Sunday, April 26, 2015

April 20, 2015 I'm off!

Well darn it, I was on a streak there! All of my companions were two transfers! Until now. 

So I'm sure you're wondering where I'm going! Well, I'm off to an area called Cavehill!! That's in Belfast, IRELAND!!! :D Fantastic!! I have no idea what my area looks like but it is awesome I'm sure! Apparently it's heavy Protestant. Belfast was one of the centers of the troubles during the difficult times. My new companion is Elder McPherson, who has just finished being trained! I'll be Senior Companion, btw! I'm nervous, but I'm sure it will all work out once I get there. I'm just sad cuz I won't be able to say goodbye to many of the wonderful Inverness members! :(

So, before I recap my week, I completely forgot to mention something last week.  We went on exchanges with the Zone Leaders last Tuesday. I was with Elder Dickinson again. In the middle of our exchange, Elder Dickinson had a seizure!!! Literally, in the middle of the street! We had just finished talking to this one woman (she'd been pretty rude) when he said to me "Oh no. Elder Bates, I'm about to have a seizure." And I was just "Wait, what!?" And then it hit! He was still standing, and talking. He even GQ'd a woman and gave her a card! He just wasn't really there. Once I was certain he could walk, we went back to the flat (we received a tender mercy. We'd missed the bus, so we were walking. If he'd had his seizure on the bus, we'd be in the middle of nowhere!) where I had him read stuff from my planner, which really helped, and gave him some food and water. We weren't allowed to leave the flat after that, by the direct orders of President Brown. We were joking about it later, how I keep giving him seizures! That's twice now when he's gone on an exchange with me and had one! He's really nervous that this means he'll have to go home, which he does NOT want. But all seems well, he's just been moved to Edinburgh, probably so the Mission Home can keep a closer eye on him. What a champ. He did not want to stop working! Great guy! 

Anyhow, so this week was great! We've had so many LA's just call us and ask if they could come back to church, the Elders here are going to be working with about 5 LA's! It's fantastic! And we also got a New Investigator! We were in the Town Center on P-Day walking around. Even though it's our day off, we've been told to wear our Proselyting clothes anyways (white shirt and tie), which not everyone is too happy about. But this is a testimony why! I noticed a guy staring at us while we walked past. I said hello and we started talking, and we were able to set up an appointment! His name is Ian, he's gotta be in his 30's or 40's. Both of his parents have died in the past 10 years, and, being an only child, he's now all alone. Unmarried, no kids. He's got friends, of course. But yeah, we met with him once, taught him the Restoration, and afterwards, he asked us about what we believed. We talked about Jesus and such, and then he asked again "What else do you believe?" and we talked about modern prophets. "What else do you believe?" This went on and on! Elder Carter started to recite from memory some of the Articles of Faith! He was really willing to go to Stake Conference this past weekend! We couldn't get a ride for him, unfortunately, but he's just willing to do everything we ask! Hopefully the future Elders can get him to start coming.

Maureen's doing fine! We brought one of the Young Men with us to teach her, and that went great. We spent a whole day in Nairn on Friday. That was really good.

Everyone out here just assumes that all Mormons are Utahn! I'm proud to tell them I'm from Seattle!

I would advise you all to read the accounts of the bondages of Limhi's people and Alma's people in the book of Mosiah. I've always thought those two accounts were the same, but reading them this past week has shown how different they are! Read and compare! 

I am uber jealous of you going to Mexico!! Enjoy it! I'm getting some sun here too, but I don't get to stay in a hotel and eat fancy Mexican food or swim. Luckies.

Love you all!!

Elder Bates     :D I'm really excited to go to Ireland!  

April 14, 2015 What an interesting week!

Hi ya Fam!

Maureen is on date for baptism!  May 16th! 

We've had an interesting week this week. 

It's been very difficult, really. We've only got Maureen as an investigator, and it's difficult to set up appointments with her. So we spend all week doing Finding. But so far we've gotten almost nothing from our own efforts.

However, we have gotten some things from Heavenly Fathers' efforts!

For instance, on Friday we were heading out to a Members home (the Hamiltons) for Lunch and some service. Unfortunately, I got us on the wrong bus! We didn't realize it until the bus had turned around and was heading back to the town center, where we'd caught it. So we decided to just ride it back to town, and catch the correct bus from there. We had just gotten off the bus when this woman asked if I was an Elder. I said I was and she started telling me how she was a member of our church, but hasn't gone in a long time. She's got a 19-month old child that she wants to be baptized (I think she's forgotten that we baptize at 8 but oh well), and we scheduled an appointment for this Thursday! I think we were led to go on that wrong bus. 

Friday in and of itself was pretty different! After we were at the Hamilton's we were back in town when Elder Carter suggested that we go by Maureen. So we got on a bus (the right one!) and headed towards her. This sweet looking old woman was talking with us about how we need to get away from Mormonism and start reading the Bible and be Born Again.  Anyways, we got off to Maureen's, and knocked her door. After a minute or two, we realized she wasn't in. I remembered that she sometimes stays with her neighbor, so we started walking over there. We hadn't even knocked before the door flung open, and there was Maureen, looking completely and utterly distraught! "Oh thank goodness you're here! She's fallen down!" Her friend said.  Maureen was lying sprawled out on the floor of her bathroom. Elder Carter and I picked her up and put her in her armchair, and basically made sure she was alright. After that, we were heading back to the flat. On the way we met a man that was completely and utterly drunk. I've never seen anyone so drunk! We gave him some cards. Hopefully he finds them when he's sober. Or maybe he'll give them to someone. 

So yeah. What a week. Ward Council was on Thursday, but because it's Easter Break here, which is two weeks long, it was just us, Bishop, one of his counselors, and the High Priest Group Leader!

Ben Clark, our Ward Mission Leader, is going through a really rough time right now. He asked us to pray for him, and if you could too, that'd be great. 

Yesterday Gail popped by and gave us our "Easter Baskets"! It was a bag full of stuff, like two massive chocolate eggs, a six pack of root beer, and some homemade popcorn kernels! We popped some last night, ate them with the root beer and watched one of those "Animated Stories from the Book of Mormon" videos! It was about Ammon. He was such a bro. Let's give him a hand! 

I gave the lesson yesterday in Priesthood. It was about Joseph Smith. I'm assuming you had a similar lesson. HE was awesome. I've learned so much about him on my mission!! The more I learn about him the more awesome he is! I made a challenge for the Elders and High Priests there, which I'm in turn asking you to do: If you haven't read the Joseph Smith History part of the Pearl of Great Price within the past week or two, READ IT. There is so much that is in there! As missionaries, we are not to memorize any part of the lessons, so we can adapt them to the needs of the investigators. The only exception is the First Vision. We memorize that scripture passage, and recite it during the lessons. You don't have to do this, but you can, and it's something I want to do soon: go through the History, and write down every doctrine or principle that it teaches. No matter how small or huge, everything. I think you'll realize, when you look at the list, that a large portion of the doctrine contained just in those few pages, are only to be found in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I once met a man who seemed to feel it was his duty to inform us that we belonged to a Satanic Cult. He said so much stuff.  The  missionary I was with, Elder Moller, who was from Denmark, asked the man if he'd prayed about the Book of Mormon. He hadn't. Then Elder Moller asked if the man believed God could answer prayers. The man said he didn't believe you could hear God's voice. Elder Moller, who's quite bold, then informed the man that he didn't believe in the Holy Ghost then. He didn't like that. But it goes to show you, we are EXTREMELY blessed!

Anyhow, looking forward to this week! This past week has been so sunny and warm until Saturday and Sunday, which were sunny but bitter cold wind. But this week is supposed to be in the 50's! Farenheit. 

Sunday is Moves Call! Next week, I could have some pretty big news for ya! I don't know if I told you, but in July, Elder Holland is coming!! He's only gonna speak to the Missionaries serving in East Scotland though! Which means it's unlikely I'll be there for it. But I'm hoping! 

Love you all! Love this church! It's so happy! I'm reading King Benjamin's speech. Let me tell ya, if you want to be humbled, read I think chapter 4. He calls us "unworthy creatures"! And we are!

Elder Bates

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

April 7, 2015 Conference Conference Conference!

Happy Easter! Cheep Cheep!!

Hope you guys got my pictures of Nessie! I found him! He's awesome!

April Fools! 

Yeah, you probably guessed that one. But hey, I had to try, right?

So I'm immortal now, btw. There's a tradition for every Elder that serves in Inverness to drink out of Loch Ness, thereby granting him immortality. I wish I could have sent you the video! It was actually really great tasting water!! Interesting after taste, but that was probably the peat in it. All three of us, Elder Stobbs, Elder Carter and I, drank out of it. We forgot a cup, so we just used our hands. And I might have gotten a souvenir that should be arriving in Mom's Mothers Day package, I don't know...

Yeah this was an interesting week! On Tuesday, we had to go pick up Elder Livingston from the train station. He didn't have a phone on him. And, as it turns out, his train was delayed. But, because he didn't have a phone, we didn't know! So we were freaking out!!! Particularly Elder Stobbs. But he eventually turned up and we had to call the AP's to let them know that he'd arrived safely. 

Elder Carter went on an exchange with Elder Livingston on Thursday, so I was with Elder Stobbs again. He's practically another companion now! On Friday, the Thurso Elders were coming to "Blitz" Inverness and go on exchanges. They arrived just after Elder Carter did, so we all decided to go get lunch together! We went to KFC, and called the Elders up in Shetland to rub it in their faces ha! With Elder Jamieson, we started going around trying by people. But after an hour of absolutely no success, we stopped and decided to do Warhammer finding again! The shop was closed, but there's a Warhammer club that meets at the building Friday nights, so we went there. Elder Jamieson was having an awesome conversation with one guy who was painting figurines. I wasn't able to get a conversation going.
We taught Riley on Saturday before the Womens Session was broadcast at the church building. My first Recent Convert lesson on my mission! It went well. He'll be at his dad's all this week. The British get two weeks off for Easter!! Anyhow, after that we had sports with the youth. We were just about to start a round of Chair Football when some of the sisters asked if I could hook up the internet with the tv. And so it began. We were working on that thing the rest of the day! We started around two, and we didn't finally give up until six! We were able to get it working for some of it, but then it cut out. It was actually funny, in the middle of Packer's talk, the internet gave out. But what happened was that the screen went dark, and then it had a display saying "Please wait..." So I thought "Oh my gosh, something happened to President Packer!!" We got so frustrated. We just waited for the Saturday Morning session to end, and then we downloaded the talks and watched them on a separate computer! 

Almost nobody was at the church! It was just us. Because anyone can watch it anywhere, most people just stay at home. Some did come, but they would leave once we had technical difficulties because they could just watch it at home! But us missionaries, we have to either go to a members home, or go to the church, and everybody wants to just sit in their jammies for conference, so they don't invite us over. The Bishop came to some of the sessions. What a champ. I love that man, he is such a fantastic Priesthood holder. But even he said he wouldn't be there if he wasn't Bishop. So because it was just us, we had to figure out all our technical difficulties ourselves. And on top of everything, Elder Carter blew out two different tires on two different bikes going to and from sessions! Satan was ragin this weekend! 

But we did get to watch every session except the Sunday Afternoon one. I'm downloading that one in a bit. We'll listen to it for Companionship Study throughout this week. It's interesting the order it has to be done out here! They do Womens Conference at 2 on Saturday, with the Saturday Morning Session live at five. Then on Sunday, we watch the Priesthood Session at 10, then the Saturday Afternoon Session, and finally watch the Sunday Morning Session live. So it was interesting in Priesthood session when they announced the speakers, and had one guy "who was just released this morning" and I'm like "Really?" because we hadn't watched that session yet! 

Quite honestly, I couldn't focus on the talks as much as I'd have liked. I was a little preoccupied with all the technical problems ha. It was a shame really. I'm hoping to relisten to all the Apostles talks later. I thought Elder Perry's talk in Priesthood session would be a great talk to listen to when I go home. It was really directed primarily to RM's and YSA. It was really good and really funny. "RM does not stand for Retired Mormon!" You should listen to it! President Brown told all the Sisters here to listen to it.

I did hear the NO people! I thought they were just overly excited Mormons that were going "Yeah! Woo!" after the Apostles and Prophet were sustained!! It's really sad. Do you know why they did that?

Yesterday  Elder Carter was REALLY sick! So we stayed in the flat all day.

So yeah, it's been a good week. Maureen watched Conference with Brother Mackay, and she liked it! 

I'm trying a new thing. I've been really inconsistent with my journal writing, so I'm trying to do a Video Diary with my camera! It's worked out all right. I missed yesterday, but overall I prefer it. I just go up into the attic, and talk to myself! It's been fun.

Anyhow, love you all! I would encourage you all to read Jacob chapter 5! I know that one's the hard one, but I spent two personal study sessions on it, and I loved it! I'm on King Benjamin's Speech now, really excited about that :)

Elder Bates

Answers to Mom's Questions:

1.  They're called Bank Holidays. They're days when almost no one works. So everything's closed except for grocery stores and a few other necessities. So the Library was closed, which is why I'm emailing today instead!
2.  Eh, I'm sleeping fine. The bed isn't too bad. 
3.  It depends on the people. Some refuse to accept more scripture. Others refuse to accept religion in general. But most honestly just don't want to change.
Thanks for all the advice and the updates! I love you so much! "I've really learned to appreciate you now that I'm doing my own laundry." Name that Movie! Well, I don't think they put that part in the movie. Name that Book!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Pictures of Riley's Baptism


More Pictures




March 30, 2015 Car Week!

Hi  ya! 

The big news is: Yes! We had a baptism!! It went really well, considering how crazy everything went! But yes! We had it! He was given the Gift of the Holy Ghost yesterday. I got to baptize Riley! I kept a program, which I'm hoping to keep forever!  More on the baptism later.

This week was a week-long exchange with Elder Stobbs from Worcheshire. He's Elder Livingston's companion, who's singing in the Easter Choir, so we get him as well as their car.

To start off with, on Tuesday we emailed (as you undoubtedly noticed! Sorry about the no warning) and Riley got interviewed for his Baptism. He passed. 

On Wednesday we went all the way to the Isle of Skye!! That was a long trip! There were some Less Actives we were hoping to go by, but we only were able to talk with one, but she was awesome! Her name is Mevis, and the only reason she's LA is because she lives so dang far away!! She asked if we could give her the sacrament! So even though we never saw any other LA, I think it was all worth it. And the pictures were a nice bonus! I'm the only one legally able to drive, so I've been driving all week long!. Elder Carter has been out for over a year, which means he can't legally drive in the UK. Elder Stobbs is from England, but he didn't get a license. (You have to be 18 to get a license here!) So I had to do all the driving! All week long! This has been the most driving I've done in my life!!! And all on the wrong side of the road and the wrong side of the car! I had Elder Stobbs take all the pictures for me.  But hey who. (That's a Scottish thing they say.) I don't know if Elder Stobbs got a picture of it, but the roads to Skye are single lane. Not both sides, I mean totally one lane. So if a car is coming towards you, you've got to swerve off the road so you don't have a head on collision!! Little scary! But everything worked out! Skye was beautiful! So nice! 

Anyway, Thursday was spent in Invergordon, Elder Stobbs' area. That was nice, nothing really to report. Just that they're working with a woman that's Feminist, Communist, and Vegan. She believes that Thou Shalt Not Kill refers to anything. So if you eat meat, you're not a Christian.

Friday we went off to the Black Isle (doesn't that just sound awesome!? The Black Isle! "We're off on an epic quest to the Black Isle to locate the Sword of Truth in a titanic battle between the forces of Righteousness and the Hordes of Darkness!") to help Brother Mackay take care of some trees that had blown over and such. We ended up spending the whole day with them! They fed us lunch and bought us food at a Chippie! (That's a Fish and Chips shop. BTW, I tried my first Deep Fried Pizza on Wednesday! It was too hot, burnt the roof of my mouth! So I don't know if it was good or not ha)

Saturday was, of course, Riley's baptism! Everything went well! We were going through Bishop's collection of the Journal of Discourses, which is a collection of General Conference Talks made by the General Authorities way back when. We were reading talks by Brigham Young!! It was really deep! I wish General Conference was that deep today!  The baptism went well too. I got all of Riley's name right. His full name is Riley Liam Donal Inglis. Talk about a mouthful! That's not a typo, btw. It's not Donald, it's Donal. 

He got confirmed yesterday, by Bishop, the YM's president, and our old Bishop, Brother Kane. We had lunch with Bishop McLeman btw! It was delicious! We had black pudding. It's really not too bad when you don't think about the fact that you're eating dried blood. 

So those pictures were taken on Wednesday. Since we had a car, we decided to go out to the furthest point of our area! The Isle of Skye! I love the ability of my camera to email pictures to you guys, but it simply couldn't capture the beauty of that Isle. It was fantastic! 

After hearing about your visit to the condo, I'm making a rule for myself when I go home: don't watch TV or a movie without someone. It's just not fun otherwise! Plus you waste a lot of time!  I'll try to keep that rule up when I get home.

I am really excited for Conference too! I love Conference!!

About the Piano, I don't get a chance often; I only play hymns, because the only times I really get a chance to play are at the church. 

No I don't really need anything new. My shoes are beginning to get worn out, but they're still stable and doable! I say, as long as you can't see through them, they're still wearable! I do have a few socks with holes in them, but beyond that I'm fine! 

I got your Valentines Day package last week.  I got your Easter Package before that, which is weird. And I got all the letters from your seminary students!  And I did hear about that plane crash. So sad.

Anyways, that was my week! Love you all so much! Keep reading the Book of Mormon! Don't let a day go by without reading something from it! 

Elder Bates

Letter to Mom's Seminary Class

Dear Seminary Class,

Many thanks for all the letters I received from you!

You are doing a great job! When I was your age, I chose to be in a special choir instead of Seminary. I had a lot of great experiences in that choir, but it was honestly a mistake. Seminary is the best thing you can do in your High School years! It's certainly the most important!

And of all the things you can do in or with Seminary, the best thing you can do is grow your testimony!! After High School, you won't have nearly as much support from your parents. So now is the time to build your testimony and make it strong. Pray and ask your Heavenly Father about the things your fantastic teacher is saying. Ask Him anything you want! Ask Him if the cute girl/boy likes you! He might not answer, but you never know! Ask Him anything. He loves you!

I am so grateful for the Prophet Joseph Smith. He was the Man! Through him, we have almost all of our scriptures!! The Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and the Pearl of Great Price alone make up half of our books! He's such an awesome guy. I hope you continue to learn about him, because you can never know too much!

Keep up the good work! Don't make my Mom go crazy!

Elder Bates

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

March 24, 2015

I know what you mean by busy crazy exhausting week! I am absolutely exhausted!! Unfortunately, it's because I couldn't get to sleep until really late three nights in a row. It's been really difficult. I've got such bad shadows under my eyes, it looks like Elder Carter punched me! Haha 

That's a wonderful story! I'm so glad she was kept safe! I received a blessing from Elder Wells once, and he told me in it that my family would be kept safe, so that's awesome! :)

I got the envelope with all the Seminary Student's letters in it!

Georgiana and her mom went back to Stornoway early this week. They're both doing fine. She's coming back in 4 weeks to do some of the tests she needs to determine if she's healthy enough to get the new lungs. We'll probably see her then.

Maureen is doing well! I don't know if I told you but she was at church last week! Elder Blosil and I went by her on Saturday, and she was awesome!! She didn't come to church this Sunday because the Mackay's, her ride, didn't come.

Rieley's doing fine. Elder Carter and Elder Blosil taught him on Sunday night. I wasn't there I don't know what they taught him. But he's doing well! Tonight he gets interviewed by the Zone Leaders. We're nervous because we're meeting him an hour earlier to teach a few more things he has to know to get baptized!! Oh, and another thing I forgot to mention last week: he wants ME to baptize him!!!! I was deeply honored by that one!! I'm gonna get my white trousers wet!! Haha So his family is a little complicated. So first there's Sister Scott. That's his Grandma. She's an active member. Then there's Gail. She is Sister Scott's daughter and Rieley's mother. She was reactivated back in January. He's got one brother and one half-brother. I can't remember his older brother's name, but they're both from the same mother and father. The half-brother belongs to Rieley's father and his partner. I don't think his older brother has been baptized. Gail was a member but left the church when she was 14. She wanted to live life her own way. She finally realized how bad of a situation her life was in, and so started coming back to church shortly before I arrived here! They're a great family! They've got strong Scottish accents, which is awesome to listen to!

Our goal for the whole year is to have 2 baptisms per missionary. Last year we had an average of 1 baptism per missionary. With Rieley, I'm right on track! Haha I can just slack off the rest of the year!!!
Elder Carter is great! He is a HUGE Disney fan.

Ben is doing fine. He's met some of the people that were Investigators in The District. You remember watching that show? 

Have you heard about the #BecauseHeLives initiative? Ask the missionaries, they can help you. ;) It's pretty cool! We talked about it on Friday.

Well, thanks for the email!! I LOVE YOU!!!! :) Happy Easter! Cheep Cheep!
Elder Bates


Email from President Brown to all the Missionary's

Dear Family, This is awesome!! The second Paragraph is the best part! Everything is, but that paragraph is fantastic!!!

My Dear Elders and Sisters,
With 4 zone conferences that was a pretty busy week and with the choir mob invading the mission home tomorrow the hectic-meter will be off the scale! Last week was great though – someone asked me what my favourite thing about my calling is and I had to say it is any gathering of missionaries – I just can’t get enough of that. It’s kind of sad in a way because I never get to talk to everyone and always go home thinking that I didn’t get a chance to speak to this or that missionary then when its interviews I still feel I missed out because the time we get together is so short. However you know I love you all and however much time I get around you I guess I should be grateful and not bleat about how short it is. You are all AWESOME – after last week’s question about the use of that word Elder Daysen Christensen sent me no less than 8 quotes by general authorities using it – including one from President Monson – so it’s officially in mission vocabulary! We can just call ourselves “Team Awesome” from now on!
I have some good news and some bad news - I am pleased to advise you that we will have a visit from Elder Jeffrey R Holland of the Quorum of The Twelve Apostles on June 6th – I’ve been keeping this quiet for quite a while and wanted to wait till nearer the time but I think it has leaked out and so I wanted to make it official for you. He has asked that I invite the missionaries who are in easy travelling distance of Edinburgh to a meeting in the afternoon from 3pm to 5pm – It’s a Saturday and he will be speaking on the Sunday at a broadcast conference for the UK and Ireland. Sadly all of you will not be able to attend the Saturday missionary meeting (that was the bad news bit). Those of you who happen to be in Ireland at the time will not be able to attend. We are having the Scotland East Zone conference on the Friday and keeping the Aberdeen Zone down here. We can’t have anyone in the mission home so we’ll plan to have some people out around the more local areas.
As has become my habit these past few months I wanted to share something from my personal study of the Atonement from the past week. Following Nephi’s brother Jacob’s great discourse in chapter 9 of second Nephi – Nephi himself goes on in chapter eleven to attest that both he and Jacob have seen the Redeemer. He then says “And my soul delighteth in the covenants of the Lord which he hath made to our fathers; yea, my soul delighteth in his grace, and in his justice, and power, and mercy in the great and eternal plan of deliverance from death. And my soul delighteth in proving unto my people that save Christ should come all men must perish.” I also delight in my covenants – they are my safe path and my sure way to freedom, peace and happiness. I too delight in proving to my people that Christ has delivered us and we perish not! These are great missionary scriptures and our call and blessing is to “prove” to the people these marvellous things – may God bless you in this, his wonderful work of salvation! 
He has blessed us with 3 friends baptised this week and there are 36 on the scheduled list too! There were 3 reactivations and 80 less active members at church. With the SOE we are IN REACH! We need a good push during the choir week by all those who are not in the choir! With 75% of the time gone we are at 76% @; 81% Jt.; and 69% New
With love to you all,
President Brown
Friends Baptised this week;
Marta Pardell in Antrim
Jared James in Dundalk
Nicola Sherlock in Limerick
At Church (400)
Joint Teaches (800)
New (350)
Mar 8
Mar 15
Mar 22
Mar 29
 Okay, this is Elder Bates now. The one problem with that date is that that is two transfers from now. I'll have already been in Scotland for 10 months by the time this transfer ends, so there is the high likelihood that I'll be sent to Ireland!! Which, before I'd heard this, was great!! But now.... I can't move to Ireland just before HOLLAND gets here!!! Can you imagine!?!? Knowing my luck...

But hey, if the Lord wants me to go to Ireland while His Apostle is in Scotland, there must be a reason behind it. So I'll trust His decisions. 

Thursday, April 2, 2015

March 16, 2015 Goodbye Wells, Hello Carter!

Hello Everybody! How are you all doing?

Sounds like quite the week! Moving, bad backs, choir concerts, whew! Sounds pretty busy! Wish I could've been there to help! 

This week was pretty cool! I'm gonna be real quick with everything though, if you want details, you'll have to ask for them and wait for them.

Elder Wells took some time to say goodbye to plenty of members Monday and Tuesday. Elder Jensen from Thurso is also moving, so they came down and the two of them took the same train to Aberdeen on Tuesday. That meant it was just me and Elder Jamieson! WITH A CAR!!!! WHOOOOO!!! We did a lot of stuff for P-Day on Wednesday! I got a hair cut, for one thing. I'm going to assume I've told you about Warhammer Finding. If not, I'll tell you later. We did that, had a blast too! We were going to go to Loch Ness and drink from the waters of immortality, but we ran out of time and also couldn't find a place to stop and go down to the water's edge. Elder Carter got in a few minutes late, but we came back to the flat. He's got this tradition that every moves, he has to rearrange the flat! So we did that! It looks cool, I'll have to snap a pic for ya. 

Anyways, Elder Carter is cool! He's got 5 months left, he's served all over Scotland and a bit in Ireland as well. Elder Carter's a hard worker. We've done some AUF's, Ward Council, Ninjitsu, taught Rieley, and also Georgiana and Jen! We had a WONDERFUL summers day on Saturday! It was sooooooo warm!! Perfect for playing sports with the Youth! Elder Carter did a great job with the youth, playing "football" with them and just having a good time. It was a fun day!
Georgiana and Jen weren't able to make it to Church, unfortunately, but they should be getting out of the hospital today! But hey, Maureen came to church!! She had a cane with her, and she was a little doped up, but she came! 

The Ward Members here are the best! They're so awesome! They are wonderful once you bring somebody to them, which is fantastic, not every ward is like that that. We're working on  getting them to actually do missionary work! But they're great fellowshippers, so I've got nothing to complain about. We usually get 2-3 DA's a week up here. 

Inverness is wonderful! Love it to bits!

We've also got a really cool experience to share!  We were walking down the river, heading towards the church to look up some AUF's, when this woman sitting on a bench called after us, wondering what our nametags said. Turns out she's from Lithuania, and we had a nice chat sitting on that park bench overlooking the river! We invited her to church, gave her a pamphlet and a card, and then she was on her way and we went on ours! And she came to church! She's willing to have us come by her place and teach her! She's moving to England in a few weeks, but we're willing to get her started on the pathway!

So yeah, that's been my week. Oh, here's something! So on Saturday we were walking towards this AUF, but we got to where we thought she was, and we couldn't find the road. We looked up the map, and the road didn't exist on there! We weren't far from the church, so I suggested we go there and use the computer there to look up the address. We did, and found that if we had just gone a few feet further, we would have found the road!! We were a little upset about this, feeling that we must have ignored some promptings from the spirit! We went to the AUF, who'd moved, and then started heading back home for Dinner, having wasted some time going back and forth from the church. However, we hadn't gone far when we suddenly heard someone calling out "Elders! Hey Elders!" We turned and a car had just parked on the side of the road and this woman was running up to us. "I am so glad I found you guys! We're visiting from England, and we don't know what time the service is tomorrow!" We told her it was at 10, and she was overjoyed! "You guys are like answers to prayers! Thank you! See you tomorrow!" They were a couple who were members who came to church. They'd been married at the church building, actually! So anyways, God uses us, no matter our weaknesses, to help others. I think someone once said "Except for only one special individual, God has always had to deal with imperfect people. That must be terribly frustrating for Him! But he deals with it, and uses our imperfections to further His work!" Amen to that!

Anyways, I'll be praying for you all! Have a great week! :) Love you all so much! :)
Elder Bates