North American Auto Show 1/22/2013

Erik Rushton at Detroit Auto Show

Erik used his picture on the Toyota Fun-Vii paint job.

We had a pretty good week last week with a lot of success. We had a pretty cool miracle on Saturday. We received this referral from another set of elders but he wasn’t home. Preach My Gospel tells us that we should tract around the area of the referrals we receive because sometimes the Lord sends us to places to find someone else. Well we had planned on just knocking the street that the referral lived on but for some reason I felt we should drive to the end of the block and start there. When we got to the end of the block we noticed there was a small apartment complex across the street and I really felt like we needed to knock doors there. After about 10 doors of nobody answering, we were getting ready to head back to the car because we were cold, but then on the next door someone answered and let us in! We had to make the lesson quick because she didn’t have a lot of time, but she invited us to come back later this week. We kept knocking in that apartment complex for a little while after that and found another person who invited us back too.

On Sunday we had another awesome miracle happen. As soon as we arrived at church, all the investigators we had planned on coming called and told us they weren’t going to be able to make it. It was really disappointing. We headed to the foyer to welcome people like we always do. Even when we pretty much know we have nobody coming to sacrament meeting, I like to stand in the foyer and welcome people until the first hymn starts. I feel it shows the ward that we’re optimistic (even though sometimes we aren’t haha). Well it turns out that a couple members invited their friends to come to church and they showed up! We ended up having four non-members at church and we had two of them that were interested in us coming by and sharing our message with them. And to top it all off, we still had an investigator show up. It was a really good Sunday. The Lord truly is preparing people!

Yesterday we went to the North American International Auto Show and it was pretty awesome. I’m glad I got to go this year because last year we couldn’t find anyone to give us a ride. The show was HUGE and they had a lot of cool concept cars to check out. My favorite was the Toyota Fun-Vii. It’s a super futuristic car that’s nowhere near showing up on the road but it had a lot of cool features and ideas. The whole thing was automated and it has no windows. Instead it has a bunch of small cameras on the exterior that project the outside world on the interior of the car. The coolest part though was the exterior of the car. The “paint” can be fully customized  to look anyway you want it to look. So you can pick red, blue, green, yellow, zebra stripe, you can draw your own picture… just whatever you can think of. We had the guy running the car take a picture of us and project it on the outside of the car. I’ll send you the picture I took of it. My favorite car is still the newest Dodge Challenger though. Even among all the Ferrari’s and Porsche’s it was still the one I wanted to check out. The new Dodge Dart is really cool though too and we watched one of the presentations on it. They had a new Jaguar there too that came with a 7.1 surround sound system and a super charged V8 that was cool too. The lady showing it off too said it was “on sale for the low price of $89,000!” But overall it was a fun car show and I’m glad I got to go.  It was funny to walk around and see pretty much all of the missionaries from our mission there too. We got stopped by a lot of members too that thought it was cool our mission president allowed us to come down.

We got a call from the mission office yesterday too informing us that next transfer (Feb19) they are splitting Warren in half. I already knew it was coming so it wasn’t a big surprise. So this week we have to locate an apartment for the new missionaries to live in so that’s going to take up part of our week. The mission office wants to be able to start moving furniture and stuff in on February first so we don’t have a lot of time to figure it out. We’re planning on doing some hunting today. It’s kind of exciting preparing the ward for another set of elders to come in.

Well, I hope you guys are doing well and having fun. Thanks for the letters and everything! Have a good week and I’ll talk to you guys next week!

-Love Elder Rushton


6 Months in Warren—letter from 1/7/2013

Erik Rushton and Elder Mayfield

Elder Rushton and Elder Mayfield

So like I said in chat, I’m staying in Warren for another transfer. That’ll keep me in Warren for a total of 6 months by the end of the next transfer which would make Warren my 3rd straight 6-month area. I stay in wards for a really long time! President Holmes called me Sunday night and asked me to be district leader again. I don’t mind doing it and I actually really like writing district meetings and instructions.

We’re getting a ton of new missionaries in these next two transfers. Tomorrow, 11 new missionaries come in and then the next transfer something like 23 new missionaries come in. We’re opening a ton of new areas in the mission. Warren is going to have two sets of Elders starting in the end of February. In fact, this whole district is getting 4 new areas opened up. My district consists of the Warren, Roseville, and North Shores ward which all right now have one set of Elders each, plus a senior couple serving in Roseville. By the end of February, Warren will have two sets of missionaries, Roseville will have two sets of missionaries, and North Shores will have three sets of missionaries, plus the senior couple in Roseville. That would mean this district would have a total of 16 missionaries which is insane. We’re thinking they’ll have to split the district in half because the District Leader has to go and spend a day with each missionary in the district once every transfer. If I had to do an exchange with 14 different missionaries, it’d take up half the transfer! But chances are I’ll leave Warren before all the new areas open up.

Our week this week was pretty great. We made a special point this week to go around and visit all of the part member families in the ward and we had some pretty good success. We have appointments set up with a couple of them for later in the week. We also had two part member families show up and church for the first time since I’ve been here and I attribute that to the fact that we made a special point to go and visit them. We had a very good turnout for church this week too and that’s probably because we’re at 11:00 now 😉

We’re really making an effort to get the home teachers involved with the less actives we’re teaching too. At correlation with our Ward Mission Leader this week we went over how the process of the Less Active ward referrals should work and then yesterday we brought it up with the bishopric as well. We’ve also been reporting to the home teachers about any time we see someone on their list, and we’ve also been making an effort to get the home teachers to come and teach with us when we see people on their list. We decided to do this after we met with our WML and he commented to us that he has 12 families to home teach and he doesn’t even know everyone on the list. I’ve heard similar things from other members so I decided that the best thing to do would be to try and introduce the home teachers to the people on the list they don’t know that we see. So far it has been working pretty well and we’ve really been trying to make the transition from us visiting less-actives every week, to the ward being much more involved in the reactivation process.

I can’t believe that time is flying by so fast! This last transfer was probably the fastest transfer of my mission! I’m starting transfer #15 today and you only have 17 total. It’s crazy how fast the mission goes!!

Well, hope you guys have an awesome week! Thanks for everything!

Cold & Snowy-Letter from Erik Jan 2, 2013

Happy 2013!! I’m glad we all lived past the end of the Mayan calender except for the fact that I was planning on the world ending while I was a missionary so that I could just continue to be a missionary in the spirit world. Oh well… Guess it will have to wait.

Not a whole lot of new stuff happened this week. Just pretty much the same old same old. It’s been really cold lately. Most of the time temperatures are below 25. I was really hoping our winter this year would be as mild as last year but I don’t think I’ll get that wish. Last Wednesday it ended up snowing about nine inches. Elder Jackson really wanted snow because he never gets to play in it in California. I kept telling him “You’ll like it for about 2 days, and then you’ll want it gone’ but he didn’t believe me. Then just the other day he was like “ok, I’m really getting tired of this.”

On Saturday one of our members daughters got married to someone in the ward. We went to the ceremony because they asked Elder Jackson to play piano.

We did have 2 less actives come to church that are pretty much reactivated. We just want to confirm with our Ward Mission Leader and ward council that we can officially call them reactivated. Their story is pretty cool too. About 2 months ago Elder Stark, our Ward Mission Leader and I brought an idea to the ward council that these 2 less actives should get callings. The council was kind of hesitant about it, but the Bishopric ended up giving them callings. Not just any run of the mill callings either, they gave them serious ones. One got called to be the Sunday School President, and the other is the Ward Bulletin coordinator. They’ve been doing awesome in their callings and have come to church 6 weeks in a row!

This Saturday we get transfer calls. I can’t believe it’s already been 6 weeks from the last transfer. Time flies to fast! I most likely will stay in Warren for another transfer but I’m not really sure. I would be happy to stay another one but at the same time I wouldn’t be really sad to leave. I’m pretty much indifferent to the transfer process now I guess haha. I’ll just go where the Lord wants me to go.

Well I hope you guys have a good week.  And tell everyone thanks for their Christmas letters!

Love Erik