Elder Brad Johnson is serving a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the ALASKA ANCHORAGE MISSION. This blog will include many of the e-mails Elder Johnson sends to his family each week. It will extend from October 6, 2010 to October, 2012.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Elder Johnson's March 26, e-mail and Shoe Shine Boy Video

This was at a Zone Conference were all the missionaries
were given a shoe shine kit and they each shined their
companion's shoes.  Awwww.

Hi Mom,

Thank you for the e-mail update. When you get a chance can you send me a picture of Lauren and this new guy? He's a return missionary--is that correct?

JA's looking beastly. He looks like Jason Stathan.

Oh, we had two baptisms this weekend. And a wedding before. It was a great time. The Root family. Elder Wallace and I started teaching them and did so for a month. And then Elder Duvall and Elder Wallace took over for the past two weeks.

How was the trip to Juneau?

It was good. We did our training and then messed around for a couple of days. Saw the Medenhall Glacier--a particularly special one for some reason. Forgot my camera for the entire trip, but we'll see if I can bum some pictures off someone else. Elder Flynn didn't bring his camera either. 

Tell me who Sister Schindler is who took the video?

She is a senior couple missionary. She and Elder Schindler are the CES Missionaries in Juneau. That's like her thing to send videos each time we have a zone conference in Juneau. The only problem about the last two times I was there was I couldn't remember your e-mail. This time I had the capacity to log-on online and get it.

Did you eat the big burrito?  (I hope not).  Or the big burger (I hope not)

No way. Elder Flynn made the attempt. Key word--attempt. He failed miserably.

Is the ice breaking up yet?

It appears that's the case. In Juneau there was none. It was like spring. But up here in Anchorage there's still a lot of snow to melt--a lot. It's record-breaking snowfall. But it has been melting the past couple of days, but everyone says it will probably snow some more still. We'll see. 

Tell me something funny or something you enjoyed doing this week.  Also, please actually write it yourself.  Haha!

Something funny. Hmm. The Juneau zone leaders were really pumped about an activity that they had planned during their training. It involved going into the thick forest behind the church--thick like a fairy forest thick--moss, green, brush, stumps of fallen trees swallowed by undergrowth--and going through this Lehi's-dream-like progression until you advance to the end. They used me and Elder Flynn for the first part; Sister Beesley acted as the large and spacious building, and President Beesley was like Lehi at the end. 

Well, it was all good and well initially for the Beesley's. They may have found the forest walk a little difficult early-on--mainly due to the fact that we were all still in suits and dress shoes. But Sister Beesley's a big outdoors person, so she was cool; President Beesley didn't mind too much. We did our thing. And then the end came, and it was time to head back to the church.

The only problem was the fastest was back was down a steep hill with rocks and slick ice that had yet to thaw. I made it down with great difficulty as did the other Elders. But when President Beesley made the attempt, he slipped, landed on his rear and slid all the way down. Sister Beesley, when it occurred, said: Just keep slidding, Jon! Then she made the attempt. Hers was much more graceful. She hung-on to the trunk of a tree, took a step down to a slick rock (she was wearing semi-high-heel boots), did a little twirl once her balance shifted and began to fall; President Beesley, having just risen from his fall, caught her with his left arm and shoulder and then carried her to flat ground. Then we brushed off the dirt and twigs from President Beesley's nice trench coat and went back to eat lunch.

Story Two:

Word on the street was that if you drank 2 liters of water with 3 tablespoons of salt mixed it would act as a natural colon cleanser. Elder Flynn and I tried it. I got 3/4s the way finished before regurgitating all I drank.


Elder Johnson     

Elder Johnson's March 19, 2012 e-mail

E-mail update:  What Elder Johnson left out in his previous e-mail is that he was called as the newest Assistant to the President and serves in this capacity with E. Flynn.  What a great honor and priviledge.  He will be working closely with President Beesley and will be a large part of the leadership in Alaska for the next few months.  :)

Hi Mom,
Thanks for the e-mail. 
This week was pretty fun. You can get a more detailed description of the goings-on with Elder Flynn's e-mail to his family--but--here's what happened in brief.
Sunday: We were up till like 2 AM with President and Sister Beesley planning for the next week.
Monday: At the mission home early--prepped for the missionaries arriving from the MTC--they arrived in the early afternoon--we had a little orientation deal we took them through--we stayed with them all till about 1030 that night. 
Tuesday: Came and had studies with the new missionaries at the mission home--then we got them ready to go to our transfer meeting--had our transfer meeting--then took the departing missionaries (the ones going home, including Elder Witt) to the Temple--went through a session with them--took them back to the mission home (I got to drive a big huge van, seats like 10 or 12)--had dinner with them--had testimony meeting with them at the mission home--took them to the airport--waited with them for 2 hours until it was time for them to go through security--watched them until we couldn't see them anymore (President Beesley and Sister Beesley like to do that)--went home and slept around 2 AM.
Wednesday: Acted as our P-Day--we ran a few errands--then we got on a plane and headed to Fairbanks--arrived in Fairbanks and planned for zone conference.
Thursday: Had a leadership training meeting--I did some training--then went on exchanges with a new missionary and his companion--arrived home later on and prepared for zone conference--Elder Flynn and I stayed up till about 3 AM making preparations for our part.
Friday: Had zone conference--got to see elder tonga--did training--yada yada yada.
Saturday: Went on another exchange with missionaries--flew out of Fairbanks in the evening.
Sunday: Went to church--worked in our area for a few hours--then had two zone conference planning meetings
 Elder Johnson

Monday, March 12, 2012

Elder Johnson's March 12, 2012 E-Mail

Any changes in location this transfer?
Yes, I'm serving in Inlet View with Elder Flynn. 
Is it starting to get warmer or will you have another snow storm?
No, it's pretty cold here today. Bout 9 degrees. Yes we will have another snow storm. So much snow here. 
What did you do for p-day today?                            
Today? We're going to pick up the new missionaries coming in at the airport. Take them through the new missionary introduction to the mission routine.  

Who is your actual companion?
Elder Witt was my former actual companion. But because Elder Duval and Elder Wallace were in our area as well, I also served with them a lot. (They got sent midway through the transfer because we were very busy, and they didn't have companions.) But since Saturday, Elder Flynn is my new companion and will be for at least the next 3 to 4 and a half months.  ...He might be leaving out an important detail about this companionship, be we will wait until we get official word on what his new calling might be (what a sneaker)...
There was a solar storm this week.  Did you see any Northern Lights?
Yes, saw them twice. They were very prominent in the city. It was pretty neat. 

Did you TRY to take a picture of anything this week?  Well try!!!!!  Take pictures of the office, your room, your companion -   Anything!  You will go this whole transfer and not take any pictures and think, “I don’t have any pictures of that great time I had in Anchorage.”  And you will be sad. 
No, but I will. 
Elder Johnson
Note from Mom:  Hmmm.  Elder Johnson seems to be holding back some important details in this e-mail, but I know how he truly feels about his new companion.  Lets hear what his new companion has to say about him ...
This is from Elder Flynn's letter to his mom (which she forwards to me every week) ...
Hello my friends,
I will begin by allowing you all the opportunity to know that my dreams have come true. It is transfer week this week and we finished putting transfers together during the week. I have a new companion, and nothing against Elder Yang; who i love dearly, but my new companion will be the one and only Elder Bradley Allen Johnson! For those of you who may not understand this excitement, if you take Bryce and try to clone him, this is your boy. We have been around each other our whole missions and now we are rollin together. Elder Yang will be training a new missionary in the Hmong branch, so he will be close by. I am very excited about serving with Elder Johnson, we have big plans.
Now thats how you write a letter to your mother ... good job, E. Flynn!

Elder Johnson's March 6 E-mail

1.         How are you?

2.         Is your excel project done?

3.         Elder Lawson said you and Elder Flynn presented something to the other missionaries?  Was that your project?
                      - It is a book for District Leaders and Zone Leaders. Generally when someone is called to such positions, they are left with no info or organization. But, with our new books put together they have it all in front of them to allow them to work with all the diligence and love that should be a part of that call.  

4.         We may be misunderstanding what is going on with your eating out, please explain if we are misunderstanding.  (Actually, you are still cheaper in Alaska than you would be at home, but Dad says he wants you to more closely follow the mission rules.) 
                        - We have to eat out because we are super busy. We have 2  companionships in our area so we are running both of those and trying to keep it all going. If you haven't for some reason realized yet, this is mostly Elder Flynn typing with answers from Elder Johnson. :) And as a side note...Elder Johnson is a remarkably obedient and hard working missionary that is really trying to run a lot of stuff in a very busy area. He blows me away with how good of a missionary he is. In fact he blows everyone away. He is awesome! p.s. much love!

5.         Are you eating out for lunch because you are working too hard to go back to your apartment?
                     - refer to #4

6.         Your life must be a whirl wind right now (assuming since you didn’t write me last week), why are you so busy in this area?
                   - Because i am a boss

7.         How many investigators came to church on Sunday?
                     - 4

8.         Have you done anything creative in your zone like you did in your district?
                     - We had a bit of a friendly competition to get us all to our goal of 200 lessons this week as a zone. We set up everyone's goals and through the week the district leaders called and pushed everyone through...turns out we got 236/200 lessons!

9.       Why do you get to be in the office and see Elder Flynn so much?
                     - Nothing but God himself could separate a love like this.

10.       Why do you get to see the president so much?

                     - He has me do a lot of projects to get things going smoothly. He likes to use everyone's talents.

11.       What vehicle are you driving now?

                     - a muddy-white chevy colorado

12.       Are you using your exercise book?  How is that going?

                     - Yes...i am yoked

13.       Are you getting any pictures?

                     - No not currently...well elder yang just took one, does that count?

14.       Lauren got aletter from Elder Wallace.  Is he your current companion?

                     -  He is a part of the 2 companionships we have here in Inlet View, so we are together a lot.


Elder Johnson