Monday, October 1, 2012

Happy Half Birthday

Dearest family,
Hello!! Happy October! Can you believe it is October already? It is starting to feel like fall here, and I like it. Your "autumn" package came just in time apparently. Thank you so much!! I loved it. And I am even wearing one of the sweaters you sent, so good timing with that. I also wished myself a happy half birthday in the subject line. Hope that's okay with you! The leaves haven't started to change yet. It still looks like summer here. Everyone says it is really beautiful when the fall colors come though, so I am excited for that!
So how was your week? I hope you have all been doing well. Thank you for your letters and emails. I sure am one lucky missionary. I know I seriously say this every week but I just feel so blessed with all the love and support I receive from everyone.
Oh, one more thing about the package. So the family we live with, I mentioned how they have five kids. They have figured out that when we get packages there has to be some good stuff in there. Last night they are like, can we come look at your stuff. They lucked out with a lot of candy and glow sticks (that was from the random package you sent when I first got here). They LOVED it. They had a "glow stick party" and were running around outside for a good hour. So, on behalf of the Sperry children, thanks for the glow sticks and candy.
This has been another good week. On Tuesday we volunteer at a place called Concordia. It is a care center for about 12 elderly people. We start off with a Bible study group. We just choose a verse to discuss with them. Last week this woman who came kept raising her hand and saying, "I don't need this, but keep going." Then she would raise her hand again and say, "I disagree, but keep going." She said that probably 8 times. It was just funny cause normally it takes 5 minutes to discuss but took a lot longer with that haha. She was friendly but I think she forgot everytime she told us to keep going. We also do exercises with them. By exercises I mean holding a pool noodle and raising our hands up. It's fun though. Then we serve them their lunch. We also play bingo with them. I get to call the numbers out. Oh how they love their bingo.
All the people we are teaching are doing really well. This area just still amazes me. We get referrals constantly and are just trying to keep up with the members here. Rex is doing great. We are so close to having him pray vocally with us. He is getting more comfortable each time we meet. It is cool to see his progression. We also are teaching a kid named Jesse (I think I mentioned him last week?). We taught the Plan of Salvation. It was amazing. He just soaked it all up and wants to know more and more. He offered the closing prayer and it was one of the most sincere, real prayers I have ever heard. Another cool experience this week was teaching a lesson to one of the couples who have been investigating for a while. We planned on teaching the gospel of Jesus Christ, but she expressed a concern so it went a whole different direction. It was amazing to see the spirit work through us to teach to their needs. It turned out being nothing we prepared for, but it was what she needed. We also met a less active this week who is awesome. It was a miracle she let us visit with her, and she even said we could come back! Those are just a few of the blessings we have seen this week. Overall, teaching is going well!
We had a baptism on Friday!! It was very simple, but very great. He didn't want any talks, just the service and that's it. We tried to get him to have a longer program but he just said nope haha. So we didn't push more. It turned out great though! She has been a member, so now their goal is the temple. Can't wait till they get there :)
The Relief Society Broadcast made me even more excited for Conference. I cannot wait for conference this weekend!! We will watch it live with you too. We are just an hour ahead of Utah so it is a little later in the day...nothing wrong with that though! I loved the RS broadcast. It seems like they all focused on the Atonement and our Savior. I love the new presidency. We aren't sure if we will watch it with families or go to the depends where investigators are at. We already have 7 investigators who said they will watch it this weekend. How awesome is that? So happy conference weekend!! Eat some food in pajamas for me...I have to be all missionary dress during it, so have a moment for me.
We gave service this week. I tore down a fence with a sledgehammer...that's all I need to say about that. It was definitely not my thing. Oh what I am learning here.
Yesterday we were at the church building for....drum roll...10 hours! Is that like bishop status? Or do I still not know what that is like? Anyways, for me, it was rough. From 8 to 6 we were there. And in our family ward it was bring a friend to church sunday, so we were running around like crazy trying to meet all the new faces before they dodged us. We also taught Gospel Principles yesterday so it was busier than usual. It was our Primary Program yesterday too! Anywhere you are, all primary programs are so entertaining. They have a huge primary here. But, we survived church. We were exhausted at the end of the night, but it was a good day overall.
Well, we gotta make our weekly Walmart run but I sure love you. Thanks for everything!! Have a wonderful week. Know that I love you!
Much love from AR,
Sister Magness
A few from the baptism
A few with two of the kiddos enjoying the package treats :)

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