Monday, March 5, 2012

Out in the desert they wander! - Hilary's email from March 5, 2012

So. I'll respond to all your individual emails soon. If I can. Mom I was so happy to finally hear from you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
ALSO shout out to my favorite Tracie Farrell because today is the anniversary of when she was born and had some quality time with her parents before Adam really took over hahaha. Happy birthday to Elder Farrell as well. Miss those kids!
And Devin Sabin's birthday was the 2nd (Texas Independence Day), but I forgot in my last email. I'll be better promise! 
Soooooooo thanks for all the emails! I'll try and respond to all of them. Trenton is so cute - he sent me the lyrics to "God Be With You Till We Meet Again" in Spanish because he didn't sing it to me in the MTC like he said he would because we were both going to cry because you know how I am with change and music and such. It's not a good combination. 
Oh and on Texas Independence Day, we had our first baptism. It was super duper awesome. We have another one this Wednesday and another on Saturday and then it stops until April 1st when we have another one. Our problem right now is finding people to teach. It's so sweet - our wards pray for us a lot in sacrament meeting that we'll be able to find people who are ready to receive the gospel, but I want to say, "No! YOU find the people so we can TEACH. But thanks anyway." I know they have great intentions, and I know how hard it is to share the gospel with people. 
So calling everyone to repentance haha - HELP THE MISSIONARIES. And religion is so much more casual then I made it out to be before. If anything, being a missionary has taught me how bad of a member missionary I was haha. Maybe not a bad member missionary, but I think I just didn't realize how much I LOVED (LOVE) the Gospel and how much happiness it brings my family and me. Something that helps me understand life and gives me purpose I should have shared with everyone! Or at least answered people's questions. I don't know. The gospel is for everyone, and it helps everyone. I missed a lot of opportunities to share truth with people that would have helped them in certain trials of their lives. The gospel helps people because it's truth! I love it.
So with the baptisms - with all the ward changes we actually "stole" some investigators with baptismal dates from our zone leaders. So that's why we have so many right now because two are ones the elders had planned and one is an investigator with a date that my companions already had. 
The first one was Kyle - he's 12 and they've had a lot of changes in their family but they're finally all together and his dad got to baptize him and confer the gift of the Holy Ghost on him which was great. Their family is really being blessed from the unity they've found in living the gospel of Jesus Christ. 
Alle is a 14-year-old getting baptized this Wednesday for the mutual activity (adorable, right?!). She is super awesome and a real example to her parents who see the how this decision is already blessing her life.
On Saturday an older woman named Linda is being baptized. She moved here like 5 months ago and just walked into the stake center one day knowing that someone there would help her. It's awesome. She's super strong. 
This week definitely had its ups and downs. Missionary work is hard! But oh so rewarding when we have a really good lesson or when we have a great chat with a stranger on the street or we go into a member's home and challenge them to shine the light! We love being able to add on to the truths that so many people already know about God or about why we're here on this earth. In fact, sometimes we get so excited on having so many answers that we have to back off and let them digest. The gospel is so beautiful in its fulness. My testimony has grown so much as people who profess to know "the Mormon doctrine" ask me questions that I think, "Wow. That's something I took for granted - maybe I should look into that more" and then I get to the next morning in my two hours of study by myself and with my companions. It's awesome. My knowledge of what is true grows so much as I really reaffirm and experiment on the gospel.
Our three wards are really great, but yeah haha we're in church all day Sunday - from 7:45 in the morning to 3:00 at least. Having church at 8:00 should be illegal. But at least I can stay awake! HAHAHAHAHA.
Also, there are 3 companionships in my district (so 2 sets of elders [including the zone leaders] and the 3 of us) and for some reason none of them sing really loud or anything and thus think that I am a gift from God because I have a good alto voice. As such I've been volunteered to sing at church this week in one of our wards and at zone meeting this Friday. I have 0 access to music and the vocal range of a man, so I'm fascinated to see how this will turn out. Any ideas Mom? I might just call someone in the ward who plays the piano and say, "Go to Sally DeFord's website, find a hymn arrangement for an alto that you can sing, and I'll sing it". I honestly don't have time to practice and I don't have the facilities to find music myself. So that's life. Ha but Mom I hope you're happy in that I haven't said no even though sometimes I really want to haha. My range is so sad. I'm joining ANY choir as soon as I get home. I miss being able to sing anything I want and loving it always. 
Wow. Okay well this is taking a really long time so I might just go and finish other emails. BUT WOW I LOVE ALL OF YOU SO MUCH. I hope my blog is adorable hahahahahahahaha. Also, I heard a terrible song on the radio this morning by Miley Cyrus about shining the light or something (we walk past a radio as we leave our apartment which is always awkward) and yeah the song was terrible. I gagged. Yuck.   
I should be getting letters from the zone leaders from the mission office this Friday at zone meeting (so it's like 4 weeks worth of letters haha), so maybe I'll find out what my real address is and give that to you instead because we're in the family history library at a church building using their computers and thus I don't have it with me.
Okay this is way too long. I LOVE Y'ALL. Hahahahahahahahahaha LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE
Sister Parks

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