Monday, September 29, 2014

A Birthday And A Baptism

Good Afternoon,

This week was really good.  We have been working hard all day every day and it was a really hot week.  We saw a lot of blessings.

It was Marla's birthday on Wednesday (a member) and she didn't tell us.  She invited us to help in her garden and she gave us some surprise cake and treats.  It was fun.  Then we had a great lesson on repentance.

Kenneth is still really excited about coming to church.  We invited him to General Conference and he said he will come.  Best part is... he is inviting all his friends and neighbors.  He is awesome.  He told the Elders he would be coming to our church for a long time.  We gave him a gospel principles book and he read the lesson ahead of time so he would be prepared.  He pretty much taught the lesson.

We decided to clean up the path to the ocean where they do baptisms for service this week.  We got down to the bottom of the path and found some houses.  It turns out we just cleaned a really long driveway.  Someone got a secret act of service :)  We found the right path and cleaned it.

We had great birthdays.  Sister Hodge had hers on Saturday.  We went out to lunch and had a very special event later in the evening which I will talk about later.  For my birthday we went to the beach and had a beach BBQ with the Elders.  It was fun.
A homeless guy lives here on the beach

Those are crab heads

Creepy spider

Women's Conference was amazing.  I love General Conference and I am excited for this weekend.  We will be watching it at the church.

Miracle of the Week:  Jack got Baptized!!!  He was beaming when he came up out of the water.  He is a good kid.  He was confirmed yesterday.  The Spirit is always strong at baptisms.

Thanks for everything.  We had an amazing week and we are ready to work hard still.


Sister Shirts

Getting her hair braided

People think she is a local.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Rainy Adventures

Good Morning,

This week was full of miracles.  We were blessed with a lot of lessons and new people to teach.  Heavenly Father helped us a lot.

There was an embroidering activity at the church for relief society.  There was a great turnout.  Everyone enjoyed it.  The relief society here is very strong and close.  They really care about each other and they love the church and the gospel.
Love that the Elders did it too!

It was a rainy week.  This gave us some fun adventures.  One evening we were driving to an appointment and we had to pass on a dirt road.  On our way out we got stuck at the bottom of a huge hill because it was so muddy.  I had to get out and take off my shoes and push from the back of the car.  My skirt got all dirty.  Luckily someone came out and helped me push the car and we got out.  It was pretty fun.  Then the next day it was raining again.  We had an appointment with someone we met in the village so we had to figure out where they lived.  We called and they gave us some vague directions that involved climbing up a huge hill surrounded with trees and plants.  It was pretty much a muddy hike.  We got dirty again but it was worth it.  The lady is pretty cool.

We have a ghost creature in our apartment.  I saw it once while I was exercising in the morning and we saw it again a few days later.  It is either a really big cockroach or a rat.  It moves so fast we can't tell.   I thought I imagined it the first time.

I got to try turtle soup at George's fish hut.  It was great.  I also got homemade passion fruit juice and pig tail.  I made some of the cocoa tea for the first time and it came out pretty good.
Pig tail, provision soup and more

Jack is just about ready for baptism and he is really excited.

Miracle of the week:  Kenneth is still doing great.  He loves church and he came again this week.  We taught him about the Word of Wisdom and he accepted it immediately.  He said that God would help him keep the commandment if he tried his best to be obedient.  It was a great lesson.

Thanks for everything.  Love you all.

Sister Shirts

Birds in the trees

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

A Week With Chickungunya

Chickungunya is not fun.  It involves a high fever, bad joint pain, a really bad headache, and a rash over the whole body (including the palms of my hand and the bottom of my feet).  It lasted for six days.  My fever finally left Saturday and it made me really tired.  I pretty much slept all day for a week.  It was annoying not to go out and work.  Now I know how Sister Hodge felt.  I am glad it is over.  My shoulders are still a little sore and my fingers are stiff.  Like an old lady :)

On the bright side we still had a pretty good week.  I had a giant mango (to make me feel better), cow heel soup, and cocoa tea.  Maria made the cocoa tea for us.  She is a less active member who we love a lot.  Cocoa tea is the most delicious thick hot chocolate with dumplings and a lot of good spices in it.  I am excited to try to make it.
Cocoa Tea

We had a great zone conference in Barbados yesterday.  On Sunday we spent the night at the Gublers.  It was fun.  Sister Gubler made delicious spaghetti and salad.  We left bright and early Monday morning and had an amazing meeting.  Elder Zivic cam and presented there.  He talked a lot about obedience and our purpose as missionaries.  There was 1/4 of the mission there.  Over fifty missionaries.  We spent Monday night with the Silver Sands/Oistins sisters.  It was fun.  I slept on the couch and Sister Hodge slept on the futon.  No air conditioning out there so it was very hot but it was still fun.  We got home this afternoon.  We had to take an hour and a half bus ride from Castries because we didn't have the car.  Lucky us we get to drive all the way back out there tomorrow for zone meeting.

Miracle of the week:  We have been working with a man named Kenneth since we got here.  He is a nice man in his fifties.  He really wants to follow Christ and has family problems.  He is like a nice grandpa.  Kenneth was in a bad accident over ten years ago and hurt his leg.  It got infected again so he couldn't leave the house much...until Sunday.  He came to church and had a great experience.  His leg has finally healed and he is excited to prepare for baptism.

Thanks for everything.  Love you all.  Things are going great in St. Lucia!


Sister Shirts

The Pitons are two mountainous volcanic plugs, volcanic spheres in St. Lucia.

These weird cows are everywhere.  They look like dinosaur cows.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Service Is The Best Way To Soften Hearts

Good Morning,

Transfer week!  We are staying together and we are ready to work.  St. Lucia is awesome.  We are really getting to know the members and we love them a lot.  We have been doing a lot of service for members lately.  We have washed clothes by hand, cleaned houses, and cleaned chicken.  We love it.  Service is the best way to soften hearts.
Quidditch anyone?

President and Sister Mehr were here on Tuesday.  They came to our District Meeting.  I love it when they come because they teach us a lot.  Sister Mehr came out teaching with us for a few hours.  She is so loving and is a great teacher.

Random events of the week:  I played with a fish head puppet and there are tiny spiders everywhere in our apartment.  I am sure I get my protein every day.
Fish head puppet

It was very rainy this week.  We went on a jungle adventure to find an investigator.  That was fun.  We ended up on a dirt road in the mountains and we were in the completely wrong place.

Oh, and I have Chickungunya so that isn't fun.

Miracle of the week:  Jack, Tina, and Trisha.  Jack is still excited for baptism.  His cousin is Tina and Trisha is his sister.  Trisha was baptized but not Tina.  Tina is 15 and has been struggling in the world.  She is very nice and is excited to meet with us.  She really wants to live a good life but needs some direction.  Kisha (her aunt) is also excited for us to work with her.

That is about it for this week.  We are doing great here in St. Lucia.  It is a great island.

Thanks for everything.


Sister Shirts

This is the church building

Beautiful Laborie

Olympic stadium is now a St. Jude's hospital

Upside down stop sign

Sister Shirts washing the car with a mop
Opening a coconut

Monday, September 1, 2014

Because Eating Chicken Feet Isn't Strange Enough...

Good Morning,

Good news.  Sister Hodge is all better and ready to work hard.  Something we have found very successful is using Mormon Messages.  My challenge to everyone is to find your favorite Mormon message and post it on your Facebook page.  It is a great way to share the gospel and it is easy.

I love my study time as a missionary.  I have learned so much about the gospel and how to apply it in my life.  I have learned a lot about myself and about Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father and this knowledge will help me and my family throughout my life.  I am grateful for this opportunity to focus on studying the gospel.

Tyson is doing well. He has been reading from the Book of Mormon and has been praying. Kisha and her family are doing great as well. Every Sunday we have Family Home Evening at a member family's house with all the missionaries. They are awesome and are like our St. Lucia family. Kisha's family is becoming like our St. Lucia family too.

Patois is coming along well. The members love helping us learn new words and phrases. Tyson also likes to help us learn. We saw George the fisherman again. This time he gave us octopus and conch soup. It was good and chewy. He also let us help him chop turtle meat and let us try some of that too. It was delicious. It is kind of like steak and chicken mixed together. He had us try some of the green turtle fat and part of the turtle wing as well. Turtle fat isn't my favorite.
Chopping Turtle Meat


Eating Turtle


Miracle of the week: Jack. Jack is Kisha's 11 year old son and he is super excited to be baptized.  Because he wants to be baptized it has helped motivate his mom and his sister to be baptized as well. His example is helping a lot of people. Another miracle out of the story is Kisha's sister in law also wants to be baptized on the same day and when her son turns 8 he wants to be baptized as well. Love that family a lot.

Love you all,

Sister Shirts

Pokemon door at someone's house

P day at Laborie Beach

Chicken on the beach.  They are everywhere.

Dead Pufferfish