Time goes by so quick! I can’t believe I’m writing yet another e-mail home.

This week has been so good with lots of things going on.

We were able to speak to Monica – the lady who called in for the video. She wasn’t quite as excited as we had hoped and instead just had more questions – we were able to help resolve her concerns and we ended up reading the Book of Mormon with her. In the middle of reading 2 Nephi 31 she just says “I want to be baptised”. We’re like, yeah that’s ok, but we still need to teach you! The difficulty in this situation is that the elders never set up a return appointment with her so it’s difficult to get her to progress without the support arriving in person!
So on Fridays we do a flag pole tour at 12. It means that we stand by the flag pole in the middle of the square and invite people to come on a tour. Only problem is that the organ recital begins at 12 too. And we’re stood next to the tabernacle so naturally people go to the organ recital as it only happens once a day. We head over to west gate to return the pass along cards we had picked up for the tour (it’s the information booth and the sisters in there assign the tours and everything) and they offer us to take an airport tour – basically people who take the shuttle from the airport to see temple square/SLC while waiting for their next flight. It was a family of 3 from Germany and a mother and daughter from Texas. Anyway, this woman, called Shauna is just in awe at everything we show her. We finish off at the Christus and while we are playing the narration I just think we need to stick around and speak to Shauna and her daughter more. We do and she tells us she is on her way to Fresno to see her friend who recently lost both her grandparents. We learn a lot about her and the trials she goes through. We decide to take her through the God’s Plan presentation. At the end we ask her what she thought and she just says “Well, I never thought I would find answers in Salt Lake City! I’m going to have to read a lot more about what you believe”. We were able to teach her more there and she gave us her contact details to call her. We bumped into her again before she left. She was telling us how she didn’t want to leave Temple Square as she just feels so good here. They were flying standby and had to go back to the airport to see if they made it on the next flight but she just wanted to stay. I called her on Tuesday and she was just so excited. She had lost the material we had given her but she just asked for more to read. She is just eager to learn and we can’t wait to teach her tomorrow. She said that she felt a connection to us and had never before been able to speak as openly to anyone about what she believed and everything. She also told me I look like Adele. So that makes probably 10 times this week.
Now on Saturday we were walking around and I see this guy sat on his own. I say to Sister Peñalba that we should speak to him. She says he looks creepy (which he kinda did) and we keep walking. I’m like ‘Are you sure?’ then we get to the end of the planters and she turns round and just says ‘Yeah, we need to speak to him’. So we go to speak to him and I greet him and ask him how he is. He doesn’t speak English. Thankfully my companion speaks Spanish! So she begins speaking to him. It’s a little bit awkward what’s going on but she suddenly says to me “OK, he’s looking for what God wants him to do and he keeps coming to Temple Square. We’re going to share our conversion stories and then we are going to invite him to be baptised.” So that’s what we do! Sister Peñalba translates for me and he accepts the invitation to be baptised. We take him inside the visitor centre and give him a book of mormon. I invite him to go to church the next day, he accepts. We give him the address for his local spanish ward. Then we take him to the Christus. We bare testimony about Christ and then Sister Peñalba invites him to ponder and pray and to indicate to us when he wants us to pay the narration. When it’s all done he says “I know this is what God wants for me”. We spoke to Jose the next day and he had gone to church but the times were wrong and he had gone to an english ward but had still loved it. He prayed with us and he had set up an appointment to meet the missionaries on Tuesday. We spoke to him last night and we’re going to teach him on the square on Saturday! Jose is definitely our miracle of the week!
I don’t know if I have told you about Bill yet. He’s a 64 year old limo driver in New York. Sister Peñalba has been teaching him for the past two transfers. I absolutely love Bill, he’s so awesome. We end up just laughing so much and he sang a song for us this week down the phone. Anyway, Bill went to church for the first time this Sunday!! He even sent us a picture! And he loved it. He just totally felt like he belonged. These were the texts he sent us:
“I am very blessed to have you sister and the elders in my life at this time and the thought that came into my mind as I entered the church was that after 26 years that I have finally come home.”. He still won’t commit to baptism but we know that him attending church was a big step! I know that Bill will be baptised but it will be when it is his decision and not because we asked him.
Those are the main investigators this week although we have a lot more, they just aren’t making the same kind of progress.
A nice surprise this week was a gift of $50 from the Amundsens! Someone had dropped it off with Sister Isaksen. It was so lovely to know that they thought about me!
This morning we were able to watch a preview of a film that will be released soon – it was sooooo good. It’s called Meet the Mormons and challenges people’s opinions about what Mormons are like. It’s really good and I’m excited for it to be released. President told us it’s not just a visitor centre film, it’s going to be released online and everything so hopefully you’ll get to see it. The cool thing was that one of the people featured who lives in Kathmandu is the branch president we got one of our investigators in touch with. Or at least we think it was him….
Sister Peñalba and I have basically been living on burritos. I just love them so much and we just have a lot of rice and beans! We also have been healthy with lots of salads so don’t worry too much. We started an exercise routine called XBX for Women. It’s by the Canadian air force or something. President Poulsen presented it to the mission as it’s only 12 minutes a day and he really wants the mission to be healthy! So we do 15 minutes of running/jogging/sleep walking and that together.
Another piece of news: there was a cockroach in our living room which Sister Peñalba courageously killed and I vacuumed up. I also learnt the spanish work for cockroach is “cucaracha” and that song and dance is the cockroach…..
As it’s Easter this Sunday, Me and Sister Peñalba are hoping to go to Music and the Spoken word on Sunday. We were going to take Jose but as his ward times are different now, we don’t know if we can!
I don’t know if you have had the chance to see the “Because of Him” video on mormon.org. But I think it’s just amazing so you should all watch it. Such a reminder what Easter is all about. I think this has become one of my favourite scriptures, I first took notice of it while in the MTC and it’s become a sound favourite throughout my mission:  3 Nephi 9:13 – “O all ye that are spared because ye were more righteous than they, will ye not now return unto me, and repent of your sins, and be converted, that I may heal you?”. The atonement is real and the atonement heals. All he wants is for us to come to him so that he can heal us. And he says to return – we chose him once already before we came to this earth. I guess this scripture particularly stands out to me at the moment because I feel like I need healing and I know that it is only possible through Christ. If you haven’t watched the video here’s the site: http://easter.mormon.org/ – Paul Sleem’s face is even in it!
Love you lots and lots xxxxx