Sunday, August 3, 2014

Stanley Idaho, Back in God's Country!

  From Ethan July 27, 2014

  Stanley is BEAUTIFUL! The mountains are huge with glaciers on top and it's green with pine trees everywhere. With lakes and rivers around every corner, it is a lot like Minnesota except there are mountains! It's like being at home camping again.  In the summer there are a lot of tourists with a lot of young people coming to work at the stores and resorts. At one of the biggest places called Red Fish Lake Resort there are 60 employees from all around Southern Idaho, a lot are returned missionaries and youth preparing for missions! There are also a lot of people from either foreign countries or other states. We are teaching young single adults from New York, Oregon, Florida, Jamaica and Bulgaria! It's pretty sweet. The church up here is held in a community chapel called "Stanley Meditation Chapel." There are two meetings, 8:30-10:30 and 5-7. In the morning there are at least 250 people cramped into that little building. It overflows so people have to sit outside ha, ha! A lot of people are flabbergasted that missionaries are here full time.
    My companion is Elder Prosch from Birmingham, Alabama who is super chill! We have a lot of fun together. We live one mile out of Stanley in Lower Stanley behind a store called "Jerry's Country Store" owned by a member who lives behind it, too. They have 4 returned missionaries who live there in the summers. Most members in the summer live on the resorts or near the place they work at. For being such a small town there is a lot of work to do here.
    We are working with Brenda Adams and Sarah McInroy. Brenda, 40's, works up here all year and has known the elders for a long time! She has a testimony of the gospel, but smoking is holding back from being baptized. She has been one week and 2 days without smoking! Addictions are tough, but I know if we accept the help from our Savior that anything is possible!  Sarah, 17, from Portland Oregon works at Red Fish Lake Resort for the summer. A non-denominational Christian, she really enjoys going to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints here in Stanley. We invited her to baptism this last week.  She is thinking about it however, she did say if she knew the Book of Mormon was true she definitely would be baptized.
    The Book of Mormon is powerful evidence from our Heavenly Father that the gospel and the church have been restored in these latter days.  The Book of Mormon is another record of God's dealing with ancient people. It shares the same doctrine as the Bible because the Prophets in both are Prophets of God. I plead with everyone to read the Book of Mormon, ponder it and ask Heavenly Father if it is true. It takes a lot of faith to read it but guess what, that's what our lives are all about! Showing our faith and humbling ourselves to whatever God has in store for us.
   It is awesome to be back in the Mountains where I am so close to nature, so close to God's creations that are untouched.  I am blessed to be a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints :)
God Bless you all,
~ Elder Howard

Pictures of Ethan's living quarters and the community chapel.

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