Tuesday, August 27, 2013

I love the people here!......August 26, 2013

Hello hello!
First off, I'll find out this Saturday if I'm being transferred, and then they'll take place Tuesday- We will drive down Monday night, then transfer day Tuesday, and then P-DAY ON WEDNESDAY!!! So I'll email then with the news!!! I also got the packages! One thursday, one friday- and one this morning!!! Mom, you went a little crazy on those! But I love them! and everyone is soooo sooo sooooooo jealous. It's crazy! I was able to use the converter you sent for pictures today- they're already on dropbox! the sky here is gorgeous, and a picture a little girl drew of me and my companion, and then Sis. McCashland drew in the little girl and the nametags she forgot haha. and me and a horny toad we found in a watermelon patch yesterday! and me and the new positivity clicker I got this morning. It's so awesome I love it! Thanks for everything! Now I just have to worry about moving it all if/when I leave.... And thanks for the raincoat you sent me! I feel like I should be in London when I wear it. The rains have lasted longer than they usually do, so I've been able to use it a few times. Except when we're not expecting it to rain and I'm stuck without it, like all yesterday evening... haha but it's okay! We're in the car most of the time anyway.
So what's new with me? hmm. Sean and Tatiana have a date for the wedding, (I think I said that) but they were handing out invites yesterday! so they have things set up and everything! and She already has her ring :) and we asked him, and it's Sean, not Shawn (haha). the bishop needs to talk with them about his baptism, because he wants to do it the day after the wedding, Nov 3, a sunday. But they know the commandments and have still been living together, for a while now. Their kids all get along great, and their littlest one is growing so fast! I think he's about four months now? I've seen growth just in the last month! I'm so excited for them! We're doing FHE with them tonight, yay!
We've been visiting a less active woman, Judy Jones, and her grandson Hunter is my first new investigator! He's only 9, but doesn't know almost anything because his mom- Judy's daughter- is inactive. We taught him the Plan of Salvation, and he loves to see pictures of Jesus and learn about Him and Joseph Smith. I hope I'll be here to keep teaching him!
I love the people here, and could go on about some others but my time is short here. We did mini exchanges thursday and sunday, for about 2 hours each time. I was in my area for them! I got to decide where to go and who to see, and it was kind of up to me to talk and keep conversation going, which I don't do a lot of. It was awesome!
We picked up trash along a main road on Saturday for part of the Taylor Town Clean Up- and people should only be allowed to smoke if they don't throw cigarette butts all over the place. True story.
Lot's of service planned for this next week! I will be busy busy busy, just like all you at home :) Keep working hard! I love you all soooooooo much!
Love, Hailey
your Sister Brown :)








Thursday, August 22, 2013

Almost out for a month!!.....August 19, 2013

Hello hello!!

So it sounds like it's been crazy for everyone! I wish I was there to see Morgan get off to college, so you'll have to keep me updated! And I want pictures Morgan! Eliza is almost done with drivers ed, and that is crazy to me. You'll be driving when I get home! Can't wait to see it :) And Shae! the semester awaits you. I'm excited for you all to start school again! I want to hear all about it!

I'm sorry you've been feeling down Mom, that isn't fun. But I'm glad that you are able to feel better within a few days! So everyone at home: no more sickness.

Last night while we were out it smelled a bit like fire down here, but people might just be doing burns too. We heard yesterday that the biggest fire in the US right now is in Idaho, near where Sister McCashland is from. I guess it's that time of year again!

Grandma and Grandpa Brown are moving? I never imagined that. But it makes since, they will be near Ada and Luis, and with Mitch and Amanda moving there too family will be close! I love that.

So I did get my raincoat and shoes this week! We had Zone interviews on thursday with President Sweeney and his wife and they were brought up from the valley. Wow! Thanks! I didn't know you got me three pair! They are all really nice, and I put on the black flat ones and they are great, perfect for the terrain :) and the raincoat is so nice! the rains are finally receding, but I hope I get a chance to use it soon :)

Last Tuesday I was in Snowflake with Hermana Sanchez, the Sister Training Leader from Spain. She is so funny, and her accent is so thick. She covers all the Spanish speakers in the area, but we didn't go see any while I was with her. Basically we just walked all over town in the heat and I thought about just sitting down and stopping. But I did it! and got my workout in too. We met with a 7th day Adventist (I think that's what they are called) and she pulled out an obscure Bible verse for us- Ecclesiastes 9:5-6. she asked what we thought about spirits and the dead and if they are with us here- basically it felt like she was trying to trip us up, but it sounded like she believed spirits were around us too, even though that scripture says the dead are dead and don't know the living. Funny lady, willing to talk to us, and liked the Book of Mormon, found some good stuff, but also some "wrong things" too. Meh. I don't see her becoming an investigator, but who knows? I'll have to ask Sister Sanchez about her and some point. Moral of the story: Know your Bible. also, know the history. she asked us about when they changed the Sabbath from saturday to sunday, I looked it up in True to the Faith, opened to Acts 20:7 , and she said, oh no, they were just doing something-or-other here. Whatever.

Basically, the prophets and the scriptures answer our questions. If we believe in the Book of Mormon and everything that goes with it, we believe the revelation from our prophets. We have that knowledge, which is an amazing thing. Just like Nephi (1 Nephi 11:17), we know that God loves us, and that is enough. He provides for us and we have faith in His plan. It will all work out, even when we don't understand.

I had a chance to do some family history! they have a great family history center here, and no one showed up to our YSA activity (no surprise) except the branch president and a counselor, so I got some help trying to look people up. If you get a change, do it! It is so amazing, and our Brown line is kinda fuzzy near the end of what we have. I think it needs to be cleaned up- a lot of it does actually! Elizabeth Hollist had three husbands, and two were Browns- and her children are all over the place. I can't wait to do more when I'm done here.

Good news! We're actually getting places with the people we're meeting with here! We have a ton of appointments for this week! And Shawn and Tatiana set a wedding date- November 2! Not as soon as we would have liked, but it is before they move in December, and Shawn can get baptized as soon as they're married.

Sweet Sister Owen is less active for health reasons. We told her about transfers coming up and she started crying. She was already imagining us at Thanksgiving dinner and thinking of what to get us for Christmas. We says, when I came in with Sister McCashland, something just clicked. We knew each other before. She mentioned Anne of Green Gables and called us all "kindred spirits." She says Sis M and I complement each other- she might be the only one who thinks so! I basically promised that I would come back after the mission and we would get our Thanksgiving together. I love her so much, it's incredible.

We are seeing progress here. The people trust us, and I love these people so much. I pray that I'll stay here another transfer, and truthfully I'm not too worried about it. I feel good about this area. I think I'll be here a little bit longer :) Hopefully! I'm not really for the heat! It gets up to 100 degrees here and that is more than enough for me!

I love all of you so much, and I miss you. I've been in Arizona almost a month and it sure is growing on me. I love it here. We'll have to come back and visit!!

Be safe, and work hard in school! It is so worth it in the end.

Remember, God loves you and hears your prayers! and I love you too!

Love, Hailey/ Sister Brown

ps- pictures next week I think! Send me some too!!!! and if you can see if Le had her baby!!!! check facebook maybe? haha thanks for everything you do!!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Literally almost everyone here is a Mormon or definitely not a Mormon for a reason....August 12, 2013

Hello Family!

This last week has been full of interesting things!

I got the package and the letters last Monday afternoon, basically right after I sent the email. Thanks so much for everything! I haven't had a chance to use the Plan of Salvation cards, but I hope to soon! And I'm looking forward to reading those talks!

So Monday we went to Show Low and got the car fixed at the dealership- too bad it took all day! But after we went to Walmart, and guess what? The couple ahead of us in line bought mine and my companion's groceries- over $100! I almost started crying! Everyone here is so nice it just about kills me! Literally almost everyone here is a Mormon or definitely not a Mormon for a reason. Our numbers stink and we don't have any investigators, but we are working with getting a lot of less actives to church. We're seeing slow progress! And the members here are super nice and feed us every day we need them do! I'm eating good out here! I even had fresh slaughtered pork and corn on the cob and fresh cow's milk for dinner last night- topped off with homemade ice cream from that milk. So delicious!

Monday night and Tuesday morning Sister Wadsworth had a freak-out- but it was for a reason. We couldn't feel the Spirit in our apartment. When I figured that out, we grabbed our bags halfway through study Tuesday morning and drove to the stake center around the block. We called our mission president and his wife until one of them called us back- Sister Sweeney did and said she'd talk to Pres. We called the Zone Leaders to give us blessings, and the Stake President came. And then we went back to our apartment and cast out the evil spirit. No joke guys. Satan can work in very tangible ways to bring us down, especially when you are doing the Lord's work and are strong in the Gospel. During the prayer after I felt my body physically relax, although I didn't know I was tense. After that our senior companion zone leader dedicated our apartment for the work of the Lord. it was a crazy and amazing experience.

Tuesday night we took Shawn and Tatiana and their kids to the temple- where we promptly got eaten alive by mosquitoes. My feet and ankles were so swollen, and they're just barely going down now. It was so amazing to be there with them! I hope they make progress soon!

Friday morning we got special permission to go to the 5:30 AM session at the temple- which was amazing! Although I can't remember all of it, because sometimes I would blink, and then my eyes wouldn't open for a while..... but so good! I can't wait to go back next month!

Wednesday night to Thursday night I was in Snowflake for exchanges! My companion was Sister Jones- we were in the MTC together. I actually got to teach a nonmember and real lesson! We taught the 10 commandments, the law of chastity, and repentance. She's not all the way there mentally, but it was a great experience and I need to ask Sis jones about Linda soon! We're exchanging again tonight- I'll go with Sis Sanchez this time to Snowflake. So excited!

Wish I could write you everything! But I'm already halfway through my journal in only a month's time, so I'm sure you'll get a huge read when I'm home!

I love you all so much! I am so thankful for all that you do for me to support me while I'm away. I miss you, but I'll see you soon enough! Good luck getting ready for school to start! School started here last week so enjoy the last of your vacation you lucky dogs!

Try to look for opportunities to share the gospel! That's one thing we're working on now- Active Member Commitments. We can't tract here, so members are just about the only way for us to find people (and even if we could tract it's pretty ineffective). So be aware! Lots of people don't even know what they're missing.

Also, encourage people who have missionaries over to tell the missionaries if they are planning on feeding them. Because we eat at 5, but we had someone surprise feed us at a 6:15 appointment. It was totally a missionary miracle we eat another meal and not want to die!

The Lord is taking care of me and is taking care of all of you too!! Be safe!

Love, Hailey/Sister Brown

Sister Brown


Arizona Snowflake Temple


Sister McCashland and Sister Brown

Sister Brown and Sister Jones

the view from dinner

the "redneck scooter" the kids made themselves

Thursday, August 8, 2013

I've been in Arizona for two weeks now!...August 5, 2013


I've been in Arizona for two weeks now! It went way faster than my time in the MTC. This week was easier, in the way that I'm more used to what's happening and the schedule. And I'm remembering the people and learning my way around this little two-stoplight town!

I'm getting along better with my companion, although we definitely have our struggles. The other sisters we live with are GREAT, and we all have fun times in the mornings and nights when we're all together. Although we don't get much done :)

So, in case I didn't say.... We cover the Taylor 3rd and 9th wards, and the YSA 7th branch in Snowflake. So my area is huge, because YSA pulls from all around! We can't go our far enough to see everyone, because we only have 1100 miles a month for the car. The YSA branch is also changing a bunch, with people moving out and in for school, so we can't do a whole lot until it settles down. Near the end of the transfer. huh. The college here is Northland Pioneer College, and that is were we all email from! The library is packed on p-days :)

The weather here is crazy right now, it rains almost every day, and some days it pours and some days it sprinkles. Mom, I am so happy you made me pack that umbrella! It actually got some use this week :)

I got some advice this week from Hermana Wadsworth, a sister I live with. She said to wake up everyday and think to yourself, "This is going to be the Best Day Ever!" It is really good advice! It really does make each day better, because you are working on making it the best day ever!

I had my first meeting/lesson with my first investigator- Eli is a YSA who has been going to the LDS church for over a year, and has taken all the lessons from the sisters before I got here. His baptism was set for August 17th- but because he is a firefighter, he and the department got called to a fire in California for two weeks. So we'll have to reschedule. But it went really well! We talked about Joseph Smith some, and we showed him the baptismal interview questions. He really didn't like number 4, which asks if you have ever committed a serious crime, or participated in an abortion, etc. So we talked about it, and apparently I was able to explain it to him so he was okay with it! ME! I said something like, the bishop needs to know you have repented of previous sins before you get baptized, .... or something like that. And then Eli said, well you finally explained it to me so I understand. I had a personal moment of joy. Yay! But it stinks because he's gone right now, and we can't even get a hold of him. Well, I guess somebody has to save the world!

We have been visiting with Alondra, an 8 year old who was with her grandmother for the summer. We went with her to primary last Sunday, and we got her a children's Book of Mormon stories at the local LDS bookstore. Everyday until Friday when she left with her mom, we went next door to their trailer and read with her. She has a hard time understanding, but I think she privately loves the stories and the pictures. Her mom said she would continue to read them with her, and we got her address to send the missionaries in Tempe to hopefully continue to meet with her! She is a sweet sweet girl and we will miss her. Especially her grandmother, Raquel, because now she is all alone. She stills wants us to visit her, but we can't too often because she is active, and just lonely. But she is awesome. Difficult to understand because she is a native Spanish speaker, and has no teeth.... but great.

Yesterday the mission president and his wife, President and Sister Sweeney, came up and we had a mission president fireside, where three recent converts spoke, and they both spoke briefly at the end. It was awesome! And the missionaries sang Called to Serve, and the youth sang the EFY medley. and I cried. haha. It was packed in the chapel too! we had to open up the little overflow section! Members were invited to bring investigators and nonmember friends to it, so hopefully progress is seen. I don't think any of ours came, but it was still great. Afterwards, our car wouldn't start. Luckily the vehicle coordinator and his wife, Elder and Sister Williams, were there, and they were with us to jump the car and give us instructions. We've been talking to Elder Williams all day today, because first thing after study at 10, instead of coming to email we went to get the battery fixed- it barely started this morning! Long story short, we went to 3 places: got our oil changed and battery checked at Jiffy Lube- they said we needed to replace our battery, almost got the battery replaced at Snowflake Tire, but got the Zone Leaders to come talk car with the people, then went to NAPA to get the battery checked again... and everything was fine. So after this, Elder Williams wants us to go to Show Low and get the battery replaced because it's still under warranty. We drive a 2012, the battery shouldn't die for no reason! That's a little bit of a drive, but we got permission to go to Walmart while we're there to shop, so yay! Speaking of permission.....

Last night, the four of us sisters got permission from the mission president to go the temple! Friday morning at 5:30, and we'll go right into study afterwards. We've been hearing such good things about the new movie, and it's killing us. So yay, we can go!!! We're all super duper excited! Because the next time we're allowed to go is next transfer, in a month. So special temple time for us!

Super long email, makes up for last week!

I love you all! Thanks for your letters and you do for me! and thanks to the Brown army who is praying for me!!!!!

Sister Hailey Brown

PS:  we got a less active couple to sacrament meeting yesterday! We made a deal with Bro. Willis that if we answered his question with the scriptures, he would come to church. He asked about how, if no unclean thing can stand in the presense of God, how are all men judged? We came back that afternoon with a Book of Mormon, with a Plan of Salvation pamphlet bookmarking 2 Nephi 9 and a pass along card telling him to read those. We came back the next day and talked and read part of that chapter for over an hour with him. He is the kind of guy to never be serious ( He calls us Sister Idaho and Sister Utah) but he was that day, and it was great! Apparently they haven't been to church in 4 or 5 years, and he can cuss up a storm and used to have an alcohol problem I guess. I think it started with health problems- that seems to be why everyone can't come to church around here! We meet with them again on Thursday, and we're both super excited! yay! plus, he called me Sister Cricket as we were leaving last week, and although it took me a minute to get it, it was really funny.

Shawn and all their family came to the family history center and we tried to show them how to do that, so we don't know where they are now, but tonight we're meeting with them at a member's family for FHE at 6:30. so we'll see!!

Sister Brown, Alondra and Sister McCashland
Mesa Arizona Temple
Arizona landscape