Monday, July 25, 2011


Alright world,
How's it going? Things pretty bueno? Mom it seems like you've been in Utah forever. I bet Dad misses you. I miss you too, but no biggie I'll see you in 17 Months.
The mish is treatin me well, like usual. Are you ready for the big news of the week?? Okay here goes- Sister Mary Hoth was officially baptized Saturday, by the one and only Elder Logan Jones (My companion). Thank you for keeping her in your prayers. The baptism was great, and I was so happy to see Elder Jones get back in the water. The only bad news is Martha didn't get baptized with her. She didn't feel ready when Elder Lester interviewed her on Thursday. We'll be meeting with her this week and talking about everything. Hopefully we'll be able to reset her date. Her mom set the example though, it's only a matter of time before Martha follows her footsteps. I'm excited we'll still be able to work with her.
Joe and Alexandria are doing great. They are still planning their wedding for next month, and then they'll be able to enter in the waters as well. Exciting things are happening in Raleigh.
We found this crazy awesome guy named Micheal. He's so elect. He's been prepared for the restored gospel, he just needed to white guys like me and Elder Jones to knock on his door. He's progressing, and has a baptismal date for the 6th of next month. He's looking way good. We get to meet with his wife and daughter this week too, I'm way excited!
We're seeing so many blessings, and I know it's because of our new commitment to be obedient with exactness. We're are striving to do every little thing we can to follow the white hand book. Of course we miss the mark in a few area's, sometimes lessons go a little long and we get home a few minutes late, and sometimes we get to studies a couple minutes late, but we're striving to tie up all our loose ends, and be everything God has called us to be. We only have so long to serve, we gotta be the best we can for the Lord, no regrets!
I'm so pumped up as of late, I just got this new fire for the work. I just wanna teach everyone I see! Haha, I went on exchanges with Elder Badger, and he pointed something out to me that I hadn't really noticed. We went tracting together, just like the good old days, and after we knocked a few doors he was like "dang Elder LeBaron, you're a lot more presistant than you used to be" I didn't really notice, I guess I was just sick of people giving lame excuses of why they don't have time to listen to a message about our savior that could change their life for eternity. I definately don't give up easy at doors anymore. I guess I'm getting better at this missionary thing. There was this devotional we watched a while back given by Elder Holland at the MTC, where he said " Be persistant! My wife's Avon lady is more persistant than most of you and she's just selling mascara". It's so true, we have something so much greater to offer than anyone who has ever knocked on their door, we can't give up easy! and when you just bear sincere testimony of how important the message you have to offer is, people feel that spirit, and almost always say you can at least come back when they have more time, you just need to show them how much it means to you, they can see that when you look them in the eyes.
Transfers are in 2 weeks, and If anyone is wondering, I will probably stay in Raleigh another 2 transfers. I don't think my work here is done, and the AP's and Zone Leaders confirmed I'd be staying for a while. That makes me happy. I love this ward. It sure does need a lot of help, but it's a great place. I've been working closely with the ward mission leader in the ward, and helping assign recent converts to specific ward missionaries. I've been in the ward for 7 months, so I know almost all of the recent converts, the tough thing is, we have like 40 or so, and so in ward correlation it's hard to discuss the needs of all of them, that could take 3 hours or so. Brother Godwin was concerned with that so he's picked me and Elder Badger to help him give the meeting some direction, and follow-up with the ward missionaries with the work that they do. We have 5 sets of ward missionaries, and only 3 assignments were given. So this past week we changed that and now there are 30 assignments, they have one convert to see a week, and the full-time missionaries will pick up the slack. I don't think that's too much to ask, we'll see how it goes. I get frustrated with some of the ward missionaries. They don't seem to want to do anything, and they complain that we just baptize for numbers, which really gets me heated. They have no idea how important every single convert and investigator is to us and how much time we spend on our knees praying for these people. I don't understand why they are frustrated with us baptizing so much, it's what we're called to do! Sure these people aren't perfect, they have a lot of problems, that's why they need these active white members we have to fellow-ship them. I guess there's a lot of segregation going on in relief society and all this crazy stuff, and we're getting some negative feedback from investigators and convert women after they come out of relief society, saying they are getting persecuted for the fact that they have children out of wedlock and tattoo's and such. This is an on-going problem. ugghh. It's stressful. I shouldn't get frustrated, its tough though, I'm trying to continually develop christ-like love for even the most frustrating people. lol. It's a work in progress.
Well... It's just getting hotter and hotter out there, and we're biking more and more, so I'm getting a nice tan. It's the collar-ed shirt tan, so whenever I wear a t-shirt I look pretty ridiculous.
I love you all, have some fun for me this week. Pray for miracles, and please keep Martha in your prayers. I'm gonna see if we can make a miracle happen and baptize her this Saturday. She's ready, and I don't want her to forget the spirit she's felt, especially at her mothers baptism.
Talk to you all next week.
-Elder Justin LeBaron

Monday, July 18, 2011


Dearest Family, what uppp?

The Mish is treating me well. We honestly had a great week. I'm
loving life. Sometimes days drag on in the heat, and things just suck,
but at the end of the day it always feel so good to report back to the
Lord, knowing you did what you were called to do, and you gave it all
you had. If there's anything I'm learning right now it's not to waste
a moment. Time just disappears. It's like, poof, another weeks gone,
what the freak happened, but when you're bustin your tail you find joy
in the work.
Thank you for the e-mails, I'm glad you guys haven't forgotten
about me, and thanks for getting ready to send me a package. I hope
you haven't sent it yet, because I have a few things I need. Well
actually I only need one thing, and that's more contacts... yes, like
4 months have past since you sent me my last box, and a box only lasts
3 months, so I'm wearin old ones. So when you guys are able to get me
another box I would appreciate it, but you don't need to go down and
get them immediately or anything, I still have my glasses, so no
worries just take your time. Another thing I was hoping ya'll could
send me are my mocassins, It'd be nice to have those for p-days, that
way I could be comfy but also avoid the chiggers.

So transfers are sorta coming up soon... I guess 3 weeks is soon. I
know it's gonna feel like tommorrow basically. I think maybe I'm just
looking forward to them, even though I'm trying to have the best
attitude I can about Elder Jones. I really love the dude. He's a great
guy, and he has tons of potential, he's super smart, he could blow me
out of the water in a bible bash or deep doctrine discussion. I think
that's why I'm serving where I'm serving though, I'm not a genious at
scripture references or deep doctrine, I just try to focus on teaching
simply and powerfully. That's what the Ghetto is all about. I honestly
would love to serve in this ward like my whole misison. That might
sound wierd, but I freaking love Memphis, I don't wanna leave. I've
been in Memphis 1st ward over 7 months now. Yeah buddy. and I hope
I'll hit a year in this ward, it's way possible. Elder Badger
supposedly knows some of whats goin down come transfers, cuz he's a
big bad zone leader, and he's my mission daddy, so he gives me the
scoop. He says he's hopping zones and goin over to the other Memphis
zone to serve with Elder Hire, another stud ZL, and our other ZL in
this zone is ending his last transfer so he's goin home (Elder Veater,
he's a stud, I'm gonna miss him) So what i'm gettin at is there's
gonna be 2 open ZL slots in this zone, so 2 DL's are gonna go up in
the ranks. So our Zone is gonna switch around a lot. I'm excited to
see the new leadership.
That reminds me, Elder Burton is a DL now in his mission, andddd,
he's been out over a year. That's madness. I can't wait to see that
guy after our missions.
The work is moving forward here in Raleigh. Best news- Mary and
Martha are getting baptized this Saturday!!!! Woot. We haven't had a
baptism since Ervin, so it's about time Elder Jones gets in the water
again. Mary and Martha are so awesome, and they are so ready! Please
keep them in your prayers and pray everything will go smoothly this
weekend. I love them, they are the coolest investigators ever.
We're also working with this couple, Joe and Alexandria. They are
so cool. Joe is 21, and he's had a really troubled past, but he's
trying to turn his life around, he's striving to quit smoking, he
want's to marry Alexandria, and chang his life around for his little
baby daughter, and we had an awesome lesson with them a couple nights
ago. Lol, so we're suppossed to be home by 9:30 at the latest, and
thats only if we have a lesson that goes long, well, we were teaching
Joe and Alexandria, and we got over there at around 8:15, so we figure
we have plenty of time to go over the Restoration with Alexandria (Joe
had heard it before but not Alexandria, it was our first time teaching
them both together). We're going through the lesson and the spirit was
just so strong, I finished reciting the 1st vision, and I always like
to be silent just after, to let it sink in and let the spirit testify
that it's true, and I look down at my pocket and I see the phone going
off, and I then realize that we've been over there for a while, so I
look at the phone and realize it's 9:35, and it was Elder Lester doing
call-ins, making sure we were home and to report our numbers for the
day. So in my mind I was like, crap. Elder Jones started teaching
about the BOM, and I texted Elder Lester our numbers and told him we'd
be home soon. We end up getting outta there around 10:30, we just
couldn't cut the lesson short, Alexandria was SO zoned in and IDK, it
was crazy that it took so long. Anyway, because of that lesson they're
getting baptized as soon as possible, but we get out of there and I
have like 20 missed calls from the DL and ZL's and the AP's. Freak. So
I call AP Peay, (I lived with him my 1st 2 transfers so I know him
pretty well) and we talked for a few minutes. He forgave me, but he
was a little upset of course, lol. I don't really regret it because we
set a baptismal date from that lesson, but I dont think I'm on the
AP's good side anymore. haha. Oh well. It was honesty the best lesson
of the week.
Everything is going good though. It feels good to be considered an
experienced missionary now. I remember how much I hated being a new
missionary. A new rule has been introduced now btw, no more using the
word "Greeny", it's an illegal missionary term. Aparrently this came
all the way from Elder Holland. I think they're trying to make the
transition into the mission a lot smoother, President said we need to
treat the new missionaries like they're pure gold. I think this will
help with the problem of missionaries going home early in their
missions, I hear they're trying to make the transition in the MTC
easier too. All they need to do is show the video of Elder Holland
giving his "Miracle of a Mission" talk. That'll keep you in the
mission. He says that he'd tie you down and beg you to stay if he
could. It's such an awesome talk. Elder Holland is the man.
Dad said it's like 90 back home. I bet that feels hot. If it's 92
here I'm telling Elder Jones " hey lets go contact while it's still
cool outside", lol. It's always over 100 and I always feel like I just
went swimming in my own sweat, I'm way used to it though now, it
doesn't bother me much, as long as I have like 4 or 5 water bottles in
my backpack.
Something interesting happened the other day. We were driving back
from the temple actually, and I suddenly had this really sharp
stinging pain in my leg, and I was like, what the freak! So I roll up
my pant leg and this big wasp flies out my my pants. lol. It was
ridiculous, don't ask me how a wasp got up in my pants, I have now
idea, but my upper thigh has been swollen ever since.
I gotta teach FHE at the church this week. That was cool, and that
object lesson book that you sent really helps. I hope I get a calling
where I get to teach when i get home. I don't care if it's little kids
or Elder Q or whatever. I just love teachin.
Well, we gotta bounce, Elder Carson want's us to play a game of
Munchkin with him and Badge Attack. I love you all very much. As the
hood rats would say down her in da south, keep it fresh as a mug.
peace mon. I'll keep you all in my prayers, thank you for your
support! keep on keepin on.

Elda Laburn (as Stephanie would say)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


This is the link that Justin mentioned yesterday in his letter.

Mormon Missionaries Live Their Faith

Updated: Wednesday, 06 Jul 2011, 6:52 PM CDT
Published : Wednesday, 06 Jul 2011, 6:53 PM CDT

Memphis, Tn - You may have noticed them in your neighborhood, young men in shirts and ties traveling by bicycle, young ambassadors for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

"It is a calling that has challenges and it has a flip side, it has a lot of joy. Something we believe in a lot," says Mormon Missionary Raddison Veater.

The church deploys 54-thousand missionaries world wide, 24 of those operate in the greater Memphis area.

Six days a week, from 6:30 in the morning until about 10 at night, they spread gospel, and proselytize their faith in the Bible belt.

It's a calling for these 20-year-olds, a voluntary assignment sanctioned by the church.

The commitment demands time and discipline. They can't read newspapers, watch the news, or use any media including the internet. Missionaries are allowed only two phone calls home, Mother’s Day and Christmas.

Missionary work is purely voluntary. They don't get a stipend. There is no allowance. They pay money out of their own pockets to do this for the next two years. They say it comes to around $10,000.

This is not a calling for the weak of heart or doubters of faith. It's for young men and women who believe in the word and will travel wherever they are told to spread the message.

Monday, July 11, 2011


Hey Family,
Greeting from Memphis, the hottest place on the planet. Lately it's been like 102 or 103 eveyday, and that's not including the humidity, so I think the heat index is like 110 or something crazy most days. Elder Jones and I are just finishing up our bike week this month, thank heavens it's over. I'm not looking forward to the one in August, that's suppossed to be the hottest month of the summa here in good ole TN.
Things have been goin'. We went to the temple earlier today, that was sweet. We get to go about one a month here since the Memphis Temple isn't very far from our area.
4th of July was good. Brother Presley (Elvis Inpersonator) had us over for a cook out. Back home we would have called it a barbeque, but in the south there's a difference between having barbeque vs. throwin burgers on the grill. BBQ is a huge deal in Memphis, and it's sooo good. I hope I'm in Memphis for May next year because that's when all the Memphis in May BBQ competitions go down. There's a place here called "Corky's", it's probably my favorite BBQ place in the world, but "Fat Larry's" is a close second.
I got a package from Alyssa with all this 4th of July stuff in it, that was cool, even the the 4th was over by the time I got it lol, but I like glow sticks. So thank you favorite cousin of mine.
We're teaching Brother Presleys son Joe, and his fiance, and they are super cool. They we're going to get baptized on the 23rd of this month up until we found out they weren't married. Now we're working on getting them married hopefully by next month, that's the current plan. Joe is such a great guy, it's obvious how much he loves his baby momma and his little girl, and he only wants the best for them. He's just got a good heart, and he's really open to what we've been sharing with him, I'm excited to see him progress.
Mary and Martha (two ladies we're teaching from Sudan) are doing awesome. They were suppossed to be baptized on the 9th, but they missed church the week before, so we wanted to wait to make sure they're committed. So we reset their date for the 23rd. They've been taught everything and they have committed to living all the commandments, and I'm pretty confident that they'll be baptized then. So that's exciting! We need to get someone in the water, we haven't baptized at all this transfer. Keep them in your prayers, hopefully everything will go smoothly.
Those are probably the most legit people we're working with at the moment. We found 5 new investigators this week, so we have a lot of people to work with. We're praying for miracles.
I finally got to meet the new mission president this week. It was suppossed to be President Gibbons, that's who we were expecting for like the past 5 months, but there was a last minute change, President Gibbons went to Russia abnd President Peterson came here. But he's an amazing man. President Drewes changed this mission, and President Peterson is here to take it a step further. He talked to us mostly about exact obedience, and to expect miracles. He fired the mission up, and that's exactly what we needed, another boost of energy and motivation.
He expects us to get 65 baptisms as a mission for the month of July. That has never been done in the history of the mission, but he was confident in the fact that if we are obedient to the letter of the law and we expect to see miracles happen, that they'll come. So i'm excited to see how this month plays out.
I have to get going, and email pres back, but I love all of you. Thank you for all of your support. Watch that video I sent of Elder Badger on TV.
-Elder LeBaron

Monday, July 4, 2011


Thank you for being the only person in the whole world to write me an email this week. lol. Usually I get like 7, and today I got uno. Kelsey didn't even write me, how bogus is that. It's okay though, you all enjoy your 4th of July! Live it up! Tell Stevo I said what up broski.
Well, I don't have a lot of motivation to write this week (since nobody wrote me lol) and we're on a time crunch since it's a Holiday! I apologize for the shortness of this email though, please forgive me mommy. We're busy, considering it's the 4th! so we're gonna have a cook-out at the Fraysa house and play a mean game of some Munchin. It's a card game that Elder Carson loves, it's fun though haha.
So something cool happened this week, Elder Jones and I discovered that there's a gym like 3 min away from our apartment, and it's owned by a Latter-Day Saint, so missionaries work out for free there! It's awesome. I missed the gym so much. Now Elder Jones and I wake up early every morning and go hit up the gym. It's saving my life, I just get all my stress out in the gym now and I feel like a million bucks, it may sounds silly but it's honestly a tender mercy from the Lord, I've been so stressed this transfer, but this is helping out so much.
We did a lot of walking and biking in the hot heat this week, and honestly it was a rough week, we didn't have very many people progress, and a lot of appointments fell though.
We did however have some very spiritual lessons with some of the less-active members of the Memphis 1st ward, and that was way awesome... we decided recently that the best way to get the back to church is to get them involved. So we've been commiting all the members we see to give out a book of mormon that week, and share their testimony with someone, and we leave them with a copy to give out, then we follow-up with them at church. It was really cool to see how well it worked this week. When we talked about the blessings they would receive by giving out a Book Of Mormon they started to remember how much the church has done for them personally and how much they need it in their lives. Before you can effectively share the gospel with others you have to be converted yourself, and I know these people have testimonies, they just haven't shared them on so long they start to lose that fire and they fall away spiritually. If you don't use it you lose it! but yea, commiting them to give out BOM's is working really well, I saw everyone we challenged last week come to church yesterday. It was awesome!
Well ya'll. I love you. But I have some food I have to go eat. Have an awesome rest of your trip. Keep it real. You're in my prayers. I'll write you a real good email next week. Love Love Love ya.
-Elder Justin Scott LeBaron