Dated: September 23, 2013

So this was a interesting week. Elder Staveley wasn't feeling well on Friday, so we stayed in most of the day. Elder Stout and Elder Mackelprang (the other Elders serving in Martin) came over and Elder Stout stayed with Elder Staveley so that I could go out and work in our area a little bit. We went and we tracted this hollow (pronounced 'holler'). We knocked on this one door and this guy came out and was not interested in what we had to say, but then he said "Have you heard of the large forehead and the callused right hand? We said no and he was like "just a second" and then he came out with this notebook and it was full of all this writing and weird pictures. He said that we are being mind controlled and that we are cooked in our mothers womb for 8 months and it shrinks our foreheads and wipes our minds and we are all slaves and work with our right hands. Then he started laying out all this conspiracy theory and religious theory stuff from revelations. He was talking about how presidents had died and been born and showing us all these correlations of the presidents and what number of president they were. He was saying that Washington DC was the 7 headed dragon in Revelations and it was just very weird all the things that he was putting together. It was really weird. I don't know if any of that was true, but the scriptures do say that there will be secret combinations in the last days so who knows what’s going on. If anything it gave me a good laugh. O he was also saying that they control us by our hair, so he has had like all his arm and facial hair laser removed. It was weird. He told us so much stuff so fast that I can't really remember much of it. I think we as missionaries can do that sometimes. We can be so excited to tell someone about the gospel we will freak out and just dump information on them so fast that they just are confused. We leave them after the lesson confused and "wondering what was that they said about the temperature of translated beings?"-(Talk by Elder Holland) So we need to give them the information "line upon line precept upon precept." So I guess there was an application for that experience.

We have an investigator we are excited for. She seems very elect so we are looking forward to continuing to teach her.

The Church is true, and so is the Book of Mormon. Read from it every day because if you want to live with God again, you need to do that. I love you all. Keep pressing forward!


Elder Spencer

P.S.  So I found this great scripture. Man, it is a really good one. This scripture has changed my life so much! Read it! I guess I will tell you what the scripture is.  The reference is 1 Nephi 1 - Moroni 10.... Trust me, it's good.


Dated:  September 16, 2013

Weird title, I know, but that is something that happened this week. We finished our studies and we ate lunch, some leftover Little Caesars pizza. I had 3 slices. Right after I finished, a member called us and invited us over for lunch at a restaurant. We went and I ate a full blown roast beef meal with potatoes and peas. I was sooooooo stuffed.

Not much happened this week. Our teaching pool is very small. We have 2 investigators. Our top investigator dropped us. That same day though, we went and visited someone that the Bishopric referred us too. A less-active. We set up an appointment with him and went and visited him and his girlfriend. We talked to them and he said he wants to come back to church and take the discussions, and she wants to learn to. That was a blessing. They seem very solid. They came to Church on Sunday. They also came to the branch social we had on Friday. I’ll tell you about that in a minute. Anyway, when we came home that night, there was a box of food on our porch. One of the items was a box of fillet-minion (I don't think that is spelled right but whatever)  8 of them. O boy what a blessing. It made me very happy.

We had a branch social. It was fun. They had a big huge bouncy blow up slide. All the kids were having a lot of fun doing that. All us missionaries started sliding down it too. That was fun. There were 6 of us there because we invited the branch from Paintsville down for the social. We had many non-members and less-actives there also. It was very successful and the bishopric was very pleased with the way it turned out. I lost miserably to the ward mission leader and the first counselor in a game of horseshoe. I did do pretty well at corn hole though.

We have been working with a less-active a lot lately. We are trying to help him come back to church and get to the temple. He drinks a lot. He has such a bad liver, that the doctors said he had only 3 months to live, (and that was a month and a half ago). He was drinking between 6-8 beers a day (16oz) and now he is down to 3. This week his goal is only 2 a day. We are really trying to help him. I hope he will just do what we ask him to do.

I studied 2 Nephi 2 this week. And I learned some things. Agency is a principle of action. We choose to act. If we don't act, we are not using our agency. Satan tries to get us not to act, or make it so that we cannot do so by addictions. When we loose our ability to act, we can’t "choose liberty and eternal life..." (2 Nephi 2:27) That is why it seems to talk about the "chains of hell" a lot, because when you are chained, you can’t do your own will. So, that is why we need to rely on Jesus Christ to help us have the strength to burst the chains, and "yield to the enticings of the Holy Spirit..." (Mosiah 3:19)

A scripture that I found that I really like is found in Ether 12:4. It states "Wherefore, whoso believeth in God might with surety hope for a better world, yea, even a place at the right hand of God, which hope cometh of faith, maketh an anchor to the souls of men, which would make them sure and steadfast, always abounding in good works, being led to glorify God." I really like this. When we increase our belief, then our hope, and faith increase. Faith, hope, charity. They are key. What a plain and simple truth that this scripture teaching. We all can hope for a better world. No matter what trials, challenges, or obstacles, we can always hope for a better world, if we believe in Christ.

I love the Gospel, the Book of Mormon, The Temple, and My friends and Family. Keep up the great things you are all doing. Never forget that Jesus Christ is your best friend and that He died and lives again for YOU!


Elder Spencer


Dated:  September 9, 2013

So this has been an alright week. The area is slow and we have only about 2 investigators, and neither are solid. The best thing about the week was Friday. We did Zone Meeting. We talked about faith. Our mission averages less then 30 baptisms a month, and we have double the missionaries as before. That is not good, we should be getting double the baptisms. So President Pitt was inspired to talk to us about faith. Faith is Power. If you have Faith all things are possible that are God’s will. (Moroni 7:33). We, as a mission, are all exercising faith. God asks us to sacrifice to show our faith, and what he asks us to sacrifice is our personal sins. So we are, as a mission, putting on the alter all things that we are doing that keeps us from being obedient to the rules, or from being the best missionaries we can be. We are stepping forward with faith, together to get this mission rolling. We have built up our faith, and we are going to push forward. This month the mission's goal for baptisms is 50. We are praying for it and working to get it. Because of the faith being demonstrated, miracles are happening.

So, yesterday at church, the Bishop came up to me 2 min before the meeting started and said that the high councilman that was supposed to show up wasn't going to be there. He asked me if I would be the first speaker. I told him yes. I had no idea this would happen. So I got up after the sacrament and gave a 10 minute impromptu talk. It was actually kind of fun. I had nothing to go on but the spirit and what was in my heart. So I introduced myself and told them about the family.  I shared my trek experience and talked about coming unto the savior. I told everyone about Daniel and his amazing skills at playing the cello, welding, and skiing. The bishop also had his mom get up and speak and he gave a talk.

This has been a good week. I love you all, thank you for your prayers and support. Read every day, Keep on praying, and do all you can to come unto the savior. He never leaves us, we just sometimes turn our back on him. When we do that he is always inviting us to turn around and come back to change and become better. The great thing about this life is that we can change. We don't have to be the same, we can become better. Church is the place to be every single Sunday. I love the gospel and I love my Savior Jesus Christ. THE CHURCH IS TRUE!!!!

Love you all!


Elder Joshua R. Spencer


Dated:  September 3, 2013

So transfers was fun. It was fun to drive the car up from Lynchburg. I went up with some elders that I came out with so that was fun. I saw a ton of awesome missionaries that I came out with in Charleston which was a lot of fun. I also saw Aunt Deanie! That was great! I gave her a quick hug. She gave me some hugs and kisses candy and some chips and salsa which were a huge blessing. When I got to Martin 2 we had practically no food so having those was a huge blessing. After transfers we drove to Martin.

When I showed up to Martin, things were kind of crazy. We only had enough miles to get us home, so on Friday and Saturday we didn’t do much because we couldn’t get to our area. We live 6 miles away from our area so we can’t just like leave our apartment and knock doors. We went with the Martin 1 elders and did service and stuff though. Sunday was a good day. This ward is really pushing missionary work and the leadership is really onboard with hastening the work. That is a huge blessing too. We drive a 2013 Toyota Corolla too which is nice. It has like 4000 miles on it.

Sorry I didn’t email yesterday, it was labor day and none of the libraries were open.

Elder Staveley is my new companion. He has been out one transfer and I am going to finish training him.  He has a great spirit and a good testimony and some great fire. I have lots to learn from him.

I love you all! Good luck with all you do!


Elder Spencer

My Lynchburg District

Elder Thueson and I burned ties for our 6 month mark.
He was my MTC Comp, so it was cool to do the ceremony
with him.

The night before transfers.

Me and Aunt Deanie!

A Note From Patsy

On Thursday, August 29th, I got a call from Jed’s Sister, LaDonna Vest.  She said she had just seen Josh at her Stake Center there in Charleston!  He was getting ready to leave for his new assignment.  She said that he looked great and seemed really happy.  He had a lot of missionary friends there anxious to say “Hi” to him.  She sent this wonderful picture.  I couldn’t stop smiling all day.

Elder Spencer and Aunt Deanie


Dated:   August 28, 2013

So I am getting transferred to Martin KY. This will be a quick email because I am in a huge hurry. I am sad to leave Gretna, there are some amazing members here. I have grown very close to many of them. Elder Snow and I have been able to put an investigator on date for baptism for Oct 19. She is pretty solid and I hope she does get baptized, well I hope everyone gets baptized. Her name is Shannon and she is 20. The younger people are nice to teach. I look forward to the new adventure in Martin. From what I know there are 2 areas in martin and so I am going to be in Martin 2. I don't know anything more than that. I think my new comp's name is Elder Steveley or something like that. I got everything packed and my bags are stuffed! I don't know how I got it all in. Well, I’ll email again on Monday. Love ya all!!!


Elder Spencer

Also, one of the areas in our district is becoming a walk area, so Elder De Graff and I, (an elder in my district) are going to be driving the car up to Charleston tomorrow. Long drive, and it will be my first time driving on the crazy roads in WV!!! WOOT!

Elder Sister (the bear) and I are ready to go!!