Monday, November 25, 2013

Week 18 - A Good Week

So I have to start off with the best news this week. Our investigator B. agreed to be baptized as soon as he gets his answer that it is true!! I'm pretty excited for that, especially because he seems to already have gotten an answer that it is true pretty much! We taught him on Tuesday this past week and before we started teaching he said that his life has changed ever since he met us. He didn't know what it was but something has just made him feel happier all the time! He then told us that he didn't really think he would become Mormon though. But then during the lesson the spirit was so strong and I invited him to be baptized and he agreed!! It was so cool to see him change from "don't think I'll become Mormon" to "yeah I'll be baptized." I'm really hoping and praying that he gets an answer and know's that it's true. He was going to come to church with us yesterday but then his ex-wife planned a lunch for their kids, and he was watching after them for the weekend so he had to go to that instead. He seemed really sad when he called us and let us know he couldn't make it, but told us that for sure he is coming next week! It's so great to see someone progressing in the way that he is! The Lord has definitely prepared him to listen to us. Then on this past Thursday we had zone conference which are always my favorite! I love listening to President Brown. He spoke a lot on obedience and how important it is for us to make obedience a quest instead of a limitation. When we are striving and seeking to be obedient in life, we are actually happier!! Whenever we see being obedient as a limitation, we are never truly happy. It's kinda the whole grass is greener on the other side type thing. If we are always saying, "I'll be happy after I do this" or for example "I'll be happy when I go home from my mission," then we aren't happy right now. If we aren't happy now then what's the point? So I've learned that I need to find the way to be the happiest I can now, and not think that I'll be happier down the road. The best way to be happy now is by following the Lord, because our Heavenly Father loves us so much and wants us to be happy! So why wouldn't I do what He says right now? He wants me to be happy!! Haha, I love this quote from a talk called the Fourth Missionary: "following God is the only intelligent thing to do." It's so true, we truly don't understand what we need, so we should exercise faith in the Lord and understand He knows what we need better than we do. Then we should move forward with faith relying on the lord.

Dakota I really hope that you won't have to get surgery! Either way I'll be praying that you'll heal up for next season. Since you have no idea what to do with your time maybe you can go crazy on studying Preach My Gospel! ahahaha. It will definitely help you on your mission if you study it a lot before you go. Maybe just take 15 minutes a day looking it over so you get familiar with it. I love studying PMG so much, it's a great tool to use as missionaries and hopefully by the end of my mission I'll be able to quote every word of it!

Dad the TT bike is sweet looking! I remember you telling me about the Pat Tillman design and I like it a lot! It turned out really nice! None of my companions family is in to cycling at all, and surprisingly enough he hasn't cooked me any Italian dishes! I've taught him to cook more than he's taught me! Haha maybe I'll make him teach me some Italian secret or something with cooking pasta. 

Malia that sounds like so much fun to do a movie night outside!!! What movie did you watch? That hot chocolate sounds really good to, we have hot chocolate a lot cause it gets so cold here!! Love you!

Mama I'll get a picture of S. and send it to you guys soon! I'm also gonna start buying all the christmas presents I'm gonna send home and a usb drive with all the pictures on it for you guys!

Ethan that's so crazy that you can stick a whole wing in your mouth and pull it out clean!!! I wish I could do that man! Haha just make sure you don't choke or something. Keep working hard with school, and read your scriptures!

Peyton I hope everything is going well with school and stuff! Keep being good and don't get into too much trouble. I'm excited for you to try the medical stuff at Campo! That sounds like it would be a good experience for you! It's kinda exciting to be thinking about your future already, so have fun with it!

Love you all so much!

Elder Benesch

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Got to "talk" with Avery

Lucky for me I woke up in the middle of the night and checked to see if we had received an email from Avery yet.  We hadn't - so I stayed up and checked every 10 minutes (don't judge me I'm a typical mom who misses her missionary!)  I was rewarded by being able to "talk" with Avery for about 30 minutes.  Got to love technology!

  • Celeste:   I can't sleep are you still there?
  • Avery:  yeah! Sorry about that, I didn't see the email till just now and I wasn't expecting to get one back!
  • Celeste:  Well I wasn't sure either. I can't believe Seyi is going to move! The Lord is watching out for him.  How's it working with your comp.?  Are you celebrating Thanksgiving?
  • Avery:   Yeah Heavenly Father is always looking after his children. We just have to put our trust in him and it all works out!! My comp is awesome! We are working hard and I can definitely see the blessings. He's struggling with getting used to the amount of success we have in Mullingar though. I had to give him a blessing the other night cause it got so bad. But he'll be fine! They don't celebrate Thanksgiving, so I'm not either! and if you send the packages to the mission home and I stay anywhere in Ireland I will not get the packages for a while. Elder Goldie had been in Ireland or the north his whole mission and just barely moved to Scotland and found out the mission home had a package for him from about 6 months ago.
  • Celeste:  Good to know. Did you get a letter from us? We had planned on doing your Christmas package tomorrow night since we finally get to have a family night on a Mon. I'm so glad you started in Mullingar and hopefully it will be your only time in a non-productive area. Dad is getting all excited about Ironman stuff again. So he might start training.  I hope he does an official one he would love it.
  • Avery:  I got the letter! So I have all the Christmas present ideas, I will be sending home the package with all that stuff before the end of this moves. That all sounds good! I'm definitely glad I started in Mullingar too, I absolutely love it here! Like I said I don't want to leave this moves but probably will. That sounds like dad! It would be really cool though if he did an Ironman!
  • Celeste: Did you hear about the typhoon? Carly's area was fine but several missions had to be evacuated & it took several days before they were able to get everyone out. Dad works with someone who has family there & his cousin lives in a town/village that was wiped out. The only way he knew they were safe was because he saw a picture on the news of his cousin & his family on their balcony watching the flood, dead bodies & trash go by!
  • Avery:  Yeah it's all so sad. It's very good to hear that Carly is safe though!!! Elder Celestini didn't understand it all at first but when I explained it to him he said he wanted to sell his ferrari back home and give all the money to the churches humanitarian aid for the phillipines!
  • Celeste:  Yep it was devastating.  I just woke up Dad & he wants to know how many baptisms does your mission average?
  • Avery:  ummmm, I'm not totally sure but I can get that info for you next P-day, on average I would say about 30 baptisms a month if we are doing well as a mission. So there's 210 missionaries, so about 110 companionships and only 30 baptisms on a typical month.
  • Celeste:  Dad wants to know if you gained any weight?  The mission president said to send stuff to them so you don't have to pay but would you rather I sent stuff to you now? 
  • Avery:  I don't think I've gained any weight yet but im not totally sure since I haven't weighed myself since I left! I feel like im still in pretty good shape, although I'm definitely not in the same shape I was during baseball season!  I didn't know we would have to pay. I didn't have to pay when the package for my scriptures came. I just know that if you send it to the mission home and I don't go to Scotland I may not get it for a while. I've learned not to trust the mission home to provide stuff for the missionaries in Ireland. They don't even send us supplies like pamphlets and BOM's(The Dublin zone has almost run out of BOM's to give away, we have 3 left so we are only using them for solid people we talk to).  As I said I don't need a whole lot so if you don't send anything until after we know If I move or not that's totally fine with me. My computer time is almost up so I gotta go.  This was fun!  Love ya guys!

week 17 - a fun week

So this week went pretty well, we had some good lessons, including a very good first lesson with this guy named B.! We taught the entire plan of salvation and he totally believes everything we taught him! He is a single dad (divorced) raising kids. His kids are younger, but are starting to get old enough to ask questions about religion and stuff like that. He said he shares with them what he believes, but since he has never really belonged to a specific religion, he doesn't really know how to teach them. So he feels at this time in his life he is looking for more structure to his beliefs, and so far he really likes what we have taught him! Tomorrow we will be teaching him and inviting him to be baptized so its gonna be awesome!!! We also taught S. this week and found out that he is for sure going to be moving to England! Don't know if I told you guys this before so let me explain the situation. S.'s son an amazing soccer player. He is 12 years old, and S., who was pro, says that he is almost better than him already. D. has been invited to go train with the Tottenham football academy, which is BIG time. Tottenham is one of the premier league clubs over in England, or in other words the highest level. The SHOW haha. So S. will be able to leave his contract with the team he coaches with now, because they understand that this is the chance of a lifetime for his son to make it in professional soccer. So in other words.... We told S. that as soon as he gets over to England to look for a job where he doesn't have to work on Sunday, and find the missionaries as soon as possible and ask them to baptize him!!! He agreed to that and so Seyi is going to be baptized!! He had already been planning it all out before we even told him to find missionaries in England to baptize him. It's so cool to see the Lord prepare a way for people who are ready to be baptized, be baptized!!! I'm so excited for him!

So other than that we had another cool experience last night. So this guy and his wife who are from New Zealand were visiting family here in Ireland. They came to church at our branch on sunday, and the guy who's name was Brother K., asked for help with going out and giving his cousin a priesthood blessing. Sadly none of the brethren in the branch stepped up (our branch is still not working very well) so we had to help this brother out. His cousin lived about a 50-60 minute drive out into the countryside in the middle of nowhere in county cavan. So we spent quite a good chunk of our proselyting time doing this, but it was needed. Brother K.'s cousin, T., had Parkinson's disease and it was getting very bad. T. is catholic and I guess he decided he wasn't going to the doctor for it either, and just had the local Priest give him a blessing. But he also asked for Brother K. to give a priesthood blessing. So we gave T. a blessing, and it was actually a really powerful experience for me. It also taught me how important doing our priesthood duties is, becuase this man really needed a blessing, and it was sad to see no one in our branch really jump at the opportunity to fulfill their priesthood duty. I know the lord has given us the priesthood to do his work on this earth, and with that we have a duty to do what the lord wants us to, and not whatever we want to do.

So I think that's about all that happened this week that was really cool! Dakota it's a bummer to hear about what happened with the game! Next year you guys will definitely take care of business! I'm really glad to hear that the physical therapy is going well. It may suck but be diligent. It's just like missionary work, be diligent so you can reap the blesssings! Haha

E-dog. Is food all you think about? Haha just kiddin man, no my companion says you can't get any pizza out of a vending machine in Italy. Sorry bro!! And to let you know, I walk about 12 miles every day. I don't know how many steps that is cause I don't have the pedometer with me right now, but I've been using it every day and I'm gonna keep track of how many miles I walk per week for my whole mission!

Mom i'm not too cold at night, but I may be if I get moved to Scotland! haha Elder Goldie says that he sleeps with jeans and his hoodie on so that he stays warm enough over there. But he said that the work is SO much quicker over there. People actually listen and he is already seeing way more success than he was in mullingar. The funny thing is that he says he may even be working less over there, but see's more success! Haha oh well, I still absolutely love serving here in Mullingar, and I hope by some small chance I stay here for one more move!! But we'll have to wait and see.

Well thats it from me this week love you all!!!

Elder Benesch

Elder Celestini 

Monday, November 11, 2013


I love this picture of Avery!  He looks so happy!
Avery's new companion - Elder Celestini from Rome, Italy!
Avery showing off his futbol skills!
Mullingar, Ireland

The benefit of his apartment's location is that he gets to watch professional games - hurling & gaelic futbol.
I'm assuming this is a map of his district.

Some of the great missionaries he's able to work with!

week 16 - Slower Week

Hello everyone!
So this week was on the slower. We had like 15 people we had met in the street/tracted that we were really trying to focus on becoming new investigators, and none of them ended up wanting us to teach them. That meant we did a lot of walking all over town, and didn't teach a whole lot of lessons, so that was a bummer. We worked hard though so we were both happy with ourselves and not to upset over it. At the end of the day all we can do is invite people to listen to us and its up to them whether or not they want to listen! Elder Goldie is in Scotland now and he said its ridiculous how much faster the work is over there. He said they had a bad week this past week, while compared to Mullingar standards it was an amazing week! Haha so I guess we can't be too hard on ourselves for not having too much success. It's just this is a tougher area! While Elder Celestini was visiting with Pres. Brown I got to play a little basketball in the church building with Elder Austin! It was so much fun to play basketball again and it was awesome seeing Elder Austin as well. We also did a little shopping in Dublin since we were out there, and I found some pretty cool souvenirs! I also got a few presents to send home for you guys and so I'll send those when I get the Christmas list and buy some other stuff to send home to you guys! So more info on Elder Celestini, He is a legit missionary! Haha, he is a hard worker, but has had some really tough companions to deal with. All his companions except for his trainer have been really lazy. But he is a good missionary, he struggles a little with the language sometimes but it works fine cause I kinda just do all of the talking when it's someone he can't really understand. He is a Dentist! In Italy they don't go to university to learn how to be a dentist. When you go to high school you choose your career and study just for that. So when he was 14 he started studying to be a dentist and finished his studying when he was 18 and is a legit dentist now! You can look him up on facebook if you don't believe he's a model, his name is Riccardo Celestini and he apparently has a business page for him as a model. Also I've seen a picture of him and his ferrari, its so cool!! haha  He is really modest about it all though! He is such an awesome guy that has some really cool stories and has a great desire to serve the lord and work hard.

So to answer some of your questions: My favorite non-american food is definitely Kebabs!!! They are amazing but really unhealthy. I don't even know how to explain them to you guys. I think they're some kind of eastern european food but are found all over europe. Just look them up online.

I will most likely leave Mullingar after this moves. However anything can happen! It all depends on what the Lord wants for me to do! But for the most part missionaries don't stay in their first area for more than 3 moves. The next moves is around the beginning of December (I think its like dec. 11th or around there) so I will probably be spending Christmas somewhere else in the mission other than Mullingar! If I have it my way though I would stay here in Mullingar one more moves so until the end of January.

Peyton, Ireland is freezing cold! The worst part is everyone keeps telling me that this is just the beginning. Plus Scotland is even colder than Ireland! And I'm dying already!! haha so this winter will be a big adjustment for me I think!

Alright well I think that's everything for this week! Love you all so much and its always great to hear from you!

Elder Benesch

Monday, November 4, 2013

Week 15 - going well

So this email will be short since, me and elder Celestini have to go to Dublin today. President is there and wants to meet with Elder Celestini about something. We have no clue if its good or bad and he's freaked out about it, especially since he asked us to travel a bunch on our P-day. Elder Celestini is pretty cool by the way! He's 21 and has been out on his mission 10 months, and is from Rome, Italy. He never spoke english before his mission but speaks pretty good now! He worked as a model in Italy, and then also as a Dentist for a little before his mission. It's crazy!!!

We've had a good week, S. came to Church!!! He got this Sunday off from work because of halloween break. As soon as he found out he didn't have to work he said he yelled out loud, I CAN GO TO CHURCH!!! Haha he is such an awesome guy, and I really hope he can be baptized someday! I know he will be because he has some great faith and knows its all true, and maybe it's just not now that he can be baptized but later on. We also had one of the members bring their friend to church! That was legit, we taught her during Sunday school and she listened really intently and is hoping to come next Sunday! The bummer is they live about an hour drive away and she works all the time so we have no clue how to get out to her house and teach her during the week. So all we can really do right now is hope and pray she comes to church again! We haven't heard anymore from C. so that sucks. It seemed like she was really interested so I don't know what happened there. Other than that the week has been good!

One more thing, It is getting freezing cold, so I bought some more cold weather clothes last week.The call letter doesn't tell you how it really is going to be. Even the big heavy coat I bought hasn't held up to well in the freezing rain, its warm, but the rain gets through and then it gets kinda cold.

But don't worry I am doing fine and loving the cold weather! I'm welcoming in the winter with open arms! haha

I'm sorry this email is so short but we can only email for like a little less than an hour today and I wanna send some pictures as well. Love you all and I will write more next week! I really loved all the stories you kids shared with me about halloween and your thoughts on your knee and how the savior can help Dakota! Love you guys!

Elder Benesch

Week 14 - New Comp!

So just to let you know how moves or transfers works, we get a call on Sunday night letting us know what is happening. Then on Monday we email family to let them know what is happening. Then Wednesday is P-day or travel day for those that are leaving!

So I am officially staying in Mullingar for another 6 weeks which is what I was hoping for! Elder Goldie is leaving, which we were both kinda bummed about. We knew it would probably happen but we were hoping we could both stay together for one more moves cause the work here in Mullingar is starting to look up! My new companion is coming over from Scotland, and he is from Rome, Italy! His name is Elder Celestini, he's gonna be my senior companion and he's been out about 8 or 9 months I think. He's 6 weeks ahead of Elder Goldie. I'm really excited because I've heard he's a hard worker and that's exactly what the area needs right now! So yeah I'm pretty pumped! I also can't believe that it's already been 3 months since I left. That's an eighth of my mission gone already! It's going to fast, although I've realized an important principle. So far on my mission I've been thinking of how fast the 2 years go by and how I don't want it to go by fast. I don't want to stop sharing the gospel and go home when the 2 years is up. But then I realized I don't have to stop sharing the gospel when I go home after 2 years. I can share the gospel every day of my life if I want to! No one ever said that after the mission we have to stop! We can share the gospel with someone every single day. I know that it's not some new principle I've learned, but since I've been out I think I've understood more how I can share the gospel every day of my life, not just every day of my mission.
This week went awesome! We had 2 mini-missionaries with us for 3 days and so from Tuesday to Thursday I had a different companion! There names were Jonathan and Joe, and they're 2 young men in our branch that are preparing for missions. We got it approved by our mission president to have them stay with us for 3 days and serve mini-missions so that they can prepare for their missions and that we could get more work done. Which we totally did! It was great to be able to get to some towns outside of Mullingar that are still in our area because one companionship could leave Mullingar, while the other could go to Athlone or Longford. We found some people that I'm really excited to teach because they actually seem interested!! One is a single mom named C., she has 2 kids and is starting to look at Christianity. She said she is interested in changing her life around and is excited to meet with us! I'm so pumped!!!! We also had 2 investigators show up to church this week! This week was just all around amazing and I think its all because we've been working really hard here the past 3 months and Heavenly Father is blessing us now for all that hard work we've done. I'm really hoping that me and Elder Celestini can keep up this success!!!
So now to answer the question of the week: Fast food is about the same. We eat pizza every tuesday after district meeting and then I've had Supermac's (irish version of Carl's Jr. pretty much) once and a few Kebabs. Which I have a question for dad. Do you know what Kebabs are and did you have them in Spain? They're a European thing, and they are so good! But they are also extremely unhealthy!!! haha I literally feel myself get fatter when I eat one. I've had 3 so far on my mission and they are pretty intense to eat!
I love all the stories you guys share with me about back home! Keep letting me know how everything is going!
Love you all so much!

Almost forgot to answer Ethan's questions.
Dude I'm in Ireland, so there are no bagpipes at all! Haha bagpipes are a Scottish thing. Bro you need to do some research! hahah just kidding buddy. I'm hoping to stay in Ireland my whole mission but that probably won't happen. I really want to go to Belfast, Northern Ireland. Missionaries usually get some cool stories there! By the way to give you guys a little more info on our mission, there really are 3 countries that it covers. Ireland and Northern Ireland are NOT the same country. The 2 kinda hate each other so I wouldn't get those confused! haha

Flat Stanley

Malia had a class assignment to send her Flat Stanley around the world to people she knows so they can take pictures with him.  So here is Flat Stanley's adventures in Ireland.