Monday, February 27, 2012


27 February 2012

Dear Homefront,

If postmarkings are to be trusted, letters and packages take about 3 or 4 days to get to me. I received both the Valentines day and the last package with the St Patricks day items.

This week looks like it will be a good one for us. Two of our investigators are making preparations to be married and to enter into the waters of baptism this upcoming Saturday. (more to follow)

The past week has been spent in a blur of trying to visit with former investigators, attempting to find out why they stopped investigating and to see if they would be interested in continuing their investigation; overhauling our Area Book (which is a record of investigators, members, and other information about our proselyting area) which was in need of some work; and a rather remarkable Stake conference.

This Stake Conference was a broadcast to our meetinghouse and included some choice speakers ... A General Officer of the Church, a member of the Seventy, a member of the Presiding Bishopric, and an Apostle of the Lord. Elder Richard G. Scott presided at this conference and spoke concerning the divine sanctity of Womanhood and how it applies to both the woman and the man who must uphold and protect her. He gave advice to all people of all ages of what they can do to protect this divine gift that our loving Heavenly Father has given to His daughters. It was a very spiritual experience and it was perfect because, after many weeks of not being able to make it to church, Sarah and Phillip (the investigators that are getting ready to be married) were there.

The Lord is mindful of each and every one of us. No matter what the concern, it's important to Him for the simple reason that it's important to us. He loves us with a perfect and impossibly simple love. He is our Father, we are His children.

May all of you find shelter from the trials and tribulations of this world in the hollow of the hand of He who gave all for us.

With much love,
-Elder John Y. Roberts

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


21 February 2012

Dear Homefront,

Well, it's Tuesday and I'm writing now because yesterday was President's Day.

This week, we got the first real snow we had all winter. Thankfully it started coming down Sunday afternoon so we were able to make it in before it really hit hard. We ended up with about 3-4 inches overall. Unfortunately for my companions (being from California, they were both much more excited for snow than I was) it warmed back up yesterday and today and now most of the snow has melted away.

The Branch Activity at Ft. Lee this past Saturday was rather enjoyable. They had Navajo Tacos and I ended up getting pulled into a game of Mexican Train Dominos with Elder Stock (the senior military relations missionary) and a couple of the soldiers. Elder Stock won by just a few points. Fun fact about Elder Stock, he is featured in
John Bytheway's book "Supersonic Saints." In fact, he is the only one in the book that is not actually "supersonic." He flew a helicopter in Viet Nam.

Other than that, this week has been pretty much more of the regular life of a missionary. We're still working our way through our records and trying to figure out who is who. We have a couple more investigators set with baptismal dates. We're hoping they stick with it. I love being out here. I love being able to share this wonderful message that has brought hope into my life. And the best part ... it doesn't end after the mission. This morning I was reading in the Ensign from an article by Elder M. Russell Ballard about how we can use technology (the internet in particular) to share the gospel. It was very interesting and it helped me gain a greater perspective.

I hope you are all safe and well. I love you all.
With much love,
-Elder John Y. Roberts.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


13 February 2012

Dear Homefront,

Happy Valentine's Day (tomorrow)! And while I'm at it (since I know that not all of my followers are happily in relationships) Happy Singles Awareness Day!

Hopewell has been good to us this week, well, mostly good. Winter is finally here. It's gotten rather cold lately and we've even had a couple flurries. But we'll survive (though I think I'll invest in a set of thermals and some earmuffs). Ft. Lee has also picked up some activity as well. Now that the holidays are over, there are more soldiers being sent out to train. Last Saturday was the largest group we've had at the activity since I've been here. We had plenty of snacks (as usual) and the Stocks (the senior "military relations" missionary couple) used the story of Johnny Lingo to illustrate how to get an "eight cow wife."

Elder Johnson and Elder Roweberry also had a very interesting time this week. They partook in a challenge at a local restaurant called the Courthouse Cafe. The challenge is 3 eggs, a side of home fries (potatoes), a 16oz steak, and 3 BA pancakes, and you have to eat it in under 30 minutes. I played it safe, and just got a regular meal. But it was funny. The cook came out and asked "Where are the hungry souls that are gonna try my challenge?" The next time he came back, he brought a "good friend," his 5-gallon bucket to "keep his floors clean." Then he brought the food (pictures to come). Each plate was the size of a pizza pan. They both failed and earned a place on the "wall of shame."

Other than that, the work is pretty much the same as always. A constant push to try to find new investigators. Currently we have three people we're teaching that have a baptismal date. Megan, Sarah, and Philip. I love working here and with these people. I feel better each and every day, knowing that even if I don't see the fruit of my labors, that I am helping people, just by being here.
I hope you all are well and safe. I love you all.
-Elder John Y. Roberts

Tuesday, February 7, 2012


6 February 2012

Dear Homefront,

Just in case my new address didn't make it out, here it is again,

4550 Jefferson Pointe Lane
Apt 8
Prince George VA 23875

The attached picture is of me and my new companions. Elders Johnson (on the left) and Roweberry (on the right).

Hopewell is amazing. I love it so much here. So far, the work is a little slow but that's nothing new to me so I'll keep working. I'm loving being able to work on base as well as my normal proselyting efforts. The spirit just feels so strong in this area, I feel like there's a vast amount of potential just waiting to be tapped.

Both of my companions are from California. Elder Johnson worked as a carny at Knotsberry Farm and Elder Roweberry is just a regular guy doing his best. We all have some similarities and some differences and we're able to get along fairly well.

So far on my mission, I've served in four areas, four districts, and four zones.
Mechanicsville, Mechanicsville District, Richmond Zone;
Salem A/Tidewater YSA, Kempsville District, Virginia Beach Zone;
Burkeville, Buckingham District, Midlothian Zone;
Hopewell, Colonial Heights District, Chesterfield Zone.

Lately, our work has consisted of working our way through the ward roster to try to get to know everybody. The result has been that most of the people we don't already know have moved. But some of the people that have moved in seem at least a little interested, so we'll keep working.

It's finally gotten cold around here. It's rare now that we'll leave the appartment without jackets. The warm winter was nice, but now we're paying for it.

I got a new set of scriptures and a new backpack (don't worry, the scriptures were free and the backpack was covered under some christmas money I received from some loving aunts, uncles, and other relations). The scriptures are a set of the military pocket sized ones that have the red cover. I'm currently working on building a small box (cardboard and duct tape) to keep them in so that they don't get crushed in my backpack. The backpack cost me $60 and I got it when some members at the military branch took us to the PX (on base store for anything that isn't food) and it's a black, military style backpack. It's very similar to the backpack I was looking at in the sporting goods store in VA Beach but for 1/4 the price. I'm happy.

I hope every one of you is well and safe. I love you.
-Elder John Y. Roberts