Monday, August 20, 2012

First Baptism!

Hello everyone,
It's been another great week here in Ottawa. We've knocked a lot of doors, taught a lot of lessons, and... had a baptism! It was so awesome. His name is Jesus Rodriguez. He's 18 and the missionaries have been working with him for a while but the baptismal dates kept falling through, but finally everything worked out. The baptism went great and I there spirit was there. He asked me to confirm him in church the next day! I accepted but I was so scared. First time I've ever done that. Hopefully my voice didn't sound too shaky because it felt shaky. It was an awesome opportunity though. 

All the recent converts in the ward are so awesome. Steve Sauve is the one who got baptized just before I came in. He's engaged to one of the members in the ward and they've had us over for dinner like 3 weeks in a row. They are already some of my favorite people. They'll be getting married in a year or so but chances are I won't be able to make it since I'm pretty sure I won't stay in Ottawa for a year. Last p-day we went to the museum of science and technology and it was pretty sweet. Then on Tuesday we had zone conference so President Cannon and the A.P.'s came out to Ottawa. It was really good. Then I had splits... with another greenie... in my area. So I was basically leading everything. Lessons, contacts, driving. It was a growing experience but it went alright. It rained on us again yesterday but I don't mind the rain too much. I prefer it to the beads of sweat down my back haha. We've continued to have dinner appointments almost every night, and almost every night we get fed ice cream. I think I've gained even more weight since I left the MTC. Overall everything's going well. I appreciate the letters! Sorry if it takes a little time to write back. Thanks for all the support!
Elder Oxborrow

Thursday, August 16, 2012

WEEK 2 (in Canada)

Hello everyone!
It's been a great week! It's rained a lot and when it rains here it reminds me of Alaska. It's crazy how many people I've met knocking doors haha. Some pretty crazy ones too. Everything from Jehovah's witness to atheist philosophers to this crazy guy who almost closed the door on us but then he decided to ask us if we believed that the world was going to end this year haha. We actually had a miracle knocking though this week which was awesome. We knocked and this door and a guy named Dan answered and said he had been researching Mormons like that morning so we gave him a Book of Mormon and told him we'd come by later, so Saturday we went back and talked to him. We asked him if he'd read and he said "yeah but I was only able to get through the first book." He read all of first Nephi! Haha so awesome. He said he really enjoyed it and feels like there was a reason we showed up at his door. He said that he's pretty sure that it's a sign from God. He was cooking dinner so we couldn't teach him that night but we have an appointment set up for Tuesday. Hopefully it goes well. We also taught a lesson in French yesterday. She's an African lady who speaks English and French. That was super cool. I feel like I can say what I need to in French but when it comes to understanding everything they're saying, I need to improve ha. I keep meeting so many awesome people. The ward is amazing and the recent converts are so strong. This one guy named Steven just got baptized a couple weeks ago and you can just see how the Gospel turned his whole life around. I'm still working on the Canadian accent and it's coming along eh. Oh yeah and milk comes in bags in Canada. Super weird haha. We get free Subway once a week since there's a member who owns a bunch of them in Ottawa. Today for P-day we're going to the Science and Technology museum. All is well.
Elder Oxborrow

Tuesday, August 7, 2012


Family and friends,
I made it safely to Montreal, and met the mission president and his wife and it all went great. I described most of that in the last e-mail. The next morning, I got to find out what area I'd be serving and.... Ottawa! I'm in an English zone so that makes it a little easier haha. It was about a 2 and a half hour bus ride from the island of Montreal, and while I was on the bus I actually sat next to a guy from Western Canada and had a long conversation with him and for a lot of time we talked about religion. He had a lot of questions about missionary work and some other doctrinal things so I answered those and then when we got to the stop I gave him a Book of Mormon and he promised me he'd read it. So that was cool, but anyway the area is called Fallowfield and there's an awesome ward here. My companion is Elder Rasmussen from Highland Utah and he's been in this area for about 8 months so he knows it really well. They actually had a baptism the Tuesday I was flying in. His name is Steve and he's super cool. He invited me to stand in the circle to confirm him so that was cool. Got to stand in the confirmation circle my first Sunday here haha. Since it was testimony meeting the bishop asked me to come up and share my testimony and I forgot to introduce myself haha. I didn't say my name or where I was from ha. Oh well I'm just a greenie. The ward is super supportive of missionary work though so it's awesome. We've had dinner appointments almost every night since I've been here. We have four hours of study every morning. 1 hour each for: personal, companionship, language, and training. We've done a lot of knocking since I got here. It's not bad but I don't like feeling like I'm bothering people but I'll get over it haha. It's been really hot here it got up to like 38 degrees celsius and it's so humid ha. It makes it so you can't escape the heat even in the shade. Our apartment is attached to some members' home and they are really nice. It's funny cause everyone up here actually says "eh" a lot and has a Canadian accent haha. So we had some pretty awesome experiences already. Yesterday we were out knocking and we weren't having any success so just as we were getting ready to head back to the car we saw a guy walking down the side walk so we decided to talk to him. We told him who we were and about the Book of Mormon and it turned out that he had read some of it before and even prayed about it and had a really good feeling when he did and he felt like there was "something to it". He even said he'd buy one from us! Haha so we gave him one and told him to read the introduction and we got his contact information and everything so we've got high hopes for him. I guess fasting works! Then today since it's p-day we were doing laundry (at a laundromat) and a lady approached us and asked us for a Book of Mormon. We were amazed haha. 2 perfect investigators in 2 days! Turns out her husband used to be mormon and it seemed like he still had a pretty strong testimony so I'm not sure why he went inactive but I guess they were going to a different church and didn't like how their church would teach one thing and then turn around and do another. So I guess for a couple months now she's been seeing the missionaries at the laundromat and trying to work up the courage to ask! She knew exactly when we were going to be there! It was pretty crazy. So we talked to them for quite some time and got their information and gave them a Book of Mormon, and they even wanted another one so she could give it to her mom. So we've already had a couple miracles just in my time here. The work seems to be pressing forward strongly in this area. Before this year, the ward's record for baptisms was 3 in a year, and at the start of this year they made a goal to have 8. So far they have 4 and we have one date set for an investigator, and some more promising investigators popping up. We get to drive pretty much everywhere we go since the area is so huge, and we drive a 2012 Subaru so that's super nice. There's a lot of different kinds of people up here. You never know who's gonna come to the door when you knock. Some people like to talk, a lot don't haha. A few are rude which is funny cause we just tell them to have a nice day very politely haha. This one guy and his brother started bible bashing us so we had to get outta there ha. Basically I'm just trying to learn as much as I can and get used to the schedule. I'm always wiped out (and usually sticky from sweat and humidity) When we get back to the apartment. I can't figure out why I'm so tired in the morning though because I sleep way better here than I did in the MTC. I do kinda miss it there though since I could play basketball every day. That was nice. We actually can't play basketball at all here since so many missionaries have gotten injured but at least we can play instruments and listen to music. Well I won't make this too much longer. All is well, and they weren't lying when they said it would be hard work. I hope I'll adjust to it more and be less tired. It feels like it's been a lot longer than a week since I got here, and it hasn't even been that yet haha. Well I'm doing well and I hope you all are too.
Love, Elder Oxborrow

p.s. Since I'm pretty far from the mission office, it will probably be more effective to send mail to the apartment. The address there is:

3231 Steeple Hill Crescent
Ottawa, ON K0A