Sunday, October 16, 2011

You may wear blue, BUT YOU STILL BLEED RED

Well, let me just start off right.... GO UTES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How EPIC was that win?!!?!!? So Saturday night, Sister Burt called me with the update of the first TD by us and how crazy that first play was. Oh goodness how exciting was that!? Then for the rest of the night, she continued to text me with updates of the game. Luckily the game started after 9 so it didn't affect any of my missionary work..... But, then it was time to go to bed and I just sat there in bed because I couldn't sleep. I had to know who won and what the final score was!!!! Finally, I received the final score, and yes... I went to bed VERY happy. I wore my red shirt to church the next day with honor and pride. Sister Burt's entire family came in red. Man, I love this ward. After Sacrament, all of the Ute fans huddled and talked about the highlights of the game... Sister Burt also printed out a play by play for me of the whole game. Awesome. GO UTES!!!!!!!!!!

We had transfers this week, and Sister Halverson and I are both staying here in Oxford. I am happy about staying here because I feel like there is so much I still have to do here. So this is why I am emailing on Wednesday.

This past Saturday T was baptized! It was incredible, as every baptism is. I just loved seeing T make such an important step in his life and knowing that they are going to be an eternal family someday. President Evans interviewed him, and after, he said to us, "By T being baptized, you just baptized an entire family." It is incredible to know that they will be able to be an eternal family and their children and generations to come will be affected by this. So amazing. These two truly do appreciate the gospel with everything they have and know it is the most precious thing to them. Tim is so happy. His father came to watch the baptism, and now the elders are going to teach the rest of Tim's family where they live. I love it, the spirit was so strong, and he couldn't deny it!
The best story of the week that I want to talk about is so great. So.. Lets start from the beginning. We went to see a guy who is less active, and had gone several times, but he was never there. So we continued to go and finally he was home and we were able to meet his wife and sons. His wife is from Thailand and she doesn't speak english pretty much at all. So I told him we would love to come back and teach her english. So then he said, "I know what you are trying to do. Don't think you will get me back to church because it will take someone very special to get me to go back. So don't count on it." I told him we just wanted to help his wife, so he agreed to let us come back. So for about a month now, we have been going over and helping her with her english by reading the gospel pamphlets out loud with her. So, of course we order a Book of Mormon in Thai as well as the pamphlets. We gave them to her, and she began to be very interested in what we were saying. SO... Last week, he calls us, and I answer and he says, "Hey, I just wanted to confirm our appointment tomorrow for you to come over..... GUESS WHAT?!?!?! We have been reading the Book of Mormon together every day and she loves it and.... I think I want to bring her to church this Sunday!!" AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!! And yes, I screamed on the phone haha. He said, "Whoa sister cannon, don't reak out, I said I THINK I want to bring her to church, I didn't say we were for sure." So we had a great appointment, she taught us how to make Thai food (which tasted AWESOME!) and she is speaking great! So Sunday comes, and we are waiting as people come in, and in walks this family! I about had a heart attack!!!! I was so excited!! They stayed all of church and really liked it! In Relief Society this lady in the ward who found the church in Japan bore her testimony on how she was so grateful she found the church and she was able to come to America and learn english. I mean are you kidding me? It was perfect for her to hear! SO great, the spirit was so strong. They are going to have their new baby blessed in a couple of weeks and she is working towards joining the church. Seriously, amazing. I was just so happy on Sunday with 2 other investigators there who are also working towards baptism. There is nothing so rewarding as this work. Seeing families work towards being an eternal family is so incredible.

We had a Fiesta with our district and their wards this past weekend and it was really fun! Hence the Spanish picture.

Have a great week! I love you all!

Love, Elizabeth

A wedding on my mission?

Before I get into my email, GO UTES!!!! I walked into church on Sunday, and the second counselor said, "Why aren't you wearing red?" Haha so I instantly knew they had won. I will be getting weekly updates on how they do. The bishop's wife wears red to church when they win and black when they lose. So I will always know. Yep, this ward ROCKS. Let me just say it again.... GO UTES!!!!!! I hope they start playing better though.

So... L's then boyfriend started taking the lessons about a month ago, and now he is getting baptized on the 17th! Yes, this area is BOOMING!! Incredible. And, they are getting married November 11th. So they are now engaged as of last week. Since they don't have much money for a wedding, they were just going to go to a courthouse to get married. Umm... NO! When she told me that I about freaked. I told her she HAD to have a wedding because this only happens once! And the bishop can marry them and it can all be at the ward building for free. So we had dinner at the Lewis' and she is so creative so we started to plan the shower, reception and all that. Its going to be so cute. AND of course she needs wedding pictures done right? Oh how crazy that I did that back home. And how crazy that Sister Lewis has a very nice camera and isn't quite sure how to use it.... I may have found my purpose in being her missionary.... So I am going to borrow Sister Lewis' camera and take their engagements next week. I never thought I would be shooting wedding pictures on my mission. I am definitely excited!!

So we will talk about Sunday. This past week we were so incredibly blessed with so many people to teach and who are so ready to hear the gospel. There aren't words to describe this past week. Just incredible. So Sunday came and so many people came to church that we are teaching! J came, he is a man we have been teaching and everything that could go wrong in his life does. His house was hit by the tornado and then made worse by the hurricane. He is so unhappy in his life, and feels alone. He came to church and LOVED IT! Everyone was so nice to him and he was so happy. He cried when we sang the closing hymn, and he kinda yelled to me while the closing prayer was being said, "You will have to excuse me I am kind of emotional right now." It was adorable. All of the testimonies from sunday were just perfect. It is amazing how people say exactly what our investigators need to hear in their lives. I could go on and on about Sunday because everything just went so perfectly!

We have a baptism this Saturday and her name is S and we have been teaching her since the first day I got here. She is adorable and very excited to be baptized.

We got to go to the fair in S for p-day yesterday and boy are there some crazy people here. It was really fun, and great to go with our district. That was my first time to a fair, and it was quite the experience! That was what all of the pictures were from. We also had a conference in Amherst, and as we were walking, these 4 kids were sitting on the sidewalk and I stopped and said, "What do ya'll play?" So the lead singer kid said, "We can play Three Little Birds by Bob Marley for you!" So of course I get all excited. They played it and I loved it. So I had to get a picture with them. It was great.

I love you all!
Love, Elizabeth

Work hard and look good while doing it

So I walked into church yesterday to see Sister Burt wearing black. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! That means the Utes lost. So sad. What a bad way to start the day. But then she told me that BYU lost too so that made me feel better.... I can't believe they are playing each other this weekend. That just isn't right. It should be the last game. Oh well. I sat and talked with Brother Lewis about how the Utes played, and his wife walked by and shook her head when we said we were talking about football. I love this ward!
So Timmy sent me the most LEGIT watch, so of course I wear it to church as well, and this girl comes up to me and says, "I didn't know sister missionaries could look cute." Well, little known fact they sure can! I think one of the reasons I came out on a mission was to prove that sister missionaries don't have to look ugly.
Well, S was baptized on Saturday and it went so well. She is such a sweetheart, and everything ran so perfectly. I always feel the spirit so strongly when they are actually being baptized because I know how important their decision is. This gospel is true and I love it!
SO quick story, this past week we went to teach our investigator, J and as we walked up to the door, he said, "I meant to call you to cancel because I have company over." Well, we didn't take that as a no, so we pretty much walked in and sat down. We were going to teach this lesson! We also had members with us so we didn't want their coming to go to waste. He had a friend there with him so she was pretty much forced to sit in the lesson. We had planned to teach about baptism, but he started talking about his dad's death and how hard it was on him. So of course we talk about what happened to his dad and where he is now. The spirit led us through this lesson, and it went so well. So his friend says, "My cousin just died and I have been wondering if I will see him again." Wow. Obviously she was supposed to be there. So we are going to teach her this week in her home. We also set a date for J to be baptized in October! The work here is just going so well, and I love it!
Have a great week!
Love, Elizabeth