There just isn't enough time in the day, and yet at the same time there's too much! The days are slow, but extremely busy, but they add up super fast. Next transfer I'll be 1/4 done with my mission. That's super weird! It feels like yesterday that I was staying in Detroit because our flight to NY got cancelled. That was a weird couple of days, but that was almost four and a half months ago!
The reality of the Presidency change here in our mission is starting to sink in, and the mission is preparing to say goodbye to President and Sister Calderwood. I'll be sad to see them go- they both are truly inspired and inspiring people. I am excited, however, to welcome in our new Mission President in June (at least I think it's in June...).
Every transfer our zone meets with President and his Assistants for a Zone Training Meeting (ZTM). This time, because it's the Calderwood’s last time, they had it at their home, so I finally got to visit the mission home! It was absolutely amazing. Sure, it took up our entire day getting there, having the ZTM, and getting home, but I think it was worth it. One of the Calderwood’s sons recently returned from a mission in Russia, and he gave one of the workshops on prayer, and truly praying in the name of Christ. It really changed the way that I think about prayer, and I've made it a goal to relearn how to pray. I can give my notes next week if people want them. The theme for this ZTM was tools in our tool belt, and how to use them. Among them were prayer, understanding (taken from the listening section in chapter 10 of Preach My Gospel), the Book of Mormon, 25 minute power lessons, baptismal invitations, the Interactive Pamphlets app (available to anyone and everyone in the app store, btw), and taking family names to the temple. It was really good, and I got to see the woods again! I was so happy. Also … imagine how much more happy I was when I saw a Shaolin Kung Fu school on our way to the train station. It was a good day.
It was so amazing Face Timing my family on Mother's day. I believe that I covered the fact that our chapel on Marcy Street got evicted two weeks ago. Well, all that got cleared up (it was just a computer error, but for some reason we still got our locks changed), and on Sunday we were able to use the church's Wi-Fi to call home. If mail is good, Face Timing (Skyping) home is better! I love my family so much, and I pray that the Lord will help me bring that joy, peace, and love that I grew up with into the homes of struggling families.
So, last week, after I sent a pretty boring letter home, we went to the Brooklyn Bridge Park, which consists of some paved paths for walking and biking, as well as several piers containing soccer and football fields, basketball and handball courts, and even a roller skating rink, all while looking out at the Manhattan skyline. It's pretty cool. Well, while we were playing soccer with some other missionaries and investigators, members, and less actives, we hear some helicopters coming in. To my surprise, I see two military helicopters fly almost directly over us, and then in comes the President of the United States. Yup. Mr. Obama came to NY to make arrangements for flights between JFK airport and Cuba. So, I ended getting some pretty cool pics.
Other than that, nothing much to report. Living the life, preaching the word. Some days are better than others. Some people are awesome, some are jerks, all are children of God. Stay true to the faith and fight the good fight, for in this I know there is the only true and lasting happiness.
Elder Richard Brandt Hull