Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Christmas 2014

Hello Ho Ho Houghtons! And everyone else!

Thank you all so much for the Christmas cards, gifts, stockings and for the wonderful chance to see my most favorite people in this world!  It has been such a wonderful Christmas week, one that I will remember for the rest of my life!

Christmas Eve was so much fun! We had our mission Christmas party! So all of the missionaries in our mission came.  We have such great elders and sisters here! We had a talent show which was great! Missionaries sang Christmas songs, played the piano/ violin, one sister in our district danced point,(I thought about you Rach) some did some missionary raps, others sang about orange juice, and Elder Walker did a Hoop dance-I was so proud! It was so much fun! I was so happy I got to see elder Walker again because he leaves on New Year's Eve, I am going to miss him a ton! ( he was my trainer BTW) Then we had a fun white elephant gift! We had all types of things from cheap family
dollar gifts to full TV's! :) while I was there I got to see Elder Gammon!!! This made me so happy but it blew my mind, I mean I was baptized on the same day as this kid-- we even talked about serving together when we were younger so yeah a little crazy. Not to mention having Elder Tomilson there.  We graduated together, we were in seminary together,and we went to mission prep classes together! It is kind of nice having a familiar face from home here in the mission! :) just awesome!

Celebrating their 9th birthday together best friends--Sean Gammon and Todd Houghton

Elder Sean Gammon
After the incredible party we then went caroling with a bunch of families from the ward.  We had a huge caravan going around and it was super warm like over 50 degrees! So all we needed was a light jacket.  We had the windows rolled down and everyone we saw on the street we wished/yelled a Merry Christmas to them! We went to several places like an old folks home and the lobbies of apartment buildings where some members lived, and after we sang all of us missionaries just dispersed and handed out a ton of those "He is The Gift" cards! I loved it so much and we ate a lot! Then after all that we had dinner with members. It was a full day!

Christmas morning I woke up and the Santa/postman came! Bearing packages,boxes and bags. We had the ASL elders come over in the morning to open all of our packages. I got to make breakfast for them as well. Mom you would be proud my cooking, just saying. It was so much fun, then I made some cookies that we could take to some of our investigators, and because of it one lady we have been trying meet with let us in! She was really impressed that even on Christmas we went out
trying to help people. So hopefully this will let us get in next time to teach her! We did that for awhile! Then I got to talk to you guys! And that made me so happy! It made you feel a lot closer! I just loved
it!  We spent the rest of the day at the Pulleys and had dinner with them.  We also got to watch one G rated movie! So we watched Monsters University! That felt weird. It was a great Christmas!

The next day elder and sister Ray- a senior couple from Becky and Dan's Ward in Kaysville came to do deep clean of our apartment! By the way they think the world of the Bryan family! Kind of a cool
connection and I still can't believe that the Bryan's are moving to Idaho! I am super excited for all of them! Idaho is going to love them! Anyways we did a deep clean from 11 to 5 and now our apartment
is super clean! It makes me super happy!

The rest of the week was great, we have a baptism set with Luis! So I am so excited for him!

I love you all and I love this work and I am so grateful for the chance to be here in the Lord's vineyard!

Love Elder Todd Houghton
Skyping with Elder Houghton!

The best part of Christmas :)
When you are in the service of your fellow men you are in the service of your God.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

December 22nd, 2014


Can You Believe it-- Christmas is in 4 days!!!! Crazy!
And The Thing I am most excited for is getting to see all of Your
beautiful faces! :)
Well lets see I am going to have to give a quick recap of the events
this week because I have to save some stories for Christmas! ;)

Well a missionary broke his nose last Monday while we were playing
basketball, that was exciting.

Tuesday we had the awesomest Spanish referral! His name is Luis!
We dropped by his place and he Let us in! (That is always surprising
as a missionary.) He is from the Dominican Republic and Apparently he
used to meet with missionaries there. He doesn't remember to much from
all  they taught except the Word of Wisdom which he is keeping!
So we got to teach him the Restoration and the Word of Wisdom! I still
don't understand anything being said but I am able to at least follow
along and get the base of where the conversation is at.  It is kind of
cool. Then he invited us back Friday! When we got there he was ready
for us. He changed his sweat shirt and beanie for a button up shirt and
combed his hair back. :) then he told us how he wants us to go through
every thing slow so that poco by poco,  little by little he can become
fully converted to this gospel! He wants to be converted! It made me
so happy! Then he came to church last Sunday as well! it was awesome!
We now have two Luis's coming to church and they are both Spanish
investigators! and they are both Solid! The other Luis has a baptismal
date set for the 3rd! :)

Last Friday we had an interesting dinner with a member, basically
during the ward Christmas party a less active lady that let's just
say has a some kind of disability.  She invited us over for dinner.
 She lives in an apartment building and on her front door was an interesting sign. 

We didn't know what to expect haha, We were happy to say she was 
really nice! She went all out and made turkey and something else that I didn't recognize. 
It was ok I just don't want to know how she made it.

Talk to you soon love you all!!
Elder Houghton

December 15, 2014

Hello Again From Rochester!

It really is Christmas time in the City Here! They have put up
Christmas lights and every Thing! (But it doesn't even Compare to
Temple Square, witch is super awesome that You got to go! I absolutely
love that place!
Also Thank you So much for all Birthday wishes and packages! It made
me so happy getting packages on my Birthday! Elder Scott even took me
to Moe's For lunch and I got me a delicious Quesadilla! It was
awesome! and a great day for missionary work! a miracles happened that
day as well. so Cassie is one of the people with a baptismal date, but
we just haven't been able to get in contact with her like at all! she
would cancel appointments then we couldn't even get ahold of her on
the Phone. So Tuesday the ASL elders went to Starbucks to do Online
Proselyting (we get one Hour online each day) But the WiFi wasn't
working so they went to the restaurant next dour were the Wifi worked
so as they were doing there thing one of the workers came over and
started to talk to them and basically testified that she knew that the
church was true and is the only correct church in front of like every
one there and that it was a sign that they were there! and Guess Who
that was! It was CASSIE! She then told them that she would call us
that night so we could come over! It was awesome! I love it when
things like this happen and they happen all the time!

Wednesday really was an Eye Opener, we got to go to One of our
investigators Grandson's funeral. I am pretty sure it was a Baptist
funeral and we were 2 of the 3 only White People there. It was
probably One of the most different, and depressing things I have ever
experienced in my life. For example they had an Organ, drums, and an
electric Guitar, and during the Opening prayer the lady progressively
got louder till the point of Yelling, the Guitar and organ was playing
along and people were Shouting out! "AMEN" and "PRAISE JESUS"! and that
was just the opening Prayer! During the opening Number It was Chaotic!
Lets just say there was a lot of Weeping, wailing and Gnashing of
teeth from the mother of the son who passed away, and everyone around
her was trying to comfort her! all during the song! it was so sad.
Also I don't think I have ever heard the Word "Amen" so much in my
life. It was a really interesting, and It makes me so grateful to have
this Gospel and for the Wonderful plan that Our Father has made for
us-- to be able to live with our loved ones again! That truly is one of
the greatest blessings. And then to hear what happened to Jonathan
broke my heart, life is so fragile and it so hard to hear that some
one I knew and graduated with and has now passed away. My thoughts and
prayers go with his family!

And Then Saturday we were at the church like all day! We went to a
baptism in the morning and then we had a went to a single adult ward
lunch talked to an investigator there! And then we went and set up for
the ward Christmas party! It seriously was one of the best ward
Christmas parties I have been too! It was gorgeous the food was
incredible we had over 250 people there many were friends that people
had invited! President France's came and Spoke and we had fabulous
musical numbers and then the best part was I got to be Santa's little
helper! Yes I was an Elf! You got to love what you get to do as a
missionary!!!!! I will have to get some pictures to show you cause it
was incredible! But that was basically my week!

Oh! This is transfers week! And Elder Scott and I are staying
companions! Which is crazy because he has been in this area for 6
months already! Haha the work is going really well here still! And I
am loving it!

Hurrah for Israel

Merry Christmas!

 Feliz Navidad

Making ginger bread houses
 Downtown Rochester

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

That's not the language they Taught me in the MTC. Dec. 1, 2014

Dearest family and beloved friends

I hope you all had a magnificent day of Thanksgiving because I did but
I will admit it felt really weird not being with you for it. This was
both mine and Elder Scott's first Thanksgiving one the mission field
and we both just felt a little weird about it but it was really good.
So Thursday morning we started by walking up early (like 6) and went
with the the ASL elders to play some basketball at the church---still
terrible at it. And after that the stake had a Turkey Bowl in 3'in. of
snow. We went and played with with them two hand touch of course.
But it was so much fun! I don't think I have played football since
last last Thanksgiving! It was kind of crazy how a whole year has past
by since then. After an awesome game in the snow! We got cleaned up.
Did our studies we watched the Joseph Smith movie! I was reminded how
lucky I am that I am literally only 20 minutes away from where it all

We then had dinner at the Pulley's, members from our ward, it was
my first time meeting them and they are a great family and dinner was
delicious!  Afterwards we got to play ping pong. It was a day to be
Thankful for! The the rest of the week we were busy doing a bunch of
missionary Work. We did Lots of contacting this week because 90% our
appointments canceled on us. We just get to meet tons of people it's

One of the great things of this mission is Facebook! I love looking
for things we can do for creative post! I still find it crazy that all
time I spent on Facebook was actually preparing me for this mission!:)
My favorite this week was making the #ShareThe Gift in the snow. It
took a lot of skill and directing but I think we reached perfection!

Missions really are great and no matter how much I miss all of you!
There is no place I would rather be than here! Sharing this wonderful
gift with everyone we meet! It is a great and marvelous work!

I love you all a ton!

Elder Todd Houghton

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

That's not the language they taught me at the MTC.

Hola Mi Familia y Amigos!

This has been a happening week here in the New York Rochester Mission! As you have probably heard Buffalo got slammed with a ton of snow! Lake effect is the weirdest thing! It was right next to my last area as well so I dodged a bullet there. But to be honest I am a little bummed I missed it because It looks flipping crazy. Here in Rochester the weather is Bipolar. Its snowed a little. It was basically freezing last Tuesday, but today it is 68 degrees! It feels like summer right now! and it is wigging me out!!  It is going to drop to 40 degrees again. I am loving it here! Rochester is not in 8 feet of snow because We Are On Fire Here! :)

Just last Saturday we went to our third baptism into this ward and one from each set of missionaries. During the service all the missionaries that were there sang the Spirit of God, and on the last verse they had everyone join in, and that was a very touching moment the spirit was so strong. Baptisms definitely are a special day as a missionary!

We also had Zone Conference this week and as always it was Incredible! So remember the "Because of Him" video the church made for Easter? Well the Church is making another on for Christmas and it's called "He is the Gift" and the Church is going big on this video.   They bought the head banner of Youtube and they got one of the main billboards in New York City and they gave all the Missionaries "He is the Gift" cards and they want us to go around passing out at least ten a day. So this is going to be huge! I am a little excited about it!

Being the Spanish Missionaries and not speaking Spanish has been kind of interesting, last Monday we went to give a Spanish lady from our ward a blessing because she is beginning chemotherapy, and I didn't understand like anything they were saying, Its weird I can understand like the main topic of what they are talking about and recognizes one or two words and that's about it. The same is true with some of the other Spanish lessons we have had and school at church! I am trying though but the weird thing is I am picking up more ASL than Spanish! But its fun and really we don't have that many Spanish investigators.

Thanksgiving is Coming Up! I am super excited! We are planning on going to a members home for dinner! But really food is good and I am Grateful for it but there is so much more that I am so thankful for that by coming out on a mission I have been able to more fully appreciate what I have been taking for granted my whole life. Growing up and having a wonderful family and friends, the home I grew up in and the education I have been able to receive BUT what I am most Grateful is for the Gospel in my life, it really has been the most amazing blessing I could ever of asked for and Being able to serve each day and to try and share this joy that I have felt with the people of New York Has made me even Happier than before!

I Love You ALL
Stay Warm!
Hurah For Israel!
Te Amo!
Elder Houghton

November 17th, 2014

This week President Fransic raised the bar for us.

Rochester is the place to be, it is wonderful and super fun, I never know what to expect each day.  Because it's always different.  Also it was snowing huge flakes earlier today!  I got ot go jump around in it for a little bit!

As missionaries we have our "Standard of Excellence", which is to contact
10 people a day, have new investigators each week, and 1 baptism each
month. So now he has made it that in our weekly email to him we have
to tell him how many people we contacted each week.  Elder Scott and
I set the goal to reach 70 this week, so we worked hard! Tuesday was
perfect! It was super warm and every one was out it was way nice! Also
that night we went to go see Luis who is a Spanish investigator that
we have seen a couple times now.  Each time we haven't been able to
teach any of the lessons, but he is super nice and is really patient
with our Spanish. Tuesday night we went and talked to him on his porch
(it's always on the porch). Anyways as we talked to him he told us how
he had cancer for 4 years and he got a blessing and the next visit to the doctors
his cancer was gone! And the then he told us that be knows the Book of
Mormon is true! And then he turned to Elder Scotland asked him "Will
you baptize me"! But the crazy part was I didn't know what  was said
until we were leaving the appointment, and Elder Scott said, " well he is
going to tell us what day he wants to be baptized!" I was so happy! I
just wish I could speak/understand it!

Wednesday it got really cold! I am now bringing out the layers!
It is going to take some getting used to the cold humidity here. And
one problem with the cold is that not as many people like to be out
side In the cold. But We Do!

One of the days we got to prove our manliness by pulling up a super
heavy desk up the side of a house! We were all pretty pumped about it!
Another funny thing happened, I saw my first utterly wasted drunk guy!
We saw him on the ground with a brown paper bag in his hand, and we
decided to give him a card, but when we got there he
held  a sign "just keep on walking" and then proceeded to yell out random
basket ball players, were I couldn't even understand what he was even
saying but it was pretty funny.

Saturday I went to the ASL elders baptism. And it was the coolest
thing they did all the talks in sign language, and they performed the
ordinance in sign language! It was so cool! And then on Sunday elder
Longherst performed the confirmation in sign language as well! It was
so cool. He starts off by putting his hands on her head and then he
takes them off and signs the blessing and then finishes by putting his
hands back on her head. It was on of the coolest things I have seen!
Sunday night we were at 68 contacts. So we were like we got to get at
least 2 more!--  We went to the Groc-er-y store! And we contacted two
more people changed their lives forever and we achieved our goal! I
was pretty excited about that. And we get to do it all over this week!
Rochester is such an amazing place! I am loving it here! The work is
really going forward here!

I love hearing from all of you all! Your letters really do mean the
world to me! You all are definitely living up to  our Houghton
Title of liberty, "as Houghtons will stand as examples of integrity
service and honer." I am so grateful for your examples. Those words
will be with me for ever! I love you tons!

¡Te amo!
Elder Todd Houghton

Monday, November 10, 2014

November 11th 2014

Hello To My most wonderful Family and Friends!

Ok, so remember how before I came out I was in the musical "Guys and Dolls"? Well I was a missionary in it and it took place in New York! Well my new area is right in Downtown Rochester New York! It has been the craziest thing! I have had the Guys and Dolls music going through my head all the time this week because that's what it kind of feels like! except Now I am experiencing/seeing these things for real and It is soooo much fun!

I got my New Companiero Elder Scott, he is so funny I like never know what I am going to get with him, but he is a way hard worker and I love it! He was called as a Spanish missionary so we, this past week, have been able to go and talk to a couple of the Spanish investigators. It is such a cool experience because  I have a good Idea of what they are talking about without understanding a single word that is said! It is kind of exciting so I got to brush up on mi EspaƱol!

Also the area I came to Is ON FIRE! We have been so busy this week that each night we are both just dead tired.  It's hard to describe just everything so I am just going to section it up.
Our district is way cool we have us, the Spanish elders, and then we have the ASL Elders, and then we have some Spanish sisters in our district and we are all assigned to one ward! its so weird to have 3 sets of missionaries at church.

Ok, One of the people we went to go see was a potential that Elder Scott had talked to a couple of weeks before for just like 3 minutes.  We dropped by and she let us in!! We got to teach the Restoration to her and that was way cool and after that she said she was interested in learning about our church! We also offered to rake her leaves for her later that week, and she said we could! ---So we did! and I think it kind of surprised her! She then surprised us by calling us! ( which never happens) and told us she wanted to come to church! We were almost jumping in the air with excitement! and then she came to church and brought her 26 year old daughter as well! We will go and meet with her! The craziest thing was that was only one of our investigators that came to church! We had 5 investigators come to church!! I was so happy and it was just my first week here!

  • Also this ward is one of the most interesting wards I have ever been in! Its the ward that President Frances and his family go too!
  • Also we have a Deaf Congregation in it, so the ASL Elders and one lady interprets the meeting! they are so much fun to watch!
  • Also we have a few members that only speak Spanish so we have some one interpreting Spanish during the meeting!
  • Also there are several people in this church that are let's just say, not fully there. One sat by us in sacrament meeting and in the course of the meeting he made a paper airplane and wanted to throw it at the interpreter. He told me he would steal my bag, and swore at me! and several other things! This is going to be an interesting transfer!
  • The ward council is like a well oiled machine, and it is so amazing to see these great members at work and there diligence to serve those in the ward! 
This has just been a crazy week! These are only a few of the many things that have happened! I can't tell you how happy I am to be here! This is such a new and different experience and I look forward to the many things I will learn here!

I love You also much! I am so happy about all the missionary work that is going on back home! Members really are the best missionaries! Especially Houghton Members! ;)

Hurrah For Israel!
and Come Follow the Fold!
Muchas Amo
Elder Houghton

PS. Weird thing I saw this week was a guy eating out of the garbage. yup it was gross.
PPS. sorry I left my camera in my last area so pictures will have to wait a little bit.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

November 3, 2014 Being Transferred-- Speaking Spanish?

Well I have officially completed my training as in the first Twelve weeks of my mission!!

I still feel like there is so much to learn! So really I will never stop being trained and I will always strive to become better! And I think the Lord knows that and He is ready to Kick me out of my comfort zone because I am being Transferred!!! 

Every thing/ Every one I now as a missionary is about to change!  I am-- well let's just say-- I am a wee bit nervous! Amherst really has been such a wonderful area to be! I love these members so much! and I love the people we have been working with!

 Especially with my trainer, Elder Walker. He is such a great elder and he has trained me well! I will also really miss my district! We seriously have like the best district EVER! I never quite realized how hard transfers could be! 
But they really are! and I haven't even left yet!

 Take a guess as to where I am going! . . . I am going to Rochester Spanish! And I have no Idea what that means! I just might have to learn Spanish! pero mi Espanol es no bueno! But I know that it is where the Lord wants me and if there is only one person I can help with my broken Spanish then I will do every thing I can to find and help that person to the best of my abilities! I am Both Pumped and Terrified about this! It is so exciting! :)

This past week has been great! Heather Got home! Holy Cow! Now that is the Ultimate transfer If I know anything! That is super exciting I was freaking out a little, but the baton has been handed off and Now I am off to a running start! Heather you gave me a great head start so now I will Work with all Heart, Might mind, and Strength to bring it Home! 

Quick sum up of my Week! We raked leaves! I got Sick one night and was better by the next day! Elder walker had a root canal! so he went and got that fixed! this ward is full of dentist and dental students because UB is right there, so one of the members did it for free! 

Halloween we had to be in my dark so we went and spent it with the Amherst elders! I absolutely love them! and we had a great lesson with Kriza on Sunday right after church in the nursery room! on the little chairs! We got to teach the word of wisdom and it was so great to see her willingness to follow Christ! It was such a good lesson! I really am going to miss the people here! Missions are Incredible! 

Love it! Wearing the black name tag and sharing my name with Jesus Christ! 

Love you all so much! I was a little sad this is my first year I wasn't able to be there for the Epic Annul Halloween dinner! you all looked great! 
love you lots! 
Elder Houghton!  

Epic P-Day

October 27, 2014

Well I have officially one week left as a greenie and then I will graduate as a normal missionary! Woot Woot! It is quite exciting.

 OK, so to clarify my question I asked Elder Hamula during my interview with him was, "How do you receive personal revelation?"  It was was something that I had been studying and I really wanted help on recognizing the Spirit. He gave me an awesome answer and to basically sum it up--  if you are doing what you're suppose to be doing than the thoughts and feelings you receive are from the Spirit. In order to get better at recognizing it than you have to act on it. He then told me that that is how the church is run, on these small thoughts and feelings. 

This week was awesome I had a great exchange with one of the zone leaders, Elder Larson. We went and saw Dee and got to go rake their leaves for them, Dee's husband  couldn't believe that she had asked for our help, but over the course of us helping he really opened up and was very grateful and was impressed that we two 18- 20 year olds would come to help them. As we raked we basically taught Dee the restoration and he is very open to learn more so I am super excited to see what happens with this family.

Thursday night was interesting,-- all our appointments canceled on us, and it is completely dark at 7 and it is super hard to go contacting at night because every one says its late when really 7:00 pm.  It is not very late, so elder Walker and I were trying to figure out what we were going to do with our time.  We got a call that Brother Taylor was feeling the worst he has felt in a long time. Bro. Taylor is a older gentleman that we visit weekly, and that he wanted a blessing, so we went over there and gave him the blessing. He didn't want to talk very much so we just got to sit with him for a while. It was a very special moment for me and the next day he was feeling a lot better! I truly am grateful for the Priesthood, for the Great Honor it is to carry it and to be able to use it to help others.

Saturday Night was our Wards Halloween Party! and it was the coolest Halloween party I have ever been to! I wish I got more pictures of every one there but we had people from middle earth and from Sherwood forest, we even had people form Wonderland make an appearance as well as Mary Poppins And Bert! Seriously like 90% of every one was dressed up! and I absolutely loved it! Elder Walker and I dressed up as your Every day Hero! I had a superman shirt under my white shirt and tie. (I attached a picture so you can see how awesome we looked) and it was so much fun! There were close to 30 something nonmembers there as well. and we the missionary's got to judge the Chili cook off! 

This work is incredible! I absolutely love it and I know that this is the place I am suppose to be! 
Love you all! Hurrah for Israel!
Elder Houghton

October 20, 2014

Hello again! From the beautiful land of New York!

It never ceases to amaze me how different each week can be on a mission. Like before I came out I envisioned the same thing day after day! Ha, Was I wrong! Each day is a new adventure of new things, people and experiences and I absolutely love it!

Just the beginning of this week we had Elder Hamula a member of the quorum of the 70 come to speak to us missionaries! He is the one spoke in General Conferences during the Sunday morning session about the sacrament! It was incredible we got to ask him questions and then he would blow our minds with his answers!  and if that wasn't awesome enough I got to go up and lead us in the theme at the beginning of the meeting 
( D&C 4, the standard of truth and our purpose as a missionary). Oh if that's not cool enough-- Elder Walker, I and two other missionaries from my district got to sing the musical number! We sang An Angel From on High (one of those hymns that I've not heard a lot), acapella and let me tell you we sounded Awesome! And For the final kicker Brother Hamula interviewed a couple of the missionaries and I got to be one of them!  If you ever get the chance to be interviewed go in with a question that you want answered and he will answer it for you! :) It was such a good day, I learned so much and how I can improve. There is definitely a lot of room for improvement on my part. 
The rest of the week was pretty much awesome as well! 

Kriza committed to baptism! she said she feel like she is ready now but we are waiting for the 15th of November so that she can have enough time to have her husband get on board. 

This last Saturday we had this HUGE Family History Seminar that we have been preparing for a long time! Gandpa Houghton I think you would of really enjoyed it! It was A HUGE Success! The Entire Church was Packed full of non members that want to learn more about family history! We got to help direct the traffic like help people know where The Primary room or the High council room was or the most important one--- the bathroom! was to every one. We got to talk to a lot of people, two of the ladies from the Catholic group were there as well, And we got to talk to them, It was really funny, one lady made the comment of how she loves family history work so much and is so glad that our church has all of these resources but that she doesn't understand why she even cares at all.  The Spirit of Elijah is grasping the hearts of many throughout this world even those that are not of our faith and they have no idea! The Lord definitely is in charge! 
Miracles are happening every day here and I absolutely love it!
I love you all so much!
Love Elder Houghton

Sunday, October 19, 2014

October 13th Just Another Boring Week in the Mission Field

HAHA Just Kidding!

So much happened this week I don't even know were to begin.

OK well Tuesday we got to see "Meet the Mormons" with all of the missionaries in both the Buffalo North and South zone and Holy Cow wasn't it incredible! All of those stories were so inspiring and wonderful I was truly inspired to be a better person! I think every missionary was a little choked up at the end. That was just pretty sweet.

Also that morning President Francis called and asked if he could go with us after the show to see some of our investigators!! I was a little shocked and nervous, but let me tell you we had one of our best lessons so far. President Francis, in my eyes, is like the Prime Missionary! He asks the right questions and is always looking for clues to talk to people.  It was really cool getting to see him at work. It was just crazy.

That saddest part of this week though was that we had to give up the van. :( apparently some other Elders need it more that we do. It was a hard parting. I had grown so close to that van and now its gone. but I guess that's how mission life is so instead we got a Truck.  It might look more manly! But the van was better.

So we had an amazing Miracle happen this week. Basically a week ago a really sweet Catholic lady, that we had been visiting, invited us to come to one of their Prayer circle Groups things to talk about our Religious Roots or what it was like growing up as a Mormon. So we Gladly accepted! The meeting was at her home with about 8 other Catholic ladies, and it was by far the best thing I have been able to do on my mission!! We told them all about reading the scriptures each morning and night as a family and Family Home Evening (yes, I told them about our Houghton Title of Liberty) and also what it was like going to school. These ladies had lots of questions. It was just perfect because all of their walls were down and we got to just talk to them. Near the end we asked if they had any more questions and one of the ladies asked if she could get a Book of Mormon. We of course said yes thus causing a chain reaction and every one wanted one! It was wonderful!! We closed the meeting by singing "I know that my Redeemer lives" The spirit was very strong. I absolutely loved it!

The lady that invited us, she asked if we could help rake some of her leaves some time. Two days later we put on some service clothes and went to work. Her husband couldn't believe that she had asked us to help. However,  by the time we were done, he expressed that we are going to Heaven and that if Mitt Romney was like us then where would our county be now. haha I thought that was funny. They were very grateful that we came to help them and now they want to feed us dinner which I am super excited for! 
Ready to Serve
Yesterday during Gospel Principles a lady that hasn't been to church for a long time came in because she was sick and wanted a blessing. I got to anoint for the first time! You definitely have to be on your toes as a missionary because you never know when you will have to exercise the priesthood, or if the Lord will want you to do something.  We just have to make sure that we're worthy to do it!

I am so grate full to serve here! The Field is White and ready to harvest!

Love you all so much 
Elder Houghton!

Chill'n on the Erie Canal

Monday, October 6, 2014

October 6, 2014

Feeling down in the dumps?
Watch General Conference it can help!
Hello Again!

This has been Quite the week! 
I mean I started off by going with an investigator to Niagara Falls! so yeah that was pretty amazing. It's been really interesting working with Jeff, he is all about helping out the missionaries and showing us all the Cool things to do in New York, but it also has been interesting to try and share messages with him because its hard to stay focused with him! BUT I think we found the cure! and it is through movies!  We just watched the testaments with him just last Friday and that really went well!   We have one of the greatest missionary tools coming out this next-- Friday!!!! "MEET THE MORMONS"!!!  This movie is inspired, it is perfect for our investigators and also to let the world know what Mormons are like! I am so Stoked! We, as a zone, will get to watch it this Tuesday

Also we got to meet and have a sweet lesson with Kriza, she has come to church Twice, she is from the Philippians and she wants to learn about the church, all because one of the members invited her! It was crazy-- we met with her on Wednesday, we had Sister Lahti and Sister Campbell who are her friends that invited her, and then we needed a male to come as well so we had 3 members present! We just set up a table in the Gym and taught her the Restoration. It's really nice when you have lots of members because they practically teach the lesson!  After the lesson we had Pizza! so needless to say it was a good lesson! 

Elder Walker and I helped move a very nice man move from one side of his house to the other I think we rearranged his bedroom 8 times! haha He is a super nice man that is a convert to the church but he hasn't been coming much lately, but we can help change that! 

Saturday we did more service.  We went over and pulled a ton of weeds around a ladies home, like it was so bad that the neighborhood was putting a petition to have her kicked out of her home! So our ward stepped in and helped her out! I love helping her out but during the project it rained like crazy so we were muddy and and wet and happy as could be,  about the time we were done it was nice and sunny! We finished the project about 11:15 (conference starts at 12 here) so we rushed home got ready as fast as could be and drove as fast as we could (legally) and got to the church at 12:00 so it was perfect!  

Seriously! I don't know if it's just me but I could swear that each General Conference is getting better and better! and wasn't it amazing how they let general authorities speak in their native tongue! The Church of Jesus Christ is a world wide Church! This Gospel is truly Going to every nation Tongue and People! 
We had a luncheon at the church between sessions, we invited several people and like no one showed.  It was incredible any ways and we went back for round two and later round three. So we were both spiritually and physically fed.

Sunday we went and watched it at the Blatto's, a part member home, it was really good..  Over the course we got to finally meet sister Blatto's husband who is not a member and talked to him even though he didn't watch it with us. They had two young daughters who were really fun and crazy! I just love getting to watch conference from a home. It made me think of all the conferences we watched growing up in our family-room with everyone  asleep and I would be watching and listing intently ;) Ha just kidding we were a Perfect family no one would Evvvvverrr fall asleep! 

I Love y'all so much!!!!
I am so great full to be one of the 88,000  Missionaries serving through out the world it is incredible!
Hurrah For Israel
Elder Houghton!

Excited about our new investigator--Fluffy!

By the way doesn't a certain Sister Missionary get home home soon?

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Hello from the beautiful state of New York!

 It has been absolutely amazing! It started out really cold last week but this week the weather here has been sunny, beautiful, and perfect for missionary work! All the trees are Changing color! I love it!

The people here are super nice, but also people here are very religious, or very busy. So trying to get in and teach people has been a little bit difficult, However, this week has been great. It almost seemed that every one and their dog wanted to talk to us! (of course with a few exceptions), Tuesday especially, pretty much every one we tried to see wanted to talk to us.  One example is that one Catholic lady we have been visiting finally let us into her home, she has been reading the Book of Mormon and she had us come in and address one of her concerns.  She wanted to know what happened to people who die who are not a Mormon.  It took us a minute but we were able to tell her about the Plan of Salvation and she said after that we could still be friends! 

One lady was quite impressed with us ( Cough Cough sniff sniff) and invited us to come speak of our "Religious Roots" at one of their Catholic prayer group things! We are super excited about it, I am also a little bit nervous about it, but that's normal I am a Greenie after all ;)! all I have to do is put my trust in the Lord and He will help me through it! 

I Got To Go On My First Sights Trip!!! WOOT WOOT! :) We got to Take Jeff  who has been kind of investigating the church for a while now. And it was great! We went to the Hill Cumorah and the Joseph Smith Farm and the Sacred Grove, and the Book of Mormon Publication Sight! I was reminded of how Great it is to serve where it all started! Missionaries all over the world testify of what happened at the sacred grove and I have it right here in my Mission!!! Jeff liked it, he is the kind of guy who likes to go see places and historical things so he enjoyed it a lot! 

Check out my Hoops!

This Sunday was the Primary Program! :) I don't think I have ever seen so many kids up on a stand before but it was very well done, and the best part was several of the members had invited friends to come see it! I never would have thought of it as a Missionary tool! It truly is wonderful to hear these Children of God Bearing Testimony of simple truths! and now we have an appointment to teach one lady this Wednesday

 Disna moved to Dubia this week :( but we got to see her and testify of how this gospel can bless her family. she said she wants to continue to learn and that she plans on going to church there! :) It is so hard to see such a Golden Investigator leave but I know God has a plan for her! the funny thing though was right after we said goodbye to Disna, Sister Campbell Took us over to meet some of her friends who are From Saudia Arabia! she invited them to church and they seemed some what interested! All it took was a simple invite, I think sister Campbell is one of the best missionaries here! 

I know I am a little short when it comes to details but I am trying to do Better! 
I love you all SO VERY MUCH 
You are the best! I loved the Package! There is nothing better than a taste of Idaho! 
Jenn You are a stud!!! Driving Sloppy Joe all over town, ! You have achieved very high honer of learning to Drive Sloppy Joe, may you drive him well, and tell him I love him and miss him! ALSO for beasting it up on stage! so Proud.
Rach keep it up! I can't believe all that you have gone through these past couple weeks I am very impressed, I am so sorry for the Loss of papa Campbell. That is no easy thing but way to keep on pushing through! 

Mom way to be! I wish I could of been There to see it! but I have a feeling I wouldn't have been invited to the Jane Austen  party thing. But way to be a missionary!
DAD YOUR A STUD! nuff said!

Elder Houghton