Mailing Address

Elder Matthew David Clough
California Ventura Mission
3301 West Gonzales Road
Oxnard, California 93036

Phone: 1-805-485-1034 (only necessary for packages)

Monday, July 21, 2014

Sleeping in a bed full of ants is not the funnest thing I've ever done... Email from 07-14-14

For me it's like sleeping in a hammock with a bunch of rattlesnakes in it.  Fortunately prayers work, because I survived the night.  I don't want to know how allergic I am to those little monsters nowadays.

This week has been amazing.  We got the report for the stake presidency done up super quickly, and we were able to hit the streets and work hard for most of the week.  We've had a harder time finding some of our more usual investigators, but the ones we've seen this time around have progressed super well.
We saw Jose again, the one who the YSA missionaries are teaching, and he's doing super great.  He asked us about the people we've been teaching and he is really anxious to start meeting with his missionaries (It's been tough for them to get in contact with him)  We have started teaching his mom, who's also really awesome, and we found out that a few days later the missionaries finally found him, and the first thing he said was "Finally!  It's about time!"  Later, as they taught him the Plan of Salvation, Elder Lee was teaching about the things we have to do in this life like faith, repentance, and baptism, and he asked "Alright, so what do I need to do to be baptized? How long does that take?"  So now he's set to be baptized about 5 weeks from now! 
We also started teaching Liz' father, Ramon.  He's a super nice old christian man, who loved the message we shared, and is really excited to read the Book of Mormon.  We're really happy about teaching them, the whole family has a lot of light.
The best news is about Ivan though; he's doing incredibly well!  We went by earlier to set up an appointment to watch Joseph Smith, the Prophet of the Restoration with him, and eventually he said "You know what? Last time I came to church it took a while after church was over to wait for my ride, so why don't we just watch it after church?"  We were floored: we hadn't even suggested he come again yet!  So, we got him a ride, and he came and loved it.  The Priesthood lesson on baptism was perfect for him, and afterwards he got talking to Omar, a missionary who returned just this last Wednesday.  As we were walking out he asked us, "So, it's two years: if I go on my mission in 2015, I'll come back in 2017 right?"  Again, we dragged our jaws on the floor for a while in surprise!  Then, we went to the Hernandez family's house to watch the movie, and it was super powerful.  I've never felt the spirit in a lesson as strong as that one, it was incredible!  Ivan loved it, and when Elder James invited him to be baptized on August 2nd, he said, "Yes, yes I will."  Yesterday was one of the best Sundays of my mission!
We also had a very powerful experience on Friday.  We went to have dinner at the branch president's house, but instead of letting us in they gave us a couple of burrito's to go in a bag, and after apologizing Presidente Rodriguez asked us to take the time from visiting their family and go to the hospital. The Garcia family had just had a baby, and the mom and baby weren't doing very well.  So, we rushed there as fast as we could, and after a bit of a hassle (The hospital was NOT up to date on it's records) and a couple helpful miracles we found the room they were in.  Hermana Garcia is holding up remarkably well, emotionally, and then Hermano Garcia took us up to give his new little daughter a blessing.  It was such a powerful, sacred feeling in the room where the little babies were being cared for in the NICU's.  The little Garcia baby looked really strong compared to the others, and the blessing her father gave her was beautiful and powerful.  We then came down and gave a blessing to the Mother that was really special as well.  It was an awesome opportunity. 
So, we're excited to work hard again this week and help people follow Christ.  We expect to see great miracles and we know great things are coming.  Keep working hard and doing your best: Prepare to serve missions, everyone!  I think that was one of the wisest counsels from the last couple general conferences.  This work is true, and it's so incredibly important!
Elder Matthew David Clough