WIM

WIM

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Catch up post!! :)

 
Ugh!! Sorry everyone:/ I'm a little behind with posting for Elder Schroeder. This will be a long one... Robin

11/25/14
You will be surprised to know that Elder Beck and I when we went to the mall to get something were interviewed by a couple people about Christmas in Trinidad and we made it on their video.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/izZsFRnMMqE?wmode=transparent&enablejsapi=1&autoplay=1&origin=http://www.lizbliz.com/home/

Pictures of a meeting with all the zone leaders in the mission! You should be able to find me, if you look hard enough.




Sorry, I have neglected to give advice to the young men!  It has slipped my mind each time I email. 
So here it is:
Just go and just love it! It's not hard to go and it's not hard to stay! If you know the Restored Gospel is true, then do your best and serve the Lord! If you do not know its true, do you best find out because the greatest thing that will ever happen to you is knowing the gospel is true. A mission simply provides an incubator, you will grow and develop in ways you never even imagined! Never even imagined!

Now to you guys! 
We finally got moved into our new apartment.. we still don't have all the furniture yet but we should be receiving it shortly! During the moving of the apartment, I got to drive the mission van! One of the wishes of my mission!!! It's a 15 passenger Nissan, right hand drive with a standard transmission. I mostly just wanted to drive a right hand drive stick! I thought that was fun! Sadly, I didn't get a picture of me driving it, oh well! 

We also had Thabksgiving  yesterday at the mission home! Thats why I didn't get to email cause we had to get to the mission home early and didn't have time to email. As part of our thanksgiving we also went to a local food court and sang Christmas hymns. We gathered quite the attention (40+ white missionaries) Elder Beck and I were also invited to the Wilkes for Thanksgiving on Saturday. They are an American couple who live in our ward, they are great! 

We did have a great lesson with "K"and her family! We taught the plan of Salvation and did not get past the fall of Adam and eve since they had so many questions! They were loving it! We just have to get them to church!!!!! They will come, I know it! 

Transfers is next week I really hope I get to stay one more, but I don't think it is likely.

1) my closet (elder beck has his own too) 
2) bathroom walk in shower and unlimited hot water!!!!!



                  Caroling at the mall

12/01/14

Congratulations Sidney!!!!!!!! I am glad all went well! I had a little apprehension about that. I just wonder how I am going to feel when it is my own wife and child. I will probably die of nervousness. 
 
Papa Scott and Mama Sid! wow.. they will be grandparents soon...haha
 
My week down here was great!  Probably not as great as yours .. it is hard to trump a new baby! 
 
Another moment you have all been waiting for....... I am being transfered to ........... nowhere.
 
I get to stay in Diego Martin for one more at least! Booyah! Christmas in Trinidad! I am excited especially since I know all the members so well down here. We have already got 3 appointment lined up for Christmas! haha... can you believe that? Talk about planning ahead.
 
Another interesting thing. As of now, I will be the oldest Zone leader in Trinidad.... Wow! That is weird to think. Everyone is counting down my days... I don't even have to do it, cause everyone is doing it for me. 
 
Some great experiences this week though.
 
A family I am super excited for the mother and father are already married and strong in the Christianity. The mother doesn't  really feel the spirit at the church she is now attending so she is looking for a little bit more. She has encountered a great deal of skepticism. It seems that the negativity has made her more curious. She has tons of questions, sadly the man of the house is a little more elusive but he apparently is really interested also. We have only been able to teach him once, we will pin him down one of these days. 
 
I forgot to menion about this last Saturday (the thanksgiving at the american couples house) it turns out that they basically invited everyone from the ward to their house. Well, not quite the whole ward but alot. There was at least 30 people there so we had a real thanksgiving with kids running around and everything! It was great and the food was spectacular!!! 
 
We also had an great success this friday. We travelled with a young man, well not so young ~30, to the sports night we have at the church every friday night. He really enjoyed it and made some good friends at church. So hopefully you hear more about "S", in the time to come! 
 
That is about all for the week! We have got some great plans for Christmas sodon't  worry about that, it should be great! 
 
Love
Elder Schroeder
 
ps. If you really do want to send a christmas package the only thing I can think of, is black or grey nike socks (mid calf)

12/08/14
Wow he is tiny!!!!! 
 
The house is going to be totally different when i get home.
 
I will really have to check out a nativity set made here .. they had them in St. Lucia but I didn't think to get one.
 
This week was really great! We had a sweet lesson with the "F" family (an awesome recent convert family with super strong testimonies!) We taught them about the 5 different temple coventants and they loved it. Bro "F" had about a 30 minute lecture on chastity and virtue, it was incredible! It is awesome to see people embrace the gospel so fully! To come out of such darkness and to behold such light! 
 
Right now, the mission is focusing on Balanced Effort Real Growth, so Elder Beck and I are teaching the Zone about that tomorrow, should be fun. I really love teaching missionaries, it is so much easier! 
 
Church was great on Sunday, there were about a million return missionaries there because they were having a return missionary conference. The self reliancy people (I don't know what you would call them) from the church held a seminar for the return missionaries on being self reliant. It is really cool that the church is reaching out to the countries where that kind of training is not available. There will definitely be many more successful members because of this. 
 
I don't really have much else to say about the week. Except that Elder Church one of the new missionaries in the Zone is awesome an you will probably hear more about him! He will probably replace me in Diego since he was already a zone leader. 
 
Hope you each have a great week! I love you all! This holiday season I am reminded of you.. to think it has nearly been two years since I have seen you.. wow .. 
 
the zone .. i wish i had time to give you everyones name

 
oh yeah it is trinidadian but they say "trini" usually 
 
Love,
Elder Schroeder
 
P.S about the skyping home thing .. We can probably do it pretty much any time .. I will talk to the members about it tonight and see what time works best for them. Let me know next week what time would work best for you guys, and we will see what we can do!

12/15/14 Exciting News!!! 

Chrstmas will be good down here! I will be skyping you between 1-4 my time ... our location has yet to be determined that's why we can't  give a definite time but it should be around then. too bad the Todds won't t be there for it... 
 
Some exciting news though... here is a quote form my mission president the assistants called us this week with the exciting news and President emailed us today about it. 
 
"Dear Elders and Sisters,

I have been authorized to announce by the First Presidency that as of July 1, 2015 the West Indies Mission will be split. The new missions will be named Trinidad Port of Spain Mission and the Barbados Bridgetown Mission. 

The Trinidad Mission will consist of Trinidad, Suriname, Guyana and the ABC islands off the coast of Venezuela.

The Barbados Mission will consist of the Islands north of Trinidad already in the mission including French Guiana that is part of the Guadeloupe District.

I will received from the missionary department further instruction on what to do to prepare for these changes and I will let you know as soon as I do.

Please continue to work as you would normally do. 

I sure love you all,

President Mehr"
 
So that wont effect me, but it is exciting nonetheless... I will have served in an extinct mission! Happens to tons of people though. Connor should try and serve in the barbados mission ;) 
 
The baptisms we have set for December have all pretty much fallen through, so that is sad we just continue to work hard. 
 
Love,
Elder Schroeder
 
12/22/14
I am excited to talk to you guys! 
 
Today is going to be a sweet day! We are going to a mall to do caroling and then off the the mission home for dinner after that. We are also going to a senior couples house for a movie. We chose to watch frozen. 
 
Christmas should also be good!! Christmas eve we have a dinner appointment with Donna a recent convert. Then we are going over for smores at another converts house. They have never had smores, so it should be awesome! 
 
Christmas day we already have 4 meal appointments .... I plan on gaining about 10 pounds that day! I also have 2 workout sessions planned that day, so I can be as hungry as possible! 
 
I will be keeping my eyes peeled for a natvity ... I haven't seen one yet :/ I really would like to get one... Thank you so much to everyone who sent me money! I am most appreciative! You all might get some souvenirs also! I will definitely be bringing some traditional trini foods to make for you when I get home. Curry, Mauby, Malta! It will be fun for you guys ... You can taste what I have been eating for the past two years! You might also be able to experience the other end of the business, if you know what i mean..... 
 
This last week was great, we had zone conference and the missionaires are hard at work. We have been having almost every appointment for the past three days fall through, as Christmas is drawing near. The Trinis really celebrate Christmas well! I was surprised to see how many people have trees and lights and stuff! It is really cool. Christmas here is definitely better than St. Lucia. It actually kind of feels like Christmas. Especially since I am used to a warm Christmas. 
 
The baptismal dates we have had set have been falling through.. I think cause everyone is so busy during Christmas! 
 
We should be doing some Christmas souvenir shopping next monday! Hopefully, there are alot of things on sale after Christmas! 
 
I think that's it from me this week.. 
 
Love,
Elder Schroeder
 
Talk to youThursday!!! 
 
PS the call will probably come closer to 2-3 my time on thursday



Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Heart attack...disappointments and miracles

11/3/14
Wow, sounds like a fun week over there! It also sounds like a fun couple weeks to come!!

Ideas for a Christmas gift... all I have to say is if you are planning on sending a package don't send candy, we have got too much of that here in Trinidad and it is all dirt cheap. There are a couple souvenirs that would be good.. some of them can be quite pricey though. I do want to buy an Indian style shirt they call it a Kurta (i don't know if I spelled it correctly)  and it comes with pants too. Other than that I don't really know. I am good on pretty much everything.

I have got one interesting story this week for you guys. 

Elder Beck and I just drove up a large hill (very large hill) to go teach a young man and when we parked and got out of the car. An older man was sitting down in the shade he asked us for a ride down the hill into St. James (it's about a 10-15 minute drive from there) We quickly said sorry we can not, he responded short of breath telling us he recently has had two heart attacks and he is experiencing shortness of breath. He said he feels like he is dying and he wants a ride to the hospital. We asked is he has called an ambulance yet? He said, he did but they can't send one because they are all occupied. While we are talking to him I could hear wheezing in his speech and breath he called the ambulance again and they said they will send one as soon as they get one. Since we couldn't take him he said "are you just going to leave me here to die?"  We didn't want to break the rules so we quietly waited with him for a couple minutes and then decided to call President Mehr. President asked a couple questions after we told him the situation and he said go ahead take him, we can't leave him there to die. So we got him in the car and drove him to the hospital... that 's a little different than the regular everyday missionary experience.

I have got another story but I think I will wait to tell you that one until I get home. I wrote it in my journal so don't worry about me forgetting it. 

I told you I would have pictures this week but I didn't take any pictures. Elder Beck took some pictures though I will see if I can get them from him! 

Love,
Elder Schroeder

11/10/14



I am excited for Sidney and Scott and for their baby to come! I better get pictures the moment you see it.. I know I don't have to worry about that though.

This last week has been the best! we have set 9 baptismal dates! Most of them are really solid too. Some may have to be pushed back later on but most will get baptised. 

I am very excited for one family!! They should be getting married and baptized on December 6th! I really hope I will be here for that! They are great! They have two children who are not quite baptism age, but one day they will be right. The parents have been progressing greatly towards baptism.. they do family home evening more often than the average Mormon family they will be a great strength to the Ward!

Another person I am excited for. I believe I wrote about last week is a 13 year old boy. Extremely prepared!!! He has already read almost to the end of 1 Nephi and he understands it super well! This last Sunday he traveled to church but got lost along the way so he obviously didn't make it .... We will be traveling with him to church to show him the way next time.. which should be interesting because we don't even know how to travel to church! (taxis)

We met a guy this week and you should have heard him. We asked him about his view on religion and he went off on a huge tangent about the great apostasy. How none of the churches on the earth are true right now, and that he is waiting for God to call a prophet so the truth can be brought back! Needless to say we shared our message with him... He should be baptised in the coming months...

It has been a great week and I am excited to see the fruits coming up! Sorry, I didn't take any pictures this week... I have been slacking on that...I will carry my camera around this week.

Love,
Elder Schroeder

P.S. we may be moving into a new apartment... and that reminds me you will get some pictures of my current apartment next week! (where i have been living the past 6 months) and possibly pictures of the new apartment.

11/17/14

Sounds like exciting times back home!!

The week went by very fast in a slow way. Tuesday and Wednesday was occupied with meetings. We had MLC - Mission Leadership Conference and all of the Zone leaders in the whole mission were present. We also had to house a few missionaries, that was pretty fun. We got to house a missionary that I was around in St. Lucia. I don't know if you remember me telling you about Elder Larson. He is just about my favorite missionary in the whole mission, so that was fun!

This week we also had to coordinate the logistics of moving apartments. It is much more difficult to move apartments in Trinidad than in St. Lucia... I can only imagine the logistical nightmare of moving houses... I look forward to that day... kinda. We should be moving over the space of tuesday-wednesday. Our new apartment is very nice... And when I say very, I mean very very nice. You guys will get pictures of the move next week. Too bad, I won't be able to benefit from it for to long (probably)

With a combination of those two things this week was a pretty slow teaching week. I do have to say that we did experience one of the greatest miracles of my mission this week! If you can remember a couple weeks ago I spoke of The 13 year old boy, well we went to teach him on Thursday and his parents said that we can no longer teach him... sad day:(  That was a bit depressing and Elder Beck and I expected he would be baptized.  A couple days we really wanted to teach and prepare someone for baptism in November, later we took out a Priest age young man to go teaching and as we were speaking to him we got on the topic of a girl who recently started showing up at church with a member family. I had met her a year and a half ago when I was first in Port of Spain and she used to attend regularly so I thought to myself that she was a member. Elder Beck however asked if she was baptized... Nope was the response. When we heard that you should have seen the look on our faces haha!! We both just looked at each other in awe. With a little more investigation we found out that she has never even been taught by the missionaries! We went by her house that night had a great member lesson and she is going to be baptized on the 29 of November! She already knows everything is true and loves the church. Great stuff! 

That was the miracle for the week, that we found someone prepared for baptism.

Another great thing (not so missionary related) that happened this week is that we got to go to a five star restaurant again. The one owned by the Cofones. Idon't  know if you remember me telling you about that a long time ago. So that was nice! 3 course meal of Calamari appetizer, Some pasta (I don't remember the name) and HagenDaz Ice cream to finish it off. yes ma'am!

It was a great week, and another great one to come.

Love, 
Elder Schroeder


Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Transfers

Well this transfer has turned out to be great! Elder Beck is from Boise and is a hard worker! He just came from Barbados and has been out for just over 14 months, he was previously stationed in the area adjacent to Port of Spain so he is vaguely familiar with its environs. Elder Babb on the other hand went down south to an area called Point Fortin that is basically the southernmost part of the Island. 

This last transfer was quite the pivotal transfer everyone (or the missionaries anyway are all beginning to tell me that I am dying soon... 6 months goes by so fast... I am not taking them on though I have still got plenty of time left!

This week has proved to be a great week! We have finally been able to get out and find a few more people! I am excited to see which ones of them will act on our message. 

We met a new guy this week named "C" We talked to him for about 5 minutes and had a nice impromptu lesson with him. He comprehended well the truths of the restoration, he did not get to make it to church on Sunday cause he was out of town but he should be there next week! We also set a baptismal date with him lets see is he makes it!

We also have found a good deal of success with two younger girls 17 and13 they are both related to a strong member so they have got great support there. We set a date with one of them for the 15th of Nov but the other girl wasn't there when we extended the date, so she did not end up with one. 

We taught a great kid last night, he is only 15 but this boy understands! He is going to do well...

This week has been a great week and I am looking forward to the transfer to come! I hope I get to stay in Diego for at least one more that would make it a year living in port of spain!!! haha! I do not now how likely that is but hey.. the end of this transfer will make it 10 1/2 months total in Port of Spain. I think I know the people here just about as good as the people in our ward back home! Maybe even better I do not even know the bishop back home.... 

Well, I love you guys .. sorry I have not taken any pictures this week .. you will get some next week of my companion and stuff. 

Love,
Elder Schroeder

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Ward Activities...

I am glad grandma got the flowers HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

By the way Mom, that is a terrifying little countdown you have got going there. A very exciting one nonetheless. First grandchild baptized! First baby from Squidly and then me :/ haha!

This week was a pretty great week! Two baptismal dates 32 lessons and an investigator at church.

Before I go on to that, I was on Family Search the other day, showing someone how to do family history and I notice that Magee (my great-great grandfather on dads side) has not been sealed to his wife and that you mom have it reserved. I don't know if you guys know about that or if there are any restrictions on that ordinance but you guys should do it.

Back to what I was saying. Elder Babb and I have specifically been focusing on a young man named "R" We have fasted specifically for him on 3 occasions and we finally set a date with him!!!!!! yay!!! We hope all will go well with that.

We had a family fun activity on Wednesday at the park with the "S" family. You already got some pictures of that but I will send some more along with this email.

There was also an activity at church on Wednesday "family fun day" it was a great activity held at the Chapel on Wednesday. Great attendance!
Elder Babb and I didn't really anticipate playing too many games while there, but sure enough the missionaries were called in for assistance. 5 hours later and about 20 pounds of sweat we missionaries were looking pretty ragged.... haha it was fun though.

I don't remember if I told you this in the past but we play basketball or football every Friday night. It's  a ward activity.

All the activities the ward has are great. It's a missionaries dream! We have so many chances to get our investigators fellow shipped. I hope that these activities continue.

Well, not too much more for this week. I love you all!

Love,
Elder Schroeder


getting some golf in! I got third place...

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Love it here! Always busy!!

9/8/14

I don't want some creepy nematode lurking in my stomach or something!

This week has been a pretty slow week compared to others... I was still a little sick, so we took it a little easier and on top of that we had about a million meetings compared to usual. We had one meeting with the stake president and the ward mission leaders, zone leaders, and some bishops about what we need to do, to keep the member work going and how to improve it.  It was super good! We also had a good deal of interviews to do this week so we had to do a few trade offs which threw us off a bit. We did get a lot done this week though so that was good!

For transfers, I am staying with Elder Babb. That means I will probably be here for another 3 months. I am super excited!  I love Port of Spain! Always busy!!

The driving stuff was all figured out just a couple weeks ago, the deal was, I applied for an extension of my permit and while it was in the works I was technically an illegal resident. On top of that, my paperwork was sent in with a batch of missionaries and of all of them, mine was lost in the process (the government lost it) so we had to send in an inquiry for it and after that it took a couple weeks. Fun huh! I am all good now, I got a year extension so I am good for the rest of my mission!

By the way, cutting nappy hair is actually a bit easier,  you can cut any direction up, down, sideways and it will be consistently the same. Can't do that with white hair.

We had another baptism this week!!! "SM" The confirmation was done on Sunday! Sadly, "D" didn't show up at church so she didn't get confirmed... we will get her next week though, she is awesome!

I am super excited for zone conference it will be cool to hear form Elder Zivic. Thank you again for sending the talk, we will listen to it in the car many times.

Right now we are just looking for more people to set dates with... we fasted this week for two people specifically. We hope that we will see a miracle with that. I believe we will. We are also planning on selecting families to fast with each fast Sunday, to keep the member work going. No doubt we will see many miracles from it!

Love,
Elder Schroeder

P.S. basketball Monday morning... I figured you would like pictures of me.




9/15/14

That flashlight hide and go seek story at the Dawson's is the funniest thing I have heard in weeks! Well, maybe not... but it is pretty funny! I am glad he did not get shot!

About being sick often, don't worry about me I am in the best of hands here. The senior couples are practically on their hands and knees ready to assist us. They are great! If they hear one little sniffle they break out the racehorses and chariots to get you taken care of! Our senior couple goes by the Francoms - I bet you could find them on a blog or something, but they are super cool. Real people!

About Elder Zivic and his wife down here. He was here the past couple days and now he is out with President and Sister Mehr touring the mission. He really is an incredible man! The lessons and instruction we received from him was just incredible... He threw out so much information wow! His vision really reflected the vision that President Mehr has, so that was cool to see. President and the area authorities are on the same track.

Speaking about the same track we have had 403 baptisms this year already and we are perfectly on track to get 600 by the end of the year! A 600 baptism year! 600! We get about 50-60 baptisms a month and we have done that consistently as a mission, for the past little while and now guess what?President has got a new vision that of 84 baptisms a month... we have 84 companionship's in the mission. So there it is. That is just over 1000. Hopefully, I can be a great part of that.

Well, I think that is it for the week! Shout out to Casey, I wish you luck with your job and school and stuff. Then again, we do not really believe in luck...

Love,
Elder Schroeder

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Great Week!!

8/25/14

Great to hear about those mini missions! Speaking of mini missions "M" (the young man I baptized at the beginning of my mission) just got back from his mini mission. He loved it and it got him super excited for his real mission! It really changed him I am glad for that.

I have had the great opportunity first hand to see lives change! That is the best!!!

Great to hear about life back home thanks for that!

We should have a baptism coming up on Saturday if all goes well her name is "D" we are excited for her. She just soaks up the teachings of Christ! Another person we have planned to be baptized is "S"she should be baptized on the 6th of September.

This weekend down here was stake conference we had a great meeting after the Sunday morning session for new and returning members. It was an open forum, question and answer kind of thing and there was a man who just returned to activity who had about a million questions about tithing... It was interesting... President Mehr was there to answer the questions so that was fun...

We have been waiting for about 3 weeks now to receive Elder Evans companion and he just arrived!! yay!!! He came out from the military about 5 months ago to go on his mission so he is full blown army. He is good! We are excited to have him around.

Recently, I have been learning a great deal about the second coming just reading through the whole book of Mormon highlighting about the second coming. It is a vastly covered subject, its fun to unravel it.

Great week! I love you all and oh yeah I should be sending a small package home in the next couple weeks it shouldn't cost too much .. I guess if If can't afford sending it, I will just keep it in my luggage.

Love,
Elder Schroeder


9/2/14
I am very glad to hear Austin is getting going on those things! I hope I get to see him before he leaves. Also, about Aunt Rachelle I am glad for her!

Sounds like you guys have got a great deal of stuff going on at home! We have got a good deal running down here too! The baptism on Saturday didn't happen... cause it was on Sunday! yay! "D" was successfully baptized! She let us pick who baptized her so we decided on Elder Babb. It was a great baptism we had about 20-30 in attendance and the spirit was very strong. The testimonies at the end were great!!

The baptism for this week is on schedule and we are working on someone to be baptized the week following.. we have a good few who are prepared they are just hesitant about taking the plunge. We will help them... the Lord is ready for them!

This week we taught 30 lessons so it was a nice busy week in spite of me being sick and staying in a bit to recover, we got business done. I just have a little cold .. it seems my health down here is constantly fighting something, some fungus or virus or bacteria, or nematode,(thats actually what causes elephantiasis I found out) you can check me on that I am not 100% or biting fly or something.

I can't remember if I told you this but our zone conference in just a couple weeks, we are having Elder Zivic of the seventy coming. It is going to be a special mission wide conference. Then the Saturday following we are having a mission leadership council with him... it should be awesome!

Well I think that's about it for the week. I am going to try and send some pictures .. Elder Babb has most of them though so I have to get them from him ... so we will see.

Love,
Elder Schroeder




Yes, he successfully did the pushup.. afterwards, I did a pushup with the Elder standing behind me on my back








cutting one of our investigators hair

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Incredible experience...

8/4/14
Thank you so much for the care package! I haven't gotten it yet but I should be able to pick it up tomorrow or Wednesday. I forgot to tell you I need athletic socks too.. they are definitely missionary socks..... real Holy.....  

The razors are holding up great! No complaints about that, they are super good!!!  
(Helpful Hint: For any of you wanting great quality razors for your missionaries or for yourself at a fraction of what you will pay in the stores, follow this link for 15% off. http://dorcousa.refr.cc/S5CNZVB We sent our missionaries out with a 2 years supply. Best ever!! Robin 

This week has been great! Here is one stellar highlight for you guys!
You may remember the first week I ever emailed home from the mission field, the very first Saturday I was here, the "M" family was baptized. They returned on Friday night from a temple trip to Santo Domingo! It was incredible to see these people in their infancy in the gospel and now as endowed members!!! Brother 'M' is even the ward clerk! It sure is incredible! I don't think there are too many missionaries who get to see that.

We also have a baptism coming up on Saturday! It is a 9 year old girl - "K" (her parents are recent converts) so we were able to teach her. 

Also, another baptism in a couple weeks! Another 9 year old girl form a recent convert family! Talk about working with members! This 9 year old did not really want to get baptized until just a couple days ago. So now that she wants to it is a thumbs up from the parents. Get this- the parents actually went to the beach with their daughter and played a game --- the game was "lets practice baptizing her. Haha..  and she wants me to baptize her because she is scared that her dad will drown her. ... Not happening... he is definitely going to baptize her!

One more thing from the week .. this was quite interesting... on Thursday morning I woke up just as normal as ever worked out, showered, and ate breakfast (hash browns). As I was tying my tie - I got a strange feeling you get in your throat when you are going to vomit. I did not have a stomach ache or any thing, I finished tying my tie and the feeling became so intense that I knew the expulsion was imminent. I ripped my tie off and proceeded to empty my guts into the toilet. It was not even that violent... I just threw up, blew my nose, brushed my teeth and was done. I did not feel sick at all or anything .. super weird... Well I started to study and about 15 minutes went by and I felt plainly exhausted... I then slept for about an hour and then we had to go cause some conundrum with the car. After that, we came back and I continued to sleep for about 3-4 hours... I was a zombie... I do not even know what it was. I continued to be a zombie for about a day and a half and now I am fine... very strange... 

We got an awesome referral this week, she is the Mother of one of our recent converts. We are now teaching her. She is taking all of it very seriously just because she has seen the great change in her son. Talk about a great example. We are excited to see her get baptized! 

That is it for the week! 

Love,
Elder Schroeder


8/11/14
Thanks for telling me about Sister Marius... Great lady!! We actually used to visit her about twice a week to read to her. I heard that she had passed away already. She is a famous woman throughout the mission.  I actually used to call her Grannie.  She could never pick a favorite missionary but I would like to be able to say that I was her favorite.  She was buried with a picture of all the missionaries that gave her pictures, she had a 10x12 picture of me :) She was also buried with one of my name tags. She really loves the missionaries!

Sounds like you have got some fun things going on back home. We have got some fun things happening down here too.

We had a baptism on Saturday! There is a small picture in the newsletter it is the "B" family it was a part member family... was... good stuff!

On another good note. I'm helping my companion with a diet and workout program and he has already lost 6 pounds! He is looking good! So that is great! Also, it was his birthday on Saturday... gave him a tie.

More about the work .. we have members out with us everyday! It is a little hard not to bring them out, honestly everyone wants to come out with us, all we have to do is give them a time and go pick them up. It is great! We have fellow-shippers for all age groups. Right now we are really focusing on part member families and it has been working out really well. We have baptized a good amount of younger people because of it. The younger ones seem to get lost in the background when the missionaries first come over. We have also had some good success with the older people. Of course older people just have more reservations but it is coming along great!

We should have about 4 more baptisms before the transfer is out. Elder Babb will probably be leaving this transfer or so we think, he has been here 6 months.

Highlights for the week-
We had mission leadership council on Wednesday so we got to hear from President Mehr. He wants to focus on flooding the earth with the Book of Mormon. As we shared that with the missionaries we have seen a great amount of success. Contacting with the Book of Mormon really sorts out the elect. The field really is white down here we are seeing loads of success the mission had 60 baptisms last month and 30 of them happened in one day! So things are looking up we should hit our goal of 600 baptisms for the year!

Anyway, I think that is it for the week. I love you all and thank you for the shoes you sent! They will get used! Great selection.

Love,
Elder Schroeder

Beautiful sunsets
Elder Babb, Mikalai (who is actually on a 3 week mini mission right now), Elder Schroeder




8/18/14
It is great to hear about Courtney and Megan leaving on their missions! How cool!

This week has been great! We got fed a lot... I feel full just thinking about it... and we have a dinner appointment tonight too... wow... it's awesome!

One new thing is I remember the suggestion you had for me on using my drawing ability on my mission. I have decided to do that I am going to draw a little bit every once in a while. I am almost finished laying out a very cool drawing of the tree of life.  I just have so many ideas it seems a waste to let them go undrawn.  It would be cool to publish something in Deseret stores or something one day.

I recently received a blessing from my bishop over here. President asked us a long time ago to get a blessing from your local leader whenever you come into a new area. Something he said that really stood out to me is "You will be the change that you want to see on your mission" I felt the Spirit strongly when he said that. He also proclaimed that, "At times things will not go the way you would like them to" and I don't remember the exact wording thereafter but there were many promises of resoluteness in the face of adversity.
It has felt like that a good deal recently, definitely a very inspired blessing! Great guidance and comfort from an inspired leader. I really admire Bishop Regis.

I have felt the Lords hand amid my life more than ever on my mission, it is truly an incredible experience. In spite of my unworthiness as an unprofitable servant, I know that the Lord loves me and trusts me with this great call. Oh it is so hard at times and the burden heavy. I can only imagine the weight of the other calls to serve in the future. I do slightly relish in the strain of the load though ... it really does allow you to grow and move forward.

This week has felt really slow but we have had so many great lessons and opportunities before us. I really love serving with Elder Babb he is such a strong person. I don't remember if I told you this but he has only been a member for three years, he knows so much about the gospel already. It is incredible!

We went to Maracas falls again today for Pday. I went just about a year ago. So here are some pictures for you guys, so you can still see I am healthy and alive.

Love,
Elder Schroeder

1) Here's a close up for you
2) We were all supposed to be flexing but anyway...
3) I don't know how good you can tell but I am cowering under the rock to shield me from the  waterfall
4) That's us climbing across, getting soaked so we can be behind the waterfall
5) Interesting close up of some moss type stuff on a tree







Thursday, July 31, 2014

Healthy and Happy!!

July 21, 2014
Wow! That flood was crazy... actually "Sister C" (she is a member down here) has a son up there at school right now so she showed me videos when we were at church! That is insane! I am glad I am not up there right now...

The baptisms went smoothly and they were both confirmed on Sunday, "J" the 17 year old was even interviewed and ordained to the Aaronic Priesthood on Sunday!! That is a rare occurrence down here, we have got to thank Bishop for that! He is good! We also took him out teaching with us on Sunday. Another young man! We just have to get him on a mission now! I think he will go.



That is scary to think I am the next missionary in the ward to get home... ughh!

This week has been kind of slow ... we did teach many lessons this week but we don't have too many new investigators... We have been relying heavily on the members but it has just not been working the way we would like, we still have plenty to do and it will get better.

The ward has had some great activities recently... we had a movie night on Saturday and watched "The Testaments" it was pretty good and then we played some games after. It was fun and there was some good friend making going on, or as we say down here fellow-shipping.

I still can't drive yet, my permit has not quite come through yet, it will soon!

Love,
Elder Schroeder


July 28,2014
Lots of stuff for the week! Sounds like a great week, thank you so much for letting me know what's going on. It is fun to hear whats happening in your lives.
Some business first... my running shoes are worn through... my left one has got a hole in the bottom. I have been using them a lot so I need some new ones. A good pair down here runs at about $120-140 USD probably more around the 140 dollar range.  I don't know if you want to buy some at home or online and have them sent to me. Or you could just put the money on my card and I could buy them here. I am the same size as Connor so he can be the test dummy. I need those pretty soon. On another note my Dansko shoes are running pretty low... I may need some new shoes pretty soon. What I probably could do is buy a cheap pair here for about 40 US and use those for just a couple months and that would extend the life of the shoes I now have. I think that would get me through my mission. - I will leave this all up to you. P.S. Nike is the best.. Connor would pick good ones :)

Now onto the regular stuff.
I have been doing great, feeling real healthy! No pudge yet, so that's good. I will be staying with Elder Babb for another transfer! Woot Woot. This now means that I have served in the Port of Spain ward for 6 months now! Maybe I can be here for 6 more haha...Whatever the Lord wants for me. I love this area! We have tons of members and they all love the missionaries, they feed us, they go teaching with us! It is the best!

So Elder Babb and I are staying together but the Zone is changing up quite a bit. We had sister missionaries in Port of Spain but they are no more. They have closed that area, we also are getting two new Elders. One is a temp actually from the last ward I was in, from San Grande. Elder Sookoo and the other is an Elder Hopkins. I hear he is post military so he should be good!

As far as the work down here, it is going great! We have so many members in our area we can't even take all of them out. They all want to come out with us! Well I shouldn't say all but most of them do!

"J" is one of the ones that wants to come out with us. In fact, so much so that he has come out with us every day this week! He is learning so fast. He taught the first vision to a couple of our investigators booyah!

One great lesson we had this week was a member referral, you should have seen the way her eyes were glued to me as I shared the restoration with her. I just hope that she acts on what she has learned now... we are seeing a slow increase in member referrals here and it is great!.. It was hard for a while but it is picking up now! Good stuff!

One pretty funny thing that occurs down here revolves around an Elder Evans, he has been out for about a year and he uses all manners of contrivance to get us to go to Dairy Queen! You should see the things he does!

I am pretty sure mostly every sentence ends in an exclamation point. I bet you guys have realized that already but I thought I would point it out.

I think that is all I have for the week. I love you guys, have a great week!

Love,
Elder Schroeder

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Good times Here!

July 4th!!

July 7, 2014 
Wow sounds like you guys are having a blast back home!

It has been a good time down here!
We had quite a few meetings this week. Zone conference Tuesday. Mission leadership council on Wednesday, interviews with the mission president right after that.  Zone meeting Friday. Wow! In spite of that, we still got some great work done this week!

Here are some highlights:

In zone conference we practiced contacting with the Book of Mormon and this is how we did it. A couple missionaries volunteered to practice and the assistants held up cards with the description of who we are contacting. President Mehr was the person we were role playing with.  I volunteered and you guys knowing my corny little self threw a joke in there.  President made fun of me for that and we had a good laugh but then I got serious. I went one more time all the way through and at the end President said, "I don't know if I could of done it any better myself." Not trying to brag but it does feel good to know that you are actually good at what you are doing.

Mission leadership council was great! We spoke about the blessings of the mission wide fast.

We have a couple baptisms coming up that we are pretty excited for.  Two 9 year olds that we have been teaching from recent convert part member families. They should both be baptized on the 19th of July.  Another one is a 17 year old boy.  He recently has become much more interested in baptism from what I have seen he is practically jumping into the water.  I hope it stays that way.  He also should be baptized on the 19th so we should baptize 3 people this transfer!!! That's good stuff.

Having a great time down here, tons of members! It's the best! Port of Spain!

Love,
Elder Schroeder

                                                                
July 14, 2014
The "M" family is doing pretty good... We actually took "M" out with us all day Sunday.  He is solid, it is incredible to see how much he has learned! He can answer any question (in regards to the gospel) the way a missionary would! So that is great!

I have another cool story though there is a recent convert here named "N"  I did not know it until this last week when I went on a trade off. I was with Elder Eggbert in my old area and we went to see her. I found out that Elder Jamison and I contacted her the Friday before I was transferred to St. Lucia and she got baptized a couple months later! So that's cool! I am going to have to take a picture of all those that were baptized here in Port of Spain partially from my efforts! That would be great! 

The Lord has truly blessed me. I love it here! 

We were supposed to have 3 baptisms on Saturday but now we are only having two. The parents of one of the them are having difficulty deciding which day she should be baptized because of their work schedule. In spite of that we are still having two baptisms. The two being baptized are very prepared! We are excited for them!  Expect pictures of that next week!

Highlights of the week! I have been really focusing on Christlike attributes and it is interesting. We need to totally reverse who we are to become like Christ. I have been making an effort, though feeble, to teach some recent converts this. It has been great. It is amazing when you culture a proper learning environment how much people can learn. Without even knowing that they are learning too. Here are some helpful things that I learned.

When something aggravating or potentially contentious occurs do the following

1) get the facts (if only we knew everything we would make the correct choice every time - so long as our morals are on board)
2) take yourself out of the situation
3) teach or correct with love
these are difficult to do...
We so often times when aggravated, throw our opinions or how we feel (emotionally) into the situation, which opens the gates of argument.  It is true that it takes two to tango but if one chooses not to tango, then there is no tangoing. I am not saying that walking away from a situation is good, in fact no progression will occur if a problem is left unattended in the foreground.

It is possible to not tango and annul the problem, it takes practice but it is possible. Its very hard to explain. Anyway, that is what I have been focusing on recently.

Well, I think that is all I have for the week.
I will for sure take pictures this week, you can hold me to it!

Love,
Elder Schroeder

Monday, June 30, 2014

New area- Diego Martin

6/16/14
This week has been a great week!

I got an interesting transfer call .. I am being transferred back to Port of Spain! Actually, the area is right next to the Port of Spain, it's called Diego Martin. I will be going to the same church building and visiting the same members so that I am excited for! My new companion's name is Elder Babb.

I am excited to go but, of course I am also sad .. I loved the area here in Sangre Grand and have come to love many of the members over here... I am excited to go back to Port of Spain though! That is sweet.

Elder Montgomery and Fiame are both staying and getting new companions they will do well in their areas.

We taught some really great lessons this week! I am sad to leave these investigators especially the "J" Family. they are husband and wife with one child and brother "J" is getting baptised not this Saturday but the next. He actually just fed us yesterday, I finally got to try iguana. It is a super tender meat, tastes pretty much like iguana haha... it was cool! I will send some pictures, anyway more about brother "J" .. this guy already mostly understands the whole concept of Aaronic and Melchizedek priesthood and he always has the best questions .. he will definitely be a great strength to Sangre Grande.

I am also sad to leave the "R's" they are also a sweet family. I have faith that they will be baptised and contribute much more strength to the ward. Last night, we taught them the gospel of Jesus Christ they ate it up! It is strange how you teach the same concepts every time and it never gets boring.

We have been working with a good amount of families .. that is our main goal as a mission.. Overall, we have baptised about 300 people in just this year already .. we area aiming for 600 baptisms by the end of the year!

Right now, I have been studying quite a bit about repentance and I stumbled across a talk by Neal a Maxwell. It is the best! The talk title is Repentance and the talk is in 1991. I also want to and look forward to reading the many books that he has written.

Love,
Elder Schroeder





Curried iguana close up!! That is curried mango next to the iguana, next to the mango is curried aloo (potato) and chana (chick peas/garbanzo beans) the tan stuff is "bus-up-shut" a type of roti





6/23/14

Well first thing I must say .... BLAKE !!!!! Actually received a wedding invite just last week...I am extremely excited for them! I still can't get over the fact that he married Maddison haha... that is the best!

I must also say about Sid the prego kid, She is looking good! and pregnant! I think it will be a boy. You should send one of those cupcakes to me so I can find out the same way ;) haha just kidding.

More about my new companion. Again, his name is Elder Babb he is from Guatemala (I don't know if I spelled that right) and he doesn't speak a lick of English.... it is very interesting, I can see why he is a zone leader but we can't understand each other very well, so that is difficult. It helps that I can kind of understand Spanish and also french he was transferred to the English side of the mission 1 transfer ago.... just kidding!! He is from Hughson California it is about 20-30 minutes from Modesto. He is awesome, we get along great! He goes home home just before me, in January. He is the outdoorsy type so that's good. He's also a competent driver so I don't need to worry about that. It's going to be a fun transfer with him.

The names of the missionaries in the zone are: Elder Shariatmadari, Rowley (i wonder if he is related) we look like we could share some blood, Evans, Eggbert (from driggs), Westbroek, Hazlett, sister Giles, Reddy, Edmonds, and Schindler. there it is ... the Assistants to the president are also in our area. They are all great missionaries!

Now .. about he fun stuff ... the members over here are the best!!! I didn't have to remind one member at church what my name is, they all remember me! booyah! It is good to be back. We have so many members to take out, it is ridiculous .. it is almost like they fight for spots or times to go out with the missionaries! It is the best! .. We are going to have loads of member lessons! Those are the best .. and plus it is way more fun to go out teaching with the members. We also have a ton of new members in the Port of Spain ward! Its great to see many callings being filled by the recent converts!

We have some sweet families over here I am excited to tell you more about them. I haven't met with too many people yet so you will hear more next week.. I expect to see some baptisms rolling along over here!!! I wish i had some picture for you guys but I haven't taken any yet...

Have fun in Idaho!
Love,
Elder Schroeder

P.S see if you can give Blake a shout out for me! please!


6/30/14

That is super exciting to hear IT'S A BOY!!!! wow that's going to be a load of fun .. little league games. etc. etc. Sid gets to finally learn everything that goes into parenting .. I can only imagine .... Speaking of that, what was the most difficult thing overall you guys have had to deal with parenting wise? just curious.

Sounds like you had some good fun up in Idaho.Probably not as much fun as we are having down here! I have been super tired the past week! But I am keeping it up! Elder Babb is a funny man, it's great to joke around with him. I also love that he is serious when the time calls! That is something I admire in him.

Not too many strange things happened this week. We have got some great new ward members down here and we have been teaching the recent converts a lot about family history work. The calling I received previous to my mission - family history consultant, has helped out so much down here. Truly an inspired calling! Thank you Bishop Dye or whomever received the inspiration for that. There are so few people down here that know about it. It has been great to help people get started with all of that! The spirit of Elijah is real and it is powerful. I know that family history work is going to be a huge part of my life in the future. Connor should get into it a little bit.

I had some questions for Grandma Schroeder
here goes ...

1) What was your most embarrassing moment?

2) What made you decide to join the church - I have heard the story but, I don't quite remember all the details

3) How did you feel when you had your first child?

4) If you could describe grandpa in 20 words what would it be? You can use a sentence or individual words or whatever..

5) If you could learn anything you now know (about parenting) before you were a parent, what would it be?

Love you Grandma!
So there is a small project for you Grandma .. I want long answers! You can have Connor be your scribe, if you feel so inclined .. how is that for volunteering!

Well, I think that is it for the week!
I Love you all, have a great week!

Love,
Elder Schroeder

Friday, June 6, 2014

Teaching...Love the people!

5/26/14

Trying to figure out the balance of these two areas. We did have some very good things happen this week though.

We met a man named "K" late last week and volunteered to help him do some body work on his car (it is a piece of work) but hey... so we went by to help him and he was pretty surprised that we actually came to help. He wasn't ready for us so he said we will have to do it next week, so tomorrow we are helping him change out the rear axle and dif. pretty excited to get my hands greasy! We did get to help him that day though, his other car ran out of gas a couple miles away so we drove some fuel over to his car to fill it up. It still didn't start but hey... I am amazed at the kind of work they do to their cars here. You should have seen this car... my goodness.... haha

"D"the one we have been working with for a long time is growing in understanding. However, he didn't come to church yesterday :( ugh... I wish he had more strength in the home... anyway... we are doing what we can for him. Truthfully, I just feel that he is a little apprehensive about how his friends will react to him being baptized.

Also, I don't know if I have written home about couple we are trying to get married. They are awesome people we went by Saturday night. I took a youth by on splits, his name is "J" and we got on the topic of marriage yet again. You should have seen this kid counsel these two on marriage it was a sight to behold!!!! haha... He was really good, he is going to be a great missionary!
About him (J) being a missionary,  I helped him submit his papers on Friday night. The ward clerk couldn't figure it out and asked me for help. So I was the middle man in all of that. I am glad I did my own papers, we submitted his papers on Friday all he has now, are his final interview with the Stake President! booyah! I hope I am here when he opens his call. That would be cool.

I think that is really it for the week,  plugging along over here. It can be saddening when people don't act on the truth they learn, but hey its got to be that way, right?

We are celebrating two sister missionaries birthdays today, it is Sister Bratt's (brought) birthday today and Sister Herrick's birthday tomorrow.

Well, I love you all! Have a great week!!
Elder Schroeder



A large field in Sangre Grande on the way to a members house.
Coconut shrimp!


6/2/14

We (the three of us) will probably be companions till the end of the transfer.

About transfers... I pretty much know I am leaving. President Mehr called me on Wednesday and called me to be a zone leader. I don't know where I am going but I do know, that I am leaving. So all you have to do is wait in anticipation. We have a big mission leadership conference on Tuesday Wednesday. That is where President Mehr flies all the zone leaders in to instruct them.

We had great week this week in the amount of lessons we were able to teach! We taught a total of 38 lessons! We have a zone competition going on (the competition is based off goal setting) and we crushed it!

As far as our investigators go, it is super hard to really focus on specific people when you are spread so thin, doing the best we can.

Recently, we have been doing really well at taking members out teaching with us. We have some pretty good bonds with the members in the area here. Bro "A" is one of my special favorites, he is a little outspoken kind of guy, but his experiences are a great help to the investigators that we have. Love the people here!!

Ahh.. this week the senior companion assigned to Sangre Grande (Elder and Sister Ray) had their family here visiting. It was super weird to see white people again. I feel like when I go to back to school I will gravitate towards the one black person... it is going to be super weird to go home.

As of now I would say my biggest focus is getting a couple married and also get Brother "R" to church. These couple families could be the best!!!!!

I really just don't have a lot to say this week. I didn't take notes throughout the week, I will this week though.


Love,
Elder Schroeder

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Baptisms and Service!

5/12/14
                           Mother's Day skype was AWESOME!!!

It sure was great that you could meet some of the members in the ward during our call. I actually invited them to come meet you guys, that was nice! "S" and" S" love going out with the missionaries! Also Brother "N.B." I am glad you guys got to meet some of them.

We have 6 missionaries serving in the Sangre Grande ward. Elder Montgomery, Hernandez, Fiame, Sister Hendricks, Sister Herrick, and myself. It is a pretty good bunch!

I am glad your range of motion is increasing! That is great you will be back to normal in no time!
Hoping Connor can get that externship! I guess I am always thirsting for knowledge, externship\internship, whats the difference? I can throw out a good guess but still I would like to know more. Oh and I have got to see a picture of that bike, sounds sweet!

Anyway, as far as the work this week I received some great news from Elder Fiame my new companion, he just came form St. Lucia. Of course I asked him how it is over there. He was just ecstatic! I do not know if you remember me writing home about a brother "P".  He is a man who only has one leg due to diabetes that I contacted and began teaching him about 3 weeks before I left. He is now baptized! Also the "A" family which includes "D" "V" and "O" are all baptized! Apparently, "O" is the best, he is a great fellow shipper for investigators and he has already given talks and everything at church. "S" I also heard is doing great! She is a great institute teacher and she has a weekly house meeting with 40+ people in attendance!!!! There also is another investigator named "J" who is being baptized soon. Elder Fiame tells me that they all love me a lot and they always ask about me. It is a great feeling! 5 more souls!

I also found out from Elder Fiame that in the mission, my nickname among the missionaries is "Elder Dictionary" pretty funny!

We did have something pretty sad happen this week a member that feeds us every Sunday after church. His brother passed away, he is not of our faith, we went to part of the wake for him. We were just there for a couple of hours. We visited with the minister, it was quite interesting to see how they handle funerals, he asked us if we had any questions it was fun to pick his brain a little bit and see how they approach the death. We sure are blessed with the plan of salvation... 

I have really discovered how much service plays into missionary work. Often I find myself throwing everything to the side so I can help out a brother or sister. There is not enough of that in the world!
This week Elder Fiame cut up about a million pimento peppers for someone. I hoed a large patch of grass while Elder Fiame taught a lady, it was great! This makes me remember when I was on a trade off a while back. I called into a house and the lady just poked her head out and said, "not interested" and then I said back "can I leave you with something to read?" she said, "Yes" as I walked up to give her the book and I could tell she was still very sheepish, if not a little perturbed. As I was writing down our name and number on the back of a pamphlet, I noticed she had been doing some yard work and the sidewalk needed sweeping. I offered to sweep and she said no (of course) with a little convincing I got a hold of a broom and started sweeping, about 5 seconds in she started laughing out of sheer shock. As I continued sweeping we talked energetically and she actually ran inside to get a camera to take a picture of the momentous event! I finished sweeping and we spoke to her very candidly about what we do as missionaries. We left the house with a great return appointment! Great stuff!
Well, I think that is it for the week. Love you all!
Elder Schroeder

This computer isn't letting me send pictures, sorry:/


5/19/14

First off I have to say... the fires over there looked ridiculous, I am glad you are all safe!

That's funny to hear about Pops being called that also haha. I did learn from you mom, how to work hard though!! You're always going. I am glad I inherited that from you.

"S" (the young man you met) came to church and got the priesthood. He is also coming out teaching with us on Tuesday! He is good and has a very powerful testimony.

A little about this week, I had to stop driving the car on Wednesday because of the work permit issue so Elder Fiame and I were on bike's for two days and guess what? I crashed twice .. once for each day... I guess Connor and I mountain biked a little too much, I tried doing some tricks and yeah it didn't end well haha.. anyway we are back in the car now, that's a whole different story though. We just sent one of our missionaries home... He has got to go home to get surgery on his knees. Anyway we inherited his companion - Elder Montgomery, so now we have a designated driver... kind of terrifying at first but, I trust him with the car now.

So right now the three of us are covering two full areas, we are doing pretty good and doing lots of service.  Elder Fiame and Montgomery are two very energetic guys, they go a million miles and hour and crash at the end of the day. They are great missionaries, hard workers, firm testimonies, great attitudes. What more could you want?

My time is almost up, I had a lot of emails to read today.

Excited for the next 10 months! Keep plugging along at home you guys should try reading the Book of Mormon in 90 days, reading the same assignment everyday and then come together and talk about it at the end of the day. I think that would be great! You can see how much you each learn!

Love you guys!
Love,
Elder Schroeder

1- Two of the best dogs ever
2- Cayman I caught (just kidding, my investigator had it)
3- Me and Elder Fiame