Monday, December 29, 2014

Christmas and Transfer Call (Week 12)

This week has gone by so fast! It has definitely been a slow week with the holidays but still good nonetheless. On Christmas Eve, we had dinner with Sister Haefner, one of the ward missionaries. She is so kind and fun to talk to. We had ham, potatoes and green beans with pumpkin pie for dessert. While we were waiting for dinner, we put together a puzzle. She even sent us home with one to do together.

On Christmas, we had breakfast with the Warmbrodt family. We had biscuits and gravy with fruit and muffins. It was so good. Then we got to see them open all their presents. With all their family there, they have lots of little grand kids with mental disabilities. It got a little loud sometimes but it was really neat to see how they manage their Christmas day. They are such a neat family and they even gave us missionaries some gifts. They gave us each a Chinese fan and a small Russian doll. The fan was so that we would remember their adopted daughter from China and the doll was to remember their adopted son from Russia. Those gifts I will keep and cherish for years to come. Their family sacrifices so much for others and they care so much for countless children who have disabilities. It was touching. 

We then went over to the Bradley's house to skype our families and eat lunch. It was such a blessing to be able to see them and talk to them. I loved it. After lunch we went back to our apartment, put the puzzle together (all of it), ate dinner, painted t-shirts and went to bed early.

The rest of the week was very slow. We did get transfer calls and both Sister Gunter and I are staying!!! We were so surprised. Not only will she be my trainer, but my follow-up trainer as well. It is so rare that companions stay together for more than 1 or 2 transfers, but we will be together for 3! I am excited to see the changes that we can continue to make in their area. I has been a challenge but we know that we can make this new year great. 

Thank you so much for all the wonderful gifts and cards that you all have sent me. It was so nice to open them all on Christmas morning and I felt loved. May your new year be great and filled with positive change. Love you!
I'm sorry to say that I can't send any pictures this week. We normally email at the local college which has free internet and printing and we have no trouble getting pictures to send. But the last couple weeks, that college has been closed for the holidays and so we have to go to a library to email. Their computers are not able to register the pictures for some reason. The college library should open up again next week and I will send lots of pictures then.

Our STLs are the greatest

Sister's p-day at the mission home.

This is the mission home. Isn't it pretty?

The mission home had a Christmas tree with a paper chain that had all the missionaries names on them.

Christmas morning going to the Warmbrodt's house for breakfast.

They have such a beautiful place.

Christmas night Sister Gunter and I made this entire puzzle in about 2 hours. Sister Haefner gave it to us for fun.

Our district.

Christmas is Here! (Week 11)

This week has been great. Our numbers are low as always but we have been able to do some great work. Sister Haefner, one of our ward missionaries, drove us to our appointments one day. It seemed like everything we did fell through or cancelled, but we had so much fun spending time with her. She is such a funny lady. At the end of the day she even showed us the Mississippi River. I can't believe that we are only 10 minutes away from it. I didn't take any pictures because we didn't get our of the car but it was really neat to see.

We also spent some time with the Ziegenmiers. They are an old couple in the ward who drive us every Thursday so that we can save miles. They are the nicest couple ever. Their conversion story is so neat and they are such a huge blessing with our missionary work. They have been driving the missionaries almost for an entire year! They are the best.

We had a wonderful surprise this week. We went to visit one of our investigators, Carrie. We were worried that we would have to drop her soon, because we hadn't seen her in the longest time. We decided to drop by their house and she was home! We even got to meet her husband and their son. We talked a lot about the organization of the church and we were able address a lot of the misconceptions that her husband had about the church. I hope that we can pick up her husband and son as investigators. Carrie is the most genuine person. She even bought us Christmas gifts. We have only been to her house a few times and yet she acts as though she has known us for years. I love the sincerity of her heart. I pray that we can keep teaching her through her busy schedule.

Sorry this email is short. We only have an hour because the library we normally email at is closed for the next couple weeks. I probably won't be able to respond to many emails.

Love you all! Enjoy this Christmas season! Remember the true meaning of CHRISTmas. He is the true gift.

Our beautiful tree full of presents

These pictures we took at the Sandy Creek Covered Bridge. It is a historical site in our area.

Week Ten!

This week has been good. This week we went on Exchanges with the STL's. I stayed in my area while sister Gunter went to Fenton. I was with Sister Heaps and I was super nervous to be in charge of my area for a whole day. But it went well. There are always miracles that happen on exchanges. We were able to see one of our previous investigators that we hadn't seen in about a month. We dropped them because we couldn't meet with them enough. We went to knock on their door, when at the exact same time, Adam (our investigator) pulled up in his cop car to his driveway. At first I was nervous and then I remembered that he worked as a cop, haha. It was great that we got to see him after all this time. He says he is interested but we probably won't see him until after the holidays. Wednesday was Sister Gunter's birthday. She turned 20 years old! Crazy to think that I will be 21 in a month. :) Appointments have been falling through still so it is a constant struggle to get our hopes up and spend time preparing lessons when they cancel. We have still done good work though. It just never seems to show in our numbers. We were able to help Sister Lindaman who is a member. She had us clean her house because it is really hard on her health. She is the sweetest lady and she loves having us over. It feels good to help those who care about us. We also had a good lesson with one of our recent converts, Angela. When we first got to the area, she was having a hard time with coming to church. But this week she came! She gets really nervous in large crowds so she was struggling with her anxiety but she made it. I think this is the first time in months that she has come to church. Sundays are always great to be surrounded by those who accept you and who welcome you. I love being able to take the sacrament and focus my week on the Savior.

3 Nephi 15:9 - Jesus is the light of the world. If we look to him we will live. The world can be a dark place but Jesus will always light the way.

Love you all and I hope that you are able to enjoy this Christmas season. I challenge you to not only make it a memorable Christmas, but make it one of the best Christmas holidays for someone else. Joy comes as we bring joy to others.
This was the highlight of our week. Sister Gunter made a huge mess in the kitchen. As you can see, she spilled her noodles over the stove as well as the floor

Week Nine- Miracles Come

This week everything has fallen through. Everything has cancelled and it is discouraging. Saturday came and I admit that I was not looking forward for another day of rejection and empty plans. But we did see a miracle after all of this frustration. We went to contact a potential investigator who lived in the dorms of Jefferson College. We found the apartment but the man we were looking for no longer lived there. But the girl who opened the door let us in to warm up a bit. Her name is Holly. We ended up teaching her and her friend, Tashina, the Restoration, gave them copies of the Book of Mormon, and invited them to be baptized. They both came to the ward Christmas party later that night, we gave them a tour of the building, and Holly came to church the next day. How amazing! All of this happened in less that 24 hours. It made me so happy and I couldn't believe how much different I felt. Miracles do come if you are just patient and keep moving forward.

This week We also got to have interviews with our mission president, President Morgan. He is a wonderful president and I am so glad that I got to talk to him. He helped me with not being so hard on myself. I think that all the weeks of rejection was getting me down and so it was so nice to have him bring me up.

I watched the Christmas Devotional last night and it was so nice to be able to sit and listen to the words of the apostles and the first presidency. I used to take for granted the quick access I used to have to listen to their words. I love hearing them talk because I know that they will never lead us astray or guide us to do the wrong thing. They are always uplifting.

I am excited to see what this next week will bring. I love you all. :) Merry Christmas
Some people have these creepy faces that they like to put on their trees. I don't understand them.


My companion Sister Gunter

I had no idea why someone would want a 10 foot duck with a Santa hat in their front yard but ok

These are some of the crazy road we have to deal with. This one was quite the adventure

There is green grass and it's December. I don't understand Missouri weather.

This pine branch made our car smell like Christmas for a little while. :)   

Our small Christmas Tree, yay!

Week Eight!

Not much has gone on this week. It seems like it has gone by so fast. We are finding more people here and there, but things still fall through with appointments. It seems like we have been the clean-up crew for this area. We have found multiple people who have fallen through the cracks. One lady who was one our Less active list said that she wasn't even a member. She said that multiple missionaries have come to her door in the past, but that she thinks her name but be mistaken for someone else. Crazy right? We thought she was a member but it turns out that she is a potential investigator. Another man we found said that he doesn't even remember if he was baptized or not. He didn't know who we were or where we were from. We told him that we had records saying he was a member but he doesn't even know. Hopefully we will figure it out and be able to bring him back to church. There are so many little things that we have been able to fix when it comes to the records. We fix wrong numbers, wrong addresses and find those who have fallen through the cracks. It's kind of sad to think that there are so many things that need fixing. I hope that even though our efforts don't show in our numbers at the end of the day, that we will at least be able to see the efforts of fixing the records we have.

I love the new Christmas Initiative that we have been implementing in our work. I have found that it is easier to talk to people when you just want to talk about the true meaning of Christmas. I feel like people are more willing to talk if it is related to Christmas. I feel like I have also been able to get over my fear of talking to people. It is surprising to find who will listen to us. We approach so many different kinds of people that you just can't judge them based of how they look. We need to share this gospel with EVERYONE. If you haven't seen the new video watch it at

Thanksgiving was great and we were able to spend it with members in the ward. We had wonderful food and we played a few games. Thanksgiving has made me realize how much this mission means to me. Everyday I am learning more about myself and I feel like I am coming closer to the Lord. I am so grateful because I know the blessings I have received now will not compare to the blessings that I will see in years to come.

Alma 26:3 - And this is the blessing which hath been bestowed upon us, that we have been made instruments in the hands of God to bring about this great work.

Week Seven!!

This week has been good even though almost all of our appointments have fallen through. It seems like Satan is getting in the way of our most solid investigators. The holidays also make it hard to meet with them. But I am keeping them in my prayers and I know that we will be able to find some way to keep them moving forward in the gospel.

Some of you may know that on Wednesday there was a terrible accident. You could find more information online than I could give you but I will tell you what I know. Two Elders were heading to the transfer meeting on Wednesday and they were hit head-on by a truck. They both survived and by Sunday they were both checked out of the hospital. What miracles! The night they were in the crash, we prayed as a whole mission. I know that Heavenly Father watches over his missionaries and I know that they have healed quickly because of the prayers and generosity of the members.

I was touched by some things that the ward missionaries did in my ward. Sister Haefner called Sister Gunter and I to ask if we were doing ok. She reached out to us in love to comfort us. Sister Johnson called us to send a message to President Morgan. She wanted to offer her home as a place where the families of the missionaries involved in the accident could stay. She alone cares for her daughter who is paralyzed from the neck down, so for her to offer her home is a huge sacrifice. Both of them were great examples to me of the importance of charity and love. I love the members here. They take care of us and care for us.

Also you may be hearing about the events in Ferguson. I am living about an hour south of the city and so I am no where near all the protests and riots that are happening. the Mission President keeps us informed and always advises to stay far away from any of that activity for our protection. I don't think that I will see anything first hand, so know that I am safe. It's sad to hear all that is going on. That is the one thing that is nice about being a missionary. We don't watch TV and we are completely focused in the gospel. It is a blessing to be away from the awful things of the world.

In my studies I have been reading the Book of Mormon. I am in Alma 16 reading about Ammon. The more I read the more I love the scriptures. I know that they are the word of God and they are inspiring and uplifting. I hope to be able to finish the book by the end of the year. I have also started memorizing the Living Christ. I have about 2/3 of it memorized and it's starting to get hard! But it is great. It is strengthening my testimony of our loving Savior Jesus Christ and the wonderful blessing His life brings to us. The more I memorize this testimony of the apostles, the more it becomes my own testimony.

Love you all. Hope that you enjoy Thanksgiving!!!!!!! 

Momron 9:22 - For behold, thus said Jesus Christ, the Son of God, unto his disciples who should tarry, yea, and also to all his disciples, in the hearing of the multitude: Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.