Monday, July 8, 2013

"Serving in the Vineyard..."

From the end of April to the first week of June, Sister Kanani and her companion have traveled throughout the mission from New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, to Rhode Island putting on musical firesides. Besides traveling, they have made some good contacts and been able to teach people in their Boston area. Sundays still consisted of 10 to 12 hours of Church meetings with the four Wards and then firesides in the evening.

“Monday night we were able to have a lesson with a wonderful young woman who has been investigating the church for about 3 years now.  She hasn't met with missionaries for quite some time but she came up to Sister Jordan on Sunday and asked to meet with us.  So we did.  She is really just working on coming to know that there is a God and what that means.  So far she's gone from no God to there's a source of light and love but not so sure
that's God.  So we are working with her to help her learn that there is a God.”

“We had another meeting with Audrey.  She opened up to us about some fears she had with joining the church and we thing we laid them to rest.  But we asked her to pray to know if God is really there and we will see where that leads us.”

We then helped a member move one of his buddies move out of the graduate dorms.  After that we taught another one of his friends.  Well mostly just talked with her.  She is Muslim and has been reading the Book of Mormon.  She couldn't understand why we need a Savior or advocate with God.  And a few other points.  It was so much fun to talk with her and show her how similar our religions are.  Her face just lit up  as I talked about the similarities between the 5 Pillars of Islam and our beliefs.  She went back to Africa but hopefully it gave her some things to think about.”

In May, Sister Kanani and her new companion, Sister Johnson (from Orem, UT) were assigned to two of the four Single Adult Wards, the Longfellow Park Wards. These Wards had the least activity as far as missionary work so there was a lot of potential for teaching.

“There is a member of LP1 that is convince that we are going to set the Ward on fire.  Which is good, but the funny thing is that he talks us up to everyone. He is convinced we're the best missionaries they've had for a while. We'll see.”

With less travel and a less hectic Sunday schedule, the Sisters began to look for areas for service. The work is beginning to pick up as they meet with members and seek out less actives.

“We had dinner up in Somerville with some members who brought a non-member friend and then we had to rush down to Brighton to have dinner with another member and a non-member friend.  It was crazy and hectic but it was what a night in the mission should be. On Saturday we went to a memorial for a member of Charles River Ward who had passed from cancer.  It was sad but also very beautiful.  Then we went down to Quincy to teach a less active and then all the way up to Somerville to try to contact a less active.  We basically went from one end of Boston to the other.” 

“Friday we had our meeting with Lyndsi and Sharon.  And Sharon became our new investigator!  It was such a good lesson.  Sharon is from China and doesn't know much about Christianity, however she knows she feels a peace and wants to learn more. We taught the Plan of Salvation.  Afterwards we were talking to Lyndsi and she said that while she expected the Restoration, she thinks the Plan of Salvation was exactly what Sharon needed. Thank you Spirit!”

“Saturday we went to a dinner appointment. It was a really good one. There is a member who is working through a lot from her childhood and wants to take the lessons so she can learn the Gospel for herself.  And she also happens to be friends with a less active that we are working with so she was there too.  It was such a good lesson as we talked, once again, about the Plan of Salvation and what the Atonement really covers and helps us with.

“We had another meeting with Sharon. She is picking up things so fast. At the end of our lesson she asked if she could pray to God in Chinese and if He would understand. How cute is that?  We told her of course she could.  ‘Next time, I will pray in Chinese at the end of the lesson.’ I can see her with a baptismal date at the end of this month, with a baptism next month.”

Monday brought a surprise. Sister Kanani’s email came in the evening, much later than usual. We found out why as she began her email with: “Serving in the vineyard... literally!” 

“Friday, President Packard called while we were on the bus ride home. I let it go to voicemail and we ran the 100 feet to our apartment.  The voicemail:  ‘Sister Kanani!  This is President, I have some good news for you.  Call me when you get the chance.’ So we called him back. After answering him that I was fine, President said, ‘And it's about to get finer. You're getting moved to Martha's Vineyard.’” 

Basically a Sister was waiting for her visa and her visa came through. There was a need for someone to fill her spot so they would not have to close it down because Sisters just got there 3 weeks ago after Elders being there forever.”

On Sunday, “President talked to me for a bit and told me he was really excited to have me go there and he thinks that I will do awesome things with Sister Hileman." 

Side note: Sister Hileman is more accurately Hermana Hileman. She is called a Spanish-speaking Sister. So now, Sister K. is serving with a Spanish speaking companion in an area filled with Portuguese speaking people.

"There is a lot of service out here in the Vineyard. We'll see what happens, the Lord has His plans and we can only follow and know what we can do to help further them.”