Monday, February 24, 2014

(327) reassigned!

                                                                     24 Feb 2014

I am now officially reassigned to the California San Jose Mission!

Crazy, I know. It's been a long journey, but I can honestly say that I am happy. Of course I am bummed that I won't be able to go to brazil, but I've always know that my heart wasn't in it and that I needed to be somewhere else. so I've definitely learned a lot and it's been really good for me to just trust the Lord. It's easy to get caught up in the fact that I was called there and all these other things pointed toward brazil, but honestly, the reasons why I wanted to go to brazil were completely selfish. I wanted to get to know the people and culture, go on an adventure, perfect my language skills, and say I served a foreign mission. None of which matters in the end.

Being in San Jose has blessed me so much. I've learned so much about leadership, and how I can be a more effective member and help my own community. we have amazing programs that let us be a part of the wards here and serve the community, and I've had way more of an international experience than I would have anywhere else. Elder Cook talked all about how this area affects the rest of the world, and it is true. So it's a bummer I won't get to serve in both areas, but I'll have plenty of time to get to Brazil! Next family vacation, I call it!

but this week was so great! we had two exchanges, one with Seaside and I stayed back for Santa Cruz, so it was really busy but we found some amazing miracles, from less actives to former contacts to new investigators, we've got a lot to do! this is sister monson's last transfer here so this week is going to be busy, but it should be good! we had stake conference and sister monson gave an amazing talk, set the podium ablaze, and we had amazing member missionary experiences this week that we got to be a part of. the work is hastening in marina!

Monday, February 17, 2014

321) "remember that bones episode?"


this week has been so great. First, visa update (not mine) but most of the people from my district are getting theirs now, and they have to go BACK to the MTC for two weeks for language training again. Kill me now. Anyway, so we will see what happens.

we had a great week for finding new investigators, we got to teach a lot this week as well so we've gotten a lot more potentials. Those that were progressing towards baptism have slowed down a lot, so that's been a bummer, but there is still a lot of work to be done. Including a man who got baptized last month and hasn't been coming...we've visited him and he said he was coming to church, so we expected him there. He even called and said he was on his way, and then that he was there....but never showed up. We think he went to a different we might have a few things to go over next time. Don't think he got the whole priesthood thing. Whoops.

We saw a lot of little miracles this week, and it's been especially neat to see how the spirit works. Sister Monson is amazing at following little promptings and it's taught me how to rely less on myself and really pray about everything. We even joked about seeing the Brazilian lady again, and we did! so I got to chat a little bit with her.

we also had some fun this week, last pday we went to the aquarium with some hermanas from San Jose and walked down cannery row on the way home...and might have stopped in a little olive oil shop. This is how you know companionships are inspired, who else would have spent an hour of their pday with me sampling all of the oils and vinegars...yeah. It was so fun though!

we had a lovely valentine's day, it was sunny and warm and we needed service so we went and picked up trash along the beach...there are worse things to do with your time. Anyway, we had been joking about looking like the beginning of Bones episodes, that we were going to find some body or something...this time we found an old sea lion corpse, so that was kind of ironic. All in all it was a good week! Glad everyone survived the snow!

(314) "Your portuguese is impeccable"

                                            10 Feb 2014

This week was craaaaaaazy.

Two zone training meetings, a mission conference, and an exchange later, we managed to survive the week! but it was SO good. We got to go up to santa cruz for their ZTM, and I'll be up in watsonville this week, so that should be really fun! I got to be with Hermana Bunnell on Thursday, she drove down and was willing to go on a little adventure for exchanges, since I still can't drive. Let's just say it really was an adventure, after having been in the area for two weeks....she's a good sport.

The highlight of the week was ELDER COOK from the Quorum of the 12 Apostles came on Saturday! It was an amazing mission conference. He spoke about the importance of the bay area, that it really affects the whole world, and he talked about the the three reasons missionaries are assigned to an area, 1. the mission president, that they really need to be there for them, 2. the people/a specific person, 3. the area, that it will be important to their future. So cool. I can definitely see how much I've learned being in this mission, I know that I needed to be here. He also talked about the importance of the restoration, and Elder Packer talked about the miracle that it was that the rain started. Apparently catholics had been fasting all month, hindus had fasted the friday before, but the day that the members started fasting on Sunday it started raining, and the high pressure zone over California just lifted. It really was a miracle.

We also had this crazy experience, we had a potential investigator that the sisters previous had contacted and she was always on our list to stop by for the last couple of weeks. We stopped by her house last week, and her husband answered the door and let us know that she had passed away after being missing, they don't know what happened. but we had an amazing lesson with him, I know that we needed to be there for him. It was a crazy week.

Monday, February 3, 2014

(307) Doubt your doubts

3 Feb 2014

Sorry my emails have been so short. This week was absolutely crazy. last Monday we were going to have this great pday activity planned for one of the sister's birthdays, so we went up to pacific grove to see the monarch butterflies....and saw two. One was dead. so then we decided to go to the wharf and rent those group bikes and bike around lover's point...and then the bike shop was closed. So we just walked around the wharf and got clam chowder samples...

Our week was crazy, we had to take our car in twice, and we had to go to san Jose for leadership council and didn't get home until 6:30 pm that night, so it was really hard to get work done this week, and half of our investigators kind of dropped us...but we have seen some real progress with others! one thing that has always been hard for me was teaching people as we contact on the street, and sister Monson is amazing at that, she just starts immediately teaching and testifying, so we have gotten a lot of new investigators that way. it's been really cool. she's an amazing missionary.

I did get to go on an exchange this week in Monterey, so we got to contact around downtown and got a tour of pebble beach when we did service with meals on wheels. so that was really fun. at our leadership council we got to hear from our area authority, Elder Packer, who is amazing. As missionaries we get to associate with and learn from so many amazing people, I've learned so much about leadership and especially working within the church. 

for miracles this week, California has been in a complete drought this whole winter, and so they asked everyone to join in a special fast and prayer for "immediate rain" in California yesterday. We woke up to the sound of rain, and it rained all day until around dinnertime, it was amazing. I mean, I know that prayer works, but it's still amazing to see those miracles happen, especially on such a large scale. 

on the adventure side...we may have had an ant infestation this past week. so that has gotten a little out of hand, but I guess I can pretend I'm in brazil right? at least it's not cockroaches or banana spiders. Could always be worse. and we've also been reduced to picking up trash when we can't get enough service, so we literally walk around the parking lots picking up trash. Quite the adventure. This week should be really great, we have a mission conference and we get to go up to santa cruz for exchanges! Hopefully we'll have time to get some missionary work done this week...guess we will see!