Thursday, February 27, 2014

More pictures from Elder Brandyn Young

Chelsea and Bernadette.  Bernadette's mom, Freddie will be baptized this Saturday.  They are amazing.  Chelsea was interested in the church and brought her mom and grandma too!

Chelsea and Bernadette

Elder Southward and Elder Young

Elder Southward came for an area visit to Las Vegas.  He is our past temple President!
Brandyn had a wonderful visit with him.

Elder Young's Birthday Week!


What a week.  Nice job Ben with the last shot of the season!  Loved to hear too how well the twinners and Blake are doing well in basquete.  Rynda, it is good to hear you are using your musical skills in sacrament meeting.  Someday that'd be fun to have a big Young family musical number.

So many miracles in so little time. 

The area is continuing to do well. Four more people committed to a baptismal date! Chelsea and Bernadette were baptized this past Saturday. Kyle and Freddie are getting baptized this Saturday. Aaron, who Sister Neider met at conference will be taught by the YSA sister missionaries and committed baptism as well. It has been a lot of fun serving with Elder Phipps. 

We have had a lot of miracles recently, but last night was probably the most amazing in both Elder Phipps' and my entire mission. One investigator, Melissa, came with us to conference on Sunday. Melissa has been investigating the church for two and a half years. Elder Southward was my old temple president, so I wanted to introduce him to Melissa. After the morning session on Saturday, she and a member, Sister Dahl, came with us to go meet him. He talked with her about her concerns about baptism. Her biggest concern was knowing whether or not the Book of Mormon was true. Elder Southward prompted her to testify of what she did already know to be true. Out came, "Yes, I know the Book of Mormon is the word of God.

That was the first time she ever said that out loud and she and Sister Dahl started crying. Elder Southward said, "There's your answer!" 

That night we scheduled a lesson with Melissa and she told us that she finally felt it was time. She wants to get baptized!! We helped her know how to receive revelation in choosing a date using D&C 9:8-9. She is super excited. 

 I know there's a reason Elder Southward came here and I am reassigned here. So many amazing things are happening and Elder Phipps and I feel that there is still a lot to be done before the visas come.

It was pretty awesome to see Elder Southward.  And then to see a miracle come from him talking to Melissa.

"...tender cmercies of the Lord are over all those whom he hath chosen, because of their faith, to make them mighty even unto the power of ddeliverance."

Elder Young the younger

p.s.  Thank you for the birthday wishes!  I wish we were allowed enough time to respond to everyone.  Within the next couple Mondays I should be able to.  I love you all and am grateful to each. 1 Corinthians 1:3-9

Sunday, February 16, 2014

More pictures from Elder Brandyn Young

The NW Las Vegas Zone

Baptism of one of Elder Phipps' old investigators

Elder Phipps,Elder Young, and a member that used to be in our stake in Arkansas

Happy Birthday MOM!!!


It is so good to hear from you!  Happy birthday MOM!!!  Hope your day is awesome.  I love all the pictures; thanks Rynda.  I especially love the one with Brooks and Braxton holding the twins.

CONGRATULATIONS BLAKE!!!!!  Holey moley.  State!  Josh Frazier is hard to beat.  Parabens.

Good job too, Brooks and Braxton in basketball!  And Ben, I like your Silver Dollar City jacket.  

It's good to hear about Bryce & his success in Brazil.  I learn a lot from his emails each week.

Thanks for the M&M idea.  We implemented the ugly tie idea in our ward and it has been working well.  It's been fun to hear all the miracles that come from something so simple. Once the ugly tie missionary tool settles in we want to try to M&M missionary moment.

This morning I read I scripture in Mosiah that I love.  It applies to some of our experiences this week. 
Mosiah 18:30:

(talking about those near the waters of Mormon, preparing to be baptized)

"How beautiful are they to the eyes of them who there came to the knowledge of their Redeemer; yea, and how blessed are they, for they shall sing to his praise forever."

Elder Phipps and I have had some neat experiences teaching those willing to listen.  I love the words of Jacob when he describes the blessings of those who are pure in heart:

"But behold, I, Jacob, would speak unto you that are pure in heart. Look unto God with firmness of mind, and apray unto him with exceeding faith, and he will bconsole you in your cafflictions, and he will plead your cause, and send down djustice upon those who seek your destruction.
 O all ye that are pure in heart, lift up your heads and receive the pleasing word of God, and feast upon his alove; for ye may, if your bminds are cfirm, forever.
Bernadette recently went to the hospital and Freddie is going into surgery today, so we are going to move their baptism to the 22nd.  We gave them each blessings, and it really helped strengthen their faith.  Kyle wasn't able to make it to church last Sunday, so he will be baptized on the 22nd as well.  I love to see the changes the Gospel can make in people.  Kyle has been a good example to his family - his mom and brother, Chris, are starting to see the changes in him.  The Gospel really does bring light into others' lives, and it is amazing to see.  

The members here continue to amaze me.  They do so much to fellowship the new members joining the ward.  It's good to hear how well the ward in Fayetteville is doing!

Thank you for all your prayers.  They are answered.

Have a good birthday Mom!!!

Love you all!

Elder Young

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Elder Young serving in Las Vegas

Hello Family!

It's crazy to hear about all of the snow in Arkansas!  I'm sitting outside right now in the sun by our apartment's pool with a shirt sleeve white shirt, although it probably doesn't compare to Bryce's heat in Brazil!  (Don't worry, we won't go swimming:).  We usually go to the stake center, but they're currently cleaning the carpets.  

That's awesome to hear about the twins doing well in basketball.  That was fun to coach you guys last year.  And to hear about the baptism!

We only have a few minutes today, but it has been another really good week.  It is so much fun to serve with Elder Phipps! Our main form of communication is singing in Portuguese.  

These past couple weeks we've had a couple similar experiences to the one Bryce shared.  This past Tuesday, we walked into one of our most promising investigator's home and they were sitting at their table all ready to hear a message.  We had a prayer, but weren't able to get in a word in after that.  They tried every way possible to attack our beliefs.  After a while, we just humbly bore our testimonies and asked if we could sing them a song.  They were a bit surprised, but allowed us to sing.  We sang I Am a Child of God and the Spirit came so strong it was undeniable.  It was completely silent.  We asked if we could say a prayer.  They allowed us to.  We said a prayer and left.  

I am grateful for The Spirit to guide us.  I know that God lives and that His Gospel is restored.  Three days in a row, experiences like that happened with our most promising investigators.  It was a hard three days, especially because we love those we were teaching so much.  It was hard to see them turn against what we are teaching because they were misinformed by outside sources about the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ.  All we can do though, as missionaries, is love them, share our testimonies, and invite them to follow Jesus Christ.  

Since Tuesday, though, we've continued to search for those willing to change their lives through Jesus Christ.  God provided 4 families!  Chelsea, Freddie, Bernadette, Kyle, and Phillip will be baptized on the 15th!  Marco and his son, Marco will be baptized the week after. I know God sees our efforts and will reward us with so much joy when we do our best.  I am excited to see God change the lives of these families the next couple weeks.

This week's verse:

From the Book of Mormon, when Jesus blesses the little children.

"And they arose from the Earth, and Jesus said unto them:  Blessed are ye because of your faith.  And now my joy is full. 
21 And when he had said these words, he awept, and the multitude bare record of it, and he took their little children, one by one, and bblessed them, and prayed unto the Father for them.
 22 And when he had done this he wept again;
 23 And he spake unto the multitude, and said unto them: Behold your little ones.
 24 And as they looked to behold they cast their eyes towards heaven, and they saw the heavens open, and they saw angels descending out of heaven as it were in the midst of fire; and they came down and aencircled those little ones about, and they were encircled about with fire; and the angels did minister unto them."
I know that God loves us each individually.  How grateful I am for His love.
Love you all!

Elder Young the younger

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Elder Young the Younger -1-27-2014

Nice job Blake!!  That's awesome.  The picture wasn't big enough to see all of the words, but I saw the headlines and knew it had to be about Blake. Good to hear Mr. & Mrs. Price went with you guys to his game!  Let them know I say hi.  Hope Brett, Will, and Ashley are doing well too.
My missionary companion and most of my MTC district got their visas, so there's a chance that in a transfer or two Elder Phipps and my visa will come.  Elder Phipps and I, being the same age, with the same mission call, reassignment, from the same MTC district, hope that we get our visas the same day.  Except it would be very hard to both leave the area at the same time because of all the work still left to do. 
Thanks Braxton, Brooks, Ben, and Blake for the emails!  The purple pandas. :D I love that.  Good luck in basketball Braxton & Brooks.  I miss coaching you guys.  Good job in your game!  That would be cool to watch studio C, we hear a lot of people quote it. :)  We'll have to have a big Studio C marathon in two years with Bryce before Blake leaves on his mission.  If life were cereal, it would taste like muffin tops.  It's good to hear you are doing well too, Ben!  I bet it was weird to go to school on Saturday.
This week Keith was baptized!  The night before the baptism, we met with him and he told us that he actually didn't want to be baptized.  Then the next morning, he called us and let us know he desired to be baptized.  It was a lot more complicated than that, but I can just say I am so grateful for the Atonement.  I know it changes hearts and brings forgiveness and peace.  I know the Atonement of Jesus Christ is real.
This is a scripture that describes Keith to me:

"11 And [Keith] was astrong and mighty man; [coming to a] perfect bunderstandingyea, man that did not delight in bloodshed; man whose soul did joy in the liberty and the freedom of his country, and his brethren from bondage and slavery;

 12 Yea, man whose heart did swell with thanksgiving to his God, for the many privileges and blessings which he bestowed upon his people; man who did labor exceedingly for the awelfare and safety of his people.
 13 Yea, and he was man who was firm in the faith of Christ, and he had asworn with an oath to defend his people, his rights, and his country, and his religion, even to the loss of his blood.
17 Yea, verily, verily say unto you, if all men had been, and were, and ever would be, like unto [Keith]tbehold, the very powers of hell would have been shaken forever; yea, the bdevil would never have power over the hearts of the children of men."
Sometime I'll have to have you guys meet Keith and all of the amazing people Elder Phipps and I meet. 
Have a good week!

Elder Young
p.s.  I meant to tell you about a neat experience we had last week.  One night there were 2 places that Elder Phipps and I needed to be, so we said a prayer to know where to go.  After waiting for a bit, we both looked at each other and said "hey you remember that Uhaul truck we drove by?  I have a feeling we need to stop and talk to someone there."  So we did.  There was a lady standing by the Uhaul truck, so we asked her if she needed help moving.  We were persistent to ask her if she needed help, but she declined.  Then we asked her if we could have a prayer with her. She said "Yes please."  We had a prayer and she started crying.  The Spirit was so strong.  It turned out she was going through a lot, being mistreated by her boyfriend, and stressed out because they were moving.  I'm sure there were other things bothering her, but those were a couple she mentioned.  It's amazing what a prayer can do.  I'm grateful for the strength God gives us every moment to be His hands throughout the day.  We were then able to make the other visits that night, and all worked out.
A final scripture:"And we know that all things work together for agood to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."
-Romans 8:28
Keith, Sister Brough, The  Hills, Elder Phipps and Elder Young 

New Pictures from Elder Brandyn Young

Elder Young lives close to an Air Base , so they see lots of planes flying over and sometimes they make cool designs in the air.

carpets cleaned!

Elder Young loves sunsets!!

D&C 84:88


It's been an amazing week.  That sounds like fun going to Branson!  Any trip with the Vincents is always fun.  We'll have to do a big return missionary trip at a Wyndham in the Amazon or something. :)  Thanks for the care package.  I loved the picture too.  

This week was one big miracle.

It all started a couple weeks ago when the Hills moved to a 3 story apartment to allow their grandchildren to move in. The grandchildren never ended up coming, so they had an extra bedroom in their apartment.  They were really struggling to make it by.  Then the week after, Brother Hill lost his job.  They were devastated, but you have got to meet the Hills; they just asked for a blessing and kept doing missionary work.  In the blessing, it said that as they continued to do missionary work, opportunities would open up for them. 

Then the next week we got a call from an investigator, Melanie (name changed) who had just gone through a second time needing to go to the women's shelter.  As missionaries we can't counsel with her, but we called Bishop and had the Hills come with us to give her a blessing.  We went to give her a blessing but something came up and she couldn't make it to the church.  So we went to our next appointment with the Hills which was to help another investigator, Keith, to move and find a place to live by the strip.  (Which saddened us, because no missionaries are allowed on the strip.)  

For the next part to make sense you have to know the back story about Keith.  He has two boys and a wife and recently moved to Las Vegas.  He's also a 7 yr All-American (football), professional chef, boxer (Brother Hill used to box too!), and so many other things.  He came to Las Vegas by himself to find a job (coming from California) and ran into the church through employment services.  We went over to visit him and found out his roommates (from South Africa) are very anti-Mormon.  As soon as they found out he was investigating the church, they kicked him out of the house.  That was the reason he had to move, although he was struggling financially.

We introduced the Hills to Keith and they made an instant connection.  Brother Hill and Sister Hill looked at each other took a deep breath and smiled.  Elder Phipps and I know that means they both had the same great idea.  They turned to Keith and said "Welcome home, son!"  

Keith, a big, 300 lb NFL player, just broke out in tears and gave them a big hug.  They brought Keith to their place and he is now living with them.  Both Brother Hill and Keith found jobs in this area and are doing really well. They call Keith their son and he calls Brother and Sister Hill mom & dad.

We're teaching the fourth lesson to Keith tonight and he's thrilled to learn about the Gospel.  Last night he went with us to an powerful fireside and has been coming out with us to lessons.  He is amazing.

The next day, Keith came with us and the Hills to meet Melanie at the church.  We gave her a tour around the chapel and the Spirit was so strong.  She said "I feel like I'm at home!"  We went to the chapel and taught her the plan of salvation.  She is a professional musician, so I played "Where Can I Turn for Peace" on the piano while she sang.  The Spirit was so strong.  Then we gave her a blessing.  We told her all about how the Gospel can help her, her 12 year old son, and baby boy.  She is an amazing lady that just got herself in a bad situation.  With Bishop's help she is coming out of it and it's all working out.

Before my mission, I never realized how much love God actually feels for each of His children.  It's like He's making a quilt, some dark colors, some light.  When He gives us the dark colors (trials) it's hard to understand at the moment.  But when we arrive at the end, we'll see the plans He has for us.  Through our trials God can work miracles and weave eternal life.  

I'm so grateful for the experiences I have had.  There's nothing like having the perspective of a missionary - getting to see the Atonement change lives.

"For, consider the lilies of the filed, how they grow, they toil not, neither do they spin; and the kingdoms of the world, in all their glory, are not arrayed like one of these.  For our Father, who is in Heaven, knoweth that you have need of all these things." - Doctrine and Covenants 84:82-83

Have a good week!

Elder Young