Monday, September 15, 2014

Hello From Down Under! (9/8/2014)

Good-day mates! Me and my new Aussie companion are working hard here in Courtenay! Introducing my new companion: Sister Bartlett

WAHOO!! She's been out for 7 1/2 months and this is her 3rd area. She's so cute and I love working with her already!

So starting from Monday: Sister Jolie and I went to the ward corn roast on Monday for the holiday. It was kind of cold. Seems like fall has already started coming here on the island. Then, we went tracting for a while and dun dun DUNNNN...we got the call! Sister Jolie got called to go to Kelowna 2nd ward! I am staying here in Courtenay with my new companion Sister Bartlett. Yay! I'm so excited! After getting the call it was a mad house for Sister Jolie, so that she could run around and say goodbye to everyone. We went and visited a recent convert so that Sister Jolie could say goodbye to her.

Tuesday was a mix of dropping by people and appointments. It was hard for Sister Jolie, because she's been here for 6 months. She said goodbye to Arlene (who now has her temple recommend), Melissa, Laura, Amanda, Shaun, Debbie, and more! We also taught this new person named George and he's so awesome! He told us about how he knows that there is an afterlife, because of his experience with his dad passing away. I can't wait to teach him more!

Wednesday, Sister Jolie said goodbye to Lynn, Mandy, some members, and a less active. Then we headed down the road to Nanaimo to take the ferry to Richmond! It was magical. We got into Richmond around 8:20, so I got to go street contacting on No 3 road again. What a blessing!!!

We stayed with the RICHMOND sisters on Wednesday night. But Sister Petersen was already home. Goodbye Sister Petersen! I love you! 

Thursday was transfer meeting! It was my first one with President Burt. It was so amazing! I learned so much. We have consecrated finding time from 5-7pm every day. This is when we go tracting or street contacting every day. We go other times during the day, but we have to go then. Now, he told us that our whole day is "consecrated finding time" and we need to keep our line in the water throughout the entire day. I really like the inspiration that President Burt has had for the mission so far. He is truly called by God to be the leader of the Canada Vancouver Mission! 

Thursday afternoon, I got back onto the ferry with my new companion Sister Bartlett! :) We then drove the 4 hours up the island to get back to Courtenay. 

Friday, we did weekly planning! Oh goodness, I am so grateful that President Burt wants us to do it in 3 hours now. I don't know how many more 5 hour weekly planning sessions I can handle. Now, I just need to figure out how to get it all done in 3 hours. Then we taught Agnus, this cute Scottish lady...or maybe she's Irish...I can't remember. Anyway, she's a super cute oldy lady. She grew up Anglican but didn't agree with everything that church taught. I need to have more faith in older people! Anyone can join the church at any age. Have I told you guys that there is a member in our ward that's 102?! She joined the church when she was 69. So crazy, eh?

Then friday night, we drove down to Qualicum and then they took us to Victoria for a zone conference. Sister Nelson (who came out with me) is my new Sister Training Leader! Wahoo!! 

Cute picture!!
Sister Nelson dropped the camera . . . hahaha!!

Carnival on the side of the road

Yay! So many road trips this week. 

Saturday we were trained by Elder and Sister Johnson who toured our whole mission this past weekend. It was such a spiritual, uplifting experience! I learned how to be a better teacher by using the Holy Ghost to teach. He taught us about how we need to help our investigators prepare for the lesson, then teach by interacting with them (not just talking their ears off), and then leave them with a commitment to keep that will help them progress. This doesn't just work for investigators, but it works for everyone! It's even how he taught us! :) 

Then on Saturday, we got back in the late afternoon, went tracting, and then met with the Bishop.

Sunday! We had church and Debbie was able to come! It was her first Fast and Testimony meeting. The spirit was so strong as people bore their powerful testimonies. Melissa was even fasting, even though she isn't able to come to church yet. Her husband doesn't want her to turn into a "crazy religious lady," so she has to soften him up a bit. 

After church, we went and visited with a less active family and talked about how much God loves us. Then we went and taught Melissa about keeping the Sabbath day holy and studying the scriptures! She's practically already living both of those commandments! She's just the coolest :)

Then we went and had a dinner appointment (Sister Bartlett's second one!) with a family in the ward. One of the girls invited her non-member boyfriend, so it worked :) It was delicious. Then we went finding for most of the night and finally met a less active that I've been trying to contact the past 3 months. All in all, it was an amazing week!

I learned that we really need to work with members to hasten the work of salvation. Sometimes as missionaries, we think that it all depends on us. In the scriptures it says that "the Lord will hasten His work in His time." It's the Lord's work and we're just instruments that he uses. There are always people that members know that we can go visit. We just need to gain the trust of the members and always ask for people that they know. It's so much better when people have already had contact with the church. They're so much nicer and open to it. I'm so ready for this next transfer! We are going to be baptizing! 

I love you all!! write me letters please! it's the same address that I had before:
Sister Elle Struempler
1820 Tull Ave
Courtenay, B.C.
v9n 5w6

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