Monday, March 30, 2015

Monday, March 30, 2015

Okay so this week has been freaking awesome.

So on Tuesday, we taught Israel and Aracely again and this week we taught them about missionary work, service, and the temple.  Israel was trying to convince Aracely to just change and get baptized so they could be together forever.  He loves her so much and it's so cool!  She doesn't really want to change though. So we'll see.  She got sick later in the week so when we came over later, she was a little tipsy because she thinks that whiskey is the way to cure all illnesses.  Haha! She's hilarious.  So that lesson was pretty funny.  She says the weirdest things sometimes ;)

So the highlight of my week.... WE HAVE A NEW INVESTIGATOR!! His name is Roman Weltin.  He's been a Roman Catholic all his life (73 years) and his dad was a Jesuit priest and his aunt was a Notre Dame Nun.  So he has a very religious background.  He served in the Marines for many years and then he became a law enforcement officer for 39 years.  While he was in the law enforcement, he battled leukemia twice and won; he was in a coma for 3 months after being shot 7 times and had his body broken from a fall during an on-foot chase and yeah... he's been through some trials. So we talked a whole lot about his military career and his law enforcement because those two things are so dear to my heart and they make me feel right at home.  Sister Liebelt and her last companion tracted into them a few months ago and Roman and his wife Laura always let them in for cookies and such.  So they got to know them pretty well.  Laura is a less active member and is a convert to the church but she fell away because she felt like God had forgotten about her because her first marriage had failed.  So when we went over on Tuesday to meet them, they invited us in and they had a lot of questions.  So the first question Laura asked was, "So what is a patriarchal blessing?" 

We explained what that was.  AHHH!! There is so so so much to explain and seriously not enough time to explain it.  So watered down version!  Laura started saying things like she felt that she didn't have a testimony anymore and that she wanted to because when she joined the church 20+ years ago she felt things so sincerely and deeply and she really wanted it back but she didn't know how.  Then as I was about to ask her about her testimony, Roman piped up.  He declared, "Laura, you still have your testimony.  You still know those things are true.  You pray to God every day.  You do everything a good faithful God-fearing woman does... what Mormons do.  I think it's so fantastic that you want to get back to church.  And just from your example, I want to check it out too."  AHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!! So then he turned to us and said, "Laura has told me about this marriage forever thing.  I want it.  What do I have to do to be with her forever? Is there a process to become a mormon?"

We told him yes, there are 5 lessons and after that he will be baptized and then he can start working on getting ready to go to the temple to be sealed to Laura.  The Spirit in the room was so incredibly strong.  We literally were all in tears.  Even Roman.  He loves her so much.  then he said, "Well let's get started as soon as possible, because I want to be with her forever." SO INCREDIBLE!! 

He expressed his love for her several times during the course of our meeting.  it was so adorable.  

When we came back on Friday and taught him the Restoration, i was able to recite the First vision from memory and we were all teary-eyed again.   Roman told us that he knows that Joseph Smith is a true prophet and that the Book of Mormon is the word of God.  He's read it already.  We tried to set a date for his baptism but he told us that he wants to learn more before he commits to a date but that he will be baptized.  YAY!!  He and Laura came to church yesterday too :D <3 And they LOVED IT!!!!!!! Our ward seriously took them under their wings.  They already are gaining friends and seeing old friends that they never knew went to church :D FANTASTIC WEEK!!!
I love those two.  They are like grandparents to me <3

So Wednesday, we went into a member's house and guess what was hanging above their fireplace..... A GIANT PORTRAIT OF TANGLED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! SO MUCH HAPPINESS!!!!! Took pictures <3 it's one of those Thomas Kinkade pictures of Disney.  It's freaking gorgeous.

I got my bedding this week too and i really love it. :D Thanks Mom and Dad! And it took forever to get all that tape off. My goodness.

So Women's conference, I hope y'all went.  It was great! But you know that story that President Eyring told of the 5-year-old boy's funeral?  Yeah... Sister Mullay (a lady in our ward) was that little boy's aunt.  so when president Eyring told that story she had a breakdown because she remembers all that happening.  But she definitely felt the comfort of the Holy Ghost :) God is so wonderful to us.  Even in times of sorrow if we let him in.

just a little more that's happened, we went and ate mexican food with a member.  she had menudo (aka, cow intestine soup).  Totally lost my appetite after i found out what it was.

So something that I've focused on this week was learning about our Savior Jesus Christ.  And I honestly can't put into words the feelings of my heart and love towards Him for all that he's done for us.  So instead of trying to explain, I'll just say this: Christ is the most selfless being to ever live on the earth.  he died for my sins and yours because he wants us to come home to live with Him and our Heavenly Father again.  He knows your name.  He knows mine.  He is always there to wipe away our tears even when we don't feel like he's there.  So this week as you go throughout your daily activities, keep Him in your heart and in everything you do.  As you grow closer to Him, you will experience infinite happiness that you cannot possibly dream of describing in words.  Words don't do justice.

One experience I've had this week was that in a quiet moment i remembered when i was sick in the MTC 7 months ago.  I was laying in bed, crying, because i didn't want to be in bed.  I wanted to work.  i wanted to do as the Lord had called me to do and teach.  So as i lay there asking God why this was happening, the clock at the BYU campus tolled.  the bells tolled in the chorus of "Come, Come ye saints."  It rang, "All is well, all is well."  Whenever i would ask God, why is this happening?  why can't i be strong?  Those bells would toll.  When i went back two and a half weeks ago, they never rang.  I never heard them once.  I bear witness to you that in my moments of despair, those bells would ring and my soul was comforted from the torment inside of me.  Those bells rang just for me.  and if those bells rang for me, our beloved Heavenly Father will definitely answer and comfort you in your times of trial and tribulation if you reach out for help.  I promise you that he will reach out and hold your hand.

I love you all so very much! <3
~Sister Hannah Weaver

I got letters from Kristin and Connor this week!!! <3 <3 I LOVE YOU!!!!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Okay so yes yes and yes plane was fantastic... don't have a lot of time to say a whole lot about that.  I slept well that night though :3

So I am assigned to the East Bakersfield Stake zone?? Yeah.  I'm in a little area called Tehachapi, CA and its adorable.  It's just a little bigger than Rexburg I believe and it's got fifteen million windmills on the hills.
I was put into a trio of sisters so we call ourselves the Tehach Trio :) Awesome.  Sister Anderson (from Canada) is my trainer and she's awesome! And Sister Liebelt (Leebelt--from Utah) is my other companion :) We all laugh and have a fantastic time.  We're getting to know each other a lot better and it's so much fun to talk and laugh with them.

So I'm the one who loves cooking and cleaning from our companionship and I have to say it's the funnest thing ever.

On Mondays and Wednesday mornings we go to the Mullay's house and work out with Sister Mullay.  She's a beach body builder.  The mere mention of her name makes my body tense up and get sore ;) okay it's not that bad. so far.  We've done a lot of yoga :D YAY!!!

So the members feed us every night and it's wonderful.  The ward is sooooo missionary minded and we've never taught a lesson without a member there.  it's so wonderful!

So our investigators are Felipe (baptismal date set in September), Israel & Aracely (baptismal date for Israel on April 17 or 18th can't remember), and Taylor (we're setting one this week with her.  she's 15).  So Israel and Aracely don't really speak any English so we have an interpreter from our ward there to help teach the lesson in Spanish.  They are not married, but they've been together for 45 years and they have children and grandkids together.  So they're getting their marriage license.  When they went to get it the first time, Aracely's purse got stolen and they dealt with identity theft for a while, but now all is well.  So close to getting their license and then Israel can be baptised!! YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! He loves this church so much.  As soon as we told him the Word of Wisdom and such, he quit things immediately because he said, "Whatever God wants, I can handle."

So WOW! incredible man!

I haven't met Felipe yet though.  He's been busy. Darn it.

We had a really solid lesson with Taylor and she loves the gospel too.  we're going to commit her to baptism this week and I know she'll do it.  When she prayed about God's love.  she felt like as soon as she asked "Do you love me?" arms wrapped around her.  HOLY COW! She's so amazing! I love her.

We are trying to make contact with two more potential investigators too :) So yay!

I don't have a lot of time, but this week has been super hard but fantastic!

I'm like 45 minutes from Bakersfield :) and on our way up there are just orchards and orchards and like Isaac said, it smells so incredible and citricy and wow. Yeah. 

Oh cool thing this week.  While we were out knockin on doors, this one older man came up to his door and asked, "What do you want?!" All of a sudden I felt tense and we didn't know what to do, but then the Spirit told me to ask about his military career.  So when i did, he totally lightened up and asked how did I know, and i just said he reminded me of my grandfathers.  We talked a long time about the military and then when we asked him, "In all that time in the war, did you feel God's love and protection?" he got teary eyed and told us stories of times when he felt God was watching out for him.  We didn't get invited back, but that's okay :) He was exposed to the LDS missionaries and sometimes that's all they need.  He was really nice and it was sooooooo nice to talk about military things :) Reminds me of Daddy's stories <3  

Lots of people have also thought I look like Emily Deschanel YAYYYYYYYY!!!!!

Ummmmm anyhow, this week has been cool! It's been fun to learn about a new side of the country and how things work. It's been hard. but I never in my life would regret it.  I love the people here and i'm excited to get to know more of them.  I am so grateful for God and his mercy.  I am especially proud to be a representative of Jesus Christ.  This church is the restored gospel on the earth today.  It's the same church that Christ himself established while he ministered on the earth 2000 years ago.  I urge all who listen to come unto Christ and to feel of his love.  There is nothing more incredible than this.

I love all of you so much!
Talk to you next week!
Hugs kisses and lots of love,
Sister Hannah Weaver

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Took Hannah Back to the MTC!

Well, it happened!  We got the long-awaited phone call from our Stake President Tuesday night, and he calmly informed us that Hannah was cleared to go back to the MTC (Missionary Training Center) in Provo, Utah.  After all her doctor appointments, it's been determined that she's well enough from her sickness (she had mononucleosis...ugh!) for her to go back out on her mission.  They needed her either Wednesday or Thursday.  Since Wednesday was the very next day, we said, "How about Thursday?"  From that minute on, it was a go!  

We had gone through this process already.  Last September 17, 2014, we tearfully and proudly deposited our daughter on the doorstep of the MTC as she began her mission preparation for the Bakersfield California Mission.  What we didn't know was that, even at that time, she was sick...very sick.  That very week that we dropped her off, she became extremely ill with swollen lymph nodes all throughout her neck, throat, and stomach areas, giving her a fearful sore throat, awful nausea, plus she became feverish and lost 11 pounds in four days.  By the time she came home, she was only consuming water.  It was pretty awful for her.  But, like I said, she had been showing all the signs of mono before she left, we just had no idea at all.  That's what you get for burning the candle at both ends.  

How can you prepare for something out of the blue like that?  Well, what happened was that we got a call on the following Tuesday and were informed how sick she was and that it was best she recovered at home since this illness has a year / year-and-a-half recovery time, and that it would be difficult to know when she'd be well enough to go back out serving a full-time mission.  Up at 6:30 a.m. and running until 10 p.m.  She just couldn't do it.  We're not even sure she can do it now.  But six months later, and hopefully enough recovery time, we're putting our trust in the Lord with much faith and, having experienced many a miracle in our lives, we know that if its the Lord's will, it'll happen. Add to that a healthy dose of prayers, and we truly hope that she's able to accomplish this goal she's had since it was announced that young women could serve earlier at age 19.  

So, lucky us, we got to go through the entire process of getting Hannah ready to go on her mission again--more lists, more harried errands (but we were happy!) and then on to reorganizing, recounting, and repacking...  Much fun, as you can imagine...  We are extremely proud of Hannah and her decision to serve the Lord by spreading His gospel message upon this earth, readying all within her reach for that special day of reckoning.  Hope we get it right...right?  

There were tears, much hugging, and urging to write from both ends.  So those of you out there who might like to support and encourage our little one--who's not so little anymore--please feel free to write to her and send pictures and loving support from time to time.  We would appreciate it very much, and I know she will too.  

Here's some photos from our day together.  Yes, we left early this morning and drove all day there and back again.  One day!  At least last time, we spread it out in two days.  We just didn't have that kind of time this time, and so decided to just go for it.  What a day!

Here's to you and your loved ones,

Devin, Ellise & family

P.S.  We love you, Hannah! <3