Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Monday, December 26, 2016

Hope Everyone had a great Christmas!

It was good to talk to the family and to celebrate the season with a ton of people I've grown to love. What made this Christmas even better though is that we had the Baptism of James Clay right after church and it was amazing to be a part of that. He is so ready for these next steps in his life and I'm happy for him.

Jorge came to the baptism too and right after the baptism he got interviewed and is ready to be baptized next week! The little girl that was suppose to be baptized this week got super sick so we had to push it back a week so hopefully she will be getting baptized this coming week as well!

I can't think of much else that is going on but I'm loving it still and I can't believe that it's going to be 2017 this week! What the heck??? It's exciting to start a new year and to see how far you have come but also set goals to work on. I hope we all choose to look forward to progress instead of looking back on weakness. Love ya!

Elder Leavitt

A white Christmas! James was baptized!
Christmas eve with some members of our ward.

Service at a shelter
Some of the missionaries I came out with. The sisters will go home next transfer...crazy!

Hot cocoa

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Monday, December 19, 2016

Hey Fans!

I hope everything is going to well back home for everyone. It's actually super cold here it got down to 3 degrees  and it started snowing so everything was shut down for a little while church actually got cancelled because the roads had so much ice and we couldn't bike so we started walking around which was a ton of fun.

James, one of our investigators, was interviewed for baptism and he passed so he is going to be getting baptized on Christmas!  Also, a part member family with 3 kids agreed to be baptized on Christmas. Unbelievable! So we might be having a white Christmas this year *bum* *bum* *tsh* haha sorry bad joke.

Sorry, I'm short on time today but I'm loving it here and hope everyone has a great Christmas! Love ya!

Elder Leavitt
Merry Christmas, from Arkansas!

We got snow

Surprise visit from former Elder Constandse

Wednesday, Decamber 14, 2016

Hey everyone,

It's another one of those transfer weeks again which means a lot of crazy changes going on! I'm actually going to be staying in Bentonville for the Christmas season which I'm super pumped about! Elder Czirr is going to be staying as well and we are excited that we get to spend Christmas and another transfer together here so it should be good!

Some pretty crazy news though: Elder Robert C. Gay of the Seventy came on Monday and had a huge conference with everyone and taught us a whole lot. He gave us a lot of advice and got us all excited to go out and improve our areas. He also told us that the first Presidency just approved a change of our mission boundaries. We are losing the 3 zones that we have in Tulsa to the Oklahoma city mission. This is super sad! I'm glad I got to serve there while I could but that means we are going to have to move a whole bunch of missionaries out of those zones into other areas in the mission. That whole shuffle is happening in 3 weeks so it's pretty much going to be a super short transfer.

We met up with George again this past week and taught him some more on tithing and I seriously love this guy! He agreed with everything we talked about and after we asked him what he thought about everything and he said,"It sounds all good to me and I'm going to go home and pray about it just to make sure it's right." Well, he prayed about it and it was right! He is still on track to get baptized at the end of the month so we are hoping to end the year on a solid note!

I'm so happy that I get to stay here in Bentonville. It's starting to get cold again and I saw it actually snow the other day which was super cool! Everyone here is really involved in the Christmas initiative and I hope you are as well! It's been amazing to be able to reflect the life of the Savior this time of year and to be miracle workers in small ways in the lives of others. Have a great week!

Elder Leavitt

I was asked to be a shepherd in a parade

The whole posterity was together! My dad, brother, and 3 sons!

White elephant exchange at Presidents house. It you look closely you can see Elder Chapman scored a black and white of me modeling my new suit. HA!

Ugly sweaters!

Monday, December 5, 2016

Monday, December 5, 2016

To those that still read this,

Hope all is well wherever you are! Things have been really going strong here in this area the past week so let me tell ya about it! On Wednesday our mission president called us to talk to us about something random and before he got off the phone we asked if we could do anything for him and he said,"Well, some more baptismal dates would be nice." He said it as a joke but we took it to heart. We were able to set 5 more baptismal dates since he said that and it has been amazing!

George: Super cool lesson with him... We met up with him this past week in our WML's home and he had some questions about prophets. We talked about all of it and he said it all made sense. Bro Wise (our ward mission leader) started to talk about baptism with him and he asked the best question ever,"How do I know when I'm ready to be baptized?" We testified to him that he was ready and he can know by looking back on all the experiences that he's had then he asked,"So what should I do now?" We set a date for December 31st and he is super excited about it. He came to church again yesterday and read the lesson before hand so he had some insights. I love this guy!

We also set a date with James one of our other super prepared investigators for December 24th and that's going to be great! He has been talking about how much his life has changed for the better ever since he's started reading the Book of Mormon and keeping the commitments. He's excited to take that next step in his life.

I have grown to have such an appreciation for the scriptures. When you think about it, they really are such an amazing tool that has been given for our benefit. They have been constructed perfectly by our loving Heavenly Father to help us learn what we need to learn when we need to learn it! I know that they are true. I hope you are all enjoying the Christmas initiative from the church. It is truly inspired and will bring true joy to your holiday season. Love ya!

Elder Leavitt


Saturday, December 3, 2016

Monday, November 28, 2016

Hope everyone had a great Turkey Day!

We had a really amazing day. It started off with some serious Turkey bowl games going on. We played one with our ward first off in the morning and then later we got together with all the missionaries in our zone and the missionaries in the zone next to ours and had a zone vs zone football game. It was a ton of fun. We had dinner with the Welch family and they were really good to us so it made the day so much better.

Some quick highlights for the week!

We taught George this past week again! He texted us in the middle of the week and said,"I have a couple questions about baptism. Could we meet up?" So we met and answered all his questions and had a super good talk with him! We invited him to be baptized and he told us that he can't say yes yet but when he knows that it's true, then he definitely will. We are still working with him and we are excited about it.

Yesterday in church, President and Sister Loveland spoke and all the missionaries did a musical number for it and it actually wasn't too bad! We saw some wet eyes in the congregation so we know it was a success. We had a couple of investigators there too and it was a good meeting to have them at.

All is well in Bentonville. The church just came out with the new Christmas initiative so everyone's homework is to go on and look at it. It's the season for service and I know that if we reflect on the life of the Savior this Christmas season, we will witness miracles. #lighttheworld Love ya!

Elder Leavitt

We went on an awesome hike

Turkey Bowl with our crazy tights

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Monday, November 21, 2016

Happy Monday!

We went on exchanges with the Assistants this past Wednesday which is always a good time. I got to go out with Elder King and we had a lot of fun teaching together. We talked with everyone we came across so we had some really positive responses and some awkward moments as well haha. It's all part of the job.

We also had interviews with President and I always love getting a little bit of time with President and Sister Loveland. We talked a lot about the zone and they said that there is a lot of potential that is coming out and that's always something you want to hear.

Really cool experience! So we got a media referral this past week for a couple named Harley and Autumn and here is their story. Harley just got out a prison a couple weeks ago and while he was there, there was a member in that he became really close friends with. He realized that every single night before this guy would go to bed, he would pray and then read this book and he got super curious. When he asked him about it, the member started teaching him about the Book of Mormon and about the church. We got referred to him when he got out and we met him and have had 2 lessons with him already. He is awesome! He has committed to be baptized in December so we will see how things work out. He's all about change and his wife is semi interested but she'll come around sometime. I'm really excited to keep teaching him. Really great guy!

Also, George came to church again this past Sunday. He has been reading a lot and he had tons of questions. He had quite a few on the Word of Wisdom and we answered all of them and he was super satisfied with everything we taught. He told us that when he was 18 he was a body guard for Ludacris but quit. He said he was happy he quit cause if he didn't, he would have never found the church and met us. Super stoked about him. We are meeting up on Friday and that should be good!

A lot of blessings have been poured out on us this week. I know that as we recognize the blessings in our life, the happier we are. If you are not happy, give a prayer of pure thanks and then go on with your day. I promise it will change your outlook. I love y'all and hope all is well!

Elder Leavitt

Shout out to mom for the new suit! 
You don't see that everyday

Bentonville square all lit up

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Monday, November 14, 2016

Hey Fans!

It's been a great couple of days with the new comp Elder Czirr. He's been out one less transfer than me so together we should know what we are doing. We've been hitting it hard the past couple of days trying to get him around to all the investigators we have. I have some really high hopes for this upcoming transfer. We are getting along great so it makes the work that much better!

Yesterday was just a day of miracles for us so lets talk about that. 1st off, a less active that we invited back to church actually came and he was so happy!  He has been going through a lot of hard things in his life lately so he's been taking a step back from things. He came yesterday and he was so happy! His name is Steve and we are going to see him again this week.

In one of our wards, we had a primary program and that was amazing of course. So, a member named Brother Miller brought his friend George to church and George was soaking everything in like a sponge. He's been searching for the truth in his life for a long time and one day the spirit reminded him of Brother Miller. They knew each other in high school and George knew he was a mormon so after not speaking to each other for 5 years, he called him up. He loved everything about church and we are hoping to meet him this week! He said he has a crazy schedule but he will let brother Miller know when we can all have dinner together.

We have been looking for an Investigator named James for awhile now. He was the most solid investigator in this area and right before I got here he got evicted and no one could find him. Well, he showed up to church yesterday and said that he is ready to be retaught everything and be baptized! We are going to be seeing him a couple times this week now.

The Lord is truly blessing us and it's getting us both excited about the work. Only being devote to the will of God and being apart of His work can bring this kind of Joy into your life. I know this to be true. I hope y'all have a blessed week!

Elder Leavitt

We did a service project at a ranch. Enjoying nature!

We went to a cool museum on pday. This is our album cover pic.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Hey y'all it's been awhile!

So its another one of those transfer weeks this week which is why I'm emailing on a Wednesday. We got the calls last night and it looks like I'm going to be staying another one in Bentonville! Sadly, Elder Maddox won't be staying another one. He is actually just a skip across the way to Rodgers so I'll probably still see him like every pday which is great cause we still need to play Spike ball. He is actually going to be serving with Elder Chapman for his last one. He will be killing off my trainer which is crazy! I'm going to be getting Elder Czirr (Zeer) this next one and I've seen him a couple times but don't know much about him so we will see what happens!

We had a pretty great week this week though! A highlight was that President Loveland came out with us last night to visit an investigator that we had an appointment with. We got there and he wasn't home but his mother-in-law answered the door so we taught her instead! She committed to read the Book of Mormon and it was pretty cool. As we were leaving, our investigator pulled up so we taught him there too and it was a super solid lesson on the importance of the Book of Mormon. We are planning on going back and teaching both of them soon.

I'm looking forward to seeing what this next transfer has in store. I have developed such a strong testimony on the fact that God knows who he needs and where he needs them. You don't have to be a missionary to see that the Lord is directing you and leading you to places and people that He needs you to influence. Love you all!

Elder Leavitt
My zone

Huge event we went to and talked to SO many people.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Monday, October 31, 2016

Hey guys! Another successful week in Bentonville.

This past week, we got to take a charter Bus up to Kansas City to go to the Temple there and it seriously was exactly what I needed. It was cool to see a lot of missionaries I haven't seen in a long time there too so there were some great reunions. The temple there is so beautiful and I received a lot of amazing revelation there.  Also, the Liberty Jail site is super close to the temple so we got to go on a tour over there too. We didn't get home until later so it was just a whole day of the temple and hanging out on the bus. It was a great trip!

In other news, this weekend there was a baptism in our district and we got to take one of our investigators there. His name is Micah, he's 15, and lives across the street from our apartment. The missionaries have been talking to him for awhile and he loves church and everything. We took him to the baptism and he was just asking the whole time when he could be baptized. We have a date with him for November 12th if he shows that he is committed and ready. We are hoping that all goes well!

As a side note: I turned 20 this past week and it's kind of a crazy feeling... Hopefully it will feel a little more real later on. Anyway, I hope everyone had a great week and thanks for all the birthday packages and letters and emails. Y'all are #1. Love ya and have a blessed week!

Elder Leavitt

Carving pumpkins at a members home

The ward sang Happy Birthday to Elder Leavitt

Liberty Jail

Kansas City temple trip

Monday, October 31, 2016

Monday, October 24, 2016

Another Weekly Report coming at ya from Elder Leavitt.

A lot of cool stuff happened this week. This past weekend was the Bentonville Stake conference which is always a good time. Elder Larry Echohawk from the quorum of the seventy was there and he spoke at the Adult session Saturday night and the Sunday meeting as well. That man is truly called of God. I received a ton of personal revelation from him. Also, our Stake President, President Keogh (Key-oh), spoke and that guy is going to be a member of the 12 apostles someday. He gave a talk that completely blew me away. Plus, he has this Scottish accent that makes everything he says that much more intense. He is a really powerful speaker and Elder Echohawk was blown away too! Be looking for him in the April General Conference.

Cool Story: Last Sunday after we gave our talks on missionary work, we had a member come up to us and tell us that while we were talking, she thought of her inactive cousin, Lauren.  She lives in our area. She hasn't been active in the church since she was really young and she is currently living with her fiance who isn't a member and they are getting married next October. We went over there and met them last week and set up a return appointment for later in the week. We went over there prepared to teach the Restoration but spent the whole time talking about the Book of Mormon and the spirit was so strong. We invited Chad, the fiance, to read the Book of Mormon and he said,"I would always see this book in the home of all of Lauren's family and I've always felt impressed to read it. I've seen Lauren with it a couple times but I never got up the courage to ask if I could read it, so thank you. I want to know if this is true." Really amazing. After the lesson was over, Lauren thanked us cause she said that they have been going through a lot of hard times lately and it's been awhile since she has heard all that and she needed it a lot. We are going back to see them sometime soon. This is a story that shows that member missionaries are the way to do the Lord's work and it truly does work.

In other news, We are going to be going to the temple this Wednesday as a mission again!!! Super stoked about that. We will be going to the Kansas City Temple so that's going to be really cool and a ton of fun. I love y'all and it's my sisters Wedding this Friday! Everyone tell Mrs. Erin Kirk that I love her this weekend!

Elder Leavitt

Serving at the Salvation Army

Ward party

Elder Maddox and I

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Monday, October 17, 2016

Hello friends and Fam!

First off, we have an investigator that is 95 years old. Her name is Naohma and she is also deaf. She is the nicest lady ever! She doesn't like cooking so every single day she goes to the Golden Corral buffet down the street from her for dinner and breakfast on the weekends. We were over there on exchanges one day this week and after we got done with our lesson she asked us if we wanted to go to Golden Corral with her for breakfast in the morning cause she gets really lonely going by herself. We couldn't say no to Naohma! So we went to breakfast with her the other day and I'll have to show y'all a picture of her cause she is just the sweetest old lady.

We had some really great lessons this past week as well! We were able to find a couple of people that we hope to keep visiting. We met up with Ted again and got to talk a little bit but he had to reschedule for this upcoming week so we hope that goes well! Last night, we went by a recent convert that a member said he hadn't seen in awhile. He has been a convert for a little over a year and a half now and he was going to be going to the temple soon for his Endowments. We stopped by to check on him and he invited us in and just started pouring out all of his concerns and feeling. He's been going through a lot of hard things lately and he still just loves the church but he is struggling with some personal life stuff right now. We were able to talk with him and bear testimony that the Sacrament is the time for us to sort out our lives with Christ. It is what he needs in his life right now. It really brought the spirit and we were all feeling it there. It was incredible.

We actually got to give talks in Sacrament meeting yesterday on member missionary work so we invited all the investigators we have and one named Joel that has never been to church before came! He really liked it so we are going back over this week to talk with him. Everyone needs to go back and read Dallin H. Oaks talk on member missionary work cause honestly, sometimes we don't fully see the impact we can have and how crucial we are to the Lord's work. I hope all is well where ever you may be. Have a great week!

Elder Leavitt

Naohma is #1
In a members decked out van

Bentley Jr.

Us and the neighborhood kids in our apartment complex

Monday, October 10, 2016

Monday, October 10, 2016

Things have been going really well in Bentonville! We have been teaching like crazy so that's been a ton of fun. I've met all of the investigators we have and this week we were able to find a couple more people to teach. We are in a car share area so one week we have a car and the next we are on bikes. Going up all these hills has been a grind but I'm hoping it will just get me into shape! It has helped us teach a couple of new people too so that's good.

We got a referral from a less active lady a couple days ago for a guy named Ted. He has been searching for a religion. We pulled up on our bikes at his apartment and noticed an elderly lady getting groceries out of her car. We went over to help her and afterwards she randomly said,"You boys need to come over and teach me how to do that family history you guys are all about." We got in contact with the lady in charge of that and we all are going to the FHC this Wednesday to talk about it! All went well with Ted too. We taught him the Restoration and he is really interested so we are going back this week.

You guys have to look up this place called The Bentonville Square. We go there a couple of nights a week and just talk to people cause there are always so many there. This past week there was a huge fair thing Friday night so we just talked to everyone and passed out so much church material. It's been a ton of fun.

Elder Maddox and I are really working on talking with everyone because something Elder Oaks said in his past conference talk. It was something along the lines of, We don't have the right to judge who is ready to except the Gospel and who isn't. We have taken this to heart and have been working on it but I know that as members, we should all be ready to share the Gospel when the Spirit directs us. We honestly don't have the right to judge how ready they are. I love y'all and hope you all have a blessed week!

Elder Leavitt
 An office couple (the O'Briens) in our ward left for home this past week. They are the best!

The crew biking home after a night at The square.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Monday, October 3, 2016

I made it over to Bentonville this week and have been loving it the past couple of days! I've got my new comp Elder Maddox and it's been so much fun. He's been telling me what things were like back in the real world and I don't even recognize half of it anymore haha. He told me finna is the new word to say so I've been trying it out lately. HA! Also, I don't know if you know what Spike Ball is but Elder Maddox is #1 in the nation at it. He's been teaching me how to play so we are going to be doing that for p-day today. I'm actually serving in two wards again! It's going to be the Bentonville 2nd ward and the Central Park wards. I've already met members from both areas and it's really bumping here. It's going to be great!

Conference this past week was so perfect! A lot of powerful talks this time that really gave me a lot of new perspective. Some highlight talks for me were Elder Andersen's talk on all of us being puzzle pieces in the Restored Gospel and Elder Ballards talk about remembering why we are a part of the church in the first place. Very inspirational conference!

I said all my hard goodbyes to the people of Tulsa and have just been spending all of my time lately saying hey to all of our new investigators and ward leaders. I don't think I have any new updates for ya. It's so cool serving in the heart of the mission and I haven't been here long but I know that there is a reason I'm here right now. I love you all and hope that as we continue to study the words of our leaders that we will continue to learn what is expected of us and what we can do now.

Elder Leavitt

Also, the new address is:

1100 NW Lincoln Ct apt. 4 Bentonville,AR 72712

Do a good deed, send a missionary some letters :)
Dinner with Elder Maddox at a members home

Our traditional Conference breakfast :)

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Hey everyone I've got some transfer news for ya that I know you are dying to know! So we got our transfer calls yesterday which is why we have pday on a Wednesday this week. Some pretty crazy things are happening. So, the sad thing is that I'm going to be leaving Tulsa. That is a real bummer. I've loved it here so much and I'm going to miss a ton of people I've become super close with. I'm also not going to get to finish training Elder Olsen. He is getting a great new companion to do that for me. I'm actually getting transferred to the one and only Bentonville! I'm really excited to serve there cause I heard it's an awesome area to be in. I'm also going to be finishing up training a different missionary that came out with Elder Olsen. His name is Elder Maddox and I've heard he's a stud so it should be good. I was asked to serve as the new Zone leader there too. I'm going to be serving as the only zone leader there so I'm hoping all goes well with this new assignment!

Last week, we had a really great week and yesterday I got to start saying my goodbyes. I've already said goodbye to both Larry and David and his family. David actually said that they are planning on being sealed in the San Diego temple in a year from now and they invited me so I have that to look forward to! There have been a couple other people I've already said bye to and it's been pretty sad but I know I'll see them all again eventually.

We saw Susan a couple times this past week. We went over to her house last week and helped her lay some sod down which was a lot of fun. She also came to church again this Sunday and got to stay for all 3 hours and just loved it, but the greatest of all these meetings was the one we had last night with her. We answered a ton of questions that she had and she was very happy with the answers she received and she agreed with all of them. Just before we left, I broke the news to her that I was going to be leaving and she was pretty tore up about it. I got to bear my testimony to her one last time and I felt the spirit there in her home so powerfully. It was incredible! I'm going to miss her a lot but she is progressing well and she'll be fine.

I'm super excited about this upcoming transfer. Every transfer, I get a renewal of my testimony that God knows where we need to be and who we need to be with. I've seen this time and time again while serving my mission and I now I'll continue to see that. God knows you perfectly. He also knows those who need you perfectly. I love you all and hope all is well. Hold off on all the letters and packages I know you want to send to me until next Monday and I'll have the new address for y'all.

Elder Leavitt

We set up a traveling visitors center at a park. It was very successful!

Saying goodbye to David and his family. They are actually moving so we helped them out.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Monday, September, 21, 2016

Hey Everyone!

Pretty incredible week this week. As you know, I talk about Kamal (our Syrian convert) a lot. Well, this past week were able to go to the OKC temple with him for the first time! It was so cool to go and see him do baptisms for the first time. He told us afterwards that he hasn't felt so much peace before and he kept saying that it's still with him. We got to go with a couple of less active members that we have been working with also. It was cool to see them all there too.

We had David's baptism this past Saturday and it was seriously indescribable! He was so ready for this next step in his life. Yesterday, he was confirmed a member and the spirit was so strong. He is going to do amazing things in his life. He is going to church a lot with his wife who is becoming active again. They are preparing to be sealed together a year from now so that's going to be an amazing day also.

It's cool to see that even though we had a baptism this past week, there is still a whole lot more work to do in this area. The YSA missionaries found a couple that wants to be taught so we went over there last night and taught the Restoration and the spirit there was very powerful. They really are looking for truth in their lives so we are going to help them know how to find it. We are way excited for them now!

It was quite the eventful week and I'm super thankful for that. The Lord is progressing His work here in Tulsa. We have recognized the obvious blessings, but we need to be thankful for the little ones that we have to look for also. Hope y'all have a blessed week!

Elder Leavitt
At the Oklahoma City Temple with Kamal.
Davids baptism day.