Monday, April 18, 2016

Week 98 in the Field: Ancient Treasures and My Birthday Wish for May 3rd

"Trailers for sale or rent..."

So Monday we started off by going fishing in TSTAT (Thompson’s Station Ward) with Elder Jensen and Elder Crawford. We went to this neighborhood pond and ended up catching some catfish. Like I said last week, I didn't know catfish had spikes underneath their fins, so I got stabbed a few times which kinda hurt. We then went down to Columbia where we got a ride from a recent convert family from Linden, TN to go to Hohenwald, TN so that Elder Jensen could say goodbye to some members down there, since he would be getting transferred to Nashville. Hohenwald was cool, not much there. It's mostly famous for a church history event where missionaries in the 1800's were killed as well as the bishop and a few other people. I spent most of my time with the missionaries down there. Linden, Pulaski, and Hohenwald missionaries all showed up there, so there were about 12 of us altogether. After a while down there, we drove back up and dropped the TSTAT missionaries off.

Saying goodbye to Hermana Kilgore (pictured in the center)

Tuesday we went to see Joe and he's been progressing which is great. He really wants to learn the gospel, which is awesome. We also went and saw this guy from the Middle East who's a Christian. He likes our church, but we aren't sure where he's at.

Wednesday we had district meeting, and it was cool to meet the new members of the district. Sister Woods replaced Sister Wayment, which is interesting because Sister Woods is going home this transfer as well. And Hermana Hooker replaced Hermana Kilgore, which is fun because she was in my district in Nashville 6 months ago. Elder Hinds wants to do my idea of the finding tournament so that's what we will be doing this transfer. Later on we went up to Spring Hill with the TSTAT elders (which are now Elder McClain, Elder Meldrum, and Elder Crawford. Elder McClain was in Manchester as my DL when I was in McMinnville).

Looking at the explorer's research

A piece of "Noah's Ark". It's fossilized wood, which was pretty fascinating.

We went to this one place where this lady lived, and she is the widow of this explorer named Ron Wyatt. Anyways, she said that he claimed to have found Noah's Ark, the place where Moses parted the Red Sea, Sodom and Gomorrah, the hole where Jesus's cross was, and the ark of the covenant. Basically a modern Indiana Jones. He died in 1999, but they still have many of the treasures he found. They had us watch a video detailing all the stuff he did, and the main thing that was really plausible that he did find was probably Noah's Ark. They showed the diagrams and pictures and even a piece of fossilized wood which we were able to touch. So if it turns out to be true, I touched Noah's Ark -- haha. The ark of the covenant was harder to believe because there wasn't any proof or anything other than his word. Still fascinating.

Here is a link to some information about his research:

Here is the link to the video about his research on the Ark of the Covenant:

Thursday we had a meeting with the WML (ward mission leader), and we also went and saw our most recent convert at the church with the bishop's wife. She had a lot of good questions after Elder Thompson's visit at stake conference. So it was pretty cool to see growth there. We also went over to a member's pie shop, where we helped them out with getting some things done, since they were swamped with work. It is in the center of Columbia, which is right near a cool courthouse that you can see a lot of the time.

Columbia Courthouse

Friday we had some planning and we also went to go teach that one family with the daughter who just turned eight. She should be getting baptized in a few weeks, which is awesome! We also saw a recent convert who is still recovering from hip surgery. We had a good visit with her, and she had one of my favorite kids books with her that someone gave her. I think the title is You Are Special, by Max Lucado, and it's about a puppet, who is degraded by others in society because there are no really good features about him, but then he goes to his creator, Eli, who teaches him why he is special to him. It's a good story for sure.

Santa Fe (pronounced Santa Fee) town square

Saturday we went up to Santa Fe which is a small community in the middle of nowhere near the middle of the boundaries. We were trying to contact a referral and a few less actives but didn't have much luck.  And apparently the only interesting thing about the city was some Confederate troops moved from there to fight. 

After that we went and helped the Columbia sisters move a lady who was going to Alabama. She didn't have too many things packed yet, so majority of the time was spent helping her pack. Before we started she showed us her cows, and I was the only missionary brave enough to hop the fence. The outcome? Four of them came up to me kinda surrounding me and I got licked by a cow. It was gross. In the evening we helped a less active out with his yard, and he took us out to eat.

Sunday, we had regular church meetings, and it was fun to see the ward finally. We had a cool sacrament meeting where the Bishop called up people to bear their testimonies on the importance of the Sabbath day. The missionaries teach gospel principles, so it was fun to watch Elder Hinds teach a small group of people about honesty. What was also fun to see was the Crawfords, who were over the YSA (Young Single Adults program) in TSTAT.  They moved to Spring Hill Ward and they were happy to see me again. After church we headed up to the top of the area and tried a few people up there.

Also, exciting news we found out last night is that McMinnville Stake is splitting! The stake currently covers four states (TN, KY, AL, and GA), and now will be split into the Cookeville Stake and McMinnville Stake. That's huge news and missionaries are really excited for it! The change should happen the first week of May.  The Church is growing!

I still haven't heard from the place I'm trying to work at this summer after I get home, but I'm not too worried. It's weird how fast time is going right now. I'm kind of in the mix where I can't wait to go home and at the same time it'll be semi-difficult to leave. I'm sure it would be harder if I were serving in Europe and not in a place that is only about ten hours from home. I'm excited to see what the transfer brings.

Also, some of you have been wondering about what I would like for my birthday in a few weeks.  I’d like to hear what people were most impressed with from my mission. Either stories or things you saw me do that you were touched by. What has the Lord taught you by the spirit?  I know I’ve learned a ton.  I'm just curious to see what you guys thought. I hope to hear from you guys!  My email and mailing address are below.  Please write if you can.

See you in five,
Elder Peery

I’d love to hear from you!  Please contact me at:
Elder Andrew Peery
Tennessee Nashville Mission
1646 Sunset Road
Brentwood, TN 37027
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You can email me anytime, and I will read your messages. Due to mission rules, however, I can only email you back on Mondays.  Thanks for your patience. I am not on Facebook at this time. 

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