Friday, March 27, 2015

December 16th - the first email from the MTC

Karin! I love you so much! It is crazy how much you want to think about home but your so busy you dont get the chance. Until your in bed, and then it all hits you incredibly hard! The first three days here were the hardest days of my life. I wanted to go home the entire time! Haha and there is still no way that i could ever say i enjoy it here but it is starting to grow on me. I made some really good friends, Elder Richinns and Elder Evans. My companion is a stud. It took awhile for us to get close but i think we are on our way there. Haha took awhile to really get a conversation going. The food here is awful. It goes right through you! Like riiiiggghht through you. Haha Thanks for being such a good guy. Make sure you dear elder me next time so i have longer to ponder what i want to say to you. It is a website i think that you can write me an email that ill receive the same day you write it in the form of a letter. I love you guys so much. I pray for you multiple times a day. Thank you so much for everything that you do for me and our family. You are an incredible person and i miss you guys like crazy. 
Elder Holman





January 13th and 14th - in the MTC

January 14
Yesterday was a terrible day. After i got done emailing i really started to get sick but i still went to the temple. Which was an awful idea. Haha i got there and thought i was going to die. But i didnt want to be that guy so i did did the session. Which was also an awful idea. Haha i thought i was going to throw up the entire time. My whole body was aching like crazy and i had the chills soooo bad! So right after we came back my companion made me see the doctor. He told me that i have the flu and that i have to spend the next few days in quarantine. I feel lots better so i snuck out to the computer to do some emailing since i got my reassignment and it tells you to email your fam and talk to them about it. I am going to the Irvine California Mission. I leave on Tuesday at 3:35. I am not going to have any lay over time. So the only time i have to call will be in the middle of the night. Haha 

January 13

Things are starting to get real here! I leave the beginning of next week. I am starting to freak out! I get reassigned tomorrow or Thursday. I cant wait to get out of here! But then again i am comfortable here and it is going to be a huge change! So i am having pretty mixed feelings towards everything. Richins left this morning at 3:30 and since his whole district left he had to stay in our room the past two nights. He is beyond sick and coughs every 10 seconds so i didn't sleep at all until he left and even after he left i couldn't sleep because i was so sad! Haha so I'm running on a couple hours today. And on top of all that i am getting sick. So that's also making everything alot worse! He wrote in my journal that i was a direct answer to his prayer and that if i hadn't shown up when i did he would have gone home. That made me want to cry! Because he has also helped me through so much in here and i dont know if i would have made it without him. Elder Adams left the day after his birthday too so we threw him a rager! Haha we all bought tons of food and made presents and went to the party room to surprise him! (We got one of the really old elders to leave us the key to his room and that became the party room) everybody still had a ton of those poppers and noise makers from new years so we used probably 30 of them and almost set the smoke detector off.  We made him a pinata and somebody even had a cake! Haha one of the Japanese elders got every attractive girl in this whole place to write him a note in this little journal and gave that to him. It was awesome. In the middle of our party one of the Who-dee-whos (That is the code word for when the Zone presidents are in the dorms) came and ruined our party and then tried to turn us in but it was an abandoned room so we got away with it. Haha Elder Adams is like a celebrity here because in the Christmas talent show he did what Jamie Foxx did with the Brady Bunch theme song! Haha he is super good at singing so all the girls are in love with him! I cant ever think of the cool stuff that has happened when i write these emails. So its just going to be random cool things that went on. On Wednesday we got to host again and that was soo cool! Ahh-hee-son, my companion, saw this car drive by and he was like i think that's David Archuleta! Before he even finished saying it i was sprinting to the car to host whoever was with him! I got there first and was stoked. But i got shut down super hard because it was a girl and elders cant host sisters. So i just got to shake his hand and take the luggage. But i almost pooped when i shook his hand because i love him so much! Haha on Sunday when we went on our temple walk we were taking pictures and i thought it would be funny to jump on a tree and bear hug it. But when i got down i had stained my shirt, tie, suit, and pride. So i looked like such a tool at the devotional! Haha it was so bad. Also the devotional tonight is supposed to have multiple general authorities here because the new MTC presidency is getting set apart. So that will be sick! There is a rumor going around that President Monson is going to be here! My companion and i are going to the Devotional two hours early to wait in line. Haha I'm def going to snap a few pictures of the prophet. That's about it i think. Sorry this email is written so poorly and unorganized. Maybe ill get little better throughout the next 23 months. Haha i hope you all have a good week. Eu Amo Voces.

Elder Holman
Elder Holman and his teacher from the MTC
(What a small world - Todd knew him in Africa)

January 20th 2015 - First email from the mission field

From: Justin Holman ( You moved this message to its current location.
Sent: Tue 1/20/15 3:09 PM
To: Judy Lowder (; Holman, Stetson ( (; Jaquoy Twiss (; Karin Holman (; McKay Lowder (

Aight i slept for one hour last night overall. So i probably wont go into too much detail like i should. I got here and everybody is super nice! We have just been hanging out at the mission home since we got here. They are about to let us take a nap. I was told you can add Irvine California Mission on Facebook. They post pictures and jazz. I dont really know, should be fun. Haha I havent met my companion yet, we get them at 5. The mission president told me he was a wrestler and will love it when i attack him. Haha I guess there is a lot of people in this mission from Idaho Falls, so that is going to be super cool! The guy Harrison and i have been hanging out with all day is from Boise and he went to BYUI. He is such a stud. I dont know what else to say. Have a good week. 
Elder Holman

                                              Justin and Elder Harrison (his companion from the MTC)

                                          Elder Holman - putting Idaho on the map!

Just relaxing after a long day of travel
 Inline image 1
   All the new missionaries arriving to the Irving California Mission

January 26th 2015

Aight the mission field is 1000 times better then the MTC. It is so nice to be out here and to talk to real people. Even though most of them and Asian, shut us down super hard, and wont talk to us, it is nice to see real faces. My companion is Elder Kurth. He has been out for 18 months, but he hasn't quite checked out yet so I am pretty lucky. He is from Michigan, and he is a rassler! He seems like he was a stud in High School! But he doesn't want to wrestle in College. He is a frickin meat head! He is only 5'6 and he weighed 185 when he got out here. He doesn't weigh that now, but he was a monster! Haha Im sure we look like chumps walking around because we are both midgets. But its alright, we get shiz done! Ha so we white washed into our area. Which means both of the old missionaries in our area got transferred out and we got transferred in. We spent all week just trying to figure out the area, the members, and our investigators. It has been suuuuper busy, so that was nice. Our ward is supposedly the best ward in the mission, they are way into missionary work! It is nothing like it is back home. Or maybe when I was home we just didn't care enough. Haha I don't know. The members feed us dinner every night. And dinner to these guys is a 5 course meal! We eat sooo good. Just so you have an idea of the money in our ward, we went to a family yesterday that is selling their 2 bedroom town house for 550,000 bones. So as you can assume, we eat pretty well.
I know I am supposed to be in Irvine! My companion said he has talked to 2 Brazilians since he got here, and since I have gotten here we have ran into over 10. We actually found one on Wednesday and we talked to her for 2 hours. She was super receptive and wants to meet with us again. We even found her a Livro de Mormon, so that's really exciting! She is so ready for the Gospel I am getting the chills just thinking about her! I am stoked to meet with her again.
So our area is a car area, but I guess they sold a few cars. So my companion and I are in a car share. We get the car Monday night to Friday morning and they get it the rest. It takes about an hour to walk from top to bottom of our area. So we have probably gotten about 15 miles of solid walking in in the past couples days. I frickin hate it! They don't even have bikes for us! But I always text the assistants and complain about walking so they are trying to get us a full time car. They are really awesome, one is from Boise and we are boiz! We heard a member has a tandem bike that they never use so we have been trying to get ahold of them all week. But I think they are out of the country right now. We are eating with them this week so we are going to score a bright yellow tandem bike and I am stoked to get it! We are going to tape a basket to the front and make a little name tag for our bike. Ill make sure to send some pictures. Haha
We had to bear (Bare?) our testimonies in Sacrament meeting yesterday and I almost fell to my death I was so nervous. I talked about how I believe the Book of Mormon is true but I don't KNOW it is true. I believe everything in it is the word of God and that is makes people happy, but I haven't had a witness that just slaps me in the face and tell me its true. I felt pretty stupid afterwards but the entire ward came to me afterwards and told me how much they respect me for saying that and being honest. It was actually what most of the priesthood lesson ended up being on. They talked about how us as Mormons feel like we need to impress eachother and lie about our testimonies when really we are all striving to gain one of our own. So that was really awesome!
It has been perfect weather the entire time. We wear short sleeve shirts and it never gets cold. It never really even gets hot, its just perfect! Haha i am running out of time. I know this is where im supposed to be, so im not even bummed its California. The people here are incredible. Its a totally different culture but its nothing like the stereotype. They people are so humble and awesome. Elder Kurth and I are working hard, and will continue to do so. Have a good week.

Elder Holman

February 9th 2015

Im honestly surprised I even made it through this week. Haha the days go by soooo slow! But the weeks go by sooo fast! We were counting all of our numbers up last night and I couldn't believe some of the stuff we did this week. Like Monday feels like it was three weeks ago. I know it doesn't make much sense, but it is mission logic.
This week was pretty awesome! Our 11 year old investigator changed his date to March 7th. So I probably wont even be here for it. Haha so that's neat. We also have a 9 year investigator that will be on date this week! And then our pride and joy.. Erik Strand is an 18 year old kid with an awful background. His mom is an alcoholic and his dad just bounced on him. His dad told him he would disown him if he got baptized but he broke it down for him and turns out he gave him his consent! So we are stoked! We started teaching him and we had an awesome lesson about the Plan of Salvation. And then we invited him to be baptized. He said he would pray for a date and turns out he got an answer! So on Wednesday we will know when he is getting baptized. Its so awesome!
Now for the cool stuff that happened. Haha I don't know when I got my skateboard. So I may have already said this. But we helped a lady move that was complete nuts! We were walking by and she waved us down to help her move! She was in a super hurry so it seemed a little fishy in the first place. But the first words out of her mouth were "I need your help! I had a miscarriage yesterday. And I have to be out of my apartment in 2 hours." So we started packing out all her stuff and I saw the skateboard decks! So I asked her if she skates and all that jazz. And so she told me I could have one! One of them had a naked girl on it, so I was forced to pick the other one. Haha and then a little while later we ran into a pro skateboarder for Element! Haha He was just thrashing! He was so freaking good! So he like ran up to us and wanted to chat! So I was already so confused! Haha people don't just do that around here! And so when we saw him coming our way I was thinking what are the odds this dude is Mormon!? And sure enough this guy has a brother on a mission! Haha he said he wanted to go/still wants to, but he wants to see where his skateboard can take him first! Haha it was so nuts! He was so cool! I told him the story about the crazy lady that gave me the deck. And he was like dude.. Ill hook you up! So he ran back to his house and got me a 70 pair of trucks and a brand new set of element bearings! Haha sooo tight! So today we are going to find some wheels and im going to start trying to be a skater boy again! Hopefully I don't brake something. (: We also had dinner with the CEO of Voodoo tactical! Haha look it up! Their stuff is siiick! He was one of the coolest guys I have ever met in my life! He has the hookups with gun stuff. So he custom made his AR15 for 60 bucks! Haha it doesn't have any numbers on it, and it has every single attachment you could image! This dude was nuts! We were just chatting and he was like wait a minute. And then he went upstairs and brought us both back a 60 dollar shoulder bag! Haha the members here are soo awesome! Most of the people are terrible! But the members are nothing like they are at home! They are all missionary oriented. They are super supportive and its great!
Im leaving a whole lot of stuff out. So just know that I did way more cool stuff that I cant think of right now.. The mish is great! I enjoy California! I enjoy it being the perfect temp allllll the time. I enjoy the asains sometimes. I enjoy my comp. It just really has been an awesome experience the past 2 months. And im excited to see what is in store. Hope all is well!

Elder Holman
                                                  At President Orgill's house for dinner

February 17th 2015

This week flew by! The more I think about it the less I remember that I even did. We were super busy! But at the end of the week we didn't accomplish much. None of the names we have will ever even answer the door. We went by 20 names of less active members and potential investigators in one day and not one of them answered the door. Even though a majority of them were inside watching tv. It was suuuuper laaaame! Haha it was 95 degrees that whole day and we were dying! But I am afraid I am getting fat so I guess I could use a couple days like that a week. I have gained a few more pounds then im willing to admit! Haha

As far as missionary work goes I don't have a lot to report! We tried really hard and contacted our brains out, we just didn't find much success with anything! This week should be pretty solid though. We have a lot of good stuff planned. Our 11 year old investigator is getting baptized on March 7th and I think he wants to have me do it. So that's going to be pretty sick! Our 17 year old investigator is getting baptized sometime in April. He has a really rough home life but his mom said he could do it after he graduates. That situation really sucks though because he lives outside of our mission boundaries and travels to our ward because that's where he is comfortable. So even though he is our investigator and we have been teaching him we are going to have to pass him off to the Anaheim mission. I hope it all goes okay. There is an unreal amount of investigators that are lost in the ward transition. So we are hoping for the best but it's really hard! The Foronda family that we are reactivating finally all came to church! It is the first time in 3 years the whole family went to church! Their 17 year old wouldn't even get out of their van because he felt stupid for being there. So we went out and convinced him to come in! haha he is a good kid he is just a little nuts! He is high functioning autistic. Sooo hes quite the challenge!

Now for the cool jazz that happened! Haha we ran into this super cool guy that said he was in a band and stuff. He seemed super crazy just by the looks! He had double sleeves of tattoos and he just seemed super wild! And then he told us he is a recent convert! Haha he has been a member for like a year now and he is stud! He said nobody believes him and all the little kids stare at him but he is a super solid guy! I could be wrong but im pretty sure he the young mens pres. Haha so that was awesome! We scheduled this huge Family home evening for all of our investigators that went super good. And at the end Elder Kurth and I were playing with all the kids outside. We were just playing games and stuff. And I don't know what it is about this place but I swear like 1 in 5 kids are autistic. So we were playing tag and this little kid threw something at me and when it hit me it took me like 5 seconds to realize that it hurt because I couldn't understand why! And I looked down and this little autistic kid with a cape on threw a super sharp rock right at my hip! Haha it hurt sooo bad and bruised real nicely! So that was fun.

I got hooked up pretty fat a couple more times this week. Elder Kurth knows a guy that works for Oakley, and he can get 70 percent off. So I bought a pair of 180 dollar glasses for a lil pocket change! Haha they are soooo sick! I wish I could send pictures. But we email at the library and these computers are like 1st gen hps. Haha but ill figure something out. And we also got hooked up with these super old FBI wanted posters! We were helping this guy move and when we left he handed us these papers and told us to hold onto them and theyd be worth some bucks someday! He said he looked them up on ebay and they are selling for 300 dolla bills! Haha cali is treating us quite nicely. (:

That is it for this week. Hope all is well!

Elder Holman
Irvine California Elders serving at the Food Bank

February 23rd 2015

Not the most productive week to be honest! Haha we have been working hard! But we just haven't seen much success out of our less actives/contacting. The people just aren't really willing to talk to us, which is fine! Haha its kinda fun most of the time either way! Like we visited a DNC (Do not contact) the other day and she just chewed us out for like 5 minutes! Haha it was so bad! And she was like I have asked you guys 40 times not to ever come back. So we explained to her that if she wants us to stop coming then she has to contact the bishop and get her named removed from the church. So we gave her MOST of the bishops number.. (: Right after that we tried to visit another lady that lives in the same complex as her named June Crane. She was explained to us as a "sickly old grump" She wasn't there, so we just left and didn't think much of it. When we left we contacted a sickly old grump and got her to talk to us for a minute. And then when we asked her what her name was she said June. Haha so we were like Yo! We are in here to visit a June Crane! Is your last name Crane? And right when we asked she instantly nodded her head no like a crazy lady, turned around and like sprinted away! Haha so even the bad times are usually pretty good times. (:

We had a Zone Conference this week! It was sooo good! It spiritually fed me up for the week. Haha so im starting to hunger again for that now! Haha so we are going to work extra hard this week to find something to satisfy us. Most of the meeting was about choosing to be offended and choosing to be mad. It has been super hard for me not to be offended with everything that happens out here. Because we will visit 25 names and not one of them will give us the time of day. Or we will go contact for a few hours and not have one religion based conversation and the second we try to they bounce! Ha so its pretty easy to get offended. But what I learned from the conference is that being offended is a choice. And being mad is a choice. And once you can learn that/live by that it makes the "Big deals" not seem so big. I have been studying patience a lot lately. In the end of Alma 32 it talks about being patient and I related it to my situation. Being a missionary everyone thinks you are suddenly more wise and smarter and know how to be a missionary! Haha but it is nothing like that! I am lost as a missionary! I get super mad at myself all the time for sucking! And about not knowing anything. I have been praying with all my heart to help me gain that confidence. And I think that zone conference was an answer to my prayers. I think that choosing to be mad can apply to yourself as well. I have been choosing to get upset with myself when there is nothing I can do about it. I just have to be patient and know that it all comes with time.

I hope all that made sense! Thoughts pop in and out of my head like crazy now days and just hope it makes sense! Haha

Not a whole lot of time this week so I'll wrap up here!! the church is true, the book is blue, we have a lot of work to do! I pray for you guys all the days and hope everything is dope as chill! the Lord loves yall and so do I.

Elder Holman

      Justin at Zone Conference