Monday, August 16, 2010

M. Russell Ballard's Son-in-Law Brad Brower Stokes Up Missionaries in Canada Toronto West Mission

President and Sister Bradley James and Tamara Ballard Brower
I see that my old friend Brad Brower and his wife Tamara Ballard Brower are pumping up the missionaries in the Canada Toronto West Mission.  He is a chip off the old block returning to our old mission field and getting the missionaries cranked up like his father-in-law and former mission president Elder M. Russell Ballard.  Elder Ballard used to do the same thing saying that he would wind us up and then we would be good for the six weeks between zone conferences.  He trained Elder Brower and his daughter Tammie well. Now the missionaries have to be wound up longer as zone conferences are changed to every three months.  Brad Brower has always been an impressive person so I am sure he will have success at keeping his missionaries all stoked up.  One of his missionaries shares how motivational he is.




Sister Heather Barton shares her experience a few weeks ago in her first zone conference with President and  Sister Brower. On 19 July 2010 Sister Heather Barton reported:

What a great week! The highlight of my week was Zone Conference on Tuesday. I met President and Sister Brower! They are amazing :) I felt the Spirit SO strongly from them and know they were called of God to be here at this time. President Brower introduced many new mission programs that have come from the First Presidency. We are one of the first missions to receive these instructions. The MTC won't know about them for months. One of the new items of business was that we now only have Zone Conference once every quarter, instead of each transfer (6 weeks). The new programs will allow the missionaries to work more closely with the mission president and be trained by him. It is so exciting to get new revelation from the prophet on how God wants His work to be done :) Sister Lavatai and I are the only sisters in our Zone. It was fun to see all of the other missionaries and meet many of them for the first time. It was a life-changing day. We talked about who we really are as servants of the Lord. It was incredible. Sister Lavatai and I prepared "Jesus the Very Thought of Thee" to sing as a musical number. Then President Brower asked us if we would sing it again for the closing hymn. The Spirit was so strong. I had interviews with President Brower and Sister Brower and truly felt their love for me. I think it was just what I needed. It's really hard to be away from parents' love and I felt as if they were my parents in a sense. This was the first week I was able to focus more on the work I am doing than on thinking about my family and the future. The drive home from Zone Conference was a great one. Sister Lavatai and I were so pumped that each time we made a stop (getting dinner, stopping in a city to teach a member), we shared the Gospel with everyone we saw. When we got back into North Bay, we immediately started tracting. I was changed as a missionary! I was excited and fearless. I was able to open my mouth and the Holy Ghost spoke through me. We met many people that night, one of whom we are teaching tomorrow night.

Two weeks later on 3 August 2010 Sister Barton and her companion Sister Lavatai were invited to the first Leadership meeting as were 10 out of the 12 sisters along with district leaders, zone leaders, and mission assistants:

Oh, right....WAY EXCITING NEWS!!!!! I just got an e-mail from my mission president saying that Sister Lavatai and I have been invited to the Leadership Training Conference in Brampton NEXT WEEK!!!!! AHHH!!!! We are SO excited. That means we will drive down to Brampton (4 hours) and stay for three days having one-on-one training with the Mission President. We will work all over Brampton applying what we learn each day. I am SO excited.

The following week the two sisters drove down from North Bay to Brampton.  Sister Barton shared this with us about her experience with her new mission president on 13 August 2010:

Leadership Conference was AMAZING!!!! It was life changing! Sister Lavatai and I drove down to Brampton (about 4 hours away) on Sunday night and came home Wednesday night. We got to stay with the Brampton sisters, Sister Olsen (INCREDIBLE missionary!) and Sister Brandley (one of my MTC companions). It was so great to be with them. I have a testimony that President Brower is called of God. When he enters the room, I am flooded with the Spirit. He is pure and the most charitable man I know. I will never forget his kindness and example to me. He puts everyone else before himself and has so much respect for Sister Brower. This conference was the first leadership conference ever. It is a new revelation from the First Presidency to hold the conference and it truly was inspired. We were taught from on High for three days and each night we went out in Brampton to apply the things that we learned. My companion was Sister Olsen each night. Monday night there was a baptism! I was able to play "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing" on a VIOLIN! It was incredible to play the violin. It has been so long, and to have the opportunity to play it for a baptism is something I will never forget. Tuesday night was a miracle night. I tried to follow and learn from Sister Olsen and I learned so much! We taught three people on the street, gave them Book of Mormons, and committed two of them to baptism. The Spirit was our constant companion. One of the main points we learned from leadership conference is that our role is to Find, Teach, and Baptize!!!! Baptism by the proper priesthood authority is the gate into Heaven and back to live with our Heavenly Father forever. We MUST have the ordinance or we cannot have eternal joy. Aside from learning how to be a much better missionary, I had a lot of fun at the conference meeting missionaries. It was all of the District Leaders, Zone Leaders, Trainers, and 10 of the 12 sisters. I made a lot of friends and I learned something from each person. Leadership conference will be every two months and President is still debating on whether or not to invite the sisters to come every time. I definitely think we will be going to the next one.
I always liked the charismatic presence that Elder Brower had when we were missionaries. He was an assistant under Elder Ballard and one of the best missionaries in the CTM.  I can see that he is starting off in Canada right where he left off  thirty-five years ago.  I hope he breaks the 100 baptism per month mark.  When we were missionaries M. Russell Ballard used to tell us missionaries that when we broke the 100 baptisms per month mark Satan's grasp in Canada would be broken.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

hey thats my mission president i get out there october 27 or 28 ELDER IVERSON

Anonymous said...

Hi All,

This question is for Sister Heather Michele Barton.

Have you ever worked in London as a Missionary specially with an Indian sister named Kandikatla.....If so can you please let me know on this blog...I really really appreciate it..then I can give you my name and email address

Thanks,
Anonymous right now.

Heather said...

To the person who made the last comment:

Hello! This is Heather. I did serve in London for three weeks, but did not serve with Kakoli (is that what you meant when you wrote the Indian sister's name?). I was there right after Christmas 2010-mid January 2011. I also went up there twice after that for travels. I love London. It had the greatest spirit about it and the people were so willing to listen, even if they didn't convert. I hope this helps. I'd love to know who this is and get in contact!

Thanks,
Heather

P.S. The e-mail for my blogger is NOT my current e-mail, so just comment on this blog again to contact me.