She has a Christian background and believes in God and Jesus Christ and so the sisters began with the very first lesson. When they taught her about the atonement of Jesus Christ and that He suffered for our sins, she understood that quite easily, and said that she had always tried to 'not do bad things'. But when we taught her that His suffering was not only for our sins, but for all of our pains and afflictions, and that He knows how we feel when we are struggling, she got teary. She told us that this past Christmas she had cried a lot because she was far away from her family in the Philippines and missed them so much. We explained that the Savior knows exactly how she is feeling because that is part of what He experienced in the Garden of Gethsemane. We read to her Alma 7:11-12. At first she didn't understand it, but as we explained it and as she came to grasp what we were saying, she said, 'now I don't have to be alone.' It was the best!! And at the end of the lesson we invited her to pray, and at first she was very reluctant because she felt that she couldn't say a long prayer, or that we might judge her. But we told her that prayers needn't be long, and that we would not judge her in any way. We just told her to speak the feelings of her heart. So, she said she would and she offered the sweetest prayer ever. I rarely get to be in on a lesson when an investigator prays for their very first time, and it was so special! Another cool thing was after the sisters had explained Joseph Smith's vision, they asked her how she felt about it. She said that 'it must have been a wonderful thing for him'. It was just so wonderful to be in on that lesson with her. I have been praying all week that the sisters will be able to teach her again, and that her heart is ready to accept the gospel.
On Wednesday we had our Mission Leadership Council here in Calgary with all the zone leaders and sister trainer leaders. It was an incredible day with them. We had Hillary McLachlan come speak to them. Hillary and her husband, Rob, and their family were baptized a year ago last November. And then this past December they were all sealed in the Calgary Temple. She just spoke of the power these missionaries have and encouraged them to just go out and find people! It was so powerful!
We also had great discussion and counseled together on many things. These missionaries are just amazing. We are so grateful for them and for their desire to lead their zones and help all the missionaries be successful.
Thursday we had more interviews up north, and then we headed down to Lethbridge so we could interview the Cardston zone on Friday. We then stayed in Lethbridge because we were participating in the Fort Macleod Stake Conference with Elder W. Craig Zwick of the Seventy. It was good to see him again--he had been in on a couple of our trainings prior to our mission, so it was fun to reconnect with him. It was a great stake conference.
Following the conference we held 2 more interviews with our Claresholm missionaries, and then we drove back to Calgary. We are sleeping in our own bed for one night, and then Monday we head to BC to do interviews there, and from there to Lethbridge to interview the two zones there, and then back up to Calgary.
We've been getting a taste of spring now and then, but this morning we woke up to huge snowflakes in Lethbridge! I didn't put my boots back on-- but I'm keeping my fingers crossed that spring is really coming! I know I can't really can't plan on it until the middle of May most likely!
|Interviews with Sisters Shaffer and Johnson in Fort Macleod|
|Our entire Mission Leadership Council|
|Looking out our hotel window at the snow on Sunday morning!|