Monday, August 24, 2015

I Am Not Going to Lie.

Hello everyone, not going to lie I am not going to miss having to send out an email every week. Transfers are here and Elder Gibb is staying (big surprise) and will carry on the work with out me. We had a great last week though. We met with Rob like three times and he is just awesome. He is eager to learn everything and is teaching me probably just as much. When you talk with him you grow to appreciate growing up in the gospel, and you realize how precious time is. I've thought about it a lot and how we spend our time defines our priorities. We may say that we love our family or that we love the gospel, but unless we are spending our time with family and reading the scriptures than our actions say otherwise. Rob deep down has always known what is right, but has made a lot of poor choices. He is trying to change all of that around now, but he has to deal with all the consequences and change his whole lifestyle and that is tough. He is great though and he inspires me to be better. We also were able to meet with a few other investigators and Less-Actives, and two of them came to church ! We should also have a great turnout at our FHE tonight. We are doing a potato derby, so pinewood derby potato style. We invited everyone and it should be a great last day here in Simi. Then I am staying the night at the mission home tomorrow, then I fly home on Wednesday. So it will be a little crazy for the next couple of weeks, but I am excited to see you tomorrow at the airport. I am sure you know, but I think I am supposed to land at like 2:22pm give or take. I will definitely miss being a missionary, but I am excited to be fully invested in what I am doing right now, and not try to live in the past or look to some imaginary future. Things change, life moves on and I am excited to see what lies ahead. Thank you all and I will see you soon or at least be in contact with you.
Elder Hamson

Monday, August 17, 2015

Right in the Middle for another Week.

Things are going great out here in Simi Valley. We were able to go on a couple exchanges, and a lot of great missionary work this week. We planned it out to take someone from the ward out working with us every night of the week. On Tuesday we had a great lesson with our recent convert Jessica. It was about keeping the Sabbath day holy, and it was great to have a member there with us. We also had a bunch of other lessons throughout the week with Potentially new investigators. Everyone keeps asking me how long I have left and I tell them that I am right in the middle of my mission for another week. One of those potentially new investigators I am really excited about. One of the members who is going to school at BYU in the fall brought her friend to church and she is interested in meeting with us. Her name is Julia  and I guess she had come to church as a teenager with her friend, but her parents wouldn't let her get baptized. Now, get this, she is moving out into her own apartment, so she is going to be a solid investigator. Also Rob came to church this Sunday! He has been really sick lately so we have only had two lessons. Also he is on probation until he is 42, so we are mostly preparing him to have an interview with President Felix and go from there. He, as of right now, is very committed and knows this is what he needs to do it will just be hard for him to change his whole lifestyle or you could say a change of heart. We taught him the Plan of Salvation this week, and we are going to try to teach him two lessons this next week as well as keep in contact on the other days. There are a few other people in the works and there is always plenty of work to do, but those are the two most exciting. This week as also been a week of reflection and it's been cool to think back at who I was and see where I am now. I am determined to keep going and to never look back. So ya, things are going fantastic and I have another great week ahead of me. Also we are singing at church on Sunday so we'll see how that goes. Thank you all and I will see you soon.

Breaking up is hard to do.

Greetings everyone, things are going great here in Simi Valley. This week we had MLC and that was great as always, it's weird to think that I won't be at the next one since I've been to the last 12 in a row. That was on Tuesday and that took up a large portion of our day, but that night we talked to these two kids in there garage and they were lifting weights preparing to go to worlds for power lifting or something like that(I'm not really into the whole competitive weight lifting scene). But they were really cool, and also ripped. We talked to them about the Book of Mormon and the restoration and they didn't commit to a return appointment due to a busy work schedule, but we got their numbers. We have a lot of interactions like that where we have a great first contact and give them a Book of Mormon, but the follow-up is always the hard part. I guess that's how it is with a lot of things in life sometimes we need a good follow-up before we follow through with something. But anyways I won't rant about how important follow-up is just do it. But ya this week was a good week, we are in a transition in our area. We were able to find 4 new investigators this week and they seem to have good potential, but on the other hand we dropped Tiny and Daniel, because they stopped progressing. Elder Gibb and I were talking about it and he was saying it feels like we are breaking up with them or something. I don't really know what that is like, so I guess I have a little taste for the future (very distant future). So ya, we had a great week and I am having a lot of fun with Elder Gibb, he probably ranks among my top 3 favorite companions. I am grateful to be right in the middle of my mission for another 2 weeks. Thank you
Elder Hamson

Sunday, August 9, 2015


Greetings everyone, things are great as always out here in California. We were able to teach Rob this week and that has been awesome. He is a very unique investigator I can tell you that much, he has a really rough background and finally after years of suffering as he describes it he wants to change. He feels the spirit and he keeps telling us that he he knows for sure that this is the right thing and he is eager to learn and be involved to say the least. The lessons are fun, because he can be all over the place, he likes to talk, his language is colorful and he has some crazy stories. I decided we need to have short powerful lessons where we get his attention for 20 minutes and really help him understand it. We are planning on meeting with him 3 times a week or so. Also he brought his friend Gilbert along and we are teaching him as well, so we like Rob. We were also able to meet with other of the less- actives in the ward and in general people were home this week so that was great. This next week we are focusing on finding new investigators in the zone and we are going to try and find 49 new investigators this week as a zone. They are going to report to us everytime they find a new investigator and we are going to update everyone on our progress towards our goal everyday this week. It will take some extra work on our part, but we are only doing it for a week and we are calling it the WEEK 4 ROCKET BOOSTER!!! We have hyped it up a lot and everyone is excited about it, so I am confident that we can reach our goal.
Thank you
Elder Hamson

Monday, July 27, 2015

Smiling Too Much

Hello everyone! This week has been another great week here in Simi Valley. The work is moving forward in our area, Daniel is doing well as far as studying the scriptures but he couldn't bring himself to talk to his parents this week. He is so close, and the sooner we overcome the issue with his parents the better. We also met with Tiny and Anthony this week. We might end up dropping them or turning them over to the ward, because although they both love meeting with us they rarely keep commitments, and they were set on getting baptized in a year. We are trying to improve our finding activities, and most of our new investigators come from other missionaries in the zone. So I think in our area asking for referrals from everyone includes asking the other missionaries. Speaking of which the sisters have been teaching Rob and they reluctantly referred him to us and we are going to give him a blessing tonight. I think that will go well and he will be a solid investigator. On a different note we got to help serve dinner to some of the special Olympians who are staying here in Simi. It was quite the experience. We got there early and we were looking around for whoever was in charge and we ran in to the Peruvians. They flipped when the saw me and I got a taste of what it's like to be famous. They all had cameras and they all wanted pictures, they sucked me in and there was no escaping. They didn't speak any english, and I don't know enough spanish to communicate very well. Needless to say my mouth hurt afterward from smiling too much. Anyways things are going great.
Elder Hamson

Over the Wall

Hello everyone things are going great here in Simi Valley. My companion Elder Gibb is great and he can sing too. We have a lot of fun singing together, and you could even say that our companionship is in harmony. Also our senses of humor are very similar, so I think we might be having just a little too much fun. Along with that he is a great missionary, so this is going to be a fantastic transfer.
We are working with Daniel and helping him to reach his date on August 15. The moment of truth will be when we go with him to talk to his parents about it. That should happen this week, so we are praying really hard that his parents don't freak out. I am confident the Lord will provide a way. Then we also found a new investigator this week named Nick, we met him on the street after an appointment and started talking to him. He has hit a low spot in his life and is looking for direction and help. We set up an appointment for the next morning (Friday). It was a good lesson, but after 30 minutes he got bored or something, because he got all fidgety and stood up and said "well thank you for coming". It was a little bazar, because he wants us to come back, and committed to start reading the Book of Mormon. Now we know that we need to have short frequent visits with him. He couldn't make it to church on Sunday, so we will probably follow-up tonight on how his reading is coming. We also had a fun experience when we went to try by a potential. I got out of the car and there was this guy sitting in his back yard behind a 6 foot brick wall. When he say me he jumped and started whispering among his friends and they all looked, so naturally I waved and he yelled out "are you really that Tall?" With a big smile I assured him that its really me and that I'm not on stilts, but he wouldn't believe me. He came over and climbed up on a table and looked over the wall and after a couple seconds of evaluation he concluded that I indeed was really that tall. We then talked with him about his day and what he is doing in life, and we had a great conversation that turned into a lesson. He was just visiting, but we will send the missionaries over where he lives and I will probably never find out what happens, but either way it was a fun experience and I think we were able to help him feel the spirit.
 We had a leadership training meeting, and that was great. This transfer we decided to work on using our time wisely as a zone. I am really excited to set meaningful goals, carefully plan, and be accountable for the area. I am focusing on taking things one day at a time, and one week at a time because if I look too far ahead it's distracting and overwhelming. When I focus on making the most out of Today, right now, everything seems to be better.
Thank you
Elder Hamson

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Staying Put

Good news, I am staying in Simi valley for my last transfer. Although president is giving me a new companion. His name is Elder Gibb, and he was in my zone up in SLO so I know him a little bit. He is very musically talented, so we might have to work that into our teaching somehow. Either way I am super glad I am staying and glad that my companion is awesome. I can already tell that this will be a great transfer. This week went well we continued to meet with Tyler, and he is doing awesome. He just is soaking it all up and it really helps that he lives and works with his brother, who he looks up to a lot. Unfortunately he is moving back to Utah this week. He wanted to stay the whole summer, but some things changed. The good thing is that he has a lot of mormon friends in Utah and he still wants to meet with them out there. Plus if he gets baptized I might be back in Utah. Also Daniel is doing well, and preparing for his baptism on August 15. We still have to work things out between him and his parents, but we are working out a time to meet with them in the next week or so. There are a couple of other investigators we are working with like Tiny and Anthony, and mostly we are trying to help them to come to church and activities, as well as really find out if the Book of Mormon is true. On a different note we had zone meeting this week, where we bring everything we learned from President Felix at MLC to the zone, and President Felix wanted us to do a powerpoint and show a video. Which means he gave us permission to borrow someone's laptop (yay technology!) So after working through some minor issues (I miss being able to google things) we got the video to work and it all went well. I also gave a talk in church on Sunday and I think if I were to go talk to my self from 2 years ago. my old self would be shocked at who I have become. I am glad everything went well with Timothy's surgery and I will keep praying for all of you, since I can't physically be there to help.
Elder Hamson

Monday, June 29, 2015

Work in Progress

Hello everyone, things are going well here in Simi Valley. We had two of our investigators come to church on Sunday. Daniel has been coming consistently, but Tiny came for the first time and he had a great experience. We are trying to help them both commit to a baptismal date, but Daniel is worried about his parents and we are still trying to find out what Tiny's deeper concern is. We are trying to work hard and build up the area, but it's still a work in progress. Things are good though, we have a good ward and there are definitely people to teach here in Simi Valley we just have to find them. We also had some people come to our FHE last week and they talked with us the whole time about why we are wrong and we need to stick with the bible. It was Mildly frustrating, but the church is still true and the Book of Mormon is still the word of God. Thank you all for your support 
Elder Hamson

Monday, June 22, 2015

Sprint to the Finish (out of order from June 8th.)

Hello everyone, life is great here in Simi Valley YSA ward. I really like Elder Wickern and we are going to do some work together. We had another couple lessons with Jessy this week and she is doing awesome. She just believes everything and asks some really great questions. The best part is that her parents are totally cool with her joining the church which seems to be the biggest problem in YSA wards. On the other had Daniel has been getting cold feet about his baptism at the end of the month. He is worried that his mom is going to freak out when he tells her he wants to be baptized. We told him it's going to be worse if she finds out after the fact, and we are trying to have a lesson where she is there or just have him bear testimony that it is true to her. It is going to be a bigger speed bump that we thought. We will pray hard, and bring some of the other members of the ward who had a similar situation, and hopefully it all works out. Going back to Jessy she came to church and brought her friend and her sister with her! They stayed for all three hours and had a great time, so we are going to try to start teaching her friend, and even introduce the Elders in the family ward to Jessy's whole family. Also we picked "Tiny" (he's 6'5" and probably 300lbs) back up he was a former investigator, and he is done living the party life. He wants to actually find out if it's true this time, so things are going well with him. He didn't come to church, but that's only a minor setback. And we are busy talking to a bunch of less actives trying to have them introduce us to their non-member friends. Oh and we also talked to an Atheist named Dan, and that was interesting. He is like a philosopher or something because he used a lot of big words and made everything in the world seem so complicated. We are used to teaching the simple doctrines of the gospel, and he is asking question about the nature of God and how can we know for sure that he is there. He was really nice, and we had fun talking but it was a little above my reading level. Turns out you can't really prove that God is there with philosophical concepts you just have to keep it simple and have child like faith. So ya life is great, and I am determined to sprint to the finish!
Elder Hamson

Life is Good

Hello everyone, life is great here in Simi valley. I went on a couple exchanges this week including one with Elder Lallatin (picture included). He is a new missionary and we get to do a little presentation about the stripling warriors and it's great. I absolutely love that story, and it always motivates me to work harder and trust in the Lord, even though I don't ever really know what I'm doing. On Tuesday we were walking out of a house and as we were walking across the street a lady like 3 houses down had her phone out, and although she may have thought we couldn't tell she was taking pictures it was pretty obvious that she totally was. So we waved and started walking over to talk to her, and she ran inside. I was thinking "oh great we scared her off" but 10 seconds later she came back out with her whole family and another friend that was over to show them how tall I was. So we talked for a little while and we ended up teaching them about the restoration, and gave the parents a copy of the Book of Mormon. It was really cool, and it will be a solid referral for Simi 4th ward (my old ward). Also Elder C. Scott Grow of the quorom of the Seventy came and talked with our half of the missionon Thursday. He also did a special meeting before hand with MLC, so that was fantastic and I really felt the spirit. Being a zone leader definitely has it's perks :) 
So ya life is good,
Elder Hamson

A June Week

Hello everyone, this week was a great week. We went to MLC on Tuesday and got to learn about how to be a consecrated missionary, and it is always good to see the other missionaries. There are a lot of new young leaders in the mission, and it makes me feel like the old man at MLC. That was great then on Wednesday we our investigator Jessy didn't show up to our appointment and we haven't been able to contact her since. That was a bummer, but hopefully she just went on vacation or something and forgot to tell us because she was solid. Daniel is doing well and came to church and one of the activities. He still iffy about baptism, but we aren't giving up on him. Until then we have been trying to meet some of the member's friends who are members, and that hasn't turned into anything yet but soon. We actually gave the family Elders  great referral thought this week. We were at dinner with Josh in our ward and his family, and his little sister's friend (she's about 16) stopped by and they convinced her to stay for dinner. She isn't a member and she had a lot of questions about what we do as missionaries. So naturally for our dinner lesson we didn't want to just throw everything on her, but I shared 2 Ne 33:10 and asked her if she is familiar with the story behind the Book of Mormon. She was like no, so we explained a little bit and that peaked her curiosity and started asking questions, and we taught it all anyway! So ya that was great and we got to help the other Elders out. But ya life is going good, and we get to meet with Elder C. Scott Grow this week, first with MLC then with half the mission. So I am super excited. Thanks for all you do and Happy Fathers day on Sunday Dad!

Monday, June 1, 2015

The Twin Towers of Gospel Preaching

Greetings from Simi Valley! Transfers are in and I am staying! Unfortunately they are breaking up the twin towers of gospel preaching. Elder Hunt is going to Santa Maria, which should be a fun place. My new companion is Elder Wickern who is currently in the zone as one the the district leaders (one of my favorites on that note) So he isn't getting transferred very far and I already know him pretty well, so I am pretty excited about this next transfer. This last week was a great week though. We went to the temple on Wednesday, and it was great to get to go since it's been almost a year since I have gone. We had a good time, and it was weird to think that Jen was probably somewhere not too far. We also found a new investigator named Jessy, and she is great. She soaked it all up like a sponge and was excited to come to some activities. She is out of town this weekend, but said she would start coming this next week. She also committed to a baptismal date in July. Daniel is doing great, he came to an institute activity and loved it. He is a little shy sometimes, so we are glad he had a fun time. He came to church and is really progressing towards his baptism on June 17th. So things are going well and there are a few of the members who are working with there friends, and hopefully we start meeting with some of them. I really like the members here, and the ward is growing with return missionaries, and kids waiting to go to school in the fall. It's weird to think that I will be one of those students in the fall. Until then I'm going to find all those YSA kids out there who need the gospel. Thank you all
Elder Hamson

Monday, May 25, 2015

Alan Leads Them Astray!

This week was exciting, we started off with a multi-zone hike. President Felix took us all on a hike and had us blind folded and our companions had to guide us down the trail. It was fun and we would switch off who was blind folded and whatnot. While this was going on Sister Felilx went around trying to lead us off the path. I may or may not have listened and started walking into the bushes. I guess I know who not to listen too! Then we did one where President had me be the one to try and lead one of the missionaries astray. I had fun and had Elder Gray going the wrong way for a while before he figured out he probably shouldn't listen to me. It was a fun hike, and I got to see some good missionary friends. Daniel is doing well and he is set to be baptized on June 27. He has been taught for almost two years and he has made some big steps forward in the last couple of weeks. Saturday night we all knelt down and he prayed to know if this is what God wants him to do, and he felt a burden was lifted and he just felt good. He is still a little nervous about the whole thing, but is moving forward with faith. His dad is cool with it, but his mom is a devout catholic, and he isn't sure how she would react. Parents seem to be the most common problem in the YSA ward. There is a lot of other good things going on, and it always seems there are things coming up with either the people we are working with or the missionaries in the Zone. One of the bad ones was our investigator Samantha dropped us over text, because she is too busy. On a better note 2 of the investigators in the Spanish branch wanted to get baptized kind of last minute, and we were scrambling to get one of them interviewed by someone who speaks Spanish. Elder Hunt did the other interview and he pretended like he had problems with question 4, turns out it was all planned out by the Spanish Elders and Elder Hunt was grumpy about that. It was good that the baptism went well. Thank you all for the support, transfers are next week so I'll let you know if anything crazy happens. Hopefully I just keep living the dream here in Simi.
Elder Hamson

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

The Old and the Young

Well this week happened quickly, and was another fun and exciting week. On Tuesday I went on an exchange and had fun teaching some old people. It's a lot different from all the YSA kids, but the gospel is still true no matter how old you are. On Friday we found a new investigator named Samantha she is fantastic. Her dad is investigating in a family ward so Elders Referred her to us. She isn't sure what she believes, but claims Lutheran. We had a great lesson on the restoration and she was fascinated and soaked it in. She accepted a Book of Mormon and is super excited to read it. That lesson stood in stark contrast with another lesson we had with some bashers the next day. We taught a lot of the same things, but it wasn't nearly as powerful. Which means whether or not we feel the spirit has a lot to do with how much we are willing to listen. Everything is going well here in Simi valley. Keep being awesome.
Elder Hamson

Monday, May 11, 2015

Mother's Day Baptism

Happy Mothers day yesterday, it was nice to talk to you all. Maybe I'll fill in some of the gaps that we didn't talk about.
This week was a great week to remember. We had MLC on Tuesday which is always a very spiritual meeting and I always learn a lot. Also it's really nice to not have to drive 3 hours home afterward. We are only 45mins away here in Simi. A lot of the mission leaders are going home in the next 4 months, so it will be interesting to see how that all plays out. We are still working with Rachel, and that has been going well. She came to church again yesterday and we have had so great lessons. She has some unique concerns, and in our last lesson we ready the story of the tree of life and drew it as we read. She is more artistic so we thought that was a good idea to draw it out, also mine kind of looks a 3rd grader drew it. The most exciting thing though was Jessica's baptism. It went well we got the program all figured out, we made sure that she and Elder Hunt remembered a towel and a change of clothes. We got there early to fill the font, and grab a jumpsuit that Jessica would be able to fit into, but they didn't have any (oh no!). We couldn't leave the building while the font was filling, so we called some other missionaries to come help us out. They got here and I stayed to get everything set up and Elder Hunt went with Elder Wickern. Turns out that they went and Elder Wickern remembered that one of the members keeps the baptismal suits so they called a bunch of people and finally got a hold of some one who didn't have them, but they knew who did. They couldn't get a hold of them so they went and "broke" into their aunts house and found a baptismal suit for Jessica. After that is was smooth sailing. President Felix came, and a lot of other missionaries that I know and love were there as well as Colby Jackson (my former companion) came down from Utah. The spirit was there and it is a day I won't forget anytime soon. Jessica started meeting with the missionaries a year ago, and at that point she was an atheist. It's incredible to hear her story and how far she has come, and I am simply blessed to be here for her baptism. Everything is going well, I am working hard, having fun and the days just seem to fly by. Thank you all for being awesome. I love you Mom!
Elder Hamson

Monday, May 4, 2015

That's My Life and I Absolutely Love It

May the fourth be with you!
Everything is going well out here in Simi Valley. We have a lot of good things going on, including Jessica's baptism this weekend! She had her interview and we announced it in church so it's official. We have planned a lot of it out, and hopefully we can remember everything and plan ahead. Although I have learned from experience to be ready for some unexpected things to happen. Everyone is excited and it should go well. Also one of our investigators Daniel is doing well. He is hispanic and loves his catholic family. Which makes things hard, because we believe in families, as well as the restored church and sometimes you have to make a choice between the two. We met with him twice this week and it was four different missionaries. We went on three exchanges, but anyways Daniel is awesome we taught him about the parable of the pearl of great price and how he has found it, so it's going to cost him everything he has. That's the thing about the gospel it's a lifestyle, not just a one time or once a week thing. Also I got to meet Dichele one of our other investigators she came to church and she has investigated for a while, but is hesitant to be baptized. She is coming to Jessica's baptism which I think should help. Also a less active we met a week ago came to church with us despite some hard feelings, which was great! I think we can really help her (Rachel) so hopefully we keep meeting in the future. The 3 exchanges was a lilttle crazy, but this week we don't have any, but we do have MLC, Zone meeting, the Baptism and Mothers day. Not to mention all the regular missionary work, but that's my life and I absolutely love it. I am enjoying being with Elder Hunt and I am excited to get to talk with some of you on Sunday
Elder Hamson

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Back in the Valley

Well I made it back here to Simi valley, and it still has a lot of the same people, which is awesome. It has been awesome running into a bunch of people I knew from before, and The YSA ward is a great ward so I am excited. I met one of our investigators Jessica on Thursday, we had fasted with her the day before about if she needed to get baptized or not. In the lesson she told us that she got an answer to her prayer and felt the spirit so strong. Also she is reading through the Book of Mormon and after she prayed she started reading, and ran into Alma 32:16 where it talks about "blessed is he that. . . is baptized without stubbornness of heart" She has been investigating for a very long time, and I feel very lucky/blessed to come in right when she gets her answer.
On a different note I am having a lot of fun being companions with Elder Hunt. He is 6' 6" but he hasn't measured in a while, so maybe he's taller. But as of right now we are a combined height of 13' 9" and let me know if you hear otherwise, but my theory is that we are the tallest companionship in the world. We play basketball in the mornings with other Elders in the complex and they are actually pretty good, so it has been a lot of fun having some competition. I am still a little sad about leaving SLO, but I couldn't have asked for a better companion or area. I am living the dream being a missionary out here Simi. Thank you all, and keep being awesome.
Elder Hamson

Elder Hunt and Elder Hamson

Monday, April 20, 2015

On the Move

Good morning everyone. this week has been an exciting week full of surprises. I am going back to SImi Valley! I'll be in the YSA ward this time and I am going to live in the same complex as my old apartment. It will be fun to live with 4 Elders again, and have 4 more close by. Rumor has it that we all go play basketball at the park in the mornings! Also my new companion is Elder Hunt, and I'm pretty sure he's the second tallest missionary in the mission. So president Felix has got the two tallest together, I am stoked out of my mind! It is always really hard to leave an area when you have been there for so long. Just imagine me pantomiming ripping my heart out of my chest and smashing it with my fist a couple times then putting it back, that's what it feels like. On a more happy note David Archuleta visited our mission yesterday. President Felix was wise and didn't tell us that he was coming, because he would have had half the Elders not show up. There were a lot of different rumors on which general authority was coming to visit, so nobody believed me when I told them it was David Archuleta. I didn't actually know, but it feels really good when you guess correctly, The meeting was really good, and he is still learning how to speak publicly, but he made up for it with his songs. It was a really spiritual meeting and at the end he took pictures with all the zones. He wanted to stand next to me, and that boy is tiny. He's like the size of one of my legs. He's cool though, and now I can say that I have officially met him and talked for a minute. Everything is going well, and to I have to go pack. . .ugh.
Elder Hamson

Yes, that is David Archuleta standing to Alan's right.

Alan and his companion with Bishop Nelson.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Fun and Exhausting

Good morning everyone, another week has gone by and I still can't believe it's April. Just so you know next week is transfers, and according to my calculations I have approximately a 10% chance of staying here in SLO. I have my guesses on who my next companion will be, and the good news is that all the possibilities are exciting. Just don't send anything that will take a week to get here, because I might leave before then.
Life is great here in SLO, we have been working hard talking to a lot of people trying to find new investigators. and we have a bunch of people who are in the works, but we'll see how many turn out. Madison is still doing fine and has tons of friends in the ward. It will just take some time I think for her to start to recognize the spirit, but she is making steps in the right direction. We also set up a table in front of the institute and we had fun trying to get people to stop and talk to us. The things we said ranged from me saying: "have you ever had any questions about us mormons?" and Elder Toa saying: "can you guess what size of shoe he wears. it was fun and we had some interesting conversations.

We went on 2 exchanges this last week and those are always fun and exhausting. We don't have any this week, but there is always something to do, we never seem to get a break. That's the good part about it though, the reason my mission is the best two years of my life is because is stretches me so much. It's not always fun, but I am learning and growing and preparing myself for the rest of my life. I have thought a lot about how to help missionaries who struggle. And I decided that we need to teach the doctrine of Christ. It's kind of broad but this has been weighing on my mind, and I think that if any of us want to change for the better we need to better understand and apply the Doctrine of Christ or in other words we need to better understand and apply the Atonement.
You are all the best thank you
Elder Hamson

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Happy Easter!

This week has been a great week. It started off on Tuesday we had interviews with President Felix and those were good. He is a great man and I really look up to him. On Wednesday I went on Exchanges with Elder Comin, and we stayed in San Luis Obispo. It was a great day with a lot of good work, We met a guy on the street named Cory, he was smoking and we talked for a little bit about easter and our unique message about Jesus Christ. He has never really learned about any religion, so he said we could come back. Elder Toa and I went back later in the week and had a good lesson about Faith and coming to know that God is there and that Jesus is the Christ. He is just wandering through life, and seems willing to learn, so we were excited to find him. If there is anything that I like about cigarettes, it gets people outside, so we can talk to them. We also taught all of our recent converts, and they are all doing great. On Friday Harmony was in SLO and she fed us lunch. (I love it when they do that!) She was a Less-Active that we helped come back to church when I first got here and she is now the Relief Society president in a ward in San Diego, and is also engaged. (GO Harmony!) We also had a good week with dinners 3 of them had invited a non-member friend to dinner that we got to teach, so that was great! Then on Saturday and Sunday we watched General Conference! It was a firehose of spiritual knowledge that I am still trying to swallow. One talk that really stood out to me was Wilford W. Anderson's talk about dancing. Don't get me wrong I'm not the biggest fan of dancing, but I thought it was a great way to illustrate the importance of having the spirit in our lives and not going through the motions. So my question is how do we turn up the "music" in our home? if you want another question, Who told us to read from the Book of Mormon everyday, everyday, everyday? why?
Thank you all for the support, I hope everyone had a happy Easter!
Elder Hamson

Tuesday, March 24, 2015


Well this last week was fun. Monday night we took a road trip to go stay the night with two of my past companions (the assistants) in Ventura. It was pretty much like a sleepover, I absolutely love those two. Then we had breakfast at the mission home, and it took me a while to figure out why they were serving us a bunch of green food and why everyone else had a green tie on. I guess it was st. Patrick's day or something... who knew. Then after breakfast we had MLC which was a big long wonderful revelatory experience. The church is starting #BecauseHelives soon for easter, and we got a sneak peek. It is a great video, the church is so cool. Yep, it was all good , and on Thursday we met with the zone and basically told them about everything we talked about at MLC. Along with that we met with the stake and public affairs on Wednesday, that was fine. As for the missionary work in my area, Madison said she is feeling a lot better, but she won't be back in town for another week, so we just have to be patient I guess. We did teach Isabella on Wednesday and we had an awesome lesson about repentance and how it is and should be a joyful process. Also I guess she will be visiting Provo this week, so that's cool. We have found some interesting people along the way, and I'll tell you about Jayden and Megan. They are students, and Jayden is outgoing kind of a loud personality, and Megan sometimes pipes in. We found them a month ago, but stopped by again this week. We tried to teach them the Plan of Salvation, but Jayden is all over the place and asks a bunch of random questions. Anyways Megan is a lot more interested in learning and has mormon family, so we are trying to figure out how we can separate them and teach just Megan. That is pretty much the gist of last week, and this week is gearing up to be a good one. We have 3 exchanges and a special MLC with Elder Nielson of the first quorom of the seventy. I love you all and have a fantastic week.

Monday, March 16, 2015

A Crazy Week

Dear Family and Friends,
This week has been interesting for sure. It started off crazy with transfers, and after a lot of driving and swapping bikes and luggage we managed to get everyone and their luggage back to their areas. Although one companionship left their phone in Ventura, and they were white washing into an area they had never been to. We gave them detailed directions and prayed really hard that they didn't get lost. Their district leader would check on them every once in a while, and they managed without a phone until we got it to them a couple days ago. We were able to teach Madison twice this week and she is still great. Her biggest concern is if God is really there, I guess she hasn't really gotten an answer about anything. This was the focus of our lessons and she definitely wants to know and is willing to try which is great. The bad news is she got really sick and went home to Santa Ana and we won't see her for another couple weeks. We do plan on meeting with Beth though this week, so we will see how she is doing. We have a bunch of meetings this week and we have been doing a lot to prepare for those. We have MLC on Tuesday, Stake report and public affairs meeting on Wednesday, then zone meeting on Thursday Then after that we take a break until next month. They don't usually fall on the the same week, but transfers messed with everything. But the saddest part about this last week is we found out that Brother Lo is moving to Sacramento. He is our Ward mission leader and he has been phenomenal. I have gotten really close with him over the last few months, and I could totally see us hanging out after the mission. So it feels like I'm losing a good friend and the ward won't be the same, but I'll get over it and baptize everybody anyway. Thank you all for being awesome and I added a picture of us and Peter Lo

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

It's All About That Bass

Great news, Elder Toa and I are staying for another transfer! I really like working with him and we both have some musical talent so that makes it fun. Our ward chorister found out that I can play a few songs on the organ, and the person who normally plays the piano was out of town this weekend. So I had fun playing the Organ in sacrament meeting, I can only play like 7 hymns, but that's about all you need:) Oh, and when she asked us what I was going to do for the intermediate hymn Elder Toa volunteered us to sing a special musical number. I was a little grumpy at first, but it actually sounded pretty good. Needless to say Sunday was a little nerve racking, but it all turned out. Looking back it was fun
We had a good week with missionary work as well, we were able to contact a couple of people on the ward list who were willing to meet with us and come to church they just needed an invitation. All of our recent converts are doing great and we are still meeting consistently with them. Madison is doing awesome. She still doesn't feel like she has an answer on whether or not it's all true yet, but that hasn't stopped her from being involved and keeping commitments. This last week there was only one day where she didn't have contact with anyone from the church. She came to FHE on monday, we had a lesson on Wednesday, she read from the Book of Mormon with a member on Thursday, we had another lesson on Friday, Saturday we had dinner with her and two other members and we read a chapter together and she was at church on Sunday. Our other two investigators couldn't meet with us this week. Unfortunately we aren't as high on their priority list, but they still have a lot of future potential.
Lately I have been thinking a lot about teaching who we are and not what we know. It has been good to make sure I am applying all of the things that I am teaching about in my own life. It doesn't always translate directly over, but basically I am always inviting people to learn and improve so I am really striving to do the same. I hope we can all more fully live what we know to be true.
Elder Hamson

Monday, March 2, 2015

Meet Eat Greet

Dear everyone, this week has been a great week. Also next week is transfers, I want to stay here forever, but we will see what happens. This area is doing awesome, I absolutely love it. We taught Madison this week and she is so awesome. She has a lot of really good questions and really wants to learn and is committed to know for sure. Her only set back that I can see in the future is her family, because she isn't sure what they will think. She has made friends with Isabella though who is a recent convert who's family was apposed to her getting baptized. It has been really good to have her there and Madison came to church on Sunday. We have two appointments scheduled with her next week and we plan on setting her with a date, so that is super exciting! Then Beth didn't make it to sacrament meeting, but she came to the meal afterward so it was great to see her there. I think she enjoys more of the social aspect of the church at this point, but the spiritual understanding will come. We meet with her this week and our focus is going to be to help her gain that spiritual understanding. Then we had dinner with Joselyn, who the member invited, and it went great. She wants to start learning more, but is hard to pin down. We should meet this week and all three of our investigators have a ton of potential, so we are both really excited. I also went on a couple of Exchanges in the midst of all this, and this next week is setting itself up to be a great one. Also Sunday was pretty cool, after church we had MEG(Meet Eat Greet) so we all ate together. After that Chris Burkard did a presentation about some of his photo adventures, and a preview of his TED talk he is going to give on March 17. I guess he is kind of famous or something, so now I can say I met him and gave him a High five, so that's cool. Hopefully that sums up the week good enough. Thank you all for your support.
Elder Hamson

Monday, February 23, 2015

"Oh, its On!"

Good afternoon everyone, this week was an awesome week for sure. It started off about the same as usual, with us teaching all of the recent converts in the ward. On Thursday we were walking by a basketball court, and there were some people gearing up to play and they saw us and talked with us for a while. They asked all of the usual questions then the challenged us to come play. Since it is no longer against the rules (as of like 1 month ago) I said "oh, it's on" I had fun playing with them for a while in my church clothes, Elder Toa just watched. I could only play for a little bit, because we had an appointment to get to, but we got there number so we can play some more basketball and share the gospel sometime. Then on Saturday I went up to Paso and exchanged with Elder Trujillo. I met some really interesting people including a member named Eli Johnson. He knows mom I guess, and he gave me some pointers about my shooting form, then we took his son out working with us. It was a good exchange, and while I was gone they taught our investigator Beth and gave her a church tour. It went really well, but she couldn't make it to church. She is a solid investigator though and we are meeting with her next this week. Then at church Madison just showed up. She is from Santa Ana, and her boyfriend is a member down there. She came in by herself, and our ward did a great job of making her feel right at home. We have an appointment this week, and she is going to be a great investigator for sure. And the third person we are meeting to night, her name is Joshlyn. She has a bunch of friends in the ward and one of the return missionaries set up a dinner for us to meet her and start teaching! So these people seem to just be falling into our lap and I am just super excited about it. Great things are going on in SLO and I don't think that is going to change anytime soon. Transfers are in two weeks, but I could stay here for the rest of my mission. Thank you all, and I may or may not see you in 6.
Elder Hamson

Monday, February 16, 2015

The Best Teachers are Great Learners

Why hello everyone, I hope you had a great valentines weekend. Everything is going well up here in SLO. We went on a couple exchanges this week and I went away for both of them, and that is always a lot of fun. On Tuesday I went up to Paso 2 and worked with Elder Goad for the day. We went and did service for the food bank in the morning and that was fine until they had us throw out rotten veggies. We had to open all of the individual spinach containers and dump out the nasty goop inside and throw away the plastic. It is moments like these where I am grateful for my lack of smelling ability. Then we stopped by someone in the ward they didn't know later that day, and he was really glad to see us. He had thought that everyone had forgotten about him(which is very sad), but it felt good to know we were being led to where we needed to be. They are going to start teaching him and there are non-members living with him, so I think that is going to be a great opportunity for them in the future. Then in SLO we met with all of our Recent Converts and they are doing just fine which is great, because there are way too many recent converts that fall away. Our investigator Beth apparently plays with a symphony and was out of town, so we didn't end up meeting with her but she has been reading from the Book of Mormon and we have a sweet lesson planned for this week, so tune in next week to see what happens.:) The other exchange on Saturday went well. We got in contact with a Part Member family, and taught the dad for a little bit. He wants to believe, but he just doesn't know. We assured him that he can know, and shared some scriptures from Alma 32 about how those people were in a similar situation. Sometimes looking back I am amazed at how much I have learned and how far I have come, and I think a huge part of my success is being humble and teachable. The best teachers are great learners and the best leaders are great followers. I hope we can all follow the example of our Savior Jesus Christ, and strive to learn and live by his teachings. Then turn and help others to do the same thing. I love you all and I hope everything goes well with all of your adventures.
Elder Hamson

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Another Great Week

This week was another great week up here in SLO. On Tuesday we drove down to Ventura for MLC, and that was great. It's a big long meeting, but always a spiritual experience and a lot of my friends in the mission are at MLC. Elder Toa and I are having a lot of fun together and we have some really great appointments this week. On Thursday we had an appointment with Tu'uta who hasn't been to church in a while, but he is Polynesian so he get along well with my companion. We went to his house and his roomate and friend were there with him. We all sat down and had a great lesson about the restoration and what sets us a part. We gave his friend a Book of Mormon and invited her to read from it and we also invited Tu'uta to start reading his again. Overall it was a great lesson, and I think some good things will start happening with them. Also on Friday we went on exchanges with the assistants, and this time was a little different because Elder Atkin just joined us so we were in a tri-pan(three of us). Anyways it was really cool to work with Elder Atkin again since it has been a year since we were companions(for 3 transfers). We had a great day and one lesson was with Beth. We met Beth on the street and she has a bunch of mormon friends on missions so she agreed to meet with us. We met at the institute and had to other sisters from the ward there. We started off how we usually do talking about how God love us and is our Father in Heaven and then we continued with prophets in the bible, and talked about Jesus Christ and His life. She stopped us and was like "I know all of this stuff, tell about the new stuff, you know John Smith and the book of the mormons". Needless to say she wanted to get to the good part, so we taught her all about it and gave her a copy to read and pray about for herself. Also the members that were there made friends with Beth, so I can see good things in the future with her. Then on Saturday we had another exchange and it rained all day which turned out to be a lot of fun. It wasn't raining too hard so we just did our thing. We walked by a girl who was sitting on her porch and we just stood there in the rain and taught her. That was fun to teach in the rain, and overall just a solid week. I have got plenty more of those to come. I love you all and keep sharing the good news of the restored gospel.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Gumball Alley

This last week has been a little crazy with all of the change, but that isn't really a new concept. You never really figure out what you are doing either you just get used to not knowing what you are doing. On Monday Elder Kanenwisher and I went downtown and added some gum to gumball alley. It is really gross, but we took a picture and had lunch at this place that makes a mean pulled pork sandwich. Then this transfer meeting we tried a new method of carpooling that worked well. We had everyone drive their individual cars to the church building In SLO and then carpooled there and put whatever bikes and luggage didn't fit in the cars in the truck. It seemed to work well, but is still just a crazy day for us. Transfer meeting was great and one of my companions (Mike Moser) is home now which is weird. He posted a video of us on facebook and my ward up in SLO found it which was mildly embarrassing, but mostly funny. Elder Toa is great he is from Utah, but both his parents are from Samoa. He is like the opposite personality of me, but we get along just fine. We make up for each others weaknesses, and I think this will be a great learning opportunity for me and I think we work really well together. This week was a solid week, and we have been setting ourselves up for a fantastic week next week. We have been trying to get in contact with a lot of the Less-Actives in the ward for a while, and of course the week Elder Toa gets here we find Tu'uta. He is Tongan and on the football team, so they talked for a while about Polynesian stuff and we have a lesson set up for next week. We also have been focusing on taking the members out working with us, and we were able to teach Mayra on Friday with Colin. It was really helpful to have Colin with us to bear his testimony and invite her to church. That was our first real lesson with her and we will see her next week. Other than that it has been a pretty normal week with a lot of missionary things going on. This is going to be a great transfer and I can't wait to see what lies ahead. I have been studying a lot about my own personal conversion, and how I can help others. Elder Toa and I are really focusing on Luke 22:31-32 and how we can apply it. One thing we decided to do is to use the Book of Mormon as the focus of our studies, and teaching specifically trying to answer questions of the soul. As well we are going to try and bear testimony of the Book of Mormon at every opportunity we can. So I invite you all to think of a question you need an answer to and find it in the Book of Mormon, because it is there and all we have to do is find it. I don't mean to be "preachy" I just know it's true. Thank you all for the support and I hope all goes well where ever you are.
Elder Hamson

Monday, January 26, 2015

Get Elder Hamson!

Well the call came in and I will be staying here in San Luis Obispo! The twist is that Elder Kanenwisher is getting transferred to Camarillo YSA ward. I didn't see that one coming and it's kind of a bummer, because we were having a great time together. My new companion will be Elder Toa. He is Samoan, and I have heard a lot of good things about him. I haven't really served around him, but I know him and this transfer is going to be sweet!
Anyways this last week was a solid week. We had a zone activity and we played dodge ball, so that was a lot of fun. I was never really that great at dodging, so you can imagine how that went down. "Get Elder Hamson"! We also taught some pretty great lessons. Hana a recent convert brought her friend to our lesson, and it was a solid lesson. Her friend, Taylor, has a quiet personality so were aren't really sure how interested she is. She did, however say she would love to come to the activities with the ward. We also had stake conference and that was fantastic. Elder Robert Packer of the seventy came and he is the coolest. He met with just the YSA ward and answered questions, The spirit was really strong, and I have a stronger testimony of the Book of Mormon and how it can answer any of our questions. He even asked Helen, our most recent convert, to bear her testimony in front of the whole stake. Overall it was just a solid week. Thank you all, and keep being awesome.
Elder Hamson

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Happiest Town in America

Hello everyone, This week has been another great week over here in the happiest town in America. I think I heard a rumor once that that's what Opra said so it must be true. Next week is transfers, so we find out on Saturday if we are staying or leaving.Elder Kanenwisher is a great companion, and I would like to stay, but you never know. Also that means we get to figure out all of the logistics of getting everyone to and from transfer meeting with all their luggage and bikes, yay! As far as this last week goes everything is went great. We are working with 6 recent converts in the ward, 2 of which are only semi-active. Jesse, Bella, Helen and Hana are doing great and we are helping them talk to their friends about the gospel and invite them to one of our lessons. Hana invited her friend Taylor to meet with us, so we have an appointment with them both this week! There a couple other friends of people in the ward that are on our radar and I think will soon start investigating. Now that the ward is up and running again, they should be coming to activities and we can introduce ourselves there. I like to think of ourselves like a dormant volcano just about to erupt with a bunch of new investigators. As for the 2 others, Mason is doing a lot better and he came to all three hours of church on Sunday despite his severe social anxiety. That was great, and we also got in contact with Megan, who was baptized in July. She transferred to Cal Poly in September, but hasn't gotten involved over here at all. We had a lesson with her this last week and she is great, she has a testimony, but she is a busy person. We talked about building her testimony and she enjoys meeting with missionaries so I think once she comes to a couple activities, and gets to know the ward that will help. But I think the stronger her testimony gets the more time she will make for church. In general though the work is moving forward and I am excited to be a part of it. Thank you all for being awesome, and good luck out there Erin!

Monday, January 12, 2015

Another Busy Week

This week has been another busy week up here in San Luis Obispo.
On Tuesday we had a confernce with the mission leadership (MLC) in Oxnard and that was great. I absolutely loved it and I am still trying to absorb everything we learned and talked about.
This area is doing great, we have a lot of recent converts in the ward and we are investing a lot of our time working with them. All of them are on fire and we have invited them to invite their friends to our lessons. Hana told us this morning that her friend Taylor would love to! So we will keep investing into the ward and the success will come.
I went on an exchange with Elder Bryson the day after MLC and that was great. I got the full experience going on an exchange with the assistants. I drove up with Elder Atkin and Elder Bryson, Exchanged with Elder Bryson Drove to Santa Barbara with Elder Atkin and back up to Santa Maria with Elder Lee. It was a lot of craziness, but I learned a lot talking with all three of them.
We also went on an exchange with Elder Snyder and Elder Johns this week. I went with Elder Johns in his area (Atascadero). We had a great exchange and I was overall very impressed with Elder Johns. He is a little shy/timid, but he is humble and teachable which is a great attribute to have. He is willing to be obedient and to just go out and try it. There were a couple of times during the day were we walked up to someone and introduced ourselves then I just looked at Elder Johns and smiled like he had something great to say. He stepped up everytime and did a great job. He set a goal to be more assertive in his companionship which I thought was awesome. I also learned from him to keep it simple and powerful. That's the advice he gave me after we did an EDPEP (role play) , because I probably talked his ear off. Now I have a goal to teach simply, but powerfully .
Elder Kanenwisher is great, and I really appreciate being his companion. He is a very hard worker, and he has some great stories that he relates back to the gospel. We are really trying to keep this area flourishing and to be good examples, and he plays a big role in that.
In my studies I have thought a lot about one of the focuses in our mission "we desire the salvation of souls" and D&C 4:4  "he that thrusteth in his sickle with his might. . .bringeth salvation to his soul" I have a renewed commitment to serve with all of my heart, might, mind and strength and I am loving every minute of it!
Elder Hamson

Alan with Elder Johns.

Monday, January 5, 2015

The Town Is Alive Again

Happy New Year! This year is going to be a great one. 2014 was definitely one to remember since I was a missionary the whole time. This last week has been a solid week, but I am glad it's over. School is starting again today and the town is alive again. Elder Kanenwisher got to meet the ward for the first time yesterday and we have appointments now with all of the Recent converts in the ward(Helen, Bella, Jesse, Hana). I am excited to see them again and see where they are at. We also have 2 exchanges this week as well as MLC and a zone meeting, so this next week is going to be a fun one. Some Highlights of this last week though. We met with Mason again and he has been doing great reading from the scriptures and praying everyday, you can see the difference it makes in someones life when they do such a simple thing. He came to church for a little bit, but due to social anxiety left. It was a huge step for him to even come, so we are glad he is moving in the right direction. We did mostly finding this week and we met Jessica. We were trying by a Less-Actives house and they had moved, but Jessica had moved in and we talked for a little bit. We taught some simple truths about the restoration and testified about how it would bless her life. She then broke down into tears and told us that she had been going through a lot in her life right now and has been praying for help. She readily accepted a copy of the Book of Mormon and we have an appointment with her this Wednesday. It was a very neat experience, and I am glad we were in the right place at the right time. It is very humbling to be a missionary and I am so grateful for every minute of it so far.
As for today Elder Kanenwisher drive down to Ventura and stay the night with the assistants, because we have MLC early tomorrow morning. I am super excited, because I get to catch up with Elder Atkin, who I was companions with for 3 transfers, and Elder Lee who I know from home.
Thank you all for your support, you are the best.
Elder Hamson