Detroit River East Letter from Feb 20, 2013

Erik in Detroit with Book of Mormon

Erik tracting in Detroit

Hola Mi Familia! I guess I better start learning some Spanish since I’m now serving in the Spanish branch!

My last week in Warren was a pretty fun one but it is always kind of depressing to leave. We spent a lot of time preparing Warren to receive 2 more missionaries and organizing the new apartment and area. I’ve had 3 areas that I’ve spent six months in and I love staying in areas for a long time, but when you have to leave it sucks. You grow really close to the members you are with and it’s tough to leave. I spent most of Sunday evening and Monday evening trying to see everyone I’ve grown close to in the last 6 months. It’s really hard to say good bye knowing that you’ll probably never come back!

Transfer meeting yesterday was pretty interesting. We had 25 new missionaries come into the mission (about 5 of them were 18) so there were a ton of trainers called. Elder Jackson was called to be a trainer so we had to be there at 9:00. With all the new missionaries coming in our mission opened up 16 new areas and opened a new zone called the Detroit Zone.

There was so much logistical stuff for the Mission President, Mission Office and Assistants to work out it was ridiculous. Imagine not only finding 16 new apartments, but purchasing them and moving in all the furniture in less than a month! I did not envy their position that’s for sure. The mission has only been able to purchase 2 new cars as well so most of the new areas are bike areas. When they called my name to announce my new area, I learned that I would in a tri-panionship with Elder Guest who has been out about 14 months and Elder Jones who has been out 2 months. I knew Elder Guest from serving around him before so I was really excited to
be with him. The funny thing was, they weren’t at the meeting! I loaded my stuff up with the Assistants and they drove me to my new area.

As hard as it was to leave Warren, I’m really excited to be in my new area—Detroit River East. I love serving in a branch and I’ve always wanted to serve in the Detroit River branch. It’s the Spanish branch of the mission and there are now 7 missionaries total that serve in it. 4 of them are Spanish elders and I’m back around Elder Gonzalez again which I was really excited about.

The really cool thing about this area is that we literally cover downtown Detroit. My apartment is really close to Ford Field where the Lions play and the Motor City Casino. Last transfer I heard they were opening an area that specifically covered downtown and I was really hoping I’d get to serve in it. My dream came true and this will probably be the last area of my mission! How much better does it get! I’m back on a bike which is really killing me right now-since I’m used to a car.

Our area is very new too so we’re doing a lot of tracting and trying to get some new investigators. I have a feeling we’re going to generate a lot of referrals for other areas since we’re spending time downtown doing street contacting.

Our apartment is suuuuuuuper small and run down. All of our windows are covered in bars to prevent people from breaking in and I’m back to sleeping with my butterfly knife by my bed just in case…….. Don’t be scared mom! I got Jesus on my side! Our shower has a concrete floor and our bathroom overall is tiny. We have antique radiators for heat and all wood floors and we have to lock our back door with a bike lock. I’ve also never seen a stove as tiny as ours, and trying to cram 3 people’s food into a tiny fridge is tough. Plus we’re surrounded by abandoned buildings. So yeah, I’m back on the poor side.

Have an awesome week!

Elder Erik Rushton

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