FYI: This blog is being taken care of by Sister Martin's mom Sharon Martin - She is posting emails and pictures that I am sending to her each week.

Monday, 7 October 2013

Another blessed week :)

I love this mission!! The only thing I hate about it is that the weeks just fly by because I am having such an incredible time!!!!!! To add to the list of terrible Harry Potter jokes we have made since being here, you can include this new one: every day when we go out street contacting, we make sure to also search for Hermione Granger on the streets! We want to ask her if she can lend us that time-turner thing from Harry Potter books........ (you think that one was bad? Then you can only imagine the arsenal of *falm palm* level Harry Potter jokes that are made while we walk the rainy/windy streets of England every day!)

Blessed Exchange:
It's rare that you get to exchange with the same person twice! Even more rare when you get to exchange with your best friend twice! I'm one lucky sister! Sis. M and I got to have a 24 hr exchange here in Telford early in the week. I'm not going to say much about the details of the exchange--most of the exchange was extremely spiritual and therefore quite private to me. I'll tell you this much: this exchange was a strange answer to a prayer. I have been fighting through some personal trials the past weeks (nothing to be alarmed about!...I'm doing GREAT!!!!! Just learning tons of things about myself right now and working through them day by day :) ) and have really needed time to recover and take care of myself. Between training and the exploding missionary work out here, I have really struggled to find an ounce of time to take care of myself. I have been praying really hard for Heavenly Father to help me find some way to get this time that I desperately need to recover and ponder about my life a little bit. Heavenly Father ALWAYS answers prayers....sometimes in really weird ways!! Sis. M ended up getting SUPER SUPER sick a couple of hours into our pretty much the entire exchange was spent in our flat. This ended up being the biggest blessing (not her being sick...I felt so bad for her....but the results of the forced time in the flat). We had a ton of time to talk about the things I'm going through…the things she's going through. I received some very personal, life-changing revelation during that exchange. The spirit was extremely strong in the flat; there are few times in my life that I have felt the Saviour that close to me, as I did during that time in the flat. I received the spiritual and physical rejuvenation that I so desperately needed. My trials are still there, but I got the reboost that I needed to keep pushing the work along in Telford. I am so blessed to have such a dear friend in the mission, who understands me so well and always gives me perfect advice; I thank Heavenly Father every day for this! I'm even more blessed that Heavenly Father (as always) answers my prayers with perfect timing! I'm now re-energized and ready for anything that can be thrown at me! I'm craving to dive out of my comfort zone again and see more personal growth! This time in my mission (trials and all) is so precious and blessed!

Miracle from Exchange: Before Sis. M got sick, we managed to squeeze in an appointment! I felt prompted last week to try calling by at a potential investigator's home (that had not been terribly interested last time we worked with them in June). We went over...turns out they have been reading the BOM we gave them and now we have an appointment to teach the whole family-  a boyfriend, girlfriend (teaching the law of chastity should be GRRRREAT!) and 2 kids! MIRACLESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!! Nothing better than finding a family to teach!!! :) :)

Random Miracle:
I taught a man on the bus a few weeks back and left him with a BOM. Anyone who knows missionary work well knows that it is EXTREMELY rare that someone you contact on a bus will call/text you back. Well HE DID! He said I haven't converted him YET but he had started to read and is liking what he is reading so far! MIRACLES EVERYWHERE (insert voice of lady in nutrigrain commercial here*)

Teaching Richard is a Piece of CHEESEcake!:
Richard is one of my FAVOURITE investigators right now!!! HE is so open-minded. He just fires one question after another to us! We have great discussions, and everything we've taught him so far makes sense to him! He came to conference and loved it! He plans to watch the other sessions later in the week when he isn't working! He is always calling us to schedule appointments (that NEVER happens). He wants to settle with one religion, and is desperately searching for truth! I pray every day he'll recognize the truth he has come across! But the real reason he is now my favourite?! We randomly got into a conversation about favourite desserts-- Sis. Riley and I are cheesecake monsters! Turns out he's never tried it (SO SAD!!).....he said it sounds too weird for him (cheese+ cake just disgusts him!!!). But he went and bought us a cheesecake because he saw how bonkers we were for it!! OFFICIAL FAVOURITE! Guaranteed way to please me is with cheesecake! This man knows that way to a sister's heart :)

Nanaimo Bar Frenzy:
I think I've started something too big for me to handle. Everyone here is addicted to Nanaimo Bars!!! It's like they are all kittens with cat-nip!! They keep asking me to make them! They keep asking how to make them! They keep asking when I'll have more. Unfortunately they are time-consuming to make and super expensive, so I'm thinking it'll have to wait until Christmas!!!

Conference IS THE BEST:
So (HINT HINT) did anyone catch the MASSIVE missionary theme in conference!!?? SO GOOD! Do the Lord a favour and apply what was taught!!! Miracles are happening!! I'm seeing them here!!!!!!! You will see them there! Invite someone over for dinner with the missionaries....have a FHE with a non-member or less-active.....mention bits of the gospel whenever you can...go fellowship with the missionaries DO WHATEVER YOU CAN....whatever you do (whether big or small), the Lord will see that it results in miracles!! :)

Random tidbit (shout-out to my dad, who uses this phrase alll the time----- I miss you dad!) of fun-fact-ed-ness:
Conference times are so different.
Sat: Sat morning session is at 5pm.
Sun: -Priesthood session at 10am.
-Sat night is at 1pm
- Sun morning is at 5pm.
- Sun afternoon doesn't get broadcasted at chapel because it would go from 9pm-11pm (SO I HAVEN'T SEEN IT YET!!!!!! BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! Giant cliffhanger in my life!!!)

We had missionaries sleeping over at our flat, because only 2 chapels in our whole zone broadcast we are SO blessed that Telford was one of them!!!!!!!!! Most people here watch conference from home! 

I didn't get kicked off the computers today! This entire email was written consecutively, and was written on only 1 computer!!! MIRACLES HAPPEN!!!!!

I Heart Polish Food:
So Remek has been wanting us to come for tea for a while. Sis. Riley and I were having a special companionship fast together yesterday and were lucky to break our fast at Remek’s!!! You have not seen big portion sizes until you have been fed by a Polish person! I have mentioned many times about Remek and how he tries to gorge us with chocolate and other sweets every time we teach him....well that was just a small taste (no pun intended HAR HAR) of what he is capable of. Enormous portion sizes of the most delicious food ever!! Polish sausages, salads, snacks, etc, and most importantly Pecos (I have no remote idea how it's spelled, and I barely understood how he pronounced it, so I now officially declare that this food is called Pecos!). Sis. Shchur has mentioned it before and told me how good it was......UNDERSTATEMENT! So good! I don't know how to describe it (google it.....if you can't find it, I'll try to describe next week haha), but all I know is that it was delicious! The best news of all? He bought it pre-made (typical bachelor....he doesn't cook much haha) at a Polish shop that's super close to our flat!! Guess what our new favourite meal is?!?!?! :)

REFERRALS EVERYWHERE (once again, insert voice of lady in nutrigrain commercial here*):
- Our members are slowly starting to catch the spirit of the work :) We have 3 possible new investigators from members!! It's seriously like Christmas came early!!!! Do your missionaries a favor and be their Santa Claus! Deliver the best presents of their lives...aka referrals! (have I hinted enough yet that I am desperate for the work in good ol' Vancouver to explode?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?!?)

Sister Riley:
She is simply the best. That is all I have to say! I love this sister to bits and pieces and we just laugh our heads off 90% of the time! I'll be pleased as punch if I get to spend another transfer with her :)

Lame Housekeeping: transfers are coming (nerve-racking!!!!.....I have had some people predict that I'm outta here! Who knows! I love Telford, but must admit I'm super comfortable here and am feeling ready for some new challenges!) . THEREFORE...Pday next WED or THURS, which means you have to wait a bit longer than usual for next email :) Next time you hear from me, you'll know if I got to stay or go :)

Anyways, that's all I have this week!! Love you all! If you love me, you will help your local missionaries! THE TIME IS NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THE LORD IS HASTENING HIS WORK (if I had a pence for everytime they said that during conference........I would have enough to buy a cheapo hardcandy from the local sweetshop!.......but SERIOUSLY!!!!!!!!! Take a hint! Be excited! We are part of the most exciting era in HISTORY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!).

Hope the time passes quickly for you and slowly for me!

Love Sister Martin :)

Here is a YouTube video made by 2 elders in Erika's mission.  It is in Chinese but English translation is available by clicking on CC and selecting english. Her mission president wants it to viral!!  Why won't you be baptised?

Some August and September Pics from Erika...

These are from the Church History Tour at the end of August

Not sure who this is but assume it is the dear older sister that Erika loves to visit

 Sister Riley and Sister Martin
 Sister Martin and Sister Dargyte

                         Dawn Cleary and Sister Martin

Sister Martin and Sister Hansen

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