Elder Taylor Dearden
South Carolina Columbia Mission
110 Oak Park Drive, Suite B
Irmo, SC 29063

taylor.dearden@myldsmail.net


Monday, February 23, 2015

Mexico?

Alright this past week was another really interesting one!

Unfortunately lots of people were busy and the work slowed down a bit, lots of appointments were canceled. But our investigators are still in close contact and are doing great!

Whitney is just as awesome as ever, she is already living the commandments required for baptism, and is still pondering a date! She has become a great friend out here!

Ben is doing good, we are doing a church tour with him today and teaching him about the Gospel of Jesus Christ, it will be a good experience for him to see the baptismal font and the sacrament table and to talk about those ordinances with him there.

Bobby and Ed are out of town, but we look forward to meeting with them soon!

So Crazy story! This is probably one of the weirdest coincidences I've had ever!

So there is this member in our ward named Jeff Hall, he has been teaching Ben with us. He is really cool and we have become good friends over the past month. He married into the Robinson family, he's Bishop Robinson's Brother in Law. But Anyways we were all eating dinner yesterday at the Robinson home and Jeff started talking about his mission that he served 10 years ago. He mentioned a city named Oaxaca, and my mind immediately remembered Mexico! I was like...wait, you served in Mexico? And he said, "Yep, I served in the Puebla mission". I was like....oh great this is just getting weirder, and I asked him, "Did you spend time in Cholula?"....He said, "Yes..."
Then I was like, you probably know Esteban, he's a friend of mine who lives there. He responded...."Did you read the Lives and Travels of Mormon and Moroni?"....my mind popped at that point. I was like, "YES! I know the author personally!"........Then he brought up a lady named Ruth Davila that he spent tons of time with in Mexico....I started to laugh and told him my Parents met her too! 

Jeff has seen the other half of the padilla plates and has lots of the papers that Ruth drew up with translations for some of the pyramid texts. He knows the Davila family pretty well. We just hit it off and were amazed that we ran into each other! We are trying to set up a pday time to sit down and exchange information. 
I am just excited that this happened, I guess i'm used to it because it happened all the time back home where I would run into awesome people like this, but I guess the Lord sees it fit to keep connecting me to people :D.

Ya, so I'm having a great time! No coincidence that I am serving here...

I hope ya'lls week is fantastic!

Elder Dearden

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Dinner on the Bay!

Magnolia Place Gardens
Ok so the past 8 days have been wild! So much fun, blessings, and success!

For P-day last week we went to Magnolia Place Gardens and had a great time! I have some pictures :D

  
After going to Magnolia Place, we had the opportunity to go out to eat with some Nonmembers that the other Elder's were teaching, it was a great p-day dinner! We went to California Dreamin, which is a restaurant that sits in the bay at Charleston! It was beautiful! The food was awesome too! I have a picture of us with them, their names are Marti and Dave :D. Awesome people!





Elder Parker, California Dreamin - Charleston Bay

California Dreamin - Charleston Bay


Marti and Dave, Elder Parker, and Me

Charleston is such a cool place! IT was cool enough that we went back again yesterday to go bowling with some Elders there! A really fun day!

Bowling in Charleston

Our investigators are doing amazing! 

Ben is progressing great! He's such a smart guy, he has such profound answers to the questions we give him. He will probably pick a date for baptism sometime this week, so we are excited for him!

Bobby and Ed came to Church and really enjoyed it! We are excited to help them progress! 

We had an amazing conversation with Whitney and she is going to pray about a baptism date too!

Elder Parker and I are working on this really cool Organ Duet, with the songs, "Come all ye sons of God, and High on the mountain top". It's going to be so cool, the assistants have asked us to play when a member of the seventy comes this march. We are excited!

Elder Parker is doing good, reminds me of the good old days when you learn how to adjust to missionary life, he's doing well though!

We had dinner with Bishop and the Ward mission leader, (Father:Son) Bishop's Dad is our ward mission leader. Elder Parker played "This is the Christ" at their home on their piano and it was really quite the spiritual experience, the whole family gathered and just listened, it was a really sweet experience.

I love South Carolina! They love to say here, "Nothin finer than livin in south carolier".

I hope your week is as fantastic as mine was!!!

Elder Parker, Elder Sibers, and me Elder Dearden
Elder Dearden

Monday, February 9, 2015

Super Busy!



Hey People!

So things are going really well here in Summerville! We have many investigators and they are all doing so well!

Bobby and Ed - we taught them about the book of moron and Baptism this past week. They both agree that if they receive their witness that they will be baptized! I am excited for them, and hopefully the lessons continue to go down the path the are already on!

We are teaching this awesome 17 year old named Ben. He is so amazing! He has been coming to church for 8 months already and has finally decided to take the missionary discussions. He already knows so much! He has agreed that he needs to be baptized and we look forward to setting a date with him when we meet with him this week! He's awesome, it's really fun to work with someone whose age you can somewhat relate to, we're only about a year apart.

Whitney is just as awesome as ever, we visited with her and her family on Saturday and were able to have a great discussion about the church. We will be meeting with her on Tuesday to have another lesson! She had a Mormon friend growing up and already knows a ton about the church which helps a billion while teaching!

Elder Parker has been awesome, if anything his heart is just full of pure love and I know our investigators see it! Our personalities are quite different, but we are both learning a great deal about ourselves and I think things are moving forward in a good direction! 
He is the ward organist now and the ward loves it! He seriously sounds like a Mo-tab organist. I have never heard a ward sing louder in sacrament than when he played yesterday, it like energized the whole place!

I will repent........I failed at getting pictures again!  But hey, proof that we work our fannys off here and we are busy! But today we are going to some Plantation with some other Elders for P-day, I think it's like an old Civil war plantation with a garden or something, but we will definitely get pictures there! I feel bad, I owe pictures, but....ooops.

Life is Good though, the weather is amazing! I hear Utah weather is good too though? 

Hopefully I can go see the Ocean out here soon, maybe next month. 

I hope ya'll's week is fantastic! I know our week will be great! 

Elder Dearden

Monday, February 2, 2015

An Amazing Ward!

Persons who read this....

Hey life is going great here in Summerville! I am already making so many great friends! The Sister Missionaries who were here before us left us many investigators who I am already in love with! 

We are woking with a couple named Bobby (the girl)...and Ed, her boyfriend. They are really cool and we have had some great discussions with them! They like Church and have so many great questions. They are really seeking the truth! We are meeting with them again tonight!

Liz, is an Older black lady who is like another Grandmother to us here, she loves to meet with us and has a desire to be baptized. After keeping some commitments she will be ready soon! I am so excited to work with her. She is so welcoming and I feel at home when I am at her house.

There is this other really awesome family we are working with. The main lady we are teaching, her name is Whitney, she is so much fun! In her Mid-20's, we are teaching her and her mom who just got back from Korea. We talked with them a while yesterday about Korea and they gave us some Korean Candy. They love Church and they love what they are learning! I can't wait to see where their progress will take them!

The Ward has referred many people to us, they keep us busy. I am so grateful to have this ward, they take such good care of us, and feed us often :D. We have a young man (Priest age) who has been coming to church a lot lately and wants to take the discussions and be baptized, hopefully we can meet with him this week and get things rolling! 

Elder Parker and I are learning lots and we are getting along well. It is fun to see a new missionary, I'm remembering all the good times Elder Davis and I had and It just reminds me how grateful I was to have a great trainer! I hope I can be the same for Elder Parker.

Unfortunately I don't have any pictures this week....I sort of forgot...really busy with things. 
Next week we might go to Charleston with Elder Lumpkin's mom, so that should be fun! Maybe I'll have pictures from that.
I'll try to get a picture of the outside of the chapel here, we have a new really nice chapel here in Summerville. They actually have 2 chapels! Lots of members here!

I hope ya'lls week is as great as mine was!

Elder Dearden