This weekend several 16-18 year olds in the stake went with us missionaries on mini-missions. It was a lot of fun, they even said so, even though I think most everyone was dreading it for some reason. Our bishop asked the 2 boys that went with us how it went. One said, "It's intense." Our bishop was impressed. Earlier that day we drove by a regular blue car and the same boy said, "Whoa, that car is intense." So yeah, he's got to learn some more adjectives.
Elder Valencia got transferred this morning to Santa Cruz. It was really sad to see him go - he was the type of companion I could work with for 6 months or longer and have no problem with it, so 3 months didn't seem long enough. This is the first time I knew who my companion was going to be before the day of transfers, possibly due to some sneakiness on my part:
We were in a meeting with the stake presidency and high council yesterday with our mission president. I knew all the missionaries coming into the stake except who my companion would be. I was reporting this at the meeting: "All these incoming missionaries are great men We are also getting a new missionary in the Almaden ward, but I have forgotten his name," and then I looked at the mission president to fill us in.
Irritated, President Jackson's booming voice filled the room, and it was directed at me.
"You didn't forget who it is because I never told you who it is."
He paused a moment, and then told us who it would be. Elder Serat, from Haiti. Sweet! He was the one that replaced me in Los Altos. I've heard he works hard and can dunk a basketball. A double-threat. I'm sure it will be a blessing being with him, for one because he can update me the progress of people in Los Altos we both worked with. You see, when I left Los Altos, I couldn't help but feel like the 7 1/2 months there were a waste and my efforts there didn't really affect more than 1 or 2 people. Don't get me wrong - I'm really grateful for those 1 or 2 people - but the area seemed a lot worse when I left it than when I came. So far I've found out that one person we taught went from thinking Joseph Smith is a scoundrel, to bearing testimony of the church, and Ben Prudence (the one we baptized there) will be going to the temple soon. Awesome.
Happy Birthday to Dad. It's still weird to think that he will be 60 this week. That seems like "grandpa age" to me. But I guess he actually is a grandpa, so it's cool.