Hi family! Guess what?
My P-day was just changed yesterday so I am now with my new companion Sister Stolp from California and our official P-Day is Wednesday, so I get to check my emails again. Yay! It was nice to be able to read through the emails from my siblings because I missed out on reading them on Monday. It was so good to hear how they're doing and I know Sister J (Geena) is having a hard time but its to be expected and I don't look forward to that time myself. As a missionary, it's like you know what your purpose is and that there isn't anything better you could be doing with your time and life right now but serving God. But, when the time runs out then what? I particularly don't like transfers because many of my friends are either going home or coming back from outbound postings and then companionships change etc. (well I don't mind that part this time) but its really unsettling sometimes. I really feel sorry for the ones who are going home because it's almost as if they are forgotten, which is sad. I said goodbye to Sister Lane - our amazing AP from Canada - and Sister Kealamakia who is going back to Hawaii and then on to NZ. There are 27 sisters who have just gone outbound, which is one of the biggest groups yet to go out at the same time. Well, I've moved apartments so I am with most of the sisters now and I'm happy. I'm neighbours to Sister Olden whose new companion is Sister Vaivai's old companion - Sister Rakotovao from Madagascar - she is the sweetest person.
My new companion and I have had such a good day together. We were up around 5:00 a.m. because we had to drive her previous trainer to the airport as she is going outbound to California and then we came back and moved the rest of our stuff and then headed to the Square. We had some interesting chats via mormon.org and because of that we now have a new investigator which is so cool. New Year's Eve was cool! After P-day (which was spent mostly packing, cooking food and taking a nap) we went back to the Square to the TC (teaching center) where we spent some time on the phones and computers sending emails to our investigators but it was a little disheartening because no one wants to talk about God and Joseph Smith on New Year's Eve. At 9:00 p.m. we met in Theatre 1 and looked over our Mission blog to check out what has happened in the past year. Some sisters had made a movie about our mission and their were photos and videos about New Year's Eve along with goals that some sisters had set for the New Year. At 10:00 p.m. we had our own, "fake countdown" with sparkling apple juice, the noisemaker thingies (poppers) and muffins and shouted, "HAPPY NEW YEAR!" Good fun! When we got home I wrote in my journal and was able to set lots of goals for the New Year. Can you believe that one year from today, I will only have a few days left on my mission. And, it was around this time last year that I decided to serve a mission and started the ball rolling to get my papers ready. Funny because it just seems like yesterday. After seeing how quickly the time has gone for Sister J and Elder C, I know how quickly the next year will go, so I plan on working as hard as I can.
Here is my favorite Mormon Message regarding New Years. Watch it, love it, share it: http://youtu.be/lrZij9MSTRI
I am now in my fourth transfer so I think for the next two transfers I might be training and then I will go outbound for three transfers and then come back for three. We'll see, but it's crazy that when you break the transfers down like that then it doesn't seem very long at all.
I love my new companion. She is such an answer to my prayers and she has a really easy-going type personality which I am thankful for. Today we went to the airport to pick up our new Zone leader that is returning from outbound - Sister Armstrong - who served in Texas and she was telling us that while she was outbound she felt like she was just wasting a lot of time. But, she said she needed to have that outbound experience to realize that she was able to find the people Heavenly Father needed her to teach. Our mission on the Square is unique in that we have such a, "hands-on" schedule and are always busy. So, when some of the sisters go outbound and have to tract or find people to teach (sometimes it can take up to 6 hours a day to find, "the one") many of the sisters from the Square aren't used to spending that much time on one person. That was one of my previous companion's problems, Sister Chen. She said she had such a hard time during her outbound experience because they would go out tracting and it wouldn't be very productive (from her perspective) and that was because on the Square, we are very lucky to be serving at the Church's biggest historical venue where people come to you and you don't have to go and find them.
So, in a way I feel bad sometimes when I don't fully explain a lot about my investigators because its kind of hard to fill you in on them. We do spend a lot of our time on the Square and that is balanced by time at the teaching center too, so it can be quite tricky to explain it all in detail. Briefly, right now, I don't have a lot of, "progressing investigators" - meaning, people that are keeping commitments and working towards baptism - but, I do have a lot of, "potential investigators" - meaning, people who I may have spoken to on the phone, but as yet, have not accepted to have the lessons or the missionaries visit them. I also have a lot of investigators that I am working on to help them accept local missionaries into their homes, but its tricky when your communications are entirely over the phone. Hope that helps paint a picture of what I do!
One of my goals that I wanted to share with you for this New Year is, "To complain less and pray more!" I feel that too often when we experience a problem, we sometimes may turn to the wrong people to help us and then those people in turn end up talking to the whole Ward, and then you realize you haven't found the right person after all. So, thats one of my goals, to complain less and pray more. It's good to hear that you are all setting goals too and I know that is something Sister J (Geena) will have to do to help her through her transitional period when she returns home. I cannot wait to see her on Saturday, and I know that it will be, "super hard" for me to give her back to the Porter's to take to the airport.
Love you family and thanks for your prayers and support. I wouldn't have made it through this past crazy transfer without your prayers.
Until next week,
Love Sister Chadderton xoxo