Thursday, May 8, 2014

Apr 28, 2014 Strengthen Thy Stakes and Enlarge Thy Borders Forever

Yesterday, after the sacrament was blessed and passed I got up to count attendance and our branch presidency came to the pulpit. I started to count as he read a "special announcement" from the Mission Presidency. It went a little something like this: "Approval has been given to hold special district conferences on May 24-25 2014, for the purpose of establishing the Phnom Penh North Stake and the Phnom Penh South Stake. Separate conferences will be held to organize the two stakes, but on the same weekend.  This is an important milestone in the ongoing growth and progress of the Church here in Cambodia, and exciting news for all of our members and missionaries!" I about dropped my notepad. I was tearing up. There was so much adrenaline pumping, I felt like I just scored the game winning goal and wanted to scream and pump my fists but we were in sacrament meeting and it was so cool! It was so hard to stay chill and count heads. My trainee just got here 2 days before the announcement. They're going to have Patriarchs! They will be split from the Mission!! I bet Elder Holland will come down to do it too! Stakes!!! It's such a big step for the leadership here. Since missionaries were allowed in 1994 all leaders have reported directly to the Mission President. Now, the stake presidencies will be independent of the Mission! It's such an amazing thing!

OK, now for more personal updating. Introducing... Elder Quirante! Elder Quirante hails from Vidor, Texas, the fourth of six children. His father is Filipino, a convert to the church who moved the America when he was five. Elder Quirante is the fourth missionary from his family when you count his dad, and he is super excited to be here! We are going to get a lot of stuff done. I kind of get the feeling that he is somewhat of a legend in his hometown. He was the star quarterback and MLB for his high school football team that went 9-1 his senior year and several deep in the 4A playoffs. And you couldn't find a more humble guy. Also, his arms are literally larger than my thighs. I'm not even joking. I don't even have to measure. It's ridiculous. Hopefully he can teach me how to workout while we're here.

Shout out to my siblings. It's really cool to hear about all the amazing things you guys are doing in all of your activities. I've got tons of reports on your various athletic events lately and I feel really confident in saying that we're going to look back and say, "Yeah Adam... He was really the only one who wasn't particularly good at his sport. But that's ok. The rest of us are All-Stars!" But really though, it's super fun to get y'alls updates. And especially Erin, who took 14th All-Around in the Texas All State Gymnastics meet! I miss y'all!

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