Josh's current address is 51 N 2nd St. Apt 310 Stroudsburg, PA 18360. Packages and letters will be safer going to the mission home. The mission home address is 721 Paxon Hollow Road Ste. B, Broomall, PA 19008. Keep in mind that there will be a delay because it take some time to get packages and letters from the mission home to Josh.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Josh's Email from 6/9/14

 Alloooohhhaaaa!! Yes I do remember when you weren't [such a bad sister- I hadn't written him in a couple weeks] haha but in your defense I did not always respond back because I didn't have time haha[.....]How's Nate
doing? Amanda? Mitch? I miss them a lot. I saw the pictures of youse guys (youse is the plural form of you which is used very frequently out in PA) on Facebook, you & Steve and Amanda & Mitch, they looked
really good:). 

I will say this, having iPads is cool and all but it makes emails very tiresome haha it's like I'm texting a really long message haha.

Nevertheless I shall make an account of my trials and tribulations yea
also of my triumphs this past week.

It came to pass in the first week of the 9th month of my mission, yea even in the 12 month of the reign of President Anderson, that our gas and hot water were shot off because of multiple gas leaks which shall
be turned back on tonight! And so I have been forced into bondage of cold showers in the morning, yea even freezing showers. We have also been waging war with those they call cockroaches and silverfish and as
massive as they are and as scary as they seem, our shoes are still stronger for the time being. I know that now yea even this very moment they are watching me waiting for an opportunity to strike but I care not, for I am Elder Barker and I will come at them with my might yea even my fury and I shall use many shoes to defeat them yea even my companion's shoes!

And it came to pass on the day of Wednes we had a lesson with Lynette and she is deaf and lo even her whole family is deaf and we had many things written down, yea, even full conversations! However, Elder Cooley knew bits and pieces of ASL and we were able to gain the understanding of her desire to learn more of the "Mormons" yea which is also the Church of God. And it came to pass after that we did travel to the town of fish, yea it is called Fish town, and we tarried at the Giordano's yea they even did feed us as our bodies did hunger and required sustenance. We were able to talk to their neighbors as they were present to view the monthly tradition of feeding a live rat to a boa, which was cool.

And it came to pass on the 5th day of the week, the day of Fri, that we traveled through much of the city and lo as many did try to talk to us with much contention in their heart, and some did try their luck to battle with us and lo their efforts were futile for we payed them no mind as they tried to tell us of our wrongs not knowing that our knowledge did greatly surpass that of theirs but the spirit of contention is not of God so we paid no attention to them. And it came to pass that one man rambled for the entire 25 minute bus ride despite us not responding or acknowledging his presence. Nevertheless we had successful lessons with others, one being a less active. I'm breaking character it's tough haha. We read with her from the book of Enos and showed her how powerful prayer is as long as we pray sincerely with real intent we will receive an answer. She also felt that because Christ suffered for our sins she should suffer too so she she can repay him. We helped her see that Christ doesn't want that, the devil wants us to think that because it will draw us further from repentance. We do feel pain when we sin though, we feel that sorrow from the Spirit leaving us and that sorrow should have us desire to repent so we can have the Spirit with us again because the greatestjoy comes from the times when the Spirit is with us always. Then we gave her friend, (not sure who she was) a blessing because she just looked like she was having a rough time health wise. 

That reminds me, this was pretty sad honestly; so on Thursday we got a call from a someone asking if we could visit her mom who just got in the ER. This person used to meet with the missionaries in the past and I guess her
mom did a little as well. So we went to the Temple ER and walked into her room and I've only been able to feel someone's faith once before on my mission and this was another one. As soon as we walked in there
I could feel her faith in God. It turns out that she had a bad fall and felt something pop inside her, and we talked with her a little, and Elder Cooley asked if we could give her a blessing, I gave her one. During the blessing I wanted to bless her with healing but every time I wanted to I felt like I shouldn't or I couldn't think. It made
me really sad because it made me think that maybe her time is coming to meet her Father again. Also it could be that someone in the past gave her a blessing of healing and that's why the Spirit was strong in
the room as well and she just needed a blessing of comfort, I don't know, but I do know that she is a wonderful woman who no matter happens has such genuine faith that  she will accept the Gospel in this life or the next. When I said amen, I saw that tears were streaming down her face and her words were, "praise The Lord" and then she talked about how her daughters need help. this woman was so Christlike, in her time of intense pain her thoughts were of helping those around her. Just for those few minutes that we were there she showed me a great example of Christ-like Love.

Saturday we had another lesson with Roni, she's from China, about the latter half of the Plan of Salvation. She was still a little confused about baptism and had some doubts, but she is sincere about learning
and that's what makes me happy. I hope she keeps progressing.  Sunday was interesting because that night we went to Mike & Dana's place. Mike is a less active who came to church yesterday:) and his girlfriend Dana is a very nice person but pretty rough around the edges, she has no filter and just refuses to come to church but Elder Cooley is determined she will come before he leaves. She wouldn't turn the tv off so during commercials we read from the Book of Mormon with her and then she'd turn it up when her show came on (it was a doughnut
cooking competition show...) apparently though that's the most gospel that's been discussed since Elder Cooley came so that's progress right? Haha I hope I'm not wasting time there but I don't think I am, even though the tv is very annoying and distracting but at least she will turn it down.. I hope everything is going well in Provo but it's not the best place to live, that's probably San Diego just saying. Tell the girls I love and miss them!

I love you guys!
Elder Barker

Ps my address is 3311 Kip Street Philadelphia, PA 19134

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