Packages

Contacting Elder Rainock:

E-mail: cordell.rainock@myldsmail.net

Address: Elder Cordell B. Rainock
Mission Argentina Mendoza
Cabildo Abierto 161
5501 Godoy Cruz
Mendoza, Argentina

Sending Elder Rainock packages: It´d be best if any packages are sent in the large padded envelopes instead of boxes and contain very little value. (time frame: letters - 3 weeks, packages - around 1 month)

Monday, June 25, 2012

"the gospel can be made to help anything"

I will be in Highlands Ranch for another 6 weeks at least. We had transfer calls on Saturday. I don't have my visa yet and they are keeping me here in Highlands Ranch with Elder Peck. They don't like to fly people out in the middle of transfers anymore so even if I got my visa tomorrow I'd have to wait six weeks. That's okay though, I really like it here. I am a little worried about my Spanish but I'm taking good advantage of my language study time.
 
The people here live a super active lifestyle and it is a great place to live one. From mountain biking, hiking, camping, running, swimming, tennis, golf, etc.. Colorado is a great place to be. Oh, and I have never seen so many jeeps in my life. About every 10th car is a jeep wrangler, it's pretty awesome. There are also some beautiful (but gated) developements here with some houses that would knock me off my feet. We have members that live in most of these communities so we have the code to get in so we can work with them.
 
Anyways, on to more spiritual things :)
 
We have been working with a bunch of members here lately to get the work moving here in Highlands Ranch. The ward hasn't had a convert baptism in over 3 years. However, the ward is extremely large and new families are moving in all the time.
 
We taught some great lessons this week! I love being here out in the field. We get to work with people in so many varied situations of life. It's awesome how the Gospel can be made to help anything. All problems, concerns, and trials we face can be helped with some aspect of the Gospel; it's a beautiful thing.
 
This week I was a part of something special and I know that the Priesthood authority is on the earth today. I am grateful for that and to be a witness of God's power. His love is abounding and His miracles are never ceasing.
 
Saturday night we went to a baptism of someone that Elder Peck taught in his last area. He was a middle-aged man and had come a long way. His family had always been members but he never had any interest. President Maynes (the Denver South mission president) was there and spoke on baptism. It was a great day for that man and his family.
 
I am grateful to be a part of this work and to be here in the Denver South mission. I feel of the Lord's strength and love every day. I see Him working in my life and in the life of those around me. I'm praying for you guys back home and thank you for all of your prayers.
 
Love,

Elder Rainock

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The keystone of our religion

It has been a great week. We have made some good contacts, worked with a TON of members, and had some good companionship study.
On Monday, after I got done emailing, we went and dunked with Rocky (the mascot for the Denver Nuggets) off a trampoline he set up in one of the local church gyms. It was awesome!! Rocky did a little flip dunk for us and we all had a good time. 


video
video
We had a dinner appointment that night at a part-member family home. One of their pet snakes had gotten loose a few weeks before and they hadn't been able to find him.. well them found him. The dad was in the basement and found it caught in a mouse trap :/ It was pretty sad for the family (except for the mom who hadn't been able to sleep for weeks because of it).
On Tuesday we had some great lessons and we lost our keys. We looked everywhere for them about 10 times.. turned out they were in my shirt pocket. Elder Peck had used them and tossed them in my shirt pocket while I was on the phone with some other Elders. I never keep them there so I didn't think to look.. haha. My shirt pocket is always heavy with pass along cards and other stuff so that didn't raise an alarm to me.
Wednesday night we had a good less with a man who is suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. He has been struggling recently and needed some upliftment for him and his family. It was a great lesson, everyone was uplifted, the spirit was felt, and laughs were had.
Thursday we had a great district meeting. I gave a training on the difference between the Reformation and Restoration that went well. I probably learned more from preparing the training than the Elders I taught learned. We also met with a crazy guy who lives in a trailer - he is quite the character and has had a rough life.. neverthless his is always full of insight and seems to know his purpose in this life pretty well. He is one of those examples of people that you shouldn't judge by their appearance.
Friday during breakfast Elder Peck witnessed a hawk taking out a little black-bird in the back yard. I missed it but still got to see the hawk sitting their with the bird in its' mouth. We always went to the newly renovated Highlands Ranch mansion. It was the original mansion home that sat on 10's of thousands of acres here in Colorado. It has been run down for a long time but there was a recent 6 million dollar renovation done. It is now a place for weddings, receptions, parties.. etc. We went to get out and public and make contacts, it went well and a lot of people asked why we were wearing name tags.. haha. So we gave them the business.
Saturday we made some good contacts, knocked on some doors, and followed up on the new member missionary program that we are doing with members.
Sunday we had some investigators at church and that was nice. It is always great to see them come and take that step of faith. It can be intimidating for new members but they never seem to regret it. We have great, open, and warm wards here that always welcome unfamiliar faces. We had an awesome lesson with an investigator lady and brought along a recently returned missionary along with us. He was in Mexico, injured his foot, was receiving terrible medical care (they even gave him a pregnancy test?), and his foot was only getting worse. So he got sent home early on a medical release to get treated here. Anyways, our lesson with him was great. For dinner we had a pork roast at a member's home with some of the best BBQ sauce I have ever tasted.. he made it himself.
I'd like to end with some personal revelation I have received this week. I have always felt uncomfortable when we say "the Book of Mormon is the keystone of our religion." As soon as I hear that I start wondering why we claim the Bible to be of equal importance when we call the Book of Mormon the keystone. It has something that has always bothered me. As I was reading the introduction to the Book of Mormon this week and received an answer to this personal issue. The last paragraph in the introduction states,
"Those who gain this divine witness (that the Book of Mormon is true after reading it) from the Holy Spirit will also come to know by the same power that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world, that Joseph Smith is his revelator and prophet in the last days, and that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the Lord's kingdom once again established on the earth, preparatory to the second coming of the Messiah."
It was then I realized that the phrase "the Book of Mormon is the keystone of our religion" is unrelated to the Bible. Our church claims to be the restored gospel of Jesus Christ that He established while on the earth, we claim to have a prophet who receives revelation from God, we claim the Book of Mormon to be the word of God, we claim that Joseph Smith was called as a prophet of God in these Latter days to restore that church (just like it has been done many times through prophets throughout history), we claim that Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer, etc...
Those are bold claims, and either they are true or they are not. The way we can know if all those things are true is through the Book of Mormon. When we gain a testimony that the Book of Mormon is true, we gain a testimony that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world because the Book of Mormon testifies of Christ. When we gain a testimony that the Book of Mormon is true we gain a testimony that Joseph Smith was his revelator and prophet because if he were not, God would not have given him the power to translate it from the plates. When we gain a testimony that the Book of Mormon is true we gain a testimony that this is the restored church because it is the medium by which it was brought forth by a prophet.
I have a testimony that the Book of Mormon is the keystone of our religion. Not because it is more important than the Bible, because it isn't. But because it supports all of our claims.. when we know the Book of Mormon is true, we know it is all true.
I hope everyone is doing well, your prayers are being felt and I am praying for you back home as well.
Love, Elder Rainock

Monday, June 18, 2012

"we like to sing loud and proud"

 written June 11
 
Elder Peck and I had a great week. The work is progressing and we made some great contacts. We get along pretty well and keep each other laughing. Every time we have companionship study or planning we belt out hymns because we like to sing loud and proud.. even though it sounds pretty flat and terrible. There is no word on the visa stuff and there won't be any until I pretty much have it in my hands.
 
On Monday night I got to share the message of the Restoration with a lady in our ward in Spanish. I did it to practice Spanish but also to invite the Spirit into their home; the best way to gain the trust of members is to bring the Spirit into their homes. So I am getting a decent amount of practice with the language along with my hour of language study each morning.
 
Tuesday was my first day on a bike.. it was pretty rough because of the altitude and I don't have much stamina. Also it seemed like the wind was in our faces all day; we'd be going one with the wind in our face and then turn around and it'd start blowing the other way, haha. The heat wasn't too bad (even though it almost hit 100) because it isn't humid here. We made some good contacts and had some good lessons with members. We are working on putting names on the ward roster with faces.
 
On the first Wednesday of every month we get to go to the temple. That was a nice surprise because I wasn't expecting to go to the temple again until after my mission since we wouldn't have one in my area in Mendoza. That day I went on splits with another missionary and I went to his area. We helped address some concerns people had and had some fantastic lessons with some members. That night we went to a members home - the mother had a southern accent. It made me feel like I was back in Virginia; that was kind of refreshing. Also we talked to a man walking his half husky + half wolf around... It definitely looked like a wolf though. It was bigger than the fully grown St. Bernard that another family we are teaching has.
 
On Thursday morning we had a great district meeting with the missionaries in our district. We had lessons on desires, faith, and charity. It was very inspiring to me. The Lord grants unto us according to our desires and our faith. If we desire to for others to hear the word of God and we have faith that God will place those people in our path.. that is exactly what will happen. It's hard to keep that faith and desire when you get an earful from atheists or anti-Mormons but it's important to just move on and carry on with the work. One thing that Elder Peck says after we run into those people is, "that's just an apology we can look forward to on the other side".. we get a good laugh and it lifts our spirits a little.
We also had two dinner appointments on Thursday... We forgot about one of them until we were already 10 minutes late.. to top it off the dinner was a about 30 minutes away. We were a late for that but it was with a super nice member family so we were forgiven. Another thing that Elder Peck likes to say is "it's a great day for America".. It's pretty funny. When we wake up in the morning, when something good happens, when something bad happens, you can count on him saying it. Good times..
 
On Friday I had the biggest snow cone of my life. When the girl was making it I was amazed at how big it was... and she kept on adding more... it was delicious but waaay too much sugar. I definitely overdosed on sugar that day because some members gave us cookies and desserts that we can't deny.. haha. We had a good dinner that night and shared a new member missionary program with two member families. The importance of members in the missionary work is sometimes unrecognized. But when people are introduced to the church through members they already have a social support system. It is important that people are baptized, but it is even more important that they continue coming to be continually nourished by the word. Baptism is not a final decision and an end, it is just the beginning.
 
Saturday was a very solid day. We really have to take advantage of Saturdays because it is when most people are home. We met with a bunch of members for the new member missionary program and made some good contacts for some potential investigators.
 
Church on Sunday was nice and the rest of the day was pretty similar to Saturday.
 
Today is P-day and we have something pretty awesome on the schedule!! The mascot (Rocky) for the Denver Nuggets is LDS and is bringing his trampoline and mats to one of the church buildings in our zone for the missionaries. DUNK FEST!!! I'll have some good videos and pictures of that that I'll send home next week.
 
I'm praying for all of you. Things are great here in Highlands Ranch.. just living the dream.
 
Alma 31: 34-35

Thursday, June 7, 2012

"It is beautiful here and I love it"

written June 6th

I arrived in the Denver Colorado South mission early Saturday morning for my reassignment. It is beautiful here and I love it so far. I am in a very nice area called Highlands Ranch, Colorado. The people are great and make me feel like I am at home. I am not in a Spanish speaking area but I still have an hour of language study each morning so I'm going to need to take good advantage of that time.
 
Elder Morley and I left for the Denver South mission early on Saturday morning while Elders Marsh, Hurley, and Hone got reassigned to the Colorado Springs mission. Elder Morley and I both had opportunities to share the Gospel on the plane and it was good experience.
 
My trainer is Elder Peck and he has taught me a ton so far. He is very friendly to everyone and has been blessed as a very good peoples' person. His teaching abilities are excellent and he is a very good communicator. I am learning from one of the best.
 
My first day in the field they had a baptism set up so I got to be there for that. Her name is Lori and she is a super happy all the time. Apparently she has come a long way and it was great to see her be baptized into the church.
 
Sunday was nice and I met a ton of fantastic members at church. We serve over two different wards - the Roxborough ward and Highlands Ranch ward. We had dinner at a members house and they told us some crazy mountain lion stories that occurred right in their back yard. We also saw a deer just chilling in the garden of one of the houses nearby so I got a quick picture of it.
 
This morning we studied and played some basketball since it is P-day. I'm excited to get back to work tonight though. I haven't gone a day yet without meeting some interesting people.. some very interesting people, haha. But that is what keeps things..well.. interesting.
 
I am having a great time here. This mission is fantastic and I'm glad to be here. I am praying for all of you and thank you all for your prayers. 
 
 
 Pointing to my two mission areas

Sunrise when I was leaving Provo

Me, Elder Peck, Elder Castillo (the one who helped Elder Peck prepare her for baptism) and Lori.

A deer just chilling in the garden by a house. 
 
 
 

Friday, June 1, 2012

"Less than a week left... and I don't know where I'm going"

 written May 29th - since writing this email, Cordell has discovered that he will be spending the first part of his mission in the Denver, Co South mission, and will stay until he can get his VISA to Argentina.  He leaves the MTC on Saturday.

Less than a week left in the MTC and I don't know where I'm going.. haha. But I think it's pretty exciting to not know where I'll be serving right away. I'm preparing to teach the Gospel either way and wherever I go there will be people who need it. Spanish is coming along fine and we are being pretty dilligent in our district about speaking it as much as we can.
Elder Marsh and I are 2 of about 16 Elders who have been chosen to start some lessons when the new missionaries come in on Wednesday. What the new missionaries do on their first day is get situated in their residence, classrooms, and then teach investigators in large groups of about 30. I think I remember mentioning it in my first blog entry. Anyways, they have missionaries that have been here for a while kick-start the lesson and get it rolling for the new missionaries. So that is what Elder Marsh and I are going to do.. no pressure.
In class this week we reviewed a talk by Gene R. Cook called "Faith in the Lord, Jesus Christ." There are two types of faith. One type of faith is faith to know something will happen - and you wait for that thing to happen. There is another type of faith - that is the faith to MAKE things happen. This talk is about faith to make things happen. It was very inspirational for me.
I don't have much more to write this week, but I am doing well. I can't wait to get out into the field! The next email I'll be sending will be from the mission field.. wherever it is that the Lord needs me at this time. Although I have been here for 8 weeks I still learn so much every single day. Some people are nervous about not knowing everything before they leave.. but learning is something we'll be doing our whole lives. If the Lord wanted the smartest, wisest, most knowledgable missionaries he wouldn't be calling 19 year old boys. He has called us to build His kindgdom and to build ourselves. I expect to learn something new about the Gospel every day of my mission. If I don't then I am doing something wrong. And although I may not know every single answer.. I trust in the Lord that he will allow me to say what I need to say.. when I need to say it.
I love all of you guys and I am continuing to pray for you. I know I am being blessed from all of your prayers back home. I hope all is well. Don't worry about me because if there is any time in my life that I'll be safe, this is it.
"No unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing. Persecutions may rage, mobs may combine, armies may assemble, columny may defame, but the truth of God will go forth boldy, nobly, and independent till it has penetrated every continent, visited every clime, swept every country, and sounded in every ear, till the purposes of God shall be accomplished and the Great Jehovah shall say the work is done"