Tuesday, April 28, 2015

The Long and Winding Road


Well I'm finally back in Aberystwyth and I couldn't be happier. I have missed this place so much. Swansea just doesn't compare! But I did have an awesome week down there with Elder Holman. To explain  the picture of the pile of broken glass I'm going to start by saying that it wan't my fault. We were in for lunch one of the days last week and had decided to make some oven pizza's that Elder Holman had. The oven in their flat is weird and has not only a regular door but a second door made out of glass to help keep the heat in. We were standing in the kitchen simply waiting for our pizza to cook and not doing anything wrong, when Elder Holman decided to check to see if the pizza was done. He opened up the first door and the the second and while he was checking the pizza we heard this squeak and BAM the glass door just exploded! For those of you at home who are worried I want to let you know that neither Elder was harmed, though I think I hit my head on the roof I jumped so high. But It was pretty awesome and glass just went everywhere! It was insane. Mostly I am just glad that it didn't go into my pizza;)

 The week went on and finally Friday came. We drove an hour to pick up some other trainers, and then braved the 2 and a half hour drive to Birmingham. For those of you who don't know how to add we have now driven 3 and a half hours. The meeting was great and the moment finally arrived that I got to meet my boy. His name is Elder Richardson and he is from St. George Utah! He is just a young-in at a whole 18 years of age. I am nearly a year older than him! It blows my mind cause I still feel like I am 17. But it doesn't help that my maturity level is still down with the primary kids. But after we met and got his stuff we walked over to the car only to discover that we had a flat tire, Greeeeeaaat. Not only are we pushing for time as it is but now I have to deal with changing a flat in front of my mission president and all the other elders. It was slightly embarrassing but we got the spare on and took it to a garage not to far down the road. After an hour delay we were finally on the road. But the good just can't last for long. I accidentally took a wrong exit in Birmingham and we ended up getting stuck in traffic for an extra half an hour. We finally got out of Birmingham after about an hour or so of driving. Just to pause and add up the hours driving, we are now at 4 and a half with an hour delay for a flat. We got on the highway and drove the other team that we had with us home which was a nice two hour drive. We got to their flat and I wasn't sure how far it was to Aberystwyth so I had been hoping it would only be about an hour, wrong again. It was another 2 hours to get home. So in total I drove 8 and a half hours on the long and winding road and I am not really looking to do it again anytime soon. Oh yeah, if you happen to go on any long drives remember to check your gas tank every once and a while. If not your car is going to be running on the prayers of you and your companion for the last hour or so of your journey. But we are safe and sound in Aberystwyth with a full tank of gas:)

Elder Richardson
I feel pretty accomplished with how good I am getting at parallel parking! 
It is impossible to find parking in Swansea or here in Aberystwyth, so you just have to squeeze in where you can!

Not too much has happened in our three days together other than me realizing that I don't actually know how to do missionary work. It has been a stressfully humbling experience and things are starting to smooth out. Brigham was right when he said that I am going to learn a lot in this calling. Those words are already starting to prove true. I just hope my learning curve is going to be a little higher than it was at the start of my mission.

Well we are having a mission wide conference this Wednesday and I'm super excited. Obviously the training will be on how to use ipads and what we will be doing with them, and I am super duper excited! Mostly because the whole mission will be there so I will get to see Elder Costigan and other missionaries that I've served around again. I honestly thought I wouldn't get to see them until I got home, so I am super excited for that. But what that also means is another drive to Swansea and then a 3-4 hour bus ride to Birmingham. One of these days I'm gonna figure our just how much of my mission has been spent in a car cause it is at least a couple of days! Ha Ha, but we will know more about when and how we are getting our ipads later this week and also when we will be skyping in two weeks! I honestly can't wait to talk to you guys!:)

But I hope you all have a great week, I love and miss you loads!


Elder Kmetzsch 

Tuesday, April 21, 2015



Well another transfer has come and gone and it looks like I am going to be spending the next 2 transfers in Aberystwyth. I have been called to Train a new missionary and as the District Leader here. Not gonna lie I am freaking out, and not really sure I'm ready for the responsibility of training, being in charge of a district or driving a car on the wrong side of the road. But alas I know that the Lord will give me the knowledge and strength to do whatever he needs me to do! Just pray that I don't crash because the Welsh roads are crazy small and really fast! Like most of the bike paths back home they are as big as some of the two way roads here. It blows my mind. But driving is nice because I've been a passenger for the last 3 months and you know how I get with motion sickness, especially with curvy roads. Thank the Lord for gum or I would have died. So you're probably wondering who my new companion is, and the answer to that is that I don't know! He is currently still in the MTC and I will pick him up on Friday. Currently I am with another Trainer down in Swansea for the week. We are having a blast and he is teaching me a lot about training, seeing as this is his third time. I'm really grateful that I get the week to prepare myself for my boy. 

Car Selfie with the Sisters!
We found Victoria Street! 
It was a great week this last week before Elder Ruttan left. We had the best week ever and just worked the area hard. He definitely left with a bang. Which I am very grateful for because it means that I'm going to have some great investigators to work with, with my boy. To answer Dad's question about tracting, I think the last time I went tracting was like 3 weeks into my mission. We tend to avoid tracting because it isn't an effective way to find people in the mission. We usually are out on the streets talking to people, and we just go to a couple of the busier streets in the town and stop people has they walk by. We have this one hill that leads to the University and all the students walk up and down it all day long, so most days you will find us walking up and down the hill stopping the students as they pass us. Occasionally we go down to the seafront and stop people, but I feel awkward down there because people seem to be annoyed that we are stopping them as they are trying to enjoy the beach. So normally we stick to the town center and the hill to the university. If I ever run into the Polish girl again I will definitely have to sing for her. 

Picture of me with Tom our investigator!
Well spring is here in Wales and my goodness it is beautiful. They have tulips and daffodils everywhere and the wildflowers are just nice. Everyone should really visit Wales in the Spring it is just really pleasant. Also you are right about how cool it is about meeting people from different cultures. I was thinking about it recently and I have met and taught people from all of my brothers, dads, and even grandpa's missions. More than a few from Hong Kong, a few Filipinos, with just one or two from Brazil. I met a guy that lived near Virginia, and have talked to some Germans, (They sold really good bratwursts). I just think that it is pretty cool that I get to meet the people that my brothers loved so much, and equally I am gaining a much deeper appreciation and love for different cultures from all around the world, in this big melting pot. It is just cool! 

Well this week I went to my first pub, and watched a seagull snatch a sandwich right out of a guys hands and in the escape it hit me in the side of the head. It was pretty funny, I think I laughed for like five minutes. The look on the guys face after he lost his sandwich was priceless. I also saw some special forces police with full gear and machine guns, which you never ever see in the UK, so that was cool. Not too many big things happening besides driving all the way to Birmingham from Aberystwyth which takes about 2 and a half hours. We saw a pretty cool castle and got to drive out of our mission boundaries. I was literally like half and hour to an hour away from Elder Jolley at one point on the Journey. Don't worry I waved hello. 

I am really starting to get to know my Bible well. We have some very Christian investigators and they are pushing me to study it more. They even challenged me to look for the Trinity in the Bible, as of now I have not been successful in finding it. Only in finding more evidence that they are indeed separate but one in purpose. But there is way more in the Bible than I ever thought. I'm really glad that I'm taking the time to get to know it better. I've been using the 17 points card that Dad gave me a lot, mostly as just a starting place for my studies and then I add to it. I've found that most of it is there if you just look hard enough, but I can definitely see why people have so many interpretations and conflicts. All you need to do is add one thing, the Book of Mormon and you've completely the recipe. I just don't know why people don't see that. But that's what my job is right? To help them see the importance of it.

I don't have all the much time so I will stop ranting now, but I hope that you all are just doing amazing. Good luck with the garden Torie, and Emma you need to stop growing up... Give Lucy my love and tell her that I miss her! Oh yeah and I love and miss Mom and Dad too:)

Love you guys,

Elder Kmetzsch 

Tuesday, April 14, 2015



Well it sounds like you guys had a more exciting week than me. It's been a relatively quiet week for us. Nothing much besides lots of teaching and finding. But Spring has come and all we get is rain. It is so different from Utah it is unreal. My hair just gets wet because it's humid and the wind is blowing. I definitely prefer dry weather to humid.

Can I just say that that picture of Clara is so cute! She is just a little chubbers. I especially love the rolls on her biceps!

Congratulations to my awesome brother Nathan for surviving BYU. That is a pretty cool accomplishment! I can't wait to try it for myself.

You are right that Mothers Day is coming up and I can't believe it has been 4 months since I last talked to you guys. I am looking forward to it a lot! I'm sure that I'll be getting more details about what time I'll be calling in a few weeks so I'll keep you updated. So I don't know if I'll get to email for very long next week. I guess it all depend on if me or Elder Ruttan get transferred. But I'm sure that I'll get a little time to send a quick note.

Well it is like a said, not a very interesting week at all. We did some finding and then some teaching and then a little more finding and a little more teaching. But some good things did happen. First off Easter Break is over and all of the students/our investigators have come back to Aberystwyst. Most notably Tom is back! Hopefully Tom will be baptized in the coming weeks, we are just trying to work out when his Mom can come down from the Isle of Man. So Pray that she will be able to come down soon cause we want him to get baptized as soon as possible. Second the greatest thing ever happened to me while we were street contacting. So we were in the city center talking to people and I stopped a very cheerful girl, like she was the happiest person that I have ever met. We chatted for a second and she told me that she was from Poland and that she was Catholic. When I tried to talk to her about the church she stopped me and said, "Can I sing a Christian song to you in Polish?" I of course had no objections to the offer, so she proceeded to sing to me. With absolutely no shame whatsoever and it was great. I honestly just couldn't stop smiling the rest of the day! I just thought it was so nice of her to sing for me:) She then just bounced away without another word. Not interested at all, but she sure brightened my day!:)

We had zone meeting out side..... I got sunburned on half of my face, 
and my chair sunk into the ground because well it was grass.... But it was super fun!

Well I love you all and hope you have a wonderful week.

Elder Kmetzsch

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

The Fastest Way From Point A to Point B is a Line


Wow, it's weird to think that Kristen isn't a Kmetzsch anymore;) I hope this Nathan guy is treating her right! Or he'd better watch out when I get home!:) But on a serious note Congratulations Kristen! I'm so-o-o happy for you. Can't wait to meet Nathan:)

Man, I am jealous that you guys got to dye eggs. They don't have white eggs here so even if I wanted to dye them I couldn't. But you should send me some close-ups of the best ones. Some of the ward members and other missionaries have never seen a proper dyed egg before! They think it is a tad bit weird.

A very old clock tower in a little village we went to. 
Anyway there is some exciting news. I know who my knew mission president is! I'll forward you the email because I know that Dad will want to know. His name is President Mark A. J. Leppard. He is from Southern England. I'm very excited to get to know him. The second and equally exciting news is that we are getting iPads in May!! So get out your wallet Dad it's time:) I'm really excited because I have also heard rumors that they are coming out with a new Missionary Handbook and Preach My Gospel, good stuff. But that's all the announcements for today. 

Conference was awesome!!! I love conference so much and definitely missed conference candy and going to priesthood with Dad. We had priesthood Sunday mornings here which was super weird. It is also still odd to watch conference in a suit. It almost feels wrong... But I did love the sessions none the less. I absolutely loved the Music of the Gospel. It just made sense to me because people always tell me on the streets, (especially students), that it is weird to not drink coffee or tea or alcohol, but it's not. They just aren't hearing the music, they only see the dance steps. Yes, it looks weird but when you hear the music it isn't weird at all. That was a great talk. I also loved President Hollands talk on the atonement. I would like to take a little time to share my testimony of how the atonement has helped me on my mission. 

I am not gonna lie my mission has been the hardest thing that I have ever had to do. I went from having not gone without my family for more than two weeks to suddenly being in a different country with no thoughts of going home anytime soon. These thoughts plagued me with worry and anxiety for fear that something would happen back home and I wouldn't be there to help. I became extremely depressed and homesick. I can now say coming through it that I have a firm testimony in the enabling power of the atonement. In the words of Elder Holland, "It was never meant to be easy!" That is why Christ did what he did for me. Because it isn't going to be easy, we are going to feel pain and sadness that is the nature of the world that we live in. But we don't have to be stopped by these trials. We only need to reach out as Peter did when he began to sink into the water. You know sometimes we are up and walking on the water, but often times we look around. We take our eyes off of Christ and begin to sink. Remember what Peter did. He called out, he reached out, and Christ was there like lightning as Elder Holland again put so beautifully. He is waiting for us to reach out, and because of what he did for us he is always in our reach. Never ever is Christ out of reach, never ever have we sunk too far for him to pull us out. We simply just need to rely on the enabling power of that great atonement and we can do whatever comes our way. It isn't a promise that we will be able to do some things, but a promise that we will be able to do all things through Christ our Saviour. I love him greatly for what he has done for me, for what he pulled me through. I was hanging on the edge of a cliff certain that I would never make it, but he didn't let me fall. He will never let me fall. He is my rock, my Redeemer, my all, and mostly my friend. Hold to him and never let go.

On a less serious note I'd like to tell you a funny experience that we had with our investigator Joe. Joe is a Chinese student, (have a mentioned that I love Chinese people). Anyway Joe is really funny and I have loved our lessons with Joe because he tends to go off topic very quickly with what we have started calling "Joe's Truths" these are just little things that Joe teaches us at random moments in our lessons with him. My favourite of "Joe's Truths" is after we finished explaining the Atonement to him. Joe looked up from the pamphlet and exclaimed, "Yes! This is Truth!" I looked at Elder Ruttan with a smile because yes the Atonement of Jesus Christ is truth. But this wasn't what Joe was referring to. Joe had read what we told him and also started thinking about his own truth and he then proceeded to teach us this truth. He said to us " This is truth, yes, the fasted way from point A to point B is a line." He then smile and said, "But! If you look at this through a microscope then is it a lie! The line is really wavy!" Honestly I didn't know what to say. I expected him to tell me something about the Atonement but instead was taught that amazing truth! And if anyone back home can explain to me what this truth is I would love to know:) To be honest I just kinda blankly looked at Joe thinking of a way I could acknowledge his truth as well as try to understand if he understood what the atonement of Jesus Christ was. I was at a loss, but we did make it back to the lesson eventually. I love Joe and his humility and just all over the place personality. Pray for him that he will realize that there is a line from point A to point B and that line is the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. No other line will get us there, and even when you look at it under a microscope it is still true. I dare anyone to try and prove to me that this church isn't true because I know that it can't be done. 

Over all the week has been pretty slow. Things are going good for the most part and we are working hard. Transfers are coming up in a few weeks which is nuts. I can't believe how long I have been in Aberystwyth, over two months! But I love it here and am happy to stay another two. I hope you all have a great week! Love you bunches!

Elder Kmetzsch