Monday, July 20, 2015

It's been a good week...


Been a while since you've heard any Spanish out of me. So there's about the equivalent of the Spanish I use on my mission.^ 
Hey so my new companion I'm training is Sister Welch. Something interesting... Her grandparents are serving in this mission! No idea how that worked out... But they're great. So I'm training the mission presidents friends daughter. No pressure. Haha. They are serving in central Pittsburgh right now and plan on taking us on many outings on pdays! 

Side note bad news. An elder was assaulted downtown Pittsburgh last week so any chances of sisters being brought back into the downtown Pittsburgh area are now gone. Elder Hunsaker got mugged and punched in the face and broke his nose. The man was caught and put into jail. President Johnson announced he would be doubling those Elders out and putting in the biggest Elder here, a 6'7 Polynesian kid hahaha. 

I'm training an English comp. which means goodbye Spanish. She's awesome! Training is a little harder than I thought it would be. When you're getting trained you kind of look to your trainer like okay, what now? And now I'm the one looked to. So it's good for me, I'll learn a lot. It brings me back to my first few weeks here and all the awkward encounters, hahah. I've learned quickly just to sit back and listen. It  just takes practice and she'll get it. 
The best oops moment this week was when I decided to break her in the right way by taking her to the infamous island ,hahah. It was Friday night so everyone was out on their porches. She  realized quickly we are the only white people, and two white "church girls" walking down the street stick out quite a bit. Anyway so we had an appointment with this guy Gerard. He's classic Butler. Dreads. Shirtless. Cigarette. So we're teaching the restoration and we start talking about how the gospel blesses families and she asks 

"So, do you have a family? Do you know who your mom and dad are?" 

Hahaha. Oops. We met  five new people that night anyway, so we're starting off on a good foot. One came up to us and asked what church we're from, always cool when they approach you ,haha. Makes our job easy. 
Another we met told us he actually used to go with his mom to our church when he was 14, 14 years ago. Excited to see where those go. 

We also stumbled upon what must have been a foster home, there were eight or nine kids out front and all came to listen as we taught. I couldn't help but smile, they were so cute, and the woman living there invited us back. 

I am so happy for Lamonte, he's doing so well. He's been coming to church every week, and we just got him signed up for seminary! Their family is getting growing at church, one day they'll all be there together. His sisters Shana and Tiara were just baptized and have since gone to the temple, palmyra, youth conference, girls camp, etc. It's so awesome to see them do so well. Their mom Theresa expressed to us for the first time she would like to come. As for their dad, still not sitting in but always says hello. One at a time, haha.

Bill's date is still set for August 1, but he is still working on quitting. So it may be pushed back. 

As for Phyllis... Disappointing news. We stopped by to see her last week to read and see how she liked church and first thing she said was "I don't know if I want to be a Mormon anymore." She had been reading through the articles of faith and came across number 2. She said the Catholic Church believes different, and also said she does not believe in baptism by immersion. She was also disappointed how in sacrament meeting they didn't talk about God, they talked about the revolutionary war (for the Fourth of July.) I too was disappointed on the day she came that was the topic. The bishop works at the VA hospital and has a lot of respect for veterans. But it was an unfortunate day for Phyllis to be there. She had a number of other questions. Any attempt to answer them only made her defensive, so I stopped. I asked if she knew the Book of Mormon was true. She said yes. I asked if she knew everything we have taught is true. She said yes. I told her she can't give up yet, that I know she she has a testimony and I know that she knows this church is true. And that she has felt the spirit confirm that. She agreed to finish the Book of Mormon and pray about her specific questions. We will see her Tuesday. I do not want to lose Phyllis! 

We have been helping the Speed family unpack still, we spend our lunch hour over there. Still no water. The house is worse than any house I've ever seen on "Hoarders." I can't believe they're living there. They are such a cool family though. We spent some time helping their 10 year old son arrange his "room," the attic with no lights/ AC, roof falling apart. But they all just seemed happy to have somewhere to be. Their kids are so cute, I will make sure to get a picture with them. I'm thinking of heading over there a few hours today, so maybe today. 
They have been so grateful for our help. Their dad is quite the guy. He's Italian, Ex military/ fireman. Although my guess is the mafia, hahah. He has severe PTSD. Works in witness protection and is also the personal security guard for the Pittsburgh Penguins hockey team now. He said he's going to arrange a tour of the new unopened Penguins arena for us! 

Another random thought this week- last night we were able to go to a fireside in Pittsburgh where the bishop of their ward, Chris Hoke, the former Steeler's player spoke. He's an awesome guy. Anyway sister Raphaela, a member in the ward (who sent you a picture) took us down and was telling us about when she left her little island in Micronesia to come to the US. She said 

"I think I was sent here because God knew I loved my family more than anything he wanted me to learn." 
She's amazing, she's a convert of a few years and she comes out with us all the time. 

Anyway, it's been a good week. We're spending the rest of our day today at the Speed's helping them move, so I'll talk to yinz later! I'll send a picture with them later. 
Love you all

💜Hermana Sears

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