RE: #FlyoverRadio: American faith and the rise of the ‘nones’

Lead image from the Standard Examiner

I was about this close ๐Ÿ‘Œ to being on the radio today (I mean hey, I do have a face for radio, but I digress). It was about religion in this day and age and how many people ages 18-35 are leaving and why some chose to come back.
As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (hereafter named “the Church”), I strongly believe that this Church has figured it out, almost to the t what these people need at a critical time in their lives when they need to figure out what they believe and the program in place helps to solidify those beliefs and share them with future generations.

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Another Week of Interviews

Well, this should be the last of the weekly updates as I’ll transition to writing a daily blog post. 

We’ll begin with Monday as we’ve done the in the past like two years. It was a fairly uneventful day as far as things I did. I found many jobs to apply to–and I applied for them. Then, it was time to head to family home evening, which was held at President Brickey’s home. A good friend of mine gave the lesson, and then we had ice cream floats (Root Beer, Orange, and Grape sodas were provided). Yummy!!! Then it was off to go home for a good night’s rest. 

Tuesday began with the donating of plasma.  I received $25 for so doing. I received several callbacks for interviews and a few rejections too.

Wednesday was a bit disappointing as I had completed an application to go to an open interview event to find out that based on my application they already assumed I wouldn’t be a good fit. Like what? You invite me to this event and refuse to hire me based off some sheet of paper or a page on the internet? Right…

Thursday was again fairly uneventful. As far as the job hunt went, I had a super successful interview at Office Max, with them immediately setting up a second interview for a few days later. The condo association here at the place I live at had a potluck meal which I stopped at quickly for a bite to eat. Then it was time for institute and we had a fantastic lesson on being Saviours on Mount Zion, meaning sharing the gospel with the people we meet in this earthly existence as well as doing temple and family history work.

Friday was another open interview event at West Business Services. Before that I donated plasma and received $50 for doing so, I also began to write a composition of Antonin Dvorak’s “Songs My Mother Taught Me” for organ solo, which I plan on publishing at http://music.blodgettmedia.com. Then, we had a very active weather pattern role through the area and I caught a lot of it on film, which can be found on my YouTube channel. We then had a good game of basketball and building cleaning for YSA branch sports night.

Saturday, my dear Mother and I began the day by organizing our storage locker and then I worked out followed by my next interview at Office Max, which went quite well. I then fixed my bike and went to an interesting lesson with the Missionaries. I rode my, what feels like new, bike for approximately 12.3 miles. I love exercising!

Sunday was an eventful day. It began by running through my talk that I gave last week because I was about to give it again. Then, I went to Neenah thanks to a member of the branch who gave me a ride. We first had a Boom of Mormon/Breakfast class, then we had church which was great to see a few of the friends I left behind nearly three years ago. It felt so good to be back in that building for a worship service. I played the organ in addition to giving my talk. I then came home to finish the song I had been writing earlier in the week.

Job Interviews Lining Up

In only my second full week back, I’ve had 4 job interviews and at least 3 are expected next week. I’m really happy about the results of the job hunt so far. I do need to begin stepping up the notch though because it seems that these interview aren’t going anywhere yet. It is awfully disappointing though when a recruiter tells you that aren’t you that you’re not good enough for the job. Read More

Somethings Never Change

To begin, it must needs be that I write an apology. I’ve been down right lousy at updating my blog lately. I promise to be better at that starting now.

Beginning with Monday, it was Memorial day, it began with some exercise, for I knew that I’d be eating quite a bit of food. It was first the Appleton first ward breakfast. I helped cook by making pancakes. It was nice to see so many people whom I used to be in the same ward with. However, a] a lot of people have moved and b] it’s simply a strange experience when it’s not your ward. Then I bought some tomatoes and peppers to plant in our balcony garden. Then it was back to the park for the second ward lunch. Yummy burgers.

Tuesday, the job hunt officially began. I applied for approximately four jobs and got a big dent on my resume. I also donated plasma.

Wednesday we went to the Chicago temple. It was so nice to be back in the temple i received my endowments in. After that we made a special visit to a family member.

Thursday, it was more jobs.

Friday, in addition to applying for jobs, I got several call backs. Already for this next week I have three interviews scheduled. I’m excited! As to be expected, some were also rejected.

Saturday, we made our grocery runs, going to the freshly remodeled Aldi! Yay good food for not a lot of money!

Sunday, we went to the first ward for sacrament meeting and sunday school. This was because we had a family reunion on my father’s side. It was good to see them again after three years. We also made a visit to my Grandmother on my mother’s side.

I say somethings don’t change because it’s true. My family is still my family despite what trials we may go through. The sky is still blue. Getting hired is still a long process. My home is about as messy and cluttered as it was when I left. Just to name a few.

The First Week Back

We’ll go ahead and begin with preparation day. It was crazy. Emailing was strange since it was the last time doing it on the mission as I didn’t have many people to chat with, so I quickly finished up and then did some family history research by looking at how far back my family tree goes. Turns out it went as far back as the 1500s one of the branches of the tree. So exciting!

Tuesday was the last full day–scary! We started with finishing packing and then cleaning our apartment so it would be ready for the new missionary coming into it. Then it was transfers. After the parking lot exchange, we headed off to some other missionaries’ area to knock doors for them for a few hours. It flew by. We kept looking at our watches wishing it would slow down. Then at 6pm, we headed to President Henrie’s home for a lovely home-cooked meal followed by a spiritually moving departing testimony meeting. A moment where it kind of felt real was when one of the missionaries was picked up, it was surreal to feel the love in the air and the fact that we would be having that moment tomorrow.

Wednesday, my turn came. We all got to the airport around 9am. Several people’s departures were delayed, thankfully mine was a-okay, and so was the rest of my flights. I had layovers in Salt Lake City and Minneapolis before landing around 9:30pm in Appleton, WI. It was strange seeing my Mom after nearly 3 years but it felt good to not only talk to her but also see talk to her face to face. Then, we headed to our new stake president’s home so I could be released and then went home for a good night’s rest because I only got about 2 or 3 hours of sleep the night before.

Thursday, was a dentist appointment. That was relatively painless, my teeth are all nice and clean again. Not white, now mind you, just clean. I began my job search by re-doing my resume, even though at this point it was very much a rough draft. I also began the effort to remember all of my crucial login information.

Friday, was a fun day. I donated plasma for the first time in 2 years. It was relatively painless. The biggest thing that took a lot of time was the initial screening. Following that was the actual donation which took about an hour. Then, we bought some groceries for a family reunion the next day and for the upcoming week as well. Then, I got a new phone. It’s a Samsung Galaxy J3 Emerge, but it will do. After that, it was home for some more unpacking.

Saturday, we headed to Madison including an extended excursion for sight seeing. When we got to Madison it was time for the family reunion. It was so nice to see my Grandmother and Aunts and Uncles for the first time in so long. Oh yeah, can’t forget the cousins as well. After several hours we went back home so I could continue to unpack and look for jobs.

Sunday was my report to the high council. It was my first high council meeting I’ve ever attended. It was nice to see many of the members of the council that I’ve known for quite a while, including the new stake presidency. My new stake president was by YSA branch president when I left for Salt Lake City on my service mission. Also my Bishop is now the Second Counselor in the Stake Presidency and many other members of the council that I have been my youth leaders. We then went home to complete some things of preparation for my open house. At church, I taught the 7 & 8 year olds in Primary and then went home to get ready for said open house. During the 2 hours of the event, we had probably 30 to 40 people come.

All in all, it still feels weird to be home.