"Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever."
-- Alma 26:12

Monday, April 30, 2012


Well my family, how are you doing?  

Today I'm doing pretty fantastic.  I love being a missionary, and I love the work that we are entrusted with and privileged to perform.  This week was a good week, and it was also kind of a crazy week, but this week is going to be even crazier.  This week is finals week for UNC, and lots of people are busy.  Well we taught Catherine this week, and she is doing awesome.  So when Sam's parents found out, his dad called Catherine's mom, and Catherine's mom didn't take it very well at first.  She didn't talk to Catherine for awhile, even though Catherine tried to talk to her and explain why she was getting baptized, etc.  Well, Catherine and her mom had lunch together on Thursday, and when it came up, they talked about it openly.  It sounded like they had a good conversation about it, and in the end, Catherine's mom wanted a copy of the Book of Mormon to "see what you guys believe".  Crazy, huh?  

Becky's lessons were awesome this week.  For one of the lessons, I wasn't there because I was on an exchange with an elder, but Elder Dodd said it went really well.  They talked about how she pretty much knew she needed to be baptized, but she had a few small doubts.  I went on an exchange two days later with Elder Goesch (my old zone leader in Cheyenne who is now an assistant to the president) here at UNC. We taught Becky and it was an amazingly intense lesson. We talked for awhile about how far she has come and the changes that have taken place in her life.  Erica, her LDS roommate, talked about how much she has changed and how miraculous it has been. We then talked about how everything so far has been good, and God isn't going to throw a curveball at her that makes it to where she no longer believes in our faith.  Then the clincher came--we read Mosiah 18.  When it talks about mourning with those that mourn, we also said, "and are willing to give up coffee, etc. (talking about the things she has changed)".  Then the next scripture really hit Becky.  It says basically, if you're willing to do all these things, then what have you against being baptized? She thought about it after we explained it and kind of laughed and said, "I hate it when I know you're right".  She knows she is going to be baptized, and now we left it to her to decide when and keep it up.  She is moving back home on Friday, so we'll be giving some elders in the Denver South mission (Littleton) a golden investigator who is ready to be baptized!  

I've been thinking the past couple of days about an interesting phenomenon that happens in our lives, and also in our mission lives.  What did we have when we were first fully converted (or first came out on the mission)--what faith, desire, excitement, trust, love, strength, did we have that we have lost?  We as human beings not only tend to, but do, forget the things that matter most in our lives. How can we go on, how can we move forward with the courage, valor, and vigor that we once had?  "If ye have experienced a change of heart, and if ye have felt to sing the song of redeeming love, I would ask, can ye feel so now?" (Alma 5:26) The key to becoming who we were, and becoming better than who we were, lies in one word that in itself encompasses thought, action, reflection, change, and motivation.  We must "remember".     

Where have our past intense spiritual experiences gone; where are the many successes that we have experienced; where are the moments of victory over trial, defeat of shortcomings, cleanliness over muddening sin?  They are within us, but we have to rely on the Spirit, and submit ourselves to God to apply and enjoy the promise:  "The Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost...shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance".  To become better, to progress and become for ourselves all that we were meant to be, we have no choice but to actively remember what we have become, achieved, felt, succeeded in.  Then we become better, achieve more, feel stronger, and succeed again.  God has given us the tools and the opportunity because He loves us.  Let us remember Him and His Son, Jesus Christ--without Him it would be impossible to find ultimate and lasting joy and peace.

Elder Logan Bryan

Monday, April 23, 2012

Week 2 in Greeley!

Mi Familia,

So here I am again in Greeley.  It's so weird not to be in Cheyenne!  So Elder Dodd is from Red Bluff, CA.  He was called as a Spanish speaking missionary, but we only cover an English area here in the University Ward.  We get to talk to Latinos often though.  I have studied a little Spanish, but not much.  I went on an exchange this week with one of the Spanish elders in his area.  He's brand new and green, so doesn't know Spanish.  We went tracting, and boy was that an experience.  I realized how little Spanish I actually know.  I gave a couple of approaches in Spanish and it was difficult understanding the people when they replied--with their words flying a billion miles an hour.  It's ok, though. Someday I'll learn it.  Elder Dodd and I get along great.  He's a great and obedient missionary.

Life as a missionary in a university ward is much much different than usual. There are special rules for campus missionaries.  The rules we have are (completely serious these are our rules):  We are the LIFE of the Institute! (We've been thinking about getting visors, wearing them sideways and upside down, walking in with a boombox, and being the LIFE of the 'tute.) We ALWAYS have to have a smile on our face!  We MUST be at all Institute activities to gain the trust of the members (from where most of our investigators come [referrals])!  We go to FHE on Mondays, we have lessons with members a ton to help them invite their friends to be taught. We walk around on campus and talk to people all the time. We take part of our pray on Saturday because we cut it short on Monday to work because people are on campus on Mondays.

This week in the area was great!  Sam had a hard time leading up to his baptism where Satan was working hard on him, but he did it, and he pushed through.  He texted us on Friday and said, "I know this isn't going to stop until I get in those waters".  He's awesome!  He was baptized on Saturday and the Spirit was super strong.  Elder Dodd confirmed him on Sunday (the spirit was also strong there), and he texted us last night and said his parents found out, and his dad said some terrible things to him and hung up the phone.  We texted him that we would pray for his parents' hearts to be softened, and that one day they would thank him for his choice.  Catherine is chugging along.  She gave up coffee this week for good, and she is set to be baptized on May 19th.  With Becky, we had some good lessons about recognizing the Spirit and the answers God gives us.  She is starting to do just that.  She is starting to truly see the changes that have been wrought in her since she started reading the Book of Mormon and learning more about the truth of the gospel.  We are going to have a lesson with her this week about the importance of baptism, and why we have invited her to be baptized.

Things are going great in the Greeley Zone (that's what it's called Dad).  We found 20 new investigators as a zone--which is crazy for Greeley (it's kind of been known as the armpit of the mission in times past).  I am excited to be here and to be working as we are.  I love this gospel.

Something I learned this week was the love that God has for us. He truly and completely and purely loves us.  I know He puts us in situations for a reason.  I know He gives us trials and lets us turn to Him to overcome them.  We are never alone.  He sent His own son to let us live.  And it is only because of Jesus' and God's sacrifices that we can find happiness.  He is the fount of every blessing. We wander, we stray, but eventually we all have to have Him take and seal our hearts to be His.  Let us show our love for Him who loved us first by doing so.  I love Him.  Love you all so much. 

Elder Logan Bryan
Sam and Catherine at his Baptism!

Sam's Baptism!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Week 1 in Greeley

So Family,

This week was kind of crazy.  I got to Greeley on Monday.  We cover just a University Ward (University of Northern Colorado) that meets at the Institute for church at 9:30 on Sundays.  Our Bishop is Bishop Russon.  One set of Spanish elders lives with us in the farmhouse.  There are two sets of Spanish elders that cover the Greeley 5th branch.  What might end up happening in the summer is that I might get a Spanish comp and we'll cover Spanish as well as University, since there's nobody there in the summer--that's wishful thinking though, and I'm not sure.  

We have 3 progressing investigators right now--Sam Munson, Catherine Choy, and Becky Merle.  We had a lesson with Sam on Tuesday this week.  He knows the church is true--probably more than anyone that I've met.  He has such a strong testimony, but his family is Catholic, and they don't approve at all.  He has been debating whether to tell them or not, and we taught him an encouraging lesson on Tuesday.  We met again with him on Thursday, and we asked him how the past few days were.  He said nothing much had happened, and then he said, "Actually, I don't know why I said that."  He had a great spiritual experience that let him know he needed to be baptized, and soon.  He decided to be baptized on April 21st and this Saturday he will do so!  He's so awesome.  Catherine Choy is his girlfriend who has basically the same background.  She was Catholic, didn't agree with many of the beliefs, and didn't know what to do with her relationship with God.  Sam started meeting with the elders here, so he shared with her.  She said she hasn't felt closer to God ever before.  She'll be baptized in May when her one supportive friend gets home from college.  Becky is the friend of a member in the ward.  She has been reading and praying about the Book of Mormon, and now she has faith in Christ, but her parents are encouraging her to look into other churches too, so tonight we'll probably end up resolving some of her concerns.  

Last night there was a fireside entitled "He came for Me" that the YSA Institute put on.  Yes mom, it's that song from Women at the Well.  It was so spiritual, and guess who sang that particular song?  Jenny Van Wagenen. Yup the same one from Germany, so she's in the ward too.  Crazy, huh?  It was an awesome fireside, full of testimonies of the atonement.  The work here is going great.  I love Greeley even though it stinks like cow poop all the time :)  Love you guys so much.

Elder Logan Bryan

Squirrel chillin' outside the Institute on a hot Day!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Hello From Cheyenne


Don't have a lot of time, so I'll be in Greeley serving in the University 1st Singles Branch.  This week was great, it was hard to say goodbye to people though.  I'll be in a truck, with Elder Dodd who is spanish-speaking.  It'll be awesome!  Here's my email to president:

"Well this week has been a crazy week. We went to the temple this week which was awesome, and we had a good time there. I love the temple, and it has helped me grow closer to God so much (both before my mission and during it).  I am very excited to be serving in Greeley.  And I think I'll be able to grow much more--but I guess every opportunity in the mission is an opportunity to grow much more.

This week we've been finalizing some things in the area, making sure that Elder Anderson is all set to take it over.  I'm really grateful Elder Samiu is coming into the area.  He'll bring a measure of love and of the Spirit that will greatly affect the work in this area.  I have loved my time here, and things should be happening soon where some investigators will be baptized. Rita is doing well, and we're just waiting for her to quit her job.  Jiselle had a blowup this week with her fellowshipper family, and we talked to her for a while.  She was just going to quit coming to church, and stop coming because she said "I don't expect you guys and the people at church to trust me. I'm not the same as you guys and I don't believe what you guys believe..." She is desperately in need of the gospel, and I bore my testimony to her telling her that the only way she'll find true happiness in life is through God and through the gospel.  She teared up and said "I know".  So I hope things will turn around there.  K'Neesha should get baptized soon and I hope that will go through.  I feel badly that we weren't able to get more work done, and covering another ward over the last two weeks has hindered the work in Buffalo Ridge, but I guess it's the same work, right?  We  weren't able to do a lot of tracting, but I know Elder Anderson and Elder Samiu will pick up the work.  I have loved serving around the people and the investigators, and growing in love and testimony.  It has been hard to say goodbye to people, but I know this transfer is what I need.

Thanks for being such a great example to me President.  I love serving with you, and I'm looking forward to this transfer. 

Elder Logan Bryan"

Love you guys,
Elder Logan Bryan

Monday, April 2, 2012

Week 6--Last Week in B-Ridge

Well Family,

How are you doing? Sounds like you're chillaxing on a cruise in nice warm weather.  The weather here is back to snowy.  Ya good ol' Wyoming!  Gotta love it.  This week was pretty great.  If I didn't mention before, we're in a trio for the next week because Elder Davidson (who has been with us for a week) had a companion who had to go home for back surgery.  So he's been with us for a week and a half.

Cool Experience of the week:  So we were visiting Less Actives and went to one's house.  On the way we saw a potential's door was open, and said we would go back after we visited this family.  The LA family wasn't home, so we went to this potential's house, and he let us in.  His name is Alex Garcia.  He's middle-aged, and a nice guy.  He let us in and started talking and then asked us about our church.  Elder Anderson told him a little about it, and he totally shot that down.  He told us: "I don't believe in your religion. It's a man-made religion. I need God's religion. How could Joseph Smith be a prophet when the Bible never talks about him. Why do I need anything but the Bible, it has all the truth in it and I don't need anything else..." and so on and so forth.  He kept saying that after anything we tried to tell him.  Again, and again he kept denying the truth of what we were telling him.  Finally, I felt like I needed to speak up and open my mouth.  I did so, and here's a little of what I said--probably not word for word, but close: "Alex, we believe that the Bible and the Book of Mormon support each other.  They testify of each other.  The Bible in itself COULD NOT BE TRUE, if things outside of it did not happen.  In Ezekiel 37, The Bible testifies of a book coming from Judah and from Joseph, In Malachi 4 it says Elijah the prophet will come before Christ's second coming, in the New Testament Christ testifies of "other sheep" that he must bring into His fold.  These things had to happen for it to be true.  I know that those other sheep were the people in the Book of Mormon, and that it is a true account.  You know about the Holy Ghost, and I have received a witness from the Holy Ghost that it is true.  So can you.  All you need to do is pray and ask."  It was intense, and I had words put into my mouth as I testified.  The Spirit was so strong.  Alex underwent a complete shift, and you could visibly see the change that the Spirit had wrought in him.  He ended our lesson by saying he wanted to read the Book of Mormon and to come to church to try out our religion and see what it was about.  It was one of the most intense experiences that I have ever had, and one of the most clear times the Spirit was in action. 

I loved Conference, and especially Elder Holland's talk, Elder Eyring's talk, and Elder O. Vincent Haleck's talk on Vision.  That was a direct answer to prayer. Don't have a ton of time. But I know the church is true.  I have felt the Spirit testify again and again to me and to others of it's truthfulness.  Let the Spirit in, open your hearts.  I love Christ. 

Elder Logan Bryan