Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Farewell Iowa

Dear Elder Morain Fan Club,

As I try to express the feelings I am going through to address you one last time as a full time missionary I am filled with emotion. I want to thank all of you so much for everything you have done for me these past 2 years of my mission. As I have received letters of encouragement from you I have been deeply touched. I am excited to see you once again and catch up on all that has happened in your journey through life.
I had one of the best days of my mission on Sunday. It was my last sunday on the mission and church was very special. Some of the members I have grown close to threw me a little party in celebration of my returning home. It has been a honor to get to know the amazing members here. Their example and friendship I have mentioned many times throughout my mission. They have been there for me when I needed them most and I will be forever grateful for them.
That night I had the sacred privilege of performing the saving ordinance of Baptism for my investigator Morgan Maher. The spirit was so strong at that Baptism. It truly was the crowning jewel of my mission experience. I cannot think of a more fitting event at the end of my service here in Iowa.
I want to end my last email with the testimony I have gained on my mission. I know without a doubt that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is true and that our Savior is at the head leading our Beloved Prophet, President Thomas S. Monson. As I have studied the words of President Monson I have received inspiration for what I need to do in my life. I know that he is a true prophet of God. I know that the Prophet Joseph Smith did see our Heavenly Father and his Son Jesus Christ in that grove which we now call Sacred. I have been to Nauvoo, the City of Joseph, on my mission 3 times, and have walked where he walked and have felt the spirit witness to me that he is the Prophet of the Restoration. I know that The Book of Mormon is true and can provide comfort to the soul when it is read and prayed about. I have come to know my Heavenly Father and my Savior personally as I have served them these past 2 years. I could not have done what I have done without them. The Sacrifice I paid on my mission is the price I have paid to know God.
Keep it real
VE Elder Morain

Monday, March 15, 2010

The Best 2 years of my life

Dear Elder Morain Fan club,

Hello to all, I have had quite the last week! In my last email, I
mentioned The Plan of Salvation. But little did I know how I would
appreciate The Plan of Salvation this week. On Wednesday, I got a
phone call from a recent convert in my ward whos Grandmother passed
away and so we met with her and tried our best to comfor her. On
friday we attended her grandmothers viewing and it was quite the
experience. If that was not enough, on Thursday another death came
into the play. My companion Elder Bringham and I were at a dinner
appointment and we were talking with the member and she showed us an
article about the missionaries in Chile. In that article, it mentioned
the friend of my companion, who was killed in a carbon monoxide leak
in his apartment in Romania while he was serving his mission. Some of
you may have heard of this incident, since it made church news. But my
companion, being on a mission had been isolated from the news and had
no idea his friend had died. He was good friends with him while he was
at BYU Provo. It hit him really hard. At this time, I thought about
the Atonement and the Ressurection. I came to appreciate them more,
since these deaths were affecting people I love. it isn't just
something I teach about to my investigators, but something I needed to
apply to my life right then.
My investigator Morgan Maher is being baptized this Saturday! She has
asked me to baptize her. I can't think of a better way of finishing
out my mission than this. Please pray for Morgan that she will be able
to go through with the Baptism and will be able to face all the trials
the adversary will throw out at her.
I will email all of you for the last time on my mission, next
Wednesday March 24th. I will fly home to San Jose California on Friday
March 26th. For those of you in the San Jose area, I would love to see
you at my homecoming talk, which will be on Sunday March 28th, at 10
am at the Bernal Building. I want to thank all of you for the support
you have given me. Especially for the prayers, for I have truly seen
miracles in my life these past 2 years because of the prayers you
offered in my behalf.
Keep it real
VE Elder Morain

Monday, March 8, 2010

When All is Said and Done

Dear Elder Morain Fan Club,

Hey everyone hope all is well with ya. I am livin up my last 2 and a
half weeks of my mission here in Iowa! We had an amazing Fast and
Testimony Meeting yesterday. Since it was my last fast sunday on my
mission I got up and bore my testimony to the members I have grown to
love so much. I bore testimony of the power of prayer. As I have
struggled through trials on my mission, I have really needed the help
of my Father in Heaven and my Savior Jesus Christ. As I have knelt on
my knees in prayer, I have communicated with my father in heaven and
have literally received answers from Him.

We taught our investigators, Morgan and Paul a lot this week. We set a
baptismal date with both of them again now that they are progressing
faster than ever. Then a trial from the adversary came into play.
Paul's Grandfather passed away on Thursday. Due to heart failure he
was on life support and couldn't do anything for him so they pulled
the plug. His Grandfather lives in Colorado, where Paul is from, and
Paul is probably going back to Colorado for the funeral. Morgan told
us if he goes back to Colorado, he most likely will not come back to
Iowa. So, we'll see what happens. Morgan told us she still wants to be
baptized even if Paul won't be at the same time as her. So please pray
for them that they can be comforted at this time. The Plan of
Salvation, which I have been able to teach many people on my mission,
is comforting to me at times like these.
I know this Church is true with all my heart.
Keep it real
VE Elder Morain

Monday, March 1, 2010

The Greatest Walk on Earth

Dear Elder Morain Fan Club,

Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls, welcome to the month of March
2010! Wow, I can't believe it has come so fast. Good thing I have till
March 26th to live it up here in Iowa! I had an absolutley spectucular
week. I had my last Zone Conference on my mission. We have a tradition
that your last zone conference you get up and bear your "going home
testimony". I have seen many of my best friends on the mission go up
there give theres and it was time I go up. I tried hard not to get
emotional but I couldn't help it. It was an experience I will never
We had interviews with our Mission President, I still get to have one
more right before I go home where he gets to give me his parting
advice haha. On Thursday I went on exchanges with my Zone Leader Elder
Wray in his area, Cedar Rapids 2nd ward(I'm in Cedar Rapids 1st ward
by the way)On friday we helped out at that hospital and it was a good
time as always.
Saturday was a special day. We helped volunteer at an event called,
"The Greatest Walk on Earth" it was a walk for curing Diabetes. They
had over 3,000 people there! They had a player from the University of
Iowa's football team there and I got his autograph haha. It's kind of
big deal since the University of Iowa won the Orange Bowl as you all
Last night I got to attend our Stake Priesthood Meeting. Waterloo,
where I served for 4 and a half months, is in our stake, so I got to
see a bunch of friends from Waterloo area! I just love the people here
so much. As you serve shoulder to shoulder with these amazing members
you develop a friendship like no other.
Here in Cedar Rapids we are working on Paul and Morgan still. We
talked with them about getting married, and offering the option of
living the law of chastity. Either path they choose, Morgan can be
baptized. Hopefully when Paul starts the Stop Smoking Workshop he as
well can be baptized. I really am going to miss being a part of
helping my investigators prepare for Baptism. It is the greatest work
I have ever been involved in, and probably the greatest work I will
ever be involved in my life.
Keep it real
VE Elder Morain

Monday, February 22, 2010

Happy B-Day George Washington!

Dear Elder Morain Fan Club,

Hows it goin? What a week I have had! I finally found out whats goin down on July 1st when we get our new Mission President. Since the Illinois, Peoria Mission is being dissolved the Iowa Des Moines Mission will be taking the Peoria Illinois Stake, the Davenport Iowa Stake, and the Nauvoo Illinois Stake! The sad news for me is though, the Nebraska Omaha Mission will be taking the Sioux City Iowa Stake! I spent 6 months in Sioux City and now they are giving to Omaha. So if you were a missionary serving in that stake on July 1st you would be transferred to the Nebraska Omaha Mission! Same with missionaries serving in the Peoria mission in stakes coming to our mission. But as you know, I will be going home March 26th 2010 so it doesn't effect me directly!
Today I got an email from my mission President informing me that Precious Rose, an investigator I taught in Sioux City 1st ward has a baptismal date! I am really excited for her! She is a way sweet African American lady that claimed she knew Bob Marley! I wonder if she really did know him...haha.
On Wednesday I had a special opportunity! My companion is the District Leader so we got to go up to Waterloo for a meeting! It was my first time getting to go back there! I got to see Sharon Evans, this lady who was like my grandma and got to know so well. I also got to see Mike Lujan who is a recent convert and one of my best friends from Waterloo! It was so good to go back to Waterloo and see people I love.
Here in Cedar Rapids we began teaching a new investigator. She is a friend of a recent convert here. They went up to Minneapolis/ St. Paul Minnasota this weekend so I told them to check out the St. Paul temple and they did! Our other investigators, Morgan Maher and her fiance Paul are doin good! We taught the stop smoking workshop to Paul and when he starts the program it gurantees him to be smoke free in 1 week! I hope he will be able to do it. I am just loving it here in Cedar Rapids, I have met some of the most amazing people here and I love them so much.
Keep it Real
VE Elder Morain

Monday, February 15, 2010

Happy Presidents Day America!

Dear Elder Morain Fan Club,

Hows everybody doin these days? Well, I am doin just brilliant. I am
with my new companion...Elder Bringham! He and I go way 3
months ago when I got to Sioux City and he was in Macy Nebraska on an
Indian Reservation. I was so excited when I found out we would be
companions. He is from Reno Nevada and has been out for 1 year! I am
grateful he will be the one killing me off as they say.
So on Wednesday right after I finished emailing you, I got to have
lunch with Vania Minor, who I was good friends with when I served in
Iowa City. It was good to catch up with her and hear how Iowa City has
been goin since I left.
So Thursday was transfer day and I said goodbye to my companion Elder
Paulson, I'll miss him, he was one of the best companions I have had
fo sho. But alas, Elder Bringham and I have been lovin life. On Friday
we did our service at St. Lukes Hospital which is always good. Then we
helped out at a homeless shelter where we fed dinner to them.
Saturday morning we had a lesson with Billy Martin and his roomate
Travis. Billys dad was actually an extra in the movie, "Field of
Dreams"! Oh and that reminds me, when I was serving in Lenox I
mentioned they were going to start filming a movie called, "The
Crazies" which is a remake of a old horror movie. So I heard that The
Crazies is being released in Theaters soon and you can see my little
town of Lenox Iowa in it! "Its a Small World After All"
My Mission President emailed me this morning informing me our new
Mission President that is taking over in July 2010 has been announced.
Dirk and Laurie Jergensen from San Diego will be the new Mission
President and Wife! This morning I also found out that the makeup of
our mission will be changing with the consolidation of the Peoria
Illinois Mission, our mission and the St. Louis Missouri Mission! I
assume these changes will happen with the switch of Mission
Presidents. If you hear anything more feel free to let me know, since
I am sheltered from the news, even church news haha.
Well, I am loving Cedar Rapids with Elder Bringham! As my 23 month
mark approaches this friday I am trying my best to enjoy every second
I have left of my mission.
Keep it real
VE Elder Morain

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

My trip to Nauvoo!

Dear Elder Morain Fan Club,

Hey everybody how ya'll been? I found out this morning that I will be finishing off my mission here in Cedar Rapids! I am so grateful I get to stay in this amazing area till I go home. The Sad news is my companion, Elder Paulson will be getting transferred. So I'll find out who will be "killing"(my last companion before I go home) me off tomorrow. It will be crazy because my companion will be the District Leader but I will be the Designated Driver. I am excited for what my last 6 weeks will bring!
Well, I'll get to the part you all have been waiting for. My trip to Nauvoo was absolutley spectacular! So I drove down to Iowa City and met up with my group that I came out with from the MTC. We got to Nauvoo and I got to see some of the sites I had seen when I went on this trip about a year ago. We saw where the Mississippi River had froze and the Saints crossed over it. Then we went to a place I had not seen, the grave sites of Joseph Smith Sr, Lucy Mack Smith, Emma Smith, Hyrum Smith and Joseph Smith Jr! That was quite the experience. Then we went to our Endowment Session in the Nauvoo Temple. I got to see my Stake President who set me apart as a missionary, President Foote! He was released as Stake President to serve as a Temple missionary in the Nauvoo Temple. So I had a conversation with him and his wife, it was the first time for me seeing someone I knew from home on my mission! After our Endowment Session a member of the Temple Presidency took us up in the Bell Tower and then in the small room directly below the Angel Moroni! There in that room we sang our mission song, which is like "The Army of Helaman" but with words relating to being full time missionaries.The spirit I felt was so strong and it was an experience I will never forget. I loved the Nauvoo Temple, especially after studying about what took place on that sacred ground. On Sunday during Fast and Testimony meeting I got up and shared the experience I had of going to the Nauvoo Temple and bore my testimony of the importance of Temples. I am so grateful my family has been sealed in the Temple for Eternity.
Keep it real
VE Elder Morain

Monday, February 1, 2010

CR ZC Pictures

Dear Elder Morain Fan Club,

Hows everybody been? I've been just dandy. On Tuesday we had the long awaited Confirmation of our recent convert Becky Miller! Becky was baptized january 2nd but she and her family have been sick and havent been able to come to church. So we came to her house and Confirmerd her. Her Dad had been Less Active for a while so hes workin on coming back to church. Her Mom has told her son that once her son is worthy to baptize, she wants to be baptized by him. So its a motivation for her son to get his act together. Their other son is the one on a mission in the California, Sacramento Mission! I'm sure he is proud of his sister getting baptized, as I am.
On saturday the Assistant to the President came on exchanges with us! Elder Porter and Elder Phillips are the APs who both came out with me to the mission field. We helped the Harveys on their flood house. We put insulation in their Attic and it was quite an experience haha. I am learning a lot about fixing up houses by helping the Harveys out.
Well, as I've mentioned, tomorrow is the BIG DAY! Tomorrow I will be driving down to Iowa City and meeting up with the group of missionaries I came out with and we will be going to NAUVOO! I am so excited for this, it is something you look forward to your whole mission, I can't believe its my time to go already. I will be sure to tell you all about it next Wednesday February 10th! Transfers are on the 11th and I sure hope I am staying here in Cedar Rapids to finish off my mission. I will be getting a new companion none the less. I'll let ya know whats goin down next time.
Keep it Real
VE Elder Morain

Monday, January 25, 2010

I moved into a new home!

Dear Elder Morain Fan Club,

Hows everybody been eh? I have some news for ya. This morning we moved out of the members home we were living with and moved into another members home! Her name is Sister Hatch and she is 88 years old living by her self. I can actually give the address to ya
609 35th St. SE
Cedar Rapids, IA 52403
That will most likely be my address till I go home! So anyways I am excited to live with Sister Hatch it will sure be a big step up from my last living situation haha.
We had a miracle happen this week. We set a baptismal date with our investigator Morgan Maher and her fiance Paul! They are so amazing. They have some obstacles to overcome before they can be baptized but I have faith they can do it. Morgan is 19 and Paul is 20 and they were found by tracting before I got there. We have taught them a lot and are really intersted in what we have to say.
I am lovin it here in Cedar Rapids! At St. Lukes Hospital we help out escorting patients when they walk in the main entrance. We are still helping the Harveys with their flood house, it is really close to being finished! But I just found out Sister Harvey only has 3-6 months to live. Since the cancer is spread through her whole body there is nothing else they can do. I am amazed at their positive attitude despite this trial their going through. I am reminded that life can be so short, so "Find Joy in the Journey Now" as President Monson teaches us. I am thankful for this opportunity to be a full time missionary here in Cedar Rapids. There are truly so many incredible people here.
Keep it Real
VE Elder Morain

Monday, January 18, 2010

Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day America!

Dear Elder Morain Fan Club,

Hows everybody been? I had a very happy 21st birthday on Saturday, thanks to those who remembered me and making my birthday a happy one. I had a happy week as well! On Tuesday we had our Zone Conference. It was so good to be taught by our mission leaders, I felt the spirit really strong. On Wednesday I had my interview with my mission president. This one was special because I got my new temple recommend. Mine is expiring and since I am going to Nauvoo on February 2nd(ground hog day!) with the missionaries I was in the MTC with I got a new one. That will be a great experience I am looking forward to.
I received some tragic news on Thursday morning. Sister Harvey, who is a senior missionary in my district, has Cancer throughout her whole body. She just started some radiation treatments so we'll see how that goes. She is a sweet lady and I respect her so much. We worked on her house that got flooded out and its coming along but probably will not be done in time for us to move in. So we most likely will be moving in with another member, I don't know any details yet but I'll keep ya posted.
On Sunday we had a returning missionary give his homecoming talk. It hit me hard on how soon I will be giving mine. This Tuesday I hit 22 months out, I can't believe how time has flown.
Last night we visited our investigators Morgan and her mom Kris. They seemed really interested in what we said about The Restoration of our church. Morgan texted us when we got home,and she said, "I want to be baptized into the Mormon religion." I've never got a text like that before! I hope we can continue to prepare her for baptism, I am so excited for her. I love being a missionary and be a part of the miracles the Lord performs.
Keep it Real
VE Elder Morain

Monday, January 11, 2010

My 21st Birthday has arrived America!

Dear Elder Morain Fan Club,

Hows everybody been? I have been livin the dream here in Cedar Rapids! I am approaching a milestone in my life this Saturday January 16th, my 21st BIRTHDAY! What better place to be on my 21st Birthday than in Cedar Rapids serving the sweet people here. I can't believe I'll be 21 years old already because being 20 went by like nobodys business.
Well, yesterday I found out some crazy news. The member family that I am living with told us that we need to be moved out by the end of January! It was pretty unexpected, but there son is moving back in with them so he needs the room were staying in. So we don't know where we will be living but we have a few options. There is a senior missionary couple here in Cedar Rapids who are serving from their home. They have like 4 houses here in Cedar Rapids and some were damaged by the Flood of 2008. The missionaries here have been helping them fix up one of their houses and the senior couple will allow 4 missionaries to live in it when its finished. I went over there on tuesday and helped out on the house and it is really close to being done. So one of the options is we might get to live there, but its up to our mission president. The other options are we find an apartment to live in, or another member who is able to have us live in their home. So I'll let ya know more when I find out.
Wednesday was a day I thought would never come for me. I got a phone call who some missionaries call their, "Trunky Call" It is when the mission secretary calls and asks if you will be flying home or being picked up by your parents. So I told her I will be flying into the San Jose International Airport. I have served with many missionaries at the time they recieved their "Trunky Call" and I always told myself that day is far off in my future. Man how time flies on the mission.
Well, I hope all of you have a specatular week and I would love to hear from ya sometime. I'll let ya know how my Birthday goes next time. Thanks for everything you do for me out here in my mission.
Keep it real
VE Elder Morain

[From Jeff's Dad: Jeff is looking for a (male) roommate to join him at BYU-Idaho for Spring semester 2010. Reply to if you are interested.]

Monday, January 4, 2010

Holler from Cedar Rapids Iowa!

Dear Elder Morain Fan Club,

Ladies and Gentlemen, boys and girls, I am pleased to announce that my wildest dreams have come true. I am now serving in the Cedar Rapids 1st Ward! My entire mission I have heard good things about Cedar Rapids 1st ward and now I am livin the dream! Cedar Rapids is the 2nd biggest city in the state of Iowa(2nd to Des Moines). Its population is about 130,000 people! Some of you may remember from the news that Cedar Rapids got the worst of the Flood in the summer of 2008. I heard it was the 2nd worst natural disaster in the nation,(2nd to Katrina) You can still see flood damage around downtown.
Anyways, my companion is Elder Paulson!!! He is such a stud. He is from Saratoga Springs Utah! He just got done being trained so some call me his "greenie buster' haha. I am so excited to serve with him here in Cedar Rapids!
We live in a members home, and this is the first time I have lived in a members home on my mission. The family is the Gillmores and we live in a pretty small bedroom. I got the top bunk of our bunk bed haha. It will be a good experience for me. I will be driving a 2007 chevy Malibu, the same car I drove when I was being trained. We only get it every other week though so we walk every other week. But I am just so excited to be here in Cedar Rapids!
On New Years Day we did service at St. Lukes Hospital! We get to help out there every week. On my mission I have developed a love for hospitals haha. I just love being in them lol.
Well, I got here at the perfect time because on Saturday we had a baptism! Another 9 year old girl got baptized! Her name is Becky Davis, and her brother is serving a mission in the California, Sacramento Mission. So look for an Elder Davis out there k? Her whole family was recently re-activated. Her brother on a mission, decided to change his life around and started coming back to church. Then his dad started coming back and got to baptize his daughter. His wife is not yet a member but we are teaching her.
I have been so blessed on my mission to witness some amazing miracles in peoples lives.
Keep it real
VE Elder Morain