T.H.E. Mission

T.H.E. Mission

Sunday, December 19, 2010

December 13, 2010

How ya'll doin’ this week?

We'll so far the Christmas day phone call is going to the homemade caramels!!!!! They were amazing, thanks so much for not giving up after ruining the first 4 batches! They were super amazing. So yeah, sorry mom, best step up the game a lil or its gonna be a quiet Christmas around the house for ya!!! Life is going great were still on track to have our baptism for the navidad which will be super sweet. Everything is going great down here, "other than the weather." One day it will be 75 and the next 45 but all in all, it’s still really not gotten too cold. It just gets chilly, with the humidity it cuts through ya but Utah is still a lot colder.

We had our ward Christmas dinner this last week and it was super good. Lots and lots of tamales and good stuff. They gave us all of the leftovers too that was night, so we’re gonna be eating tamales for a good lil while. They gave us like 75 leftover ones!!!

Life has never really been better though, we’re really enjoying everything together. We have started a prank war between us and the U of H elders that live right next door to us, so that’s really keeping things pretty fun and interesting. We’re having a good time!!! We’re going to have our mission Christmas conference this Thursday so that will be pretty fun, The entire mission is getting together so it’s gonna be super fun.

We also got to help with a pretty neat service project. We did a Christmas fun type thing with bounce houses and everything like that for all the kids with cancer in Texas Children’s Hospital. They took us to the airport to do it, so that was torture but it was super fun to get to help make their Christmas. The more that we talk to people about Christmas the harder it is. We run into so many people that don’t even have enough money to get a Christmas tree for their kids or a gift for them and it’s pretty hard. There are a lot of the guys that we talk to that are just sending a box back to Mexico for their family full of nothing but food. They said that’s all their family has asked for for Christmas. We are very blessed to be able to sit down in a warm house and have a nice Christmas meal as a family!!!!

Were doing a bunch of gifts here too, just among some of the friends here on the mission to so it’s pretty fun. Life is great! Thanks for everything y’all are doing for us out here as the lords soldiers!!!

We have our Christmas conference so we just thought we'd hurry and cut our hair last night and got in a lil’ bit too big of a hurry, it looks not so bad now though!!!

Thanks for everything and I hope y’all have a great Christmas!!!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Life in Texas.

Casey always finds a way to have fun.

Casey is doing great. Latest Letter.

November 15, 2010

Hey Hey ya'll

Well this week was a pretty good one here in Texas we got some nice rain and its almost started to get a lil bit chilly down here. Sounds like y’all have gotten some snow though huh?? That’s great for you! Well, this last week we had like 12 gators at church so it was super cool it was the most that had been there in a long time and our family of 6 that is progressing super good didn’t make it so were really doing good and the branch is super fired up down here. It’s really cool and gonna be super rough if I get transferred this next week. The members all already have some super cool plans for us for Christmas and thanksgiving and stuff i feel closer to some of the members here than i did some of them in Fayette after 19 years of being there with ‘em. They’re super cool and I’ve already got a trip to Mexico planned with one of them when i come back down. I helped him hang up his Christmas lights Friday night and just about fell off the roof so that was fun to!!!

Life is going Great! We’re going to the temple tomorrow as well. So that will be awesome, then doing some service project - putting bikes together for kids for Christmas. Life is good though there. We have a few families that are getting super close to baptism and were pretty sure that they will. The Lord is really blessing us down here and its great. Another thing that we got that I’m not too sure about down here is we all got texting and so it’s just weird to text down here now. I really don’t like it anymore, but I guess all the missions in the U.S. are getting it, so not much I can do about it.

Life is good though and I hope everything is going great. Congrats to Cody and Beth too! That’s pretty exciting, but life is over now for ya so hope ya enjoyed it - - -

Also I’m super stoked for Chuck !!! He’s gonna be the best missionary Mexico has seen in its history. He’ll be able to show the narcos what’s up. Life is great though and he’ll do amazing.

Love y’all tonz and sorry this is short, but our day is cut super short cuz were going to the temple tomorrow.

Also thanks a ton for the letters and support. It really helps out a lot, especially the home made jelly.

con Amor Elder Bown

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Mexican Independence Day

Click on the Picture to make it larger.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Casey was transfered to Baytown

That’s the new hot spot in Texas ill tell ya that much!!!!!!

Whats up familiares???

So pretty much I don’t think that I’ve ever been this happy in my life. We’re white washing the entire city of Baytown Texas!!!!! We are the only 2 Spanish missionaries in the entire zone so we get everybody that is Spanish. It is gonna be amazing! Our branch is about 70 but the Branch President just prophesied that the branch is going to have 100 baptisms in the next year. There have only been 2, so that means that we have a good 98 baptisms to look forward to, which is enough to make anybody happy, I believe. We met up with 2 families last night and it was awesome. They are so excited to help us out and do everything that they can, so it’s gonna be amazing. I’m happier than I think I’ve ever been on the mission and I feel great too. I just got outta the chiropractor getting my back realigned. He’s a member, so we get free services como misioneros, so it’s great!!!! I feel good and we’re gonna baptize like crazy. My comp was just released from being zone leader, so he is super happy to be a normal missionary and just focus on the work. We’re gonna do miracles! He only has 4 transfers left before he dies (goes home) so that’s sad but his Spanish is great and so mine is gonna improve a ton this transfer!!!!

We also got the privilege of speaking in sacrament last week right before I left, so that was super cool, but hard at the same time. It was seriously just like my farewell all over again. It was pretty rough leaving behind everybody, almost as hard as the first farewell.

So yeah our ward mission leader here lived in Utah for 10 years and was comps with Carl Sorensen on his mission. Small world! Pres Palmroy is over our area to so I’ll get to talk with him a lot, which will be cool. He is the brother-in-law of Bruce and Kathy Williams . . .

Everything really is going great our apt is super nice and so it’s a nice change and this area is a lot like Provo I think menos (minus) the mountains. So its super nice to get outta H-town for a bit and I’ve actually seen white people already today! So its crazy, I think during my last 4 months in Denver Harbor I maybe saw 10 white people the entire time. So good to be back. But there aren’t quite as many Hispanics either, but that’s ok. We will find them we gotta huge area to cover. So it’s gonna be great! Everybody is stoked to get to work and help us. Both the families we visited last night said that their happy that they can understand us and can speak Spanish with us, which is funny because I’m still pretty much the youngest Spanish missionary out here - menos (minus) the nuevo (new) this week. So that made me feel good. I’m to the point now where I can pretty much understand everything and say what I need to just gotta work on expanding my vocab and a few things but its great. I love it here!!! President Moldenhaur pretty much told us that he was sending us 2 here to fulfill prophecy and revelation and to baptize. It will be great. I had an interview with him the other day that was a good 45 mins long and there only supposed to be 10, so I don’t know about that. But it was super good and I loved it. I heard exactly what I needed to, so everything is going good. We’re seeing a ton of miracles and blessings here, so everything is going great. Thanks a ton for everything that you’re all doing, your prayers are definitely felt.

Let me know if there is anything that I can do for y’all thanks a ton and love y’all.

Love your Tex Mex from Baytown

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Casey is having a great Summer.

(Click on the picture to make it larger)
Casey is doing great in Texas. He really loves it there. He truly loves the people of Texas and also the food. This week he enjoyed an early morning trip to the temple as well as helping with a baptism. It is much better than last week when he was robbed. But he always stays so positive and up beat. We miss you Casey but wouldn't want you anywhere else.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Pictures From Casey

Casey on P-Day

The Spanish North District

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Houston Weather

This is a picture of Casey in the middle of the road after their brief encounter with a hurricane.

A gorgeous Houston Sunset.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Casey is staying in Denver Harbor

Casey is so happy he is staying in Denver Harbor. He is able to continue the work with the people of that area that he loves so much. Here is his letter from this week.

Hola Hola,

So I’m staying in Denver Harbor for one more transfer and I getta go pick up my new comp in a hour from now so that will be pretty fun. We’re all guessing and pretty sure that its Elder Oman but who knows. Well find out in a bit. It’d be super cool if it is him though cuz he’s already served there and so he will know the area and things like that it will be super good.

So I don’t think the good news you left me hanging with last week was anything near what i was thinking. IM SO STOKED FOR PUEBLA MEXICO TO GET CHUCK!!!!!!!!!!! o sea Elder Hammond. That’s gonna be super tight and crazy fun I’ve already started finding some people from down there and they say it’s beautiful and the temperature is super good so you lucked out bro! Congrats I’m stoked, Also for Chris to get out here in Texas with me its gonna be super fun for him. Texas is a super fun beautiful place too. It’s just sometimes a bit hot and super flat but the sky is big so that’s pretty fun.

So sounds like you’re all keeping pretty good and busy with everything. That’s great to hear! The idle mind is a scary thing and will get you into trouble more often than not.

Ah this week was a good one though, we helped a family clean out an old bar for a wedding and stuff and so that was a rather eventful time. We found some pretty INTERESTING things for lack of better words haha. But then the wedding was super fun they sure do know how to party......

Ah everything is going great though. This will be the hottest transfer of the year so if I survive this one I’ll survive the rest the year so we’ll see what happens. Marcalino, the guy I baptized, we taught him again yesterday and he asked us for a few more B.O.M's cuz he gave his 2 away to some of his friends so that was amazing. He’s already doing missionary work and we got super happy. He is giving us people to teach and everything! It’s great to see the change he has had in his life. He says he’s never been happier. That’s probably one of my favorite things about the mission is just seeing the change in people’s lives and getting to be a part of it. Everything is good though, thanks so much for everything. I love hearing from y’all.

Love Your Texi Mexi,
Elder Bown

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

May 19, 2010

Hey Hey hows the family doing today?
Yesterday was a super nice day, it was about 80 or so all day. But today is upper 90's, so its kinda rough. Everything is going great! We've already taught 2 more lessons today from 11 till now and got another guy committed to baptism. He is really excited, we just gotta figure out a few things with him he doesn't know how to read. So we're gonna round up some audio stuff for him but he is solid.....

Thanks for all your prayers. I love ya'll and have never had this much fun in life! It's the best time of my life by far being here changing other peoples lives. Yesterday we taught some guy that just had 2 deaths in his family in one week and it was amazing.

Life has never been this good. Love ya'll thanks for the prayers.

Elder Bown

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Chris' Mission Call

Casey's Cousin Chris received his mission call tonight. May 13, 2010. We were so excited to share in the excitement of his call.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mother's Day Phone Call!

We were so excited to talk to Casey today! That really is the best Mother's Day gift for a missionary mom! We certainly get excited to get a personal word with our missionaries!

Just wanted to let you know Casey sounds great! He is happy to be out in the Mission field and getting to work. He was happy because he got to help a family run cement in their driveway and enjoyed the physical work.

He gave us a mailing address and we looked it up on google earth. It looks like he has a decent apartment. He says he can sit on his porch and see cactus, palm trees and pine trees. If he rides his bike up a berm, he can see the skyscrapers of downtown Houston as well. He seems to be getting involved and loving the chance to get to know the members. He hasn't had much chance to get to know his mission president yet, but I am sure he will. There are 6 Spanish speaking sisters in his zone.

He loves eating with the members, he really appreciates brisket that has been cooked in a smoker all day. Beans and tortillas with every meal - he is learning to love it. Otherwise he is living on cocoa puffs and sugar smacks.

There is a Spanish speaking stake in Houston, there are 4 stakes total there. Casey says there are other Spanish wards and branches as well as a stake. There is even an article on the missionaries working with the Spanish in Houston.

Casey says that they will get to go to the Houston Temple twice each year. It is about 45 minutes away. He is looking forward to getting to hear Elder Holland, who comes to speak in Houston each year.

He said he sweats because of the heat, only in the 80's so far, but lots of humidity. He says it is different heat than here at home, he sweats from everywhere, places he didn't even know would sweat.

His typical day is get up about 6:30 am, exercise or run, then shower and eat breakfast. Then he has an hour of personal study, an hour of companion study, and then an hour of language study before they head out for the day. They have to bike a couple of blocks to get into their area, then spend the day working. They have to be back in by about 9 or 9:30. His P-day will be on Wednesday.

He said that the most exciting thing to happen yet is that they have committed two sisters to baptism and now are starting to teach their mother.

We look forward to talking to him again at Christmas. Thanks for all each of you do to support him. Keep all the missionaries in your prayers, they have a great work to do!


Casey's First Letter from Texas

Olah Olah!

So so so I dunno where to even start from. Its been about the weirdest week of my life, haha, but its been a good sorta weird i suppose. Sorry I forgot to write down our new apt number but ill get a few letters sent out with the address on it asap. Its a lil 2 bedroom apt. We live on the 2nd floor and there are 5 buildings all around us and like 3 mexican families and the rest are all blacks so it keeps things super fun and interesting We sit and watch fights almost every night so its pretty fun. Our neighbor is super cool though, he invites us over to watch the ball games all the time, but my companion doesnt think that's very right. so we are gonna have problems come game 5 or so hahaha. But no its pretty good I guess.

We already had one of the members ask for a blessing so that was a really neat experience but kinda rough in Spanish but we made it through it ok.

My companions name is Elder Evans. He's from Hawaii or however you spell that place. Spanish has slaughtered my spelling in English but what do ya do i guess? Sorry guys. But he knows spanish pretty good, hes been out here about 7 months. idk I guess I'm just gonna have to learn to love him though for everything i can. We've already had a few pretty intense talks he thought it was ok to take a nap every time we came back and ate at the apt. so idk we're still disputing that one though and he rides his bike slower than anybody i think I know, so Im always pushing him along. I just aint a slow paced lazy type a person i guess. . . .Were getting along better now though. I suppose I made it very clear that I had been raised on the farm and don't slack off on the job and we're on the lords work for the next 2 years.

Next Houston, Probably nothing like anybody is imagining it to be. Its one of the greenest places i've ever seen in my life, You can't see in 10 ft past were they have stopped chopping down the forest. Its super weird cuz its tropical as well as forest stuff. A lot of people have like palm trees and stuff in there yards and others have big pine trees and stuff like that. Its super cool to see everything but its still Texas. I've seen some of the biggest trucks I've ever seen in my life. Its pretty sweet and there are a ton of motorbikes to so its pretty sweet.

We're serving in a place called Denver harbor. its a suburb out of Houston but we can see the tops of all the buildings from here if we ride up on like a 15 ft burm thing. We can see the whole city really well, its that flat. . . .Its pretty cool though this place is huge. Our area is pretty good sized to i'd guess we probably bike around 10ish give or take about 4 miles a day. So my legs are feeling better than ever. Our area is mostly all Hispanic with a few blacks though a lot of people are from Mexico, Salvador and Honduras areas.

The Spanish is welll . . . .ah ya its coming slowly. its a bit different here than in the mtc so it'll just be a long slow hard trail. But were gonna make it I hope. We are both new to the area too, so we're white washing the whole are which is really fun but the last elders in the area didn't update anything in the area book. We're starting from like 4 month old records, so its pretty rough but not much we can do about that its super cool though.

Texas is the only state that flies their flag the same height as the US flag. Houston is like the number one area in the US for alligators and for poisonous snakes too, I believe is what they said. Its been about 80 - 85ish everyday.

The first day we got here we went out for a Texas bbq and that was heaven after 2 months in the CCM. I had bbq ribs and brisket so it was amazing and got to listen to Kenny Chesney and Brad Paisley on the radio so i fell in love with Texas right then and there haha. Then we went to the mission home and did a buncha orientation type stuff so it was boring but fun to get to know everybody and stuff.

Its been good though thanks for all your support and what not. Its been a crazy week and hopefully stuff seems a bit more normal next week. Church was honestly one of the best meetings i think that i've been to in my life though. It was like a testimony should be the longest one was like 6 mins and they were all actually testimonys not court trials or travel logs so it was really really really neat. We eat with members every sunday and then again on like wednesdays so its pretty cool. The food is amazing usually pretty good mexican food, i love it! It is most delicious.

Ah church starts at 10 30, so I'm not sure, we haven't figured out exaclty where or when we're calling from yet. I'm pretty sure were calling from one of the members houses though im guess between about 2 30 and 5 30 our time just to be safe I'm pretty sure that's when it'll be so I'm really looking forward to that too.

Its been a pretty crazy adjustment but well get used to it. It rained the 2 and 3 day i was here and you last about a min and then your soaked to the bone so I've been here a week now and been wet about 5 outta the 7 days its super hot and humid. I'm pretty sure I've lost a good 10 lbs already.

Life is good though i guess. I'm surviving off of mac and cheese soup and cereal so ya its pretty fun i guess.

Thanks for all your support and encouragment i love all yall.

Love your favorite Texan Mexican
Elder Bown

A neat article Casey told us about.

Casey told us about an interesting article that was published in a local paper. Please follow the link to ON A MISSION

Or just read below:
They've put off college and typical young-adult antics to spend two years without TV , movies, laptops, texting or dating. They've moved hundreds of miles from home to work in a city they've never lived in before, speaking a language they've just learned.

That's life for missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Elder Aaron Porter, 21, instinctively answers the phone in Spanish, setting up appointments for Bible studies and lessons in doctrine. A clean-cut blond guy sporting the missionary uniform — shirt, tie and backpack — he's one of 150 Spanish-speaking Mormon missionaries in Houston.

They meet people in flea markets and front yards, handing out copies of El Libro de Mormon, sharing their message and trying to avoid the occasional heckler.

“There's people that don't like us. We get doors slammed in our faces, and people try to bug us, but it doesn't even matter,” Porter said. “The people who have a sincere interest in learning make up for it … . I'm happy, looking back, because we have brought them such a wonderful message.”

Locally, the church has 32 Spanish-speaking congregations, and a third of area missionaries speak Spanish, mirroring Houston's Hispanic makeup. The number of Spanish-speaking LDS congregations nationwide has grown by 90 percent in the past decade, up to more than 700.

The church's focus on Hispanics dates to its founding in 1830, explained Jorge Iber in his book Hispanics in the Mormon Zion, when Latter-day Saints were charged with proselytizing to Latinos and other descendants of Native Americans.

The church's sizable missionary program, now up to 52,000 people serving worldwide, is in part responsible for its growth and diversification.

In Houston, Porter begins each day like every other missionary in the world and all those who came before him. They review their missionary handbooks, study for a couple of hours and then head out to meet with interested neighbors until 9 or 10 p.m.

“They get up every day, and they serve,” said the mission's president, Todd Hansen, beaming like a proud father. “I tell people if they could work with these young people, we could restore the faith in the vitality of the future of this country.”

While on mission, they focus on the church and have time for little else. Cell phones are for missionary business only — they can call home twice a year and send e-mail to their parents just once a week.

“At the beginning of my mission I was pretty homesick, but then I lost myself in my work,” said Porter, who will finish his mission service here next month. “It's fun to get to go and play basketball on the weekend, and it's fun to date, but this is a once-in-a-lifetime thing.”

Most missionaries have families who understand the gig. Maybe they've had older siblings serve, or they've heard stories about their dads' missions decades ago. Porter dreamed of serving since he was a kid and saved three-quarters of the cost of his mission living expenses, nearly $10,000.

Things were a little more difficult for Sister Madison Taets, 21 and a convert to the church . Her Catholic family was initially “really unsupportive” of her mission call, she said.

Since then, her parents have begun to grow more open to her faith and have even started reading the Book of Mormon.

“Both have sent me letters that they were proud of me,” Taets said. “It just shows you that what we do doesn't just bless the families here. It blesses our families back home, too.”

The missionaries tell people that the gospel of Jesus Christ can bring blessings to their lives, offering hope to struggling first-generation families.

“Latinos, in my view, have found a wonderful home in the LDS Church. The Mormons value God, country and family, just as most Latinos do,” said Iber, adding that they also can gain business and social connections through church.

Juan Porcayo, a new convert to the church, sat next to his wife and rocked his newborn son in a baby carrier during an introductory Sunday school class at a Spanish-speaking congregation in Northwest Houston.

The 25-year-old described himself as a sometimes-drunk deadbeat dad, but after joining the church, that's no longer the case.

“I want to be strong for my family, my kids, my wife,” said Porcayo, who quit smoking and drinking to comply with LDS standards. He's also stopped staying out late, he said, and grown to be more patient and more responsible.

After months without work, Porcayo cites his baptism as leading him to a string of job offers for his construction company.

Coming from a Catholic background, like most Hispanic converts, Porcayo asked missionaries about Mormon doctrine and religious figures familiar to him, such as Jesus and the Virgin of Guadalupe.

“There is a very strong Catholic tradition among the Latino population; and that is very, very much of an impediment to leaving the church,” said Iber, an associate academic dean at Texas Tech University and a Latino history scholar. “I am certain that there are many individuals in the Latino community (and not just in the Catholic Church) who oppose evangelization … . Still, I think that this hard attitude is not as prevalent as it was say, in the late '80s or '90s.”

The missionaries studied the Bible with Porcayo, then introduced him to the Book of Mormon.

“You have to pray. You have to ask God. Is he going to tell me, ‘Juan, this is true'?” Porcayo said. The answer, for him, was yes.

The missionaries must explain concepts such as the afterlife and salvation in Spanish, a language they could barely speak before going through classes at the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah.

“You try to approach everybody differently and teach personally to them,” said Elder Tod Workman, another Spanish-speaking missionary. “They're open to listening when they hear something they might not know about.”

Monday, April 26, 2010

Casey's Last Letter from the MTC

Casey leaves the MTC Wednesday April 28th. It's hard to believe that he has all ready spent nine weeks in the Missionary Training Center. He is very excited to get into the field. We have his Mission Homes Address (see the right column) he can receive mail and packages there until we get his current mailing address. We don't know what day his p-day will be but we look forward to hearing from him and we will fwd his e-mail to everyone when it comes.

hey how yall doing . . . ;. so this place is pretty much all done and over for me . . .I'm outta here now so its super nice. But I dunno if I'm ready or not for the whole 6 million people at the end of this or not. But whatever, I guess we'll just dive in head first huh? It should be super fun - we picked up a new district this week and one of the elders is from houston. So he's been filling me in on everything and says that I'll love it. He has told me a ton of really cool things about it, so I'm really pretty dang excited to get out there and start converting the whole city! Its' gonna be a good time.

Ah, we had a really good devotional on how our mission will affect us and how our attiude will affect our mission so that got me pretty excited to get out and go to work. I'm figuring I won't have a bad day in the field if i can do anything about it. . .I'm sure I'll have some super tough days, but there really is quite a difference between that and having a bad day. . .The elder from Texas says they're the nicest people in the world, especially the Mexicans. So it got me really pretty excited to start serving real people and doing the real stuff not just the whole mtc routine stuff.

I sent one of my suitcases off to Texas already and it saved me about 50 dollars because of the stupid airline charges and fees now. So it'll be nice not to have to put up with worrying about being overweight now. But life is good, we're on our teaching week now and so were teaching about 5 to 7 lessons a day and so its super good and really getting us ready to go and also helping with the Spanish a ton. The last 2 lessons that we had were about the most powerful lessons that I think I've ever taught it was super cool. The spirit was bumping in there I loved it and hope that it goes that good while I'm in the field. . . .Thanks for yet another package - everybody loved it and the brownies and bread and homemade jam hit the spot. . . .

Thanks so much for everything fam and friends

Love always Elder Bown

Monday, March 29, 2010

New Pictures

Casey is doing wonderful in the MTC. He is a little tired of the food but is loving learning the gospel. He has an amazing testimony of the gospel and has grown so much in the short time that he has been there. He sent some pictures from the MTC for everyone to enjoy.

The back of the Picture said. The Night Elder Francis left for Peru. Me and my Cali Boys having a good time!

The Picture said "The G-Town Missionaries on our Sunday Temple Walk the day before Elder Neal went to Nicaragua"

The back of the picture says "We be happy. We be serving the Lord. We be the G-Town Boys"

It's great to see that Casey is doing good and making the most out of the opportunity he has to serve the Lord. We love hearing from him and he LOVES hearing from his Friends and Family.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

MTC Pictures

In front of the Famous MTC world map.
Casey is headed to Texas to serve, Heston is going to serve in Nicaragua and Seth is going to serve in Brazil.

Casey and his friend Mason, who is going to be serving in Tonga

Casey's District on their first day at the Temple.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Letter from Casey

hey hey everybody

Sounds like life is going good. sorry the stupid key boards don't work all to well so its really not my fault I promise. Alisa was telling me that I sounded like an uneducated fool but the key boards are all jacked up and so nothing really works all to well, but hey its the general message that counts right? So wow where to start hmmmm haha... The foods is pretty ok I guess but gets super old super fast and gives all us guys way bad gas so its honestly pretty funny being in a class with 4 sister missionaries too. But my comp keeps getting weirder by the day so 8 weeks from now its gonna be VERY interesting. I guess you could say he means well for the most part but hes getting on my nerves with a few things but what do i do? The shower and the bathroom are the only time he won't be right next to me so I bet that you could guess where I spend a lot of my time. But all things considered every things going fairly smooth I guess.

So there are 2 elders going to Peru so they leave us in like 2 weeks which really sucks cuz I get along with both of them really good. Elder Francis is from Cali and Elder Harris is from Idaho. Me and Elder Francis get along probably the best and hes leaving me so its a bummer but what do ya do. Then my comp is going to New Jersery and the other 2 elders are going to Minnesota. Then there is one of the sisters - hermana Keele from Springville is going to My exact same mission. Then in our zone there is a whole district going to the Houston south mission next week so its kinda cool.

Everything else is going great though. Thanks so much for all the letters I love em keep em all coming. The spirit here is crazy too. I've never been so "spiritual" in my life for this long so its pretty neat. I suppose. We got to go to the temple today and it was amazing but it was the biggest session id ever been in. The chapel was packed when we went into the room there was only 2 empty seats. But we all go as a zone every Friday to the 10 : 20 session so its really cool I got a ton of my ?'s I had answered so it really hit the spot and I'm really looking forward to going again next week. I'm super glad that they let us go every week, we can pick what we want to do when we get there to so its really pretty neat.

Then this sunday is mission conference and fast Sunday, so its Both really good and really bad at the same time. The good is we all get together and get to have a really good devotional or whatever ya wanna call it and the bad is they lock up the cafeteria so we CAN NOT EAT till 5 so that is no bueno. Our fire side this week was really good though we have one every Sunday and Tuesday night and we got the presiding bishopric to come this week so it was really good but the word is its about time to get an apostle again so that will be good. That's about it for this week. The only other thing I can think of is how good the Sundays and w-ends are cuz its ice cream days. There super good, its all you can eat and I think that may have been part of Tylers weight he put on.

But thanks a ton for your thoughts letters and prayers. I love all of it, please keep em coming. God bless ya. love Elder Bown

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Casey's Address while in the MTC

If you would like to keep in touch with Casey (Elder Bown) while he is in the MTC you can mail him or use the Dear Elder Service. He gets the Dear Elder Letter the next day and they do not charge postage. We're sure Casey would love to hear from his friends and family. If you do choose to use Dear Elder please put Casey Roger Bown. They will also ask you for his estimated MTC departure date it is 0427.

Casey Roger Bown
MTC Mailbox # 358
TX-HOUE 0427
2005 N 900 E
Provo, UT 84604-1793

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

First Night as Elder Bown

Casey was set apart as a Missionary February 23rd, 2010. He was set apart by the Stake President. It was a very spiritual experience where the spirit of missionary work was present. Casey was told to have a missionary companion with him until he was in the MTC. His cousin Chris volunteered to fill the position. Chris was a good missionary companion making sure that Casey followed the mission rules and kept the girls at arms length. Casey makes a very handsome missionary and you can tell that he is excited to go and serve as a Missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Casey and Logan. They are an awesome pair. They have so much fun together. Logan will really miss Casey.

Casey and his Companion Chris

The Farewell

Casey's Farewell was February 21, 2010. He had a lot of support from his family and friends.
Casey gave a good talk, his subject was "Let Virtue Garnish thy Thoughts." He talked about lessons he learned while working on the farm and "Enjoying time in the mountains with his dad." He talked about what has helped him prepare to serve a mission. It was a good talk with a lot of laughs and also a spiritual aspect. We enjoyed hearing his testimony and about how excited he is to serve our Heavenly Father as a Missionary.

After the meeting, we enjoyed a nice ham dinner and lots of desserts. We have to thank everyone that helped make the dinner so nice. It was a nice celebration to start Casey's mission.

Niece and Nephews

Casey is so loved. He has adorable nephews and a niece that would do anything for him and Casey would do anything for them. They will have a great example to look up to while he is gone.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Farewell Date

Casey's Farewell Date has been set for February 21st 2010 at 9:00 at the Fayette ward building. We would love to invite anyone that would like to come. We will be having food after Sacrament Meeting so come hungry. If you need any directions please contact Casey or any member of our family and we would be happy to get you there!

One last vacation for two years.

Our family took us on an awesome vacation to spend time together before Casey leaves on his mission. We had a great time together making some awesome memories. We loved teasing Casey and being teased by Casey. We had some intense shuffle board competitions, great food, adventurers zip-lining through the jungle, playing in the ocean, whale watching and making some really fun memories. We will miss Casey over the next two years but know that he will bring back some amazing memories to share with us.