Monday, August 15, 2011

Off to Indy!

Elder Bengtzen woke up at 3:00 am on Tuesday, August 9th to get ready to leave the MTC.  He and about 40 other missionaries arrived at the Salt Lake airport at 5:30 am.  After arriving at his gate he got to call home.  We had set the alarm for 6:00 am and were waiting for the phone to ring.  I got back in bed with the phone in hand.  Then, the long awaited ring.  One ring was all it took for me to answer.  He sounded so good!  He was so excited and anxious to be on his way.  Gregg went to round up the rest of the kids and they all came running with excitement waiting for their turn to talk to Brayden.  After everyone had their turn we reluctantly said goodbye until our next phone call at Christmas.  Then it was time to start getting ready for Brach and Ashley's wedding.  A perfect beginning to a perfect day! We even bought an "Edward" (from Twilight) cut out and put Brayden's face on it so he would be with us all day during the wedding festivities....

Back at the airport our good friend Mike Adams (who works for Delta) arrived to see Elder Bengtzen off.  This made Brayden's day!  He was so excited to see Mike and have someone stay with him until he got on the airplane.  Mike bought him breakfast and video taped Brayden giving advice to Brach and Ashley.  He also took a picture of Brayden and Brayden's airplane and gave them to all the kids later that day.

Elder Bengtzen was the travel leader of 10 missionaries.  They all had a layover in Detroit and then after arriving in Indiana 5 of them were to stay there and 6 were traveling to Baltimore and Maryland.  Brayden had motion sickness on the plane and was so happy to be on the ground again.  President and Sister Collins were waiting for them as they came off the plane.  He says he loves them both and really enjoyed his first home cooked meal in 3 weeks... amazing pork sandwiches. 

After a good night sleep they went to the Stake Center for orientation and to become certified to drive.  Well, due to Brayden's driving record the past couple of years he is on probation for one more month so will probably not be driving for a while.  They went to the chapel for a transfer meeting.  They have 3 Area Presidents there.  Elder Bengtzen was assigned to Elder Thomas in the Indianapolis North Indiana area. Elder Thomas happens to be their district leader. He says it is so beautiful and green there. Not very humid with temperatures in the low 80's and high 70's.

Elder Bengtzen's first lesson was on Wednesday to the Curtis family.  Sister Curtis and her 5 year old daughter are active but Brother Curtis is not a member.  He has a very scientific mind that says emotional feeling is not a viable source.  They challenged him to read Moroni 10:3-5 and pray about it. On Thursday they taught 3 lessons, found 1 investigator and 1 potential.  He was anxious to leave the MTC so that he could get in the field and relax a little bit.  Ha ha, jokes on him!  He says the field is 8 times harder.

He has been given a very nice Diamond Back bike so he didn't have to buy one.  He is assigned to a part-time car area so also does a lot of bike riding.  He says he rode a total of 30 miles on Thursday and that his butt is very sore!  He has lost 10 pounds so far on his mission.  Towards the end of his first full day he said, "This is by far the most mental/physical challenging thing I have ever done. Being a billionaire better not be this hard!!"

Over all Elder Bengtzen has had a wonderful week.  He says the hard work is absolutely worth it!  In his own words he says, "I love Heavenly Father, I love Jesus Christ, I love President and Sister Collins, I love Elder Thomas and I absolutely love this Gospel in Indy!!"

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