27 July, 2015

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this was an action-packed week!

Monday we had a great lesson with Kaden….and he set a day to be baptized! It will be in September because he needs permission from one of his parents. We absolutely love that family though, we have lessons at the grandparents, the McClure’s house, and they are the sweetest family you will ever meet. They fed us dinner and the kids made a menu for us, very southernly adorable so I took a picture. I have gotten used to having 10 sides at meals!!

Tuesday to Wednesday we had exchanges so I was in Waynesville with Sister Gifford! I have been focusing on charity this week…I want to be able to actually help people, to teach them what they need, not just teach lessons. I want to truly care about people and serve them in little ways. This week we have run into a few situations where we have been able to comfort people and give them the service they need, and that feels good.

Thursday we helped at Haywood Christian Ministries! We shelf and box food with a bunch of older people from the community.

Friday was District Meeting and me and Sister Draney gave the power principle training on Baptism. Every meeting it seems like there is a new “most important thing” to focus on so it’s a little overwhelming sometimes to remember all the things we need to do and teach as missionaries…but really they all point toward baptism and that covenant or promise we make with God when we are baptized, to follow Jesus Christ, serve those around us, and keep the commandments. Without that covenant and commitment, we probably wouldn’t have the same ability to keep ourselves focused on the Savior. I know how naturally self centered I am, and what gets me out of that is focusing on the Savior and knowing that everything He did was focused outward…serving the one, helping those around him, even when He was in deep pain or had been tempted or betrayed, he was focused on helping others and teaching them. The central way we are reminded of this and of our baptismal covenant is through the sacrament every week. If you think about it, the prayers that are said to bless the bread and water outline that same promise we make at baptism….that we will always remember Him, keep His commandments, and take upon us the name of Christ. And the promise is the same that we had at baptism…the gift of the Holy Ghost, “that they may always have His Spirit to be with them.” We take the sacrament weekly to remind us of Christ’s sacrifice and our covenant, because God’s children have always been asked to make and keep covenants, and they have always been given ways to be reminded of those covenants. We can make it meaningful instead of routine as we examine ourselves, maybe that morning or even a day or two before Sunday comes, or even throughout the week as we remember the Savior. 1 Corinthians 11:28 “But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.”

Friday we had Sister Taylor/Kaitlyn, who served in waynesville for 9 months last year, take us around to see past investigators. She has been our new best friend for 3 days. We are going to start teaching a few past investigators again. She convinced our neighbor Carol to come to church yesterday!!! It was a miracle! we always invite Carol to everything and she refuses, haha. We love her. Friday was also Pie Night/pie-o-neer day. We had a good crowd come out to the church for that and an investigator came!

Sunday was great. We have been preparing for the fireside but our own part just hasn’t been coming together….kinda stressful. But we decided it would come together because we had done our best. And it did, each of the members who shared their experiences and testimonies were very heartfelt and sincere. George Worley, who got baptized in February, and is terrified of public speaking and won’t even pray in front of us, took part in it and we are so proud of him!!!! He shared how the Holy Ghost has comforted him since he lost his wife in December and the whole room was in tears. We had a room full and some visitors so it turned out the way it was supposed to!

Today we went to the Biltmore mansion….a member got us tickets!! Kaitlyn Taylor took us and this is definitely a place mom would love to visit some day……and DaNae would love the gardens. I’ll include some pictures.

Have a wonderful week!! 🙂

– Sister Victoria Hale

victoria. hale@ myldsmail. net

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20 July, 2015!

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I was gonna ask y’all what kinds of things you want to hear about every week….and then Jillian had already told me to write more about the people we teach and the things we do throughout the week. I feel like I don’t get into a lot of detail sometimes but I will try to do better!

So I will start with Monday of last week. Sunday night I felt like we should text a lady we had met once, we’ll call her K, and then she texted us back and asked if we could call her right away… Apparently her ex-husband had tried to commit suicide and was in bad condition, and she just felt horrible about it….and for some reason she trusted us to talk her through it, so we tried to help her calm down and sent her some scriptures to read later on. We didn’t hear from her for a while until this morning. She texted us and told us she felt a lot better and really wanted to come to our church and get her kids in church, and she thanked us for helping her!! Grateful we remembered her, there are so many people we meet once and never get to see again so it will be good to meet with her again.
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Monday we also got to meet Andy & Allison….I love them!!! They referred themselves after going to Salt Lake City and talking to missionaries there. Andy was in the army or air force or somethin with a Seventy and has known a few Mormons throughout his life. He says it is a little freaky how positive and upbeat everyone is, that he couldn’t be like that, and asked if we are ever allowed to have a bad day………haha. We told him yes and shared a story with him of how we had been struggling earlier in the day and had to take a break and figure things out. He is wanting to understand how he can feel like he has purpose and told us that when we go home, to know that we made someone’s day better by what we do, and to tell ourselves we have purpose and to be grateful because our lives are “perfect.” It surprised me and makes me want to grasp more fully what blessings I’ve been given….really my life isn’t perfect but compared to a lot of the world, I am pretty blessed with the things I have and with where I am in life…….I am happy to be who I am, most of the time, which is a blessing.
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We met with them Thursday as well……….might have to back-track a little because Andy had ordered the White Handbook (guidelines for missionaries) from Amazon and read the whole thing…….apparently he thought everyone who joined the church had to go on a mission and live all those rules, haha.
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Tuesday I went to stake correlation, which includes our stake president and President Griffin and the zone leaders and a couple others over missionary work. Wednesday was Zone Conference and Sister Trommlitz and I did a training on Diligence. We need humility to recognize our weaknesses, idleness, or disobedience, and desire to change and improve. We need repentance to renew with the Lord our decision to serve and to make resolves. Diligence is a conscious effort to carry out our responsibility with persistence, care, creativity, obedience, and charity. Diligence is a hard thing about missionary work……..cuz you’re almost always tired. I liked this quote though: “There is the pain of working hard and the pain of regret.” Either way it will be painful so might as well kick yourself and get to work. I love the feeling at the end of the day when I know I have done everything I could that day with a willing heart.
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Thursday was my year mark!! Woohooo me! Got to spend it with Sister Linford on exchange, she came out the same time as I did. Our companions bought us twix!!
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Oh I need to dedicate a paragraph to my new companion. Her name is Mykena Draney from Bountiful, UT and she is being trainer-broken (by  me!). We have pictures together now but they’re all bad so we’ll wait on that…..ALSO we were doing family history, and my great great great grandpa William Poulton is her great great great great grandpa!
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Saturday we went to a Relief Society activity and an investigator came! We are having pie night this Friday and we’re putting on a fireside Sunday night……..entitled “Come Unto Christ”….pray for us!! It should be good, we have some good plans and ideas for it, we are assigning a few members to focus on something throughout the week and share their experiences Sunday night.
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Hope you all have a great week!! happy birthday tansy and happy pioneer days!!!! 🙂
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– Sister Hale
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p.s. just saw comments from Aunt Cheralyn and Lucille and Leeann Turner from a while back…..thanks, love you all!! 🙂
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p.p.s.
1: Smoky mountains
2: harvestin’ souls. this is how we do missionary work in the south
3: happy life

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13 July, 2015

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This week was a week!

On Wednesday Sister Trommlitz and I went to MLC together. OH i forgot to explain last week….right now the Sister Training Leaders are split up, Sister Trommlitz (who was my MTC companion!) is the new one and so our companions worked together for the day while we went to Farragut. There are some new changes in the mission……mostly with a few guidelines here and there. The biggest one is music, our new guideline is that the music we listen to needs to be appropriate for Sacrament Meeting. I thought that would be hard for me…there’s a lot of upbeat Christian music and Nashville Tribute that everyone listens to… but already I feel like it has helped me be calmer and less distracted.

Friday, Sister Draney and I met with Bishop Larson to talk about some of our missionary efforts. Let me tell ya………there are so many people to go see!!!! So many members and families and part-member families……I don’t know why I ever feel like we don’t have anywhere to go because there are so many people to see. We have set some good goals and the mission as a whole is getting better training and direction.

We have found some great people and families to teach this week!! We are seeing 2 different families tonight that seem like they will want to be taught!

Ok just a few things!

Scripture of the week: Alma 58:10-11 "We did pour out our souls in prayer to God…and the Lord our God did visit us with assurances…he did speak peace to our souls, and did grant unto us great faith, and did cause us that we should hope for our deliverance in him."

Quote of the week: "The cultivation of Christlike qualities is a demanding and relentless task–it is not for the seasonal worker or for those who will not stretch themselves, again and again." – Spencer W. Kimball

President Uchtdorf of the week: https://www.lds.org/liahona/2015/07/all-is-well?cid=HP_TU_7-7-2015_dPTH_fLHNA_xLIDyL2-3_&lang=eng

love you all!! Keep pushing through your trials. Learn to rely on the Spirit and reach out to others when you are feeling down or bored or tired as well as when you feel happy and motivated and grateful. Don’t be disabled by discouragement or fear.

Have a great week!!!

– Sister Hale

2 of our office couples are leaving………
pic 1: with the Williamson’s, Elder Williamson was the vehicle coordinator
pic 2: the Collins’!

6 July, 2015 15:29

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Hola todos Los personas en el mundo!

So we had transfers and my new companion is Sister Draney from Bountiful, Utah! It has been a great week. We have gotten lost a few times….still trying to make my way around in an area with crooked intersections and road signs that are turned 90 degrees (I have fixed one or two of them:)), still get confused even with a gps.

On the 4th of July we had our ward party! We met a lot of new faces. Church yesterday was packed, a lot of visitors and a few part member families came, it was good to have to open the back curtain in our little chapel and pull out more chairs. I felt very uplifted by the testimony meeting. Our bishop is back from a one month trip….I had only met him once but he is back and will be a huge blessing to the ward, he is very sincere and hard working. It is difficult to be a member out here in a lot of ways because you travel a lot to get to the church, and a lot of weight is put on a few people to go out and visit and help the many members who are spread far apart.

Been a little discouraged about investigators slipping away….we’ll have all these great moments and good lessons with people, and they’ll feel the Spirit and be excited, and then they disappear or I don’t take care of them or something….hard to tell. I will be seeking better ways to take care of people and help them feel like they can change and can make the gospel of Jesus Christ a way of life. For many it is a belief or tradition but not something that gets inside of them and changes them and blesses them…..there are so many blessings Christ wants for us, which comes by keeping the commandments…John 15:10-11:

"If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.
These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full."

It is just hard to take that step of faith and trust that life through faith and obedience and repentance will give us more than the life or habit or sin we are leaving behind has given us.

Other things are going really well! Our recent convert George is doing awesome, he serves us all the time and loves the church. Visits with other members are going well too.

Ok have a great week!!!

– Sister Hale

for some reason I don’t have any pictures with my new companion yet….
pic1: the district
pic2: Elder Searle from Burley! is home now.