My beloved family,
Boy today has been a good week. It went by really quick, but we sure worked hard. I'll guess I'll go straight to talking about the thing you all want to hear about: my new companion! His name is Elder Westhoff; he's from Escalante, Utah; he's a true blue country boy; he loves peanut butter; and he's an awesome worker and missionary. I'll try to see if I can remember to take a picture with him for you guys. Basically, I'm extremely grateful for my new companion. I don't want to bad mouth Elder Duran, but let's just say some of his actions lead to unfortunate consequences. One of these consequences is that we've been searching for a new house to live in. Apparently, we were only supposed to live with the bishop for two weeks while we searched for another house. Oops! That was news to me. Once we found this out, we immediately moved out into my district leader's house. That's where we've spent the week. I uploaded a couple quick pictures of that house and the street around it. Hopefully, that will give you a bit of a feel of how my area is. Anyways, during the week we've been searching for a house and we've found one that seems to be perfect and it's really cheap. We're swinging by today to take a look at it and if it's good we'll rent it. We're only hoping there's no catch because it seems almost too good to be true. Either way, we should have our own house by tomorrow. Those are the big changes that have happened lately.
We've also had some changes in the work. We've been contacting people on the street and knocking doors like crazy! We've also been asking EVERYONE for references. It's been awesome! Boy am I tired at the end of the day though. Elder Westhoff is about a head taller than me and he likes to walk FAST! The first day was a little rough, but I've gotten fairly used to it by now. Once we get some new investigators we should do a little less walking. The cool thing is that although I'm tired all the time, I'm happy. :) I feel like we're finally doing the work the way it should be done. I'm trying to learn all I can from my companion so that I can keep working like this throughout the mission.
However, with all the work we did, we didn't get a baptism this week. I don't know if I told you guys but it's actually a mission goal to baptize every week. So far I've been falling flat with Elder Duran, but I think that will change with Elder Westhoff. We've got a lot of new people that we're teaching so I'm not worried about getting baptisms. :)
In other news, we'll be going to the temple on Wednesday December 5th as a zone. I'm super excited! I can't wait to be able to visit the temple again. Actually, Elder Duran and I took our recent convert to the temple before he was baptized. (Not inside, just in the waiting room.) And it was awesome. I took a couple pictures and put them on dropbox. In other other news, I receive one of my Christmas packages this week. I don't know if it was the first or second of the two, but it had soap and deodorant. I guess you guys just think I stink or something! How rude. ;) I love all the packages I receive as well as all the letters from Grandma and Grandpa Wortham, Although, I receive the letters about two weeks later than they are written. For example, today I received letters from the 17th, 18th, and 25th of November.
I also really love it when I receive e-mails from everybody. Even when they're just short little things, it's nice to hear from you all. I like hearing about what's going on back home. It's awesome that everyone is staying in good shape and exercising at home. I'm certainly getting my own exercise with my new companion! So far I always receive your e-mails, we usually don't write until at least after ten o'clock so don't worry about it too much. I would love to receive a picture of the family around the Christmas tree. Be sure to take lot's of pictures of Christmas and send them to me! I have one other request as well. Can you send me either the New Era or Liahona that has the General Conference talks from October 2012 in English? I don't even have them over here in Spanish yet, but either way I like them better in English. That reminds me... I got the chance to see the First Presidency's Christmas Devotional yesterday. It was too short! We got to see it in English and I LOVED it! When it ended I was like "...What?! There has to be more!" I hope you all got the chance to see it. Also, I'm extremely thankful that Grandpa Max is doing okay. I was praying for him all week and I'll continue praying for his swift recovery.
During this Christmas season I just want to stress the importance of family and service. Ever since I left for my mission, it's hit me really hard just how important my family is to me. Sometimes we let dumb things get in the way of spending time with the ones we love. I know I did. I challenge you all to take the time to be a blessing to those around you, especially your family. Small acts of kindness here and there can go a long way. I know that we're a close family, but one thing that I've been regretting is not spending more time with all of you. Take the opportunities you have to give service to one another. Help Dad with the yard work or help Mom to cook. Make your brother's bed or slip a little note of appreciation into their backpack. I don't know why this just popped into my head just now, but I distinctly remember hopping out of bed early in the morning to say goodbye to Dad as he left for work when I was younger. At the very least, I always tried to wave goodbye from my bedroom window. I'm not sure why, but I felt that I should share that experience. I just really wanted Dad to know that I loved him. I think that small and simple acts like that can go a long way. I don't know if Dad remembers that or not, but I hope that it brightened his days when I did that. To show our family that we love them we don't have to do something huge. I testify that if we show them our love in small ways every day, that more and more love with be cultivated within the family.
I love you with all my heart and hope that you'll take the time to be a blessing to someone this Christmas season. Not only then, but always. I'm thankful for the opportunity to show my love to our Savior through my missionary service. I can't wait to get back home and see you all again, but until then I'll work as hard as I can for the Lord. I testify that this is the true Church of Jesus Christ. I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet called of God to restore Christ's Gospel to the earth. I know that Thomas S. Monson, his counselors, and the twelve apostles are all called of God. The Church is true!
With all the love I possess,
-Elder Sean Horrocks