Monday, February 29, 2016

Hermana Schmidt Week 75 Letter 02/29/16

From: Nicole Schmidt []
Sent: 02/29/2016 12:57 PM
Subject: Creo En Cristo!

Hola a todos! 

Happy Birthdays to my SISTER CAROLINE! :) And also to 2nd cousins Travis and Leila and my awesome friend Leda. Hope they are great!

So first, I am just about to run out of subject lines so I have switched to spanish. :)

I am sorry this will be so short but basically this week was full of huge highs and huge lows. We had a GOLDEN investigator and she said she prayed and felt that she should stay in the catholic church... we were mind blown!! But then she preceeded to give 100 excuses on why she wouldnt get baptized even if she knew our church was true. So it just seemed like she wasnt really willing to act on her answer even if she got it. It was really sad to see someone so blatantly be so unwilling, (it doesnt happen here often), but it was such a strong moment to share our testimonies with her. It strengthened my testimony even more that I just know that this church is true!! that our message is true. Hermana Shaw and I truly poured out our hearts and the spirit backed us up so strongly. The Lord is good. 

We have an investigator named Jeffrey who has almost read all of 1 Nephi and accepted a baptismal date!! woot woot! 

This week was independance day so hermana shaw and I made smoothies and took pictures... classic. :)

The Familia Sosa are doing so good in the church and are just SOLID! It is so fun to see amazing converts and the positive influence they have. Being a missionary is the best. 

Sorry it is so short today, but I love you all!!! 

Hurrah for Israel! :)

-Hermana Schmidt 


Tan Faces and Popcorn

Companions at church

At church

Another at church

Another at church

Celebrating Independence Day US Style

More celebrating of independence day

More celebrating with smoothies
Old Catholic Church

Nikki in front of church

Another of Nikki and Church

Another view of the church

Close up of church

Inside of church

Monday, February 22, 2016

Hermana Schmidt Week 74 Letter 02/22/16

From: Nicole Schmidt []
Sent: 02/22/2016 12:13 PM
Subject: It's a great day to be a missionary!

Hola a todos! :)

Happy birthdays to my aunts Elizabth and Sue. I hope it's great!! :)


So this week was like... a week full of un-expectantes! It was a little bit crazy, and a whole lot of going up to Santo Domingo but it was amazing! 

We had a lot of meetings up in the capital this week and I just love all of our meetings. They are seriously so spiritual and have taught me so much more on a how to be a christ-like leader. I love it! 

I had the opportunity to do an exchange with some STLs in the capital as well. President gave me permission to go into my old area and see a couple of people I helped there. It was amazing and SUCH a boost and tender mercy. I really liked the common theme of the day which was ''Finish with honor''. I thought a lot about that, and I know what everyone was meaning but I couldn't stop thinking, ''I should finish every single day with honor, not just my mission.'' So that is my new focus. Finish everyday with honor! 

While in that exchange the sister told me she was struggling with her companion and some of her responsibilities as STL (names withheld). I started just asking her a lot of questions to understand and see if she had any ideas herself to resolve them. She said, ''We should organize our study room as a service for her. I bet that would help our stress.'' So we spent a good while organizing EVERYTHING. It was a big project but it was SO cool. The best ideas really do come from the people we are helping themselves. I felt really strongly that the Lord was pleased with this result and act of love. It was really wonderful. So grateful! 

We finally found Nayua and she said, ''I miss coming to church. When I go, I just know that it's true. I can see it in everyone's faces. It's different than any other church, and I just know it's true.'' She just needs rides to church so the ward is stepping in there to help her with that. 

Okay so Sabrina is just golden but has completely disappeared this week!! Which was really discouraging but we aren't giving up. We have faith that God's timing is the best timing and whether she gets baptized on Sunday or another date, it won't matter. We are just here to make progress to that point. :) 

Today we were going to go to some cool caves but we got there and found out it's not open mondays and we were bummed so we took a bus ride back home but on the way we contacted a lady on the bus and she was so excited to hear about ''For the strength of youth'' (i'm currently carrying around one and studying it while I can) pamplet. And was so excited about eternal families. She accepted to take the missionary lessons from the elders so we will give them her info. Everything happens for a reason! 

Okay so 2 funny stories for you: 

We were in our Ward Correlation meeting with our ward mission leader and every thing was fine and normal and my companion takes a drink of water and then suddenly squeals and freaks out and I was like, 'WHAT!?!'' And a lizard flies off her shoulder!! I have to say I think what most shocked me wasn't the suddenness of the squeal, or even the lizard, it was the fact that my companion kept her water in her mouth and still managed to scream! haha. That does not happen every day, and it will be a moment I will not forget. 

The second funny story was that we contacted an old woman in her house and she let us in and just started crying, telling us about all of her pains and trials. My heart just broke for her and I wanted to serve her to make her feel better, and I thought back to another experience I had, had in another area of rubbing lotion into the hands and feet of an old lady to make her happy. Well we started rubbing lotion into her hands... and she stretched out her arms wide while we were doing it and starting yelling and praying at the same time ''Thank you Lord for sending these teenagers to heal me! I know they have the power and heal me lord, heal me, heal me!!'' ... she thought we were doing a healing ritual.... so awkwardly we immediately stopped and I said, ''Sister, i'm sorry, we don't heal people. But there are men in our church who can give healing blessings.'' She didn't understand and to this day I think she thinks we gave her a healing ritual blessing... oh boy. I tried to explain... haha. 

Other than that the work is rolling and new people who are accepting baptismal dates are just coming out of the woodworks. It's so wonderful and it truly is a great day to be a missionary!! :) 

I love you all and remember to finish every day with honor.

Hurrah for Israel!! :)

-Hermana Schmidt 

Companions at the caves

The Caves

Organized study area

Subway sandwich

She was very happy to have Subway today

A Subway

The Caves

Another of companions

Monday, February 15, 2016

Hermana Schmidt Week 73 Letter 02/15/16

From: Nicole Schmidt []
Sent: 02/15/2016 11:16 AM
Subject: 37 Missed Calls from the Zone Leaders

Hola a todos! :) 

Oh my goodness this week was AMAZING! What an incredible way to start off this transfer. My companion, sister shaw, is just the best and has taught me SO much. :) 

So to start off the transfer right (lol) here's the story to my title. So, on our way home I didn't realize that our phone was on silent. We were talking and talking and talking on the bus to La Romana and on the taxi home and in home about everything. Well, me being not as responsable as I should have with checking the phone, just kept talking without checking it for (3 hours) a little while. Well... in the middle of our conversation there was a loud knock on our door. I answer it (in our PJ's since it was time to start getting ready for bed) and standing there are our Zone Leaders and our bishop. I was so confused and ridiculously thought they were there for a house check so the first thing I said was, ''Hey why did you not call???'' And the bishop said, ''Did you lose your phone or something??'' I said, ''No...'' and went and grabbed it. Let's just say I will not be telling any of you how many missed calls we also had from the District Leader and bishop... but you can know we did have 37 from the Zone Leaders... I was very embarrassed. Thankfully they took it well, but one of the Zone Leaders is a new zone leader and I think we about killed the poor guy... first night as a zone leader and he's already frantically searching for missionaries. 

But on a more serious, responsable, i've been in the mission long enough to know how to be a missionary kind of side of the things.. The work was rolling this week. :) 

Our most progressing investigator is Sabrina. She is the woman I mentioned last week that was just so prepared and accepted a date. Well it's pretty clear that her husband won't be baptized next week just because he was gone on a work trip for a week and a half. BUT she is still up for it. She just has to get married, which we are shooting to set a date with her for that on Saturday (that's right, this saturday!). During our lesson we taught all of the restoration and at the end I said, ''Do you believe all that we have shared with you today?'' she teared up and said, ''Yes, I know the church is true.'' And in her closing prayer she said, ''Thank you Heavenly father for showing me today that the church is true.'' It was glorious. I know it's true too!! 

Hermana Shaw and I started trying to contact people by serving them. We just kept trying to look out for people who looked like they needed help. One woman we helped was like, ''I think a church should have standards. And not baptize children. And not support drinking alcohol. And have to be married legally.'' and we were like... UM YES.. ours! And she was amazed by all that the church had and accepted the invitation to be baptized. I think that there is something really special about serving, and then inviting that brings the spirit really strong! 

We had a miracle this week with our ward. The bishop was really worried about the attendance and so together we all thought of an idea to give out 3 invitations to each member to give out to Less actives and non members. The results were huge! We had the most attendance we've had in MONTHS! It was just cool to see how teamwork really brings about miracles. 

This week I also had my last big Zone Conference with President Corbitt. (It's when a couple of zones have a big training meeting/spiritual meeting, it's cool). Hermana Hinrichsen who is also going home with me, and I, did a musical number of ''Be Still my Soul'' on the piano and violin. It was a great way to have my last one! I'm so grateful for little opportunities like that. 

Everything is good here in La romana. We are working hard, sweating lots, smiling tons, and on our knees like madwoman, running around finding new people and trying out new techniques, and it's joyous :) I just love it!! There's nothin' better. :) 

Thanks for all of your love and support. I have NO doubts that this is the perfect church of Jesus Christ! I know that the Priesthood is a real power that really does bless our eternities. I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God and I know that the true, lasting, joy that we all seek comes from the Savior and his Gospel. I know Christ lives. I know He will ALWAYS be there for us! I just love Him.

Hurrah for Israel!! :)

-Hermana Schmidt 

Hermana Schmidt and Hermana Shaw

Meeting Hermana Shaw

Transfer Day 1

Transfer Day 2

Transfer Day 3 with Elders and Suitcases

Monday, February 8, 2016

Hermana Schmidt Week 72 Letter 02/08/16

From: Nicole Schmidt []
Sent: 02/08/2016 11:19 AM
Subject: Who knew cleaning up cigarettes would be such a spiritual experience??

Hola a todos!! 

Happy birthday to Marissa my sister in law! :) I hope it's a great one! 

To start off we found out the next transfer news (I say next to not focus on the fact that it's my last, but everyone already knows that... haha) and I will be staying in LA ROMANA! :) And I will be training a new STL-- Hermana Shaw! Okay, so funny story. My mom had actually talked to Hermana Shaw before her mission and later on told me about it and said, ''who knows maybe you will train her''. So when president told me the news for this transfer I told him what my mom said and we both agreed that she is an inspired lady. :) (although it wasnt the type of training she thought, she was right on the dot :) ) 

I just found out one of my old investigators, Fidel, from my second area got baptized!! The first time we met him he slammed the door in our face and yelled at us. Little by little he warmed up and soon he started taking the lessons. He changed little by little but kept saying ''i'll go to the mormon church every sunday the rest of my life, but I will never be baptized.'' Isn't it amazing how the Lord can just work miracles in the hearts of people?? It was a joyous announcement to hear! :) 

So this week was just FULL of spiritual edifying experiences. The first being with Rafael. I've written about him and his wife, Rosa, quite a few times and how they were dropping their smoking addiction. Well, they haven't progressed for a while or come to church and my companion and I felt that we needed to drop them for a time to help them decide to act in accordance to their faith (those are some of the hardest decisions a missionary has to make). Well, we went over to explain to them the whole situation and we arrived and Rafael just looked awful. He looked defeated and there were cigarettes EVERYWHERE. I mean, everywhere. On the ground, in the garden, on the patio... just everywhere. And it reaked of smoke. My heart literally sank at the sight of it and I just had the strongest sense of disappointment come over me. I prayed in my mind to know what to say to Rafael in order to help him and to make sure he knew that even though we wouldnt be meeting with him for a time, that we still loved and cared for him.

And in that moment, pure, pure love just FLOODED over me. It was seriously as if, even for a brief moment, God allowed me to see him how God sees him, and to feel how he feels for him. My heart broke even more and I just knew without one shadow of a doubt that he was a beloved son of God. I started teaching him and tears welled in my eyes and I just could barely muster the words out. Eventually we explained why we needed to leave for a time and would wait to continue when they came to church. He seemed very sad, but he was very understanding. We finished the lesson and as we stood up I had an uneasy feeling come over me like ''I gotta do more. I gotta do something more for him. I can't just leave like this.'' Then a huge prompting came to me and it was one of those *well duh* moments from the spirit: 

Clean up the cigarettes.   

So we immediately acted and we asked for garbage bags in order to clean them all up. We filled a good about of a bag and as I was cleaning, I looked over at Rafael and he was just stunned, but beaming, and with tears in his eyes thanked us for the service. I realized that service really is the best way to help another person we can't just be like ''Hey your house is dirty, you should fix that'' True disciples of christ will feel impressed to feel ''Hey their house is dirty, let's see what I can do about that.'' And although I am not perfect at always doing that or following those promptings, I'm grateful that God places in my path person after person to serve and to bless, although I am a very unprofitable servant. The Lord is so good. I think if we had just left telling him he needs to stop smoking without doing much, it would have just been that, empty words and a bitter end. But I could tell it really, really touched Rafael because he promised he would find a way to get to church in the next couple of weeks- which he has never done. I really think it will happen. 

Other than that, we are teaching a new family and the mom has come to church like 5 times but is never home but we finally caught her! We taught her and the first lesson she said, ''So how can I be baptized?? Do I have to become a miamaid and laurel or whatever they were saying about those girls in church today??'' (she's in her 40s haha) and we explained that she didn't and that the process is easy and we gave her a date right then and there for the 27th this month and she said, ''I really want to. But I want to with my husband and daughter.'' And we asked if she had the faith to see that miracle and she said yes. The spirit was so strong and I can just feel that, that entire family will be baptized so soon!! The Lord truly does prepare his elect. 

I love you all and can not express with words how grateful I am for all of your support. Every day, and in every way, my mission has become the best, and even better, and even better, experience of my entire life. And I couldn't do it without the support I receive from all of you. I testify that this is the completely true church of the Lord!! It is his kingdom. Oh, it truly is ''wonderful, wonderful to me.'' I can feel it every day, that angels are around us and guiding us and this is God's mighty work and his mighty truth. I testify that the gospel binds a family together in unity and happiness, in this life and for the eternity. I know that God loves us and LIVES. He will never leave us alone. He truly does see us as how we can become, perfect, glorified beings like he is. I just know it. I know it, I know it, I know it! 

Hurrah for Israel!! Hurrah for missions!! 

-Hermana Schmidt 

Another Goodbye

After organizing

Before organizing

Dead and Alive

Goofing Off

Back to brown hair <3

Invites they handed out

Hermana Schmidt and Hermana Greenstreet

Monday, February 1, 2016

Hermana Schmidt Week 71 Letter 02/01/16

From: Nicole Schmidt []
Sent: 02/01/2016 10:47 AM
Subject: Can I just say, that I am SO happy?! :)

Hola a todos!!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MADDI GIRL!! 4 YEARS OLD!!!! I can't believe it. :) 

So i'm sorry for the lack of updates the last 2 weeks. My companion got really sick and so there wasn't really much to update on. But, this week we got everything solved. President wanted us to stay in the capital to see some good doctors up there, and they found out what it was and now she has the right medicine and is doing a lot better. 

But while in the capital we had many adventures. 

1: I was the office secretary for a day. That's right. Sister Schmidt, Head Secretary, for 7 hours. (That's the least cool thing ever, but I felt cool answering the phone and saying ''MisiĆ³n Santo Domingo Este'' Over and over again. :) ) 

2. Leadership Counsel. Our leadership counsel was amazing this month!! We talked a lot about balancing between working hard and being excited for the achievements we have, and being humble. It was a great talk. The sum of it was that we need to recognize that we are children of God, who have the potencial to become like him, and that means hard work. But as children of God we can't do it without Him, as any child needs his father to learn. I always say, ''Humility isn't thinking we are nothing. It's realizing that we can become nothing without God.'' And I really believe that. 

3. Hotel House for 3 nights. That's right. Hot showers. Living the good life. 

4. The tender mercies of the temple. Before the Elders picked us up to take us to the bus stop to La Romana again, we felt that we should stop quick by the temple store. Well while we were waiting at the temple, I heard an ''Hermana Schmidt!!'' And I saw one of the sister missionaries I went on appointments with before my mission (she served in the Provo Utah mission) running towards me. She's dominican and we met through the davis family who had introduced us (shout out to them). I went out with them a lot of times before my mission so it was a huge tender mercy to see her at the temple. That day I was feeling really overwhelmed with trying to help the sisters in La Romana, trying to help my companion with her help, worrying about my investigators from not working very much... I was just on stress overload. But seeing her and having her talk to me about how much the mission meant to her, just spoke so much peace to my mind. The Lord is just so good and truly puts the people that we need to see in our paths!! 

5. After we got home, I was still trying to sort out my feelings and stress and turn it all over to the Lord when I had two thoughts. 1. Study Esther. 2. Study from the Topical guide ''cheer''. 

I loved the story of Esther and how Mordecai says, ''Who knoweth if thou hast come to the kindgom as such a time as this??'' Basically, I take that as: 'the Lord has placed you in this spot during a time of huge opposition for a REASON.' I felt so, so strongly from the spirit that I am where I am supposed to be and when I'm supposed to be there. Comfort rushed over me and I just knew that the Lord is aware of me and that he will sustain and inspire me every step of the way. 

With the word ''cheer'' I found and read DyC 112:4-14. I felt so strongly that we as his representatives are called to fight, morning after morning, and day after day, for his good cause. To raise our voices loud and proud and put our heads high because we are on the BEST team ever--- the Lord's! And we have every single reason in the world to be cheerful, and happy, because He Lives, and He is there with us every step of the way. When we feel down, we have to remember that the Lord WILL lift us. He is the Living God, The Prince of Peace!! I know that He lives. I know it, I know it, I know it.

I love you all!

Hurrah for Israel!! :) 

-Hermana Schmidt 

Hermana Barfuss and Hermana Curtis-saying goodbye

President Corbitt in Leadership Training

I can see why they love this president so much just in these photos

Her true love