Monday, November 27, 2017

Week 18 - Merry Thanksgiving and Happy Christmas!

Happy Thanksgiving wonderful friends and family of mine!! I hope you had a fantastic week and are feeling happy and chubby and grateful :)

At this ship that they are rebuilding to look like "Maine's first Ship"

First off, HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY AMAZING BEAUTIFUL MOTHER!!!!!! I love her so so very much and she is practically perfect-at least to me :) So if any of you haven't been able to yet give her a big birthday hug from me :)

So, it is simultaneously Thanksgiving and Christmas in our apartment right now because we just really love the holidays and we love all the cutesy decor we have so we are just leaving it all up for the time being :)

Our Completed Thankful Tree

So this week was all about being grateful !!! And also preparing for December and the Church's #lighttheworld campaign! So great!

We had two Thanksgivings! One with Fredrick and Thankful and some of their friends/family. Which was really nice!...china and chandeliers and healthy food and some really funny company! We shared our Thankful Tree and introduced them to the Book of Mormon and shared a scripture from it. :)

For our second Thanksgiving we brought our investigator Lynne with us to the Derrs home and we were all snuggled in to a little kitchen and had a lot of good food and a lot of AMAZING desserts! Both were very different, but both were wonderful :)

This will be short this week because we just found out we are having a district p-day so I won't have my whole email time. Sad news Robin didn't come to church so we have to push her baptism date...

Here are the highlights of the week:

  • Fletch came to church and was super involved and had a great time in gospel principles 
  • Thanksgiving x2!
  • Exchanges with Sister Gremillion
    • I adore her! We have so so much fun!! We walked super far in the rain and were completely drenched! But we also got 4 new investigators just on that exchange so that was awesome!

  • Last Monday we did glow in the dark volleyball for FHE and we thought we were cool so we took some pictures in the dark! haha

  • Miracle!....Well, there are miracles all the time, but here is one I will tell about: We contacted this former investigator named Kendall who had been dropped because missionaries had stopped coming by (what!? lame!) So we went and knocked 3 times but he didn't answer, so we started knocking on his neighbor's door to ask about him and....what do you know?..Kendall then opened his door! He asked if we were "from the church" and he got so excited and said he was hoping we would come by. He asked how the prophet was doing and said he had some questions! He said that right then wasn't a good time, but asked if we could come back tomorrow! What!?..Crazy! We hope this this leads somewhere great!
  • Got the CUTEST Christmas Package!!!!!! SO pumped!
  • Sister Morrison and I jammed out to some spiced up primary songs
  • 28 DAYS UNTIL CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The bridge that leads to Woolwich

5 things I am grateful for this year ( in no particular order)

  1. The Book of Mormon: Seriously. So amazing. Our whole lifestyle is centered upon the validity of this Book and I can testify that it is true. I feel the spirit when I study it. I come closer to Christ and I can become more like Him.
  2. Family and Technology: Email is the best this ever pretty much. 
  3. Prophets and Apostles: I was thinking of this extra because of the AMAZING face-to-face on-line live event last week. We are so so blessed to have apostles so in tune with the spirit and God's will to help us know what He wants us to do in this crazy world.
  4. Food: yep!
  5. Christ: I love my Savior. I am so grateful for the chance to wear His name over my heart every day. He is really the Light of the World and the Light in My Life. I am so grateful for the things I have seen and felt lately that have helped me come to know Him even more deeply.

I love you all dearly!!!!

MERRY THANKSGIVING AND HAPPY CHRISTMAS (because basically we have just mixed them together).

Love, Sister Brady

......Picture of how we found the Elders after we came back from hiding their car...

Monday, November 20, 2017

Week 17 - Thankful Tree!

Hello Wonderful Family and Friends!

I look super tired, but... some of my FAV ward members!!! (we decided to be glasses triplets)

The highlight of this week was for sure our Thankful Tree! If any of your are on Facebook and friends with my missionary account than you probably already know all about it-but for those of you who aren't I will explain!.......

So there is a HUGE push for creative finding ideas here. Really, we are moving away from tracting, especially with the social media push. And neither of my companions or Sister Training Leaders that I go on exchanges with like tracting - so I have actually never done it. (But we still knock on doors of potential people and promising former investigators). We find most of our people through street contacting and just being around the town and inviting people to learn! So, a big thing in a couple other areas is Street Booths!

So we decided to make a booth of our own! We teamed up with the Elders and created the idea for a Thankful Tree - similar to what I did in my Best Buddies Club up at college! People would write what they are grateful for on a leaf and add it to the tree that we made. And also got free hot cocoa and pumpkin cookies :) People LOVED IT!

So many people asked what we were doing, why we were doing it, and who we were. We were able to share so much and have so many quality gospel conversations and get contact info,  and AH it was so great! I love love love being a missionary! It was so fun!

We are still adding to the tree this week so if anyone would like me to make them a leaf let me know! 

And fun surprise!...President and Sister Blair showed up to the Tree!!! So fun!! We really felt special to have that visit and support from them! And the owner of the store came and personally thanked us and told us how much she loved what we were doing and what we stand for! It is really fun because people are really started to get to know us (for example the guy at the grocery store today got me my spinach because he knew exactly what I was looking for and what brand I liked haha) 

Anyway a couple highlights from some lessons this week: 

We had the opportunity to testify really strongly of Joseph Smith to Mick - and that was really cool because that is a piece of my testimony I have been working on. But I got to share how I went to Carthage and felt of the spirit there and how I know that he died for the work of the Lord. Mick also let us know that while he was out of town this week he was bringing his Book of Mormon (he is in Mosiah) and that he is spending the weekend in SLC - fun right!   

We also had a really wonderful spiritual experience while testifying of the Book of Mormon to Fredrick and Thankful. I brought my personal copy that I have grown up reading and bore testimony to them that it truly is a book that radiates with the spirit and persuades me to do good and draws me unto Christ and I know it is of God. Super cool.

We are SO excited about the Holiday Season! Pray for some Christmas (and Thanksgiving) miracles and that we can have some wonderful children of God have the desire to be baptized!!! 

Couldn't Resist buying this Christmas Sweater!.....I Love Christmas sooo much!

I am SO THANKFUL for you all!!!!!

P.S. MY BROTHER JACKSY IS GOING TO BE 16 TOMORROW WHAT!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!??!  I really think that this is the hardest thing to miss is his 16th birthday and his first date that he had this week.. but so so happy for him :). 

Monday, November 13, 2017

Week 16 - The winds of Change....Literally

Happy Monday Everybody!!!

So this week I didn't do my cute little 1 sentence summaries of each day with all the cute emoji,  so this week's format will be kind of boring.. sorry!

But yes big changes! 

The first part of this week was mostly devoted to visiting investigators and ward members so that Sister Anderson could say bye to them. It was super fun to see so many people and do a lot of quick visits. It was also really cool for me to take a second to realize how much I love all these people. I am so grateful that God allowed our paths to cross and that I still get to see them.

It was really sweet at the soup kitchen that we help at on Tuesdays - they had a big farewell speech dedicated to Sister Anderson and Pastor Bill just praised us Sister Missionaries so much and it was "Soup"-er cute -  haha!

On Wednesday we had our big weekly planning session and while we were saying our prayer to open the session I was thanking Heavenly Father for Sister Anderson and I just started balling - super sad. But it is just because I love her so much!  We also got ice cream to wish her farewell.

We spent the night in NH in a city that starts with a D-I think - Durham or something? Dover maybe?

Then went to transfer meeting.....WOW! It was so different than the first time I was there getting my assignment to Sister Anderson and to my area. The first time I felt so lost and that I didn't know everyone and this time I was so surprised at how many people I knew (mostly because a bunch were from my flight group out here). 

But I got my new companion! Sister Morrison! She is adorable and such a sweetheart! She was kind of quiet the first couple days, but today we have just talked and talked all day and have really gotten to know each other better! I am way excited for what this transfer has in store!

Yesterday church was really, really good. None of our investigators came - so that was sad. But it also gave me the chance to focus on what the speakers were saying and how it applies to me.

At the end of the pamphlets that we use there is a little section about what our services are like and it is entitled: "Worship with us". That, in addition to Elder Bednar's talk this last general conference about temple attendance and Sabbath Day worship really got me thinking. I really want to make my time during the sacrament a time to worship my Savior. I tried to pray extra intently and I felt strongly to really listen to the talks. The first was on Sister Joy Jones' talk on our worth. It is a really good talk that we have shown a lot of people and I think it gave me the self-esteem boost that I needed. 

The second talk was about how we can do hard things. And it was super powerful! We can do hard things - that's what we are designed to do is hard things. And God will help us as we engage in them. Maybe we totally rock it. Maybe we don't. Maybe that's okay!

Being out here and teaching about the purpose of life has allowed me to feel a lot of peace. We are here to do our best and to learn and to always strive to improve. We aren't perfect and that is okay. And other people aren't perfect and because of Christ - we can forgive them. Christ is the reason it is okay.

On the way to transfer meeting Sister Anderson and I had a good conversation about what we want for this transfer. What I want out of this transfer is to keep Christ at the forefront of my mind and heart always. To keep my baptismal and sacrament covenant to Always Remember Him. And I know I am not going to be perfect at it - but that isn't a reason to not try. So I am going to get on my knees and pray for help with it each morning as I put on my tag which bears Christ's name.  

As I was explaining this goal to Sister Anderson - I felt the spirit so strongly. I felt a peace wash over me and my name tag almost felt like it pressed closer to my heart and I felt Christ's presence. Which is what I want to strengthen. I believe that as I do this and as I consecrate my efforts, my area will continue to progress - at whatever rate the Lord sees fit.

I would like to invite all to add an extra focus these next 6 weeks on trying to keep our baptismal covenant to Always Remember Him. And take actions of faith to make that happen!

I love you all and I love our Savior Jesus Christ.  

Love, Sister Brady

Monday, November 6, 2017

Week 15 - Let there be LIGHT!! ...Also some sad news

This week was CRAZY! Our whole schedule was flip flopped around. We stayed the night in a couple different places, had a national crisis, walked around with alcohol in my bag, and got transfer calls-what!? YES. Crazy!

Monday:  P-day in Augusta!(Maine's state capitol)🏛. Tried hard to pick up this lady at Duncan Doughnuts🍩. Bought apocalypse food! Ghost suckers 👻.

         So Monday was spent in Augusta due to apartment issues. But that was cool to wander around there! And we tried to get an investigator for the Augusta Sisters and talked to this lady for like an hour! But she kindly said 'no'...sad. But its okay! Seed planted! 

Here is a picture of Sister Tupai and I doing funny face masks when we were staying in Augusta:

Later we bought "apocalypse food" that didn't need to be in the fridge - later we were so glad we did because without power all the food on our fridge was spoiled. 

Then we made cute little Ghost Suckers that say, "By the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things". 

Tuesday: Power outage🤤. Youlands. Mick. Harry🎉. Neighborhood soup kitchen🍲. Back to Augusta.

           GUESS WHAT! That huge storm that hit took out the power all over New England!!! It was crazy! At my apartment in Bath we were without power for 5 days. It was actually declared a National Crisis!....What an adventure. We still did our best to do our normal missionary work and appointments in town. We helped at the soup kitchen and I took a picture with some of our friends there and Carol Ann (she is the one dressed up as a tourist).

 We also saw this guy Harry again! We met him about 2 months ago and he was this hard core rapper living this crazy lifestyle. He tried to show us some not-so-consecrated music videos of his work and we had him pull up James the Mormon instead!!! haha (Mormon rapper). When we saw him on Tuesday his countenance had completely changed! He shared that he had had this spiritual awakening and is living in faith and no longer swearing and preparing to get baptized in another church-but we are swooping in and going to teach him on Wed!

Wednesday: Trees everywhere🌳. Helped Carol Ann. Planning. Relief stations➕.  Sleep over at the Ames'

        It was super eerie without the power-really felt like zombies could come out any second! haha! Also there was all these giant trees all over the roads- it was really sad! I took a few pictures. 

We went and volunteered at a bunch of relief stations and then slept at a ward member's house so we didn't have to drive again. 

           With the power being out for 5 days we all realized how important and dependent we are on light and warmth. It is so amazing that light and darkness cannot be in the same place at the same time. We have used this approach many times in the past week to begin talking to people and then transition into gospel topics such as the Light of Christ. I shared a video on my missionary Facebook that so many people respond well to when we show it! I love light and I love this gospel and the spiritual enlightenment it brings to our hearts and our minds!!!  Truly a lesson I will never forget.

Thursday: Weekly planning in dark and cold. Raking🍁. Dinner with the Hills! Contact attempts. Nadean!!!😆 Lesson with Fletch.

        Okay, this is super long so I will be shorter. But I will just talk about Nadean and Fletch! So Nadean was found a while ago and I have never had a lesson with her because she always stood us up, but it turns out she only acted weird when her mom was home and she welcomed us right in this day and her and her son are so excited for us to come back! Also, right as we were going to invite Fletch to be baptized he said that he doesn't want to change religious so we are trying to figure out if we should keep pushing or not.

Friday: District Meeting🤔. Helped Sister Caton🍁. Drive to Freeport. L.L. Bean- BOM. Dinner with the Walkers!!!💜💜 DEEP CLEAN Halloween!!!!!🎃

         Friday was different. Not a ton of lessons. But Elder and Sister Walker really wanted to treat Sis. Anderson and I to dinner! So we drove a bit to L.L. Bean (which is huge). And had a lovely dinner. And this senior couple is amazing. They are President Blair's in-laws, they served as MTC President in England, Temple President and Matron at the Salt Lake Temple, and Sister Walker is President Hinckley's daughter!!! Ah!! We love them and they expressed that they love us! No other missionaries got a dinner with them, so we feel special. 

Then, since the city of Bath postponed their Halloween celebrations until Friday due to the storm, we deep cleaned our apartment this day and got rid of a TON of junk!

Saturday: 7th day Adventist church with Linda💫. Potluck😌. St. Lady's craft fair.  Lesson with Linda our Neighbor!!!🐶 Went to see Al. Melanie. Robin.

           We went to a 7th day Adventist Church with this Lady who said she would come to ours if we came to hers. It was a really good service! They sang some of the same hymns and were all really nice people! But they didn't take the sacrament! It made me so sad because that is the most important thing!!! Later that day we had a lesson with another Linda who has had a really rough life, but is looking for a fresh start. She accepted our soft baptismal invite almost before the words were out of my mouth!!

Sunday: Fasting for all those that we will have baptism dates! Church. Talked with ward members! Sylvia. Invites everyone along the way👊. Betty. Derrs. Lackie-took away alcohol🍺!! Went and saw Lynda and Trevor😊
             Sorry this is so long. We are wanting so badly to get some people on date for baptism so we added that to our fast. But guess what!???...We went to visit Robin and her brother Lackie (who has a drinking problem) and the spirit prompted me to promise that if he came to church he would have strength against his drinking addiction. I then said: "Show us and God right now that you want to take steps towards that and give me that bottle of alcohol." And I stood up and held out my hand and he gave it to me! Crazy! Then afterwords we had to hurry and go throw it away so we didn't get in trouble because we are underage!!!...hahah!

Finally the sad news.................we got transfer momma trainer Sister Anderson is leaving me 😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭...and she is going way across the mission to VERMONT!!!! AHHHH!!
Here is a picture of our zone before we all got split up *cries*

I am so so sad. I know that I have made a lifelong friend in her and I am so jealous of the next missionary that gets her. My new companion's name is Sister Morrison and she is coming from NH! I am praying for her and love her already!

Miracles are going to come!!!!

Love-Yours Truly-

Sister Brady!!!!

P.S. Here is a reenactment of what our window looked like last week when our apartment had gotten broken into: