Monday, October 20, 2014

Letter 51 -- Eternal Families, Pie-ing the Assistants, and awesome exchanges!

Hello Family!

I just want to start off by bearing my testimony of the power of the Plan of Salvation. I know that it is real. I know that Christ was the first to rise from the dead so that we may all live again someday. I know that there is a life after this, and the only way for us to live with God and our families again is through our Savior, Jesus Christ. I am SO GRATEFUL to hear that Grandma is happy and blessed to be back with Grandpa, Terry, and all her family again! I love you so much Grandmommy. Just think of how amazing of a reunion it must have been, thousands of family members being able to come up to Grandma and thank her for doing their work. She truly spent her whole life giving, and looking outward. And family was always her first priority. Because of her and Grandpa's testimonies, and their acting upon them, I was blessed to be raised in the church, my family is sealed together, and I am able to be on a mission right now sharing this beautiful message with everyone in Canada. I want to be like Grandma someday. 
Things that I remember about Grandmommy:
     -She loved to steal one piece of my cereal in the morning to make it more "balanced"
     -I remember loving when she came to visit and reading stories with her.
     -Like my mommy, she always loved being a part of whatever was happening. It was so cute the way that whenever she came to visit, she would just sit with the family and soak in whatever thing was happening.
     -She never missed a Birthday. I remember wondering how Grandma had such a great memory. And my mommy has the same gift now too!
     -Historical genius. I remember calling her in fifth grade to ask for help on a project about the history of Delaware, and she knew EVERYTHING.

Well this week was great! Like I mentioned last week, our zone had a Turkey Bowl at the mission home against Brampton zone. President and Sister Clayton hosted and provided A LOT of food and a powerful spiritual thought. I love them so much. We played two-hand-touch football. The sisters in both zones went against each other. It was the worst football you could possibly ever witness haha it was hilarious and SO MUCH FUN. Then the Elders played each other and President kept having the sisters on the sidelines chant "Two-hand-touch! Two-hand-touch!" - they were getting a little more into the game than we did haha. All in all, it was a blast! The best part was the end. Our zone had made the challenge to extend 20 baptismal dates in three days (doubling the amount we already had), and if we achieved it then we would get to throw pie at the Assistant's faces. We achieved it :) I'll attach the picture.

Sister Hsiung is leaving for China in four weeks! So we have been working hard on getting her VISA. We spent all Friday at the Chinese Consulate in downtown Toronto only to find out that she needed more information before she could get the VISA. It was an adventure haha. So we get to go back again this week! Road trip!

President Clayton has been really focused on working with members and strengthening them so we have been spending a lot more time in member's homes, teaching them the lessons, and binding our efforts with theirs. We have had some pretty cool experiences with it!

 Yesterday, we visited with the T... family, by request from the Bishop. They were not interested in our visit at first, but they still allowed us over and we really worked to show them our love. As we taught them the Restoration, we gave them the chance to share what they know to be true. Multiple times throughout the visit both parents would get excited about the certain testimony they were giving and would say something like, "My hair is standing up!" or "I'm getting the chills I just know that it is so true!" It was a very wonderful experience. 

My favorite lesson, though, was with a less-active family. Sister A... is active but she didn't want us to come over because she didn't think her two teenage daughters would want it. So at a recent baptism, we saw the two daughters and went over, introduced ourselves, and talked to them as friends. They invited us over to their home, and Sister A... was surprised and so excited! As we went over, we took teaching the Restoration in a different way. We told them about how we are teaching the Restoration in a new way and we needed their input (is it too slow, too fast, boring, do you feel the spirit, does what we are saying make sense, etc.). So we taught using the pamphlet, and throughout the lesson we stopped to evaluate. The girls were so awesome! They really helped us out by being honest with how they felt about the way we were teaching, and we could tell it made them feel important that they were helping us. The coolest thing was when we asked them how they felt, and we identified that the peaceful feeling they were feeling was the spirit! So cool! And they invited us back. Sister A... is ecstatic. It was a really cool experience.

I went on exchanges with Sister Samantha Reeves in Don Mills East. TALK ABOUT A POWERHOUSE MISSIONARY!!!! She is SO hard working. She rocks at contacting people on the streets and on the bus. It was so much fun teaching with her. Last time she exchanged with Sister Hsiung, for Sister Hsiung's commitments, Sister Reeves told her to drink more water and be more cautious of her ankle (Sister Hsiung rolls her ankle a lot). Haha we joked about how Sister Reeves was going to commit me with something along the lines of taking better care of my back. She is so healthy! I must learn from her. Sister Hsiung and I were inspired to try harder to be healthy. It's hard as a missionary!

I also went with Hermana Pilling again (the Hannah Spencer look-alike). She is a visa waiter for Spain and came straight onto the mission - no MTC, no mission prep before or anything - but she has been working hard and she is also a powerhouse missionary! We saw so many miracles in the little time that we were together. I am learning so much from all these amazing sisters. 

This is a really great story that Sister Reeves shared with the mission this week. So cool!! "Yesterday on the bus I was talking to this girl about the Book of Mormon and how we can ask God if it is true, and I finished my sentence and the guy sitting next to us said, "sorry to interrupt but....(at this point I was preparing for some anti) I just have to say I know this book is true. 4 years ago the missionaries came up to me and told me the same thing she is telling you..." It was such a good experience! The book is true! This is His work."

Well I love you all so much! I know this gospel is true. I am grateful for eternal families. I hope you have a great week! Keep you standards!

Sister Bodine

Sisters Hawryluk, Felix, Warburton, Wanlass, Bodine, and Hsiung at MLC

Cleaning the Apartment

Exchanges with Christie South Hermanas!
    Hermanas Dudley, Horton, and Pilling

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