Week of Traveling and an Apostle visit!!!!!

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A visit to Tubingen to pick up Sister Priest’s visa and I go to work briefly with the lovely Sister Baugh.

Another week gone by, someone tell me how this happens so fast!

This week was very different for us, as we traveled a TON. Monday throught Wednesday were ”normal.” Meaning just working hard with Christiana, Beauty, Nancy and Constanz and being able to really see the hand of God in their lives and feel His love for them as they progress in the gospel. Christiana has been making huge improvements. We were reading all together in 1 Nephi 13 this week and she had a moment of complete revelation right before our eyes. She just got really excited and said she undertsood why this book was SO important. Since then, she has been reading a lot each day and has been an amazing support to her friend, Beauty who will be baptised soon!

Singen is an amazing place. The people are just so nice and ready to help!

The rest of the week we were underway. On Thursday we went to a place called Tübingen to pick up Sister Priest’s visa. The Lees were able to drive us (what we would do without them, I am not so sure) there and then got us ice cream and lunch afterwards. They are my favorite! 🙂 Tübingen is gorgeous, typical Europe with cobblestone streets and a big bridge with two rivers flowing through it, colorful buildings to boot. haha We got to see her old companions and I got to work with the lovely Sister Baugh for about 20 minutes. She is awesome, as to be expected. I was just amazed at how willingpeopleare to help. Her old ward mission leader was rwilling to take time out of his day and meet us to give her the papers she needed and then the missionaries guided us through the town to where she needed to be and dont even get me started about the Lees who never let you pay them back. I was just along for the ride, oh how blessed I am.

On Friday, we hit the road to Munich (it’s basically my home, I’ve been back so many times now). IT was a 4 hour drive and we had a good time looking out at the sea of spring green (in tons of different shades) that flooded the fields of Germany. It’s a pretty place, I guess 😀

We had gotten special permission to be there with the Lees and another Senior couple and their missionaries to do a tour of Hitler sites in Munich. It was so weird to see these places where I used to work and know the significance behind them all. We were on this walking tour with Elder Annen from my MTC group and his companion. It was a blast, just like anything I get to do with the Lees, but super strange to be on tour in my old area!

Later, we headed to the youth hostel where nearly the entire mission stayed overnight. You would expect us girls to stay up and talk, but man we were exhausted. So we slept.

The next day we got to see Elder Bednar. Pretty much everyone was expecting to get iPads and to hear all about them. The first thing he said was this is not about iPads. It was so much better than that. I know he is an Apostle of the Lord. The instant he spoke, his mantel showed in that we all felt so comfortable and loved from his spirit. Hearing from him flet like hanging out with a brother and best friend, even though you could simultaneously feel the power of the spirit in the room. Amazing stuff. We talked about how to prepare ourselves for a technological world and how using technology can really forward our reach and our influence for good in the world. We asked questions and answered his questions (no answer was wrong) and it was amazing.

I learned that really everything we have in this life and how we affect our futures comes down to our agency. Our choice and how we honor or destroy our covenants. Technology helps us really test who we are in that we can waste our time or look at destructive things or we can use it as a tool for good. We can choose to be acted upon or to act. When we act, we become empowered, strong and are readied to live with God and our families forever! When we are acted upon, we miss out on so much, especially blessings.

Elder Bednar is pretty amazing!

It was also way cool to see all of my missionary friends and some of my old ward members. Everyone is illuminated with the spirit and in the service of God. It is so nice to see my blessings in person. The Lord has really blessed me so much! I dont know where I would be if I didnt come here, but I know for sure that this gospel, this church, is true. I know that God will give you the same answer and that we all need to ask this to Him in prayer. I know that it has changed my life and it will change yours too! It is glorious.

Well, I am happy, Spring is in full swing and I’m gonna go hike to that castle again.
This time, not in the snow. Pictures will be sent next week.

Thanks for all you do!!

Love

Sister Smith

Being a missionary is so Cool!

Where to begin….

Being a missionary is just one of the coolest things you could ever do. You do what Jesus did and what he would do today if He was on the earth. We get to strengthen one another and ourselves and everyone we meet. I have seen so much growth in people and it is so cool to see them open up and their light shine brighter because they are getting closer to their Father in Heaven. I see in each person who decideds to sincerely learn about this gospel, people on the street, my companions and of course myself.

This week we got to spend some time with Christiana. She told us a story of how God was watching over her extra well. She said that her daughter, 5, Miracle and Beauty’s son, who she is watching, Victory Sunday, were riding bikes outside in the nice weather and just decided to bike away.

They got about 3 miles away before she realised they were nowhere to be seen. She freaked out and had everyone who lives at the home looking for them. It was a scary situation for her because she knew if someone stopped them and asked them what happened the kids would be taken away from her and Beauty and put somewhere else.

She prayed and finally they were found. They had biked and found 50 Euro on the street and decided to take the money and buy some chips at the store. These 5 year olds did all of this without one person stopping them or asking them where their parents were. They even did it in German, not their native tongue.

Then, some people from the home found them and they were brought back safely, eating their chip. Everyone at the home was telling her how lucky she was and how she must really have God on her side. She was definitely grateful for how much God helped her with her kids and she kicked herself into high gear the rest of the week as she studied the gospel and watched the kids much more closely.

It was a moment where I actually felt proud of her for recognizing the hand of God in her life and not taking anything for granted. She is so faithful and she is just getting better and better, brighter and brighter each day!

We also met with Nancy, she wants to marry her fiance, but in order to get married she needs fad ton of documents from Nigeria and the German government does not really trust the government there, so it has become a huge process.

She has wanted this for a long time. We were teaching her about Chastity and about how she needs to decide not to live with her fiance to prepare for her baptism, and she will see a ton of blessings in the meantime, and she was humbled and ready to follow God.

She will be praying and fasting this week for strength. It seems like something weird, to not be able to live with her fiance if she wants to be baptised, but I know that as she keeps herself pure and really keeps the commandment from God to be chaste, she will have a better relationship, family, and life. Confidence comes from keeping this commandment as well as real joy and peace in life. I’m excited for her to learn and grow and get even close to her fiance than before!

We also spend some time on the streets, as missionaries, talking to people about Christ and sharing our message with people. Yesterday, we had a few plans fall out and were deciding what to do. We finally decided we needed to get out of the apartment, even though we had a ton of studiest to complete. We were going to deliver a Book of Mormon to a woman who came to church looking for the truth, Rosa. We grabbed the book from the church and went by. She wasn’t home.

We turned around and began to walk the super short walk to put the book back when we saw a younger woman with her little son. Sister Priest stopped her and asked her if she wanted to hear about Jesus Christ. As soon as Jesus’ name came out of Sister Priest’s mouth, the tears that were welling up in her eyes began to flow.

I immediately asked her if I could hug her, feeling her pain and the love God has for her. She nodded and said yes. I hugged her and asked her if we could help her or if she was okay. She said she was not okay, but that she needed Jesus and the message we could share.

She asked to hear from us, and made sure we were the mormons (haha). We shared a scripture with her in Ether 12:27, Book of Mormon, about how God makes weak things strong unto us. She said she needed to be strengthened by God because she feels so weak. We asked her if we could share what we had becuase we didn’t know how better to help her. She was anxious to agree and gave us her information.

I am so glad that God knows each of us personally and what we need. He sends us help whenever we need it, we just need to be open and ask to receive such help. I cannot describe how amazing this love is! Feel it for yourself, then share it! It’s the best thing you could ever do. It heals you, it strengthens you, it saves you. I love this calling, missionary.

Have an amazing week!!!

Love,
Sister Smith

Liebe Geschwistern!

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Welcome to Singen Sister Priest!

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Happy Easter! thanks for all the goodies from home!

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Brooke LOVES these sisters and their family’s! She helped give her recent convert, Christina a birthday party with Beauty and her kids Victory and Miracle

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Sister Berry and I made Christina a frame with the Nigerian Temple (her home). She LOVED it!

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I love these crazy kids so much! They love their pictures taken–they say ‘SNAP ME!” THEY ARE AWESOME! Kids names are miracle and victory

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STREET FEST.

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Sister Berry is very excited to pass out our cards from our street table! LOL

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Elder Jensen

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He Lives! I love sharing this message!

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Sister Berry and Sister Lee. I love these women!

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Sister Berry got transferred! She’s one of my very best friends! She’s an amazing missionary!

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Im blessed to live in the most beautiful place!

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I LOVE being a missionary!

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The bus schedule changed on Easter. We had gone early to surprise Sister Lee and help her make dinner while the men were at priesthood session of conference (with time difference it’s sunday morning here). The bus didn’t make it there so we got off at the last stop possible and ran/walk 4 miles to surprise her. We loved every minute of it!

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beautiful Easter Walk!

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Cutest ever!!!!!, I just love her!

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Happy Birthday Christina!

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Sister Berry with Christina and her children Miracle and Beauty

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Sipplingen is a Super cute little town near us where one of our investigators lives

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Sipplingen

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Sipplingen

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Sipplingen

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Ekatherina Schafers House with the Elders

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sister Berry outside our Bishops home

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Awww,,,beautiful!

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our walk to Sister Lee

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Sister Berry with Beauty and I ,,,,

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Sister Berry, Christina, Beauty and I

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Liebe Geschwistern!

Transfers were this week, so leading into Thursday we said a lot of goodbyes and got Sister Berry on her way to Passau. She is doing great there and is such an amazing person! Sometimes we get lucky as missionaries and just get sent someone who the Lord looks at and laughs and just knows we will be the best of friends. Sister Berry is one of those best friends. I am so lucky to know her! As Sister Berry left, Sister Priest came. She is awesome, how can she not be with a name like that right?, and is still training. She is from Nevada and has lived all over. She is super determined, hard working and strong. I have no doubts about her, she is totally already trained!

After the transfer, we had a straße Austellung, or street display. The Lees came and we had a great time (the whole district was there, all 6 of us). It has been cool having a district of just our ward. The district leader is Elder Lee and he is the best. It feels like home!

We sisters found three new people from the display and one experience I had was super cool. I just asked a lady if she wanted to take a video card with a candy attached and what she thought of Jesus and Easter and ect… and she just stopped and ranted about how her ancestors are tying to communicate with her and she wants to reestablish her faith in Christ. She had taken the lessons from missionaries 30 years ago and wants us to teach her again! Soo cool.

Then, on Sunday, we had a random lady come to church who is from a small country next to Kazakhstan and she is searching for truth. She is baptised Baptist, but really doesn’t feel like she’s found the whole truth yet. We are more than happy to help her on her search as is a family in our ward from Kazakhstan who are also converts! They clicked immediately and we are so excited to teach her this week with that family!

Beatuy Sunday went out of town randomly because her Sister Rachel (who is being taught by Elders near Stuttgart) just had a baby girl! Rachel has no other family, so Beatuy had to go. She wil be learning there for a little while and calls us often. She will be baptised after she returns.

Other than that, it has been a great week! It is such an honor to serve here and I cannot beleive how fast it all goes by!

Bis nächste Woche,

Sister Smith

Happy Easter from Singen, Germany!

Easter in Germany. Just like any holiday, and they have many here, they celebrate it well. The cities are flooded with people heading into masses and ceremonies and just partying. They even take Monday as a full holiday, too.

As missionaries, obviously, we do things just a little differently. We had general conference, had a lovely German dinner at the Lees (Schnitzel and potatoes and carrots and American chocolate cake). Funny story, the bus says it runs on the holiday but it turns out, as we found out arriving at the central station in Singen, it doesn’t actually run to the Lees on the holiday. We were going to be early and help Sister Lee prepare everything, but the Bus wasn’t running and Elder Lee was watching the Priesthood Session. Well, we decided we would walk like 3 miles to the lees on this super windy day so we could get there in time to help a little bit. We did it in 30 minutes, which was good for walking lol. Sister Lee was surprised but happy to see us and we had an hour together before Elder Lee made it home. We all ate together and it was delicious! Basically, Sister Lee is an angel and we love her way too much and she does way too much for us!

We got to watch conference with Christiana and Beauty and the kids. It was so good! My favorite talk in the moment is the one by Elder Holland, he talks about the boys climbing the mountain unprepared and the older one hopelessly gripping into the sand, to no relief. Then, of course the impossible happens. A savior comes with strength unimagined and pulls us lovingly to safety! I don’t remember if I shared the Because He Lives video, but it is so good and it talks about exactly that, how Jesus saves us and helps us in our lives. It is such a good one!

We shared that with Christiana and Beauty at the church and one of the lines talks about the greatest miracle and miracle the daughter got so excited, jumped up and pointed to herself LOL these kids are crazy.

Other news this week, We went to visit a referral from a nice young lady in our ward at an old folks home in a place called Sipplingen. We visited her and she was totally lucid and has no impairments other than being in a walker. She is so excited to see us and just explains to us how the church has had this lasting positive impact on her life. She always wanted to learn more, but in her older age, needed permission to do so. When she got permission, we got over there and she just sat us down and told us she wanted to be baptized. Singen, I’m telling you, is a miracle kind of a place(or maybe this is just a miracle kind of a work…). Just wonderful! Her name is Costanze and she is the cutest thing. She is German!

Beauty Sunday is also doing fine! Christiana had a birthday this week and we were able to visit her a bit and leave her with something! We gave her a framed picture of the Nigerian temple and wrote Families can be together forever on it. She just loved it. Africans are funny because when you take their picture, they don’t smile, they pose and they smile so much in normal life, but when the camera is on, they like it better when they pose. They always say “snap me!” and then pose for pictures. We got some really good ones. I will have to load those up next week.

Each day is such an adventure. Some days are physically taxing or spiritually taxing, but each challenge completed with faith and diligence brings blessings bigger than I can comprehend. I am learning how to be truly meek (responding with love and grace to anything that comes my way), how to be strong, how to serve others, what people (including myself) really need in order to be happy, to focus on the eternal perspective rather than just do things for the momentary results, and really just how to come closer to Christ. Each struggle, miracle, experience is a blessing and a lesson. I cannot imagine my life without a mission. I cannot imagine not knowing these people, going through these experiences or testing my faith out here in Europe. I am so grateful that I made it our here and the God is molding me into something better than I was before!

I am so blessed to know the gospel is true and the Savior and what He did is real, and that these truths really come to life as you live them and watch them save the lives of others in the mission field. Especially at this Easter time, I think about all that Jesus did for us and am simply humbled!

I hope you’ve all have a great time and wish you a fabulous spring week!

Sister Smith

p.s. we got transfer calls: Sister Berry is leaving us and goes to open Passau for sisters, an area that was closed when my old area was closed and is close to Munich by the Czech Republic.

I will stay and finish Sister Priest’s training! So I get to train again. 🙂