Tuesday, May 27, 2014

A Baptism through Skype!

 May 26, 2014
     Hey Family & Friends!!
This week has been a really good week. We are finally starting to make some progress. Hopefully we can keep it going and make this area amazing. Transfers are coming up soon! This coming Saturday is our transfer call 5-31. I can't believe that this transfer is almost over! I wasn't able to get on he computers today, but I was able to slowly write this throughout the day. I hope you understand. I'll write you guys tomorrow.

Monday: We did the normal routine in the morning, then went to the library to email. Elder Harris needed to get some new pants so we went and got some. We came back and wrote some letters and took a nap. haha. It was a pretty good pday. haha. After dinner we went out and talked with a referral we received from the Bellevue Sisters. We met him at work. He works at an old fashioned diner. We met with him for a little bit and got to know him. He has some potential, but he is just super busy. The day went by too fast.

Tuesday: We helped out one of our members, Sis Rowe. We helped her move a bunch of furniture in these super fancy and expensive apartments. Her dad or someone in her family owns the whole building. It's pretty ridiculous. Haha. After dinner, we went up to the north part of Vanderbilt. We found this one area up there that's pretty golden. We were able to have 5 solid lessons with some of our investigators. We are finally starting to see some success. We are coming back to a lot of the potentials and teaching them again and making return appointments. It's still slow, but we're making progress.

Wednesday: We started the day off with Zone Meeting. We had some really good trainings for the Zone Leaders and Sister Training Leaders. We switched with the Zone Leaders for an exchange. Elder Fore went with me to Green Hills and Elder Harris went with a Elder Loveless to Antioch. Elder Fore and I had a great time. We work really well together. We had 3 solid lessons with return appointments in the north-west side of our ward. After dinner, we went to the north part of Vanderbilt again and had 2 more lessons and follow up appointments. We found 5 new investigators that day!

Thursday: I was still with Elder Fore and it happened to be his birthday on Thursday! After studies and Facebook, I bought him lunch and this little sub shop. It was pretty good. We went to sweet Cece's after that. We headed up to the north part of Nashville and found a bunch of new people to teach and taught a lot of Restoration lessons on their front porch. We committed a black guy named Robert Smith (;) haha) to be baptized after he came to know the Book of Mormon was true. We haven't set a baptismal date yet, but he has a lot of potential. After dinner, we went to the north part of Vanderbilt again!! Haha. We were able to have 3 more solid lessons and follow up appointments that night as well. I loved working with Elder Fore. He is a really good missionary and he works hard. Together in the 2 days, we had 11 other lessons and 10 new Investigators!! That's a ton in 2 days. Thursday night, President gave me a call and told me that Matt was going to be baptized on Sunday!!!! I was so happy. Matt is Tim & Trudy's son. He is 17 and just finished his Junior year of High School. President told me that it would be after Church on Sunday and that I get to Skype in!! I was so happy to hear this!!

Friday: We had a normal Friday with Weekly Planning. We planned for the first part of the day, then tried to go out and teach people in the area where we live, but not too many people were home. After dinner, we tried to see a couple people, but they were busy. We headed to the Church because the Green Hills Sisters had a lady named, Janice being baptized. I interviewed her for baptism and got to know her better. She is a great lady and she has gone through a lot. Her daughter was just baptized about a year or less ago. It was a great story overall.

Saturday: We tried to see some people before we went to Janice's baptism, but we didn't have much luck. We attended her baptism and it went perfectly. It was a great services. We had dinner after that and tried to see some people that night.

Sunday: We had a good time at Church. Not too many people because a lot had graduated and were off on vacation for the memorial weekend. After Church, I skyped in to see Matt's baptism!! It was so fantastic!! He has become a different person and I could see this amazing glow about him. I was able to take some screen shots before and after the baptism and I was able to talk with him before and after. I also talked with a lot of the old Princeton members. It was so wonderful. I miss them dearly. They are family to me. Matt was so happy after his baptism and it was just so wonderful to go through this process with him and his family. It made my week!!! We came back and studied after Church. After dinner, we went to the patriotic concert held at the Church. It was a good way to finish the night. What a day!

Today: Well I wasn't able to get on the computers because it's a holiday, but I was able to type this up as Elder Harris and I have been going back and forth to Bellevue. We went up this morning and went bowling with them. It was pretty fun. We got to relax a little bit and have some fun. We are heading back to the apartment to write some letters and have dinner. It's been a pretty good day. I'm getting on the computer to email you guys tomorrow, so I'll talk to you guys then.

Thanks for being patient and thanks for your support. I love and miss you guys so very much! I'm having a lot of fun and I'm learning a lot. Thanks for all your prayers and thanks for your letters/emails. Have a great week!

-Love Elder Cottam

Elder Cottam got to Skype with Elder Roney who was also watching the baptism through Skype.  


Tuesday, May 20, 2014

I love missionary work!

May 19, 2014
Hey Friends & Family!!!
This week was a pretty good week. We are finally starting to have some success with following up with the people we've met. We have a pretty good teaching pool and we are adding to it each and everyday. If everyone was home when we come by, we would have a million baptisms, but people are gone so much! haha. We understand though. I love missionary work. It's not the easiest process, but it sure is the most rewarding. I'm so grateful for all the tools and supplies to help us with the missionary work.

Monday: We did the usual with getting all the basic needs done. We also got a call from President and he told us that we needed to give a blessing at the Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt. We headed up there and gave the little boy a blessing. We emailed, then headed to the Church to play some basketball with the Bellevue Elders. We had a good time with them. It was a lot of fun. We came back to the apartment and wrote some letters. We left to have dinner with the Haglund Family. They are super nice! They live in a normal size home, finally! haha. We had dinner with them and Sis Haglund's parents. It was kind of interesting, Sis Haglund's dad was a Mission President for the Brasilia Brazil Mission. His name is Bro Babbel. (or something like that) I was like, "No way!! My uncle, Robert Smith served there!!". Rob, what was your Mission President's name?? haha. That would be a small world if it was the same guy. Anyways, they made this interesting "Thai" food for us to eat. After dinner, we share a message with them and set a date to come back and have dinner with one of their friends. We then went to a referral's house, Russell and started talking with his dad, Russ. Russ has had a lot of experience with our Church before. We left him with a Book of Mormon because Russell wanted one. Russ didn't really want to learn more, but he was a super nice guy and gave us a ride back to our apartment. We then finished off the night with having a message with the White family. They are kind of less active because Sis White is disabled and Bro White had surgery on his foot. We committed them to come to Church this Sunday and we would help them get around. They came to Church this Sunday and had a great time.

Tuesday: We went up to the North side of Nashville and tried to see a bunch of potential investigators and members up there. Not very many were home. It's hard because a lot of them are at work during the day. We headed to a different area to see a referral. This guy wasn't home, but we called him and set up a time to come by that night. This guys wasn't in it for the right reasons though. He just wanted money and it didn't go the way we hoped it would. We were able to get him a ride for Church, but it didn't go very well because he just wanted money. After Dinner, we went out with Bro Booker. He is a recent convert! He's been a member for about a year. We went out and saw a bunch of 
our investigators. We stopped by one of our top investigators, Steven. His wife, Bree answered and said that he wasn't home. She was really nice. We just explained who we were and what we do as missionaries. She said that she would tell him that we stopped by. It was a good night. We were able to see a couple people and talk with them on the door step and talk with the referral.
Wednesday: We had a really good District Meeting. We really felt the Spirit strong with the different trainings and messages. I personally learned a lot. After District Meeting, we went to the Hospital to give another blessing for this lady's little boy. After dinner, we went out on exchanges with Bro Gould. We had a lot of success with him. We came back to Steven. He said that he has been reading the Book of Mormon again (This will be his 3rd time reading it) and that he has a lot of questions. He was busy that night, but we got his number and we said that we would call and set up a time to meet up with him. He is a really nice guy. He has an awesome family too. We also tried to see our other top investigator, William. He wasn't home, but we were able to meet his sister, Erica. Talked about who we are and what we do as missionaries. We gave her a copy as well and committed her to read it. They are just an awesome family. We also had a pretty cool lesson with Markwood. We haven't been able to see Markwood in a long time. Bro Gould bore a really powerful testimony. It was great!! We had to hand Markwood off to the YSA though. Hopefully they can make an impact on his life. We also talked with a girl named, Angel. She is a girlfriend of one of our potential investigators. We told her about the Book of Mormon and gave her a copy as well as Chester. Good day!
Thursday: We had interviews with President. It went really well. President and Sister Andersen are so amazing. They have so much love and kindness. They are such hard workers and they are making our mission amazing. President even polished my shoes while we were talking!! He is doing that for every Elder in the Mission!! After, we switched with the Bellevue Elders and went on exchanges. Elder Randall and I stayed in Green Hills and Elder Harris went with Elder Leavitt to Bellevue. Elder Randall and I had a pretty good time. We went up to the North-West side of our area and contacted some of our investigators up there. We had a really good lesson with Jay. He hadn't had a chance to read the Book of Mormon yet because he is super busy working at Vanderbilt, but he says that he really wants to read it. We had a great little lesson with him. We also tracted around his house a met a bunch of his neighbours. We met a girl named Katie & Jenny. Who would have guessed that? haha. Jenny's mom is a member and Jenny remembers going sometimes and said she really likes it. It was really successful. We came back for dinner. We headed out to the area that was by us and tracted a bunch down there and met a bunch of really cool people. We gave away a bunch of copies of the Book of Mormon. It was a really good exchange.
Friday: We had crazy day!! We started by going to the service project that we go to every week, "The Little Pantry that could". We switched back with the Bellevue Elders then did the service project. We then came back and got a call to go to the hospital for another blessing. After waiting a long time for them to do some tests on the little boy, we finally gave the blessing and left to go weekly plan. On the way back, we received another call from the Zone Leaders to go up to a different hospital to give another blessing. So, we headed up there and waited for the person to be ready. We headed back for dinner. After dinner, we went up to the North Part of Vanderbilt and tracted around there. We have most of our top investigators there. We found two ladies, Raven and Sea-Enna (Not sure on the spelling haha). Told them about the Book of Mormon and gave them a copy. We didn't get to Weekly Plan.
Saturday: We had breakfast at our Ward Mission Leader's house. We ate a delicious breakfast, then had a small correlation meeting. We headed back to the place and waited for a member to pick us up for a service project she had for us for one of her friends. She has a non-member friend that was moving and needed help. We drove with them to her house, but got lost because Brentwood is so massive and has so many houses. haha. Her friend ended up living right next to our Ward Mission Leader's house!! We were like "what?!?!" We were here just a couple minutes ago!! hahaha. Everyone here doesn't really know their neighbours and they have friends, but they usually don't know where they live.... Sad life... I'm so glad it's different in Utah!! haha. I had a good time texting our Ward Mission Leader and telling him that we were helping his neighbour move!! haha. We were able to talk to a bunch of her friends that were helping her move about our Church and about missionary work. We gave her a copy of the Book of Mormon and explained it. We came back and weekly planned. After dinner, we went and saw a guy named, Jay. We met Jay at "The Little Pantry that could". He is a super cool guy. The only problem is he lives in kind of a "Half-way House or Penitentiary House". It's not hard to get into and teach him a lesson, but it was just difficult to figure out the situation and figure out where he lives. We finally got inside and taught him the Restoration. It went so well!! He loved it! We committed him to read the Book of Mormon and pray about it. We also asked him if he came to know that it was true, would he be baptized and he said he would!! Now, we just have to continue teaching him and have him come to church. We asked if he wanted to come to church and he said he would love to come, but he has to get it approved first. They have to check in and out everytime they leave or go somewhere. Hopefully we can make it work cause he is such a cool guy.
Sunday: We had the most interesting Sunday ever!!! First the referral came and that was just a mess. I'll have to explain it in person sometime. haha. On the good side, we had this guy call us in the morning and he said that missionaries talked with him awhile back and he wanted to come to church. He came and brought a friend, but his friend was from Vietnam and couldn't speak any English... haha. It was a good day after that. We went over to the Gawry's for lunch and to the Moore's for dinner. We were able to really connect with the families really well.
Crazy week, but I love it. Thanks for all your support!! I love and miss you guys so much!!
-Love Elder Cottam

Skype on Mother's Day

May 11, 2014

We had an amazing time talking to 
Elder Cottam on Mother's Day!!
He looked and sounded so good.  
He is LOVING his mission!


Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Slow week??

May 5, 2014
Hey Family & Friends!!
This week was a pretty slow week, but that tends to happen sometimes.  I hope you enjoy hearing about my week.

Monday: We had a pretty good Pday. Got a lot done and had some fun. We went to a dinner appointment with the Tolk family and had a lessonwith their friends, Jean & John. The lesson was kind of all over the place and I was trying to bring it back to the basics. It turned out fine, but it's hard sometimes when others try to understand the College or High School level of our religion before understanding Elementary level. All of it is true, it just doesn't make sense unless you know the basics first. That's what I love about Heavenly Father and this Church. It's a Church of personal learning and personal progress. We all learn at our own level.

Tuesday: We went out to find some less active members in area 6 of our ward, but we didn't have a lot of luck or time. People are never home!! haha. I understand though. For dinner the Barton Family have us over. It just so happens that Bro Keith Barton used to be the famous attorney in Utah!! He was the, "One call, that's all" guy!! haha. I used to see his ads all the time when I was younger. haha. We meet a lot of famous people in the Green Hills Ward. Bro Tolk is a famous Physics Professor at Vanderbilt and he has a, "I'm a Mormon" video on mormon.org. It's just crazy!! Anyways, Bro Barton and his family are super nice, they have a ridiculously nice home that even has an elevator inside!! We had a good short lesson with them. Then, we saw some less actives in the area.

Wednesday: We had a pretty good District Meeting. It didn't go as I planned it would, but that never happens. haha. We tracked a bunch of houses around the Church afterwards and found this one older lady named, Beth. She was super nice and really willing to talk to us on her porch. We talked a lot about the Book of Mormon and the Restoration and how our Church is ran and organized. It went really well. She was grateful to talk to us that day. After dinner, we took a long bus ride up to the North-West side of our area and tried to see a couple people, but didn't have a lot of success. The bus really kills us sometimes on time.

Thursday: This was a day full of tracting. haha. We found this one really good area and we tried to see them, but most of them weren't home. We had a set appointment with Danielle, but she wasn't home. So,we tracked the area around and found about 5 potential Investigators. It went really well. After dinner, we tried to see some people we talked to before, but they weren't home either, so we ended up tracking around them and found some potentials again.

Friday: Some of the members of our District found this really cool service opportunity and told us about it, so in the morning we headed up there and helped them stock up on some supplies. They are called, "The Little Pantry That Could". They give some food and clothing to the homeless/ less fortunate. It went well. We were able to talk to quite a bit of people and give a couple a Book of Mormon. After that, we had a set appointment with a guy named, Marco, but he also wasn't home when he said to come by. We headed back to the place to weekly plan. For dinner, we went over to one of the Green Hills Sister's Investigator's house. His name is Jason. He is a nice guy, but he isn't progressing very much. We had a decent lesson with him and we focused on having him pray about Prophets. We followed up the next day and said that he had prayed and that he had a lot to talk about, so we should be meeting with him again this week. Hopefully it goes well.

Saturday: We did a ton of Service Saturday. We were asked by the Library to help them move a bunch of books around and set up for their book fair. Then, a single lady in the Ward need help with a bunch of work around her house. We moved some cabinets to her shed, cleaned off her back porch, take a bunch of trash to the dump, and fixed her mud room. Luckily we had a bunch of other men from the Ward, so it went pretty quickly. We tracked after dinner and found a couple people.

Sunday: We had a pretty good Sunday. Good testimonies. Tracked after we had studies after Church and talked with this guy about the Book of Mormon and the Restoration. It went well. The Thompson's came and picked us up for dinner. It was really good. We had a solid lesson with them. Came back and looked for more people to see.

Well, I hope you enjoyed reading about my week!! Thanks for everything!! I love and miss you guys so much!! I hope you guys have a great week!!!

-Love Elder Cottam

The 250 missionaries serving in the Tennessee Nashville mission!

April 28, 2014
Hey Family & Friends!!
This week has been a pretty good week. I'm sorry for not writing a weekly mission life email to you guys. I've been super busy and Elder Harris has us running around everywhere on Pday, so I don't get as much time. I still love you guys and I think about you always. I still love my mission. Green Hills is definitely different, but the progress in the area is getting a lot better. We have a pretty good teaching pool now. We are finally starting to see the reward of our hard work from last transfer. Heavenly Father has a lot in store for this area. If we can just get the members fired up, we will be golden! Thank you so much for all you do. Thank you so much for your support. I can feel your prayers and I hope you feel mine.

Monday: Last Pday was a pretty good. Elder Harris and I did some laundry, then went to the library. We went to the Church after that and played some basketball. I almost beat him in basketball. He would have been pretty upset if I did. haha. We went grocery shopping afterwards at Kroger. (So many stores here have weird names) The Green Hills Sisters have an Investigator named, Jason. Jason gave us and the Sisters a gift card to Kroger for 50$!! It was way legit! He is so nice! We came back to the place and Bro Tolk picked us up for dinner at his house. Bro & Sis Tolk are so nice!! Bro Tolk is a physics professor at Vanderbilt and Sis Tolk plays the piano and organ really well. She went to Julliard. She is
a big name as well in the music business. We had a fantastic dinner. She cooked this amazing Parmesan Chicken. She was telling me how she makes it and it's a super simple recipe. I'm going to make it one day! haha. After dinner, we shared a message with them and challenged them to pray for a missionary opportunity, make a list of friends, pray about the list, then talk to them about the church. They were telling us about a couple that was in their "Nashville Community Choir" and they said that they would ask them to have dinner with us next week. They asked them and we set up an appointment today. We are going back tonight!! Super excited!!

Tuesday: Transfers!! This transfer was a special one because we had a guest speaker, Bro Dan Clark. President had everyone in our whole mission come to transfers!! 250 missionaries in one stake center building!! haha. Bro Clark does a bunch of talks throughout the world. He used to be a professional football player. His talk was amazing!! It was so powerful!!! It was probably one of the most incredible talks I've ever heard. The Spirit was so strong. Everyone was blown away with everything he said. I wish you guys could have all been there. It was pretty incredible. We took a mission picture afterwards. It was great. Check it on Facebook. We came back from transfers with a couple new members in our District. We had a couple lessons that night with a couple less actives. We also got in contact with this lady that requested a Book of Mormon and talked to her about it and told her that the Sister Missionaries would love to come by sometime. It was a great day overall.

Wednesday: We had a fantastic District Meeting. We were able to meet all the new missionaries that moved in. We had really inspired training that went really well. We tried to find some less actives that lived around the church area, but they weren't home. After dinner, we went on exchanges with Bro Thompson. He is way cool. He reminds me of dad. Haha. If you were to meet him, you would agree. His son is going on a mission soon. His name is, Cordell. He is going to Vera Cruz and he leaves in July. We plan on going on exchanges with Cordell really soon. Bro Thompson took us out and we saw a referral that turned out to be a pretty good one. Then tried to see some less actives and ended up just catching the Morse family as they were pulling in from picking up groceries. We got to know them better and we really connected with them. We thought it went really well. After that, we stopped by a potential Investigator's house, but he was busy that night, so we rescheduled for Saturday.

Thursday: We started off the day by going up to North Side. We tried to see a couple of investigators and less actives. Not too many were home or had time, but we had a couple good visits here and there. Headed back down for lunch. We saw bunch of people in the North Vanderbilt Area. We followed up with a lady named, Danielle. We met her a couple weeks ago and we gave her a Book of Mormon. Came back to see how she was doing and to see if she had read the Book of Mormon. She said that she had read some of it and that it was pretty interesting. We set up a time for us to come back cause she was busy, so we set up another time for next Thursday. She was telling us that she wanted to show her friend the Book of Mormon, so we gave her another copy!! It was amazing!! We tracted a bunch of houses on the other street next to Danielle. We found a ton of really solid potential investigators. It was a pretty good day!

Friday: We had a great weekly planning session. We have been organizing our area and putting in a lot of work. Now we finally get to us what we have been preparing. We organized our area into the 12 areas and now it's a lot easier to plan and stay organized. I love how effective it is! After planning we went out to see a bunch of people. It was a pretty good day.
Saturday: We tried to follow up with one of our investigators, Van. We saw him on Wednesday with Bro Thompson. We came by at the time we said we would, but he wasn't home. We were a little later than we said we would be there because of the bus, but that's just how it has to happen. We tried to see his neighbour who was a referral, but he wasn't home either. We decided to tract the neighbourhood next to his. We found this guy named Jay. He was Buddhist, but he let us in right away and was super nice. We got to know each other really well. We were discussing religion and what we believe. He was really fascinated with how we explained "Grace". He said that it wasn't like most Christians. We explained the difference between Physical Death and Spiritual Death. He seemed really interested. He is such a nice guy. He believes that we should have good values and how we need to serve others. It really helped us to compliment that to the Gospel and our Church. It was a great lesson. Then, we tried to take a bus back home, but the bus near us would't come for another hour, so we headed down south a little bit. We took a break at the gas station and found another bus near by. That bus was only supposed to be like 20 minutes until it got there, but we ended up waiting about an hour!! Oh it was torture!! haha. The sun was not our friend that day and the humidity is never our friend. haha. It was a great day overall. Minus the waiting. haha.
Sunday: It was a pretty good day. We had a pretty good church service. Our investigators didn't show up to church. That was kind of a bummer. After church, we came back to the apartment and studied. We went out for about an hour and a half to try to see some people, but no one was home. Came back and had dinner. Went up to the North Vanderbilt area to follow up with some potentials. It went really well. We came back to this black guy named, William. He just graduated from High School. He is such a nice guy. He lives with his mom and sisters. We came by and to see how he was doing and to see if he had read some of the Book of Mormon. He had looked through it a little bit. He let us in and we got to know him better and taught him the Restoration. It was such a powerful lesson. Our mission has really been wanting us to use these pamphlets. Man, the lessons are so powerful and simple. They are pretty short too. I'll have to show you what I mean when I get home. It is so nice becuase it covers all the main points and gives them pictures to see. We asked if he had any questions in the middle of it and he said, "I'm just soaking it all in" haha. It was great. We committed him to read and pray and he said he would. It went perfectly. After that, we went to another potential. His name was Rick. Rick is kind of an older gentleman, but he loves having us come over. He kept saying, "Man I'm sure glad you came back" haha. He is a character and so funny. We committed him to read 2 Nephi 31 and we would come back and talk to him about it. He said he would and he gave us his phone number so we could call him before we came by. It was great!!
Today: We just got done with laundry and we need to some shopping. Other than that, we don't know what we will do. haha. Tonight we have dinner with the Tolk family and the investigators they are bringing like I said earlier. It should be a good rainy day. It's pouring right now!! haha.

So, I have made a really dumb mistake. For the past 7 months, I have been sending an email every week to my mission President. The only problem was, I was sending it to andersOn instead of andersEn... I thought for the longest time that President Andersen's name was "son"!! He hasn't received a single email from me until last week... MAN!!! I didn't even think twice about it. He asked if I had been receiving a reminder that he hadn't received an email from me, but I wasn't receiving anything from him except his weekly email to everyone. I was pretty bummed. 7 months of emailing down the drain... haha. It's all good though!! haha. President had a good laugh about it and he was excited to start receiving my emails. haha.
Thanks for everything!! I love and miss you guys so much!! You're the best!! Have a great week!
-Love Elder Cottam


April 21, 2014
Hey Mom!!
I'm doing fantastic!! We had a pretty good week. It was crazy and full of random stuff, but it was good and spiritual. haha. Only on a mission can you use that sentence. haha.  I am glad you were happy to get a picture on Easter. I was grateful for the family that helped me out. I was also grateful to tell you the news about transfers. (The Easter text told us Tyson is staying in Green Hills and that he was asked to be a district leader) I'm happy with the news and hopefully it will be a great transfer. I can't believe how fast they go by. It's insane. haha.

I'm so glad that you guys had a fantastic Easter weekend. I had a really good one as well. We had this new investigator show up to our Easter Sunday and we had a music concert at our church later that night. They had all these famous LDS people show up and perform. They were so good!! We had, Nathan Pacheco, Shedaisy, and a bunch of other amazing singers and songwriters. It was really great.

Oh I'm so jealous that you guys got to go to Park City. I'm sure it was a lot of fun. Thank you so much for the fantastic pictures!! I loved them!! Especially the Duck Dynasty one!! hahaha! Too funny. I loved seeing pictures of Adalynn hunting for the eggs. She is too cute!! Her and Emmy are getting so big!!

Thanks for everything mom!! I got your Easter package and I loved it. You're the best. You really know how to make me smile and make me happy. I hope you have a fantastic week. I can't wait to see you guys!! Love and miss you so much!!

-Love Elder Cottam

Here is the Duck Dynasty picture is case you were wondering! 


April 20, 2014

I got this text on Easter! 
"Happy Easter!  
Elder Cottam loves you!"

I love Elder Cottam's Ward members.


April 16, 2014

I got this text today!

"Your son is awesome!"

Makes my day!! :)

Apartment in Tennessee

April 14, 2014

Elder Cottam's new apartment!

Hey Mom!!
 I'm doing well!! I still love my mission. It's amazing how much I learn in so little time. I love it!! My week went by too quickly. We had a good Easter Choir Concert. Some of the missionaries were in it and did a great job. I'm glad you enjoyed the photo card. Sorry it doesn't have a lot of pictures on it. I'm still working on doing better. I was so grateful that I was able to get a group photo of everyone. I sure do miss the Princeton Branch. Yeah I haven't made a video in awhile and I promise to make one soon. 

 Thanks for everything mom! I love you so much! I got my keyboard and I love it! Thanks!! I can't wait to see you guys as well! Transfers are the 22nd, so pretty close! I don't need anything. I'm perfectly happy! Haha. Have a great week! See you soon! 

-Love Elder Cottam


I finally got some pictures of Elder Cottam's 
last days in Marion.

Packing to leave Marion.

Meeting Elder Harris.

General Conference

April 7,2014
Hey Family & Friends!!
This week has been a pretty good week. We taught a ton of lessons and we figured out a better system for working with our members. We can definitely see the progress in the area. Especially from how we started the area. It's a slow process, but it's working out. General Conference was really good! A lot of fantastic talks! Watching conference is completely different while on a mission! Haha. It's amazing how inspired the talks are and how they go perfectly with what the Church as a whole needs to hear. I love it! I do have to admit that I miss watching it in my sweats. Haha. I also miss the big breakfast at Grandma's and I obviously miss the naps in between sessions. Haha. It was still a fantastic weekend. I can't wait to here about how you guys enjoyed it.

We went to choir practice and I got to email a little bit while Elder Harris sung. Then we went up to Bellevue with the other Elders. We went to a couple stores and we went shopping for our groceries. We came back to their place and put our groceries away, then decided to go bowling for a little bit. We played 3 games of bowling. It was pretty fun, but we all sucked! Haha. Elder Lovell was the only one to actually do well. I blame the bowling balls. Haha. They were horrible! They had weird weights and they had bumps and cracks all over them. It was still fun though! We came back to Green Hills and went to Ruby Tuesday for dinner with the Gould Family. It was pretty good! Had a pretzel burger for the first time and I loved it.

We went up to the North Side of Nashville and met with a couple of our investigators and less-active members. We had set up an appointment with this guy named, Bobby, but we got there and he was somewhere else paying a bill on something, but we met his friend, Marco. Marco is a nice guy and he let us in and we tried to explain the Book of Mormon, but he was so tired he started to fall asleep! Haha. It was an interesting experience! Haha. We tried to see a couple other people, but a lot of people weren't home. We found this one member who moved into our ward. She lived outside the U.S. before moving to Nashville. She was super nice and willing to have us come by. She has been a member for about a year and she has lived in Nashville for only a month. She said she had the address to the Church, but didn't have a ride. We said we will try to get her a ride and talk with the ward. A guy in our ward coordinates the rides, but he didn't answer his phone the whole week and the same was with our ward mission leader. Luckily it was General Conference and she could watch it on TV. Then we decided to head back home by catching the bus, but we missed the bus that was passing through by only a couple seconds! Haha. It was too funny. Two guys in white shirts running through the neighborhood! Haha. It was too great! Luckily another bus comes through the same route every 30 minutes or so. We came back and had dinner and tried to see a bunch of people after dinner, but no one was home.

We had a great District Meeting. The training went really well. We went and talked with a lot of potential investigators that lived around the Church. We got in contact with Laura and Cayce. They are roommates that are both going to Vanderbilt for college. They were really nice. We met Cayce awhile back and talked about the Book of Mormon and she said she knew a lot of nice Mormons and that the Book of Mormon was on her top list of books to read. It was awesome! We were just trying to follow up with her, but she wasn't home yet, so we met Laura and talked to her about the Book of Mormon. She also seemed interested. As we were talking to Laura, Cayce pulled in and we were able to talk to both of them. We couldn't go into their house, so we told them that we have some awesome YSA (young single adult) Sister Missionaries that would love to come by. So we gave Laura and Cayce the Sisters phone number and told them to give them a call. We also talked with the YSA Sisters after and they were so excited to start teaching them and meeting with them. After Facebook at the library, we headed to the bus where this girl named Jordan was there. Jordan came up to us and started talking about how she dated a Mormon a couple months ago and how she was almost about to join, but then left for college at Vanderbilt, but she still kept in contact with the missionaries back home. So yeah! A complete miracle to find her as well! We had to give Jordan's information to the YSA Sisters as well, so the YSA Sisters were super excited to get 3 new girls to meet. Yeah you know, we are just doing everyone else's work besides are own! Haha no problem! After dinner we tried to see this former investigator that the Green Hills Sisters had for us. We took the bus up there and couldn't find the address. We ended up finding this crazy psycho guy yelling at everything when we were looking for his address. This guy was muy loco! We don't know what he was yelling at, but he wasn't happy. Haha. We stopped looking for the address and we started to tract the near by houses. We ended up having a lot of success. It was a really good neighborhood to find and we plan on going back there. We met 3 women, Danielle, Zakeria, and Heidi. They had husbands and a family though, so we finally found people for our ward! Haha.

We went up to the North Side of Nashville again. We had a crazy lesson with this guy named George, but overall it went pretty well. The lesson was just all over the place. Haha. We also found this less-active guy named Mike. He was hilarious. He had so much energy and he was like the only white guy that lived in "the hood" but still talked like a black guy. I wish you guys could've met him! Haha. We always meet the most interesting people! Mike knows everything that goes on in the neighborhood. He works at this security business with his wife, CeCe. He said, if I don't take you down, she will!! It was so awesome! It was quite the adventure. Afterwords, we went to meet Flamauion. Sweet name, huh? She was a referral from Mormon.org. She is way cool! We stopped by last week, but she said it wasn't a good time, so we left her with a Book of Mormon and said we would come back another time, so we went over on Thursday and answered some of her questions. She wanted us to come inside and talk to her more cause she was really interested, but her husband was at work. She had such great questions though! We told her we would have the Green Hills Sisters come over. Another perfect person to talk to, but we have to let the other missionaries teach! Haha. We came back and had a great dinner with the Rowe Family. We talked about missionary work with them and challenged them to pray for a missionary opportunity like all the other members we have met with. It went really well. We went on exchanges with Bro Lambert and tried to see our main Investigator, Markwood, but it wasn't a good night for him. We went and saw a couple members and had a great night.

Had a great weekly planning session. We broke up the area and marked where the members lived and if they were active, less-active, or unknown. We also included the investigators that live in that area as well. We divided our big area into 12 areas. (We call them the 12 tribes of Israel haha) We could only do 7 areas on Friday. Which included about 185 members! It was a lot of work! Haha. It was good though. We figured out where most of our members live and now we can visit a lot more members that live near our Investigators and get to know them better. We took a break and had a great lesson with Markwood. We read 2 Nephi 31 with him and talked about Christ's baptism. We also talked a little bit about the Plan of Salvation. It went really well! We finished Weekly Planning by planning a time to see the 7 areas. We finished the night off by seeing a couple referrals. We ended up tracting around the building and found some really good potential Investigators. It was a good day overall.

Saturday & Sunday:
General Conference was fantastic! I'll email you my notes I took while watching Conference. I thought it was awesome! Especially Priesthood session. We had some members feed us lunch in between and we tracted a couple houses. I really enjoyed both days.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my emails. I miss you guys so much and I love you guys with all my heart. Thanks for all you do! Have a great week!

-Love Elder Cottam