Monday, February 24, 2014

The heat doesn't keep the sickness from coming.... February 24,2014


Hello again! Weren't we just here? I'm really not that exciting guys. I mean, it wasn't even me who got sick! So no worries :)

Nope, it was sweet Sister Tucker who got sickysick again. So for a few days last week we went on exchanges so Hermana Garrett was able to get some fresh air! And so they could make their appointments. 

In case you were wondering....

From left to right: Sister Carambelas, Sister Tucker, Hermana Garrett, and me! Sister Brown :)

This is a picture we took this morning with the heart necklaces you sent Momma! Thanks for the package!!!! It made my week when I got it Thursday :)

And you can see the dollar store purchases we made to spice up our apartment.... the banner overhead we sometimes let down and play volleyball with a balloon over, and the plastic tablecloth. We have fun :)

Anyway, back to this last week.... we didn't get as much done as we had planned because of the splits we did, but I did get some much needed down time when I stayed hope with Sister Tucker! i feel asleep on the couch at 7:30 or 8 and the other sister woke me up at 10:30 to go to my bed :) Best night's sleep ever! I felt great the next day :)

We got to see Doina once this week, but couldn't stay long. We tried to talk to her about prayer, and shared a verse or two in 3 Nephi 18 when Christ is talking about prayer. But we're not sure how much she got from us... We're still looking for a reliable Romanian translator to help us out! The one in our ward is too busy to come with us. :(

We also taught Brenda the first half of the plan of salvation! And on Saturday we came over to help her clean for some family she has coming over this week. We are going to talk to her about baptism again soon, and hopefully set a date! It may not be really soon, but we want her to be working towards a goal. And although she is still recovering from shingles, she made it to church yesterday! Just in time to hear me bear my testimony, but missed Sister Carambelas's right before me. But she liked sitting on the couch for the meeting :) We had a great Relief Society lesson on Elder Holland's talk from last conference, "Like a Broken Vessel." I love that talk so much! I remember sitting in the chapel up in Taylor last October, my first area on my mission, and hearing the words he was saying come directly at me. We had had a great morning listening to the first session with some great people, and for some reason I just got super depressed and was really struggling when Jeffrey R. Holland got up to talk- and I was like BAM! I love that talk SO MUCH! there is always hope! And God will always love us! Anyway, everyone should go read it. Here, I'll even post a link :) listen or read!

We're all working really hard out here! We all show it in different ways though. The mission is so hard, and I don't think anyone could go through this without knowing that this is true. We are doing what the Lord has commanded all of us to do- spread His Gospel! I have strengthened my testimony just by facing everyday challenges while on my mission. I know how much the Lord helps me and how much God loves me and every one of His children!

Well, time's about up- again! thanks for all your support and love- even if I don't see it, thanks :)

I love you all! Be good and remember: "Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have JOY." So let's all be joyful! Not just temporary earthly satisfaction, but eternal and everlasting joy, which can and is only found be living the Gospel of Jesus Christ. So I'll be working on this, and I hope you all are too! I love you!!!!!!!!!!

Love, Sister Hailey Brown

Thursday, February 20, 2014

What even happened this week? It's all a blur..... February 19. 2014


Well! I guess I can start off my saying that I DID stay in my area! I survived the transfer! Sister Carambelas and I are still together in the Chaparral ward! We love it here! Although I'm already getting hot in the high 80's during the day...

So, what did we do this week? We took Brenda to the Gilbert Temple Open House last Monday and we all loved it! 

Then she got really sick with shingles so we haven't been able to see her. But we have plans to see her this week when she isn't contagious anymore!

We were able to take a few dogs for walks, trying to talk to people and get around. We'll definitely keep trying that one! But more fun than dog walking was drawing the Plan of Salvation with chalk at the park! We had so much fun, and we definitely are planning on doing it again!

Thanks for the chalk Mom!! :)

We were able to talk to Doina again, and get her a Restoration pamphlet in Romanian. So hopefully we'll be able to bring our translator with us next time! She and her husband have expressed an interest in attending church so we'll have to see what happens!

Do you remember our investigator that we met with just once last transfer, Yvonne? Her daughter is bulemic and bi-polar. We went by again to see how she is doing, and she has to give her daughter 24 hour care and just isn't in a place where she can meet with us. It is so hard to not be able to help in some way! But she still has her Book of Mormon, and we told her we would keep in touch.

Um, super fun thing we still Tuesday morning- we were asked to substitute for seminary! Besides getting up over an hour early, it was the best thing ever! We had a really great time with the students who were there, talking about Helaman chapters 3 and 4, and how we are strengthened with the Lord on our side! And we talked about humility and being an example. We loved it!

We also were able to meet with John again, who was going to get baptized but didn't because of family issues. We are going to try to keep him involved with the church- he really wants to help out and serve the church! he really is a great guy.

And somehow or another, we still had a great time on Valentine's day. The sisters we live with heart attacked our room and gave us gifts! we had good times :)

Well, the rest of the week was normal, mostly. Taking naps at lunchtime, knocking on a billion doors... it's amazing how many people just don't answer, and we know they are there. And the worst part is- they're the members! But we find the other people who love us, so it all evens out :)

I am so happy to be here on my mission! I love strengthening my testimony, and I love trying to help others to find theirs!

I know that God loves us, and that there is a reason we are all here. I know that God has called a modern day prophet to lead and guide us today, just as he did in the Bible. I know the Book of Mormon is the word of God and I love it!

I love YOU!!!

Love, Sister Hailey Brown

Monday, February 10, 2014

So thankful for our temples! .... February 10, 2014

Hello hello! I kind of feel like I was just here writing to you... But I guess it was a week ago, so here we go again!

This week we were able to meet with a lot of people- basically every one on our investigators list! And here's something awesome- we were even able to stop in and see John!

John was the investigator who was supposed to get baptized in December and ended up postponing his baptism, because his divorce is so recent and he doesn't want to alienate his family. He has been struggling with connecting with his two young teenage sons, and he doesn't know what to do about the LDS church. He loves us and he knows it is true, but he feels like he owes us all something for helping him in his time of need! He says that no one will tell him how to donate financially to the church :) We just want to help him and keep him involved, but his work gives him a crazy schedule and he hasn't made it to our church in weeks. He is still very involved in his old church to stay connected with his family. We are meeting with him next week, so we will know more then. I hope we can get everything to work out!

We were also able to FINALLY meet with Jenna! This was only the second time I had met her face to face, and she is so sweet! She has had such a difficult past and recognizes how much God is trying to lead her to find peace and joy. She taught her about temples and we set up to go with her to the temple on Saturday night- and she didn't even cancel on us! and her boyfriend agreed to come!! So we got to go through the open house at night, and it is so beautiful, I can't even stand it. Jenna got choked up at several places, but especially just walking towards the grand staircase, with white and cream colors all around us and beautiful flowers... She kept thanking us and hugging us. And she got so dressed up for the occasion! She looked beautiful!! We want so badly to help her, and she knows she needs help. I pray it will all work out.

On Thursday we were supposed to take Brenda to the temple, but she canceled last minute with a migraine. So we called up Kerri, who we had a reservation for to go with this next week, and she was able to come with us! I was so stressed out, but everything just fell right into place- our dinner had to cancel so we didn't need to worry about getting back in time, and Kerri felt great that day (she is the one with leukemia) and she is actually starting a new medicine this week that may have messed up our planned tour. So, that was the miracle of the week! well, just one of them :) God loves each of these people so much, and He works everything out for our good! Kerri loved the temple and had a lot of great questions, and we are going to try to come by and teach her the lessons soon, if she is feeling well. Cross your fingers!!

But with Brenda, we were able to go out to dinner with her the next day and she already had reservations to go to the temple! So we're going again this afternoon! She had a lot of questions about the restoration and the plan of salvation that we are going to work to answer, but I have faith that we will know what to say through the power of the Holy Ghost. We don't know everything, but we have been blessed with so much knowledge! I love this gospel so much! Brenda was able to come to church yesterday as well, and we talked about the Atonement and the Plan of Salvation in our different classes. It was a super good meeting- two sister missionaries who just returned from their missions spoke in sacrament meeting, and it was AWESOME!!

And now, Doina, our Romanian investigator. We were able to get her a copy of the Book of Mormon in Romanian, just like an hour before we were meeting with her! That was a super miracle!! But she was super busy, so we gave her the Book of Mormon and she said she would read it. When we came back a few days later she said she had read some of it. But we were able to meet her husband, and they expressed an interest in coming to church! We are so excited to work with them! But her husband knows even less English than she does. This is going to be difficult! Hopefully we can keep getting our member to come and translate for us.

Um, so I guess that's about it. Oh! We are training (kind of) to run a 5k with the youth in our ward! I'm going to die, but no big deal. My legs are killing me :) The actual race thing is the first of March, so I have a few weeks to get in shape!

So, yeah, I think that's about everything. I love you guys and miss you all so much! I am so thankful for all your support and love that you send to me :)


Love, Sister Hailey Brown

With the Book of Mormon in Romanian
it sprinkled for a few seconds the other day, it was awesome!

At the Gilbert Temple open house
Jenna and her boyfriend Ed at the temple!
this is us studying this morning- working so hard!! :)

Monday, February 3, 2014

Quite the multicultu​ral week..... February 3, 2014


Hello again family and friends! This week has been an interesting one...

So last week, while I was on exchanges and down in Gilbert, Sister Carambelas and Sister White found a very interesting woman in our area. She is from Romania and speaks very little English. We went and met her on Wednesday, which was interesting, but she is so sweet! And we go our own little miracle- the 2nd counselor in the bishopric went to Romania on his mission! We recruited him to our efforts, and on Saturday we all went over, and he pretty much taught her the Restoration while we just sat there smiling. Sis C turned to me during and whispered, "This is the best day of my life!" We both love other languages and Romanian is so neat! We are working on getting her a copy of the Book of Mormon in Romanian but who knows how long that will take! We might try to make a trip to the distribution center in mesa, but it's outside of the mission so we need a member to take us. But she is so neat and we are so excited to teach her! We are going to work on teaching her English as well! We taught her name was Donna until Brother Carter said it was Doina. So that's cool :)

The other crazy part of this week was Wednesday night, for dinner. The members had two Indian medical students living with them for a month while they did their internship at the Mayo, and Ajay's birthday was the next day so they wanted to celebrate and have us give them copies of the Book of Mormon. Both Ajay and Sukideep are Sikh from Northern India, but they seemed to be thankful for the books- they both love to learn, so that should be good! They are off this week to their residencies in Ohio and California, but it was an interesting and unique experience, for sure!

We were only able to meet with Brenda on Monday afternoon, and she is still doing well. We are going to start the Plan of Salvation with her next! We are really excited. But we hate not seeing her! We are supposed to go to the Gilbert Temple Open House with her on Thursday but we haven't gotten a confirmation from her yet. But we're going to try to take a lot of people before it ends!

We did talk to Jenna again this week.... over the phone. She called us Friday evening, and told us about some scary paranormal activity she's been dealing with, and some 'thing' that follows her from place to place and physically tosses her around and leaves her bruised. She sounded terrified, and we really wanted to come over that night but she wouldn't let us because her house was to dirty. So we were going to go Saturday so she get a blessing, and her house could be blessed, but she ended up going to the doctor instead because it turns out she has bronchitis. Her boyfriend was going to drop her off at church, and we were all excited.... and then he forgot. We were so disappointed! But we have a meeting with her on Tuesday scheduled, so hopefully that one will stick! She is such a sweet girl, so loving and so sincere. We just want to help her! but she needs to let us into her life first, and talking on the phone doesn't count :)

Um, yeah. So that's the people.... We're still enjoying picking citrus off the trees and eating it fresh, and it is still mostly cool outside. It was even cloudy for a day or two this weekend! I took pictures :)

I do love it here in Arizona, and I am so thankful for this opportunity I have to serve the Lord and show my love for Him by loving those around me!

Thank you all for your love and support. It means the world to me!

Stay warm :)

Love, Sister Hailey Brown

Beautiful Arizona Skies
Sister Tenney and Sister Brown
at the Gilbert Temple Open House