Monday, January 13, 2014

Letter #63

Dear Family!
This week has been crazy! (to say the least) It was also very good :) 
So we finally have a investigator!! Two actually!! :) It feels so good to be teaching again! We have been doing a ton of the "To the Rescue" which is great! ;) We have also been working with a of lot less active/returning members. That is always good, however I have missed teaching investigators. 

So their names are Ria and Will! We are not super clear on there relationship. It is actually really confusing to us!?! She says they are just friends. When we meet him for the first time... he said they are engaged!?! Weird! Anyways, we love Ria! She is really great and so prepared! She has just been searching and really is ready for a change in her life! The Elders met her just biking around and she said she has been praying for a change and she felt like we were sent from God. That is just the best thing to hear! :) I love when people recognize that! Everything happens for a reason... so we were able to meet with them once or twice and we got a really good feeling about Ria. Not so much for Will; he didn't talk much. Actually the first time we meet them, he was whispering to us! It was really weird... he said he's "saving his voice". I guess he sings or something. haha So he has been a little harder to read the whole time, a little off but harmless we thought...

Long Story short: They came to church on Sunday and we think he is schizophrenic (sp?) haha He had an episode/attack in church... it was the craziest thing... so I'm going to forward Sister Calder's e-mail with all the details! haha  I type slow and the Elders pretty much took up all our time... :( 

Either way, the coolest thing is that during all this craziness; Sister Calder and I we're kinda freaked out and didn't know what to do? We were driving with member to drop them off at home... and I was just questioning like... what is going on!?! Why am I here!?!.... and then a car pulls 
next to us. They had a bumper sticker on it that said..."I love my church" and I just knew that Heavenly Father was listen and was well aware of me and my thoughts. I am out here because I love this church so much! This gospel is what makes me happy! I know it! I live it! I love it so much! I want to share that happiness with as many of God's children as I can!! I may forget that when things get hard, but I know Heavenly Father loves me and is watching over me! He has a plan, and I just need to let him lead me... and have faith in his timing. I love you guys so much! I can't believe that I have been out for 15 months! :0! I also can't believe that you are already getting info about me coming home!! I just feel like I just got out here. I have felt green my whole mission!! :) and I plan to feel that way till the end. I love you family! Sorry my e-mail is so short! Hopefully the pictures make up for it... I LOVE YOU GUYS!!!! God be with you till we meet again! :) 

Sister Sharon Andersen 

P.S funny/ hilarious video on Facebook: It doesn't really fulfill my purpose  as a missionary... to put it on my Facebook (that's why i haven't posted it)... but it's so funny! haha and thought I might share it with you... I haven't done a church tour quite like this. Actually, I haven't done a church tour since Naples! But anyways... enjoy :") 


I think the hardest lesson I have had to learn on my mission so far is that I can't change people. I came out thinking that I could baptize the world! If only people just knew and hear me testify to them, they'd know the truth… yep. I totally thought that. And in a way I still do haha because there are people out there who need ME to testify to them. But it's just been hard because I realize that no matter how much I tell someone, they still can't find out until they ask for themselves. And you can't push that on someone and you can't make them feel the spirit. Even though you know 110% that it's true, they can only know for themselves and that's the hardest thing ever. I can't imagine having kids. This really is preparation!
We had the craziest Sunday ever. I thought when church was cancelled in Naples because of the pipe was bad, this FAR exceeds it. But I really don't think I can do it justice over writing or even telling. It was a "had to be there" sort of thing. 
We have these 2 investigators that we got from the Elders who were covering part of our area. The girl is SO cool and we love her so much! She has this friend that she's living with. When we met him he was whispering while talking to us because he was "saving his voice". We thought it was kind of weird, but didn't think anything of it. He also said that she was his fianc√©… so we thought just some weird relationship problems were going on or something. We had 2 really good lessons with her, while he just kind of sat there. So they wanted to come to church on Sunday. We still hadn't found them a ride on Sunday morning. As we were searching Sister Canulette came in and we ran over to ask her if she could pick them up. She said yes than goodness (20minutes before church). So Sister A and her went to pick them up while I stayed in our ward counsel. Apparently some really weird things happen on the way here. He was acting really strange and she was acting normal. They ended up getting here right before they passed the sacrament. So they were doing fine, he (sorry, I can't use names so it might be a little confusing…) was acting weird so she didn't want to sit by him… so Sister A sat in-between them… then while someone (our WML actually) was doing this amazing piano piece he just jolted up and left. Really weird… so then she chases after him. We just stayed sitting not knowing what to do. Then after the piece was over we decide to go and check on them. They were outside walking across the street! There house is 12 miles away. We had no idea what to do! So we just watched them from the window. Then they got more down the street and soooooooo we did what anyone would do. Ran and grabbed our sandwiches and watched… we were starving because it was 1:45 and we hadn't had lunch. Then they were going up and down the streets. Some members sitting on the couches were just watching in anticipation with us. THEN, they started coming back! So we ran and put our sandwiches away. AH. They were outside and she was just watching him while he talked about the bubble around the church, the internet in his head, the smells that were in the church, and how we had our own ecosystem…. 
Then we knew something was totally up. She was so calm and collected though. She just let him talk it out. I can't really even explain all what he was talking about…. but we just let him talk and he kept saying he wanted to go home and that he was going to walk. She just said she wanted to stay. SHE LOVED CHURCH. So then there was some more stuff where we talked to him. Then we grabbed Sister Canulette and had her drive them home with us. He then was talking about his nails and things like that. So I just talked to her about how she liked church, she loved it and we explained a lot of things (side note, we totally had Texas Roadhouse rolls for our sacrament bread. No joke) about sacrament and stuff. She wants to come back, but he couldn't handle it.
Here's the miracle, Sister Canulette used to work with psych patients. So she was asking him questions and things like that. On the way back to church she told us that she's almost sure that he's schizophrenic (no idea how to even spell check that…). Everything he said and was doing pointed to it. It was insane. We made it back halfway through RS…. everyone after was asking about it because it was like this big show that was going on and we were just running around like chickens with our heads cut off not knowing what to do… I still don't think I've done the story justice because it literally was insane. 
Also, I was able to explain why we are called Sister to a 5 year old this week. I explained it EXACTLY like we do to investigators. It's SO simple :)
Also- I love Sister A :) she's pretty much my favorite! I love working with her and I hope this Saturday doesn't rip up apart!!!!! Also, since I'm getting SOOOOO many letters (cough cough) just to let you know there is transfer calls this Saturday so if you don't send it in the next few days wait till Monday to know if I'm still here!
Before I forget I wanted to tell the Primary in my ward thanks for the package! I loved it so much and it totally made my day!!!! :)

HASTEN THE WORK. Since this email is already a mile long I'm going to throw this in. 
Hastening the work isn't just to bring people in now- it's to prepare the missionaries to be strong mothers and fathers united in raising and fighting for the Army of Helaman! The cool thing is, we're an army. This is a war. And we know who wins. All you have to do is pick your side, and stick with it till the end! 
This. Work. Is. True! 
It's real and I love it more than anything! I love being a missionary! :) 
I love you all! 

Love, Sister Calder :)

Spread the joy! If only you knew how much joy comes when you bring someone in :)

 Sister Andersen by the Sarasota Sign
 Sister Andersen & Sister Calder by the Sarasota Sign.
 she dropped their food on the floor... had to capture this moment...
 treats in the car
 sharing an XL t-shirt
 not sure what she was doing here... LOL
 She got a text and HAD to help out a missionary... see below...

It say's "Well... Momma Andersen is on duty call... Bike wreck..."
Haha. She is always taking care of others!!

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