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Elder Balzer - 6/5/2023

Yeah unlike my previous transfers this one is different and it's gonna be like this moving forward. We didn't get transfer news last night, but we'll get it Wednesday night. So we're all just waiting and trying to go about things normally, except Elder Chandler who's going home this week. We're going strong, but being with him has helped realize that even my mission won't last forever and there are some things I should be thinking about with school and work. I only really have about 5 months left, so while I'm focused here I'm taking time to think about my future. Plus talking about home and things we'll be able to do off the mission everyday would do that as well, haha. What can ya do. 

It was a walking week cause May was coming to a close and we don't want to get to many miles. So Tuesday plus at least one big chunk a day we walk. 

Miles are going to be fun to keep track of now cause we just got a new car a few hours ago and the Mike's were reset. So I'm going to be busting out the calculator to due some calculations while calibrating the car. It's nice and I love that new car smell. 

Tuesday was fun cause after walking, we walked to the Pecks(star wars part members) for dinner. It was great getting a big meal after getting there. Tia had her kids fir the summer and her eight year old son was having so much fun. He was just doing the whole 'behold my stuff' thing that kids do when people visit. 

Wednesday was ReStore, but much safer this time cause other people were doing sledgehammering. We mostly cleared out junk they got from donations(aka peoples trash that instead of throwing out they bring here to feel better). 

Later though, right before DC there was an amazing contact at a bus stop with this lady named Carmen. She was asking all the best questions and a full restoration lesson happened right there. We've been staying in touch and see good things with her. 

We also ran into DeShawn finally, and talked to get some intel. Turns out a cavalcade of crap happened and now he's marked as a DNC for everyone's safety. He is nice, he is cool with missionaries, but he is dangerous.

We later told Bishop and shared info and the ward knows the situation and thankfully the Saos are safe and are hiding out somewhere hours away where apparently no missionary can reach. Super secret, but the kids can still be picked up for church cause the Webers are superheros driving hours. Yeah stuff is going on, but it's working out. 

Thursday ended with a really cool lesson with pickle guy Stephen in the square. It was really spiritual and he could feel it as the restoration was taught. He said it multiple times and walked us out saying it as well. He even invited his wife over to the table and it was really amazing. 

There were some funny moments with his fish tank having fake fish he takes out for the night and some murder doctor show on the TV that looked so ridiculous. 

Friday was extra special, probably the best Friday ever and one I've been looking forward to. It starts great by being Chandlers two year anniversary as a missionary so we put up a decoration and got him some ice cream.

It goes sky high from there cause later in the evening around 6pm we picked up the other Elders and went to the stake center. Why you ask; oh simply because it was for a baptism for Grace Yaboah! Now Sister Yaboah! I was blessed with the honor of baptizing her! After a year and a half of waiting and praying, it finally happened! Thank you Jesus! There was just so much excitement and after I just hugged her with the biggest smile on my face. 

It's moments like these that just make this whole mission worth it, these life changing impacts, sparks that light my way. There was another one I just today and it was the testimony of Bruce that was written and sent to the missionaries involved with his conversion and it made my heart melt. 

Saturday was filled by two awesome events. One was a huge morning service at united community helping them clean out the building to make room for remodeling. That food pantry is getting an upgrade. On a big main wall is a huge thank you board with everyone's names on it, including the missionaries. We wrote down our individual names as well to add to the board, leaving a lasting legacy, that's service. 

Then there was a big Elders quorum party at the Reads home where we talked with a lot of members, including a couple less actives that came to church the next day. It was great and the Butikofers kid, who just came home from his mission in Angola, talked with us about missions and the work and the people while the Reads non member neighbor was there and also being in the conversation, it was incredible. 

Sunday was a good working day. We helped the Ellis's for a lot of the day and got the sacrament ready to be administered to people who can't make it. We got to administer it to the Ellis's then watch a Book of Mormon video. It was a really nice time. Before that was working on their phone, well Chandler did it and wrote down for them how to use it, cause they are old and Shirley especially is having her age get to her. During this was a scary moment for me, heart sinking fear. For a minute I gad deleted all of my photos, all of them, all 3200 of them, 18 months of experience just gone. I had accidentally deleted them while cleaning storage, but I could thankfully restore them.

Today was nice, cause after the whole car thing, we went to Huntley Meadows park and it was so pretty. So Pretty! Then we ran into Rachael and had a great talk with her and Sis Petrenko ran into us. So all 4 of us had a really awesome time together. 

Oh and one more thing for Friday was I tracked in a suit and it made me feel like an absolute legend.

Anyway it was an awesome week amd we'll see what news we get. Plus there's some fun things lined up. 

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