Monday, March 25, 2013

We Survived!

Well, somehow I survived another transfer week in Lakeview! All of the other sisters kind of laughed when they found out that I stayed in Lakeview and that Sister Whittaker stayed in Rockbrook because its kind of unheard of for anyone to stay in the same area this long right now. Sister Brown has opened 3 different areas the past 3 transfers. But, we stayed, which was a huge blessing. I love Lakeview and I am so grateful to be here still with Sister Owen- all in preparation for next transfer when we have SEVENTEEN SISTERS coming to the mission. A good chunk of us will probably not be serving at the Trail Center, which I am both excited for and sad about. 3 new areas opened to sisters which is SUPER exciting, but just hints at what is going to start to happen the next few transfers. I am so excited!!!!!! I love seeing how quickly the work is going forward. Speaking of which, Lakeview got Elders!! We are so excited to have them in the ward! It will be a learning experience at first to get used to having two sets of missionaries, but we are so excited to have the work go forward twice as fast. We were having a lesson with Elyssa on Friday night and they actually knocked on the door while we were there haha. It was so funny!
Matt and Elyssa are officially married! It was a day that I will never, ever forget, and I am so grateful to all of the ward members, especially the Staheli family and Bishop Thompson for helping get it all ready. Sister Coats (Alex, I guess I can call her now) drove out from Utah for the wedding and helped set up as well! Everything was absolutely perfect, and Elyssa looked every bit a bride even though she wasn't in a floor length gown. I will never forget the way they looked at each other- something about them making this step together so they could get baptized- so they could have eternity that much sooner- was so sweet and perfect. I never thought I would put together a wedding on my mission, but I was so grateful to have this experience, especially because on the VERY SAME DAY, my own best friend in the world, my little sister was getting engaged. I will never forget March 23rd!

Kate and Sid- I am so happy for you guys! I'm so proud of you and love you both so much, and as much as I wish I could be there, know that I am SO HAPPY that you will be getting married in the temple and that's what matters!
I am so excited for the upcoming weeks- Easter next week when we can really focus on the Plan of Salvation- Christ created this earth so we could come here to live, but knew full well the whole time that would mean He would need to come here to live and Atone and die for us, and then General Conference when we can listen to the words of the prophets and apostles of the Lord help direct us and guide us. We are so blessed!
The Winter Quarters temple closed today for a couple weeks, and tomorrow, some of the sister missionaries, including Sister Owen and me, get to go clean the crystal in the chandeliers! I am so excited! They only let the sisters- no one else- clean the crystal, so it is really exciting to get to go do that. It will be Sister Owen's first time going in the WQ temple so I am really excited to show her all of the beautiful details!
I love you all! I am so happy for you, Kate and Sid!
Love, Sister Farnsworth

Monday, March 18, 2013

Happy Monday!

Well, somehow, it is transfer week again. This is a short transfer, so it is a bit unusual, but still. TRANSFERS? It will be really hard to say goodbye to 5 awesome sisters, but we will be really excited to meet the 8 new sisters that get here on Wednesday! We find out on Thursday if we will be moving or staying, but we should both be staying here...we will see! The exciting thing that we KNOW is happening is that Lakeview is getting another set of missionaries, elders, that will be moving in with Brother Hall. We are really excited for him because this will be a wonderful opportunity for him to have missionaries living with him, especially after being such a recent convert! He is so willing to serve and do whatever he can to help other people. I love him! I will miss seeing him so often though.
Matt and Elyssa are getting married on Saturday! They are progressing so well and are so excited to get baptized in a few weeks! I can't wait for the day that they are able to be baptized and confirmed. The are really loving the Book of Mormon. The other day, after finishing 1st Nephi, Elyssa said she was really glad because that means hopefully soon she will be done having to read about Laman and Lemuel trying to kill Nephi. She gets really angry at them for that. Matt told her to wait until she gets to Alma, where he is. His favorite chapter so far in the Book of Mormon is Alma 36. They have had so much opposition from Satan trying to get them to not be baptized. It is amazing to see that Satan really does know that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is true and that it can make us happy. That is the last thing that he wants, and so he works as hard as he possibly can so that he can try and distract us from clinging to the gospel.
That is amazing that you were able to go to the temple with the Zitars on Saturday! We spoke in church yesterday, and I knew that I wanted to use part of the letter that I asked her to send me in October in my talk, but I couldn't find it anywhere. I finally went through EVERY letter, knowing that I wanted to use a specific story Papa had sent me in either November or December, and finally found it stuffed in one of Papa's letters in November! I had been wondering if they had been to the temple yet, so it was really cool to open my email today and hear that you had just done that this weekend. I'm sure it was an incredible experience! We got to go to a fireside last night for all the temple workers last night because the temple President asked for a few sisters to sing at it, and one of the counselors of the temple presidency was talking to me about cleaning the temple next week. I am SO excited to be able to have that opportunity. That is my absolute favorite place to be in the world. If you haven't been to the temple in awhile, get there. If you go every once in a while, go more frequently. If you go pretty frequently, try to go with an inspired question every time. If you go with an inspired question every time, try to serve someone every time you are there. We can always be doing more to improve our temple attendance- the Lord has trusted us with His holy houses, and He wants us to be doing as much as we possibly can with them.
We recently received a traveling exhibit at the Trail Center of paintings called Witnesses of Christ. I'm not sure if Mesa has already had them, but if they haven't, go see them when it gets there!! It is a collection of paintings by Liz Lemon Swindle that covers the span of the Savior's life starting with Mary and Elisabeth and including various parts of his life, death, and resurrection. They are absolutely stunning, and the Spirit is so strong! Some elders brought their investigator to the TC this week and we brought him down there, and it was incredible. He had been studying in the seminary to be a Catholic priest before he got engaged, so he obviously had a very strong relationship with Jesus Christ. After looking at the paintings, we watched the 20 minute Restoration video, I taught him about the Book of Mormon, and invited him to be baptized. He is so humble, and I really hope that I will be able to go to his baptism next month!
I love you! The church is true!
Sister Farnsworth

Monday, March 11, 2013

                                                      Matt and Elyssa and Brother Hall
                                                          with Allison and Sister Coats

                                   Allison and Sister Seguin with a cute little investigator's son


So, another eventful week in NOM (Nebraska Omaha Mission) has gone by. It was so much fun to have Kami and the kids come in to the Trail Center on Saturday and to take them on a little tour. I'm pretty sure that she recorded me, and then I got awkward because I realized she was No judgment, ok? Today, I bought Starburst Jelly beans. SO HAPPY IT'S SPRING TIME!
For some reason the past transfer has just felt like a lot of weird weeks and strange things, and this past week has been no exception, nor will this upcoming week be! Last week, we had exchanges, which was SO much fun! I went to West Maple with Sister Seguin who is one of the missionaries who got here this past transfer. We had a blast teaching and tracting and saw so many miracles! I love exchanges, because it seems like you always see so many miracles on exchanges. For instance, I have never received 4 referrals in one day, but when we were planning our numbers for the day we both felt prompted to try to receive that many, and in ONE appointment, we received that. It is so amazing what the Lord will do when we are spiritually ready. The most HILARIOUS part of the day though was when we were tracting and the door was starting to shut and I had said "have a good day!" It was around 3 in the afternoon. So Sister Seguin says, at the same time, "Have a good night....or day......also....." We were laughing so hard all the way off the porch. It was approximately the most awkward situation of all time, which is funny because the door was practically closed already by the time that she had said it, so it shouldn't have even been awkward at all! She is amazing, and I am SO glad we will get to serve around each other for a long time!
Matt and Elyssa have decided to get married on the 23rd so they can be baptized on April 6th. They are so incredible, and I cannot even believe how much they have changed and grown. Yesterday, we woke up to a huge snow storm and so we walked up to their house yesterday and had a lesson because church was CANCELLED. I have never had that happen to me in my life. It was so crazy! It was a wonderful day, though, and I was so grateful for the things that we were able to learn in that time that we had to study!
I love being a missionary. President Weston has invited us to invite everyone to read the Book of Mormon for 30 minutes every day. I know that is a sacrifice, and for some people, a completely foreign concept. But I can promise you that if you do that, you will be able to have clear answers to your prayers. I love you all so much. The church is true!
Sister Farnsworth

Monday, March 4, 2013

Some Fun Pictures!

                                             Allison and Sister Baker!  Aren't they cute??

Happy Monday!

Well, I'm still getting used to emailing every Monday! It seems really strange, like every Pday comes really fast, even though some weeks are longer between Pdays. I don't know what it is, but every week I'm a missionary, especially this week, I fall more in love with being a missionary. It has changed everything about me. EVERYTHING. Not that all of the sudden different, I guess, but I hope I'm becoming better. I love every week when I get the emails that mom sends me from Sage and Alayna and even Steven and Jake- these people I've known forever- and to see how they have changed and grown because they have allowed themselves to be changed by the Atonement and to become consecrated and dedicated servants of the Lord. I don't even understand how I am so lucky- so blessed- but I am grateful that my Heavenly Father loves me enough to allow me to be here in Nebraska and at the Trail Center.
This week has been another wonderful one. We actually had time to tract this week!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YESSSSS. As weird as it sounds, because of the Trail Center, some weeks we may only get about 10 hours in our area, and most of those hours will be taken up by appointments with investigators or less active members, so we have hardly any time to try to find new investigators. This week, we had time, and it was AWESOME. Also, it was even sunny one of the days. Nebraska is really funny and fakes you out, and even when it is sunny it can be like 19 degrees, but it makes me feel better when it's sunny! I thought I would share some of my favorite things that happen to us while we are tracting...
Situation #1: SUPER cold night/day. Maybe a high of 10 degrees. Max. Knock on a door. People come up to the window (everyone has a window next to their door here) and yell "It's too cold!!!" through the window and walk away.....We laugh really hard because....yeah....we know it's cold!
Situation #2: Dark winter nights- maybe 630 at night. People open the door. "Why are you knocking right now?! Do you KNOW how late it is!? It's.... (looks at watch) six thirty....and we're.....talking about right now isn't a good time, but you could come back later!" Man, I can't wait until the days start getting longer! :)
Some of my other fun facts about tracting are that you might get confused and think that you accidentally tracted outside Nebraska if you didn't hear a dog bark when you knock, or you don't see a big "N" on the door.
Well, hope you enjoyed my tracting fun facts for the week, I'm sure they will be more! We had an incredible regional conference this weekend that was broadcast from Salt Lake- Elder Oaks, Elders Echo Hawk and Christensen, and Sister Reeves spoke at it! We all learned so much, and it was so incredible how so much of it was directed specifically to the needs of our investigators. I love how Heavenly Father can take something that is directed to a huge audience and have it apply to specific people!
The Saturday night session of stake conference was also particularly good, and it was a blessing that we were able to attend. Normally, we wouldn't attend that session, but we were asked to sing with some other members of our ward, so we got to go. It just so happens that Brother Hall got asked to speak- to bear his testimony- that night, and we got to be there for that. He got up and told his story of how he joined the church and then bore powerful testimony about the gospel, about the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith and President Monson. It was so incredible for me to hear how much he has grown in the past two months....TWO MONTHS since he has been baptized, and then the next day, to see him stand in Stake Conference to be sustained so he could receive the priesthood. He is such an inspiration because he has continued to become more and more converted daily- he has a desire to continue to seek out what Heavenly Father wants for him to do and to always be more converted!