Friday, June 19, 2009

Mission Update June 18, 2009

Dear Family and Friends, June 19, 2009 My brother David sent me an email asking for our mailing address and askedthe Lord to watch over us and bless us. Sister Heaton and I have officiallybeen in the mission field 13 days now and I can attest that the Lord iswatching over and blessing us. It is an amazing thing to watch the Lord'skingdom moving forward using the humble, weak and meek souls of the world.Elder Packer in a talk that the new Apostle Elder Anderson was at said, andI paraphrase, "I am not anything and then looked at Elder Anderson and saidneither are you." Anyone that has served the Lord on a full-time missionunderstands that concept. We are totally dependent on the Lord foreverything we do and say, we are nothing. It has been a happy sad time for our Mission President Jim Beck and hiswife Trudy. They just receivedtheir last set of new missionaries from theM.T.C. ; twenty-two beautiful, young faces with a testimony of the Saviorin their hearts and in their voices. As we sat in testimony with them withmist in our eyes and the Spirit of the Lord so thick that we could not denyit, I thought of the young man that came to Jesus and asked what else heneeded to do as he had kept all of the commandments from his youth and theLord said sell all that thou hast and give it to the poor and come followme. He could not , but these of the Lord have. They have strippedthemselves of all worldliness and come to follow the Savior. What awonderful blessing they are. For the Becks, they have been untiringlyfinishing up three wonderful years of miracles as they put it. They told usthat we would see miracles on this mission and we have. If we and theseyoung ones can finish as the Becks have I believe that the Lord must have aplace for us. They are great examples of strength and perseverance. On FlagDay Sister Heaton and I were down at the English school thatPresident Beck set up about a year ago. There sat 38 Chinese students mostfrom communist China trying to learn enough English so they can pass theexam to become a U.S. citizen. I thought it would be fun to sing the StarSpangled Banner so I began to sing spontaneously. All eyes fixed on me andthen to my surprise an older gentleman that speaks virtually no Englishbrightened up and said, "I know! I know!" Together we sang word perfect andwith great feeling and zeal through the Rocket's red glare then giving wayto the HOME OF THE FREE. Never, in all the times that I have sung thatsong, has it meant more to me as I looked into the faces of those mostrecent immigrants and they all broke out in applause. The Lord guided anddirected Lehi and his family to a promised land and the Lord continues toguide and direct His people to this Promised Land to hear the restoredgospel and restored hope in a world of woe. The wardwe are serving in is the Oakland 9th Ward an inner-city ward.Bishop Linford was called from another ward by the stake to serve a missionas the Bishop. Same thing with the High Priest Group Leader and ReliefSociety President. Sister Heaton and I have been assigned to find some ofthe lost sheep. On our journeys we have had the privilege of meeting FlossyGrant a non-member, Frederika "Freddie" Waters who taught the gospelessentials class Sunday, and Williamson "Chilly Willy" St. George and hiswife Shelley a less active family. These sweet souls are evidence of why wewere called here. To proclaim the restored gospel to those that have notheard it, support the active in their callings while strengthening them andrecover those that have been ignored far too long. Our ward is a beautifulbouquet of faces from around the world. Sister Heaton has been busy with her calling as the Mission MedicalAdvisor. This mission, as was pointed out in our training in the churchofficebuilding by those that know, has the highest cost for medical carein the whole Church. The Church does not have insurance when it comes tomissionary work. The church pays for all of it out of tithes and offerings.Usually any medical is handled by the Mission President's wife who isusually not trained. This mission has not had a mission medical advisorbefore. This has been a further testimony to us of why we were inspired toput our papers in when we did. This is the perfect transition period forher call with the new mission president coming in at the end of the month. I cannot tell you how much we miss our family and our Kaibab Ward family.Your prayers and support have been felt every day that we have been away.We want you to know that we pray for your welfare every day and we knowthat the Lord will bless, guide and protect you in all of your righteousdesires. In the name of our Savior Jesus Christ, Amen Our address is: Elder Joel and Sister Shawn HeatonCA-Oakland/ San Francisco Mission 4945 Lincoln Way Oakland, CA. 94602

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Mission Update

Dear Family,

It is about time that we sent you an update on the California, Oakland/San Francisco mission. First interesting point, at least to me, is that there is another descendent from William Heaton my Great, Great, Grandfather, who was the very first missionary for the church and our Heavenly father, serving with us here in Oakland. Sister Jensen and her husband from B.C.. Canada Her mother is Geneveve Heaton Gubler who is still alive in Laverkin. Her mother lived in our ward when we were in the Laverkin first ward. Her Great Grandfather was Christopher Beilby Heaton Williams first born son who was born while he was on his mission in England. Sadly they are going home on the 15th of June.

After meeting with the Jensens they recommended that we stop by AAA and get some maps so we obediently did. While on the way I about ran into a car on the freeway so Sister Heaton suggested that we make sure our accidental life insurance policy with AAA was still in force because if we wreck and I die she wants some money out of it (I guess spiritual blessings aren't enough!). While getting the maps they sent us back to a life insurance agent accidently (we only wanted accidental life insurance not whole life or term life which was this mans department). Mike Movaghar after seeing our name tags got so excited that he asked we someone sent us to him. Turns our that he graduated from S.U.U. in Cedar City. He had a great experience there and in S.L.C. He raved about how Mormons and Muslims are very close and how wonderful we are and how decidant society has become and please take the gospel to the black people because they need it the worst. I asked if he had a B.of M written in Farsi his Native tongue? He is from Iran and I thought it might help in his understanding of the gospel. He said no so I told him that I would bring him a copy, which I did yesterday. He is not ready to join the church, but he said that if we need any help to just ask him. I asked for some referrals, he offered none at the time but will. We are going to stay in contact with Mike whose real first name is Ishmael which means "God Heareth". We know that God has heard him and that we were sent to offer him another chance to hear the gospel message and invitation to be baptized into the true and living church.

We are living in the Temple apartments. small but in our budget ($20 per night). I found out that the Temple President Richard Hunter is Howard W. Hunter's son. His wife is a joy and he is a wonderful man. Nice to have good neighbors!

Sister Heaton is working hard learning her calling and I am moving furniture and inspecting apartments. We have been assigned to the Oakland 9th Ward, an inner city ward with a Bishop tha was assigned from outside of the ward by the Stake. About all are ethnic other than caucasion. It's a beautiful boquet of Heavenly Fathe's children. One of the members is a former member of the Genesis Ward. This was a ward set up in S.L.C. before Declaration 2 in the D &C for black members. Wonderfull people with wonderfull spirits. truly God's humble elect.
President and Sister Beck our mission president and wife are making the most of their last couple of weeks. they are a most wonderful couple and have Quite inspiring! The highliter for me was when one of the elders totaled a car and when Pres. got there the officer was about to throw the book at the Elder would have charged him with wreckless drive etc. When it was our turn to speak, I told them tha while we were in training at the church office building and elsewhere that when we asked about the Becks everyone had nothing but great things to say about them and the mission and then when we arrived and got that great welcome by the whole mission it made us want to say in our loudest voice, "HOORAY FOR ISRAEL". Everyone laughed.

Well that is all for now. We will try to keep you all informed. We are having the best experience that missionaries this old can have. the gospel is true and please don't miss any opportunities to share that wonderful message.

Elder and Sister Heaton (Mom and Dad)

Monday, June 8, 2009


Ok, so this is really Sharice, but I was able to talk with Mom and Dad on the phone the other night, and they had LOTS to tell me! They wanted to make sure that it was posted on the blog too!

They left from Provo, UT on Friday afternoon and had a long drive ahead of them! They called Shellianne and asked her to book them a room in Nevada that wouldn't be too expensive. Shellianne called and said that everything looked pretty pricey, but she found something in a small town that looked pretty good.
So they booked it. Mom and Dad pulled up to the hotel around 2 am in the morning, and it had been a long drive to get there. They had to go through the casino to get to the desk to get the room key. They got a key for room 112 and went to find their room. When they tried to put the key in the door, however, it didn't work... They fought with it for some time before Dad decided to go find the "right" key. He walks all the way back to the desk through the casino and they guy at the desk said it was the right key.... So, he walks back and they try it again when the door knob starts to turn. A gentleman came to the door and politely said, "This one's occupied..."
OOPS... They tried the next door down room 118 I believe, and the key worked, so that is where they slept for the next couple of hours before heading on the road again.

Mom and Dad said it wasn't that bad Shell, just FYI, and thanks for getting the room!

The next story came the next day. They pulled up to the mission office and nobody was there. It was right next to the temple, so they went for a walk over there, and they found everyone getting ready for a picture with ALL the missionaries in the entire mission. The mission president had EVERYONE say "WELCOME ELDER AND SISTER HEATON"! It was an amazing welcome! They felt VERY special.

They even got to sleep in the general authorities room for the night! Mom said that Dad behaved himself even!!!

They are right next to the bay with a beautiful view! The weather is AMAZING!
So all in all they are there, they are safe, they are having the time of their lives!!! I can't remember any other stories, so if you want them talk to Joshua because he knows!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Cassandra LaRae Day

Born: 6/6/09
Time: 10:48 pm
Weight: 8 Lbs 8 Oz.
Length: 20 1/2 inches long.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Goodbye breakfast photos.

These are some pix from our breakfast with Joel and Shawn just before they went to the MTC for their mission. We had a good time and enjoyed seeing those who were able to make it and missed those who couldn't.