Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Transfer 9 week 6 : Happy Duali!

This week has been absolutely stellar. 

To start off, on Tuesday I had my exit interview. Super weird. I really don't feel like I'm leaving the TSAM, and I don't think it will feel real until my feet hit the pavement on Wednesday. But my interview with President Slaughter really helped me to catch a greater vision for what I can do and accomplish at Temple Square. I accidentally went 20 minutes over in my interview, but it was much needed. Not feeling as anxious and overloaded as before. President Slaughter is simply amazing. 

Saturday was such a fun day! Started off with a super powerful MLC. We then were knocking at an apartment complex when a family from Nepal opens the door. They immediately hurry us in, sit us down and grab their daughter who speaks English. We are in the middle of explaining who God is when the daughter gets up and leaves... we were sitting with her parents who don't speak an ounce of English. So I start trying to play charades and act out that God is our Father, and he loves us. (Don't ask me how I did that... I still don't know). No bueno. But just then the daughter comes back with a million plates of Nepali food! She gives us each 3 plates and we start going to town. It was so good! Come to find out, it was a Nepali holiday called Duali (sp?) We ended up taking the food and more home with us because we were heading over to the Theurer's for dinner. Nicole made the cutest cake that looked like a missionary tag! It was so good. We went to stake conference that night, and on the way back there was a HUGE firework show for Duali! Apparently there is a big population of Nepal people in San Antonio. Who knew?

This week we had mission tour, MLC and Stake Conference with Elder Hamula of the first quorum of the 70. He spoke this last general conference on the sacrament. I had quite a few encounters with him this week, beginning at mission tour. I am generally a pretty quiet person, I'm not one to raise my hand and volunteer for things. So when Elder Hamula picked me out of the many zones to simply read a few verses, I was petrified. But little did I know, in MLC he was going to ask me to do something that almost gave me a heart attack. We were nearing the end of the meeting when Elder Hamula announces that we are going to have a few of the departing missionaries share their testimonies. President Slaughter provided him with a list of 5 names. I look around at the 20 some odd missionaries in MLC leaving and feel pretty calm. "We will begin with hearing from Sister Breakall," one of the Sister Training Leader Leader's (the Sister Assistants), "then from Elder Lundstrom" one of the assistants, "and we will conclude with hearing the testimony of Sister Brock." Boom boom, my heart literally dropped to my toes. I looked right over at President Slaughter and he gave me a reassuring look. Well, I did it. I survived! And I feel good about it, so I am happy about that. But mostly I felt good because I was honored that President Slaughter would include my name with the 4 assistants heading home. The trust that he has in me, and has shown me continually has helped me to gain so much confidence in myself and this amazing message that I share. I am so grateful to have had the chance to have served under President Slaughter, and to feel of his love and learn from him. I cannot wait for him to be the president of the church one day!

Thursday we had mission tour with Elder Hamula. And boy was this a powerful meeting. I can't even begin to describe the gist of what we discussed. We talked about many different topics, but one that was prudent to me was sacrifice. Sacrifice of one's self. In the Bible, in Luke 14:27-28 it states...

 27 And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple.
 28 For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?
The cross represents the shame of the world. If we are to be true disciples, we must pay the cost and be willing to bear the shame of the world. There truly is a cost of discipleship. The cost is you. You must lay yourself upon the alter of sacrifice, and give all that you have. This pierced my heart. I have worked hard in my mission, and I have lived up to the light that I have received. Now, I will do everything I can to continually gain more light so that I may more fully be able to lay myself upon the alter. There is nothing that I love more than my mission, this experience has meant everything to me. It didn't simply change the degree of the angle I set for my life, but it put me onto a completely different plane. I have been changed, molded and crafted into a completely different person. With new dreams, desires, hope and vision for life. My entire life with effected by the decision I made to serve a mission, and I am forever grateful. The gospel is true, it has to power to change us, if we let it. Let us all press forward each day, seeking continually the will of the Lord.

I love y'all and am looking forward to seeing the beautiful mountains on Wednesday!

Sister Brock

Wednesday, October 22, 2014


Good times in Texas

Another recent convert, Sister Mary Jane Sweet!
We also lost our house key yesterday... my companions looking for the key in the grass while I shine the brights in the car. 

Trying to fit Sister Clark in my suit case... she wouldn't quite fit...

This Oregon girl can pump her own gas!! 

Transfer 9 week 5

Sister McGinty, a recent convert

my district! 

Another glorious week!
My brother and his wife had their baby, little Braxton. I love him so much already! Definitely feeling the mission baby blues right now, I just want to hold him so bad. But he is beautiful, and sounds like he is doing better! 

Last p-day was super fun! Typically for p-day we play volleyball and basketball with our zone. But this one we mixed it up and went to a members house to play capture the flag in the woods in their backyard. It adds a new intensity when you need to stay within sight and sound of your companion, especially in a trio... but it was so much fun! Our team was all the assistants, and we creamed them. 

Last week we found a new investigator who has so much potential. His name is TJ. He's probably about 28 and keeps asking us, why did you choose to talk to me? Why me? Why am I so special that you wanted to share this with me? We show up for our appointment, brought a member and everything, knock knock knock. No answer. Then we get a call from him, saying that he was 2 minutes away and to not leave. When he gets home, we have a super powerful lesson. We simply taught the restoration and it had such great application to him! He was engaged and excited about it. He's also a cop! So hopefully we can get a tour of the jail one day... I'm excited to continue to teach him from Temple Square next week.
We also have a great investigator named Brother James! I met him last transfer in the parking lot of an apartment complex. When we introduced ourselves, he called himself Brother James, and he will forever be Brother James. He talks A LOT, so sometimes it is hard to guide the lesson with him. But something that my companions and I have been working on the past few weeks is what we call the 4 Ds in teaching. Discern, discuss, doctrine, declare. The 4 things that you need when you are teaching. And with brother James, it is definitely a lot more of discussing rather than a 'missionary discussion'. At church yesterday, the Elders told us that he spoke up in priesthood and gave a powerful comment, about how we are in the world but can't be of the world. He's so great! Even when he showed up to church, he was sitting with a member, and everyone thought he was a member! He showed up in a white shirt and tie. He's so great. 

This week is going to be an absolutely amazing week. We have a mission tour with Elder Hamula of the 70. We have been reading a lot of scriptures he assigned us to prepare for it, and I am so excited for this mission tour! He is also doing an MLC on Saturday with us, and speaking at General conference with our mission president and both of their wives! It is going to be a powerful week. 

I love y'all and hope you have a great week!

Sister Brock

I'm driving!

We had to get the flu Shot. :(

An investigator who has been in the hospital for the past month, we keep visiting her there. Christine Mountcastle

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Transfer 9 week 4

This week was pretty good. I ended up getting pretty sick this week, so I was out with another sister who has meningitis. They let me loose on Friday before zone conference. Sister Clark and I gave a training on teaching skills summed up in 4 D's: Doctrine, Declare, Discuss, and Discern. It went pretty well considering I had a huge cough attack right before our training.

Saturday was a very interesting and amazing day. Started off with a huge thunder storm, which made the power go out. It was a little frightening considering I am terrified of thunder/lightening, and there were sirens and alarms going off for over 4 hours. Nonetheless, it turned out to be an amazing day! We didn't have many appointments in the afternoon, so we were visiting some potentials. No luck. So we were walking back to our car when we see a woman and her son unloading a truck. We immediately jump on the opportunity! Most people are very reluctant and hesitant to have 3 young girls help them unload things. But thankfully, she was in desperate need. We help her and her 15 year old son unload the truck and she immediately starts telling us about her life. Both of her parents have passed away in the last 6 months, and shortly after she lost her job and her house. Just now, she is starting to get her feet under her and she got a job and a new apartment. She had been going to another church for the past year, but hasn't gone for the past 2 weeks because she doesn't like the pastor. We started explaining about our church services, and she especially liked the youth programs in the church! She told us that her son wants to be around people with good values, and was asking her a couple weeks ago to buy him a Bible. So we gave them a Book of Mormon to read. They are both amazing and I am so excited to see what happens with them both. That night we went to an awesome baptism for some people that we have been helping the Elders in our ward with, they are amazing and I am so excited to see them go to the Temple one year from now!! Sorry this email is so short, hopefully the pictures make up for it! I love y'all, have a great week!

Sister Brock

Friday, October 10, 2014

Transfer 9 week 3

What a full and glorious week!
This week we had so many spiritually uplifting meetings and such. We had district meeting Wednesday, went to the Temple on Thursday, Friday was MLC and Saturday/Sunday was General Conference! Sounds like a pretty great week to me. 

This week while I was on exchanges in another area, my companions went and visited one of my favorite potential investigators: Brother James. He's this big ol loud man. When he invited them into his apartment, he didn't have anywhere for them to sit except for his bed... so they sat on the edge of his bed and taught him the Restoration! And invited him to come the following day to a Conference BBQ at one of our ward missionaries' house! He came and was the life of the party. Everyone knew and loved Brother James by the end of the night. He loved the ribs (even though he had to take out his teeth), the people, and General conference. It was a great experience! I am so grateful to be in a ward where the members are so diligent in their missionary work. This weekend our ward will reach over 12 convert baptisms in the past 3 months. And it is mostly because of the great fellowship of the members of the ward! They are missionary minded. They serve. And give of themselves and their precious time! But there is no greater cause that someone can be involved in. Because this is the work of Salvation, and we are all called to be apart of it. I love being a missionary more than anything else in the world! Especially in the great Texas San Antonio Mission. 

I love y'all and hope you have a marvelous week!

Sister Brock

Transfer 9 week 2

Another week showered with blessings. To start, we had general woman's meeting this last Saturday. Powerful. How amazing is it that we get to hear the words of prophets in our day, a tool and resource that is often overlooked in the church. Growing up, I was excited for general conference because that meant I got to stay in my pajamas and often I would fall asleep. And as glorious as that sounds, there is nothing more exciting to me than being able to hear the words of the prophet, apostles and leaders of the church. Truly they are sharing the words that lead us to happiness! And who doesn't want that? This was exemplified through an investigator that attended the general woman's meeting with us. Her name is Brittany; let me tell you her story...

Brittany is 21 years old, engaged and recently moved to San Antonio. She has always had a lot of questions about life. So one day she started doing online chats where you could ask questions. About a week ago, she ran across Mormon.org and started talking with the lovely Sister missionaries there (TEMPLE SQUARE SISTERS!!!!). We then got a text with her information, saying that she would like to have missionaries come and visit her. While I was on exchanges in another area, my companions had a lesson with her and called me to tell me about this amazing investigator! She has truly been prepared. The following night, I met her for the first time at the General Woman's meeting. When the meeting had concluded and our eyes were adjusting to the bright lights, I looked over at Brittany who had tear filled eyes. She expressed that she has never felt so loved in her life, and that there was this indescribable feeling that she never wants to go away. This is exactly what hearing the words of the prophet brings. Feelings of peace and joy that are so boundless that it is indescribable. Thomas S. Monson is the Lord's mouthpiece, and I know this because of this indescribable feeling; the spirit. The spirit speaks to everyone differently, but it is a universal language. It is the language that brings the children of God together. I would like to invite y'all to watch President Uchtdorf's address in this meeting... https://www.lds.org/general-conference/watch/2014/10?lang=eng&vid=3810258135001&cid=9 Search for the spirit in His words.

This past week we had zone conferences (which my companions and I sang at if you got the audio), and we talked a lot about how God is preparing people. In our mission, we talk a lot about the concept of nearness. Meaning, that we are guided to someone not necessarily because the person we seek is prepared, but that the people around them are being prepared. So we constantly are talking to everyone in our path, and asking who they know that will benefit from our message. This was manifest just yesterday as we were visiting some potential investigators. The people we visited were not home, but were then able to talk to some people as they were leaving their apartment. We set up an appointment to come back later and we went on our way! Though our purpose was not yet met. So we knocked a nearby door. Behind were a brother and a sister, Elise and Saul. They had a bunch of Catholic decorations and such inside and outside their house, but they let us right in! They said they have never met missionaries before and they accepted to hear our message. We sat down at the table with them and began teaching them the Restoration. In zone conference we also talked about True Baptism. How there are 5 points to a true baptism. First, for those who believe. Second, for the repentant. Third, by complete immersion. Fourth, by proper authority. And fifth, is followed by receiving the gift of the holy ghost by the laying on of hands. We taught them the points and invited them to be baptized. And they joyfully accepted! They even wrote it in big letters across their calendar! We didn't necessarily go into this lesson truly believing that these people were prepared and they would be baptized. But as we applied the principle of nearness, God allowed us to have this experience to increase our faith in finding. We must believe that God is preparing people all around us, or else we will never find those whom He is preparing. As we talk with our friends, family, coworkers, acquaintances, we must invite and discern through the spirit how to best help them on their path to eternal life. What can we invite them to do at this time that will help them come closer to Jesus Christ? Mutual? Family home evening? Read the Book of Mormon? Pray? There are so many things we can do to share the Gospel with those around us, and we must have the faith that they are being prepared. It is a sign of love as we share what is most precious to us; the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

I love y'all so much and am so blessed to have so much support. 
Sister Brock