Monday, April 28, 2014


Hey Mom!

Well, this last week was pretty interesting and busy week.
I had one of the strangest appointments of my mission on Tuesday. The
week before, we got a call from a woman living in our area who said
she was a less-active member of the church, and she wanted us to come
and talk to her daughter. She didn't speak the greatest English or
German, so we couldn't find out exactly what the purpose of our visit
should be or what we were supposed to talk about with her daughter. We
drove over there on Tuesday afternoon with our ward mission leader.
The woman was an Asian lady, and she invited us into her small
apartment. She first asked us to look around the apartment and tell
her what we thought. She then proceeded to tell us about how she had a
few kids that weren't allowed to live with her and she didn't really
know where all of them are, she had recently been divorced for the
third time and her husband had her scriptures and member records, and
that she didn't want to get a job since the welfare in Germany was
giving her more money than a small job in the town would. It was all
just a strange situation, and we couldn't really tell her what she
should do since that is not our responsibility. We later left with a
prayer, and then she followed us all the way out of the apartment and
to the car, which was a good distance away. When we finally drove
away, our ward mission leader said he realized during the appointment
who she was and that she tells a bunch of weird stories and doesn't
look for work so that the church will pay for her to travel around to
visit her kids. It was a sad situation, but we couldn't really do
anything. Anyway, later on we had our English class, which went well.

On Wednesday, I went on a split in Paderborn with Elder Richards. It
was kind of a bad day; all of the appointments they had set up fell
out. So we spent some time finding and also updating information on
the referral manager system the church has online.

We had a back to back split with the Paderborn Elders, so I went on a
split on Thursday with Elder Isham. This time I was in Hagen. We spent
a good 4 hours on trains going from Paderborn to a town called
Lüdenscheid. It is a long trip anyway, but our train got delayed by
about 45 minutes so it took a while. We visited a less-active member
there who is actually the brother of my old Elder's Quorum President
from Langen. He is a cool guy, he is just kind of tangled up in the
ways of the world right now though. We watched some of the church's
new videos online with him, and he seemed to like them. We will start
meeting with him a little bit more regularly, and hope that we can
help him see the fruits of living the gospel.

Friday consisted of district meeting in Unna and then later on a
street display in their pedestrian zone. We didn't see a ton of
success, but we were able to give out 4 copies of the Book of Mormon.
That took up the rest of the day, pretty much.

On Saturday, Elder Moore and I visited a member who is moving next
week and helped him work in the garden at the new apartment, getting
it ready to plant grass on top. As we were doing that, we got a text
from Moritz, who said he had started to face opposition in his family
against him getting baptized. I got kind of worried and thought maybe
it would keep him from getting baptized on his scheduled day. He said
his sister and brother-in-law said he is not old enough to make such a
big decision so quickly and that if his girlfriend (a member) dumps
him, he won't even want to be in the church anymore. We planned to
talk with him about that the next day at church. We ended the night
with our weekly Bruder Kramer appointment.

We went to church on Sunday morning, and I had a nice surprise there.
The Helzers, one of my favorite families from Solingen, were at church
because a relative's baby was getting blessed. It was cool catching up
with them and getting a picture together. Moritz showed up during
opening exercises at priesthood, and we took him aside with our ward
mission leader to talk about his situation. It was kind of intense. We
shared with him the story of Joseph Smith being persecuted for his
beliefs, and I also talked about Eric Corpuz's story when he got
baptized. Moritz said at the end of the appointment that he was still
planning on getting baptized on the 11th, and he prayed at the end for
strength to overcome the opposition in his family. It was awesome. We
had a really good Sunday with church, and later on an eating
appointment with a cool family in the ward.

Well, today is my second to last P-day. The Unna Elders are coming in
a little while, and we will chill and then I will go on my last split
with Elder Haskell. It should be fun. We will meet with our ward
mission leader tonight and then have district meeting tomorrow.

I hope you have a great week, love you!

LG, Daniel

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Final Interview with Pres. Schwartz

Hey Mom!

Well, we had a pretty good week. On Tuesday, I had my interview with
Pres. Schwartz. It was really good but kind of awkward at the same
time, mostly when he got to the marriage portion. He did the classic
"it's not good to be alone" line, and at one point he leaned back in
his chair and said, "OK, I'm now prospective Sister Squires, we are on
our first date, ask me questions." Haha it was kind of funny. He told me I have to do 

power-datingwhen I go home, which is basically just laying everything on the table
in the first date and setting expectations, almost like in a lesson
with a new investigator. Yeah, we'll see how that goes. Other than
that, I learned a lot of good things from the interview and Pres.
Schwartz gave me a lot of good instruction. We spent the rest
of the day in Dortmund since it was our P-day.

Wednesday consisted of going on a split to Unna with Elder Pratt. We
did service all day, helping some members transport a piano to a
member's physical therapy practice. It was a good day, but we didn't
get to do much of anything else since the places were so far away we
had to travel to. Meanwhile, Elder Moore and Elder Haskell met with an
investigator, Monica, to help her stop smoking. Apparently they
discussed the Atonement a lot with her.

On Thursday, Elder Pratt and I took a train back to Hagen and there we
had district meeting. We did some roleplays trying to meet the
concerns of our investigators. Afterwards, Elder Moore and I went to
Iserlohn for an appointment with Bruder Kraft and his friend who plays
guitar and bass. The friend had questions about why we are called
'Elder' and what similarities there are between us and the elders
spoken of in the old testament. We pretty much just read the
explanation in the bible dictionary, and that was really helpful. We
also got to jam a little bit on guitar. I am super excited to play
more guitar when I get home!

We did not get a lot accomplished on Friday because I got sick. One of
the kids in Unna, whose family was moving the piano, was sick, and I
am pretty sure that is the source of my sickness. I wrote my mission
history (a roughly 5 page document required from Pres. Schwartz) just
giving an outline of my mission, my areas, my companions, and the
people I have taught.

There was a couple from the Siegen branch who got baptized on Saturday
in our ward building since they don't have a baptismal font in Siegen.
It took a long time, and we had to clean everything up afterward. The
guy who got baptized was a pretty big dude and it took him 4 times to
get baptized because he wouldn't go all the way under the water. The
fourth time, he just kind of fell backwards. It was kind of an awkward
baptism, but it's all good haha. After that was all said and done, we
took a trip to Iserlohn and had a lesson with Manuella. It went well.
She was not doing too well, so we gave her a Priesthood blessing.

I started feeling more sick on Sunday. I was coughing a lot and my
nose was very plugged, but I still was able to get through all of the
meetings, give a talk about the Atonement, have a lesson with Moritz
about some of the commandments and his baptismal program, and have an
eating appointment with an older couple in the ward. After that, I was
pretty much done for the day and just rested.

I was not doing too well on Monday, so it was another day of mostly
resting and getting some easy things done, like preparing the
baptismal program for Moritz. Other than that, I just kind of laid
around and took it easy. I am feeling better today, I still just have
a little bit of a stuffy nose and a little cough.

Well, that was our week. It really is starting to hit me that I go
home in a couple weeks. I started packing so that I would not have a
last-minute scramble in a couple weeks right before I have to go. I
also sent home a big package today, mostly filled with books, letters,
and other random things.

Anyway, I hope you have a great week! Love you!

LG, Daniel

PS For Moritz's baptism, we will be singing "A Child's Prayer" and "I
am a Child of God."  I don't know yet if we have someone to play the
piano for the service, so could you practice those a little just in
case we would need a back up pianist? That would be awesome!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

A Baptism Date

Hey Mom!

Well, this week was really good and interesting. I will start off with
the great news. Moritz, who was originally going to get baptized on
April 26th, had to change his baptismal date. He requested to be
baptized on May 11th (Mother's Day), and he asked that I would be the
one to baptize him. That means you guys get to be there too, so it
should be a great experience! Moritz is really excited about getting

Anyway, now to the recap of the week. We had P-day on Monday with the
Paderborn Elders who had overnighted with us because of general
conference. We had a lot of fun. Elder Moore and I later had mostly
paperwork to finish up in the apartment to get all of our records in

On Tuesday, the weather was really weird and made it difficult to know
if we could go outside or not. It would start raining really hard for
5 or 10 minutes, and then get sunny again for another 5 or 10 minutes,
and then the cycle would repeat itself. We took the opportunity to
completely finish some things in the apartment we had been putting off
because there were just some higher priority things we had to
accomplish. It was kind of a slow day, but we got a lot of things done
that we now don't have to keep putting off and make the missionaries
after us do. We did at least have English class that night, though.

We went by on a couple members on Wednesday, one of whom had a
birthday so we brought by some brownies. We later on had an
appointment with the Dietrichs, an active couple in the ward. They got
pretty excited about missionary work seeing as Sister Dietrich has a
less-active brother, and his daughter is also less-active and has a
semi-interested, nonmember boyfriend. They said they were going to try
and make a little barbecue get-together on the coming Saturday, so we
were excited for that.

On Thursday, we had a lesson with a woman named Monica that we had
found contacting the previous week. She wants to give up smoking, so
we went through the "Stop Smoking Program" that our mission has. She
also showed interest in our message, so we should be having a lesson
tomorrow with her about the Gospel if all goes according to plan.
Later that evening, we also had a lesson with Moritz in Dortmund,
followed by staying there with him for institute. We talked about the
Gospel of Jesus Christ with him, and it was pretty easy for him to
understand and accept.

On Friday, Elder Moore and I did our weekly planning session before
heading to Dortmund for zone training meeting. After the meeting, I
stayed in Dortmund and went on a split with Elder Clark, one of the
zone leaders there. We did some home teaching splits for a few hours
with a former German Elder who served in this mission. It was kind of
cool talking to him. He trained Elder Fausnaught, my second companion
in the field.

There was a youth conference on Saturday that missionaries were
permitted to visit if youth from their wards were going. We got to go,
and our part in the program was to help the youth give out invitations
they had created for the Easter Sunday service in Dortmund. Elder
Moore and I accompanied two Aaronic Priesthood holders in our ward.
They were noticeably scared talking to random people in public, but
they did a good job. Upon returning from Dortmund, we had that
barbecue appointment with the Dietrichs and the others they invited.
It was a really good opportunity to get to know their friends and
relatives a little better. We asked the one nonmember boyfriend of the
less-active girl if we could call him that week to try and set up an
appointment, and he said yes. We also shared a Mormon Message with the
rest of them, and it seemed to be really helpful. the Dietrichs were
really happy about how the activity went. Later on, we ended the night
with our usual appointment with Bruder Kramer.

Sunday was pretty typical in terms of church services except that we
watched the last session of General Conference for the last two hours
of church. Moritz came, and after church, we had a short lesson with
him about preparation for baptism and a few of the commandments. He
was still really excited about his baptism, and he came to institute
and church even though his girlfriend and her family couldn't come. He
is way solid.

Yesterday, Elder Moore and I were in Dortmund for a long time. Elder
Moore had an interview with Pres. Schwartz, and afterwards we had a
meeting with Pres. Schwartz, the zone leaders, the assistants, and the
district leaders in our zone to discuss the needs of the districts and
the zone. When we got back to Hagen, we went to our bishop's house for

I have my last interview with Pres. Schwartz today. Normally
interviews last for 10-20 minutes, but the last interview takes about
an hour. I have heard from other missionaries ending their missions
that Pres. Schwartz talks about marriage a lot, so this will
definitely be an interesting experience. Other than that, Elder Moore
and I will have P-day for about the rest of the day since yesterday
was all meetings.

Well, I hope you have a great week! Love you!

LG, Daniel

Monday, April 7, 2014

Conference Weekend

Hey Mom!

I am glad to hear everyone had a conference experience, and am
relieved to know that Dad's shoulder is not anything serious. Also,
thanks for the package, all the treats were really good for me and the
whole district!

Well, I once again am a little pressed for time. We only have an hour
left of P-day and still need to get groceries across the street, so
yeah, I have to hurry.

Monday was my birthday P-day, which was a lot of fun. After the games
and festivities, Elder Moore and I had FHE with the Clemens family.
They are cool and they are big BVB fans, so I like hanging out with

On Tuesday, we went to get Elder Moore's visa and to train and get him
a new card for public transportation since his broke. We later on did
some contacting and also had English class.

Wednesday was our last district meeting with Elder Waterböhr in the
district considering he got transferred the next day to Solingen. We
later on went by on a less-active member and
had a short lesson with him about charity. The end of the night was
spent in ward council.

Thursday consisted of getting permission for a street display from the
city, going by on a less-active member to drop off brownies for his
birthday, and translating an English guide to stop smoking into German
for an appointment we would be having on Saturday afternoon.

On Friday, we didn't see a lot of success. We first did weekly
planning, then went by on a few people who were not home. The night
ended with our game night in the church with the ward, which was fun.

On Saturday, we had a lesson with Manuella before the broadcast of the
women's session of conference was played. It went well. We also were
going to have an appointment with a woman to help her stop smoking,
but she had to cancel last minute. Then we had to run to the store to
get some extra food for the Paderborn Elders, who had to stay
overnight with us to make it to conference. Saturday evening we got to
see the live broadcast of the Saturday morning session of conference.

On Sunday, we saw the Priesthood, Saturday afternoon, and Sunday
morning sessions of conference. I really like the messages that
Jeffrey R. Holland, Randall L. Ridd, M. Russell Ballard, and Gary A.
Stevenson had to share. The whole conference was really good. After
the conference, we had a short talk with Moritz (that 18-year-old new
investigator) about his baptism on the 26th. We discussed everything
he would have to do to be prepared by that time, and he seemed okay
with that. The only hitch was that he really wants to invite his dad
to his baptism, and his dad will be gone on the 26th. He wasn't sure
which date would be the best, but he really wants to get baptized. We
gave him a couple days to think about a date and then to let us know.
I hope he gets baptized while I am still in Germany, but if not, it is
not the end of the world.

Well, we had a good P-day today. Because of travel issues, the
Paderborn Elders overnighted with us again. So we had a P-day together
and just played a bunch of games. It was good also getting to know
Elder Isham, the new Elder in Paderborn.

That is all I have time to report. I hope you have a great week!

LG, Daniel

PS Our P-day will be on Tuesday next week, so don't expect an email till then.