November 4, 2013
|All of these Elders live in a one bedroom trailer.|
The one in the tan coat is Elder Clark's companion
Fort Apache is wonderful, and the work is thriving. It is not traditional missionary work though. It’s mainly focused on bringing people back to the church. About a fourth of the people here have been baptized and about 95% of those people don’t come to church. The 6 of us missionaries here really focus on rescuing those members. It’s amazing what a simple visit can do. Missionaries have been absent from this area for 5 years and you can really see the effect it had. All most of these people need is to remember why they joined in the first place. Many people remember missionaries here before and they absolutely love us. We eat an average of 2 or 3 dinners a day because the people always prepare dinner for us when we come over for our appointments. We actually go tracting a lot because it is a really effective way here. We knock on the doors and there is a good chance of them being members. That’s how we get most of our appointments. It is amazing to see the change in people after just 1 or 2 visits! There was one lady, no joke, probably about 100 years old, who opened a door we knocked on and she just started crying, and just kept telling us thank you, thank you for coming back. What a sweet moment that was. People really do need the gospel in their lives, and there are SO many today that had it and have lost it. But, that’s why we are here! To find all of his lost sheep! When missionaries first came here, there were only 30ish people attending Sacrament Meeting. Our goal for next week, only 2 months later, is 150 people!
Halloween was a lot of fun! The Natives go ALL out for it! Young and old, it’s an all-day thing. They start trick or treating in the morning! It was really fun to see all the costumes and people talk to us because they thought we were wearing missionary costumes! Another fun thing is the "first of the month" is the Natives favorite day, because that’s when they all get money from the government, so outside in "downtown" (which consists of a grocery store, the post office and the bank) all these vendors set up shop, most exciting day on the res!
I love this work and I love this area. Everyday something new happens, whether that’s a drunk man sleeping on the side of the road (Happens pretty often) or wild horses running across the street or running out of gas in our trailer so there is no more hot water. Cold showers are wonderful in our 30 degree mornings.... The life of a missionary is great! Whether it is bringing people to Christ or bringing them back!
|Elder Clark on the Reservation|
Miracles happen every day. Make sure you look for them and notice them. Life becomes so much sweeter when you realize what a blessing every single day is. The living conditions of most of these people have really made me appreciate the things I have. What a wonderful life I have! I am so grateful for the opportunity to share my source of happiness with everyone I meet!
Much love to all of you!
- Elder Clark!