Monday, April 22, 2013
So this week has been AMAZING! I have been so blessed and I hope you are all being blessed as well.
So first... we moved. We are still in Staten Island but instead of living in St. George we are in Great Kills. Sounds exciting huh? haha It's not nearly as modern as our old apartment but it's in a lot safer neighborhood and we have a washer so we are enjoying it haha We also had a fun "package" come on Thursday (that's what the Elders called it) we got a new car!!! What?! Yeah, right off the lot. It's so nice. I took a picture of it for you for proof haha
So Tuesday we had a training meeting with all of the new missionaries and their trainers which meant I got to see my family from the MTC! It was SOOO fun to see all of them and feel of the love and growth that is occuring all around the mission. It was seriously like a family reunion haha President Calderwood gave some amazing counsel and it motivated Sister Jorgensen and I to have a wonderful week. We were so busy this week with service for the hurricane people. We painted a families basement and had a little too much fun painting eachother ha We also worked with the Croation family, Mio and Tanya Cujack (sorry if I spelled it wrong Dad:)) They were so nice and made us all breakfast and lunch for helping them. It's hard because they don't want us to teach the gospel as we serve but that family was just awesome that we are really hoping one day we can go back as actual missionaries. Wouldn't that be so cool?! Dad you definitely have to meet them.
Another thing that was different about this week was that we did exchanges with the Sister Training Leaders. I guess it's kinda a new thing but two sisters go around and do splits with all of the sister missionaries. I had the opportunity to serve with Sister Neilsen whose parents were in my MTC Branch presidency! We had a pretty good time and I learned a lot about different ways to teach and plan and stuff. It also made me more grateful for my awesome companion. Sister Neilsen said that Sister Jorgensen would be the most improved player if we had awards on a mission. I have already learned a lot from her and I'm excited to keep building a strong friendship with her. We had an amazing day Saturday. After service and studying and then an amazing meal of Filipino food (love it!) we were both feeling like we needed to visit this family that we have tried to see several times. As we got to the door step, both of us had a huge feeling come over us. It's really hard to explain what it was but we just knew this family was golden. And they were. Carrie Cox (the mom) is less active and her husband and kids are all nonmembers. We spent almost thirty minutes just getting to know them and testifying that we wouldn't be on our missions if this church wasn't true. It was an amazing experience. They also told us about some wild turkeys that live here so on our way home we checked it out and sure enough there were turkeys roaming the streets of Staten Island haha It's so weird! They said they are like royalty, like if you hit one it's a huge fine and when they are crossing the road, you have to wait for them. I will try to get a picture because seriously, they are huge.
Well I just want to say that I know this church is The Church of Jesus Christ, established for us in these Latter-Days. It is amazing as I have been studying about Christ and His teachings, how much happiness can be found if we follow His gospel. It's really the only thing that will bring us happiness now and for forever. I love praying to my Heavenly Father everyday, all day. I love when I can truly feel Him guiding me to say something or go somewhere. The Book of Mormon is the keystone of our religion and if that is true, (and I know it is) then it should also be the keystone of our life. Please read the Book of Mormon everyday. I promise it will bring you closer to God who wants more than anything to bless you with His love because you are His child.
Have a wonderful week! I love you all and can't wait to talk to you on Mother's Day! Can you believe I've already been out for a month?! Crazy. Sister Jorgensen bought me some frozen yogurt to celebrate haha so fun. I love this gospel. I love this work. I love my life because it's becoming a life full of love.
One more thing that I forgot! Our new place is in the basement of an Italian, Bonello, who smokes and the vent of our bedroom is directly under his TV so we heard all about the Boston marathon, some explosion in Texas, and other exciting news that we really don't care to know haha but it makes life fun!! Gotta love it!
So the following pictures are of me and Sister Neilsen, my district after we got done painting, my apartment while we are doing laundry ha, the random driving rules they have in New York- No Standing means no parking... go figure, and the new car!, oh and the cool street I found :) Love you!
Wednesday, April 17, 2013
Man I love hearing from you all!! Thank you SO much for writing me!
So this week has been great! I'll be honest, it was a tough one. I miss you guys like crazy. But I have been so blessed here and have really learned to rely on the Lord and His Atonement. D&C 136:31,32. We must be tried in order to help the Lord receive his glory. And His work and His glory is to bring eternal life to all of his children. That is what I'm here to do. Assist him in His work so he can have the glory He deserves.
So yeah, the first part of last week I was really homesick but I knew that the only way that I could receive strength was to pray, trust in the Lord, allow his grace to strengthen me, and serve! We were able to teach a 12 year old boy, Brandon, who has severe mental disabilities, ADHD and more. He is awesome though. He asks a lot of questions and is a super smart kid. He is planning on getting baptized May 5! I'm so excited for him! His mom has been less active for quite some time so it's been awesome to see her strengthen her testimony as well. We did a lot of service throughout the week and will continue to do more this week. Last night we knocked on a few doors to see if there was any more help we could do and we met a Croatian! We were also offering to say a prayer on their homes and families and it's been amazing to truly be the Lord's servants in offering a prayer of peace, safety, and love. It's incredible.
The ward is AWESOME!!!!! People from Sri Lanka, Phillipines, Africa, Germany, native New Yorkers, young families going to dental and medical school, and more. They are so happy to have sisters here and we already have a pretty packed schedule for this next week which is super great. Member missionary work is SO essential for missionaries. It's amazing how much easier and better the work is when members are working with the missionaries giving referrals, teaching their friends, and just simply living the gospel.
This week I have been studying a lot about humility and charity. I've been praying more to receive the love of God for myself, my companion, and the people that surround me. It's amazing how the Lord will answer your prayers when you truly ask in faith and are willing to be obedient to the promptings he gives you. I love studying about Christ. If our goal is to become like Him, (and it should be :)), we must know him. Know how he would act, what he would say and do, and how he would serve and love. I've been so blessed to have that love growing inside of me. My companion and I were listening to a John Bytheway talk and he said the only things you will take with you after this life is your knowledge, your character, and your relationships. So I want everyone to think of one way you can increase your knowledge, improve your character, and strengthen your relationships. Especially your relationship with your loving Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, and your family. I love thinking about that. I also love thinking about my eternal family. The people here on Staten Island are very kind (I think there was only one person that wouldn't at least talk to us!) and to know that they are part of my eternal family helps me love and serve them even more.
Sorry I won't be able to write you individually today! We are heading over to play soccer in Brooklyn! FUN!! But I love you all and will continue to pray for you!!!
Love, Sister Meyer
Monday, April 8, 2013
Hello from Staten Island!!! Yep, I am currently serving (and will probably be serving for a few months) in Staten Island. It's an awesome place! Full of hills, parks, people, and businesses. And an amazing view of the ocean and city! Sister Jorgensen (my great companion and trainer who will be coming home to Provo in June) and I are the only English sister missionaries on this island. They haven't had sisters here for years and the bishop and people have been praying for us. They welcomed us with love and dinner (we get fed a lot) and we are so excited to start working with them! There are tons of less actives in this ward so that's been our main priority this week. We have met quite a few people already so it's been busy and I love it! So big news... I am an official New York City driver!! What?! haha it's actually not as bad here as it is in Brooklyn and Manhattan but there are still a lot of random one way streets and crazy stop light rules.. Like you can't turn right on a red light between 9-4 Mon-Fri... weird. But I love driving! We luckily have a GPS or else we would probably be completely lost. haha I may need one of those when she goes home...
So one thing our mission president wants us to focus on is the people who were helped by the Mormon Helping Hands during Hurricane Sandy. Friday we visited a few of those families (members and non members) and I was amazed at how humble and grateful they were for the help they received. Some of the stories are devastating. We are continuing to provide service to those who are trying to clean up and recover. We have also been directed to ask if we can pray for their home and their family so we were able to offer a few blessings on their homes and it was such a tender experience. I know there will be a lot of investigators and strong members because of this tragedy. On Satuday before conference we cleaned up a home that was right on the beach (gorgeous view!!!) and the man offered us some chocolate and cookies. Some of the elders ate the chocolate and then found out it had brandy in it.... ha! so funny!!!
Our apartment is really cute, it suits New York very well. I am going to try to send pictures to you today if I can figure out how to do it haha we live close to an area called St .George! But it's not at all like the St. George I am used to haha it's really windy here but the weather hasn't been too bad so I'm not complaining! Like I said, we have and will be fed a lot here haha the district leader and zone leaders here are awesome! They set appointments up for us all the time. We had dinner given to us for the first three nights. Filipino food (is that how you spell it?:)), fish, and chicken pasta just like the one you make mom! (of course not as good though:)) My companion found out she can't have gluten so I'm trying to help her out with that haha sadly, there are bagel places pretty much on every corner! I saw one yesterday called MnM Bagel and Deli.. I may have to try it out:)
Just in case you think I am having too much fun I will share with you some spiritual experiences that have happend this week. First, my mission president is truly inspired and called of God. His power and motivation is contagious. He is incredible. I really can't describe him any better than that. He has encouraged all of us to become forever changed. Not just til we finish our mission but to experience real growth always. That is my goal as a missionary. I struggled at first because I wanted to experience that so badly but I wasn't letting the Lord do it. He humbled me very quickly. On Thursday, I was trying to study and learn but something was in the way. I don't know what it was but as we finished out zone meeting I was prompted to recevie a priesthood blessing. I fought it, but was reminded from a letter Elder Brown had written me that said "Take advantage of the priesthood. If you are in need, don't hesitate to ask for a blessing, your faith in it will bless you." As we were driving home the Zone Leader called to ask us a question about something. I knew that that was my last chance. So I asked for a blessing. They didn't know what was going on and I can't really describe it either. But the first thing that was said was "We give you a blessing of comfort and of joy." The word joy was exactly what I needed. I have been filled with joy in the last few days. It has come through the Priesthood, through truly feasting upon the words of Christ, praying more sincerely, exercising and studying more on faith, repenting every second I make a mistake, and remembering who I am and whose I am. I pray the happiness you feel for the gospel is contagious, we have the most hopeful, peaceful message! I pray you are putting a missionary tag on your heart. Member missionary work is KEY. My vision for my mission has grown tremendously. I am striving to work diligently, humbly, and patiently everyday so when I am finished with my time here the Lord will accept my work and accept me as His own. I desire to become more like Christ and know that that is only possible because of His Atonement. I stand all amazed at the love He gives me daily. I am truly blessed to be apart of the greatest service one can give. In 25 words I want you to know.... Jesus Christ lives. His gospel is the way back to our loving Heavenly Father. Pray. Study. Love. Bloom where you are planted. I love you.