La Crosse, La Crosse, God Is Calling!

Featured Photo: Riverside Park and melting snow! Bipolar!

From Elder Ellis:

Hello everyone! It’s been a week since I last told you my adventures, and yes they are still continuing, M___ and it’s amazing! I left last week on a cliffhanger about M___, so I’ll jump right into that after this blurb about the subject:

So our phone has been acting up recently and it randomly calls the person we last talked to on the phone, not just once, but like ten times. What’s even worse is that our phone only works if it’s on speaker phone. So we’re getting a new phone soon. Anyway, on Tuesday we were walking into our Book of Mormon study class and M___ says, “Hey, why are you guys calling me?” I didn’t notice, but we were. So I hung up. It happened again. And again. And again. So I turned the phone off and set it on the table behind us. Three minutes later, M___ gets a call from us. We all freaked out. M___ said, “Okay! God is calling me! I better answer it!” It was the weirdest thing, because the phone was off, but it turned itself back on?

Anyway, picking the story back up where we left off, M___ was considering getting baptized on February 27th. She was very indecisive, so we invited her to this Book of Mormon class thingy we have every Tuesday night. She came! So we read the Book of Mormon with her and a few of the Ward members and the Sisters. It was fantastic. After the meeting, Brother Perry, a member of the ward, looked right at M___ and said, “You look like you’ve got sometin’ to say.” She responded, “Oh no, I don’t have anything to say, I’m really just learning.” He persisted and asked her again. Silence, then she said, “Well, I have been thinking about getting baptized.” Everyone in the room was so excited! Almost everyone was of the…older perspective and pretty much all of them were converts to the church. So they all told her that this was the best decision she could ever make. After the class, we took M___, Kiley (A YSA member of our ward), and the Sisters around the church to have a lesson. We showed M___ the baptismal font and we even let her step into it. She just said, “Ah! You guys make me want to cry and be happy and have goosebumps all at the same time!” We took her into the chapel next and that was amazing. The chapel is the place to feel the Spirit and we all did. It was quiet and peaceful. We sat in silence for a little while, then I asked everyone to bear their testimonies of Christ. The sisters, Kiley, Elder Lao and I all bore our testimonies. After that, I asked M___ to share her testimony of Christ. She said, “Aw man, you’re going to make me cry!” Then she grabbed the box of tissues. We started to bear the sweetest testimony of Christ I’ve ever heard. The Spirit was so strong and she testified of knowing that God really does watch out for her and her family. Then she paused. She looked up at me with tears in her eyes and said, “Will you do the honors of baptizing me?” I was shocked, I was stunned, I looked at her with tears in my eyes and said, “So does that mean you are getting baptized on February 27th?” Then, I quickly said yes! She wants to get baptized on that day and I am so happy for her! I’m so excited too! She has come such a long way and wants the blessings that come from baptism and she is receiving them already!


The rest of the week with M___ went wonderfully. We had a great lesson with her and Sister Heaton in Javavino (some café we told her No coffee). Then on Friday we reviewed the Baptismal interview questions with her at Coldstone, guess who works at Coldstone? Kiley! How coincidental. Not! Well, then Saturday we had the baptismal interview and she passed, she is ready to go and be baptized. We went to this cupcake place afterwards and walked around riverside park with her and she was so excited to get baptized. It’s so exciting! On Sunday, she came to church and loved it, then in the evening we watched the Best Two Years with Bao and her Brothers. It was amazing. She said she has so much more respect for us missionaries. She also said that her heart broke every time the missionaries’ hearts broke too. It was awesome! We all laughed too. She is so ready and I’m so grateful to be a part of her conversion story. She will do wonderful things.

Yo! Yummy breakfast!

Well, the rest of the week was great too! Elder Lao and I have a lot of fun together. We love working together and I’m so glad I’ve been able to work with him. Next week is transfers, so I hope that I’ll get to stay with him for a couple more transfers. We had a pass off lesson with the sisters for an older Hmong woman. We couldn’t teach her for two reasons: 1) she lives far away from us, and 2) she has no possible way to allow us to have rule of three in her home. So the sisters will work with her.

Riverside Park

There was another wonderful miracle that happened to us this week! We got a call from a random number and they left a message. Basically he’s a guy who has been learning from the missionaries over the phone and Internet for the past while now. He was challenged to contact us and learn from us directly. So he did. He basically told us that he knew everything was true. He watch anti-Mormon videos and read anti-Mormon literature, but it didn’t phase him. He said he knew it was more of an act of faith rather than physical proof of evidence. He’s so golden. We met him on Saturday and he wanted a ride to church, because he can’t drive. We did get him a ride to church, he just accidentally fell back asleep and wasn’t ready in time. Ah well, there’s always next week. Haha. He’s great though and we see a lot of potential in him. How often does someone call you and want to learn about the gospel? Never. Miracle!

Turkey burgers for a couple of turkeys!

Well that’s about it for my week. It’s been a wonderful week, I’m so happy to be serving where I am and when I am. It’s a wonderful experience for me and I’m so happy! Thank you for all your love and support! Pictures of the baptism for next week! So watch for them!


Elder Ellis


Published by

Michael Andrew Ellis

I write literary fiction at the confluence of Mormonism, Hmong culture, and the human condition. Here on, I write about Mormon arts and letters, Hmong history and culture, classic and contemporary literature, existentialism, and my journey as a writer.

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