Sister Denton's Marvelous Mission: August 2011

Monday, August 29, 2011

8/29/11- Letter to the World

So...I forgot my planner.  I hope I can remember everything from this week!  I may have to borrow Sis. Mortensen's!

This is week one of my second transfer of training!!  Can I just say--I LOVE State College?!  It's amazing!
So after our regular P-Day activities we deep-fried snickers and oreos.  The process is as follows:  Dip snicker/oreo in pancake batter, drop in a vat of boiling oil, once browned (about 10 seconds) remove, enjoy once cooled enough!  'Twas fun.  We also had indian leg wrestling and arm wrestling competitions.  'Twas fun.  Afterward we went to a lesson where our potential didn't show up and then tracted the rest of the evening!

Our first forum with the students back in town!  After 30 minutes, we completely ran out of supplies--over 200 "Open Your Mouths"!  Crazy!  We ran home to get more and renew our bus passes and then we got to teach Zack.  I love this guy!  We taught him with Alan this time, who is also a genius, so it went really well!  We did service at the food bank and when we got there everyone was like, "Did you feel the earthquake?"  Apparently the earthquake from DC was felt up here in PA too!  We were walking around and didn't even notice it :D  We had dinner with an awesome recent convert family.

Something exciting this transfer is that we have a real district leader!!  Woot!  Elder Neely and Elder Lavata'i doubled into Philipsburg.  And also, Elder Densley, my frist District Leader and one of my favorite people is the new Assistant!  The other assistant is my first Zone Leader.  If you've seen the pics, they are the two that look like Kyle and Cody haha.  Awesome!  So District Meeting was fun and Mama H came by, saw us, and bought us pizza!  She has a son in England and says she loves to do things for the missionaries so that someone in England will do it for her son!

We met with Caden for the first time in a while and it went really well!  We also got to see Susanna , one of my favorite people ever!  Her two little boys are ADORABLE.  We watched the Restoration DVD with them.  Then we went to another new family's house for dinner.

We went to see if any of our people would make it to institute.  They didn't, but the other sister's had some people there!  One is Suzanne who is just amazing!  She came to find out more about our church last Sunday and stayed all three hours.  She went to FHE, institute, the relief society activity, and church again this week.  Her boyfriend is a member and currently at BYU.  She's so amazing!  I'm super excited about her!

We had another forum that we got a couple of potentials from.  We also saw Zack and confirmed he'd be coming to church :D.  On the way back from the forum, we were carrying this super awkward table and a box of foreign language Book of Mormons to storage and a girl stopped and asked if we needed help.  She asked if we were from Hillel, which is the Jewish organization on campus.  She was going to help prepare the dinner they have every Friday.  We were supposed to teach Richie at 3:30, but couldn't get ahold of him and couldn't figure out where.  We tried one place at 3:15 and then walked to check the other about 3:30.  We thought he ditched us, so we went to help cook for the dinner as well!  First time in a kosher kitchen, super cool!  We chopped celery and opened TONS of cans.  We found out later that Richie was at the place we checked at 3:15 at 3:30.  We were able to reshedule later, though.  We had dinner with another amazing new family.  After dinner, she took us to Josiah's house.  Josiah is a blind man who was a referral.  He has a lot of questions about how to help his dead friends change their ways.  It was a great lesson!  He's moving to the other sister's area, but not until next week, so we taught him again Saturday.  Afterward, the sister drove us to the Relief Society activity where we met some more new sisters.  We got to meet another amazing new branch member there--Domitila.  She was just baptized 4 months ago and she is on fire!  She's willing to come out and teach with us :D

We got to teach Caden again!  We watched the John Tanner DVD with him and talked about baptism.  He was set with the 3rd, but we wanted to be sure he wanted this and was ready.  He thought about it during the movie and afterward decided on the 17th.  I feel a lot better about this date, so be excited for Sept 17th!  Afterward, we got to teach Kalea again, who's also been out of town.  She started reading the Book of Mormon!  Woot!  She also realized she's going to have to make a choice between the church she attends now and ours.  She keeps going to hers to say goodbye, but then misses some people.  Hopefully she'll come to ours on Sunday!

Saturday was crazy.  We had Ronnie first, who canceled.  Next were our correlation meetings.  Then we had Darius who didn't show up.  Then was supposed to be Levi, but he called VERY apologetically and canceled, so we went tracting.  Then we had to split to teach Jordan (the Chinese guy who overheard us last week) and Domenic (from Nigeria!)  Both lessons went very well and they became new investigators!  We got dropped off for a 15 minute dinner and then got picked up and dropped off at another members home who drove with us to Bro McAllister's, the 75-year-old recent convert.  We watched the John Tanner movie with him too.  Then another member picked us up and taught Josiah with us.  We were planning to go over Lesson 2, but he had questions about Brigham Young and Joseph Smith!  Sweet.  Again, it went very well.  Then another member drove us home.  There's no way we could've done that day without members!  EVERY lesson had a member there!  They are amazing!

Church was great.  Zack came for the first hour and Richie made it for the third.  We also had a recent convert come who hasn't been in awhile.  It was SO good to see him there!  We ate with a fun couple and then went tracting for a couple of hours until our appointment with Ruben  from Turkey.  Vaughn taught with us and it was an AMAZING lesson.  The Spirit was so strong at points.  Unfortunatley, Ruben did not feel it.  It was really sad to see him not be interested because we really gave our all.

Oh--and Hurricane Irene hit this day.  It was pretty much just rainy and windy, not bad at all.  We actually had a tornado warning last week during church that was WAY worse.  The craziest thunder and rain I've ever seen in my life!

So ya, 'twas a great week!  Being a missionary is awesome :D  Just sayin'!  I hit my year mark this week--I can't believe it!  Time goes SO fast!

I love you all!

Sister Denton

Monday, August 22, 2011

9/22/11- Letter to the World

Okay world....I have 35 minutes, so this is going to be AWESOME because I just lived one of the best weeks of my entire life :D

Super Funny
Super Awesome
That's right...back to color coding :D

After P-Day, we went to find a referral.  He wasn't interested, but we went tracting.  The next house, a man was outside, so we went to talk to him and he gave us a giant box of tomatoes.  We had 2 more hours to tract, what were we supposed to do with a giant box of tomatoes?  So we carried it with us to the next house and set it to the side.  The people talked to us for a little while, but weren't interested, so I asked if they wanted any tomatoes.  They were discussing it when I mentioned that the neighbors had just given us the box.  The woman responded that the day previous, she had given THEM a box of tomatoes.  Super awkward.  Anywho, we went to give some to a couple we'd met a couple of roads down who was super nice and invited us in and gave us water last time.  They took some.  Then we took some up the street to another woman we'd met who is older and super sweet.  Turns out she LOVES tomatoes and thanked us.  :D

Tracting the rest of that street was relatively uneventful. it wasn't least not compared to regular tracting terms.  We met a woman who ended up yelling at us.  We got a return appointment with an older woman.  We met a cool guy named George from Germany.  We're teaching him tonight.  Lol...we met this guy named Dan who I'd actually met before.  I knew he looked familiar, but couldn't place him.  Last time I met him, my companion and I had been walking through the library and he passed and just said, "Hi Sisters!"  Well, no one but members of the Church call us sisters, and we didn't recognize him from the branch, but he was gone.  We continued out the door and I wished I'd said something more.  Next thing we knew, he came up behind us and just started walking with us on campus!  Turns out his bro is LDS, though he's not interested at all.  He just walked across the campus with us like we were all lifelong friends and as soon as we parted ways that was that, he was gone!  It was like a whirlwind or something, but he was just a happy person.  Okay, so back to Monday night.  I walked up to hand him a card and was like, "Wait, do we know you?"  "No"  "Have you talked to sisters before?"  "Not recently"  "Oh--okay, well we're missionaries....(intro)"  "Will you do me a favor?"  "Um...okay."  "Will you sing a song with me right here right now?"  (Mind you we're standing in the middle of the road, but I am me and I do love to sing...)  "Sure!"  "I was in a Mormon church once and I know you sing this song....'Because I Have Been Given Much'"  So we sang it.  Right there in the middle of the road!  He actually knew the song better than we did lol.  And once it was over, he was gone again!  I want to be like him though, he just changed our entire night!  We were so happy afterward!

The moral of that story is...go make someone happy!  :D

TuesdaySo we got to teach Zack again!  If you'll remember from last week, he almost dropped us.  We taught the Word of Wisdom with James and it was awesome!  Before we even got into it, though, he asked some typically amazing Zack questions: 

  • If we have to experience life to know what happiness is, did God experience earth life so He can know how happiness feels?
  • Where did God come from?
  • If our body is a temple, why does God give it cancer?
Man I love that guy!  So, we committed him to the Word of Wisdom!  He usually drinks tea while doing his research all day, but ever since Tuesday he's just had hot water!  Woot!  He kept trying to give scientific reasons for why it's good and then James was just like, "You've just got to do it because it's a commandment from God!"  Man, member team-ups are the best!

Next we had a forum, but they were painting our assigned area, so we went tracting instead.  We had a member dinner with a cute new family and then went to a less active lesson.  They canceled, though, so we went tracting again.

This is where we had our first awesome tracting experience!  We've been struggling in this companionship to get other lessons while finding.  Well, we did it!  We got 6--a personal high!  It's especially hard in neighborhoods, which is where we were!  We met a COOL guy named Chase.  He was listening and was just saying how he has a church, etc.  So I was like, "Well, this is Jesus Christ's church--the only one on the earth today...." and talked along those veins.  He asked what our purpose was and Sister Mortensen was like, "Really?  It's to help you and your family to progress toward baptism."  It was just like bam, bam, you know!?  It was great!  He said he wasn't interested in baptism, but knowing that was our end goal, he still said he'd be willing to meet again!  I love the Spirit!  We also met a cute young family that I hope decides to learn someday!

This was another day full of tracting, etc, though not quite as effective as Tuesday.  We rode the bus up to Bellefonte and followed up with a referral and then walked to dinner after tracting some.  Another family picked us up and brought us back to the chapel where we practiced our song for the baptism and then went out tracting again.  We did get a cool referral tracting, but he lives in Pasadena, CA. :D

We started the day off with a forum!  And the zone leaders came, so it was really fun!  It was neat to see everyone's different style of contacting.  I met a SWEET girl from China named Susanna.  One of the first things she asked was if she could join our group--um yes!!  After that we all went out to lunch and then had District Meeting--no pressure to be in charge and have the Zone Leaders there lol.  It was good, though, and then they interviewed Jane (who is INCREDIBLE) for baptism.  We went and taught Richie the Word of Wisdom with Alan.  He just started to quit smoking like that day, which was awesome and he agreed to avoid alcohol, but wasn't so sure about coffee or tea yet.  As were were finding some afterward, we had two lessons OYMing, which almost never happens for us...and both agreed to meet with us!  Next we went to dinner with this awesome family.  I won't tell you there names, though, so I can tell you this hilarious story.  They have 3 little kids and as we were finishing up dinner, we looked over and the little boy was standing on the coffee table with a puddle under him.  His parents were like, "Aw!  Did you just wet your pants?"  As we're watching all this go down, he started splashing his feet in it and his sister came over and started playing in it.  Haha. It was disgusting but HILARIOUS!  That night we went to our appointment, but they weren't there, so we took our team-up to the Day's house (we met them last week).  The boyfriend, Jordan, was there and we ended up talking to him for like 15 minutes!  It was a great conversation and I REALLY hope we'll be able to teach this family!  He'd looked through Jessica's Book of Mormon and took his own and said he'd read it :D  Awesome!  I really hope we're able to teach this family!

FridayThe morning was filled with more errand type stuff, but the evening was AWESOME!  I just searched it, and I guess I've only talked about him in one letter!  He was a HQ referral back in June.  He read the whole Book of Mormon in like a week and basically just had the church on his short list as he was searching for the truth.  Well he found it :D  The other sisters have been teaching him and he was baptized Friday night!  It was SO cool and he bore an awesome testimony at the end.  The other sisters and I sang "I Am Not Ashamed"  a song my cousin wrote.  Zack and Richie both came!

Again...phemonal day!!  (AHHH  4 minutes left!)
We had three lessons with potentials that all turned into other new investigators!!
Sutton--we met him a while back and finally met with him.  He is very into his church, but after our lesson, he is really going to seek it out!  Woot!  We're meeting with him again next week
Levi--He has very low English, but is willing to learn!  I'd met him awhile ago, but when I called he said he didn't want to meet.  Last week, I saw him at the bus stop again, and he didn't sit by me on the bus---till about halfway through when he rushed up, sat down, and said, "You believe in a different Jesus."  The Chinese Church out here is very anti-Mormon, so we get a lot of that from the Chinese people.  It made him interested, though!  And while we were teaching, an older Chinese man was paying attention the whole time.  he waved me down and said, "What church are you from?"  I told him.  "You said you're the only true church?"  "Yes"  "And you have a prophet today?"  "Yes"  He said his name was Jordan, "Like the prophet"  :D  He came to the church Sunday, too!  But he's in the other sister's area.
Susanna--she's great (45 seconds!!)

Ahh Just believe me when I say it was absolutely incredible!

This truly is God's work.  Missionary work is amazing and I am so blessed to have the opportunity to serve!

Love ya!
Sister Denton

Monday, August 15, 2011

8/15/11- Letter to the World

So...I was just surfing wondering how I had so much extra time when I realized I hadn't written a Letter to the World!!  And now I have 4:30 minutes left!

Taught Zack.  He almost dropped us, but he is going to keep meeting with us!  I'm so glad!  He's awesome.  We also met with Kalea.  She's doing well and always feels calm as she meets with us!  She's out of town now for a week and a half.  We went and helped Caden clean his apartment, which his roommate had left DISGUSTING.  He's on a trip to Europe now.  After dinner with the Smith's, we went to their neighbor's house to teach and it went well!  They said we could come back!

Tracting ever tracting :D

We taught Richie, and he totally pulled one over on us!  We asked if he'd read and he said, "No, but I prayed."  We asked if he received an answer and he said he'd had an "experience."  We were SO excited and he said, "As I was praying, this bright light started shining and Joseph Smith appeared to me."  Haha.  Very funny.  Anyway, he'll keep reading and praying!  We went and saw Bro Rich that night and watched the Restoration--intense lesson!  We saw the Memmott's later that night--still not interested in the gospel, but full of great stories! 

Off to Harrisburg for Leadership Training!  We also got to teach the awesome Wesleys!

Helped out the RS Pres and got to teach Bro McAllister (75 yr old Recent Convert)

Went out to the Philipsburg Branch to speak. 

Love you all!

Sister Denton

Monday, August 8, 2011

8/8/11- Letter to the World

Hello World!!

MondayWell, the awesome thing I was going to tell you last week was about this woman--Sis Ron--who called us last Saturday and asked if she could come to church!  She was a former.  We went over Monday and had a great lesson, but she told us yesterday that she doesn't want to meet again.  She's gone back and forth at least 4 times now, so hopefully she'll come back soon!

We went on exchanges this day, so I got to spend the time with Sis Juliano.  She is a rockstar!  It was so amazing to see her talk to people--she has a great way with them.  I need to learn that better!

We went to meet with Gary and as we were walking in the building, he canceled. 

We had a forum that morning, and during it, Zack canceled.  The forum was pretty slow, so once the other sisters came for their half, we went off to the creamery for lunch.  About that time, Ian canceled.  Ian is the referral we got a hold of last week.  But then, he did something that made me SUPER happy!  He sent a text beginning with the words, "I was reading the Book of Mormon last night and I have a question..."  He asked us about pre-earth life, prophecies of Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon in the Bible, and grace/works.  I hope we get to meet with him soon because he seems to have a lot of the same beliefs!

Because Zack canceled, we taught Gary during Zack's time.  Gary is the other sister's new investigator, but he is SO cool!  He reminded me of Joseph Smith with his questions!  "Sometimes I wonder which church is right, or if they're all just wrong!"  He's just awesome!

Next was Deb, who didn't show up for her appointment.

Next was Shaun who canceled while we were waiting for Deb.

Next was Cole who didn't show up for his appointment.

Then on to our dinner appointment!  Woot!  They were a great missionary-minded family!  She's actually coming out to teach with us next week!

Because of all the appointments falling through, we spent a good amount of time tracting, but it was still an AWESOME day!  I just felt great at the end!  The gospel is true!  I just wish more people would get that :D

After District Meeting, we taught Kalea the Word of Wisdom.  She said she was planning on implementing it a  little at a time.  At the end, we asked if she would live it and she asked if she could finish the tea she brought with her.  I told her it was her choice, but afterward I told her I'd buy her a smoothie or whatever if she didn't finish it.  She's super sweet, but we haven't been able to get a hold of her in a couple of days, so I hope we'll get to see her again...

We taught Caden next--the Word of Wisdom.  He is progressing a ton now.  I'm so excited!  We're going to help him clean his apt tomorrow.

Next was Richie.  He is SO fun to talk to!  His accent is probably my favorite and add to that he's one of the happiest people you'll ever meet!  Slowly but surely he is progressing too! 

We had dinner with Samantha, a woman that I absolutely love!  She is doing wonderfully!

This day was pretty much awful lol.  Lots of cancellations.  Lots of nothing.  Caden did meet up with us to ask us a question and since James (our branch mission leader) was waiting with us for someone who didn't show up, he came along.  We did get to go to a returning member's home for dinner though.  His family is great!  It really was the highlight of the day.  Add to that that he's a was a DELICIOUS dinner!  Turkey, potatos, corn, peas, stuffing, pasta, and pie for dessert.  Mmmmm.

We taught Caden again and it went well.  We tracted for awhile and went to meet a new family.  There are TONS of new families moving in because most of the ward is made up of Master's students and schools about to start!  We had dinner with a cute family and then went to Rachel's house.  She won't be getting baptized here, but we did get her Cali info!

SaturdayCorrelations this morning.  The ward one was at the Olive Garden.  Yah buddy!  Shrimp Ravioli.  Yum!!  The whole rest of the day was tracting ever tracting.

After meetings (7:45-3:30) we went to the Branch Break the Fast.  Then we went back to the church for more study and then had an AWESOME missionary open house. 

The work is awesome and my time is up!

Love you all!

Sister Denton

Monday, August 1, 2011

8/1/11- Letter to the World

Hello World!!

Here's the week!

We're back to one car, so we went with the sisters to run all of our errands.  We went tracting that evening and met Yogi, who set up a return appointment.  That's his nickname because he can do the impression!

We also had a woman call that day from Indiana with a referral!  Those are the best.  We found him and it turns out he wasn't interested, but it's still awesome to see people trying to share the gospel with their friends!

Our Relief Society President took us out to the Waffle Shop to help us look over the less active list and know who to help where.  After that, we got to teach Zack again!  That guy is so amazing!

Next we got to teach Callie.  Sis Johnson and I met her back in early June and we didn't think she was too potential.  Sis Mortensen and I stopped by to see if she was interested and she told us that last time we'd stopped by, she was having a really bad day, but it was much better.  Also, she told us that each time she read from the Book of Mormon, it made her feel better.  Unfortunately, she also said she was moving.  We left, but I kept feeling like we needed to do something more.  We had a couple of appointments set up with her last week, but they all fell through, so we finally got to meet with her on this day.  It was so great!  She really wants to learn and even accepted another Book of Mormon since she had packed hers.  The sad thing is, she moved on Thursday.  We'll try and keep in contact, but she didn't want missionaries where she lives.  I hope that she will continue to seek this out!  It was amazing to see someone really get the message of the Restoration!

We had interviews with President.  It was great to see him and Sister Topham again.

We got to have dinner with Samantha, an amazing woman that's been coming back to the church.  She has two of the cutest little boys I've ever met in my life!!

We also got to teach Sandy for the last time--she's now in Pittsburgh.  We called the Elders there to brief them and it seems she's in good hands :D  I'm going to miss her a lot!  It was weird not to see her at church.

WednesdayAfter District Meeting, we went and taught Caden.  We taught him with Shaun, a Recent Convert.  It was one of the best lessons we've had!  It was amazing!  We asked him to pray at the end, and he said no as usual, but Sis. M shared an experience and he agreed to pray!  He truly is progressing and it's exciting to see the change coming over him!

We also got to teach Kalea--the girl who recognized me from the bus.  It was a GREAT lesson and she really recognized and felt the Spirit.  She agreed to baptism on Aug 27!

That night we went and taught Yogi.  He was less accountable than we originally thought, but he may come to church at some point!  We went with our team-up to drop by the Memmott's and on the way home met a wonderful woman from Mexico named Janelle.  I really hope we're able to teach her more!  It was an amazing little lesson right there in the street.  It really is so important to talk to everyone!

We taught a new potential named Wes, but he wasn't too interested in progressing.  He did agree to read and pray, however!  We met with Zack right after.  We'd given him The Restoration DVD to watch.  One of his questions went as follows: "Many times in the movie, Joseph's dad told him to ask and pray."  "Yes..."  "Why didn't HE just ask?"  So then we got to have a whole discussion on foreordination and how prophets are called.  He very much wants to know that these things are true!

We did a forum at the HUB and met a less active who's records aren't out here.  I gave him a Book of Mormon and he came back about 10 min later having read from it and double checking what he should where to church!  So cool!

We also went over to the Memmott's and recorded more stories.  We also found out that he'd read a couple dozen pages from the Book of Mormon!  Hopefully that will progerss!!

We had another great lesson with Caden with Shaun as a team-up again.  It's so great to have the testimony of a convert!  Shaun was just baptized in January.

We had dinner with an awesome family again.  He is from Zimbabwe and we had Madza!  It's cornmeal mixed with water--kind of a dough--and stew.  You make a ball and scoop the soup up!  It's messy, but fun :D While we were there, we saw a black bear lumber across the parking lot!  Crazy!!!

We taught Deb that night--we hadn't seen her for awhile.  She's the one from Liberia. We read with her since she hadn't and got another return appointment.

We also got to teach Rachel.  She still hadn't read and hadn't been coming to church, so we really emphasized the importance of doing so.  She came to church this week :D  We'll have to follow up on her reading still!

We met with Kalea again and she said she acted too hastily and wants to push her date back a year.  Hopefully she will change her mind as she learns more :D  She loved the Plan of Salvation!  I do too!  It's so true!

We met with Kyle--another Chinese man we met.  We're teaching him English through gospel discussions.  He's not interested in learning at this point.

We also got to see Bro Rich again and read from the Book of Mormon with him.  Our team-up was my freshman year RA!!  Cool :D

We got to see Bro. McAllister receive the Aaronic Priesthood (he was baptized end of May and is 75).

30 seconds left!

Caden, Zack, Rachel, and an AWESOME woman I'll talk about next week came to church!

Love ya!

Sister Denton