And the adventure begins! This is a record of my experiences as I serve as a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in the England Manchester Mission.
I am humbled to be so blessed to have this opportunity to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ every day for the next 18 months. Many trials await me in the form of slammed doors, pouring rain, and tons of homesickness, but with Jesus Christ I can overcome all of that and more.
Love you all!
FYI: This blog is being taken care of by Sister Martin's mom Sharon Martin - firstname.lastname@example.org. She is posting emails and pictures that I am sending to her each week.
Monday, 24 February 2014
OH CANADA!!!! That awkward moment when your zone leader is a passionate hockey lover from Sweden and you are a proud Canadian :)
I was the happiest sister alive yesterday when I received a
text from a member that the men's hockey team beat Sweden to take the gold!
Double gold for our men and women! Nothing on earth can make a Canadian happier
than that. Things got slightly awkward though when our Swedish zone leader
called us to make travel arrangements for our temple trip. I had to break the
news to him. I haven't heard an elder so devastated in a long time. I asked if
I gave him some maple syrup as a consolation if he would forgive me. He’s going
to think about it :P
I HAVE A CHALLENGE FOR YOU:
I can always use some more laughs in my life! I'd love it if
people could send me any missionary and/or church jokes they know! Consider it
my birthday present for this year! It will make my month! Please and thank you
Highlight reel now!:
Sister McD's first KD:
Some members gave us the English version of Kraft Dinner. It
is still made by Kraft, and looks almost the same, but has a different name and
tastes not quite the same. Sis McD did not like it. I think I liked it because
it was something somewhat familiar from childhood. I'll have to think about it
some more and get back to you on my final consensus on it!
I discovered why we don't get tea appointments!!
We had a Filipino family feed us last week. They are AMAZING
cooks! Funniest confession of the night from them: "We were going to make
a proper roast with mash and everything, but we realized that Sister McD is
English! We can't make English food for an English person!"
Bless them, they were intimidated to feed English food to a
legit English person. So to make ourselves feel more loved, we are just
convincing ourselves that the reason missionaries don't get fed here is because
they are intimidated to feed Sis McD!
My worst pun of the week!
Sister McD actually wore her hearing aids this week
(miracle!!). They sometimes irritate her though and she was going on about
Sis. McD: "I dunno what I'm going to do about these
hearing aids. It makes it easier to talk to members but they annoy me so
Me: "Guess we'll just have to play it by EAR!"
Womp Womp Womp! I'm waiting for Sis. McD to just start
hurling tomatoes (pronounced the English way) at me one day!!
Confessions of a die-hard Beyonce fan!
Anyone who knows me knows that I LOVE LOVE LOVE Beyonce! We
were in the middle of teaching a pretty intense lesson to one of our recent
converts. The member and I are going back and forth working through things.
Then out of nowhere, her daughter (on her iphone) shouts out "Oh my
goodness, Beyonce is in Glasgow tomorrow Sister Martin!!!!!!! Let's go!!!"
Distracting much?!? That's one way to throw a missionary off her game-- just
tell her that her music idol is within touching distance of her!
Despite this, we had a good laugh at this silly moment that
busted the tension of the intense lesson. Just as we were getting back into the
discussion, Sister McD shouts out "Oh my goodness!!! I GOT A KOALA
BEAR!!!!!!!" She had bought herself a kinder surprise egg and I guess had
decided to open it and eat it during the lesson. She just couldn't contain her
excitement. Lesson gone again. We were in fits laughing. Safe to say we were
ready to banish those two from the lesson for being so distracting! Good times!
English translation of the week:
Sister McD asked me if I wanted any Tommy K for my chips.
Discovery of the week:
Tommy K= Tomato ketchup!
Apparently she and her siblings used to call it that all the
time as kids!
I LOVE fish and chips!
We discovered the best chippy in Carlisle!! Seriously! It's
only a 10 min walk from our house and has the best fish and chips I've ever had
in my life! Even better though? They make deep fried Cadbury cream eggs and
mars bars. So we plan to try them on my birthday! As the saying goes: when in
Rome (.....or maybe England)!
Pondering things other than the scriptures:
We humans are strange creatures! The dumbest things go
through my head sometimes. My strangest thought of the week as I was eating
eggs on toast:
"This is the creepiest thing ever. If there had been a
rooster around, this egg would have become a chicken. I'm eating a future baby
chick right now. It's like an indirect form of chicken abortion. Ughhhh".
Safe to say I ruined my breakfast for myself! I'll stick to
pondering the scriptures next time!
When spiritual lessons go wrong:
We thought it would be nice to watch the DVD Finding Faith
in Christ with our recent convert family. Our discovery: when teenagers are
involved, this is a bad idea!
My favourite comments of the night:
1. Jesus is walking on the water towards the apostles. 18
year old yells out "That is definitely a hashtag swag moment"
2. 18 year old girl: "Why are they not tanned?? Casting
FAIL! Christian Bale played Jesus in a movie and he was tanned! He looked so
much more legit than this Jesus! You think they would have thought to not cast
a bunch of white people for a movie that is supposed to be about Jewish people
in the Middle East!!"
Mum: "Ya! Why do they never have black people in these
movies! It's always a ton of white people in these DVD's! So racist!"
18 year old girl: "Duh, because there weren't black
people thereeeeee!! Come on mother! They couldn't exactly just jet over to
Jerusalem on a plane from Africa could they?! Common sense!!! There are too
many white people in this movie, but it would be just as dumb to cast black
Never a dull moment in missionary life!!
Signs from God:
No. This isn't a miracle or a spiritual thought! This is
another silly story!
So we got to our member's house last night and they told us
they got a big sign from God! The sign?
Their 13 yr old was hoovering before church and the hoover
completely blew up and is broken! They joked that it was a sign from God that
they should stop breaking the Sabbath (by labouring: doing Saturday chores on
Sunday). I love church humour!
Spritual thought for the week:
3 Nephi 15:22
In this chapter Christ is talking about how he told the
Israelites that he had other people (John 10:16--"other sheep") that
he was going to minister to. Through reading this chapter and chapters
previous, we learn that Jesus was referring to the people in the ancient
Americas (recorded in the Book of Mormon) when he said this. Because of their stubbornness
and pride though, the Israelites assumed that Christ was talking about the
Gentiles. They did not know that it was going to be them who would bring the
gospel to the Gentiles.
Historically, Gentiles weren't treated equally by those of
the house of Israel at that time. The Law of Moses established that these two
groups of people had different duties. Pride and time though led to a bit of
separation between the two groups-- converted Gentiles weren't allowed to enjoy
full fellowship in the gospel, Israelites didn't really associate with
Gentiles! Essentially the Israelites didn't treat the Gentiles very well at
times. Pride is so dangerous! These people of the house of Israel thought that
Christ was going to go and sort those people out. The Gentiles ended up being
incredible converts after Christ's death!! Many were converted as a result of the
apostles' missions! Turns out maybe the Israelites had more to sort out than
the Gentiles did, because look how strong the faith of those Gentiles ended up
being, while the people of the house of Israel rejected Christ who was
literally standing right in front of them! We should never assume that the
gospel is needed anymore by someone else than for ourselves first!!
We should never assume that the gospel or a gospel principle
is not for us!! Instead of looking at other people and say "oh boy, they
definitely need the gospel, they need a lot of sorting out, but I myself am
doing fine!" then we are robbing ourselves of growth and conversion!
Instead of looking at others faults, we should look to improve ourselves first!
If you think you have no problems with a gospel principle, live it anyway, or
strive to live it more fully than you currently are! You will likely surprise
yourself by how much room for growth you still have!
I bet the apostles had such beautiful experiences as they
helped preach the gospel to the Gentiles! Those Israelites who left it to
Christ and his apostles to share the gospel with those people, rather than do
it themselves, robbed themselves of those blessed opportunities! Let us never
forget that we need to first live the gospel ourselves. Stop worrying about
other people and start focussing more on how you can become more like Christ!
Life will be more fulfilling and happier as we do so!
Anyways! Have a wonderful week! Do something kind for
someone! Be grateful for all the Lord has blessed you with!! He really does
love us so very much!!!
And never forget that missionary work is the best!!!
Hope the time goes quickly for you and slowly for me!