Elder Ellis…Bug Sniper!

Featured Photo: “The future is as bright as your faith.”

From Elder Ellis (email dated 8/29/2016):

Hello everyone, yes it’s that time of the week again. Holy cow, it’s Monday already. Today we are going to the state fair! Next week I’ll have lots of pictures of the state fair! 🙂

Watch out bugs!

So, as per the title…Yes, I am a bug sniper now. It’s official. On Thursday, we went to the Donohoes house to help them with some service. As we were changing into our service clothes, Brother Donohoe shows us this fancy new trinket. It’s a bug gun. Well a fly gun really. What it is, is a gun that looks like a nerd gun and it shoots salt. You load it up, cock it, and fire. It sprays salt like a shotgun at really fast speeds. It kind of hurts if you shoot it point blank, just FYI, don’t ask how I know…. Anyway, because of the size and scale difference and because it’s salt, it obliterates flies and bees. Salt kills them, and it shoots through them like pellets on us. So Elder Oldroyd and I were equipped to fight an army of bees. Elder Oldroyd was equipped with an electric bug zapper. So we had one melee champion and one ranged one. It was awesome. We looked like we were ready for a war. I shot bees, he smacked them with the electric bug zapper. It was fun. That wasn’t the service we were there to do by the way. We were supposed to bring wood from one end of the yard to the other. That was also fun. We lit stuff on fire too.

Spiritual experience from this? I’m still thinking about that…though there could be something with the fact of being turned to salt, having salt lose its savor, flies being of the devil, something…. I’ll let you decide. 🙂

Anywho, why don’t we get started on how the week went?

Most of the Hmong Missionaries! Awesome!

This week has been a great week! It was transfer Wednesday, so I got to see a bunch of my favorite people! I got to see Elder Lao and Elder Thao! I saw Sister Peterson, Sister Coleman, and Sister Pack. Shoutout to Sister Coleman and Sister Pack. They go home in six weeks, which translates to I’m getting old! I got to see Elder Bezzant too! He’s going to finish his mission in Kasson. It’s really far south and off in Africa. No one really knows where it is. It’s near Austin, the spam capital of the world! Anyway, Wednesday was a party, a reunion. We didn’t get transferred, but we did get a new car! Her name is Sally. She looks like Sally from cars. Though not a Porsche, the same color. Kind of a chick color.

We spent most of Tuesday in River Falls. Gage went teaching with us! That was fun! We even took him tracting for an hour or so. Oh, the miracle of that day was when we decided to visit a less active member. Turns out Tuesday was his last day in River Falls. So we barely met him, by “luck” he says. Reality: Miracle! So that was cool! We also got chased down by these college kids studying ministry. They wanted to ask US questions. So we were ready for the questions about our multiple wives, but they didn’t ask that. (We don’t have multiple wives, just FYI.) They asked some different questions, but the funny thing was, when we’d try to tell them the answers, they didn’t accept it. They would rather receive the answers from a random website rather than listen to the truth from the ones called to preach it. It was a decent chit chat though. They want to meet again, so we’ll see how it goes.

Sister Coleman and Elder Ellis

M___ came to church yesterday! That was so wonderful to see her, her daughter, and her daughter’s boyfriend there. It was great. The real miracle that happened with M___ this week was when she texted us. She texted us and told us that she has a niece who lost her mother recently. She’s 13 years old and is searching for happiness. M___ talked to her and said she’s learning from missionaries and how much happiness she’s found from us. She asked us for pamphlets and a Book of Mormon to give to her niece. She then said, “She may be your next baptism!” We were so happy to see her do missionary work, and she’s not even baptized yet! She talked about how this 13 year old girl just needs a motherly figure in her life and needs some friends. We talked a little bit about the young women’s program with her, but neither of us have been through it, so we couldn’t tell her too much about it. The next day at church, the entire sacrament meeting was focused on the young women’s program. The young women gave talks, the young woman’s president talked about the program. It was almost too perfect. It was amazing! 🙂

Humidity is real!

One final miracle. When we were in New Richmond this past week. It was 8:15 at night, and we were about 30–40 minutes away from home. We were on bikes, and it was getting darker. We had to decide whether we should visit one family, or get back to the car (about a 5–10 minute bike ride back). We had planned to visit this one less active family in New Richmond, but it was in the opposite direction of our car. We started heading towards the car, and I got prompted that we need to visit this family. So we turned around and visited them. Right as we passed their house, the wife was passing the window and waved us down. She and her kids came out and talked with us for a bit. It was cool to see how when you follow a prompting, you know later that it was from the Holy Ghost. I’m not sure how we affected that family, but if we hadn’t gone by at that moment, we would never had known. Maybe it was for me to know what it’s like to know what the Holy Ghost is telling me. I’m not sure, but it was wonderful. 🙂

Hudson, Minnesota!

Well, that about sums up my week. Thanks for all your love and support! I love you all! I hope you all have a wonderful week and see miracles.


Elder Ellis


Published by

Michael Andrew Ellis

I write literary fiction at the confluence of Mormonism, Hmong culture, and the human condition. Here on michaelandrewellis.com, 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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