Monday, December 29, 2014

Suspicious Guys in Black Hoodies

Good Morning!! I hope that you all had a great Christmas. I know that I was truly blessed as I took the time to reflect on the true meaning of Christmas and focus on the birth of our Savior.
This week was kind of a weird week... Monday we went to Fredrick Meijer Garden! I will include a few pictures. Tuesday we had our half-mission training and Christmas party. It was a lot of fun and we got to just hang out and play games for a few hours. We even played a huge game of scripture jeopardy! It was great to be able to take a break from working all day everyday and just spend some time with a whole lot of missionaries. Wednesday, since most people we usually meet with were busy with their families, we got to do quite a bit of door knocking in the afternoon. We were sharing with people a Christmas message and really focusing on the true meaning of Christmas with people. Most people were really nice but were not interested in hearing our message. It was raining a little bit and so both me and Elder Brown had the hoods of our coats on. About halfway through door knocking we noticed a cop car that was parked on the corner and was kinda of watching us. He drove up to us and asked us, "Are you the two suspicious guys in black hoodies that are loose in the neighborhood?" We laughed and told him yes we were terrorizing the neighborhood with the message of Jesus Christ. He laughed and said that he had gotten a call from someone across the street and once he saw us he knew that we were just "sharing the word with people." and that he wasn't concerned that we were any type of criminals. It was really funny that someone would think that two little Mormon missionaries would cause any type of trouble and really made us laugh. Wednesday night we went over to a member of the wards and had Christmas Eve dinner with them and a few other families from the ward that they invited over. Thursday we spent most of our day at the Banners. They are an amazing family that does so much for us missionaries! I got to call home and talk with my family for about 45 mins. It was really weird to have both my home life and mission life collide but it was really good to be able to talk to my family even if it didn't seem long enough. My Christmas out here in the mission really didn’t feel much like Christmas since I am not with my family but being able to call them really helped to make it a very special day. Christmas night we had another dinner with another family and needless to say I weighed myself at the end of the day and I had gained 7 pounds! But I think it was just the weight of the food and I am back to my usual weight. (Don’t worry I promise I am not getting fat out here on my mission.) The rest of the week was pretty normal I was on trade-offs with Elder Elmer this week who is the district leader. I was able to learn a lot from him and able to learn things that I can apply to my own missionary work. I also continued to receive letters and packages from all over the county wishing me a Merry Christmas! It was truly humbling to receive love and support in close to 100 letters and several packages. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints really do love and care for their missionaries and they helped make this Christmas special! It is confirmed to me everyday that I made the right decision in coming on a mission and seeing so many people support me from all over the country really inspires me to continue to give the Lord my best! 
That is about it for the week. Today we are doing our usual P-day stuff and I will get to show the other missionaries how to really play basketball this afternoon at the Stake Center. I hope that you had a wonderful Christmas! I am so blessed to have so much love and support back home!

Have a great week!
Elder Bloskas


P.S. Here are the pictures of the big horse at Fredrick Meijer Garden and the other picture is of the families that we got to eat with on Christmas Eve!



Monday, December 22, 2014

Christmas Greetings!

Merry Christmas!!
It is a cold winter day here In Grand Rapids, Michigan and I hear there is snow in the forecast for Christmas! This was another great week in Grand Rapids even though I didn’t get to spend a lot of time in my area. I was on trade-offs with the district leader on Tuesday and part of Wednesday and so I got to go to downtown Grand Rapids and meet with the people that they are teaching there and I got to be with Elder Dunn who is a missionary who is being trained. It was a lot of fun and he has a great attitude towards the work. I think he is going to be a great missionary. Thursday, we got to see several less active members, a few of them are unable to make it to church because of health issues and so they are always so happy to have us come over. They are amazing and faithful members of the church and they are always so positive when we go over so I always love going over to their houses. Friday I was in Wyoming (the city not the state) with the zone leaders. It was an awesome experience. I got to learn a whole lot from missionaries that have been out for over a year and a half. I was able to learn a ton of things that I will be able to apply to my own missionary work. We got to meet with several people and were jam-packed all day with appointments. Our last appointment of the day was with a guy who had been less active for several years. He told us that we really made the right decision in going on a mission. He said that he had made several mistakes in his life and one of them was not going on a mission and it is something that he really regretted. A mission really teaches you a lot of things and the lessons that you learn out here are something that you can apply for the rest of your life. Saturday I was back in my area and me and Elder Brown got to go door knocking. We knocked on the door of a family that had met with missionaries in the past. They let us in, gave us cookies, and we got to talk to them for over an hour. It was nice to be able to get out of the cold for a while and enjoy talking to some nice people about the gospel and share the “He Is The Gift” video with them! Church yesterday was awesome. They had a Christmas program and they convinced a few of us missionaries to sing in the choir with them. None of us had ever heard the song that we were singing but I think that it all worked out all right. So it was a great day.
So an interesting thing has been happening this week... I have received several letters and a few packages from random people encouraging me and wishing me a Merry Christmas. They have come from Michigan, Utah, Idaho and even Texas. They are from people that have heard about me going on a mission so shortly after joining the church and have been really encouraging!! I'm not completely sure how they heard about me or got my address but it has been really awesome to be receiving so much support by people that don’t even know me.
I think that’s about it for the week. This week is going to be awesome!! We have a few people that are having us over for Christmas and I know that it is going to be a very special holiday with the people that are here in Michigan and to be able to call home! Today Elder Brown and me are going to Frederick Meijer Garden where they have all sorts of Christmas stuff going on and they have a huge horse sculpture that I am going to take a picture in front of for my niece! I will send other pictures from it and other holiday festivities next week!
I hope that you have a great week and a Merry Christmas!! The best gift folks up here are getting is cheap gas. I will include a picture. The lowest I have seen is $1.94!!

Merry Christmas!

Elder Bloskas
P.S. from Kristi Bloskas:  I am adding a couple of photos I received from Cale.  



Monday, December 15, 2014

December 15, 2014

It was another great week in Grand Rapids. The past few weeks have kind of been strange. Last week I felt like I was running around not knowing what was going on going from appointment to appointment and this week was the exact opposite. Everyone is getting super busy with the holidays and have not been able to meet that much. We only had 2 lessons this week with people that are investigating the church but were able to meet with 6 less active members including a few older members that are unable to come to church because of health reasons. It is always a joy to be able to bring joy into the lives of some of the people that we meet with. We spent a lot of time door knocking this week and sharing the "He Is The Gift" message/video. We have seen a whole lot of positive feedback from that and I am excited to see all of the good that comes from it!! Most of the people that we talk to are super nice and open to talk to us. We had one guy this week that immediately let us in and had us talk to him in his living room for a few minutes while he lectured us on how we were promoting the devil's message and that he prays for us before literally pushing us out of his house and only one person cussed us out this week so that was good. Honestly, not a lot of super exciting things happened this week. Me and Elder Brown met a lot of people this week that we will start to meet with probably this week and the work will continue to pick up. We are really focusing on Christmas and on the Savior's birth and we have been able to have several great conversations about Christ!
Sorry this is super short and I didnt really talk about much. Like I said it was just a super weird week.. But this week is going to be amazing! I have a great feeling about this week and I am excited to see all that he Lord has in store for us as Christmas is around the corner. People start to turn to Christ more around the holidays and I think that will open more doors for us this week! I hope that you have a great week and remember, He Is The Gift.
Thanks for all the love and support!!
-Elder Bloskas

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

G-RAP

Greetings from Grand Rapids!!!
Oh man, I love Grand Rapids so much! I knew that the Lansing Michigan Mission was the best mission in the world but now I am serving in the best area in the world. Grand Rapids is home to many things including a huge 3-story sculpture of a horse at the Fredrick Meijer Garden (I am going there in a few weeks), and the world headquarters of Amway! My area has both of those things and our ward boundaries have many awesome attractions! Needless to say I think that my P-Days are going to be pretty awesome. I love the ward here! There are so many amazing people that are members here and they do so much to help us!
Elder Brown and me are doing awesome! We get along great and our area is EXPLODING!! We have had several lessons everyday and we have 1 person that is preparing to be baptized. We picked up 2 new investigators this week, one of which was on a door step. We were door knocking and we knocked on a ladies door that has lost both of her parents within the last year and also is going through a possible divorce with her husband. We shared a message about the Plan of Salvation and the Spirit was so strong! She was crying because of the joy that what we were sharing with her brought her. We are planning on having a lesson with her this week to share more with her!
Saturday night we had the ward Christmas party and I got to meet a lot of the members of the ward and talk with them. There are so many amazing families that live in Grand Rapids! I can’t wait to see all of the amazing work that is going to come forth here in Grand Rapids! The field truly is white and ready to harvest and I am learning that I am not here in Grand Rapids to plant seeds but to harvest all of the seeds that have been planted in the hearts of so many of Heavenly Father’s children.
I am still learning the area... Grand Rapids is such a huge area and there are so many people that we see that I think that it will take a week or two for me to feel comfortable with the area!
There is not much else that really happened this week. Most of the week is a blur since I am new to the area but this next week should be a great week!
As we are in the holiday season I encourage you to ponder in your own hearts how you can make the Spirit of Christmas not just a holiday but a pattern for your everyday lives. The celebration of our Savior’s birth was never intended to be a holiday that happens once a year where we focus on presents. The purpose of Christmas should be to establish a pattern in our lives to be reminded and changed daily by a gift of our loving Heavenly Father to all of his children. The most important gift this holiday season was given over 2000 years ago wrapped in a blanket. When you get a chance spend some time on Christmas.Mormon.org
Thank you for all that you do and again for all of the prayers, love and support!! Have a great week!!


-Elder Bloskas

Monday, December 1, 2014

December 1, 2014

Good morning!
I hope that ya’ll have a great Thanksgiving! Well, as I mentioned last week, Friday we got our transfer calls. I am leaving tomorrow morning to head to Grand Rapids, MI!! I am super excited to be going to Grand Rapids and start serving in the largest city in the mission. I have a feeling it is going to be a great area and I can’t wait to get there and hit the ground running!! My companion will be Elder Brown. He is a missionary that just got done being trained. So I will be "Greenie Busting" Elder Brown. We are both young missionaries but we are going to tear Grand Rapids up!
This past week has been a great week. I think that I ate more food on Thanksgiving then I have eaten in months. We ate breakfast with a bunch of guys from the Elder Quorum at a buffet place here in town. We then had a huge lunch (including a bacon wrapped turkey, it was amazing) and then another huge dinner that night. I think that I am still full from Thursday...
Other than that Elder Call and me did our usual thing of meeting with our regular people and doing a lot of door knocking. We have seen a lot of positive feedback from passing out the “He Is The Gift” cards this weekend and I am excited to see what happens with that! We also had a lady finally come to church yesterday that we have been working with. She has not been to church in over 6 or 7 years and yesterday she came to church and loved it!! It was super exciting and it was very rewarding to see that on my last Sunday in the Holt Ward!  We met a lot of really cool people recently and while I am sad that I am leaving, I know that they will be in good hands with Elder Call and his new companion.
I am sorry that this email is a littler shorter. I usually have my little planner with me and I flip through it to remind me of things that happened this week but I forgot it at the apartment since this is a new transfer and I have a new planner. But I am super excited to see what the Lord has in store for me in Grand Rapids!! It is an awesome area and there are already a few people that they are working with that I am excited to get to meet!!  Here is my new mailing address while I am in Grand Rapids:

Elder Cale Bloskas
3352 Pine Meadow Dr. SE Apt. #202
Kentwood, MI 49512

Thank you for the continued love and support! There is no place I would rather be than serving the Lord here full time in Michigan! Your love, support, and prayers are what push me to work harder! Have a great week!

-Elder Bloskas


P.S. Here is our district picture. All of us Elders have matching winter boots so we wore them for the picture! Also this is something that I made for a member of our ward that we visited Thanksgiving day! It’s not my best work but I was proud of it!



Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Here are 2 pics that Cale sent last week that I was unable to post at that time.




Here! is a picture with the "Grape of Wrath" (named that because it is the only purple car in the mission. All the other cars are silver and sometimes black or white) right after it started snowing

He is the gift

Good Morning!!
It is a rainy day here in Holt, Michigan! It was super cold all of last week with us getting a lot of snow but Saturday and yesterday it warmed up enough to melt all of the snow. I got to break out all of my winter gear and I think the lowest it got this week was 8 degrees!! It was super cold but luckily I had all of the winter gear that I needed in order to stay warm!
Last Monday we went to the zoo and the MSU museum! The zoo was a lot of fun, we got to see lots of cool animals but there were a lot that were not out (I have no clue where they were hiding them...) but it was totally worth the $2 it took for admission. The MSU museum was also kind of cool but I liked the zoo better. Today we are going to tour the Michigan State Capitol building so that will be fun.
Some pretty cool things happened this week. First we got a referral from the Sister missionaries in the Portland area. They had been calling some previous investigators and accidently dialed the wrong number and called a guy named Ted. They talked to him and found out that he lived in our area and told us to drop by. He is super awesome! He has had a really tough life but he is probably the most humble and sincere guy that I have ever met in my life. He is also so positive. We were able to see him 3 times this past week and he came to church yesterday! He didn't even need us there with him he totally fit right in with the ward and was making friends left and right. I am super excited to see what happens with him.
We had zone conference that lasted all day on Wednesday. It was an awesome zone conference and I got so much out of it!! I was able to learn so many things by the Spirit that is going to help me be a better missionary and better help those people that I work with on a daily basis. I have been able to apply some of the things that I have learned and have already seen the good things that are coming from it!
We met with several other investigators this week. One of them, Kory, dropped us... He had a really good conversation with us but felt like right now it was something that he didn't want to look into anymore.
Friday was a pretty awesome day. Since we are without a car this week we took the bus to downtown Lansing and went and saw Ed, the deaf recent convert that we baptized my first transfer with Elder Bass. It was really cool. I was able to talk with him in ASL for a good 45 mins and did a whole lot better than I ever thought I would. We talked about his family and about a lot of things that have happened in his life and how he is going to be able to be with his family again. It is awesome how Heavenly Father has been able to work with just that one semester of ASL that I took last fall and help me to be able to communicate and share the gospel with people out here on my mission. I really am able to see the Lord helping me in every aspect of the work.
We had a lot of really good conversations this week and really were able to see the Lord directing our paths. Not too much happened this week other than these things but there are a few other things that I wanted to share with yall.
Starting Friday (the day after Thanksgiving), the Church is going to be doing a Christmas campaign  called "He is the gift".  It is a initiative to really help people put Christ back into Christmas. It focuses on slowing down this holiday season and really recognizing the reason for the season. Since the Church never does anything halfway they have armed us with tools to really use this message with those that we come in contact with. We are going to be passing out pass-along cards with the link to the Christmas website starting the day after Thanksgiving and really hoping to get the word out. Also, on December 7th the church is going to be the only advertiser on the homepage of YouTube. The banner ad will be a short video and information about the video that they are releasing with this initiative and it should be super awesome!  I am excited about it!
Finally, this is the last week of the transfer and we get transfer calls on Friday. There is a chance that I will be getting transferred... SOOO if you are wanting to mail me anything and you are not sure that it will get here this week you can mail it to the mission office and they will forward it to me until I can get yall my new address.
That address is:
Elder Cale Bloskas
4910 S. Hagadorn Rd.
East Lansing, MI 48823

Thank you again for all of the love and support. I love all of you and I wouldn't be able to be doing what I was doing if it wasn't for yall! Have a great week and a fantastic Thanksgiving!!


-Elder Bloskas