There was an ET (emergency transfer), and one of our Sister missionaries in the District was transferred out. A new one came in. She had already decided to go home for medical reasons, but the Mission President wanted her to try a new area. She went home Wednesday. Because of that, her companion, Sister Bishop, is now combined with us. We are a trio covering the Green Valley Ward and the Bass Lake Ward...all in Cameron Park. It is a decent sized area! Sister Bishop has been here 6 months in Green Valley, so she knows EVERYONE! She only has one more transfer after this...so she is nearing the end. I was hesitant about a trio because Sister Parkinson and I have been working so well together, but over the last few days, it has gotten so much better! Sister Bishop is a little "trunky" (the term used when someone is about to go home and getting antsy haha), but we joke with her about it. We are all learning how to work and teach together.
On Wednesday night, there was a huge stake activity at a park for Pioneer Day. It was so fun! I just love the early Saints of the Church and all they did. I am thankful we could honor them.
|Sister Parkinson and me, with our new companion, Sister Bishop! We are at the Pioneer Day activity for the El Dorado Stake.|
So, last week was hard for me as you know. But this week is completely different. I cannot even believe it! I have been so much happier. I read President Uchtdorf's talk on being "grateful in all circumstances," and it totally changed my outlook. Heavenly Father is answering prayers and miracles are happening!!
There is one that I am so excited to share. We got a referral from Church headquarters for a woman named Hannah. I guess referrals do not really work out well, so my companions were not super hopeful. I was pumped though. We go in to meet her. She is mid-20s I would day. She has a 4-year-old daughter from a previous marriage, and has since re-married. We walked in and she told us to sit down. She asked her friend to set her up with the missionaries, so she referred herself basically...how cool! She said her parents were members but that they went inactive before age 8, when she could be baptized. The last few years, she said she feels like she is missing something. She is so happy with her life, but she is still looking for something. She said everytime she thinks about it...The Mormon Church always comes to mind. I could not even believe it. She was basically saying that she pretty much knows the Gospel is the answer, so she needs to learn more. Anyone who knows me, knows that I am a cry baby, and let me tell you, I started crying right there. The Spirit was so strong. Hannah was a miracle. She is the answer to my many, many prayers. I told her how much I admire her. Instead of going through life, trying to survive, she is seeking out answers and hope. She wants the blessings and promises the Gospel offers. It was incredible!! I was immediately connected to her. That was Saturday night. We set up an appointment to teach her the first lesson Monday night. Saturday night, after we left, I went home and cried to much haha. I just could not believe it. We taught her last night, and it went so well. We had left a Book of Mormon with her Saturday night and she read the introduction. Last night, she listened intently, and committed to read and pray about the truthfulness of what we were teaching. She was my very first "official" lesson in the field. And she was our first lesson to teach as a trio! It went smoothly. At the end, I committed her to be baptized!! She said if she comes to know the truthfulness, then Yes! And she said she knows she will get the answer that it is true :) She is on date for August 30th!!!!!!!! I am so so excited!! I was so nervous to ask her to be baptized. My companions said they chickened out their first time, so they were proud of my for following through haha. We brought a member with us to teach. She is young, too, and about to have a baby. She joined the Church a couple years ago. Her and Hannah connected SO WELL! We knew they would. Hannah loved the member. The member, Brianna, was able to testify about the difference the Gospel makes. I can see the change it will make in Hannah's life, and I know she sees it too. She is worried because her husband is not interested. He is SO SUPPORTIVE of her, but he just is not interested. But I do not think it will affect her in the long run of getting baptized. She is incredible and so ready for the Gospel!!!! It truly was a miracle.
We also have another great potential investigator. Ryan. His schedule is busy but he is interested. We are excited to see where it goes with him!
We had a former investigator come to Church on Sunday! The lessons were so powerful, and I know she felt the Spirit. Because we are over two wards, we go to church from 7:30am-4:30pm...between Ward Council and church. haha. Sundays are long, but I love it. Sister Parkinson and I spoke in the Green Valley Ward. They asked me to talk about why I decided to serve a mission.
We finally moved into our permanent place! It is with a member. Their son just left on his mission. They have an apartment attached to the house, so we stay there. It is so nice! I love having a home now that we know we will be in. I have been living out of a suitcase for so long.
|Our new place! It is in the country-ish part of the ward. It is a super-nice gated community, but all of the houses have tons of land. It is cozy! I love that I was able to un-pack. The view is so nice for running in the mornings.|
I know that Heavenly Father answers our prayers. When we keep our faith, press forward, and work hard....He will provide. I have seen it. I am so excited to continue working in this area. Great things are coming, people!!!!!!
To end this letter, I just received news that a girl in my pledge class at OU passed away. I cannot describe how sad it makes me at this time. I know all the Thetas are together and mourning. I love you all so much. We cannot always explain why these things happen, but if we turn to God, we can find peace and comfort. My prayers are with the Witcher family, with my Theta family, and with the OU community. Stay strong and know you are loved.
Until next week,
P.S. We had interviews with our Mission President, so that is why P-day is on a Tuesday this week. I have printed out everyone's emails and will write back today and send them out!!! :)