Sunday, July 23, 2017

This email was sent by Sister Welker on July 3rd.  We received it on July 2nd.

Week 47: Best PDAY!!, Super slow slow week

So it wasn't a very exciting week.  Monday was probably the most exciting, but that's about it.  
This email was sent by Sister Welker on June 26th.  We received it on June 25th.

Week 46: New Kind of Tracting, Dinner Almost To-Go, and Visit Lacey Again?

Last week was pretty slow.  However, towards the end of the week we started to see HEAPS of miracles!!!

We went tracting last week, hoping to find new investigators.  Tracting is not my personal favorite, I actually have to kind of bribe myself in order to "desire" to go tracting, but instead of knocking and telling others about the Restored gospel, we tried asking if they wanted to learn more about their ancestors.  I was amazed at how much easier it was to talk with people about their ancestors than the restored gospel.  People were either polite and said "no thanks," or their eyes grew wider and they wanted to learn more.  At the end of the day, we got one new investigator but he wasn't keen like we thought.  When we went back for the return appointment, he told us he was busy.  However, I felt that it was a cool experience for me and helped me to have a more genuine desire to go tract again.  

While we were tracting, the Brown family (name changed) texted us asking if they could drop our meal off tonight.  In the past, I would have agreed, but I felt I should try to find a different option.  So instead, we offered to come to their place and pick up the food.  Sister Brown agreed as long as we came before 5pm.  We arrived at the members home at about 4:30 pm.  She told us the food wasn't quiet ready and invited us in to sit while we waited for her to finish the meal.  As we watched her cook, we asked Sister Brown about her 1st impressions of missionaries.  She explained to us how at first she wanted nothing to do with missionaries, and would tell them to leave.  At the time she was living with a less-active member, and the LA member wanted the missionaries to come inside.  Rather than argue she let the missionaries in, and went to the kitchen so she wouldn't have to be in the same room as the missionaries.  Over time she realized how she would subconsciously listen to the discussions happening in the other room.  One day the missionaries came to visit and she asked them if she could get baptized.  A couple weeks later she was baptized, and is now married in the temple with two children.

By the time Sister Brown had finished telling us her story, the dinner was ready.  I thought she would pack it up in ice cream containers and invite us to leave, but to my surprise she looked at her clock, realized she had more time than she thought and invited us to stay and eat the dinner there.  Once we finished the dinner, I thought again we would be asked to leave, but we were invited to stay again to share a quick message.  We asked everyone in the home to share their favorite Jesus Christ story.  We then discovered that Sister Brown's darkest time in her life was when she found out she couldn't have kids of her own, and during that time her life she learned how to rely on the Atonement of Jesus Christ.

This last Sunday, Sister Brown had been assigned to speak in church and she was so touched by our visit that she mentioned our visit during her talk in church!!  Hopefully that helped the members gain trust in us!!  Now we plan to see her family again tonight for FHE, and we plan to share the Restoration, and maybe get referrals as well!! 

I received a written letter from one of my companions earlier this week, and I now have a testimony of how companions are inspired of God.  I don't think either one of us had any idea why we were meant to be companions until now.  I guess we may not always see ALL the good we do, but GOD DOES!!  And it matters in his eyes.

Another miracle had to be when we went to visit a LA sister, Lacey (name changed).  I had visited this sister before and would only talk with her behind the gate.  Usually she would tell us that she was busy, but we had members in the ward refer us to her, so we felt more responsibility to go and visit her.  This week as we went to visit Lacey and to our surprise she said "You know there's a reason why I don't come to church."  My ears grew hoping to finally learn of her concern.  We inched our way closer, and could barley see her in face from the reflection of the dim street light.  She wasn't very specific, but buy the end of our visit we had spent 20-30 mins talking (which is the longest I've ever talked with her), and we got a return appointment!!

When we went back for the return appointment, we were invited into her house!!! I had never been past her gate before, and was completely shocked when we were invited in.  Turns out her whole family is LA, and she had a child who needs to get baptized!!! :D

Then just as we were walking to come and email today, we meet someone who wanted to study more about the Mormon faith along with his 3 others sisters back home!!! 

So basically God really does love me, and is helping me to see so many miracles.  :D

Thanks again for all your love and support.  I hope you all have a great week!!

Sister Mandy Welker

Sorry the pictures have nothing to do with anything I emailed haha
Inline image 1
This is our 1st Milo party of the Transfer

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Picture at the temple after MLC

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Oh and Um...."Hey Jesus" ;)
This email was sent by Sister Welker on June 19th.  We received it on June 18th.

Week 45: Airport again, Transfers, and Sunday Surprise

Well for someone who's not that close to finishing her mission, I've sure been to the airport heaps hahah.  I'm not getting trunky (missionary term for someone who is ready to go home) or anything, but it is kinda ironic.

Yep we had another sister stay with us this week. Her name is Sister Taragnutu (tera-new-two) and she's from Kitibus (might have spelled that wrong).  She was telling us of all her favorite memories and told us that the only advice she has for missionaries, is just to be yourself.  The night before we dropped her off we had a movie night watching the District, and eating ice cream!! 

Finding the airport is easy since all the signs have airplanes on them making it easy to find the airport.  It's getting back home that's the struggle.  So we may or may not have gotten lost on the way back home, haha.

In regards to transfers, I'M STAYING!!!  I've only had two areas my whole mission and I've been here since February.  Not sure I'll be staying again after this transfer but who knows!? And I'm still with Sister C.  By the end of this transfer, she'll be the companion I've been with the longest.

Sunday there was hardly anyone at church.  Not sure why but we did have Elder Henry B. Eyring, and Neil L. Anderson here this weekend for a dedication for a church history museum, I believe.  So maybe that's why hardly anyone was at church.  There was however, a family visiting from Tauranga.  It was the Tusenga family!!!!! :D  Straight after sacrament I ran over and gave them the biggest hug!!  It was so good to see them, and I was so so happy!!

That's about it for this week.  But I hope you all have a great week and I wish you all the best!!  Thanks again for all the love and prayers.  

Sister Mandy Welker

This email was sent by Sister Welker on June 12th.  We received it on June 11th.

Week 44: Exchanges, Baptism, and Transfers

It wasn't a super exciting week.  We had exchanges with the Mountford sisters.  The last one of the transfer.  The theme was "Have Courage and Be Kind" from the latest Cinderella movie.  Each sister looked up one scripture with the word courage and another scripture with the word kind and then we were suppose to think about that scripture throughout the exchange.

Our area had been struggling lately so honestly it was a blessing to be in another area for 24 hours.  We are really low on investigators and in general the area isn't progressing.  Mountford area on the other hand is doing great!! By the end of the exchange we had visited with about 5 different families and had shared everything from the plan of salvation to a simple prayer.  It was just what I needed to regain my motivation to do the work.  Now that I'm back in my own area, we plan to find by day, and do member missionary work by night.  Hopefully through our efforts, we'll find something or someone that's willing to progress.

We had a baptism on Saturday for a girl that I'll call Millie for now.  Millie had been baptized as a member when she was 8 years old, but when she was a young women she went less-active.  Years later she had missionaries visiting her trying to help her regain a desire to come back to church.  It was then that she was informed that her records went missing.  Meaning that the prove that she had gotten baptized as a child was lost.  At first Millie was disappointed and frustrated, since she knows that she was baptized before, but as she thought about it, she realized that having her records go missing was a blessing.  She had been praying for a way to have a second chance, a new chapter in her life.  Millie would have never thought that baptism would have been the answer to her prayers.  With the help from friends in the YSA, and a desire to change her life, Millie got baptized again this last Saturday.

Minuets before the baptism began, while the prelude music was playing, Millie whispered to me how she was getting emotional and started to cry.  Before I even had the chance to react, one of her best friends came to the front row and gave her a hug.  I was happy for her knowing she could feel the spirit and that she had her best friend by her side. Having a best friend by your side definitely makes all the difference in the world.  I'm so grateful for my best friend and I want to let her know that I miss her so much and can't wait to see her again soon!!!

Out of all the baptisms I've had since I've been in this area, this one was definitely the most well done.  We had heaps of members come to show their support, including our stake president.  The speakers were great and Millie had the chance to share her testimony about her reactivity.  She had told us how there was a number of less-active friends that came to her baptism to show her support, and she was hoping that her story may have touched one of her friends that attended the service.

That had to be the highlight of my week.  Transfers are this week and it could go either way.  I don't know if I'll stay or go.  I'm hoping to stay one more, but you never know what the Lord has planned.  I'll be sure to keep you up to date next time I email.

Thanks for all the love and support.  I hope you all have another great week!!

Sister Mandy Welker

This email was sent by Sister Welker on June 5th.  We received it on June 4th.

Week 43: How about June 6th, Green field, and Old Faithful