Thursday, December 29, 2011

Merry Christmas!!!

This past week we went to Aix en provence and presented the transfer focus to the Montpellier and aix en provence zones it was great to see mission friends and spend time with President and Soeur Murdock.

Thank you so much for all of the wonderful gifts, cookies from the Goodwins, and other packages! Tell everyone THANK YOU!! Cards from all the extended family and friends! Much needed candy and hygiene from you, the family and so many other great expressions of love! My Christmas season was a great one and I looking forward to be sharing Christmas with all of you next year! Let me know what you doing for new years!

I love Montpellier it has been a ride and thrill to be a missionary in such a large city! This Christmas season really has opened doors!

I miss you all and I'll defiantly will miss singing Christmas Carrols on the busses, trams, and streets. I think we will continue singing just not Christmas songs!
Merry Christmas!

Elder Garlock

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Step Away from the Car!

I got pulled over Tuesday... It was in the middle of no where and I was going up a one way.

French one ways are very confusing because on some of the quote on quote one ways both sides pass and wait for the other car and take turns. The one way that I went up the wrong way was signed the same way but once getting up the one way I realized that the sign was misleading and the police station was right in front of me. A women stood up from her desk pointing at me and signaled that I pull over. I did so. Then I explained the misleading signs and confusion... She took all of my papers (gratefully I had my passport and titre de sejour) and walked back into the station. 10 minutes go by and she came back out telling me the gendarmerie (national police) will deal with my situation.

At this time Elder Claflin is keeping his cool and I'm thinking I'm a dead man... the song I'll be home for Christmas ran through my head a couple times. The gendarmerie pull up and ask me to step out of the car and come inside with them. We walk inside and had an interview of my dealings why I was there etc normal police stuff. Then I find out from them if you have been in France longer than a year your permit is invalid-- I'm no math matition but I have definitely been in France longer than a year. So little red alarms start sounding in my head and genie from Aladdin mayday call sounds. I some how from the grace on high come away with a 135 euro ticket(I don't think I'm going to buy a suit but instead use that money for the ticket) ;( and a huge headache.

30 minutes after this incident we receive a call from President Murdock (in no relation whatsoever to my ticket) telling us to park our car. We get talking and find out the night before president had received a phone call from the inter region authorities warning him about this law of one year drivers. President found that 10 of the 14 zone leaders with cars have no longer the right to drive. Meaning a huge problem was at hand.

President after hearing my ticket story gets off the phone with us and talks to the mission lawyer and finds out that the states of Washington and Utah never ever have the right to use their licensees to drive in France.

In other news my voice is raw i have probably sung Silent Night in English over 100 times this week. We have two versions one is me singing pop and Elder Claflin beat boxing underneath and the 2nd is us singing together as a duo.

Montpellier is so beautiful with the lights and little shops all over town.
Elder Garlock

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Merry Christmas from Montpellier!

Montpellier Montpellier!

My voice is shot! Singing for multiple hours a day in colder temperatures is not the best for a voice as delicate and fragile as mine. Elder Claflin played a square garbage can as a drum and I danced and sang with a lot of zeal. I definitely tried to fulfill the Lords commandment to shout and cry repentance even with a voice like unto a trumpet :) I'm pretty sure if anyone of you saw me singing and dancing in English and French like I was doing, everyone would be laughing.

We have a multiple sweet experiences with many people stopping to listen to us and 4 people on separate occasions picking up our extra hymnals and singing with me and Elder garbage can ;) We have seen it go over a ton better with the other two missionaries singing with us at night.

I asked the members if they had a guitar that we could play and we found one from one of the members. Montpellier is a very, very musically oriented ward.

We got stopped by the police multiple times this week again and President Murdock is now giving us legal backing to present to police men when they stop us. I am hoping not to get arrested.

I am grateful for the light, knowledge and intelligence that God can accord us when we are worthily working for His Glory. I claim in no respect that I am in the category of the un ignorant because the more I learn the more I realize how much more there is to learning. I am extremely grateful for the Love Jesus offers me. O it is wonderful wonderful to me.

This is the work of the Lord and the more I work in living a life of continual purity, keeping the commandments of God, and following His Spirit, the more my testimony is rendered stronger and becomes more clear that this is not the work of men but rather the work of God.


Elder Garlock

Saturday, December 10, 2011

What a Wild Missionary Week!

Probably one of the most eventful in my mission experience. Where to begin?
How about David...

David was a man that i contacted in Centerville. He seemed quite interested and was very respectful. We set a meeting time and the night it was supposed to happen the buses were on strike so he couldnt make it. We then invited him to just come to church and he couldn't make it because of buses again. SO we finally set up a meeting on Monday. We met at a members house who is a stud named Amié. He used to be a professional soccer player until he got into a car accedent which crippled him and he has been in a wheelchair ever since. He met the missionaries and recieved a strong, strong testimony of the restored gospel. He has such a great attitude, perspective and really loves helping the missionaries. So it was perfect. David came on Monday. The spirit was strong. He even accepted to be baptised. He read, prayed, came to church and met with a us 3 times a week it was a very, very spiritual experience and was a miracle before our eyes. We left the meeting on cloud 9 and were excited to see David throughout the week. We then recieved a text message the next day which was completly on the other side of the scale. I won't go into details because it is not appropriate to share but Elder Claflin and I really pondered, prayed and tried to find where we went wrong, where the basis for a reaction like we recieved was rooted. We learned a valuable lesson. As disiples and members of the restored Church of Jesus Christ, we are asked to invite boldly simply and with the spirit. We can in no way have fear because of reactions to invitations such as these. David bless his soul really rejected pretty bodly simply and more rudly than anyone could our invitation in a very cowardly text manner. However, Elder Claflin and I felt peace comfort and reassured that we had fulfilled our objective. God doesn't only ask us to invite those who we have 100 percent surety will accept the invitation but asks and commands that as disciples who have taken on His Sons name to invite ALL CREATERS of our God and King!
Sending love and courage and Christmas greetings!
Also I have been singing a ton recently on the street and to whomever will open their door to us its been really fun cuz Elder Claflin beat boxes underneath me!

Elder Garlock

Monday, November 28, 2011

Eight Days a Week!

Golly time is flying.

Push ups in the morning are really adding up and the french language continues to become more and more intricate. I sometimes wonder how in the world I got by on what little knowledge of the french language I had a year ago. It was no doubt the gift of tongues.

Montpellier is the 8th largest ville with the most world's famous prankster named Remi Gaillard check out his you tube videos. I hear they are sweet from all the members. But as missionaries we are all dying because we can't watch em.

There has been plenty of opposition thrown our way in all directions recently it seems every time a great thing is happening there is opposition. If we can push the limits and be instruments in the Lord's hands there has got to be a miracle coming. Until then we work diligently and patiently on the Lord's time table not ours.

I am super excited for NOEL this year because I am totally going to take it to a new level Elder Claflin beat boxing and me singing at the place de la comedie. It is this HUGE POPULAR square in the middle of town.

Well, Christmas is in the air and Thanksgiving went well we had a little gathering with 4 other missionaries and ate a little meal which was fun. I am so grateful for your love and many prayers. I love the memories of Thanksgiving and Christmas together I can't think about it for to long or I get all trunky! But I am grateful for the unity that our family shares. What a great decision it was to live so close to family and so many other family friends. It really helped form my childhood and youth.

I love that it is easy for me to testify of the power of daily family scripture study and prayer. As well as family home evenings o ya!

Elder Garlock

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Not Enough Time in The Day!!

Transfer day has been crazy! Almost all of the transfer trains have been late today! My new comp is Elder Claflin. I'm staying here in Montpellier so I'll be here for Christmas. We have been looking for a new apt for the soeurs and Internet cafe so I can send pictures!

This past week we went to Beziers for an exchange. It was great to see everybody again. Happy Thanksgiving! I am grateful for each one of you.

Elder Garlock

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Zone Conference

Zone Conference!!

This week was Zone conference. Elder Nakken and I put on the lunch afterward and spoke after the mission presidents wife, Soeur Murdock for an hour according to our zone needs. It was very fun!! Tacos!! mmmmm Yes!!! We cooked the meat, bought the lettuce, tomatoes, salsa, sour cream, cheese and threw in a hint of lime. It seemed like it went over well, because everyone was stuffed and we had leftovers which we took home! I'm looking forward to shopping today so I can eat something other than tacos :) We also had an Elder from China cook two apple pies and a cheesecake.

This Zone Conference was a special one because we had personal interviews with president. The theme for the conference was for us to roar like lions. It was very inspiring and this past week after the conference we have seen fruits. Every companionship in the zone has someone fixed for baptism. Miracles are happening.

Randomly, since being gone for so long, memories will pop in and out of my head from back home. It feels like that world was just a dream. France seems so much like home now. It's hard to imagine I'll be going back home in less than a year.

It seems All of our people close to baptism have been letting opposition win. Seriously, there have been 9 people ready and standing at the waters of baptism but for one reason or another have not entered. I am hoping the Soeur missionaries that are coming will be able to break this drought!

My old ville of Béziers has been EXPLODING with 2 baptisms since I left and the branch is just gaining momentum!! It's so great to see the branch have new life, new fire and to see them thrust in their sickles to do the will of our Heavenly Father.

I loved this past talk about the Book of Mormon It was amazing!!! Everyone share it with your friends!

Love you all!!

Elder Garlock

Monday, November 7, 2011

Trains and Delays

Bon Jour!

This week was full of delayed trains and early mornings. We went to Lyon for our monthly zone council and presented zone goals and spent some time with president. It was rough trying to make it out to Lyon as to the fact it has been raining non stop and when I say rain I mean Washington real thunder lighting kinda rain!! Oh ya it was coming down! It flooded in the canals and all the trains were delayed or canceled so we had to switch trains 3 times to make it from Montpellier to Lyon.

Pauline, who is one of our engages for baptism has been progressing well and we hope to have a baptism the 19th. It is going to be great because her boyfriend is a member and we are definitely thinking that will be a future eternal family o yayayaya! o yayaya! We also met a sweet student who actually has her family in PAU.

My companion has 3 huge spider bites on his stomach it must be spider season. Last night we were porting and it was raining and for some reason the stairs had spiders in ever crack possible it was so gross !!

I love you all and hope y'all are visiting
Have a happy thanksgiving!!
Elder Garlock

OCT. 31, 2011

Where shall I begin? A wild week!!
Scary Encounter, a random woman from California, stake conference, stake conference choir, Recent Convert: Jean luc, delayeeeeeeeeeeeeed trains, Carcassonne sleep over, Elder Wahlquist.
Kidnapping not going to go into detail...l hoping the experience will be erased from my memory but long story short.

My companion and I were out in a little ville working there for a day and trying to call and contact everyone we could who lived in the area because we usually are not out in that direction. So we called this man and he said he was busy and he shortly there after called us back and said that if we wanted we could go with him to his house. So we arranged it for him to pick us up in this small ville and drive us there. We met up got in his car and started talking just seeing who he was what is does for work those types of things. Next thing we know we are on this movie scene-- like 24--- abandoned industrial factory with huge pot holes and him wrecklessly driving.

Spirit left and I was flipping out. Started asking him some more questions-- he told us he does the same things we do just with actions. He doesn't work-- all he does is figures out ways to take down the "men of the world" he has no belief in God and he confessed that we weren't going to his house but rather some of his "friends" that want to meet us. My collegue was in the front seat me in the back--- he put down the make up mirrior and looked at me like what is going on elder?

I was super scared! Thoughts were running through my mind like:
ok i can fake sick, get out of the car and run back to our car... but then I realized that's a dumb plan... he knows where the car is!!

Number two, I'm not ready to be chased down by a car and become road kill.
The other thought was I can strangle him from the back while my companion beats him senseless but then I thought he could easily call the cops and set us up.

So we both said silent prayers and went with it. He got us back on the high way and I was like ok maybe he is just joking I'll try the hahah funny man so who really are you, kind of thing. Tried it Failed...

So when we got back on the highway he wasn't really talking anymore and he pulled a u turn in the middle of the high way with cars honking fingers being thrown and 2 elders praying their hearts out.

We took a u turn down a road on the highway that was under construction and he started flooring it towards these back hoes and huge construction trucks about 30 yards before All three of us were going to die he whipped it down a dirt road off the freeway towards the bay and all these brushy areas. We finally arrived at a Romanian camp just like the ones I had known in Béziers. I calmed down and just said hi no big deal and they were nice no problem. We then told the crazy guy to take us home!!! This man was a lunitic.

It turns out that this man tries to legalize all the romanian camps. To make a long story short he tried taking pictures with us with them to show to the state saying that the church supports this up rising that he is a part of. It was weird stuff, weird feelings, just nuts!! We then asked him to take us home but he instead took us to another one and tried the same thing. We finally after all was said and done told him to take us home or we would call the police.

The random woman from Califonia was stranded in Montpellier. She had been trying to get to Spain but missed her train. She is in fact a travel guide :) She tried checking with all the hotels for open rooms but they were all booked. So we actually met her in this same internet cafe and heard her speaking american english so I contacted her. We tried our best to help her and called a few members and found her a place to stay. I do not recommend this to anyone. She spent the night at aimes house who used to be a professional soccer player who had a car accident and was paralized and is in a wheelchair. Seriously, one of the most charatible men I have ever met. We woke up the next morning and took her to the train station. Got her contact information to pass on to the Californian missionaries!

Stake conference was this weekend. It was great! The stake choir was lacking so I got a chance to sing in it with a couple other missionaries. It was intense because we had never practiced any of the songs together. Elder Wahlquist was actually in the choir with me it was really great to see him. He is as GQ as ever :) The songs ended up going pretty well!

At stake conference I ended up seeing the branch from beziers. It was a great reunion to see one of the recent converts who was baptized while I seved there at stake conference. On the way home from stake conference there was a train delay of 2 hours-- once we got on the train it broke down almost between ever train station and arrrived 8 hours after its scheduled time of arrival.

This past week was full of surprises! Seeing miracles daily!
Elder Garlock

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

What I Learned from Seminary

Halloween parties are already happening? Here in France there hasn't been the slightest hint that there is Halloween. However, last year there were a few trick or treaters so we will see.

Something I wish seminary would have done is to teach to the level of the students rather to teach the lessons given. It is a must to have the students testify of experiences and to explain their ideas, thoughts and feelings. If not, you will receive cookie cutter answers every morning and no growth or testimony or unity.

I didn't like scripture mastery because the objective became memorizing scripture, but I didn't know why it was important... why would I want to memorize scripture? I think explaining the scripture, applying the scripture and then have the students recognize the application in their own lives ---if not, no one will grow.

Often times on my mission, now that I have scriptures memorized-- how did they become memorized? they come into my head as experiences happened---- the way this has happened was using them---- applying them----- They have entered in my life and touched me when I needed help.

We must help invite and guide others to Christ and the Spirit will lead them touch them and reveal unto them the truth so that they can attain happiness and this life and salvation in the life to come!

je vous aime tous!
Elder Garlock

Monday, October 17, 2011

Week in Review

Bon Jour!

This past week there was a ward talent show it was insane there were about 25 investigators at the show in about 30 ward members so it was pretty fun. The only problem was it went until 10 o'clock at night and all the people that stayed either were late to church or didn't come the next morning. The the other missionaries and I participated and did a midget skit-- Midgets in the morning. It was pretty funny and everyone laughed really hard! The Tahitians in the ward did a musical number and we had a few Spanish songs sung and played. My favorite by far was this African song with a recent convert who sang this super gospelly song.

Last Monday was very, very fun! We organized laser tag with the young adults and all of our investigators that were of that age and had about 15 people show up and go to war! It was intense because my comp and I are super good friends but he was placed on the other team so it was war! He beat me barely because he took advantage of the not as experienced players but I shot him 24 times and he shot me 24 times so I consider it a tie! It was great for our investigators and companionship unity!

This next week we will be having Elder Caussé from the area presidency do a tour of our mission and then in turn have a zone leader council with us it should be edifying and intense! That will happen on Friday and Saturday in Aix en Provence!

love you all,
Elder Garlock

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Keep Moving Forward!

Bon Jour!

I feel like I read something not to long ago about Lot's wife! It might have been a conference talk or something like that all I remember is it was super insightful. It made that point about Lot's wife that it wasn't that she turned around that she was turned into a pillar of salt (that would be Moses law) but it was that she desired to go back to still be a part of sin. (the law of Christ) How often do we repent but we skip the entire meaning of the word repentance?

Repentance is a Greek root which means a change of mind we must change our heart might mind and strength to not only never do the sin again but also not have that desire. We must place protective barriers in front of us or we are still in the battle field with out a sword or shield or the essential needs of war. We need to protect ourselves in this spiritual war! We know who has won-- Jesus Christ-- it's clear-- the only question left to be answered is did we accomplish the will of our Heavenly Father during this time? Did we aline our will enough with His? The goal of prayer is just that--- aliening our will with our Heavenly Father's.

This past week my companion and I were in Geneva, Switzerland for zone council yahoo! It was great!! So international. high class and fun! But yet so worldly! We went and bought Gatorade and Swiss chocolate which was amazing. We tried to go to the American store but it closes at 6:45 not at 7 like all other normal stores in the world! It was funny I think the Lord wanted us to stay focused--- all 14 zone leaders in the mission :)

It was a crazy time trying to leave from Montpellier to get to Geneva because we planned to arrive at the Gare (train station) 1 hour before our train because we knew it would be hard to find a parking spot. Well there is tons of construction right now so we couldn't make it on time so we put our emergency lights on and ran to the Gare telling the other companionship to meet us there so we could give them the car keys.

There was only one problem both of the other two missionaries were not authorized by President to drive and they both didn't know how to drive stick shift. So they made it to the Gare and we literally threw them the keys like in a movie and hopped on the train as it rolled away. We then had to call president to get permission for them to drive. We got permission and then we had to verbally explain to them how to drive stick!! O lalala!! What an experience!! They were in traffic and we also had to tell them where the car was in this massive city-- it was literally impossible!! But after much prayer they made it home only with one scratch :)

Please warn all foreign missionaries to learn how to play piano and stick shift before coming to the field!!!

I love the Holy Ghost it is one of my favorite subjects to study!!

Elder Garlock

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

General Conference


PARIS TEMPLE o ya! berets all around! :)

Conference was renewing I especially loved Elder Erying's talk (in priesthood) as well as Elder Christopherson who spoke on repentance. We missed the Sunday afternoon session because of the time change but i like reading Elder Oaks and Elder Nelson better than watching. It was very frustrating because we had planned on having quite a few people at church for it but only 4 showed up.

We had a miracle! A chilian who has been living in france for the past 30 years-- saw the lights on in the church and just walked in! His name is Roberto and that NEVER EVER EVER happens! The Lord blesses us when we do all we can do to accomplish all that he asks. We have been fasting once a week and workin 8 days a week and are seeing the fruits of our labors. The Gospel has been restored!

Elder Jeffery R Holland during the priesthood session rocked he reminds me of the FIRE Grandpa has! We must be related to him.
In past conferences,I usually took notes and at the end had a nice overview of what the speaks topics were. However, during conference I looked for more personal answers and epistles and less mundain note taking. Here are some things I had come into my mind from the speakers.

Many talked about the good the bad the happy the sad the easy the hard. But true character is shown when we learn from the bad, sad and hard times and find solutions to our current challenges and challenges to come.
Life is driven with a windsheild and a rearview mirror so look ahead and if needs be repent and back up.

The Priesthood can only be used to bless the lives of others ---it is impossible to give a personal priesthood blessing.

I love serving here in Montpellier and its definatly tough to balance and do everything that needs to be done but I have seen daily the hands of the Lord in my life. I am so grateful for the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ and the purifing power of prayer and daily repentance.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Headed to the Big City!

Well this past week we went to Toulouse for blues conference. Meaning a meeting with all the 2 new missionaries in the mission. It was great to see some of my old friends from the mission in Toulouse. We spent 2 days with President and Sister Murdock. It was great to rub shoulders with them.

We actually had the opportunity to go out to dinner at Pizza Hut with them and the assistants it was a very filling meal. We also had the Gap missionaries stay with us for a day while traveling back from the conference because it is a very long trip to go from Toulouse to the little alps.

Today was transfer calls and I am transferred to Montpellier to be a Zone Leader with Elder Nakken. Its going to be sweet-- super sad to leave all of the great branch members and our Romanian engages.

So excited to be in a BIG CITY!!! It's going to be great to stay in the same zone that way I can come back to Beziers every once in a while to see some of the old investigators and members.

Elder Garlock

P.S. Check out for more information of the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

This past week has been a whirlwind we touched Perginan, carcassonne, montpeiller, and nimes all in a time of 1 week. Incredibly stressful but what a chance to see every city in our zone in a span of 1 week!

Elder Mitchell continues to progress and speaks great french. It has been unbelievable hotttt here-- honestly my finger tips are sweating typing this email its insane... but it is pretty sweet in the south of France.

Transfers are next week and I probably will stay. We have 11 engages for baptism. meaning 6 months in Béziers ooooo la la--- tired am I, but the Lord has provided for me in so many different ways.

Elder Garlock

Monday, August 15, 2011


Well this past week we have been working in the city of Nimes which is farther east than Béziers it is actually very close to my old sector of Vitrolles. We had to leave Béziers for security issues because of the Feria.

Spanish festival where there is the fighting of the bulls.

I am ever amazed at the attitude changing power the Atonement of Jesus Christ plays in my life. Throughout this week there has been much adversity... Us not being in Béziers... Phone broken... Contacting literally all day long and finding ourselves lost in an unknown ville of Nimes... however, through all of these worldly circumstances and really these "things" I felt joy, saw miracles, and personally grew.

I am grateful for the scriptures and the hours of studies we have during the morning. I find great peace and inspiration, personal revelation and motivation to continue on and help others grow their faith in keeping the commandments of God.

I had a unique rather funny experience while here in Nimes. During sacrament meeting we found ourselves without a pianist so I bit the bullet and offered to play. The first song to open the meeting I played one handed not a very well known song but we got by with few faults and 3 flats. At this point I was feeling pretty confident. (I should point out that normally I play in Béziers during sacrament with the simplified hymns. At Nimes i did not have that luxury) Then the sacrament hymn came I looked in the key signature and there were 4 flats... o golly... what made it even worse is I played the first starting note to get everyone started off correctly but no one knew the song. Absolutely no one... the conductor was trying her best... bless her heart... to no avail. There wasn't anything to do to help. Thankfully one of the counselors from the stake was there and gave us relief and decided to restart and sing another song. In the moment, it was tough but as Elder Worthlin couseled, "come what may and love it."

Preparation days are way way too quick to get a ton of letters out. I have definitely seen countless blessings while on my mission.

Elder Garlock

Monday, July 18, 2011

Lyon, France Mission

We love France :)


We recieved our calls and I will be staying in Béziers for another 6 weeks and be training! Super excited! Tomorrow I will be going to Geniva Switzerland to meet my blue! STOKED going to swiss tomorrow just for 2 days but still our Heavenly Father loves me!

Elder Smedley will be transfered to Lyon which he is stoked for! Béziers is a lot like Vitrolles in the sense that its a more difficult area. However, the past 2 transfers here have been incredible-- 4 baptisms!

Jean luc was happily baptised this past Saturday and our new member Soeur Tomescu gave a wonderful talk on baptism. The spirit was so strong! Because of vacations and traffic jams the baptism consisted of Elder Smedley conducting. I baptised, playing piano and gave a talk on the Holy Ghost. Another Brother from the branch Fr Marshes was a witness, Soeur Tomescu and Jean luc were present. It was the most touching baptismal service I have ever attended. It was an incredible experience because Jean luc contacted the church 4 weeks ago and wanted to be baptised. He lives literally 2 doors from Soeur Tomescu and we always teach together. He stopped smoking and stopped drinking coffee... it is a miracle!

For preperation day today we went bowling with the zone leaders and ate the famous star kebab to celebrate the 3 baptisms in 1 transfer! It was a hoot!

In other news...all letters must be sent directly to the city which I am serving in so my address for all mail NOT PACKAGES is....

29 residence la petit prince
allees paul riquet
Béziers 35000 FRANCE

Elder Garlock

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Short and Sweet

Not much happened this week.We met some people from China. We will be doing exchanges with the missionaries from Montpeiller more often because one speaks Chinese!

Brother Luc should be baptized this Saturday so we are preparing for that.


Elder Garlock

Friday, July 8, 2011

4th of July

We met our new mission president, President Mudock. There are some minor rule changes such as 60 minutes on the Computer. I shall learn to manage.

Any who we did an exchange with the new assistants of the mission and then the night after, the old assistants randomly showed up and surprised us. Today, the zone leaders randomly decided to drop by. So things here have been, needless to say, stressful.

On a lighter note Gioacchino was baptized and it was amazing!!!! Not a ton of members that came but our recent convert soeur tomescu who was baptized the week earlier, gave the prayer in french and it was a very big deal because she has only prayed in Romanian. After she said amen she announced," that was that... first prayer I have ever given in french..." She was so proud! We were so proud! awww the spirit was strong!

Elder Smedley and I had the opportunity yesterday, to go to the local famous cathedral and listen to the concert of the organ. It was crazy epic in France HUGE organ playing Bach and all manner of epic ness with massive statues and all manner of huge medieval flair.

There are tons and tons of German, Hollanders and English tourists so we are contacting many people in English it is so weird! Also a member family came from Germany and sang for the sacrament meeting. It was very moving. I feel so ignorant in such a historic place as France and Béziers. There is so much history and now I am learning to appreciate it. Still not fully understanding art but the history is a good start.

Today HAPPY INDEPENDENCE!!!!!!!! Today we organized bowling here in Béziers for a couple companionships so exciting!!!! BOWLING!!!!

Elder Garlock

Monday, June 27, 2011

Ubber Excited: Baptism

We were ubber excited at the beginning of this week because we had planned 2 baptisms for the Saturday however, we finished the week just being excited!

Mdm Tomescu was baptized! It was an amazing service with the spirit very strong. Giocchino we are hoping that if his heart can keep pumping will be baptized this coming Saturday. He has been on some crazy heavy medication because of his heart attack and so he didn't make it to his baptism Saturday with mdm Tomescu nor church yesterday. However, it will be great to spread the baptismal services out that way we can have more people see what it means to follow Jesus Christ and his example.

A true baptism, meaning a baptism which is valid in the eyes of God, consists of 3 things:
1 Someone must use their agency to choose to be baptized.
2 One must follow Jesus Christ's baptism of being fully submerged in water as a symbol of a new birth.

3 One must be baptized by someone who has received the power and authority of God meaning the priesthood.

President and Soeur Carter gave their farewell talks to us last week. Tomorrow we meet our new mission president, President Murdock. It was a very emotion time for everyone it made me scared to go home. Just thinking about going home scares me!
MARRIAGE o golly.
Love you all!

Elder Garlock

P.S. I am ever so grateful for packages and letters! Words do not do justice, honestly those are the highlights of the week!!!!

Happy Birthday and Father's Day!

Happy Birthday MOM! Happy Fathers Day DAD!

The more I meet people the more I am grateful for the gospel and for 2 loving parents who are so strong in this restored gospel. Elder Smedley and I are preparing for 2 baptisms this Saturday! If all goes well, we all should be in white. It has been an exciting process to help Mdm Tomescu and M Airde prepare to make a covenant with our Heavenly Father. Both have had an undeniable change in their lives since they have applied the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the Atonement of Jesus Christ daily into their lives.

Calito, who I have been working hard to teach the piano played the first hymn, "I am a Child of God," yesterday it was seriously a miracle and an amazing experience! Now, if I could only get him to practice. I think I can now relate with you, Mom, who had to force me to practice the piano. I am pretty sure I'll need a break from, "I am a Child of God". We practiced for hours that one song until he felt confident enough to play it in front of the branch.

Calito has also shown interest in going to the states next summer for a month or so. I said I would ask you if he could come live with us. He speaks Spanish and French so he would fit in really well in our family. He plays tons of video games and he needs to find other hobbies and interests. His mom is from Peru and dad from Spain. His dad is the quote on quote go to member for the missionary's because he is always available. And his mom from Peru has this rather heavy, cute Peruvian accent and always cooks us meals because they want the missionaries around Calito as much as possible. He just turned 15 and will be 16 next summer.

I think mom and dad you would be the best for him: no video games, always active, family home evenings, and family prayer. He needs to find new hobbies: running, swimming, biking, canoeing, working and try new things and stop playing video games. He needs to come to the Puget Sound.

Elder Garlock

Friday, June 17, 2011

Teaching and Playing the Piano

This week has been SO HOT.

Béziers is starting to have a huge influx of tourists so street contacting has been in a variety of languages portages English Italian Chinese polish Romanian Yugoslavian German Russian etc its amazing how many languages are out there and I only know two. It really motivates me to start learning other languages when I get home I was thinking Arab would be pretty wicked. I have been learning some since half of Béziers habitats are Arab.

On Monday there was an old returned missionary visiting with his wife and friend. His friend was in the Paris mission and knew of Nathan Oaks. The returned missionary knew Andrew Gessel. His name was Josh Lapray or leprey or something like that it was fun to eat dinner with them.

Giouchino, our sweet investigator has been having some health issues. This past week he texted us and said I am going to the hospital. So we go over to the hospital as fast as we could and he was laying on his bed, in very broken french Italian he said they are going to give me a shock like a BOOM. His heart has been beating faster than normal so I'm not really sure what happened but he was going to be BOOMED and hopefully have his heart Boomed back into rhythm. He had brought his Book of Mormon and said he had been finding strength from reading it. So we gave him a blessing and the Spirit was very strong. He was released Sunday and came to church which was 3 days earlier than expected the doctors were very pleased by his progress it was an all in all Ensign worthy story.

Speaking of Sunday, I was playing prelude during the sacrament and found out it was one of the young men's birthday. Calito. He turned 15 and is a giant seriously looks like he is 20. He may be stronger than Elder Smedley and I combined. Calito does nothing but play video games ALL day and ALL night seriously ALL the time. so I received some inspiration that I should try and teach him the piano. That way when I leave the branch they will still have a pianist.

So I received this inspiration and right before the President de Branch stood up to start the meeting he looks over at me and says can you give a talk? I shook my head yes and realized not just one person but 2 people forgot to prepare talks so I had 20 minutes to fill. I stood up and it was a powerful experience I did not even cry but the spirit brought our three investigators to tears that were there it was awesome. I spoke on gratitude, sacrifices; repentance and recognizing the spirit.

One part I really liked was before my mission I always thought missions were a sacrifices but now that I am here, it has been a great blessing. I know that our Heavenly Father asks us to make sacrifices for us to test our faith. He not only blesses us when we do our part but he blesses us to do our part and it is no longer a sacrifice but a blessing. I invited the branch to make a goal to help Calito go on a mission in 4 years time. The spirit was very strong and I feel our Branch is becoming stronger and stronger.

Today during our preparation day, Elder Smedley and I have spent it at the church teaching Petito Calito how to play the simplified hymns he is a very quick learner and has been enjoying the piano. I have been looking for an electric piano so he can practice at home.

In any case, this is a great and marvelous work!

Elder Garlock

Monday, June 6, 2011

No Transfer for me!

Elder Smedley and I got the call that we will be staying together for another 6 weeks.

This past week there were many people here on vacation from England and the states. At church, our little branch was tripled with 3 large visiting families. They were all here for the Medieval festival which happened this past weekend with jousting and dancing and all manner of festival activities. It reminded me of the UP festival on steroids. It was the second medieval festival that I have been to this summer. There were tons of little gadgets and cool random things I'm glad as missionaries we are broke because I probably would have bought some pretty useless things.

However, one thing which is not useless that I did buy was a Jalaba. It is the traditional Arab style of clothing that hopefully I'll be able to send some pictures because I could defiantly see them catching on as a fad when I get back and start wearing them around town ;)

Any who as I told you last week we have these English friends from Manchester and Scotland whom we bike with... side note when biking with them again today its was gorgeous with all of the HUGE fields of grapes and the biking along side the canal du midi and going through these little villes so romantic and cute!!!! I better stop there before I start being to descriptive with my adjectives... cute... gorgeous. I should not be using that language it was very ruggedly and manly and rugged :)

ok back to the story our 4 English friends quick run through:
Keith: tall, big nosed, long haired, hippy doesn't bike with us
Lucy: sweet, Scottish accent, and the girlfriend of Keith and is a biking super star
David:... david
Roger: retired, long haired intellectual who worked with Elton John and Bono's charity RED. Loves biking with us as well.

So last week Roger had just received a new bike as a gift from his friend and was excited to ride it with us. We did the ride and ended at Lucy and Keith's house leaving all of the bikes including Roger's new one at their house. The next day we passed by and said hello and went to our other appointments we than saw Roger in Centerville and he told us his bike had been stolen from Keith's.

What ended up happening was when we had passed and said hello the first time, a gypsy man and his son who knew Keith stopped by as well. We said hello to them and left shortly after they arrived because we had an appointment to go to. After our appointments, and seeing Roger, we came back to Keith's house to see what had happened with the bike. We found out that the bike had been stolen by the gypsies. Keith was up in arms, Roger was up arms, and Lucy was up in arms! We quickly left their house because it was a bit hot as we say in french and went on with the day.

As we were contacting in Centerville, we saw this bike zoom past us. I quickly ended the contact and spotted the gypsy kid. We confronted him and said, "whose bike is that ?" He said it was his and that he bought it in Centerville. At this point, I took the phone and started calling Keith and Lucy. Of course they didn't respond.

During this time, Elder Smedley was asking how much did they had pay for the bike he said 10 his mother who showed up said 100. At this point they were getting nervous because I was playing MR. Missionary Cop and they thought I was calling the police. Elder Smedley was just being a stud and ended up taking the bike from them, it was sweet. He got the bike back and we rode over to Keith's house.

Lucy and Keith we just amazed and asked, "where did you get they bike? How did you get it back?" It was already close to 9 so we just said we will see you tomorrow and walked off into the sunset. With Keith yelling at us "I'm going to become a Mormon!" ;) So epic, so sweet. I felt like a hero. I now know how Superman feels ALL the time.

I love all of you. Thank you for the letters. The work of the Lord goes on Nobly here in the South of France!

Elder Garlock

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Bowen, Basketball, Bikes and a Baptism

Where to begin, where to begin?

Elder Bowen, one of my old missionary companions has been serving in Carcassonne (which is a neighboring city). His companion called me on Thursday frantic telling me that Elder Bowen had been bite by Match, (who is the ward mission leader's dog in Carcassonne) meaning that he could not come to do the interview for the baptism as planned that day because he was in the hospital. To make a very long story short it all started as Elder Bowen was feeding the dog slices of ham. The dog, I guess got a little too hungry and bit a Mike Tyson chunk out of the ear of Elder Bowen. As Elder Bowen then realized that the dog had not licked him but rather BIT him, he started yelling for his companion to help him. Understand that Elder Bowen is a joker and he is ALWAYS messing with missionaries with jokes and acting like he got hurt or something. So Elder Bowen's companion non shalontly walked over and was like quit messing around... as he stopped in his tracks looking at the blood now coming from his ear he went to pick up the piece of ear from the ground which had been bitten off. He then freaked out dropped the piece of ear and the dog came over and ate it up. The owner at this point of the dog lost it and punted the dog in the face in hopes that he would spit out the part of his ear with no success. They rushed Elder Bowen off to the hospital and waited for hours until the free public health care could help him. Now days after, he has stitches and once he goes home they will re graft his ear back to normal. For the mean time (less than 1 year) he is the only missionary in the world probably with the permission to grow out his hair. Cool crazy story! Side note I'll be seeing him tomorrow and take some pictures. He says that there are pictures on his facebook: Mattew Bowen from Utah. Check it out.

Well I met an American who works in Footlocker this week. He invited me to play basketball with him last Wednesday so I got permission and played with him for a couple hours. He was not half bad actually. However, I made him a deal that if I beat him 1 on 1 to a game to 21 that he had to come to church. He took it and I beat him 21 to 0. We played make it take it and he did not touch the ball. Granted I made 5 three pointers in a row and drove in 3 times to win it. Seriously it was incredible. Still got it o ya!

We went on a bike ride with our English friends this morning down the canal du midi. So B E A Utiful! Its a famous canal that spans from Toulouse to the sea. It's lined with trees, small cities, vineyards and incredible views. check it out online its super sweet.

A Baptism occurred in VITROLLES!!! Way to go Elder Birk for finally breaking the drought. It was a lady that we had contacted together at the end of the transfer! Speaking of Baptisms Sister Flerimont was baptized Saturday! It was a great service. I played the piano and gave a testimony during the baptismal program. It was amazing! I contacted a man 2 days earlier and invited him to come to the baptism he accepted and came. Miracle after the baptism he said he had spoken with the missionaries in the past and wanted to be baptized but could not because he was homeless, smoking and drinking. He then told me it has been over 4 years since then and has now cleaned up his life. He has a house, a job and doesn't smoke or drink anymore. We engaged him to be baptized in June! MIRACLE!

Also something I thought you might all like to hear is in our homemade make shift baptismal font there was a lizard that we extracted out of it. Moreover, that was at 7 in the morning because the service started at 10:30. So we woke up ran over to the church started the frigged cold water and started boiling pots of water in the kitchen for 2 hours. At about 9 o clock we decided we'd better go home shower and get in our missionary cloths the only problem the font was not close to being full so we left it running and ran home. While frantically changing, showering, etc at home we received a call from Sister Flerimont's mother who asked if we could stop by her house and grab the food that she had prepared and take it to the church. We said we could in 30 minutes she said, "No that's to late because the food needs to cook in the oven." I then realized she had just volunteered us to cook the food. We sprinted over to her house then sprinted to the church. (The showers we had just taken really served no good)

We got to the church just in time to see the font begin to over flow! It was literally a James Bond (Elder Garlock /Elder Smedley) esk in the neck of time moment! After emptying out the font, we started cooking upstairs in the kitchen. She gave us no direction other than, throw this in the oven-- no time, no temp, no directions. It felt like a camping meal... just cook till it looks good. The only problem was we didn't have the time... it was then 10:30 and time for the baptism to start. We went down stairs called the president of the branch, who was late and started the meeting. It all ended, well a bit hectic but it was fine.

Yesterday (Sunday) was nuts! Every morning before church we pass everyone we can and walk with them to church we did not have time to pass yesterday so we ended up just going directly to church. During the 2nd hour I went on an exchange and left Elder Smedley took Frere Gonzalez and passed everyone we could we ended up have 8 investigators at church and 2 less actives we did 3 car trips driving people to the church and going back for more that went on for an hour. I then went and played interlude to start sacrament meeting. The meeting started. After the first hymn, I went and sat with our investigators and less actives after that I gave Camille the gift of the Holy Ghost. Afterwards, played the sacrament hymn after that a lady gave her talk so I went and sat with our investigators after that I sang a solo to a hymn during the meeting in french :) then I went and sat down next to our investigators and listened to the next talk. Then I played the closing hymn O yes I forgot to tell you that the president of the branch changed the songs we were singing for sacrament and ended up telling me moments before the meeting started. Talk about a little overwhelming because I usually practice so then I can simplify the hymns but he threw me a curve ball and I had to do it-- a strike out was not an option so I played unpracticed hymns and it actually went better than expected.Once the meeting closed I still had to get everyone back home. The Lord magnified Elder Smedley and I to get everything done!

I love you all. Transfer calls are coming!

Elder Garlock

Monday, May 23, 2011



We have a baptism scheduled for this Saturday with Kamy, who is from Guyana and is 9 years old! I started teaching him my 2nd week I was here and now we will be in WHITE!!!!!!! HURRAYYYYYYYYY!!!!!!

Well, there are so many things to tell you that are just incredible but its just impossible to articulate the emotions, the moments, and ALL the stories.

It was Keith, our English friend's birthday, which was fun. We played backgammon. It was the first time I had ever played. It's a pretty fun game. During the party, which consisted of Elder Smedley, myself, and Keith I realized how lucky I am to have friends and family who love me. While sitting there in his house, I felt for him.

Another thing that has hit me this transfer was the great blessing of the Word of Wisdom. Honestly, I have met hundreds of people whose lives have been maimed from alcohol and drugs. The cigaret packages here are labeled with, "smoking kills" and with pictures of the diseases that people get from smoking. It is an absolute testimony builder! So many people are literally enslaved to smoking.

I am grateful that I had parents who taught me the commandments of God so that I can now realize that the limitations or commandments of God are there to not limit what we become but rather what we do. Or in other words, we limit what we do to not limit what we become.

I Love you all. I encourage you to read, The Book of Mormon. an introduction to the Book of Mormon given by Elder Jeffery R Holland, a member of the quorum of 12 Apostles.
Elder Garlock

Monday, May 16, 2011

Preaching the Gospel in France

More Pictures!

Preparation Day

Simple Questions


Well, many things are happening! We have 6 people engaged for baptism and work is exploding in Vitrolles and Béziers. We had our Président's interviews this past week-- it was amazing. We found out that Vitrolles and Béziers are the two most productive and efficient villes in the mission but also the hardest.

I think we may have quite a few people in the mission who are scratching their heads over this fact. It's sweet! I'm in Carcassonne writing this for Preparation day. Today we visited the amazing chateau. I highly recommend looking it up online. We walked into the Huge Catholic cathedral and there was this men's french quartet singing.It was amazing! It brought me back to college choir and high school choir. It was sweet!

I must move on to the "weightier matters" if you will because there are tons and tons of little interesting details as a missionary but in the long and short of it all it doesn't have any really meaning or interest. Therefore I shift.

I love asking people on the road the most simple questions probably one of my favorite is... How are we saved? I shall leave you with a few scriptures that are very powerful:

Matthew chapter 5 verses 15-29

2 Nephi chapter 25 verse 23

John chapter 3 verse 5

I encourage all of you, if you have not already, to read The Book of Mormon.


Elder Garlock

Monday, May 9, 2011

Mothers and Missions

Happy Mothers Day!!!!

I was grateful to talk to all of you yesterday it was fun to hear your voices!!! I am very grateful for the love and letters and prayers that I have felt for the last 9 months.

May I also express the love I have for my Mother who has dealt with my know it all attitude for the last 20 years. I am grateful that I was raised with love. It must have taken much patience and prayers. I probably don't understand all of the sacrifices and hardships that you had thanks to me until I am a parent myself.

However, I appreciate your love and many hours of teaching me how to read. It is now hard to learn how to read french with out someone like the love of a mother helping you along. At 20, a mother's touch and hand is still needed and much appreciated and loved.

I love the APRON!!!! ;)

The work goes on and time goes on as President Thomas S. Monson, the prophet today stated, Nothing is as constant as change. But what is something that is constant, straight, and true? The answer. Following Jesus Christ by doing the will of our Heavenly Father. We know the will of Our Father in Heaven always by listening and obeying the commandments given to us by his prophets. Please watch the film: Which recounts the story of Joseph Smith who was called by God to restore the Church of Jesus Christ today.

Well, I love you all!!
Shout out to the Soundview ward: Doolys, Whites, Betteridges, Sorans, Batemans, Liddles, Hemmings, Muglestons, Van Valkenburgs, Masters, McCoys and sooooo, sooo, many, more love you and miss you all!!!

Also speaking of Mother's Day...I love my grandmas!!!!!

Which reminds me, hello GOODWINS!!! on the beach! I hope the Mariners will finally win the WORLD SERIES!!! ;)

And to all my friends in college, I'll try and send you a letter this week... just know I have been holding out to not distract y'all from your goal!!! (to get married)!!! Just kidding :) letters are in the mail !!
Elder Garlock

Monday, May 2, 2011


This week was fast Sunday and fast paced!

I met the members here in the branch in Béziers which was nice.

This next week I'll give you a call for Mother's Day.

In any case, miracles have happened this past week. The moment I arrived In Beziers, I organized the ville and found a lady who had come 2 times in the past to church. We contacted her, set up a rendez vous, and engaged her to baptism. She came to church this Sunday. So we moved her baptism to Saturday!!! ooo yaa I'll tell you over the phone all about it because she said that she couldn't be baptized. But wow!! It was sweet!!! We are now planning her baptism on the 7th day of May!!!

Any who things are going well talk to you soon!!!!

Elder Garlock

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Bunnies Don't Lay Eggs

Salut a tout le monde!!!!!!!

Once I feel as though I have conquered the challenges of Vitrolles, receiving a car, knowing the ville and really seeing changes as far as the ward and our investigators... I LEAVE! Yes, I have been transferred to a little branch and little ville named Bézier with Elder Smedley from UTAH!

Its bittersweet to leave Vitrolles because there were days that absolutely changed my life. It's the ville that I really learned the language and learned what success really is. It taught me so many countless lessons about patience, gratitude, charity, faith and hope. I learned to not only live but to apply deeply the gospel.

It is sometimes bizarre to look into the mirror and not fully recognize the person looking back. Yes, everyone I have gained weight but not only that I think a great change has occurred since I left. A change which is personal, a change which comes only through following our Savoir, Jesus Christ. I am grateful for the love of our Heavenly Father for him sending his Son.

As it is written so greatly in Romans 8: 38 and 39 Christ is a manifestation of the love that our Father in Heaven has for us. Scriptures, Prophets both old and modern, testify of Jesus to be the Son of God to be The Savoir to be The Christ and the Great Jehovah of the Old Testament and the Messiah of the New.

I too testify that we have a Father in Heaven who loves each of us and through The Book of Mormon and Bible. We learn about our Redeemer and He becomes not a distant pagan holiday but rather a friend. We are his friends ONLY if we keep his commandments.

As Easter has come and gone, we reflect and many of us realize the many witnesses and testifying proof that Christ lives and he directs and leads his only true church which so fittingly bears his holy name, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Through the prophet Joseph Smith the church was restored and The Book of Mormon another sacred testimony of Jesus Christ also came as the fruit of a prophet today. one of my favorite talks about The Book of Mormon was given by Elder Jeffrey R Holland who is a living Apostle of Jesus Christ. I wish to all of you a happy Easter!
Elder Garlock

Monday, April 18, 2011

Pigeons, Jonah Lomu and a Car!

Pigeons, Jonah Lomu, and a Car! WoW tHe UpS aNd DoWnS oF a MiSsIoN! Pigeons!!!
I believe I told you a few months ago while walking with Elder Herring to the Chapel, we contacted a man working in his yard. When he stood up to start talking to us, a pigeon was resting on his shoulder. Impossible to keep the conversation away from birds. I informed the fellow that there was a pigeon on his shoulder. It did not phase him. He just kept right on working and shrugged us off. :) In any case, moving on to Elder Birk, (my current companion) 2nd day in Vitrolles we were on the same side walk contacting a man and that same pigeon came and landed on Elder Birk's head! A priceless moment once he realized it was not my hand! He frantically swiped for the bird.

I tell you all of this to bring you to last Monday... We were walking to the church same street same spot, I spotted a bird and said, "Elder Birk, c'est votre oiseau préférez!" He responded and said, "there is no way no way!" But yes, it was that bird!! and yes, it Bee lined it or plutot pegion lined it for the head of Elder Birk--- not for me, but for him again! As we ran off in fear towards the chapel crossing lanes of traffic-- how stupid we were risking our lives, when a bird can fly over cars! Anyway, that's beside the point! Elder Birk and I thought we lost him. Our historical laughter quickly turned into fear ! It was right above us, swooping at Elder Birk and tried to fight it off while sprinting now for the church. We finally made it there safe. Needless to say we were relieved.

The story only gets better. Two days after the Bird incident we were walking in the same place and there were now 10 birds!! Yes 10!!! May be more, but we were paranoid. So we ran to the bus hoping not to invoke a war!! The day after that, we were walking down the same road again, I know at this point many of you are saying that I am insane because yes, this experience fills the requirements of the definition of insanity which is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. (Groundhog Day). However, while walking to the church again we saw a poor bird laying dead on the side of the road. We are not 100 percent sure if that's the killer bird, but we will soon find out. For some reason this story reminds me Matlock not sure if anyone remembers that show, but my mom, a mystery for sure!

Jonah LOMU!

Aka The most famous rugby player in the world! He is a stud we called him up after losing contact with him for a couple months. He will be baptized in June, if not earlier!!!! He will be married this May in New Zealand and than be baptized as soon after as possible. He has such a strong testimony and is loaded. He said that he wants to be baptized in France because that's when the missionaries first made contact with him. So right after his baptism he will go and live in New Zealand and than move probably to Spain. Everyone tells me that he is the Michael Jordan of Rugby. I believe them! People taking pictures and asking for autographs and staring when we are around. It's funny when people are trying to decide if that's really Jonah Lomu first and then two, if that really is Jonah Lomu with missionaries? In any case, he is a stud! I probably won't be here for his baptism because transfer calls are next week and I have a feeling that I will be transferred.

A CAR!!!

Finally! we should receive a car TODAY!!!!!!!!! Exciting!!!! ooo YYAAAA!

I got my birthday package! Thank you!!! Something exciting is that Elder Graham, my training will be going home next week!! He has finished his mission! Ethan Graham from Spanish Fork, Utah! He is awesome! Sorta sad but tight!

Well, things are moving along, we were a little sick this week but who cares we are getting a car!!!!

Love, Elder Garlock

Monday, April 11, 2011

Baptismal Drought

Well, this week high, high, high hopes... and... I'm still hoping! This past weeks things have really heated up which is a constant reminder that the baptismal drought is still there, looming over our heads. However, while I was on an exchange this week, we really found some people who are ready. One person we found named, Benoit said. "I am a baby Christian. This morning I prayed to find the church of the Seigneur". We have seen Benoit twice since and he is engaged for the baptism for the 30th April. I have a feeling I will be transferred the 24th right before my birthday--right before a few baptisms and--- right before they receive a car here. I hope I'm wrong! However, it would not surprise me at all. In any case this week, Elder Birk and I decided to really just go for it with Mdm Lavie. She has a testimony of the gospel but is scared to keep all of the commandments and be baptized. My very first lesson here in Vitrolles when I arrived was with Mdm Lavie and so we have a very large trust. I have a been more than bold with her on several occasions and she is ubber close to being baptized. Furthermore, the moment she chooses to stop seeing her boyfriend is the moment she will be baptized. It's a very complicated situation and there are many factors. However, yesterday we had a very solid lesson on placing God first and letting the rest work itself out. If nothing else an important lesson I have learned since being in Vitrolles is when I give my best I can feel satisfied. Well, something out of the ordinary this week... You know when I said the church building in Vitrolles is not in the nicest/best/religiously open neighborhood? Well, as Elder Birk and I were walking in the neighborhood, across the street we encountered quite a few groups of people-- old and young Arab french-- just the usual people and a kid of about 17 years old walks up to us and just stops us no big deal right? Wrong-- he rips the bag off of Elder Birk and sprints off. Elder Birk decides that he wants his bag back so what does he do???? He turns and sprints off after the kid... speed it up.... one thing led to another...... Elder Birk victor! Yes, he got his bag back! Elder Garlock side kick, o ya! Many more things occurred however, to keep this email G rated we shall leave it at that. The work is progression to all those who have written me recently I have not forgotten you, letters will be sent out within the next couple weeks. Love you all, Elder Garlock

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

General Conference Internationally

Bummer I missed a lot of conference. I got a chance to see Priesthood session in Marseille which was sweet. Elder Utchdorf and Elder Eyring gave talks which were sharper than a two edged sword. They were really inspired and shed light on many topics which I needed both as a missionary and as a Priesthood holder. I got to see a little bit of the conference with the BYU Idaho combine choir sing-- that was incredible! It made me wish I was back at BYU-I singing. There were so many people I recognized it's amazing how quickly I have forgotten so many names. When I return from my mission, it will be embarrassing if I don't remember family names or names of our ward members. I'll just trust in the Lord and ask for a ward list a month before I come home. That way, I will be ready for any new members. Well, it was very disappointing that our satellite did not work at our ward building, because we invited all of our friends and all of the practicing Muslims from across the street to watch conference. When we arrived, the bishop told us it didn't work but not only that but it also didn't work in Avignon and Aix en Provence so the next closest would be Marseilles. It was needless to say a bummer. I have learned some valuable lessons from this experience. The importance of sacrifice, a living Prophet and ancient scriptures which we have so freely to use and apply daily. Also, - I look forward to going to the temple. There are so many times on my mission I have thirsted after the peace, joy and inspiration that we receive in the Holy house of the Lord. In any case, I started reading Doctrine and Covenants last week and I am currently in section 60. I have been writing down the sections that I would like to go back and study because obviously in a few days I have not had the time to study the sections intensely. Furthermore, I have been studying the house of Israel and finding much joy and learning about the different tribes there is such a rich history. I love when you send me the letters from Dear Elder. I love hearing about Emily on Temple Square, Rachael in Missouri, Michael in Africa, Adam the Spaniard in Provo, Ashley soon to be in Argentina, Bryce in Romania, Paul in Albania and William in Chili. In any case, I hope no one back home is taking General Conference for granted!! I now realize how much of a blessing that it is to have a Prophet who is a seer and revelator which leads and directs us to always follow Christ. We are defiantly In the last days and as I have read many times in Doctrine and Covenants we must be ready to meet the Bridegroom by reading scriptures ancient and modern, praying always, renewing our covenants weekly, keeping all of the commandments and following Jesus Christ who is living. Jesus Christ showed us the example and the way to be perfect even as God, the father is perfect. For there will come a day when no man can live on borrowed testimony light. Be prepared by relying on Jesus Christ so that when he comes he will have no problem recognizing you as his disciple and that you will have no problem recognizing him as your Savior the Son of God even Jesus Christ. I know that The Book of Mormon is truly a testimony of Jesus Christ. With this 3rd testimony of Jesus Christ we see the fulfillment of prophecies both found in the Old Testament and the New. Jesus is the great Jehovah in the Old testament and the great Redeemer in the New Testament. Jesus on the sermon on the mount stated that you will know my Prophets by their fruit. We see with Moses his fruit was the 10 commandments. We see with the other great prophets of old like Abraham with his fruit being his posterity being blessed for all time and all eternity and that Jesus the Christ would be born in his lineage. And Now we see the fruit of a Prophet in our day with The Book of Mormon. Any one who takes the promise given by the ancient Prophet Moroni and reads, meditates and studies The Book of Mormon with an open sincere heart, acting in faith and asking in the name of Jesus Christ to our Heavenly Father if the Fruit of a modern day Prophet is true, I so testify that they will have a response given to them by the Holy Ghost. The only way to enter into the kingdom of God is to be baptized by water and by the spirit by someone holding the priesthood power to act in God's name. The only Church on the earth today with that profound power and authority is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints with a prophet living with the living Christ directing and The Book of Mormon proving that the heavens are open. These things I know by the personal witness I have from the power of prayer and witness of the Holy Ghost in the name of Jesus Christ Amen-- Elder Garlock

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Companions for a Day!

On an exchange in Marseille with Elder Wahlquist. Elder Wahlquist's Dad is Elder Garlock's cousin. They were born 2 days apart and left on their missions the same day, both called to serve in the same mission and they were in the same MTC District! This is the first time they have served together in France! Here they were on the streets talking to the people in Marseille and loving every minute of it.

Spring in France

Springing Forward here in the Cote dAzur also known as the most warm and vacationed area in France. It is starting to heat up! In two weeks there will be a huge medieval festival literally in our backyard. We live in probably the most beautiful apartment in the mission as far as I have seen. I hear Gap is pretty awesome but I won't be able to go there for another week or so it all depends on switches. Speaking of switches, yesterday I was with Elder Wahlquist on the streets of Marseille! It was an awesome time to catch up and see how much we have changed since the MTC his colleague is about to die (complete his mission) next transfer. I got to fill his companion's shoes while Elder Birk and Elder Barbar, were in a leadership meeting. It was amazing walking down the streets with Notre Dame towering over us and the famous port of Marseille and the chateau dif on the horizon. It was sweet. We actually had some fun talking to some Korean missionaries who believed that God the Father and God the Mother literally came to earth and ministered for the past 37 years in Korea. Definitely an experience as well as contacting together was a hoot. Elder Walhquist speaks very well and his colleagues all love his happy attitude. We also bought a baguette together and ate it over an awesome pasta dish that Elder Walhquist made for us. Mmmm it was good. Also I had the opportunity to go on an exchange with Elder Gubbay from Dubia who is french and the current missionary in Aix en Provence as well as Elder Heywood who was in the MTC with me and is currently the missionary in Avignon. This week was full of exchanges. We are hoping that next week we will finally receive a Car. FINALLY!!! As far as our amis go...

  1. Williams, who is from South America and we met a few weeks ago, is still on date to be baptized probably the 30th of April. He is sweet. Seriously, just been ready for the truth. He will also be turning 46 years old this Thursday. He came to church for the first time last week and just loved it.

  2. Eyasu, our other investigator who will probably be baptized on the 30th of April as well has become great friends with Williams. For Williams' birthday they are going to get together and walk the streets of beautiful Martigues. It is amazing how amazing it all worked out because we met Eyasu just before Williams and they have both problems speaking French but they speak English alright and communicate reasonably well. Eyasu is from Ethiopia and is married. Because of legal troubles, his wife is still in Ethiopia. We are thinking about teaching him this next week about eternal families. With Eyasu its pretty hard to communicate and break that barrier.

  3. Nga Sok is Cambodian. We met him while doing door to door last week. He lives just next to the church. He reminds me so much of Frere Leang in Pau its crazy. He came to the church this Sunday. We taught him starting on Thursday and saw him consecutively until Sunday. We are hoping that he will come for general conference.

  4. Sonia who always comes to English class is a lot like Soeur Sa Oliveira from Pau whom I baptized. Sonia takes notes and was hesitant at first to listen to us but when she started meeting the members they realized how many ties they all had. It was incredible. She cries often and we are hoping to engage her for baptism for the 30th of April. We have tons of hope for her. She was found when I was with Elder Bowen.

Those are our 4 leading amies who are SWEET.

I am stoked to hear General Conference. We probably will only hear it in French. I am starting to miss English a bit because with Elder Birk we only speak french.


Elder Garlock

Monday, March 21, 2011

Campaign: I-Phones for Missionaries!

What???!!!, you gave into the Tech boom buying an I-phone 4 that is sooo cool, soo jealous! Maybe you can write to President Monson and advocate for all missionaries to have an IPHONE that would be amazing. Then I would never get lost. In France, from ville to ville, all streets are called the same thing. Think about that with over 20 villes in my secteur and that many more roads with the same name!!! Oooo boy, yes that can be a headache.

Elder Birk from Denmark is a stud! I never met anyone so perfect. I'm pretty sure President sent him here just to humble me. This past week alone we have done almost more work than my entire 1st and 2nd transfers combined.

Yes, things are moving here. Like I said last week, we had 2 people engaged for baptism-- Eyasu from Ethiopia and another woman. This week we got a call from a man named, Sherman from Guwien in South America. He said he had met missionaries there and that he took the lessons. He has been in France for the last 6 months and has no friends because he lives in a heavy Arab neighborhood. We met him and engaged him for baptism and he said, "of course, I'll be baptized." It was a miracle.

Elder Birk is a beast with contacting working and just being perfect. I know that we have been blessed for how hard we have been working. I am super stoked for the next 5 weeks. Elder Birk is the only one willing to knock buildings with me. I really find joy in that for some reason.

We have found tons of Italian people this week for some reason. It has been awesome because Elder Birk can pick it up pretty well. Well, things are moving along. I love all of you and time is flying!! I can not wait to finally get a car here in Vitrolles.
Elder Garlock