Tuesday, January 26, 2016

throwback to my first area, a visit with Tippy and jungle life

Hello to everyone near and dear!!!
This week has been great, per the usual, and we only have a week left tip the transfer is over!!
Sad day.
It has been a longer transfer because the last one was a week shorter due to Christmas. And I'm so grateful, because being with Sister Pilkington is the best. YSA is the best and so is being in a family ward. Like President told me, I live the best of both worlds!! Hannah Montana's got nothing on me!!!
Sooo this week. Starting with Tuesday evening, we street contacted before our awesome YSA activity. And right before it started our investigator Eddie texted us and asked what activities the branch was doing tonight. And we were splitting up and going to find and visit people who we haven't seen in a while. We told him that and he asked if he could come. So of course we said yes! He loved it! It was really cool to see how much he has changed and he's already living the gospel so much! It was a great night.
Then Wednesday morning we had a wonderful broadcast for the missionaries all around the world. It was fantastic. All about teaching repentance and baptizing converts!!!! And man, is that happening! But two things I took away from it and I'm really trying to apply are helping the investigator recognize what the spirit is instead of them sharing an experience and me just telling them what it is. It's more powerful when they have that realization for themselves. And to also really intently listen to my companion while she's speaking, or to whomever is speaking, not to be thinking about what I'll say next or what to do, but just listen. That's how the spirit works. They said the most important missionary is one that is listening. They might have observed something the talking missionary did not.  I should be better. I tend to zone out but I'm doing a lot better! It was Elder Bednar who brought it up and it was comforting to hear him say he's done it too. These apostle are legitimate. We were able to hear from Elder Bednar, Elder Anderson, Sister Oscarson, Elder Clayton, and another brother. All very insightful and something that will definitely help this mission move forward.
After the broadcast we had a lesson on the Holy Ghost. The broadcast had perfect timing. We were able to apply what was taught. We were teaching Eddie about the Holy Ghost and just listening and the through the power of the scriptures we were able to help him identify the spirit and he now has a BAPTISMAL DATE FOR FEBRUARY 20th!!!!!!!!!! Oh man he is so COOL!!
I've never seen someone so humbled, it was amazing! The gospel is true and it changes everyone, if you accept i, you can't force it on people, you can only introduce it to them. It's up to them to accept and I'm so happy Eddie has!! We also taught Jake, the recent convert, and he went to the temple on Friday!!! We weren't able to go because he didn't bring a family name but he went with some YSA and he said he loved it and it was amazing! He said he can't wait to go through the whole thing! The temple works miracles. Jake said he had always dreamed of going inside but he couldn't believe he was actually able to. I'm so happy for him! The temple rocks!!!!
We also got to teach Vanessa, our Spanish/American investigator. We invited the Hermanas to come (Sisters that speak Spanish). We taught on the atonement and it was powerful. We just wanted Vanessa to have the option of going to the Spanish or English congregations yet. She speaks both fluently. She hasn't decided yet... But she came to church on Sunday, our ward, so we might still be teaching her!!!! It was an awesome Spanglish lesson. We also saw our investigator Derek who is dating a member. We taught him the restoration and he expressed the desire of wanting to be sealed to his girlfriend! That's awesome, not everyone has that desire but I am so happy he does! This church ROCKS!!!!
We also had a super late dinner with a nonmember that night. It was interesting to say the least. Good times with tacos. And I don't think I ever mentioned it but I had a cold and passed it on to Sister P at the end of December and because of her exercise induced asthma she had a VERY bad cough. Like VERY bad. And she started to get over it but then she'd always tell me her ribs hurt, so we called Sister Schmitt who is a doctor and the mission nurse. They had us set an appointment with the missionary doctor. We went there on Thursday and found out that her rib is either sprained or cracked! They didn't want to x-ray it because it would be treated the same either way and they didn't want to unnecessarily expose her to radiation. But she's sneezed a couple times and heard pops, so I would assume if it wasn't cracked it is now. Don't worry I won't let her bend down or carry anything. She ices it every morning and puts heat on it every night. Nurse Whitcomb in action!!!!
But Thursday was also amazing because we had interviews with President Schmitt!! He's a great man and I'm always all smiles when I meet with them. We talked about what I'm going to apply since the missionary training and I asked him how I could help the sisters I'm over. It was a very sacred experience, one I'll forever remember.
Eddie called us and asked if we could read with him which was a tender mercy because we are low on miles. Instead of wandering around trying to find someone to teach, we got to read with Eddie! It was legit. The Book of Mormon is true! Read it. We also got to teach Taylor. I love her so much!
Then Friday we planned. We couldn't do it on Thursday due to the doctor's visit. It was good though because we were able to use time wisely as Sister P rested. We had coordinations with our branch/ward mission leaders and then Friday night we started our exchange with the Hillsdale and Jamul sisters!!! (Because the broadcast was on Wednesday we did it on Friday)
HILLSDALE AND JAMUL WERE MY FIRST AREAS SO I WAS EXCITED!!! Because I got to go back to HILLSDALE AND JAMUL!!! AHHHH!!! And what was even better, I got to be with Sister 'Eukaliti!!!!! She was Sister Wardinsky's companion after I left the area. She's the best! She's from Tonga and loves this work! I've never seen such a hard working sister! It was so awesome to see the Mahaffeys again! When we were coming back for the night Elder Mahaffey locked us out so we rang the doorbell and he came and open it and was so surprised to see me! It was so cute. He just gave me a big hug... classic Elder Mahaffey! He and Sister Mahaffey kept on saying how good I looked, so sweet of them! I love them a lot! :) And have no fear, Sister 'E and I took a selfie with Tippy the cat. He's getting big!
At the Mahaffeys with Tippy and Sister 'E
Probably because of all the baby rabbits he's eating! But it was great. These Sisters are rocking it!! They have new investigators and are working with some I did. But we got to go to the Mormon Battalion with SISTER KRAGE!!! She is the best and I love her a lot! She even fed us a healthy dinner at the end. I love seeing these people that I love!
We taught one of their investigators Kevin, he's cool. And he will be baptized on February 13th!! When we invited him we invited him to be baptized on the 20th, but he's like "Why so late?" It was awesome. I love people! We then were able to teach one of their new investigators and a recent convert! I love it all so much. Too much joy to be found! We switched back Saturday night.
Then Sunday. Game day. A great day! Eddie, Stephanie, Julie, and Vanessa all came! I stayed in YSA this time. It's always a blast. I love all the people we teach. They rock! And might I just say Julie is the best! Sister P and I were able to go to young women's with her. She rocks! She was participating. And we found out that this past week she went to her first stake youth dance!!! AHHHHHHHH!!!!!! How cool is that? She's the best!!! I wish Emily could come up here and dance with her! That would be so funny. She's also coming to mutual activities!! And she's in skits that the youth are doing! I LOVE HER activities!! And she's in skits that the youth are doing! I LOVE HER SOO MUCH!! We taught her that night, and she rocks! We also taught her last night and then read through The Book of Mormon with her. She's awesome. She likened it so well to herself and even inserted her name in some of the verses! I'm so excited for February 13th!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Then yesterday we also taught Eddie and it was really cool. He opened up to us a lot and talked about how he didn't know where he would be if it wasn't for us, but little does he know it's the gospel! I really haven't done anything! It's all the Lord! Can't take any credit! But it was sweet, he even cried. Emotions rock! But on a funny note he calls Sister Pilkington and I, Sister Whilkom and Sister Pilkinsin. I love it so much! Nicknames are the best! And the funny part is that's just how he pronounces our names. It's the best! We also got to teach a past street contact named Gabriel. He is SOOO funny!! And the funny part was we taught at a Starbucks. First lesson at a Satrbucks, but hey, it's still a lesson and it rocked! He wants to learn more so I'm pumped! (Especially for the word of wisdom lesson.)  ;)
The seniors in the stake put on another lunch for the missionaries in the stake so we went to that, so sweet! That night we also entered into a jungle. The house literally had a jungle in front of it. And it was late at night and all the lights were off. It was pitch dark. Was I slightly scared? Yes. Did a cat jump out of a tree and scare me? Yes. And were there many NO TRESPASSING signs? Yes. Did we trespass anyway? Yes. Sister P knocked on the door as I was cutting the circulation off to her hand.
All of a sudden we heard a voice. I heard "GET OFF MY LAND!" As soon as I heard that I started running. But then Sister P grabbed me and said that he said he was just coming. So I came back and the door opened and we saw no one. But we heard a voice and started talking to him. We learned he was investigating but things happened. So we invited him to church, he came out to shake our hands and he had these HUGE eyes. He was basically Albert Einstein.
And he started telling us how he has no utilities and he just walks around his house with a flashlight. He tells us we can come back during the day. We left and got in the car and Sister P tells me that she realized that the man was the one who the ward mission leader told us to stay away from.
Cool.
I guess we won't be going back!
Oh man.
Good times in the jungle.
I love missionary life. I love laughing at myself and I especially love all of YOU! Keep rocking it and be careful whenever you go into a jungle! :)
Love,
Sister Whitcomb

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

WAY good.

HELLOOOOO!!!
Oh man, I wish I could show you all my excitement and happiness in this letter but I truly can't. I just love my mission, I love all my companions, I love my area, I love the people I teach, I love how I'm so happy! Everyone should feel like this, so they need the gospel.
Because the mission hasn't changed me, the mission has taught me to live the gospel and the gospel has changed me! It's a glorious thing!
Oh man.
Exchanges galore this week!
On Wednesday I went to LaMesa to be with Sister Vernier, she is currently in training and has been out for about five or six weeks. She rocks it! She took over the area with ease, knew where everything was and is so good in lessons! She is such a consecrated missionary, I learned so much from her! She's the sweetest and it was fun to be with her and street contact with her. It's the best!
with cute Sister Vernier
Also, we stopped by this member's home to give them a family mission plan. Genius by the way, they have the family set goals for how many people they invite to church, how many people to a Family Home Evening in their home, how many copies of the Book of Mormon they give away, and how many baptisms they helped take place. So cool! Anyways, we asked them for referrals and they gave us one in Africa! Super cool.
Then they sent us to a neighbor's house, and their little son followed us, and he referred us to several other houses! He's the coolest! Love kids; they are such great missionaries! Love those sisters, her companion and trainer is Sister Starr, who was my STL, she's the best!
Then on Thursday we had weekly planning, always a good time full of inspiration. We tried to find a former investigator who was referred to us by a member. We had a couple of laughs in between and helped people feel the spirit! So all in all a good day. ALSO WE MET WITH JAKE, A RECENT CONVERT WHO IS GOING TO GO TO THE TEMPLE THIS THURSDAY AND DO BAPTISMS!!!! So exciting!!!!
Friday we had district meeting and it was WAY good. We talked about being successful missionaries and how the only perfect missionary is Jesus Christ, and the way we can become perfect is by being successful, by being a committed missionary. Trying everyday to do so!
Friday night we also had the coolest lesson with Julie Webb, our 15 year old investigator who's dad is a member. But to back up we've been talking about as missionaries how it's better to have quality time rather than quantity. For example, we could be trying a lot of people and feeling busy or we could be doing something useful like prepping a member for a lesson so the lesson is powerful and impactful and the investigator makes great decisions! Well we've been trying really hard to do that, so we found a young woman fellowshipped for Julie; she's 14 and actually for personal progress wants to do one of her projects by coming out with us! How cool is that? So a couple of hours before the lesson we go over and we prep her, we tell her what we are going to teach and how she can contribute and then we role play with her. She did awesome! And then we brought her mom with us as well and it was one of the best lessons EVER!!!
Doug, AGAIN, bore powerful testimony and told us how he knew the church was true, (SO COOL!!!)
Our 14 year old fellowshipped and her mom were AWESOME at teaching and JULIE COMMITTED TO BE BAPTIZED ON FEBRUARY 13th!!!!!!!!!! I'M SOOO EXCITED!!!!!!!! She's so prepared, she came to church on Sunday and I introduced her to the Bishop and they got along really well. She went to all three hours and then we had a lesson with her right after church and she talked about how she wanted to go to Girl's Camp!!!!!
SHE'S SOOO COOL!!! I love her a lot.
Anyway, Friday night we did an exchange with some other Sisters and I went back to my area with a Sister from South Korea; her name is Sister Seo!!! She is literally one of my favorite people!!! She is such a good street contacted, she's awesome at teaching the gospel and she's so funny! She laughs all the time and I love it!
Sister Seo loves waffle fries
We were able to meet with a former investigator, Linda, and we taught her and she wants to learn again! So cool! Hopefully the next lesson we will have at the Temple! :) :) :) :)
I love the temple, especially San Diego Temple!!
We also met with an investigator, Stephanie, who has been meeting with missionaries for a very long time and finally she committed to a baptismal date! It's in June but I'm so happy for her, she wants to follow Jesus Christ!!! It's awesome.  :)
So that was our Saturday.  :)
Then Sunday was go go GO!!! Classic Sunday, Julie came, our investigator Eddie came, (he's changing so much it's awesome!!), and so did Stephanie! It was a good day. :) And I got to go to primary! They had us talk to the kids about what missionaries are and what we do and how they can be missionaries! It was awesome, kids are so smart and are the BEST missionaries. So make sure you use them! :)
Anyways, then the rest of the day was spent practicing and performing in the mission president's devotionals! The BEST things ever! And guess what? I got to play piano for the whole entire thing! It really was quite an honor and I know I was guided by the spirit because I literally practiced for like an hour and then performed. I'm also very grateful for my music teacher Mrs. Wardwell, for teaching me and making me sight read! Truly a blessing! And everyone kept saying "Thank your Mother for us!" So Mom, from everyone in SanDiego, THANK YOU! You rock. :)
It was beautiful, beautiful music, beautiful testimonies, videos, and guess what? It was in BEAUTIFUL PENASQUITOS!!! MY LAST AREA!!!
And it was Sister Pilkington's last area so we both and so much fun seeing old friends! And one of our investigators Sister P and I both taught, Beans, has a baptismal date for January 30th!!!!!! My international trio is ROCKING it!! I love that area and miss it SO much!!! :) :) :) :)
Sunday was just a dream and I even got to see some of my favorite members from my first area!! It rocked, and Sisters Stewart, Carlson, Espanto, Leyva, Purcell, Wilson were there!!! And so many more people that I LOVE!!! Truly I don't know what I would have done if I had never met them! I LOVE THEM SO MUCH!!!
Monday was just fun as well, we were with Maddy, one of our favorite YSAs; she's like our third companion! We tried a lot of people with her and she even fed us dinner! She rocks! Cali burritos for the WIN! (Except Sister P and I almost got food poisoning from them... Good times!) :)
Also our favorite Hermanas, Spanish Sisters, took us to this cute little restaurant called Izzy's Restaurant. It reminded me a lot of Parker's Maple Barn. I love the area I serve in and the people I serve around!!! :) :) :)
With the Hermanas at Izzy's Cafe
Oh.My.Gosh. I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!!! And it's already been eight months. :( :(
I love these people. It's truly the best experience for me and I encourage all those who are on the fence about going on a mission, GO!! A man at the devotional I went to on Sunday talked about how we need more missionaries! We need YOU!!! Love you all!
Love,
Sister Whitcomb

PS the reason this email is so late is because we went to the temple this morning with Sister P's old companion, my old STL, and she's my Sister because Sister Stewart trained her as well.
I love Sister Wilson!!!
And the Temple. It was so wonderful!

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Miracles with Fibelton and White

HELLOOOOOO!!!!
How are my favorite people? I truly do appreciate all the love and letters you have sent me! You are the BEST!! And I am feeling like I'm on top of the world! Even with El Nino in town! If some of you don't know, San Diego has been experiencing a storm, a rain storm! It was supposed to come a while ago! And now it has come! And yet last p-day we still decided to go to old town! With some of my FAVORITE sisters! It was so fun to run in the rain from shop to shop and get Mexican food!
 Old Town with the best!!!!
We got SOAKED! But it was fun, so nice to see and laugh with Sisters I love! Sister Carlson, Sister Stewart, and other lovely sisters! We got soaked and then we were shaking for the rest of the night, but that's okay! Why is that okay? BECAUSE WE FOUND AN INVESTIGATOR FOR YSA!!
A YSA was feeding us on Tuesday and he texted us and said he was bringing a friend, who is not a member. So we ate some pizza and talked about the gospel! And Andre is at a point in his life where he just wants to start over and surround himself with good people with good morals. Perfect place for him!! So we are excited to teach him more! It's just hard to meet with him because he works a lot! But I'm so excited!!!
Then on Wednesday we went on exchanges with the sisters who reside in Chula Vista! Sister Cava and Sister Wencel!
Exchanges with the BEST!!!
Lovely sisters! Lovely!
Sister Wencel!!!
And I had the fortunate opportunity to be with Sister Wencel in her area, Chula Vista! It was so fun!
We saw some cool miracles! We were able to talk to a LOT of people and we were able to set some appointments for them to see people they haven't in a while, and set one of their investigators with a baptismal date! Great day, full of wet shoes and big smiles.
Their area also includes Coronado, which is a little island, so cool to see! It was fun.  :)
Full of missionary opportunities! And Sister Wencel is just getting out of training and she is FANTASTIC!!! I love her. I love everyone! And in my area with Sister Pilkington and Cava, they saw a TON of miracles. They were able to add Ella, the girl who came to church on Sunday and has a friend serving in South Korea, and apparently it was a great lesson! I was sad I missed it, but she wants to be baptized before March!! She has such a great spirit, I just love her instantly! She basically already knows the church is true so that is AWESOME!!!
And then they were able to find potentials, didn't work out but still cool! They were able to teach the Restoration in the rain, they are awesome!
And one of our former investigators, Eddie, called them and wanted to meet with us! So we met with him on Thursday! And when we met with him, we got him into spiritual shape! We've taught him everything he needs to know, it's just up to him. HE JUST NEEDS TO COME TO CHURCH!!!
And so does everyone else.
We also were able to teach our recent convert, Jake Grover. HE GOT THE PRIESTHOOD ON SUNDAY!!!
And so did Anthony!!!
It was awesome, and the next step will be to bring a family name to the temple!! We are getting there, close! So close!
We then taught, taught, taught in the rain!!
On Friday we had zone meeting, full of council, full of wise words, full of inspiration during role play. And might I just say role play is inspired. I receive so much revelation when Sister P and I do it! It's the best.
We saw Anthony and worked on family history with him and then we ate at our Ward Mission Leader's house. He has an eight year old daughter and she gave us nicknames, hence the title of this letter.
She was trying to guess our first names, and she guessed Sister Pilkington's name is Fibelton. And then Sister P says "Fibelton Pilkington, my parents really loved me." I DIED LAUGHING!
And then she guessed my first name is White. I guess I don't have a tan. She thinks I look like Snow White, so hence the name. White Whitcomb; my parents also loved me.  :)
So White and Fibelton, we will baptize the thousands!!!!!  :)
Then on Saturday we met with a member who is struggling. It was really spiritual. I'm so grateful I have the gift of the spirit or else it would be really hard to HAVE the spirit!
We also had our correlation meetings with our two ward/branch mission leaders. It's an important thing, so if you ever have that calling, do it. It's a great thing. We also had two members come out with us at two different times. It was really fun, teaching some lessons, contacting people on the street. Hopefully both of them will go on missions soon!
Sunday: game day.
We had three investigators total from both congregations. Sad but great at the same time! Vanessa, our Spanish/American investigator came with her two sons, and Stephanie, a YSA, came, and our new investigator Philip came! Philip wasn't an investigator until later Sunday night, but he still came to church!
He's been to church several times but the member he has been dating has struggled to set up a time with us. But we finally did! We met with him at 7:00 pm. He is so prepared! And my companion says he looks like Paul Rudd. I have no idea who that is. But he's so cool! When we told him the Joseph Smith story he goes "That is soo awesome! I'm so glad you introduced me to this!"
It was awesome and he committed to be baptized February 13th! HE IS SOOO COOL!!! I'm PUMPED!! So another new investigator!!! It was awesome.  :)
Monday was also awesome. Because guess why......?
I FINALLY GOT TO SEE TAYLOR MCDANIEL!!!! My first convert! It was awesome, I jumped when I saw her! She's one of my favorites.  :)
T McD!!!
We also saw Eddie who has recently been struggling. He is at his lowest low. But I'm very grateful for that because it reminds me of Alma 32, when Alma saw his brethren were humbled he REJOICED! And so did I. It was a great lesson, full of the spirit!
We then had a wonderful dinner with the Whitlocks, the purple couple from my favorite Mormon Message, "Expressions of Love." They are the CUTEST!! Complete with a Cali burrito.  :)
I love this work so much!
I love the people I serve with!
I know everything is for a reason!
The Lord is preparing so many people for me and I am so grateful!!
I LOVE ALL OF YOU!
Rely on the Lord and all will be well.  :)
Love,
Sister Whitcomb
video

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

HAPPY NEW YEAR LOVED ONES!!!!!

Man, can you believe it's 2016? And I got to spend more than half of it as a missionary!!! How exciting is that? Pretty exciting. I have learned so much this past year, I learn so much every single week. I love my new area, my new companion, and my new position as a missionary. Being a Sister Training Leader stretches me in the best way.
Tuesday, for our p-day, we went to Old Town! It's really fun. 
We parked at the Mormon Battalion, walked all over; there are lots of Mexican shops with fun things and food. I found a couple of cool things. I love serving in San Diego!!!!!  :)  :)  :)
with the Spanish sisters
Today we are going to go back (haha we had so much fun!)  :)
Tuesday night was also really fun because Sister Schmitt asked us if we wouldn't mind having a young woman named Aubrey tag along with us for the night. Aubrey's family are very well acquainted with the Schmitts and they were in San Diego for Christmas! She's from South Jordan. She's going to BYU. Her boyfriend is currently taking the discussions so it was cool to talk to her about that. We had an appointment with a less active but that feel through, so we decided to stop at a member the Bishop asked us to visit who is also a recent convert. Her sons are nonmembers. Great opportunity for us!
Her son wasn't home but we were able to teach her the restoration and resolve some concerns she had about her primary calling and reading the Book of Mormon. It was cool. We tried to contact a referral. We street contacted with her. We even tracked a house because they had a nativity! Almost turned into a potential investigator. Almost.
Aubrey experienced it all and she was only with us for barely three hours! I loved being able to tell her how amazing missions are and how they change lives. We were able to commit her to praying about a mission.
She'd be a great missionary! And she is!
Then Wednesday was my first exchange with one of the sets of sisters we are over! 
So as sister training leaders we go on 24 hour exchanges with all of the sisters that we are over. That's five sets, so ten sisters. It's really fun!
We went on an exchange with Sister Bartel and Sister Atwood. We prayerfully decide who goes where and with whom. And even just after two weeks of being in this area the Lord wanted me to stay in the area and go with Sister Bartel. Sister Pilkington joined Sister Atwood in her area. It was fun. We had a lot of appointments so Sister Bartel experienced it all! Sister Bartel is actually a Temple Square Sister from Wisconsin. I love Temple Square Sisters!!!!!!!
She's a great missionary. I got to know her really well. I asked her non stop questions! So I definitely know she's awesome! We first met with Vanessa, our American/Spanish investigator,we watched the restoration with her and she said she knew it was true! But she still has things to resolve she doesn't want us to help her with.... So she sas she doesn't want to be baptized til March. A little ways away but it will sneak up soon! 
We then had an appointment with a YSA investigator named Stephanie. She's been investigating for a while, and she said she didn't want to get baptized til June. She's pretty firm, so we asked her what she's doing NOW to prepare. Let's just say it was an interesting lesson. But she's cool because she pays tithing and she's not even a member yet! Super cool. People inspire me. Then we raced over to a recent convert's home, taught a beast lesson, raced over to a returning less active's home and he gave us two cheese cakes so we truly scored! And then we racced over to a less active's home and they fed us a surprise dinner. (Fun fact: they gave me a HUGE pile of peas. I HATE peas. It's the one food I hate. Did I eat them? YES. Did I swallow them like pills? YES. Did I almost gag? YES. Was I still smiling? YES!!! It was free food and the peas are keeping me healthy! I guess. Another fun fact: Sister Bartel also hates peas. So we were dying together and we ate them all!)  :)
But they are such a sweet couple; Brother StGermaine makes HUNDREDS of wooden toys, and I might have mentioned it before but he gave Sister P and I a wooden turtle. We call him Santa because he literally gives away THOUSANDS of these toys, for free!!!! He's legitimate.
And we had a really spiritual restoration lesson, AND THEN ON SUNDAY HE CAME TO CHURCH!!!!
Woot woot!!! I was soooo happy! We also found Faith! (In the spiritual sense and the physical!) She's a person. And we found her! (Not without some struggles since her house is hidden!) And we set a return appointment for the next day but it was cool because Sister Bartel pretty much called her to repentance. Being a missionary is awesome.
We then met Anthony, the YSA who got baptized the day after Christmas! IT WAS SO AMAZING! We had a senior couple who works in the YSA (The Monks) come with us. They gave him his own set of scriptures! It was the nicest thing ever!  :) We then talked about the priesthood, (WHICH HE WILL BE RECEIVING ON SUNDAY!!!!!!) And we watched a video called "Sanctify Yourselves" and afterwards he said he had never felt the spirit so strongly and kept on describing it and how it covered his whole side of his body. SO COOL!!!!!! The spirit is amazing! So we had pretty much a GREAT exchange. We have another one tomorrow with some pretty AWESOME sisters. I'm so excited!!!!
Then.... NEW YEAR'S EVE!!! I've never smiled so much than on this day, and not even a lot happened! We walked around these apartment complexes for an hour and so many things happened that made us smile! We ran into a former investigator and she said she would try to be at church and that she is thinking about BAPTISM!!! Sweet. We were also walking and this car pulled over and it was DOUG! The secret less active we found whose daughter we are teaching! He wanted to see if we needed a ride. So sweet! And then we street contacted this mail woman, not interested, but as we were walking and she drove by, she waved and did a friendly honk at us! I LOVE PEOPLE!!!! We also found a less active family and committed them to church! Super cool! They didn't come but hopefully soon!!! And then Faith, the woman we found last night, we had a super powerful lesson with her. We talked about forgiveness and relying on the Savior. And I've never felt the spirit work so strongly through me. It was awesome. And then on Sunday since we cover two congregations Sister P and I have to split up.
So Faith was my companion! And she stayed all three hours!! It's been a struggle for her so I am SO proud of her.  :)  But New Year's Eve we had to be in early for safety by 6:00 pm.
We then weekly planned. It was a very inspiring planning session, complete with Panda Express!! A night well spent. :) :)
At 9:00 pm we shouted HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! In honor of the East Coast. :)
Friday, I was SO tired. I felt bad, but I kept pressing forward because I knew it's what I needed to do! And I know it won't get easier! We had a really cool district meeting about teaching people, not just lessons. Addressing their needs. So in order to practice that, we taught our companions, as our companions, and what their specific needs are. Super inspiring.
Saturday was also REALLY fun! In each Ward there is a couple called as YSA representatives to help the youth transition and come to the YSA branch! So we went on splits with one of them, Sister P went with Sister Gordon, the couple representative, and I went with a YSA in that ward. Her name is Maddie and she is AWESOME! She's thinking about a mission too, so it was SO fun!
We actually saw a cool miracle. We tried this one girl's house but she wasn't home. But her killer dog was. Have no fear we became friends.
But her apartment mate was home and we were able to get his number to teach him more! WAY COOL!
THEN later last night he texted us and asked if we would be in the area, so we quickly grabbed Maddie again and raced over! Not only was Mike there but his roommate, who is dating the less active was there! His name is Derek. So we taught Derek and Mike and it was AWESOME! At the end of the lesson we learned that Derek had actually taken some of the lessons before and was pretty interested. And at the end I was able to let the spirit work through me and bear testimony of the Book of Mormon and the importance of change and being truly converted to the gospel! Miracle!!!
So they are both YSA investigators now.  :)  I LOVE IT!!!
But back to Saturday. We taught another returning less active, they are the BEST, and then we taught Anthony, and he had his notepad and everything! Spirit was strong again and he is so ready for all the next steps! Temple, a calling, and the priesthood! All should happen very soon...... We also laughed a lot that day which is also important for your health.  :)
Sunday is game day!
The moment of truth whether people show up or not!
Sadly we had no investigators BUT right before the YSA sacrament started a girl showed up. Her name is Ella. She has a friend who is currently serving a mission, who gave her a Book of Mormon, and brought her to church a couple of times. And guess what? Her friend is serving in South Korea Seoul mission! Same as Elder Lewis! Pretty sweet. I then went on to learn that her friend entered the MTC in August and left in October!  Pretty sure the same time Elder Lewis did..... Pretty cool. So it helped bond us really quickly. She enjoyed sacrament meeting and we are going to meet with her on Wednesday!! I'M SO PUMPED!!!!!!!!!!!! She's awesome.
The family ward was also great. A tragedy recently happened and the sacrament meeting was so strong. Tragedies really either bring us closer to Christ or we turn away from him. I would recommend turning toward him because the alternate is not a happy route! Christ is the best.
We then also taught Doug! And his daughter Julie!
(Remember the secret less active)
We taught the plan of Salvation, the spirit was of course strong AGAIN!!! Ah, I love that family! They should be in church on Sunday!
And Julie said the most heartfelt prayer ever at the end! She loves her Dad and he loves her. I LOVE IT!
Sister P and I then had a most EMBARRASSING dinner ever. We went to a classy member's home, and long story short, Sister P had a coughing fit and almost barfed on their table.
Then later on I missed a step and flew down their hallway. Good times. Classy sisters. What can I say?
We then found a lot of potentials on the street and a member was able to tell us an investigator he used to teach with the Elders a while back. EXCITED TO TRY THEM ALL!!!
And then Monday was my first mission leader Council meeting.
President Schmitt, the Assistants, the Zone Leaders and the Sister Training Leaders all gather together and council about goals and things to do in the mission and what certain trainings will be on and how we can improve. Let's just say to keep it short I receive a LOT of revelation for myself, my area, and the sisters we are serving over! So cool!!!!! And we set a goal as a mission to reach 1,000 baptisms in 2016!!! We can totally do it, with all the promises General Authorities have given us and all the new things to do and try! Miracles will happen! And they definitely did for us right after because we were able to get a solid referral for the Elders and then add Mike and Derek! I love life! ESPECIALLY as a missionary!
One of my favorite quotes from the leadership meeting was "It's amazing what you can do when you have to do it!"
This is true. And I love doing this work. I love stretching myself, and I love studying Christ every single day!! And I love all of you!
Stay close to Christ!
And know that this classy sister loves YOU!
Love,
Sister Whitcomb