Monday, October 28, 2013

More Changes

This week has been crazy!!! First of all we got an awesome referral from a member in our ward. The referral was for Lou who is Haitian but he has grown up in the U.S. Basically I was pretty excited becuase he is the first person I have met on my mission that speaks french. We went over and got to teach him part of the plan of salvation (some of his family members died in the earthquake in Haiti a few years ago) It was such a great lesson, he is so humble and he had lots of questions and you could tell that he was open to listening to everything we had to say. He is a college basketball player so we have only seen him twice since he has a crazy schedule. Then we found out that he is 20 so we will have to give him to the singles ward elders. But it was great to meet him and to get to teach him a little.

Also this week we had a funny experience when we were knocking. We knocked on this lady's door and she let us come in and talk to her. As it turns out she was like 92 and so she kept repeating herself becuase she couldn't remember what she had already told us (stuff about how she used to sing in the Salvation army band and how her son lives near by and she can pay her own bills!). So my companions start trying not to laugh because the situation is just ridiculous and so finally I just jumped up and shared a scripture with her and asked if we could pray with her. During the prayer my comps were still trying not to laugh and then as we made our way to the door as she kept telling us the same three stories over again. All in the average day of a missionary I guess.  T

his week we also had tune-up training (for trainers and their trainees) which was really good. We have a new AP and he is a really good missionary. Then we had zone conference which was about teaching with power. Also we have been teaching the after baptism lessons to a 16 year old recent convert named Ally. We took one of the other young women with us and it was a really good lesson. Ally has started going to seminary and stuff and I love how excited recent converts are to learn everything they can about the gospel.

We had a blitz this week in our area (where all of the missionary in the zone work in one area for a couple of hours) It was really good and we met a Jehovah's witness that we talked to for a while. We have run into Jehovah witnesses beofre but usually it is just when we are knocking and we awkwardly see them going around knocking in the same neighborhood. This guy we met outside of a yogurt shop and he was really nice. He knows a little bit about mormons and he said that he read the book of mormon and he knew that it was inspired. But he said that he had been called and chosen as one of the elect that will be saved and now he is waiting to be taken since he is no longer of this world. I've heard weirder before and I think it was just because I don't really know what they believe. But anyways the point of me saying this is that this guy randomly opened up and told us his life story. Sister Perry (who i was out with ) and I were talking about how this happens to us quite a lot. People that we talk to randomly open up to us which you wouldn't think because we are complete strangers who are just walking up and talking to them. Probably because we are representing Jesus Christ and people can feel the spirit when they are talking to us. So anyways it was just cool to think about.

We also got to go to our ward's trunk or treat this week which fun especially because we have to be in at 6:00 on halloween and we have to deep clean our apartment for 3 hours. But the craziest thing that happened this week was that they re-aligned all of the ward boundaries in our stake!! So bascially half of our ward isn't in our ward anymore. We are kinda bummed becuase we are losing a lot of the active families that we love a lot. Also Viv is in a complete other ward so we won't be able to teach her anymore. As of right now we don't even know what ward we are in anymore so it will be interesteing to see how everything works out. Its just weird having all of these changes in the middle of the transfer especially because I was finally getting to know the ward really well.

Overall it was kind of a hard week just because the work has been going really slow in our area and we haven't had a ton of time to proselyte because we have had a ton of meetings lately. But I was also thinking about how grateful I am to be a missionary. Heavenly Father has blessed me so much with helping me to overcome a lot of my weaknesses and to become a better missionary. He has surrounded me with a lot of good people to help and encourage me and we have been in a great ward. I just really feel like this is exactly where I am supposed to be right now  in my life and I am just grateful that Heavenly Father has guided me up to this point to where I am. Being a missionary has blessed my life in so many ways by helping me to become a better person and to have a better relationship with my Savior.

Anyways I love you all and hope that you have a good Halloween!!
-Sister Washburn

Monday, October 21, 2013



This week was good minus the fact that we had to get flu shots. I was already a little bit sick and so the flu shot made me more sick so I was out for a whole day. But the beauty of being in a trio is that my comps dropped me off at a members house for a few hours and then went out and worked. Sister Phillips is awesome!!! She is from Tennessee and she was going to BYU and she is 21 and she has a little bit of an accent and she is just the best trainee ever. We all get along really well so it has been a lot of fun to be in a trio. Oh also she is going to Sao Paulo Interlagos, Brazil. She will be here for at least 6 weeks and then she will leave whenever her visa comes. They are super backed up for Brazil though (apparently 500 missionaries are waiting for their visas to go there, I guess the soccer world cup is in Brazil this year and so that is making it hard) We have her practice her portugese on us every morning for a few minutes and even though we have no idea what she is saying (actually I can understand some of it cause some words are similar to spanish or french) it helps her a lot to remember things.
 Last week when we taught the YM/YW we talked a lot about first having the desire to share the gospel, then acting on the desire by trusting that the Lord will help give you opportunities and help you know what to say. Then we kind of made it like a district meeting where we had eveyone get into pairs and practice teach. We had them practice different senarios of answering questions their friends might have or asking their friends to come to a chruch activity. I think that it really helped them becuase we ended up passing out 12 book of mormons at the end to people who wanted to give one away!! Our stake has really been emphasizing missionary work lately and I think that it has pushed a lot of members to do more. In stake conference our stake president said that "we could double our stake." Afterwards when all the missionaries in the stake had fhe with him, he said that the spirit prompted him to say that. He was nervous becuase that is a big commitment but he felt like that was what the Lord wanted him to say. I think that this is awesome!! The Lord really is preparing people in our stake to hear the gospel! It is so exciting to be a missionary in this area where church leaders are focused on really making missionary work a priority.
We have really been trying to work more on finding lately. We have a few potentials that we have found lately so hopefully they work out. Things with Viv aren't going too well. She hasn't been keeping any of her commitments and while she loves learning and knows that what we have taught her is true, she doesn't want to change. I think it is just kind of scary for her because she would have to change a lot. We were going to drop her if she didn't come to church this sunday (which she didn't) but she said that she doesn't want us to give up on her so we might try a few more times. We might bring Mario over to tell her his story (the guy that was homeless) because he didn't want to chang eeither at first. He always tells us that he used to be Korihor at first. He had been agnostic all his life and had told people that they don't need to believe in Jesus or God. But after the missionaries taught him and he realized all the things that the Lord had done for him, he had a change of heart. The Lord has done so much for Viv and if she would just realize that and let it motivate her to change hopefully she will be able to commit herself again. Training has been a really good experience for me. I feel like I have already gotten better at a lot of things since I have to be the one leading and being the example for how to do things. I feel like I am a lot more confident in contacting which can sometimes be hard for me. We had a blitz this saturday and me and the Sister I was with were talking to everyone we saw. We even practically ran down the street to catch some people who were getting out of their car. (there aren't that many people out and about in this area so we have to use every chance we get). We are going to keep focusing on finding so hopefully we will soon have some more people to teach. Also you should pray for the missionaries in the ward back home by name. One thing that I have learned on my mission is that specific prayers are so much more powerful. It will really help them a lot!! Last week for p-day we went to PCH again so Sister Phillips could see the ocean. It has been beautiful weather here lately and the ocean looked so pretty.

This week I have been thinking a lot about faith. As a missionary I have learned that faith can be one of the hardest things to have. I have also learned that a lot of times we have to act and to show the Lord that we are willing to try and that we have the faith that as we do what he is asked he will bless us. Sometimes we won't have a flood of blessing come the minute we act on our faith. But as we show the Lord that we are willing to do whatever is asked of us we will eventually see the blessings come.

Love you all!!
-Sister Washburn

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Now a Trio



I have like no time to write this week because it is a holiday and so we all have to share the computers in the family history library. My new comp is Sister Phillips. She is from Tennesse (so she has an awesome accent) and she was going to BYU before her mission. We had a really good lesson with Viv this week. Also we taught the YM/YW a lesson on missionary work and I think they really like it. At the end a bunch of them wanted Book of Mormons to give out to their friends. Being in a trio is really fun so far. It was a little hard to teach at first but we have gotten used to it. Got to go but I will write more next week. Love you all!

-Sister Washburn

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Pictures from Fountain Valley

With an Elder in my zone -ouch, check out that sunburn.  September is one of the hottest months in So. California. * With sisters in my zone, Me, Sister Wadsen, Sister Robson & Sister Perry

The beach from the Pacific Coast Highway.  * The pier just down the street from downtown Huntington Beach.

There is an El Paso street in our area. 

Monday, October 7, 2013

Training a "greenie"

I'm having a baby!!!! haha jk But I'm going to be training a new missionary :) Sister Robson and I are staying together this transfer and we are training a visa-waiter who is going to Brazil. (so she will be with us for 6 weeks) I'm really excited!! New missionaries always have extra enthusiasm and motivation and it will be good for Sister Robson and I to work harder since we have to be extra good examples.This week was really good. We had two church tours that went really well. One with a less active and her boyfriend who both enjoyed learning more about the church. At the end of the tour the less active said the closing prayer and it is the first time that I have heard her pray! Then the other tour was with the non-member wife of a less active. She is awesome and she really loved the tour and getting to learn more about the church and how it runs. She said that she could feel the peace in the chapel that was different from the rest of the church. We keep visiting her and her husband in hopes that he will come back and she will get baptized. I think that it will take a while but they are definately warming up to it all. We also are still working with Viv. She really is progressing and her prayers are getting better (a lot more sincere and focused on others not just herself). She is also building her faith and even helps us to remember to rely on our faith when things get rough. We had an awesome zone meeting this week. We talked about pride and how we shouldn't compare our numbers or our success to other missionaries. As long as we are trying our best and working hard the Lord will bless us. We also talked about having unity in the zone. The zone leaders talked about how the Elders and the Sisters aren't on separate missions that we need to work together and become friends so that we can support each other. It was just really good. And conference was awesome!!! So many good talks. We watched the sessions at the stake center. We stayed and ate lunch there (we brought it with us) so we were at the church from 9:00-3:00 all day. But it was great. I loved the talks on missionary work. I think that even as a missionary I am sometimes hesitant to pray for specific things to happen because then I will have to act on them. I am going to work more on praying for specific aspects of missionary work and talking to more people (not just when we are knocking and contacting). There were also lots of good talks about keeping the commandments in a world that is getting farther and farther from good morals. I also liked the talks about bringing people back- that is missionary work too! Being a missionary is awesome! I know that the Lord really is hastening his work and that he is preparing people to receive the gospel. Sharing the gospel can be hard but if we pray for opportunities we will find them. And the Lord promises us that if have faith we will be given the words to speak. I have seen this on my mission that there are times when I have no idea what I am going to say but when I show the faith to open my mouth the Lord makes up the difference and the spirit guides me to know what people need to hear. I'm also so grateful to have a prophet on the earth and leaders who are inspired to teach us what Heavenly Father wants us to know. When we follow their counsel we really will have peace and lasting happiness in our lives that we can't get from anywhere else.

Sister Washburn