It’s been a busy week in the Arizona Scottsdale Mission!
President and Sister Cox were able to meet all of the missionaries in both the valley and the mountains. The sisters and elders baptized several new members into The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. All of the Zone Leaders and Sister Training Leaders met for Mission Leadership Council. The week was topped off by a potluck dinner for all of the Senior Missionaries.
President and Sister Cox presented a slideshow about themselves and their family and some of the training they received at the Missionary Training Center.
Baptisms are one of our favorite events. There is nothing more exciting than seeing someone enter the waters of baptism, make covenants and come unto Christ.
The missionaries sang Joseph Smith’s First Prayer in English, Mandarin and Cantonese at a Chinese Community Cultural Celebration on July 4th.
In addition to sharing delicious food, each of the missionaries shared something that they have learned on their mission and a habit or quality they have developed that they want to take home with them from the mission.
The senior missionaries threw a going away party for Pres. & Sis. Robinson. We met in the RS room next door at the church which is adjacent to the Mission Home/Office. We have enjoyed this church very much over the past 3 years. We have held many, many missionary related meetings over there. We will always have fond memories of gathering here at the Mountain Shadows building.
Sis. Lauritzen did a beautiful job organizing this gathering. Everyone brought food and helped with the decorations. We enjoyed ham, cheesy scalloped potatoes, salad, fruit and strawberry shortcake. Pres. & Sis. Robinson had each table work as a group to answer one of the following questions:
How has the gospel of Jesus Christ helped strengthen your faith in Heavenly Father’s plan during times of trial and adversity?
How has your faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement increased through your study of the Book of Mormon? Identify ways you have studied the Book of Mormon to learn more about Jesus Christ.
What have you learned from the ‘Come, Follow Me’ curriculum? What are some effective ways you have used Come, Follow Me as a couple and/or as a family?
Under President Russell M. Nelson’s leadership, the church has experienced many changes. Identify the recent changes in the past year and a half and share how one or two of these changes has increased your faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement.
We all learned together how we can increase our faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement. We had Elder & Sis. Dimond introduce themselves and tell us a little bit about their family. They are from Wendall, ID. They both served missions when they were younger. They have a large and a firm testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ. They currently serve in the Papago ward among the native American Indians.
Pres. & Sis. Robinson received some lovely gifts and cards. They also received a flashdrive that had over 200 messages from missionaries who have served in the AZ Scottsdale mission expressing what they have learned on their missions and the love they have for Pres. & Sis. Robinson. The assistants and Elder Lauritzen had worked on this project for many weeks gathering missionary’s videos. Pres. & Sis. Robinson were completely surprised and overwhelmed. Thank you to all who helped with this last gathering for Pres. & Sis. Robinson. We love you!!
We held our last zone conferences with Pres. & Sis. Robinson. Pres. & Sis. Cox will begin presiding over the Arizona Scottsdale Mission this June 29, 2019. They are excited to come and work with these incredible young missionaries.
Our last zone conference was focused on the Savior and improving our missionary skills to share this great message of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. Sis. Robinson provided a training based on a talk by Elder Lawrence E. Corbridge “Stand Forever”. She also included a talk by Pres. Dallin H. Oaks “Be Not Deceived”. As we face questions and sometimes opposition to our great message of the restored gospel, we need to remember to always turn people back to Christ and His teachings. As we strengthen our own testimonies of the Savior and His Atonement we will become better instruments in teaching by the Spirit and of staying focused on the blessings of the gospel. “Stand Forever” is an excellent talk and we would encourage all who read this blog to look it up and ponder Elder Corbridge’s message. A statement/question is posed – “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will stand forever. But will you? And if you go, where will you go?” There was much good discussion that went on with this training.
Pres. Robinson taught again, the importance of understanding the foundation of the Plan of Salvation – The creation, the Fall, and the Atonement. He invited the missionaries to prepare for his training by reading Pres. Nelson’s talk “The Atonement” Oct. 1996 and sections in Preach My Gospel having to do with The Atonement of Jesus Christ, The Creation and Agency and the Fall of Adam and Eve. When we understand the Doctrine of Christ, we access those blessings of the Atonement into our lives.
The assistants trained on “Unraveling the ‘No'”. We broke into groups and role played set scenarios to help us improve our understanding of people we are teaching and their concerns which might prevent them from getting baptized. Very effective.
At the conclusion, each individual zones gathered and were participated in trainings conducted by Zone Leaders and Sister Training leaders.
Of course, we had a delicious lunch in between and enjoyed each other’s company very much. Pres. & Sis. Robinson purchased an Arizona State Flag and took pictures in front of it with each individual missionary.
We will miss working with your children!!! What a special and humbling experience this has been. We are connected with all the missionaries who have served in this mission from July 2016 – June 2019. We will continue to pray for them and all missionaries who serve throughout the world that we might increase our faith and understanding in Jesus Christ and His Atonement as we strive to serve our Heavenly Father’s children throughout the rest of our lives. It has been an honor and privilege to work with such outstanding young men and women. We will never forget it!!
That time came for 5 Scottsdale missionaries who have completed their mission to leave for their homes. We have enjoyed these five and watched them grow in the gospel and mature in their testimonies. From left to right: Elder Ulrich, Elder Dorius back row and Sis. Thompson, Sis. Childs and Sis. Galicia in the front row. We are so proud of them and know they will continue to accomplish great things!
We welcomed 11 new missionaries to the Arizona Scottsdale Mission. The weather was a little warm but not too bad. They all arrived happy, healthy and ready to go to work. After greetings and hugs we gathered their luggage and headed back to the Mission Home. We unloaded the luggage into the Mission Home garage and then took pictures with Pres. & Sis. Robinson. These new missionaries were so excited to be here! We fed them lunch over at the church and then began a full afternoon of orientation, trainings, and then meeting their new companion/trainer.
We ended the day with dinner, introduction to the Robinsons, a little scripture study and then off to their new areas if in the valley or to the mission home to spend the night. The next day those missionaries who were assigned to the mountains left for their areas by 8:30am. We are so excited to have such wonderful young men and women who have chosen to serve the Lord in the Arizona Scottsdale Mission.
Sorry, this is late and out of order. Elder & Sis. Dimond joined our mission May 6, 2019. We are so thankful to have them. They will be working on one of the Native American Reservations. We know they will be a huge help to the Papago Ward. Welcome Dimonds!!
We decided to do zone conferences a little different this transfer. We had each individual zone meet with Pres. & Sis. Robinson either in the morning or in the afternoon over the course of 4 days. In between, we had lunch with the 2 zones meeting that day with us. We introduced the missionaries to Pres. & Sis. Cox, via a video they made introducing themselves. Pres. & Sis. Cox will be take over presiding over the AZ Scottsdale Mission July 1, 2019. They are so excited to come!! So we thought it would be a good idea for the missionaries to see and hear their new Mission Pres. & Wife. Then Sis. Robinson trained on “The Plan Of Happiness & Our Mortal Discipleship”. She then went on to train on the 3 A’s of mortality- Adversity, Agency and Attitude. The missionaries were given a pre-read of Elder Bruce R. McConkie’s talk “Agency or Inspiration – Which is it?”. Excellent talk and the missionaries learned so much about receiving revelation and using our agency. We wish all parents could be with us in these zone conferences to hear the discussions which go on with your children. These missionaries are so eager to learn and come prepared to learn. It is one of the great privileges Pres and I get to do – interact with the best young adults in the world and learn together how we can better increase our discipleship to Christ and our Heavenly Father. Then President Robinson trained on “Discipleship, Education and Family”. He compared this to a 3-legged stool. We need all 3 of these elements as we strive to have balance and increase our faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement as we journey on the covenant path. After our trainings, we set aside 30-40 minutes for the missionaries to ask Pres. & Sis. Robinson questions. We are so impressed with your children and depth of maturity they exhibit. We love them!!! We will miss working with these valiant souls for sure. Pres. & Sis. Cox are coming to the best mission in the world!!
We had the opportunity to attend the Gilbert Temple, Phoenix Temple, and the Snowflake Temple in May. We had each individual zone attend the temple which was closest to them. With the Mesa Temple closed for renovations, we are not able to attend the temple in large missionary groups. The missionaries LOVE going to the temple and it is always a rewarding experience for all of us. Love being in the temple with these wonderful missionaries!!
Elder & Sis. Wainright have been serving with us as MLS missionaries for the past 18 months. What a joy they have been to us, the missionaries and the two wards in which they served. Their service has included reactivation of members in separate wards, referral secretary, drivers for transfers and picking up and dropping off at the airport, transporting visa waiters to the Equador Consulate, participating in district council, zone conferences and a host of other duties/responsibilities. Whenever they were asked to do something their only response was when and where do you need us. We love the Wainrights and will miss them terribly. The following pictures were from our farewell get together with other senior missionaries in our mission. Farewell Elder & Sis. Wainright. You made a difference here!!
A glimpse into the day of transfers. The pictures below are of the missionaries who are being transferred from the valley to the mountains. We have a 12 passenger van, truck with large trailer for all the luggage and bikes and various companionships who are driving their own trucks going to the mountains. Fortunately, we usually have pretty good weather here in Scottsdale which helps facilitate a usually smooth tranfer day. Everyone leaves at 8:30am in the morning and travels 3 hours up to the mountain to a stake center in Show Low, AZ. The tranfers take place with all the mountain missionaries trading places to transfer down to the valley. A long day for our drivers but everyone gets back by 5pm in Scottsdale. The rest of the missionaries who are transferring within the valley or within the mountains do that in the morning on their own.
Its that time again when we meet together with those missionaries who have completed their missionary service. We had six of our finest gather at the Mission Home after going to the Gilbert temple one last time. Then we enjoyed dinner & FHE/Devotional with Pres. and Sis. Robinson. Such a tender sweet time for us and well as for these incredible missionaries. Laughs, tears and testimonies are shared on this last night. The sisters spent their last night in the field at the mission home. The elders spent their last night in the mission field across the street in one of our apartments. Pres. & Sis. Robinson relish these last few hours with these outstanding departing missionaries. As much as we want to hang onto them longer, we know they have great things to do and accomplish. So we say a fond farewell to these wonderful six!!
On Monday, April 29, 2019 we received 5 new missionaries coming from the Provo MTC and from the Mexico MTC. Pictured below are the new missionaries arriving at the Phoenix International Airport. We first greeted the two missionaries coming from Provo and then had them go with some other missionaries to do some real live proselyting while Pres. & Sis. Robinson went to another terminal to greet and pick up the 3 sisters coming from the Mexico MTC. They were all nervous but so excited to begin their mission in the field. And we are excited to have them serve with us.
In the above group picture there is (L to R) Sis. Picado-Garcie, Sis. Stanton, Sis. Olsen, Sis. Barber, Pres and & Sis. Robinson and Elder DeVries. Below are the pictures from later in the afternoon when our brand new missionaries find out who their companion/trainer will be. A little nerve wracking for the new missionaries but they soon feel the love and encouragement from their new companion. Before they are paired with their new companion they have lunch at the mission home prepared by Sis. Robinson. Then the rest of the afternoon is orientation where they meet the office staff and learn about car and bike safety. Then President announces the new companionships. After, we all enjoyed a delicious dinner of enchiladas with all the trimmings. Elder & Sis. Ziegler always do a good job with the dinner menu. After dinner, we meet together and get to know Pres. & Sis. Robinson and learn about the diversity of the AZ Scottsdale mission. We close with testimonies from Pres. & Sis. Robinson and watch a video called ‘The Work of Salvation”. We kneel in prayer and then off to their new areas.
We had a tremendous time in Zone Conferences in April. We decided to take individual zone pictures so that you might be able to see your son or daughter better. Remember to hover over the picture and click to take you to a large size of that picture. At all zone conferences we usually take a few minutes and talk about goals. This last month President Robinson had asked each zone to increase their goal finding new people to teach by 50%. During zone conference we looked at the results of that effort. 7 of the 9 zones were able to meet or exceed their goal. What a tremendous job that was!! We then had trainings on Extending Invitations by knowing, understanding and teaching the doctrines that underlie every invitation, a training on specifically extending the invitation to come to Sacrament Meeting using various resources and again understanding and teaching the doctrines that underlie that invitation and a training on developing Christlike attributes. After lunch we had a training on the new TIWIs which were recently installed in all the missionary cars. That was both fun and informative. Then the individual zones met together and trained on linking weekly planning with daily planning.
Paradise Valley Zone
Show Low Zone
White Mountain Zone
Phoenix East Zone
Here is a sampling of pictures from all the zone conferences. We have fabulous lunches everytime prepared by our stake RS sisters. We are so grateful for their willingness to provide these lunches. I’m sorry if your son or daughter is not pictured. We do the best we can to get a picture with all missionaries at various times during zone conference. Hopefully, these pictures help you get a glimpse into your son or daughter’s mission.
TIWI training. These devices in all missionary cars help to keep our missionaries safe. A voice will talk to the driver if speed exceeds the speed limit, if seat belts are not buckled and if there is aggressive driving happening. Since TIWI have been installed about 15 yrs ago, the statistics of accidents have decreased dramatically.
We also take time at zone conferences, usually right after lunch, to talk about the cars and bikes. Elder & Sis. Patterson are church service missionaries who oversee all the bikes and cars in our missions. There are awards given out for those who have been on bikes for a certain amount of time and awards for those who have driven safely with out violations.
We recently had the pleasure to welcome two sisters into our mission who are actually called to the Salt Lake Temple Square Mission. The temple square sisters are assigned to another mission for two transfers to have the experience of being proselyting missionaries. We were lucky to get Sis. Garcia and Sis. Galindo. They have been a joy to have in our mission. We know they will be just as valiant serving the Lord in our mission for two transfers as they have been in Salt Lake City. Welcome Sisters to the AZ Scottsdale Mission!