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


Monday, October 5, 2015

And the rains came down.......



It has been a wild week! First off...I was transferred to Congaree
which is about 10 miles south of where I used to live...ain't to far
at all.

Well, on Friday evening, President Turner decided to lock the mission
down because of the impending storm, there was an expected 16' inches
of rain over the weekend. We were then called by our leaders and told
that we needed to evacuate our apartment because they expected it to
flood pretty bad. The unfortunate part was that we only had 20 minutes
to pack as much as we could and get out. President wanted us all off
the roads by 7pm that night and we didn't get to start packing until
6pm. We were told to find another missionary apartment to stay at. I
chose the APs place because they have an extra bedroom. Anyways, I
packed as much as I could, I was able to get all my sentimental
objects and enough clothes for a few days.

Anyways, I'm back in Irmo with the APs again for the weekend. We were
able to watch conference at the Irmo building, because the APs had
permission to drive their truck. I really loved the first session
Saturday morning! That day continued well with nothing really
happening except for conference, because after conference we had to be
back in our apartment for the rest of the night.

Waking up Sunday morning our ZLs called us and told us that their
apartment had flooded! They had 1.5 feet of water in their apartment,
they didn't realize it until it was too late when they woke up, they
lost everything that was on the floor, including scriptures and
anything cloth based. They gathered up everything they could and
evacuated to a nearby senior couple. They are fine, they just lots a
lot of possessions.

Meanwhile we were safe, dry, and warm with the APs in their apartment,
assuming our apartment in Congaree was filled with water and possibly
mud and whatever else comes with a flood.

They closed down the Irmo building due to many roads in the ward being
washed away and people being stranded, so we couldn't watch General
Conference there. However the Mechams live in the same Apartment
complex, so we went to their place, and they threw a huge breakfast
party, we had like 8 missionaries and we all stayed there to watch
conference on their computer. It was great, I love the Mechams, great
people!!!! Sister Mecham looked online for us to see what was
happening around the state, and we discovered there were already 5
dead from a building collapsing and many people were stranded. We were
quite shocked to hear about the disaster that was happening

Unfortunately after the Morning session was over we were informed by
people knocking on doors that the water was contaminated due to the
floods washing harmful stuff into our water system. So if we drink
water from the tap we need to boil it first. We were lucky to have a
case of water bottles in our car.

Well, Sunday night came and we ate dinner with the Nolans, who lived
nearby also. As we were leaving we were informed that the state had
issued a state of emergency and there was a curfew for when you can be
on the road, I think it is 6pm. So everything is shut down after 6 to
prevent crazy people from stealing stuff.

I was informed this morning that the roads that would take us back to
Congaree are closed down and flooded. So I don't know when I will be
getting back.

All I know is that this was the strangest conference weekend ever!

Btw, I found a picture of my trainer in a members home, (Former Elder)
Cole Davis! It was really funny to realize that he served here in the
same area. This member does really cool ceramics and has invited us
over sometime to paint and do some fun stuff.

I really like my new comp, Elder Pace. Here is a pic of us at the
members home who has the ceramics.

Thanks for your prayers! Pray for South Carolina, it is a disaster
here! However this will open MANY DOORs for service!

I know the Lord is always in Charge!

Elder Dearden
My new Companion, Elder Pace

Picture of my trainer, Elder Davis, in the ceramic shop.

Watching conference at the Mechams


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