And SO MUCH has happened. I feel a little overwhelmed trying to remember everything I want to tell from this last 2 weeks...
anyways lets start with TRANSFER NEWS!!!! Because, yes, I have this
awesome new companion and YES I'm going to attempt at learning yet
another language. My companion is Sister Bernhardt from France! We are
over the West 1 zone this transfer (which is why my p-day changed to
Tuesday). She's pretty funny and older than me, again....pretty sure all
my companion's have been older than me...I'm such a small little
child.... But she is SO funny and so French. (: We enjoy being together.
may or may not have mentioned that last week that President Harman
asked me to put together a musical number for a ward in Bountiful, Utah?
... So I gathered together myself, Sister Garcia from Spain, Sister
Mathias from England, Sister Aquino from California, and Sister
Sindylkova from Czech Republic to sing, with Sister Ma from Taiwan to
accompany us. We threw it all together in less than a week and we sang
in our sister missionary ward Sunday
morning. That afternoon I drove the crew up to Bountiful to sing in a
ward and it went so well. THEY HAVE BABIES IN THEIR WARD! Adorable.
Babies. I kept having to remind myself not to stare and make faces at
the little children during the meeting but to be an example since I am a
missionary after all. (Though I will admit after sacrament meeting I
asked the mother sitting behind me what her secret was to get her little
2 year old girl to fold her arms and sit quietly during the prayer. It
was astounding and so adorable!!!!) Anyways. After the sacrament meeting
we were asked to stay for a "linger longer" to talk with the members
and their non-member friends they had brought. We met one guy from
main-land china who just loved church and asked to get a picture with
all of us (of course). But in a nutshell it was just a really really
President Poulsen pulled me aside
later that day and asked me if I would be willing to get the sisters
together again to sing that same song for the LDS Business College
Devotional this next Tuesday,
since he was asked to be the speaker. Fist pump!!! So we'll be singing
in that next week and we are so excited!!!! Singing is the greatest!!!!
Missionary Leadership council was yesterday and it was excellent! We
met again on the 9th floor of the JSMB. All the zone leaders gave
instruction so Sister Bernhardt and I were asked to focus on the
fundamental Teach People, Not Lessons. It went really well and we had
some sisters do an exercise I had been forced to do at girls camp back
in the day and it was successful! They all cried! (In a spiritual kind
of way.) So yes, that was great. For our lunch break we took the tunnels
to the Church Office Building to eat in the cafeteria there and we
happened to see Tad R. Callister again! We all walked past him and
strained to see if there was meat on his plate... which there wasn't
any. (: Hahaha But that's just a random side note.
Right after MLC we had to run (literally) back to the square to get to our assignments. At 4pm
we had a V.I.P. tour. And dad you are going to die....(or I could just
accuse you of being jealous since I am known to do that...) The people
we took on the tour were some of the chief executives of Amazon. (You
know, that massive online company?) So yes we were absolutely terrified!
But they were actually really nice! And there were a lot of people who
work for the church who accompanied the tour so no just in case you are
wondering we were not nervous at all... But in all seriousness the tour
went very well and they asked a LOT of questions. We showed them the
inside of the temple (the model of the temple, that is, haha) and
explained to them how Mormons worship in temples. The spirit was just
very unusually strong throughout the tour, especially when we ended at
the statue of Christ. Sadly, because they are VIP guests, we're not
allowed to invite them to learn more or anything like that, but the man
from church hosting did tell us that they already gave them a Book of
Mormon a few days earlier. We were happy to hear that. (:
has also been going very well this week! A few days ago a young lady
came on chat with a very strong interest in learning more. In fact, she
asked us, "What steps would one have to take to become a Mormon?" Which
is a good question! She has a lot of religious background and she
actually is majoring in Biblical studies in university! She said
something interesting to us though. She said, "I feel like I know a lot.
Yet, I feel like I don't have the whole truth and I just want to know
what the whole truth is!" Quite the statement! So we talked about The
Book of Mormon and we will be speaking with her again later this week on
All in all the transfer has been going
extremely well and we have been SO busy. At first I though I was going
to die with all the things we had to do, plus the fact that I had to go
an extra week without a p-day to rest. Yet when I woke up this morning I
was almost disappointed to have a p-day because I felt like we've just
been on such a role so why stop!? Then I pictured mom and dad's worried
face not receiving a letter from me this week so I decided that p-day is a
wise thing. (: So yes mom and dad, I do love you immensely. (:
upcoming events for this week will be Zone Training meeting, announcing
for Music and The Spoken Word, singing in the LDSBC devotional, and
beginning exchanges with the District Leaders! There's just so much work
to do I LOVE IT!
Tongan and Mandarin. Just in case you were curious.
week was very spiritually uplifting. On Sunday I spoke in church. Each
sister on Temple Square has one chance to speak in our ward (our ward
just consists of our mission btw) in our entire mission and it's always
within the last few weeks of service. So yes, I spoke in church on
Sunday and it actually went very well! I spoke on 4 different principles
I have learned on my mission. I won't give you my entire talk but I
will mention what those four principles are.
fall into the trap into doing what is easy. 2. You've got to just calm
down and trust in the Lord! 3. Comparison destroys the purpose of
creation. and 4. Forgive others and yourself quickly.
there you are, it was great! I really did not want to cry because I
hate crying on the pulpit but of course, you know me, as soon as the
words "the temple" came out of my mouth I cried...awkward! But it was ok
I forced myself to remember that people can't understand me when I cry
and it was too important of a testimony for people to not understand so I
stopped crying almost as fast as I started haha! After sacrament
meeting we went to Music and The Spoken Word. (: And I was so happy!
They sang an Ola Gjeilo piece called The Ground. #choirgeek #THEBEST
But really...somebody tell Robert Reimer about this song I expect Trilogy to sing it in their final concert when I return.
have a wonderful new investigator from Las Vegas, he's a single dad
with an adorable little boy and he has been so prepared to learn about
the gospel! He said some missionaries stopped him in his driveway and
gave him a He Is The Gift pass along card. He said her enthusiasm
sparked his interest so He watched it and felt the spirit soo strong. He
then decided to call in Mormon.org so he can learn more! He went to
church last Sunday and really enjoyed his time there and loved the
relationship of the members. We are excited for him to continue learning
especially about the TEMPLE!!! :D :D
of the Temple, we finally went to the temple this transfer! In the last
week of the transfer! Haha but it was muchly needed and so wonderful! I
just always have this one issue when I go to the temple, I just don't
ever want to leave the Celestial room! Honestly, I could sit in there
for a few hours and just ponder and be content. But life is about more
than being content...so eventually I do drag myself out of there. :( But
the temple is great! There is no better place to find peace, feel safe,
or just feel closer to Heavenly Father. I love the temple. It was also
an excellent temple trip because I received some answers regarding after
my mission, which is sad but true. (Not that the answer was sad, it was
good, but the fact that it had something to do with other than the
mission was sad...) Nonetheless, I am very grateful that we're able to
visit the Temple once a transfer (once very 6 weeks).
we went on exchanges with some sisters in our zone, Sister Yim from
Hong Kong and Sister McElhaney from Arizona. Sister Yim is currently
training Sister McElhaney. It was such a great exchange! Sister
McElhaney is an exceptional missionary, even just being in her first
transfers. I spent the day with Sister Yim and she spoke so highly of
her companion. She's very loving, very hard-working, and extremely eager
to learn. Sister Yim is an amazing missionary as well. She follows the
principle of obedience with exactness and she is just like a missionary
sponge. Last transfer sister Yim was companions with Sister Merrill,
whom was my companion her first transfer and she asked me lots of
questions like, "When you were with Sister Merrill how did you do [fill
in the blank]." That surprised me a lot but it was also really cool
because Sister Yim just loves to learn on how to improve and different
methods of doing the same thing, which is how successful people find
success. So Sister Yim is going to be a very successful person. (:
a quick update on our investigator in England; she's doing very well!
It was a little hard being at home first and she was doing a lot of
praying and just really trying to determine what steps to make next. She
was a little stressed but we stayed calm because we know that
everything will work out for her. She has accepted a baptism date now
that she is working toward and she has a lot of confidence in it! We're
really excited for her and she is really learning the principle that no
matter what the Lord will always provide for our needs.
think that is all I was planning on writing about this week. It's just
been a really great week full of many teaching opportunities! Transfer
conference will be on Monday morning. If I switch zones next transfer my
pday will change so if you don't get an email from me next week, you
know why! I will let you know quickly who my new companion will be. I'm
going to miss Tim-Tams, frequently laughing and speaking in Tongan when
I'm frustrated...but oh well. The show must go on!
Want to hear a joke I told my companion the other day?
other day I saw three guys walking down the street. Two of the guys
walked into a bar, but the Mormon ducked. (Insert awkward smile here.)
I know I know...my mormon jokes make no sense.
Ok bye now!!!!
We found Grandmother Willow today! So awesome! #pocahontas
Sometimes we don't want to
write letters home. Sometimes we just like to read letters and then not
have to worry about responding haha(: But we still write because we love
you! So mom...dad...I just love you. And that is why I am writing this
letter today haha(:
This week was complicated...
investigator from England came. (: We got to spend 2 days with her! Ah!
The dream of any Temple Square missionary! We met up on Friday
afternoon and took her to the Conference Center and Beehive House. We
also took her to the mission offices and she met President Poulsen! He
had us come in his office and we all sat around and chatted for a while.
He's so awesome. (: After which we ate dinner with her, which was fun.
We went to the mall across the street but then took our food to what we
call "the celestial vending" in the bottom floor of the Church Office
Building. It was closed but since she was with us we were allowed to
take her in through the tunnels. We then took her to the teaching
centre's with us and she watched us take chats and phone calls, which
she was completely curious about! I let her look in my area book and
read all my records I put in about her hahaha! She enjoyed reading that a
lot. On Saturday morning we met up again at 9 am and showed her around the North Visitor's Centre. At 10AM
our investigator from Provo came up and we all met up and watched Meet
the Mormons in the largest theatre we have. Yes. Yes we used our largest
theatre for the 4 of us...it was awesome. Then she went with us to our 3
hour shift in Guest Services haha! I let her get on my familysearch
account and look around on what that was like, which she seemed
entertained by! She even found herself! Haha(: We talked a lot. Well, we
always talk a lot even when she's not here but ya know. Then I brought
her to Sister Mathias' District Meeting! (My companion and I split up
each week and attend different district meetings.) So she went with me
and sat in and experience the ever-so-exciting district meeting of a
missionary! Of course, all the sisters were just awestruck by the fact
that she was an investigator from the other side of the world who was
really visiting us! They all adored her accent as well.
side note: it's interesting how there isn't just one British accent. As a
child I always just assumed there was one but our investigators accent
is completely different from Sister Mathias', and Sister Mathias' accent
is very different from other sisters here and other people I know. Just
shows you how cultured I was as a little child...#merica]
then ate dinner and showed her the rest of the buildings on Temple
Square. The Assembly Hall was closed for some reason but we decided it
would be ridiculous if she came all this way and didn't see every
building!!! So we took her in through the tunnels. #shh... But there was
nothing going on in there anyways so...don't judge us! #yolo THEN! Alan
(you'll remember he was baptized 6 months ago and is now married to a
member and they attend BYU?) came up with his wife and a friend and we
all met up to go to Saviour of the World! We originally were not going
to sit in the show with them but circumstances worked out that we could
and we were SO HAPPY! Not only that, but we went in and the theatre was
packed but, you know me, determined to have the best seat for our
investigator I walked down to the front where the special reserved seats
are and asked the host if it would be possible for our group to sit
there. I was about to tell him we had a non-member in the group (I know I
know I'm aweful) but he ran to the other host and then came back and
said YES!!! So, no joke, we literally had the best seats in the house!
Heavenly Father loves our investigator. (: Yes He does!!! After the show
we had to say our goodbye's and she left with Alan and Mikah (they gave
her a ride back to her hotel).
So now she is back in
England. *shed a tear* We miss her. I miss her. I don't want her to be
so far. We pray for her constantly. She has hard decisions to make. She
has so much faith, though! She has done a lot, but she doesn't do it for
anyone other than herself. When we first began teaching her 9 months
ago she wouldn't even allow us to call her on the phone haha she would
only chat with us online. And it's been neat to see how God answers her
prayers, which He does...a LOT. God would never leave her alone,
however. He has purposes and a plan for her. He is very aware of her.
She may or may not read this blog post, but if she does, I hope she
feels the spirit confirm to her that every righteous decision she has
made the past 9 months has lead her to where she is right now. D&C 6:14. There are no coincidences.
other news: My companion is the greatest! She makes me laugh all the
time and if I don't have a 6-pack when I get home I will be really
upset. Possibly rage. Speaking of rage! If you haven't seen Meet the
Mormons yet, you better! Oh and that reminds me, my companion's
Christmas package finally made it all the way here from Australia!
Hahaha! We have been feasting on Tim-Tams! AH! I must live in Australia
someday JUST so that I can eat Tim-Tams! And my companion is great
because she never thinks about the fact that she returns home in 13
days! WOO! Life is good. My companion is good. (: It's good to have a
This letter is too full of emotion! I
should not be so sappy! What is not sappy that I can tell you...? Our
avocados are ripe! FINALLY! We've been waiting to eat them for 3
Well I can't think of anything else that is not sappy that I should write about so I think that sums up this week's email!
Everybody stay calm!!! Except this is kind of a BIG DEAL!
(This email will not be chronologically...I'm just jumping to the good stuff first.)
INVESTIGATOR FROM ENGLAND IS HERE!!!!! And I met her 2 days ago!!!! And
it was so crazy!!!! :D She was here with the family of one of the
Elders that has been teaching her back in England! We were in Guest
Services when she first came on the square but I couldn't just sit down
there when I knew she was upstairs! So we went up and I was thinking we
would just be quick and take longer at a later time...ha! Yeah right! We
were talking for almost 2 hours I think? It was a long time, but it was
great! She is coming back to be in downtown SLC all day Friday and
Saturday so we have lots of time to fill!! Today she is spending the day
skiing up in Park City with the members. Woot! :D
of the things we will most definitely be doing is showing her Meet The
Mormons!!! We had a mission wide training from the Missionary Dept on
Monday morning to tell us all about the details and how we are going to
be involved in the showings here on Temple Square. It officially begins
showing on Temple Square tomorrow (January 2nd) at 7:30PM
as the first showing. But, of course, the movie will be in the systems
attached to all the theatre's on Temple Square so we're reserving a
theatre just for our investigator from England to watch with her...maybe
tomorrow? #tsqmissionary #perks The main point is that we are stoked
about how many people will be coming to watch it! Usually after
Christmas is over the square slows down quite a bit but we have no doubt
this will keep it busy enough to have people to talk with. It's just
such a fabulous movie! Woo!!!
If you're in the
Salt Lake City area and want to watch Meet the Mormons in the Legacy
Theatre on Temple Square you'll need to go online and reserve tickets.
The tickets are free, but they are required for seating purposes. If you
don't get tickets, however, there will be a standby line in the JSMB
(Joseph Smith Memorial Building) for any extra seats in the theatre. If
you don't get in even after that, you can go to the North Visitor's
Centre for overflow in theatre 5. You can obtain tickets here:
it is currently available in is just English and Spanish. By summer of
2015, however, the missionary dept says it will be available in other
languages such as Mandarin, Portuguese, Japanese, etc.
Ok, now that we have the formal information out of the way...
past week we had exchanges with all the District Leaders in our zone,
and THAT was fun! Sister Garcia (from Spain), Rangel (from Brazil), and
Mathias (from England) are just amazing district leaders! They do SO
much and are very on top of everything. We were able to do a lot of
teaching with each of them and it was a great experience! After we
completed exchanges we had Zone Leader reports with President, which
went super well!!! Sister Poulsen and Sister Taito (from Figi) kept
laughing at me though...and they kept looking at me and Sister
Tuinukuafe and saying "Oh those two!" I don't know what that means...but
it was interesting!
Funny story! At the end of
Zone Leader reports we told president about our investigator in England
who was here and he got really excited! He asked about how she got
interested in the church and we told him she had been watching a Mormon
family on YouTube for 4 years called The Shaytards (Shay Carl and his
wife are pretty famous YouTube who just post videos of their
family/life all the time haha). We had never seen them and neither had
president so he said, "Well lets go look them up!" So he sat at his desk
and pulled up the shaytards on YouTube and we watched a little bit
haha! It was very...interesting... We kept laughing at how dramatic they
are but president was just watching with a very intent/interested face
and it was SO funny! Sister Poulsen and the AP's were just laughing too.
So now I can say the first time I saw the Shaytards was when my mission
president looked them up during zone leader reports! #what?
Some little miracles that happened this week!
former investigator that Sister Esquivel and I taught a year ago called
into my personal extension and left a message saying he wanted to talk
with us again! I freaked out! His story is a long one, and you may not
remember him. But he was the guy from New York who was into some bad things and then was converted but then dropped off the face of the
planet. Yeah! Him! He called us! And he's doing really good! And he's
still Christian!!! So that is exciting!
was a man from Las Vegas who came onto chat about 2 weeks ago who was
really interested to learn more, but sadly we couldn't get a hold of him
after our amazing online chat BUT this morning I saw a voice mail from
him! He called us last night trying to get a hold of us and he says he
still wants to go to church and learn more! We are so happy!!!! That was
a tender mercy. (:
Speaking of tender mercies!
was crazy. I for some reason I couldn't sleep AT ALL and I was just
laying in bed awake all night long. By the time my alarm went off I felt
soooo terrible. I got out of bed and went out to the living room
planning on trying to work out but I was so dead that I ended up sitting
in the middle of the living room like a zombie and I wasn't sure but I
thought I was going to perish. But then we had a MLC (Mission Leadership
Counsel) so I got myself ready to go and we came down to the square.
The meeting went well but I just felt sooo out of it and I couldn't
figure out what was wrong and why I couldn't sleep etc. and my companion
thought I had turned into a vegetable haha. So we came home for lunch
and I seriously collapsed on my bed and just started crying like there
was no tomorrow! My poor companion was like "Oh my gosh what is wrong!?"
and I was like "I don't know I just feel like I'm going to die!" So she
just sat by my bed and patted my sad little head while I cried for two
minutes haha and then the next thing I knew I was unconscious. I had a
lot of really weird dreams and when I woke up and looked at the clock it
was 3 hours later! I also found that my companion had taken like 5
blankets and put them on me and tucked me in and put heating pads in the
blankets too because our apartments heater was broken and she said I
felt super cold! Crazy! Apparently after I fell asleep my companion
called the mission president's wife and they found covers for our
assignments and she said for me to just sleep. So anyways when I woke up
I just felt so awful like I had been hit by a truck haha so we stayed
home the rest of the day and had lots of good gospel discussions. (: The
APs gave me a sleeping pill to take but I still couldn't fall asleep
this morning...but for some reason I still feel a lot better than I did
yesterday. It was just such a crazy experience I have never felt my
body just shut down like that before! But there was a huge tender mercy
because we had an appointment with a new investigator that we missed but
when we called her this morning she said that it was ok because the
local missionaries ended up showing at her house yesterday at the same
time our appointment was! SUCH A TENDER MERCY!!!!
yes, missionary work is hard and sometimes you almost die. BUT the Lord
takes care of us. For me, He sent me the sweetest loving companion ever
who just patted my head while I cried and covered me with blankets so I
could sleep! Haha(: And she made me laugh on New Years Eve when we were
talking about how in a year from then we would look back on this New
Years eve and laugh about how we spent it reading conference talks
together and watching super old church movies that are cheesy but
awesome! It was a good New Years. And even though I couldn't sleep, it
was a tender mercy because I got to listen to fireworks at midnight while all the other sisters were sleeping! See! Life is grand. (:
Anyways wow that was a big long dramatic way to tell you that I'm sick. But it had a happy ending, right?
I will be buying lots of orange juice today.
so that is the condensed version of the goings-on this last week! The
weather is FREEZING COLD and I don't know how I will survive but I know
the Lord will provide! I am grateful for gloves, scarfs, jackets, long
sleeve shirts, leggings, boots, earmuffs, and the ability to walk
swiftly from building to building. :D
I love you all and hope you have a marvelous week!!!!!!!!!
BY THE WAY! This was an abandoned skate board someone left is west gate
for an entire transfer! So we finally just brought it home and now we
skateboard around the apartment when we're bored... :D Don't judge by
byu sweat pants, really cool hat or my charlie the unicorn t-shirt...I
have awesome friends who send me awesome stuff ok!?