Elder Tucker hefts a first edition King James Bible
One of our investigators that we've been working with for a little while, Garland, has been kind of flakey and sees the church as if he's going to do a church then this is the one he will pursue but he doesn't pursue it very much. We told him we want him to be active and want him to come to church and be a fully active member. He went to institute and is coming to church today. He's come to family home evening multiple times and to church before he got passed off to us, but I think he's doing a lot better now.
We also went to see Danielle Hoffman, an investigator who dropped away for about a year. We tried to meet with her twice but she was really sick, she could barely see straight. We had the first discussion with her today. She saw us and wants to pursue this now. We went over the first lesson again with her today. She was in tears the whole time. I was able to give her a blessing and as we were driving away, I got a text from her and she said, "thank you again, the church is true". You could tell she knew the spirit was touching her and she knew these things were true.
I have a new companion now. His name is Elder Peterson. He’s a younger missionary like me. He just moved here to my area, so I think we’ll work out well. We’ll work hard.
Let me tell you about those old books that I was holding in the pictures I sent. The guy we visited is one of the biggest Mormon collectors in the United States. This bible I held was one of the 100 bibles used by court created by King James. They printed 100 in English - they revised them for about one year. They came back and argued about the revisions in the Council of Nicaea. This book I held was one of those. The book's binding was about 6” thick and was made of wood and leather. It weighed about 15 pounds. Its pages are older than the U.S. He trusted us, and let us actually hold them and thumb through them. You usually only see things like that behind glass and protected really well. We also had the little one with a seal on it. This was King James personal bible. We noticed the size reduction had dramatically changed, and after that they started printing a few more. His personal seal was so guarded that anyone touching it would be executed instantly because that was the way of knowing it was the King’s. The artwork was changed a bit because he didn't like it.
The little book that looks like it is falling to pieces is said to be the hymnal Emma Smith used to write the first Mormon Hymnal. This was like holding glass, it was falling apart but he said, “Hold it, look through it.” Crazy, the pages were almost falling out and I was almost afraid to hold it. The other hymnal I got was of the first editions printed. I held 2 books of Mormon; one of them was one that Joseph Smith gave out on the ferryboat. These are two first editions that are in the best condition out there and they were super cool. All of these books, by the way, have a bigger book kind of box called a clamshell. They all go in them to protect them. He’s the one with the Tesla, Dad.
What else happened this week? They have this little Mexican Shop called Frijoles down here. I don't know if they have them anywhere else, but they have these Marchadas stuff you get with a pineapple drink, it was really good. I've had so many burritos since I've been on my mission I think by the time I finish it wouldn't surprise me if I had about 600, because I probably get 1 or 2 a week. I LOVE Mexican food, I don't think I'll ever get sick of it.
Ben and Scarlett starting the Stop Smoking Program and made it 2 1/2 days and are anxious to start again. They did well. Ben was a bit hesitant. Scarlett is now pregnant, by the way, so that's a big motivator for her. Ben is in it to help her and knows it will be good for him as well. He previously quit and that's kind of an iffy part of it.
Amanda has been set to be baptized for the 21st for a while, but we may have to set that back to the 28th, as a result of her not being able to attend church last Sunday. We heard a bit about her family situation, which isn't the best at the moment. Not even remotely good, so that's why she's been living with the Bertogo's, the family that's been fellowshipping her. She quit her job at Starbucks and got a new job so she wouldn't have to work on Sundays. She is what the missionaries call a golden investigator. Just an absolutely wonderful person to be around, and anxious to learn. She latches onto everything we teach her, and really knows the church is true.
It is an amazing testimony builder to me to see her progress, I know she'll get baptized, although she may be experiencing quite a bit of hell at this moment in time. I know that Heavenly Father is there for her and I'm grateful to be able to teach her and be His hands, and help her out.
So many crazy things have happened; so many fun missionary experiences. I carved the angel Moroni onto the back of my ukulele and finished my case for it. That was fun.
Love you all,