Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Week 78

Hi Family!

How are you all doing? I hope all is well there in Centerville! I still can't believe you guys are back there..... That is crazy!

This week has been 100% AMAZING!!! I am so happy and the work is going great!

On Thursday, we went to a high school and taught a religions class about the church. It was intimidating, but a really cool experience. On Friday, we flew to Oslo for a mission conference with Elder Teixeira from the quorum of the seventy. It was such a great learning experience. The Spirit is always the best teacher! :)

On Saturday, we had a baptism! Smith was baptized and it turned out so great! He brought 4 friends with him to his baptism and none of them were members! He is a missionary already! :) He was so incredibly happy and was just glowing! Lots of members were able to come and support him and that just made everything better! I am so grateful to be a part of this work! It truly is miraculous!

Earlier last week, we had a really cool experience. I received a couple of texts from a number that I no longer had in my phone. The person was asking if we were still helping people take an experiment to find God. I told them yes and we made an appointment for Saturday after the baptism. I had no idea who this person was, just that we had met them and gave them our number. On Saturday, we met up- it was an 18year old boy who sister Pace and I had met within our first 2 weeks in Bergen. We had tried to get an appointment, but his grandpa had a heart attack and we lost contact shortly after. He was going through his phone and saw my number and felt like it was right to text. We had the most amazing teach! He has no faith in God, but he wants one and we were able to help him recognize the Spirit in the teach! It was so cool! He came to church yesterday and loved it! And he will be bringing his twin brother with him the next time we meet! :) Miracles!!!

Well, I am sorry this is short, but I have to go now... School business took too long. I will send you pictures next week! :)

I love and miss you all! :)

♥- Søster Jessica Taylor

Monday, October 22, 2012

Week 77

Hi Family!

I hope all is going well with you! How is everything? 

This has been a crazy week for us here in Bergen. It has been great! The best news is that we are having a baptism on Saturday!!! Our investigator, Smith, is getting baptized. Sadly, our other investigator that was supposed to be getting baptized as well didn't make it to church yesterday and therefore couldn't make his date. We are still so excited for Smith! He is so ready for this! :) 

We have a new companion! So there are 3 of us now. Sister Campbell, my first trainee, went home early because of health reasons and so Sister Grass is now our companion! It is kind of weird being 3, but I am so glad it is with Sister Pace and Sister Grass- I love them both so very much! We have combined our areas and so we have tons of people to work with! It is so much fun! :) 

We are finding lots and lots of new people as well- lots of Norwegian young adult girls- we are looking for a wife for Bob! Ha ha! That is the joke between the 3 of us. :) 

Something way exciting happened today- There was a girl named Liv who was baptized a week before I got to Norway. We became really good friends while she was studying in Oslo and then we both moved- I went to Trondheim and she moved to her home town of Bergen. It was so exciting to come here and be able to see her again! Well yesterday, in Sacrament meeting, she had her missionary farewell! She will be serving in Spain and I am so excited for her! She actually told me when she was in Oslo that she was thinking about serving a mission, and now she is actually doing it! She is on a plane as we speak to the U.S. to go to the MTC! I am so proud of her! :) 

Well, sorry this isn't a very exciting email... Just know that everything is going so great and I am loving being a missionary so much! It truly is the Lord's work! :)

Good luck with everything this week! I love you tons!

♥- Søster Jessica Taylor  

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Week 76

Hi Fam!

How is everything going? I hope you all have had a wonderful week.

Weather in Bergen- It has been actually quite nice here lately. It hasn't rained too much and the sun has been out. It is getting cooler and we have officially busted out the thermals, but it's not cold enough for a coat yet. :)

The work- Everything is going really well right now! We actually have 2 baptismal dates for the 27th of October. I think I told you about the one last week- Ohakam. On Monday, we taught Smith, another investigator and it was super powerful and so, being prompted, we invited him to be baptized. He is super cool and we are way excited for him! We are going to have a double baptism party that day!!! Woot!

The mission- We had zone conference this week in Stavanger. It was so great to be with President and Sister Evans and the rest of the missionaries in our area. We had a lot of great activities to strengthen our abilities as missionaries. After their presentation, the AP's invited the whole zone to kneel down and pray for each of our areas and to continually lead us to those who are prepared. Guess who they asked to pray.... Me. It was a lot of pressure, but I was grateful for the opportunity. Towards the end of the zone conference, They always have the soon-to-be-leaving missionaries are asked to bear their testimonies. It's called their "burnimony"- mission language. Well, I had to give my burnimony and it was so hard! I cried through the whole thing....of course! Ha ha! But it was a great opportunity to reflect on the things I have learned and feel an inexpressible amount of gratitude to our Heavenly Father. 

Funny story- When we were in the airport to fly home, our plane got delayed for over an hour. They were able to get all of the other people on our flight on an earlier flight, but the 6 of us in our district got stuck waiting until the later time. When it was finally time for our flight to leave, there were only 6 of us on the plane! Think about it- 6 Mormon missionaries on a 737! It was like we had a private plane to take us home! We were feeling pretty cool! :)

Well, that's about all I have got for the week. I hope you guys have a good one! I love and miss you tons!!! :)

♥- Søster Taylor

Monday, October 8, 2012

Week 75

Hi Family! :)

How are you all doing? Have you had a good week? :)

This week has been been really quite good. Sister Pace and I are doing great. We have such a fun time together and we work really hard. :) Fall is in the air here in Bergen. All of the trees are beginning to change colors and at first I though it was so pretty, but now I am starting to miss all of the green! It is so beautiful here! :) It has been really rainy lately, but when it is time for us to contact it seems that the rain lets up a little. When we are inside, however, it pours! :) Nothing like a little tender mercy! :)

We have been meeting with some really cool people lately- we have this Norwegian guy named Even, an African guy Emmanuel, an African guy named Smith, and another African guy named Ohakam. We are loving all people! :) Lots of Africans and lots of teaching in English... I miss Norwegian... But it's all good! :) Anyways, Emmanuel was actually a referral from a member who met him on the train. He is here doing his master studies and told us when we first met with him that he had prayed to know God's will for him, then met that member. He is loving learning more about the church and really feels the Spirit. :) Ohakam is a miracle man! Sister Pace and I contacted into him and his friend last Friday and gave them a church card because they didn't want to talk. Randomly, Ohakam called me last Sunday and wanted to come to church- we had totally forgotten that we had invited him! So he came and really liked it. We taught him once and then we had a second teach on Saturday- it was so great! We wanted to show him the 20 minute film about the restoration and after we did that, Sister Pace and I just bore our testimonies. It was really simple and we didn't say very much... But then I recognized that the Spirit was there and that Ohakam was feeling it big time so I asked him how he was feeling in his heart. He said "My heart is really hot, like it's on fire!" I told him that it was the Spirit and we just sat there together enjoying that sweet feeling. Then Sister Pace did something that we hadn't planned to do- she invited him to be baptized and set a date with him- just like we had practiced in companionship study earlier that day! She is the bomb! Ohakam accepted the invitation and has a goal to be baptized on the 27th of October! Miracle! :)

General Conference was 100% the best 2 days EVER! I felt the Spirit blazing through my heart the minute I heard the Mormon Tabernacle Choir start singing. Oh what amazing counsel we have been given! Did anyone else pick up the theme of the need to lay aside our sins, forget ourselves and remember the Savior's call to follow Him and serve others? It was beautiful! I learned so much and it was just what I needed this week! :) I think the thing that got Sister Pace and I got the most excited about was the age change for missionaries! Brothers- get started NOW on the preparations for your missions! Heed the word of God's prophet and be ready to serve at 18! Do you have any idea what this is going to do for missionary work throughout the world??? It is going to EXPLODE!!! So many more sisters will serve and, sorry boys, but the sisters are where the baptisms are at! :) That was history in the making! :)

Anyways, that's about all I've got for the week. I hope you all have a wonderful week and know that I love you all tons!

Vi snakkes!

♥- Søster Jessica Taylor

Monday, October 1, 2012

Week 74

Hi family!!!
I am so sorry for the extremely short email last week- it was was so rude of me, especially right after a baptism! So I am going to fill you in right now!
So last Wednesday was Bob's big day! I had been sick all morning- Poor Sister Pace was responsible for making some Brownies and finalizing some last minute details because I was trying to sleep off my disease. She was such a trooper! When we had about 2 hours until the baptism started, we headed to the church to make the programs and set up. Everything was going so great, despite how I was feeling. :) When Bob got to the church, he didn't tell us he was there, but we heard him playing a simple song on the piano. We knew it was him (he has a very signature song that he plays) So we went and got him and his clothes all sorted out. When he saw the suit thingy, he asked if we had one without legs, just a dress thing so that he could look more like Jesus. It was so funny! Well, once he got changed, we were getting ready to take some pictures, but then we realized someone was missing... BOB!!! He had completely disappeared! So there was a group of like 6 people running around the church calling for Bob. Sister Pace, bless her heart, was so stressed- she led the pack. Then there was me, trailing behind, just laughing my head off. (I was so sick! But I was not stressed at all... That's a first!) Anyways, we ended up in the chapel and everyone was so lost as to what to do. Sister Pace kept saying "I thought it was Runaway Bride not Runaway Investigator!" Ha ha! When we thought all hope was lost, Bob popped out from behind the curtains in the chapel... He had been hiding in the curtains like a 6 year old! I laughed so hard all over again! (He later told us that he was so nervous he almost ran out of the church... that would've been bad... I think Sister Pace would've died...) Well, we took some pictures and then proceeded to the baptism. Bob looked kind of terrified the whole time, even as he was standing in the water, but when he came out of the water he told us later that he had the most amazing feeling that made all of his fears worth it. I am not going to lie, the Spirit was so incredibly strong and Sister Pace and I shed a few tears together. It was a great moment! :) I got my greenie a baptism in her first transfer. SUCCESS!!! :)
As for the rest of the week, I spent a lot of time trying to get better and we did a lot of finding because we need to find another Bob! :) He got the gift of the Holy Ghost that Sunday and that was so great. We just love him to pieces!
This week has been amazing in so many ways!  Kari almost dropped us a while ago because she has been super sick, but we were able to meet with her again and teach her about God's plan. It was so great! We love her so very much! She probably won't get baptized for a while because she has to have major surgery, but she wants to afterwards. I probably won't be here. :( As long as she is baptized at some point, I don't mind. :) She has come to church 2 weeks in a row with the members she lives with. :) On Wednesday night a major miracle happened. We are living in the house that Sister Pace's great grandpa built and her great aunt, Ellen (who is not a member), lives upstairs. It is a miracle that we are so close to her! We were up visiting her and Sister Pace decided to ask her if we could teach her. The feeling in that room was so strong, so strong! I just felt like everything we said was so guided. I recognized that the feeling was good and from God, but it was different that feeling the Holy Ghost... Then it hit me- we were surrounded by angels! All of the people who were rooting and pushing for Ellen to know the truth. Oh my goodness- it was so cool! I have NEVER felt that close to the spirit world - it literally is so close to us! Miraculously, she accepted and when we went back to our apartment, Sister Pace broke down crying and I couldn't help but feel that someone was giving me a big hug. It says in Alma 13:24 "For behold angels are declaring it unto many at this time in our land; and this is for the purpose of preparing the hearts of the children of men to receive his word at the time of his coming in his glory." I have a very firm testimony of this! People on both sides of the veil are doing the Lord's work! I love it!!!
Well family, that's about all I've got for this week. I love and miss you all so very much! Ha det bra og vi snakkes! :)
♥- Søster Jessica Taylor