Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Nov. 18 letter & Pics

'Hasnt been to cold here usually just like 60's! It's really pleasant! Thank you everyone who has sent mail and stuff!

life of a missionary--so humble and so much different than his totally decked-out sports themed room at home

Elder Lord, Elder Schoen and some happy new members of the YSA ward in Fresno!

 My companion is great he is from Bountiful, Utah and we get along great! Being in a YSA ward definitely is weird but it is really fun! I'm teaching people my own age basically! It really is awesome here! President Gelwix is amazing! Me and my companion will be eating thanksgiving dinner with our ward! Dad is sending my weekly report! Love you!

2ND E-MAIL/MORE FROM DAD: This week was another good one! time really flies here in the field! We are starting to gain the trust of the ward members which should be great cause they have a lot of friends they want to bring into the church! So we'll see if they trust us enough to have us help. We had a baptism yesterday for Bianca which we kinda inherited from the past missionaries but it was great to get to be witnesses for her baptism. She will be confirmed next week. We have three other investigators that all have a baptism date and are progressing really well. And for one of them we are actually having to plan a wedding right before the baptism so they can be married before they are baptized! should be fun! The people in Fresno are a lot like texas people it feels like except way different ... We have gotten the door slammed in our faces a couple times which is really fun! haha seeing people act like we are contagious and we bite... some people will talk through their door so we can't hear what they say.. it really makes me laugh! One of the times I was like "we dont bite!" and they we're like ohhh i know it just dont want you to give me anything which made me laugh;) The work can be challenging at times but it is very rewarding. My companion and I get along really well. We are really working hard! being in a ysa ward is really weird but kinda fun cause we are teaching everyone our own age! The language is getting hard to keep up but i am starting to work with one of the returned missionaries from brazil to keep up with the language! Missionary work really is amazing! I love testifying soooooo much now;) Its all i do! I love you all soo much!!

Ate Mais (Until More) Com Amor ( with Love)

Elder Schoen

Monday, November 11, 2013

First Week in Fresno

 Dear Family!!
(pass this along to everyone!) 
On the flight to fresno i was sooooo close to placing a book of mormon but she kindly refused! On our first day here we had a "open your mouth" thing where we all got a trainer and went and talked to everyone we could! Speaking english is soooo nice;) Funny enough me and my trainer that day were really good apparently and we gave out 6 book of Mormons! Haha my trainer was a hmong missionary (he spoke hmong) which was fun!

That night we had dinner with president Gelwix and talked about mssion policies and expectations! President Gelwix is seriously the greatest. ThursdayI got my trainer. Funny enough his name is Elder Lord and he is 6'1 with black hair and likes sports. We are basically identical. We get along really great! He has been out 5 months and funny enough he was in the MTC with Carley but he doesnt know her. President Gelwix said when he put us together it would "be a competition to see who could work harder" which made me laugh cause we are both REALLY hard workers.

Me and Elder Lord are serving in a YSA Ward funny enough. Heritage YSA is the name. It's in North Fresno. We have like 5 baptisms scheduled and 2 investigators we hope to set a date with. We have a baptism this sunday! Her name is Bianca. There are like 5 RM's (Returned Missionaries) who served in Brazil so they are offering to help me with Portuguese! I gave a blessing to a ward member here my first night. It was reallycool awesome because as i started i could tell that i was only standing there.. the spirit was basically doing all the talking. all i did was move my lips. So there are a bunch of mission rules like we have to have a part in our hair, no ipods and only music from member artists! But its alright at least we get to listen to music! Please send cd's with some music by mormon artists like david archuleta or any member like hymns and cool efy stuff. It has been an awesome week thus far and i am taking every second i have here in fresno for everything it is worth! We went to Walmart today and shopped which was funny cause you do all the shopping mom so i was sooo lost about what to buy! I look forward to seeing the work here progress as we work our hardest! Love you Guys talk more next week!
Elder Schoen!!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Entering the Field

Dearest family

You will probably get this by the time I have gotten into the field, sooo yeah!!!!

Elder Schoen at the Provo MTC

I am really excited to get into the field! I’ll be honest, I’m kinda nervous but its good nerves. I can’t wait to get to Brazil but I’m going to give Fresno California all I have.  It is going to be weird that first day in the field talking to real people. Haha! but I can’t wait.  Me and a fellow Elder from a neighboring zone who are really good friends are going together so that should be fun.  Being District Leader has been actually really great. I ican feel how much I have grown just in these last two weeks.  The love I have for others has grown as well as my patience! It was such a great opportunity to serve in a leadership position I loved my teachers here at the MTC.  They were so beneficial to me and I honestly couldn’t have picked two better teachers.  I don’t know if they had “infield orientation” when you left the MTC dad but we had it and it was very cool.  It was 8 hours long just sitting in classes but it was still very cool.  Haha! so its was daylight savings today but none of the Elders in my district got the memo so we were dressed and out the door by 6 instead of 7.  Talk about frustrating.  Oh well it was alright cause we just went to class and slept at our desks.  The MTC has been one heck of an experience.,  That first week I never thought I could make it but looking back now and seeing how much I have grown it makes me so proud of myself.  Although I am nowhere near being sufficient in the language or in doctrinal knowledge, I have been blessed to have the companionship of the Holy Ghost when we  have taught lessons.  It is so comforting knowing I am never alone.  I have been continually blessed whenever I am stressed or homesick with comfort and peace because of prayer,  Like I said, the most sincere prayers I have ever shared have been here at the MTC.  I feel as though I am almost annoying Heavenly Father because of how much I talk to him. JKJKJ But this experience will be difficult, no doubt about it, but I have learned to rely on Heavenly  Father, the Spirit and most importantly, the Savior and his atonement.  Coming into the MTC I can honestly say I never had a testimony of the fullness of the atonement.   I knew Christ died for us so that we could have the opportunity to live again with God but I never knew how important the atonement is in comforting and strengthening us.  I know now that through the Atonement of Jesus Christ we truly are never alone.  What a great blessing that is to know.  Funny enough our mission conference today was all about Christ and his atonement. 

Reassignments for all the Sao Paulo North missionaries

So I’ve been here now for 6 weeks and today it snowed for the first time.  It was great to see.

Elder Hall and Elder Schoen, Elder Hall is a fellow "Brazilian" missionary that has been reassigned to Fresno.

As far as Christmas this year, just send me a tie and some uplifting quotes and some pictures.  I need the kind in a book so that they are not lose.  One thing that would be plenty sufficient is just praying for my success in the field with the people, with my companion, and with the language.  I’m going to need all the blessings I can get,  I’m going to be the last one here from my District. We had fast and testimony meeting today it was so nice because fasting on a mission is so special.  I bore my testimony first in English and then in Portuguese.  It was awesome.  I can’t wait for Brazil.  Even if I cant speak the language, I want to teach those people down there! I am very excited to meet my new mission president, President Gelwix.  I hear he treats his missionaries like his rugby team.  he gets them all pumped up and sends them out.  It is going to be so weird to talk to real people this week.  I am so pumped to get out there in Fresno. I hope you guys are realizing the blessings in our lives cause I sure am!!! I love you!!! I can’t wait to tell you all about California.

Love y’all!

Elder Schoen

Friday, November 8, 2013

He's on Fire!

OHHHHHHH man!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Fresno is amazing! Me and a temporary trainer went out and proselyted and placed like 4 Book of Mormons! Plus my Portuguese helped me speak to some people in Spanish! It is sooo awesome! I went out with a Hmong speaker so it was soooo much fun!! President Gelwix is probably the coolest mission president in the world! I love ALL THE MISSIONARIES HERE! This is just an email to say I made it safe and I will email you in more depth on Monday! This place is awesome!!! Pass this along to everyone! Great talking to you this morning!! Love you!!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Fres-NO Way!

!!!!!!!!!!!! FRESNO CALIFORNIA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I LEAVE ON WEDNESDAY AT 4:30 IN THE MORNING!!! my flight will leave at 8:20 our time and i have a layover in Pheonix! i will get to fresno at 11:41!!! I will call in the morning on Wednesday the 6th!! I will email in greater length tomorrow!!!
I have been giddy the past 6 weeks about where i would be serving and know that i know it is Cali i could not be more thrilled!! What a treat!!

Halloween here was just another day unfortunately soo no celebration! me and my companion switched tags though ;)

My mission president in the fresno mission is the coach of the rugby team, the guy from forever strong! Larry Gelwix! It is going to be sooo sweet!! Nope, I won't be speaking portuguese, it looks like just english, spanish and hmong in that mission, crazy enough!!