Monday, June 2, 2014


My Sweet Family,

This week we had exchanges with the Sister Training Leaders and I had the wonderful opportunity of working with Sister Dixon for the day. We were in the MTC together, but I really haven't been able to spend much time with her since then. I am so glad that we were able to spend a day working hard together. Sister Dixon is such a great missionary! We talked for most of the day about things we have learned on our missions so far. I was so lucky to learn from her example. She is such a strong person. I was able to learn so much from her and see how calm, sweet and strong she is!

We visited many people and had many short lessons throughout the day. We focused on using the Book of Mormon in every teaching and finding situation. It was really surprising how many people listened right away and were interested in learning more. The Book of Mormon is truly one of the strongest tools in missionary work. It was all around a peaceful and miraculous day with Sister Dixon!

Sister Dixon and me on our exchange!

This week we were able to start having Family Home Evening with a family who was recently reactivated, but is struggling with different issues. We taught them a simple Restoration lesson and we talked about their concerns and doubts about the gospel. It was really great to be able to be there to strengthen their family and answer any questions they had the best we could. We will hopefully be continuing to have Family Home Evening with them every few weeks. We are really excited for this opportunity to help them in any way. 

We also had many great lessons with a few great less-active members this week. We went out again with a high priest to visit a few less-active women, and we had some great success. One woman only talked to us for a few minutes, but the other woman was very warm and friendly. This woman is someone who we would have never come across, or even thought of to visit. She was very open to us coming over because we had her home teacher with us. She even invited us to come back to visit her and help her out in the little farm in her back yard. It looks like we might be helping clean horse stables next week. Haha, I bet you are all excited to hear that! Now that is going to be a treat! We are really excited to develop a great relationship with her and try to help her come back to church. 

A couple of cute Simi houses!

We had a great lesson with L this week. Our lesson was on tithing and it basically turned into a discussion about being willing to sacrifice for the Lord. She told us that she had heard of tithing before from LDS coworkers, but she was still unsure about what it included. She isn't too excited to sacrifice tithing money, especially because her husband is retired and they are on a fixed income.

She also told us that she is totally fine following the commandments 98% of the time, but the other 2% of the time she wants to have "fun" and has a hard time with the commandments. She is doing really well and is really progressing. We are just hoping that in the next few weeks she will get her answer that she is supposed to be baptized. She is still unsure of everything, but we hope that she will soon get some answers that she is looking for. 

I am not too worried about her because if her answers don't come yet it must not be her time. That is really something I have learned since being on my mission. I have learned to fully trust in Heavenly Father's timing and to realize that He knows way better what is good for me and the people we teach. I have learned not to get too frustrated when things don't go exactly as I had planned because God truly has a bigger plan in motion that I just can't see yet. I have seen and experienced many things already. I think that almost nothing in missionary work will surprise me anymore.

Hermana Shepherd, me and Hermana Presgard.
These great hermanas share an apartment with us, which is so much fun!
Sometimes it just feels like a dignified sleepover every night. Hahaha

We also were able to have another great lesson with our Filipino investigators M and L. They invited M's cousin to join us for the lessons, so we also have another new investigator from the Philippines! We taught them the Plan of Salvation. M was a little confused about the whole spirit world part, and the three degrees of glory. We gave them the Plan of Salvation pamphlet to study. There are extra scriptures in the back that they can read to help them understand better. They have been coming to church every week since Mother's Day, and they are doing so well!

We also had the opportunity to teach S about baptism and a little about temples. She is still struggling a little bit, but she loves reading the Book of Mormon. I really think that the thing that will touch her the most is learning more about temples and eternal families. She wasn't very religious to begin with, but she loves her children and her husband more than anything. Two of her children are already endowed and on the right path, but now she just has to work on joining them! 

Sheryl and me at the Strathearn park. It is such a cute place where they
basically transplanted many of Simi's historical buildings into one place.
It has old houses, farm equipment, and even the first library. It was so much fun!

We also had a great lesson with a recent convert Justin. He had just gotten his wisdom teeth removed. It was really sad to see him in a lot of pain, but he is really so strong and is doing so well! We taught him more about the priesthood, missionary work, and enduring to the end. He really loved it when we talked about honoring the priesthood and leading his family by example. We taught him mostly about how the priesthood can only be used with love, gentleness, and patience. He was really interested to hear that, and he is already such a great priesthood holder and example to his wife. 

We also helped him with a few ideas of how to share what he now knows with his friends and family. He was really excited to learn how to be a great missionary and give back to Heavenly Father just a little for all the blessings he has had in the past months. Unfortunately for us, he moved this weekend. We are sad to see him leave, but he will really do well in Utah!

A recent convert Justin. Sadly, he just moved to Utah so we won't be
able to see him anymore. He is such an incredible person and is
going to be such a blessing to his ward in Utah

Definitely one of the biggest highlights of this week was yesterday in fast and testimony meeting. The recent convert Gianna's mother went up to bear her testimony. It was so sweet and touching. I was really shocked that she wanted to go up there. Afterwards, so many ward members went up to talk to her and congratulate her and welcome her to the ward. That was really sweet to see. 

Even better than that was later in the meeting when Gianna went up and bore her testimony too!! It was so sweet and so sincere. She even got a little emotional when she was up there. Now that is something that I will never forget. I had the hugest smile on my face when I saw little Gianna go up there and tell everyone how happy she is to be baptized, and that she absolutely knows this church is true!

Sister De Vreis and me!

A few of our investigators have dropped off of the face of the earth or have gone crazy. Right now we aren't able to visit M because he has some crazy ideas. Our elders quorum president is going to keep in contact with him until the coast is clear for us. Another one of our investigators is going through a really rough time with dealing with his ex-wife passing away.

It seems like we are almost starting from scratch this week trying to find new investigators, but we still have many wonderful people that we are working with. We are really blessed in this ward to have many people to teach and great member support! 

Hiiiiiii... do you want to hear more about the gospelll?
Haha, here are our creeper missionary faces.

Sister De Vries is honestly doing really well and learning quickly! I can already tell that she is going to be a great missionary!

I am really excited to see what the next 6 months have in store for me! I honestly can't believe that I have been out a year. I think in the next transfer or so I will start to panic. Haha, don't worry, I will try to keep my cool and work my buns off for the next 6 months!

Much Much Love,
Sister Mason

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