Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas as a missionary > Christmas as anyone else

Hi All :)

Oh my goodness, I've had the best week ever. Aaaaand today is my 15 week mark. So I mean that's cool too! It was so good to see you guys yesterday. I'm so proud of myself for not crying - for some reason I figured I would. It didn't feel like it'd been that long since I'd seen you, and I'll get to call you again when I am at the airport headed to Spain.

Anyhow, my week. So last Tuesday we made bread with Brother Finlayson.

He brought us a loaf a couple weekends ago and we had devoured it in like two days so he said we could come over one morning and he'd teach us how to do it. This stuff is heaven. Pure heaven. If anyone wants the recipe I'll send it. It's the best.


Wednesday was the Sister's Activity.
We ate lunch at Pizza Pie Cafe and then went to the mission home where we made bracelets, and cookies and gingerbread houses, and then had a gift exchange.

I'm really grateful for Sister McCune and her efforts to create a good time for us. She's seriously like a mom away from home and I really love that lady. At night we met with Anneliese. She was a referral from a Ward Mission Leader and she's really sweet. She has two kids (6 and 8) and the three of them are pretty shy. Oh oh! Wednesday night after we met with Anneliese we started walking home. It was FREEZING - the coldest it's been since I've been here, or at least it felt like it. We walked by Subway and thought it'd be a good idea to go in there for a few minutes just to get warm before we walked the rest of the way home. This guy Chad who was working there started talking to us. It was almost closing time, but he was like, "I'll make you a deal. Once a week you come in and if you teach me a lesson, I'll buy you dinner." Done. So we talked to him about Christ and gave him Joshua 1:9 to read. I already love him. We didn't recognize it at the time, but it was probably the Holy Ghost telling us to go into Subway and talk to Chad, not our little frozen selves wanting to get warm.

THURSDAY WAS THE BIG DAY - Sister Cha's 24th birthday and my 100th day in the mission!


We woke up at 5:30 to be at the temple at 7 and it was fantastic. We went to Timpanogos and it was so beauuuuutiful. It was really fun. We didn't have a ride back to Provo so this lady leaving offered us a ride home. For the 136817th time, people in Utah are so nice to missionaries. We went to Katia's for birthday cake and that was really fun. After dinner we had a lesson with Daisy. Her whole family joined the church a year or two ago, but at the last second she backed out. Her attitude has changed a lot though and she's willing to meet with us again. She's only 14, but so mature and really cute. I lovelovelove her. And they made Cha birthday cupcakes and a cinnamon streusel cake (but we gave the cake away so we don't get fat).

Friday was our Christmas Zone Conference. Ahhhh I love Zone Conferences!

Greg K. Olsen who is a famous painter for the church came and spoke to us. He had his pictures of Christ on a projector and he talked about the Savior. It was really really neat. Then we heard the final testimonies of the Elders leaving - Chavez, Ramires and Bishop (who is from Overland Park). I really enjoyed Bishop's. He said, "This isn't my final testimony - I'll be sharing it all my life." I love that. President spoke to us after that. He had us pretend like we were all in the living room at the mission home, having scripture study together. We read 2 Nephi 32:2-3, Moroni 7:29-31, D&C 31:5, and Matthew 11:28-30. We talked about us speaking with the tongue of angels by the power of the Holy Ghost. We talked about angels ministering to us and that as missionaries we are not alone. Angels are fighting for us and helping us with this great work that we're a part of. We read that the Savior is helping us too. We can come unto Him and He will give us rest, light, and truth. I love President McCune. He's truly inspired of God and loves us. We had a talent show after lunch and at the end six Elders sang this song called "Homeless." Soooo good. We watched Brave and then got all our presents and went home.


Sister Cha and I didn't wait until Christmas, even on the packages that said to wait (sorry Grandma).

Lately I've had this weird interest in family history and genealogy. Last week our zone had a class on family history work and how to do it, and since then I've wanted to spend all my time finding my ancestors and requesting that their ordinances be done. It's really cool! Saturday we went and saw Sister Baird (the lady who takes us to lunch every Monday) and she told us all these stories about her pioneer ancestors. Turns out her brother-in-law is President Hinckley! Pretty neat.

Christmas Eve was really fun. We went to Sister Baird's house and had dinner with her family.


Then all the grandkids did the nativity scene, which was precious. Little Eliza played Mary and it was pretty adorable.


We headed over to Katia's after that for more dinner (I'm so sick of eating). We had posole and tamales and all sorts of yummy Latin things.


Then came Christmas morning! Hoooray!

 
After I talked to you guys we went to Bishop Jakin's house for breakfast. Sister Jakins called all the Relief Society ladies and they bought us some Christmas presents! Yay for more nice people. We had fruit and french toast and muffins and then we put together a 500 piece puzzle. We came home and then we got picked up and went over to this Hawaiian families house (Mom they're from Kihei so you have to talk to them!). We played games and had dessert and it was really fun. It was the best Christmas ever. I loved being with families who felt like home.

I hope you all had a Merry Christmas! I'll talk to you in 2013 :)


Love,
Hermana Munden

Monday, December 17, 2012

'Tis the Season

Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii Familia!

Well, I cut my hair last Monday. Probably 10 inches or so. It's the shortest it's been in my whole life and I honestly don't know what I was thinking. Oh well. I keep telling myself it's just hair and it'll grow back, but hopefully in 14 months it'll be as long as it was. Haha at least that's what I'm praying for.

Awkward Merry Christmas from me
The semester at BYU officially ended on Friday, so everyone's gone. This place is like a ghost town. It stinks because that means most of our investigators are gone, but we're making the most of it and spending a lot of time in the two family stakes we cover. But this was our last week with all of our people here until January 6 or so! That's so long. I already miss them.
This is pretty much our relationship

Tuesday we met with Stephanie. It didn't go so well. We ended up arguing about various things and the Spirit wasn't there and it was just a really unproductive meeting. I texted Bro. Adams afterwards because we were feeling really discouraged. Stephanie's friends have been telling us they felt strongly that she was going to get baptized on December 14th and they had so much faith and were so sure it was going to happen. But we didn't have the same feeling as the date got closer. Sister Cha and I were feeling really down and wondering what we were doing wrong. Were we lacking faith? Were we lacking in obedience or diligence? What were we doing wrong? Was Stephanie not getting an answer because of something we'd done? He said, "She'll get her answer when Heavenly Father wants her to have it. At times we need to remember that we cannot do it all. We can only do our part and that's all Heavenly Father wants for us to do. Now is the time for faith and patience. Put your trust in Him and you'll never go wrong." That made me feel better. Still bummed, but better. We saw her again on Friday and the feeling between us was back to normal. She had a chat with one of her law professors who joined the church when he was at BYU and she talked to us afterwards. She realizes that it's more likely than not that her answer will come as a feeling of peace and comfort. She'll know she's gotten her answer when she feels good about baptism, but right now she feels good about waiting, and that's okay! We're not really "teaching" her anymore, but we're there when she needs us and we're going to continue to visit her and support her. Stephanie is the best.

We saw Connor almost every single day this week. Haha it was awesome. He's probably sick of us by now, but that's okay. We know somewhere deep down we're his favorite sisters :) This kid is the best. We read scriptures with him, watched some Bible videos on LDS.org and helped him study for his Intro to LDS final. Homeboy got a 92% so we're proud.



Saturday was the best day everrrrrrrr. It was the sealing of a family who got baptized last year. Sister Alley taught them and Sister Cha had them as recent coverts when she got to the area, so we all went.

Mama Cha and me the morning of the sealing!
It was really neat. I'd never been to a sealing before! First, Eduardo and Veronica were sealed. And then the children came in. I'd never met this family. I'd never even seen them before in my life. But as the family knelt down around the altar together, I started crying. Shoot, everyone was crying! The Spirit in that sealing room was incredible. I felt so strongly God's love for that family. They put their hands on top of each other, and they became sealed as a family for time and all eternity - stuck like glue forever and ever. The sealer had them hug and kiss and stand in front of the mirrors and see the generations that were now so positively effected. It was seriously the best. I can't wait to (one day) go to the temple with my husband and be sealed forevz. 
Garcia family at the temple!

Reunited with my mom at the sealing!
 Soooo this week we have a Sister's Activity with all the sisters in the mission. It's going to be the last one because we're getting 30 new sisters next month and there will be too many of us to do it anymore. So that's Wednesday, then Thursday is Sister Cha's birthday and my 100th day in the mission, so we're going to the Timpanogos temple (Provo is closed). Then Friday we have Christmas Zone Conference! Hooooray. Since Monday is Christmas Eve, we're not doing emails until Wednesday, so don't be surprised when you don't hear from me. Our district had interviews with President this last week and he also thinks the visa waiters will be leaving in January. We'll see! I'm just happy to be in Provo for Christmas.


I love this time of year so much! The presents, and lights, and songs, and glitter, and parties are all wonderful parts of Christmas, but it's important to remember that the reason we celebrate this season is because we celebrate the birth of our Savior! I know that He lives, and loves us. I'm grateful for the time I have this year to share that with the world (or at least Provo). The best gift any of us has ever received is the Atonement of Jesus Christ. He is the way back home to our Father. This is one of my favorite quotes by Elder Holland, "There is not a single loophole or curveball or open trench to fall into for the man or woman who walks the path that Christ walks. When He says, 'Come, follow me,' He mans that He knows where the quicksand is and where the thorns are and the best way to handle the slippery slope near the summit of our personal mountains. He knows it all, and He knows the way. He is the way."

I love you all! Talk to you Tuesday :)

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Love,
Hermana Munden

Monday, December 10, 2012

"Think the best of each other, especially those you say you love. Assume the good and doubt the bad."

Hi Family :)

Wednesday was transfer day! I love transfer day a whole lot. Elders Salvador and Hifo went home so that was pretty sad. I'm gonna miss those guys. Elder Salvador is from Brazil and Elder Hifo is from Tonga.
Elder Salvador and me on transfer day
Us with Elder Hifo
Oh! Since I'm staying at BYU for another transfer, I ordered an English name tag. I'm actually really excited about it, even though this will probably be the only English area I'll ever be in. Haha oh well!

Last night we went to see Katia and her girls. We brought Emily with us again (she's getting ready to serve in Brazil so she comes teaching with us sometimes) and afterwards she was like, "Guys, something really cool just happened. I didn't understand any of that (we teach her in Spanish), but I still felt the Spirit!" Yep, pretty awesome how it works like that. When I was in my last area and we'd go to the Portuguese ward, I didn't understand anything, but I always knew the Spirit was there. I'm glad Emily was able to experience that.

Thursday we met with Connor. We talked a lot about the Bible and the Book of Mormon and how they support each other. I felt like I should ask him if he believed the Book of Mormon was true. He said he thinks he's getting close and that the question of it's truth is a part of his daily prayers. Yay Conman :)

Connor's Christmas tree!
Friday morning we went to the temple with Ashley for her first time! It was INCREDIBLE. Since we're missionaries, we couldn't do baptisms with her, but we did confirmations and watched her do baptisms. She looked so preeeeettty, and of course, Sister Cha and I cried. Pathetic. Afterwards she told us she was really nervous, even more nervous than she was for her own baptism. Silly girl. It was awesome though. I just love her.

Friday we contacted this referral we got a couple weeks ago. Her name is Rachel and her sister is a convert, so that's how she knows about the church. I'm really excited about her. And she's really excited too! She has all these questions and things she wants to learn about, so it's pretty cool. We talked about our purpose as missionaries and she told us she'd never really prayed before, but that she thought being able to communicate with God was pretty neat, so we taught her how to pray. Before we left we asked if she'd like to offer a prayer and she did it! It was super neat. She thinks prayer is the best - and it is. I'm excited to meet with her on Friday.

We had dinner that night with this really cute family. The wife's dad was one of my professors at BYUI, so that was weird. The church is suuuuuch a small world. After dinner we went to the Barlow's (the people who live above us) and made gingerbread houses. Mine fell over, but Sister Cha's is still alive and well!

My gingerbread house, while it lasted
Yesterday we had two speaking assignments in two different YSA wards. I talked about Jesus Christ as our Redeemer and Sister Cha talked about Him as our King. It went pretty well and the rest of the Christmas programs we're beauuuutiful. I love Christmas hymns (and being all around these Mormons who can sing and play instruments haha). Last night we visited Connor and watched the Joy to the World DVD with him. He liked it and said he was going to watch it with his family when he goes home for Christmas. AND we have lunch with him in about half an hour. Hooray!

Well, that's all I've got. It's been snowing the last couple days, so it's finally starting to look and feel like Christmas. We still haven't heard from President about what the phone/skype situation will be, so I'll get back to you on that. Well, I love you all! Thanks for the support and letters :)

Love,
Hermana Munden

Monday, December 3, 2012

Day 83

Hi Family!

So the big news this week is transfers. We got our call this morning, and Sister Cha and I will be staying together at BYU for the next 6 weeks. Hooooraaaaay! Mostly I wanted to stay for Stephanie and Connor; the American food and Sister Cha were just bonuses :)

Our district and our Zone Leaders (Elders Krieger, Elliott, Fry, Frassa, Baisden, Harker, me, Sister Cha)

Last Monday we met with Katia. We'd been to visit her a few times before (I think I mentioned her). We decided to start visiting and teaching her more often. We talked about prayer and the Holy Ghost. She said she was really grateful for what we shared. She's seriously the sweetest lady and I really like her. After the lesson she fed us tacos and rice and fruit. Ermahgersh, soooo goood. I'm moving in with her. I told her daughters that I'm trying to learn 200 words every 6 weeks so they were going around the house pointing at things and asking if I knew what they were. I got like 8 new words that night!

Tuesday we saw Justin and Stephanie! We brought Bro. Adams with us and it was the best. Justin got called into work and that was a major bummer, but it was still good to be with Stephanie. Bro. Adams shared his conversion story, which may or may not have put Sister Cha and me in tears (and by that I mean it did). That guy seriously has the best story and it gets better every time I hear it. I felt like it was something that Stephanie needed to hear, so I'm glad he was able to share his testimony with her. She told us that the night before she'd been with her friend James and his wife and he had said that he felt impressed to tell her she should get baptized on December 14th. Sister Cha and I looked at each other and started crying again (shut up, the gospel does that to us okay?) because we'd been praying about it and felt like Stephanie was getting baptized on that day too! So nuts. Bro. Adams had to leave at that point and after he did, the three of us knelt down and Stephanie offered a prayer asking if she should get baptized December 14th. She told us that she wasn't going to ignore the fact that three different people all had that date on the brain, so I'm really excited to hear how she's been feeling this week about baptism. I love her muchiiiiiisimo.

Thursday I saw four people I knew in the space of like an hour. That's what happens when I'm serving at BYU. Haha I wish I didn't know so many people here. But I saw Jordan Hale, Andy Nelson, Amy's little sister Bri, and Mette Petersen. So that was kind of awesome. Thursday night we tried to contact some people who had previously been investigating the church, but for some reason or another they stopped. Jessie came with us and we visited with this girl Brianna. She made it very clear that she belongs to the Pentecostal church and that she only believes in the Bible. After we talked with her a little bit I shared Joshua 1:9 with her. It's neat how the Spirit tells us what scripture will help people. I don't know what's going on in her life, but I knew that hearing, "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest." would help her. Sister Cha and Jessie bore their testimonies too and it was cool. I have a really good feeling about Brianna and I hope she calls us when she gets back from Christmas break.

Friday we had a good lesson with Connor. With him, we've taught everything that needs to be taught before baptism, but he's told us he wants to take things slow and not rush into getting baptized because he wants his dad to be able to be there when it does happen. We were planning to talk about the power and blessings of the Priesthood, but when we got there, Sister Cha and I both felt like that wasn't the way the lesson was going to go. It was awesome though, because he ended up having questions about what he was reading in the Book of Mormon. He had been reading in 1 Nephi 13 which is about Nephi prophesying of things that have happened in our American history. We talked a lot about the Bible and the Book of Mormon and how they testify of each other. He really loved that. Pretty neat. I love that kid.

Saturday was ASHLEY'S BAPTISM! And definitely the best part of my week. She had asked us to say the opening and closing prayers, which made me feel pretty cool. A TON of people were there. Like both rooms were full and people we're lined up against the walls.
Ashley
My favorite part of baptisms is when the person actually goes in the water. I don't know, that's just when I feel the Spirit the strongest. And they always come up with the biggest smile on their face! I like that I get to be apart of that. It's the coolest feeling in the world.


Sunday morning we went to church with Ashley to be at her confirmation. Since it was fast and testimony meeting too, she got up and bore her testimony. I was in tears. She's so happy to be a member of this church and she knows it's true. Her testimony was so pure and simple, but so so powerful. Then we went to Sam's church (he's a recent convert of about 2 months) and got to be there when he was ordained a Priest in the Aaronic Priesthood. He was so excited. AHHHHHH I LOVE THE GOSPEL. He made us dinner that night and we watched the First Presidency Christmas devotional. I hope everyone got to see it! It doesn't really feel like Christmas - it's December 3rd and I'm not even wearing a coat (not that I'm complaining) - but that helped it feel a little more like Christmastime.

I don't know what the plan is yet for Christmas, but I'm excited to talk to everyone! 22 days!

Love,
Hermana Munden

Monday, November 26, 2012

Thanksgiving, Visa News, and Board Week

Hi Family!

With it being Thanksgiving Break, practically everyone was gone, so this week was really slow.

But Tuesday with Stephanie and Justin was fantastic. I seriously can't say enough about how much I love them. Justin had to work, so we just met with Stephanie. Sister Cha and I had literally no idea what to talk about when we went in there. We felt like we had kind of hit a roadblock when it came to where to go next with them. We'd been fasting and praying so hard for them and that night, things felt a little different. Good different. I finally had Stephanie read Mosiah 4:9 which I had been meaning to do forever, and I hope it helped her at least a little bit. She told us that she doesn't need answers to her nature of God questions before she'll get baptized and I feel like that was a huge step in the right direction. We read the introduction to the Book of Mormon and what it says in the Bible Dictionary about prayer. Stephanie said she can see her life as a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and that it looks really good. I love that so much. I like that they think about getting baptized and how it would bless their life. I want so badly for Justin and Stephanie to get the answers to the prayers and the testimonies they're working so hard for! They are a huge part of the reason I'm not ready to go to Spain yet.
 
Thanksgiving was the best. We woke up early and went to the UVU field with our zone.

Our whole zone, plus President McCune
We played rugby, football, and volleyball. President McCune and his son even came and played with us for a little bit!

Sister Cha, Sister Quist, me, weirdo Elders
Sister Barrera (from my MTC trio) and me at rugby
The two dinners we had been invited to were at the same time, so we couldn't go to both. We ended up going to the Winn family's house with the Polynesian Elders for a little bit.

Us at the Winn's (Elder Hifo being a punk, Elder Salvador - my grandpa, Elder Va'enuku, me, shorty Elder whose name I don't know,  some other Elder I don't know, Sister Cha, and then Elder Reher in front)
We played some games and had some turkey and then headed to our other dinner with the BYU Elders at the Gill's (obviously). 

The Gill family!!!!!
Mindy and Nate (their son and his wife), Collin, Amy, Bro. Gill, Sis. Gill, Elder Baisden, Sister Cha, me, Elder Elliott
They had a ton of people over. The food was delicious, and someone even made pretzel jello (not as good as yours, Mom) which made me miss home for about 2 minutes. After dinner we all gathered in the living room to do this gratitude thing. During dinner we had all written on little pieces of paper something we were grateful for. Then the little cousins took turns reading them and we all guessed who they belonged to. I said I was grateful for the beautiful weather, Sister Cha said she was grateful for the Savior, Elder Elliott said he was grateful for Elder Baisden, and Elder Baisden said he was grateful for Elder Elliott. Lame. Then we helped clean up and played Nertz. Oh my gosh, best game ever. I want to play it every day for the rest of my life. Haha it's right up there with Skipbo on my list of favorites. It was nice to not have to leave right after dinner, and to get to hang out and enjoy being with a family for a little bit.

Saturday night we went to this guy Jeremy's baptism. He wasn't someone we were teaching, but the Elders couldn't find anyone to play the piano, so I did. Convert baptisms are my favorite. It's the best part about being a missionary. The Spirit there is incredible and it's amazing to see how excited they are. We say success on a mission isn't about numbers, but it is about the people those numbers represent. Seeing people come closer and closer to Christ and watching them change their lives to live the way He did, it's a miracle. It's seriously my favorite part.

Yesterday we taught Sharing Time in the Primary of one of the family wards we cover. It was the cutest thing ever. I miss teaching my little CTR 7 babies. Each class had written a couple questions they wanted to ask us, so we took time to answer them. My favorite question was, "Do you get good haircuts?" The sunbeams asked us that.

Elder Elliott fixed our toilet. It had been flooding like every single day.
He fished out two bobby pins. Probably my fault. Oopsies.
Oh! Visa news. Alright, so last Sunday at one of our correlation meetings the high councilman in charge of missionary work (who actually works at the MTC) told me if I called him on Monday he could give me an update on my visa. So you better believe I did. He said this past summer, the MTC, BYU, and Spain made an agreement where BYU would send a student over to help them with all their visa paperwork, and things were moving along pretty smoothly. Well, the student came back home like a month and half ago. So since then, nobody has gone to Spain. They've agreed to have another student go back over January 2nd though. So I should be gone shortly after that. I'll definitely be here for Christmas though. Yayyyyyy!

And this week is Board Week. It's the last week of the transfer, so the AP's and President McCune will be taking this week to pray and make decisions about where everyone will go. I can't believe these 6 weeks are almost over! Transfer calls are a week from today and then transfers are next Wednesday! I think I'll probably stay here until I go to Spain. At least I hope that's what happens! I'm not ready to leave this area. We'll see. Whatever the Lord wants I guess!

I hope everyone had a happy and safe Thanksgiving! I'll talk to you in 29 days!

Love,
Hermana Munden

Monday, November 19, 2012

"Faith isn't believing that God can, it's knowing that He will"

Hi Family!

I know I say literally every week that it went by so fast, but it really does, every time! Every single day seriously flies by. I can't decide if I like that or not.

Monday was the most emotional day I've had since I left the MTC. After I heard about Derrick's accident, I was bummed out all day long. That evening we met with Justin and Stephanie. We had their friends April and Cory come. We watched the talk "The Grandeur of God" by Jeffrey R. Holland with them. Justin said that even though he really liked it, it didn't bring him any closer to having his questions and concerns answered. For some reason, it was a really emotional lesson. I don't know if it was because I was having a hard day already or what, but everyone was very solemn and quiet. I didn't say hardly anything at all because I knew as soon as I started talking I would cry. At one point Stephanie started crying and said, "I feel like I've done all anyone has asked me to do, and I still haven't gotten my answer. It's hard not to feel like God has forgotten me." It just broke my heart. Cory had her read a scripture in Matthew about when Christ was in Gethsemane. He cried out, "God, God, why hast though forsaken me?" Cory told her that maybe she was having these feelings so she would know that Christ has felt the same way too. He promised her God has not forgotten her and he was choked up when he said it. After we left their house we came home and I ran to our room and just started sobbing. Like the nasty, embarrassing, uncontrollable cry where you can't breathe and makeup gets everywhere. Sister Cha came and sat next to me on the floor and cried with me. I was sad about Derrick and wishing I could do something, and sad about Stephanie and wishing she didn't feel the way she did. Before I went to bed I wrote a note to Stephanie in my "Forget Me Not" book that someone gave me a couple months ago so I could drop it off for Stephanie later in the week.

Tuesday was way better than Monday. We met with Ashley and asked if she was still planning on talking to her parents when she went home for Thanksgiving about whether or not she could get baptized and she said she was. I told her we'd taught her all we have to teach her, so we went over the baptismal interview questions with her. She did so great. Her testimony is growing and it's cool to see it happen. Then I invited her to be baptized on December 1st and she said yes! She's the very first person I've put on date. It was pretty fantastic. We knelt and prayed right there and asked Heavenly Father if December 1st was a good date. It was the best experience. After she said "amen" she started crying and said she felt really excited and overwhelmed, but in a good way. She was still excited to talk to her parents about it, which had been worrying her. We sat in silence for a little bit and she just kept smiling and saying, "Oh my gosh I'm so excited." We taught Connor and Tabitha in the afternoon and everything went well. On our way home at night we got a text from Ashley saying she had just decided to go ahead and call her parents and they said she could get baptized! Sister Cha and I stopped in the street and hugged and screamed and jumped around. Hooray for Ashley!

Wednesday was Zone Conference. The theme scripture was 3 Nephi 5:13, "Behold, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I have been called of him to declare his word among his people, that they might have everlasting life." We all had to prepare a 3-5 minute talk, but I didn't end up giving mine. So here it is!

"Behold, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God." I am a pupil, a learner, a follower of Christ. I look to Him in every thought and try my best to do what He would do it. I wear His name proudly over my heart and strive to honor it. I am a representative of Jesus Christ. "I have been called of Him." My call came from the Lord, through His prophet. It is no accident that I am in the Utah Provo Mission. I'm not filling a spot, I am not a statistic. I am a servant of the Lord. I am not a perfect teacher, or an eloquent speaker. I am inadequate and most days entirely incapable. But because I have been called, I have been qualified. I have been called of Jesus Christ and I'll go where He wants me to go. "I have been called of Him to declare His word." I am here to declare, preach, proclaim, share, and rejoice in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I will tell everyone willing to listen that He is the Light and Life of the world. The knowledge I have of the restoration of truth, the plan of salvation, and the gospel of Jesus Christ has changed my life, and I want to share that joy with everyone. "I have been called of Him to declare His word among His people, that they might have everlasting life." I want every person to know that they are a child of a loving Heavenly Father, and that He has a plan of them. He wants them to come back to Him. And it is through His son, our brother Jesus Christ, that this life and the next are possible. Heavenly Father doesn't want just some of us back - He wants us all. It is incredible to me that even though we are nothing compared to the vastness of the universe, we mean absolutely everything to God, the most powerful Being, the Master of all. I am a disciple of Jesus Christ. And because of all He has done for me, 18 months of my life dedicated to Him, will never seem like enough. But I know that in this short time we have, we can make a difference. We are here because there are people who we promised before this life that we would come find them and bring them home. I pray that we spend our time diligently seeking these people, that we live what we preach, and that we act as effective instruments in the Master's hands as we carry out His great work. I know the message we share is true and I know of the happiness it brings. I say so in the name of Jesus Christ, amen."

Probably the most important thing I learned at Zone Conference was that I need to rely less on my own knowledge and abilities, and more on the Spirit. I've discovered that mastering humility is so hard. I realize that I can't do this on my own and that I need the Spirit in order to teach, but it's hard to rely completely on Him to know what to say and do. I don't know why I struggle with that so much. But I'm trying to be better at listening and asking inspired questions. At the end of Zone Conference, the Elders who are going home this transfer (Lopez and Hifo) bore their testimonies. After Elder Hifo's, he, Elders Va'enukum, Manumá, Reher, and Walters sang this really preeeeetty song called "How Can I Be?" Then President McCune left us with his powerful blessing and we went home. He's the best. I'm gonna miss that guy when I go to Spain.

 Thursday we met with Ashley and she told us more good news. She's been talking to her parents more and her mom is actually going to fly out for her baptism! We started planning her program and she's super excited. Less than 2 weeks away!

On Friday we had dinner with the Drake family. They have 3 young kids and they're pretty cute and probably going to turn into the Gills in terms of how often we see them. Haha I love finding awesome families who we get along with. Then it was time for TABITHA'S BAPTISM!


She was so so so so happy - a smile was smeared across her face the whooooooole night. We got to meet her baby Zach (who turns a year on Sunday) and he actually received his baby blessing that night! It was pretty neat. We took her out for ice cream afterwards and she's the happiest in the whole world.


This week has gotten so much better since Monday. I think Heavenly Father is doing a pretty good job of helping me not be distracted by Derrick's accident. So I'm grateful for that! Saturday night we actually ate with Elder Starks' parents! I got a letter from him on Thursday I think and it made my day. At first I thought it was from Hadley because they have the exact same handwriting. Haha but it wasn't (Hadley, that's a sign you need to write me!). They took us to Chuck-a-rama and we ate and talked and had the best time. I like those people!

Sunday was super busy. We had four sacrament meeting to go to (three of which we spoke in), four correlation meetings to go to, and three teaching appointments. It was nuts. But it was good because this week is going to be so slow with everyone gone for Thanksgiving. This week we have a service project planned for tomorrow and then Thursday is Thanksgiving. We're having a turkey bowl in the morning with our zone and then we have two dinners to go to. It's a non-proselyting day, so we'll just be visiting families in the ward and eating too much food. I'm excited though. I love Thanksgiving.

I love you alllllllllllll!

Love,
Hermana Munden

Monday, November 12, 2012

Happy 2 months to meeeee!

Hi Family!

This week was too good. I can't believe I entered the MTC 2 months ago today. Weeeeeiiiird. The highlight was Saturday at Mission Conference with Elder Bednar. The lowlight was the drastic change in weather. But we'll get to that.

Monday we just went shopping for new Mission Conference clothes - we had to look good to see our favorite Apostle of the Lord, you know? About half our mission was at this place called Nickel City playing laser tag so we stopped by to see them. I talked to Elder Nilson, who is also waiting on his Spain visa, and he said President Brown from the MTC talked to his parents (I guess they're neighbors) and he said they'll be here probably mid-December and that we'll leave at the first of the year. I hope that's right! Monday night we taught Nina (our little Chinese investigator girl) about the Restoration of the Church. We had to go slowly and explain things very simply and clearly because she's still learning English, but it was good. She's so cute and so interested in learning. And her prayers are getting really good too! Monday night we also taught Doria. We made a point of seeing her every day last week since she was getting baptized, so we did. We taught her the 10 commandments and afterwards we asked if she had any questions and she was just like, "Nope, I'm just going to keep living them!" I love how willing she is to obey everything Heavenly Father wants her to. I think more of us (me included) need to have that attitude.


Tuesday morning Elder Jackson (my little brother from my last district) called me. He said he could tell from the 5 minutes he was around us on Monday that something wasn't quite right between Sister Cha and me and he wanted to be sure I was okay. I love that kid so much. He encouraged me to focus on the things I love about her and find ways to serve her and promised me things would get better. And they have! Sister Cha and I have gotten along perfectly this week and I'm grateful Elder Jackson helped me out. Tuesday was soooooo busy. We had something every single hour from noon until 9. But it was awesome - busy days are my favorite. We had a lesson with Connor. He only had like half an hour, so we were going to talk about the importance of obedience, prayer, and studying the scriptures. He told us he ordered a quad and he was super excited about it. He asked us how we mark our scriptures and we told him each of our systems. I told him that scripture mastery verses were a good place to start, so I let him borrow my card thing that has all 100 of them. Afterwards we had a lesson with Nina. We had planned to teach the Plan of Salvation, but we decided first that it'd be a good idea to answer any questions she had. I like her a lot because she's so sincere. She's not embarrassed or afraid to say/ask anything - she is always really honest and tells us exactly what she thinks and feels about the things we teach her. Then it was time for dinner. The ward who was in charge of our meals last week forgot about us, so we had to find our own dinners. We called the Gill family and asked if they could feed us and Sister Gill said yes! I love that family so much. They're seriously the sweetest. She made us chimmichangas (no idea how to spell that) and we talked about the election and stuff. I want to go to their house for Christmas because I know it would feel like home. Haha they're the absolute best. After dinner they took us to our next appointment. We normally meet with Justin and Stephanie once a week, but since Justin was working, we still wanted to visit Stephanie, so we did. We watched the Special Witnesses of Christ DVD. There's nothing more powerful than the testimonies of the Prophet and Apostles, so that was really neat. Then we spoke at another Relief Society thing. I love doing that! I wish I had heard from Sisters before I decided to go on a mission. We always here from returned Elders, but it's not the same.

Wednesday morning we woke up to like 10 different texts from our investigators that Obama had won. We were hoping it had just been a terrible nightmare, but newspaper headlines when we got to campus confirmed that it wasn't. Lame. Anyways, we taught Tabitha the Plan of Salvation. Those lessons are my favorite. Since being out here, I love the Plan of Salvation so much more. And teaching people about this plan that Heavenly Father has for them and their family is the absolute best. This kid Jordan Lee (who served in Sister Cha's ward back home) came with us. His testimony really helped bring the Spirit and afterwards he sang "Be Still, My Soul" to her. It was so preeeeetty. I think we all might have teared up a little bit. But that's okay - crying on a regular basis is acceptable when you're crying happy gospel tears. Cutie little Nina left for China on Thursday, so she made us dinner Wednesday night. I love that girl! It was so cute.


We walked in and she had the table all set and everything. First we had fish ball soup (ew) which was basically broth with fish meatballs in it. Then we had dumplings (basically postickers) and those were delish. We also had California rolls (my fave) and fruit. So good. I love real Chinese food. After dinner with Nina we went to Doria's and reviewed the baptismal interview questions with her. She did so great and she was so ready for her baptism Saturday. It was awesome getting to hear her testimony about Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon and the Plan of Salvation and the Atonement. After Doria we had a little time before we had to go home. One of the YSA wars was having an activity in the middle of the apartment complex. They were bowling with frozen turkeys and they invited us to play. Haha omg it was so much fun. Sister Cha and I sucked at it, but it was fun trying!

Thursday was kind of a slow day because meetings took up a lot of it. We taught Ashley the Law of Chastity. It always amazes me how teaching that commandment is never awkward. But when we explain why we have the Law of Chastity and the blessings that come from it, the Spirit is there and it takes away any awkwardness. We also had Doria's baptismal interview with the District Leader and it went swimmingly. She got the green light for Saturday!


Ewwwwww it snowed Friday morning. So so much. I hate snow. I know I should be used to it by now since I've lived in Rexburg for 3 years, but I will never get used to snow. Worst stuff ever.


While we were doing our weekly planning at the chapel, Doria came up with her friend Kendra to try on her white jumpsuit thing. She's so excited! We had an awesome lesson with Conman. We taught him the 10 commandments and he showed us his pretty new quad. He's excited to start marking scriptures! We had dinner with the Gill family again (they don't hate us for asking twice in one week). Sister Gill made us pasta and salad and bread. So yummy. We went and visited this lady Katia who isn't a member, but her daughters are, and she fed us hot apple cider and pumpkin pie. We're going to find a time this week to visit her and hopefully start teaching her. We got home and the power went out. Awesome. Bro. Barlow brought us down some emergency candles and a flashlight, but it was still a sucky situation.

We woke up early Saturday morning so we could get to the chapel early for Doria's baptism, but the power was still out. We called Sister McCune and she came to get us so we could get ready at the mission home. Suuuuch a pretty house. She made us yummy breakfast and took us to our baptism. The baptism went perfectly. After she got out of the font, she came back in the bathroom area to change and just started bawling. Happy tears though! It was perfect. Afterwards was Mission Conference. Best 4 hours of my life. I love Elder Bednar so much. I'm late, so I don't have time to tell you what he taught us (it'll have to wait til next week), but it was the best. He let us all go up and shake his hand. I love that guy.


Love,
Hermana Munden

Monday, November 5, 2012

"We are not worker bees, we are not drones - we are children of the Most High God"


Hi Family!

This week went by soo fast.

So Monday this sweet lady Sister Baird took us to lunch at Cafe Rio and to do our grocery shopping and such. We went to the church to watch the Elders play basketball for a little bit and then we went to a corn maze on the west end of Provo with our district. Then we went to teach Justin and Stephanie. We taught them about the Law of Chastity, which they already understood and agreed with. Justin is so great. At one point he was like, "Now when I think about being morally clean, I think about my future family. I think if Stephanie and I try our hardest to put God in the center of our marriage, our children will have a good example of what a successful marriage looks like and it will help our family be more unified. I know how special the powers God has given us to create life are and I want to be careful with them. I want my sons to learn to respect women as they see the way I treat their mother, and I want my daughters to grow up knowing they are so valuable." Every time Justin speaks about what he's learning and understanding of the Gospel I feel the Spirit so strongly. He's seriously incredible. After Justin and Stephanie we went to visit Robert and Misty. Robert got baptized just a few months ago so we like to go visit them when we have a chance. Misty opened the door and just started crying. I guess Robert has been really sick. We asked if there was anything we could do for her and all she said was, " I just really need my husband to get better." So we said a prayer right there with her. Sister Cha loves her so much and tried her best to comfort her. We called their bishop as we stood there in the doorway and asked him to come give Robert a blessing. We saw them the other day and Robert is all better!

Tuesday we spent most of our afternoon contacting on campus. I ran into lots of people I know; I love seeing familiar faces. I know that's not ever gonna happen in Spain! After dinner we went tracting in some apartments we cover. We got so many referrals for nonmembers and less active people we can teach! People are always surprised when we tell them there are 3000 nonmembers on campus, but that's because everyone always assumes everyone else is a member! A lot of the ones we're planning on contacting are athletes who come here to play sports. I can't wait to go back and talk to to some of them. One of the referrals we got was for this Chinese girl named Nina. Her English is pretty good, so we get to teach her. She asked us to come in right then and teach her! We taught her about our purpose as missionaries and read the introduction to the Book of Mormon with her. She's so interested, it's really awesome. Our other appointment with her last week fell through because she was sick, but we're meeting with her again tonight.

Wednesday was so good. It was my 7 week mark in the mission. We started our morning at the temple. Sister Cha and I had been struggling a little bit due to an argument we'd gotten in the day before. But it was incredible how much the temple helped us. After we left the Celestial room, before we headed down the stairs, she just grabbed me and we hugged for a good minute or so. She started crying and just said, "I'm so sorry, I love you." and I apologized too. It changed everything, and things have been so much better since. I love the temple! We get to go twice a month and since October, November, and December are all in this transfer, I get to go six times this transfer! After the temple we had a lesson with Connor. I'm pretty sure I've already said so, but I love this kid so much. He's so receptive to everything we say and he wants so badly to find the truth for himself. I love it. Our lesson was on the Plan of Salvation, which I was really excited for because of his dad's cancer. I wanted to tell him that I know his family can be together forever, and I wanted him to know it too! At 5 we stopped working for the day and we met at the chapel by our house to have our party with the Elders in our district. The AP's brought us Little Caesar's (sooooo gooooood) and we watched the first Narnia movie. I forgot that it's actually pretty good. When Azlan came and roared everyone was quiet and I just said, "I love lions, they're so attractive." I thought I said it in my head, but I guess I didn't. Everyone judged me so hard. It's okay, only Hadley and Amy would understand. We love lions.

Thursday we spent 4 hours in our booth in the Wilkinson building on campus and didn't get a single referral. The only good thing that came out of the booth was I saw Amy! Homegirl just waltzed in through the doors and I about peed my pants of excitement. It absolutely made my whole day. And I met this kid, who's reporting to the MTC in February and who will be serving in Madrid! Yay for Madrid missionaries! After the booth we went to dinner with a family in one of the wards we cover. She's from Mexico, and her husbands from here, but he served in Nicaragua, so he and Sister Cha had a lot to talk about. Sister Hunt made the most delicious meal ever; fish, bread, salad, rice, and this yummy yogurt/fruit thing for dessert. It was basically heaven in my mouth. And you know the picture called "Lost and Found" of the boy sitting on the bench with his bags and the Savior sitting next to him? Yeah, well that's one of her sons. He's famous! She gave us both a copy of the picture so I'll probably send it to you. They were the sweetest and I hope we get to go eat with them again. That night we were invited to speak at a Relief Society preparedness meeting. We bore our testimonies, talked about why we decided to serve a mission, and how we prepared. It was really awesome. We have another one tomorrow.

Friday we met with Ashley. This girl is awesome. I don't know if I talked about her before, but her parents are inactive, her grandma's a member, and she has never been baptized. We had planned to teach the Word of Wisdom, but we both felt impressed to talk about fasting. It was a really cool lesson and since the upcoming Sunday was Fast Sunday, the three of us decided to fast together. Ashley asked if we could fast that she would have the courage to talk to her parents about her desire to be baptized, and that their hearts would be softened and they would be supportive of whatever decision she made. We'll see her tomorrow and I'm excited to talk about how her fast went. After we had this really awesome dinner with this family from Africa. African food is so good! I want to eat it every day please. After dinner we went tracting in the same apartment complex as before. This time we met this inactive kid named Paul. He was a super strong member of the church until about a year ago when his girlfriend broke up with him and married another guy. Now he spends like 3 hours a day waxing his car and that's all he cares about. I think we're going to have a Family Home Evening with his apartment soon.
Saturday we had five lessons planned and three cancelled on us, so it was kind of a bummer day. But, we taught Connor and things were so much better since it was just the three of us. We taught him the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and focused on faith and baptism. He explained a little more why he doesn't want to be baptized until his dad's out of the hospital. It's really important to him that his family be there to support him, so he wants to wait until things are better with his dad's situation. We also told us about a cool post he saw on Facebook. One of his mom's best friends posted that she got hit really hard by the hurricane. A lot of damage was done to her house and she didn't know where to begin to get it fixed. Two hours later he saw another post that a group of people had shown up to her house ready to help in whatever way they could! Guess who those people were. The Mormon Helping Hands in their yellow tshirts! I guess one of the men in the group had a feeling to turn down her street and then they happened upon her! Connor was really impressed by their sensitivity to the Spirit and how willing they were to serve her. The lesson that followed was incredible and it's so great to be able to see Connor coming closer to Christ every single day. We went to Texas Roadhouse for dinner and it was yummmm. Jessie was working so I got to see her and it made me miss work. Saturday night we taught Tabitha. We met her a couple weeks ago. She's had kind of a crazy past and she's been through a lot, but she's on date for baptism on the 16th of this month, so we're helping her get ready for that.

Yesterday we went to three different Sacrament Meetings. My favorite, though, was church with Connor. Before the meeting started he told us an experience he had that morning. His Bishop felt impressed to call him in to meet with him. He didn't know about the situation with his dad, or that he was meeting with us. But he offered Connor a blessing and he told us that it was a really special experience for him. The testimonies that morning were perfect too. Three different people got up and bore testimony of the Plan of Salvation, saying that they had friends/family with cancer, but that they knew they would see them again. HOW CRAZY IS THAT? It's incredible how aware Heavenly Father is of us and how big of a part the Holy Ghost plays in missionary work. I know Connor felt the Spirit and I hope the testimonies of the members of his ward really helped him. Last night we had a lesson with this girl Doria. She was being taught by the Asian Elders, but since her English is really good, they transferred her to us. She's getting baptized this Saturday! She's so willing to obey every single commandment that God gives her and she cannot WAIT to get baptized this weekend. It's awesome.

Well, I think that's it. Saturday we have Mission Conference with Elder Bednar! I can't wait. I love that guy. I met him like 7 years ago or something when he came to the Olathe Stake Conference. I can't wait to see him again. I hope I didn't forget anything. I love you guys!

Love,
Hermana Munden

Monday, October 29, 2012

My first week on BYU and my first baptism :)

So much has happened, I don't even know where to start. Transfers were Wednesday. Everything is so different - the area, my companion, our investigators, everything. It's taking some getting used to, that's for sure. Sister Cha is awesome though and we get along so well. We're basically the same person. She helps me a lot with my Spanish and I've made it a goal to learn 200 new words every transfer (which is about 5 words a day). It's also nice not being in a trio for once, and teaching in English, I feel like I get to say more in lessons than I was before.

It's been SO cold lately. I'm wearing so many clothes all the time; tights, leggings, my dress, a cardigan, a coat, and scarf, and it's still not enough! It doesn't help that our house doesn't have heat. Some days I wake up early and take a hot shower just to get back in bed because I'm so cold. It's rough. AND this is a walking area. I didn't realize how spoiled we were with our car until I came here. Please mail me a car! That'd be just fantastic.

On Wednesday after transfers we got right to work. We had dinner with our investigators (Justin and Stephanie) and their member friends (James and Kendra), and then had a lesson. Justin and Stephanie are so great. They've been taught all the lessons, they're reading their scriptures and going to church, and they know a ton. The problem is that they want to know everything before they get baptized. Right now they're hung up on the nature of God - who He was before He was our Heavenly Father, and how He became who He is. From what I understand, they feel like not knowing everything is affecting their relationship with Him and that until they get the answers they want, they can't get baptized. That's hard for me. I was baptized when I was 8 years old, didn't know half of what I do now, and I don't expect to know everything in this life. But knowing that God is my Father, that He loves me and that He is all-knowing, is enough for me. Some things we just have to take on faith, knowing that more light and truth will be given to us with time and as we're seeking for it.

Hey Paola Ward people, this is for you! Sister Cha and I had a meeting this week with Phil Hickman. He asked where I was from and we got talking about Kansas. I guess he was in the Paola Ward for 23 years or something? He asked about the Kesters and the Cunninghams, Gerry Sue, and Iris! It made me miss the Paola Ward so bad; it was great to meet him.

On Thursday we met with Connor. He first heard about the Church two years ago in Connecticut with his family. His dad was diagnosed with cancer in February, so he says his family has gotten really close through prayer for his dad. He decided to come to BYU because it's a conservative school with high standards. When he came out here, his roommates took him to watch the Joseph Smith movie at Temple Square and then he met and talked with some sister missionaries there. Apparently he'd been having bi-weekly appointments with them over the phone, but they encouraged him to meet with real live missionaries, so that's when he called us! He's so awesome. All the nonmember students here have to take an Intro to the LDS Church class, so he's in that, and he's been reading the Book of Mormon and praying a lot. He got to go to General Conference and he said the Spirit he felt there, in the same room as the living Prophet and Apostles, was incredible. We're meeting with him again on Wednesday and I can't wait to talk to him about the message that we can live with our families forever!

Saturday morning we had a lesson with Sonya. Sister Cha said she'd been progressing really quickly and she even had a date set to get baptized (this last Saturday), but that lately she's kind of hit a wall. She's not even really sure she has faith in God anymore. We watched the moving Finding Faith in Christ with her and the Spirit quickly came into the room. I almost started crying as I bore my testimony that God lives. My voice began to shake as I explained to her that her feelings of doubt and fear did not come from God. I encouraged her to remember the feelings she'd had before as she read and prayed and made the decision to be baptized. Yesterday we fasted for her in the hopes that she would begin to regain that faith she's seemed to have lost.

The highlight of my week was definitely Saturday afternoon. I had my first baptism! She has an incredible story and it was probably one of the coolest things I've been apart of. So many people were there -- 50-60. The Spirit was incredible and she was so happy. She texts us every day and tells us she's still on cloud nine.

Last night we had dinner with the Gill family. They live up by the Y and have a beauuuuutiful home. They said Sunday dinners are always really big (they had like 10-15 kids from BYU over; some of their kids' friends, some they knew from past wards, and then us). It was awesome. One of the guys that was there served in Madrid, and another one served in the Louisville Mission! I talked to them and that was really awesome. Speaking of dinners, it's fantastic eating American food again. I'm going to miss it when I get to Spain!


I think that's about it! Today we're going to a corn maze with our district and one of their investigator's who's getting baptized on Saturday, so I'm looking forward to that! Halloween is Wednesday and the movie President McCune approved us to watch is Narnia. We stop proselyting at 5 and get to have a little party with our district and watch our movie. Yay for Halloween! I love and miss you all. I can't believe how the time is flying. I never want to leave :)

Love,
Hermana Munden

P.S. A high council member told me on Sunday that the Spain Ambassador was actually at the MTC this last week and that he promised to do something about the Visa situation! Maybe I'll spend Christmas in Spain?

Monday, October 22, 2012

Transfer Week!

I've officially been in the field longer than I was in the MTC! Finalllllllly. I guess I'll start with the big news first. We got our transfer calls on Saturday afternoon. This last week went by soooo slow waiting for our calls. But here's what's happening for the next six weeks. Hermana Alley is going to Payson speaking Spanish, Hermana Soto is going to stay here in Provo East speaking English, Spanish, and Portuguese, and I'm going to BYU Campus speaking English. I'm really gonna miss Provo East. There are so many cool people we're teaching that have come so much closer to Christ and I'm sad I won't be here if and when they decide to get baptized, but President McCune will let us come back for baptisms, so I'm glad about that. I have mixed feelings about serving at BYU. I'm excited I get to stay here in Provo, but kinda bummed about serving in English. I mean it's kind of awesome because, well, I speak English. But I'm nervous that my Spanish is going to get worse than it already is. The good thing though is that my companion, Sister Cha, is from Nicaragua, so she can help me keep practicing so I don't lose it before I get to Spain.

Alright. So this week has had more downs than ups, but that's okay. Our guy Adao from the Portuguese ward in Orem was supposed to get baptized this past Saturday. He was going to be our only baptism this whole transfer! But he hasn't been going to church and he has to go at least two times in a row before he gets baptized, so we have to push his date back a little bit. Kind of a bummer, but he's still really excited about it and knows he's making the right decision, so that's really good.
We had some awesome lessons with Michelle this week. She's told us she needs to get baptized, but she's lacking the faith that she's good enough to take that step and that she can truly be forgiven of her sins. The other day in my personal study I read Mosiah 26:22 and thought of Michelle. It says that whoever will believe in Christ, repent and baptized, will be freely forgiven. We spent our lesson that night talking to her about forgiveness. I think she's feeling better about the idea that we can be freely forgiven, and she also recognizes the importance of forgiving others. She's had some pretty terrible stuff happen to her and she told us since talking to us she's been able to talk to some people for the first time in years and tell them she forgives them. Yay Michelle! I know how hard it is to forgive people sometimes, so I'm really proud of her. We invited her to come to church with us on Sunday because it was mine and Hermana Alley's last Sunday and guess what. She came! And she brought her husband and 7 of her 8 kids. Oh goodness, it made my whole day. We also two more of our investigators there and a couple less active couples. And the theme in Sacrament Meeting was missionary work and the restoration of the gospel, so it was a good one for them to come to.

Wednesday night we had dinner at Cafe Rio with one of our recent converts and this guy who was there with his girlfriend came up to us and offered to pay for us! How sweet. We figured we shouldn't deny this kind man the blessings that would come from helping the missionaries, so we accepted his offer. Haha and then Thursday we went and got Jamba Juice and they gave it to us for free. Being a missionary in Provo is for real the best. After Jamba Juice we went home and I accidentally through my scriptures in the trash in the garage. So that was awesome. I had to have Bro. Dickson help me get them out. Oopsies. They don't stink or anything though. So I mean that's a plus.

Friday morning we had DTM (District Training Meeting) and Hermana Alley gave the spiritual thought. She shared Alma 26:16 and it's my new favorite scripture. Go look it up! It's a good one. We went out for pizza as a district afterwards and these two gentlemen who were eating with their families paid for us. Sweeties. Saturday afternoon after we got done with all our scheduled appointments, we walked by Bro. Adams house (he's in our area) to see if he was home. He was! It was good to see him - I've missed that guy. Now I wanna go find my other teachers! He made me give a spiritual thought, as only an MTC teacher would, and then we left. Afterwards we went to dinner at this lady's house. It was a nasty sweet potato and pea soup. I wish so badly that I'd eaten more weirdo vegetables and stuff when Mom tried to make me because if I had, I wouldn't be so picky now. It's a real problem. I hate almost every dinner we have. I'm excited about serving in English wards because I might finally get normal food for once!

I'm sad about leaving Hermana Alley. She's been such an awesome first companion/trainer. She thinks I'm funny even when I'm not, she encourages me, and she loves being a missionary. She's so easy to love. I think I got lucky with her and I know I'm not always going to have companions as great as she is, but I feel blessed and grateful that I got to spend my first three weeks with her. I still love being a missionary. I'm the happiest I've been in a long time and I feel my testimony growing every single day. One of the things I like best about being a missionary is the love I've developed for the scriptures. They're so good! An hour of scripture study every morning is never enough! My scriptures are covered in colors and notes and I love it.

I think that's it! I always feel like I've forgotten stuff, but this week wasn't too terribly exciting. I hope everyone is healthy and happy. Thanks for all your support.

 
Love,
Hermana Munden