Monday, March 17, 2014

St. Patrick's Day

If the people around me in the library are any reflection of the rest of the state, then South Carolinans are not big celebrators of St. Patrick's Day. Basically no one is wearing green. Sister McNeece and I celebrated by making Irish bread (we found it at the grocery store) and the hats you sent were great as well. 

We've had a good week. A very interesting week. It's been really windy here lately, particularly on Wednesday. Which was also the day that we decided to walk the most. It wasn't the best combination. We had a little bit of a hard time keeping our skirts down; the things sister missionaries have to deal with... 

Our new member is doing really well. She's been a member for two whole weeks now, and it's been so fun to see the change in her. She's so happy and friendly to everyone she meets at church. She gives everyone a hug. And she's not afraid to wave across the chapel at someone in the middle of sacrament meeting. She's so funny. She reads the Book of Mormon all the time, and she loves the Book of Mormon study class we have on Wednesday nights, and she's started asking questions, but only when the elders aren't in the room. They still kind of intimidate her, although she calls them boys. It was very inspired that it was sister missionaries who knocked on her door. 

We had a great meeting on Thursday with Elder and Sister Zwick of the Seventy. Half the mission was there, so I got to see Sister Bell! I was so happy to see her. It's been three and a half months, and I've missed her so much! She's doing well; she's liking her new area a lot.

Elder Zwick talked to us about a lot of different things, but basically it all centered around being changed and converted to the gospel. He talked about the importance of change, being truly changed by the gospel, rather than just going through the motions and treating the gospel like a checklist of dos and donts. He and his wife shared a lot of stories from his mission and when he was mission president in Chile, talking about how they did a lot of things on their missions that they never expected to do and that the only way they were able to do them was through relying on the Savior. I could definitely relate to that. My mission hasn't been anything like I expected it would be; I've done things that I never imagined I would have to do. But I've been able to do them because I trusted in the Savior and let him guide me in what I did, what I said and where I went. When I think about the hard things that I've done, or the people that have come back to church or joined the church I can't claim any responsibility for that success. It was all the Savior; He did everything, I just let him use me. 

Sister McNeece and I have been trying to work more with the members and it's been helping us a lot. We spent about three hours the other day with one of our ward missionaries going through the ward roster, having her tell us about all the people that we don't know and calling the ones that had phone numbers. It was an incredibly productive three hours and now I feel like we have some idea what less active members to focus on, and how we can help them get back to church. I love the members in this ward, they are such a big help and they do so much for us.

Thank you for the letters, I appreciate knowing what's going on back home, since I can't be there to be a part of it. I'm very blessed to be here in this mission at this time, and I'm trying my best to use every day well. I love you all, have a good week. 

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