Monday, June 10, 2013

June 10, 2013

Well, here it  is... What mixed emotions that I feel. I am happy, nervous, sad, and confident...all at the same time. I am not sure if all that is possible.

Thank you all for the Birthday wishes. It was a good and simple day. Elder Bird bought a BOCA Juniors jersey (big soccer team) and the Elders were really kind. We have a great group of office Elders. Elder Moeller is here from Rexburg Idaho, also Elder Rodriguez, and Elder Moriera de Urugauy, and Elder Lisonbee from my MTC district.  Also the Family Tidei brought over a cake. We also had lunch with President and Hermana Parreño. They were really nice. Thank you for the cards.

President and Hermana Parreno

The week was really good. Mosies and Ruth and her husband Ruth went to a dance. They loved it and Mosies met some friends. It was a Single Adult Dance. The Familia Martinez was really kind and they went to the dance with them to help them feel comfortable. They are such great examples and help so much. I love it because they enjoy doing it also. David and Haydee, the grandparents are doing well. Haydee told us while we were teaching with Bishop on Wednesday that she wanted to be baptized. We put a date with her but she wasn´t feeling good on Sunday so she was not able to make it to church,. If she can be a little bit better prepared she might get baptized this Sunday. If not, the 22 of June she will for sure. Her daughter Gabriela is doing well also and is really close. Luis is doing well. He are praying and fasting that he can change his work schedule. He works in a bakery and Sunday mornings are his busiest days. I am certain though that if this Sunday we don´t have two or three baptisims they will be baptized with Elder Bird and his companion. That will be great. The ward is doing well. Mosies was asked to speak in Ward Conference next week, he will also receive the Aaronic Preisthood.

Today I spent some time organizing my things and reading my journal I read some inserts from my Freshman year of college. How wonderful is life and all the experiences that we have. When Christ is our vision things always go well.I also read my first letter that I wrote to President. What a hoot...half English...half jibberish. What a great way to see progress in the mission.

Also this last week we had our Leadership Conference meeting. It was the first one with Sister Training Leader and it went really well. Elder Bird and I talked about not being complacent and being good examples in our Zones. We based our presentation out of Alma 60. President talked about how we have to make connections in every part of our missonary lives to achieve the Standard of Excellence. Sister Parreño talked about comunication and established some rules about the words we use.  Reminded me very much of Papa and Grandma Crouch, the use of "guys".   I really enjoyed that.

Thinking about what I would like to say for the last time.... I think I just want you each to know that I truly love my Savior. I love the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I know that the Gospel is what it says it is. The restoration answers so many of our questions.

Well, I will be seeing you next Wednesday at 12:00 noon. Mom, Dad, Mikesell, Brennen, Alex, Harrison and McCAll.... I love you.... and I am very excited to see you. Please send my love to Grandma and Grandpa Clegg, Papa and Grandma Crouch, Grandpa and Grandma Daw and all of the family and friends.   How blessed we are to be surrounded by greatness.

What a happy time....

Stay safe and I´ll see you soon.

All my love...

Elder Austin

Monday, June 3, 2013

June 3, 2013

I hope that you had a wonderful day. I loved the story of your home run ! You are the man buddy!

Hello there Family!

Thank you so much for the emails and the birthday wishes!

This week was a fantastic week. We received 10 new missionaries from Peru, Columbia, and Bolivia. This week we will receive two from Brazil. That took up a lot of the middle of the week but we took every moment we had to teach the Vasquez Family. The missionaries that got here are solid and well prepared so that makes us feel very good. Every missionary has a story. Some have been members their wholes lives, some only have two years as a member, but all of them will grow leaps and bounds in this time on their mission. I know that God will show them their weaknesses and if they are humble and obedient they will grow so much. 

So the baptism of the Vasquez famliy, was unreal! It was a spirtual power house. All of the family was there. There was a good member turnout. President Parreño and Sister Parreño were nice to come. We were taking pictures right as they got there and as they walked in, Mosies said outloud "What a blessing!" . The Tidei family did the baptismal ordinance and that was really a miracle becuase even though we had taught the family Vasquez with them they had not met Ruths husband, but when they met at the baptism, turns out Hermano Tidei, was childhood friends with him. They hugged and Hermano Tidei told him that his son was going to be baptizing his wife. That was perfect and Luis will for sure be baptized in the weeks to come. Also David, Haydee, and Gabreila were there and they loved it. They are not saying "no" now to our invitations to be baptized, so that is a progress!! We will see what we can do in the next couple of weeks. Ruth and Moises shared their testimonios after the baptism and there was not a dry eye in the place. They talked about how they had been to so many churches, has been so disappointed with so many Pastors, how they had recieved there answer about the Book of Mormon. It was almost too good to be true. I felt like I was watching a church movie. Then yesterday right after they were confirmed by two excellent members (Cisek and Currelef) Ruth, got up first out of everybody and with her Bible in her hand bore the best testimony ever. She challenged her family to take the same step of faith. Shared again her experiences of praying for the Book of Mormon. Then read a Psalms that she said that helped her. I will ask her which one because I can not remember. While she was challenging her famlily to follow...the 2nd Counselor in the Bishopric leaned over and looked at me and smiled. Gal, I love this ward. It was 100% pure joy. Like floating in a cloud. It had to been better than whatever type of drug.:) Then our ward mission leader ( martinez) got up and some other people that were at the baptism. The ward has a huge enthusiasm. I am excited for Elder Bird and his new to companion to lick up what we can´t in the next couple of weeks.

Tomorow we have the Mission Leadership meeting. We have done so many now that if feels so normal. I love the spirit that we always feel and it is always a great blessing. 

Dad- Thanks for your letter and being so kind. Are you doing Dave Ramsey this year? Sign me up if you are. We have been going to the gym 2 -3x times a week in the morning and that feels so good. I love exercise so much. I love you Dad. Thanks for BEING...the best father in the world.

Mom- Thank you for your sweet letter.That was so nice of you. I got your package. Thank you so much. I hope that you can get all that you need to get done for moving. I am sure that it will be great.  I hope that the kids can help a lot.

Mikesell- Thanks for sending the letter. I couldn´t read it, but save it for a while. I hope that you can get rid of your cold. I love you sis. I hope that you are ready to practice your personal training skills.  Love you sis.

Brennen- I bet you have spent the next few days rushing throught the tress on your bike truly living a dream. We are so blessed to have Redfish as a part of our lives. I love you bud. Keep working hard and studying daily.

Alex- I always loved the Buhl tourney. Just tear it up have fun and build a relationship with your team. Great learning oppurtinites. I love you Alex. Keep up the good work. 

Harrision. THE GRAND SLAMMER! I laughed aloud when I read about your home run. What a tender mercy. I hope that you had a great day. I sure love you buddy and I hope that you have a great week.Keep being a stud.

McCall.- I sure love you sweetie! I hope that you have a great week and that your school went well. You are best Call.

Well this week I learned that the best way to be happy is to keep our covenants. The best way to do that is to pray, fast, and read the scriptures. The Gospel is simple but so beautiful.
I know that Christ makes our visions clearer and sin fogs whatever dreams or potential that we have.

2. Nephi 31:20

D& C 128:22

D & C 19:40-41

Well, I will talk to you all next week. Have the best one of your lives. Thank you for your prayers and your support.

Elder Austin

Monday, May 27, 2013

May 27, 2013

Hello Clegg Family,

Thank you for your letters. I appreciate them very much as always. Sounds like the Memorial Day race went really well. I am glad that you had so many people running. That is really a neat thing and has a lot of potential! Sounds like it was a lot of work and loved by those participating.

It has been a great week here in Villa Mitre. It was a normal office and area week. Moises and Rut are doing awesome. David and Edith has gotten a little cold and have stopped doing their commitments like before. We had a great lesson with them in Presidents house. They had some rather large doubts about tithing and we were a little tentative about teaching them in Presidents house, but we decided that we have nothing to hide. We watched President Monsons last conference address and that was really great. They left really good and we resolved a lot of doubts. President and Hermana Parreño are so kind. They are just incredible. We announced the baptisms of Rut and Moises for this Saturday. Rut wanted to wait for her husband, but we told her that God would bless her more if she took the first act of faith. She is awesome, so prepared.  The members are doing a good job with them also. They will be a great blessing to the ward here. They will come to do Family Search tomorrow in the center. Keep praying for David. If he decides to go, he is the Father of a large family and you could see some huge results. His son is a pastor and he puts a lot of doubts in his head, but we could not have explained it more clearer with more members. So I feel OK.  He is a great man. He have had lots of spiritual lessons in their house.  We got a surprise on Thursday, we will be getting 11 new missionaries this week, and that was not in the plans and is not part of our transfer cycle. That will be interesting and it will be a lot of movement in the mission.  Funny story for you Mikesell... We were teaching the Family Vasquez tithing with a member who was Evangelical. He is great. It got a little tense at one point in the lesson between him and David. And the member started to talk about how the blessing have came upon him since he paid his tithing and as he went to say "the blessings have come 10 fold" he brought his hand up to the sky and then brought his hand back down again.  A mixture of Napolean Dynamite and after a freethrow in JHS. Elder Bird and I got a kick out of that after the lesson....
We had a lunch with the Tidei Family this week and they are such good examples. Also we ate with the old Stake President and I love talking to him and observing him.  
A story that is not so funny and still hurts happened last night. We were contacting a man close to dark on a bridge and as we were talking a car passed by and then jumped the curb and hit the fence of the bridge. We were the only ones there so we ran over and everyone was ok. It was three drunk men. They tried to start the car again and back out, (the front part of the car was totally destroyed) we told them to get out and then when some other people showed up we moved the car out of the way, to be able to lift up the car, I put my scriptures down on the side walk. Lots of people passed by as we were moving the car and after we talked to several people, we went back to the bridge and my scriptures are no where to be found. So scripture set number two. Check. Gone.  I was a little bummed, but  then we went to house of the man we contacted when they wrecked and we were able to find and teach there... so that was good. I guess I just need to learn that it is more important that I apply the scriptures and not if they are all marked up like I like them or not. Haha, I got a good laugh out of it. If no one ever accepted the gospel through the last pair of scriptures, maybe this one will have a better chance. :)

We have been going to our ward mission leaders gym and so that has been good. The exercise has been great!

I have really enjoyed my studies this week. Some of the scripture that I would like to share.

2 Corinthians 12:9-10
Marcos 10:17-23
Mosiah 5:8
Luke 17:10- 
Abraham 1:4-
10 Axims to to govern your life, Feb Ensign 2007. Elder Hales

Dad-thanks for your wonderful analogy. I needed that. 
Mom, Mikesell, Brennen, Alex, Harrison, McCall-

Have a great last school week and I hope that your finals go well. I love you all..

I know that through Christ we can make our life visions clearer and purify our hearts....

All my love to each of you and have a great week....Elder Austin

Monday, May 20, 2013

May 20, 2013

Hello there family, 

Thank you all for you letters. It sure was great to hear from you and I am glad that you all had a good time up at Redfish. I am sure that is very pretty up there. 

It has been a great week here in Argentina. It was a normal work week without conferences. We had some great lessons with the Family Vasquez and they are all doing very well. Gabriela, who hadn't came to church yet, came to church yesteday and she enjoyed it. It was a good meeting for them. Moises and Ruth have told that that for sure they will be baptized the 1st of June, so we are excited for that. We are working with the doubts of David and Edith and they are making a good progress. We had a lesson with them with some great members in our Ward and also with President and Hermana Parreño. Thank you for your prayers in their behalf. They are very sincere and I know that they will come around. It has gotten considerable colder this week. We found a great part member family also. Well, he found us, he went to the church in his car looking for us and we were not in the church. He left and just as he turned we were returning to the church. He stopped us, it was dark and told us he wanted to talk to us. He is a good man and is going through some hard times in his life. They didnt' make it to church, but we will keep seeing what we can do to help them. We had a great meeting with President Parreño. Elder Zabellos talked about the importance of learning to speak in english in our weekly meeting.  We had the first hour in English. That was really strange. I admire President so much. He is so wise. Elder Bird is such a stud. He all service and never thinks about himself. He is the perfect example of  Mosiah 3:19. I am so grateful to be with him these weeks. 

Dad- Glad to here Dustin got up there okay! He will really enjoy it up there. Tell him that Hermano LLanos from his last area will be getting baptized within the next couple of weeks. That will make him really happy. I am glad that you are in the swing of things at the lodge. It sounds like a very fun but busy and memorable time for you. I l ove you Dad and thanks for thoughts and letter!  Have a great week.Good luck with the race this weekend!

Mom- Thank  you for your email. I am really glad that you got my letter. It is the least that I can do... I hope that you can enjoy the last few weeks of spring madness. I don't know how you do all that you do. I love you and thank you again for your email.

Mikesell- Thanks for your email. I am glad that you are enjoying the Redfish life. Sounds like you enjoyed going to state and seeing Grandma and Grandpa Clegg and Uncle Alan, Aunt Julie,  and the cousins. That is great. I love you Mikes - Have a great day.

Brennen- Glad to hear that you are doing well buddy. Thanks for your email.  Love you brother. Have a great week! Keep up the physical therapy!

Alex- I hope that you have a great week buddy. Tell the Coach Messick and Coach Sharp and Coach Clark hello for me. Enjoy it and play hard. You can learn a lot of really important life lesson out there on the court. There is nothing you can not acheive if you really have the desire and put forth the effort.

Harrison- Hey buddy!!  Are you excited for birthday number 10?  What are you doing to be doing? I love you Harrison!!! Have a great week.

McCall- How are you sweetie! I hope that you have had a great week. I sure miss you. Keep being a good helper for Mom!

Well I sure love you all.. Sound like the surgeries in the family went well. I am so grateful.  I will be continuing to pray for you all and have a great week! 

Ether 4 :11-12
2 Corinthians 10:5

Sad to here about Sister Monson. What a great lady.   Keep praying for President Monson. 

I love you all have a great week! 

Elder Austin

Monday, May 13, 2013

May 13, 2013

First off...thank you Lyly Valdes for your dearelder!  That is very kind of you to take the time to write and I am glad that Elder Watts has been able to read a little about the best mission in the world!!:). He will enter the MTC the day I finish my mission, so I will miss him, but tell him that he should be very excited and do all that he can to prepare himself spiritually. Thank you again for writing...


I hope that you are having an excellent day and that you have been able to feel just a little of how important you are for so many. It sure was great to talk to you yesterday for Mothers Day!!  I love you Mom so much. You should get my letter soon. I hope today. That would be a miracle!;)

It was excellent to talk to you all yesterday. It is strange to me to imagine seeing you so soon. It seems unreal a little bit. But like I said I am at peace and happy.

Like I said yesterday on the phone... it was a excellent week!! The conferences with Elder Zabello went really well and it feels good to be done with that. I laugh sometimes because I feel like my whole life before the mission was to prepare me for the mission. Things like getting last minute asked to be on the speech team, learning how to drive a stick the last month of high school, microsoft excel classes, ( use excel a lot with the stats of the mission), and little things like that. 

So I will write the experience that I had with Elder Zabellos...
It was great to be able to serve Elder and Sister Zabellos. The zone leaders helped  a great deal with the organization,and that helps a great deal. We drove back from Mar Del Plata and Elder and Sister Zabellos followed us and that was neat.  Elder Bird took the first shift and I took the second. I was shocked at how much Elder Zabellos drove. He drove all the way from Buenos Aires to Mar Del Plata -which has to be like 5 hours and then 5 more hours to Bahia Blanca. We got to Bahia Blanca at 8:30 and we dropped off President and Hermana and Elder and Sister Zabellos for a mulitstake meeting. Then on Friday after the conference as we sere serving lunch, President leaned over and said to me, "Elder Clegg, Elder Zabellos would like to have a interview with you." So Elder Zabellos and I went into Presidents Office. Like I said yesterday, he was really kind and spoke highly of the mission and what he saw. He told me some stories and asked me some questions about the conferences. Then he asked me if I had any questions for him and I asked him what had brought him the most success in his career, schooling, and in his church service. He opened my eyes and was so kind. As we were walking back to the conference he looked at me and told me how good life is when we live the gospel. It reminded me of a interview that I had when I became an Elder. President Buhler (from Salmon) told me that "I couldn't even imagine how good life would be if I just lived the Gospel". That is so true. It was a experience that I will treasure for my whole life. I am so grateful for President and Sister Parreño. The whole experience was something I will never forget in my lifetime.

Saturday was a great day. The Vasquez family came to the baptism in the ward, it was actually their neighbor who got baptized and is an investigator of the sisters in the ward. Nestor Baptized him and he did a great job.  He is a good man and I love to see how the Gospel is changing him. 

I can´t believe how quickly the week went by. Thank you for your prayers for the Vasquez Family. They are so special and we need all the help we can get to help them. 

The pictures are of the conference in Mar Del Plata (100 people),  and in Bahia (106), Elder Gravelle, Elder Mikesell, and Elder Bird, President and Hermana and Elder Zabellos and Sister Zabellos, and of Nestor at his baptism.

I love you all. I hope that the very busy week goes well and that you have spiritual experiences. I hope that the surgeries of Papa, and Aunt Robin go well, and that Grandma Daw can get feeling better soon. All such important people in my life. I sure love you all.

I know that the Gospel changes lives, because it helps us to change our attitude and effort. I am grateful for a knowledge of the plan of happiness that helps us grow and see life with a great vision.

I love you all. Keep on keeping on. Have a great week!!

Happy Birthday Mom!!!  I know you will have a great one.


Your son, brother and friend,

Elder Austin

Monday, May 6, 2013

May 6, 2013

Hello Dearest Family,

Thank you so much for the excellent emails. It is sure great to hear from you all.

Brennen- I am sure proud of your accomplishment in earning your Eagle. That will bless you greatly!! Thank you for being a example of living what you learn. You are the man!

It has been a excellent week. I have learned a lot and although it was very busy with the preparation for transfers and the conference with Elder Zabellos... it was a great week. Elder Bird and I had the goal to teach at least one lesson with member everyday.  It really worked miracles in our area. Teaching with members is so powerful!! Last Saturday we found a great family.  Their nephews live in Chille and are converts and were recently sealed in the temple. They are talking with them through facebook and that is a big help. But we taught them every day with members and it worked out so great. They are understanding the Book of Mormon well. They know a lot about God and have some great questions. The Family consists of the parents who (David y Edith) who have 84 and 80 years. They are the funniest couple. Every time David finishes reading in the Book of Mormon he shouts out to his wife "Mama- 18" and points at her. He was a very active member of the Baptist faith but because of some bad experiences he stopped going. They have  two daughters who live with them, Garciela, who has 48 years and has a great son named Mosies, he is 30 and single. Then there is Ruth and her husband and there daughter Veroncia. David, Edith, Mosies, and Ruth all came to church. The others had to work. They enjoyed it and it was a great experience. Also Erwin and Ceclia came to church... we have been working with them for about three weeks and they finally came. The two families showed up at the exact time in their own cars.  The family Martinez and other members were really great in helping them feel good in the church. It was a great experience. There always is a special spirit when there are investigators in the church and it was great. Martha got up and bore her testimony. She is incredible. Her knowledge is deepening and she is really loved and taken up by the members. Nestor and Raul are also doing well and sticking strong. Bishop teasingly asked for my membership records, and another Brother offered a room to rent out if I just wanted to move to the ward. I love the ward and am really grateful for them. Heavenly Father really answered my prayers this week. 

All the Elders and one Sister are here in the office. It is another great group of missionaries heading home with transfers and I am so grateful for them. I was trying to remember how many of the family nights with finishing missionaries I have been to and I think this is my 6th or 7th. 
 This week on Thursday we are in Mar Del Plata for the conference. We have a lot of set up to do. And then we get back Thursday night to prepare for the conference in Bahia Blanca. We are trying to assign out the work so that it goes a little bit more smoothly.  Your prayers so that everything goes smoothly and that it is well organized ...are greatly appreciated!!! Also this week was President Parreño´s Birthday, we had Asado with them and that was a neat experience.

Dad-  I am glad that you are up at The Fish. I hope that all the set up goes well. Thanks for your email. Have a great week.

Mom- I sent your birthday letter last Monday. It should get there on time. Next week is Mothers Day..I will be calling in the afternoon after church, is that ok?  Is there any conflicts with that? I sure love you Mom. Have a great week. Thank you for all that you do!!

Mikesell- I loved your letter. Thank you for being a great example of attitude and effort. It sounds like it will be a great week for you with Dad. I loved being up there in the spring time. It is a sacred place. I sure love you Mikesell. Have a great week. Keep strong.

Brennen- Such great pictures of the court of honor!! That is awesome. Tell Jacob congrats also. How do you feel? How is the rehab going?  How are your classes going? Are you excited for finals?  Keep growing brother. I sure love you.

Alex- How goes the battle buddy?  How are your classes? What have been your spring activities. Have a great week buddy. I love you!

Harrison- Souds like you are living it up and are also busy with all your activites. Thank you for your prayers Harrison. You the man Harrison. Have a great week. I love you.

McCall- How is the sunshine on that freckled face of yours? I hope that you can finish schools with all 100's. I love you Cally.
I love the Gospel so much.  My greatest desire is to feel the sprit and just work and change peoples lives. I am excited. Thank you for your prayers. I hope that you have a great week. All my love.

Eter 12:4
"Stick to your task till it sticks to you, beginners are many but enders are few,
Honor, power, love, and praise will always come to the one who stays."

Elder Austin

Monday, April 29, 2013

April 29, 2013

Hello dear Family!!

It has been a another great week here in the great mission of Bahia Blanca. It has been unusally warm, hot almost we are still waiting for the full sting of winter. It was another week of miracles...small but important.  Next Thursday and Friday, Elder Zabellos from the Seventy comes and so we are  in full preperation mode for that great blessing. I am excited. Also this weekend is transfers. So, surprise, life is busy!! :)  But I am just loving it.

This week we had some up and downs in our area. The people that we were really excited to come didn't  show, but like always Saturday night at the last hour we found a really great family that are from Chile.  They were all converted a little while ago from a Baptist church and now thier nephew is going on a mission.We had the first lesson with them.  It was awesome. It was a good first lesson, and then we went by on Sunday with a The Martinez family. It was a great lesson with members...text book. They got a good relationship formed and that is what is important for the first few weeks. Members are so important. How many times will you hear me say that...!?

Mom, your service stories have inspired me on Friday we got up at 5am in the morning and made pancakes for the Seminary kids and thier teacher. (7 people) Sorry for type errors...the keyboard is a little special again. But we dropped of the pancakes at 5:50 and left a note. We went back to the house and we did not hear anything from them. On Sunday the Dad of one of the seminary kids talked and told the whole story in church.  I was embaressed... it was something so little. Thanks for your great example of service Mom.

The ward is doing well. On Saturday we had a big service project with our new Bishop and that was great. I am ready to be a brick mason now, and am fully trained in whatever type or cement making. All the houses here are brick houses not wood houses. I dont think I have seen a single one.  We had a great dinner with Miguel and Martha and they are doing awesome.  They invited another friend and he is a good solid investigator. Nestor is also doing really well. We had a great FHE with him and some other members.  I am excited for the area, I feel like we are on the verge of explosion. I know that I can do more, we work in the office and then at the same time we are putting huge amounts of effort in trying to leave the office and get out as much as we can.

Dad- Thanks so much for you email. I will tell the Elders. They leave this weekend so I will see them. I am glad that you are doing well with the lake preperations. Tell the Ovesons hello for me. I will try to shoot them off a letter.  I sure love you Dad. Thanks for you great example.

Mom- Sounds like you have had a great week. I am happy for you. Are the cows in the fields already? I will be mailing your birthday letter soon. Hermana Parrrenos Mother is still in the hospital. She is stable but  not doing very well. Oh Mom, don't even think about sending anything for my birthday. All I want is one on one time with each of the family. I might ask for some things to give to President and Hermana Parreño... but I will keep you posted. Thank you for your thougthfulness! I love you Mom. Have a great week!!!

Mikesell - I will never forget the feeling that I had as I drove away from BYU after my Freshman year. It actually was hard because you are saying goodbye to so many people that you love. Very strong memories I have of that time. You will love being home and I am excited for you. You are so strong and can take whatever test that is thrown in you way. Nothing can stop Mikesell Clegg. Have a great week. Remember who you are, and just look over your shoulder.

Brennen. -Last week on crutches huh...? Good news indeed. I bet you are excited!
Now therapy. Have a great week Brennen!! I know that Heavenly Father has big plans for you!!

Alex- Hows it going buddy?  I am sure love you buddy!!  I hope that you have a great week and that track goes well. I have been running more. I was super sore one day because we sprinted a block then jogged a block. It killed my little walking legs.  Have a good week buddy. Love you.

Harrison - How goes the battle soldier?Are you excited for school to end? What are you learning?  How is baseball? I love you buddy!!  Have a  great week!!

McCall - I hope that you are doing well. I sure miss your voice! I love you McCall so much!  Have a great week.... little soccer player!

I really enjoyed my reading in Mormon 9 this week and in Jesus the Christ.

So, yes,  transfers are this week. President called me into his office this morning and told me that he was planning on sending me to the field to finish...but that he wants me to stay in the office til the end. He counciled me to keep working in the office and to leave even more from the office and get to the area, and to go out and visit zones, work as much as possible. That is what I want to do. So I will finish this magic in the office. It will be a 11.5 months in the office. I have learned so much from President and Hermana. I am so incredibly grateful for them. I am also excited to work in the ward. I am glad that they have put up with me so much.  So, life lesson of 11.5 months in the office. Diligence.... I am grateful for your prayers and look forward to a flat out sprint. The next few weeks will be busy and I am not sure if I will be able to write on Monday or not, but I will sure try.

I love our Savior. His love is real and changing... Have a wonderful week and I love each of you deeply. Hasta la próximo 

Elder Austin

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

April 23, 2013

Clegg Family!
Sorry I am a day late writing…yesterday we were in Santa Rosa observing district meetings while President had his interviews. I also was able to see the Garcia Family. They have been so blessed since a year ago when they were baptized .  They are struggling a little to get to church, we had a nice visit. They had framed the photo of the the temple I gave them and the house feels good. hope that they can get it together a little bit.
Thank you so much for your great emails. I enjoyed them so much. Thank you Papa Arlen for your great advice...  Grandma Clegg, I am glad to hear that you are doing well and that your temple session broke the temple baptism record. That is some great news... I am very glad to hear that everyone is doing well. There is no greater blessing for me!!
We were in a zone meeting last Tuesday and we were setting goals as a zone and I was sitting in the first row listening to some of the comments from the Elders and Sisters and I realized that they really didn´t believe that they could reach the standard of excellence. I asked Elder Mikesell  (Zone Leader) if I could talk and shared with them my testimony of how if they don´t believe it…they will never achieve it.  I was kind of heated, but hopefully guided by the Spirit. I left the reunion with a ton of energy and Elder Bird and I decided to do everything possible to leave the office a couple of hours early every day. It was great and we had a really successful week in our findings. Now this week we hope to bring in the member squad to get them in the church this Sunday. We finally will get a missionary leader this Sunday. It has been four months since we have had one.  But I am excited because it is Bishop Martinez, so it will be an excellent experience.
As usual it was a week of miracles as well…two that I would like to share with you.
On Friday night we were leaving a members house planning the baptism of their daughter. We crossed paths with a man and gave him a card. He was in his 40´s in a collar shirt and gym pants. He asked us if he could tell us something.  We were in a street with very little light and he put his hands in pockets. To be honest my first thought was that he was going to rob us. Then he started to cry and said, "I have been doing drugs all day, I have tried over and over again to stop, but I just can´t, I want to stop for my kids and my wife, they don´t know I have this problem" .  He was really honest. We walked  11 blocks with him to his house. He was not doing good. He kept saying, I can´t give anymore, I can’t give any more. We talked. He is married, has three great kids, he showed us pictures on his phone, has a set job. He is a cocaine addict since he was 27. We testified to him and explained what we could do, said a prayer with him outside of his house, and gave him a Book of Mormon. We set an appt. for Saturday. We went to Viedma on Saturday for interviews and got back at 6:30 and went to his house. He was there and we talked again. The problem is that he still has not told his family. We committed him to go to the baptism service. We passed by and his kids told us that he was at church already. So we jetted it to the chapel but he wasn't there. I hope that we can help him and his family. That is what I love about being a missionary, there is nothing better being put in real positions to help people.  Which brings me to my second story.
Sunday Morning we woke up and I sat down to write in my journal. I love Sunday mornings and writing in my journal. The phone rang and... long story short,   a less active members mother had passed away in another small town close to here. Her funeral was going to be held at 8:30 and she wanted to know if someone could dedicate her grave. We called President to see if it was ok. He said yes and Elder Bird and I went to the cemetery to wait for the hearse and the family to show up.  We were a little nervous and didn't really know what to expect. They called us telling us that they were leaving the funeral home and about 10 minutes later the hearse showed up.   We followed them in the cemetery  (way different than the states)  and got out of the car, there were like 25 people. We asked a man in back of the group if he knew the less active members that we were looking for he told us that they were nobody here with that name. Then we realized that this was not the group that we were looking for. We walked away respectfully. It was really sad…oh how the Gospel blesses our lives.  I am pretty sure it was someone young who passed away. We then went back to the entrance quickly for fear of missing the family. They got there just as we showed up the family less active waved us down and we followed them in. We got up to the grave and they put the coffin in place and then it was our turn. We testified of Christ and the resurrection and told them who we were. None of them were members. Shared a scripture then dedicated the grave and shook hands with each one of them. They were super grateful and I hope that something good comes out from it. They called the other Elders and told them how grateful they were. It was a little nerve racking. We then showed up to church an hour late. It was a very humbling experience. The gospel blesses our lives so much.
Dad- I was thinking about you lot today in the car ride back from Santa Rosa. I thought about the letter that you wrote me the day that I opened my mission call. Dad, I can´t tell you enough how much I admire you. The sacrifices that you have made so that our family could “live the dream”.  I know that this time is so busy for you. I hope that you know that you are in my prayers. I know of no better father, leader, boss, husband, and best friend than you. Have a great week Dad. Shovel off a snow covered roof for me will ya?
Mom- Do you ever think about yourself…ever? ... You are truly amazing Mom.  Thank you for your letter and your moral support. I think I am going to need that support that you talked about. It hurts, honestly hurts to think about this all ending. But I am grateful and happy with the work that has happened.  (just saw your  "fyi" email come in.) I hope that Ben Forsgren is ok. I will think about your questions.  Mom, I sure love you. Have a great week. Keep fighting. You are in my prayers, in those nonstop 5 trips into town a day days…baseball game days…basketball game days…soccer game days…track days… know that I am  praying for you. Brennen will be back to driving soon to help out. I love you Mom. You truly are #1.
Mikesell- Sounds like you lived the perfect experience at Long Beach. I loved the pic of you running on the beach, that sand is so great huh?! I hope that you can rock finals and that you are feeling better for your BYU race this Saturday.  Sounds like your next couple of weeks will be crazy. I sure love you Mikesell. Keep being the best. I will keep checking the moon-Have a great week!!
Brennen. How are you holding up buddy? How much time till you kick out the crutches? How is school going? Are you going to run for Student Council again?  How are your classes? I sure love you buddy. If you see Gus again tell him I love him and hello for me. Have a great week. Keep being the warrior that you Alex and Harrison are.
Alex- How’s it going? School good? How is the Book of Mormon coming? I miss you buddy. Keep being a great man. Fuerza Capo. Te amo amigo.
Harrison- Will you read with Dad and Brennen and Alex this scripture?  Eph. 6: 10-19. I sure love you Harrison. Keep up the good work. Are you reading like a champion? Reading will help you so much. Love you Bro...
McCall- hey there princess!! I hope that you have a great week. I sure love you McCall.... Enjoy school... What do you play at recess?
I love you all so much. Have a great week! I should be able to write on Monday next week.
I was thinking today about that the experience in Mark 9:22-28 I love what the phrase "Lord I believe, help thou my unbelief"  teaches us about the Atonement. It is so real and has the power to transform our lives.
Mormon 5 22-24
Moses 6 33-34
Eph. 5, 7-8,17,19,20,21
Elder Austin

Monday, April 15, 2013

April 14, 2013

Hello Family,

I hope that you are all having a great start of the week!! Is is getting hotter there?  *My question mark doesnt work fyi* so you may have to edit it.  It has been nice here this week, rained a little while we were traveling, but overall a beautiful fall. I love fall here. Everyone sounds really good. Busy time of year.... 
It was a good week... ended with lot of tests and we will see how it goes. There is surely a force that works for bad, but we always know who is going to win. We got back on Thursday, we can't pass by the family Barbosa, because their neighbors have complained about us coming. So we have been sending members to set appointments. On Saturday night we passed by with a plate of brownies and a card, a member did. She reported back to us that they were in the hospital for in a city close by. Sister Barbosa has leukemia and she is not doing well. I don't exactly know her condition but she is in the hospital and it sounds like she is not doing very well at all. I called Brother Barbosa last night to ask how they were doing. I asked him and he said >bad> we talked and he said that he did not want us to call or pass by anymore. I was quiet thinking what to say... I could hear the hurt in his voice. I think he is upset with God for what is happening with his wife. He hung up before I could say anything. I just stood there a second and thought and decided that I better call him back. He answered to my surprise, and I tried my best to testify and tell him that this was the only solution to his problems, that we loved thier family and wanted to really help them. He closed  up so much. I don't know what happened in so short amount of time. The only thing that I can think of is that his wife is doing really bad. It is a really hard situation. Like you said Dad, we are just going to pray, really pray. We are still kind of in shock. ..... 

They released Bishop Martinez yesterday. Six years as bishop. Our new Bishop is a stud and we have done several service projects with him already and so we are ready to work. 
I was thinking about how grateful I am for the wonderful Bishops and Branch Presidents that we have had in our family...we have been so blessed.  Payson emailed me and told me he left on exchanges with a Elder who just got back from Bahia Blanca, Elder Howard. I love Elder Howard and I am glad that they will be able to get to work together! 

I am not sure if I told you about the athesit and agnostic couple that we found. He works for Sony and we have had two lessons with them. They are really great people. They actually have a lot of faith. They pray with us and everything, but I think they have had some bad experiences with other religions  One of the greatest couples that I have met in the mission. 

All is well.... you just got to keep working and it will all be good. 

Dad - It sounds like you are super busy. This week starts the madness of Redfish for you. How are the snow levels?  I sure love you Dad.  Have a great week and enjoy your personal resort.

Mom - I loved your piano story  -that is special. You played the piano in public (seminary) and I can eat bannanas fine now. Our little victories... hahaha. Have you heard anything from BYU about that major... I will need to get that nailed down sooner than latter. I have that schedule conflict that I need to fix also. Could you maybe take a look at that.... Thank you so much Mom... I hope that you have a great week.

Mikesell - Long beach! That will be an adventure!  I hope that your finals go really well. I am excited for you. It was really hard for me to leave college as well. you get attached to the people and the atmosphere. You will do great though. Just keep busy. I sure love you..
Brennen - How goes the healing process? I hope that you are doing well. I bet you are a pro with the crutches now. I am praying for you and I hope that everything goes well... Love you buddy!

Alex.. How is is your team doing? So are you done now? I love you buddy have a great week.

Harrison... How is school? Are you playing soccer too? I know you are doing baseball! I love you!

McCall...I love you! I hope that you are doing well in school and in everything!! I love you so much!

1 Peter 5 :1-7
Ephesians 3: 13-21
D & C 121

I sure love you all so much! Have a wonderful week!

You are all the best!!

Elder Austin

Friday, April 12, 2013

April 13, 2013

Hello Cleggs,

How has the week been?

It was a excellent week. The tour went great throughout the mission with President.

I don´t have much time but I wanted to tell you about the Family Barbosa.

So we were waiting on them Sunday. We called the night before to tell them what time we would pass by to pick them us and he told us not to come... that they would come alone walking. Experience has hurt my trust a little and I pushed a little saying that we would love to come by and that it is not a problem, but he didn't budge. I told him that we would be praying that they made it and we would save them seats with our Bishop Martinez´s family. Then at the 1 o clock Sunday afternoon and they were not there. Bishop showed up and had a spot for them but they were not there. We were sad. I called him at 1:20 and they didn't answer. We had fasted for them...we did everything. I said to Elder Bird, "lets go to their house and look for them", he told me "if they wanted to be here they would already be here, just let it go". We decide to look for them between sessions. Literally just in that second, Elder Cruz, my old comp came out and said to us  " Hey your investigators are sitting in front of us!"  My first thought was  he has got to be joking and just brushed it off. Then he said, "No really!" So we ran to the back and sure enough... the whole family was sitting there. Sister Barbosa in a skirt and the kids were in back playing with some friends from Taekwondo. It was so awesome so we sat with them and then Bishop walked home with them.

We haven't been able to teach them this week because we haven't been here. But we have called them everyday and we have the commitment for the church. Thank you for your prayers in there behalf. They are greatly needed.

Conference was amazing. I loved President Monson´s talk at the end of the session. They all were so great!! I am so excited to read it.

Well once again my time is short...this Monday should be normal. This morning I translated with President and a Elder who is struggling and the psychologist of the area who doesn't speak Spanish. That was a really tender experience.

Well I love you all with all my heart. I love the gospel so much.

Have a great weekend...

Thank you Mikesell and Amy for two wonderful letters. You are both inspiring.

All my love,

Elder Austin

Mosiah 3:19

Monday, April 8, 2013

April 8, 2013

Hello dear Family,

I am writing from a internet cafe in Mar Del Plata. We left Bahía Blanca at 7 o'clock this morning and while President is doing interviews we are observing the district meetings in the mission. We were in Necochea today. Roberto and Melissa put a marriage date for the 26 of April has been a good and we have had some really great conversations with President and Hermana Parreño. They are just awesome. 

Tomorrow we have three zone meetings. Wednesday we are in Tandil and Olavarria and on Thursday we are in Trenque Lauquen heading back to Bahía Blanca. So I imagine I will write Thursday or Friday.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your prayers for the familia Barbosa. They went to the conference. I will tell you the whole story later, but they went to Bishops house after and drank mate. Bishops family loves them. GOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am so excited for them. It is hard to be away from Bahía, but the Sisters and Bishop will be helping us out. It was such a miracle!!

I loved, loved the conference. It was incredible. I will tell you my favorite parts later. 

Dad, Mom, Mikesell, Brennen, Alex, Harrison, and McCall -- I love you!! Have a terrific week!!

I love you so much. I am glad to hear that Alex had a good birthday and I hope that Grandma Clegg did too!!

Could you pass me Tanners Email address?

I love you all so much. I just can´t tell you enough. I am so grateful for the Gospel in our lives. I love our Savior and I know that this is his work.
Go get em Tigers... You are in my prayers....

Elder Clegg

1st Corintios 13:11

I promise that one day I will be able to write a normal letter on Monday. Thanks for your patience!!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

April 3, 2013

Better late than never right? I hope that you had a very Happy Easter!! What a wonderful time of year....

I am so sorry to be writing late again. These last two weeks have been the busiest weeks of my life. We have barely slept, but some how I don´t feel tired. And I have never been happier. After the transfers of last week we had one day in the office and we worked the afternoon in our area and then we left at 10:30 at night in the bus for Necochea. We got to  Necochea at 3am, slept on the floor, and then we had a great normal missionary day. I worked with Elder Cano who finishes his mission in May. His companion is Elder Yarger, my old companion, and the missionary I trained, also one of my best friends. We had a good work day. We found a less active family with kids who are not members and then, they had a appointment with some converts. Roberto, Melissa, and Estefina. I could not believe the blessings that they had recieved since I was there. Roberto and Melissa have finished their house. They were reading in Alma in the Book of Mormon together. You could feel the spirit so strong. Melissa was reactivated while I was Necochea and her boyfriend Roberto came to church several times and we had a great relationship.  They are not married so he is still not baptized. But as I write this they are in Necochea getting a marriage date!! They are such a great young family. I love them so much! We got back to Bahia at 9:30 on Friday night and then we had a meeting with President for the leadership conference that we had yesterday.  We spent part of Saturday and Sunday preparing for that conference and also worked in our area. It has been raining a ton last week. It even flooded a few houses on Saturday.The streets literally were rivers. We got up early on Sunday to prepare talks. I was last and I only had three minutes so I just shared a scripture and my testimony. Nestor who received the priesthood was passing out hymn books. Bishop took him to a service protect on Sunday afternoon. Gal, there is nothing better than seeing members form relationships with new members.  It is so so important!!! On Monday we took the stats of the mission,  had a meeting with President, put up tables for the conference, and finished the presentation. Mom, when I read the email on Monday that it was time to register for BYU classes, I couldn't ´t believe it. I tried to do some of it... but my mind wouldn´t let me. Thanks for your help. I trust you!  

The leadership conference yesterday was incredible. President's message was just so awesome! To give a quick summary he talked about  Isiah 40:31 and waiting on God. Then we showed us the painting called "The Raft of Medusa" it is a French painting from the 1800's. Look it up...but it is a really interesting story. But he talked about how each of us are at a stage in the painting. There is a person on top the raft who is waving a flag and calling for help. He encouraged us to be that person no matter what stage of the mission that we are in. .

After the conference we had a true miracle....Elder Bird and I split to work with the Zone Leaders of Tandil because their bus didn't leave till this morning.  So I went with Elder Forbes and we went to the family that I told you about last week...the referals. We were able to teach them. They are AWESOME. The family Barbosa. They accepted everything. They have a baptism date for April 27th. I am so excited for them. Sister Barbosa, the Mom, has cancer, she has very little hair, but is always smiling and is a fighter. Brother Barbosa drives taxis in town close to here. They are literally looking for exactly what the gospel can offer them. They are just golden, golden, golden. I hope that we can do our part and help them all that we can. They said they will be able to come to General Conference and so your prayers so that they can make it to one of the sessions would be great. They live one block from the Bishop, who is helping us a ton right now. After the appointment we were running back to the church. (I had my phone on silent and they called me a ton during the lesson because I had the keys to the car to take other Elders to the terminal...but I knew they would figure it out and take taxis) 

I have realized that one of the great lessons that I needed to learn in my mission is... 


In every area I have been in God has put families who are just ready to accept the Gospel. It is unreal. I was thinking about the scripture that Papa talked about in D&C 112:10 and Proverbs 3:5-6.  There is a great likeness in trusting in God and being humble. 

Dad- Thanks for your great letter. You are Superman. Go get em. I gave Elder Mikesell and Elder Gravelle your email. With the rule change they can email you now. They will be great. Also, is there any other positions open anywhere? Dustin Sonderegger, another Zone Leader from Boise would love to work up at Redfish too.  He also is a BYU-I student. I highly recommend him but I also realize there is a order to all this. I just know the type of employees that you want, and these people fit the mold. I was thinking maybe he would do a great job in the Store?  Sure Love you Dad. Thank you again for you letter. The other day a missionary asked me what is the key to success is. I told him to not compare yourself to other missionaries. I told him that this is not a business, this is the biggest team sport that there is. 

Mom- Thanks so much for your help with the classes. I think I would like to take that first class for the American Studies Major. You won´t believe it but we just got a new Elder here in the office who is in charge of the ecomonics of the mission. His dad is District Judge in Idaho Falls. I have been talking to him and he gave me his infortmation to contact him when I get back. I have been thinking (but not too much :)) about maybe a law degree and I actually like the idea of maybe trying to be a judge down the road. But, hey we will see. Got to have VISION.  I love you so much Mom.....You are truly an angel...100%

Mikesell- How did your meet go? I hope that you are doing well! I love you a ton! When are your finals? Did you see the moon?

Brennen- You can still be a stud even if you can´t walk. Double knee surgery....Wow! THREE MONTH RECOVERY? Will you still be in crutches in July? We got mountains to climb! Keep your mind busy and I loved the service stuff that you are doing. That is great. You are a stud B. Keep it up. I love you. Try to read the Book of Mormon in 30 days, andPreach my Gospel too!!

Alex- Hey All-Star!!   HAPPY BIRTHDAY on Saturday! When are you going to send me a sock with your autograph?  Sounds like you are balling it up and doing well. How are you coming in the Book of Mormon? I sure love you buddy. Keep being a good example. Have a great Birthday...I haven´t been able to get a letter off to you yet, but you will get one, don´t worry.

Harrison- Did you color a lot of eggs? They don´t have Easter eggs here. Will you save me some? :) I love you buddy.

McCall-  Are you excited to listen to the prophet this weekend with General Conference? (Church on TV as Mom says) You look so grown up in all the pictures. I sure love you Cally. Have a great week!

Grandma Clegg - I hope that you have a very special birthday. I love you and am eternally grateful for your legacy. Thank you for being a true queen!

All my love and I hope that you enjoy conference. 

Elder Austin

Monday, March 25, 2013

March 25, 2013 March 27, 2013

Hello dear family, 

I am sorry that I could not write yesterday. It was a group of 19 that left and a group of 13 that arrived. Since Sunday night we have not stopped. Today was really a good day and I felt we all felt the spirit a great deal during our transfers and it was a neat experience. Elder Bird is is a stud...I don´t remember if I told you that he is my new companion? 

The week was great. There is so many things, I don´t really know where to start!! :)  A lot of the time was spent in meetings with President helping with transfers. I have learned so much with him. It is incredible. I feel so inadequate sometimes, but President trusts in us so much.  This transfer we have the focus to get out and work in the zones. So tomorrow we are going to Necochea to to observations. On Sunday we had a huge miracle, (there are miracles everyday) a member from another ward came up to Elder Costanzi (we were all together for the stake conference) and told him he had a reference in a street that is in my area. So I spoke with the member and it is reference of GOLD. I am super excited we went by on Sunday and we talked with the father of a family of 4 kids and MARRIED!! His name is Feliz and his wife has cancer and is not doing well. We talked with him a while outside because they had company. He has a lot of hope and is really interested in learning. We gave him a Book of Mormon and set an appointment yesterday at 8. I told him I would call him if we couldn't make it. And right at that hour is when we had to be in the airport to pick up the newbies and so I called to reschedule the appointment and he told me that he has reading the Book of Mormon and that is is enjoying it. We have a appt. tomorrow right before we go to Necochea. I am praying that we can teach with lots of power and that the family can except it. That was a miracle. The transfer cycle went well. My mission heros all left and my brothers. I want to share what I learned from each of them. 
Elder Calarco- Was in my first zone and is from Argentina. He was my zone leader there after emergency transfers. He taught me how to love being in the streets and how to teach boldly with a ton of love. He taught me in great deal how to baptize. He just cried together as he left. I learned from him the importance of taking control of your mission and not letting your circumstances effect your level of work. I love him
Elder Ryan Garrison- Elder Garrison is from AZ. We were at BYU together but never met. He was friends with Amy´s roommates. He was my zone leader when I was a district leader in Santa Rosa. He taught me how to lead a district, how to verify, study and correct with love. The best zone leader that I have seen. Taught the importance of going for the goal. He will be at BYU.
Elder Jacob Horward- You cannot not love Elder Horward. Also a great zone leader and just loves the work. Always happy, always positive, always enjoyable to be around. Never got discouraged. 
Elder Andres Costanzi- My companion as an assistant for 6 months.  He is truly my brother. Taught me the importance of sacrificing everything. Being a perfectionist. Charity, how to build other people with your words and self-less service. He is from Argentina and will be moving to Canada with his family this year. I have so many memories with him. He, Elder Bird, and I prayed together our last night together. That was a huge spiritual experience.

I could write something about everyone of the great missionaries that finished. I feel so blessed to have been able to have brushed shoulders with them.

I really enjoyed 3 Nephi 27 this week. The Hermana Parreno is back from Spain. Her mom still is not doing really well, but she is of good spirits and is super strong. I sure am grateful for them.

Well I love you all more than you know. I love the Gospel. I love the miracle that has happened in my life that some call a " mission". I know I can grow. I know that there is not limits with faith. 

I love you all and am so grateful for your huge example, your support. I couldn´t be  more blessed. 

Have a wonderful week!!
Wishing Brennen a very healthy recovery from knee surgery this week! Will be remembering you in my prayers like crazy!  Love to each of you!!
I look forward to reading your letters tonight.
Have Papa and Grandma gotten my letter I sent to them?
All my love,
Elder Austin

(March 25, 2013)

Hello Dear Family,

We are in the the middle of the madness of tranfers. It has been enjoyable. I am sad but happy for this great group of missionaries that are leaving. We are getting ready to take them over to Presidents House for thier last interviews and I don´t have very much time. I will try to write more today, if not I will write tomorrow. We slept very little last night. We had to go the the terminal to pick up Elders and Sisters at  12:00, 1:30, 3:00 , 4:30 and at 6:00. I have learned during transfers that the Atonement helps us with our physical strength also. It is also a miracle every transer that all the missionaries get to thier new areas safley traveling in buses to places they have never been before.

We had a stake conference in all of Argentina yesterday It was super special. Nestor went and he loved it. He is doing well. Bishop went and visted him with the counselor and we had a FHE with him and a family that the husband is less active. I and Elder Bowen spoke and also Sister Stevens, Elder Clayton and also Elder Nelson. It was a great experience. Their messages were very inspired. It was great.

Turns out the North Americans are not coming for visa problems.We are recieving 13 missionaries. (4 Sisters and 9 Elders). 

I read a great talk this week from Elder Eyring called "This Day".  Please read it.

Well ...all the Elders are here and I need to take them to Presidents House.I am sorry to be so rushed. I will write more later.

I love you all with all my heart.

I love my Savior.

Elder Austin

Monday, March 18, 2013

March 18, 2013

Greetings from Argentina, and yes, we are proud of the Pope...are we ever proud!! I have some good stories about this week. I´ll wait to tell you some....

In all seriousness we lost Ana Maria, an investgator who came to church once and to Nestor baptism partly because of the news. She told me that she felt like Christ had taken back his church with the Pope.... but she is still willing to listen to us and her boyfriend went to church yesterday. So I am confident that she will find a answer to her prayers, she is sincere in her desires to get to know God so I trust in the message. 

Nestor, was baptized Saturday by Claudio Tidei, he is the Dad of a really special member family here. There lifestyle reminds me a lot of ours, he works in southern Argentina and is 21 days at home and 21 days at work. They are a neat family. Nestor is doing great. He bought a suit for his confrimation and he happy and really has desires to change his life. The ward has taken him in well and that is a HUGE step. Martha gave a talk yesterday. Tears were everywhere. She is a stud. The ward is doing good. Today we have a FHE with Nestor and another family as well. in a hour we are going to a appt with President Parreño. I love going to lessons with him. 

Also, big news for the Yost Family... we had a emergency transfer and Elder Yost is now my zone leader. I was pumped when President told us that and then we knelt in prayer together to ask if the decison was right. So I will be seeing the Elder Yost every week if not more. He is in a trio right now and next week he will be  with a new zone leader because they two that he is with are finishing now. So that will be great.  This week is tranfers. I am loosing so many of my brothers this round. It will be brutal. 8 zone Leaders, 1 old AP and a lot a great sisters. 19 in total. We will finally be receiving missionaries from the states on Tuesday, with visa problems we havent recived a missionary from the states for about 6 months. 
We had a great service project this week lifting beams up for the Elders house. That was fun.  Construction here is another ball game.

I have loved my studies this week and I have felt a difference in my teaching. I love persuading people with the spirit, that is one of the most satisfying feelings as a missionary.  

1 Samuel 15:22
Gal. 2:19-20
Eter 3 19:20
3 Nephi 19:28
D&C 50: 28-30

I would love to talk more about these scriptures with you but you can read them and think for yoursleves.

Dad- Thanks for your email. You sound good and I enjoyed your experiences from the conference. So Jordan Gravelle is fine with the docks and he want to do it. Also Jamin Mikesell (mikesell´s future husband) :) wants to work there as well. I know that they would be great dock guys. But I also understand that there is a order to things. but they both want to do it. So if there is a way, that would be great. Sure love you Dad. Thanks for being a great priesthood holder.

Mom- Thank you so much for working out the roommate/apartment thing. I couldn´t ask for better situation than that. Thank you! I hope that you enjoy your time in Vegas (not in a wordly way) . I am glad that you will be able to go to the temple. Tell Jon and Raquel hello for me. Does Jon have a Book of Mormon? I sure love you Mom.

Mikesell- So glad that you were able to have a good time in CA with David and Rio and with Uncle Kerry and Aunt Lisa. That is wonderful!!Thank you for your example of gratitude and happiness...always I admire that so much. I sure love you Mikesell. Thank you for your wonderful example.
I love you.

Brennen - Sounds like you are having a great tennis year. That is wonderful.  You go to the Doc´s soon don´t you? Good luck. I love you Brother. Keep strong.

Alex- Thanks for the updates. I forgot that it was that time of year. I sure love you buddy. Keep up the good work in school. 

Harrison- Whats happening buddy? How is school? Did you learn a lot this week?

McCall- If you are in spring there that means that it is getting colder here. The leaves are starting to change and we work with jackets now. I love Fall here.  I love you McCall....

I realized this week that I have learned so much in my time here in the office. I am eternally grateful for the examples of President and Sister Parreño. They are real people, and they are REALLY good people. 

More than anything this week. I want you to know that I love our Savior. I love our Father in Heaven. I love the restored gospel. I think of all the blessings that we have and I always come to the same conclusion.. that these blessing are to bless the lives of others. That is the only way it makes sense to me. 

"I pray that we will have the courage to extend the hand of fellowship, the tenacity to try and try again the humility to seek guidance" President Monson.

I really, really want to see a family friend to enter into the waters of baptism. Keep praying and trying to find someone who is ready to accept the gospel. You all have a huge influence with so many people.

I know that God knows each of you and loves you. He has a plan for you.

I love you all. 

Love, Elder Austin

Monday, March 11, 2013

March 11, 2013

Hello there Cleggs,

What a wonderful week that it has all been for you. I was glad to hear that Ash´s farewell went well and that you were all able to see a lot of family. I am sure excited for Ash. I know that she will be an outstanding missionary. Tell her I love her and that I will be praying for her and her family. That is neat that she and Cass could go through the temple together. I love that.... also glad that you had some great Redfish time Dad with the young men from the ward!! I love those young men campouts that is the best!!  Mom, sounds like you are "man-ning" the fort back at home like a good soldier. You will be greatly blessed!!
Well this week was a excellent week. I feel like I have grown spirtually and that is a good feeling. I think I was in the airport 2 times this week. Oh, a really funny and cool experience. One time we sent the Elder through security and behind us walked up the "Bahia Estudiantes" -the basketball team from Bahia. They were huge black guys. As they passed by us the line got backed up and we started to talking to player called "Lee". Turns out he is from Indiana. Played for TCU, against BYU. And then he played in the NBA for a couple years and now played in Argentina for 5 years. He doesn't speak a lick of Spanish.That was a neat experience. We didn't get to talk too much about the Gospel but we explained what church we were from and talked just a little. Small world.... The blessings of being a BYU basketball fan.:)
Nestor is dong great in a couple of hours we have a Family night with another great family in the ward with him. He is ready to go this Saturday. The Ward is taking to him really well.  I love the ward. The sisters are doing good. Elder Bird is a stud.  I love him and Elder Cruz is doing well. He is fighter, he has been through so much in his life. I really respect him. 
                                           President, Elder Bird, and Elder Clegg

Yesterday we passed by a old investigater that we haven't been able to find in a while. The lady who worked at the terminal and her family. It was her birthday and we talked a little bit. There was a another lady inside who told us she had read the Book of Mormon and she said she didn't belive it. We asked her if she had prayed and she said, "No one ever told me I had to pray!". So we told her clearly that she had to pray, then she went off on the normal "it doesn't say anything in the Bible about the Book of Mormon" line that is a favorite here and we shared with her the scripture in John 10:16 and  the spirit was thick. She opened up and we have a lesson with her at 6pm this afternoon. The spirit is the most important thing there is is missionary work. That was a neat a experience.

Today I went running with Elder Huey and we found a grove of trees and we stopped and thought and prayed.It was a great afternoon acttivity. Great stuff.
Well my time is a little short today.

Dad- I hope you are doing well and feeling that Redfish fire... Sure love you. Thanks for being the best.
Mom.- Thanks so much for your wonderful thoughts in your letter. I don't think there are better roommates possible. I am super pumped for that .Thank you for your help!!  Answer to my prayers. I love you Mom!!

Mikesell- I hope that you are doing well. I hope that you can get better for the race in CA this week!!  I will be praying for you. I sure love you. You are amazing.

Brennen- I hope that your knee surgery can go well  when you have it in a couple of weeks and that you can get better soon. Keep strong my man!

Alex- Sounds like you are doing well. I love you man. Keep growing that testimony. Love you Bro

Harrison - I love you bro! Have a great week!  Be great brother.-

McCall- Hey sweetie1 How was your first week as member? haha

I love you all so much.

Elder Bird and I have been getting up at 6 this week to study because of the shortage of time we have. I have loved my morning studies. You feel such a great difference!!

I love you all with all my heart. Keep strong and have the best week of your lives!!!!!

Elder Clegg

2 Cor 12:10
Moroni 7:41
D&C 59:23

Elder Clegg and Elder Bird

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Monday, March 4, 2013

March 4, 2013

Welcome to March!

Thank you all for your wonderful letters!! I especially loved the pictures of McCall's baptism and the district champs. That is awesome. It is so great to see pictures of you all!! Thank you for taking the time to write.

It has been a excellent week here in Bahia. We received all of the new missionaries just fine and it was fun. We got 18 year old Elders and 19 year old sisters. They are young. After we got done explaining some of the mission rules (one of them being that we can not play soccer) and we saw their reactions I said to Elder Bird..."They come in boys and they leave men." They will do great and I am excited for them. The mission changes us all so much for good. The sisters are doing well in our ward. I am excited for them and the ward took them in well. They will be able to help a great deal with less actives. There are things that I have not been able to do very well here with the little amount of time we have left after our office work situation. Sister missionaries work so well, they really do amazing things. For example last week we were given a family that were member referels. We were not able to get to them beforeWednesday becaue of all the movement with the new missionaries. I love the sisters, but when it is transfer time they are a lot more work... : )  ) Anyway, the sisters were in the area, just happened to knock their door and they talked to them and invited them to church!  We came by the next day and talked to them as well and they (Jose and Ana Maria) showed up to church on Sunday. It actually was a testimony builder for me of the fact that this is not our work. It is Heavenly Fathers. He won´t let my lack of time, or weaknesses stop His work, he will just use someone else. haha They loved church and we will see how they progress!! They are not married, but we will see. 

Nestor, is progressing awesome. Started work at 10 at night, got done at 10 in the morning and showed up at sacrament meeting at 10:55. He has accepted a date completely for the 16th  and things are going well. He has accepted tithing, chasity, and the word of wisdom. He had a great lesson with him and Bishop. Bishop is really excited and pleased with the ward growth. On Friday we had lunch with his Mom who lives next door to him, and the sisters were going to eat with the Bishop. His Mom couldn't make us sack lunches though after all because she was gone so they called us inviting us to come. I told him thanks but we couldn´t because I was with my companion, another Elder from Tandil, and a sister who spends her day in the office because she hurt her ankle and can't walk. He said "no just come, just come" I said " No Bishop we don't want to bother you. " He then firmly said come. So we went and we were six missionaries in his house for lunch. It was a good time. It was a spiritual experince as we talked about the the work is "hastening". I did splits with Bishops son yesterday and it was a good time. I love Bishops family. They are solid.  The ward is doing well.

Miguel and Raul blessed the sacrament this Sunday together. That was really special for me to see them up their suits.  Miguel in his wheel chair blessing the Sacrament. Tender moment. Martha is the Secretary in Relief Society. She bears her testimony to everyone in Sunday School. This ward has done a great jobs with these special converts. 

Elder Bird, the other new Assistant, is a stud, super humble, and just loving. He is a perma-grin. I just love being with him and he has the assistant thing down, we have a leadership conference on Wednesday. Mikesell I don´t know how serious or how much you are liking this Carter, but Elder Bird gets home in January. FYI!!

Elder Yost was in the office on Wednesday, he was showing all of his pictures to President Parreño and his wife and they were shocked at such a big wonderful family. It was fun. Elder Yost is a super hard working missionary. He talks with everyone and just doesn´t stop. He is district leader of 4 sisters and 2 Elders and is doing really well. I love seeing him.  Tell his family that I love them.
Dad- Thanks for your letter last week. I have written on the back of my agenda "The other side of the pancake" as a reminder. Thanks so much, it meant a lot to me. I am glad to hear that you are doing well and am also excited for Cally.  Did you see the application of Jordan Gravelle? I love you Dad. Thanks for being the truly perfect father. 

Mom- Yes I did get the package, thank you so much Mom! I am so glad that McCall received the letter. That took a lot longer. I am also glad that you had such a productive week. There is nothing better than reaching your goals. Thanks for the talk--- I did read it and I just loved it. Jerimiah 17:10... I love you so much... Have a great week Mom!!!

Mikesell- I am so happy for Cass. I am glad that I will see her. We will go teach some guests and knock some doors. I am glad to hear that you are doing well. I sure love you Mikesell. Keep being the best you. Go get em tiger....I hope you leg gets better. I love you!
Brennen- What a great "stripling warrior" you looked like there in white with McCall. What an all out stud. I am just so proud of you and I love you with all my heart. Keep being strong. Thanks for being a great friend. I know that you will dominate this semester. Keep going for straight A´s and keep your vision on college and what you want in your future. I love you brother!

Alex.... CHAMPION.. oh man I loved the picture of that!! You are quite the "baller". What are your spring sport plans....I love you little bro. Keep on being the CHAMP. How is your Deacons doing? How is your testimony? Sounds like there is a campout planned this weekend at the lodge huh? Good times!

Harrison- How is life little brother? Did you like McCalls baptism? It seems like just yesterday you had your baptism! How are you doing in school? I love you Brother..... 

McCall- .... What a very special week for you. Heavenly Father is very proud of you and the choices that you are making. I love you McCall. I am sure happy for you. I miss you and love you. Keep being great. Big hug....

Thank you for all that you do.... I love you and am so grateful for you. Have a wonderful week. This is the Gospel of Christ...
Keep being great. 
All my love and prayers...

Elder Austin

Pictures from McCalls baptism----