Happy 4th of July!! 2016

Leaving late from the apartment we hustled through the Chicago streets to make the twenty minute ride to the chapel. Arriving just on time we quickly locked our bikes, wiped off the sweat, put on our suit coats and tried to look as dignified as we could walking into the building. We entered into the chapel and saw forty missionaries sitting in wait with white, blood-less, confusion upon their faces. Elder Vandenhazel and I sat on the third row and sat in eager anticipation along side them. Ten minutes later we hear the door open and a bunch of people hurry in. A short, stout farmer walks in with a big smile. "Well, don't you all look so serious," he said, as he walked over to shake all of our hands. Welcome to Chi-Town President Bingham. That was our introduction to our new mission president. The week before we went to the famous Chicago botanical gardens with President Woodbury as a goodbye gift on P-Day. I have gotten quite accustomed to the tender natured, tall, older businessman and it was sad to see him go. It is amazing to see the variety of people all fighting for the same cause. President Bingham is from a tiny farming town near Manti, Utah. He was a seminary teacher for many years, and an institute teacher at Snow College. He is a farmer and his stature and speech display such a lifestyle. He has like ten children as well. His youngest two are twin girls of sixteen years. They, along with a son who returned from a mission in El Salvador a week earlier, are here with the president. He is a strict, fiery man and so we will see what more changes will occur in the near future.

We still have been meeting with the old man named Luis, the one who got mad at us for laughing. He likes to talk, and talk, and talk, and talk. We have been trying to figure out a way to actually teach him. We went in for a lesson with him on Saturday and he starts out by telling us that he is not going to talk, and let us teach him. I was very exited and we preceded. However, it was not the case because it was just the same as usual. We ended up teaching the Word of Wisdom, because he has shown his desire to quit smoking and drinking, even before we taught it. After the lesson we received a text from a member asking us to teach Gospel Principles class the next day, about the Word of Wisdom (God's Law of Health) as the topic. Well, Luis came to church the next day, and thought that we taught the topic just for him. Also huge blessing/side note to throw into this story about how the Lord watches out for us missionaries. I had accidentally left my bike unlocked for the entire hour long lesson and it was still there when we got out!! I have heard countless stories of missionary bikes being stolen and I thank the Lord I don't have one of those stories yet! I don't know how many of you remember me speaking of Elder Jensen, one of the biggest reasons I made it through my first area happy as a Jones, but now he is my zone leader after 6 months being separated! I am so stoked to have my great friend close again. Another big change in my mission district is Hermana Rowbury, from somewhere in Idaho, just went home last week and this is only significant because she has been in my district for over 7 months now so it's a bit weird!

Well I hope you all have a very explosive, fantastic, and safe FOURTH OF JULY!
Love you all so much and thanks for your support!

Also shoutout to my buddy Nate Taylor who returns home from his missionary service tomorrow! Which I could be there but the works still goes on and I am excited to be a part of it here.

Elder Jones

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