Barcelona

Vitoria – Week One

13 July 2015

People of the United States,

So I am finally in the field.  My first area is Vitoria, which is a very, very nice place.  I love it already. My companion, Elder Sedgwick, is a baller. He is from Southern California as well, great missionary and just an all around beast, I guess. The two other elders we live with are great as well.

We had to take an eight hour bus ride to get from Barce to Vitoria on the first day.  Here we are doing a lot of work, and a ton of walking.  We teach and look for people pretty much all day and it’s crazy, but I’m loving it.  We have to be in our piso (apartment) by 10:00 p.m. every night.  One night, we were teaching on the opposite side of the area and we were supposed to take the bus to get home.  9:30 – no bus, 9:50 – no bus, 10 – no bus.  By that point we realize that there is a festival going on and there are no buses that night. “Put your running shoes on Elder!” So, we ran back to our piso.  It was easily over two miles – more than I’ve run since lacrosse season senior year, honestly, and boy am I out of shape.  I’m still cute though.

Missions are the best!  For anyone not sure if they should serve, just do it. It’s the best decision you will make. Not much to report this week since mostly I forgot a lot of it but also most of it was just traveling. The Book of Mormon is the word of God. Thomas S. Monson is a prophet of God. Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer and the Son of God. He is also the head of this Church and guides it today through Thomas S. Monson.

Love you all. Keep it real.

Elder Turner

Just trying to fit it - Elder Simple and Elder Sedgwick

Just trying to fit in – Elder Simple and Elder Sedgwick

Heading to Vitoria, Spain

8 July 2015

So, I made it to the mission home. I’m with going to be companions with Elder Sedgwick, who is from Jon and Suzie’s Stake in Laguna Niguel, and friends with the other Turners as well.  Small, small world.  He will be my trainer and we will be serving in the Vitoria area.  Should be really great.  I get to stay in the mission home another night and then I will be catching an 8 hour bus ride to my area tomorrow. So yeeeeeeew.

Yeah – had to eat a pizza with mushrooms on it … made it thru okay … and I taught two lessons last night as well.

I love it here. The mission is awesome. I’m stoked.  ( \m/   that’s a Shaka, btw.)  I will be able to email more on Monday – that’s the new preparation day.  This IS the mission for me … I can’t even explain it.  This also is the best mission in the world … It’s truly a blessing.

Love to the family.

Elder Turner

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Pictures from a travel site of Vitoria – Medieval wall in Vitoria

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Calle Eduardo Dato in Vitoria

 

 

Diez McNuggets por Favor – CCM Week Four

25 June 2015

So I realized I haven’t really talked much about anything other than doctrinal things in these emails … That is simply because that’s all I think about these days.  A little update on what goes on here would be as follows: so I live in this big building called the CCM, basically just a dorm with classrooms and a caf (cafeteria). We spend all our time inside except one hour a day to go play futbol. So that sucks, except I love this place. We are 50 feet from a BEAUTIFUL Temple of The Lord. Outstanding. We have gotten more missionaries every two weeks and lost some as well. Right now we have the most we have ever had since I got here. Right now we have a little over 30 missionaries here, all will be serving in either Spain or Russia. We all speak English except for five of the new Spanish speakers we just got.

I got to go to Real Madrid’s field and stuff. Pretty sick – they’re ballers, but Barca still shreds them. #reppin. Got some sick missionaries here I love them all they’re like a family to me. I hopefully will send pictures of my “adventures” outside of the CCM this week or next week depending on the computer. For now you will just be stuck with my selfies.

Spanish is coming along, I definitely speak better than I thought I would, and I’m stoked that I will be able to speak Spanish with my boys in two years. Shout out to my Hale 6 boys #Nubsquad. I guess my Spanish isn’t that good because when I had the chance to order at McDonald’s I didn’t because I don’t know the word for “mcdouble plain” so I left…. Later I realized that I do know how to say that, or I could have said “diez mcnuggets por favor con papas fritas grande” oh well I didn’t want it anyways. Spending Euros is like nothing to me. Euros don’t even seem like real money. Not that I spend money here but just looking at it makes me think they are fake. Don’t worry Mom and Dad I only buy the necessities … like these huge white chocolate bars that are 59 cents. That’s deals. Idk what else there is to say … I’m getting dropped into some place in northern Spain in the next two weeks, so that’s pretty gnarly. I’m stoked though. When I come back you will all see how sick my stache is. Pretty amped on that.

So this week has been amazing. I was getting really down on myself and worrying about certain things and I was really low. Some things that I learned this week are as follows:  The Lord will take us low so that he can lift us higher. Higher than we were before. Though he takes us low he will never leave us. The Lord cannot forget us, He will not forget us, He doesn’t want to forget us. We are graven on His palms. Think about that sentence. He is the Son of God. He could have a perfected body, yet he chose to leave the scars. We are graven on his palms. He suffered for us all. He died for us all. He knows us all – one by one. He knows us personally. This is why He will never leave us alone. In John 14 he talks on this subject. My favorite is in verse 18. It says, “I will not leave you comfortless, I will come to you.”

What will he give us? Verses 16, 17 “another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever… Even the Spirit of truth… dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.” Then in verse 26 we get more clarification. “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.” First of all, I love that it says remembrance because we all indeed used to know, but we have forgotten. Thankfully we can remember. Then in 27 it says “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” This is basically saying that the peace we receive is on a whole other level! I know it is.

Don’t get this all confused though because the Spirit and God don’t physically talk to us. Yes it can happen, but usually it is through feelings. These feelings are explained in Galatians 5:22-23. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance.” It’s these simple feelings of joy, peace, love. All of these feelings come from God and that is what the Holy Spirit feels like. Not necessarily a voice. I know that the Holy Spirit is real. I have seen its influence so much throughout my life and especially during my time out here. It is truly remarkable, and I know you can al receive these same feelings. I know Jesus Christ is the Son of God and our Savior and Redeemer. He truly suffered for us and paid the price for our sins so we might be able, through him, return and live with God our Father in Heaven.

Elder Turner

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Shout out to all my haters!  My sweet Barcelona jersey!

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We taked to this lady about music. This Elder kills it at piano and even though he is going to Russia, he is fluent in Spanish

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They’re all trying to take my contact!

Halfway Done With the CCM!

18 June 2015

Well, I am doing great.  Spanish is coming.  Weather is pretty perfect, I just wish it was more humid but up Norte it is humid so that’s cool.  I really don’t have much to say about myself. I love the opportunity to be doing this. Halfway done with the CCM! Three more weeks and I will be in Barcelona! STOKED.

My district - my comp, Elder Merrill is on the end. With President and Sister Lovell

My district – my comp, Elder Merrill is on the end. With President and Sister Lovell

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking and learning over this period of almost a month. One thing that really hit me was this:

“I was one day reading the Epistle of James, first chapter and fifth verse, which reads: If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. Never did any passage of scripture come with more power to the heart of man than this did at this time to mine. It seemed to enter with great force into every feeling of my heart. I reflected on it again and again, knowing that if any person needed wisdom from God, I did; for how to act I did not know, and unless I could get more wisdom than I then had, I would never know. At length I came to the conclusion that I must either remain in darkness and confusion, or else I must do as James directs, that is, ask of God. So, in accordance with this, my determination to ask of God, I retired to the woods to make the attempt. It was on the morning of a beautiful, clear day, early in the spring of eighteen hundred and twenty. It was the first time in my life that I had made such an attempt, for amidst all my anxieties I had never as yet made the attempt to pray vocally … exerting all my powers to call upon God… I saw a pillar of light exactly over my head, above the brightness of the sun, which descended gradually until it fell upon me. When the light rested upon me I saw two Personages, whose brightness and glory defy all description, standing above me in the air. One of them spake unto me, calling me by name and said, pointing to the other –‘This is My Beloved Son. Hear Him!”

I don’t know about you but I cannot read that without getting emotional. That is the story of a boy. A boy who would go on to restore the Church of God to this earth.

A boy who would later go on to translate the Book of Mormon. Joseph Smith. My words will not do him justice, but I will try to get something meaningful down. First off, let me tell you what I know. I know that Joseph Smith was called of God. I know that he was a simple farm boy with a true desire to know the truth. I know that because he had real intent, a sincere heart, and faith he received an answer. I know that we all can receive answers if we have those as well. I have received an answer for myself. We will not all receive huge answers or even big answers, most of us will receive an answer as simple as an overwhelming feeling of peace or tranquility. I know that the Book of Mormon was translated by Joseph Smith through the power and authority of God. I know that there is no way a teenage farm boy could make that book up, and if he did there is no way he could get so many people to follow him. Nor would he pay the ultimate price, even death, leaving behind his family, children, and wife to endure pain and affliction alone. The Book of Mormon and this gospel bring me the biggest amount of happiness out of anything else, because of it I get answers to questions, guidance, peace, and comfort through the hardest parts of my life. This gospel gives life meaning, and I promise you I would not give up two years of my life, two years away from my family and a normal life, if I didn’t believe with my whole heart that what I believe in wasn’t the truth. I know it is.

My first zone, 11 of these missionaries have left and we got 13 more missionaries into the CCM.

My first zone, 11 of these missionaries have left and we got 13 more missionaries into the CCM.

Joseph later wrote:

“It caused me serious reflection then, and often has since, how very strange it was that an obscure boy, of a little over fourteen years of age, and one, too, who was doomed to the necessity of obtaining a scanty maintenance by his daily labor, should be thought a character of sufficient importance to attract the attention of the great ones of the most popular sects of the day, and in a manner to create in them a spirit of the most bitter persecution and reviling. But strange or not, so it was, and it was often the cause of great sorrow to myself. So it was with me. I had actually seen a light, and in the midst of that light I saw two Personages, and they did in reality speak to me; and though I was hated and persecuted for saying that I had seen a vision, yet it was true; and while they were persecuting me, reviling me, and speaking all manner of evil against me falsely for so saying, I was led to say in my heart: Why persecute me for telling the truth? I have actually seen a vision; and who am I that I can withstand God, or why does the world think to make me deny what I have actually seen? For I had seen a vision; I knew it, and I knew that God knew it, and I could not deny it, neither dared I do it; at least I knew that by so doing I would offend God, and come under condemnation.”

I don’t even know what to say. Nothing I say could ever hold as much power as that. But I will just leave that with my testimony that I love this gospel and I love all joy it brings to my life. I don’t expect you to take my word for it, you should ask God for yourself.

"Shout out to all my haters #buckets #nubsquad"

“Shout out to all my haters #buckets #nubsquad”

I am grateful for the Priesthood and its power. Stop and think how cool that is. To all the 12+ year old boys – you guys literally have the power of God.  Those of you 16+ – you have the power to work miracles. God trusts you so much and loves you so much that he allows you to bless the sacrament. How sick is that?! Super sick. Make sure you always live your lives and sanctify yourselves so you may be able to utilize that power we have.  A deacon, a priest, and elder, whatever you are we all act under the same power of the same being, God.

Keep it real everybody.

Elder Turner

My two Portuguese speaking elders the night before they transferred. Elder Ferriera and Elder Erhardt. Love them. Serving in the Portugal mission.

My two Portuguese speaking elders the night before they transferred.  Elder Ferriera and Elder Erhardt. Love them. They are serving in the Portugal mission.

"You already know, Elder Simple."  With President and Sister Lovell

“You already know, Elder Simple.” With President and Sister Lovell

Talking to people in the park by the CCM

Talking to people in the park by the CCM