Wednesday, December 31, 2014

"He is the Gift"

December 30, 2014

It was great to talk to y'all Christmas day!  It was an event which has come sooner than I thought. Thank you for the Christmas gifts- they were delightfully.. different.  Elder Witkowski is convinced that Japan is odd. 

Thank you for the camera.  I am trying this Wi-Fi magic out as I type. I sent a photo to your e-mail of Elder Witkowski in front of Henderson's big water tower (every city in East Texas has one, all with the city or town name on it!) 

Henderson took a dive with the temperatures about 38-45 deg during the day with almost constant precipitation of some sort or another. It seems to be warming up today though it is still cold and cloudy. Life is great. 

This past week Elder Witkowski and I were tracting, sharing the "He is the Gift" video and message. We met a young man, Kyllar, with whom we shared the message. He liked it so much he wanted to go door to door with us! Elder Witkowski and I, not quite sure what to do or say in that situation, decided we should be ok if he came with us for a short time. This turned out to be a blessing as Kyllar volunteered the use of his phone for showing the video. We were able to share the video with so many more people because of that! Then set return appointments with anyone who accepted.  We also helped two neighbor families rake up the leaves on their lawn. While he is out of town at the moment, we will be meeting again with Kyllar too. 


-Elder hunt

Blessings of the Sacrament

December 23, 2014

Dear Family,

My heart is a bit heavy- we just got back from teaching a friend of a ward members. I don't claim to know everything but I feel she knows the restoration is true, that God desires for her to join His church, yet she does not. Each week we partake of the sacrament, a renewal of the covenant of baptism. If we allow, this ordinance from our Savior performed each week prevents us from procrastinating the day of our repentance. But unless we really do as the prayer spoke at the altar directs, it is a missed opportunity to take another step towards perfection.

Can't wait to see y'all and hear from y'all and speak to y'all-- I shall call in the afternoon and then we can arrange video-conferencing-technology-amazing-rejoicingness!

Love you so much,
See you very soon!
-Elder Hunt 


December 16, 2014

Dear Family and Friends,

Tomorrow we make the long haul to Dallas.  There I will meet my new companion and return to Hendy.  We will also be having the whole mission there!!!  There will be trainings and meetings so the day will be long. 

This past week has been great.  Elder Clark is a bit apprehensive about going home but I think he will do just fine. Anytime I am a missionary's last companion it helps me keep perspective and reminds me just how short a mission is. To say time has flown by is a lie, it has disintegrated before me. 

Good news- we found some new people to teach last Monday at the evening. We have not been able to meet with them again since, nonetheless, we feel there is potential. With the on-coming of Christmas, I am so thankful for the wonderful childhood and youth I spent with you. Thank you for teaching me and living the Gospel!

-Elder Hunt

Monday, December 8, 2014

Face to Face

December 9,  2014

Dear Family,

Pretty soon we will be able to talk face-to-face on Skype!!!!! Ahahahahahahh!!! 

*and there was much celebration*

Elder Clark is leaving for home next week and so I will be making all the Christmas plans and finding computers to Skype from. Because of this, I can arrange to call you at what ever time you would like! You said later would be better. I want to call y'all at the time that is best, most convenient, funnest, cherry-on-top part of the day. 

Since you mentioned calling at 3:00pm in Dallas translated to 6:00am Tokyo, I will plan on making the call at that time. However----- Please PLEASE let me know the bestest, bestest, bestest, [bestest isn't a word] bestest time for y'all!! 

I have to say- just now I was thinking that it feels as if it were two seconds ago we were chatting on Mother's Day.  My mission has not felt long, rather it has passed thus far like a dream. 

Just think- halfway around the world from one another and we will be able to see each other's faces and hear each other's voices! Truly we are so blessed by God to have inspired these technologies.  Truly the communication methods and technologies are of God for the furthering of his purposes. 

We have been proselyting this past week, directing people to look into the "He is the Gift" video in addition to what we normally do. This is a great initiative and direction from higher up in the church and I love it!

Something I have come to love about the restored gospel is simplicity. People here in the bible belt throw around terms such as "born again", "chains of hell" (really just "heaven" and "hell" in general), "judgment" or "judgment day" and so many others. As I have studied the Book of Mormon, I have found these terms plainly and simply explained- so that a child might understand. I love it! 

Talk to you soon!  See you face to face, too!

-Elder Hunt

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

He is the Gift

December 2, 2014


Yesterday Elder Clark and I gave talks in sacrament meeting. Elder Clark spoke on Ammon, his motivations for serving and the service he rendered, and I spoke on the subject of "if ye are in the service of your fellow man ye are only in the service of your God." We both were a bit anxious on how we would do but are both very pleased with the addresses we gave. 

Thanksgiving was good.  We ate at the Georges with the Gages and the Hillmans joining us as well as even more people I couldn't quite all keep straight. (For Elder Clark and I, it was the first time really meeting some of these people.)  We are very blessed as missionaries because we had a few families ask if we had a place to eat and even the day of Thanksgiving we received two calls asking if we had been invited to a Thanksgiving meal. 

Life is great.  I'm still improving and having to improve especially in gratitude. Really gratitude is what defines our happiness. Bad things or great things can be going on, yet reagardless of it all our attitude will determine our joy. 

I thank God for the gift of His Son 2014ish years ago.  Especially I am grateful for the message that "He is the Gift."  There is a new video clip sharing the message that the first gift of Christmas was and is Jesus Christ Himself!  Y'all might already have heard about it.  If you want, you can see it on or #sharethegift can get you to it.  Make sure you watch the video!!! It's awesome!!!!!

Love Y'all!
-Elder Hunt

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Thoughts of Thanksgiving

November 24, 2014

I am so grateful to be on a mission; not that I'm always liking it, but because of what God is teaching me and has taught me. This opportunity is afforded to so few! It is a paltry group when compared to the billions who have lived. And what more- an even smaller fraction has the privilege of serving in Dallas and East Texas! Notwithstanding the bounteous blessings, I do from time to time forget just how merciful God has been to me. This ingratitude worms its way into my heart and gnaws at my joy. Last Sunday one of the sacrament speakers addressed us on the subject of gratitude. The talk might as well have been for me. How grateful we are determines our happiness. Needless to say, ever since then I have been happier. I think of President Uchtdorf's talk back in April. He spoke of gratitude not as being grateful for things, but cultivating an overall and abiding spirit of gratitude. I love it and have so much to be grateful for. 

Elder Hunt

Monday, November 17, 2014

Enjoy the Faith

November 11, 2014

Dear Family,

Thank you for your weekly words of encouragement, thank you also for the weekly pictures. 

Y'alls stake covers the entire island of Honshu! Is that the big, main island? 
That is mind blowing to me- in North Dallas there are many, many stakes and wards. I take it the church is not very concentrated in Japan? 

I am very glad to hear that yall are settling in on the finer points of living. Beds are very important- what were y'all doing before they arrived??

I love you, stay safe and enjoy the faith!

-Elder Hunt

Working Hard

November 4, 2014

Elder Clark and I are working hard.  Yesterday a new lady walked into church for fast and testimony meeting--------It was a great meeting with great testimonies bore by many. People did practically "line up" to meet and introduce themselves. Elder Clark and I were a bit worried that it all may have been too much at once but I trust God is in charge here and all will work out. Unfortunately, when we went to talk to her after 3rd hour we found she had gone already so we didn't get to ask her what she thought of church let alone get an appointment to meet with her.. 

So there's that- other wise it has been a pretty similar week to the previous weeks. Elder Clark and I have now found most of the unknown members or moved members and met with several less active ones. Bishop's direction has been excellent here-- the whole ward leadership is on board with his plans! Pretty soon we hope to have the whole ward list up to date and in the hands of all the ward.

So a good week after all!

Love y'all! 

Elder Hunt

Bullet-proof Testimony

October 28, 2014

Hey y'all!

This past week was very dynamic. Elder Clark and I have been applying President Taylor's training and working more closely with our ward council- both individually and as a whole. We have also traversed Henderson, coming across many less active members. 

Every time we meet with anyone we leave an invitation, as the Spirit directs, often to come to church or read the scriptures daily. Some peoples responses have been positive, accepting our invitations. Not all have been so prudent. One woman told us that reading the Book of Mormon was something she "just doesn't do" She hadn't come to church since the year I was born. 

Juxtaposing such, we had a Stake Priesthood meeting last night from our Stake Presidency. They spoke with fire and zeal and love, inviting the men of the Priesthood to be better. (Imagine Texan accents and a little pulpit pounding.) President Wagley asked us: What kind of testimony do you have? Is it strong? Or did you get it at Wal-Mart? Nice, cheap, easy, and it even has a lifetime guarantee!  He invited each of us to get a bullet-proof testimony. This sermon fit right in with Bishop Williamson's vision of increasing the spirituality of the ward! Things are on the upward.

Love y'all!
-Elder Hunt

To My Parents

October 21, 2014

Dear Fadre, 

I am blessed above celebrities, politicians, and princes to have you as my father. Serving this mission has exposed my mind to the fullness of the world and my appreciation has grown deeper. I see too much despair; too many broken families. The Gospel of Christ can fix so many needless problems but people are not always willing to commit, seek help, or even accept it. Some people seem to see it all as a fairy tale - that loving, unified families exist only in the movies, and only old movies at that. So thank you for loving God most; that your love for Madre, Brandon and I remains strong.

Elder Hunt

Wow Madre!

Can you feel the wisdom and experience? (I celebrated my 50th birthday this past week.)

It was delightful for me to see all those pictures- thank you for doing that for me. I do have to say that you and Fadre don't look so old as being in the fifties. It is wonderful to see and hear that you are doing so well back home. 

I am glad to say that I too am doing quite well. Henderson is challenging as areas go but Elder Clark and I have noticed a pickup- we are finding lost sheep! We hope to help the ward build it'self up.  I realize I have not been the best at sending pictures to y'all- the computers here don't have a port for this 8gb "memory stick pro duo" and the SD converter doesn't read it so I will find a solution somehow!  

Love you, 

Elder Hunt

"Meet the Mormons"

October 14, 2014

Hey Family and Friends,

Well, I am sad to leave Palestine, but Henderson is the least drastic change possible.
Henderson is slightly smaller than Palestine, however it is very well kept. 

We (Elder Clark and I) cover two counties- Rusk county and Panola county. I have known Elder Clark throughout my mission- from Frisco and even Plano wayayayay back eons ago. He has been serving his mission a bit over 21 months out so we suspect that I will be sending him off home as his final companion come mid December. 

Elder Clark is from Holliday, Utah. He is a fellow geek like me so we enjoy talking about all kinds of stuff- including stories we have both come up with. We were double-transferred into Hendy (my nickname for this town) and it has been a slow start. 

Several storms have hit since we arrived. They have all hit around 6:30 am (always after our alarm goes off) with resounding thunder that shakes the windows and they rattle in their place. I think God has been very merciful not to have the thunder booming before that time- it is louder by far than our alarm and I love my sleep! 

This past week President Taylor showed us the movie "Meet the Mormons". If you want an inspirational feel good movie watch it- it is really good! 

-Elder Hunt

Happy in Henderson

October 7, 2014

Hey y'all, 

Sorry for the lack of an e-mail last week.

I found out I was going to Henderson at  9:45 pm the night before so it was a scramble to be in Dallas for transfers.  Ironically, today we head into Dallas to stay overnight for a huge meeting about the "Meet the Mormons" movie and some training. So I'm rushed again this week. 

Henderson is very similar to Palestine.  It is a large county with gently rolling hills, forest- large ranches and fields for cattle. It's a whole lot of 'murica (America)

Love Y'all!!!! 

I'll send lots of pics and good stuff next week!

-Elder Hunt

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Moving Missionaries

September 8, 2014

Hello Y'All,

Well, things are moving.

Mike, our new investigator (who had a baptismal date) dropped us last Saturday. We had a member with us who brought up the Word of Wisdom too soon in his progression. We do hope to meet with him later this week.

David was at church with us again.  He wore a collared shirt and a tie and we taught him how to tie a tie before heading to church. Given Word of Wisdom issues, we probably will push his baptismal date back.  Nonetheless, he is progressing so I'm pleased with that.

Texas Dallas Mission was chosen to pilot a new program for the church. Referrals have been done over the phone but a new computer based program is what we are working with now. The plan is for us to use it and help work out all the bugs and give feedback ect. Once all the issues are fixed the program will be implemented world wide.

Have a great week everyone! Love to all y'all!

-E Hunt

A Two Terrific Week

September 1, 2014

Dear Family & Friends,

So this past week Elder Osborn and I have seen some progress.

We taught David the Word of Wisdom this past week and committed him to live it. We also set a baptismal date with him. 

We have already twice taught Mike, an older gentleman who was referred to us from Salt Lake. He is interested in the church because he can get out and do things. He can be a missionary, and that was what first drew him to our church. We have already set a baptismal date with him too. 

This had Elder Osborn very excited.  He has never baptized, nor even taught past the third lesson with an investigator the whole nine months of his mission. So he was ecstatic to set two baptismal dates in one week. 

You guys really are my family- Fadre sent me some photos from his I-phone and half were of y'all eating amazing food! (Our family is moving to Tokyo, Japan with Shane's work at Disney.  This past week we were on a housing trip to Tokyo and ate a number of very tasty Japanese meals.)

I love you!
I love you!
I love you!

-E Hunt

Monday, August 25, 2014

Chicago Dogs and Oz Dogs

August 25, 2014

Dear Family and Friends,

Elder Osborn and I both made our own unique hot dogs. Elder Osborn has family living in Norway, and up there they wrap a hotdog in bacon and put french fried onions on it. We call it the "Oz dog". 

I have found a unique hotdog myself. A Chicago dog is a hot dog with poppyseed on the bun, chopped onion, relish, tomato, a slice of pickle, hot peppers, mustard, and a dusting of paprika. Apparantly the combo comes from Chicago and I am glad it wandered it's way down south to Texas! 

I love working with Elder Osborn.  He has energy, cracks a good joke, and is very easy to get along with. With him, we have really made headway with several families in the ward. It's cool to catch a glimpse of maybe why the Lord sends an Elder to a certain town. I can truly say that we are meant to be here -and now- in Texas! 

David came to church AGAIN this week!!! He seems more comfortable each week. 

Something very interesting about the move to Japan: I had always considered California as just a place I lived.  California is where I came from but not what defined me. Then when I found out about the move, I thought I would never get to go back nor see any of my old family and friends and I will admit to a bit of sadness. So I guess I do have a bit of attachment. But then I thought: hey- I can visit! So no more sadness. (Our family is moving to Japan for a new job assignment with Disney.)

On the contrary, I am loving life. Every so often I like to tell Elder Osborn how good life is and monologue on the details and big picture alike. 

*disclaimer* The mission is an emotional roller coaster - filled with progressions upward and quick descents. And just like any roller coaster- it is fun! *end disclaimer*

Love y'all so much!


-Elder Hunt

Angels in Palestine

August 18, 2014

Hello Y'all!

Revelation 14:6 -- And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people.  

This week all has been well in Texas. We had Stake Conference and President Taylor and Sister Taylor spoke. David was not there but we did meet with him last Saturday and he is progressing and gaining an understanding of the Gospel and the Plan of Salvation and all of it all. I want y'all to know I am healthy, happy, and loving life. I love you.

-Elder Hunt

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Things Are Looking Brighter!

August 11, 2014

Dear Family,

Wonderful news!

David was with us again at church yesterday!!

He also seemed more relaxed than he has been in the past.

On Friday all the missionaries of East Texas met with President Taylor. He trained us on the "How" of member missionary work. This training answered many questions I have had for a long time, that no one has been able to give me straight answers for. It also gave me new perspective on my role as a missionary.

Dad, you have some competition.  Elder Osborn is an adept pun-er and it is so much fun to hear puns again it reminds me of you. Last Saturday we were helping a new member of the ward move in.  One of the members of the Elders quorum commented to me that my lifting technique was excellent. After thanking him, I thought back to you, teaching Brandon and I how to lift properly. Even though Brandon and I would at times become exasperated when you taught us things, we did and do listen. Dad, thank you for taking time to teach my brother and I, both scheduled and opportunistic. I love you. 

Overall, things are looking brighter here in Texas. I am excited to apply the new things I have learned.

Love all yall!

-Elder Hunt

Monday, August 4, 2014

Batman and Robin

August 4, 2014

My Dear Family and Friends,

This week on Batman- the dynamic duo saw some dyn-a-matic changes and surprises.

David did not attend church this week.  He went to another church with Miss Johnson and some other friends. I figure he's attended the past three weeks and plans to attend with us again this coming Sunday, so that's fair. I hope that he will notice the difference between the churches and realize that the best place for him to be is in Sacrament Meeting. We meet with him tomorrow so we will see.

I have enjoyed driving the Batmobile around.  Yes, I am designated as the driver. I have been making the most of the car's manual shifting option and have become proficient at using the manual gear-style.

We also will begin teaching an adopted girl whose family has now won full-custody of her. She wants to be baptized and her family wants her to be baptized but the adoption needed to be completed. Now that the legal stuff is taken care of she can be baptized!

We also ran into the Riddler and he asked us this, "I have one face and three hands, the longer my hand the faster I can move it- the shorter my hand the slower I move it. People are always looking to me to tell them one thing- what am I?"

Batman (Elder Osborn) and I figured out the riddle- can y'all?

We ran into the Joker and he told us, "I found out today that my toaster wasn't waterproof- I was shocked!"

Well, my dear family- I love all y'all!

Have fun back home in the Marvel universe!!!

-Elder Hunt

Monday, July 28, 2014

Hello's and Good-Bye's

July 28, 2014

Dear Family & Friends,

On transfer day, Elder Heward made his last mission transfer.

Elder Hunt and Elder Heward

He is home now. At approximately 3:30pm on Wednesday, he touched down and met his dear family.  He was a good companion.

Elder Osborn, my new companion, has been in the mission field for eight months. He moved in from McKinney, TX which is similar to Frisco, TX where I served previously.  He is from Las Vegas. Here's a picture of us!

Elder Osborne and Elder Hunt
We got a bit lost in deep Anderson county visiting members of our congregation. I parked the car on the side of the road and when we looked up we were fifty feet from the mission boundary! It was a miracle that we did not accidentally leave our area!

After some good jokes about the mission boundary, I took this photo of Elder Osborn leaning against the "invisible wall" that prevents us from leaving the mission.

I have learned that attitude is what makes a difference in many things in life. On the mission it is the same situation. Some missionaries love their mission, while others carry the attitude of serving a prison sentence, struggling through it.  I personally can say I would not want to be anywhere else; this is the BEST decision I have yet made in my 19 years, four-something months upon this earth in this mortality. 

I am happy to share that David has come to church for the third time this past week. We don't know for sure, but suspect that there is some opposition going on. I thank God for the fulfilling spirit of the sacrament.  Other churches can copy a "spiritual-feel-good" feeling or a burning of the bosom, but they cannot copy the fulfilling power and wholesome feeling of being cleansed and spiritually fed.

Love y'all! 

-Elder Hunt

Monday, July 21, 2014

The Gospel Blesses Families

July 21, 2014

Dear Family and Friends,

Good news: David was with us at church again this week! We taught him the Plan of Salvation on Saturday.  It is one of my favorite lessons to teach because as you share the scriptures and information about it, people's minds kick into high gear. 

The next day at church in third hour it was brought up in class that smoking was looked down upon as we read from "The Teachings of Joseph Fielding Smith" and included a story about smoking. David does smoke and we hadn't taught the Word of Wisdom yet. He was expressively surprised, so I asked the teacher if we could explain why Mormons don't smoke. It was a perfect setting for an initial introduction to the Word of Wisdom. With so many men in the room, some of whom are converts and overcame smoking, many put their input in as to why we have the Word of Wisdom. After the lesson, a few of the men came up and talked with David about it. One thing I've learned on the mission is that most people who smoke don't want to and have tried to quit before. Rather than becoming offended, David seemed happy to learn that so many others successfully quit, and that our church supported doing so. 

Beautiful Texas!
Tomorrow we drive into Dallas to send Elder Heward on his way. I do know my new companion's name! It is Elder Osborne (no guarantee on spelling though). 

Hearing from y'all about how the work is progressing in California is such sweet news. I have noticed that people take a while to join the Church.  They don't go from 0 to 60 in three weeks and they definitely do not flip a switch. Usually it takes time and patience to bring people to the fold of God, they must prepare themselves or allow themselves to be prepared before they keep commitments. Just as fruit ripens upon a tree, the children of God progress towards Him. And how sweet is the fruit! 

My dear family, I love you and pray for you. The Gospel blesses families and that's God's truth.

Elder Hunt

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Miracles in Palestine

July 14, 2014

My Dear family and friends,

I received a very 'Murica (America) package indeed this past week! What a delight it was to open it up and read all the kind notes and messages from so many of y'all. (We have had Shane's sister Renae, mother Delle, niece Jennifer and her two daughters Hailey and Kelsey visiting for the 4th of July weekend.  Everyone wrote a note for Graham to put in his package.)  Thank you so much for the time, thought and love you show to me with little things like that. Many missionaries who have been out the same amount of time that I have been out receive no mail of any sort, just some brief e-mails each week. So thank you, each of you for blessing my life so much!

A Monument Dedicated to American Soldiers located in Palestine, Texas

 Elder Heward prepares to return to normal life in a week and a few days.  Nathan and William, two young men in the Palestine ward, are also preparing for mission changes.  William left for Guatemala last week and Nathan leaves for Chile this week.  I realize that what people have told me my entire mission- that the mission is short -is indeed true after all! (I didn't believe them, I didn't believe them one little bit).

Congrats to Jordan Rex on his mission call to Malaga, Spain!  Both President Durrant and President Taylor served in Spain; the missions and their boundaries were different then but it wouldn't surprise me if Elder Rex serves in some of the same areas as they did. Both men speak fondly and dearly of their missions. They love that country (President Durrant so much that he chose to play professional basketball for Spain) and I know they would say that Jordan is headed to a wonderful mission.

Several weeks ago a little boy in the ward, Fransisco, sank into a burning pit at a dump after a service project and was burnt so severely that he was helicoptered into the ICU in Dallas. Doctors feared that he would have to have skin graft surgery. So we have been praying for him. He has recovered and is walking around and playing now. He won't have to have skin graft surgery.

If that isn't a miracle I don't know what is.

Yesterday at church was pretty interesting.  We had David, one of our investigators, at church for the first time and in third hour the lesson was on Priesthood Ordinances and they consecrated oil (something I havn't even seen before). He seemed to think it a bit weird. Thankfully we have the writings of Mark in the New Testament and after reading a little in Chapter 6, I don't think he found it too terribly odd. Elder Heward commented later that different things always happen at church when investigators decide to attend. Nontheless, David seemed to really enjoy church. We are excited that things are progressing.

Love Y'all!

-Elder Hunt

Monday, July 7, 2014

A Taste of Palestine...

July 7, 2014

Dear Friends and Family,

Well, I hope y'alls past 4th of July weekend was terriffic!

One of the most iconic things I saw was a restored old red Ford pickup truck with a huge American flag on a pole mounted in the bed, driving along the highway.  The flag was billowing behind in full splendor. 'Murica! 

As y'all know, Palestine is a city of churches. Many of these churches have sign boards that they will put certain phrases on. Elder Heward and I have been collecting these quotes. Some are funny, some are serious, some give helpful advice, and some I disagree with. Nonetheless here's a few:

Change begins at the end of your comfort zone.
Christ has risen! He is risen indeed! Alelujah!
The only thing you can give and still keep is your word.
Christ's love, not human nails, held him to the cross.
Christ crossed out our sins on Calvary.
If the grass is greener on the other side, fertilize yours.
Our lifeguard walks on water.
Right thinking produces right living. 
God's not dead.
Don't pray for rain and complain about the mud.
We need to put God back in the U.S.A. where He belongs.
The oak tree is the little nut that held his ground.
He who forgives, ends the quarrel.
Patience is a virtue that carries alot of wait.
Fun in the Son  V.B.S. (VBS stands for vacation bible school.)
(Father's Day) Children of God obey your Father.
Come Holy Spirit come!
Many people who say "our Father" live like orphans.
Prayer- the world's best wireless connection!
Work that is cheerfully done is usually well done.
Your words are windows to your heart.
(Auto repair shop honorary mention) We repair what your husband fixed.
Nature is God's signature.
God thinks one way, man thinks another; who needs to change?
God's bottom line- Believe in my Son Jesus.
When looking for faults use a mirror not a telescope.
God without man is still God; but man without God is nothing.
Don't let your yearnings exceed your earnings.
Purity, prayer, fasting, and love impresses God. Money, pride, and sexy don't.
The key to heaven is Jesus Christ.
The Bible: read it- believe it- obey it- live it.
Jesus is the answer.
(Christmas seasonal) Jesus is the reason for the season.
(Christmas seasonal) Happy birthday baby Jesus!
A person without prayer is like a tree without roots.
(Vet's office honorable mention) Don't get caught littering- spay & neuter.
Only one bound to Christ is truly free.
Yesterday and tomorrow are thieves of today.

Hope y'all enjoyed that taste of Palestine.  Have a great week!

-Elder Hunt

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Texas is beautiful!

June 30, 2014

Dear Family & Friends,

I received some wonderful news today by e-mail. Tylar (recent convert of three months back in Frisco) and I have been e-mailing back and forth. He told me this week that he had received his patriarchal blessing and shared a few of the blessings. He told me he was considering serving the Lord full time as a missionary. I spent most of my time e-mailing him, so please excuse the brevity of this e-mail. 

In missionary work, it is inevitable that some who discover the gospel of Christ will be lost. That is why I think the references in the scriptures (D&C 4) to harvesting wheat and laying it up in store are so fitting. Elder Heward, who back home is a wheat farmer, told me about how you plant, grow, harvest, and store wheat. After wheat is harvested, it must be placed in safe storage. Rain, wind, storms and many other things can ruin the harvest you worked so long and hard for. That is why the Lord talks of laying the harvest up in store so it doesn't perish. Tylar had a very rough time and much adversity before he was baptized. I think of the saying that what we obtain too cheaply we esteem too lightly. Tylar had to struggle and pay a high price to receive the gospel of Jesus Christ.  Now Tylar is thriving in the Gospel and it is awesome!

Texas is beautiful, never mind what they all say..

Love Yall!

-Elder Hunt

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

A Cute Puppy Joins Elder Hunt

June 23, 2014


This is Jackson. On a companion exchange this past week, I was with Elder Stadman in Palestine. We were out tracting neighborhoods and came across Jackson sitting in one of the yards. Jackson came up to us and we did the usual "aw hello little doggie" routine. Yet as we moved on door to door, Jackson followed us. Jackson started accompanying us to the doorsteps, sitting down next to us as we stood. Unfortunately, Jackson did not help us get in any doors- but he was really good morale support and made things more interesting.

This year is fixin' to be nice and cool. We have received much rain the past weeks, even rain today as I type. This keeps things cooler and many predict we won't hit hundreds for another month or so. So it's a very nice summer to be the summer stuck right in the middle of my mission! Anyway, this is a picture of some clouds that preceded a dark storm cloud.

Elder Heward and I have been visiting various families that are not actively attending church this past week. Surprising to me, there are many who talk a great talk, insomuch that they seem to be active members, yet do not even act to attend church on Sunday.  So we do what we can to encourage and invite.

Elder Heward received his "trunky papers" a few days ago. (Elder Heward will be returning home at the next transfer.) The trunky papers are your itinerary and instructions on what to do and how to prepare to leave the mission.  It is stuff like flight info, schedule for your last day in Texas, etc. Having him so close to leaving has helped me realize how short the mission is. Last transfer cycle back in Frisco with Elder Wheelhouse was the fastest of my mission, this transfer makes that one feel like rafting down a river of molasses.

I am glad to hear all is well. I pray it remains so.

Love Y'all!

Elder Hunt

Monday, June 16, 2014

Farewell to President Durrant

June 16, 2014

Dear Family and Friends,

Well, last Friday I met with President Durrant for the last time. He talked about how the mission is like going to a concert. We pay top dollar to sit right in front of the stage, yet sometimes we sit in the back. Sometimes we sit in the bathroom the whole time, and we can't even hear the concert. Others will go off to the concession stand and get a two buck hot dog where they can't even see the concert, giving up a five hundred dollar experience for a two buck hot dog. It was a pretty good analogy for missions. The more you give, the more you get out of it. 

President Durrant also showed us a video of our new, incoming mission president (PresidentTaylor) passing him the basketball during a BYU basketball game, as well as some other basketball game clips of President Durrant that we missionaries have been dying to see our whole missions. He also showed a clip from a General Conference way back when he spoke about deciding to serve a mission. He had thought the Mormon Tabernacle choir was done singing and was walking up to the podium as they began another verse. Realizing he was in a jam- Elder Faust of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles let him sit on his lap until the song ended.  This was caught on camera by the crew doing the usual filming of the Mormon Tabernacle singing! Two other apostles leaned over and shook the young Durrant's hand and gave him thumbs up! The video was hilarious to watch. 

President and Sister Durrant also answered any questions we had at the end and gave much good advice for life. To end, we sang "God Be With You Till We Meet Again" and then everyone wanted pictures with them. It was the last time any of us would see them because they leave in three weeks. I have grown considerably on the mission and so I thought I would try to stand as tall as President. Well, I am not quite there, but hey I'm close. (No, I am not standing on my toes!) 

Unfortunately none of our scheduled lessons went through this week. Thank you for all your prayers, they yielded fruit: we do have an appointment with one of them today as it was bumped back from last week. 

It is warming up now. This summer has been extremely mild, with much well received rain. Locals predict it will get hotter later, but by August we will inevitably reach those wonderful 100 degree fahrenheit with 100% humidity days. But if there was ever a summer to have in the middle of my mission, this is probably a good one. 

Lastly, I needed to tell y'all that I love y'all. All your prayers do help, the Lord does strengthen me when I need to do things that I cannot, but He can. I am praying for each of you. 

Elder Hunt

P.S.  Texas has some food all it's own!  This is Chicken Fried Steak!!!!! So they take a steak and batter it like a chicken and deep fry it also like chicken but it's a steak! In the bowl top center is one of my favorite foods! Fried Okra.  Okra is a kind of vegetable maybe like a pepper or cucumber or tomato or maybe it's just it's own heavenly thing.

Monday, June 9, 2014

"City of Churches"

June 9, 2014

My first week in Palestine we spent driving all over the county, focusing on meeting as many of the members of our congregation as possible. This past week we have almost exclusively spent in the city of Palestine. And for the first time on my mission, we are finding people to teach. 

We have found three new people to teach this week alone! We have also met some other potential investigators. We are meeting with (names are changed, just so you know)  Larry on Thursday, and Katherine and John on Saturday. This is good! 

Palestine is called the "City of Churches" with something like 140 plus churches in the town. Religion is in the culture here and people are much more "laid back" and willing to hear us out. So- I am super excited!

And about my good fellow companion, Elder Heward - he is from Tooele, a small town in Utah.  He grew up on a welfare farm for our church. He goes home in a month and a half! 

We have rain today, which we are very happy to have beat the mercury back down into the milder sections of the thermometer. Not only that- I have been eaten alive by mosquitoes while tracting this past week.  Elder Heward (lucky man) doesn't even have one bite! Thankfully the bites do not itch but because West Nile virus is carried by some mosquitos, I got some heavy duty deet bug spray and a pound and a third of garlic cloves. So I'm hoping to change that...

Well, I love you, pray for you, and hope your coming week goes well!

-Elder Hunt