Monday, October 31, 2011

"You wouldn't take your car to get repaired at the barber."

The beautiful Georgia sunset!
Dear Family,
How are ya? It has been an incredible week! The other Elders had an awesome baptism Saturday! We came and helped set up and my companion gave one of the talks. This girl is awesome; she asked if she could get baptized after the first session of General Conference! That's pretty legit! She has already brought several friends to church who all want to take the lessons, and her mom and sisters are working towards baptism! How cool is that?
We had an awesome Trunk R Treat party this Saturday night! What fun! There were plenty of non-members and less-actives there, so it was very effective use of our time. We got to judge the kids costumes and then participate in the spook alley; I scared the stuffing out of this member! She flipped then hit me! It's all good though; we helped her clean everything up and set up chairs for Sunday, so she forgave me. She also promised to sign up and feed us, so every thing's great!
We had an awesome Sunday! They gave a missionary report, and a return missionary gave a great talk on "waiting on the Lord". Waiting on the Lord does not mean waiting for him, sitting around doing nothing; it means to wait on him like a waiter does! We need to work and do are best to get the job done! Pretty cool.
We had a great Sunday dinner too: baked Z! It was great, and they gave us the leftovers! Awesome!
They kids in the ward are pretty great; they are studs in missionary work, and they are all pretty hilarious!
Dang, the cougars lost! Oh well. Is TCU good this year?
We also carved some awesome pumpkins with this awesome family! I made a bat, but Elder Nielsen's was better; he made a Mario! Buh duh duh duh duh Duh, duh.
We helped that family we are teaching (where the mom is still deciding) move the other day; we had a member bring a truck and it all went smoothly. We'll still see about them.
On the other hand, they other family we are teaching is doing great! They finally got a phone, so we can call them! They are moving eventually, and the husband has nearly recovered, so he'll be going to work soon! I'm happy things are looking up for them and I'm praying for them. The mom is still married to her husband, we found out. She needs the divorce papers and legal aid so she can get divorced then get married then get baptized! That's the only thing stopping them; they are way solid! They love church and everything about it! They can't always get a ride to church, but they said they'd call a cab if they had to. Talk about dedication! They rock! We had several awesome lessons with them, and took a member who remembers them from when the mom was in the ward before. How cool is that?
We are also teaching this woman who is Muslim; it has been a very interesting experience. I know little to nothing about Muslim culture, but she is kind and funny, and a little scatter-brained like me! Yay! I'm not alone after all! At first she wasn't too sure how she felt about Jesus Christ (or God for that matter), she says she wants to believe and asks us to help her with that. She came to the baptism, which was awesome because she felt the spirit. She had come to church and we expect her to come again. We have been killing with our LIMPS (Lessons with an Investigator with a Member Present) this past week; a return missionary sister has been meeting us at the Muslim woman's house, and she has been a BIG help! She served in Sydney, Australia, so she is used to teaching people without a Christian background. It's been great, and I can't wait to teach her again!
We also met this one guy who is non-denominational, and who loves to discuss religion. While this usually turns into a Bible bashing situation (to which we then politely excuse ourselves), he was sincerely interested in our religion, and really liked the first vision, and the fact the true church wasn't on the earth after Christ was crucified. He wasn't too sure about the Book of Mormon, but he was OK when we told him we read the Bible as well. He told us he has done some "research" on our church, which usually means they went to an anti-site or got anti-material from their pastor. He asked us if we believed Jesus Christ was an angel, and not the Son of God. He also asked us if Joseph Smith proclaimed he was the Holy Ghost. I have never heard that one before. Like always, we turn to the Book of Mormon in these situations; We showed him 3 Nephi 11, and he agreed that if he wants to know more about our church, he should ask someone who actually knows. You wouldn't take your broken down car to get repairs by some other person rather than a mechanic; so if anyone wants to know more about our church, ask a Mormon, come to a Sunday Worship, or go on (The Church's OFFICIAL WEBSITE!).
We said the same thing to a guy at McDonald's who told us he is on that preacher in Texas' side; that we are a cult. First we asked him what a cult was, and he couldn't give us a better answer than, "well... it's what you guys are!" We then invited him to, but he refused, saying he was told everything he was told by his pastor. He was humbled by our "would you take your broken car to your barber?" statement, so we'll see. Anyway, something that the first guy ( see beginning of  this paragraph) said (that I think is awesome!) is that after we showed him this, he says "Well, then Mormonism should really be called Christianity." That's right! Why hasn't anyone else understood that? He welcomed us to come back, so we shall.
We had interviews with the Mission President this week; he is a fantastic guy and we are lucky to have him helping us with this great and marvelous work! He didn't say, but I think that either I am staying here and training, or I'm going somewhere else and am training. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Oh well. It'll be a great opportunity to learn and grow even more. I have learned so much already, and I feel like I'm changing every single day! It has been so great, and I can't wait for more awesome adventures!
That's all I got for news this week. I hope that everyone is well, and I hope to hear from y'all soon! I can call/Skype for Christmas, so watch for that! Thanks again for the package Mom, it was wonderful! I sent you an e-mail; check it out! Dad told me that Shelby's team rocked, and is done now. Congrats, little Missy! I heard that soccer one, and football did well. Go T-wolves!
OK I la you Buh-Bye!
Elder Casey Guy Dickson
P.S. I'm sending a letter, look for it! And e-mail me! And check out my blog and page:

Monday, October 24, 2011

Talking to yourself is only crazy if you answer ...

You want to do what?

Elder Nielsen and Elder Dickson

What a handsome lad!

!Hola, Familia! ?Como estas? Everything is just fine and dandy here in the land of biscuits and gravy! We had a fantastic Sunday this week; combined with the other elders in our ward, we had 14 investigators at church! Holy cow! There was a family of 5 that we ran into the other day; another was a single woman referred to us by a member, and the others were families that the other guys are teaching. How awesome is that? There was also some really awesome talks by some recent converts; their talks had a lot of power and spirit of experience. The young women gave a lovely musical number (Guardians of Virtue), and we sang one of my favorite songs to close: How Great thou Art! What a great song! Oh, also, we (the four missionaries) somehow got roped into singing A Child's Prayer in primary for sharing time; the spirit was definitely there to help us (we needed it!). We had some investigators come late; the mom was sick, but still got up and came, which is pretty cool. It was just a good day all around! Today has started off pretty good too; we had Cracker Barrel with the other Elders and then went to play board games with a special needs kid who the other Elders are best friends with. We played Uno Spin; it was way fun! Not as fun as Wahoo though. Oh, the other Elders have a baptism this coming Saturday! Sweet! They are baptizing this girl who came to conference with her member friends and loved it! She asked if she could get baptized as the Sunday afternoon session ended; awesome! She is way legit; her mom and sisters are leaning towards baptism as well, so wish the other elders luck! The family that came to church we met while heading to see someone else in the neighborhood. The mom asked us what church we were from; when we told her, she said, "I'm a member of your church!" Turns out she got married at our building and was attending about 5 years ago. Her husband was taking the lessons and got baptized, but she didn't, so she isn't actually a member. She is now divorced to that husband and is engaged to another man, but not married yet; she has a daughter who is 7, and her parents are giving them a place to stay while her fiance recovers from a stroke. Kind of a long, sticky situation; but it was because of their humility that she decided she wanted to come back to church, and have the lessons again so they can all get baptized. That's pretty dang cool! I'm glad the Lord put us in her path so we could help her. We have to get her married first, then we could baptize them, so we are working on that first. They loved church and everything about it, though. I'm excited for them! That other lady who was referred to us is a Muslim, but her father gave her permission to investigate if she wants. She loved church and everything about it, so we'll swing by tomorrow and see what we can do. Awesome! Our other investigators are doing OK as well; that family I keep talking about is still on hold as the mom continues to study and pray about joining the church. They still haven't been to a sacrament meeting (which is the reason we go to church in the first place), so we are trying to get her to one. We also discovered she hasn't been reading the Book of Mormon, so we got to encourage her to get a testimony of it. The kids still want to get baptized, but if the mom doesn't, there is a strong chance of inactivity happening. We want to have the whole family benefit from the blessings that come from baptism and having the Holy Ghost and such. Other than that, the work goes great! Tons of people are asking missionaries and members alike about the commercials, which is AWESOME! They work really well; it gets connects the word Mormon with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which is all we ask. Baptisms are nice to, though.
Go Cougars! And go T-wolves! Dad has been telling me about them,
and it sounds like they are doing well. I'm pretty dang nervous about the chance that I'm training, but I know I need it. It is an opportunity to serve and have a greater responsibility. I hope I stay in this area, though; I know I'll have to leave eventually, but I have made some great friends here in the ward, and a lot of our investigators are soooooooooooooooo close; I feel like I still have work to do here, but I'll go wherever the Lord needs me. So, Devin: how is school? How is football? How is everything? Let me know what is going down with TOR. I heard from a kid in the ward their is going to be a Kung Fu Panda cartoon on Nick, so look for it and let me know if it's any good. So, Shelby: how is school and volleyball? What's up and down and sideways with ya? So, Mom: how is work and volleyball and the 9th ward doing? I heard about the Bishopric change; sounds like it'll be a good one. Say hi to Bishop Fitzgerald and Bro. Herrick and Bro. McDonald and Bro. Dowd and all the kids I taught in Primary as well. Eric wrote me; how cool is that? I just sent his letter, so I hope he gets it soon! I'm writing you a letter this week, so watch for it. I heard I have a package, but since it was sent by UPS they can't forward it to my apartment, so someone with a car will have to go get it from the mission office when they go up there sometime. If it's from you, thanks! I don't know what it could be (I hope it's candy!). The weather has been soooooooooooooo much better; it's even cool enough to wear a long sleeve all day, which is good and bad. I need to buy some one long sleeve shirts; I only have 2. I gotta buy some gloves as well; I didn't think of bringing any out. The weather has been great, the food has been great, the work goes great, and is the best website in the world! I am way excited for this coming week! Love y'all, Elder Casey Guy Dickson

Monday, October 17, 2011

Living the good life in Georgia

Casey's living quarters in Georgia. It has a washer and dryer!
Hey, everyone!
The whole e-mail thing is nice and the blog is too since I haven't been writing in my journal like I should. I've never kept one till now; I was doing great in the MTC but a couple months out here and I've been forgetting to do it! I gotta get on that!
Go Cougs! Sounds like Riley is the guy this year!
The work is going great! We had a couple surprise appearances at sacrament meeting; one of the 18-year olds brought his girlfriend, an investigator brought her mom and best friend, and a recent convert brought a friend! How exciting! Also had a surprise visit from a guy who works at Wendy's that we gave a card to last week. He got online, liked what he saw, and found the address to our church and showed up at sacrament meeting! Awesome! He has agreed to meet with the other elders (he lives in their area), so we're excited! Struggling a little still with the mom of our goldens, but we are working with her every chance we get!
We always jump at chances to serve! We helped the relief society set up for their activity; they were so grateful they fed us! Sounds like a good deal lol! Really though, service is great, and it's all about serving our fellow man without reward!
Doing my own laundry isn't too bad; it's nice that we have a washer and dryer in the apartment! Since it's cooling down, I'm not going through multiple shirts a day now lol!
The dumb thing about last week was that I got a nail in my tire... 3 times! In the space of a week! Give me a break! And it was the back wheel each time; spent 25 bucks on new tires and tubes; ouch! Good thing that came from it is that now I'm pro at changing tires lol.
We did an exchange this week; Elder Sarniguet (Sar-knee-get) was with me while his and my companion were at leadership meetings two days in a row. Elder Sarniguet is the new spanish elder for our spanish branch; I was the senior companion! Ahhhhhh! He was born in Chile, moved to Alabama when he was 12, and is fluent in English and Spanish, and is teaching himself Portuguese! Pretty cool guy; he looks and sorta acts like Fezz on That 70's Show lol! We had an interesting experience; we went to all his spanish appointments (so I didn't understand anything lol) and then we got in an arguement with a Jehovah's Witness lady. We didn't start it, and we didn't argue or yell or anything, but we talked and shared and invited (like we are supposed to do) and she wouldn't accept anything from us since we believe Jesus Christ is Jehovah (which he is; read John 1:1-3 and 14, then read 1st John 5:7; Jesus Christ is the Word, and the Word is God.) It makes me sad, because even when we showed her in the Bible were we get that belief from she refuses to accept it. I have nothing whatsoever against Jehovah's Witnesses, or any other religion for that matter; but even when we help people understand the Bible and share the Book of Mormon with them, there are some that just won't even try to believe or at least pray about it (which the invitation we give to everyone). Oh well. The work will go on; if we are faithful and diligent, then the Lord will lead us to the elect by the Holy Spirit.
Anyway, we had a good learning experience together and I'm grateful for it.
Oh, also, we met this one guy who was really open to any religion or any idea and such (which is a change). He was wondering why people are so against the Book of Mormon, especially when they haven't even read it yet. Wow! I have been wondering the exact same thing! We shared an awesome first lesson, and we hope to see him again!
Oh, we also found this really awesome hole-in-the-wall wings place that has the best wings I have ever had! We are definitely going back and teaching the guy who owns the joint!
It has been a good week, and I'm looking forward to the next!
Transfers are on the 9th of November; I had it hinted at me by the zone leaders that I might be sent to another zone, and I might be training! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!
Oh well; it has to happen sometime. I will go where he wants me to go; it will be where the Lord needs me most. If he needs me to train, so be it. It'll be a good responsibility position for me to learn and grow. We'll see.
I've sent pictures of the apartment; it's pretty nice and clean. We could probably have two more missionaries stay comfortably with us. Elder Nielsen says it's the second nicest he has been in; when you have been out as long as he has (that phrase is a joke between us missionaries), you have seen all kinds of apartments.
The food here is pretty good; last night I had 4 cheese lasagna, and it was awesome! Still have some leftovers; the Bishop's wife is a fantastic cook! I have been eating almost too well; it's a good thing I am biking. I'm not losing weight anymore; I'm maintaining. I gotta get a better exercise routine going.
 I discovered something; that is what the mission, really our life here on earth is all about; love. I continually pray for the gift of charity as I come to love and teach these people. Christ is the reason. Amen.
P.S. Hey Devin, did your package come yet?! I sent it two and a half weeks ago, so it should be there by now. How's everything? Write me, please!
P.S. Hey Shelby and Mom; how's volleyball and such. Write me!

Monday, October 10, 2011

"But Jesus wasn't Mexican!" The further adventures of Elder Dickson in the mission field

!Hola, Familia!
 Good to hear from ya! How're y'all doin? Did you get your package, Devin? I sent one for your birthday, let me know if it got there. E-mail me!
First, let me explain the heading; we were teaching a part-member faimly, and the husband wanted to know why we worship on Sunday when the Jews in Christ's day (and today) worship on Saturday. We were being a little smart and said, "Well, sunday is the last day of the week in the Spanish Calendar." He frowned, then said, "But Jesus wasn't Mexican." We burst out laughing at that. It was a good lesson; he is a funny guy.
We might be in a tricky spot with that golden family; the kids still wanna get baptized, but the mom still isn't certain if she wants to join yet. We foud out that we need to explain better that this is the only true church; she still thinks any church is a good church.
Teaching the gospel is the coolest thing! Even better than teaching the gospel is having them understand it and enjoy it! There has been plenty of times we are teaching someone, and something we say rings familiar to them, or they studied it that morning, or it was something they have always wondered about; it is so cool how the spirit can lead us to the right place at the right time, and say the right things to someone who has been prepared! It amazes me every time!
We did a lot of tracting this week; we met some really awesome people! We met this mostly blind guy who wants to read the BoM but can't really see, so we are going to help him set up a computer program that enlarges images on his computer, then download the Book of Mormon from, or else get it in audio. We met this other lady who was reading in James that morning, and when we told her about Joseph Smith reading James1:5 she got excited, saying, "That's what I have been thinking about, too!" How cool is that? Then we met this lady who was smiling a mile a minute, and we couldn't help but smile as well! She was super friendly and she invited us back! We also met this 13-year old girl who was interested in what we believed, and she invited us to her Life Church this friday. Might go check it out if we have time! What cool people we met this week!
We also had zone meeting this past week; it was good to see some of those guys from the MTC that came out with me! It was a blast!
Yay! BYU won! Go Cougars!
Ha ha ha ha ha ha! Dad sent me that picture of you, Devin. You're such a cheeseball! Nice hat by the way; did you get that for your birthday? Hope it was a good party; did you get my package yet?
People here in Georgia are crazy about the Bulldogs; you can always tell when they win or lose, the attitude of the town shows it. We seem to get to run into a lot more friendly people when Georgia wins, anyway lol!
Wow, a bishopric change. Strange that Bishop Fitzgerald isn't Bishop Fitzgerald anymore; Brother Smith will make a great Bishop, and Brother McDonald and Jensen and Miller are way awesome! Tell mom to tell all of them hi!
It's been a great week for me, and I plan to have a better one this week, and the next! The church is true, the book is blue, and God is a Mormon! Never forget that!
Elder Casey Guy Dickson
P.S. My profile is finally up! Check it out! Here in Atlanta North Area plus 9 other location s in the U.S. ( including Lincoln, Nebraska!) there will be commericals and internet ads and billboards; the media blitz stared monday and we already had 2 referrals from the site. It's awesome!
P.S.S. Hey Shelby, how is school? how is life? How is volleyball? Write or e-mail me please lol! I wanna know, can you show me? I wanna know about the strangers like me! Is your profile up?
P.S.S.S. Hey mom, how is work and life and volleyball and such? Is your profile up?
P.S.S.S.S. Hey Devin, tell me what you got for your birthday, and let me know how life is, as well as school and whatever. Is your profile up?
P.S.S.S.S.S. Hi Aunt Darcell and Uncle Charles and Rebecca! How are y'all? Is your profile up, Aunt Darcell lol?
Elder Dickson and his fellow missionaries in Georgia.

Monday, October 3, 2011

A kiss is just a kiss ... Casey's latest letter from Georgia

Hold still, this won't hurt a bit ...
!Hola Familia!
Things are great here in the land of fried chicken, biscuits and gravy! lol Seriously, that's all I've been eating, aside from the things the members feed me. Good thing I'm biking; I've actually been losing weight, which is awesome!
General Conference was incredible! I don't think I have enjoyed conference so much in my entire life! President Ballard's was good, but my favorites were Elder Callister, Sister Dalton, and Elder Holland. Elder Callister threw down, Sister Dalton's was sweet, and Elder Holland was bold as usual. And I always enjoy President Uchtdorf and Packer, and of course the Prophet! Oh, and Elder Curtis (I think that is his name) is related to my companion distantly, so that was pretty cool. It was just a great conference all around! We watched it in our stake center; we were some of the only ones there though. Everyone else watches it at home (if they have the BYU channel), or on
We had a pretty golden investigator there, who loved everything and wants to be baptized! She just needs permission from her mom first. She is in the other elders area, but that is still exciting! It was interesting to watch conference from an investigators point of view. I feel like I learned a lot. And I got so excited when I heard about the Provo Tabernacle; I totally didn't see it coming and we all sorta freaked out (in a good and respectful way appropriate for the chapel).
We had Elder King leave us this week; he was a great kid, an awesome missionary, and is now a good man; he going to be a great husband and father, and is ready to start a new chapter in his life. We are all going to miss him.
I got reminded of the importance of family when the children's choir sang, "Families Can Be Together Forever", which has always been one of my favorites. I never really thought about it before, but those young children know more about the Plan of Salvation than any minister or pastor or religious professor outside this church will ever know; they know and understand the great and happy message we are trying to share with everyone we meet. How great is it that we are a family for eternity? I think it is my favorite part of the gospel.
Sounds like a good week to be a BYU fan! I'm glad we beat them this time, last time it was embarrassing. Sounds like Riley Nelson is doing well; how often is he playing? lol I love "Remember the Titans"( I'm sure this comes as a shock to you); I'm still not too used to the short hair, especially now that it's getting cold down here; the cold is penetrating, so jackets and hats don't really work lol.
Go T-Wolves! It's good to hear our team doing so well. Is Devin still doing the thing for the team?
I hate missing Devin's party too; I hope he got my gift I sent, it should be there by now. I hope they all have a blast and a half!
The family is doing fine, just a little stressed; the mom wants to move out of the bad neighborhood they are in, but can't really go anywhere since her car blew up. We promised to help how we can. They should still be getting baptized at the end of this coming week. I'll be sure to tell her what you said. I see it like this: the wise man and the foolish man (one of my favorite stories) had the rains and floods fall on both of them. No one is exempt from trials and afflictions, not even church leaders or those called to the work; the difference is that these trials are more bearable because we have the gospel in our lives. The knowledge of why we are here, where we are going, we these things happen to us (which can all be found in the Book of Mormon, by the way), that God loves us, and since Christ suffered for us, he can lighten our burdens through His atonement. You are absolutely right, the gospel will help them endure, and help them find happiness in this crazy world. I know that this is Christ's gospel; His one and only true church restored once again through the prophet Joseph Smith, who was commanded and ordained by God to do so. I know that Thomas S. Monson is God's chosen prophet on the earth in this dispensation, and that his counselors, the Twelve, and all the Seventy's and all other auxiliary leaders are called of God to build up His Kingdom and prepare the way for the second coming of the Messiah. I know the Book of Mormon holds the answers to life's greatest questions, and you can become closer to Christ by using this book more than any other book in existence. I say this in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
P.S. Mom, Devin, Shelby, tell me how ya'll are doing. Did devin get his package?
Time for a short break, it's hot out here!

Worn out shoes are the best shoes.

Hurray, it's transfer day!

Casey Guy Dickson

Casey Guy Dickson
Called to serve in the Georgia Atlanta North Mission (July 2011 to July 2013)