Monday, July 25, 2011

Hi Everyone,
Oh my goodness it is so hot and humid here! But I really don't mind. It's better than the bone chilling cold that makes you lose the feeling in your toes. I'd rather feel like I'm melting any day! And it does feel like you're melting!
We were able to meet with a less active girl, Stacy. She is so different. She's been changing so much...and for the better. She wants to come back to church and have God in her life. It's so amazing to see somebody go through that change. We talk to people all of the time and see the potential that they have, but so few live up to that potential because they don't want to change. So to actually see somebody making those changes brings such great joy to my life!
We had some lessons with Santos. She's been going through a lot of hard tings in her life right now. She told us that it seems like whenever she's trying to get closer to God it is when life seems to get harder. Is it any wonder why, when to get closer to our Heavenly Father is the last thing that Satan wants. He doesn't want us to be happy. Santos is making lots of progress, she just lost her job and so she told us she wasn't going to be able to make it to church this week because she had to make tamales to sell so she would have money. She had to make them on Sunday because she wouldn't have enough money to buy the meat for the tamales until then. So we thought she wouldn't be there...but something miraculous happened. She came to church! All on her own too, usually we call her in the morning to wake her up and she has to get a ride from the Arguetas but none of that happened and she just showed up! We were happy, she wants to get baptized but she's marred to a man in Guatemala and living with her not husband but she can't get a divorce for a couple of months.
We've been working with a less active, Sister Rippenkroeger and her daughter Debi. I love them so much!!! They're starting to return to activity and they just gave Sister Rippenkroeger a calling. It's like wha I was talking about before with Stacy. It's so awesome to see people take those steps to come back.
When we've been going to Nauvoo, we offer the people we talk to the opportunity to send the soundtrack of the music from the pageant to their nonmenber friends or if they themselves are nonmemberw we offer to have missionaries bring it to them. So we carry around forms for people to fill out for that and because it's so hot we've been fanning people with papers. It's fun, they like it! We were finally able to actually see the pageant this Saturday. The Parkers (members) drove up down to Nauvoo and we spent the night with them. It was really fun!!!
I told you about Mariah last week. Well...she dropped us :( It's really sad and it hasn't happened to me that much on my mission because the Hispanics are so nice they never drop you. You have to drop them if they're not progressing.
Kamrai (LA) brought her nonmember husband to a lesson again at the Lance's yesterday and they came with us to the Pioneer Day Broadcast from Salt Lake (even though it really wasn't about the pioneers like we had thought it was.)
Well, I love and miss you all! Write me a letter, it's my only line to the outside world:)
Plus it's my birthday next week.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Looking for the hand of the Lord

We had a really cool week! Remember the video I told you about last time by President Eyring? Well we've been asking the question each night to ourselves. "HOW DID WE SEE THE LORDS HAND IN THE WORK TODAY? " And we've been able to see lots of miracles. It's amazing, when we recognize the Lords hand in our lives it's almost as if He blesses us with even more. I was talking about it with Sister Dalton and she said, "Its like He's saying "Good job!" Here's some more." :) Here are some examples: We had an appointment with a less active girl named Stacy. She's awesome and super nice, really we love her to death...but she's never home for the appointments we make with her. Well, last MONDAY we had an appointment and she and her nonmember boyfriend (David) were actually home! They're actually the ones I talked about last week who we ran into at the gas station.
Okay, there's more:
TUESDAY: We've been working with another less active girl, Danielle. She's so awesome too but she's been offended at church and is apprehensive to come back. Well I don't rememeber if you remember me writing about an experience I had a couple of months ago about her and her non member boyfriend (Ian) I'll give a summary of it just to refresh your memory. We found Danielle's informantion and we decided to stop by and see her one day but her parents told us she had moved and gave us her new address. We didn't feel like we should see her at that moment (even though we had time) We had the impression later that night to go see her. What happened was she was at home and invited us in and 2 minutes later her boyfriend came home and we ended up teaching them. He told us that he was looking for a church to go to. End of that story. So months pass and we're able to visit with Danielle but not Ian...he's always working. The miracle on Tuesday was that they were both there that day and we watched the Restoration movie with them. (If you haven't seen it it's basically Joseph Smith's story searching for the true church.) Something cool that happened afterwards was we started talking about prophets and Ian told us he didn't like that word, "but you never know, something could change...I just watched that movie and something just changed", he said he hadn't read in the Book of Mormon before that but he said after watching the movie he felt "a stronger desire to read it." The Spirit was there really strong for that lesson.
WEDNESDAY was a day of finding people at home that I've been trying to meet for the past 3 months and was finally able to! The Mitchels: a less active family with an interesting story (I'll save that for another time" and a woman named Mariah the other Sisters had tracted into before I got here. It was just about time to go home that night but Sister Dalton said, "Who else can we go see?" I felt an impression that we needed to see this woman. We tried her and she was home and invited us back the next day!
THURSDAY I titled in my planner as "MIRACLE DAY" We taught a hispanic woman named Tomasa. We've been teaching her for a couple of weeks. We met her while doing service at a restaurant in town called Little Mexico. She told us that she's already been baptized before in another church and if that was okay. We taught her about the Priesthood and invited her to be baptized and she said yes :) She also invited herself to church (I hate it when that happens:)
Miriah was home for our appointment with her and she's got lots of potential! The Spririt was strong at the lesson, we have another appointment with her for Wednesday. I'll have to let you know what happens with that. When we went down to the pageant on FRIDAY, we got to talk to some Hispanics and they gave us a referral...amazing!
SATURDAY something interesting happened, we had some time at 6 pm and decided to see a referral the Lances (members) had given us. But when we got there it just didn't feel right. (even thought we knew she was home) So we went to dinner with a less active (Todd, the same one that told us to make pigs of ourselves) and he also finally admitted to us that he had been praying, when before he always told us "that's for me to know". We've been sending him texts morning and night to remind him to pray for the past 4 months. After that we decided to try the referral again. Susana is her name, but the Lnaces were outside (they're her neighbors) and they told us she wasn't home. They invited us in and as we were talking to them Sister Dalton and I both received revelation at the same time that the Lances's were the ones wo needed to invite Susana to learn.
We had a lesson with a less active named Kamrai on SUNDAY who has just moved into the area with her husband...who is a nonmember. We were supposed to meet with her at the Lances house and we did. What ended up being really cool was she unexpectedly brought her husband. We made an appointment with her for next week and he's going to come to that as well.
So many other amazing things happened to us this week and I'm so glad that we took the time each night to recognize how much the Lord has truly blessed us!
Love you All!!!!!!!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Nauvoo Pageant

July 11, 2011

Hi Everyone,

This week has gone by so fast!!!!!! A lot of it has been in the car, driving back and forth to Nauvoo to help with the pageant. We actually haven't seen the pageant yet. We talk to people who are playng 1840's games in the County Fair nearby the pageant grounds and then we leave right before the pageant starts. We'll be able to see it at least one time though :) The Arguetas (members) took Santos and Orlando (Investigators) to Nauvoo this last Saturday. They also went spontaneously to Carthage and miraculously made it in the nick of time for the last tour. They said they could feel the Spirit really strongly there and they had a really great experience. They want to go back again in a couple of weeks.

I watched an awesome video on Mormon messages. It's called "O Remember, Remember." by President Eyring. I encourage you all to watch it! He talks about when his children were small he would take time at the end of each day to review it and see how God had blessed him. He encouraged all of us to ask this question, "Did God send a message that was just for me?" As I've done this I have been able to recognize more fully how much God's hand is in our lives and in this work!

One of those miracles being that we drove up to a gas station and whose car happens to be on the other side but a family we've been trying for forever to get in contact with. Coincidence? I think not!

Funny things:
We were in the car talking about an investigator, I said "I don't know what to do about Lorenzo?" and then we heard a voice saying "Hello" (Hispanic accent) It was Lorenzo. I had pocket dialed him and he probably heard me..It's a good thing he doesn't speak English. Ooops!
"What do you think of when you hear the word prophet?" said Sister Dalton Brittney responded with "Money"
Hope you all have a great week!
Hermana Hepworth

Happy 45h of July

July 5, 2011

Hi Everyone,
For the past month I was companions with Hermana Draney and Sister Whitbeck and we were going back and forth between carthage and Mt. Pleasant. Sister Whitbeck is English speaking only. We had our transfer meeting on Thursday and now Hermana Dalton is my companion in Mt. Pleasant and we're no longer going back and forth. But we sort of will be because we're helping out with the Nauvoo Pageant this month. We'll be going down there Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. That means we're going down there today. It's the first night of the pageant tonight :) It goes until July 30th.
Hope you all had a fun and safe 4th of July. Love all of you!

Hermana Hepworth