Note: For the duration of Riley's mission, this blog will be produced and edited by his parents, Daisy and Todd Stonely.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Week 75: The Waters of Mormon

Dear Friends and Family,

Another great week of learning and improving. This week I thought I would share a couple great experiences that we had throughout the week.

As some of you know, I had the opportunity to visit Ana Fuentes and assist her baptism. Its been a while since I have used her name so i will bring it up again for everyone. Ana is a sweet lady from El Salvador. She has been meeting with the missionaries from the time i was in Cairo GA and I began teaching her. She is SOOOO amazing. She has such a sweet spirit. We set a Baptismal date with her back in june or july for the 19 of November. She prayed about a date and that was the date that she picked. So we went over and would teach her preparing her for that special day. Sadly, I wasn't able to continue teaching her and visiting with her as I have been moved to the city of Tallahassee (about an hour south). However, this past week was the day of her wonderful baptism and I was invited to go! After getting permission from President Smith first. HAHA So we went up there and enjoyed the trip! The spirit was so strong and i could see how happy she was! It was cool to hear her say as we left, She said "this is the best day of my life." My dear friends, I cant remember the details of my baptism, though I do remember how amazing i felt. Especially when i got home. I was sitting on the steps watching my friends and family. My wonderful Grandmother, Vicki Stonely was there talking with us all. They told me I could start fasting now since i turned 8. HAHA I proudly agreed, but then couldn't do it for more than 10 min. HAHA though i remember feeling so happy, so peaceful and it felt right. How special is your baptism day? What do you remember from "the best day ever?" If you cant remember, think of the temple. That was my favorite favorite day. Ana is amazing and I was happy that she reminded my of "my best day ever." 

This week we also went to contact a referral that we had been given from the 6th ward missionaries here in Tallahassee. As we talked to the lady from Venezuela whom they had referred to us, we asked her if she knew her neighbors. She pointed out that her neighbor was from Cuba. so we decided to walk over and knock on the door. We talked with him and set up a return appointment. He was from Cuba, though spoke both english and Spanish. So on Saturday, when we came back for our appointment, we drove up and guess who was there? the 6th ward missionaries!! Now I don't know what it is like in other missions or in Utah, but down here there are some areas that are SOOOOOO spread out. And being Spanish missionaries, sometimes we have to travel an hour to get to places. So this drive was an hour away, and when we got there, there just so happened to be two other missionaries talking to the same guy, in the middle of nowhere, at the same time we had planned on seeing him. HAHA so we left back home and let the other missionaries teach him. We were on the drive home and feeling a little bit down cause we had then wasted about 2 hours of time. Though Ive learned never to say "wasted" because the Lord always places people in our path. So the story continues as we were driving home. (Now for all of you who have never seen a picture of our car, I will just say that other missionaries did not take care of this car like they should have. There is a lot wrong with it.) We were driving home and Elder Moore saw a sign that said "Free brake inspection." He asked me suddenly if we should go because our brakes were squeaking like crazy. Key point, (Normally we would just wait to get these issues fixed or things like that done till later when we have free time. We were headed to a lesson, but decided to stop and get the brakes fixed. It was completely unplanned.) We both decided at the same time to quickly turn into the mechanic shop. We got out of the car, walked inside and told him we saw the sign and just stopped in. He went outside to look at the car and we sat down and made ourselves feel at home. I started to think and thought to myself, "We are completely wasting our time... What have we done?" HAHA And no joke, In that very moment, two Hispanics walked through the door!! Now that sounds very surprising to you all maybe, but down here, in the city of Tallahassee, we have to first do an Easter egg hunt to find people who speak Spanish, then we can see if they are willing to listen. But these two walked right into the bears cave as we just happen to choose to change plans and get our brakes checked. We immediately talked with them and this guy was from some place in Texas where he knew a lot of Mormons. Now I'm not joking, this man asked us more questions than we could answer. HAHA So we talked with him and gave him our contact information. He isn't living here in Tallahassee, but he is going to talk to missionaries there. 

Now that was a cool experience. Because i never thought that the spirit would work in simple ways like telling us to get our brakes checked. Though when this Hispanic guy and his wife walked through the door I felt those tender mercies literally falling through the sky. The spirit is incredible. Even though sometimes he works in ways you would never think of. 

I love you all and hope that this week the spirit will guide you to those whom you can serve and bless! Count your many blessings and remember how much we have been given! On December 1st is world wide service day so go out and do some service in the community! There is not a better way to show who we are as members of the church than serving our fellow brothers and Sisters! I love you all! Take care and Enjoy the holiday seasons!

Much love,

Elder Stonely

Ana's baptism.
Zone Conference with Spanish Elders.
I made the BEST spaghetti!
I visited the Jacki Robinson Memorial.
Remnants of Jacki Robinson's home.