartments. Our area borders the south border of Bible Park but I was on the north side the whole time I was there. I got the birthday video last week but it was upside down. The photo was right side up though. I appreciate the extra scripture case. Since we were in a car I got tired of carrying around my bag while we were proselyting so I started to just take a scripture bag. The new one will be for my nice scriptures. The ward is really big and reminds me of our ward back home. They fill up the whole over flow at church. I am adjusting really well and I am really excited for this transfer. We also had a huge hail storm for like 15 minutes. It was throwing golf ball sized hail and so our car is all dented up and we are going to have to take it into the shop. And we may not have a car for a bit. This week has been fantastic! It was hard to leave the Peoria Ward and I will always remember that ward and the people there. Things have been great with Elder Bake and I feel like our minds are on the same page and we both have a strong desire to serve. Elder Bake has really helped me improve in talking to everyone and already I feel so much better because we aren't giving up any opportunities to talk with people. This week we have been focused on finding and searching for people to teach. The teaching pool is slim here but we are excited to build it back up. We found two investigators while I have been here. One whose name is H. She was very open and we shared with her the first vision, and are going to meet with her this week. The other investigator we found is named K. She has some friends that are members and she was really open as well and we are going to be teaching her next week also. We had a really cool experience at dinner on Saturday. We were talking about temples and the Fort Collins open house, and as we testified to them that people were prepared for this event she felt prompted to have us teach in relief society for five minutes after she finished teaching. It was a great opportunity for us to share with the ward the importance of inviting our friends to the open house. My GoTo scripture this week is Mosiah 23: 24 “And it came to pass that he did deliver them, and he did show forth his mighty power unto them, and great were their rejoicings.” I am really excited to be serving here in Greenwood Village!

July 25, 2016

Hello, this week has been a really great week! We have been pretty busy this week we had a lot of meetings. We had a mini Zone Meeting for the new temple open house, District Meeting, and a Zone Leader Meeting. The Zone Leader Meeting was really cool because it was themed off of the school of the prophets and so we got to learn a little bit before the meeting and it is really cool to see how it prepared the early leaders before they went to spread the gospel. We also did quite a bit of service this week. We went downtown as a Zone to Denver Rescue Mission, where we prepared a lunch and served it to the homeless. We have been really focused on finding and we were able to find 6 new investigators this week! We plan to find even more this upcoming week. We are currently working with two girls V and B and they want to get baptized. The only thing is that they are moving in a couple weeks and have some family situations that may cause some complications. It has been really fun serving with Elder Bake and the work is really enjoyable right now. My GoTo scripture this week is D&C 6:36 “Look unto me in every thought; doubt not, fear not.” Focusing my thoughts on the work is so important and there is so much strength that comes from it.



Elder Blackham​


Sunday, June 12, 2016

March - May (Sorry I'm so behind, but it's life!)

March 14, 2016

So guess what! I am now in Aurora! This week was pretty great. I was in a trio up in Brighton and I found out Thursday I was going to be emergency transferred to the Peoria Ward in Aurora. There was an Elder in the Peoria Ward who had to go home to take care of some things. That left my new companion, Elder Burt companion-less, so because I was in a trio, President felt that I should transfer to be companions with Elder Burt. So, yeah It’s kind of been crazy with a lot of things happening in the last week. This week started off a little slow. We were still organizing our ward that had just been formed. We had an awesome lesson that we were able to teach to an investigator. It was really powerful, especially as we asked inspired questions to help them understand what we were teaching. As we taught this family they had a greater desire to understand what we were teaching them and wanted to learn more about the gospel. So, I got to Aurora on Friday and I was able to meet Elder Burt. He came out at the same time as me and he is from Pocatello, Idaho. The Peoria Ward is pretty interesting. It is in a rougher part of town and Elder Burt was telling me about some interesting experiences he had there. We live with a member, which is something new for me and we have a car which is also pretty nice. A couple weeks ago in Aurora Highlands, Elder Wohlrab and I ran into a less- active in the Peoria Ward. He had never transferred his records but we got all his info and passed him off to the Peoria Ward. They hadn't gotten a hold of him, but on Saturday Elder Burt and I dropped by and we were able to talk with him and he came with us to the Stake Conference. It’s pretty cool how the Lord is already preparing people for us to meet. I am really excited to be here in the Peoria ward. 


March 21, 2016

Things have been going pretty good in Peoria. We taught a lot of people this week. We found a new investigator this week his name is M R. He is about 16 or 17, but he is pretty interested in what we have to share. We were able to teach quite a few less actives as well. Sister F - she currently has cancer in her skull and every day she has Chemo therapy treatments where the doctor inserts 6 inch long needles into her skull. It is a very painful procedure, but the most amazing thing is how much she has turned her life around and now has such a strong desire to return to church. We also met a man named Brother M. He has a real desire to learn more about the gospel. We had Zone Conference this week. The Theme was "What Lack I yet?" It was pretty great. I am focusing on how I can improve as a missionary. My Go To scripture this week is Alma 38:5 "And now my son, Shiblon, I would that ye should remember, that as much as ye shall put your trust in God even so much ye shall be delivered out of your trials, and your troubles, and your afflictions, and ye shall be lifted up at the last day." I am really excited for this up-coming week and know I need to keep my trust in the Lord.


April 4, 2016

This week was a great week! Monday was a solid P-Day. We taught a recent convert the Plan of Salvation. It was very spiritual. She was only about ten years old, which was good because I felt like I got better at teaching simply. Tuesday was a weird day. We went to teach a couple Muslims who had walked into Church last Sunday and wanted to learn how to teach English. We were just going to see how it went and when we walked in we saw two hookahs in the corner of the room. At the end of the lesson they were about to fire it up so we decided to just leave. We got an awesome call though on Tuesday, a man named J called us and said he wanted to meet with us. I was trying to remember who he was and then I remembered he was a former that I texted a week ago while Elder Burt was in a District Leader Meeting. We are meeting with him today so I am really excited. We were also trying to meet with our investigator J and so we called him. Before we called him he had a seizure and we were able to give him a blessing and I was amazed at the Lords timing. Wednesday we met L and A. They are from Liberia and they were a referral from a member in Heather Ridge. It was and awesome lesson. They both accepted baptism but only L accepted a date. Afterwards we met a family that moved into the ward - the L's. They were less active but want to come back to church. Brother L owns a vape company and he is pretty into the vape thing himself. I am not a fan of it at all because it just makes a bunch of smoke. The awesome news was that their eleven year old son wants to get baptized, so we are really excited to start teaching him. Thursday we had District Meeting and I had to do some training. Elder Burt asked me to give it the day before because I had been studying the topic in personal study. We had baloot for dinner which was pretty interesting. It is basically a fertilized duck egg - pretty popular in Asia, and you eat the whole bird. It tasted good and it was a good thing to eat so I can say I ate that. We taught J and it was a rough lesson. He kind of dominated it and we didn't go anywhere. As he was talking I could see a concern he had and so I stopped him and shared with him a scripture and my testimony. The spirit was really strong and I felt that I answered his concern. Friday was cool - we were tracting and I started to remember a training given in Zone Conference about relating just a random object to the gospel. So, as we were tracting we met a man named A. As we talked to him I wasn't sure if we were going to get in but I noticed a painting in his home and I said "I like your painting." As I said that, he said come on in. As we taught him, he told us he had a dream that we would knock on his door. it was super exciting. Saturday was cool we planned on watching the morning session with L and A. It was awesome. A was really funny sometimes. He was way into it - clapping, or saying amen, and other times he looked like he was falling asleep. When Elder Hallstrom spoke about his experience in Liberia L woke A up and told him to pay attention. You could tell that it was meant for them and that it really touched their hearts. After the Priesthood Session I felt prompted that we visit a less active family. The M family is from the Philippines. While we were there we were able to give her son a blessing. I asked them if they were all baptized and everyone but there 10 year old daughter was. Her mom asked her if she wanted to get baptized and her face lit up and she said yes. We were so excited! Sunday after General Conference we dropped by an Investigator and we taught him the first lesson and after wards we invited him to be baptized and he said yes! This week was amazing! General Conference absolutely strengthened my testimony that our Church is led by a Prophet of God and that the talks given are truly inspired and meant for each of us. Brother Owens talk stood out to me. We are all placed in positions where we are to lead and the best way to lead is by following Jesus Christ. My GOTO scripture this week is Proverbs 3:4 Trust in the Lord.


April 11, 2016

So this week was pretty great. We taught more lessons than I have ever taught my whole mission. The great part about it was that the majority of the lessons we taught to our investigators we brought members with us. Monday we went to get haircuts. We were told that there was a barber off Colfax that gave free haircuts to missionaries because the Barbers wife is Mormon. So we set up an appointment, but the main barber wasn't going to be there. We got to the barber shop and it was pretty funny because it is like a barber shop for mostly black people.The guy who gave us a haircut was named St. Louis. He told me had been working there a couple years and that he didn't know how to cut hair with scissors - he only used clippers, it was an interesting experience, but hey it was free. We taught a former named J, and when we walked up to teach him he was talking with his neighbor, so we taught both of them and they were interest in hearing about the Restoration. Afterwards, we headed over to A's. She has been struggling with cancer and was completely inactive for a long time but with this trial her heart has softened and she has a really strong desire to come back to church. She told us she had watched all of General Conference and had re watched it as well. We shared with her Elder Hollands talk and it was a powerful lesson. Tuesday we taught a recent convert and her mom. The really cool thing was that we had given her mom a blessing before she went in for knee surgery and a week after that surgery she was off crutches and walking around normally. Earlier we were asked to give a blessing with a senior missionary in the Colorado Children’s Hospital (we give a lot of blessings there because it is in our ward boundaries). The child was two years old and had passed away the night before but they revived her and had her on a breathing machine. It was a very sad situation, but while I was in that room I felt the Spirit testify to me of the Plan of Salvation, that God had a plan for this child and that this childs death was not the end. As we gave the blessing it was very powerful. Wednesday we had a lot going on we had Zone Meeting and then we taught three of our investigators. While we were at dinner I was reaching for a pot and I knocked my water cup over and spilled it all over the member right next to me. Looking back it is kind of funny, but boy I was a little embarrassed when it happened. I'm going to skip to Saturday morning at 2:00 am when we heard a really loud noise upstairs. A couple minutes later we walked up stairs and find out some drunken guy was trying to break in. This guy was kicking at the door, so Papa Q got his pisto,l peeked out the window, saw the guy was unarmed, cracked open the door pointed the gun and said "What do you want?” The guy started to walk away so Papa Q called the Cops and the guy got arrested. Later that day we taught A. We brought our ward mission leader Brother V because he served a mission in Honduras where A is from. We taught him the Plan Of Salvation and he committed to baptism. Sunday we only had one Investigator come to church which was disappointing. We were trying really hard to get more of our investigators to come but Sacrament attendance will be something we will have to emphasize this week. We taught S at his rehab home and he invited one of his roommates K to listen and so now we have another investigator. During my studies I realized the mindset that the Sons of Mosiah had when they went to teach the Lamanites. They didn't see them as who they were but as who they could become. That is the way God sees us and that is something I am trying to work on. So my GOTO scripture is Alma 26:3  Behold, I answer for you; for our brethren, the Lamanites, were in darkness, yea, even in the darkest abyss, but behold, how many of them are brought to behold the marvelous light of God! And this is the blessing which hath been bestowed upon us that we have been made instruments in the hands of God to bring about this great work.


April 18, 2016

This week is transfers and I am staying and I have been given the assignment to be a district leader which is exciting but humbling at the same time. My new companion is Elder Glen. He is a couple transfers behind me but President told me he is a hard working Missionary. Also Elder Ah Nee is going to be my Zone Leader which is exciting because I enjoyed being with him in for a week in Brighton.


I don't have a whole lot of time, but these are our top investigators right now. All four of them were at sacrament meeting. L and A are the couple from Liberia. Somehow they got a marriage license so they should get married within a month and then L will be ready to be baptized. A says he will get baptized but he hasn't committed to a date so we are going to work on that with him. A(diff. A)is excited to get baptized but the thing I am worried about with her is that her parents gave her permission, but they have been going to a different church and I feel like that might make it a challenge for her, but I think she can also be a great example for her family. For our investigator J we brought a primary teacher with us so he could help keep J interested and focused. This was great. One thing I have learned this transfer is how much a difference members can make in helping investigators learn and progress. We have been teaching a lot and we have been pretty busy which is good. I am really excited for our investigators as they get closer to baptism it gets even more exciting


April 25, 2016

This week a lot of cool miracles have happened. It makes it clear to me that this is the Lords work. My new companion is Elder Glenn. He is from Yucaipa, California and has been out one transfer less than me. He is a really good missionary because he has a strong desire to serve the Lord. Here are some highlights for this week.


Monday- P-Day found out transfers and that night we visited the W’s. Elder Burt was really sad to leave Peoria so we visited some people.


Tuesday- We taught L and A and we found out they were getting married on Saturday which was super exciting! We taught A the Gospel of Jesus Christ and she is getting ready for her Baptism on the 14th.


Wednesday- Transfers - cool experience - it was about 8:15 and our plans fell through so Elder Glenn suggested we pray and then he asked if we were teaching a person named M. We were,  and so we dropped by and he wanted the address to the church building and we gave him the address and taught him.


Thursday- We taught G. She is from the Congo and she told us she believed that the restoration was true and we invited her to be baptized on the 21st of May


Friday- as we were walking out of a lesson a lady asked how we were doing and we began to talk to her and we set an appointment up with her for tonight.


Saturday- We were walking out of an apartment complex and I heard someone trying to talk to us but I couldn't see anyone. I walked towards the voice and it is coming out of someone’s window. The man wanted to talk to us and invited us in. We are going to teach him the restoration on Tuesday. We also had L and A wedding - it was pretty cool. Bishop Doxey married them.


Sunday- A was the only investigator who came to church, so we are going really focus on getting our investigator to come to church. We were going to visit a member but I couldn't find a parking spot so I parked across the street. We walk over and talked to the member and she tells us that the building across the street is a crack house and that every apartment except for two are doing crack and that expensive cars pull in and stuff like that. The police know about it but they haven't done anything yet. Well, that was the building I parked in front of. As we are walking back to the car this sketchy motor home had just pulled up and before we get in someone in the motor home says something. I was pretty nervous and didn't really know what to expect. A lady and her husband walk out and they tell us they are members from Wyoming and are trying to turn their life around immediately I felt a love for them and we talked to them about coming to church and about how the gospel will change their life. I could see hope fill up in their eyes and I knew the Lord put these people on our path.


This week has been full of tender mercies that the Lord has blessed us with by putting people on our path it is truly amazing to know who is on our side. My GOTO scripture this week is  D&C 50:26 He that is ordained of God and sent forth, the same is appointed to be the greatest, notwithstanding he is the least and the servant of all. I am a servant to the people here in Aurora but my Master is great he is Jesus Christ.


May 2, 2016

This week has been really great we are seeing some amazing things happen in the Peoria ward. Elder Glenn and I are doing great together I am surprised at how in sync we are with each other. One thing that has been on my mind is that we are teaching a couple ten year olds and they are keeping the commitments, but one of them, her family is inactive. They support her decision; I just hope that A will be able to continue to progress despite the fact that her family is not centered around the restored gospel. Honestly I really love it in this ward because the people here are just great and I love the people we are teaching.


Monday- We met with A(diff. A). The change she has made in her life is amazing and now she is completely free of Cancer she is the definition of a broken heart and a contrite spirit. She even wants her boyfriend to start taking the lessons. She bore her testimony in sacrament meeting! We had an opportunity to give a blessing at the children’s hospital - now I cherish each time we have the opportunity.


Tuesday- We taught A and when we asked how her reading was doing she told us she read the first seven chapters in the Book of Mormon. I was so excited for her!


Wednesday- One of my weaknesses is street contacting because I am just used to tracting. We went street contacting in a park. Luckily, Elder Glenn is pretty good at street contacting, so he was helping me out. Elder Glenn told me to talk to a man walking his dog, and I was hesitant because he had already passed us. Elder Glenn told me to shout at the guy and so I did. We started talking to him and now he is a new investigator. We also taught A that night and it was a really cool experience. A is able to feel the spirit really strongly  when we are with him and when he reads and he feels really good about our Church we are just trying to get him to come to church.


Thursday- We had District Meeting and afterwards we taught two of our investigators M and C, - she is blind. That lesson M kept on trying to get off track so we really had to work to get the lesson back on track.


Friday- We taught V - she is a new investigator. She had met with missionaries a long time ago. She is interesting because she is Roman Catholic, but she believes the Book of Mormon is true and that Joseph Smith was a prophet. But she isn't ready to commit to anything.


Saturday was a really good day. We had been teaching a guy named C but every time we met with him he would try to argue over the scripture. I felt that he wasn't ready yet and so I told him that we were here to help him gain an understanding about the Gospel and if he wasn't willing to do that we couldn't teach him. I felt like it was one of the best drops I've done because he told us he wanted to learn but that now wasn't the right time. I think timing is really important for people to progress in the gospel.


Sunday- was amazing we had 5 investigators at church, which is the most I have ever had attend. It was really cool! We also taught a new investigator T and hopefully she will take the message of the restoration to heart.


This week has been truly amazing these are just the highlights a lot of the work has been the small and simple things that we are doing to help our investigators progress in the Gospel and help them gain a testimony for themselves. I am grateful to see the work increase not only in our area but in our whole district. My Go To scripture this week is D&C 68:6 Wherefore, be of good cheer, and do not fear, for I the Lord am with you, and will stand by you; and ye shall bear record of me, even Jesus Christ, that I am the Son of the living God, that I was, that I am, and that I am to come. This work is a joyful work because the Lord is with us as all of us bear testimony of him. Hope you have a great week.


May 9, 2016

This week has been a really great week. Although it felt like we had quite a few appointments cancelling on us, we were able to be just as productive this week. Here are some of the highlights


We had zone p-day, so we played whiffle ball and basketball and we had lunch together. Afterwards we taught KM and her sister BM started to listen as well, so we are now teaching her. We taught A afterwards and it was a very spiritual lesson. He can feel the Spirit really strongly when we are there and he is gaining a testimony for himself but he needs to start acting on it. We have been teaching A this week and we are trying to help her get ready for baptism. We were planning on that this week but we felt that we need to push it back a couple weeks so that she will be ready. We have been teaching a Seventh Day Adventist whose husband is trying to get active in our church. It has been difficult teaching her because while she agrees with a lot of things we are teaching there are somethings she having trouble understanding. We also had a really good District Meeting and I learned a lot about resolving concerns. We were able to apply it when we taught V. She wasn't reading from the Book of Mormon but we helped her understand the importance of it. Friday we had a barbecue with the M family. They are less actives that we just started meeting with and we had dinner with them. The food was really good. We also found a really solid investigator his name is K and he is from Vietnam. He was interested in learning about the things we were teaching him. I enjoyed the time I was able to skype my family it gave me a good boost.


My GOTO scripture this week is D&C 84:83 For your Father, who is in heaven knoweth that you have need of these things. I think it is really comforting to know how much Heavenly Father Loves us and he know exactly what we need.


May 16, 2016

Hi! First off I will wish a Happy Birthday to Mom and Tyler! This week was a little different. It seemed like we had two days this week where we were really busy and taught a lot of people. We were able to meet with A this week and we had a really good lesson and we were able to get her parents more involved. We also got the Restoration Video and the Children’s Book of Mormon to help A have a better understanding. We taught L and A and we are really excited for L's baptism this week. She has a really strong desire to be baptized. Something pretty cool is that A’s cousins are Ashton and John Youboty. They both played football for Klein High School and played college ball and I think they even played in the pros. We also have been getting J ready for his baptism this week as well, which is really exciting. We also found a really solid new investigator. Her name is V J. We taught her the first lesson and we extended a baptismal invitation and she accepted. Some other exciting things that happened this week were that we had zone meeting and one of the trainings was on a real cool idea called the Calendar for Conversion. What we do is when we set someone on date we give them a calendar and we plan on the calendar lessons and commitments and it helps people see how they are doing on keeping commitments. It helps us as missionaries plan and keeps us accountable to make sure we teach everything. We had a District Leader Meeting which was very helpful. It helped me see ways I can be a better leader in my District. Also we went on exchanges this week. I was with my old Companion Elder Ah Nee! It was a really fun exchange and part of it was because we already knew each other really well. One of the things I was able to realize is how important it is to have fun. Missionary work is hard - if you try to find joy in it - it is definitely there. One thing that really helped me this week was that I tried to view people as Children of God. That really helped me have a desire to share the Gospel with them and to just not get frustrated over things that happened. My Go To Scripture this week is 2 Nephi 33:15 For thus hath the Lord commanded me, and I must obey. Amen. I think Nephi's attitude that he must obey is the perfect attitude to have and it is the last words that he shares with us so it is probably something pretty important.


May 23, 2016

Hi Family! This week was a really exciting week. We were preparing for the baptisms we had this week. I felt really tired this week for some reason. Part of it is probably because we had to put a pause to playing basketball in the morning. But I just kind of had to push through. We had some cool experiences. We have been working with a Less-Active. She has been trying to get her life in order. It is pretty cool to see her make that change in her life. She even made it to sacrament meeting this week. We also had been teaching a guy named M and we retaught the restoration to him and set him on date and it seemed really solid. Well… two hours later he called us and told us he wasn't being himself and dropped us - hey its mission life. We are working on getting A baptized this week. It may happen it just depends on if she remembers everything we taught her. We found a new investigator this week.His name is Q. He is a pretty cool guy and is willing to find out if our message is true. We are still working with V as well. She says she believes what we are teaching her but she wants to talk to a Catholic Priest before she commits. It is a little bit frustrating but we should be able to work out her concerns. We had the Baptism for L and then J and his brother Z. It was really exciting! We had a lot of support from the ward which was great. Bishop Doxey baptized L and I Baptized J and Z was Baptized by Elder Burt. The Baptism went well. The water was a little hot but the Spirit was definitely there. We had the confirmations on Sunday and I was able to confirm L. That was my first confirmation which was exciting. I was a little nervous but it was a really great moment. Some other cool things that happened this week were that we had dinner with a convert and his mother. The things was he never told his mother he was Mormon and he felt that having us over for dinner would be a great way to let his mom know. Well it ended up going really well and at the end we left them a commitment to read from the Book of Mormon together and they did it and had a really good experience. Also we were contacting a referral and we were in an apartment complex and Elder Glenn went through a door into a courtyard. I wanted to make sure we would be able to get back through the door but when it shut it wouldn't open and so Elder Glenn had to climb a wall to get back over where I was. it was pretty funny. This week I am really just focusing on being more diligent and achieving the goals that we set for the day. My Go To Scripture this week is D&C 58:27 Verily I say, men should be anxiously engaged in a good cause, and do many things of their own free will, and bring to pass much righteousness;" Hope y’all have a great week


May 31, 2016

So I found out about Transfers yesterday and I am staying in Peoria, although there are going to be some changes. First, Elder Glenn is getting transferred to downtown and my new companion will be Elder Parsons. We are losing our car so I am going to be back on a bike. The reason why we are going back on bike is because our mission is adding two new stakes to our mission: the Boulder Stake and the Parker South Stake. I am still very excited because it will provide us a great opportunity to be even more effective in our area. Anyway,s some really cool things have happened this week. First was Monday night - we had 3 appointments cancel and so we prayed and I felt prompted to look for a less active named O and so we found their address and when we got there we realized the address didn't exist, so we tracted around the area and we found two new investigators. Later that night we taught J. We found him last week during a picnic we had with some members. We were walking back to the car to get our Jackets and I saw a kid’s football team and one of the Dads (J) watching them. I talked about football with him and then scheduled a time to teach him. We met him Monday and taught him the first part of the restoration. It was a really cool lesson because the spirit was really strong and you could see his desire and interest in what we were teaching him. We also reset A's Baptismal date for the 11th of June. We found that she is able to learn well when we use drawings so I've been using my creative juices to draw out the lessons for her. On Wednesday things were just not working well for us so before we started tracting an apartment we prayed and asked for God to put someone on our path. Well we tracted into a Less-Active that was not even on the records #notrandom! We also started teaching V again and it is so much fun teaching her because she gets really excited when she understands things. We also are working with a boy named J. He is 14 and has been in some trouble and so his Grandma who is a convert wanted us to start teaching him. We taught him twice the first time. He really didn't want to open up so we gave him some time and we taught him again the second time. I felt that we just needed to teach him and as we went through the lesson he would open up. Well that’s what happened - he started to talk to us a little more. Monday we had a mission 5k run so we met up in Westminster and ran as a mission. It was a whole lot of fun to be all together as a mission. Well this upcoming week will be an exciting week and I hope we will be able to carry the momentum forward.



Elder Blackham