Friday, July 26, 2013

Catching up on Elder DeCoursey

The DeCoursey Household has had a lot going on these past 6 weeks.  With 3 Vacations, Dallin's Graduation, and Amicherie's homecoming, I have not gotten a chance to post Ephraims's Emails. 
So I will consolidate them here. 

Letter received from Elder D 6.2.13
This last week was definitely a difficult one. Elder S was covered almost head to toe with poison ivy. We were doing some service at a less active members house on the yard and stuff and we think that's where he got it. They invited us to a BBQ Saturday and when they found out we went investigating through the yard. Turns out they have an infestation of poison oak! Elder S is the only one that got it even though the rest of us where in the same stuff and he had it bad for the whole week. We got him some meds, some cream, and eventually had to go to an urgent care to get him a shot. The shot helped out a bunch. He is much better now.
Saturday was hard. The whole day we were finding people we're stopping us mid-sentence, completely ignoring us. One guy even yelled at us. We didn't even knock on his door he just saw us out his window walking down the street to see a potential investigator. He came outside his door and yelled at us saying "no one wants your religion" "get out of my neighborhood or I'll call the cops" stuff like that. We let him vent it out then we just kept on walking. We were talking to the person we wanted to see and he told us that the meany was bi-polar and that it wasn't the first time he had threatened to call the cops. He's called the SWAT team on his parents because they do something he asked them to do. The potential, Matt, was really cool and made me feel better but he was leaving somewhere so he couldn't talk for long. He's a really cool guy and It makes me happy that he's willing to talk to us. The rest of the day was just bleck. So to end the day we ended with take out-pizza and Golden Bears lemonade. That made me happy.
We saw Robin at the health care center yesterday. She is super stressed. She hates where's she's at, her legs broken in 7 different places, her house was robbed by her neighbor, another neighbor poured grease all over her porch, and many other afflictions that have befallen her that I can't say. She finally broke down crying in front of us. Robin's trying so hard to be so strong. She also told us she's never left the building since she's got there more than a month ago, other than to go to doctors appointments. We had to do something for her so we wheeled (she's in a wheelchair) outside for a few minutes. She was so happy. She's trying so hard to be strong. We shared with her a little about the Plan of Salvation, which still blows her mind, and it felt like she gained comfort from that. She looks forward to all our meetings with her. She's told us that she wants to go to church with all her heart but she can't because of her situation. Satan is pulling out all the stops to get her from coming to Church. The day before she broke her leg she was planning on coming to church that Sunday. And now all hell is breaking lose against her. And all we can do is teach her. We're seeing her on Tuesday for lunch and we're making her lots of stuff to make her happy. We're bringing her a picture of Jesus, we're making funny pictures today to help cheer her up and we'll be putting them up on her walls, which are completely bare. I really wish I could do more to help her but this is all I can do so far. She's said yes to baptism and she's prayed and knows that the Church is true. All we can do now is wait for her to heal, which should take 3-6 months. She is so strong.
That's all I got. This week will be better. Love you
Elder Ephraim Kade DeCoursey

Letter received from Elder D 6.12.13
Well last week hasn't been real exciting. I went on exchanges with our District Leader and taught some good lessons with him, drove over and hour to get to our mini mission meeting to pick ours up but apparently he hadn't gotten back from EFY in Provo so we were reimbursed for the miles and got our mini on Sunday. He's super cool and he's been working hard along with us. His name is Tyler B, he's 16 and really looking forward to his mission. He likes to sleep when we travel so we like to mess with him. It's really great. Anyway, we saw Robin several times and she is reading the Book of Mormon and the giant Holy Bible we got her, she knows the church is true and that Joseph Smith is a Prophet. The only thing we are waiting for is for her leg to heal up. She's looking to be out of the nursing home by the end of the month and she's doing remarkably well.
      To get the work moving further here we've discussed with the Branch President to put more emphasis on the Preach My Gospel manual in lessons with members. We really think that the work will get moving when the members get more involved. I know that the best missionary work is done by members. Looking forward to a good week.
      We are going to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir tonight with Niki and Todd. They were able to get their tickets for free from the Stake and we're getting a ride with them. I know I'm not being transferred but we have no idea if any of us are training. Today's the day to find out. So we will just wait and see. Any way I'll tell you how the concert goes next week. Really looking forward to it.
       I really need to write some letters soon to a lot of people. I will do it as soon as I can. We are pretty busy here.
     Love you lots. Till next week,
Elder Ephraim Kade DeCoursey

Letter received from Elder D 6.17.13
Last week was great! Our mini missionary, Tyler B, had a great time with us. We loved MoTab. I got to see all the missionaries that I know and love and also some members from Beavercreek and Xenia that I wasn't able to say goodbye to. Jane was there!! She was one of the first persons that I met in Columbus. She was there with all of her sisters, she has 5. I saw the Davis' and the Hoskins'. It was great. Todd and Niki were there and they got ground seats while we sat at the very top. It was so cool.
Niki has told us that she wants to be baptized in a river and we were alright with that but after talking with President Nilsen we've decided not to. We've already got a font, it's cleaner this way, and it's easier for the Spirit to reside in the chapel than it is outside. All we need to do is tell her about it and all should be good. Niki is all set and ready for baptism but we might have to push it back. There are still things we need to teach her before she gets wet, so that will have to happen.
How are you doing?

We were able to catch President before he left and we got some pictures with him. I think this is probably my best smile picture.
Inline image 1
Letter received from Elder D 6.24.13
So as you all know, I left the presence of our Heavenly Father 2 decades ago yesterday to learn and grow even further than I ever dreamed of before. Thank you all for the wonderful birthday cards and wish that I had received. It meant a lot to me. I love the books that I got from my family. I'm on Lecture Third now. I loved the cake!! Not done with it yet but still working on it. Yesterday started off rather slow and grey. We had planned a breakfast with a Less Active member of the branch to help her come to church, we came with cinnamon rolls and everything only to discover she was not home. We left dejected and ate the rolls before we had to leave for Church. At Church, Niki told us that she would feel more comfortable if we pushed back her baptism. She just found out that she's going to be out of town this Saturday anyways for Todd's nephew's (Todd is Niki's husband) is being baptized that same day. Anyways, my day got better when we had my birthday dinner with Mama C and had cake and stuff. That made me feel so much better.
The missionary broadcast was awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That's what really pumped me up!!! We get to use technology and email in our finding techniques!!!! It's so exciting!!!! It's going to be some time before we get to use iPads though but for now I'm content. I hope you were able to watch it. It tr uly historic. 
We had another birthday dinner on Saturday with a member family that were baptized last year. We had ice cream cake and pizza and all other good stuff. They gave me some awesome balloons and I had a great time there.
We found a new investigator on Monday finally!!! She tells us she's an unbaptized Jehovah's Witness and that she had narrowed down what the true church is to two churches, ours and the Jehovah's Witness. Her sister is a member of the Church in California and she's who referred us to her. We had a great 1st lesson with her and she did feel the Spirit. We're meeting with her tomorrow to teach her more. I'm looking forward to it.
Wednesday was my last time seeing President Nilsen before the mission splits next Monday. We had a zone conference in Cincinnati for the Zones that will be a part of the new mission. I got a picture with him and Sister Nilsen. At the end of the meeting we sang the Ohio mission song. I teared up because of the reality that I wont be under their council anymore hit me hard. But I'm over that now. To show how close we are, President and Sister Nilsen called me Sunday evening and sang Happy Birthday to me. It was awesome!!!! I love my mission president will surely miss him and his wife.
I love you all. I had a great week. I will do my best to write you letters today.
Elder Ephraim Kade DeCoursey

Picture of the Cake I frosted, that mom mailed to me already baked.  Got to love serving in the US.
Inline image 1

Letter received from Elder D 7.2.13
I'm in a new mission!!!!1!!!!!1!!! The transition happened so fast. Our District last night held a meeting to close our part with the Ohio Columbus Mission. 'Tis a sad moment in my mission life. But on the bright side, our mission was split which means we're doing a good job in hastening the work of Salvation. I feel prepared to face this new challenge head on, with nothing wavering.
Niki Garcia has agreed to work towards July 20. Our last meeting with her was more of a "what's in Niki's mind" lesson plan. We taught mostly with question to help her understand the covenants she will be making and how important it is for her. We feel she's really looking forward to it.
Robin is doing much better now. She can bend her leg more than I ever expected her to do so soon. We helped her move back into her house yesterday. Someone broke into her house since she's been gone. She already knew this but she hadn't been back to her house to see it yet. She was very depressed to see her home the way it was. She did her best to mask her feelings with laughter and jokes but I could tell she was hurting inside. She has told us that we've been such a blessing to her and she wants to be focused now on her studies.
I've got Landon's pictures and Sister DeCoursey's card. I love the Abe Lincoln picture. that will be going up on my wall of awesome pictures now.
That's all I got. I know it's not much but not much happened last week. We'll be having an even better week starting right now. I pray that you will do the same as you answer the call of duty and share the Gospel with those you love.
Kia kaha
-Elder Ephraim Kade DeCoursey
P.S. President Nilsen has a kidney tumor. He'll be having surgery on it on Wednesday. Please keep him in you're prayers.

Letter received from Elder D on 7.8.13
My dearest family and friends,
This last week hasn't been to bad. It just felt really long. We haven't seen Niki at all so far because there's a death in Todd's family, his niece, so they've been in Texas this whole time. And we wont see them until next week because they are also going to the Hill Cumorah pageant. Robin is home now so it's been easier to meet with her. She's moving along really fast but recently her bone that's broken has been sliding out of place. . She should be going to the Cleavland Clinic soon to get it fixed but she will be there for a certain number of days. Hopefully she'll heal up as soon as possible. She realizes that this is Satan keeping her from coming to church. She has wanted to come to church for so long but her health keeps getting in the way. We've given her several blessings, which she enjoys, so that should help. She's embracing the Gospel so well.
We met President Porter on Wednesday finally!!!! He was a Stake President in some city in Utah. Him and his wife are very excited to serve with us and I'm excited to serve with them. On Sunday they came to our Sacrament meeting. Elder S and I were blessing the Sacrament when they came in and the entire time the water was being passed around, President was staring right into my soul. the entire time!!!!! !!!! I'm not even exaggerating! Every time I looked at him he was staring right back, never broke his glance. Even when he was passing the tray to Sister Porter his glance never left. I never even got to talk to him after the meeting. He interviewed the Branch President to see what they can do to help the work progress even more than it is now. I'm not really nervous anymore. I've not heard nothing yet about this experience. Maybe we will soon.
Lately I've been engrossed in the Doctrine of the Gospel. Lectures on Faith probably started it but I have been studying intently on the scriptures. There's just too much to study in 1 hour it's hard to get everything done that I want to. I've also been collecting the Teaching of the Presidents of the Church books. All I need now are the teachings of Heber J. Grant and Harold B. Lee. I'm so close to getting all of it. So close!!!! I just need to see if the church library would be willing to let me have those. We shall see.
I need you, mother and father and other family members, to get me the email addresses of my friends. I would like to email them to update them on my life and back and forth and what not. I also think that it's easier to email that it is to write letters. I just can't seem to find the time to sit down and write some letters home. So please help me out with that.
One last thing: If it's not too much to ask, are you using Mormon Doctrine? If not can I have it???? I think that it's a great gospel reference to certain subjects.
Love you so very much.
-Elder Ephraim Kade DeCoursey

7.8.15 A & W ROOT BEER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! IT'S BEEN AT LEAST 9 MONTHS SINCE I'VE LAST HAD THIS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THIS IS AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Inline image 1
Letter received from Elder DeCoursey 7.15.2013
This past week has been a mixture between fast and slow. Tuesday it rained on us. A lot. A lot a lot. Buckets of rain for 15 minutes then bright and sunny immediately after. The weather here in Ohio is weird. But the clouds are awesome. We still haven't seen Niki this past week. She should've been at the Hill Cumorah Pageant last weekend. We hope that it has given Niki the answer that she needed. Robin is still broken and physically unable to come to church but she wants to come with all her heart and be baptized in the church too. We're making progress with Sue, the unbaptized Jehovah's Witness. We brought a member with us to our last meeting and she really helped a bunch. She used to be a member of the JW's so they related very well. On Thursday we had interviews with President and Sister Porter. That was very needed.  He's helped out a bunch. On Wednesday we met with the W. They are the new Senior Couple that will be working in Greenville with Elder S and I. We're going to get a lot of work done with them. The first step is to find them a home to live in. They found one that's close to our apartment but they can't move in yet because the current resident doesn't move out until August 5th. So they will be staying with the Branch President until then. This should be very exciting.
Unfortunately that's all I have today. We worked hard last week but the fruit hasn't come up yet. Elder Scribner and I feel that Greenville is about to be set ablaze with the Spirit. So did the Walkers which makes me feel better.
Love, Elder Ephraim Kade DeCoursey
Letter received from Elder DeCoursey on 7.23.2013
I was unable to be online on Monday because our preparation day is on the Wednesdays before Transfers, which is tomorrow. We also just found out that Elder Scribner is being transferred and I'm staying. . What the heck! Elder S just got here 2 months ago. Honestly I was hoping to be leaving. But I guess the Lord still needs me here.I do not know if I will be training yet but for now I just know that I'm getting a new companion. Elder S is kinda freaking out right now. I was hoping that he would be staying. This area really needs an Elder like him. But he's needed somewhere else now. Other than that this past week has been a slow one. Niki's back in town. She didn't go to the Hill Cumorah Pageant because she and Todd had the stumach flu after they got back from Texas. She is still looking for an answer and we feel that she is getting closer to it. We have decided to see Robin less than we have been. We aren't dropping her but we feel that this is the best way to go. All of our meetings are with her have been really scattered. She can't go anywhere because of her leg so she's been confined to her home. She doesn't have a lot of people to talk to so when we come over she rambles a lot on her week. Seeing her less is the best way to go. Sue is moving along. Last week we finished teaching her the Plan of Salvation and in between our meetings she was able to cross reference The Bible with the Book of Mormon. The scripture she found wasn't even in the footnotes!! She found it on her own!!! It's incredible!!!! The member we brought with us bore a sweet and simple testimony on his conversion. The Spirit was super strong at that lesson. These past few days we've been spending a few hours cleaning out the cob webs from Sue's basement. There were a lot of cobwebs down there. Today we are planning on going down to a zoo in the next county with our district. We found a new investigator on Sunday. That's all I have time for now. With our knowledge of transfers now, Elder Scribner needs to pack now. We need to go now.
Love, Elder Ephraim Kade DeCoursey.