Monday, June 9, 2014


Hey everyone!
So, I'm in Waterloo, Illinois now. So that's fun. Every transfer puts me in a smaller town than the last. It's so weird here; it's so flat and there is corn everywhere... Everywhere. My first day here we got picked up by a member to go give another member a blessing. He picked us up at our apartment which is in the middle of town and then not even two minutes of driving later we were surrounded by nothing but fields of corn. One second we were in civilization, literally the next second we weren't.
On Thursday we had district meeting. After which we had district lunch at KFC. Looking out the window I saw a spacious corn field. On the other side of that, a Walmart. On one side of the more busy streets here there is a pizza hut, applebees, department stores and so on. On the other side of that street is nothing but corn fields. Everything neighbors corn here! I can't get over it.
It's kind of been a long week, but transfer weeks are always weird for me. We have many service opportunities throughout the week such as building houses and taking down hangers at thrift stores. When I got here we had 5 investigators. We had a lesson with one of them whose name is Alyssa. We taught her the word of wisdom. She took it very well and is committed to living it. She is progressing well; she has a date for July 19th. Awesome!! I am very excited to be teaching her. Last night we stopped by to teach her and her friend Tiffany, who is also investigating and has a date but she is technically the sister missionaries investigator. They had company over and we were able to teach them about the book of Mormon, the priesthood, and a little bit of the plan of salvation. We exchanged contact information and set up times to meet with them again. That's two new investigators!
The branch here is great so far. They are very friendly and eager for missionary opportunities. Elder Bowen and I are getting along well. He is from Wanship, UT which is a little bit south of Coalville. He has some of the best people skills I've ever seen. The trick is getting him to use them.
I definitely have my work cut out for me here, but whom the Lord calls, He qualifies. I am excited to serve in this area now, and I am going out with more eagerness than ever before! How blessed am I to be a part of this marvelous work! It truly is a marvelous work. I love serving the Lord!
I hope all of you are doing well and have a wonderful week!

Love, Elder Curtis

PS. Dad, good luck with your new project at work, as well as your self-inflicted project at home. Haha! I wish I was there to help you. Take care. I love you.

6-2-14 (Transfer News)

Want to know what the worst part of being on a mission is for me? Transfers. As many of you have guessed, I will be leaving Poplar Bluff and going to Waterloo Illinois to serve as the district leader there and my new companion will be an Elder Bowen.
I can't believe how attached you can get to someone in such a short amount of time. There are so many people here that I've grown to love so much and evidently the feeling is mutual. It felt like it took more than an hour to leave church because all people wanted to do was say goodbye. Funny thing actually: my companion, Elder Davis, apparently doesn't really know how to make a good appearance because every single week since he got here without fail some member of the ward would come up to him and ask if he was new because they had "never seen him before". He's been here two transfers and yesterday even more people where asking him when he had gotten here because they didn't recognize him! As we were leaving, one sister told him she is excited to get to know him... That same family has had us over three times since he's been here.
With the news of me leaving this week and everyone just now realizing Elder Davis is a thing, everyone was just very confused I think. Hopefully Elder Davis will have more attention with me out of the way.
I haven't had a transfer call that I was particularly excited about yet, and this one doesn't exactly change that. I don't know if I'm just sad to leave so many people I love, leaving my wonderful companion for someone I know is going to be difficult, or going to Illinois which is even more flat than Missouri, but it's got me feeling kind of bitter. However, the Lord has proved my bitter feelings about every transfer wrong so far, so I have trust that He will continue to do so. I am going on with a good attitude and I keep practice looking for the good in all things and people and I already know for a fact that I am going to learn so much because of this change.
That's all I've got for this week. I love you all and I hope each of you have a blessed week.
Love, Elder Curtis


Hey everybody!
It's been a rather slow, yet still pretty crazy week. We had hardly any appointment follow through but we were able to visit a less active and we had a awesome lesson on the gospel of Jesus Christ. It was so cool because I'm sure it was the strongest he had felt the spirit in such a long time. Usually our appointments with him (if they follow through) are, to be frank, dull. I don't know what exactly it was this time but he was definitely more open and inviting to the spirit and it showed. On Sundee we had the pleasure of seeing him come to church! Granted he was a couple hours late, but he still came! It was so great to see him come back and I really think he enjoyed the lesson given in the third hour.
The appointment we had with Stacy Kemp fell through. Apparently right before we got there she had a seizure. As far as we know she is doing okay. We don't know why she didn't make it to church but we will be trying to meet up with her again.
Memorial day was nice. We drove up to Cape Girardeau and played softball with the whole zone. So that was fun.
We had many, many service opportunities this week. Mostly painting but also some moving. In fact we've spent the entire day up until now doing service. And we did so much painting this week that I almost felt like the Lord wanted me to get the idea that I need to pursue it for a career or something. I hope that's not true though.
I do love giving service though. It's so fulfilling. Many people out here aren't very comfortable with the idea of receiving service without giving some sort of payment, so that's annoying sometimes...
I will hit my ten month mark in a couple of days. It blows my mind at how fast all of this has gone by. There really is no time to waste.
Transfer calls come on Saturday. I have a feeling I will be leaving Poplar Bluff. There are always more bitter feelings about leaving an area because I grow to love the people so much, but I look forward to offering my service to new areas.
That's all I've got for you this week. I hope each of you stay safe and have a wonderful week.
I love you all!
-Elder Curtis


What a fantastic week it has been!
We kicked it off with an awesome zone conference (which is a meeting where all of the missionaries serving in a zone [which is equivalent to a stake] get together with the mission president and other office missionaries and have lots of trainings and what not). It was a wonderful time and I received so much spiritual guidance. I loved it!
I don't know if you remember, but ever since long before I ever got to Poplar Bluff the Elders have struggled to find people to teach, but on Wednesday we found TWO!! Haha! I remember when finding two investigators in a week wasn't very uncommon, but I haven't had that joy in quite a while, so I freaking happy!
We had an appointment with our investigator, Theresa (the one we found at pizza hut) and we were actually able to come in, sit down and have a lesson which hasn't happened in over a month due to illness, work, etc. But we finally got in and we read the Book of Mormon with them... Well, her cousin just so happened to be there that day and he sat in with us and read with us, asked question and all manner of good things for an investigator to do. He had a few concerns about our religion which we were able to resolve easily and he was very accepting of everything we said. We got his address and scheduled an appointment with him for this Wednesday.
Shortly after that lesson we went tracting. Of all the doors I have tracted on my mission I have never had anyone invite us in on the first approach, but we knocked on a door which opened up to Stacy Kemp, who after a brief introduction to our church and the Book of Mormon accepted our request to sit down with her and give her our message. We taught the restoration and she took all of it so well. I knew she felt the spirit as she willfully accepted our invitation to read the Book of Mormon and pray about it and what he told her. When we asked if we could come back another time to talk to her more she wanted us to come over the next day; so we did!
She explained that we had left such a strong impression on her that she drove around looking for our church so she would know where it is and she read the Book of Mormon and prayed about it. Although she claims she has not received an answer yet, we know one will come to her- she doesn't know it yet, but she knows it's true.
We taught the plan of salvation to her which went very well. We felt prompted to give her a subtle invitation to be baptized but she said she doesn't want to make such a commitment until she was on a "higher spiritual level" which isn't a valid excuse all, but don't worry, we'll work that out. She wasn't able to come to church this week due to family things, but she is committed to attending next week and bringing her niece with her. We have another appointment with her tomorrow and I am so excited! I love teaching the gospel!
There's so much more I want to share with you today, but I really don't know how. Mainly I just want to express the joys of my heart for the gospel, Christ, being able to have this opportunity to literally represent Christ and proclaim His word and to first handedly experience the atonement at work. It is the most amazing thing. I can't tell you how much I love it!
The church is true and I know it! It is true because of Christ- it is His church.
I love you all. May all of you come more unto Christ this week and partake of His sweet peace and love.

-Elder Curtis