Ps I am in a video...(very briefly!) Check it out! www.wdcsmission.blogspot.com
Hey I wanted to tell you all that I do not have much time to write today because I'm going to the national zoo in 20 minutes... There really is so many perks to being a missionary in the Washington DC South Mission. Sister Lindmeir and I will plan on seeing Justin and his family at 5 your time tonight. Dad that question was actually really inspired because we want to talk about keeping the Sabbath day holy tonight.
Ps I am in a video...(very briefly!) Check it out! www.wdcsmission.blogspot.com
"I am so thoroughly convinced that if we don't set goals in our life and learn how to master the techniques of living to reach our goals, we can reach a ripe old age and look back on our life only to see that we reached but a small part of our full potential. When one learns to master the principles of setting a goal, he will then be able to make a great difference in the results he attains in this life." - Elder M. Russell Ballard
It has truly been a miracle week. I can't begin to tell you how grateful I am for a Father in Heaven who loves ALL of His children! This past week Sister Lindmeir and I set really high goals for our week and we knew that as we exercised faith, great things would happen.
Miracle #1: Bonnie has been investigating the church for over a year now. She has been taught by the Elders and was not progressing... ( I really have no idea why she has been taught by Elders for so long). The Elders in our ward passed her to us this week and we had a great spirit filled lesson this past Wednesday. She did not reject a baptism date. She has been praying about a baptism date this week and we will put her on date this Wednesday. She also came to church this past Sunday... Wahooo!
Miracle #2: During an exchange with Sister Steadman this week we had a lady approach us in an elevator and tell us that she wants a Book of Mormon.. Hallelujah!
Miracle #3: Sister Lindmeir and I had 15 minutes to find this past Friday and during this time we got 3 return appointments.. One is even a family of four. One of the return appointments was for a 16 year old girl named Keiliegh. I complemented her on her hair color and it lead to a great discussion. We had a lesson with her on Saturday with the laurel adviser in the ward, met Keileigh's family (potential investigators), and she came to church on Sunday. The other return appointments are for this week so I will update you on how it goes.
Miracle #4: We met this boy named Dimitri this past week and taught him about Repentance and the Atonement. His heart softened and we will be meeting with him again this next week for a church tour.
Miracle #5: We have been working a lot with the members ever since I came to Gainesville. This past Friday we went to the Singers home. Once we walked in the door the mom told us... "I invited my neighbors to sit in the lesson with us today... and they said YES!" 5 minutes later a family of three knocks on the door. We had a great discussion about being children of God and the power of prayer. We really got to know this family and had a great time. After the lesson the family said that they would love to come back every Friday... Member work is the best way to do missionary work. Hands down!
I really could go on and on about the miracles I see every single day. I am so grateful to have a companion who wants to work as hard as I do to help souls come closer to Jesus Christ. We will see a baptism before the end of the transfer. God is just so good to us!
It looks like you all have had a busy week. Two funerals in one week would be really tough! I hope that the Manire family has the desire to learn more about the Plan of Salvation. You will have to keep me posted. I can only imagine how Ade felt at Michella's funeral. I bet it was fun for her to see Katie. Jake, happy birthday last week! I hope you had a good time. It's so weird that you are 17 now. You were 15 when I left. Aww, tell grandma that I love her and hope that she gets better soon. I really appreciated the picture of her back. Why did she need back surgery?
Mom, thanks for applying to colleges for me. Let me know what I need to do. President Riggs will let me work on the essays on Mondays. Let me know more details about the essays and I will get right on it. Hmm... Birthday gifts? It's already that time again. I really would just love some goodies and a letter from each of you. The only big gift I would love is a phone when I get home in November.
I love you all and I hope you have a great week!
Love Sister Smith
Aww my heart just aches from all of the sad things that have happened this past week. My prayers go out to Michellas family as well as Adrianne. I know she was super close with her. I also remember taking Ade to the hospital to see Michella on her first round of chemo. I love a quote that Ades friend said on her Facebook page, "nothing is terminal, just transitional!" I am so grateful for the Plan of Salvation and the knowledge we have to know that we will see our family and friends again. I am so sorry about Jeremy and his family. You guys really have been super close! That will be such a neat experience for dad to dedicate the grave.
There has been a lot of change this week. Sister Stott was transferred to the Ashburn area this past Thursday. I have a new companion named Sister Lindmeir. She actually started her mission in the Gainesville ward and now she will be able to finish her mission here. We have already had so much fun together and its only been 4 days. We have set a high goal to find new investigators this week so I will update you on the miracles waiting to happen.
Elaine and Dora came to church again this past Sunday. They truly are loving the ward and so grateful to be active again. They are still going through some difficult trials so keep this family in your prayers!
Have you ever wanted to see a python eat a rat? Well... yours truly was able to experience this up close and personal. Ahhh it was so gross and fascinating at the same time. I can now cross that off of my bucket list ;).
Hey if you all can we would be able to teach Justin tonight at 6 pm your time. Let me know asap in a Facebook message if that will work. If not we will be willing to reschedule. Hey mom, dad, or Ade can you please find out when I can start applying to BYU and UVU for spring semester? That would be greatly appreciated.
Well I hope you all have a better week this week. Keep your heads up and know that I love you!
Love Sister Smith
Hello my dear family and friends,
Wow... Jared has changed so much since I saw him last. Tell him to cut his hair and shave his stache. I am happy that dad, Josh, and the Hobans had a good time hiking. I am so sorry that Sister Stott and I were not on the Skype call last night. We never got a message back so we went out and worked instead.
I have had such a busy week. We ended up going on two back to back exchanges with incredible sisters. One of the sisters has a brother who I knew from BYUI... Small world! We were able to do lots of service and help out some less active members. After the exchanges we had a lesson with Vivian about the word of wisdom. This lesson was powerful and the spirit was able to guide the entire thing. We also brought members of the congregation to help and support her. The lesson was very hard for her. She said that she would give up smoking in a heartbeat but she would not give up her 1/2 cup of coffee in the morning. It's really hard because now she wants nothing to do with us. We will continue to be persistent and not give up!
Sister Stott and I went to the mission leadership council and received more guidance of how we can better help our sisters and help us missionaries become better leaders. The one takeaway I learned from it is to train my sisters on teaching people, not lessons.
We have been working with this woman Elaine who has not been to church since she was 16 and now she is in her 40's. She is going through an awful situation and she is at a point in her life where she can be humble. Because of the situation her mom Dora (who is in her late 60s) is staying with her. We went to Elaine and Dora's home this past Saturday and we discussed Elaine's situation and she broke down in tears. She told us that whenever she is going through a hard time it is always the Mormons who are there to help. We committed her to come to church and she finally accepted. After she accepted the invitation her mom Dora told us that she was actually baptized in 1970!!!! We always thought she was Catholic. This family did come to church yesterday and we were able to put her mothers name in the record database. After church Elaine said, "this is my church. I will be here every week!" I really do love how the Lord works and how he guides us to where we need to be.
Hey dad since it's your birthday and Father's Day this week I wanted to let you know how grateful I am for you. You really have encouraged me to work hard and play hard. You really are an example to me of someone who is dedicated to living a gospel centered life. I am looking forward to our snowboarding and skiing trips when I get back home. Love you!
I love you all and I hope you have a fun week in the sun!
Love Sister Smith
I love you all and am so curious as to how your week went. My week was a success! Sister Stott was well enough to go out and work this week. She really has been through so much since we became companions and I am so happy that things are back to the way that they used to be.
This week Sister Stott and I went on two exchanges. Sister Calder and Sister Hills were both transferred into my Zone this past transfer and so I was able to go on exchanges with them and catch up like old times. My, I am so fortunate to have the opportunity to go on exchanges with my old companions! My exchange with Sister Calder went very well. She really is growing and maturing into a wonderful missionary. We taught a few investigators and danced in the rain... I was soaking! Sister Hills and I also had a great exchange this past week. She is training a new missionary in Manassas and is loving every minute of it. It will be so hard to see Sister Hills leave this July.
I hung out with 30 nuns this week! Sister Stott and I are still volunteering at a transitional housing for homeless women and children at a Monastery. They had a big event this past Thursday and they wanted us to run a booth. It was so great because all of these wonderful people kept coming up to us and telling us how much they respect and love Mormons. It was also pretty cool to talk with the nuns. There was one who told us that when she was 15 she had a choice to either date a boy that she liked or to run to the Monastery and become a nun. She chose to run to the Monastery and she doesn't regret it at all. That was back in 1948. Sister Stott and I even took a break and went to the labyrinth. We had lots of fun.
Vivian is still progressing!!! We had two lessons with her this past week and she came to church again. I really just love this Sicilian woman. She is such a hoot. She is also still on date for June 21st. We also had a couple lessons with two less actives that the ward has never had contact with. SOLID WEEK!
My ward is the most missionary minded ward I have ever been in! I just want to use a paragraph and tell you how much I love this Gainesville ward. We had a ward fast for missionary work this past Sunday and during sacrament meeting there were tons of the ward members who got up during the meeting and gave their testimony of how they were doing missionary work. This ward is doing so much and I am so happy to be here.
I love you all and I hope you had a good first week of summer!
Love, your sister missionary,