Monday, December 30, 2013

A Wonderful Week Around Christ (Dec 29)

G'day all!!

This past week has to have been the best week of my mission, no exaggeration. Bendigo has been SUCH AN SWEET AS PLACE TO SERVE AND IT HAS ONLY BEEN THREE WEEKS!!!! FAIR DINKUM!! ;)

Anyway, first of all the ward members spoilt us heaps with lollies, bickies, and heaps of leftover meals. Never have I had to indulge in so much food as I did on Christmas Day. Who is complaining though aye? NOT THIS GUY! (MY waistline may be but she'll be right) and now New years is coming up. A new year to work towards bettering ourselves and lifting others. That's what it's all about!

Anyway, some funny things happened this week. First of all being in a 4 man flat is funny as because I'm with two missionaries who had to learn English. They sometimes speak in a broken tongue which is hilarious as, and the best part is when they hear American slang that they've never heard before... because they just keep saying it over and over and over and over again. I'd give you some examples... but that'd be bad. 

To add to the awesomeness, the Bishop called us on Saturday morning and asked for our assistance with some service. 

Turns out... we had to help put out a bushfire in a vineyard of a less active member and her non member husband. Someone started a fire with some farm machinery and it sparked it and BAM 75% of the vineyard in flames! It was hot as and such but it was awesome. We walked around with buckets and poured them on all the posts. It was insane seeing the damage that a simple spark can bring... looking over the landscapes it was like looking at a green freshly planted pasture of grapes, then a desolate burnt wasteland with smoke rising from the ground. The best part was he didn't know we were in a evacuation zone. Technically no one was supposed to be there because of potential fires... but no one told us this and the Bishop didn't either. LEGIT! :D 

The best part of the week was talking to my family, followed quickly after some wonderful experiences with Elder Worsencroft. Bendigo is such an awesome as place. The work is so plenteous and the people are wonderful. We got invited to stop by and see this bloke named Brad, one of your potential investigators, on New Years Day. He wants us to teach him how he can bring his life back on the straight and narrow path. 

Then, yesterday we had a lesson with one of our investigators named Deckland. He had been taught formerly but lost touch with the Elders. He is gay, and smokes, but is such a sincerely nice and loving guy who has gone through... A LOT of unfortunate and horrible things that shouldn't have happened. The hard part of agency aye? Sometimes you get yourself into horrible places when you don't have the Light of Christ in your life. My testimony has grown so much. I love it!!! Anyway, we had a member with us named Mitchell Rechter, the brother of our Ward Mission Leader. He got back from his mission in April and he is SOLID AS. HE served in Germany somewhere and we've become quite good mates. He reminds me a lot of Nick Nadeau actually which is comforting in itself. So, with the testimonies of three Elders we sat down and talked to Deckland about how he could build his faith. We shared with him and bore witness of the truthfulness of the Gospel, and how Jesus Christ and His atonement make everything right in life that seems wrong. Elder Worsencroft looked over at me and whispered "should we invite him to be baptised?" and I just was overwhelmed with a "YES!!" So that's what we did. It was powerful. Deckland cried and as I invited him to be baptised, per Elder Worsencroft's wish, I had that overwhelming confirmation that everything I was doing was right. I FELT the pure love of Jesus Christ just wash over me, and I just knew from that moment that 1) I was saying exactly what needed to be said and done and 2) I KNEW that Jesus Christ lived, died, and lives now for me and everyone. It was exactly what I needed. I felt as if I took a bite of the white fruit of the tree of life that Lehi talks about in 1 Nephi 8. It was incredible. I LOVE THE GOSPEL!!!

Oh, and Deckland accepted the invitation with FLYING COLOURS! WOO!!!!!!!

This week was just amazing. I love seeing how the gospel makes everything better, and more happy.


-Elder Sargeant

Me and Elder Hirata posing like straight thugs. ;)

Sunset, lollies from Christmas, and workout time!!!

 Elder Smith, Elder Judd, and I posing in Mooroopna the day before I got Elder Worsencroft.


G'day all! 

This past week was quite hectic with all the transferring and the Mission Christmas Party which turned out to be a BLAST!

I'll start with my new companion and first born son in the wilderness as we call it on the mission. His name is Elder William Branson Worsencroft from Tooele, Utah and he is the MAN! He's 20 years old, the 2nd youngest of 8 and paraglides for fun... yeah.... sweet as. I think the best thing about him is that he reminds me of my Bro... ELDER SAM GISH! His mannerisms are SO closely related to you Sam it's ridiculous. I LOVE IT. His desire to learn, work, and serve is amazing and he genuinely loves. He is an incredible missionary already and I cannot wait to see how he turns out later in the mission.

The Christmas Party was a blast! Despite the new missionaries coming in and losing their luggage for a day (that was fun) we were able to enjoy a beautiful meal together with heaps of meat and potatoes and such. Also, we had a talent show which was cool! Last we had a mission video that each zone made. They had this one story of an Elder named Elder Howard from New Zealand who was called here almost a year ago. He ended up serving in an area near his father who had left and moved to Melbourne a few years back and got permission to not only see his dad... but meet him... and then BAPTISE HIM. HOW AMAZING IS THAT?!?! Heavenly Father puts so many people in the places they need to be. It's amazing.

So, my new area is called Bendigo. It's about 2 hours away from Melbourne but about 1 1/2 hours from Echuca! It's a bigger city area with HEAPS of potential. The ward is great, genuinely loves, and already has us all booked for Christmas Lunch and Tea + Skype. 

I'm staying in a 4 man flat with Elder Hirata from Kushiro Japan, and then Elder Tojong from Cebu Philippines. THEY ARE SO MUCH FUN. Basically... we have rice from breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Legit, and very good. Funny enough my companion cooks almost ALL the meals we eat and he loves rice. Match made in heaven. It's so much fun to be there.

We had some cool miracles as well! Our first hour of tracting, Elder Worsencroft and I were able to find five people that were interested in meeting with us. MIRACLES. The fire that comes from Golden (new) missionaries is awesome. It's giving me such a boost.

Anyway, I'm so happy here! We've had some pretty funny experiences already and heaps more to come so stay tuned for the action in Bendigo!


Well, Merry Christmas!!!! Hope all is well. It's the best time of year as we can reflect on the things we've done, and remembers our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and how much He has done for us. It makes me think of all the things I can do more to remember Him not only just during this time of year, but every day. 

Love you all heaps!! ENJOY THE SNOW!!!!
(It was 40 C here two days ago---105F ish)
--Elder Sargeant

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Moo-cows, bike falls, Hippos, and Christmas plans are---TRANSFERED?!? (Dec 15)

G'day all!!!
Well, I heard a quote describing the gospel that went something like this. "The purpose of the Gospel is comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable." Just as I was getting comfortable in Echuca with my wonderful companion Elder Judd, I get a called from the AP's last night at about 8:54pm.

"Elder Sargeant, how you goin'?....That's wonderful! Did you enjoy your Sunday today?.... Good on ya guys, that's the way. Well, there is a new intake of missionaries coming in this Wednesday and President Maxwell has decided that you are going to train one of them!"

I was in complete shock! Thoughts like "Right before Christmas??" and "Things were just getting rolling down here" popped into my mind. I accepted the call, with no other choice of course, and realized.... why was I complaining?? I've always wanted to have a Mission son! My firstborn in the Wilderness as we call them often out here. I was humbled as I reflected on my attitude after the call. I was being selfish and inconsiderate of what Heavenly Father wants and needs me to do. I was getting to comfortable and now it's my chance to help another missionary experience the joys and hardships of the mission life, and learn to LOVE the gospel as much as I have learned to love it. I love those moments of reflection and humility. I'm SO KEEN TO TRAIN AND BE IN A NEW AREA!!! Even if it is before Christmas, she'll be right mate! :)

Anyway, this past week was heaped with fun adventures. To start, I am a living example and witness that trying to answer the phone while riding a bike is a NO NO. I was stupid enough to give it a go when we were riding on a sidewalk. I answered and to my utter surprise I looked up and saw myself drifting to the left...more...more... BOOM SMASH INTO THE BIG BUSHES. Mate... it was SO funny though. I dropped the phone and quickly picked it up but just started laughing my head off. I apologized to the person on the phone and said I'd need to call them back momentarily.

My companion raced back and just started dying laughing as I got up covered in leaves, dirt, and a big grin on my face. You live and you learn. Never TALK AND RIDE, despite it's funny consequences. I reckon Heavenly Father gets a kick out of those moments as well.

Thursdays have been designated as our "Tysoe" day. The Tysoes are a wonderful family that are quite big into dairy farming. We teach their less active son named Matt, who came to Mission prep and stayed at church for all 2 hours AND wore his suit, and then we do about 5 hours of service on the farm to get things situated... I GOT TO MILK COWS!!

Times almost up! I apologize!!

SHOUT OUT TO GABE AND MARK!!! CONGRATS ON THE WEDDING AND SEALING. I AM SO HAPPY FOR YOU AND BELIEVE YOU ME I WAS THINKING AND PRAYING FOR AND ABOUT YOU ALL DAY YESTERDAY!!!!!!! :) I saw the photos and LOVED them heaps. Best wishes to my wonderful sister and new brother as they begin their adventures and new life together, for time and ALL eternity. :)

Thelma is getting baptised on the 1 January!!! SHE IS GOLDEN AS AND JUST LOVES THE BOOK OF MORMON and coming to church. Never have I met a more prepared and willing child of Heavenly Father. She just wants to truth. plain and simple. She has found it. This church is true.

I love my mission!!! I'll be better next week with time and photos.. please forgive me!

Also, we got invited to a Cantata in a Uniting church by a potential investigator named Sally who sang in it. It's wonederful being able to experience the joys of other faiths as they prepared and worship Jesus Christ during this Christmas season.


-Elder Sargeant

Heat waaaaaave (Dec 8)

G'day all! How ya goin??

This past week was pretty legit, not going to lie. It was HOT AS but she'll be right, because with heat comes sun, and with sun comes tan, and with tan comes funny photos... (which I didn't take any but my companion Elder Judd did. DANG was he RED.)

Anyway, let's start out with some amazing adventures. In the beginning of the week we were a bit down because our investigator Thelma was not home still from the funeral she went to almost two weeks prior. However, after trying to go visit with a former investigator we had the idea to go try Thelma one more time. We biked over past the post office on a street called 'Haverfield St.' and made our way on the narrow strip of pavement surrounded by gravel. After what seemed like ages of peddling through the intense breeze that felt like an oven, we made it to Thelma's humble flat. Bikes parked, helmets off, hair fixed, shirt adjusted and now it was time to knock. Her curtains were open! This was a big indicator that she was home.

I was first to the door so I began the missionary knock I do. (Knocking to the tune of Mario.) After waiting for a few moments, we heard no dog bark, and knew she must be gone. We disappointingly turned around and hopped back on our bikes to peddle around to see one last person before lunch.

Despite our slight frustration that Thelma wasn't home, we had the peace of mind that she was at least in town. As we made our way back towards the postoffice, we saw a little older lady walking her dog on the side of the road in a sweater with a red scarf. THELMA!

There she was, walking home just in time to see us. We chatted for a couple minutes and found out she hurt her knee during the funeral and would be in town for a while! This warmed our hearts as we realized that Heavenly Father answered our silent prayers. She had been gone for 5 of the last 6 weeks and with her Alzheimer's it's tough to keep her on top of things when she leaves for ages and forgets stuff. However, we said we'd stop by sometime that week and invited her to church.

Peace at least.

Fast forward to the next day. The similar circumstances were there. We were peddling to other appointments which all fell through. With sweaty brows and backs from dark backpacks we made our way past the post office again, when we though 'hey, let's go call into Thelma.' As we made our way to her flat, we were greeted warmly by our friend. She let us in and we sat down in the cooled air of her living room filled with a green couch big enough for 3, and two armchairs. We took our usual seats and began talking to her about her adventures in Melbourne. She seemed happier than in times past, more at peace, and we found out why.

Soon after the conversation ended, she pulled out a black piece of paper form the funeral. It said something in regards to her friend's death and how he was forever asleep. She asked us as sincerely as a starving child for food, "what is it that you believe happens again? I can't remember quite what really happens."

The spirit just poured into the room. My heart melted a bit as I recounted memories in the past of her exclaiming with conviction her testimony of the Book of Mormon. Hope rose in my heart for Thelma, as our golden investigator. We brought out some laminated cut outs of the 'Plan of Salvation' and began from the beginning. She LOVED every second of it, and we helped her remember all the parts to it, at least the truly basic elements she needed to know. It was beautiful seeing how the simplicity of teaching her was all she needed to feel that what we were saying was true. It was in these moments that her memory of the Gospel principles we have taught her came flooding into her mind. I love that about our Spirits and our Bodies. Though we physically may be limited, our spirits are divine in nature and have capacities beyond our own comprehension. She remembered what she knew to be true, because of the power of the Holy Ghost. Cool aye? I think so.

That made our week so much better. We've had so many little things like that happen that make our days worth while.

However, church was just as good, but filled with some interesting moments.

Elder Judd and I were given the privilege of preparing talks for this week. It was a wonderful experience to speak and everyone seemed to enjoy them. Ah, stress gone, no worries. All we had to do was enjoy Sunday School and "bob's ya uncle" (She'd be right, aka everything would be okay.)

Turns out... Sunday School was not quite as expected. The teacher is a wonderful older man named Elder Bellomo. He is a gifted teacher in that he knows so many stories and talks that Apostles and Prophets had given in the past that you could never have a moment of silence. However, this particular day he decided we'd talk about the Armour of God (Great! That's good for investigators!) and... the Law of Chastity.

This was a particularly sensitive subject for April, one of our mates who we found door knocking. She came to church and we've just barely started teaching her. You see, April comes from a broken family. She has two kids from two different dads, and 1 on the way with the father of the previous baby. Her mum was a prostitute, and knows only what it's like to live in what society would classify as the "normal" home.

The discussion was heated and the worst part was that most comments seemed to be given ignorantly towards April. She, however, being the devout Christian she is was able to feel the spirit and take the new found information of what Heavenly Father expects and desires for us in this life regarding families, our bodies, and our procreative power.

It --was---a--nightmare. Clearly, things were hard at first but the Spirit came in and enabled the tension to die down. The members were really supportive of April, especially the wonderful Sister Betty Snowden who held her hand during the meeting.

After Elder Judd and I apologized for the awkward lesson and reassured her that she was in no way judged, at all, and she wasn't which is true. She smiled and said it was all goods, and told us of her mum and growing up. The morals of today have been all she knows, and that was enough to get a little bit defensive over.

However, all the members of the branch comforted her, loved her, and made her feel welcome... luckily.

That was intense. We went home for lunch and just laid down on the couch absolutely smashed from all the emotions we were feeling. Elder Judd was just like "dang... that could have been bad." Luckily, all is well and she wants to continue learning :)

OH! So, the Zone leaders over the Missionaries in our Zone (so about 14 companionship covering about an 11th of the Mission) came down for exchanges with us. That was fun as! We were able to do some service for a branch member named Brother Tysoe. He owns his own farm and so we were able to let the Zone leaders milk cows while we simply cleaned up all the rubbish. That was fun. Elder Whitehead, my good mate, is one of the Zone leaders. He is from New Zealand and LOVES "moo cows" as they call em here. He was in heaven doing the milking...even though one of the cows relieved itself on him. All goods, he didn't seem to care.

Best part was we went in after for Tea and a FHE and there was a wolf spider on the ceiling that freaked the other Zone Leader, Elder Munro, out so bad he screamed. (He hates spiders even though he's about 6'2 and quite large in stature.)

I took a photo!

Things are great here in Echuca. Christmas is coming fast as!!! Hopefully all goes well back in the homeland. Enjoy the cold and the snow for me ;) It's SUMMA TIME HERE BABY WOO!

Cheers for all the letters and prayers. They mean HEAPS.

With Love,

Elder Sargeant

Watch tans and NO pumpkin pie (Dec 1)

G'day g'day! How ya going mates?

This past week has been pretty awesome, not going to lie. I have learned to really love it here in Echuca Victoria, the Bush, or as others call it "regional Victoria." I laughed when I heard people call it that... it's just the bush I reckon. Anyway, I'll start off by saying HAPPY THANKSGIVING! And, HAPPY DECEMBER!!!!!! I cannot believe how fast time is going aye? It just seems to be devoured, not just nibbled. Things just keep going and going and it makes me happy knowing that I'm off doing the Lord's work here in Australia.

Some sad news... since my last companion went home I've started to lose my developing Aussie/Kiwi accent that I had! Since Elder Judd is from the states, he is about as American sounding as can be. It makes it hard to not naturally switch back to my native tongue, but... all goods. She'll be right mate. Still got HEAPS OF TIME :)

So our week has been spent just going out and trying to find through our own means. We've been quite fortunate as we've been out and about the area we are in. We've been able to find a Tongan lady who isn't a member but who has a son named Michael living with here who IS a member and Potential missionary! He's young as but LOVES the missionaries so we are going to be spending heaps of time with them, and hopefully learning some tongan. Also, we were able to find a GOLDEN lady who has just blossomed in the Church. Her name is April W. (Can't spell her last name) and we found her tracting AGES ago. Elder Pearce never wanted to go back but with Elder Judd being here we decided we should. We knocked on her door with high hopes and excitement only to find that she wasn't home. We pebbled away but were prompted to turn around when we saw a bright yellow taxi driving down the street we just left. Elder Judd was the one who initiated the pursuit back. Satan was definitely trying hard as he placed a lot of doubt into my mind. Luckily, Elder Judd was able to dispel any doubts and we ended up inviting her to our Ward Christmas Party.

She accepted happily and came! The night was A BLAST FOR HER! She felt so at home with the members and it was as if the members wrapped her up with a giant blanket of love, suited just for one who was new to the area and was in desperate search for good friends, and a good place to raise her young children. She was invited to come to church without us even having to ask! She came, LOVED IT, and then went to a fast breaker at our Branch President's home. It went extremely well as she just simply meshed with the people in our small branch. It was such a blessing seeing how members really are the key. We're going to help her mow her lawn on Tuesday and are excited as she wants to be taught. Hopefully all works out with it.

So, the title is called "watch tan" because well.... Elder Judd and I have been on bikes for the past month! It's been awesome being among the Aussie's here and getting waved at, laughed at, and seen. The funniest part of the week was when we made a 9km bike trip out to visit a potential investigator that we had GQ'd (general question--- basically teaching by the wayside or just talking to a person while biking around to our appointments). He was not home, but this group of ten year old boys were riding around on bikes in their neighborhood. It was CRACK UP. The ring leader was a cocky and confident kid named John who was asking us heaps of questions. He's from America too... which I don't believe from his obvious Aussie accident and look. I could be wrong. Anyway, Elder Judd in hopes to impress these young minds decided to pop a Mono (or Wheelie as we call it) and he pulled up too much and flipped the bike underneath him and just smashed on his heels. It was CRACK UP seeing the kids laugh for ages at him. He's all good though. In the process, we ended the day biking a total of 40+kms, with only sweaty pits and a mean farmers tan (with Watch tan as well) to show for it. All goods.

Anyway, life is good, things are great, and the work is moving forward. I've found that my time as a missionary has become so precious to me!!! I have ages to go which makes me happy as!

Well, that's about it for the week. Love you all heaps. Hope your week is well and not too cold hahah.



Elder Sargeant

We got randomly breathalyzer tested... Came up... 0! :D

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Missionary Life-It's Legit as Mate! (Nov 24)

G'day mates! Kiaora!

Well this past week has been pretty legit I would say. Let's get right into business!

My new companion Elder Judd is simply... THE MAN. He has taught me so much since we've been together and he's such a blessing to me. He's from Las Vegas, is funny, has a dry sense of humour, and a VERY different personality to me. He's laid back which makes it so we can get on quite well. My favourite characteristic he has.., HE WORKS HARD.
This week we were able to catch up with Thelma, our Irish investigator of 74 years of age who went on Holiday for two and a half weeks. I have to admit, I was humbled by our visit with her. We called in and had a good chat about her experiences. Since she has beginning stages of Alzheimer's disease she tells a lot of the same stories. She'll be right though because she's an awesome lady. Anyway, we started talking about what happens after we die because she's convinced that she is going to die soon (she isn't going anywhere! :D) We read out of the Book of Mormon with her Alma 11:42-45. SHe LOVED IT!!!

I had a feeling to ask her if she felt the Book of Mormon to be True. She exclaimed "I KNOW THAT IT'S TRUE! IT HAS TO BE!"

My heart just burst with joy as I heard those words. She has accepted a baptismal date of the 14th of December but we may have to push it back.

I was humbled because sadly... I doubted that she would read while away. She said she has been and it has brought so much light into her heart and mind. Despite her disease... the Spirit and the Book of Mormon have helped her gain more faith.


Anyway, we were also able to do some fun stuff together. We took the bus from Echuca to Wangaratta because we are out of K's in our car. It was my first experience taking a bus anywhere for public transport sadly, so I was keen. Since we are out of K's for our car for the month we ARE ON PUSH BIKES!! THAT'S THE ONLY WAY TO GO!

Not only do we get heaps of exercise, which I love personally, but we get to talk to heaps of people as well. It makes the big difference in an area when people can see Missionaries out and about in town.

We've seen some good miracles come from it as well, despite me having three popped tires.... (there was a rip in the seam of the tread that pinched the inner tube and burst it).

Oh! We were blessed with the opportunity to go on Echuca's most famous attraction: OLD AS PADDLE STEAMERS!These are ships that take people up and down the Murray river, which is located right through the middle of town, and is the main tourist attraction of Echuca.

Our Branch President, President Richardson AKA President Rob Dawg from New Zealand has two mates we are hoping to start teaching soon. Anyway, we were invited over for tea on Tuesday and family game night with the Richardson family and Paul and Dion, their mates. They are COOL AS! They are some of the most humble, normal, and fun people we've ever met here in Echuca and they ask heaps of questions about us and the church. Anyway, Saturday we got a phone call from President Richardson asking if we were free at 3:15. It just so happened that we were and he told us that Pauline had got us tickets to go on the paddle steamers. What a charitable lady she is! We went, and had a BLAST seeing the river and meeting heaps of people from all over the place; People were from Wales, Holland, Sydney, and other places as well. We got to talk to heaps of them and leave some pass along cards as well.

The work is moving forward and I just have to throw this in... I LOVE MY FAMILY!!
1) Mum and Dan. You two are such amazing examples to me. I am so proud and happy for you two and getting sealed together for ever :) Wish I could have been there... NOW IT'S TIME TO SPOIL GABESTER AND MARK MUAHAH!!!

2) GABESTER! Mate... Gabesta... you munta. I love you heaps! I am happy as to see your wedding photos and hear about your build up to the wedding. I love your little emails, your fun stories, and the adventures you go on. You're the best sister I could ever have.

3) HEATH: I have honestly been quite astounded by how much I want to become like you. Your qualities, life, talents, and ambitions are all ones that are righteous and good. It makes me aspire to become like you, my own man, but following the same pattern and life you have. LOVE YOU HEAPS AND I HOPE SCHOOL IS GOING WELL!

4) Emmaroo!! My wonderful Sister in Law! Gosh, I cannot imagine life without you. I never imagined that I'd have as cool of a Sister in Law as you are. Your quiet dignity is noticeable by all who see you, and your patience and genuine love is far reaching as well. I Love you heaps :)

5) GISHES!!!

Okay.. Hold up... Let's be honest.... I should just get a name tag that says "Sargeant-Gish"
You are amazing people. Chase. I am so proud of you and all you've become. I have to say I'm gonna be sad as to see you leave but keen for the experiences and growth you'll have on a Mission. You've become such a wonderful example to me and I am proud as of you mate. Love you heaps.

Poppa and Mama Gish: You have no idea how amazing you are. Your example to me is unable to be described. All in all... I some it up with 1 word: Love. That's all you give and all I feel from you. Thank you so much!

GAGE! Little buddy you're a stud muffin mate. I cannot wait to see you again and wrestle with you and see your drawings. I reckon you'll be heaps taller by the time I get back too aye. Gosh... how time flies.

Last one: Momma Rose!!! Thank you for your note to me. I often think of you and your family and all the wonderful things you've done for me. Thank you for your love and prayers and I hope you and your family are happy, healthy, and blessed for all you do.

That's all mates! Until next week.... AND IT'S A MONTH UNTIL CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!! :)
Turoo! Kakite!
Aroha Nui!

With Love,
Elder Sargeant

A box of Lucky Charms that my Mission President and his wife got me!!!! :D

Sunday, November 17, 2013

"The Church is Fair Dinkum" (Nov 17th)

G'day all!!

"The Church is Fair Dinkum." Fair Dinkum!

That was a quote my last companion Elder Pearce told me. We had some good laughs about that one. :) Anyway this past week was a bit hectic, chaotic, and wonderful all at the same time!

To start, we've seen some awesome miracles through... interesting means. I'll explain:

My old companion Elder Pearce loved to try new ways to find people. I found this refreshing and HILARIOUS as we would come up with any idea possible. Some were washing people's windows in P-day clothes, going up and singing hymns with a Ukulele to people, or my last and personal favourite... RIGHTEOUS STALKING!!!

That's right! We were stalkers for a day! But not in a creepy way.... Well I sounds bad but it's ALL IN THE NAME OF THE LORD AND HIS WORK!!!!

So we were on our way to an appointment and Elder Pearce was like "aye, Elder Sargeant... what do you say we follow this person to their house?" I looked out the window as we drove past this aboriginal girl. We reckoned she was an islander but she was not. I thought to myself, well... never done it before so might as well give it a go!

I agreed and we pulled over and pretended to make calls on our phone. She passed us without even looking our way and we waited until we couldn't see her. We pulled out and followed her and discovered that she walked into a home with heaps of cars in the carpark.

We told ourselves we'd go knock it the next day and see what happens....

The next day came and GUESS WHAT HAPPENED?!?! A aboriginal man named John answered the door and was nice as to us. He told us that he had see missionaries before and that we could come around when his wife was home so we could talk. The next day we went in, talked to them, and immediately they wanted to come to church with us!! MIRACLES HAPPEN. Heavenly Father wants us to try different things to find success... even if it's HARMLESS and RIGHTEOUS Stalking :)

I love it.

Anyway, My companion Elder Pearce unfortunately had to go home.... he had some things to take care of in the family and such so we had to E.T him. It was SO SAD!!! Of my three companions he has definitely been my favourite. We got on so well and I learned a lot from him.
We spent a night and a morning with our Mission President and that was such an awesome experience. They are the nicest people in the world and I love being able to build a relationship with them. They made us the best tea ever consisting of some type of salad that only my mum would know, pork chops, baked potatoes, steamed veggies, and to top it off pumpkin cake with a cream cheese frosting. I usually deny desserts ( or try) but this time I could not.

Anyway, President and I had some good chats together and when we got to the airport Elder Pearce had a hard time getting on the plane. He teared up as we hugged each other to temporarily depart. He will be back in a years time, but it was sad as... even President/Sister Maxwell teared up. The love was so strong.

We had nicknames! "Sarge" and "Make-Peace" Good times...

My new companion is legit as though. He's from Las Vegas, Nevada and has HEAPS of talents. He DJed back home, is a star tennis player, makes his own music, is smart as, and knows a lot about the Gospel and teaches extremely well. He's such a blessing in my life! I want to develop some of the skills he has and no more perfect opportunity than now.

Well, that is about it for the week. Love you all heaps and hope all is well back home.


Elder Sargeant

Elder Pearce and I flexing

Elder Pearce and I 

Our Branch President and the young men did some service for us in our backyard and wrapped our furniture and then froze all our cutlery.... cheeky devils

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Precious Time (Nov 11)

G'day all!

Well, this week was amazing and there were many experience that made my testimony grow heaps!

We had 6 people at church on Sunday and that was a miracle in itself! One family, Melissa and her young kids Emily (11) and "Maka" or Mikayla (8) were welcomed warmly and the spirit was so strong.

I love this work.

I'm going to have to make this short because time is almost out. I apologize for my lack of time management, but I feel as though other emails were more important at this particular time.

Time has always been something that we have no control over. And that time is precious. I was informed today that my brother, Nick Nadeau, was killed a few days ago when we was coming home to see his family from BYU-I.
Time is precious, but knowledge is peace. I love knowing that there is a Loving Father in Heaven who is watching over him right now. I know he is in a better place, and I cannot help but feel sad for the loss of him. I loved him. He raised me in some aspects, and I know that one day I will see him. The plan of Salvation is real, and my prayers are pouring out to Sister Nadeau, Dan, Tommy, and Paul. Stay Strong, Stay True, and Smile. There is hope for a better life to come.

I cannot say I haven't shed a few tears over this, nor can I say that the sting of death is not hard. However, I know that it is swallowed up in Christ. "And it shall come to pass that those that die in me shall not taste of death, for it shall be sweet unto them;"

God be with you Til we meet again my wonderful brother. I Love you heaps.

But, Life will go on. I'm so grateful for the Gospel and the truthfulness of it. :) I Love my family, I love My Savior, and I love the peace that comes from it.
I hope this isn't too sad, but next weeks will be better! Be safe! Make smart choices, but remember that there is a time and a season to everything that happens. :)

Love you all heaps!!!!!

-Elder Sargeant!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

"I'm the Black Jesus" (Nov 3)

G'day g'day!

This week has been quite an interesting time for me as a missionary. I have to say that since I've been out I've really seen the other side of life. People here in Echuca come in all forms, colors, shapes, sizes, and types... and that is the same everywhere, but here seems to be an exception to my little home town in New Hampshire.

I'll explain this, and the title of my post now.

We were given a referral from a lady we have been striving to teach! She told us about her mum, and it turns out that she is a less active lady who was baptized a few years ago. We went to visit the referal but without any luck. It was a hot as day out, about 30 Celsius and 86 F, but we decided to knock a few doors nearby. We met a lovely blind man, a couple of blokes rooming together, and finally... "The Black Jesus."

This man is an Aboriginal man that we said hi to while walking towards his home! His sister was outside and went in to get him and his nephews. He walked out drunk off his face and yelling at us... and yet personally I felt some sympathy for the man. He stands about 5'6, short buzzd black hair with a M shaped hairline. He is missing heaps of teeth, and usually wears shorts, jandles (thongs or flip flops), and a blue singlet (uhh... wife beater). He told us that he is worse than the devil and is the Black Jesus. After some simple smiling and talking, he grabbed our hands and asked for us to say a prayer to him. So, we offered a prayer, and miraculously he calmed down and said for us to come inside.

We walked into the living room which consisted of some worn blue couches that circled the area, and then one recliner chair. I'm assuming that was his chair because next to it was a bottle of grog that he had no problem downing before we continued our chat about God. Then, simply, he told us to sit down and tell us about what he believe.

He confessed that he had murdered 3 men, has been a chronic alcoholic for years, and is close to "sleeping for good." However, despite these things, along with heaps of foul language and other such crudeness... I felt a profound love for the man. We chatted about his brother who had recently died, and through tears he told us of his fear for death. We consoled him as best we could by simply telling him that there is no need to fear death, there is peace after this life when we turn towards God.

He told us he loved our words, the scriptures we shared, and the "warmth" he felt in his heart. We tried explaining to him about these things and what they mean for him... but he had been drinking non stop for about four hours. However, he told us to keep coming back to see him and each time has brought that same sense of love and spirit.

I Love being a missionary! I love helping other people, even when they exclaim they are worse than the devil and are "the black Jesus." I Love how Heavenly Father allows His love to come through us for others when ours in insufficient. It makes the hard days worth it when you feel you can be a vessel for the Lord and His love and message.

To add to the fun, we were able to bring a boy named Kyle to church yesterday! He is 15 and was... well.... fact baptized about four months ago by previous Elders.


Anyway, we ran into him at the park with his mum and family and he wants to become a Mormon. He loved Young Mens class and he is seriously the funniest kid I've ever met! He has a dry sense of humor so he never cracks a smile when he says crackup things, but he basically has a punchline for everything that anyone says. He is more simple than other kids, or rather he has some learning disabilities, but HE IS THE MAN!!! I reckon that despite his past experience he is completely capable of turning around and embracing the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Mum, I also have to say... I'm sorry I never helped clean the house. In the two areas that I've been in thus far, I've spent heaps of time CLEANING out old flats and closing/opening new ones. Tassie was this way, and Echuca is the same. We were asked by the Mission Office to assist the Senior Couple Elder and Sister Curtis to close down a flat in Echuca that was for the old Senior Couple.

We spent about six hours total helping out last week doing yard work, weeding, moving furniture, and finally... scrubbing walls. The labour is much more redundant than I had ever anticipated but I learned a few new cleaning tricks and a life lessons. Cleanliness is of God, and Mum.... I don't know how you did it back home. In all seriousness after about 1 wall I was bored out of my mind!! However, we had a job to do and people to impress so it was worth the pain.

So mum... I'm sorry I never let myself help you. I hope you can forgive me... and allow me time to help you with the New Rye Beach house! :D

After cleaning we were treated to a free dinner at our Branch Mission Leader's Pizza shop! It is GOOD AS! We are spoiled here aye... free meals, a place to go work out every morning at our Branch President's house, and cool as young men. Blessings!

I had a warm chicken Salad and a slice of Supreme Pizza. Everyone else got random stuff.

LAST BUT NOT LEAST..... I got a package!!! I ordered new 2013 compact genuine leather scriptures since my old ones are falling apart... and they are ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL!

Let the record show that never in my life, before my mission, have I been this excited about having new scriptures. Let me also tell you... scriptures are legit. Need I say more?

Anyway, things are looking very well here in Echuca. I was informed  to my great happiness and excitement that Dan Han, our chinese investigator in Tassie GOT BAPTIZED LAST MONTH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ah.... I Love the mission.

Anyway, that's about all I can really think of for this week! Hopefully all is well back home. For those that have been writing letters to me... I'm sorry for being slow as to write you back. I get really busy at night these days, and P days are hopeless. I still LOVE you HEAPS and appreciate your letters so much. You have no idea how much it means to open a letter and feel the love that comes from the words expressed.

Until next week.. turoo!

Love you all HEAPS!

Kakite Ano,

Elder Sargeant aka Elder Satini (Samoan for Sargeant)

Baptism of Eloise in Mooroopna!

Elder Munro (Kneeling), Elder Yim Tae- Cheung (Standing in back), Eloise, Elder Smith, Me kneeling in front, Elder Pearce next to Smith, and Elder Whitehead on the far right

Sunday, October 27, 2013



This week was SWEET AS!

To start out, I received my birthday package from my wonderful and amazing Mum and from the amazing Dan the Man my step father! It was filled with contents that will not be discussed because of time! However....  THANK YOU MUM AND DAN!!!!!! You have no idea how much it meant to get a package. It was everything I needed.

This week was good because we were able to go to Melbourne! My companion had to take care of something that required him to be there so we got to take a little trek out to the center of it all. During this time I was beckoned by a lady in the office named Sister Epa! She is awesome as and works in the office part time to take care of all the supplies and badges and stuff like that. Anyway, she called me over as Elder Pearce was busy and told me to answer this mans question concerning Brigham Young. Well, turns out I was in a for a long...long phone conversation that started out good then went very one sided quickly.

At first we exchanged greetings and small talk but then I asked simply for his question.  His question was about Brigham Young and a statement he made ages ago about African Americans and the church. From that moment I knew it was going to be a sticky conversation because it brings heaps of drama all the time I reckon. Anyway, I could tell from the moment we began discussing that he was only in the conversation to try to false the church. He really did not want to hear anything that I had to say! It was quite a hard experience as I tried quite hard to just let the Spirit guide and forget my own frustrations in his lack of letting me get a word in.

It got to a point where he was basically tell me to denounce my belief in the Church, and to deny that we have a living day Prophet. In that very moment... I can honestly recall the whisperings of "Just do it... he'll leave then!" and things like "He'll get off the phone with you if you just say okay and give in." To my horror I thought over these thoughts with shock. Never in my life had I had this experience. I remember after my heart sunk, I had this other thought trickle in the back of my mind that said... "Testify. You know it's true." That's simply what I did. I bore my testimony of what I knew. It was powerful to me... it brought tears to my eyes, and a very flustered man on the other end of the phone. I learned a powerful lesson that day.. actually a couple.

1) Bashes don't get anywhere so don't get into them.
2) When you're prompted to do something that "invites and entices to do good continually" DO IT.
3) In my moment of testing.... I can proudly and honestly say that I did no give in. When Satan and his workers were there to tear me down, Heavenly Father was there to bear me up with his Spirit. I've always wondered about those times where Prophets have been asked to denounce their faith and refuse, and then died. I've often wondered if I was put in a situation of that depth if I would do the same thing, and I think that this deep inner question was answered through this experience. I, simply put, doubted my doubts before I doubted my faith. Because of this, my testimony is SO MUCH STRONGER OF PROPHETS, THE CHURCH, AND EVERYTHING! I Love those teaching moments that we are constantly put in.

I also learned not to give out your mobile number to anyone like that because he called the mission office 4 times asking to speak to me and me only, then our mobile 2 times. Luckily our voicemail says the names of other missionaries so he has to simply call the missionaries in his own area ;). President Maxwell even got to talk to him because he called the office so many times! It was wonderful. I cannot help but feel a sense of love for Michael as I hope he one day sincerely wants to hear about the Restored Gospel and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It's true!

Then, Saturday came and we were able to have a ZONE PREPARATION DAY!!!!! IT WAS SWEET AS! We picked up the other Elders near us and drove to the Zone Leader's flat. Then we got heaps of food to cook a feed, and played sport (basketball, touch rugby, and other non-physical games) for a few hours. I got burned as on my neck,face and arms. Turned into a tan though! Fair dinkum. Then we had District conference and had transfer news! That was exciting and sad as we found out those that were staying and going.... but luckily most are staying!

Anyway, HEATH! MY wonderful Brother. I saw a bloke driving a Deloriane on our way to Zone P-day and thought of you. Just thought I'd throw it out there.

Also, on our way down we witnessed a Kangaroo get SMASHED by a car. No blood or guts, but the thing flipped, did a 360 over the hood of the vehicle, and then simply just... well... sat there on the side of the road looking a bit in shock. I'm assuming it died but my goodness was it the funniest and quickest thing I've ever witnessed! For my first legit Kangaroo.... it was not how I expected to see it.

Heaps of photos are on the way. Life is good, the mission is good, and I Love being able to serve the Lord in this glorious work.

That's it for now!!

Oh, I also found out that Mum, you and Heath may have the Belgium nose... but I have the Irish Hairline ;) YEAH, That's the way!

Well, cheers for all the letters, love, support, and prayers. They are far reaching and deeply impacting me.

Love you all heaps!!
Elder Sargeant

Elder Whitehead, Elder Pearce, Sister Shurtz, Leota, Elder Sharp and Me

Paintball---rugby----and the blessings of Heaven (Oct 20)

G'day g'day from Echuca, Victoria!

The heat is started to show as it was a throat closing 32 degrees yesterday and last night! Elder Pearce and I are currently on a K's fast.... WE RAN OUT OF K'S FOR OUR CAR!! All those baptismal interviews sure add up aye?

It's all good. Being on push-bikes again is a blessing! More people to see, more exercise to have, and more opportunities to appreciate the beautiful world we live in.

Well, onto the week. You're probably wondering why it says paintball, rugby, and the blessings of Heaven. I'll begin with Rugby because that happened first.

So we were asked by our Branch President to come to his home for a Mission Farewell for their "nephew" Jade. He leaves for Sydney North in a month. Anyway, we got invited to come and the best part was they were watching the New Zealand All Blacks play against the Australia Wallabies, and then after the massive feed to play Slingshot paintball. The real kicker was that heaps of nonmember friends would be coming as well, so that was the direction we decided to head in our request for permission from our Mission President.

Well, the time came to ring up our good mate President Maxwell. I have to say... I have idea why it is so hard sometimes to call people in such high authority, but I was nervous as to call him. However, when I heard his calm voice answer the phone all my nerves ceased and the conversation was casual and comfortable. President Maxwell and I have become pretty close from the conversations we've had together. I reckon that by the end of my mission I want to have a sweet as relationship with him and his wife. ANYWAY, after some small talk and "How ya goin? Oh good! We're good as well! How's Sister..." we cut to the point. He paused for a moment and simply said "Well, ask your Zone Leaders because they are closer to the situation."
I was stunned. I figured we'd get a "Elders... NO!" But he let the Zone leaders give us permission. I've learned through his example that when in positions of leadership it's sometimes best to let others have an opportunity to make decisions. It helps you stay humble, grow, and develope, and more importantly gives others a chance to grow in their areas of leadership as well. Needless to say, President Maxwell is a inspired man who is close to the Spirit.
We called the Zone Leaders and they said "Sure, just don't be stupid. We trust you guys so make sure you're representing the Lord in a dignified manner." Heck yes. We were given the opportunity to meet some awesome people and bond with them over something Kiwi's have a strong passion for.... RUGBY and FOOD.

The experience was such a blessing. We met the Richardsons's family (The Branch President's Family) friends named Pauline and Deion. They are also from New Zealand so they were passionate as for their All Blacks. It was cool watching Tele for the first time in over 6 months, especially SPORTS. If anyone knows me... they know I love me some good sport, especially when it involves running and hitting people. THAT'S THE ONE!

So, after the All Blacks smashed the Wallabies, we retired to the back to have a massive feed. Let me tell you.... these people know how to eat and know how to make HEAPS of delicious food. There were about four plates of chicken, two buckets of KFC, heaps of pasta and potato salads, fried eggs, sausages, cake, ice cream, hot jackets (baked potatoes), rice, and fry bread! So good.... and so much food. It was a massive feed. After, all the young boys when and played basketball in their backyard and we just chatted with Pauline and Deion for ages. We talked about everything from their interests, to their home life, to what missionaries do. It was a good experience to talk to them and they invited us to come and play some Rugby touch with them. They're some of the most caring and genuine people I've met. It would be hard not to love them straight away.

After, it was about 8pm and we made our way to park in the near town of Moama. We divided our teams and set out on our battle with Slingshots and paintballs. Jade, the soon to be Missionary, got smashed in the forehead two times and had massive welts at church the next day. President Richardson got beamed in the eye by one. He came to church with a bloodshot eye and a family covered in baby tomato coloured welts from head to toe. It was FUN AS! We ended things off with a prayer and made our way home. We had a few welts, and it was probably a once in a Mission-time experience to say the least.

The next day... brought the "Blessing from Heaven." We have been struggling with the recent converts of our branch. They were poorly taught, and are stuck in a hard situation to say the least. However, we go over there and teach them every other day or so. They are half Aboriginal and half white, so alcohol, drugs, and smoking have been an issue in the past. Anyway, so we invited them to come to church on Saturday morning after reteaching the first lesson commonly known as the Restoration of the Gospel! It was a good experience because afterwards, the neice of Rodney, the father of the family, said she wanted to change her life around, get off drugs and come to church! We were a bit skeptical of her actual desires because they have a tendency to talk the talk but not walk the walk. Turns out... the next day... BOOM, she (named Melissa) and the Moore Family (recent convert) came to church. It was a miracle if I've ever seen one. The smiles on Melissa's face were priceless treasures to me as I saw a fire of hope radiate from her eyes as members gave her hugs and hand shakes of affection and warmth. The Light of Christ is given to everyone, and it was never more evident than during that brief moment that I saw here smile.

My Mission has been life changing. I LOVE BEING ABLE TO SERVE!!! I cannot begin to express or explain the many experiences that I have had. I've come to see my imperfections and weaknesses and that is such a blessing! I have seen the progress in areas that I've worked on for months, even if it is just little, but it grows my testimony ten-fold. The enabling power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ is very real, and I love that I've been able to see it not only in my life but in those we strive to teach and help. It's true, there is no denying it.

So, I'll end with my new favourtie scripture. Chances are it'll chance in a fortnight or so but hey...that's life!

2 Nephi 9:51 reads: "Wherefore, do not spend money for that which is of no worth, nor your labor for that which cannot satisfy. Hearken diligently unto me, and remember the words which I have spoken; and come unto the Holy One of Israel, and feast upon that which perisheth not, neither can be corrupted, and let your soul delight in fatness."

Spiritual Fatness... That's the fatness I can't get enough of! :D

That's it for this week!


-Elder Sargeant

Summer Night and Chilly mornings (Oct 13)

G'day g'day, how ya goin? All goods? GOOD!

This past week has been an awesome experience. Never have I been so happy and blessed. We have been having a bit of a slow time here in Echuca since we're basically starting from the ground up, but it's been quite an experience! It's such an opportunity to really set the stage for how effective and diligent you are to the work of the Lord!

So, we were able to have some awesome things happen. FIRST 1) My Birthday. That was legit as and I reckon that no other birthday on the mission will be quite as good. 2) We were able to do some things I've never done before! For example, we visited heaps of less active members and were able to prune a vineyard, tried pickled onions (they left the most disgusting smelling breath I've ever experience in my life), make homemade ties, see a Brown snake, and wash people's windows. OH, I also learned how to make Fry bread which is a New Zealand meal where you simply... well... fry bread. I reckon it's fattening as but what can ya do? RUN HEAPS!
3) Our investigator named Thelma came to conference and LOVED IT!! She is progressing so well into the gospel and the members of the branch are just bringing her in so well.
4) I'm out serving the Lord... that's sweet as in itself aye? YESSIR!

Wait a second... da heck am I doing here!

My companion is from New Zealand you know? fair dinkum! You'll love it there. The culture is sweet as, the people are sweet as, you'll get fed heaps.. sweet as! And most importantly, you'll be working with some of the most humble and loving Sons and Daughters of God that are living on this earth. You'll learn amazing things in a culture that is completely foreign to you, and I reckon you'll meet my roommate RYAN HAMMAR! He's serving there as well! Aye, when you get a Lava-lava (you'll find out what that is when you go) SEND ME ONE AS WELL! MINE IS BREAKING! :(

Well, yes! Now that that is mentioned, we can continue with the past week.

So I've come to realize that the best part about my mission are those fun moments where you can walk down the dirt roads in the middle of the bush making the time and showing effort to those that you truly care about. Also... making fun of Australian Accents is quite entertaining as well. Not the really cool as ones that most people have, but the really bogan as ones that are super defined and hard. It's just hilarious for a couple blokes like my companion and me because we don't have aussie accents (yet... it's slowly coming I reckon) but we just mimic the things we've heard people say and laugh at ourselves. It's a great time, take my word for it.

Anyway, I just want to express my love for each of you who made this past week a blessing. I've never had so much love given to me because of a day that I was born. In all honesty, when I woke up it was just another day to me. I received calls from Sisters in our district, members in our branch, the Mission President, AP's (assisstants to the Mission President), and his wife, I received about (total) 50+ emails, a few precious letters, and time that made my day the best it could have possibly been. I hope you all know how much it meant to me. I hope one day to be able to help each of you feel even a fraction of the love that I felt that day. There really is no greater joy than the Love that is felt and expressed to and by others.

I Love this Gospel! I Love my Mission, I love AUSSIE! It's amazing meeting new people and having that hope burn in you that you can persuade them to try out the message you hold dearest to your heart. What's even better is seeing others progress! That's such a blessing. I reckon it brings great joy to Heavenly Father when he sees each of us standing in holy places and progressing as well!

Well, I gotta get off. I'm getting booted off soon. This next week will be bringing miracles as well. Conference was awesome and my favourite quote from it was this: "Doubt your doubts before you doubt your faith." --Dieter F. Uchtdorf.

He's the man aye?

Hope all is well with you all! Turoo!!

Elder Sargeant

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Mind...BLOWN (10/6/13)

G'day g'day all!!

Well... I have to say I've never felt so loved in my life. Heaps of people sent me little notes via email and I cannot help but feel so special and happy. Your thoughts, letters, and love is far reaching and I really do appreciate all the time and effort spent on my behalf. It's truly humbly to know that especially since it's not even my birthday yet!?!

Anyway, this week has been sweet as! We were honoured with an opportunity to go to Trek to teach all the youth there to do a dance called the Haka. For those that are familiar with the All Blacks Rugby team, they do a Haka before every game. It's a dance that was used anciently before war to intimidate the enemy. These days it's mainly used as a sign of great respect to those that it is performed for. We taught the boys the Haka at trek to do it for the women during the women's pull, and to honour and remember the passing of a young man from a nearby Ward. He died in a house fire at the age of 17. It was remarkable how powerful the spirit was when we were at trek, and it was only for less than 24 hours! They learned it quickly ( Yes I had to learn it as well... it's heaps of fun and I think it suits my personality well. ;) ) and it brought chills to each of us as we performed it.

The best part of the day we spent with the boys was that night. We were able to camp out with the boys and sleep under the stars... IT WAS FREEZING AS but we managed. I ended up sleeping next to the fire and waking up with the other Elders every few minutes to boost the fire up a bit. It was a great experience. The drive home was a bit dodgey as I am the only one with a license and it's a 3 1/2 hour drive back to our flat. Needless to say... I stuffed a few Tim Tams in my mouth for quick energy and blasted the Air con heaps to keep me awake while every one else slept. It was a hard experience, but lots of prayer and boosts from Heavenly Father were constantly there for me!

Other than that, we had an awesome experience on Sunday! We were able to have one of our investigators named Thelma come to church and we've only taught her one lesson. She's an Older Irish lady... who is a bit... well.... on the crazy side. She has a tendancy to talk heaps using very vague and random terms, but she feels the Spirit well and understands that there is something missing in her life and she thinks she found it in our Church. Cheers Heavenly Father!!

The best part was the fellowshipping of the ward! That was such a blessing to see others just latch onto her and make her feel welcome.

OH! I almost forgot to mention.... my companion had a birthday this past week!! It was last wednesday the 2nd of October! One of the members in our ward threw a surprise party for him. It was awesome having them welcome us so warmly. One of the families in our branch is named the Boultons. They are some of the nicest people I have ever met! Brother Boulton makes his own ties and so for Elder Pearce's Birthday he made him a sweet as tie, got him a huge chocolate bar, and then a few pairs of socks. It was so much fun! They said they have a plan for my birthday as well... so we'll see what happens with that... haha. They are some Crazy as people!

Well, that's about it for this week. OH!!! I saw my first poisonous snake since I've been here in Australia. It's called a Redbelly Black snake. It was pretty massive and it was slithering next to our camp site while we were leaving Trek the following morning...


Anyway, all is well here in Australia, and the work is moving forward. I definitely have realized that one of the things I'm meant to learn here in Echuca is patience and love for tiny... cheeky... devilish children. I swear, I've never had such a hard time with kids in my life until I came here. That's the best part about it though! It gives me an opportunity to allow myself to be loving and kind even when kids throw footy balls at our heads, or dump dirt on our pants, or throw pizza on us, or scream and rip up our books. It's just a time to realize that the innocence of young kids is truly amazing... and how the gospel really does help families when they adhere to the principles and disciple that come from it!


Cheers for the Birthday wishes again!

With Love,

Elder Sargeant

Echuca bloke (Sept 29th)

G'day g'day, or in Maori... Kiaora!

Well, lets get straight to the chase here and let me fill you all in on where I am serving, who I am with, and the AWESOME AS stuff that has happened since I've been here.

To begin I am serving in an area called Echuca! It's in the middle of the Bush near the border of New South Wales, and Victoria. It's about 3 hours drive from Melbourne and I love it heaps. The people out in the bush are so much more appreciative of the things that we have been given. Everyone, at least almost everyone, looks out for each other. The Branch is about 50 members or so, maybe a bit less, and the President is related to my companion! He is from New Zealand which is cool as because he has a different accent and culture than anyone I have met.

Anyway, to tell you about my companion now, his name is Elder Pearce. He is from Whangarie (pronounced Fungaray) New Zealand. He is about 6 ft. tall and is white! He's a mix of Kiwi and Scottish I reckon so he's whiter than most of the islanders in New Zealand. He is teaching me how to speak Maori, and we go around with his ukulele and sing hymns sometimes! It's quite a big difference from Tassie but it's pretty good.

Back to Echuca! We basically spent the majority of the days getting to know the members and teaching an investigator named Ian Briggs. He is an Aboriginal man who lives with the Boulton family here in Echuca. They are members are honestly are such a blessing to be around. Brother Boulton is quite the missionary in that he has brought many families into the Church over the past couple years. When we were at Tea last night, we had the opportunity to taste of his cooking skills. He's seriously one of the best cooks I've ever tasted! We had kebabs, chicken fillet, roasted pumpkin, carrots, and potatoes, with homemade gravy and heaps of biscuits and butta (as they call it here ;) ). Anyway, they have a large as dog named Tubby who doesn't like black shoes. She was laying under the table and out of no where.. BOOM... the dog bits my toe!! THROUGH MY SHOE!!! It was nuts! I learned quickly that the dog does not like shoes, or feet near her. She's old as, 13 years, so I could imagine she gets grumpy. Dumb dog.

Anyway, it's been such a blessing to be here in Echuca. You learn heaps about yourself in small areas, at least from my experience. Things are more relaxed because everyone around here works near or on a farm. It's such a blessing to have those little moments where you can appreciate the world around you. I love it here, even though it's new and I'm doubled in with a new companion (who is the man) and have been called as the District Leader for the first time. Every thing is new, exciting, and different. It's uncomfortable but it allows you to grow. I love the idea of progression and stretching that Heavenly Father allows you have and accomplish and work at. My mission has been such a growing experience, and I really hope that I can continue to learn and grow! Echuca is AWESOME!!!

Well, that's about it for this week. Next week will be better, with heaps more photos I PROMISE!

Love you all heaps!!!

Kakite Ano!! (Goodbye in Maori)


Elder Sargeant

PS- the photo is of me with all the Sisters (minus sister Ricks) from my district!

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Turoo Tassie (Sept 22)

G'day all,

Turns out that both Elder Hosman and I are getting *dun dun dun* TRANSFERRED!! NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Well, two sisters are coming into our place so I reckon they'll bring heaps of blessings.
We spent the last couple of days saying our goodbyes to members of the ward. It was really hard as we've become really close with many, many members here.

Sunday was the hardest day for me in all honesty, but before that I'll begin with some interesting news from the week...
Last P-day we were at the Wheelers for some goat chasing adventures. There was a goat named George who, well, was in need of a long holiday in the paddock up above! We were summoned by Brother Wheeler, and by we I mean my companion and me, as well as the Elders from Burnie who came down to hang with us, and it was hilarious! We chased that dang goat around for at least an hour. Elder Hurt, a golden (new) missionary, was wearing vans. He's a bigger missionary from California and he was trying to run to grab the goat and slipped about 5 times on his butt. It was crack up!!

After we finally caught the goat, we played some basketball with Rowin and Jayme, the sons of Brother Wheeler. They are awesome, awesome guys! Rowin is a STUD basketball player and he's only 12! Jayme is just the man and is lost when it comes to playing sports but gives it his all. He's quick as though, so he was our secret weapon in times of trouble when playing some touch rugby. Anyway... to the news: turns out when we were playing Elder Hosman came down on his pinky toe and popped it out of socket. He said it felt like it disappeared but he kept playing. He is a tough as guy... I don't know how I would have responded to a feeling like that in my toe. We played touch for another 2 hours and then the next morning his foot had swelled up like a plum! There was a massive circular bruise around his pinky toe as well as under his foot. He got X-rays from a podiatrist in our ward named Brother Roger.. who is the man by the way, and got a "Moon boot" for Elder Hosman...

And to make matters even more fun... we were without our vehicle because it was in the shop getting repairs. We still worked heaps but it was hilarious watching people as Elder Hosman hobbled down the street in a giant black boot to protect his foot.
That was fun....

Anyway, we had a slow week because of that but then we got a call Saturday morning saying that the flat we had spent HEAPS OF TIME LAST TRANSFER setting up in East Ward Area needed to have two beds and a desk taken to another area in Tasmania.

We knew from this news that two things were happening. 1) SISTERS WERE COMING INTO DELORAINE!!! 2) Only 1 set of missionaries would be over two wards.

We talked about it heaps on the drive down. By the way... driving on the left side of a road is an adventure. I'm starting to have dreams about driving on the left side. Being in America will be an interesting time! Mum... don't let me drive on the way home from the airport.. PLEASE!

Turns out... that night..we found out that we were both getting transferred OUT... FOR SISTERS!

We were sad and excited as well. 6 months and 4 months in Tassie is a long time for 1 area in all honesty! But it was OUR home. Somsone said that Elder Hosman has been there so long he's as old as the furniture haha. :D Anyway, we went that night to visit our recent convert Anthony and Cassie. We talked, said our goodbyes and ate apple cinnamon muffins for a treat.

Sunday came: and that was tough... I woke up feeling like I was leaving home again.
We went to church and it was awesome. The East Ward (our morning Sacrament meeting) had us bear our testimonies and seeing people tear up was hard for me! I LOVE MY LAUNIE FAMILY! The meetings were filled with the Spirit, and the end came when we said our goodbyes with many of the members. There were heaps of photos taken, and many emails exchanged. I've never felt so loved from a ward before in my life... I cannot say it enough.

After Church we made our rounds to the members we needed to go see. I'll mention a few here:

First was the King Family. Sister Lisa King and her family have seriously been one of the reasons I KNOW I am meant to be here in Australia. Meeting her and her boys has been one of the greatest blessings. We spent a lot of time there, with Brother Christian as well, and played footy in the back yard followed by cricket. It was while I was there that I found out that BYU LOST TO UTAH AGAIN!!??!?! DA HECK!!!!??? Probably good I wasn't home to see that. I'd be livid as.

Anyway, I want to talk about the youngest son first named Kobe King. He is 5 years old and is a bucket of energy! No lie, he is going to be a professional footy player one day for the Hawthorn Hawks, Tassie's AFL team. He has a tendency however when playing footy to wear trousers that reveal what we love to call the PLUMBER BUTT! It's one of the funniest things ever because he even made a dance to it called the "Plumber Butt dance."
Harri--the middle child--- is going to be an AMAZING footy player one day as well. He is so competitive! It's GOOD! He gets angry sometimes when playing because Elder Hosman would "Mark" ( A term used in footy basically meaning that a player caught the ball that was kicked ), and hand it to Kobe to kick since he's a bit smaller than the rest of us. Plus, Hosman was in his Moonboot so he wasn't much good for playing.

I love HARRI!! He's THE MAN!!
THe oldest son Named Jaylen is 14--- and he is... THE MAN!!! He's such an athlete himself and is always picking fights with me (out of love of course) and we pretend punch each other heaps. It's a blast. Even Sister King got into the fun! It was a great time with my Tassie Family. After that, we went inside and took photos, then went on our way to our next stop.

Before we left, Harri hopped in our car and said "Nope... you aren't leaving and I'm not getting out!" He started to tear up and cry and Elder Hosman and I just looked at each other with sadness in our hearts. Our time with them was over... but it was only for a small season. I'll be back! MUM! YOU'RE COMING TO TASSIE!
Then we went to the Wheelers and spent some time with them. We took photos, reminisced about the good days, and then Brother Wheeler printed me out a program to use for the rest of my mission work work outs in the morning. HECK YEAH!!!! They are an amazing family as well. Rowin started tearing up a bit when we left and said " you guys are the best missionaries." That meant heaps to me. All the love was sinking down into my heart as I realized that this was soon going to be over.... but again... not forever! Sister Wheeler even started crying and as we drove off they took a video off their porch and waved to us as we departed off on our journey to the mainland!

We then were able to go to Tea with the Clarks. It was amazing!! SHE IS AN AMAZING COOK. Mum... she honestly would be your best friend. She is a interior designer and loves to cook anything and everything. We often were her Guinea pigs... it was the best ever. We had venison, roasted beat root, roasted potatoes, carrots, and "pumpkin" (we call it squash back home.. It's different no matter what the Aussie's say ;) ), cheesey Coliflower, and a smoked chicken pie. Then for dessert we had vanilla ice cream over a DELICIOUS gooey.... cake-like thing with cinnamon apple baked into it. It was good as that's all you need to know!

Then we went to the Roger's house: They have 5 wonderful kids that are FIREBALLS. We woke them up but they still said goodbyes to us. They recorded the entire time we were there and I have to tell you... I've never been more tickled in my life! Charlotte, Chelsea, Joe, and Archie ( 2 girls, 2 boys) TICKLED ME TO DEATH! I was red, blue, purple, and nearly wet myself from all the tickling. I could hardly breath! They just attacked me! It was awesome though :)

Then we took photos, and got a present?!? WHAT DID THEY GET US?!?! A boomarang, a Aussie shirt with heaps of Aussie slang written on it, a hand written letter from Brother and Sister Rogers, and a HUGE 300g chocolate bar that I nearly devoured entirely when I got home... yes... I ate heaps... but I didn't eat anything all day and felt like splurging. She'll be right. Cadbury chocolate is good as by the way! That's the Aussie Chocolate company here. It rivals Hersheys at times... not gonna lie.

Then we went home, finished packing, did a bit of numbers since Elder Hosman is the District Leader, and headed to bed.

It was sad.... really sad.... but such an amazing day.

I'm so lucky to be on a mission, serving the Lord and spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ in it's fullness, that has been restored. Tassie has been my home! I'm going to miss it heaps, and as 6 months comes around this Friday, I can only imagine how amazing the rest of my mission can be. It's all what you make of it, and what you do to be happy with what you do. The mission is amazing, and all those still debating on going or not... JUST DO IT. You'll never regret it if it's what YOU want to do. Don't feel forced. Find what makes you happy, and do it. I know that we are so blessed with the people in our lives. I Love my Family back at home. HEATH, EMMA, CHASE, GAGE, MAMA+PAPA GISH, SAM ( IN Taiwan), MUM, DAN, KARA, KRISTA, BROOKE, BRITTNEY, CALEB, MAMA WHITNEY, and MANY MANY OTHERS that I miss heaps and think of often.

I've come to have another family here in Tassie: THE ROGERS, THE KINGS, MY BROTHERS JAYLEN, HARRI, KOBE, My favorite Tassie sister Lisa KING, THE WHEELERS, ROWIN, JAYME, and heaps more.... they are amazing people. I love them. Just thought I'd say it.
Well I won't know where I am going or who I'll be with until tomorrow. Hopefully this email was worth it. ( I got to take a bit extra time for it WOO!)

I Love the Work, I love the Gospel. It's true. Jacob 6:12 "O be wise; what can I say more?"

Jacob pretty much sums it up. Be wise.. Live the gospel... LOVE YOUR FAMILY + FRIENDS!!!


With Love (and a sad/ excited heart),

Elder Sargeant