Monday, August 31, 2015

Columbus Ohio Temple

Sister Sears, Sister Welch with President and Sister Johnson

The highlight of our week was going to the Columbus Ohio temple with the Hoy Family.....

Saturday night after Lamont's baptism the Freeport ward mission leader threw a "party" party for us at his house...

It's not everyone who  you get to see their  investigators football game and baptism in the same day....

Lamont showed up at the church at 5 til in full football gear.  Granted his uniform was all white....


This week has been the hardest yet. For obvious reasons. But I'm doing alright. All is well.
     Actually on Monday we were in a lesson with Perry and we got on the topic of sacrifice and I basically lost it haha. Monday night we were happy that Alphonso- you remember the one- the guy that doesn't come to church because he cries- called us. He's in a rut. Not motivated, so he called us. He really is so awesome, but he will not come to church.
     Tuesday was produce to people- our monthly service project where they hand out free food to the public. Again, about 550 people showed up for food. 
     I am always so humbled by these people. In particular, a woman came through the line and I complimented her jacket. She took it off her back and gave it to me. The woman who just waited in line all day in the heat for some potatoes and some apples. Of course I didn't let her leave without it, but I couldn't believe the generosity and humility of this woman. 
This week I was working by the table a member in the ward was working at. The member got talking to a lady going through the line and told her about her new grandson. This woman immediately began digging through her pockets and pulled out one dollar, and gave it to sister Neibar. She told her to use it to start a savings account for her new grandson. Sister Neibar was absolutely sure that that was the only dollar that woman owned. 
There are good people here too amongst the ones lost in addiction. 
     Tuesday afternoon we went to go visit Sister Wolfe and Blakely- the ones we painted with last week. We arrived and her door was wide open. We called for them and knocked but no one answered. We didn't know what to do but we both agreed something was up so we went in a bit and realized sister Blakely was laying right there on the kitchen table passed out. We couldn't wake her. Finally we did and she started crying hysterically- she was on heroine and methadone. All she could get out was "prayer prayer help blessing." 
So I said a prayer with her, and then we just sat and hugged her while she cried and cried until she passed out again. We decided to call for help. It was pretty horrible seeing her like that. 
     On a brighter note, our meet the mormons movie night went awesome. It turned out to be more like "meet the non-mormons" night because more non members showed up than members, hahah. We had nine people of ours that showed! And members brought friends and neighbors. Ross, Ivan, Ken, Perry and his girlfriend, two of the guys from Tuesday night volleyball, and a few others came. 
     After the movie two of the members friends came to us and decided they wanted to take the lessons from us. Sister Piotrowski last second invited her friend Cynda who lives next door to the church. She called her five minutes before the movie started, and she left in tears.
     Yesterday we went back to see her after church. When we returned she first told us she was not interested, but by the end she gave us her home and cellphone number and told us to come back. 
     Tonight we will go to see the other that came to us after the movie.

     Perry is in a very tough situation. He and his girlfriend are having a lot of issues. She wants him to attend the Jehova's witness church with her, and vice versa. It was awesome that she came to the movie night on Friday and for a lunch we had at the church after on Sunday. She has gotten to meet many members of the ward. They are both in such a hard spot. She has many family and friendly ties to her church, and the mormon world is an entirely different one. It has created a huge strain on their relationship, and it is to the point it may cost Perry their relationship to be baptized. 

     Yesterday in church Bishop Critchlow recognized us in combined third hour, in how much missionary work has increased in the area since I got here. The ward is beginning to get excited as they see us bringing people to church each week. 
Butler is no longer a dead zone at all. You just have to get off your butt. Haha. 
     Nefdali was at church again, I have loved getting to use my spanish again. It's so refreshing. Gosh, even just a conversation a day does wonders for practicing. 
I've really been trying to study hard and use my language study hour well. I learned to teach the gospel and a missionary vocabulary in the MTC. But they do not teach you to converse in the MTC. They count on you learning that as you are immersed in the language and culture- as I am not. It is something I am all on my own on. 
     Nefdali is amazing. The Hispanic culture.. The kindest people you'll ever meet. Each time we come he is out on the porch sweeping it off for us, haha. Last night when we met with him he shared that he is here working because his wife is dying of cancer back in Guatemala  and is working to send her money to keep her alive. He and his wife are divorced, but he is still doing this for her. He has sacrificed everything for her. 
     He has been reading everyday in the Book of Mormon. I really worry about what will happen to him when I leave the area and there will not be a spanish speaking missionary for him. There are only 8 in the whole mission. 
     Clearly, the highlight of our week was going to the Columbus Ohio temple with the Hoy family. It was Lamont and Tiara's first time. Not every one gets to see their investigator baptized 12 times. Haha- two because his knee came out of the water on his baptism day and 10 more for baptisms for the dead. He had an awesome experience, it was a great day. Such a beautiful temple, and a much needed time for me there. 

     Saturday night Lamont was so excited to show us all the studying he had been doing in the Book of Mormon. He showed us his notebook of all the notes he had taken. He is going to make such a good missionary. 
     That night he also shared how grateful he is for the gospel. Lamont's older brother, 21 years old- left home last year and is now living on the streets and involved in drugs. Their family has no contact with him anymore, but they all want so badly to find him and ask him to join their family again. 

     Por fin, quiero a compartir mi testimonio con ustedes. Yo se que evangelio de jesucristo es el plan Dios para una vida lleno de felicidad, y que Su plan es perfecto, sin error. Todos de nuestros pruebas y desafios traernos mas cerca de Él. Todos de los tiempos mas dificiles en mi vida han hacerme una persona mejor. 
     La decision para servir fue dificil, pero estoy aqui porque yo se que hay personas que nececita que yo tengo, y la paz que solo el evangelio puede ofrecer. Estoy muy agradecida por la oportunidad para ser una misionera, especialmente para ser una misionera aqui. He crecado un amor grande por las personas aqui. 

Hermana Sears

Él vive - Celebra la Pascua gracias a que Jesucristo vive

Él vive - Celebra la Pascua gracias a que Jesucristo vive Gracias a la resurrección, Jesucristo vive. Gracias a Él, tú puedes vencer el pecado y sentir dicha eterna. Averigua cómo descubrir, recibir y compartir el gozo de la resurrección en el sitio É

Monday, August 24, 2015

Where to start....


     Where to start? We'll start with Lamont.
     Last week after Lamont was interviewed we told him he would be
able to baptize Shekera, he was so excited. Never seen him happier
(til his baptism day.) His comment- "So what do I do, just push her
under the water?" Hahaha. Because the district leader was there, who
happened to be in a trio, we had them share their experience as
missionaries and why they decided to serve. When Elder Klima asked if
he was planning on serving, he said yes, and both Shana and Tiara said
they are thinking about serving. Shana said she "wants to change lives
too." Moral of the story, the Hoys are awesome
     Lamont was baptized on Saturday! It was such an awesome day. And
not everyday you get to see your investigators football game and get
baptized the same day. He had a game that morning, and we went and
watched for a bit while the font was filling at the church which
happened to be close to the school. Funny story with the font... So
little did I know the font takes four hours to fill.. Rookie mistake.
So we got there two hours til he baptism and the font was only half
working. So the bishop had to run over mid haircut to get it working.
By some miracle it filled in less than an hour! The church is true.
     Anyway Lamont showed up to the church five til in full football
gear. Granted his uniform was all white. Haha. He was baptized by a
member his age in the ward- Anthony Hook. After, two of his sisters
Shana and Tiara were supposed to speak but backed out so I ended up
speaking on the spot. They also didn't want to sing anymore, so sister
welch and I did a duet to when I am baptized. Lamont's parents did not
show up, that was kind of disappointing. And the service could have
been smoother, but all that matters is Lamont was baptized, and he was
so happy, he was just beaming all day! The very same day he was
interviewed to receive a temple recommend and the aaronic
priesthood... Which leads to our exciting news...
     Last week President Johnson called after reading my weekly email
to him.. Of course whenever PJ- President Johnson pops up on the phone
you know it's serious haha. He called to thank me for my email and
hear more about our week and..... To approve us to go to the Columbus
Ohio temple with the Hoys on Saturday! The rule is you have to be
within three hours to go. We are almost four hours away, but he is
allowing us to go because of the situation with the Hoys! Many
missionaries here never make it to the temple on their missions, so we
are so lucky!
     Saturday night after Lamont's baptism the Freeport ward mission
leader threw a "party" for us at his house. This guy is nuts. His
house is like a museum. I won't try to describe it, just look at the
pictures. Haha.
     After that our district did insanity together. (The workout) So I
was dead all week after so much service and crazy stuff.
      Anyway, yesterday he was confirmed as a member of the church of
Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in sacrament meeting. Guess who
showed up to surprise us at church?? President Johnson and Sister
Johnson! President Johnson even got to stand in Lamont's circle.Yeah
that was a surprise. So it couldn't have been on a more perfect day
for him to show up. Two of the stake presidents in the area were also
there by coincidence, and each of them directed their talks to Lamont.
My favorite was one which he explained to Lamont that joining the
church is like learning to dance- sometimes you have to watch others
to learn the steps first. Our little bench was quite crowded this week
with all the Hoys- even Shekera, us, and four other investigators. Not
a bad day to have five investigators show up for church, haha.
       So then Sister Welch ended up teaching gospel principles class
on the spot because the teacher didn't show up for the third week in a
row. WITH Pres and Sister Johnson in the class AND Nefdali, the
Guatamalan, so I was teaching half Spanish half English. No pressure
huh? There's this recent convert guy- the one I mentioned last week
that tries to cause a ruckus in class every week. He asks sneaky
questions and tries to slip up the teacher. It was handled well this
week though.
     Nefdali is solid. I sat by him through church and translated for
him. Whenever Sister Welch and I teach him I translate for her.
Interesting lessons. He knows a little bit because he knew about the
church back home. He liked the idea that the church is the same
anywhere in the world- because he said he's always been confused why
even within the same "religions," they all have different names and
teach different things.
     Ivan fed us again this week, he feeds us more than any of the
members in the ward do. Haha, he's seriously the best. I have gotten
to use my Spanish so much this week and I'm loving it!
      This week a member in the ward preparing for a mission came out
on splits with us- the one who baptized Lamont. We were teaching
Jonathon, and mid lesson- Tim interrupted us and told us he wanted to
come back to church, the guy I told you about last week that used to
be a member. Anyway, that was cool.
     After Jonathons lesson we had some more time so we hit the
pavement- and met a couple- April and Jonathan. When we told them we
were missionaries she was like "so are we," and I was like "great."
They don't belong to any church- and they really wanted to argue. An
hour passed by and they were still trying to argue. But by the end she
decided she did want to read the Book of Mormon after we talked about
our beliefs on families. As we were leaving they tried to give us
money to buy drinks, but we told the, we are not allowed to accept
money. They started getting super upset and angry, and literally
commanded us in the name of Jesus Christ to buy ourselves drinks.. So
Anthony took the money and we did. Hahah
     We ended up going back to help them clear a rental property they
own the next day. That was an experience. Every square inch of the
floor was covered in feces, cigarettes, garbage, and drug
paraphernalia. We found stashes of heroine and all sorts of goodies.
We didn't touch anything, we scooped it all up in shovelfuls into the
garbage. Pretty cool- sister welch found a bullet shell that got
turned into the police that may have been from the suspect that was
responsible for the shooting a few weeks ago! I think the person who
lived there- who up and left that house was the suspect. Anyway, we
got to throw furniture off the third floor, so that was fun. Just
another day as a missionary in Butler.
     April and Jonathan were super frustrating. They would subtly but
obviously ask us questions, then roundaboutly tell us we had been
brainwashed and deceived our whole lives and everything we were
teaching wasn't true. I'm like uhhhh a "thank you" would suffice. They
just wanted to argue. They believe in weird healing stuff. April
noticed my hands were shaking and rushed over and said made sure I
knew I didn't have to live this way and that I could heal myself.
Interesting people. But they said they would read the Book of Mormon
and possibly come to our movie night Friday.
     Our movie night should have a really good turn out. We've been
inviting everyone. Every Tuesday night we play ward volleyball, and
the Butler high school team comes. (Sister Welch and I whooped them
this week.) we earned their respect, so we invited the team to the
movie night, all nonmembers. We're really hoping for a good turnout.
     We got to help Sister Wolfe paint a room for her granddaughter
Jasmine. She's so excited to finally have visitation rights. If you
remember, her daughter is currently in prison, so her three year old
granddaughter lives with the father. Anyway, we got it all pretty and
painted and ready for her.(: A less active member in the ward, Sister
Blakely was there to help as well. We've been spending time with her
as well- she recently relapsed and has been in a pretty bad place, but
she's got an amazing story of how she became clean and joined the
church years ago. Her boyfriend is investigating the church currently.
     Joshua, our minister, is almost done with the Book of Mormon! He
doesn't have much to say about it yet.
     We met the craziest guy on Friday night. He seemed somewhat
"normal" (for Butler) at first, then it went downhill real fast. He
started talking about how aliens are taking over America, and they're
going to start with Christian churches. He pulled up all these
pictures of "aliens," and told us about them and their names. He keeps
texting and calling we need to come see the evidence (he got
permission from the government to show us) so we can tell the bishop
immediately. Apparently "all of Christianity is depending on us." ️Oh
     We got the greatest referral from the bishop this week. He called
and told us this guy had been trying to contact the church for months
now, he just moved here from California. He finally got ahold of the
bishop, who called us. We went to see him yesterday- his name is
Perry. He was so cool- been studying for two years- he knew
everything, basically he said he knows he has to give up coffee and
that will be hard but asked when he could be baptized. Sorry, gotta
wait three weeks. Haha.
      Talk about "prepared," he has the gospel library app and has been
studying the Book of Mormon and conferences, he knew all about the
prophet. It's almost too good to be true... Haha.
     Ross is doing great, coming to church every week still. The only
problem is he downs know if he wants to quit smoking yet. He says it's
all he has. I guess we just assumed that everyone would at least want
to quit. He told us this week he will try, that he knows the church is
true, and that we were sent to him from God and what a blessings we
are in his life. So hopefully he decides to give it a shot. We always
drive by him in different places around town, and many times he has
happened to be sitting there reading the Book of Mormon.

     So yes, we are very busy here. Those are but a few of the people
we are teaching. Some days we are literally running from one appt to
another. Everyone in our district hates us for it, in many areas here
they struggle to teach a single lesson a week.
     I really feel so lucky to be trusted with the work here. We are
clearly being entrusted with many people and many opportunities. The
harder we work the more the blessings seem to keep coming. This week I
was reading in 2 Nephi and I came across a scripture that reminded me
of the responsibility I feel over all the people here.

     2 Nephi 33:3 "But I, Nephi, have written what I have written, and
I esteem it as of great worth, and especially unto my people. For I
pray continually for them by day, and mine eyes water my pillow by
night, because of them; and I cry unto my God in faith, and I know
that he will hear my cry."

     "The responsibility I carry frightens me… I pray each day for
strength and wisdom and inspiration… Sometimes I could weep with
concern. But there comes the assurance that the Lord put me here for
his purpose, and if I will be humble and seek the direction of the
Holy Spirit, he will use me according to his will to accomplish his
purposes. " -Gordon B Hinkley

That's all.
Hermana Sears

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Just another week in Butler, PA

Feelin real Pennysylvania shuckin some corn with my new friend....

Courtney and the new baby:)

Our bedroom

Shereka and Lamonte

Post zone training- Pitt North Zone


Legacy- Kristi's baby

It was a good week...Ya'll ready? Here comes a looooong one.....

Hey friends and fam,

It was a good week. Y'all ready? Here comes a looooong one. 

I received two very special packages this week! One- from mom! You have officially filled my cupboards and my tummy for the next six weeks.(: My comp and I  are very happy, haha. In fact, you fed us both the past three days including tonight, because the member signed up to feed us got arrested and is back in prison... Don't you hate when that happens? (That was insensitive.) 

The other was from Hunter's mom! It was so cute, full of treats and lotion and good stuff. I happened to come home to it after a long hard day, it made my week. It's good to have my mission moms, I feel very loved.(: Haha. I've smelled like "happiness" all week. 

Our week started out strong with the Hoy's. They are just amazing. We have gotten so close to that family. Monday night we went over and were talking about Lamont's baptism, and Shekera out of the blue said she has decided she wants to be baptized with her brother. That was a very cool surprise. We've seen the Hoy's quite a bit this week. Saturday night was the Butler farm show, it's a huge event here. Anyway, Lamont even left all his friends early so he could be at our lesson Saturday night. He was excited to relay the story from Nephi he read, haha. Sadly, he told us of an encounter he had at the farm show about someone giving him a hard time. Someone gave him a pamphlet from another church, and Lamont's response was "I'm mormon." Well the guy started bashing the mormon religion, it was clear Lamont was pretty embarrassed and overwhelmed, he being very new to just about everything. But he held his ground haha. Sad that he has already had an experience with it. But it was cute that he is already calling himself a "mormon." 
He then told us he wants to serve a mission! That one took us by surprise! I still can't believe it, I am so happy for that family. That night Lamont sent us a text and said "Thank you for everything, I mean that." 
This meant a lot coming from him, we have seen an amazing change in him, since the kid who wouldn't come out of his room for lessons, to the kid who had to be dragged downstairs for lessons by his mom, to getting baptized and wanting to serve a mission! 
His baptism will be this Saturday. His sisters, Shana, Tiara, Shekera, and I will be singing at his baptism, and Shana will be speaking. It is going to be such an awesome day. I am so happy for their family.

Guess who's back! Phyllis is back. We finally built up the courage to go see her again. I was expecting her to say she had finished the whole Book of Mormon to be honest, hahah. But she said she gave it to her friend, who is Native American and told her that she was "Lamanite" and wanted her to read it. She even put our number in it. Look at her, doing missionary work already. 
So Dad and Jansen- I took your advice with sharing Matthew 3 about Christ's baptism with her. When we returned she told us that "there are two different doctrines about Adam's transgression, but she didn't know which one was correct." She then told us she understood and believed that baptism by immersion was indeed correct. That's our Phyllis, hahah. And it's a huge step that she acknowledged that she doesn't know which is correct about the other question, a big step from when she wasn't even willing to consider anything but what the Catholic Church had taught her the last time we saw her. It was very clear to me that the Lord had been hard at work with her all the time we were away, He had greatly softened her heart. 
We taught her about the role of the Book of Mormon this week, and she basically taught the lesson for us. She literally quoted Preach my Gospel a couple times. 
"The bible and the Book of Mormon support each other."
-Phyllis, PMG pg. 106
She basically bore her testimony of the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith.
"The Book of Mormon is proof that God spoke to all nations and all people, and continues to do so today through modern prophets."

We got to be a part of some very special priesthood blessings this week. The first was one of our investigators, Courtney, who just had her baby on Wednesday. The elders were dropping us off after zone training, and we were about to head up to the hospital to see her and decided to invite them to come to give her a blessing. 
There is so much power in the words "By the authority of the Melchizedek priesthood that I hold." This was definitely one of the strongest times that I have felt the presence of the spirit. After, she asked for one for her new baby, just a few hours old, Joseph. Elder Klima's hands were bigger than the entire baby, haha, but he gave a special blessing to him. 

The other was Kristi, the mother of two. We took her on a church tour Saturday evening, we showed her the building, the font, etc. A member in the ward came to give her a blessing. I am not sure if she understands everything yet, but I know she felt the spirit that night. Their family is in a real hard place right now, and she is fighting some serious addictions and mental illnesses. Her kids, Legend and Legacy, 3 and 1, love me, they're so dang cute. Haha, even the one year old doesn't leave my side whenever we are with them. 
This week I am grateful for the priesthood. 

We got to see Ivan this week, he is doing well. We don't see him much because he is not really progressing. We stopped by to drop something off and as we were talking out on the porch one of his housemates came out to eat. We started talking to him, and I very nonchalantly invited him to join us. Haha. He did, and it was awesome. We taught him again Sunday night. His name is Ken, very smart guy. He just soaked it all in, I love when it just clicks with certain people. For him it clicked. We will see him again tonight, fingers crossed. As he said the closing prayer yesterday, the first prayer he has said in years, he thanked God for "the chance to start anew." Good things to come with him. 
As we were leaving Ivan's last week, he stopped us to give us a ten minute lecture on our safety. He tells us again and again, he does not want anything to happen to "his sisters."
"Tengan mucho cuidado Hermana, Los hermanos se protejen unos a otros." 
(Be very careful sisters, brothers and sisters protect each other." He told us if anything happened to us he would beat someone up haha. He also tipped us off on someone he saw us teaching a few weeks ago, Maurice with some info... Yeah we won't be seeing him again. Ivan's got our back. 

We had a weird lesson with a guy who tricked us into meeting with him to slam us with anti mormon literature and to convince us we needed to be saved. He started asking really uncomfortable questions about the temple and garments.. So we shut that down quick and left. He actually used to be a member. 

Also, we may have finally found a way to teach Nora and Cicy, the Chinese mom and daughter we help with their English. Sunday as we were at our usual 4:00 appointment with them, I noticed the mom, Cicy, was wearing a cross. They asked us what missionary meant, so it was the perfect opportunity. Cicy speaks zero English, and Nora's is very limited, but she translates everything to her mom. We very simply explained that we teach about Jesus Christ, like her necklace, and pointed to our name tags. Turns out she didn't know what the cross was, or Jesus Christ, she just bought the necklace. We have no idea what their background is, but we did our best to explain the Book of Mormon is the simplest of English terms and they said they would read it, so we are going to order a Chinese Book of Mormon for them! 

We have been seeing this recent convert lately who is quite the character. This week he invited us over for hot dog dinner and to help him paint his trailer. So Pennsylvania. He told us he invited us because "he needed to talk to us about something- how are we ever going to find a man if we're always working and we're always together?" Hahaha. 

So we are teaching a Lutheran minister right now, haha. He's pretty cool, he's halfway through the Book of Mormon! I'll let you know what develops there later on.

Sunday was the most stressful day, as they always are. Sunday's are a headache, arranging rides, trying to get people to come to church, worrying about everyone, and then we ended up teaching gospel principles and relief society this week because the teachers didn't show. We seem to always be "on-call" for subbing in. At least one class each week. Haha. I don't mind actually, and it went well this week. 
We're putting on a Meet the Mormons movie night for everyone, so that's our project for the next few weeks. We invited the whole ward, and we'll have them invite friends and neighbors, and we'll invite all our investigators. Should be a really fun night! Everyone in the ward is already signing up for food, it's on the 28, so pray that goes well and people show. Haha. I love the Butler ward. Fun fact... Everyone here is related. Everyone. The ward is made up of three "clans" they call them- the Eberle's, the Popa's, and the Critchlow's.
We had a really great Zone training this week about the Book of Mormon. There really is so much power in that book. I have come to love it. When I first came out to the mission field I was determined to read through it again cover to cover, and I read the entire book in less than one week. I knew that I would not be able to convert anyone beyond my own conversion. 
The past five months I have had numberless encounters with "anti-Mormons." And it has been a huge blessing for me. At first each time left me feeling so frustrated, humiliated, and mad. A few times in particular I remember well. I just wanted to dish it back to them. But all I did each time was bear my testimony, and leave feeling pretty defeated. I have mentioned before that the first couple times I was scared that it was effecting my own testimony. Those nights are the nights I spent praying the hardest. I am so grateful for those experiences. 
There are just so many miracles I get to experience and be a part of every single day here, I wish I could share them all. 

The last thing I wanted to share is one that is more personal. Each week as I read my patriarchal blessing I am amazed at how much I can see my mission written on those pages. I laugh now because I remember how disappointed I was when my blessing did not specify that I would serve a mission. And I struggled deciding if I was supposed to go. Reading it now everything in there is about the things I am going through and the things I see people going through out here, and all the special people I meet. This week the line that stuck out to me was 

"...through these struggles which may sometimes pull at your very heart strings, you will come to know of the Savior's love and understand His Atonement more deeply. Your soul will be further expanded, your heart will be further enlarged, and you will be better able to serve others as a disciple of the Lord...." 

Couldn't say it better myself. 

I love this work. And I love being a missionary, thank you to those who help me through hard days and help me get to the good! 

"When it comes to serving the Lord, He cares just as much about the instrument as He does the task at hand."

I am in good hands.(:
With love,
Hermana Sears💜

Ps. Watch this video attached. 

Lifting Burdens (3:35)

Lifting Burdens (3:35) Apostles of Jesus Christ testify of the Savior's power to heal, change, and purify us through His Atonement.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Take Me Out To The Ballgame....

Sister Sears and Sister Welch...



Swapped my Pday so today's the day! We're at the Pirates game in Pittsburgh vs the Dodgers! Gonna be a good one. Should be the perfect day for the game, no rain yet. We're right behind third, and we're here with my comp Sister Welch's grandparents who are serving here as well, by total coincidence. 
Mom, you got to talk to my companion's mom this week again? Her grandparents were referring to MLC, where all the district leaders, zone leaders, and missionaries in leadership positions meet monthly with the mission president for training. Sister welch and I, the Butler sisters got recognized in MLC this week, her grandparents were there. 
It was an interesting week. Monday was fun in downtown Pitt running around. No missed buses this time.  We did run into "crazy Mike," the man who assaulted the Elder in Pittsburgh. He just got out of jail, haha. We smiled and said hello and kept walking. His picture has been sent through the whole mission so we know who to avoid haha. 
I could bore you with updates, but here's a quick one. We're teaching a variety of people. Speaking of, one of our investigators got out of prison last week, (not Thomas) so we were pretty excited. It was crazy, the first time we met him he told us about a dream he had about the scripture James 1:5! I couldn't believe it. 
This week I taught the most unconventional Plan of Salvation lesson yet. We showed up to Christy's and she was working on laundry, so I fed her baby while she worked, and we taught the Plan of Salvation. At the end of her lesson she said she wanted her whole family to be baptized. (Her kids are 1 and 4) but that was really cool. I am almost reserved in getting to excited though, because she and her husband smoke. I never knew that would be the biggest challenge to overcome with people I teach. It has been so frustrating.
Bill's date is still pending  him quitting. He is still smoking "a few puffs" of a cigarette a day. But he's trying, and we're doing our best to help him. 
We have so many friends around Butler... Anywhere we go we run into people, or we hear them haha. We know just about every homeless person in Butler, from walking around or from serving at Katie's Kitchen. Sometimes we're teaching outside somewhere and our friends will just walk up and join us, haha.  
Okay now for the interesting part.... We ended up in the ER twice this week in two days. (Don't worry mom- not for us.) 
We were walking around the Butler hospital and there was a woman sitting on the side of the curb, didn't look good. She had a patient belongings bag, four patient wristbands, and still had ekg pads on. I knew something was up, so we tried asking her if we could help. She was in no shape to be out, she couldn't speak, and was trying to walk five miles to the methadone clinic to be there in the morning when they open. That's a big thing here. She was having severe withdrawals, couldn't walk straight. We could hear her mom on the phone pleading with her to go back to the hospital and get help. 
We couldn't leave her wandering the street, so we walked with her. She finally sat down to take a rest and started crying. Sister Welch was on the phone with the hospital trying to tell them the situation. So about an hour later, I talked her into signing herself back into the hospital. 
We went back to see her the next morning, and she was still in bad shape, crying and begging for methadone. Unfortunately it seemed to be completely routine for the nurses and docs here. Just another day in Butler. It was so sad. 
So this morning we were teaching Ross, and an elderly woman tripped and fell and hit her head on the concrete right next to us, and was  bleeding uncontrollably. We called an ambulance and I got to play paramedic and held the bleeding back until they arrived. We went back to see her at the hospital later that day, but she was in getting X-rays. She should be okay. 
So I guess we were put where we were supposed to be at the right time for both of these people! The life of a missionary in Butler always keeps you on your toes. 

Anyway, I'm at the game, go Bucs!!💛⚫️
Hermana Sears💜

Ps. The church is true. 

El mensaje de la Restauración (2:22)

El mensaje de la Restauración (2:22) Declaramos al mundo que la plenitud del evangelio de Jesucristo ha sido restaurada a la tierra.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Those Pittsburgh Thunderstorms....

The more you love the people here the harder it gets!

Hey fam💜 

Not a whole lot to report on this week. We've been crazy busy. I'm pretty exhausted. Things aren't really looking up yet. My patience is really being tried here. But we're doing well. The more you love the people here the harder it gets! 
I'm just happy to be here and very happy to be a part of the greatest work on earth. A missionary!  

Hermana Sears