Dear family and friends,
Have you shared the Bednar video from conference yet? (I'm like the red cross people that won't stop calling for blood donations)
First of all, I am SO jealous that all of you have the chance (well most of you i'm guessing) to see Meet the Mormons. I asked if we would be able to see it as missionaries out here and there was a resounding no. Sad day. So all of you better see it 20 times for me. :) I heard it's amazing, and selling a lot of tickets!! It'll be one of those movies I get super stoked after I see it in 17 months and all of you will be like, "Uh.... that was so a year and half ago" and i'll be sad but probably talk to you all about it for a solid more 18 months.
I reached my one month mark!! At least by the day of the week. Tomorrow is my "day" one month point. NO. Time. Stop. Can't. Breath. Don't. Want. To. Ever. Not. Be. A. Missionary. That month flew by, but yet felt like an eternity. I believe only missionaries will be able to understand how that feels exactly. Oh man, I LOVE being a missionary for this church. I am so super lucky to have this great opportunity to serve the Lord and his people in the DR! Can't wait for the field in less than 2 weeks!!
So last week at the university. We got there earlier than our appointment with Antonio so we found another person to teach. However, right before we talked to someone else our teacher and others were telling us "don't be sad if he doesn't show up, Dominicans can be flaky" and such. And so actually I wasn't expecting Antonio to show up, and went to the university pumped to talk to lots of people still. Anyway, the very first person we talked to was a girl named Julie. She is our age. And... MIRACLE.... she spoke english almost perfectly!! So I got to teach her in english. Which was good because I finally felt like I could express my real feelings and not worry about the right words. Anyway we asked her what she believed and all of her beliefs were exactly the same to ours it was CRAZY. She even believed in three seperate members of the godhead, which is really rare here. The only thing she was caught up on was prophets. So we explained the role of prophets and why God calls prophets in our time. Near the end she said something like, "Why do I need to listen to the prophet when I can just listen to the Holy Spirit?" And I said, "That is a great question. Do you believe the Holy Spirit not only leads you to the right things in life, but also tells you what is true?" and she said, "Yes..." And I said, "Well our whole purpose here is not to convince you that you need to follow a prophet, or to convince you that the book of mormon is true, or that the church is restored... our whole purpose is to invite you to find out for yourself, by praying and feeling the holy spirit be the one to convince you of the truthfulness of our message. And I know, that if you pray about prophets, and the book of mormon, the Holy Ghost WILL tell you it is all true, all of it." I have not felt the spirit stronger in my whole life, and the words just seemed to come without effort! It was an amazing moment. She really felt something and agreed to do all we invited her to do and we got her number to make a referral.
In the middle of that lesson however, ANTONIO shows up!! Thankfully our teacher was there and talked to him until we were done with Julie. Antonio really just wants to know information about the church, not really interested in joining... but that's okay! Everyone starts somewhere. And he is going to meet with the missionaries in the field :) (I understood 2% of our lesson with him or else I would go into more detail)
I also saw my good friend from home Elder Tate at the CCM this week!! That was really cool and he is doing great and his spanish is flawless! It's way cool!
Another cool thing that happened this week was Hermana Triplett and I got called to be the new sister training leaders over the CCM! It's not really training though, we are just there to help, serve, and comfort all the sisters here which is super cool. It's been fun. In the DR they call greenies "pinitos" or little pine trees, so we made them little pine trees with a thought + chocolate for when they arrived here yesterday. There's about 17 total sisters here now which is a lot for here!! It's been fun talking to them and getting to know them! :)
I GOT A SHARK SHIRT. And on it, it has "Santo Domingo" which was about the most exciting moment EVER. Lies... Worldy excited moment ever :) For those of you who know me well, you can see why this would be a big deal.
So this week I go on splits for 8 hours in the field!! I'm so nervous, excited, can't believe it, AH. I finally get an "in the field" experience and I can't wait!!
Okay to finish off I have a thought for you all. So we watched a Devotional from Elder Bednar this week about the character of Christ. Oh my lanta, the best devotinal I have EVER heard, or at least right up there with Uchtdorf's that I talked about 2 weeks ago. He shared a story.
He was in the stake presidency over a stake that was in distance, really spread out. He got a frantic call from one of the ward's relief society president (a single mom) that she needed his help. She said that there were 3 girls from the stake who had been in a car accident and she needed him (because he was close) to go Identify which ones were dead and which ones were living. As she was talking to him, he could tell she was also talking to the hospital, and over the phone he heard the nurse say, "Your daughter is the one who is dead." So Elder Bednar heard this woman find out her only child had died, and immediately she says, "we need to update the other moms". In that moment, she turned outward. He related this to christ on the cross and when he looks down and worries about his mother rather than his own pain. She turned outwards when most of us would turn inwards. So continuing the story, the day of her daughters funeral she gets a call from a woman in her ward who didn't know of the passing. This other woman called saying, "are you kidding me I have had a cold for over a week and not one person has brought me a meal" and just chewed her out, THE DAY OF THE FUNERAL. This whining woman clearly had no idea about the Relief Society presidents daughter. But this RS president was so christlike that on her way to the funeral she brought this woman a meal.
This touched my heart and inspired me. I want to make that my mission goal. To become a person who looks more outward rather than inward. That in my hard moments, I look to help others. I truly believe that if we ask for God's help, he can change us to become a more outward person. Alma 5:7-9. He can change our hearts so that our souls expand. I truly have a testimony of that.
My missionary challenge to all of you this week is in your hard moments, try your best to find someone to serve. I would love to hear your experiences. I will accept my own challenge and try it out as well. :)
I love you all. This is the most important work in the WORLD. God loves us and he wants us to find joy, and peace in this life. I know this church is true.
Hurrah for Israel!
Hermana Schmidt :)
|Companion, Roommates and Friends|
|Selfie in honor of Jordan Bradford|
|The shark shirt from her letter|
|Newbie gifts for the sisters arriving|
|Not sure what they are doing here|
|Santo Domingo Skies|
|Purple Lightning behind the clouds an Elder took|
|Elder Kline Tate from Orem came by to say hi!|