Monday, September 29, 2014

What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Stronger

Hey everyone!

We had a pretty solid week that had a lot of good adventures in it!

Week Five of this transfer found us in the shop waiting for our car to be fixed (a recall on one of the axles). It took us three hours to before they pulled it out and told us they fixed it but the check engine light came on so we have to go back in today! We went back to Philomath and set up an appointment with John and then we set out to talk to Stan. We knocked and he was home! After talking for a little bit and watching a spider try to kill a huge fly, we helped him unload wood from his truck and after he let us in and we taught him a little bit. Tears were shed (not by us) and the Spirit was there! We just hope we can get him to come to church!

Tuesday we went tracting some apartments and we ran into a former investigator who wants us to come by again! We also got some referrals from some non-members so that was pretty sweet as well! We also helped Ben move a washer and dryer into his home. That night, we were out walking and we ran into David (or "God" as he calls himself; he isn't quite there) and he was pretty angry at Brad Pitt for marrying his sweetheart, Angelina Jolie! He had a pen in his hand and the smell of alcohol was evident, so I was worried he would snap and do something with that pen on himself!! Haha pretty crazy. We them set up an appointment with a guy named Mike whose wife is a member but he isn't so we hope we can get him on the path!

Wednesday was probably our most slowest day. We went and contacted some less actives and went tracting but we didn't see much success, but we did plant some seeds!

Ok so I fibbed a little bit. Thursday was pretty slow too! We did our weekly planning and then hit the streets for a good chunk of the day! We did go talk to Birdy and catch up with her so that was great!

Friday was awesome! We helped out with setting up tents for the Corvallis Fall Festival before district meeting. After district meeting, we had district lunch before heading back to Philomath. We went tracting on a street that Elder West felt prompted to go on and the first guy opened his door and told us we were wasting our time. Nice. Down the street however we knocked on this lady's door and she took a Book of Mormon and had a lot of questions about youth programs and the Book of Mormon! It was sweet!! We then picked up another potential and met with a less active named JR. We decided to save miles and bike out to JR's. Well, there are several huge hills and we both almost died! But we made it and it made for a sweet ride coming down! We also talked to a guy named Kyle and he had a lot of respect for us and told us we were changing America!

Saturday we went to Lobster Valley and had dinner and a lesson with the Bradburys. Along the way, we talked to some less actives, some who were pretty angry at the church and some who just had to work a ton.

Sunday we drove out to Eugene to see PeeWee get baptized! He was one of Elder Wests investigators and we got permission to go down and see him get baptized. The Spirit was so strong there! He was so happy and his wife was pretty happy to, considering she had been waiting two years for that moment!

I love you all so much. Thank you for all the support you have given me! I feel like David going up against Goliath some days. David went into battle with what he knew to fight Goliath and he came out on top. I might not be the best at scriptures or stuff like that, but I have a testimony of this church and of the Gospel of Jesus Christ! I love being a missionary!

Love you all!

Elder Tonini

Monday, September 22, 2014


Hey all,

So I don't have much to write home about. We are in a finding phase right now and we didn't see a lot of people. We knocked doors, we opened our mouths, did exchanges, worked as much as we could and we didn't have much come from it. There were a couple of things that happened that I do want to add

  • We were able to give one of our LDS neighbors a blessing. She was in so much pain that she could barely walk to knock on our door one morning. We were able to give her the blessing she needed and her back still hurts but she is able to move around and take care of her kids! 
  • We went tracting and knocked on this apartment door. A man opened up and told us he wasn't interested. We asked him if there was anything we could do for him and he told us to "lose the ties"! Haha sorry can't do that! 
  • We went and saw the Bradbury family and had a great visit with them! They are an awesome family! 
  • We did an exchange after zone conference and some of my pens and deodorant ended up in Orange jello when I got back! Haha it made for a good time! 
  • I did an exchange within an exchange! I was with Elder Johnson and he had to go teach a lesson in Spanish for another companionships investigators husband so I went with Elder Fetzer, who I came to the field with! 
So yeah, those were the highlights of my week. We had an awesome zone conference and I got to talk about the Holy Ghost! That was great because that morning I felt as though I was going to be sharing my talk on the Holy Ghost that I prepared a few weeks ago and lo and behold I did!

I'm going to end there. I want to share my testimony of this gospel. I'm grateful to be a missionary. I feel like David going against Goliath. He was a young man who knew how to protect the fold and he went to battle against a mighty giant who was bigger and stronger than he was and he came out on top. I don't know the scriptures as some people do. Yet I have been called by a prophet of the Lord to share what I know, just like David when he took off Sauls armor and headed into battle with his sling. We can do great things if we put our trust in the Lord. I know this is the true church. I know that joseph smith was called to be a prophet and I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that my Savior lives.

I love you all. I hope this week will be more productive and I'll have more to write about!


Elder Tonini

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Facebook Post - ‪#‎MyFamilyis4Ever‬

My parents were sealed for time and all eternity in the Washington D.C temple in 1990. Since then, they have taught me and my siblings to go to the temple regularly and to prepare for the day when we are married for all eternity to our own families! I am grateful that ‪#‎MyFamilyis4Ever‬ and that I will be able to be with ‪#‎MyFamily‬, even after death! 

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Facebook Post - #‎MyFamilyHistory‬

I love ‪#‎MyFamilyHistory‬. On my mom's side, I have deep roots in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I have ancestors who were bodyguards for prophets, built temples, and moved to the West as part of the Mormon Pioneers. On my Dad's side, however, it all started with this man, my grandfather. He joined the church when he was young and his family followed him. There are so many stories about him, from his childhood to my earliest memories, that I can't even think of which one to post! Even though he didn't come across the plains with the early pioneers, he is a pioneer in my book for what he did! Although he passed away a few years ago, I can still feel his love and his effect on me and ‪#‎MyFamily‬!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Facebook Post - #‎MyFamily‬

In ‪#‎MyFamily‬, we are a baseball family. I pitched and played third and when I started playing baseball on the high school level, my dad started telling me to "fear no evil", especially when I was on the mound pitching. It was something he picked up from my uncle and it stuck with me and my siblings. There were times when things wouldn't be going as well as I want them to be, whether in a tight situation during a game or in real life, and I could hear in my head my dad telling me to "fear no evil". Through sports and ‪#‎MyFamilyMotto‬, I have learned to face life for what it is and to keep moving forward no matter what!

Monday, September 15, 2014

It's A Hard Knock Life

Hey there!

So this was probably one of the rougher weeks numbers-wise for us... We taught about 5 lessons overall so I am only going to do the days where we had some excitement! We have been really trying to find more people to teach and we talk to a lot of people so we are contusion working hard.

Tuesday we talked to a pretty interesting guy named David. We were walking past Main Street and he asked us if we had any reading material for him. We gladly gave him a Book of Mormon and a couple of pamphlets. We got talking to him and we realized shortly after what kind of mess we had gotten ourselves into! We thought he was joking about some of the stuff he said but when he said he had mental issues, we were like "oh, he is being serious!!". He said he was born of the sky, had a god superman tattoo, and believed that superman, batman, and Spider-Man are gods... Oh man haha and that is only a few of things he talked about!

Wednesday we made plans to go talk to this family that we have been trying to see for a while. We tracted on their doors awhile back and they told us to come back but they hadn't been home! Anyways, we were talking to a guy washing his Jeep and we noticed this small group of people a couple of doors down. With it being dark and hardly any street lights around, we were a little hesitant attempting to talk them. When we got done with talking to the Jeep guy, they called us over. We went over there and a man named Vernon from Saudi Arabia started asking questions about prayer and repentance and stuff like that. He is a Muslim and he was open to hearing what we had to say. He even took a Book of Mormon and a card.

Thursday Elder West hit his year mark! We also had correlation and we went with Brother Morrison to Ted and Kayla's home. It was great being able to talk to the two of them and trying to figure out what we could do to help them!

Friday we had district meeting and then some news that made us pretty sad. We called the family where our investigator Tiffany lives and they told us she moved to Coos Bay! Bummer! We know though that she is going to be taught what we were teaching her so I just hope she will be baptized:)

Saturday was a lot of service!! We painted a house for about 4 hours, doing trim work and such and then we helped out moving a piano! We also got invited for desserts as we were walking by by two families in the ward. We got talking to some of the youth that were there and we challenged them to hand out Book of Mormons with their testimony in them! It was great!

Sunday we had a lesson with RJ and then went around and tried talking to people. That's pretty much it except for church!

Wow that was longer than I thought! Well, although this wasn't the most stellar week a missionary could have, I still found joy in it. I love being a missionary!:) I love this church and I love my Savior Jesus Christ!

Love you all!

Elder Tonini

Monday, September 8, 2014

I Just Love Being A Missionary!

Hey everyone! I hope Labor Day and the week was good for everyone! We had a good week and I'm pumped to talk about it!

Monday we had our Labor Day picnic and although we showed up late we had some great food and I got stung by a yellow jacket! Stan came to the picnic about the same time that we did and a yellow jacket was flying around his plate. It landed and he flicked it off. Well I felt a pain immediately in my arm and I look and somehow this yellow jacket stung me going end over end! I'm ok though I promise!

Tuesday was super duper slow. We set up some appointments for later in the week and we tracted some. The biggest highlight of the day though was what we ate! We were invited over to Jose's house and his mom made some soup. Well we found out later that it was cow stomach! Yummy!

Wednesday we did some splits and I went with Brother Waite and four teachers. We had a list of people we were trying to go see but Ben called and asked if we could come help out put his truck on the ground so we obliged. We ended up putting all four tires back on and it took forever but we did it!

Thursday wasn't our most successful day teaching-wise. We had some less actives shut us down and some potentials told us that they don't want us to come back so that was a bummer. But we got to help out Sister C***** pick plums that she couldn't reach so that was great.

Friday we had zone training meeting and it went pretty well! Had some good insights shared and I am looking to apply them in my teaching! We did exchanges right after and I went with Elder Romero back to Philomath. We changed into service clothes and did some grout on a members neighbor's house for a little while. We had an appointment set up for John M. But he wasn't home in time. After dinner we got some items we had requested from the mission office and we taught some recent converts later in the evening.

Saturday was pretty dang awesome! We traveled all the way out to Lobster Valley (some 30 or so miles away but took an hour because of all the twists and turns) and we met Tiffany S. She is living with some members out there and she and her fiancé wanted to take the discussions. We went there with Brother Parker and we taught the Restoration to her and the Bradburys. She had a couple of questions we were able to answer and at the end of the lesson, we felt prompted to ask her if she would follow in the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized and she said yes! We even set a date! It was so great!!:) To top it off, we biked to our dinner with a member family and we ended up going at a pretty good Mexican restaurant!

Sunday was just as good as Saturday was! We had a great time at church and before we knew it the afternoon flew by and it was time to go to Maxx's baptism! Elder Flora got to come up for that so it was good seeing him again! So many people came that we had to go into the chapel!! The Spirit was so strong and it was pretty incredible:) we spent the rest of our night biking to dinner and to lessons. It was great:)

I miss all of you so much! You are all such great examples to me! I love you all and there is no doubt!


Elder Tonini

Monday, September 1, 2014

"And we are never ever ever getting back together!"

Howdy from Philomath!

So this was my first week being a full on missionary! It's pretty exciting! This was a super slow week to be honest. So beware of a somewhat dry email until the end! You have been warned!

I already talked a little bit about my Monday went but to wrap it up, I got Elder West as my new companion later on that night and we drove into Philomath around like 6:15 and went straight to dinner. He just ended up unpacking the rest of the night. He is an awesome elder from Star Valley, Wyoming and I am his first companion who won't be going home in the next three months haha!

Tuesday we had to go grocery shopping because we didn't have enough time on Monday to do it. We then went through our former investigators records and we picked out some formers that we would try to go see and also the people on our potentials list. So that is what we did! We didn't have a lot of success... We did talk to a lady who was super nice (she knows quite a few families in the ward and her son investigated the church) and she said we could stop by and get water anytime! Maybe we can plant a seed there!

Wednesday we tried seeing formers again and we actually did have something come from it! We knocked Kim's door and she opened it and we talked to her for 45 minutes or so! She is coming to our Labor Day picnic today so we are going to introduce her to the sisters. We are really hoping that we can get her to stop drinking coffee because she said that is what held her back. She also gave us some sandwiches for a quick lunch.... Not sure how good the meat or the honey mustard were because we were in some serious pain! Haha!

Thursday was definitely rough. We went and tried a former named Anna and when we knocked on the door she opened it and we talked for like five minutes. She said she wasn't interested in seeing us again and proceeded to give us a break-up letter of sorts (which is why the subject line of this email is a Taylor Swift song!) where she told the sister missionaries why she wouldn't join the LDS church. It was filled with LDS quotes and such but she just went looking for things that were wrong in her eyes and she felt justified in these quotes (and she wasn't. It was a bunch of hogwash! Apparently we aren't spirit children of God according to her). So we went home later that night and we got rid of it. And then not even five minutes later this guy named Gary decided to try to destroy our faith, especially around the doctrine of the spirit world. Again, a bunch of hogwash. He contradicted himself multiple times and said that our spirit remains with our body after we die....yeah I don't think that is how that works! But besides that, John R. called us and told us that he was going to church on Sunday!

Friday we had a good district meeting. Me and Elder West dominated the competition part of it haha and we got some sweet bread from a Mexican bakery! Other than that we spent most of our day tracting and talking to people on the street.

Saturday was another day of searching for someone who needs the message of the Gospel or just service. We drove out almost to Alsea to try to see a potential investigator but he wasn't home! Bummer! On top of that he has no phone! We stopped by another potentials home and he gave us back the Book of Mormon that the sisters had given him... Ouch.

Sunday was the best day though! We had an awesome sacrament meeting and John R. came for it! He couldn't stay though because he forgot to take his meds. After church we had a lesson planned for RJ and we actually ended up teaching two young men from Lithuania about the Restoration! They go home in two days but the seed has been planted! And then after dinner we got a call from the Relief Society president about teaching the brother of a member who loves out in Lobster Valley! Although it'll mean asking for rides (it's about 80 miles round trip), we are super excited to go teach them!

That is how my week went. It was a rough one but we are going to kick it into high gear these next few weeks! People can try tearing my faith in the Gospel down but I know that this church is the true church! Always build your faith in that and the Book of Mormon. If you do, you can't fall, because there is no doubt.

Love you all!

Elder Tonini

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