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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Thank you, Sister Brown!

Note from Mat's Mom:

I received an email from Siser Stephanie Brown in Whitehorse and I wanted to share the wonderful things she wrote about Mat and his work there:

"I just wanted to send you a note to say how much I appreciate the work that Elder Squires did while he was in Whitehorse. He has great work ethic and is doing his mission honorably. He really blossomed when he got to be senior companion here with Elder Stephens. Their companionship reminded me of the missionaries who arrived in Whitehorse at the same time just before I got baptized in February 2009, Elder Lott and Elder Merchant. To match them you have to be obedient and work hard for the Lord and they did exactly that. I really enjoyed being asked to go to lessons with investigators again because they are always the highlight of my day. I get to meet new people and share how the gospel has changed my life in the little time I have been a member and then encourage them to allow this amazing gospel into their life."

Thank you Sister Brown, for your kind words and testimony of missionary work!

Monday, June 28, 2010


It's been a very eventful and unusual week. The first half was in the Yukon, and the second half has been here in Fairbanks. I spent Monday through Thursday in Whitehorse, and it wasn't fun saying goodbye. I was there for a really long time so it felt like leaving family behind. It will be good to have a new adventure here in Fairbanks, although I will miss the people in Whitehorse a lot. On Friday morning I hopped on a van headed to Tok, AK. I'm just glad I got to take the long part of the drive first this time. The drive wasn't as bad as before by far, and It was light all day and night so I got to see everything on the way up. In the afternoon I switched vans at Tok and headed for Fairbanks. I was the only one on the van, and it wasn't too bad because it was a lot shorter than the drive was from Wasilla to Whitehorse. When I got dropped off by the van in Fairbanks, there was no one there to pick me up, so I used the driver's phone to call President Dance (he was the only person whose number I had) and he called Elder Piiparinen, and I was picked up about ten minutes later.

It's so fun to be serving with Elder Piiparinen again. It doesn't happen too often that you get to serve with your MTC companion again. A lot of MTC companions don't get along, but me and Piips get along awesome so it will be a fun time here. It was really cool to get here and see how much we had grown. From not having a clue at the MTC to where we're at now is a big difference. You don't really notice how much you've changed until you see someone you came out with and work with them. Well, serving in YSA is definitely different than serving in a family ward or branch, but it's been really fun so far. Everyone is on a first name basis so it's a lot harder to get everyone's names down, as opposed to just learning family names. There are a lot of activities and we go and talk to all the nonmembers that come and it's been a blast so far for the past couple of days. We will work hard here and have a good time and be obedient while we do it.

On Wednesday Elder Piiparinen and I fly down to Anchorage for a Zone Leader Conference and then fly back Thursday night. I'm looking forward to it because I get to see missionaries that I haven't seen in awhile. Well, this will be a great week, and I'll have lots of great experiences to report on next week. See ya!

Love Mat

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


The past week has been very eventful, and pretty nerve racking with transfer calls happening. But I'll get to that later--maybe it will make this email more suspenseful. Last P-Day I went on a pretty cool hike along the Yukon River. This place is gorgeous, and I wanted to make sure I got some really good pictures of it before it was too late. So that was fun. The week went by really fast, and the work is great. We taught Karen again, but Cecil was out of town. They are doing great and they are excited about the gospel. We also taught Virginia this week. She's always fun to be around. On Sunday she came to church and I think she enjoyed it. The Father's Day talks were great.

Well, transfers are this week! This will be my last email from Whitehorse. We were anticipating our transfer call all week, and it came yesterday (Monday). I had already felt that I would be leaving, especially since I've already been belssed enough to extend my time here once. President Dance told me that I would be going up to serve in Fairbanks, Alaska. I've heard that it's a great place. I'm really excited because I get to serve with my MTC companion again--Elder Piiparinen. President Dance laughed when he called me because he didn't realize that we had been MTC companions. I know I will enjoy Fairbanks, but I'm really going to miss Whitehorse. I've had an amazing time here, and I've been able to meet some wonderful people. I wouldn't trade my experiences here for anything; they've been great. This is a great place to be, and I love the people! Now I've been called to start a new adventure in Fairbanks, but I will never forget the amazing people I've known and the experiences I've had in Whitehorse.

Love Elder Squires

Note from Mat's Mom: Mat has never been one to toot his own horn--ever. So here's a little more info from his email to his Dad today: "President Dance called me to be a Zone Leader, and I'll be serving in the Fairbanks YSA (Young Single Adult) branch. I'm actually really excited about it because I'll be serving with my MTC companion, Elder Piiparinen. President Dance told me that Elder Piiparinen is exactly obedient, so I'm really excited to serve with him, and I know we'll work hard. " As Mat's parents, Steve and I are very proud of him. Mat is also exactly obedient and I know our family has been blessed because of that.

Monday, June 14, 2010


Caitlin was baptized and confirmed this weekend! We had a great time helping her prepare for it, and she was definitely ready to be baptized. She wore a nice baptismal dress that her mom adjusted to fit her, and her dad borrowed some white pants and a tie from Elder Stephens. He was really nervous to perform the baptism, but he did a great job. Caitlin's husband, brother, and mom were there to support her and they had a great experience. She asked me to confirm her a member of the church, and we did that yesterday during sacrament meeting. She is really excited to be a member, and she will be greatly blessed for her decision to be baptized and join this church. It was a great weekend!

On Saturday before the baptism we helped one of the members cut down dead tress around the curch and clean up the landscaping so it doesn't look messy. It's kinda funny to be cutting down and limbing big trees around the church here. I think the most work I did around the church in Vegas was kick some rocks and dirt back in it's place. It doesn't take much to clean up desert landscaping. After cleaning up and cutting all the trees, we had to hurry to be ready and have everything set up for the baptism. We were pretty tired by the end of the day.

We had some great success this week. Elder Stephens and I have been trying to get in contact with some less-active members for a long time that we were finally able to contact this week. It's amazing to see the Lord's hand in the work, and to know that you are being led to where you are supposed to be, when you're supposed to be there. I've learned here in Whitehorse that to be led by the Spirit you have to humble yourself or be humbled, and put your own will on the backburner. I've had great experiences on my mission where I've been led to those who need the gospel, and I know that it hasn't been mere luck or chance, but that the Lord truly has guided me and my companions to the honest seekers of the truth.

Love Mat

Monday, June 7, 2010

Great Things are Happening

Well this week has been full of craziness. Caitlin was not baptized on Saturday, but for a good reason. Her dad has been away from the church for 40 years, but is going strong and steadfast now that he's back. Caitlin really wanted her dad to baptize her, but he had only been ordained to a deacon in the Aaronic Priesthood. Everything was worked out with our Branch President, and Bro. Weitzel was ordained a priest yesterday so that he can baptize his daughter this Saturday on June 12. We're so excited for both of them! This will be a great experience for them to have together. I can't wait.

After Church yesterday, we went and taught Karen and Cecil with Bro. McDonald, and had an amazing discussion. And something amazing happened--Cecil wants to be baptized too! It was great to see both of them willing to enter into the covenant of baptism together. Cecil is such a tough guy, and he's hard to read, but he has been softened by the Spirit of God. The Lord has definitely been preparing them to hear and accept this gospel. The only downside is that Cecil went out of town today for about another month, and so I most likely will not be around to see him baptized. But--that's ok because it's not about me, it's about them.

We didn't get to teach Virginia this week, but she is doing great. She cooked dinner for us on Saturday for Elder Stephens' birthday and it was good stuff. Hopefully we will be able to teach her this week. She has been very open to learn about the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Whitehorse is still awesome, and I hope to continue to be blessed here! Hope you're all doing great.

Love Mat