June 29, 2015

Miracles and the Modesto Mission

Happy Monday!

Happy to hear that everyone's week has been going well and that the house is under contract! I'll continue to keep that in my prayers! Any fun plans for the fourth of July yet?

Sister Wilson and I have had an eventful week here in Lodi. On Thursday we had a farewell get together with the two other zones to say goodbye to president and sister jardine. Definitely a bittersweet afternoon but it was great to spend a few hours with them one last time. They are such incredible people and I know they will continue to do a great job for the Sacramento missionaries. President Palmer arrived last night and we received a phone call from the new assistants inviting us to a meeting with the other district and zone leaders at President's new home on Wednesday; so we're excited to meet him and his wife as well as the other leaders. 

A few weeks ago before I entered the area, the hermanas told us about a girl named Taylor that was friend's with a daughter in their ward that is interested in the gospel. So this week we called the number that they gave us and left a message. The next day, Taylor's sister, Vanessa called us back and said that she would be more than happy to have us teach Taylor! Turns our that Vanessa and her husband (who are the legal guardians) are actually less active members, they've moved around a lot and haven't ever stayed anywhere long enough to get settled in a ward, so they said that this would be a great opportunity to teach Taylor and also for them to start coming back to church as well. We're meeting with them on Thursday so please keep them in your prayers!

There's quite a few troubled teens that we've been working with; it breaks your heart hearing about these 14 year olds who are already drinking hard liquor and have horribly abusive boyfriends but we know how good it is for us to keep in touch with them and to continue visiting and working with them. They have the righteous desires of wanting to serve missions and being active in the church but getting there and staying on the path is the hard part. 

Sunday we were asked to go visit a sister that was in our area but wasn't in our records. So we went to go see her, turns out there's a psych ward/facility in the neighborhood...she's a less active member but wanted missionaries to come by. As we were talking with her and waiting for the elders to come give her a blessing, another patient that was living there comes up to me with a book of mormon and starts asking all of these questions. It's hard to talk with these people, especially when you want to teach everyone you possibly can but difficult when you don't know who mentally stable they are...but it was a good reminder that we are all God's children and that he loves each of us despite the challenges or illnesses we have. So we'll see what happens with both of them!

Last week, Sister Kandare emailed me that in the elk grove zone they did a missionary gathering where they all got together and had a testimony meeting and were given balloons to write their fears on and then send off. Sister Wilson, the zone leaders and I thought that would be a great idea to do here in Lodi as we start this new mission with a new president. We called the elk grove sister training leaders to get a few of their ideas and how they did it. Sister Wilson and I were given permission to go out on Saturday to buy balloons...who would have thought getting 14 stupid balloons would be so difficult?! Seriously, it took us 6 stores and 3 hours but we FINALLY got them! We had our zone gathering last night, starting with the zone leaders sharing a thought on how we can continue to be unified as a zone and in our purpose, all bearing our testimonies and then writing any fears we might have on a card and tying it to the end of a balloon and sending them off. It was a great way to get everyone together and remind us all of the goals we've set to stay on purpose and lose ourselves in the work. 

We're looking forward to a good week here and excited to meet the Palmers and the other missionaries! I love this work and know that it is true!

Love you all, until next week!

Sister Allen 

Burning a skirt for my 9 months!

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