So. I got my calls the other day. Spent the whole day worrying. Didn’t get calls till around 9. We were 100 % sure that I was staying, and probably him too. Well, he got a call around 8 from Bremerton (where the Navy Base is). “Augustine! You’re my district leader! I’m so pumped!” Except my comp didn’t know yet. I was wondering who would come in with me. Not so, I am leaving the Stadium ward. I am going to……
So, I prayed to God this whole transfer, that if he had to move me, please only send me to Sequim (it is pronounced squim. Like squid with an M) Sequim is the top of our Mission! At the very top of Washington. The reason I wanted to go there is that the weather is the best in the entire mission. Called the sunniest spot this side of Rainier.
The last week, the 9 month rainy season started, and I hated it. I seriously was hating it so bad. Cold, and rainy. It would pour all day. Wind, clouds. Miserable. Not as much in Sequim!! I’ve heard some really really cool things about Sequim. Its up on the water. And the coolest part? I look out at the San Juan Islands. I don’t know if you can see them, but we are right across the water from them. I talked to my new comp. His name is Elder Siemon. Or seamon. I don’t know how to spell it. But, I keep forgetting that it is Siemon and keep accidentally calling him Elder Sperm. Haha whoops. He is young. He has only been out 2 transfers. 3 months!! Seems cool though.
I know I’ve only been here 6 weeks, but I have come so close with these people. Sunday was so hard! Went to church, and as everyone came in asking what is happening to us, we had to tell them we are leaving. 😦 Then we had a testimony meeting because next week is General Conference. (Twice a year the whole church watches and listens to the leaders of our church through 5 sessions of conference on Saturday and Sunday). Augustine gets up right away, gives a really good testimony. Whenever he gives a talk or testimony, the Spirit is always really, really strong. He is good at that. Then, after that, there were so many good testimonies. And everyone was crying the whole time.
With 10 min left, I go up, even though there were people waiting. I get up there and they all force me to go before them. I give my testimony, and it was so hard! Sitting there looking at all the people I love cry. I didn’t do a farewell talk. I just bore my testimony, said I’d miss em, and got down. Bishop got up, even though we were 5 minutes over, and said he needed to talk real quick. This guy is amazing. One of the coolest men I have ever been able to meet. This retired special forces guy gets up, and says “Jones! Where are ya?” I raised my hand. Then, he looked at me, and he kept looking at me his entire testimony. He started off by crying. He talked about how the missionary that baptized him, was from Alabama. That his battle buddy from the army, his best friend ever, was from Alabama. Then, he talked about me and how I’m from Alabama and how I have helped change his ward, and he won’t ever forget me. I just held eye contact and teared up and kinda cried. 😦
Spent the next hour in the hall with people trying to say goodbye and get our emails and invite us to dinner. We did a musical number in primary, and after, we started our long day of dinners. We ended up with 6 dinners. !! Started right when we got out of church, and went from house to house to house. First, the Ericksons who just sent their youngest on a mission. Then, the Daniels, who are one of my favorite families in the world. The mom reminds me a lot of you, mom. I feel like I am part of that family. They kept telling me how much I have impacted their family, and how I have really helped their sons. The mom spent the whole week praying really, really hard that we would stay. Guess we all didn’t pray hard enough! Then we went to the Cornwalls. Nice young family. They are really cool! Then to the Petersons. He lives on the water and we had a mini concert with his guitar and microphone. Then we gave a blessing, then we went to the Torells. He is from the south. I love him! They made us fried catfish, fried okra, and everything else!! So good. He told me a story of how he took a man into his house, because he was from Alabama, and the homeless man became their kids grandpa. Amazing story, and I could just feel the southern love come from him! Then we went to Nanas. My grandma out here! Her daughter says to tell Kurt Gardner, the younger, that the hippies say hi!!! They know him on his mission in Chicago. She made me a blanket, and she is just amazing!! Loved her. Then we went home and started to pack.
I wanted to cry all day. Saying goodbye was so hard. I hate to say this, but it might have been harder than leaving home. Maybe not quite, but real close. I still want to refuse to leave. I just love them so much and gratefully they loved me back! Ahhhh I’m leaving my family again!! This stinks. 😦 Our ward has been giving us lots of solid referrals, and bringing their friends to dinners, and so we teach them. This one girl that was at a dinner at the Gordon’s was cool. We taught her about the Book of Mormon. As soon as we left, she called her mom, told her about it, and then her mom was interested. I am leaving this!!! They trust us with their friends, and it was getting so good.
So I am an emotional wreck, and sound like a crazy person. So please edit as needed. Sorry. I love you a bunch. I am just going to end!