Elder Bird's Missionary Blog


Skype Call Home!!

5/15/17

Hey Everyone!!

What a crazy, awesome week we had here in Colorado! With transfers and a Skype call home, things were pretty busy this week! I hope everyone's week back home was well!

The beginning of the week was kind of slower as we prepared for transfers. We did our normal tracting and street contacting, not finding a super duper amount of success. On Tuesday we helped out a bit with transfers, and Elder Mork and I got to solo drive! We needed to pick up a car from the Arvada 5th ward sisters who were being swept out, so I drove the truck home, while Elder Mork followed in their car.

Transfer day was fun! We rounded everyone up, grabbing the luggage and getting things set up for everyone to make it to their designated location safely! It was a long morning, but we got everything done okay and everyone back safely as well. It always feels a little weird staying in an area during transfers, because you don't change, but you have a brand new zone!

Thursday was a pretty packed day. We went to our district meeting, to learn and to get to know the new missionaries in the district. Then we went and sat in the other district's meeting for a few minutes. We wanted to see how the new district leader, Elder Glenn, will be doing things and to also meet those new missionaries. Then, Elder Mork and I planned for the week ahead (normally we do that on Friday, but we had a big zone leader meeting on Friday). After all of that, we barely had time to get out and work! But some miracles happened anyway. We went to meet and have a lesson with a guy named Adam and took a member with us. Unfortunately, Adam told us he was going to be about an hour late. So we just tried contacting in the apartment complex and actually found a woman named JerriAnn, who wanted us to pray for her brother. After the prayer, she accepted a return appointment and a Book of Mormon! It was pretty cool. Then, we went and saw Adam. The ward member was able to come back and meet with us too. The lesson got a little off course because Adam had a friend over that wanted to tell us his story. So Elder Mork and I sat and listened to his friend, while the member, the Elders Quorom President, started talking to Adam. 9:20pm rolled around and we didn't even have a chance to talk with Adam before we left, but our member stayed after we left and talked to the group until 10:30pm!! He and Adam really connected, and Adam wants him to come back next time! So we were pretty pumped about that!

Friday was the leadership meeting. It was a long, but good meeting. There are a lot of newer-ish zone leaders, and this is my 3rd transfer, so I finally feel a little seasoned compared to some of these new elders! After the meeting, we headed back to our area. We didn't have too much planned that night, but did try to set up a lesson over the phone with a potential investigator named Donna. I ended up getting into a 30 minute conversation with her over the phone, teaching her about the Book of Mormon and the restoration. She seemed to really enjoy the conversation, and told us she would want more lessons over the phone. So she told us to call her again in a week at the same time. It was kind of weird, but now she is a new investigator! While I was on that call, Elder Mork was contacting people next to me in the apartment complex and got two return appointments with people who might be interested in the future! It was a good night!

Saturday was a full day of work, going out and talking to people. The big highlight was a lesson with a YSA guy named Jade, who we had picked up a week earlier. We did a lesson with him and the YSA missionaries. The lesson was awesome! Jade seemed to really like the conversation and is going to one of the YSA activities tonight! We were super happy to end the night that way.

Finally, Sunday! We had no meetings in the morning, so we just headed straight to church. We had a good Sacrament meeting. A young man in the ward gave his farewell talk before departing for his mission. It was a little weird because a year ago, on Mother's day, I did the same thing. After church was over, the brethren in the ward fed all of the sisters pie! There was a ton left over, so everyone in the ward also got to enjoy pie. We had plenty (we called it lunch). Then we went to a members home and prepped for our Skype calls home. It was such an awesome Skype call with my family! There were no tech hiccups, and it felt so great to just talk to the family for 45 minutes. They are all still goofy and it felt great to be back in place! It was tough to hang up and say goodbye to them, and for 15 minutes all I wanted to do was use the phone and call them back! But I soon got back into missionary mode by talking with the ward members whose house we were at, about our investigators, while I waited for Elder Mork to finish. Later that night, Elder Mork and I got back to our normal work and we worked at getting some YSA investigators we found to go to that nights YSA activity. Then we went in and ended the week.

Anyway, things were pretty great this week! Miracles are happening and I am ready for the next 6 weeks here in Arvada! I know strongly that families are where true happiness is found. God has placed us into them for a reason, and I am glad that God put me in mine. I love them so much! And I love all of you so much for taking the time to think about me throughout your week. I hope you are all doing well!!

Elder Bird

P.S. Oh yeah, we found a goat in someone's yard this week. Not often you get this in American missions


Year Mark (Kinda?) and Transfers!!

5/08/17

Hey all!!

I know you just heard from me, so I will for sure keep it brief. But guess what?? This next transfer on Wednesday will mark 1 year from when I first entered the MTC. My dates got a little mixed up with the things that took place after and my health problems, so I will really be hitting a year mark out here in about 2 months (next transfer), but it is kind of weird that I started my journey about a year ago!

Speaking of which, transfers are coming up on Wednesday!! We heard about them this morning when we logged on. I will be staying here in the Arvada 2nd ward area with Elder Mork!! We have some crazy things happening in the zone though. It should be pretty fun!!

As for our last week from Wednesday until now, things were pretty normal. We had fun going out every day and trying to find people to teach. We even ran out of Book of Mormons in the process...we have had to scavenge from other companionships until we can get more. That was awesome! Some cool things happened!

While tracting one day in an apartment complex that we had just found, we met a woman named Kandie that was super nice at the doorstep and let us teach her about what the Book of Mormon was. She listened and accepted a copy, telling us that her step-father, who she really looked up to, had been Mormon. She cried a little and told us how she knew that we were sent from God to see her. It was so awesome, and we were able to set a time to come back and see her. Then we prayed with her and had her crying again. It was a great experience!!

We saw our investigator Bryan and heard what he had to say about attending church last week. He loved it, and had no concerns!! Moving forward, he doesn't know if he can commit to 3 hours away from his family every week, but would like to come if he has a chance. So we started lesson #4 with him about the commandments and preparing for baptism. We brought an awesome member that really connected with him. We left him with a Word of Wisdom pamphlet and asked him to read it and come up with questions for our next discussion. It was an awesome lesson!!

Last night, we were trying to decide if we should go in at 8:50pm or try by one apartment complex that we always go to with a few investigators. So we went to the complex and found a group with two of our investigators hanging out near a fire pit. They saw us and flagged us down, and we talked for a bit. They invited us in to "hang out." I was a little apprehensive, because it was late and I wasn't trying to hang out with them without a gospel conversation. But we sat down and then our investigator Adam told us to give a 30 second elevator pitch to the group about why they should convert. We ended up having a great discussion about the Book of Mormon and picked up 2 new investigators from the group, at 9:20pm that night!! Then we hurried inside to make our 9:30pm curfew!!

Miracles are happening here, and people are sincerely;y seeking answers from the Book of Mormon. The missionaries are working their tales off to help as many people as they can, and I am just glad I can be here to witness it and to learn. I am so glad I get to be here for another transfer and hope I can continue to become a better missionary!

I hope everything back home is well and everyone is loving life!! Happy Mothers Day to all, and especially my mom (she's the best in the world). Thanks so much for the love and support from everyone!

Elder Bird


Temple Day!

5/03/17

Hey everyone!!

I'm so sorry to have missed emailing on Monday! Our P-day got switched to today (Wednesday) because we were able to the temple this morning!! It was such a blessing to be able to go and enjoy some peace and a good dose of the Spirit there. I really enjoyed it this morning!!

It is May!!! How crazy is that? It feels like it was just Christmas like last month. It is surprising how quickly things are moving out here. The crazy thing is that it was lightly snowing on our way back from the temple this morning. Snow in May!

Our week was pretty good here! Last Monday our truck went into the shop on p-day after we got all of our chores done. Our check engine light was on, so we dropped it off and then biked the rest of P-day. It was good! Definitely worked our thighs out a bit more than having our truck!

On Tuesday, we spent the day on bikes again. It was a beautiful day, a little light rain, so I had no complaints. The highlight was teaching a guy named Adam that night. Adam is a super nice guy and when we taught the lesson, he really opened up with stuff that is going on in his life. It was a great lesson! When we were done and walked outside it was pouring down rain. We had walked over to Adam's house, so the walk back would have taken 30 minutes...in the pouring rain. Luckily for us, we knew a nice investigator in Adam's same apartment complex named Tex, who graciously gave us a ride back home.

On Wednesday I went on an exchange with Elder Cluff in Arvada 4th ward area. It was a good day. Elder Cluff is a really solid elder, and we enjoyed the day together out street contacting and tracting. My companion was able to get the truck back that day, so that was nice to come home to!

On Thursday, the highlight of the day was a lesson with our top progressing investigator named Bryan Coffing at 7pm. We met with Bryan with a member of the ward named Brother Bowler. We taught Bryan about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It went super well! Bryan told us, "I was going to start Alma and got a few chapters in, but it just seemed kind of daunting. So I gave up and just re-read 2 Nephi." He is so awesome!! After the lesson, Brother Bowler invited him to come to church for the first time and he committed to come. It was so great!

Friday was a pretty busy day with planning for the week in the morning and then scouting out a service opportunity we could do with the zone at a future time. We were able to get a few hours near the end of the night to proselyte, and taught a woman named Nelly who is a new investigator. She is Native American and grew up on a reservation in Arizona. She didn't know too much about Christianity, so we got to teach the very basics, like who God is and how He relates to us. It was pretty cool!

Saturday was a snowy day! I had to break out my snow boots again!! Luckily by Sunday, the weather was basically back to normal.

The cool thing that happened on Sunday was that Bryan came to church and stayed for all three hours!! We were so happy. He wore a suit and everything and fit right in. He enjoyed it and told us at the end that we have "lots to talk about." We are excited to see him again tomorrow night!

Later that day we got a referral from headquarters telling us to go by a house that we had actually already tracted and the people behind the door were not interested. So we tried by again and were able to meet the ex-husband, who had met missionaries before and was requesting a blessing. It was just cool to be able to knock on a door and know who was behind it already!

Later that night, we were out street contacting and these two girls our age walk up to us and ask us if we were Mormon missionaries. We told them we were and they asked us to come and talk to them once we were done talking to this other guy. So we did. We talked to them on their doorstep, and it turns out this one girl named Shelby just wanted to know a bit more about what we believed. We were able to find a guy they knew in the apartment complex who came and then we were able to teach them! [Missionaries are unable to teach people of the opposite sex unless there is another man 18yrs or over there.] They made us waffles and we talked about a lot of stuff. It was awesome!! So our Sunday was just a very eventful day!!

On Monday we had a proselyting day, which was kind of weird, because it is normally our P-day. It was pretty uneventful, except for a meeting with a young man named Mason. We are teaching him the basics, so we taught him about faith, repentance, and a little about baptism. He is a cool kid, and we even were able to scheduled to have dinner with his family soon! We are excited to see his whole family!

Tuesday was one of the busiest day I think I have had on my mission!! It was packed full of stuff. It started off by driving into Thornton to drop off some reports along with the other zone leaders up here to our "car czar". After that, we drove back to our area and went to a doctor's appointment for Elder Mork at Kaiser Medical Center, which was good for me because I needed to get an A1C report taken and some blood drawn. I was also able to pick up some insulin from the pharmacy. Then, we went and had lunch with a new investigator who took us to an all you can eat pizza place. It was so awesome. After lunch, we did some service at an investigators house for a while, and when our appointment fell through, we had some time to do some tracting. After dinner, we had a lesson with a nice guy named Scott. Later we had a meeting with our Stake Mission Leader about what missionary work is happening in the zone, and then we ended the night with a quick lesson at 8:30pm. It was a super full, super fun day! '

Anyway, so the week was great! We had some lows, but we also had many miracles and tons of fun along the way. I am just so happy to be out here and to be among friends who are happy to be doing missionary work too! I hope everything is going well back home. I love you all!!

Elder Bird

The Arvada tribe at the temple!!

Me with Scott

My tie matches the wall!!


Street Contacting

4/17/17

Happy Easter everyone!!

I hope everyone's Easter was fantastic! Hopefully it was a good way to remember the Savior and all that He did for us the last week of His life. We had a wonderful, busy (a wonderfully busy) Easter here in Arvada!

The first highlight of the week came Monday night, when we found a guy named Adam. adam was a super nice guy that had taken one of our cards while on the phone a few nights back. Well, we went and talked to him again when we saw him on Monday, and he invited us in and told us he really respected what we do as missionaries! We shared the Book of Mormon with him (he told me to do a 30 second elevator pitch as to why he should join our church, so I used the Book of Mormon). We were both able to share a few of our favorite verses and they seemed to resonate with him.He accepted a copy of the Book of Mormon and we scheduled to come back and see him next Monday! he was a bit inebriated...so we will see where it goes from there. he was a really nice guy and it was a good way to end the P-day.

On Tuesday, Elder Mork learned that a recent convert he used to teach was getting endowed at the temple. Elder Olsen (in the zone) had been there for this man's baptism and was going to the temple that day. So we called President and asked if Elder Mork could tag along. President gave the go ahead! So Elder Mork was able to go and see someone he taught enjoy the blessing of the temple! Meanwhile, I went on an exchange with Elder Cluff (Elder Olsen's companion). We had a great exchange of contacting people and enjoying the day.That night, we taught one of our top progressing investigators named Scott. It was a fantastic lesson, just walking through some questions Scott had about the chronology of the Book of Mormon. Scott is super solid, and we talked a lot about working towards baptism. his hardest thing is going to be telling his family, because he pretty much knows that the book of Mormon is true. We committed him to pray about whether telling his family about baptism is right. I am super excited for him!

Wednesday was a pretty uneventful day. Exciting, because missionary work always is, but just some good street contacting and tracting. Thursday was a big day though! We had a zone conference at the mission office! we were able to learn a lot. Elder Mork and I were even asked to teach a small class on following up with our gators on commitments (we called it the "5 step check"). It was really cool to be able to see a bunch of friends and elders again. I even got to see Elder Olson, which was pretty cool! The that night, we saw another on of our top progressing gators named Bryan. Bryan is doing really well! he is halfway through 2 Nephi (he's an all star reader) and is really enjoying the Book of Mormon. We talked a lot about different questions that he had about the Book of Mormon and then taught a quick Plan of Salvation lesson. He seems to really be enjoying what he is learning and is working towards baptism next transfer! I am so excited!

Friday was a full day. The biggest thing that happened was that we were able to go back to another baptism for Elder Mork in Aurora. it was really neat to see someone else that Elder Mork had taught finally come and get baptized! then that night, we drove to the assistants' apartment and went on exchanges with them that night!

Saturday with the assistants was fun! It is always great working with some really talented elders. And, the coolest thing that happened that day was that one of the assistants was able to baptize his uncle, who he had gotten permission to teach up in Boulder. It was so cool to be able to see him teach and help a family member! It was a blessing for us to be there. After that was all done, Elder Mork and I got back together and drove home to get ready for the coming Sunday!

So Sunday was Easter, and I got to open my Easter basket from mommy. That was pretty sweet! that morning, Elder Mork and I were planning out the day and realized that we didn't have too many plans and wanted to avoid knocking on too many people's doors and bugging them on Easter. So we decided to really quick make some Easter cookies (cake mix cookies) and go around to our investigators that we were having a hard time scheduling with and hand off some treats/ set an appointment. It went really well! We had a great day at church and then went out to hand off some treats. We saw a few people and had a really good time that day!

So the week was great! We really enjoyed helping people try to remember the real meaning of Easter. it was so cool to see how empty the streets were on Easter, because people were with their families or at church. We just wish it could be like that every week! But hopefully we can help people feel that same happiness that they did on Easter all year round as they focus their lives more on the Savior. I know they can if they only let Him in, because I have felt it in my life.

I hope you all have fantastic weeks coming up!! I love you all so much!

Elder Bird

Me & Elder Mork in our truck

Us taking a break at Target - haha


Street Contacting

4/10/17

Hello everyone!

I hope everyone had a fantastic week like we did. We had a pretty awesome week! So many miracles are happening as we open our mouths and talk to everyone that comes within our sight.

Our week started off good last Monday with p-day and getting to email family and friends. Later, while walking around and tracting after dinner, we were able to street contact two new investigators! One named Brandon, that wants to see us in a couple weeks, and then one named "O" (he told us his name, and I was like ,"Oh"...). he was a super nice guy from Chicago that said he would want to see us again in a few days, so we scheduled to see him on Wednesday! It was a great way to start the week!

On Tuesday we held a District Leader Council in the morning and discussed with the District Leaders what is happening in this transfer and what we want to do moving forward. I loved it. Then we went out tracting for the day. That night, we were invited to teach the youth [12-18 yrs old] a "Welcome to the MTC" night. It was really cool! We started with a discussion and explained the book we use to teach investigators with, called "Preach My Gospel". In it are lessons about the gospel, like the Plan of Salvation. Then they all got "mission calls" and had the chance to try and teach an "investigator" that night. We had tons of fun!

On Wednesday we had a district meeting in the morning, and then went to see our new friend, O. We were able to talk with him for a while about some pretty cool things, mostly about the Plan of Salvation and some great questions he had for us. After we answered all his questions, we started talking about the Book of Mormon and coming to know if it is true. It was then that he told us he wasn't interested. It was such a bummer!! But we were glad that we were able to give him some answers to his questions about our church from us, instead of some internet site, that doesn't always have the right information. It was a good visit!

On Thursday, Elder Mork had a doctor's appointment, all the way in Brighton!! So we got to drive through basically the whole northern part of the mission. It was a fun drive and a good trip. When we came back and got to work! That night we met with a guy named Joe, who was baptized a long time ago, but forgot tons of stuff. We talked to him a lot about the Plan of Salvation and drew it out for him. He is progressing very slowly, but after we met with him, he committed to watch President Eyring's talk on the Plan of Salvation (fantastic).

Friday was kind of interesting. Elder Mork, in his last area, was teaching a family who's daughter recently passed away from cancer. He taught them in Brighton, but the daughter lived in Wheat Ridge (very close to us). So Elder Mork and I were given permission to go to the funeral, because it was being held in our zone. (I think it was inspiration that Elder Mork was transferred here.) It was a good service and included a man from Elder Mork's ward in Brighton, who gave a talk on the Plan of Salvation. It was sad, but comforting to hear the words of her father, on where his daughter is now. After the funeral, we came home and started working.

We street contacted and found another new investigator! Her name is Tiffany, and when I first approached her she started telling us about how we didn't believe in Christmas. (Don't you love it when other people tell you what you believe, and it's not true?) We had a good conversation though, and then she said she would come to church with us on Sunday. We got her information and made plans for someone give her a ride to church. After dinner that night, we went and taught a guy named Bryan. Bryan is a really smart guy and lives in one of the richer parts of our ward. We had taught him once before where we talked about the Book of Mormon. That night we found out that he had read all of 1 Nephi and so we had a great discussion on it!! He already feels like the Book of Mormon is another testament of Christ [in addition to the Bible]! Then we taught him about the restoration and he said it all made complete sense and agreed with everything!! So we asked him to pray and find his answer about being baptized by the 13th of May. It was an amazing lesson, we felt the Spirit as we talked, and just so much truth was shared. It was an awesome night.

On Saturday, the big event for the day, was driving to a baptism in Aurora, our Stake where Elder Mork and I used to serve. An investigator who Elder Mork used to teach was getting baptized, and Elder Mork was asked to give one of the talks. It was super cool to be back near Cherry and Piney Creek wards, my last area, and to be at a baptism where we could feel the Spirit so strongly! Then that night, we came back and met Tiffany's fiancee, who also wanted to come to church the next day! How awesome is that?

Sunday came! It was Ward Conference, so we had some awesome meetings with the Stake leaders there. The stake president is really, really cool. He is just captivating to listen to, and can quote scriptures and talk like nothing else. Tiffany and her fiancee came to church and went to the Sunday School class that was led by the Stake President. He talked directly to them and taught them about the Book of Mormon and the Holy Ghost. It was so awesome!! Elder Mork and I were freaking out, because we had only street contacted these people 2 days earlier!! It was awesome! That was probably the biggest highlight of our week!

So, the week was fantastic! We are being blessed so much here. I love it and can feel the Holy Ghost influencing me every single day to share the gospel and watch the happiness that comes from it.

I hope you have a wonderful Easter week and remember that it was the Savior's last week of His mortal ministry. The atonement and death of our Savior was the most important thing that happened on the earth. I know He did this for you and me, so that we could return to Him someday.

I hope you all have a fantastic Easter!! I love you all!

Elder Bird

P.S. Please everyone watch this wonderful Easter Video of our Savior - Prince of Peace https://www.mormon.org/?cid=HP_SU_2-4-2017_dPFD_fMORG_xLIDyL1-C_

Also, here are some pictures of Elder Mork and I!

1. Us at the library emailing!

2. Arvada is a no pooping zone

3. Elder Mork and I enjoying some ice cream


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Elder Ryan Bird
Colorado Denver North Mission

Contact Information

E-mail Address:
ryan.bird@myldsmail.net

Mailing Address:
Elder Ryan Bird
1250 Main Street
Broomfield, CO 80020