Hey hey hey.
I'll get right to it. Haha. I'll start with the good news.
So Tuesdays we do "produce to people"- people come and get free food. It was so humbling.. People of all ages came, they lined up blocks back, hundreds of people. I think my heart is just a little sensitive for it at the moment, haha. The inmates from Butler prison were there passing out food with us. One guy came up and started asking questions about our church. He told us that he had had a Book of Mormon, and had read the first three books, but it had been confiscated a while back. We got to teach the first lesson to him as we passed out food, not your conventional first lesson haha. We may be going to Butler prison to teach him, he was great. He had a sincere desire to know more about the church. Today we wrote our testimonies on the inside of a Book of Mormon, and we plan on smuggling it in to him since he wasn't able to take anything back with him. We'll see how that goes. I believe he gets out in a few months, so if nothing happens now we will contact him then, he lives in Butler.
There was also a Jehovah's witness there, who was harassing us all night once we found out we were 'the mormons.' Haha. He started bashing us a bit. A real in your face kind of guy. At one point he asked "So what do we have to do to go back to heaven then huh?"
I answered "There are certain saving ordinance-"
Lol ,poor guy. Very good, baptism is one of them. He did that again and again everytime yelling "Wrong!" Hahaha.
People here have very wrong conceptions of 'the mormons' here. I don't know what it is... But when they realize we are mormons, there is a visible disgust that comes across their face, and suddenly it's like we're not human beings anymore. People hate the missionaries here. We hear the nicest things(((((:
It's hard not to take rejection personally, because the gospel is something I find very personal. If only they knew what they were letting pass them by. The worst part is seeing families, and literally having to walk away.
Working with inactive members is a very slow and frustrating process. Sometimes I feel more like a full-time visiting teacher than a full-time missionary. Being a sister missionary is also frustrating, No one takes you seriously.
Missionary work sure can pull at your heartstings. These people go through so much. It is black and white seeing the influence of the gospel, and the happiness and success it brings.
We had a great lesson with our (only) progressing investigator Friday night. We had it in a member's home- the Furuzzi's. It was such a powerful lesson, the spirit was tangible in the moment. He told us he 'knows the Book of Mormon is true.'
The cool thing about knowing that is that with that knowledge comes everything else- because it contains everything. Once you know the book is true, you know Joseph Smith was a prophet, and he restored the gospel to the earth, along with all the doctrine that make up the fullness of our gospel. He is so ready, but he has to quit smoking. Our time with him is short, he leaves next month.
Some more good news- we found our first Spanish speaking people. We had to drag it out of some members, they didn't want to send us into that part of town. Is there a good part of town? Haha. We knocked and they were the kindest people we have come across. It is a house of five or six Hispanic guys living there, they told us we could come back. They are so much nicer than white people, hahah. It's hard not to wish I was in Mexico. Those are my people.
We got to go to a special MLC this week in Pittsburgh, the mission president, President Donaldson, from "The district" videos taught. It was cool, only a handful of missionaries were chosen to go. We went to dinner in downtown Pittsburgh after. My new district is great. They're super fun.
We get ipads this month, PRAY that I don't have to be a facebook missionary. Hahaha It was also just approved that we can attend three different temples, the Palmyra New York temple, Washington DC temple, and Columbus Ohio temple. Next year the Philadelphia temple will be dedicated and we will be able to go there too.
Before I forget, something you must listen to. Not sure the exact name, but something like "the catholic conversion of Bill Carpenter." It's an audio thing, but I promise it's worth the listen.
Look at me being all positive and stuff. To all the people I haven't had time to reply to, please be patient, my time is limited here. Don't stop writing!
I'm doing my best out here,