Thursday, January 12, 2017

Missionary Journal entries by Jay M. Richardson

January 8, 2017
June 20, 1956     Salt Lake City      Owen Lunt drove me to the mission home in Salt Lake.  Got registered this morning and assigned to my dormitory room.  Attended first class at 1:00 am in Barrett Hall where President Childs of the mission homemade assignments and gave us a good talk on what it means to be a missionary.  In the afternoon we had a less on the missionary plan by Elder Cottrell, had a group picture and instructions on going into temple.  At night Elder Lynn McKinley of BYU gave a very spiritual talk on preparation for entering the temple.  We well all filled.

June 22, 1955                     Spent a wonderful morning going through the Salt Lake Temple.  Elder Mark E. Peterson addresses us in the chapel session and explained things pretty w ell.  Enjoyed a regular guided tour of Temple Sq are and a class on directing singing in the evening.

June 27, 1956                     I went on a tour of temple square and attended the noon organ recital with Elder LeBaron.  Went to setting apart meeting on 3rd floor of church office building.  Saw many general authorities.  Elder El Ray L. Christiansen set me apart, tell me to keep busy, obey the mission rules, be optimistic, keep myself clean and he blessed me with health to fill my mission.  Elder Sterling W. Sill addressed me afterwards.  Boarded train at 5:30 pm for Denver. 

June 28, 1956                     Spent a hard night on the train, arrived in Denver about 8:30 am.  Ate breakfast after meeting Pr4sident and Sister Ellgren.  The house is as mansion built by a beer dealer long ago.  We sleep above the garage.   Elder Kleinman and Campbell pt us through the Godhead lesson and door approach and assigned us scriptures to memorize. 

July 6, 1956 -Denver                        We traded all day got 6 meetings, 3 good ones.  Our last meeting in the evening was with a dear old lady Mrs. Ogle, form a hard-shelled Baptist family from Tennessee.  She’s almost 80 years old, but as friendly and big hearted as can be.  She’s crippled but still works in house and yard, while her grown daughter works in town.  Bought a Book of Mormon and welcomes us back any time.

August 17, 1956                Walked up to Mrs. Chervrout’s and gave her the Book of Mormon lesson.  Received it very well.  She is going t o be stubborn about quitting her coffee though.  Attempted some call backs on Lincoln Street.  Still no luck.  Gave Godhead and Book of Mormon lesson to a Catholic family. Gave two Godhead lessons in the evening.  Just before the last one we were very rudely excused from the door of a fellow watching the convention speeches.  Feeling hurt, we almost turned to go home, but the next door was Mrs. Whyte and two boys, who seemed t o be “waiting” for us.  They really seem like good contacts.  We’ll see.  Anyway, it always pays to go to the next door.

August 28, 1956                Gave Apostasy lesson to the Wallace’s.  She thinks we’re too “sneaky”.  Said they wanted to hear about our Restoration before they would argue.  People just can’t help contradicting themselves in the lessons if they don’t want to go along with us and we present t hem clearly. 

September 5, 1956          Our best day yet, as far as points go.  Gave two apostasies and two restoration lessons.  We still lack something, though can’t seem to get their testimonies started.  Seems to me that we shouldn’t wait so long between meetings.  We give them too much time to cool off.

September 17, 1956        I read in the book of Judges in the Old Testament.  The Old Testament, just as the New, contains more gospel and good sense than we realize.  Hope a little of it will sink in. 

Oct 12, 1956 Colorado Springs     Had a very good day.  Gave three Apostasy lessons this afternoon.  One of them took, at least.  We knocked on the door of an insurance salesman this morning who works for New York Life and know Elder Sterling W. Sill very well. He was just leaving and didn’t have time to talk, but he said when we get through with our missions to look him up for a job. Said we have a “good approach”.  His isn’t bad either.  Stopped to talk with Brother and Sister Barrett this evening.  She is going to try to help us get Mrs. Davis (a contact) out to Relief Society.  She’s really a good gal.  I surely appreciate working with Elder Tueller .  He’s so good natured and not afraid of doing too much work.  Am learning al lot from him.    Thant handshake after our evening prayers is mighty warm.

Oct 15, 1956        Held a Godhead meeting with Mrs. Phebing and it turned out well.  She met with missionaries several years ago and said she agreed with practically everything they said, but she’s a staunch Lutheran and the message just didn’t sink in.  We’ll have to shake her up with an apostasy lesson, really forcible!

February 23, 1957            Received another special delivery letter today saying that I’ve been called to open up the missionary work with the Jewish people.  It’s a wonderful privilege.  Hope I can do it justice. 

May 3, 1957 Denver        Finally got another Jewish lady who’s the real agnostic type and she wouldn’t budge an inch either.  I think that by concentrating we will improve the firs t lesson a great deal to give it more punch for everyone we talk with.  It‘s just like the Godhead lesson of the Gentile plan. It must be made to stimulate some life in its hearers.  Learned today that Mrs. Granger (the invalid wit h arthritis) has asked for baptism. I’m surely thrilled.  Will have to write Elder Judd, I guess. ``

Sept. 5, 1957                      Went to see Mr. Jultake the florist with Sister Rose Marie Reid as my companion to make a date for her to speak to his men’s club sometime this winter.  A visitor who was there got all shook for fear she’d convert some of their “ignorant” people.  She surely bragged up the job we had done in Mr. Jultak.  Drove her, President and Sister Elggren, Elders Hebdon and Smith to West Denver to hear her speak to a Hadassah group.  She was marvelous.  President Elggren really enjoyed it.  Elder Hugh Pinnock, former second counselor of the mission was here as a visitor and spoke to us.  Sister Reid is on a campaign to get an integration program organized in the church. Won’t she ever  quit?

September 6, 1957          Had testimony meeting all day.  Long, but wonderful.  Sang a solo “Beside Still Water”.  My voice is in good shape.  Former companion Elder Teller said he’d rather work with me than any other companion he’d had.  Got my new companion Elder Verl Smith tonight.  He’ll be good.

September 28, 1957        Elder Verl Smith baptized Bobby and Billy Jorgason of the member family just moved in from Georgia.  They‘re shipping out to San Antonio tomorrow.  A great family!  After the baptism we cleaned up and found ourselves locked in.  Had to go out through a window.  Hope no trouble comes from it.  Our district had seven baptisms, west Denver three.  Hope things we’ll pick up. 

April 1, 1958                       Had quite a round with Elder Counder this morning.  He's so big and likable and so convincing.  Has had some poor companions though that haven't been the best for him.  I think he's going to do all right now.  Went on up to Albuquerque and worked with Elder LeBaron and Draper this evening.  Elder Draper has a good spirit and I  think will make good.  Elder LeBaron has had difficulties at home, and was in bad spirits for awhile, but is picking  up now.  Is still as unorthodox as always, but a terrific missonary.  Baptized a former Presbyterian minister last Saturday and is really proud! Who wouldn't be?

April 22, 1958                     Went down to the train station this morning to meet 7new elders and 2 new lady missionaries.  Sister Crawford is as small as a 10 year old girl, but is eager to learn and work as anyone.  Sister Spell from South Carolina isn’t much bigger, and is awfully homesick.  Worked till midnight getting out a very complex transfer.  Why mission presidents go gray! Had a lot of fun training them today.  Elder Wells is very good as enthusiasm and propaganda of the beneficial type.

May 13, 1958                      Seven new elders and an elderly couple, the Brinkerhoff’s, came in today for training.  Elder Wells and I should get good at this, but it’s hard to do much with such a large group. It’s lots of fun though and this is as very good group!  A large transfer went out tonight, one of the largest ever.  So we sit back and watch the repercussions!  Wish that all missionaries could have this experience.

July 3, 1958                         New missionaries went out to work, and we stayed home.  Worked on material for Wes state News, etc.  Held the regular sacrament and testimony with the new ones this evening.  I’ve being blessed with lots of farewell testimonials here.  Guess these compliments won’t hurt me as long as I don’t believe them.

July 4, 1958                         My mission ends today.  It has been a marvelous experience, much different than what I’d expected.  I’m blessed at every turn – surely have a big debt to pay to Savior. Hope I will soon be settled and able to be normally active. My biggest mission is ahead now. I’m charged with the job of finding a wife and making a home.  May I be as well blessed in this calling.  Didn’t celebrate much today for Independence Day.  New missionaries were trained, the office very busy.  Went out this evening and said goodbye to Dr. Abrams and wife, our Jewish contact of last fall.  We’ve made a good impression, there and it may yield fruit.

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