AHHHH this week was even more crazy then that last couple. So lets see.
The week started off with a mission leadership council and Sister Fitzgerald was still not doing too well. We ended up going in and out of the meeting to make appointments with doctors or just to talk to President Browns wife. So we kinda got some of the meeting in. Then later in the week we had Zone Conference and it was the same type deal-- In and out of the meeting. Sister Fitzgerald was doing a little better but still having a rough time. So then after that meeting we talked with President Brown because she thinks that her illness is to do with stress. And our area makes us both soooo stressed. We both feel like we are spread soooo thin because we are Kirtland sisters, sister training leaders, over a ward, and over a branch. I mean, it is possible to get it all done, but it can be a little overwhelming. Plus sometimes it feels like we aren't doing enough but that's because we are trying to divide ourselves into so many different tasks. It's definitely a stretching experience. Sooo anyway, we talked to President Brown and he is thinking it may need to be a full proselyting area. So who knows what will happen next transfer, but as of now everything is the same. So after all that excitement we went back home and Sister Fitzgerald was still sick but toughing it out anyway.
So then we get a call from President a day later and it turns out another Kirtland sister is down because she just got her wisdom teeth removed on short notice. Sooooo we ended up trading companions for 2 days and Sister Morrison came to Kent for me. Basically it was an extended exchange. Sister Morrison and I took those two days to find a bunch of the less actives and we also got a new investigator. Her name is Sherry and shes pretty cool!
Okay, so then after those days in the area we went back to Kirtland to go to the visitors' center. Then the same day we were at the visitors' center we took our car to the shop and it turns out that we need a new radiator overflow thing because ours was ruined and the part we needed was on back order. And we couldn't drive the car or else it would ruin the engine. Next thing we know is we are stranded in Kirtland for the rest of the week because we can't drive rental cars and we have no car to get back. So the rest of our week we spent in Kirtland. In fact we are still in Kirtland because our car is still at the shop. So its been crazy. We even went to Kirtland Ward on Sunday and all their members were so confused. And then on top of all that, we had only brought 2 days worth of food to Kirtland so we have been mooching off of everyone for days. Thank goodness we finally have a preparation day to get some food.
So yeah, that's how my week has going. Pure craziness. And now tomorrow we have a meetings from 7:45am-8pm in Cleveland. Elder Bennett is coming. And luckily we have a ride with the site director and his wife so that will be fun.
This week we also saw Michelle and she is doing sooo good! She is praying and she has had her prayers answered and continues to progress. Yay Michelle! Well pray fro my sanity and also that my companion gets better! For the most part she is back on her feet. Shes a toughy!
Well, I love you family!!! I am glad to hear your trip went well! And though my week was crazy, it was still full of many miracles! Heavenly Father really wants me to grow and I am seeing that more and more throughout my mission. But its all for the better. He wants us all to reach our full potential and we aren't going to get anywhere if we don't have trials. The church is true! I love y'all so so so much!
Sister Katie Call
Crazy week --ER Visit for companion, teaching less actives - and teaching a girl from France online!
All is well here. We didn't get much done this week because unfortunately Sister Fitzgerald isn't doing so well. She has been sick and we actually ended up going to the emergency room and hanging out there for hours. It was quite the experience! We were able to see Freedom and Michelle this week though and both those lessons went great.
Michelle is a very chatty person and sometimes lessons with her were more like a hang out. But we wanted to change that so we were pretty bold with her this week. She is a very intelligent person and loves learning about our faith, but she wasn't really applying it to herself. It was like she was there because she was curious, not because she was actually willing to change. But this week we talked about faith and we asked her what faith meant to her. She ended up opening up about her childhood and how she had never been one to trust. We ended up showing her a super powerful Mormon message and it changed the tone of the lesson completely. Michelle now truly understands why we are teaching her. I don' think it was ever set in stone from the beginning. But now she has committed herself to really applying everything we teach her and keeping an open and willing heart.
Freedom was kinda the same way as Michelle but now we are really getting to the good stuff with her. We are so so so close with Freedom but there are still some walls up that we are trying to get through. This week we talked about temples, and the priesthood, and the atonement and a little bit of everything. She has heard all of the lessons but we have been able to connect them all so it makes more sense to her. It was funny because in the beginning of her lesson she said that she would never be the type to join the church but by the end she was asking all the golden questions like how baptism works and what not. It was great!
I also have been teaching a girl in France from the visitors center. Her name is Courtney and she is awesome!!!! Plus she said she was going to church this week with her mom. I hope she did, but I won't know until later this week. Courtney is awesome! Her family is going through a lot of tough things right now but she had the desire to find a church so that she could be at comfort. She said that as she was doing some research that she felt inspired to check out the mormon church and thats why she chatted us. AHHH shes the coolest! She is already reading the Book of Mormon and she has been reading everything she can from beta.mormon.org. She is perfect! Now I just hope we can find some missionaries close to her little island to come teach her in person as well.
This week we also found another less active and her name is Brielle. She is in what she calls "limbo" and she says she doesn't know where she is at with the church. I know there was lots of drama with her and the church when she was a teen so she is afraid to go back because some of the people are still attend there. She told us that we could come back though so that's always a good sign. She even offered to make us dinner. We also asked her if we could come and practice teaching the lessons with her and she was totally cool with it so maybe that will help her rekindle her testimony that she has. We shall see!
I can't remember if I already told y'all this, but our less active Rosita just had a baby and its been prime time for us to get the members into her home. She normally cancels and doesn't answer the door when members come, but we have had the relief society bring her meals and she is actually letting them in. Woohoo!
No update on Amber and Erin. Its literally the most difficult thing ever. There is family drama every week and their dad wouldn't even talk to us this week. So keep them in your prayers. Hopefully we can see them soon, but otherwise that baptism date isn't looking to promising.
Well the rest of the week was a bunch of meetings and area work in the apartment while Sister Fitzgerald was sick. Poor thing! But she is a tough cookie because she refused to miss any of our meetings and pulled herself together for those. Keep her in your prayers. I love you family! Miracles are happening everyday! And Heavenly Father is helping this area get into shape.
I LOVE Y'ALL I LOVE Y'ALL I LOVE Y'ALL! Have fun while on your last vacation before school again!
Sister Katie Call
Yo yo yo!
This week has been quite a busy one! The week of transfers is always the craziest! We were assigned to the visitors center most of the week but we still got as much as we could done in our area.
We taught Freedom earlier this week and she is finally progressing. She loves the Book of Mormon! She doesn't exactly understand why we would need another book of scripture but she is slowly getting it. We finally broke through the ice with her. She had been getting the lessons on and off forever and they weren't getting anywhere but she finally is opening up and asking perfect questions.
Amber and Erin are doing great! We hadn't seen them forever because of the whole family situation but we finally saw them again this week. Those girls are so cute! The things we are teaching them are finally starting to stick. We have them both praying about a baptismal date which we think will be Aug 29th. Originally only Amber really seemed interested and Erin always seemed like she was being forced into it because of her dad. But this last time we saw them she was so energetic about getting baptized. Also, as of now, their mother says they can get baptized if they choose to. But I think she still doesn't like the idea too much.
We also saw a bunch of our less actives this week and we should start to be seeing more of them at church. Its so hard because our church building is literally in the middle of nowhere. It takes forever to drive there for almost every person in our ward. So a huge reason we have most of our members less active is because no one really has any desire to drive 30min to church every Sunday. Hard stuff.
We have been trying to work with the YSA ward and getting them involved in the missionary work as well but its a little more difficult with them. This week we had what we call a "missionary sunday" where everyone was suppose to bring their friends, but no one did. It was the worst timing. We set up the day to be full of really good teachers and just basic doctrine so that people visiting wouldn't be intimidated. Sooooo it was super good Sunday minus we didn't actually have any visitors so that was rough. #fail. It was worth a try. The timing was bad because everyone is moving out for school, or in for school. All those moving out are the ones with friends they could bring. And then all those moving in don't have any friends yet. Yup just really bad timing. Right now its a little harder for them but when school starts up again we have lots of the YSA on board with inviting their friends to church and taking the lessons (supposedly) . We also will be setting up what we call "the Kent table" soon when school starts over here at Kent State. One of the YSA said it was a big event with all the incoming college students checking out whats in the area. We hope that it will help us get a bigger pool of investigators.
Its another one of those weeks where I don't have much to share. Its been super difficult to manage our time in this area. The work is spread out sooo thin. We have like 5 jobs, the branch, the ward, being STL's, giving tours and our online investigators. Soooo much!
(Ohhh speaking of which we just go an online investigators from France and she is golden! The only problem is that she lives on this little island where they don't really have missionaries. But we will find a way to make things work!) But back to what I was saying... We are just bombarded with loads of things to do and it seems like there is not enough time. I hope in the future they make this area a full-pros area. I love having all the fun different things to do but then its just not reasonable.
But whatever happens is suppose to happen and I am going to keep working hard no mater the situation. Dang missions really do stretch you. I have learned so much its insane! Well the church is true and pretty soon the pace over here is going to speed up even more. I love my mission!!!! And I love my family!!!!!!! Don't have too much fun without me and enjoy the last bit of your summer. Dang I can't believe summer is already over. I didn't even get hot here. Everyone told me I was going to die from the heat but it didn't even get up to the 90's other than a couple of days. Anyway, I LOVE Y'ALL SO MUCH!!!
Sister Katie Call
Photos of Sister Call with a group from her Young Single Adult Ward and with a senior missionary couple -- The Muellers and photo with Sister Jacobsen (on exchanges with her).
This week was a bit slower than normal but all is well otherwise. Both Sister Fitzgerald and I have been on and off sick. I think I just have literally the worst allergies. Ugggg!!!!
This week we had exchanges again! I went out with Sister Jacobsen in my area and it was great! Well the day started off terribly because every single one of our appointments canceled that morning. I was super worried because its the last part of summer and everyone is currently going on their last minute vacations before school starts up again. Anyway, we ended up doing tons of less active stop bys and met some people we had never seen before! They weren't all too friendly, but at least we now know where they stand. Another one of the less actives is a 10 year old little girl named Dakoda whom I only met once before. Her aunt and grandmother are members but her mother isn't really into being religious so shes not very supportive of Dakoda. Either way, we had been stopping by forever but we never came at the right time until our day of exchanges. We ended up talking to Dakoda and were going to start seeing her more because she knows very little about the church still it seems.
What else... ohh transfers are this Wednesday and I know (as of last night) that I am not getting transferred and neither is Sister Fitzgerald. Its funny because they dont tell us these things until late Sunday night. So at church on Sunday I was running around getting pictures and giving everyone hugs...or just had shakes, because I wasn't sure if I was leaving. Especially because I can't try to predict President Brown because its our first transfer with hi,. Rumor has it almost every Kirtland zone sister is changing. I don't know if I believe that one... We shall see!
I am super boring this week and I don't have much more to share. But I can always share my testimony :) I know that Heavenly Father knows each and everyone of His children. He has a reason for everything. When all my appointments canceled but we ended up finding some of the long lost less actives-- that was Heavenly Father saying He had something else in mind. I am sooooo grateful to be serving!!!!! Its been the most challenging experience but all the more worth it! I feel like I understood so little and coming out here has helped me understand and find the truth for myself. The church is true and our Heavenly Father will never stop loving us and providing ways to get back to him! I LOVE Y'ALL!!!!!
The week has been awesome! We got lots done and we are finally getting lots done! The difference between Sister Fitzgerald and I. I like to do a whole bunch and really fast. Sister Fitz likes to do very detailed work which takes longer. So we pretty much balance each other out. We are now getting lots done, but making sure that what we are doing is effectively. Not that it wasn't effective before, its just more effective :)
okay so to my week---
I already told y'all but the temple was great!!!! AHH I wish we could go more! It was such a re-boost which was what I needed. We also visited a members later that day, the Rogers, and they are awesome! In fact Brother Rogers used to be a band director and loves Jazz music so connections for the future right there.
We also had our FHE group with some of the less actives which is always great. (Now that we don't have one of the trouble making members there.) In fact some more of the less actives have been coming and they are just so sweet! When we are there we read through chapters of the Book of Mormon and discuss what it all means. Recently we were studying Jacob 5 which was harder for them to understand at first but as Sister Fitzgerald and I explained it a bit they got sooo excited! The finally understood something from it :) They were glowing and wanted to keep reading which was a neat experience. In fact, Sister Fitzgerald is really good at making difficult things easy to understand. #talent .So this week when we went to FHE, Sister Fitzgerald was comparing what we were reading to her own personal life and talked about some of the struggles she had had with doubt and literally the rest of the lesson was them teaching us about enduring to he end. Its was priceless! They got so excited and it was cool because they kept bearing their own testimonies. I think one thing that helps less actives more than anything is when they hear themselves bear their testimony. Once they say it out loud they realize how much they know to be true. Its probably one of my favorite things. Anyway, so that was a really neat experience and I can see a difference in these people.
We also did service at one of the members homes this week AND THEY HAVE WOLVES! I got to feed one of them a treat. I felt pretty cool. Also I love wolves. Also Sister Fitzgerald calls them woofs. LOL.
We also saw Michelle this week! We actually met her in Kent at one of the Panera's and she brought her Friend Jordan whom knows Sister Fitzgerald. I guess Jordan went to BYU and they lived across the hall from one another. Anyway, Jordan is actually the one who introduced Michelle to the church so it was perfect to have her there!
We finally found another one of our less actives. It was actually a hilarious experience. We had stopped by this families home like a million times but they never answered the door. So then one night we still had like 15 min until we needed to be home so we decided to stop by this family, the Deal's. So we knocked on the screen door and their actual door was open and their dog was right here barking like crazy a us. Then we hear someone inside yell at the dog and it ran off into the house. So then we sit there a minute wondering if they are going to come to the door. Complete silence for about 2 min. In the meantime Sister Fitzgerald and I look a each other, then the door, then each other, then the door...etc Until finallllly this man comes to the door shirtless. And then it gets real awkward. And then he says, I'll be right back... and then disappears... and then we are like freaking out because we don't know if he is going to like come back with a gun or something dangerous.... Seconds later he is back at the door, with a shirt on, and steps outside. First thing he stars rambling and tells us that its very rare for him to be home and how he never really can answer the door and how we just shouldn't worry about stopping by because he really just is never home. But he is being so nice in the mean time, just trying to come up with some quick excuses. Also this man is from he south. Heavy accent, super sweet, but also trying to make up excuses so he doesn't hurt our feelings. So then we start some small talk and I start talking about the south and using my Texan-ness to my advantage and he starts to loosen up and talk to us. Then his mom comes out to the porch and she starts chatting with us and then we ask them about their conversion story and it was great. They basically told us that they were less active but that they still knew the church was true. Back to that thing I talked about earlier--they got to hear their own testimonies and then BAM! It sparks something in them.
So that was cool. Its just a matter of time that they start coming back. Plus we have been working a lot with the ward council making sure that the less actives are getting the attention they need.
We also met with Sister Farmer his week, another less active, and she is the sweetest! She has a hard life but dang is she strong! We talked to her about the sabbath and then she showed up to church on Sunday! Miracles! In fact they had her give the opening prayer at church. So we are going to start working with her more.
We also finally saw Freedom again! Its been weeks. It was a drop or not lesson and we didn't feel we should drop her. We were super planning on it until she started really opening up. WOW! She finally started ell us her doubts and we found out a better way to reach her., She had go cheated by a church in the past and has never felt comfortable since joining a church. We had a very deep lesson on he Book of Mormon and why its important. She has been told to read the Book of Mormon over and over again bu she never truly understood why she needed to. So we shall see later this week if she actually reads. If she doesn't keep her commitment though, we may have to drop her and give her a few months to think hings over. I know she will figure it out! I just know it! But its all in Gods timing.
This week we also had several youth tours which are always my favorite! Ohh funny thing. Each group I took said I looked like some famous girl. I cant remember what her name was, but some new celeb. Anyway, they all waned to take pictures with me so they could tell their friends they were hanging with this famous girl. I felt pretty cool.
Also another thing I love to have youth groups do is ask them to show me that dance move "the whip". Its so funny because they all get so excited to show me. In fact it helps the group connect with me and get more comfortable so then our tour is awesome. Plus with teenagers its hard to get them to listen unless you can find some common ground, so this weird dance move has been a huge help. Hahaha funny how things work.
Another thing that we have been starting to do is get some of the elderly people in our ward involved in the missionary work. Sometimes its hard for them to do missionary work when they don't leave their home often but we have invited them to start writing letters to some of the less actives. Its been awesome to see the change even in these ward members, not only do they see that we are trying to get the ward working together but they feel important which has been one of the struggles that our ward has faced in the past.
One thing I have been thinking about my whole mission is how Heavenly Father wants us to try and seek solutions ourselves. He doesn't just give us the answers directly because He wants us to grow. Sister Fitzgerald has helped me see this as well. She is always coming up with new ideas to improve our area and as we test them out we learn more and more. Its all about the trial and error. I always was thinking a lot about how Heavenly Father teaches us line upon line and precept upon precept. Like when the saints first built the temple, Heavenly Father didn't just give them everything at once, He gave it to them over time to teach them! Its the same with so many other things. Like we get baptized when we are 8 and then we wait until we are 12 to go to the temple and then we wait until we are 14 to go to dances and then we wait until we are 16 to date and then we wait until we are 18 to go to college and then we wait until we are 19-20ish to go to get our endowments in the temple and go on a mission and then we wait to get married and be sealed, and to have a family and then to be old. Its all a growing process. If we went straight to being old then what do we learn? I remember when I was younger always wanting to be older because I waned to be able to do more things. But now I look back and I see that I had to learn more before I could take those next steps so that I could be prepared. Its like what I read in my personal study this morning... found in Jacob 4 verse 14 -- the Jews desired something they could not understand so God gave them what they wanted and then they all go confused. They weren't ready for hose things. Likewise, we have to be patient in life because we aren't always prepared. We have to trust our Heavenly Father and also take the experiences we have right now and ask ourselves, what am I learning? Its all about the growing. Sorry for that ramble! These realizations just amaze me. Ahhh! I love being on a mission! Well everything else is going super well and we have been keeping very very busy!!!! I LOVE YOU FAMILY!!!!!
Have a great week and enjoy the farm without me!
Sister Katie Call