Monday, June 3, 2013

Sacredness and sickness

BRENTWOOD, Pa. -- I'm excited to get some letters from some other people! I keep writing the same ones! Calling home would probably be bad. I'm just starting to turn it around from Mother's Day. Sorry Dad! Happy Father's Day in 2 weeks!

Leanna WOULD get called to Spokane. Seriously, am I the only one holding down the East Coast?!?! Is she Spanish or English speaking?? I change my vote for Kyle to Sweden. Don't you think so??

This week has been crazy. Sister Montgomery got sick on Wednesday and I got A LOT of study time in. She just couldn't kick it and she slept 12 hours that day!! Poor thing, yet I still kind of envy her. 6:30 comes a lot faster when you are constantly exhausted. So we weren't able to accomplish that much by ways of silly numbers.

Sister Montgomery

Thursday is where the craziness started. District Meeting was typical, we have some CRAZY Elders over here. The AP's are in our district PLUS the zone leaders were there, so we got a lot done! With only one pair of sister missionaries in our district, what can you expect? 

We went to Chipotle as usual, got our Mexican food fix (sort of and thank goodness). We then went back to our apartment to prepare for our tracting idea. We are trying to use Family History to work our way up to getting people to be receptive to the gospel. They are SO stubborn here. After we had written up some information on the back of the Family History cards, we went out tracting and lots more people were willing to talk to us! It was great.

We then went to our dinner appointment with a less active Sister Montgomery had been working with since LAST transfer. Mandee is amazing. Her and her husband Brian were converts a couple years ago, and have a 11-month old boy named Frankie and he is the fattest little kid I have ever seen! He is so smiley and simply adorable!! Spending some time with Mandee and Frankie was like being able to go home for a little while. She is so welcoming and seriously, felt like home. 

When we finally got ready to leave, I thought about going to visit another less active we had tried about 2 weeks ago named Faith. We had met her friend Agnes, who invited us back, but we were just unable to do so because the apartment building was always locked when we went. Sister Montgomery agreed we should try again and we experience the same luck. The door was locked and no one around to open it. Sister Montgomery started to leave, but I said we should stay just a little bit longer to see if anyone would come. And someone did. (The first of several tender mercies we experienced that night). 

We went in and met with Agnes again, because Faith goes to school and works at night. We talked with Agnes, who is from Kenya, and she told us of Faith's situation. Sister Montgomery and I just looked at each other and the story continued, getting more and more dire as Agnes continued. The thoughts we had and the experience we had after leaving Agnes' and Faith's apartment are so sacred and special, I can't share them over email. I might even have to wait until I get home before I share all that happened that night, but I can say that Heavenly Father is watching over every single one of His children and loves them so dearly. We, as missionaries and representatives of Jesus Christ, get to feel a tiny portion of that love as we talk with His beloved children and offer them hope and joy beyond anything they can comprehend.

When we got home after the visit with Agnes, we literally collapsed on our beds. We were so exhausted, physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. We stared at the ceiling and didn't say a word. We eventually made our way to our knees and prayed in gratitude for the things we had experienced that night. It was wonderful and terrible. I think I understand the phrase "The great and terrible" so much better now! All I can say of that experience is that God is good and I cannot deny that He lives or that He knows everything about us.

Friday, we were still wiped from the night before. It took everything in us to keep moving. We kept at it though, and Heavenly Father blessed us so much. The strength we received was amazing and could only come from Heavenly Father. We still managed to contact a media referral named Champayne. Her baby's name? Shamere. She was super nice and we gave her the Bible she requested and happened to give her a Book of Mormon to read as well. 

We were really bummed the day we found that she was out of our a long shot. When we called it in to pass her over to the Elders in her area they asked if we had driven through Homestead. We said we did and they sat in silence. Then they said "You know that is super sketchy right?" We laughed and said we did but we passed through just fine and Champayne was waiting to be taught on Wednesday. They were really excited to get a referral so I guess it is ok we passed her over.

At the end of the day, we couldn't find our dinner appointment (some members of the ward just wanted us to be there because they wanted to ambush their friends with the is rather quite interesting out here). We came home and ate tons of chocolate (THANK YOU GRANDMA AND GRANDPA!!), probably more than we should have, but after the week we had had up to that point, it was worth it.

Saturday, it was SO humid and nasty plus my allergies were acting up so that is always hard to stay focused. We have been sleeping on TOP of our covers because everything sticks to you...and it isn't even bad yet.

We did some catch up on our weekly planning and got into a Kisses throwing fight (really, throwing chocolate? nobody loses). It was a good stress relief after coordinating a ride for Agnes and Faith to come to church on Sunday.

Then we went and visited some more less actives though none were too keen on us being there or in coming back to church which is more than a little frustrating. But we just keep working on them! (;

Fast Sunday, as Dad affectionately calls "the slowest Sunday of the month", was very great and extremely slow, but you know how that goes. Faith came, but Agnes wasn't feeling very good so it was just Faith and Makayla. The ward was amazing and the bishop was introducing her to everybody, and by the end of the block everyone was offering her rides to church and other support. The best part was when some of the members came up to us and asked us if we had heard her story and the difficulties she was going through. I would look over at Sister Montgomery and I'd say, "you have no idea". We were so happy to see the ward adopt her like that. It gives us hope that whenever our investigators DO show up, they will be welcomed in a similar manner.

We got home from church quite elated with what had happened and dove into some study time. Sister Montgomery wasn't feeling very good again and fell asleep for an hour and a half. She was nauseous and had a headache. She didn't know what to do; she wanted a blessing but didn't want to bother anyone at 7 pm. So, as her companion, I took it upon myself to help her. I texted and called our district leader, Elder Nelson, and he was more than willing to give a blessing. So we coordinated (got approval from our zone leaders) and went to the Church. The Elders were able to give her a blessing and she has been feeling so much better than she has all week! The priesthood is amazing and I am so glad that there are worthy priesthood holders who are willing and able to do that. The blessings of the priesthood are astounding!! Thank you to everyone who is a worthy priesthood holder and is willing to give blessings at a moments notice! You are amazing!! (:

Thank you so much for your support and letters! I love getting mail and hearing about what is going on back home! I miss you and love you all!! (: 

Until next week--

Sister Crockett

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