Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Dear family and friends!

This past couple weeks has been super awesome. I didn't send an email
last week cause we ran out of time because I did 3 sister missionaries
hair:) and the next day was Charles baptism and so we were making sure
he was ready and it was kinda stressful but so fun! If you could
imagine that!

Charles was baptized on Tuesday! It was a stressful day as he had to
be interviewed by the district leader again right before to make sure
he had really quit smoking. He was so excited. His sister who is not a
member came. She is a very nice person and said her husband's
brother's family are members. Charles also invited a friend and his
wife from Sweet Home. A lot of members came to support! The talks were
really good and Sister Farnsworth and I shared our testimonies while
he was changing. We sang I am a Child of God and the young women who
were there sang a descant with it that was so beautiful. The spirit
was really strong there. Charles seemed so different and happy the
next couple of days. His housekeeper got a job in Portland and is
leaving. It was really sad. We came by on Saturday and he seemed upset
and we read with him and had a lesson. He told us at the end that he
had smoked and drank coffee that day and he started crying. He said it
was because of all the stress with his housekeeper leaving him. He
said he prayed and told Heavenly Father sorry. He has gotten emotional
a lot lately. We feel so bad for him, but also feel we need to teach
him more about the atonement and repentance. Like Clayton E.
Christiansen said, " It is easier to keep the commandments 100% of the
time! than it is to keep them 98% of the time." We know Satan is
working really hard on him. We also know that the atonement of Christ
can heal us from whatever addictions or problems we have. It is only
through faith in Him that we can be completely healed. We have been in
contact with him daily! It was really special and he has grown so much
the spirit was super strong. we are still working with him so much to
be able to progress. He needs the gospel now more than ever, it's like
the only thing he is holdin on to. I love him so much definitely know
I was sent here for him.

A lot of our time has been really focused on Charles and so I feel
like we haven't really done much of anything else but we have.

We were able to have a really good lesson with Elliot. I have talked
about him before he has been investigating the church for over a year
now. Has some things to overcome and he also recently split up with
Olivia who is an excommunicated member that is trying to come back
also. But in general this has both been really good for them to split
and not live with each other. They both have been able to get really
good jobs and that was a huge blessing for them separately. So now
they can focus on themselves and progress in there lives.

A la that I super duper love is Brenda and she hasn't been to church
since I've been here! She is the one that we quilt with every Monday.
I LOVE her. She has been doing really good and has been learning a lot
about the atonement for herself lately. She is very knowledgable of
the church. But needs to apply it to her life! But we think she is
coming to church soon cause she just keeps saying.."You will just have
to trust me" and were like oookay Brenda. ;)

We went to the stake pioneer picnic and it was really fun! Charles
came and Brenda! There were so many investigators there from the
surrounding areas and it was so fun to meet most of them. People that
are so prepared. Specifically Mike...he is friends of the Meyr family
here in bville and he works close to bro huff Meyr with state patrol
stuff. Anyways I met him at dinner one night for-ev-er ago (like 3
transfers ago) and I might have talked about it before but he is the
one with tazing elk story. You could probably find it on YouTube. And
then the next night we were texting mike about some things he has been
struggling with about God and how he lets little children suffer,
cause he works a lot with that and I was like...yo Meyrs you should
ask mike if he would like to meet with the sweet home sistas. He has
decided to get baptized in October and also his girlfriend that moved
her last week from Texas and her daughter, she was telling us that she
has always had members of the church in her life and has read and has
taking it as an answer from god that it is where she is supposed to be
and that it's true. Esp because her and mike reconnected (they went to
high school with each other) and he has been investigating. I was mind

Oh and last night we were going to see a la Lori who came to church
yesterday! (yay) and next door are some la members that we have never
met and there was a guy about our age sitting on his car and I said hi
to him and asked if he lived there and he said no! And I told him why
and he said oh are you Mormon?? And said ya are you? And he said he
used to be and that he left the church! It was interesting because it
wasn't really a bash because he was really nice but sis Farnsworth
called it a respectful interchange of ideas haha He had all these
wonderfully sad rumors of Joseph smith and it was interesting one of
the first things he said was that he started to plant this seed of
doubt as he started to get ahold of anti material. It was interesting
but I bore    My testimony of Jesus Christ. And that seemed to do
something..If anything we said did anything. We hope. But I wasn't ok
with walking away until I did, as he told us that Mormons believe that
we have to earn our way to heaven and we don't need to Jesus Christ.
Oh no boy. Not ok. Most definitely not true. I am not perfect and
there is no way I will make it without my Savior Jesus Christ.
Love always and forever Sister Heywood! :)

Picture directory:
Charles Thompson after baptism:)
Killed 5 spiders filling up the Lebanon font
Ice cream from divine on a rainy day for lunch.
Stand by me day. It poured this day.
How much sister Farnsworth and I love Brownsville. Really. So much.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Dear family! 
It's been a great week! It's gone by so fast. Time is so weird out here. 
The coolest thing that happened this week was teaching Joni the 
restoration and committed her to reading the Book of Mormon and 
praying about it..she is so nice! Also a cosmetologist! It was so fun 
and she has a very strong relationship with God. 
Charles is doing so good! Still trying to quit smoking and drinking 
coffee! Keep him in your prayers. We had a really good lesson with 
about satan and how he works which is really interesting to know how 
he works and how evil and easily he try's to trick us. It was really 
important for Charles to know how real that is. Satan doesn't like 
that he is preparing to be baptized. And he doesn't like that we are 
helping him or anything else that we do. He's a meany head! 
We also went to the visitors center with charles in Lake Oswego with 
Merlin and Marie Evans, it was really fun! And so good for everyone. 
The Portland mission was getting there new mission president which is 
elder ballards son! So there were no sister missionaries in the 
visitors center and so sis Farnsworth and I got to be the ones to walk 
him through all the different displays. It was really cool!! 
My bday was fun starting out with walking in the morning with Marie 
and Debbie Evans and they got me a Oregon ducks shirt cause I always 
wear beavers clothes when we go walking which they don't like haha Had 
zone training meeting and sis Farnsworth and everyone made it a really 
good day...lots of yummy treats and food...oh man! 
Fun memory this week was being in by 9 on the 4th and doing our 
planning on our balcony/fire escape while we waited for the fireworks 
to go off! The trees were kinda in the way so we just tried to 
remember some girls camp song and sang them to Brownsville. It was 
funny. Well and before we went in we had dinner with Kathy and Gina 
two la woman in the branch and we had a campfire that we helped build. 
I was laughing a lot because Gina cracks me up! The fire kept blowing 
up cause she put rocks under the wood and we couldn't stop laughing so 
we had our own little firework show! 
There are some potential families we might teach this week and I'm 
really hopefully we can make it happen. It almost happened 
this week..but work schedules got in the way! 
Love sister heywood! 
Hello hello! 
This week was great!! To start off I will tell you about our very 
wonderful eventful pday we have had today! It consisted of the usual 
quilting at the church win Brenda and other ladies which by the way 
I've finished my quilt while I've been here! It's super cute. Then it 
was off to blueberry picking in Albany with sis Robbins the relief 
society president and they were so yummy and juicy! It was so fun and 
my first time doing it! Then she dropped us off at costco to meet 
sister Glenn and her daughters Grace Ella and alyse! They are the 
branch presidents family and we did some of our shopping there. Oh my 
goodness they are soo cute and fun! I can't even explain how much I 
love them. A lot of people feel like family here. And we have dinner 
with them at 6! 
Brother Charles Thompson is plugging along! We have a lot of contact 
with him this week and I got to cut his hair on sat. And was able to 
do some service for him and we brought a less active Kathy with us and 
that was a good opportunity for her! The lesson we had on Saturday was 
amazing we focused in on repentance and feeling godly sorrow and it 
was definitely what he needed to learn more about. The spirit was 
really strong as we talked about certain things and him talking and 
thinking about his wife again. Idk why but all three of us were 
crying. We had already said a closing prayer and then after talking 
more about a gospel principle that needed to be understood. We said 
another one and it was my turn....oh man I couldn't say it without 
crying. It probably was one of the most heartfelt prayers I've said in 
awhile and that lesson was probably the most spiritual lessons I've 
had on my mission..because we love Charles so much!! He is still 
working on quitting smoking and so this week we are really going to 
help him nip it in the bum! He has wonderful Amuleks and lots of 
people praying for him. 
We had another wonderful experience yesterday as we went to a la home 
named Sandra! We have visited her a few time and this time we brought 
a member with us her name is Chandra and she is amazing and so loving. 
Sandra told us she has some anxiety meeting new people but it went so 
well! We talked for a little bit and I told Sandra if you want you 
should tell Chandra your conversion story and so she did that really 
helped Chandra to see where she stood with the church which is very 
strong but hasen't been to church in a very long time and is feeling 
really broken and she opened up a lot more and as she cried. Chandra 
just asked if she could giver her a hug and told her that she has a 
light and she has so much to give and then proceeded to say come sit 
at church with me and my family next Sunday we would really love 
that!" Let me tell you this is why member and missionaries work 
together because we went 10 steps forward with Sandra and she really 
has so much to give, her conversion and testimony is unshakeable she 
just says "I know it's true" we never could of done what Chandra did 
for Sandra in one appt! It would have take. Us maybe 10 more if we 
never brought a member. She related to her so well and I was In tears 
watching this happen right before my eyes. And I know it was a very 
good experience for Chandra she just kept saying it's been a good day, 
it been a good day! 
We also had exchanges with our wonderful stls=super training leaders 
jk it's sister training leaders! I was in Albany with sister Palmer 
and we had a wonderful day and the main thing I really loved was that 
last time we were on exchange there we had dinner with the same family 
and I felt like I should bring my hair cutting stuff! And it turns out 
the mom is home alone while her husband is doing side jobs in Utah and 
also hasen't been able to find a steady job for three years and so I 
got to give hair cuts to three of five kids! She was so appreciative 
and I know that they really needed it. She is a amazing mom! While we 
were there she asked us what our parents did to strength our 
testimonies growing up! I thought that was a really cool question and 
she wanted advice for her family. It was so sweet. This day was also 
my year mark! Woop woop! 
We did service for a family the mcphersons I have talked about them 
before that we always do service for. We are super close with them and 
they are really good friends with Chandra's family and the Glenn's. We 
have all been praying and waiting for his heart to be soften to god or 
religion or general. He is gone six months out of the year. We know 
it's something that Angie has wanted more and more over time as she 
has learned more and expressed to her member friends. Anyways so while 
service was happening she said something that was interesting about 
her 5 and 3 year old boys asking questions about god and religion that 
they can't answer. And so we gave her the idea of us coming over for 
dinner like we have before but with Jason her hubby there so we can 
share a message with them! She didn't seem to excited because she 
knows how her husband would react but she ended up calling Chandra 
later and telling her she wants to take the lessons from us. She would 
be a wonderful member of the church and I know it would bless there 
family so much. It's funny because we heard from Chandra that Duncan 
had said to his mom "mom do we believe in god? And she said yes Duncan 
we do and he said no we don't and she said yes we do Duncan we believe 
in god and then he said no if we believed in god we would go to church 
like Chandra and Sarah's family." Duncan and Tristan are super sweet 
and really close to the spirit I have seen it many times. So that 
dinner thing is happening this week!:) 
We weren't able to teach Patricks family but we made another appt. for 
this Wednesday and we are super excited! I hope that it will work out 
this time and we have some good Amuleks set up for them! I love doing 
the lords work and am so glad to be a missionary at this time. Im so 
thankful for the gospel in my life and the many blessing it brings I 
can't imagine my life without it and I know that it is and will be a 
wonderful foundation as the world seems to be going the complete 
opposite way. I love the fact that the gospel is all over the world it 
inspires me! 
Love always and forever sister heywood! 
Best decision I ever made. 

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

 Hi hi hi hi!
> This week has been awful oh my goodness I just hate being a
> missionary! Just wanted to get your attention.... It's been
> wonderfully wonderful, expect miracles!!
> To start off we had an hr till dinner out in Halsey at the Haskins and
> so we decided to do some finding and we found an older lady named
> Linda and a family that has really good friends in the church and it
> was interesting that he continued to stand outside and talk to us even
> though they were on there way out to go to there daughters softball
> game. We are planning on following up with them this week!
> We had Indian fried bread at the Evans home Wednesday night..let me
> tell you that was a miracle ;) haha (I've never told y'all about
> them?but there from snowflake,az) they are friends with Charles and
> invited him also! The even cooler miracle is that we had our planned
> lesson after dinner and Charles set a BAPTISM DATE for July 22nd and
> tomorrow July 1st he is quilting cold and smoking. We
> have been meeting with a lot and it's interesting to me that during my
> mission to see that people are slaves to these they
> have to have them or life will not go on. And to see the difference
> between people and there healthy who do and do not. There is reason
> god gives us these commandments.
> We were able to teach this sweet sweet lady named Joni we have been
> trying to catch her for quite some time now. She was on her way out to
> see her dad. We sat on her porch and she lives in one of the oldest
> historical houses in Brownsville. And she collects tons of antiques.
> She had so many questions and has always been curious about the
> "Mormon" religion! It was not in the order that we would of liked to
> explain things but by the end she said said "how about we start from
> the beginning" and we were like yess haha she is so bubbly and
> hilarious! She was telling us all kinds of stories one of them being
> when she crashed her car because she was texting and driving and she
> was really embarrassed to say it and so I started to say it so she put
> the restoration pamphlet up to my mouth and was laughing "shh don't
> say it don't say it" and I couldn't stop laughing!!! She is so cute!
> She is about in her late 50's early 60's. We are going back this week!
> We had the branch talent show and camp out in pioneer park and it was
> so much fun it was a good turn out and people that we invited that
> showed up! The talent show was hilarious and there is literally so
> much talent in the branch!!! I have some pictures at the bottom! AND I
> did my back hand springs for everyone...I still got it!! Everyone was
> amazed...and I'm really sore now!
> We Are meeting Charles 3 times a week now to really help and support
> him. We went saturday afternoon and before we got there he said he had
> been reading for 3 hrs and he was in alma 45!
> This is when he told us he was going to quit. And it was so sweet as I
> bore my testimony at the end of the Book of Mormon, Joseph smiths and
> the Savior. Charles said the closing prayer and I started to cry and
> it was weird cause I never cry and I couldn't hold them back. After he
> asked why I was crying and I told him it's because I'm happy for him.
> Pray for him :)
> Yesterday we were able to meet with Wayne and Mary ough! Wayne is a
> member (I've talked about him) and Mary his wife is a baptist and she
> has been listening to the lessons and has began to pray about the Book
> of Mormon. She has a strong belief in Jesus Christ and has that
> foundation. We have told her we that we are not asking her to
> disregard all of that but to add to it. Which a lot of people think
> it's that way, that we are trying to tear down all that they have
> every known and learn something completely new. They are soo sweet and
> have had us over the past 2 Sundays for lunch.
> We got to meet and read out of the Book of Mormon with Kathy! She is
> one of my really good friends even though she is in her 60's! On your
> mission you gain so many friends of all ages:) her dad recently passed
> away and she has been having a rough time. She has us call her an hr
> before church to motivate her to get there. Satan works really hard on
> her because she is a phenomenal woman!
> We were able to have a lesson and dinner with the Ragles! We LOVE the
> ragles!!! They are so super sweet! They recently have come back to
> church and have loved it and have really felt welcome. They accepted
> to take the lessons by invitation of president Glenn. Both of them
> felt really judged in there wards growing up. They also talked about
> how they were taught incorrect doctorine growing up? The spirit was
> strong and we know that we will really help them by teaching them the
> lessons. Adam and Mary are very open and share how there experiences
> have been in and out of the church. They have felt the spirit more in
> there lives as they have come back. Adam said he always stayed true to
> the word of wisdom even when he wasn't active. They told us that each
> time they have come to church the lessons taught have been really
> relevant to what they needed to hear. They recently have gotten
> callings!
> I told you about Patrick and family last week and they have a super
> crazy work schedule at Walmart! Him and his wife both work there and
> so today when we did our pday shopping he came up to us and said hey
> strangers! and so we set up a time for Wednesday at 4! He is so
> awesome! Really excited to teach them!:)
> I love being on a mission and doing this fun work it is not easy at
> times, but it is soo worth it!!!
> Love sister heywood!