Feb 18, 2010

Feb 18, 2010
Thanks to all the friends who showed up at the airport - we were so surprised to find out how many have been following the blog for 2 years. You all are great!

Elder Nowland and His Friends

Elder Nowland and His Friends
We've Been waiting for you.

26 October 2009

Pictures in Ceske Budejovice Oct 2009

Pictures Elder Nowland sent me this week
without any labels, so I am left to guess...

Sauerkraut and ?

Elder Pearson

The bus stop perhaps?

Elder Pearson, Elder Vivona (looks like he
needs a jacket), Elder Hill & Elder Nowland
are they trying to look like a boy band or what?

That pose has Elder Nowland's name written
all over it.

Another castle...

Elder Nowland in a goofy face in front of the
castle with Elder Pearson

The city square of Ceske Budejovice

Fountain in Ceske Budejovice

Could this possibly be the NORMAL
picture of Elder Nowland that I have
been begging for with his companion,
Elder Pearson. Wonder how long it
will be before I get another normal
face picture?

See I told you it wouldn't last long.

The boy is NOT NORMAL

Need I say anything more. LOL.

Posin' again for the Missionary Boy Band -
who knows?

Until next time - and we never know what
that may bring now do we? But we wouldn't
change him for anything. Life is never dull in
the Nowland home.
He always makes fun of the antics of his
dad - the apple does not fall far from the tree
now does it?

26 Oct 2009

Hey family!

This week’s district meeting was a really powerful one. I don’t say this because I want to brag of myself, but actually because I want to brag of my companion. One evening we came home and we were feeling really good about the day’s activities. Elder Pearson after taking a seat began to share his thoughts out loud. Well before he knew it he had monologued for 40 minutes about the power of our calling and our reliance on the spirit. I felt super motivated by the words that he was sharing with me and felt that he should share those same words with our district. So I gave him about 30 minutes of our district meeting to expound upon those thoughts. He did an amazing job. Elder Hill later mentioned that it was one of the best district meetings that he has had on his mission.

We pushed really hard this week trying to get member lessons. Throughout the week we had a total of 6 lessons with a member present set up. Three of them fell through and caused for a scramble yesterday to make it happen. We came to the point where we had nothing else to do but hope that at one of our meetings there would be a random less-active friend of the investigator there that we did not know about. Even though the standard was not reached, we did see an increase, and that increase is our motivation this week to really make it happen.

This next week should be great the Zone Leaders challenged us as a companionship to get 6 member lessons, so that is what we are going to do. The district goal for the end of this week is to have had 8 member lessons and 4 people at church. Hold your thumbs for us, it is going to be a wild ride!

Now for questions:

It looks like it has been kind of rainy, is that correct? yes
Has it already started snowing? a little but then stopped
I noticed that Elder Hill got a New Missionary - what is his name? Vivona
Where is he from? Indiana
What is your direct address? Dukelska 46, Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic
Do you have a mailbox? nope
So are you getting settled in your new city? yeah its great
Is it challenging because of the beer production? a little but not a lot
Are the people harder to teach? the same
More receptive than in other cities? nope
Struggle with the Word of Wisdom? always
Is your comp fired up about being there? you bet ya
How long will it take to get a package to you? maybe three weeks possible 4
Do you have any investigators getting close to baptism? 2 are getting close to receiving a date
Are the members supportive of the missionaries and do they get involved with the work? a very very little bit....but it is starting to get better, we had three member lessons this week. we are going for 8 total as a district though
I love you all and am thankful for what you have done to help and motivate me
You are truly the best parents that i could have had.--
With love,
Your son,
Starsi Morgan Nowland

19 October 2009

19 Oct 2009

A Waffle Fest before he left the Mission Office in Prague - notice the goofy face...lol

He always talked about being so tired at the
end of every day. But he says there is no
greater feeling than being spent at the end
of a day in the service of the Lord.
What a priceless picture.

The sleeping picture was sent to me by Elder and Sister Robbins. They are a senior couple serving in Prague. Elder Nowland has grown very close to them. I am glad they sent me this picture with them.

They all went on a vylet (day trip) on their P-day to Knezi Hora,
which is right behind the castle, this the place where on
July 24, 1939 the country of Czechoslovakia was dedicated to the preaching of the gospel by
Elder John H. Widstoe. Elder Russell M. Nelson returned to this same spot in 1990 and offered a prayer of thanksgiving and rededication. Very appropriate that the name of the mountain is Priest Hill.

This is a picture of the Zone in Prague before
Elder Nowland left this past week to serve in
his new city of Ceske Budejovice.

Now in the city of Ceske Budejovice on P-Day.

Elder Nowland, Elder ?, Elder Pearson, Elder Hill (if you know the mystery Elder please let me know)


Elder Nowland and Elder Pearson

Hiya Family!

I'm now in Ceske Budejovice serving as the district leader!

We traveled in on a train! It was great.

I have come to realize that this is definitely not going to be just a walk in the park. We are going to be walking in the park nearly every day to find the investigators that this area needs. In all actuality, I’m really excited to be able to work here in this city because there is a big need for member lessons and people at church. These are our two biggest focuses. The district has set a baptismal goal of 4 for this transfer and I really feel that if we put the work into it, it will happen. The only thing I’m afraid of is the human factor. I have a really comforting confidence that the Lord can help us find that many people.

In district meeting this week we talked about Moroni and the title of liberty. What he did has become our motivation. We got some old proselyting shirts and put them on, then we rent them off of our bodies and we are going to make our titles of liberty out of them. It was a lot of fun. I took a few pictures as the Elders were renting. We are going to hang a flag up in each apartment, in the building and in branch President Chrdle’s home. It went over really well. Because we have such young missionaries we are having the “Polar Bear” (a training where we apply practical missionary finding methods into czech). This past one we had, we broke down “the contact” and practiced the different parts like in football how one player runs down between two rows of players breaking through the pads that the players are holding; except we had one missionary contacting through three other missionaries. The missionary was not allowed to move onto the next contact until he had accomplished his task with the first.

I am really excited for this next week because we already have four member lessons set up for Tuesday, with about 9 lessons total in the plan. We double booked two 1 hour blocks and got a member to come to that hour. Sister Kalenska and President Chrdle are the members that are helping us. We did a lot of calling! We called all former investigators that looked to have any potential, and contacted as many of our current investigators as we could. There are 2-3 investigators that we are already teaching that are looking really good for making progress towards a baptismal date.

This is a very beautiful city. I’m excited.

We went on a vilet (day trip) today to an amazing Castle Called Hluboka we got some fun pictures!

Ill post them as soon as possible!Question time:We noticed you finally had to use some of your money from your account what did you buy? Two white shirts a thicker coat (it is sooo cold here.....and rainy)Do you have a lot in common with Elder Pearson? we both like to laugh and have good success. He is really easy going. We both like to be goofyDo you think you will see his dad while you are there? Probably not, his dad is in RussiaWas it hard to leave Pres and Sis Slovacek? yeah, but i'll be fine. It was hard to leave PragueWhat did they tell you when you left? "You had better have success down there!" ...Seriously thoughDo you think you will stay in Ceske Bud until the end? AbsolutelyWill you take pics of the apt there? yup remind next week though just in case.....hee heeWhat did you think of Conference? Elder Holland's talk? conference was sooo nice it was a great booster to get me going again. Elder Holland and Andersen's talks were my favorites!Well that is all i have for this week. I love you and will talk to you next week. Make sure not to spend too much money on the christmas package. if anything send stuff that will be great for little gifts to children that dont make too much noise. So i can use them in sacrament. We have a lot of little kids in our branch.

Thanks a ton!!

Ahoj! --With love,

Your son,Starsi Morgan Nowland

15 October 2009

10 Oct 2009

I am going to make a quick apology for the length of this letter, but because of conference our time has been cut short today. I wanted to let you know a few things though, and answer some of your questions.I am so glad to hear that things with work are going reasonably well. I don't remember having a single tornado watch the whole time that i was there in Georgia. I hope that everything turned out all right and that everyone is safe and healthy.

Conference so far has turned out to be amazing! it is full of great talks covering concerns that we as missionaries hear on a daily basis. It will be wonderful teaching with the talks once they come out in the Liahona. We have been spending the past week getting transfers all figured out. Otherwise, I will be going to a southern city called Ceske Budejovice i will be a district leader and will be follow-up training Elder Pearson (his father is the General Authority).

As for the questions:

Did you laugh at that poster of Barrett and Evan? Yes i did it was perfect! thank you so much for doing that for me.

Did you enjoy your package? Absolutely, and i am still enjoying it! Im actually wearing the tie today!

Elder Briggs hasnt had grits since he left home and was in heaven when he ate some.

Thank you family for all that you do, the loving kindness that you have shown unto me will be with me for all eternity.

As parents you really were consistent in raising me just as Elder Bednar spoke about.

Thank you.

I am learning so much and am thankful that i am out here. I am truly where the Lord has always desired that i be at this time in my life.--

With love, Your son,Starsi Morgan Nowland

01 October 2009

26 Sept 2009

This picture is from a Young Adult Family Home Evening with one of the Senior Couples Serving in the Czech Republic Mission - Bro. and Sister Robbins.


It has been another week! Weeks don't last nearly as long now as they did when i was in High School. It all is going by so quick. we just got back from a Zone leader conference that we had in Brno. It was a lot of fun and i am really grateful that at this time in my mission i get to be apart of such wonderful opportunities to learn from the other elders and from mission president.

The coolest thing that happened this week is that.....drum roll please.....I finished reading the Book of Mormon from cover to cover within a 6 week period !!!!! I know for many people this is not such a massive accomplishment, but for me it really is something absolutely amazing. I never really had a very strong testimony of the importance of the Book of Mormon, i always considered it to be a true book, and i defended it as scripture, but i never really knew the great importance that it holds, and also the great amount of knowledge that is contained within its pages. I have grown to love the book. It is interesting because now that i have finished it i feel this great desire to want to pick it up and start all over again. It really is an amazing piece of work that know matter how intelligent Joseph Smith was or may have been; he could not have written such a book by himself. even if he would have had four years to write it. If any man had four years or more to try and write such a book, i am firm in my belief that no one could create a compilation that would come anywhere near to what the Book of Mormon is.

We received a really great blessing from the Lord but not anything that could top what happened to momma. Thank you for sharing that story it is absolutely amazing!! We went out contacting and talked to 5 people. The third and the fifth are where the miracle happened. we talked to them about the Plan of Salvation. One is a convinced atheist and doesnt believe in God but he does believe in something after death, so we set up a time to meet again and talk about exactly what happens after death. it was really interesting because he is a really sarcastic individual and seemed as if there was nothing we could do or say to help him feel the need to learn more. We took a step back and started to listen to him and discern with the spirit what his true desires are. And, we found it. That was pretty neat to receive that blessing of the Lord.

I love you all!!!!!!!!! Have a great week--

With love, Your son,Starsi Morgan Nowland

19 Sep 2009

It is so exciting to hear that things went really well for you all this past week. It really is a great motivation for me to persevere and continue on in the work. I'm really excited to see the branch (he forgets we are a ward here) when i get back. I have a feeling that I'm not going to recognize anybody. It is a wonderful feeling to know that my family is doing missionary work right along side me. I forgot to mention a big ol' HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO DADDY!! I want you to know Dad that when my mind was pricked to remembrance about that fact that your birthday had come and gone, I felt absolutely horrible. Then, as i thought more about it i realized that it was probably better that i forgot because then, in my mind at least, you dont get any older. Now isnt that just wonderful. My mind creates a "Neverland" for you, so i figured that even though i am half way around the world, that i can still give you a gift. The gift of never growing up! Which my 20 years of experience has shown me is a gift that you already assume that you have. But now it is official!! So Congratulations to never having to grow up; at least in the mind of your son. I love you daddy!
This week some really neat things happened. We went to a meeting that we had, upon showing up to their house we were pleasently surprised to find that they had four other friends from Nigeria staying with them as well . We felt the impulse to change our lesson plan to discussing the baptism of Jesus Christ. It turned out to be a very bold lesson, but very powerful. Also while i was on exchanges with my District Leadder we were out contacting near the center of Prague which is a bit abnormal because there are always a lot of tourists there so missionaries don't frequent that area too often. For some reason though we were out there and ended up getting contacted by two amercan girls that know (Elder) Travis Chambers. I told them that i had lived with him for two months and know him pretty well. They were really excited about that. Small World huh... So because of the example that Elder Chambers always was, we are now meeting with these two while they are here an a study abroad program. We will see what happens. The power of example is something so great, much greater than we realize. That it why Alma was so dissapointed with his son Corianton. For because of Coriantons bad example, many were hardened in their hearts and did not listen unto the words of Alma and his sons Helaman, and Shiblon. Something really cool that i cant remember if i told you or not is that Elder Briggs challenged me to read the Book of Mormon from cover to cover this transfer. I have been completely absorbed into the book. I am truly amazed that a book of scripture could be so amazing. Another neat thing is that because of this great excitment that i have felt towards the Book of Mormon, when i finish it i want to read the New Testament in the same fashion. It is a witness to me that the Book of Mormon does not only witness and testify of itself, but it testifies of the truthfullness of the Bible and as you read in the Book of Mormon, it develops in you a greater desire to read the Bible as well. The Book of Mormon is truly a magical piece of literature that i know without a doubt was written by the hand of God.


Do you think you are a better field missionary or office missionary or both? I enjoy the field work, it keeps me on my toes. But I do ok in the office when it comes to keeping things organized.
What do you like most as AP? working with President so closely, and being able to travel aroung the mission
What do you like least? Balancing the area and the office and the mission.
Last chance for things in your birthday box?
An updated picture of Whitney and Jeff in their home.
Pictures of our new home
A picture of Barrett and Evan Bello
Cinnamon Poptarts
Green "Icebreakers" mints
I cant think of anything else so if you think of anything else i guess it will be a surprise!it is possible that i will buy a new pair of shoes because mine are seeing their end. cobblestone is a destroyer! But it is fun to look at!
I love you all and look forward to hearing from you next week. Im in Alma 50 and looking like i will finish before the transfer is up...keep your fingers crossed. I love you, and wish you well this week. --
With love, Your son,
Starsi Morgan Nowland