Monday, April 27, 2015

April 27, 2015

I reached my 10 month mark this week! This is going by so fast! Transfers are this week and we're both staying! We're really glad. It's a good area, we love the people here. Sister Rudd only has 2 transfers left, so we think we'll probably both stay here for the rest of her mission.

And as far as we know, we can only use the car for meetings and shopping and emergencies indefinitely. It's way hot outside and I can't say walking and biking are my favorite, but we've been meeting a lot more people that way.

This week we met a family with a children named Ethan, Gillian, and Addison, and the mom was named Tiffany. So that was a fun surprise, they're basically like my family :)

A couple weeks ago a bunch of people were trying to guess my first name and nobody could. When I told them they said I didn't look like a Jordan, so sorry Mom and Dad, I guess you picked the wrong name for me :) It's really strange to have my name not feel like my name anymore.

This Sunday was probably one of the best Sundays of my mission. C. got to pass the sacrament for the first time and his "grandma" (she's basically his adopted grandma) gave a talk and she started crying and told him how proud she was of him. It was presh. :) And Ch. came to church! I may have talked about this before, but he has really poor health that's kept him from coming in the past. But last week he got a blessing and he promised us he would do all he could to come and he came! Although we're not sure how much he liked it or understood... He can't read at all, and his English is not the best. And we know from experience that our church is very different from his Haitian baptist church :) And I think he was snoring a little in sacrament meeting :) But he came and stayed the whole time. 2 of our other investigators, G. and W., came too. They're 15 and 10 and their teachers said they were answering all the questions in class. Correctly even :) They're really smart kids.

The rest of our Sunday was super busy, which is always good, and only slightly stressful :) We have a family in our ward who does YSA dinners every few weeks and this time there were like 30 people there, with probably like 10 non-members. It was a lot of pressure to teach all of them haha, but it was fun.

Our ward had some really fun activities this week, one of them was a relief society activity where we played family feud, and the other was a spaghetti dinner fundraiser for the young women. They had a dessert auction and people were buying desserts for like $100 and then just giving them away. We got a lot of delicious, expensive cake. They're trying to fatten us up!

We also had a really happy accident- we went to an arts center because we heard there was a music festival and we thought it would be a good opportunity to find people. But we went and there was no one there... The security guard asked us what we were doing there. But it turned out that one of the workers there was a member in another ward and he gave us a tour of the museum. It's in what used to be a Catholic church, it's super pretty and I had always wanted to go inside. And he told us about some friends he wants us to meet. I'm tellin ya, we make a lot of mistakes but God is pro at making good things come from them.

We've met a lot of really awesome people this week. We've been working with a less active family and they have a 9 year-old son who we invited to be baptized. The mom started crying and said "oh my goodness, yes!!" It was really sweet. And we met another guy who we gave a pamphlet to but didn't seem to interested. And the next time we met with him, he had read the whole thing and loved it, he basically taught us the Restoration. The first thing he said to us was "I'd really like to read the Book of Mormon." We told him we could give him one and he got so excited. The gospel is exciting! :) He came to the YSA dinner the next day and even brought his friend.

We've been finding a lot of really prepared people, it's been incredible. And I know it doesn't have much to do with us, it's all the Lord, He is way too merciful.

Monday, April 20, 2015

April 20, 2015

Sister Coleman at Mission Meeting

This week has been great! It was (hopefully) our last week of full bike.

Today is actually Sister Rudd's birthday! She's 21 now. Apparently she looks really old and I look really young, because several people have thought she was my mom... awkward.

We had a pretty interesting experience this week. We're teaching a Haitian man named Ch and his friends invited us to go to their Haitian baptist church with them. So yeah, that was different. They loved having us there though and they were all really kind. We kind of stood out a little bit... There was this one little girl in particular who LOVED us, she came and sat by me and picked up my arm and put it around her, it was so cute. Most of them speak pretty good English, but none of the service was in English, so we had no idea what was going on. They were all singing at the top of their lungs and clapping and dancing. If we didn't stand out before, we sure did that. But it was fun, and I always like seeing people worship in their own way.

Sad news of the week: Y is going back to Japan :( We're going to try to get her in contact with missionaries out there, but we're going to miss her so much!

But J is doing really well. He's the little 9-year-old who is kind of rowdy. But it's been neat to see him change since he's been reading the Book of Mormon and praying everyday. He still has his moments, but he's much more willing to listen and learn. He's a really smart kid, and he's so excited to be baptized. We took an 8-year-old who was recently baptized to a lesson with us and when we asked how he felt when he was baptized he said "it felt... AMAZING!!" and then he talked about how warm he felt. I love seeing. the excitement and innocence of little children. Sometimes I wish we could all be more like that (in some ways) :)

Another cool experience with a kid: this random kid on the street bought us ice cream from the ice cream truck! It was a really hot day and we had just talked to him and his grandma, but she wasn't interested. And as we were walking away, he chased after us yelling for us to wait and gave us both ice cream! He was probably like 9, it was the sweetest thing ever.

Embarrassing moment: we had a big meeting with over half the mission, and President Cusick was showing a slideshow. He showed the picture of this cute baby sleeping and in front of over 100 missionaries he said "this is Sister Coleman. Your parents sent me this picture. You don't remember that?" He was just kidding, but I'm afraid I'll forever be remembered for that. One of his counselors came up to me after and was like "You didn't remember your baby picture?" Apparently it's hilarious.

And on that note, I've got to get going :) Our Bishop brought us McDonalds for breakfast for Sister Rudd's birthday, and apparently he's taking us out for lunch too.

 Have a great week!

Monday, April 13, 2015

April 13, 2015

Well, I'm sure lots of wonderful things happened this week, none of which I can really remember at the moment :) But I know it was a pretty good week. Lots of biking! And it's been nice and hot... or rainy. Sometimes both. So that's kind of hard without a car, but we make do :) And on the bright side, we meet a lot more people being outside all the time. We've found a ton of new investigators. 

We've still been running into a lot of people who don't speak or understand English very well. The other day we found a whole street of Haitians.  Who knew I would come to Florida and feel like a minority? :) But the diversity at least makes things interesting :)

We've had to drop a lot of our investigators because they won't keep commitments, which is always hard. But we still have Yangmi. For now. Her visa is about to expire so if she can't get into grad school, she'll have to go back to Japan. We're so sad, we're love her to death. On Sunday she fasted for the first time, and we and a bunch of members fasted with her for her to know that God is real. The bishop had no idea we were doing that, but at the end of church he asked if he could give her a blessing. It ended up being a really emotional experience for her and at the end she told us that she felt like someone really was there blessing her. 

Our other main investigator is a 9-year-old boy from a part-member family. He's a good kid, but a little rambunctious and hard to teach. So that's been interesting :) And we've found a couple new people that seem promising, so we shall see :)

We had our first lesson with Chase since his baptism and he kept telling us how good he's been feeling. He said it feels like he's receiving something. He's basically been a member for a long time, we're all so happy that he finally is :)

Overall things are going great :) We've been kind of forced to work pretty hard, which is actually good. It feels really good to know that I'm serving the Lord with all that I have. And I'm grateful for the opportunity to do that :)

Monday, April 6, 2015

April 6, 2015

First of all, wasn't Conference amazing?? Oh man, it was so good. I'm sad it's over. Good thing we only have to wait 6 months :) We were almost late to the first session and we were so worried we'd miss it, we had to bike like the wind up this huge hill to make it to the church. We made it just in time. And it was worth it :)

Why did we have to bike you may ask? Well, we found out last Tuesday that our whole mission is going to be full bike for 3 weeks. We were hoping it was an April Fool's joke, but nope, they were very serious. So that's been... interesting. One week down, 2 to go.

Our mission has also started tracting, so that'll be kind of different. I know most missions in the world do that all the time, but we never have because our mission president said it isn't effective. But I guess he changed his mind. We've only done it a couple times, but I think I like it better than talking to people on the street. 

We had a really great Easter. 2 of our new investigators, J and V, came to the Sunday morning session of Conference. They had to watch it in another room in Spanish (they don't really speak a lot of English, so teaching them is interesting), but they said they really liked it. Then we watched the Sunday evening session at a family's home with Y. They fed us an amazing Easter lunch/dinner in between sessions and I got to play Battleship with some of their kids. Unfortunately, their 8-year-old son beat me, but I'm pretty sure he was cheating :)

I've learned something new about myself on my mission: apparently I look Hispanic. I thought I was as white as could be (well, I still think so), but all the Hispanics here think I'm one of them! It's the weirdest thing, they all come up to me and start speaking Spanish and I have to be like no sorry, I don't speak Spanish, and they're always surprised. Just last night, a Puerto Rican asked me if I was from Puerto Rico too. Yeah, I don't get it either. 

And as for my title, a guy we met this week asked us if either of us were married. When we told him we weren't he said "Why not?" And then proceeded to tell us why we needed to go get married. He told us he would come to church with us on one condition: if we promised him we'd get married.

I hope you all had a Happy Easter! What a great day to remember the greatest gift we've ever been given. And then Conference on the same day, it was almost too much awesomeness! But I'm sure this week will be a good one too :) Love you all!