Monday, September 26, 2016

Monday September 26, 2016 Kamiah, ID

Alright I’ll answer your questions first.

1. I did get your package and I was super happy about it! Thank you so much! I love the sweaters.
2. It did rain quite a bit last week but not too hard - just sprinkled for a couple of days. My clothes and shoes are fine.
3. Our truck is a 2014 Nissan Frontier. Super lame but it’s a vehicle and I can’t complain.
4. I did get my bike when I first got here. Its sweet! I like it a lot. I just have to figure out how to make the seat a little lower because I’m short.
5. We cover 2 wards because my area is huge. Sundays are crazy! Kind of like Sundays for me back home. A lot of sitting and listening. 
6. Everyone and their dog’s dog is concerned about the end of the world and the government. So they all say things like, “What do you guys think about what’s going on in the world?” And of course we can’t tell them even if we did care. But they say things like, "I think we shouldn't let anyone in our country for 5 years to clean ourselves up and then we can let people in.  
7. I’ll send some pics in a separate e mail.

Monday was p day. We did our laundry and bought food. Everything fine there. Nothing really important.

Taught 2 people who smoke a lot so I smelled like smoke the whole day. Also finally met our neighbor! Awesome guy in his 60's and loves guitars! He recently got a new one that dad will like. I’ll send a picture.

Weird day. We drove out to the middle of nowhere and knocked on some sketchy doors in the wilderness. Later had dinner in a grocery store. Yes, a grocery store and not just any grocery store. The Stites one. Stites is a town just outside of Kamiah and Kooskia, (Kooskie) but super small. Like 300 people small. The grocery store is just super ghetto. It had a bunch of empty shelves. Doctor pepper and donuts for sale and that’s it. Weird. We just sat down at a table in the entrance and had dinner. Later we decided to stop by some members who just happened to have 3 new investigators for us to teach. Two of them are on date for baptism after the first lesson. Crazy!

Not much happened. Just weekly planning and some teaching.

Taught a few lessons and set up a church tour. 

Had a church tour & it went super well. Most of our appointments fell through. Lame. But still got some good work done.

Went to both wards. Blessed the sacrament in one and went to a bunch of meetings. Normal Sunday.

Well that’s my week. Wednesday was weird. But the longer I’m out here the more I love the people. The members are so awesome and love missionary work and my testimony has grown so much and I love it! We are reading the Book of Mormon by Christmas you guys should too. And look for the tender mercies of Christ. Super cool. 
-Elder St. John

 Before leaving the MTC Alex Case and I switched jackets! (Alex is a boy from our ward. He and Colten were in the same zone in the MTC. Alex is serving in New York.)

 This is Paul. Our neighbor and his new guitar.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Monday September 19, 2016 Kamiah, ID

All righty my first week has felt like 4 months and 1 day all at the same time. Crazy.

1. My companion is named Elder Stoddard he’s awesome! He’s super nice and smart and works hard. He’s from St. George Utah.
2. I’m in a ghetto apartment. It’s not so bad though
3. We have a full time truck because we are the biggest area in the mission.
4. The weather is so cold and gray most of the time. I could use some sweaters.
5. My area is suuupppperrr big. Way big. Grande. Extra-large or family sized.
6. I email from the library 
7. There’s only one grocery store and it’s called harvest foods. Kinda ghetto.
8. I’ve been eating at members houses a lot and for lunch I eat sandwiches and oj (yes they have my oj and I’m very happy).
9. We get fed dinner at members almost every night. 
10. I’m mostly good. I’m going to need to buy a winter coat soon. But sweaters would be appreciated.

So my area is the booniest place ever. There’s hardly any people here and everything is very spread out. Its super pretty though. Lots of pine trees. The people are a little weird but I love them anyway. Everyone smokes and I mean everyone. Also there's about 3 dogs per person here. This week has been crazy and fun. I’m getting to know the area and stuff. We don’t tract a whole lot. We mostly go off of referrals from members and investigators. The weather is cold and mostly like Utah, just the seasons switch earlier. Ummm my trainer is really good at teaching me how to work hard. Oh! So second day here we taught an investigator and she brought up baptism and the date she wanted to be baptized. Crazy! So her baptism will be on Oct 29th. I’m way excited for her. We’ve been teaching a few other investigators and been working with the members a lot. There’s a lot of hunters here and a really cool log furniture store that sells the kind of stuff that is at the ranch. I’m thankful for all the emails and support! I’ll try to send a better letter next time but I don’t have a whole lot of time and way too much to talk about but that’s alright. I’ll keep you updated on the people I’m teaching and stories that happen. I cover 2 wards so church is interesting but good. And the members have interesting ideas. But all is well and I’m doing good. 

The gospel has taught me many things already but mostly shown how it can improve our lives. I know that if we follow the teachings of the prophets that we can have a good state of life and be blessed for it. I have seen what it’s like to live without purpose and I am so glad that I have the gospel in my life.

-Elder St. John  

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Email from President Dymock September 14, 2016

September 14, 2016 
Dear Brother and Sister St. John,

I was pleased to welcome your son, Elder St. John, to the Washington Spokane Mission this week.  I’m happy to report that he arrived safely.  I had the privilege of meeting and associating with him the day of his arrival and note that it is evident that he comes with a great desire to serve Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. Elder St. John understands the role of the Holy Ghost in accomplishing the work here in the Washington Spokane Mission and has committed to live worthy of that power.
After prayerful consideration, I have called Elder Stoddard to serve as Elder St. John’s companion in the Kamiah area. It is our objective to call only the best missionaries to serve as trainers and I believe that your son is in excellent training hands.  We expect that your missionary will serve in this area for the next 6 to 12 weeks as he begins his mission.
I have enclosed photographs of your missionary and assure you that Sister Dymock and I will love Elder St. John. Our great desire is that his time here will further establish him on the path of righteousness, as well as bless the many people he will serve.

Attached are the new updated recommended guidelines we have for parents.  These guidelines are based on many years of accumulated missionary experience, especially those guidelines concerning personal contact with your missionary. Elder St. John needs your good example.  I sincerely request that you consider them for the benefit of your son and his fellow missionaries.

The mission has a website where you can see what is happening in the mission.  Go to:
You can send mail to your son at:
Elder Colten Mark St. John
Kamiah, ID 83536-5015

Thank you so much for sharing Elder St. John with us. 

Monday September 12, 2016 Arrival in Spokane

Hey guys made it here safe! Its super pretty here. And kinda cold. The mission president and his wife are awesome! So first thing we do here was "fear busting." That’s where we go out and street contact with a random companion. Super fun, had a lady tell me that Mormon Jesus is a demon. Haha great first experience! So I'm spending the night in the mission home and then getting shipped out to my area (no I don't know where I'm going yet or who my trainer is you'll find out next week on Monday). Yeah well I like it here and I feel at home almost. 

-Elder St. John

 *Later that day we could see this picture on the mission Facebook page*

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Wednesday September, 7, 2016 MTC

Hey guys! What’s up? They bouncy balls are a huge life saver! 

Normal day just a lot of study and reading. But I’ve learned to love it. I learned how Satan works to destroy peace with pride.

Started the day with service so we cleaned a building in a lot of ways I would never even think of. I’ve started to learn about how to teach hard investigators that won’t open up. You have to almost make them talk. It’s weird.

This was our last day teaching our first trc investigator. He was extremely quiet and never answered a question with more than 1 sentence. Which is not very fun but I learned so much from it.

Having Fast Sunday wasn’t even that bad. Everybody was complaining that they couldn’t eat. It was super fun to have a good devotional. We had maybe the coolest guy on earth talk to us. His name is Chad Lewis (ask dad who he is if you don’t know.) He was a former byu football player and nfl player and he talked about loving the people you teach and how that can help you become invested in the work. 

Normal day

Crazy day started off with learning to teach the commandments and then we had our Tuesday devotional. Elder Christofferson came to talk to us and shared a super powerful message and told us all about the atonement and repentance and how it can unlock forgiveness and many other cool things. 

Well I only have a few days left here so I won’t have another p day here to email you. But I want you to know that I love the gospel and I have learned so much in so short a time it’s crazy. I leave Tuesday morning for my mission so I’m super exited for that. Yes mom we have sheets on our beds those beds in the picture weren’t ours. I haven’t gotten your last letters yet, don’t really know why. The temple is awesome. What should I do for like a phone card in the airport? Also could you send me like one pair of basketball shorts and maybe one or two t shirts? Also can you get me bro./mr. smith’s email, bishops email, and Leslie Christensen’s email so I can respond to them! You should probably answer these questions in a dear elder letter because I won’t be able to check my email again until I leave.

Thanks - love you all 
-Elder St. John

*A couple of hours later...*
Hey so scratch the whole leaving on Tuesday thing. Just found out I leave Monday morning early. Like I report to the travel center at like 4:15 am. Anyway I found your letters! My companion had them and so I read them.
I think Cassidy would be proud of this one...
 I wanted to see what my camera could do and this is what I got...
 This is how we study. With orange cream sodas. They're only 85 cents so we get them like everyday.