Sunday, June 19, 2011

Summer is Here! Father's Day Approaches...


I’m proud of my family doing missionary work! Yeah! I hope that the dinner with the missionaries and their investigator goes well. Those lessons taught in Members homes can be some of the strongest lessons and teaching opportunities that you can find. That is from personal experience. It's a great thing.

Josh and EOGs. I think it's ridiculous to have classes 3 weeks after the tests are over. What's the point? It just doesn't make sense.

Jenna is Jenna, our prolific reader. :)  I hope she’s enjoying having some more time to read.  She probably has some good books for me to take on when I get back.

Happy Early Birthday Mom! Have a great one!  :)

Do I get to use some of the iTunes gift card when I get back? I'll have to listen the new Cars Cd sometime.

As Matthew Watkins would always say, "Leah Maria make me-a tortilla!" Leah's coming home this week. Awesome. We'll see how everyone adjusts to her being home. 


  • The Baptism was awesome! :) My comp Elder Glaus, baptized the "recent convert" and I baptized the younger brother, the "child of record." This song is actually the 4th time we sung in consecutive weeks at baptisms. 3 being Spanish, 2 being ours. :-D  I do have a great singing companion and we do some great things to harmonize and our voices blend very nicely together. It's reminiscent of the PriestQuorumQuintet days. I looking forward to singing when I get back. If Joshua's voice is deep enough I'll start teaching him bass. He'll thank me later for it. ;-) We've been singing in Spanish as well, so it's been very cool. We sang "Brightly Beams our Father's Mercy" = "Brillan Rayos de Clamencia" 
  • My clothes are doing fine. When there are small rips and tears I sew them up and they're good as new. I've become quite good at sewing things. :P The bike is doing well, but I lent it to another missionary because his bike got stolen. (he just got transferred, so I have it back.) I'm thinking that I may just try to sell the bike to another missionary before I come home... I'll let you know if I need anything.
  • We don't have any miraculous tracting or contacting stories, but we have met some pretty amazing people who have overcome drug addictions here, but coming to Jesus in their various faiths. Those were some very interesting conversations.
  • Dinners are 99% with Hispanic families, but every once in awhile we'll eat with some Gringos, mostly that always know Spanish. Go figure. We have some amazing members, but I would take another hour talking about them all. We get dinners pretty much every night, most of the Latino wards are good about that except for my first area (being a greenie in Santa Rosa) which looking back is understandable because there were six of us missionaries.
  • I’m getting along fine with my expired drivers License. Just not doing the driving now. 

I know my time is far spent.  :) I'll get my rocket boosters going. Turning on the jets and getting some more work done. I do need to turn up the heat, even though I'm seeing that we're already accomplishing a *lot*. I'm moving forward, and will be excited to make miracles happen here in Vallejo.


  • I’m looking forward to the package you sent! Yay! Oooooo, tape recording! It'll be nice to hear your voices again.
  • Moe Joe's burgers sounds great! The Inferno Burger sounds like a worthy challenge. Grilled Jalapenos are worse than regular ones. It all has to do with the oils.
  • Devin Romney, Congrats on your mission call. Tempe, Arizona. That's where I was born! Spanish culture is something you'll never forget.
  • I actually enjoy cooking. There are some days where I really don't want to bother with it, but that's life. I can cook just about anything, recipe or no.
  • Good luck with the health conscious change. I dunno if I can give up on your fabulous homemade bread though Mom. It's not worth giving up.
  • Father's Day is here! That's pretty wild! It's just another reminder that home is around the corner...
  • Singing has been awesome. Everyone just loves it. see Dad's email for more details.
  • Don't die up there at Girl's camp Mom! :) I'm not worried, you can handle it, you raised us 4 kids! Ha! :-D

Things have been going well here! I'm loving life, and working hard. I'll make these last few months the best. :) It'll be nice to have some mail this week. I love you all!

Love your son and missionary,

Elder Richard Mackelprang

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Two Transfers / Three Months / < 100 Days Remain…


It's not the first time I've heard or thought about singing Happy P-Day to the Happy Birthday tune. I can imagine it perfectly. Although if you want to send me something on a recording you can ask Kayla to come over, she has a recorder that we've sent each other back and forth a few times. :) If you want to.

The baptism was fantastic! That was the 2nd week in a row that I've sung a musical number with another Spanish Elder, Elder Estep. Another best friend. He lives in Georgia. Has a great voice. We sang again this past Saturday for one of their baptisms, and we will be singing again this Saturday for ours this Saturday. So I've gotten a lot of singing in! I've loved it though. :P We're getting popular! Everyone wants us to sing at the baptisms now.

Robert has been very diligent in his studies. I commend him in that. I hope that I can work as hard and put my heart into my studies. I know I can, but I have to love what I'm doing. So that's why I think I can work with the Animation program. It'll be a challenge, but it'll be worth it.

I'm proud that Leah has grown up so much since I was home. She used to be holed up in the house all the time, and now she's started to use her wings. :) It'll be good to see how things will fit together with the family when we're all back together. The other kids have been growing so much too... it's a little weird being the eldest, but I wouldn't give up on the privileges it comes with. ;-)

Exercise. Yeah. :P. The balance between exercise and proper diet is a hard one. Especially since we love bread so much. Your homemade bread can't be matched.

I would like a package if that's alright with you.


  • Teriyaki Beef Jerky (Dr. G recommended it as a good snack)
  • stamps (probably 30)
  • drawings/ letters/ etc. from the kids and from my mission buddies
  • *small* goodies/ a few chocolates
  • pictures?
  • something nostalgic? just an idea. I really don't know what.


  • Seminary Teacher again, huh Dad? You must be pretty awesome! 5 years running.
  • Rose Prom. Dances are awesome, but the guys are scared. They fear rejection. That's sad.
  • Less than 100 days! I figured that out this past Wednesday. That was pretty intense.
  • Here is the summer! Scout Camp!!!
  • Rachelle Romney's Missionary Farewell. Good luck in Chile! Dios este contigo hasta vernos!
  • Wait -- Christina Hiltscher is getting married? Huh. I guess it was bound to happen. How has she been doing in BYU-Hawaii?
  • I am planning on have lunch with Aunt Marsha and the Taylor clan in early August. That should be a wonderful treat.
  • The weather is mixed right now. small rain some days, and brilliant sunshine on others.

How's the exercise program going?

  • I'm back on the full hour exercise. Running to the church building (about 1 mi with hills) and doing some basketball afterwards with some other missionaries. It's going well, and I'm more now than ever working on learning on how to live on healthy foods for cheap... I'm still learning, and I'm cutting down my portions, which is only a problem with some dinners with members.

Any chance you can send more pictures?

  • There will be another baptism this Saturday, and I will have more pictures there. Next week.

Any stories about people your teaching you can share with us?

  • I do have a very sweet story. I believe that I told you about how Teresa got baptized, and how her husband has done a complete 180 with his feelings towards the church. Things having been rocketing along with them, because we went to the temple this past Saturday! We went to the Visitor's Center first, and then we helped Teresa go do Baptisms for the Dead. It was very busy so we were directed to do endowments. But it was a sweet moment to have our so recently converted sister come to the temple with us. It was a little rainy that day, and we didn't have the time to take a picture with us and them there... I regretted that even as we were leaving, but we had to go. However, in the Visitor's center the Sister missionaries and ourselves helped Antonio (Teresa's husband) set a baptismal date! For the 25th of June! I know he can make it, and even though he's apprehensive about it I know he can make it. It's really awesome.

I love you all and I hope that you have a fantastic week! 


Elder Mackelprang

Memorial Day!!

*DADs email*

:) Hey! That sounds like you guys are having a lot of fun over there. It's cool that you are working on developing apps for Mac systems. I'm wanting to learn more about programming as well, so it'll be cool to see what your new system can do. :)

:) Don't worry. I'll make these the best 100 days ever. They're going to be some of the most effective days of my life! I know that I have a second wind hidden somewhere in this hulky body of mine. ;-) Onward, ever onward. I will glory in His name. He will lead me, and guide, even walk beside me as I do His work. His will will I do. I'm especially pumped at the moment because I watched one of my investigators get baptized on Sunday, and I participated in my first Confirmation ever! Period. It was in Spanish, and I couldn't even remember the beginning of the prayer in English, so I the Branch President ended up reminding me how it went. The investigator's name is Teresa Solis. She's only been studying with us for 4 *_weeks_*. She's a golden superstar member now! Her husband was a roadblock to begin with, but since he came to the baptism, and to church to see her confirmed (he held the microphone for me, it was sweet. :) His attitude has changed, and he sincerely wants to know and understand. So we ended up teaching him last night, and picking him up as a new investigator. He has accepted to be baptized when he knows it's true, and you could tell that he meant it. That lesson was one of the best. The spirit was there throughout and help each of us understand and communicate clearly. Miracles do happen, and as we keep working hard, and have faith then our lives will shine even brighter. Those who seek that light will be attracted to us, because the light of the Gospel is the solace that everyone yearns for in this ever increasingly dark and riotous world. Let your light shine forth! Be thou an example of the believers! You know what you should do, what you ought to do, but will you do it? Hope becomes faith as we put forth our efforts to make our hopes and dreams come true. When the element of love comes into play with that hope and faith then you have a vibrant flame that cannot be vanquished! I know my Savior lives! I know that we can move forward through any trial and hardship, no matter how difficult, if we are willing and humble enough to constantly kneel before our maker and work with Him to make our lives change. I have experienced that miraculous change in my life, and I know that I still have many other challenges to face ahead, but like Nephi of old I can say, "But I know in whom I have trusted..." (2 Nephi 4) Trust in God, and obey His commandments. They are there for our good, and to help us be happy. Those who scoff, and scorn are those who are prideful, and most oftentimes ignorant of the blessings that are experienced as we give our will to the Father. There is a sense of purpose and accomplishment that comes from no other source, but from Heaven. I know my Father lives! He loves me, and watches over me. I fight for Him! I fight for my brothers and sisters who are struggling and searching for peace in their lives... I fight to help our Father's children come home. I love you all, and I pray that you are all safe, and doing well.

Your missionary,

Elder Mackelprang

PS enjoy the pictures from the baptism, and the one of me drinking natural Mexican coconut milk for the first time.

*Moms Email*

Dear Mom,

Hey! That's great that your vanity is coming through. :P Just another thing that'll be different about the house when I get home. JK Smile  I know that I'll still recognize everything for the most part. Things are looking good, and I feel happier here now than I have in a long time. Things are moving forward, and I know that I'm improving myself as much as I am helping others.

Keep up the good work with fellowshipping. Keep inviting them to activities, and find small chances to talk about gospel principles. It doesn't have to be a 7 course meal on the Gospel, but it can be a fruit snack. There are small, but powerful ways to share the Gospel. It only takes the open eye, and the courageous and loving heart to act on those opportunities.

:) I think it's great that Jenna is getting her dating in. I could have done better with dating as a priest. Dating can be a lot of fun! Go Jenna!

I'm proud to hear that everything is going well with the ward being so awesome with sending out missionaries! :) It's also nice to know that we've kept that number really high! 8 missionaries out. I'm impressed. That's great that Ainsley was made a DL. The Salt Lake Visitor's Center is one of the only places you'll find a Sister missionary District Leader. I'd love to hear how the other missionaries are faring in their parts of the field.

I'm pumped and excited. I know that this is the last leg, and that being so I'm not going to let that be a weak finish. I will finish strong. I know I can. I know I will.

I'm down to 10 stamps :P so if that package is coming soon then it'd be nice if I could have another batch of 20. I'm averaging about 4 letters a week now!

con mucho amor,

tu hijo mayor. ;-)

<<Lots of Love, Your Older Sibling>>



3 Months Remain...

Hello Everyone!

<Dad's Email>

:) I appreciate the joke of the day! I like getting another chance to laugh. Sometimes I need more things to laugh about!

Vallejo is hustling and bustling, and we're happily preparing for our baptism this coming Saturday! A young lady (22 y.o.) named Teresa Solis, is getting baptized at 1pm this Saturday! She's one of the most faithful investigators I have had the chance to teach. This will also be one of the few baptisms that I have had the chance to be here to prepare, and help follow through afterwards. She has also asked me to confirm her, which will be the first confirmation that I will have ever done. I'm excited, and I'm happy here. Things are going along well, and time is flying although you do still have those days where everything falls through the floor, and you have to find things to do.

:( It's sad to hear that the Lete's are moving... Everyone that I know seems to be leaving the best ward in the world! Bro Lete's ribs are indeed the best I've ever had. We WILL try his recipie if he gave it to us.

Congratulations Joshua on your patriarchal blessing! I hope that it means a lot to you. It will help you in your life.

Jenna, congrats on your performance with the Cary High Choir!

<Mom's email>

That sounds pretty exciting! I can remember being in the office with Patriarch Stevens. I remember it taking awhile, but I do remember his booming voice. It was more calming for me though. I appreciate deeper voices. Patriarch Stevens will always have a special place in my heart. He's a great man. I think it's great that we (all of us kids) got to receive our blessings from him. I still have some work to do to meet all of those blessings, and promises, and also the expectations that the Lord has in store for me, but I'm another step forward. I look forward to learning more as I move along.

The Church is true, and I'm learning more and more deeply just how important it is to read the Book of Mormon everyday, and coming to church every week. I also am beginning to understand how our prayers can be more meaningful and effective as we put our whole hearts before Him. We are here to know Him, and if we search for Him with faith, then He will reveal Himself unto us. I know that Joseph Smith restored Christ's church, and didn't just set up his own. I know that you can know this truth for yourselves. If you will be humble enough to read the book of Mormon, consider it's teachings, and then asking God if those teachings, and also the Book of Mormon are true.

I love you all, and I'll keep you all posted!

I promise pictures next week.

Your missionary,

Elder Richard Mackelprang

Note that this is a moderated blog - Elder Mackelprang neither reads or (directly) writes to this blog. This is done by his father.