Monday, June 2, 2014

June 2, 2014

Hello my beautiful and amazing family!

I've loved reading the emails about Chandon going through the temple, about graduation, and all the other exciting things going on now that it is summer! I love summer except for the fact that now when we knock on doors, most people are "too busy" or "leaving on vacation" so they can't listen or learn about the gospel. Hmm...let's think about this....Eternal salvation or a pool? haha But we still do meet those gems who know that they are missing something in their lives, or want answers, it is just a bit of a road block. Summer really helps lead us to those who truly want to know the truth! If someone wants to take time out of their vacation to learn about the restored gospel, they are elect! :)

So this week is what I have now named a "determining week". The kind of week that includes a few trials that are there to help determine who you are becoming, and will become.

Monday night, we had not been able to contact Frankie and so we were a bit worried about her. We got her daughter's name off her baptismal record and went to the phone book to contact her. When we called her daughter, she explained that she had been worried about Frankie as well and asked if we thought if she should go check on her. We said, "yes" and then waited to hear back.

Tuesday we were able to attend an amazing MLC with President Pitt and all the other leadership of the mission. This was President Pitt's last MLC so it was a tear-jerker. We ended the meeting by singing the "As Sisters in Zion/Army of Helaman" medley which put each person in tears by the end. President Pitt then said the closing prayer and was accompanied by a chorus of sniffles. He then went around and shook each hand with a tender remark for each person. It was amazing! We then began lunch, but I went to go check the phone and saw a few missed phone calls from a woman who lives in Frankie's building. I listened to the voice mail and was in shock to find that Frankie had died. They found Frankie Monday night in her apartment.

Frances Sue Williams, at the age of 68, passed away in her sleep. She was to receive the Holy Ghost Sunday morning and was excited about this. This shocking phone call put Sister Snow and I into a sort of daze. We went home and immediately went to pray. We were in separate rooms, but when we came back together, we both had our scriptures turned to Alma 40-41. Without speaking to each other, we had both turned to the scriptures to find peace. It was a bonding and growing experience for both of us. We then ended the day by teaching the Plan of Salvation to a sweet lady. This was another tender mercy. We were able to make it through and it reassured us that Heavenly Father has a perfect plan and was aware of us. I know Frankie is at peace and that she had truly done all she could. It makes me think of the Parable of the Talents.

We then went the next day to the mission office where President Pitt called Salt Lake to find out what needed to be done about Frankie. He's never had this happen while he's been mission president. In fact, when he called Salt Lake, they had to do some research. This is not common. I'm grateful it happened to me. It truly has made me a stronger person and closer to my Heavenly Father than I've ever felt. I had to rely on Him throughout this experience. President Pitt gave Sister Snow and I each a blessing and I can't express how amazing this experience was. I know the priesthood truly is the power of God on earth. It provided the peace I was searching for and I was able to get back to work the remainder of the week.

We are now going to focus on finding Frankie's daughter, getting her permission, and hopefully bringing her peace by sharing our knowledge of Heavenly Father's plan. I know Frankie will be there every step of the way. I want you all to know that I know this is the restored gospel on the earth. I know we have the power and authority from God to perform sacred ordinances and to make covenants with God that will bind us to Him forever! Our family is forever! I know that I will see Frankie again and I'm so grateful that she now gets to see her two daughters. What a joyous reunion!

Oh, also, on Sunday, we passed around sheets of paper to each woman who knew Frankie. Her daughter didn't have funeral service because she is the only surviving relative of Frankie and didn't think she knew anyone. She did! Frankie made an impact on the ward. We will be taking these notes with us when we go to contact her daughter.

The rest of the week flew by! We were able to teach a lady named Lisa Young who is married to a member. She came to church on Sunday and plans to come back! She is wonderful! She is taking the lessons slowly, but I know she has the desire to know if this message is true and I know that she will find an answer. I know that Heavenly Father hears and answers each prayer. He is aware of us! I love his gospel! I love being a missionary!

Sister Dorsey bore her testimony on Sunday in church, and it was simple but absolutely perfect! She is such an amazing lady and I am still so grateful that I had the opportunity to teach her and see her baptized. She is so strong in her testimony now and is a huge asset to the ward and family. I hope to be able to come back and see her go through the temple next year with her husband! Yay!

The ward is now joking about how they think I should become a permanent part of the ward. Brother Cotrell said I could move in with their family and teach out here (no worries, I'm not planning on it). I love this ward and the people in it! They are my family away from my family! It will be hard to leave, but I am grateful for the friendships that have been formed! I truly have been so blessed to have had the opportunity to serve here. I love this area!

Well, I hope this wasn't too much of a downer. I want you to know that I am doing great! I have the best companion, the best area, the best week planned, and I have the gospel! We are so blessed! Even though we all may face challenges, there is a way out of them! We need to simply rely on our Heavenly Father! Turn to Him for help, focus on the gospel, study about the Atonement of our Savior. He did in fact suffer and die for each of us so that we wouldn't have to. Each of us goes through trials, but with Him, we can make it through. Even death is not the end...because of Him! (Yes, I did see that amazing video). :)

I love you all so much! Remember that! I hope you have an amazing week! Keep up the good work wherever you are!

Sister Herring

P.S. Where did May go?!

Picture 1 and 2 - Beautiful road! Love the green!

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