Monday, December 8, 2014

Letter 58 -- He is the Gift #ShareTheGift

Hello everyone! 

How goes it? I just love you all so much. I love when my family comes to mind throughout the day because I like to say a little prayer thanking Heavenly Father for my family. It makes me happy :) I hope you all had a wonderful week. Good luck everyone with finals! I'm praying for you! Mom your Disney tree sounds adorable!
Please give the little kiddies a hug for me!

December is going by way too fast. We are sponges here trying to soak up every minute haha. A bunch of members in our ward came up to Sister Mencarelli and I yesterday inviting us to visit their friends and sing to them. We had a couple great experiences with it last night. Planted seeds :) 

Haha so Sister Mencarelli and I were knocking on a row of doors last night, and it was a pretty consecutive response of "no thank you's" and slammed doors. So we decided to change it up a bit. When someone answered the door we immediately started singing a Christmas carol. Haha this brought several different responses. A couple got excited and laughed, and their family came to the door. Another person stepped outside and started singing with us. We had a man who we think got a little scared because he turned around and walked away with the door still open and us standing alone singing to ourselves haha we don't think he spoke any English. Overall, it was a fun experience. There was one woman who stopped us in the middle of "Silent Night" and told us they just had a death in the family and she couldn't really handle anything at the moment. It was so sad. We shared our simple testimonies with her and left her with a smile. It was a good experience because we don't think she would have even talked to us had we not sung to her. Pray for Tracy's family!

So best news of all. M... :) M... is wonderful. She is doing amazing. Such a wonderful woman. She is beyond prepared and is loving every minute of learning about the church. We visited her on Wednesday and shared the Plan of Salvation with her, she received a Priesthood Blessing from our Ward Mission Leader and the spirit was so strong. At that time, she hadn't started reading the Book of Mormon yet so we talked about that and invited her to start reading. We went back on Friday and found that she had read to 2 Nephi 17! And she was loving it. "I don't know what it is because I don't remember what I'm reading, but every time I pick up the Book of Mormon I just can't stop reading it. It feels like I am filled with peace, and all my problems just go away for a brief moment." We taught her the Gospel of Jesus Christ and she was so excited about repentance. We asked her a follow-up question about what it meant to her to repent, and she answers with "Well, it just means that you need to change. Stop doing bad things and start doing the right things. Like read the Book of Mormon, pray, go to church, be nice to people, don't lie, forgive others, serve the people around you, ask God for forgiveness.... she went on and on. It was so cool. She came to church yesterday with Sister Arthurs (they've become really good friends) and she was WRAPPED up by the ward. Different people took her to every class and introduced her to everyone they passed. After church she expressed that she LOVED it.

April was baptized yesterday! She was taught by the Mandarin Elders, but it feels like all the Mississauga missionaries taught her and worked with her because she came to everything, we all taught her in ESL, she helped us with chapel tours. She's so great. I left my camera cord at home so I can't show you any pictures of it. Next week! The baptismal service was so powerful. They created a theme of "I Am A Child of God" and the primary kids sang that song. April asked Elder Dunyon and I to sing Lead Kindly Light. That was nice. M... came to the baptism and she loved it. After the baptism I asked her if this is something she was going to want on December 28th, and she responded by pointing at the font and said, "On December 28th I am going to be in there." I love her :)

It's so easy to take things for granted in this life. We took our friend K... with us to Christmas Carol to our friend Brother Teepell. Brother Teepell about 10-15 years ago, fell down some stairs, broke his neck, and has been paralyzed ever since. As we talked to him, he remarked at the tender mercies the Lord has given him. Like the time when he looked out his window, and saw a balcony that had two 10 ft lines of Christmas lights on it. And just above that he could see the moon. It made his day. Then another time, his nurse took him outside in his wheelchair, and he recounted the joy that overcame him when the sun hit his face and he breathed in fresh air. As I heard these things it made me so grateful for my life. I have been so blessed with everything I need and much more. 

Testimony meeting was wonderful yesterday. Completely missionary focused. It is wonderful seeing the members of our ward catch the fire and excitement of being a missionary. They are so good at it :) Good luck with all your missionary efforts! I LOVE YOU SO MUCH!! Have a wonderful week! Good luck with Christmastime. PLEASE go on and watch the "He is the Gift" video and then share it on Facebook, Twitter, instagram, and with your friends! If you've already seen it, then you can watch it again and share it again!

Sister Bodine


We got a little surprise invite to go help out this morning in the Bishop's storehouse this morning. So we spent our whole morning there (SO MUCH FUN) and now our preparation day lasts for the rest of the day!
We bagged apples, oranges, and tomatoes. Then we used exacto knives (coolest knives ever!) and cut off the tops of every box in the storehouse. My hands are raw right now haha. And I may have cut through a couple orange juice mixes on accident..
We're not sure how many people are serviced by this Bishops store house, but they help Hamilton, London, Brampton, etc. Southern parts of Ontario at least.

There are a LOT of people that need help here. Hamilton is actually known to have the greatest Bishop Storehouse welfare need in all of North America. I loved helping out though. I want to be a part of it somehow when I go home. So many things I want to implement when I go home haha. This mission has been so remarkable, I love it. 
There is Mormon Message that very briefly summarizes our church. It is VERY WELL done. We showed it to one of our investigators and it really shows how involved we are in meeting people's temporal needs around the world.
I heard a cool quote from an Elder at MLC. He said "Ask me what my mission means to me, and I will tell you to look at me in five years and to look at me in ten years. Then you will see what my mission means to me." So true :)  Have a great week!

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