I'm Hermana Rogers, a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. This blog has the letters that I'll be sending home, as well as the address you can use to write me! Edited by my sister, Cassie, this is just a way to keep track of how my mission is going. I appreciate all the support and encouragement I've received! See you in 18!
It is officially the start of another transfer here in Pecan Park :) GUESS WHO MY COMPANION IS?! Hermana Hurst.
I dont know if you all remember the story of how I KNEW HER BEFORE THE MISSION but real quick storytime.
So I was at BYU at my friend McKale Simpson's mission call opening, and the girl sitting next to me was on Skype with someone. I hear the girl next to me say, "Erin, where do you think McKale is going?" Then from the computer screen I hear, "She's going to Texas Houston East, spanish speaking". I popped my head over into the computer screen and said, "Hey!!!!! that's MY mission!!" So then me and Hermana Hurst became friends... then came to the CCM together...and now are out in the field together... as COMPANIONS! Whaaa?
I am super relieved that I got a companion as someone I already know because I was already SO nervous about leading out the area that I couldnt have handled getting to know someone too... haha just kidding but also I am kind of serious. I am super grateful.
Hermana Hurst is one of the most patient people I have ever met. She just knows how to keep her cool and she's also SO strong in everything... she has a solid testimony and knows so much about the gospel and is also like actually emotionally stable so this is going to be really good for me. She has helped me through a lot already and I can tell this transfer is going to help me grow so much!
I am really excited for this transfer.
Okay updates on the week! Well... to be honest it was REALLY sad. Yesterday was a super dramatic day-- a lot of the members freaked out about Gerardo, and it ended up that the Elders have to take over teaching him. I don't know how to explain it all, but there was a lot of judgements made about him, a lot of people trying to "protect us" and so now we can't go back to teach him. I will be hounding the Elders to make sure they keep teaching him though. It was another really hard moment for me to accept the counsel of my leaders because there wasn't an ounce of my body that wanted to. But I know I have to because that's the lesson Heavenly Father is trying to teach me right now-- how to accept his will even when it isn't something I want. It has never been harder as it has these last few weeks with Hugo's baptism and now not being able to teach Gerardo. I will be working a lot more on my humility and willingness to obey for sure.
We did have some cool lessons with him this week. He has been reading the Book of Mormon an ton and just wants to know everything there possibly is to know about the gospel! :)
We saw some other awesome miracles this week as well.
Carmen and Alejandro are 2 of our other investigators that we have been working with and they have a baptismal date but we hadnt been able to see them for a while. We stopped by on Wednesday, and outside was Carmen's husband Marvin. We talked to him for a little bit, but were planning on just leaving and talking to Carmen and Alejandro, but he told us, "I've been reading in the book you gave me" wait whaaaa?? So turns out Alejandro has read a little bit, Carmen hasn't read at all, but MARVIN has been reading and he is the one that wants to come to church! So that surprised us, but it was a good surprise :)
on Thursday, we were on our way to a set lesson with a less-active member, then we showed up, knocked his door, then called him. He said, sorry Hermanas I am in a meeting. We were pretty confused since he was the one that had set the appointment, but we just started walking away, trying to think where we should go next. As we were walking, we saw this guy trying to get something out of his trunk, so we offered to help him, and he said he didnt need help, but we started a conversation with him about the church. He said that the missionaries used to go to his house in El Salvador but then he moved here. His grandma got baptized over there, but he hadnt talked to missionaries since he lived here. He lives with his wife and sibling and cousin or something and said we could come back the next day and teach all of them. We showed him Because He Lives right there and he really liked it. We set a return appointment for the next day and walked away so happy that our first lesson had fallen through so we could meet Eric.
The next day, we went to go to Eric's appointment. We knocked and knocked, and he wasnt there. So we called him and he said that he wasn't home because he was visiting his daughter but he felt SO bad... he apologized SO many times and then we told him it was okay, we could set another appointment. When we hung up the phone, we started talking about how the reason we met him in the first place was because something fell through. So we knew that there must be a reason that his appointment had fallen through as well because Heavenly Father had put us back in this area. Without even a second thought, we knocked the next apartment. It was a younger couple, Isabella and Douglas. They let us right in and we started talking to them. They have had a really hard life and had been TALKING YESTERDAY about how they wanted to find a church to go to. THEN WE KNOCKED THEIR DOOR TODAY. It was such a great experience to know that Heavenly Father really does put us where we need to be for a reason. He knows the people in this area and there's a plan for every one of them. Eric wouldnt have missed his appointment on purpose, but because he did, we met someone else that was searching for the truth.
The last story I want to share real quick was Sunday night. We have been visiting this family-- there are 6 kids ranging from ages like 30-17 and 2 of them are members and the rest aren't. Their dad really doesn't want anything to do with the church, so when we went over Sunday night, we had to sit outside because the dad was home. I got a little nervous, thinking maybe we shouldnt be there, but then a couple of the kids came out to talk with us. We were out there talking for a while and they told us story after story about why the dad doesn't like the church, why he is offended by missionaries, etc. Then all of a sudden the dad walks out. I practically held my breath because I didn't know what to do. I already knew he didnt like us. He was carrying some things outside and so after hesitating just a minute, I asked him if he wanted help. He turned around pretty surprised and said that he was fine. I dont even remember what happened next but basically within a few seconds he came over and started talking with us. He asked us about why we were missionaries, what we do, why we like the church, how long we have been members, why we are members, what we are studying, what we will do after our missions, why we have faith in God, what our faith in God does for us, and THEN he started to open up. It was an amazing conversation. Not going to lie I was pretty nervous and worried almost the whole time, but when he was going in, he said, "this is your house, you're welcome to come over whenever you want"....uhhhhhh??? So Felipe explained to us how surprised he was and he said that it was a miracle that his dad had said all that. He said he hadn't heard his dad talk about the church in a long time and he definitely didn't expect to. It was really cool.
Although there were some really hard moments in this week, there were also some really cool miracles and I know Heavenly Father is looking out for us. He knows what we need and I am working on trusting Him in everything.
HUGO showed up to our ward randomly so I got to see him for a little bit and that was the biggest tender mercy of entire life. I WAS SO HAPPY. He told me that his life is changing for the better and although it was hard to leave all of his past behind, he knows it was the right decision and that was what he needed in order to be a better person. :) AH it made me sooooo happy. He is doing so well!
I love you all so much! Thank you for everything you do for me, all your prayers and support. The mission is amazing, I wouldnt trade it for anything. Its true, it goes by way too fast, but all I can do is live in the moment and learn from it! I am grateful for the lessons Heavenly Father is teaching me, even though sometimes I am too stubborn to learn them the easy way so everything is difficult... I still know He loves me.
Have a great week! I love yall!
Love, Hermana Rogers