Tuesday, September 2, 2014

like having grandchildren!

Hello!

Hope you all enjoyed your labor day! :) Our's was great. Though Sister Pratt went to bed last night and then woke up today feeling pretty sick, and now I'm feeling sick too...so hopefully it'll blow over quickly!

This past week we went on two exchanges! It was actually a lot of fun, and the week went by really quickly. Our first exchange was with the Lamoni sisters!!


 We met in Osceola where they were having interviews, and then I went down to Lamoni with Sister Froerer! Ahhhh it was sooooo great, and really quick healing and therapeutic in a way, though I know that sounds a little weird. It was super fun because Sister Froerer is pretty new to Lamoni, so she wanted help and advice, and I loved being able to help her a little. The sisters have done amazing down there. Do you remember Sister V, the inactive lady we found by some miracle who started coming back to church? Yeah...she's getting MARRIED and her fiancĂ©e is getting BAPTIZED like the day after the wedding! And he's AWESOME and has already read the ENTIRE Book of Mormon AND Doctrine and Covenants! I can't get over that. It's incredible. We also got to say hi to the sweet Slayton's, met with another lady who I love, and read the Book of Mormon with a dear young woman I had worked with when I was in Lamoni! She has had some hiccups but is pressing forward and doing great - we are so proud of her! It was fun laying in bed in our apartment and thinking about all the memories there. Anyways, I decided that going back to your old area is like having grandchildren - you can visit and have fun for the day, then leave and let the parents take care of the dirty work ;)

We also had exchanges with the Winterset sisters! 


This time, Sister Pratt went to Winterset (the birthplace of John Wayne) with one sister, and I brought the other back to Des Moines with me. It was a good exchange, but a hard one too. While on the exchange we got a new investigator, and set a baptismal date with J, which was a sweet lesson! So that was good :)

Tuesday we had interviews with President and Sister Jensen. They were wonderful. I needed those! Oh, speaking of interviews...guess who the new assistant to the president is? ELDER CLEVERLEY, one of my favorite zone leaders from Oskaloosa! Yeah, we're pretty pumped.

On Thursday we had a Relief Society activity, which was really fun because we got to meet and get to know better a lot of the women in the ward. I love them! It is crazy because there were three of them there - all married, two with kids - who graduated in 2010 with me. I'm getting old!

Yesterday we had a sweet miracle! We've really been struggling with investigators lately - we find them, and then they drop so quickly or just don't progress. (oh speaking of which, one lady we've been working with dropped us, hard!) So at the end of the week, for the first time in a very long time, we didn't have a single investigator on date (we can't count them as "on date" unless they've come to Sacrament Meeting, and none of them came except for R, but we're waiting to set a date with her because of some different situations). So that was a little discouraging, especially since we're trying really hard. But then yesterday during our p-day, we decided to go walk around the sculpture park downtown. As we were walking, a man waved us down and came up to us, asking what church we go to. I started saying the name of the Church, but he was like, "I know that, I'm a Mormon - what church building do you go to?" He said that he just moved here and wants to know where to go to church. We talked for a bit, and then Sis Pratt asked him when he got baptized...and he said that he never actually got baptized because he didn't feel he was ready, but now he wants to be! We had a lesson with him right there on a park bench and went over the baptismal interview questions, almost all of which he already knew and had great answers to! My favorite part was when he asked if we could kneel and say a prayer, right there in the park in downtown Des Moines on the concrete...it was great :) We met with him again today and set a baptismal date for September 27. We're hoping he's committed and is able to progress...he's had a rough past and is a little different, but he seems really sincere and will hopefully stick around! We're having faith! :)

My favorite thing to study in Preach My Gospel this week was the section on bearing testimony. It doesn't really matter how smart we are or how well-spoken we are or whether or not we cry when we feel the Spirit...it just matters how much we really internalize the doctrines we teach and then bear testimony of them! I love that because it makes me feel empowered to be able to fulfill my purpose as a missionary - because sometimes, it's so overwhelming :) Thank YOU all for sharing your testimonies with me. You mean so much! I love you all!

Love,
Sister Whipple

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