27 March 2017 letter
Hello my loves! This week seemed really long for some reason, but it was really so good and full of countless miracles! Sister Sumaribos is so awesome. She is teaching me so many great things. One thing that she and her old companion did differently was pray a lot more. At first I was worried about how much time it was taking, but then I realized that Heavenly Father is the only one who knows where our time will be most beneficial and what each individual needs to hear so we need to be involving Him in our days as much as possible. It is His work! I really believe that it is the source of all our miracles this week!
The most exciting thing is that we have three new investigators who we found on a potential investigators list. It is a family who is super nice and open. The parents, Cane and Kayla are both really young and they have three cute kids. Mia is 8 and super outspoken and talkative haha; she will tell you anything on her mind. Then they have two adorable toddlers named Curtis and Lexi. We first met Kayla, who was happy to have us back. The second time we came, we met Cane, he and his buddy were smoking weed or something on their front porch. He doesn't really believe in God but he is also really open to listen and interested. The daughter Mia, is the one who is most excited about us coming. A lot of primary schools in Australia have bible classes and she loves hers. My favorite quote of our first lesson with them: when Sis Sumaribos and Cane were talking about a famous Filipino boxer, "are we going to talk about boxing, or are we going to talk about JESUS!" Another time she asks us how old we are. Sister Sumaribos says she is 26 and I say I am 19. "Oh, so you're only a teenager." Instantly shot down lol. Anyway, they are a strong little family and the gospel would bless their family so much! Please keep them in your prayers and pray that Sis Sumaribos and I can be adequate teachers and help them to understand. Mia's Friends that live next door, Madelyn and Jacob came over for the lessons too!
My first Sunday was an interesting experience. They definitely put us to work in a branch! In sacrament, I bore my testimony, then we taught three crazy boys in primary, then in the 2nd hour of primary, we did singing time with them. It was all so fun though! We have to work a lot more with the branch members in this area because basically the only way of finding people to teach is door knocking, which is not the most effective. We visit them every day. There are so many great members! A lot of old adorable couples. On Sunday, the numbers were low so there were probably only less than 40 there, but usually they get 50-70. I received such a warm welcome though! There are just one other set of Elders in the branch, Elders Tovi and Crowten. Elder Tovi was also just transferred in as well. We work a lot with them.
I love getting to meet so many cool people from all over the world every day, and be in such a beautiful area. There are so many reasons to be happy every day, especially when I am doing the work of the Lord. I hope you are all doing well and happy and healthy! Have a great week!
Photos: a cool Filipino brother and sister that we met at the car dealership, waiting for our car to be serviced this morning. Sister Sumaribos takes pictures with all the Filipino's we meet.
April 2nd Letter:
Well, it has been another great week in the Mittagong Branch. I'm trying to remember what even happened.
The Ragg Family, the ones I told about last week, said they will be at church this Sunday! We forgot that it is general conference, but that will be even better. Hopefully Mia, the 8 year old, will be willing to sit and listen to some of the talks. (Oh yeah I forgot to mention that we see conference the week after because we are a day ahead of when it happens in Salt Lake). We had a great lesson with the Raggs on Thursday. Turns out, Cane, the father, started reading the Book of Mormon! When we asked, he started recapping the whole introduction and he had lots of questions, Some that we didn't even know the answer to! We were so shocked and happy! We are excited to finish teaching them the restoration so he can start putting it all together. They are so great! All of their neighbors are always in and out of their house (they are friends with everyone!) so sometimes it’s hard to get everyone settled down for a lesson, but it always ends up working out, usually with multiple neighbor kids listening in as well.
Every week has countless miracles! One that happened on Monday night was after our plans had fallen through (when miracles usually happen). We decided to go visit a less active member Natalie, who has some mental disabilities. She was so sweet and we had a productive visit with her. Then we were knocking doors around her house. It was getting late, but we decided to knock on one more door. Then we met an older woman named Barbara. She and each of her family members have all different faiths. The whole time we were talking to her, she looked like she was trying to decide. Then, she realized that she had met with missionaries before, around 6-8 years ago, but had lost contact with them over time. We helped her remember that she felt the Holy Ghost when they taught her. Finally, she decided that yes, we could come back the next day! Unfortunately she has been sick all week so we haven't met with her yet, but hopefully tonight. I know that the Holy Ghost was guiding what we said to her. I am so grateful for those elders who planted that seed of faith in her heart years ago! I have realized that that is most of our work, planting seeds. Seeds take time to grow, and we might not always see the harvest, but we can be confident and happy with our work as long as we are being obedient and doing our best.
Other miracles have involved having really good visits with a few less active ladies in the ward. One of them has been going through an extremely difficult time and is losing her faith. I was able to feel heavenly Father's love for her so strongly, I was having trouble keeping it together. We mostly just testified to her of God's plan of happiness for us because nothing we could have said would have made it better. It is so cool how we can always just testify of the things we know and have felt, and we can never be wrong!
I am really enjoying the work more and more every day! Sister Sumaribos is still so great and we are doing well. Having the guidance of the Holy Ghost in our lives is so important, especially on a mission. I have been able to see Him guide us throughout each day, it is incredible.
I love you all So so much! Have a great week!
April 1st was both Brother Magick's and Sister Roger's birthdays. The Lake where we had the party:
Good Eats! Sister Sumaribos likes to cook for us! #blessed