Monday, December 29, 2014

"he himself also knelt upon the earth; and behold he prayed unto the Father"

Hey Family,

This has been a great week. On the days leading up to Christmas we went to many families and presented a "Live Christmas Card" in which we caroled and read the nativity story from Luke 2 and sang some more. It was great fun. And some friends later told us that the father of one family we went to "cried like a baby" after we left. 

On Tuesday we went to Redlands to serve in the temple. The last time I went to the temple was in February, so I was really happy for the opportunity. And while I was there, there were some missionaries from the Riverside mission just getting to the temple. One of them was Elder Haslem, whom I knew in the MTC. It was really cool to see him, after being split to different missions.

On Christmas eve we taught a man who struggles with schizophrenia and bipolarity and hyperactivity and other mental and physical challenges. Last week we gave him a priesthood blessing to strengthen him. When we saw him this week, he said:

I used to hear voices telling me to 'do this' or 'do that'. It's strange, but I haven't heard any voices since you guys gave me that blessing.

The priesthood power and authority is true! It's been restored!

On Christmas we had brunch with a great family in the ward. They fed us waffles and fancy scrambled eggs and bacon. Before we left we shared the Nativity Bible video. 

On Saturday we went to Highland for a mission conference. It was refreshing. I love reverently gathering as missionaries for a conference because I always come away edified and inspired with direction specific for my needs. And it was nice to see missionaries I love that I haven't seen in a long time.

I love you all! The gospel is true! It's going to be a GREAT year!

Elder Judd

Monday, December 22, 2014

"Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift."

Merry Christmas, family!

It's been a good week. And we're going to the temple tomorrow so our preparation day is shorter today, so this will be a shorter letter.

We're teaching a man named John, whose wife is a member. he is awesome. He has been meeting with missionaries on and off for about 2 years. he understands everything well, and he believes it. But he has several things he still wants to do before making such a sacred covenant with God in baptism. And as we taught about prayer this week he told us that he doesn't think he's ever felt the Holy Ghost before and he doesn't feel like someone is listening to his prayers. But I know that his prayers are heard and answered!

We also helped organize care packages for the homeless at a church of another faith this week. It was fun!

We taught Ti and her boyfriend Neil this week for the first time. They are so great. Neil loved having us over and told us that he felt really good with us there. We're excited to teach them more.

The branch had a christmas party on friday and Neil and Ti came! Lots of food. 

Christmas is this week! We will be caroling and offering to share the Christmas story in Luke to everyone! Every should watch He is the Gift! watch and watch again and share and share again!

The branch President had asked me to read the christmas story from the bible in Samoan for the christmas program yesterday. I was nervous because there were lots of big samoan words. But I practiced and prayed and really felt heavenly father help me to do my best.

I love you all!

Elder Judd

Monday, December 15, 2014

"I pray unto thee for them, and also for all those who shall believe on their words"

Talofa family,

Really great week. I really love 29 Palms and the people here. I love my mission.

Transfers are this week, and I'm staying. Which I am really happy about, even though I didn't really expect to leave. There are just a lot of great things happening here.

We have a mission conference coming up at the end of December. It will be focused on the Savior (really, everything is) and becoming like him. And to prepare, President Van Cott invited us to study how Jesus prays to the Father and how He teaches. So I've been doing that and been trying to pray more earnestly and mightily.

On Saturday, the ward had a Christmas party/dinner. Lots of people showed up and we ate at a table with a family we really love. They had brought their neighbor's kids because they were watching them all weekend while the kids' parents were out of town. The kids had never heard the original Christmas story, so we shared it with them as we ate. It was fun.

On Thursday night we saw a young man standing on the side of the street in the dark. We had a strong feeling to talk with him. So we did. His name was Colby and he was from out of state, traveling the country for a contest. We talked with him and ended up talking about God and prayer and the Book of Mormon. Well just as we were about to give him a copy of the Book of Mormon, his friend, Nick comes up. Colby had been waiting for Nick. We talked with Nick too and he soon saw the Book of Mormon and seemed like he wanted to say something and then just said:

Hey, by chance, do you have another one of those?

We walked and talked on the way to the truck to get another and Nick said that a missionary had given him a copy once and he started reading it and really liked it, but then lost it. And he was excited that we had one. More happened, and we gave them a chapter to read and invited them to learn more. Because they are both from out of state, we will probably never see them again. But I can't put the whole experience into words. I just felt so good afterwards and during the whole thing. I felt so much love for Heavenly Father and I felt that the things I know and believe--the Savior, the book of Mormon, temples, everything--are so important. I felt like Lehi, when he said: how great the importance to make these things known unto the inhabitants of the earth. It's true! I know it is. And I felt that there are people out there who have no idea about the things I have been raised up with. I felt just a sweet peace and joy that is hard to describe.

I know I won't always be a set-apart, full-time missionary. But I hope that I can continue to have faith to open my mouth to share the good news throughout my life. 


I love you family!

Elder Judd

Monday, December 8, 2014

"If ye will have faith in me ye shall have power to do whatsoever thing is expedient in me."

Hello family,

Many miracles this week. Heavenly Father is so good to us.

Tuesday night we went to the town tree-lighting at city hall and sang Christmas hymns with the ward and branch. I love christmas and all the people here! 

Wedesday, went on an exchange with Elder Seright on the other side of 29 Palms. We were going along with our plans. But we both felt that we weren't where we needed to be. We stopped. Prayed. Adjusted and started again, but still felt off. Stopped again. Prayed more inside. A name, Andre, kept standing out to Elder Seright as he flipped through his planner. We went to Andre. He was home and outside, and his friend Faasavali was too. One thing led to another and we ended up teaching the Restoration and they want to learn more.

Thursday we had zone meeting and it was great. We were trained more about planning. I love planning! I have learned so much about planning on my mission that I hope to use throughout my life. GREAT meeting.

Sunday we went to the Christmas devotional. But just after we sat down and the choir was singing, it didn't feel right. It felt like we needed to be somewhere else. So we left. We didn't know where to go. But we prayed and then went to a potential that came to mind. He wasn't home, but we met a less active young man who lived next door. We had a great, brief visit and set a return appointment to teach his family. Then, the feeling was satisfied and we went back to the devotional to catch the closing prayer by President Durrant. Lots of Joy.

Love you all!

Elder Judd

Monday, December 1, 2014

"God has provided a means that man, through faith, might work mighty miracles"

Happy Thanksgiving, Family!

GREAT week. 

On Monday night some of our plans fell through, and long story, but we were biking and a taxi pulled over beside us. The driver asked if we were missionaries. Then he asked if we could meet with him this week. Found out he's a member of the church and has a lot of struggles and hasn't been to church in a while. God places us right where he wants us!

District meeting on Tuesday. It's funny because our district is just the 4 of us in 29 Palms, and we live together. But we still have district meeting at the church, because we are dignified. and we all love 29 Palms. It's a great district.

Thursday morning we went to Desert Hot Springs and helped feed the homeless at a nice church of another Christian faith. We had Thanksgiving dinner with the Panzarella and Tavai family. Just one dinner this year, and it was great. We also dropped off thank-you notes to families in the ward during the day.

Really Cool miracle on Wednesday. We were biking down a main road and passed an Auto Zone parking lot. We saw a man and woman fixing an Astro van. We had almost passed them, but something urged to us to pull over quickly and offer to help. We started to talk with the woman and she recognized us as being from the Mormon church. I had a hunch she was Samoan. She talked a lot and we listened and asked questions and she said she used to meet with missionaries about a year ago and was baptized in Samoa as a child. (Sadly, she speaks very little Samoan) Her name was Ti. She wanted to meet with us. Her name was really familiar to me.
I thought a lot about it, and at night I looked for an old letter from my good friend Sister Morris, serving in Reno, Nevada. I found the letter, and it confirmed that Ti was meeting with Sister Morris and her companion in Nevada, but then moved to somewhere in California.  Little did we know it was 29 Palms! There are no coincidences! I am so grateful that Heavenly Father has been merciful enough to send me to the desert to 29 Palms and help me and my companion have the faith to open our mouths about His gospel! I love this place! And I know that God is mindful of me. And I know that God is mindful of you! None of us is lost to him. 

Jesus said:
What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it?
And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing.
And when he cometh home, he calleth his friends and neighbors, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost.

Everyone should watch He is the Gift. Do it! Share it. It's great. You're great. You'll love it. 


Elder Judd 

Monday, November 24, 2014

"Jesus anointed that Prophet and Seer"

Dear Family,

Great week!

On Monday we prayed that we would find someone to teach. In the evening after dark we rode by a guy putting his bike and little makeshift bike trailer away. We talked with him and his name is Omar. He said we could come back.

We also taught a family I'll call the Sweetwater family. The Sweetwaters are members of the church but haven't been to church in a long while. We taught them about the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ. They have family and siblings who have served and are serving missions. The message wasn't new to them, but as we talked with them and they shared their thoughts about it, a spirit of peace was there. We testified that Joseph Smith saw heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, and I felt God confirm that it was true--I felt a powerful peace and calmness. 
We invited Bro. Sweetwater to say the closing prayer and we knelt with their family. He looked to his wife and seemed like he didn't want to. but something moved him to say yes. It was a great prayer. And as we stood and were about to leave he said:

Kudos to you guys. You got me to pray. I've had missionaries come over here for years and they've never gotten me to pray.

I was so happy and smiley all night. Filled with joy.

On wednesday we met a samoan family that was in their garage. We didn't realize they were in the branch. We found out a son in the family had passed away that morning. Really sad. They gave us a ride to a Priesthood meeting last night, and as we drove home the remaining brothers practiced a song they wrote for their brother's funeral next week. They sing really well.

We had zone conference on Friday and it was focused on the process of conversion.

On Saturday we went to meet a family that past missionaries had been teaching, but accidentally went to the wrong address. We ended up semi-lost in the middle of the desert on sand roads. We prayed that we would not get stuck in the sand. Just really funny adventure. 

Last night we had a stake priesthood meeting. we have a really great stake president. He is really young. we sang "Praise to the Man" and the spirit was powerful and uplifting. the stake president spoke of one time the priesthood sang that song when he was a bishop. They started to sing, but were sort of lame and didn't have energy. he stopped them and said:

If we're going to sing 'Praise to the Man who communed with Jehovah' we need to sing it as if the Priesthood of God has been restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith. 

They sang again, this time with vigor. 

I know that Joesph Smith is a prophet of God! 


Elder Judd

Monday, November 17, 2014

"O how you ought to thank your Heavenly King!"

Talofa Family,

My last few days in Indio were good. On Monday we met with Joe again. He really liked church and liked what he read about Joseph Smith in the Restoration pamphlet we gave him. He said:

When I read about the light that Joseph saw when he prayed, I thought about when I first opened the door the night you guys came.  You both just had a bright light with you that I could feel when you came in.

I felt a peace when Joe talked about that. Joe is just really great. 

So you know, I love Twentynine Palms. It's kind of a small town out in the middle of the desert, the far top right corner of the mission. Our boundaries go out to Arizona and the Las Vegas mission. And we cover the small town, Amboy, which the town in the movie Cars was based on. There's a marine base in 29 Palms, which is the main reason why people come live out here. And it's much colder than any area I've been in so far, mostly because we're getting into winter. It will probably snow, people say.

And my new companion is Elder Duffin. He is a really quick thinker and really sincere, and I am really excited to work with him. I feel like we're going to see a lot of miracles together and do good work.

We are working hard to meet everyone the Sister missionaries who were here were working with.  I love serving with Samoan people again.  Great things are going to happen here.


Elder Judd

Monday, November 10, 2014

"Make us thy true under-shepherds; Give us a love that is deep"

Dear Family,

Transfers are this week and I'm leaving. I'll be moving to 29 Palms, on the other side of the desert, and I'll be serving in an English ward and a Samoan branch. And I'll find out this week who my new companion will be. He will be a brand new missionary, so I'm excited! And honestly surprised. I didn't expect to be leaving at all. But I know that the Lord is in charge and knows all things and I am excited to see what great things He has prepared for me. Obviously, He wants me to learn something from Samoan people. 

This week was great. We were blessed to meet Joe, who seemed to come out of nowhere.

Joe was raised Jewish, but had Mormon roommates in college and really likes Mitt Romney. He recently moved into the area. He had a guy, Chris, come to his home to notarize something and Chris is Mormon and reminded Joe a lot of Mitt Romney. They got to talking and Chris invited Joe to meet with missionaries. So we came. And Joe is awesome. The first time we met him he said he had already stopped drinking coffee 2 days earlier because he read online that Mormons don't do that. And he came to church the next morning, 30 minutes early. 

We didn't see Collin all week, but we left a tie hanging from the handle of his front door with a note saying we hoped to see him at church. He didn't have any ties. But then he came to church the next morning, wearing the tie! It was a great little miracle.

We haven't seen Andrew 2 in a long while, and we are praying that he is doing all right. Please pray for him.
We met with Frank and Jane again and they are doing so well. Frank told us that when he was in Utah a few weeks ago he met up with an old friend he hadn't seen in years. He told his friend he had been coming back to church. His friend then gave him a lot of opposition about the church. But after a moment Frank responded:

You know what, I know the Mormon church is good because there is an empty void in my heart that is being filled with love and peace and joy.

As he told us this, I felt that his words were true. I know that Jesus Christ is at the head of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I know it. And I know that God Loves us and that every person can know these things for himself.

I love you all!

Elder Judd


Me and Frank and Jane

Me and Elders' quorum president

Monday, November 3, 2014

"even if ye can no more than desire to believe, let this desire work in you"

Dear family,

Happy Halloween! This week was busy and great. 

We met with Collin again, and he's doing well. He didn't come to church last week because he was sick. but he came this week! And he seemed to really like it. At fast and testimony meeting yesterday there were many young kids who came up to bear their testimonies. They were simple and sincere. And in sunday school we were talking about baptism, and Collin commented:

I liked that kid in sacrament: "Baptism is for a second chance." Bam! That's it.

It was funny and true. Collin is just funny. He has so much goodness in him. 

On Halloween we had to be in our apartments by 6 PM, so we had our weekly planning session for the rest of the night. And a really sweet sister in the ward made us a dessert she said she always makes for the missionaries. Brain! Very realistic and funny. (see below)

We're teaching a couple who are members of the church working to become active and eventually sealed in the temple. It's the same people we met in the far corner of our area a few weeks ago when we felt to go to that area. They are so great. They were gone last week because they took a trip to SLC to visit family they hadn't seen in a long time. They loved the tours on Temple square and recently began reading the Book of Mormon and listened to the audio version as the drove.  I'll call them Jane and Frank.

This week they told us about how they felt in SLC and at church last week. Jane told us that during one video at Temple square, she felt a big "whew" feeling of peace. She didn't know how to describe it fully, but she knew it was good and that it felt good. She felt at peace with everything. Everything was going to be okay.

Frank had a similar experience while in priesthood class at church. While he sat and listened in class, he felt the most powerful and good feeling that he had ever felt in his life. He does many things that make him happy, and been in places where he has felt fellowship and love, but nothing like this. 

I know that the feelings that Jane and Frank felt are from the Holy Ghost, which come to any humble seeker of truth. God speaks to us and comforts us by the Holy Ghost.

We also had interviews with President Van Cott this week. It was great, as always. He gave me direction that I know is inspired of God. Missions go by so fast. I only have 7 months left here. I want to use the time I have to the very fullest.


Elder Judd

Monday, October 20, 2014

"be the children of your Father who is in heaven"


Marty moved to another ward in the Stake this week, which was sad to us because we love him. But he is doing great so it's all okay. He is a solid missionary. He reads the Book of Mormon whenever he has down time throughout the day and shares scriptures with coworkers and prays for opportunities to share these things. He invited his boss to "Meet the Mormons" too. He has no fear!

On Tuesday afternoon to Wednesday afternoon I went on an exchange with Elder Weaver in his area. He's a great missionary and my district leader. There were so many miracles throughout the exchange. One cool moment was this: 

We went to see a less active family (meaning they don't always come to church). As we walked toward the home a voice from the semi-open garage called out to us. We walked closer and heard:


It was Collin! Sitting on the top step of a ladder with sawdust all over and a sander in one hand. The whole picture made me smile. He was doing work for the family. Just a funny moment cool to see Collin even though I wasn't serving in my ward.

We drove to Banning for a conference on Thursday with Elder David F. Evans, a special witness of Jesus Christ. He is the head of the missionary department of the church. He told us that our mission will be receiving iPads as proselyting tools in January or February. It is amazing to see the great things that are happening in the world. And one thing that impressed me from the conference was the principle of faithfulness. King Lamoni was astonished because Ammon did what he said he would do. I want the Lord to be able to trust me to do all the things I have said I will to do.

The Lord is keeping His promises! We prayed this week that we would be led to those who are prepared or that the Lord would lead them to us, and that we would be where we needed to be.

Well, yesterday afternoon we were in a Wendy's parking lot eating an early dinner that a member had given us to-go. We were planning on meeting a member there to give us a ride to a baptism at the Stake center. Just as we finished eating, a young man our age came up to us and asked:

Excuse me. Are you guys Mormons? ... One of my best friends are Mormon and I have a lot of questions. Would you come and talk with me?

Really surprised, we grabbed some copies of the Book of Mormon and followed him to his table in Wendy's. His name's CJ, he has a lot of great questions, and we'll be meeting with him again later this week. Miracle!

I know that Jesus lives. I know that Joseph Smith is a prophet. I know the Book of Mormon is true.

I love you!

Elder Judd

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

"Who can glory too much in the Lord?"

Dear family,

I love the people of Indio. 

Andrew2 is loving the gospel. He loved the whole experience last week of attending General Conference. The leaders of the Young Men who chaperoned the trip told us that when they asked what he liked about it, he said:

I really enjoyed the last guy. ... I felt a warmth in my heart when he spoke.

The last guy was the Prophet Thomas S. Monson. The leaders helped Andrew understand that what he felt was the Holy Ghost. 

Andrew2 also told us that they had front row seats at the Priesthood session of conference. Before the session started, a man came up to him and Andrew1 and asked them if they were future missionaries. He didn't know what to say at first, but thought about it, and answered Yes. The man gave them both a special card with golden dollar as a beginning to their personal missionary savings fund. They learned afterward that the man was David L. Beck, the General Young Mens' President of the church. 

It is really cool to have the opportunity to teach Andrew because it's teaching me that this is truly the Lord's work. He is speaking and teaching Andrew through the Holy Ghost, and I as a missionary get the privilege to help just a little bit as a tool and witness the whole miracle.

Collin is doing really well too. He told us that reason that he keeps meeting with us is because he says the things we teach make him feel good. He talks fast and jokes a lot and he's just funny. He calls Elder Fife "Santa Rosa" and he calls me "Youngster". We always come away full of love after teaching him.
On Saturday we stopped by a less active family but they weren't home. But the neighbors were outside. A middle-aged gentleman named Ernesto from Uruguay was working on a project in his garage. Almost immediately he told us that he knew we were Mormon and that he has 3 sisters who are Mormon now too. Each married a returned-missionary and consistently invite him to read the Book of Mormon. He playfully told us:

I'll never be baptized Mormon! I'm catholic and I'll always be Catholic.

This Thursday Elder David F. Evans is coming to tour the mission. We have been preparing for a long time to receive guidance from his visit, so I'm excited. President Van Cott often reminds us: "Puny Preparation = Puny Revelation". It's true. 

I love serving as a missionary. I love my Savior Jesus Christ. I know that He lives. I know that He loves me.


Elder Judd

video link to President Monson talk:

Monday, October 6, 2014

"I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded"

Dear Family,

This week was incredible. Many mighty miracles. 

On Monday we had planned to be in an area we rarely go to. It takes a good drive to get there, but we had felt to be there. We went to the 3 member families that live there (we didn't know any of them). 

The first had a big gate that was locked, so we couldn't meet them.
The second had moved away about 14 years ago.
Then we went to the third. It was now dark, and their lights were out, and we almost didn't stop to meet them. But something told to go anyway. The wife heard us coming, called for her husband and invited us in. We talked, and learned that they had not been to church in a long while. They told us of some difficulties they have been having in their lives. The husband paused for a while, and told us that he felt that our visit was God giving them an answer. 

We set an appointment for them to meet the Bishop the next day. Their visit went great, they want to come back to church, and they accepted the invitation to meet with missionaries. Miracle!

On Wednesday we went to see this guy Jose (I've talked about a lot of Jose's, but this is a new one). He was busy, but we were able to schedule a return appointment with him. 

But while we were in Jose's area, we had a feeling to go see Collin. Collin came to church with a member family about a month ago, and we made an appointment to teach him, but it didn't work out and we lost contact with him. 

But we stopped by, Collin was home, and he let us in. We taught a little, set a return appointment, and it went great. The spirit was so strong, and I felt like Heavenly Father helped me to be able to focus on Collin and what he needs. He commit to read the Book of Mormon and pray to know if it's true. And then we asked:

Collin, when you come to know that the Book of Mormon is true, will you be baptized by someone who holds this priesthood?

He responded:

Yes. Definitely. I'm ready to go. We could do it next week. We could do it tonight. I'm ready!

Collin is funny. We set a date as a goal for him to be baptized, and our member friends have told us that he's really excited.

On Thursday we met Andrew2 for the first time this week and he is awesome. He is so prepared and wants the gospel in his life. He had already started reading the Book of Mormon before we even met him and he really likes it. And Andrew2 watched conference! Live!

The priests in the ward went together to Salt Lake City, UT to watch General Conference, and they invited him to come along. We are so excited to see how Andrew2 liked it. 

Last night we went to our appointment with Jose with our fearless ward mission leader, Bro. Verduzco. Turned out Jose intended for the appointment to be at 8:00am, not 8:00pm. We rescheduled. But as we were leaving, we saw a home with a moving truck outside. Some men were working to unload it. We offered to help. They only spoke spanish. They declined. But Bro. Verduzco speaks spanish. So he kept talking with them. While they spoke, Elder Fife and I just went ahead and started to help them unload. We tucked in our ties. We finished within the hour. And when they were done, we found out that one of the men had come to church before and recognized Bro. Verduzco. He allowed us to send spanish missionaries to his home.

Conference was great! Listen to the Holy Ghost, and go and do what it says. 
God will not lead us astray. I know He will not.


Elder Judd


My watch has been through a lot.

Monday, September 29, 2014

"for they are not lost unto the Father, for he knoweth whither he hath taken them"

Hey family!

This week is transfer week and I'm staying! I love Indio!

On Wednesday, we did more service at the food kitchen and it was great again. We cleaned tables, unloaded breads, peeled potatoes, and put away dishes. 

We are really looking for more service opportunities. So, on Friday, we borrowed our Ward Mission Leader's lawn mower, went to the Indian Reservation, and went door-to-door offering lawn service for free. It was warm and fun. 

We also helped a man clear away many many books from his bookshelf. Many were cookbooks of his late wife. We're going back this week to finish the job, but for now we have stacks of cookbooks in our apartment until we can take them to a donation center somewhere.

So we learned this week that a young man in the ward named Andrew 1, has a friend, Andrew 2, who has been coming to seminary with him. Andrew 2 had asked about seminary and asked if he could come.

On Tuesday, we learned that the door we knocked on last week--when we met Enrique--was the home of Andrew 2!

It is a miracle! And I could not stop smiling after we found out. There is a God and He is our Father and He knows every one of His children and He knows exactly what needs to be done to help them--His children--us. He loves us! He wants us to become happy and strong!

I'm so excited for General Conference too. Everyone should come listen to a prophets voice!

We also had the opportunity to see Meet the Mormons as an early showing. It will be in theaters on October 10th. It is great! everyone should see it. It is a great family movie. and funny. Go see it and invite everyone!


Elder Judd


elder allred, me, and elder weaver - the district, minus elder fife

the desert

Monday, September 22, 2014

"why not speak of the atonement of Christ"

Dear Family,

Great week!

We met with Marty again this week. He is doing awesome. He just finished the Book of Mormon and reads it every day. He was praying for strength to talk with coworkers about the gospel this week. Then people at work started asking questions about what he believes, and he shared pamphlets with them. Marty is great!

We served at a food kitchen on Wednesday. We help clean and peal and chop carrots and potatoes. I tried to speak spanish with a fellow worker, but only Samoan phrases kept coming to mind. 

Cool miracle: On Tuesday our plans fell through and we prayed to know where to go. We saw the name of a member whose current status is unknown. We went to the house, found out he had moved. We met Enrique and talked with him. He was nice, but not really interested. But then he was like:

Oh, actually, my son might be interested. He has been thinking a lot about this kind of stuff lately.

Enrique said we could come back and meet his son, Andrew, later. I know that the Lord is preparing people to learn about His gospel!

Trust the Lord! He trusts you!


Elder Judd


Palm Desert zone

Elder Fife and me

Monday, September 15, 2014

"if the salt shall lose its savor wherewith shall the earth be salted?"

My family,

These are some of the happiest days of my life. 

I forgot to write about this last week, but last Saturday Lea was baptized back in Rialto. In our mission, we have permission to go to baptismal services of people we were privileged to teach. We just have to find a member ride and arrange for another member to stay and work with our companion. But, Rialto is about 1.5 hours away, which meant it was going to be about 5-6 hour trip, total. I really wanted to be there, but after praying about it all, I felt I should continue working in Indio. Hopefully soon I will be able to write a letter to Lea and Jordan congratulating them.

I don't know if I have already mentioned this, but we did service a while ago for an older lady, Pat, who hasn't been to church in years and didn't want any contact from the church. Her daughter, Barbara, who is very active in the gospel and the church, just moved in and had asked help moving things. We believe the experience softened her heart. 

Pat and Barbara had us for dinner this week and we brought another brother from the ward, who was great company for them. Barbara talks about her mission in Canada when Elder Ballard was her mission president. She is amazing. She listens to Preach My Gospel on audio every day (which I didn't even know existed). She is awesome. 

On Friday there was a ward dessert social. We were asked to be the judges of the desserts. They had a get-to-know-the-members jeopardy game. It was a fun time.

This morning we went to seminary. One of the teachers asked for our help in teaching about the Holy Ghost and missionary work. The youth of the church are awesome. It made me think about Andrew, because I was in the Junior's class. 

Cool story: we were out trying to meet a less active family. They had moved, but the current resident referred us to a family she thought was Mormon. We pulled up to the house and before we even got out of the truck this man came up to Elder Fife's window, slapped his hands on the door, and said: 

Which cult are you from?

He told him that we were missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The man, Dave, said that he knew our church well. Dave went on to share claims and research and attacks about how our beliefs were false. We shared our testimony of how the boy Joseph Smith had seen Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and how we knew that the Book of Mormon and all these things are true by the power of the Holy Ghost. 

Dave brought up more claims against our faith and asked to see our bible. While he searched for a scripture that he knew would prove us wrong, we talked with him, and listened. We learned that Dave had a sincere desire to believe in the Savior. He eventually stopped bringing up claims, we shook hands and went on our way. and the Spirit was there. I felt love for Dave. And although I felt nervous at first when he approached us, I prayed for help, and I felt help come.

God is our Father! Jesus is the Savior! This work is true! 

Elder Judd

picture: driving with Elder Fife

Monday, September 8, 2014

"he hath heard my cry"

My family,

GREAT things are happening here. Here's a few:

We had dinner with an awesome family on Wednesday. One of the sons, Derek, just got home from his mission last week. He invited his friend, Jose, to church and the dinner. Jose is awesome. We talked and found out his family is from the same place in Mexico where my family came from. We talked about family history and I am convinced that we have to be cousins. 

On Thursday night, we had an appointment with a family that used to meet with the missionaries. We went, but nobody was home. we started to drive away and drove a few streets away. But then we felt to park, make some phone calls, and then knock again at the family. We followed the feeling. When we knocked again, the family was there. they had just returned from a school activity. They were super nice and want to meet with us again. I know that the Holy Ghost is real.

We did service for an older lady who didn't want anything to do with the church. It softened her heart, and now she's going to feed us for dinner this month.

I know that our Father in Heaven loves us! I know that Jesus lives!


Elder Judd

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

"the Spirit ... speaketh of things as they really are, and of things as they really will be"

Hey my family,

Things are great in Indio. Every family out here is so solid. I love these people. I wish I could write everything about them that is coming to mind, but I don't have much time.

We visited a guy name Marty this week. Marty was raised in the church, but hasn't been in many years. About 2 months ago, missionaries stopped by his home hoping to meet Marty's parents. They met Marty and he told them that his parents had moved out, but he invited them in. Since then, he's started reading the Book of Mormon daily and praying daily, and coming to church. He is so sincere. Marty's whole life is changing because of the Savior.

On Tuesday we had dinner with Stephanie and Eddie. They are a couple a little past middle-aged, and they are not members of the church. They just love to feed missionaries. Stephanie lived in the same apartments as several pairs of missionaries many years ago in Washington, and she would make treats and dinners for them, and developed a love for missionaries. Then, out here, she met a woman in her sewing class who is a member of the church. She was excited and got in contact with the missionaries out here. They have questions about the purpose of life. They are so nice and I love them.

We also met Marcus, who was referred to us by some sister missionaries. He is awesome and we are about to meet with him after this.

Church was awesome. some youth taught about family history work. The Spirit was strong. Families are important to Heavenly Father.

I love you all!

Elder Judd

Monday, August 25, 2014

"they are in the hands of the Lord of the harvest, and they are his"

Hey family!

I love the Shadow Hills ward! These people are so great. The desert is warm, and there is a lot of sun and sand. Indio is awesome. There are many gated communities with nice homes. Everybody has beautiful homes. We also cover a small Indian Reservation in the corner of our area. Also, we drive a truck.

My new companion, Elder Fife, is awesome. He is near the end of his mission, but he has only been in the Redlands mission for a few months because he was one of the missionaries who was taken out of Ukraine because of the danger there. So, he speaks fluent Russian. 

Shadow Hills is a new ward, just made 2 months ago. Our Bishop is incredible. the members are excited to do work and reach out to friends. I am just excited and grateful to be here. This week we have been working to get to know the members because we're both new to the area. 

I have already seen miracles.

On Friday, we met Sam. He was baptized in Kentucky years ago, but lost contact with the church. He lives part time out here, part time out there. He started meeting with missionaries again a few months ago, but he just recently told them that he was already a member. He was afraid that missionaries wouldn't meet with him if they knew that. He's a funny guy. He is solid, and we'll be meeting with him more this week.

Saturday morning during personal study I had a feeling to study about Family History. I didn't know why. But I followed the impression. 
Then in the afternoon, we met Israel and Inri, while they were sitting in their garage. They are brothers, and they're neighbors of a member family that wasn't home. They were funny and gave us water. While talking with them, we learned they are from Mexico. I told them my grandparents were from Mexico too, and Israel said that the 2 places were very close. The Spirit reminded me about the things I studied about that morning. We talked about Family History. Inri looked at me funny and was like:

Do you think we are primos?

Not remembering what 'primos' meant, I thought for a second that I had somehow offended them. It was funny. They said we could come back to share more. 

That's all I have time for. I know that my Redeemer lives!


Elder Judd

Monday, August 18, 2014

"could we have supposed when we started ... that God would have granted unto us such great blessings?"

Malo le soifua!

It is transfer week. And I am leaving Samoa. And I am going to the desert.

I can't express everything that is on my mind and in my heart. These people have a home in my heart. I am so grateful for Heavenly Father and the experiences He has given me.

I will be going to the Shadow Hills ward, and I think it is in Indio. But I don't know for sure, and I don't know how to spell my new companion's name because I learned it over the phone. Elder Faif. I hope this is the way it's spelled because "Faife'au tala'i" means "missionary". Elder Holcomb is leaving too, and both Samoan wards will now be covered by a pair of Sisters. 

Anyway, this week was great. Many, many miracles.

We started teaching Emo and Su. They just moved in from Alaska and they are living with Emo's aunt and uncle, who are members. We actually met Emo on her 21st birthday, so we brought her cookies the next day. Su is Emo's boyfriend. They are awesome and came to church on Sunday.

Also, a long time ago we met a guy named Joe (We've taught a lot of Joe's). This is Joe P. He has daughters that live in McKinney. Joe said we could come back, and we did, and tried many times, but could never catch him. We ended up meeting his wife, his neice, and his son over time, but they all said to come back later. But we finally caught Joe again this week. He is an older man. He invited us in and we mostly tried to get to know Joe. We learned that his wife passed away 3 months ago. He misses her very much. He loves his family and the Lord. We invited him to read a chapter from the Book of Mormon and set a return appointment. Really, it was a small experience. But I am so excited for Joe because I know the Book of Mormon can change his life. 

We also met with Lea and Jordan again. Lea insists that she be baptized in our ward, and then she will attend the English ward in Redlands. She is awesome. She quit drinking coffee before we even taught that God has commanded us not to drink coffee.

We also brought a young man named Keli out with us to teach Lea and Jordan and he spoke sincerely about how keeping the Sabbath Day Holy has blessed his family. He said this and I could feel it was true: 

God will bless the other six days when we keep His day holy.

On Saturday there was the monthly Samoa temple day, where the Temple service is offered in Samoan. Like always, we met up with the ward at the Temple after they had finished serving in the temple and they went out with us to visit people. I love these people.

I am really excited to serve in the Shadow Hills ward. I am excited for the future. I love my Father in Heaven and my Savior Jesus Christ!

Faith is always pointed toward the future!

Alofa atu,

Elder Judd


a bunch of people that I love. more description later.
Matapula family

Sai and Amy and their boys