Monday, November 25, 2013

Mormon Helping Hands

Dear Friends and Family,

It was a crazy week! So I guess let's start at transfers... I'm training! So I got my brand new greenie! Sister Caitlin Oskins from Phoenix, Arizona. It's been good. The first day we were together we got to teach April and she loved it! Me too! April is doing so well! We taught her Wednesday and Friday and then she came to church on Sunday. She's read to the middle of 2 Nephi, she's in the Isaiah chapters. We talked to the bishop and asked if he would marry them, we set a time to have the Church open so we can perform the ceremony... SO many amazing things are happening here!

We also taught Jaclyn. She's doesn't really want to commit to baptism right now, but she is definitely searching. She wants to know if the Book of Mormon is true or not! So we've been reading with her. That went really well too. We read Alma 32 and talked a little bit about faith and how it doesn't matter HOW much faith you have as long as you have a  little. It reminded her of the parable of the mustard seed  in the Bible.

I guess the biggest, most exciting thing we did this week was on Saturday. We went to Kokomo and cleaned up after a big tornado that hit there. It was kind of fun, because I used to serve there, but it was so SAD! There were bunches of houses that were missing roofs and one of the ones we helped at was missing the entire back wall.
We helped clean up a lot of the debris that was left. There was a lot of wood, fences, shingles, insulation, and tree branches. I was a little nervous because there were a lot of nails and I did NOT want to get cut by a rusty nail. Tetanus shots are not my friends. But I think I'm good! 

I loved it because I got to wear those bright yellow Mormon Helping Hands vests. And guess what! Sister Gil, my roommate, probably got on the news! They interviewed her... I don't know if it actually made it on air, but it was fun. I might even be in the background :)
It was freezing cold, though. It's been really really cold lately, and they took our car away on Wednesday because SISTER LONDON didn't have one. Of course she's the one that would take our car. Of all people! ha ha

Anyways, sorry this was kind of short. I forgot my journal today.. Won't do that again!

Hope you all have a good week! Happy Thanksgiving!

Love, Sister Kimberly

Monday, November 18, 2013

Transfer #5

Dear Friends and Family,
It was a really interesting week! But mostly the weekend. Let's start there--

We raked the leaves of that widow in the ward AGAIN. Hopefully this is the last time. I think her tree is all empty now, so we're in the clear! But when we were playing in the leaves, a spider got on my face! And Elder Stucki pointed it out and I FREAKED. OUT. Gross!

Interesting story: The Fishers 2 sisters got a call from the Stake President in the Muncie stake, which isn't in our mission. And he told them that the sisters in the Noblesville ward (not in our mission) had been teaching a lady that actually lived in their ward boundaries. And.... She was getting baptized on Saturday. Crazy, right?! So they got a random out of the blue baptism in their ward. Why doesn't stuff like that ever happen to me? It was cool, though. We went to the baptism and there were tons and tons of people there, it was great! We love well-attended baptisms! And a guy she knew from Utah flew out here to baptize her. It was great.

And then a 13-year old girl who was recently baptized in their ward moved back in with her mom after she got out of jail and now they live in our ward. So we went there to get to know her. Her mom is interested, which is awesome! Hopefully we can get teaching her!
Then yesterday was the cherry on top. So the Fishers 2 sisters went to the store the other day to get something for their investigator and while they were there, this man came to them and asked if they were Mormons. So then he went on to tell them that he was recently baptized in Colorado and had recently come here to be with his fiance. And then he told them that his fiance was interested in the gospel. But they turned out to live in our ward too. So they told us about this a few days ago. 

On Sunday we went to Priesthood Executive Committee meeting a couple hours before church. So we were in there and near the end, the bishop asked everyone if they thought we should cancel the linger longer after church because I guess there was a storm warning at about 4 o clock, right when church ends. So they were discussing it, and then they started talking about cancelling the 3rd hour. So they pretty much decided to just see what happened and if it was bad, then tell people to go home. But then the 2nd ward bishop came in and said he was sending everyone home. So our ward got cancelled. The whole thing! And I was so bummed because Becky was going to come. But we couldn't do much about that. So instead we went to contact this guy and his fiance. They took about forever and a day to answer the door, I was PRAYING that they were home because we didn't plan to contact people during church. And finally I saw a light go on and the door opened. This lady was standing there in her Superman pajamas and just told us to come in. So we did! We had brought them cookies, so we gave them those... Then we got to know this girl and met her fiance, the member. It was great! Jonah and April are their names and we pretty much taught the Restoration. And the Spirit was really strong. And it kept telling me that I should invite her to a baptismal date. So I did. December 14! She is so ready! She said yes, and there are things we need to work out before that, like get them married, but they were planning on that soon anyway. I'm excited! And afterward Sister London told her she felt that date was right too, so I'm not crazy!

So then we left and were getting ready to get out of the car to try someone else and we heard these sirens.... Tornado sirens! So instead we drove to the nearest member's house, and it turned out to be the CUTEST family on earth! So we sat in their apartment and watched the weather. There were, like, 6 tornadoes in Indiana or something. And we saw a bunch of pictures of damage. One of them hit Kokomo even! And one was close to us, in the northern part of Hamilton county. It was crazy!

So that was fun. And then we had transfer calls. We waited forever to hear! It felt like an eternity! We didn't get the call until 10, and usually it comes earlier than that. But it's going to be a big, mission-changing transfer! And, for once, I am staying put. No packing for me! Instead, I get to train a brand new missionary! Love it! I'm excited!

Anyways, it was a great week! I hope you all had an equally good week!

Love, Sister Kimberly

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Happy Birthday to Me!

Dear Friends and Family,

We got a new investigator! Her name is Jaclyn and her mom has been visited by Sisters a lot because she's been sick and everything. I guess Sister London and her previous companion were over there once and Jaclyn's mom almost died a few times. And her dying wish was for the Elders to baptize her grandson, Jaclyn's son. So Jaclyn has been trying to get her son to be friends with some of the other Young Men in the ward and she's been reading the Book of Mormon. She told us she was having a hard time understanding it, so we offered to read with her! We read Alma 40:11 with her because she had a really good friend of hers die recently. We set and appointment, but it happened to be when her friend's funeral was, so we will have to find another time to meet. I'm excited, I think we'll teach her about Alma 32 first, and talk about faith.

We raked leaves for a widow in the ward. We figured it would only take an hour or so, so we went over there and this woman has a HUGE tree and a HUGE yard and it was covered so that you couldn't even see the grass at all. So we start raking. Two hours later we left because we had plans with the Fishers 2 sisters for lunch. Then we decided to invite the Elders because it was taking us so long. We raked a giant pile of leaves taller than Sister London. Then, of course, we jumped in them. And the woman we raked for wanted us to dump all the leaves on a pile in her backyard. And without telling us, she just lit all the leaves on fire! It was huge!

Later that night my arms hurt so bad, but we practiced waitressing at the etiquette dinner that the youth had. It was fun! But my arms were so sore I could barely hold the pitcher of water.... 

We met a potential named Myada this week. Sister London had met her once, but her old companion had been on an exchange when they found her, so she didn't know much about her. So we knock on the door and she invites us in and has us take off our shoes. We sat down on the couch and she got up and went over to the kitchen and says in her thick accent "drink or coffee?" We politely declined and her son, who speaks better English than she did, told us we had to drink. So we just got water. It was so awkward. They had three birds just flying around the apartment pooping all over and there was some news channel in Arabic on the TV. Myada is from Syria and came to America because of war in her country. She's Muslim and we asked her if she had been interested in the Church and she just said no... I guess she only talked to the missionaries because she needs help finding someone to teach her English. 

We went to find someone who speaks Arabic. Can't find anyone. But Sister London remembered there was an old potential who wasn't really interested that was Muslim. It was a long shot, but we went there and asked if Aldin was there. It was his sister, Aldiana and she wanted to know why we were there. So I asked if they spoke Arabic. I guess they pray in Arabic, but don't speak fluently. But she was so nice and helpful and told us of a Mosque that they go to where they teach people English. It was kind of an awkward encounter, but it was productive! So it's okay!

We saw Becky a few days ago because we really needed to set an appointment with her. She just happened to be putting up Christmas lights, so we stood out there and talked with her for quite a while. She loves the church! And she told us about her life. She has a really interesting background, it was fun just to get to know her. So we set an appointment for today actually. 

We just came from her house and Becky is so awesome! She loves to learn, and she told us today she believes everything is true, the Joseph Smith story, the Book of Mormon... The only thing she doesn't quite understand yet is why we need a prophet today. But that's okay! Because the Spirit can definitely work on that! I'm so excited for her!

We had a birthday party for me at the Culwell's and Sister Culwell made me confetti cake with confetti frosting and got Blue Bell cookie dough ice cream. Is that brand in Utah? Go try it is SO. Good. My second favorite, just under Aggie Blue Mint!

Don and Leah Ann got baptized this week and we got to go! I love the members of the ward here, they are all so helpful when we need rides to these far away places. So we went and I loved it! Leah Ann was so nervous, but it was so cool! I love her and Don so much. Then Leah Ann spoke at "Why I Believe" on my birthday and I just felt all tingly, especially when she was talking about when the Sisters first came to her house. That was me!  I loved it! 

I just had a good birthday all the way around. Thank you everyone who made it awesome. Especially for the packages and cards and letters! I love you all! It just sucks that I'm getting so old. I'm 20! Can you believe that?

..... Except if you remember, baptism is a rebirth, so does that make me 12?....

And I'm almost 6 months into my mission! #oldlady #oldmissionary

Love, Sister Kimberly

Monday, November 4, 2013

Halloween and Fake Halloween

Dear Friends and Family,

This week was Halloween! Finally, October felt like forever and a day. Probably because my roommates all had Halloween decorations up since the day I got to Fishers. But they all got ripped down today! So it was so weird though. On the 30th we heard from an investigator that the Town of Fishers had rescheduled Halloween to Friday November 1 because it was supposed to rain. Isn't that ridiculous? When I was a kid, we trick-or-treated in 5 feet of snow! And we walked uphill both ways! Oh man, I'm getting old... :) But really, we still trick-or-treated in the snow. No way was snow going to get in the way of our Halloween festivities! But I guess here, in Indiana, they are a little wimpy ;)

We talked to a guy this week named Brad. He was a potential we had and he went to SUU a couple years ago for school. He knows so many Mormons and he knows a lot about the doctrine. He's seen General Conference... He read a little bit of the Book of Mormon.... He even LOOKS like a Mormon! But he's just all about logic and he says we can't trust our feelings.... Maybe we'll try to teach him. I'm not sure how much potential he really has, but he's definitely willing to talk to us. We talked for an hour and a half probably.

We played Family Feud with the Young Women. And you know which family won? The one with the missionaries of course! It was us, a couple of the YM leaders, and a couple of the youth... So that's probably why... But we still won! Apparently none of the youth knew what Family Feud was though.... I really am getting old...?

My District Leader's birthday was this week. One of the members threw a party for him. And then another member made Cafe Rio for him for his birthday. And we got to enjoy both! So it's all good! Just so everyone knows... My birthday is next Sunday. And I want letters! Please, please send me letters! I love them! I want my mailbox full of them! 12188 Windsor West Dr. Fishers, IN 46038!

We went to this 100 years of Scouting broadcast thing. And it's so good that we did, we actually weren't going to. But one of the members of our ward told us there was a Less Active lady in the kitchen who had been helping with refreshments that wasn't comfortable going into the chapel and she felt like she should tell us. So we went and talked to her for a long time, we missed probably half the broadcast, but then one of the scout leaders came in and told us to come watch the best part, and she came! I'm so excited! That one step is really hard for a lot of Less Active members. She's in the Noblesville ward, so I haven't seen her again, but I'm so excited we did that!

Real Halloween: WE GOT A CAR! The Car Shepherd, Elder Hodges, called on Halloween morning and told us we got another car. So now we don't have to share! We have a Chevy Cruze and the other sisters have a Toyota Corolla, both 2014. I love the Cruze because it turns really well and Sister London doesn't have to get out and back me nearly as often! Love it! And it was raining that day... It was perfect! Then later that night we painted pumpkins with a member. We painted some pacman ghosts and a pacman. They were cute! 

Fake Halloween: We partied all night! Well, until 9 o clock curfew, that is. We ate chili and drank hot chocolate at a members house. It was fun, and there were a couple nonmembers there that we got to talk to. Then we went to the bishop's house and had homemade donuts.... Just like home! I loved it. My family was all in Disneyland, which would've been a little better, but I'm on a mission, so that's about as good as it gets :) It was a lot of fun!

Saturday was probably one of the best day of my life. We got to see a baptism in the early afternoon of a girl that the other sisters taught. And then, right after that, we went down to Greenwood with a member and got to see HEIDI get baptized! It was so cool! We almost got lost and wouldn't have made it, but we did! And I'm so grateful we did! I had to call Sister Mayberry and ask for the address because I guess she gave me the wrong one. But we made it! We went to this hospital where they do physical therapy and they have a pool there. So they wheeled Heidi into the middle of a big metal platform and lowered it with three Priesthood holders on it and water came gushing over it. They lowered it until she was floating and Brother Wilde was holding her head out of the water and the other men were holding her legs. Then he baptized her. It was the sweetest experience. And I am so glad I got to be there! I love her! And I got to see Sister Mayberry again, I love her too, and I really miss her! And before the opening prayer Heidi put her finger on her nose. At lessons we would always play Nose Goes for the prayer. I laughed, I miss that too! Ah, it was so cool!

Yesterday we went to a going away party for a family that is moving to California and that was a lot of fun too. We had a spontaneous jam session with Elder Stucki's ukelele and one of the members that majored in Piano Performance played the COOLEST and HARDEST song ever!
This ward is so cool!

For my birthday Don and Leah Ann are getting baptized and then Leah Ann is going to speak at a fireside called "Why I Believe" where converts tell their conversion story. It's going to be the BEST. BIRTHDAY. EVER.

Needless to say, I'm excited.

Love Sister Kimberly