Monday, January 30, 2017

"Question Mark or an Exclamation Point"

Hi everyone! I hope all is well back at home! This week has been so awesome! I want to first give a shout out to 2 of my very good friends who in the last 2 weeks have opened their mission calls! One to Tennessee and the other who will be going to Germany!!!! I am so excited for them and the amazing opportunity they will have to be a missionary!

This week we were so blessed to have a General Authority come visit us, Elder Ian S. Ardern from the Quorum of the Seventy. It has been a great week with many trainings and a lot of changes in the mission. First I wanted to share with you some of the highlights from the training we received last Tuesday by Elder Ardern.

Elder Ardern helped us recognize that we work in the same purpose as he does. This message was very powerful to me. He talked with us about the importance of our calling and how it doesn't matter where we are called but the simple fact that we are called. We are here because the Lord wants us here.

I have a favorite quote from the training that I have already written down and posted on the wall by my desk. It was something that really hit home that I think will apply to everyone. As Elder Ardern was talking about our purpose and our power as missionaries he told us, "Don't put a question mark where the Lord puts and Exclamation Point!!!"

We go throughout life with many tasks and responsibilities and a lot of the time we look at ourselves with a feeling of inadequacy. Go forward in your life knowing that every time the Lord gives us a prompting, a calling or a feeling it is because he knows we can do it. So don't question it.

I learned so much from our training of things I can apply to my life as a missionary and also my future. I know that Elder Ardern has been called of God and was inspired to share with us what we needed to hear to better ourselves as missionaries. 

In other news, on Friday we had another training where we were informed about our new missionary schedule. I will send a picture of the one for my mission. This new schedule is focused on us having our own agency and focusing on what we can do specifically for our area without having a set part of the day that we are not able to visit with investigators.

Also we have the option of going to bed earlier so that is some very good news for all of us. They changed the way we keep track of our numbers, before we had 9 key indicators for our area but now we only have 4. These are some big changes that will take some adjusting but we know that this is what is going to move the work forward!

The work has been great as far as the investigators go. We had a member with us at every single lesson we taught this week, yes the first week that numbers don't count for having lessons with members. That just helped us recognize that everything we were doing was for our investigators. We have such an amazing Spanish Branch that has been so supportive in our missionary endeavors! I have seen so many miracles each and every day I serve! The investigators I am blessed with right now are so special and I feel blessed and so lucky to be able to teach them right now!

This week marks my 6th month mark in the mission!! It is exciting and scary at the same time! Also it is my little brother’s 13th birthday on Friday so if you see him wish him a Happy Birthday!!!! Have an amazing week everyone you are in my prayers. 

-Hermana Hadley

Six Months down for Hermana Hadley!

My Awesome Companion Hermana Jensen taking selfies in the car :)

Elder Ardern teaching missionaries in the CASF Mission

Yogurtland a popular treat for CASF missionaries!

I was having some fun with the shopping cart....
Almost ran into the car!

Our New Schedule

Service project of building Goat Stands.

Do we look like we know what we are doing?

Not sure if Hermana Talbert should have the power drill.

Hermana Johnson cleaning the board with a broom?

Monday, January 23, 2017

"I'm Singin' in the Rain"

So I would like to start out by announcing that California has made it official and they are no longer in a drought!!!!! YAY!!!! But let me tell you it is wet here in the Santa Clarita! Rain is my absolute favorite thing so I am having a blast but it has been raining and raining and raining. This morning it was hailing so that was exciting! We are having a lot of fun knocking doors and people looking at us like we are crazy because we are soaking wet! 

In other news I am now finally all moved into my new apartment and getting everything in order! This week has been so crazy with many things to do but we are taking it little by little and life is starting to calm down for just a bit. But I am sure it will pick up again in like a day! Gotta love the mission life!

This week we have been working really hard in our area with many of our investigators. Three of them are the cutest kids ever, they are 16, 11, and 9. They are on date for baptism on the 25th of February!!! I am so excited to watch them progress and learn, they are so fun!

Friday morning, we made breakfast for my District Leader and his companion. It was an adventure because I basically made up a recipe for crepes without sugar, because we didn't have any. I was very proud and the Elders were very happy and fed. The next day they came over and brought us some ice cream, play dough, and a certificate that I will send a picture of.

Let me share with you probably one of the craziest days ever. So my companion Hermana Jensen had two investigators that got baptized on Saturday so that meant a road trip to the wonderful valley of San Fernando which is always crazy. It started off with us going to soccer that morning and so I took my makeup, my dress and everything I need for the baptism so we could leave right after soccer. We missed the exit 3 times and ended up in Pacoima which is the ghetto of San Fernando, always an adventure.

We made it to the baptism where literally everything was going wrong but that is normal for a baptism. We were asked to sing a musical number that we hadn't practiced but it worked out. For the actual baptism the poor lady had to get baptized 5 times!!!! And then her husband twice!! It was a little stressful especially because the fourth time they thought she was good but another Hermana and I noticed it wasn't right and then we had to have her come back to the font and do it again. She is defiantly baptized a member of The Church! Long story short on what happened the rest of the day, I left all of my clothes and makeup in San Fernando so it’s been a fun little challenge and hopefully I will get it all back today! Yay! 

One day this week we had an interesting night where we had dinner with a member and then went to go share another message with a member. We told the second member we didn't need dinner but she didn't believe me.  They will not take no for an answer. Eating with Latino’s is an experience, they dish up and serve your plate with large amounts of food and you always have to have seconds or else they are very offended. So yes.. we ate 2 Latino dinners... I thought I was going to die. It took a little while to recover from all the food but we got back on our feet.

This week we also went to do service and we had to build a goat stand.... ya I can't even do Legos so it was a challenge for all of us but we will finish the goat stand this week haha. We joked and said we didn't know that being a carpenter was part of our mission call. 

This week has been fun and wet but for sure one to remember. But know that God loves every single one of us!! Something that a member told me was we notice the hand of God and feel the Atonement the most when we look at where are feet are planted and live in the present! It is always good to not be worried about the past or the future but notice what is happening in the now! That’s my little spiritual advice for this week!
Love you all!

-Hermana Hadley

Operation Gratitude
Note from CASF Mission Facebook Page: Two of our Zones working with Operation Gratitude today.  Then gave valuable logistical and sorting services, enabling Operation Gratitude to further their mission to send 200,000 + care packages, this new year, filled with food, entertainment, hygiene, and handmade items, plus personal letters of appreciation to Veterans, First Responders, New Recruits, Wounded Heroes, their Care Givers, and to individually named U.S. service members deployed overseas and their families waiting at home. 

Thanks to our Missionaries...whether giving service in the communities where they serve, teaching repentance and baptizing converts, or helping to establish The Church in their areas of service!

Hermana Hadley is halfway back on the assembly line.

Great opportunity for the CASF Mission with Operation Gratitude

Last day with Hermana Robertson :(

Hermana Hadley's Familia with Hermana Robertson 
at her Homecoming :)

The Crepes!!! I am becoming a Homemaker!!!

Certificate from the Elders for our Breakfast Making Skills

Another service project for the Carpenters.......

......a Goat Stand?

Desert from a member that was amazingly good!