"Make no small plans: This is the vision I have for the South. I believe that one day the South will baptize more people into the church than all other English speaking missions in the world together....We will see the time when we will baptize hundreds, thousands, tens of thousands...In your day you will see a million members of the church in the South. There will be temples plural in the Southern States. What a great call you have to serve with these marvelous people." President Spencer W. Kimball

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Tough Week, Big Win

Sent Date: Tuesday, September 30, 2014
Author: Andrews, Zachary Jacob

So this week was Tough. like a ten, everything that could go wrong went wrong... from vomit to cancelations. It all started last Sunday where out and getting nothing and it was hard and I was just like we are going to win this week. Satan is going to try his hardest because we are on the point of doing great things and we have to win!! So I told my comp that we are going to win!! and trust me that Satan worked so freaking hard against us this week. We fought and we won!! Diana is set up for baptism... win We had an awesome family home evening with the Hispanics that was awesome and is starting to get our strong members doing the things that they need to do to grow their branch. I am not only here to convert them but to help them do missionary work too! And that is something that these members are ready for so I am trying my hardest to teach them how to be missionaries!!

Sent Date: Friday, October 3, 2014
Author: President Hansen
Fantastic news! Thank you for your faith and hard work.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Working Like Madmen

This week we ran like crazy. We have a bunch of new investigators and are running like madman!! I freaking love it. Life is so good when you are working like a madman. So Suje had her baby and he is a happy little kid that is so awesome!!! Life is pretty good, I am sorry my letters suck.

We also have been doing a lot of work with one part member family. They are awesome we are trying to reactivate the son and get the dad baptized!! We have been doing lots of things to help them!! 
Love y'all!  

Suje's Baby

So this week we have been working hard! We went to Suje's house to see her new baby and it was interesting. We walk in and everything is so quiet, and calm and we walk over and the spirit is so strong!! It was crazy.  Elder Peterson and I were kind of confused. We were talking to Suje and the baby was just sitting there smiling and laughing!! This baby is exactly what she needs in her life. She has had such a rough run and the spirit was just letting us know that this is the Lord's way to help her. Hopefully we are here to help her too. She is still planning on getting baptized but not on our original date. We have been working really hard, and being cancelled on or having no shows like crazy. But we will keep working and doing the best we can!!!

Elder Andrews

Fast and Testimony Meeting

This week was fast and testimony meeting.  We are in this tiny little branch and had a group of our investigators there. Which is so awesome. So one investigator stood up to go bear her testimony which is always terrifying especially cause this girl really likes to bash us when we say something she doesn't like so I am freaking out...anyway she got up there and bore her testimony about how much she is feeling the spirit the whole room was in tears.   Awesome. We are going to get her.
We have been working like madmen but the harder we work on people, the harder Satan works on them too. So lots of stuff has been going down. It is awesome. I really like my comp a ton.  He is fun and excited and ready to go. Very refreshing.

Elder Andrews

PS I only have like 9 months left...but who's counting.
MOM: You better not be counting.
ZACH:  No, it just hit me the other day and I started to freak out.

FROM PH: Transfer Jitters

Transfer jitters.
Sent Date: Monday, September 29, 2014
Author: President Hansen
Dear Elders and Sisters,
I am so grateful to be serving in this mission with each of you. Every day. I notice new reasons to be grateful to be here with each of you. I often hear Missionaries who are worried about transfers, "what if?", "where?" "who will my companion be?" kind of questions. Other missionaries are worried about "what is happening at home", or "what will happen when I go home?".

While all these questions are common to all missionaries, we need to have faith and confidence that the Lord is watching over us and He will give us the experiences that we need in this life. This from Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths. 7 Be not wise in thine own eyes..."

Maybe we can find comfort in the words of the hymn: "I'll go where You want me to go, dear Lord... I'll be what You want me to be." Many of you will have new responsibilities, or new companions, Let's just commit to ourselves to make this transfer the best one yet, the most obedient, happy, successful transfer of our mission. Let's remember, who the Lord calls, He qualifies.

I have been as surprised at some of the transfers as y'all, but I can tell you with all my heart that this is what the Lord wants for the mission at this time. I love the wisdom and the wonderful experience s that you expressed in your letters this week. Here are a few examples:

============This is a good lesson for all of us:
-----We found out that they weren't doing their family prayers. They seemed like "oh great, just more people to see where we aren't perfect and to ask us to do more" and the mood just wasn't all that great from what I saw, then at the end I added that they were doing a great jobat church, and that they set good examples. They lit up and were more willing to do what we'd asked them to do.

-----Last Tuesday at district meeting we restarted the mental diet that Sister Hansen gave us, and looking back over this past week, I can't really find anything that I dwelled on or that I let affect me. I noticed the first few days there were times where something would enter my mind that was negative and I had to make sure I let it out and replaced it with positive and confident thoughts, but as the week went on it got easier and I got happier. It was awesome! It really lifted my spirit and my mood. I'm usually always happy but after doing Sister Hansen’s diet I feel even better. I feel healthier too. It really was so great. So I'm not going to stop doing the mental diet. I love it.

============This was from our missionaries, Elder Heber C Kimble and Parley Pratt:
-----They have these preachers whose church is called consuming fire, and we walked up and we were still like 30 yards away when groups of people started cheering for my comp and I. We were kinda confused cuz there was students everywhere. and then a bunch swarmed up to us and were telling us about how they were just condemning everyone to hell and all kinds of stuff and asked what we believed and some people were like i don’t really know what y’all believe but you guys are so much nicer we want to learn what you believe but i got class right now and we got his contact information. Then the preachers came up to us and a big ol group of people were around us, and they just started trying to argue with us and yell at us and it was seriously crazy and we just kept our cool so well, which was super surprising cuz normally i don’t stay that calm when someone starts bashing us that hard, but anyways we ended up being there for like an hour and a half and there were so many groups of people who would walk by and watch and they would be like who is winning and all these other people would be like “the Mormons! They are way nicer,” ha ha and they were all taking videos and pictures. So we pretty much just preached Gods love and the atonement of Christ and how we aren’t perfect but that his grace is sufficient for all sinners if we just reach out and partake of it. They
were claiming perfection and that they had been saved so they don’t sin anymore and were just condemning everyone and us, …But seriously it was so cool and everything that happened ended up being for our benefit and benefit of the church. Afterwards we had groups of people just like clapping for us and talking to us and asking us all kinds of questions and saying how patient we are and how impressed they were and it was too good. Learned a lot that day!
===========Wow this is awesome!

Monday, September 22, 2014

District Unity

Sent Date: Monday, September 22, 2014
Author: Andrews, Zachary Jacob
This week we have been working really hard. As a district i really wanted us to start finding more. Mostly because the sisters are inexperienced in it. So in District meeting we did some role plays and then after we went finding. The sisters are really doing lots of finding. Elder Peterson and I less so because we have tons of referrals from the members that turned into Investigators so we are going crazy trying get to everyone! It is really fun. Unity in this District is very very strong. We are working hard and doing everything we can! Thanks so much for all you do!!
Elder Andrews

Sent Date: Tuesday, September 23, 2014
Author: President Hansen
I am happy to hear of your success. Keep up the good work.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

FROM PH: Short Letter

I'm taking it easy on you this week. Way shorter letter.
Sent Date: Sunday, September 21, 2014
Author: President Hansen
Dear Sisters and Elders,
I am so grateful to be part of this great work in Louisiana. I appreciate the way you have all embraced the new goals and direction in the mission. I asked you to limit the time you spend with your dinner appointments to one hour, to stop doing hours of service for members of the church, to stop going to the church on week nights rather than be in the homes of investigators or or less actives. The point of all these directions was to get us in front of more investigators and less actives, and to do more finding. I am seeing the results of your commitment reflected in the weekly numbers, but more importantly in the number of baptismal commitments you are reporting. Thank you. You are great missionaries. When we think of the balloon exersize, we know that we can always do better. Let me know in your letters what we can do to have better lessons and more lessons.

Here are some excerpts from your letters, they always make me proud of you:
-----If we are telling ourselves as missionaries, "alright sometime in the coming months or weeks I will start contacting more people or SOMETIME soon I will start working harder and give the Lord my all, or SOMETIME soon I will start trying harder." This is the point I am getting at, we cannot sit and complain as missionaries and expect all these amazing things to happen, if the work is tough or our teaching pool is low etc… instead of complaining we need to CREATE and MAKE good opportunities by WORKING and excising our faith and then our situation will change and we will see and find success. This work is all about faith and diligence and commitment and humbling ourselves and aligning our will with Gods and never being lazy always giving our all to the Lord, hence then we will create incredible opportunities and experience miracles daily!!!

-----We have been out trying to track down less actives... this ward has a lot of those. I’m finding that most of them are part member. They’ll have like two or three kids who haven't been baptized. Ill usually just be right up front with people, and I’ll say, "hey is it alright if we teach your children about the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ?" I’m finding that most inactives have a testimony of the Gospel they just don’t feel comfortable at church... Like on Sunday we had an inactive family come to church for the first time in years, and she remembered faces, and people... but she totally felt alone, so that’s when ill snag a member to go over, and say hi to them. Less actives, and inactives are GOLDEN when it comes to finding new people to teach. I love it!!!

-----I set meaningful goals every week and every day that I will accomplish. By doing this I feel like I am successful every day, if I accomplish my goal. I may not be able to do everything, but I can focus on accomplish my goals every day, baby step at a time. Along with this, some of my goals are to pass out a specific pamphlet, card, BofM, whatever, and when I pray I pray specifically for someone to come into my path and then I look for that opportunity. I think the biggest part of it is to actually LOOK for the person. How many times do we leave our apartment with a prayer saying, "Help me to find those thou art preparing" and then not look for them? I am guilty of that. We need to be conscious all the time of people around us and then get gutsy!!

Monday, September 15, 2014

FROM PH: Help Spanish Elders

September 15th
Sent Date: Sunday, September 14, 2014
Author: President Hansen
Dear Elders and Sisters,
It was so fun to see all of you this last week. Sister Hansen and I are so impressed with each of you and your commitment to serve with all your hearts. Doctor Bean thought that we had amazing missionaries. I was so proud of all of the Zone Leaders, the Office Elders and the Assistants for their fine training. It is so fun to see the growth in each of you and your love of the work and the Lord.

I wanted to remind the English speaking missionaries to notice all the Spanish speakers that you see and forward the names and addresses to the Spanish Missionaries. They have a harder time finding people to teach. They are giving referrals to the English missionaries also. We will give you cards to hand out with the time and location of English classes as well. The English classes are intended to find people to teach the gospel to.

A member that I talked to today said that when she first met the missionaries, it was through a crack in the door. When she saw them she was immediately impressed by the spirit and knew that what they were to offer her was true.

President Stock, Stake President of the NOLA Stake told me that frequently investigators have people who come in during the lessons. He said that missionaries don't appreciate the fact that the Lord has brought these people to them for a reason. Let's not miss the opportunity to invite them to have the discussions as well.

From your letters:
----- I've always thought that being at 18 months would mean it's "go time" and that I'd just be this stellar missionary that gets all kinds of good work done. Now I'm out 18 and realize that those things wont happen on their own and that I still have lots to do. It's like in football when the game is nearing the end, the "fourth quarter push". I want to work really hard so I don't go home carrying regrets with the rest of my luggage.
-----Another thing I learned this week was the value of planning. Sometimes we only plan to see like three people and kind of just hope things will pop up throughout the day. When we only plan for three, we usually see only about three. However, when we seemingly over-planned but pushed ourselves, we actually achieved our goals of seven or eight people a day. The Lord blesses those who plan, prepare, and push themselves to be better.  But I think that's why it is hard. If you don't believe that there are laws such as the law of justice and you don't believe that certain things are sins, then you are less likely to have faith that the commandments really are for our benefit.
-----I explained that when I feel the Spirit telling me that something is true I'lI get really excited and it's like my whole body is full and I can't keep it all in. She thought about that for a second and said "thank you for explaining it to me. I've had times where I felt like that but I didn't know what it was." It was a great experience for me to realize that we just have to tell people when they're feeling the spirit because most of the time they don't recognize it.

Monday, September 8, 2014


Sent Date: Monday, September 8, 2014
Author: Andrews, Zachary Jacob
I am not going to lie I really really like having a trainee. Just the Energy is amazing! I really like him and Unity is very easy with him. WE have been working like madmen, and it is awesome. The District is doing great. They are just working and doing great. We have some great things that are coming in this branch. I hope that we can get some people baptized in the coming months. We have been doing a lot of finding through members. We have been going crazy with referrals from members and hopefully some of them decide to get baptized!!! Anyway we are doing good!
Elder Andrews

Sent Date: Saturday, September 13, 2014
Author: President Hansen
The members must really have a lot of confidence in you. Thanks for the hard work.

Friday, September 5, 2014

From PH: Casting the Net

Every day I love this mission more. I am always so impressed at the diligence and love that each of you shows for your commission to serve the Lord. I am proud of you for your commitment to be faithful in all ways. I know that the Lord is blessing us for that commitment. As always Sister Hansen and I worry about your health and safety. We have had four missionaries go down with "heat exhaustion". That is very scary to us. Please keep hydrated. Watch your companions to make sure they are drinking enough.

We know that there are better ways of finding than tracting, but I also know that tracting is working very well in most of the areas in our mission. When you are tracting here are a couple of ideas that may help:

* Don't introduce yourselves first off. Engage in some other conversation for a minute first. "I see you are LSU fans. Did you watch the game?" "Are you Christians? How has that blessed your life?" After that an introduction makes sense and then they will be more likely to extend the conversation. My son served his mission in Fresno. They would ask, after people told them  they were not interested, for a glass of water. Frequently they would be invited into the house for a minute while they got some ice water. It gave them a few minutes to build a relationship of trust with the PIs. He said that they were instructed to never turn anything down that was offered to them as long as it didn't offend the Word of Wisdom. People love those who they serve, so if they offer to serve you something, let them give it to you. Let me know if these ideas help.

Here are some interesting experiences and thoughts from your letters:
-----So we made a goal to help all those we teach learn something of the doctrine of Christ because it was promised in PMG that if we did that that members would have greater trust in us and be willing to help. Truly this is the case for just this week members who seemed to have been referraled out after mentioning to us that such was the case last week gave us referrals! So did one of our investigators! The Lord has blessed us immensely.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014


So I got a Greenie!! His name is Elder Peterson. He is from Spanish Fork, Utah!! He is a really cool guy. I am really excited to be his companion and to teach him all the fine points of missionary work.
So last Thursday we where going to see Richardo and I told Elder Peterson that he had to invite him to baptism. He said that he didn't know the baptismal invitation in Spanish and I said, "Well, we better learn it then!!" So he had the opportunity to ask Ricardo and he said yes! (sure it took a little bit of explaining from me....) It was awesome and Elder Peterson was a little bit giddy after.  It was funny.
So this branch is sucking everything they can our of me.  Take last Sunday for example: I translated, lead the music in Sacrament, taught Gospel Principles and taught Gospel Doctrine. It was awesome! I am just running so much I might go a little bit crazy! Nothing too bad but just a little bit. I am having tons of fun and we are working our brains out.

Love y'all

Elder Andrews