Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Sure Foundation

Hello everyone,
So, the library was closed yesterday - not sure why, so that is why I am emailing today (don't worry, I got permission)
We had district meeting this morning - which went pretty good, and then we had a district lunch afterwards. Our district changed, due to some problems another companionship was having (don't worry, everything is fine) so we have a new companionship is ours. They really like video games, along with my companion, so they talk a lot about that when they are together - which is fine, it is just kinda weird in a way...just need to find some common ground! Humor is a great place to start! :)
In regards to updating about missionary work, things have not changed too much. We had a great lesson the other night. I almost cried at one point in it, but I refrained from doing so :) at one point in the lesson, the investigator said how he was envious of us having our Faith that we can fall back on in trying times. I asked him "so you are referring it to a foundation - in a sense", "yes, I guess that is how you could put it". I then shared with him Helaman 5:12 - which is a really well known scripture amongst missionarys. I then went on to tell him how much the foundation of the church has blessed me in my life. I recognized that he did not grow up in the church as I did, but I was quick to assure him that he can have the same foundation - the same faith - as we are so blessed to have. I told him that I know this church is true because of all of the opposition I have met while I have been out on my mission. I told him that it was the hardest year of my life thus far. I have been ridiculed, belittled, sworn at, and many other things, but to me, that is just a confirmation that the church is true. If it were not true - there would be no opposition - it would be too easy. It was never going to be easy, only worth it. That quote dad shared by C.S. Lewis was perfect, I loved it.
Thank you again everyone for your support. Things are going great up here and I am loving it! It was great to talk to all of you and I wish you the best!
Elder Hartman1

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


Whats up everyone-friends and family,
Just an update on the Dr. apppointment, everything is fine, we are just waiting for the results-which I should get today, not sure what time though, Dr. Kutchera is on call, but the nurse told me right when she gets them she will call me. I will notify Pres. and then he will e-mail you, cuz he is so awesome!
Well, things are going great here in Alaska. I opened up the presents that grandma Judy sent with E. Merrill-who is getting transferred to Nome by the way. He has mixed emotions about it, people either tell him he will love it, or hate it. I have no updates on the new Elder yet, I will not find out who he is until Tuesday morning. The first words I am going to tell him are "I like Unicorns", or something ridiculous like that ;) which by the way, EVERYONE knows that I like Unicorns up here, but I stand by it! :)
This week was really hectic with transfers and meetings and everything, so we did not get too much of a chance to proselyte, but that is ok, we will make up for it this week :) I am gonna work those Mr. Macs right off the Elders feet ;) hahaha
We watched the movie "17 Miracles" the other day with an investigator family. That movie is so good, I love that movie! It really does open your eyes to what the pioneers went thro-their trials and afflictions over those long, both hold and cold plains. The central message in that movie-to me-was "Faith Precedes the Miracle". I am pretty sure that is a book, but when you watch that movie, you see that happen over and over. The person offers a fervent prayer-showing their faith in Heavenly Father by asking Him for help and turning to Him-and then having a miralce follow shortly thereafter, due to their Faith. That is where everything starts is Faith. Faith is the first principle of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, it is where we must first begin, in order to start our foundation in Him. Faith is a huge word to tackle, but I do know that we must have Faith in order for such things as Miracles to happen. It was awesome, we gave a blessing to a part member family the other day-to their 2 year old son. He had a very high fever and was throwing up throughout the day. The husband (who is the member) asked us to give him a blessing. We did and promised a speedy recovery. We went over yesterday-the next day-and he was running around, being his happy-go-lucky self. The husband said to us "I think this is the result of your blessing". No doubt that it was. I know that through Heavenly Father-all things are possible. If we put our trust in Him, we will be ale to overcome anything.
Thank you again everybody for the wonderful support-especially during the holidays. I have been immensley blessed because of you. Thank you all! I love you!
Elder Hartman1

Monday, December 12, 2011

Walk With Me

Friends and family; Seasons Greetings! (I hope I used correct punctuation)
I got the packages, both for the birthday and Christmas. Thank you so much for those, I really appreciate it. I will be honest, when I opened them up and saw them filled with presents, I was so overjoyed, but at the same time, I felt so unworthy for such blessings. I have been loving them tho, they are awesome, thank you so much!!! Terra's letters are awesome!
We are still not sure what we are doing for Christmas yet, things are still up in the air for that, but like I keep saying, I will let you know when I find out. It will be interesting to call everyone, but a very exciting time too! I still remember when I called on Mother's day and at the end of the conversation, I said "see you in 7 months!" (I think that is the right number) and now it is here, crazy thought.
We are having more and more success in our area, things are picking up and we are getting busier. We have a lesson scheduled every night this week, which for our mission standards, is pretty good. Doing a lot of less active work and working with the members of the ward as well. Tracting is always a blast too, one of my favorite things to do as a missionary. You have nothing to lose, the worst that can happen is a person sayind "no", and you get great stories out of it. We were knocking doors the other day and this Vietnamese (I think) lady peeked out the window next to the door and just stared at us. Merrill was really taken off guard; literally for 3 mintues, she just stared at us. I pulled out a Gospel of Jesus Christ pamphlet and showed it to her, but she just kept up the stare. Finally she gestured she was not interested, but great experience none the less :)
We were eating dinner at a members house the other night, having a great conversation, enjoying each others company and such. At one point, the dad shared a really thought-provoking quote. There was a man by the sea of Galilee, who was fishing, I believe, and saw Christ walking by along the shore. "Walk with me". The man joined Christ and started talking with Him. At one point in the conversation, the man asked "will it always be this hard?"-he had suffered much trial and affliction due to trying to follow Christ. Jesus replied "and what if it is?" meaning: if it is always this hard, will you still follow me? In the time of real trial and real affliction, will you still remain faithful and follow me? I loved that quote, gets the gears in your head working for sure!
Again, everybody, thank you so much for the packages and support. It was such a great birthday, it really was. Although it was not a formal celebration, it was such a great day. I do not know how all of you do it, when you are thousands of miles away, and yet you still manage to send presents and bless me immensley. Thank you so much, everybody, it really means a lot. Ok, that is enough tenderness :) it is easier for me to say that over email then in person unfortunately hahaha :) I love you! Thank you again!
Elder Hartman1

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

O Christmas Tree

Hello everyone.

I got the package from Terra, the 25 days of Christmas, thank you so much for that, really appreciate it! I have not gotten anything else yet, but I am positive I will get it this week.

Cannot believe it is already December. Such a great time of year, I love the Christmas spirit. We watched a little bit of the devotional at a members house, but had a lesson to go to later that night too. We got out our Christmas decorations, mainly the tree :) I am sending the pics with this email so you can feast your eyes upon our wonderful masterpiece :) I remember how much I love having Christmas lights. Everyone up here pretty much has them on year round. They actually encourage everyone to leave them turned on as well, due to the long nights in winter. We are still not quite sure what we are doing on Christmas itself, but when I find out I will let you know. This ward is awesome and I have no doubt we will be very hospitalized that day :)
The work in our area is picking up. We found 2 new investigators the other week. One of them recently got out of prison and wants help to put his life back in order. He is receiving the message extremely well and very receptive to it. Another one was a daughter of a less active in our area who had a lot of questions regarding the Mayans and Incas, so historical stuff. I loved the conversation we had, it was very intellectual and got me thinking a lot. E. Merrill could care less for that stuff, but I loved it :) We have a lot of potentials we have to meet with again as well. Every time we go tracting, we find a great potential, I love it. Our companionship itself is doing great as well. Elder Merrill and I get along really great with each other. It is always such a blessing when you get along with your companion, seeing as how this is the person you are going to be around 24-7 for the next little while. I have been very blessed with companions on my mission. I have learned a very important lesson from everyone of them and they have all helped build my character and I am very grateful for that :)
I was thinking about the holidays we would spend together as a family. A mission really does bring to your mind the things that are really important and the things that never were as much of a priority as you thought them to be. Looking at pictures of the family is one of my favorite things to do, when I have time. My favorite thing about pictures and memories is that they last forever, they are always with you. Memories are the moments that you cherish most, the moments where you are truly experiencing joy and happiness. They are the moments that you unwrap every now and then and always bring a smile to your face. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father blessed us with memories so that we may have June flowers in the Decembers of our lives. Thank you so much for your support. I love you!!

Elder Hartman1

Monday, November 28, 2011

Playing Clue

Hello everyone.
First off, that was wonderful to hear about Mikelle and the newest member of the family coming in! Congratz Mikelle! Exciting to hear, I hope everything went somewhat smooth, for the most part :) I guess you cannot really plan something like that being smooth sailing.
Thanksgiving was great, we had a Turkey bowl in the morning. Over 30 people were there, so we divided into 4 teams of 7 people, roughly. It was all of the missionaries, then just members from other wards making up the other teams. We were the overall champs, no big deal or anything :) I had to take it easy tho, I was getting light headed in the middle of it and really fatigued. Everyone would sprint down the field, for the kick return, while Elder Silentman, who was a linemen in High school, and I were slowly, but surely, making our way back. After that, we went to the Ellis' house and chatted with them for a while, then went and ate at the Hodgsons home. It is always a blast going over there to eat :) then we finished off by going to the Oswalds. Good holiday, a lot of fun :) I did miss the fam tho, I was reflecting on how we would always go to the cabin or our house and have dinner there. I loved it when we all would just kinda chill up there, everyone doing their own thing. I always looked forward to that, and I always will :)
In regards to the work, things are picking up now. I am finally pretty familiar with the area now, therefore, I can be more effective and executing the work. We are gonna focus on working with part member families. I am very anxious to see how things will work out.
I think I am going to start keeping track of how many times I fall, cuz I eat it all-the-time, especially in Whitehorse, man did I biff it there a lot. This week, I think I have fallen a grand total of....I don't know actually, probably more than 15 at least. It all depends on the shoes I am wearing. Now on to more important matters...
Elder Merrill got sick this Friday, so we stayed in the apartment all day. It was really stressfull because we had two lessons set up, and both of them canceled. He is back to health now tho, he did, after all, sleep for 9 hours that day. Guy should go into competition with that, he knows how to sleep! I did not mind it tho, I got some really good studies in and some good time to ponder and enjoy some peace and quiet :) (typical White, you know me)
Thanks again everyone for your support, it is always great hearing from you! I love you all!
Elder Hartman1

Here is first letter I received this week. TJ is answering questions that he was asked but i have no idea what those questions were. have fun trying to guess at what he answering. Some are pretty obvious while others are not so clear! I think "A Malibu" (#9) is the barbie he is hoping to get for Christmas?

1. We had a Turkey bowl for thanksgiving. After that, we went to the Ellis', chatted with them for a little bit, then we ate a the Hodgsons home, then went to the Oswalds house. Normal Thanksgiving dinners. Did not eat quite as much as I expected to, but none-the-less, it was a great holiday.

2. The work is going great, things are really starting to pick up. We are in the Klatt ward, but we are also covering Cook Inlet, which is the YSA ward. That is why we go to church from 7-4 every sunday...

3. Thanksgiving. Mainly the Turkey bowl :)

4. He is awesome. We are alike actually, our sense of humor is very parallel with each others :)

5. It is really not that hard, very simple calling. All I have to do is just plan a district meeting once a week, and take numbers, it is not stressful at all. I did the last District meeting on the color code :) I will send you a recording and dad can critique me on it :)

6. Not at all, the cold does not really bother me for the most part. The only part that gets cold is my face and hands, other than that, I am just fine. I do not think I will need my thermals-hopefully ;)
7. Running errands. We have a lesson set up with a Samoan family that we found tracting. After we see them, we will play sports, probably basketball.

8. No, not yet. But as it draws closer, I am sure members will start planning things, and our zone and district as well.

9. A Malibu

10. Nope, I am good for now, just family pictures and any other pics of my friends and I and papers with quotes on them. Meds are doing great.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Turkey Week

Hello fellow citizens of the U.S. (and whosoever else may come across this from another country)

I got the package that Summer sent, it was awesome, thank you very much. The shoe shine was probably my favorite part. I honestly never thought I would like shoeshine as much as I do right now. After I used it, the whole rest of the day, I kept on looking down at my - somewhat - shining shoes. My proselyting shoes are very worn out right now, they are slowly starting to fall apart. I am hoping to use them my whole mission :) but it made my day to see that shine on them, I could not stop smiling :) :)
We do have a dinner for Thanksgiving set up, so we are taken care of. It will be a great day to try and catch some people home too, since it is a holiday. I am excited :)

The way we do missionary work in this area is really different from the way I am used to doing it. In Whitehorse, due to the size of the branch, I am used to having to go out and do a lot of work on our own. In Klatt, they assign us a lot of people to visit, so there is a lot of less active work and recent converts. Neither of the ways they execute missionary work is bad, it just varies depending on where you are. The ward here is awesome with missionary work. Members are ready to attend lessons with us, and they are great about suggesting names for us as well.

Since it is Thanksgiving, I have a quote from Elder Holland regarding this holiday. He was speaking in the MTC, a few year ago, and told all the missionaries in there to picture there families at home, around the dinner table. All of the family is there, except for your chair, which is empty because you are out on a mission. It is the exact same for Heavenly Father. We are on missions here on earth. Our seat in Heaven is empty. He wants us to come home to Him. He misses us dearly. We are all His children. He wants nothing BUT the best for us. I know he is our Heavenly Father. I will miss all of you dearly this holiday season. I will be thinking of you a lot and I hope you have fun and make memories with each other that you will remember for years to come. Thank you again for your support, I love you!

Elder Hartman1

Questions from Mom that I am answering:
1. The area is doing great! The members are awesome. We do a lot of works with less actives, so I am still having to adjust to that, cuz I am used to tracting all day and doing a lot of the missionary work ourselves, but this ward takes great care of us :) The weather is getting pretty chilly. It is about -10-0 usually. Our doors are starting to freeze shut in our cars. Makes things interesting :) The new apartment is awesome, I am sending pics of it in a separate email so you can see.
2. He is from Blackfoot, Idaho. He is 19, played football and basketball in high school. He has been on his mission for almost 4 months now.
3. It is good, nothing too hard, just take numbers and plan District meeting once a week. Our District actually has 4 areas in it, counting ours. The sisters, us, another companionship in Anchorage, and then one in Dutch Harbor, so we have to do it over the phone, which is kinda stressfull cuz I cannot do a lot of activities I was planning.
4. I will always remember the fellowship in Whitehorse. Everybody knowing everybody. The branch there is awesome because everyone is really close. They say a small town is a big family, which is how I will always remember it. Also, teaching David and Xenia, I will always remember them too. Those were the best lessons of my mission, hands down.
5. A lot of stuff, mainly turkey bowl, then eating dinner at members houses (we have more than one dinner set up).
6. Those questions are hard. The best I would say, was just tracting, I always have a blast doing that. The worst was when we found a Jehovas witnessed who bashed with us, that was depressing.
7. Stuff for Christmas, I thought about this. All I want for Christmas is pictures of family, and any pics of my buddies and I too, if you have any. And any quotes, likes books with quotes, or just pictures, whatever you got. Those are the main thins I would like-for now at least :) I did get the sweatshirt and I LOVE IT!!! It is awesome, thank you so much!!!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Do You Hold and Use a Current Temple Recommend?

Well I am back in Anchorage now. I do not have a whole lot of time to email cuz we are on a time limit, but I will try my best :)
To update you on everything. We rode down with the members in the branch, not on that awful 18 hour bus ride of death. It was a lot of fun, we had a blast. The storm did not really affect us that much, but you can definitely tell it hit Anchorage, there is so much snow here. My new comp is Elder Merrill, he is from Blackfoot, Idaho and has been out on his mission for about 3 1/2 months. The Klatt ward is awesome, the members are really nice and very welcoming. We also cover the YSA ward too, so we go to both church meetings. Church starts at 7 a.m. and goes till 4 in the afternoon. It is a huge spiritual feast, one that I am going to have to definitely get used to. I am not sure if I already mentioned this, but this is the last are that Elder Meteer served in. I took his place here and he went up to Fairbanks, kind of a fun fact.
This area has a lot of potential, I am very excited to get to work here. We spent the first few days getting to know the members and letting Elder Bowes see people, cuz he served here in the Summer, before he came to Whitehorse.
I do have to say, I am having big Whitehorse withdrawals right now. I miss that place so much. The harder I worked there, the more I grew to love the place, just like dad said in a email. It really did hurt to say goodbye to everyone. I guess that is my confirmation that I worked hard and did what I had to do there. Those were some of the best months of my life and I am never going to forget it.
We went to the temple on Saturday. I am so happy I get to finally start going again, I really missed attending there. Jeffrey R. Holland said that if he could ask any LDS member one question it would be; "do you hold and use a current temple recommend". I may have miss phrased it, but nonetheless a very intriguing question. That one question would tell him whether they had a testimony of the Prophet Joseph Smith, and the current, living prophet Thomas S. Monson. It would tell him if they attend church regularly, if they keep their covenants and commitments. If they live the 10 commandments. It basically would tell him everything. That is one thing I am going to make sure I have, is a current temple recommend that I use regularly, not just something I have, then put away in my wallet and forget about.
Thank you again everyone for your support! Mail should be easier now cuz I am back in the US. The mailing address on my blog is correct, so send all of the mail to that address and it will get here :) Thank you again!
Elder Hartman1

Monday, November 7, 2011


Hello everyone, both friends and family,

I got the Halloween package from Mom and Dad that Summer sent, it got here
safely! And just a quick heads up, I sent a package home of excess stuff
that I did not need, mainly so I would have more room to pack for
transfers. I sent it home, so Summer should be getting it sometime soon.
One of the things in there is a book of all of the letters I got for the
first few months on my mission. Enjoy the scrapbook! Keep it in good
condition, if at all possible, it is something I will definitely refer back
to in the future, to reminisce about my awesome mission :)

Just to update you, I am leaving Whitehorse on Thursday now, due to
transportation arrangements. I do know where I am getting transferred
though! I am going back to Anchorage and I will be serving in the Cook
Inlet/Klatt ward. My new companion is going to be Elder Merrill. My last
companion, Elder Meteer, trained him in the area I am going to actually. I
am very excited. President said that he is sending me to this area as a
reward for my hard work in Whitehorse, which caught me off guard. I will
also be serving as the District Leader there too. Our district is really
small, it consists of our companionship and a sister companionship, so
district meetings will be ever so much fun :)

Just to give an update on Halloween. It was very fun. We played monopoly
with the Thompsons with the other companionship there. It was such a blast.
Chris Thompson (RED!) and Elder Johnson (RED) were making deals left and
right, which I knew was going to happen, light years before the game
started. So my master plan was just to try and accumulate as much land as
possible and then team up with either of them, because I knew that one of
them was going to win, just based off their personalities and how
incredibly good they were at making offers you could not resist! Elder
Johnson eventually won. Chris was not happy at all. I love seeing Reds get
mad, it is so funny to me, I do not know why.

Saying goodbye to the members here was hard, but it was comforting to know
that my time has come and now I am needed elsewhere. I am ready to leave,
as weird as that sounds, but part of me will always be here in Whitehorse.
I have been getting a lot of pictures with as much families as I can. I
will try and send you some either today or next P-day, depending on how
much time I have, because I do realize that I have been slacking in that
area. My most sincere apologies :'(...

We had another amazing lesson the other night. The spirit was so strong and
the couple we were teaching have thoroughly talked about baptism with each
other. I know they will be baptized, but they expressed that a lot of
things need to change first before they make that commitment, which is
exactly what needs to happen! They understood everything perfectly and they
will be very strong, faithful members once they join, Elder Bowes and I are
certain that they will. I have no doubt that at least 6 people in our area
will be baptized by the end of this year, if not sooner. We have been
having so much success and our investigators are progressing wonderfully!
The future is looking very bright here! I am convinced that this area,
within the next 5 years, will grow substantially, maybe even into a zone.
They estimate that the population will double within the next three years.
Homes are popping up left and right. It will be cool to see what happens. I
will keep my eye on this place in the coming years.

I hope the details I gave will suffice. I am not gifted in that area, as I
am sure all of you are aware, but I will try and improve on that aspect. I
love you all! Thank you again!

Elder Hartman

Monday, October 31, 2011

Come What May and LOVE It!

Hello friends and family,

Thank you very much for Miranda's address, really appreciated :) The Halloween package is awesome, we are going to break the pinata tonight :)

Our  mission office address changed, so when you send mail, start sending it to:
3250 Strawberry Road
PO Box 226149
Anchorage, AK 99522-1649

I am putting this as the return address for all of the letters I am sending out now to. This will be the address for the rest of my mission for things to send.

Just to give you a run down on Halloween. We are celebrating it today. In regards to proselyting, our p-day ends at 4, then we have dinner. We are supposed to be back in the apartment at 7 for the night. If we have any other appointments, we will go, but other than that, just stay in and do studies.

Well, things in Whitehorse are amazing, a little bittersweet I do have to say tho. All of the members are starting to ask when I leave. I am not exactly sure when I am going to, I just know it is next week sometime, hopefully not Sunday, so I can bear my last testimony and just enjoy one last Sabbath here. After church was over, I was looking around at all of the members, trying to soak in all of the magic I can. My experience in Whitehorse has been amazing. I have learned so much here. It will be very hard to leave, without a doubt it will be. I never knew it was possible to get so attached to a place like this. This week is going to involve a lot of goodbyes and farewells. A lot of members said that when I come back up to visit, I can stay at their place. so when dad and I come back up, we will be taken care of :)

As far as missionary work goes and how things are looking in that aspect, we had another really successful week. Still teaching a lot, having much success in that area. The first transfer with Elder Bowes, we were working our tails off. We were tracting for 2-3 hours a day and having no success. When the second transfer started, things just started falling right into our lap. We proved to the Lord that we wanted to work. We showed Him, through our diligence, that He could trust us with people to teach.

Recently, I read a talk called "Come What May, and Love it" by Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin. I have read it before, but I read it again, because I really like him, he is one of my favorite apostles of Jesus Christ. This talk really gave me a different perspective on trials and affliction. I have learned to love whatever comes. I learned that we are always brought down to the depths of Humility when we are experiencing great affliction and hard times. It is always those times that you are humbled the most. I was really sick on Friday morning. I do not know if it was something I ate or what, but I was dry heaving and was not in any condition to proselyte. I hate it when I am sick on my mission. I missed studies and the whole morning to go out and work. I still got fully dressed in my proselyting clothes, with my tie on and everything, because that is what Bruce R. McConkie did when he was at the end of his life and could not get out of bed, he would still get fully dressed and do whatever he could to serve the Lord, even if that meant reading his scriptures in bed. I am grateful that I have been broken down on my mission, for had I not, I would definitely not be the person I am right now today. I have loved every single second of every minute of every hour of every day that I have been out on my mission thus far. I can definitely see why dad wants young men to serve a mission so badly, why wouldn't you want to!? I love my mission so much and am definitely going to miss Whitehorse greatly, but I do realize that my time is coming to an end and it is another Elder's time to come and spread the gospel here.

I have to admit, I am not looking forward to the 18 hour bus ride again...but like I said earlier, come what may and love it ;) hahaha putting my foot in my mouth here.

Terra, I am so glad to hear about your missionary efforts in the wonderful state of Hawaii. It sounds like you are having a blast over there and I love seeing the pictures. Polynesians sure love to throw parties, they have parties for EVERYTHING. It is awesome :)

The dress pictures looked awesome Bree, you looked beautiful in those. I am really upset that I will not be there for this wonderful even, I was hoping to have a personal interview with Chris and pass him off for you ;) hahaha kidding, I really like Chris, he will be a great spouse.

Summer, those pictures you sent of the kids were awesome. They all looked great! Loved the outfits. I have no idea who the baseball player was that Easton was, but he looked great in the baseball uniform nonetheless.

Thanks again everyone for your support, I love you!!

Elder Hartman1

Monday, October 24, 2011

What Missionaries Do Best

Hello once again, both friends and family.

I have not gotten the Halloween package yet, but I am sure I will get it this week sometime, so do not worry. Also, I need Miranda's current address, I realized that I do not have her home address right now and I need to send her the letter that I wrote a while ago :/.

Another quick note, yes they do celebrate Halloween up here. It is on the 31st. I am not sure how proselyting will work out, I think that they will not have us go out later in the evening because everyone will be expecting little kids and it will be hard to have discussions. So only set lessons is when we will go out.

This week was awesome, we are having so much success in our area right now. Our teaching is still climbing, we are improving every week. A cool experience we had this week. We were out tracting Wednesday morning last week. The first house we knocked on, a very nice lady answered. We talked for a little bit, gave her a Restoration pamphlet, and said we would come back and visit her again. We continued making our way down the street, knocking doors, doing what missionaries do best. Soon after we left her house, however, I started to get the prompting to go back to her. I felt that we did not really complete the purpose of visiting her. As we were coming back down the street, we were going to the car, and still, the prompting was strong. I told Elder Bowes we had to go back to the lady and give her a Book of Mormon. We go back, knock, she answers again, friendly as ever. I basically said that I was prompted to come back and give her this book. She told us that she was legitimately interested and was very happy that we gave it to her. We are meeting with her again on Wednesday, hopefully things will go well!

One of the things I love most about a mission is the rewards for obedience. I know that it is only through obedience that we experience the Lords greatest blessings and inherit everlasting joy. We have to prove ourselves to the Lord that He can bless us with people to teach. In the way we prove it to him is by obeying and honoring the rules that are set for us.

I have been doing a lot of reminiscing lately. I have been thinking about the holidays we would spend together as a family, up at the cabin, the wonderful family vacations we were so fortunate to go on (thanks dad!), just being together as a family was always my favorite part I remember. I had a lot of images flash through my mind, mainly Christmas' at the cabin. I always remember Travis putting together the new toy that one of their kids would get. I remember always hearing Mikelle and her laugh, wherever I was in the house. I remember trying to beat Jeremy at Dr. Mario, but would utterly get destroyed whenever I would try. My favorite times where when we would all end up in the little family room, with the fire going, and just talking or playing a game like catch phrase. I hope that our family can inherit some more memories with each other in the years to come. I am glad that we know the importance of family and are held strong together. I am truly grateful for the Plan of Salvation. To know that our family can be together forever, to know that the end of our mortal life here on this earth, is not the end at all, it is just the beginning. Thank you all so much for the wonderful memories I have. I treasure them dearly and every now and then, open up the chest that contains these wonderful treasures and gaze upon them with joy and warmth, never to be forgotten. I love you all, thank you again for everything.

Elder Hartman1

Monday, October 17, 2011

Power of Prayer

Hey friends and family,

Sounds like things are going great back home. I love the email and support from everyone. A thought I had, to make it easier to answer questions that you have, make a list of questions, that way, it is easier for me to answer and I will better remember them :)

This week was just an overall awesome week of missionary work. The Lord blessed us greatly in His work. Through our obedience and diligence, we were able to find more investigators, have more powerful lessons, and have experienced the Lords blessings firsthand. It has humbled me greatly. That was one thing I was trying to work on this week, was trying to be more humble. I tried to follow Ammon's example, and glory in Heavenly Father as he does in Alma 26, especially verses 11-12. His joy was so great, that it eventually exhausted him later. He gave all of the credit to the Lord, because he knew that it was the Lord who blessed him and sustained him. I hope that I can be made an "instrument in the hands of God to bring about this great work" (Alma 26:3). We taught a lot of lessons and experienced a little of the fruit of our labor. I know there is more in store for us to. Some of it, I may not get the opportunity to experience, but that is alright. I do not like the thought that I have already been here for 6 months already and my time is almost up. It has gone by too fast. I know that it will be very hard to leave when the time comes. Hopefully I am somewhat ready.

I had a wonderful experience during personal prayer a few nights ago. I was talking to Heavenly Father and realized that it has been a while since I have asked to talk to Jesus Christ. I say in the prayer "Heavenly Father, if it is ok, I wish to talk to Jesus Christ" then I heard a voice say "here He is" and the atmosphere totally changed. It was such a powerful prayer. I felt so much closer to Him during that. I felt my Saviors love. I know I did. It was so wonderful talking to my best friend, someone who knows exactly what I have been through. Someone who knows me better than I know myself. Who loves me more than I can possibly begin to imagine. I am so grateful to have the knowledge of the Atonement and to know that families can be together forever. I love the fact that our Heavenly Father wants nothing BUT the best for us. He wants us all to come home. He wants it so badly, he showers us with blessings when we start to do the right thing. He is right there waiting, always. It is so moving for me to think of that. I know that He loves each and everyone of us individually. I love this gospel. I love my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I love my Father in Heaven. Thank you everyone for everything. I love you!!!

Elder Hartman1

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Power of the Holy Ghost

Hello again family,

I am very sorry about the inconvenience last week about sending the letter to the wrong email address and everything. I promise you it will not happen again for future reference :)

This week was amazing. We had a lot of success and our teaching is climbing up too! This area is starting to boil and will soon explode I anticipate :) Yesterday was such an amazing day in particular. It was fast sunday, testimony meeting was outstanding. The spirit enlightened my mind so much during the meeting I could not stand it! I learned so much in that hour about the gospel then I have in a week! It is truly amazing what happens when you do your part, because Heavenly Father 'always' upholds His as well. When you put forth an effort to fast and really ponder things, the spirit magnifies the things you ponder astronomically. As you are aware, we skip 2 consecutive meals for fasting, we were skipping breakfast and lunch. When dinner comes around, we are ready to eat. We were meeting with our new investigators that we have been teaching for the last 2 weeks. Every missionary deserves at least one of these kind of investigators their mission. These are the best investigators I have had thus far on my mission, hands down. They ask inspired questions, keep commitments, and are just a delight to be around, we get along with them perfectly. They were the investigators I mentioned a while back if you remember at all. Anyways, back to the story, we went to their house for the lesson. Nothing has ever smelled to Heavenly when we walked inside. They had the whole thanksgiving dinner ready for us. I will not go into detail, due to excessive drooling that will occur if I do. Earlier that day, I was crazing cinnamon rolls for some strange reason. Well, guess what is for desert? It was so perfect, I almost did not want to eat it.
The lesson we had afterwards was indescribable. The spirit was so incredibly strong in the room, it would have been impossible not to feel it. We were teaching the 3rd lesson, The Gospel of Jesus Christ. I decided to open up the lesson with Faith. After a little bit of discussion about it, they both went really quiet, deep pondering mode. The wife started crying pretty hard, saying that this was a tough subject for her to talk about. Apparently they had had a discussion about this exact topic just the other night. It was just an amazing lesson all around. I hope every missionary who serves has the blessing of experience a lesson like that. I know I spent majority of this email on one particular experience, but it was an experience that had a real impact on me. The spirit was testifying to them throughout the lesson. We had a member there who was outstanding, perfect member to have their at the lesson. I am truly humbled by this experience and I was sure to thank my Father in Heaven for helping us find the elect and assisting us in teaching them as well.
I hope and pray that I will always be worthy for the companionship of the Holy Ghost. Without it, we missionarys are a lost cause. People will not believe what we are saying is true, unless the Holy Ghost testifies to them that it is. 

As I stated a few letters back. I want to say again to dad, as well to all of my family, that I am working hard. I am giving my mission the best effort I can. At times I have stumbled here and there and I have made mistakes. I always try to help improve myself and look for ways to better myself. I am loving my mission. I love it with all my heart and I am forever grateful for your continual support to me throughout my mission thus far. Thank you all so much again, I really appreciate everything you do. I will continue to give it the best I can and make the most of these 2 short years that I can as well. I love you all and pray for you often.

Elder Hartman1

Monday, October 10, 2011

We Are All in This Together

Hello again everyone!

I think I got the package that Summer said she sent to me last week, the one with the recovery drink and everything, I am going to the post office today with the slip to get it :) I also got a letter from Becky and Miranda, that was ever so wonderful :)

Our area is doing really good, things are looking most definitely up for us! We are increasing our teaching every week and we have found almost 2 new investigators every week for the last month! Some are stronger than others, but it is still so great to see the fruit of our labor :) I know that the Lord blessed us because of our obedience. Sometimes in the mornings, it can be difficult to fully dress in pros because it is much easier and more comfortable to study in your pajamas or sweats. I like proving myself to the Lord that I want to be obedient because I know that He recognizes that. He always blesses us for our efforts and diligence. We picked up 2 new investigators last week. They are pretty solid, we taught them the first lesson, with a member there too. I love bringing members to lessons, I cannot tell you how many times the member has saved me during lessons because they can always relate better to the investigator than we can. These investigators ask very good questions, really good questions actually. I do not like saying "I don't know" to a question, but I know that it is far better to legitimately say that then to try and answer a question you do not know and sound like an idiot. At the end of the first lesson, the husband commented how he liked how "human" we were. He explained why he used this term. He has had a lot of experience with other churches and faiths, and one thing he noticed that was common with a lot of them, not all, was how they go through the motions. They literally try to have an answer for every question and try to know everything. He said he liked how we did not know the answer to every question. We did know a lot of answers, but there were a lot of questions too during the lesson. It was really reassuring to hear him comment on that. It is not the end of the world if we do not know the answer to a question, all we have to do is simply find out the answer for ourselves if we do not know it.

I absolutely LOVED Conference. I never thought I would ever look forward to it as much as I did last weekend. I was so excited I could hardly see straight. My favorite apostle (we can have favorite apostles, Boyd K. Packer has a favorite prophet and he himself said it is ok if we have favorites, just to clarify) is D. Todd Christoffersen. I just love the way he speaks and presents himself when he talks. He is so clear and puts things in just a understanding perspective. I also like how easygoing he is too when he talks :) My favorite talk this conference was Uchtdorf's in the saturday morning session, about God's love and relating it to our understanding of the universe. Basically, we cannot comprehend just how much he loves us. Personally, I thought it was his best talk he has given. I absolutely loved it, such a great talk and one that I needed to hear. I was dreading conference ending, I really was. I did not want it to end, I loved it so much. I could tell Monson did not want it to end either. I loved his words as he was closing "we are all in this together". I felt such a brotherhood as he said that. I truly felt that we are all indeed family here on earth.

My love for the gospel has grown so immensely over the last few weeks. It was much needed growth, as I felt a big change in myself towards my outlook on just how important this gospel is to me and my life. My desire to serve the Lord has increased so much and I know that we can achieve no greater happiness than in following the Lords commandments and doing His will. I feel at home whenever I feel His love. I feel at peace and love the serenity the spirit brings when it comes. I hope that I will continue to be able to remain worthy for the companionship of the spirit and will always strive to be as well. I just want my family to know, that I am putting my shoulder to the wheel and working hard while I am on my mission. We are working hard here in Whitehorse, and I will do my very best to continue my diligence throughout my mission and even the rest of my life. Thank you everyone again for the support, it is because of you and your faith that I am able to press on diligently :) I love you and thank you again.

Elder Hartman1

Monday, September 26, 2011

Sunday Was a Great Day

Hi everybody!

Thank you all for the wonderful e-mails and letters. I got the little snacks Summer sent and Mormon Doctrine as well :) I was so happy to get my own copy! I am emailing early this week cuz we only have 2 computers and we decided we would email early and the other Elders wold email later.

We had a short week because of Zone Conference. We flew from Skagway in a small plane, not a bush plane, just a very small airplane. I loved it, right when the turbulence hits, it rocks me right to sleep every time :) we went their with the Skagway Elders, so there was 6 of us total. I don't think I mentioned this, but we stayed in the sisters apartment. The first and probably last Elders, as Pres. Beesley says, that will stay in the sisters apartment. How many missionaries can say that? They were super nice about letting us stay there and eating whatever we wanted. You could definitely tell that Elders had been thro there once we left :) I did leave them a thank you note on a little heart sticky note, however. So at least we were somewhat considerate in that aspect.

Sunday was such a great day. We had 3 investigators at church and Bro. Andre, a father of a less active family we have been working with a lot this transfer, came to church as well! I was so excited I could barely sit still! I am hoping we will have some baptisms next transfer, we have a lot of people who could be baptized. I, personally, do not consider myself having any baptisms right now, the one I had beginning of my mission I pretty much walked into, so I do not really count that one. After I left Chester Valley, they had a baptism and were teaching their neighbor, which Elder Ashby and I talked to I think 2 days before I left. I was very happy to hear about that and the success they are having in that area.

It is hard to think that I only have 6 more weeks here in Whitehorse. I have already been here 4 1/2 months. It will be so hard for me to leave this area, I love the people here so much, I do not think I will ever get enough of the people or Whitehorse itself! I hope to have a really successful transfer and bring souls to Christ. There is nothing I want more, than to give them the greatest gift they can experience and have them receive everlasting joy. It is so rewarding to be a part of these persons lives and help them out. Everyone in the branch is so unique in their own way and we are really starting to connect with the people here. They are getting more anxious to be engaged in missionary work. Every time we call a member to see if they can come to a lesson, they almost always say yes. When they cannot make it, it is usually due to things already planned or work.

I was looking back on some journal entries, and one I wrote really stood out to me. It was not all that long ago, on the 21st of this month. Near the end of it, I was talking about Alaska a little bit. "Every time I hear the word Alaska, or picture it on a map, my heart starts to pound. The spirit swells within me. That is always another confirmation the church is true!". And it is. I love Alaska so much. I never thought I would be sent here, but now that I am actually here, I cannot picture myself going anywhere else. I love this mission, I love Alaska and I love the gospel. Thank you all for your support and your continued dedication.

Elder Hartman1

Thursday, September 22, 2011


So this will be a little bit more of a detailed e-mail than last week.

This last week was really good. The missionary work in Whitehorse is picking up, slowly, but surely. We are plowing the fields and planting the seeds. We have 2 lessons set up with new investigators we found. I love finding people to teach, it is challenging, but so rewarding when you receive the fruit of your labor. We had a Zone Conference recently, and interviews as well, which I was promised to have 1 more transfer here in Whitehorse, I was so happy! Elder Walker of the 70 is taking a mission tour of Alaska and he came and spoke to us. It was so great to see this man, who has dedicated the last 9 years of his life to the Lord, come and speak to us and share some of his experiences he had while on his mission and during his current call in the church. His call involves the temples, whenever there is a new temple announced, built, or about to be dedicated, he is involved in the whole process. It strengthens my testimony whenever I hear others bear theirs. The spirit was so strong in the room when he was telling us about setting his son apart as a missionary. He was the Stake President when his son came back from his mission, so he was interviewing him to set him apart. "It was a very tender moment" he described "my son, near the end of the interview, looked at me and said 'dad, I just want you to know I worked hard. I gave it my best'". He was so proud of his son when he said that. I loved how I felt after he told that story. I am proud because if I were to see dad right now, I would be able to tell him "dad, I am working hard and I am doing my best as a missionary". There is a lot I can improve on, I constantly try to better myself everyday. 

Every time I try to improve myself, I always feel reassurance from Heavenly Father that he is proud of me for what I am doing and trying to do His will. In our last sacrament meeting, we sung "I Stand All Amazed". I love that hymn. To think that someone, who was perfect in every aspect, would willingly suffer for me, freely, it is truly wonderful that "he would care for me, enough to die for me". It truly is wonderful to think about. I love this gospel. I love our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. He is my brother and my best friend. Thank you all for your support, I love you very much :)

"No one was sent on this earth to fail"
"If you are focused on worldly possessions, everything will always fall short. You will never have enough. If you are focused on the gospel, you will have ALL of the blessings. Heavenly Father makes sure of that".

Elder Hartman

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Chess Champion

Hello family,

So, I do not have a whole lot of time to e-mail this week. We are leaving for Skagway at 2, for Zone conference. I am so excited!! :) Pretty much, we picked up 2 new investigators this week. We have a lesson set up with them on Wednesday and Saturday. Things are looking good here in Whitehorse, we are slowly but surely progressing. Oh, and I also beat a member at chess who is way super good the other day. We were over at their houz to do service, and it has been a goal of mine to beat him, so I challenged him after and I won! So happy :) anyways. I will let you know how Zone conference goes next week. Again, sorry about the short e-mail. Spent a little too much time golfing ;) hahaha, love you all! Thank you again for your support!! :)

Elder Hartman 1

Monday, September 12, 2011

Dogs in Onesies

Hi again everybody!

Sounds like things are going just swell back in the blessed land of the States. I miss the states, I miss having a decent postal service, people who drive a little bit faster (the speed limit here is SOOOOOOOOO slow...) and grocery prices at decent amounts. I got the package from Summer that mom and dad had her send. Thank you very much for that! I really appreciate it!

A funny experience we had this week. We were tracting on the outskirts of town, just visiting some houses that are pretty far away that I am sure missionaries in the past have not visited. We were coming up to one and we see this dog in a pajama onesie. It had the butt flap and everything!  It was the koolest dog I have ever seen! I could not stand up cuz I was laughing so hard. I was sure to compliment the people on the outfit. Apparently the dog was their guard dog...I will send a picture and you tell me if it looks much like a guard dog, personally, I am not too threatened by a dog wearing pajamas, but that is just me tho :)
We went on splits last week. I went with Elder Johnson, our DL. It was really fun, the only downfall is that NO ONE was home that we planned to see, that was awkward. It is pretty difficult to find people. The hours from 1-4 are so hard to work during cuz that is when everyone is working. A lot of people have 2 full time jobs up here.

So, we are going to be receiving our District Callings soon. I am going to be the District: Complimentor, Activities Coordinator, Health Advisor (my personal favorite) and Scrapbook Committee Chairman. I know, the last one is a little odd, especially for me, but we are planning on making a District scrapbook while we are here. Don't have high expectations, I know NOTHING about scrapbook, but I can learn :) We gave ourselves the name "Whitehorse Warriors" pretty awesome name, I know. We came up with a scripture for us too, 2 Cor. 12:10, a bomb scripture if you ask me. It was between that and Alma 48:13, which I thought we should of had, but one of the Elders in our District thought it was too violent....for reputations sake, he will remain nameless :) not that it really matter anyways.
Oh my, so the other Elders stay at the family history center at the church for certain hours during the week. One of the days, they couldn't make it cuz they had something come up, so we went there for them. This lady came to do some history work too. She was very nice. Unfortunately, for the next 3 hours, all we could smell was cat urine. Man, that was just excruciating..

We started p90x today! I was so happy! The Thompsons are letting us come over in the mornings and do it. We get there at 6 and start, so not as early as Elder Meteer and I were doing it, thank goodness! Elder Bowes does not really like getting up in the mornings, so it is a trial for him to get up, but it is worth it!

I was thinking of a quote by President Monson. I read it in on the recent ensigns.
"Friends move away, children grow up, loved ones pass on. It's so easy to take others for granted, until that day when they're gone from our lives and we are left with feelings of 'what if' and 'if only'.
Let us relish life as we live it, find joy in the journey and share our love with friends and family. One day, each of us will run out of tomorrows. Let us not put off what is  most important".
It is true, how the people who make the biggest impact on our lives and have the best influence, are often the ones we tend to forget first and take for granted. There is that famous quote "you never know what you have 'till its gone". It is true, a lot of us do not realize what we do have. I always try to thank Heavenly Father for the wonderful, loving family that I am blessed with. Who have set the best examples for me and have always lent me a helping hand. For being patient with me and never ceasing to love me. I will always try to be grateful for what I do have and recognize it when I have it. I love you all, thank you again.

Elder Hartman1

Monday, September 5, 2011

I Have the Best Family Ever!

I just felt like expressing a portion of my gratitude on the subject line ;)

A man, this week was really good! I got a letter from Olex!!!! We have started writing each other once a week :) LOVE it!! :) I can hear his voice when I read his letters, we just reminisce a lot and just tell each other awesome stories :) mainly him cuz he always has a story to tell :) I also got Summers list of characteristics that my wife has to have. I really liked it!! It was a great list! So I think we can all agree that my wife has to for sure be a Yellow core at least, can we all agree on that? I know that we have quite the opinionated family, but I think we can start with that :) I also got the email where mom and dad were talking to Brad. I laughed when he said how he was probably getting more baptisms then us hahaha, but hey, in my defense, we do not get investigators that fall in our lap and whenever we go tracting, we NEVER pick up 15 new ones either, but he is living in poverty and I am not, so props to him for that :)

This week was really good! Did not have as much tracting hours as I would have liked, but that is just fine. I absolutely love tracting!! It is so much fun to talk to people and teach them at the door about the gospel. No mean to boast, but I can tell that Elder Bowes and I are getting better at it. I have seen a lot of improvement and we are getting so many potential investigators! I do not think that I will be fortunate to see this area have a lot of success yet, but I think pretty soon, it is going to blow up! We are just toiling the ground and planting the seeds right now. I have started writing in my journal every day now! I would usually write in it on occasion, but now I realize that I would have regretted that years from now, it is always fun to have something to look back on too :) Our district is awesome, last tuesday, after district meeting, we recorded Elder Johnson rapping and me playing the guitar, it was so much fun, our district is awesome! He is way good at coming up with lyrics on the spot and a super hard worker too! He has set a great example for me and helps me strive to work harder too :)

Man, so we were helping a lady move the other night. No offense to them, but they were totally unprepared to move. They procrastinated at were rushing it. They only had us Elders to help them move. We got there at 8, did not leave until 11. I know, we were out way past curfew, but they really needed the help. It was just very aggravating at times cuz the lady was being a little controlling at times, and you know how I do NOT like being controlled at all. It was just another experience to learn patience. I will send pictures of the truck after we had finished packing. It looked like they were transporting an elephant or something haha :)

Ok, so story time. On Friday, we were having a fast for some of the Elders in our mission who are opening up a new area. Well, the same day we were going on a bus trip for the old folks home in Copper Ridge (we usually go on fridays for service). The bus trip was lunch at a place called "Earls". We were fasting for breakfast and lunch, and we are pretty hungry, but we know we can go for one more meal. Well, when we get to the restaurant, the girl greeting us was not really dressed modestly. Very tight, revealing clothing, really short skirt, very fair daughter of God pretty much. We sit down, and I notice that every waitress in the restaurant is dressed like that! They have the girls dress like that for bigger tips. Elder Bowes and I had no idea about this place. We tell them we cannot order anything because we are on a special fast and they were understanding about that. Throughout the whole dinner, the people at our table are describing what is in their food and keep on offering us some, even tho we told them we can't. So the lunch involved a delicious meal that we could not partake of, while having tons of Bathshebas walking around. We were literally in a world of temptation in there! I pretty much just stared at the ceiling the whole time. I counted how many wine bottles they had on the wall, to keep me entertained. They had 107, a lot from the 1990s too actually.

I love each and everyone of you! I have been pretty bad with not responding to a lot of your e-mails, but I do read them and I will put forth a better effort to respond. Thank you for supporting me! I love you!! Oh and Briar happy birthday!!!! Sorry, I am awful with birthday wishing! :( haha

For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also - 3 Nephi 13:21
Love, Elder Hartman 1

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


Well hello once again everybody. I hope everything is crackalakin' in your
humble abodes :)

I am so jealous of mom and dad seeing Brad in Madagascar and having a
vacation during their lucky! But hey, in your defense, you
have both paid your dues, so I think you have both earned it, so I will just
put my foot where my mouth is! Hahaha ;)

So I figured out why my pants keep on ripping at the seam in between my
legs....I have stretch marks on my inner thighs! Chub chub here is either
gettin yolked a little too fast, or just putting on his winter coat early ;)
either way, I was very surprised when I discovered that. I took my 3 pairs
of pants (ya that is right, I ripped 3 pairs of pants) to a lady in our ward
who is a master seamstress and she gladly sewed them all up, bless her
heart. I am trying to exercise in the morning, I am on and off with that. I
just love the peace and quiet in the morning, I don't know why. I know, I am
a weird person, but I just like sitting there and pondering, it is a very
peaceful time of day :) but I will make an effort to get back into shape for

This week was a hard week. One thing I can assure you, is that we are
working hard. It is just a little disappointing right now, cuz our numbers,
if you were to see them, would show that we are not working hard. We have
had low numbers the last 2 weeks. We are focusing on finding. We did only
about 10 hours of tracting this last week, but I think we need to do more,
hopefully we will average about 2-3 hours a day. I do know that no effort is
ever wasted on a mission. I always try to remember that when we tract all
day and literally have no success. We do, however, leave pamphlets at almost
every door we stop at. A lot of the time, they just say "we are not
interested, but we will take the pamphlet", which is just a nicer way of
getting rid of us faster. I hope that if I do not see a lot of success
personally, that the next set of Elders will be fortunate to. I think that
we are just planting a lot of seeds right now. 

We got new phones the other day. Samsung Galaxies. Wow, these
phones are waaaaaaaaaay to nice for missionaries to have, at least in my
opinion. Touch screen and everything. I am sure all of my buddies who are
foreign are thinking that we are spoiled, which we are, living wise, I
cannot complain about that. We struggle with finding people, but are good
living wise, while a lot of other missionaries have vice versa. I think Brad
mentioned that to mom and dad. Do not worry, my hat is tipped to the Elders
who literally walk thro slums and are in major poverty, it is a big
affliction you have to face, but one that the Lord is aware of that you are
in :) I love my mission. I love all of the afflictions I go thro because
they are what make me a man. Last night as we got back, I looked at my right
hand, cuz that is the one I usually knock on doors with, and it is beat up
and has some scratches. I don't know why, but I was happy to have that scar.
It showed that I worked hard that day. "I earned my scar". That is what I
think us as missionaries have to do. We experience trials and afflictions
for our personal benefit. Jesus Christ earned his scars, in his hands and in
his feet, symbolizing all of the afflictions that he went thro. That is what
went thro my mind as I looked at my bruised hand. For that day, I had earned
my scar and I can show everyone that I worked :) It was interesting
comparing my situation to the new Elder who is out here. His suit is new and
all of his journals and planners look very nice. Although I have only been
out for 8 months, which is not all that long I know, I looked at some of my
stuff and it is starting to show some use and get some tears here and there.
I love "earning my scars" so I have proof of the work I did :) Thank you
again everyone for your support, the Lord is aware of your effort and I know
without a doubt that you will be blessed for it :)

Elder Hartman

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


Hey hey hey hey once again evvvvvverybody :)
I got the package that Summer sent with the healthy snacks, thank you so much! They are all almost gone actually hahaha :) sorry, I am really hungry! About my medicine mom, I will be fine till the end of the month, I have a whole other bottle, so I will be good till the next one comes, don't worry :)
My new comp is way awesome! He is from Roxboro, North Carolina. Way sweet, we get along really well :) The other companionship is Elder Johnson, who is from Arizona, and Elder Record, who is from Spanish Fork Utah, he is being trained out here, I am so jealous of him for that reason....they live about 5-10 minutes away from us, we don't really see them that much while we are working cuz now we are more focused in our areas, which is way nice. This area is really special. To have 2 companionships in one branch says something about it. Elder Johnson was saying that we are in history in the making here, I agree. I hope this area just explodes!
Well, I found out one thing about myself. I love to tract and talk to people while tracting. We tracted everyday, for the last few days, and averaged about 2 1/2-3 hours of tracting, I plan on doing more. I absolutely love tracting and talking to people. Whenever we are tracting, I usually end up talking to the person at the door for about 10 minutes! Someone was passing thro Whitehorse, and he served in the California, Riverside mission and did a lot of tracting. I asked him if he had any advice to share about tracting, cuz I wanted to improve with it, he said "just be yourself. Don't be intimidated by the person you are talking to". I took that advice and I used it and it worked! It is funny, a few times we actually did not end up sharing the gospel, just talking to the person. We asked if we could come back another time or get a number, most said no. Was our effort wasted? Of course not, no effort on a mission is ever wasted! It is just so much fun talking to people and getting to know them. I kind of observe the person at the door to try and find something to talk about. At one house, the girl answered and we gave her the whole shbeal (I don't know how to spell it) and she said she did not have time to talk about that. I noticed she was wearing a belt buckle with a gymnist girl doing a pose, so I asked "are you a gymnist?" she said yes and from that, we had a wonderful 10 minute conversation. I know NOTHING about gymnastics, so how we managed to talk to her for that long was pretty impressive! We asked if we could come back when there was a better time, and she said she works a lot, so she can't really say, so just try and if she is home, great! We went from "I don't really have time for this" to "ya, if I am home, we can chat" even tho it was not all that promising, it was still progress eh?? So awesome :) I plan on tracting everyday for a long time, cuz President Beesley wants our areas tracted out! I noticed something about myself. I know this sounds weird, but I am a relaxed, hard worker. Does that make sense? I know it sounds weird, but I discovered that about me. If I run at my own pace, I love working, absolutely love it!! I do not like idling in the least, especially on a mission! I am so grateful this mission has taught me to value work. I think in the gospel principles booklet, it talks about work the best. It helped me alter my view towards it. I like working to earn something. I love to work, to earn rest :) I love this gospel. I love all of you very much. Thank you again for your support!
"The most effective way to preach the gospel is through example" - Dieter F. Uchtdorf
"Preach the gospel at all times and if necessary, use words" - Saint Francis of Assisi
Elder Hartman1

Monday, August 15, 2011

I Love Unicorns...and the Gospel

Hello everyone,

Things here are wonderful, everything is going swell :) I got a package from Dani that had a Charlie the Unicorn shirt in it. I am totally wearing that with pride around my new companion :)

This week was a really good week. I will start with missionary work then inform you on transfers :). We finally contacted this family we have been trying to contact for the last few weeks. We went there with Bro. Nunez, and taught them the first lesson. I think they are from Somalia? I could be way wrong, but now I understand how Africa is ready for the Gospel. At first, the wife was pretty quiet and the husband was the main one talking pretty much. At the end of the lesson, when we introduced the Book of Mormon, the wife was super enthusiastic, asking tons of questions about it and everything. It was such a great lesson! It was nice to get a taste of what mom and dad, Stephen, and Brad are experiencing, these people are most definitely ready for the Gospel! We also started to visit a member family and teach their kids. The parents are both members, the dad used to be less active, and the mom just recently got baptized. The dad wants us to help the kids realize how important the church is and try and make it their first priority. It was so much fun teaching them, we showed them the video, "Moments that Matter Most", on (one of my favorite videos), President Uchtdorf gave a talk on it and it is an amazing video, love it! I told the kids a quote from Howard W. Hunter, I believe was who said it, that I got in a package a little bit ago from mom and dad I think (thank you!!) that says "if our lives are centered on Jesus Christ and his restored Gospel, nothing can ever go permanently wrong". Then we explained how, if we put the Lord first, everything else has a way of falling into place, and it really does!! We are faced with so many choices everyday and if we try our best to follow the Savior's example and do what he would do, we NEVER regret the choice we make. I came up with a little quote I love to say to missionarys, investigators, comps, whoever. "Do you want temporary satisfaction, or everlasting joy?" if we let Satan tempt us and if we give him power, then we make the choice of being temporarily satisfied, we are happy for a little bit, but after wards, we pay the price. It is also vice versa, if we allow the Savior to work in our lives, we may temporarily regret the choice, but when the blessings follow after wards, we receive a fullness of joy :). This Gospel ROCKS!!!!! I absolutely LOVE IT!!

As with transfers, my new comp that I am getting is Elder Bowes, his first name is Taylor, so I can already tell he is an outstanding missionary :) The other set of Elder's I do not really know, one of them is training out here! That is pretty crazy. Oh I am actually going to be the Senior companion now! I am anxious to be the one that plans out everything, I hope he likes to tract, cuz I really enjoy tracting and finding people and giving everyone a chance to hear the message we share :). They will arrive here on Wednesday night, Elder Meteer leaves that morning. I wish him safe travels, he is a fantastic missionary and helped me in so many ways. I was really blessed to serve with him and he is a invaluable asset to this mission :) Thank you all again for everything you do and all of your support. I love you all!

-Alma 37:6
It is the smallest things that make the biggest difference (my quote too, don't steal it!!)

Elder Hartman1 

Monday, August 8, 2011

Don't Eat the Cashews

Everyone, hello, this is your favorite Elder speaking :)

I keep on trying to come up with new, funny ways to start my letters, but I can never think of anything funny that I haven't already used. First off, congratulations Thai Thai on your baptism!! I loved the pictures!! That is so exciting what you just did. You are now a part of the biggest/coolest family in the world!! Also, happy birthday to: Matt, who was on the 22nd of last month, Thailee, who was on the 28th, and Berkley, who was on the 29th! Sorry, I was going to give a shout out in my last e-mail, but I forgot and got sidetracked, a thousand apologies for my inconsideration :'(. I cannot believe mom and dad get to go on a vacation during their mission.....that is SO not fair! Oh well, I am sure they have earned it anyways, so I will try my best not to be bitter ;)
Here is a place we went to eat with a family from the branch. This sandwich is HUGE and so good!
A lot has/will be happening this week. We still do not know for sure if we are getting another set of Elders up here due to housing issues (we are having trouble making sure the place we have selected for them is good to go). We know how we are going to split the area. Luckily, I will actually not be losing anyone we are teaching right now with the way we are splitting it, I was so relieved with that. Oh and yes Terra, it is a branch up here, we are trying to push to make it a ward, so hopefully the other set of Elders will be able to help with that :) Transfers are next week, we are going to get our call on Saturday nights now for transfers, so we can say goodbye to people we are teaching on Sunday, then prepare to leave on Monday, then Tuesday go to wherever we are getting transferred. I, personally, like that a lot and hope it goes over well. I am nervous to see who my next companion is, as I am sure you are all well aware of at this point :). I know he will be the one that I need at this point in time on my mission. I know that every companion we get, we get for a reason so we can learn lessons about ourselves from each other.
A picture of the view from a walk we took the other day.
So, I discovered that my body does NOT react well to cashews. The other night, one of our investigators moms is visiting from India, so we decided to stop by and introduce ourselves and get to know her better. Well, she brought some sweets from India, one of them was milk mixed with cashews and sugar. I figured no harm could come from it and I wanted to try it. Well, I ate it, and I got that tingly feeling in my mouth, the one where you eat something your body is not used to. Later that night, it got worse, and I had this pain right in the center of my stomach. I started to make frequent bathroom trips, and then started throwing up pretty good for about 2 hours. It was not a pleasant experience. I weighed myself after wards to see how much weight I lost. I lost 7 lbs!!! I should get sick more often! hahahaha kidding, ;)
I decided that my most favorite sound in the world is the sound of cracking my scriptures open. I absolutely LOVE that sound. I love marking my scriptures so much and learning new things from them. I love how personal this gospel is. We experience extremely personal trials, and also experience personal blessings as well. It is so weird how the scriptures can relate to us at our current circumstance in life. That is how I know that book is true, there is no other book on this earth that could do that, unless it was from God and true. I am grateful for this opportunity to be out here on a mission. I love it with all my heart, and will try to use the time I have in the best way I can. Thank you all again for your support and everything you do. I love you!

-Alma 41:14-15 (what goes around, comes around)
Elder Hartman1

Monday, August 1, 2011


Once again everyone, ola

It is so weird how the longer you are out on your mission, the faster time seems to go by, I cannot believe it is already August!! Yikes, depressing thought. I got, I believe, 2 letters this week, one from Bekah and the other from Kaitie, thank you ever so much for writing me, I really appreciate all of the support!

So, the mission President came up and visited the area with the AP's. I was a little nervous at first, not towards President Beesley coming, but the AP's, cuz they were going to be staying with us. It turned out to be really fun! You know those bouncy balls you sent me in the package last week? Well, we had a huge bouncy ball war and threw them at each other in the apartment, great fun, great fun indeed :). So, they are going to be splitting the area, a little depressing at first, but after some thought towards it, I realized that it was the best decision. It will be easier for us to focus on a more condensed area, and plus, we will be saving TONS of kilometers (hopefully). I am a little nervous for the new Elders they are going to be bringing up here (they will be bringing up a new set of Elders and my new companion as well, so 3 new missionaries total). I will give you a list of reasons why I am a little discouraged at the thought:

1. They do not know the area at all, therefore I will be getting a lot of calls on how to get what place, and I am not good with directions at all! (You know me with details...)
2. Obedience has been an issue here in the past and I hope that the other companionship will be obedient and not fall into apostasy, I hope not to chastise!!!
3. Hopefully my new companion is kool and relaxed and likes to tract, cuz I wanna do a lot of tracting these next 2 transfers.
4. My biggest worry is that my new comp will be a little more on the fluffy side (fat) and will not want to do p90x...

It was fun meeting with President and Sister Beesley tho, I really like them and enjoy being around them. I know he is the right Mission President for me. Serving a mission is, hands down, the best decision I have made at this point in my life! Now I know why Dad is so big on young men serving missions! Why would you NOT want to serve a mission?? You literally only gain from it, in no way do you lose anything at all. I absolutely love this mission and am so grateful the Lord provided me with this opportunity to come out and help spread the gospel and testify of Jesus the Christ. I love this gospel with all my heart and always strive to be more Christlike in my everyday life. I absolutely LOVE reading from the scriptures, oh my goodness is it great! I also really enjoy reading from "Mormon Doctrine" by Bruce R. McKonkie, such a great book, one that has helped me immensely in my studies and has answered so many questions I had. Hopefully the new Elders plan on being obedient! Gotta start praying and having hope! I love each and everyone of you. Thank you so much for your support.

The meaning of life is to discover your gift. The purpose of life is to give your gift away.
Love, Elder Hartman1

Monday, July 25, 2011

I Love My Mission

Hello once again everybody,

Wow, it literally seems like I just wrote home, like a few minutes is so weird how time just walks right on by. I got 3 packages this week!! I know I am super spoiled, I admit it, but what's new?? Ha ha, but 2 of them were from Summer, one was one of the packages from mom and dad and the other was from her. The 3rd was from Carol! I was so happy when I saw that! She made me a unicorn pillow cover with rainbows!!!! I was on cloud 9 the rest of the day. I instantly put it on when we got home. I will take a pic and send it when I can. Thank you very much for your support, it means a lot.

This week was really good! We went on a hike Saturday morning up Grey Mountain as a ward activity. I have to tell you, it was GORGEOUS!!! Oh my gosh!!!!! It is so amazing how Heavenly Father knows how much I love the wind and love views of lush green forests and fields....I am in the PERFECT place for it!!! I stood on the edge of a cliff for probably about 5 minutes just taking in the peace and quiet and feeling the wind rush around moment I will never forget! We are going to try and do an activity like that every Saturday now because everyone had so much fun, plus it would be a great way to fellowship investigators and less actives as well :) Anshil, who was baptized recently, came and loved it! I was so glad he had a good experience out of it. After we were done and riding down the mountain in the cars, he asked "do you do this every Saturday?", that was awesome to hear :)

We finally got a hold of a less active we have been trying to contact for a long time the other day. They were going strong, but then just went cold and fell away, a pretty common thing on this mission unfortunately. We just started talking, normal conversation and then she said that she wants to come back to church, but she is scared no one will accept her and everyone will turn away. We kept on promising that that is not the case at all! I read her Matthew 11:28-30, a "tender mercy" scripture I like to call it (which I have a TON of, I love those scriptures!!) if you ever need comfort, read that scripture, it helps so much and has blessed me immensely!

I want to tell all of you how much I love my mission. These last 7 months have been the best months of my life!!! Although I have had some incredibly hard times and have had a lot of trials, after I had gone thro it, I always thank Heavenly Father for putting that trial in my path so I can grow from it. It has been so hard to press on at times and there has been some times where my testimony has been tried. I love this work, with all the conviction and sincerity in my heart. I love it because I get to be a part of something great! That has always been something I have wanted to do, be a part of something that matters, that is important. Be a part of something that will change the world. I have so many things to be grateful for, I have the best friends in the world, who are all out serving missions and have been nothing but uplifting for me! Seriously, I never realized how blessed I was with my friends, we never worried about bad influence when we were with each other (for the most part ;) kidding) none of us ever had a problem with drugs or alcohol or any of that stuff, we were only positive influences. Then my family who is supporting me so much and been the best family anyone could ask for. Thank you so much for always helping me thro struggles in life and being so positive with me. I cannot begin to thank you enough for everything you have done for me. You all continue to support me as I am out here and say how grateful you are for me. It means the world to me, thank you so much. I love each and everyone of you immensely!! I love my mission and I am so glad to be a part of this marvelous work!! Like Ammon (my favorite person from the Book of Mormon) glories in God in Alma 26, I join him in thanking Heavenly Father. Thank you everyone for everything you have done, your service was not in vain :)

People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel.

Elder Hartman1