Friday, February 28, 2014

Another temple trip

Sister Fernley's email came late this week because p-day got shifted to Wednesday so the missionaries could go on a temple trip. I think it's great that the missionaries get to go the temple! There wasn't a temple close enough in my mission, so I never had that opportunity. Troy had a temple in his mission, but his mission president felt that missionaries were there to serve the living, not the dead, so he was never allowed to go. I'm glad Tasha's mission president sees the wisdom in providing missionaries with the spiritual strength the temple brings! (And when we didn't get a message Sunday night, Troy sent an email to the mission president's wife to make sure everything was okay.)

Here is her message:

Sorry this is so late! I completely forgot to tell you that this week was our temple trip so our P-day was moved to Wednesday. Apparently we were supposed to get an hour to email on Monday, but our zone didn't get that message. Then yesterday our bus was late taking us home from the temple so we had just enough time to grab some groceries and dinner and head over to english class.

We got permission to email for an hour today, so sorry if it is shorter than normal, but I will be emailing you again in a few days as well. I hope you got the emails from Sister Blickenstaff and Sister Darrington. Monday night as we were getting ready for bed Sister Blickenstaff called. Whenever I see her or President's name on the phone I get really nervous and wonder what we have done wrong or what they are going to ask us to do that I'm not prepared to do. It was a bit of a relief when she was just calling about the email dad sent her. Sorry about that again dad!

This week (or last week) was power week for our mission. For each day we were given tracting, contacting, or teaching goals to try and hit. One day was tract all night and get let into two houses, give out 13 Books of Mormon and get their information, get 20 adds in two hours, confirm 15 people for church etc. If we hit the goal that day we could call President that night and say "mission accomplished." I really wanted to call President just once, but we didn't hit any of the goals. We tried really hard and got a lot of contacting practice. I feel like it also  introduced me to ways that I haven't used for contacting before, or even just helping me see how I can be a better missionary and inviting others to come closer to Christ.

We have been able to sit with a few people that could potentially become new investigators. We contacted a lady on the street almost a month ago and were able to meet with her. She had a lot of questions about Christianity and if all the churches are different, so today we are actually teaching her the first lesson. I love that she has so many questions! It makes it so much easier to know what she is thinking and I love that we have an answer to all of them. We also have a lot of potential investigators that we just haven't been able to get a hold of yet, so we are hoping!

Jia Zhen's baptismal date is coming up quickly! She came to church again for the full three hours, but after that we haven't been able to contact her. I'm getting a little nervous about getting her baptismal interview done in time before we have to move her date again, but we are going to try our best. She really has such a strong desire to be baptized! And the ward has been incredible in fellow-shipping her at church!

On Sunday we were able to go up to Taizhong for a mission fireside with Bishop Stevenson from the Presiding church bishopric. He was in Taibei with Elder Holland for a mission council and was assigned to come talk to our mission. Unfortunately Elder Holland wasn't able to come down. Anyway, Bishop Stevenson's son is serving in our mission, he just got on island a few weeks ago. It was really motivating and now that I think about it more of an answer to my prayers than I thought. 

I've been praying constantly for Heavenly Father to help us with the work in Nantou. I've been praying to know how I can be better, how I can be more consecrated, or what we can do to find those people who are being prepared to hear the gospel, but it still seems that nothing much is happening. Then lately (starting with Bishop Stevenson's talk) I've been running into a lot of scriptures or parts in Preach My Gospel that talk about patience in long-suffering. Bishop Stevenson talked about that as well, that all of our experiences are for our benefit. He reminded us that our mission call was not by chance and that there are people here prepared for US to teach. He also talked about having joy. "Men are that they might have joy." He told us the Lord is on our side and his closing statement was, "You can do it!"

After we heard all the speakers we sang our mission song which makes me cry every time. I'm so grateful to be called as a missionary! I have already learned and grown so much and hope that I can continue to help others come unto Christ. This move-call has been really hard as far as having people to teach or visible success, but I think the Lord has been teaching me patience. He has been teaching me humility and to rely on Him and remember that He knows best. I continue to try my best and look for the miracle just around the corner.

Anyway i'm almost out of time, but I love you all and miss you all. But I know this is the most important work in the world. Give Jemma a giant hug and tell her I love her! I will email you in a few days!

With all my love,

Sister Fernley

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