Dear Elder Slavens

Dear Elder Slavens

Elder Dallin J Slavens Cambodia Phnom Penh

Elder Chancellor J Slavens Idaho Twin Falls

Monday, March 30, 2015

The Subject Line Is the Hardest Part

Well, it's official! The transfer is imminent, and things are about to be ALLL mixed up 'cause of it. The whole Kimberly Stake is in fact moving into an entirely different Zone, so it was necessary to find a new place to have the Zone Leader area go. As I though, it'll be moved to Filer. HOWEVER, unlike what I expected, I will not be going there with Elder Brock. I'm being transferred to smack dab in the middle of Twin Falls! The big league! The real deal! The holy land! SO hey, that should be fun. I've been moving around so much recently though that transfers are like no big deal at this point. So I suppose it's just time to move on! Bring it, Twin. Show me what you're made of.

This was a good week! It was mainly filled with prepping for the big change. Ya see, all of our ward mission leaders are new, so we've been working like mad to make sure that everything's good to go so that nobody slips through the cracks with the whitewash. What stress. We also had a big meeting this week about talking to everyone in our path, so Elder Brock and I made a pact (a pinky swear, no less) that we would do just that! So we took a solid hour and a half the other day to just walk around and talk to a billion people that we ran into.

Man, that is what missionary work is all about! People aren't out and about very much in Idaho, so we don't have many of those stand-in-the-town-center-and-talk-to-the-millions-of-people-that-pass-by experiences, but it was a beautiful day and there were people all over the place, so it was real nice to just walk around and bug people! It is pretty funny how bugged people get sometimes, but then other times people are just so willing to talk and listen. We talked to this Christian dude who said he used to talk to missionaries but he eventually had them removed from his property for trespassing. He wasn't very nice. But it's all good. That's life. We then walked up to this group of teenage kids on BMX bikes and started kicking it with them for a bit. They said they were chill with Jesus so we talked about Him and shared a scripture and it was very chill. Good times.

My brain is turning to mush so I need to wrap this up. Basically I love my mission 'cause I get to tell people about the most important message in the whole entire universe, and I grow to love these people because I actually want them to understand it. If I don't let them know what's up, that's on me! Oh dang! Anyway, I hope you all have a gorgeous fantastic splendid beautiful week!

Elder Slavens

Mah peeps

 And I don't even walk that much.

Meetings, blah.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Cambodia's People Party

Well, hello everyone.

Yes. I have made it. And I think I am going to die.

Cambodia is insane. Let me start from the beginning.

We left the MTC on Tuesday and flew for like a million hours to get here. The Salt Lake Airpot had no Asians, and then a couple of Asian people flew to LA, and then every one flying to Hong Kong was Asian, and then flying to Cambodia every one was Cambodian. I sat next to an old Cambodian lady on the plane and told her I needed help reading the Book of Mormon and just had her read it to me hahahah.

When we got to Cambodia, MY GOSH was it just cray cray!!! Like trees everywhere. Chickens everywhere. English nowhere. I'm learning fast.

We spent our first hour here just walking the streets and talking to people. I was crying on the inside. IT'S SO FUN HARDLY KNOWING ANYTHING!!! When we were allowed to go to bed, I fell STRAIGHT asleep because of jet lag. And then I had a dream. I dreamed I was going to Battambang, South, which is the name of a province in Cambodia.

AND IT HAPPENED!!! There is no such thing as Battambang, South, but that is because there are only 6 missionaries in this tiny little province. I thought for sure I was going to serve in the big main city of Phenom Penh. But NOPE! My trainer companion is Elder Elieson. He is SO COOL!!! We get along great! He loves Les Mis, so when we sing it, he takes Eponine while I take Marius. We had a long 6 hour bus ride ahead of us, so we set off. The bus had karaoke and crazy Thai action movies. So that felt like a dream.

The next couple of days have been crazy. We bike all over in the jungle on dirt roads. There are animals and bugs everywhere. Everyone is SO NICE and love Americans! And I love them!!! I make them laugh because I'm super dumb. The old ladies ESPECIALLY love me. I'm actually a little afraid. I don't want them to take me. The members love to help the missionaries here. There are 2 little boys who bike around with us and help us teach lessons. I really wish I could talk to them better.

Church on Sunday was the best. Like seriously, THE BEST. The power went out like 100 times. No one wore shoes. Babies just crawl around and everyone just talks to each other. People just talk on the phone during sacrament. AND IT IS SO AWESOME!!!! Even though it is crazy hectic here, I still feel like I have Christ as a rock for me (and I need it). You guys, helping people is the best. I'm gonna put some pictures, and I hope you have wonderful weeks. I love serving. I hope you all can see the blessings you all have in your lives, because WE ALL have blessings in our lives!

BE SAFE!!!!!

PS They don't have toilet paper in Cambodia. Only bidets. 

​Long live the provo MTC 

My dope new companion. Everything about him reminds me of me when I was cool.

​Just everything is so great! 

A million kitties with my favorite little kid 

​Average day of swag 

​How people live here

I've eaten the orange Thruan stuff everyday so far

​My housy house.

​The road that leads to the market right outside my housy house.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Elder Slavens arrives in Cambodia

Dear Brother & Sister Slavens,

We are excited to welcome your son to the Cambodia Phnom Penh Mission!  He arrived safely here on Thursday after their long flight and travel.  They had an opportunity to do some prosleyting Thursday and try out their language skills, and then we orientation with them at the mission home.  They slept at the mission home Thursday night.  Friday morning we had several hours of training, and assignments with their new trainer and companion, and a lunch together, after which we sent them off to their assigned areas.  Hopefully you have received a short e-mail from them letting you know they are here safe.

We are so grateful for your sacrifice in letting your son serve and know it will be a great blessing to him and to your entire family.  We will do our very best to keep him safe and well.  If you have ever have any concerns or questions please know that you can always contact us using the information below.  Packages and letters can also be sent to the address below.  We encourage our missionaries to send you an e-mail each Monday, their preparation day.  Thank you for sharing your wonderful son with us!

Best gospel wishes,
President David C. Moon & Sister Kathryn T. Moon

David C. Moon
President, Cambodia Phnom Penh Mission
House 2B Street 222
Phnom Penh, Kingdom of Cambodia

Thursday, March 26, 2015


Hey mom and dad and Trenton and Jackson and Chancellor!

So I was given permission to email you just to let you know that I made it to Cambodia safe and sound! AND IT IS AMAZING!!!!! Remember when we came here on vacation? This is basically vacation but for 2 years. Except I also work really really hard. Cambodian is still hard, but I'm not afraid at all. I know I'll get it.

I love you guys! Can't wait for my email on Monday! PS Sorry I didn't ever use my call card to call in the airport. Time flew. Almost like me in an airplane. I CAN'T BELIEVE I'M HERE!!!! It's so cool, you guys. I love you and I love churchy things!

See you on Monday! 


Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Dallin's layover at LAX

We decided to take a spontaneous 6 hour trip to LAX to meet Dallin for his layover on his way to Cambodia.  ‪#‎DALLinCAMBODIA‬  It was awesome!  It was a little crazy and fearful that we may miss him altogether!  We landed and rushed over to his terminal.  After a long what seemed like tour of the airport we made it to his gate!  We made it with about 10 minutes to spare. This is what happened.

It was AWESOME!  It was a total surprise. We said our hellos then we walked them to the international terminal.  All the other missionaries wanted to get to a phone to call their parents and we couldn't go through security so we said our goodbyes there.  It was so fun to see Elder Dallin even if it was only for an hour.  It was nice meeting all his new missionary friends putting faces to names.  They were happy talking to strangers and telling them about their mission.  Going was totally worth it!

Monday, March 23, 2015

I'm as free as a Genie!!!

Well... almost 

     Ok, now stop celebrating. We have a lot of business to get to. I have a lot to tell you. Well, at least I THINK I do. It really has been weird because Everyone has been saying the MTC flies by, but I feel like I've been here for my whole life. I'm pretty ready to go, except for the part where when I go, I have to speak fluent Cambodian, and I'm not even close. Memorizing words is hard for me. I've been trying to make this week my best when it comes to working hard, because i know that is what I am supposed to do. 
     We had something called "in-field orientation", which is basically supposed to get us ready to be REAL missionaries. The most I got out of the day was when I saw a picture of some eggs and took a selfie. ROFL JK I really did learn a lot. Egg selfie to come later. 
     Also, the bestest bestest part of my week was when we met someone named Leah. So, I never knew this, but there are REAL Investigators of the church who come to the MTC, and me and a couple other missionaries have been teaching Leah. At first, she wasn't really getting a lot out of what we were teaching her. I thought it might be a waste of our limited time at the MTC, but then she played us a song on her guitar that basically just told us how thankful she was for us helping her and it made me realize how much missionaries help people. It was TOO swag! I love Leah. I can't wait to have COPIOUS amounts of people I can help in Cambodia. 
     I hope everyone is doing well! My week is gonna be a WEIRD one! I'm flying to Hong Kong tomorrow night, and then to Cambodia from there! So I'll let everyone know my new address, because I KNOW y'all are gonna want to be writing me letters that will probably never make it to me! Enjoy TV and movies everyone, because I miss them every day! But it's worth it because I love what I'm doing! Be ready for the sweetest email ever next week! 

Elder Slavens 

Silly Forgetful Elder Slavens

Wow I totally missed sending out an email last week! Whoopsies! That's what happens when you're dumb like me sometimes.

Actually something really great happened last week! We had the miracle/blessing of seeing one of our investigators baptized! His name's Martin and he's on fire. He actually just recently moved to Kimberly from a more western part of the mission and was being taught by the Elders over there and was like straight up ready to go when he got here. Pretty cool stuff! Whadda guy. So we petty much just tied it all off and finished the lessons. But he's doing great and all that good stuff.

We had a cool big meeting this past week where all the leaders of the mission (District Leaders, Zone Leaders, Sister Training Leaders and trainers) got together and were taught how to be a leader and do it the Lord's way. It was really cool to discuss all the different ways the Savior led and how we can emulate Him. I'm still pretty awful, that's for sure, but hey, I'm definitely working at it and getting better!

Man, there is a lot of chill stuff happening in our area. Since all of the crazy ward changes and stuff things have been rough and our teaching pool small, but all of our ward mission leaders are called and they're PUMPED like yolked and souped up and it's the best. They're so excited to get things moving and we're expecting big things soon. Too bad Elder Brock and I are leaving.

WHAT?? I'M LEAVING?? Yeah, probably. It's only been one transfer, I know, but our whole stake is more likely than not to get moved into another zone this transfer, and we, being the zone leaders, need to be moved into another area. So if that all goes according to President Curtis' current plan, Elder Brock and I'll be packing up our bags and moving out this next week. To Filer, Idaho, most likely. Which is funny, because it's the town RIGHT next to Buhl, my first area! So I suppose it's only fitting that my (probably) last area is in that spot. Kinda cute, huh?

So yeah, that's my life right now. I guess we'll see where that all goes. More info to come! STAY TUNED 'CAUSE I KNOW YOU'RE SO INTERESTED. Love you all muah peace out!

Elder Slavens

Monday, March 16, 2015

Top o' the mornin' to ya!


I am in a DARN TOOTIN good mood! I'm loving life! The MTC is awesome! and you know what's MORE awesome? I GET TO LEAVE IN 8 DAYS!!!!! This weeks egg amount has been pathetic. The store didn't restock flaming hot Cheetos, so eggs had no purpose. So I basically come home every night and I am starving. And i have nothing to save me from that. IF THERE IS ANYONE WHO LOVES ME, buy a bag of flaming hot cheetos with Limon and write my address on a piece of paper and tape it to it and throw it in the mail! I'll send you something nice in return. 

I had my first dream that was FULLY in Cambodian a couple nights ago! It was Arnold Schwarzenegger and I chilling in a parking garage with each other, and he was telling me all about how he loves going to the temple, but he has to eat a ton of bananas before he goes so he doesn't get stomach pains. And I woke up and peed my pants because it was so awesome. Arnold rocks the Cambodian. 

Our week has been crazy because we are all trying to get ready to leave. WE HAVE 8 MORE DAYS IN THE MTC, PEOPLE!!!! I always think i'm ready, until our teachers do something like show us pictures from their missions and tell us to describe what we see. and I'm all, "Dude, I only know how to talk about Jesus because He's all that matters". But honestly, I don't even know how to ask for directions or buy anything. AND I'M SO EXCITED! When I don't know what someone says, I'm just gonna say some random sentence about how I'm from America and love to dance. 

Honestly, this week i have just realized how much I love everything. I LOVE EVERYTHING! you name something, and I can guarantee I love it! All my hardships as a missionary, I LOVE! It's gonna be so fun getting to Cambodia and having no clue what's going on, but at least Heavenly Father will help me out! Next Monday is gonna be exciting! I love you all! Stay safe! Make every moment count! Live life like you are a mermaid from H2O: Just Add Water!! 

Love you! 
Elder Dark Money 

My address for the cheetos: 
2007 N 900 E Unit 60
Provo, UT, 84602

Every Villain Is Lemons 

Me and all my friends (I don't know a single person in this picture) 

MTC look alikes 1: The Holes Crew 

​MTC look alike 2: Andy Samberg with a guy who is plotting something 

​MTC look alike 3: Black Michael Jackson

Monday, March 9, 2015

Ether probably liked Eggs

What a SPLENDID week it has been, do you agree? THAT'S GREAT!!!!! 

     In my last email, I forgot to tell you about the best part of my last week! the night before all the Thais left, my master (Elder Swagger) decided to hold a competition for who would receive his bathrobe. A foot race for only the most FEARLESS of contestants. I decided to think of the Maze Runner while I was running the twisty halls of the MTC residency. But then something I did not expect... STAIRS. I tripped and fell down a flight of stairs. I twisted my ankle so good. So I had to get it iced and stuff. I think it was God punishing me for being an idiot. It's probz gonna be happening a lot. 

     But the Thais did leave us with a noisemaker for the long, dark nights! One of the settings is "heartbeat" and every time someone turns it on and turns off the lights I instantly go into fight or flight attack mode. Someone always gets a black eye. 

     IMPORTANT IMPORTANT IMPORTANT!!! My parents sent me my new drivers license. So if someone would like to WIN my old one, then enter this competition. The first one to send me a letter will receive my old drivers license in the mail. No charge to you. Mail away. 

      HEY! Are you wondering to yourself... why hasn't Dallin talked about eggs yet? Well prepare yourself for THIS! We have done the math. We were curious how many eggs we have all individually eaten since we have been here. After hours of working hard on a chalk board to solve the problem, we have figured it out... We have all individually eaten almost 260 eggs since we have been in the MTC. And I am so sad, because I only have about 48 more eggs to go before I am out of here. Cambodia better be ready for my iron stomach.
     Skyping a member in Cambodia was so fun last week! He was this old guy, and he kept looking into the corner of the screen, and then when I asked him what he was up to, he moved the computer screen to reveal there was a crowd of like 8 people listening to us. So we preached to the masses. 

     I will end my week with the miracle that happened to me. It was all thanks to a certain Erin Bartlett (Sorry if I butchered your last name lol). So one day I was having major struggles because I realized I only have about 2 and a half more weeks in the MTC, and I SUCK at speaking Cambodian. But then I got this package in the mail from Erin, one of the babes who was in my ward at BYU, and she told me to read Ether chapter 12, and to relate it to my language learning ability. Verse 27 spoke to me. It said to turn your weaknesses into strengths, you have to have humility and faith. I was like, "what the heck! I have humility! I'm the humbelest ever!" I was asking God for help on the language every night. But what I was lacking was faith. I didn't KNOW every night that the next day I would be better at Cambodian because I asked. But once I read that scripture, I realized that once I KNEW that God would help me, it came so much faster. 

     I'm preparing to head off to Cambodia in about 2 weeks, and you guys, I got some ants in my pants! I'm stoked! I love y'all! Have a sweet-nasty week. 

Free rabbit pellet ice 

​This Elder doesn't speak English, and he has like 12 last names. But our love is still strong. 

​Bow down, commoners 

Sick of It All

Yeah, I'm sick, guys. Not of the mission, though, geez, chill out. The missionary I went on an exchange with and got the pen with was sick out of his mind and he shoved it on me. Barnacles. It's all good though, I'm cooling off. My voice is just like super dead and that makes it pretty hard to teach proper lessons and stuff. Very annoying. But hey, whatch'a gonna do? Mah laff ees goot.

This week. Gah. I don't even know. OH HEY. I have another story from last week that I forgot to tell 'cause I was so preoccupied with my new pen. So check it out: My companion and I have been pretty good about working out recently 'cause we're both on the downward slope and wanna not be super fat when we get back. So we been hitting up that P90X 'cause the guy on it says it'll make make me rock hard. Putting that to the test. ANYWAY I DIGRESS (surprise surprise). We were working out one night and Elder Brock's benching two fat dumbbells rather than doing push-ups 'cause he's cooler than me. I'm doing push-ups like the guy calls for 'cause I'm smart as well as obedient and suddenly I hear this huge BANG-CLANG-DONG-SHING-BAM-KABOOM and I'm like awwwwwww, crap. I look over and Elder Brock's covering up his face with his hands and blood is EVERYWHERE AHHHHHHHH!! Long story short (pssssh, yeah right, Elder Slavens) he dropped a weight on his face and cracked two of his teeth basically in half. So that was pretty funny, I guess. We went to the dentist's office and I sat there for like 2 hours as Elder Brock had his face reconstructed (it's really not as bad as I make it out to be, but still kinda bad). He's all better though. Thank goodness we weren't in Cambodia 'cause it would be a lot harder to fix a prollem like that so Dallin, be careful in the hood, ya hear?

But anyway, really not tons happened this week. Due to my sickness I've been taking it pretty easy. We're still working through all the crazy ward changes and just trying to get to know people above all else. So yeep, that's me. Peace out fools. I say that with the utmost love.

Elder Slavens

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Stuff We All Get

That's what SWAG stands for, for those of us who are behind the times.
You wanna know why that's my subject line? Ah, well I have a story to tell in that case.

I went on an exchange with Elder Van Leeuwen this week, companion to one of the District Leaders in our Zone. Our dinner appointment for that evening was the Scout Auction/chili feed the ward was putting on. So we went to this feed excited to just chill out a bit and eat some chili and get to know the members and non-members attending. We had no idea we'd be, like, the center of the show...

So we got there and everybody was shaking our hands and stuff, you know, just happy to see the handsome missionaries. And suddenly the dude in charge of all of it announced that we'd be the judges for the chili contest. I'm like ah crap, now we're 'bout to tick off everyone who loses. But whatever. We tasted all the chili and made a choice and it was said and done. The winner was awarded a thing of Tums.

Then the auction was about to start. We looked around at all the stuff being sold and I found these dope pens and I was like man, it'd be cool to have one of those. So a member walked up and asked, "So what's something that strikes you fancy?" I was like, "Well those pens are pretty chill, but you're not allowed to buy me one or anything." He responds with, "Elder, I will pay whatever is necessary to get you one of those dang pens. In fact, I'll get your companion one too. I brought a bunch of money just so I could do something like this." I figured I couldn't talk him out of it, so I decided to wait. Keep in mind, these pens typically run you 50 bucks when it's not a Scout Auction, but I was like if this is what he wants, I won't fight it!

So the auction begins and this dude is just going crazy. Spending like 50 bucks on cinnamon rolls, 45 bucks on a plate of cookies, you name it, he bought it. Then came out the pens. The bidding started out at 25 bucks, and this guy found himself in like a battle with another dude to get these fancy pens. You wanna know what he bought the pens for? 275 DOLL HAIRS. EACH. He gave us the pens and everybody just stared at us and I wanted to die. But hey, I have a cool pen now.

Dang that was a long story. But that's kinda how my week went. So yeah. Now my hands are dead. Peace out, everyone. I love you all hugs and kisses muah!

Elder Slavens

The pen to end all pens

Mater lives in my area. We're tryna start teaching him.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Fun times with Bong Gong and Look Poo Thuu

Why PIP PIP CHEERIO, everyone!!!! How is life as a normal person? Probably totes not as swag as life as a missionary. Hey, just be a missionary and you won't have to hear me say dumb stuff like that! If there are any of you just tuning in, YES, I am still at the Missionary Training Center, learning how to speak Cambodian. And breathe Cambodian. And dream in Cambodian. I'm hoping I sleep talk in Cambodian. If you think I do, text 58365 right now and vote "YES". Again, if you think I do, text 58365 right now and vote "YES"! 

I'd just like to give a HUGE shout out to the San Ramon 2nd Ward for CRUSHING it in the dodgeball tournament, ONCE AGAIN. A little birdy told me it was all thanks to a horde of giant tattooed Tongans that all came and just made everyone pee their pants. Classic. 

I'd also like to give a shout out to T-rizzle and his 14th birthday! He can now go to stake dances, so treat him well, ladies. 

I'd like to inform everyone that eating eggs and Cheetos every night is still going very strong. The cafeteria people know us now. They see us, and they get ready to swipe us in for some eggs. I woke up one morning a couple days ago, and I was concerned because my hands were covered in dried blood, but then I realized it was just Cheetos dust from the night before. That was a good morning. Also, JUST TO BE SURE, will one of you consult a doctor for me and ask if constant egg eating is ok? I just want to make sure I'm not destroying my body before I go to Cambodia to destroy my body. 

As Zone Leader, it was Elder Lamborn and I's honor to welcome the new Cantonese missionaries. They are #SoFresh. They are picking up the MTC so fast! I offer them foot massages every night because we learned that a good leader is a servant to who they lead. I have had no takers yet. 

So we had our final lesson with one of our "Investigators". I haven't talked about them much (I mostly talk about eggs), but we have 2. One is Bong Gong, and the other is Look Poo Thuu. Awesome names, AM I RIGHT?! But we had to stop teaching Look Poo Thuu because we are supposed to teach a new investigator soon, and it was SO SAD!!! I hate saying goodbyes, even if it's fake! So we taught about Joseph Smith and the Restoration of the church, and MAN, I have never felt so passionate about it! I started crying! I'm just really grateful for everything Joseph smith did to restore Jesus Christ's church. There's a really good video called "The Restoration" that tells the story. It's so cool. I recommend it! I'll put a link. 

Alrighty, fam fam. Have a darn tootin good day! Wish me luck! Tonight we are all Skyping members IN Cambodia. I'm stoked to be yelling at a computer screen and have no clue what anyone is saying. I appreciate you all! Have a sweet week! 

Me being pleasantly surprised as Master Wager pops up out of a bush 


Elder Osborne is that guy from Hunchback of Notre Dame. FIIIRREEEE 

We ain't your common swag wielders