Week 68 – Caswell State Park

This week was a great week! Have a great week everyone!

Last Monday we had the opportunity to go to Caswell State Park in the town right below Manteca. It is one of the smallest state parks I have ever been to, but it was an absolute blast! We went on a little hike with the Sisters and just had lots of fun! Down below there are some pictures of the wonderful fun we were able to have. It reminded me so much of home (except that home is in the mountains). Being outdoors is so fun! I have loved the outdoors ever since I was a little boy and I am loving them even more each time I get to go do something in the outdoors!

We had the wonderful opportunity to help a family move. It was super fun! They lived with Brother Cortez (the guy who is in a lot of my pictures) but moved about two blocks away. They are still in our area but we have to get a male over the age of 18 if we want to go and visit them. Her name is Sylvia and she has two daughters. They are a super awesome family! I love meeting so many wonderful people here and developing a  friendship with them! I love doing service projects for people!

We have been working a lot with our less active members in the ward. We just found out that there are over 500 members in our ward boundaries and only about 150 of them are active. We have been making it a big push to visit everyone on our ward list who we don’t know and bring them back to church. Attending church is such a wonderful thing! Each week we are able to partake of the sacrament and take upon ourselves the name of the Savior. The sacrament is such a wonderful and peaceful thing in our lives.

Yesterday we had a special fifth Sunday meeting with all of the brethren here. We talked about prospective elders and less actives. We talked about the importance of home teaching each and every month. It is so amazing when we visit a family on the ward list who we are not familiar with. When they open the door they see it is the missionaries and get super excited. Oftentimes they have been praying for someone to stop by or talk about the church. There are so many families here and all around that are ready to come back to the fold, but “they know not where to find it” (D&C 123:12). I think that it could also mean that they don’t have a friend or that they don’t know that someone cares about them. Home and visiting teaching is so important. We just need to let people know that we love them and that we are always here for them. Just being a friend to someone may be what could bring them back to church so they can receive the wonderful blessings. I am so grateful for my dad and the wonderful example he set by home teaching his assigned families every month! I want each one of you to reach out to someone in need. Pray about it and reach out to them. Help them feel loved!

We had the opportunity to do our usual service this week at Second Harvest and then at the Methodist Church Food Bank. We always have so much fun serving at these places and meeting the people who come through. Below is a picture of us at the Methodist Church Food Bank. They didn’t believe that we could stack the baby food but they were wrong! We got it!

For our dinner message we have been sharing the Ask of God video. I really enjoy the youth video. I love the questions that the kids ask. A bunch of them ask questions that we will all ask at some point in our lives. I know that our Father in Heaven loves us and will answer any question that we have. Prayer is so important. He wants to hear from us each and every day. I love that I can turn to Him any day and at any time. He is listening. Sometimes we get frustrated that He doesn’t answer our prayers when we want Him to, but in His time He will answer them! Sometimes our prayers take a while to get answered and sometimes they get answered right away! I love my Father and knows that he answers our prayers!

The scripture for this week is 2 Nephi 9:5-10. I love my Savior so much. I know that nothing would be possible without Him. If it weren’t for the infinite atonement, that He completed for each and every one of us, there would be no purpose here on earth! It is only by the Atonement of Jesus Christ that we can be saved. It is the grace of God that we are saved after all that we can do! I love you all so much and hope you have a wonderful week! Family, I will see you in two weeks on Skype!

Love,
Elder Pope

This is Caswell State Park. Let’s just say we had a lot of fun doing whatever we were doing!
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​​Here is the district!
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