Archive | August, 2014

Week 71 Scotland

6 Aug
Dear Friends and Family,
We had a pretty good week this week!
It started off well with a trip to Culzean Castle! It sits right on the coast and it is absolutely stunning! The weather was perfect so that helped too. The McAteer family in our ward took us in their car with their little girl named Alix (10) and Dave and Ruth took the Elders in their car. The McAteer’s provided the means and made it a really great experience. We went on a tour in the castle which was very interesting but a wee bit hard to understand and keep up with… but it was still really cool. The grounds of the castle were so pretty!!
The end of the week was a bit rubbish though becuase I got sick…. again! But this time it was the stomach flu! Humph. I’m all better now but it was NOT fun! I woke about 3 am Friday morning with horibble stomach cramps and then spent the rest of the moring on my bathroom floor. I had truned off my alarm clock because I knew I wouldn’t be going out that day so I didn’t bother waking up on time. Which meant Sister Larsen woke up late haha oops. I layed back in my bed around 7 am and that’s when SIs L woke up and was upset that she slept in. I told her I was super sick and not to worry about it. So she did the normal routine while I stayed in bed, and in the bathroom, ALLLL DAY! Not fun. Sister Larsen called Sister Brown and told her we were staying in and then called Sister McAteer and asked her to bring me some medicine and 7up. She came over a couple of hours later with a whole bag full of different medicinces, 2 liters of 7 up, plain crackers and bread, a box of Winnie the Pooh character tissue box to make me smile, chocolate for when I felt better, and a mini catus in a colorful pot with an umbrella sticking out of it. SO SWEET!! She is so so good to us! She gave me a big mom hug and gave me some advice on how to recover. That night Matthew (WML) and Keir-nan came over and Matthew gave me a blessing. I felt much better after that. They were only there for like two seconds because they were scared of getting sick haha.
Saturday I felt a wee bit better but I was really exhausted and dehydrated and still had a fever. I had a really high fever the whole time and it was dreadful. I kept a cool wash cloth around my neck for two days! I also had terrible back pain (probably from the bathroom floor) Poor Sis L was so bored! On Friday she packed!! She is now living out of her suitcase haha. Then on Saturday I called the zone leaders and asked them for the “Sanity Pack” which is a bag full of movies for sick missionaries so that they don’t go insane! It worked! So Sister Larsen and I layed in our beds and watched movies. One being “The Other Side of Heaven.” Good fun. I am just so glad I am better now!!!! Since yesterday was fast Sunday I didn’t really have proper food until Sunday night at a member’s home. But I’m totally fine now!! NO more getting sick Sister Jones!!! Believe me I’ve already told myself that hahaha
Earlier this week we were able to see Evelyn. She is really struggling right now and is in a bit of a dark place. Her depression has hit her really hard. But we had a good visit with her and she has agreed to have us over once a week and read the Book of Mormon with her. We are so grateful that we can start seeing her again! We love her so much and want to do everything we can to help her. By the end of our visit she already looked a bit better. I know that the spirit she feels when we are in her home helps her feel better. We are going to help her start reading the Book of Mormon and praying again. The members really love her too and want to help her come back to the church. Keep her in your prayers! I know the Lord will heal her.
We still haven’t been able to teach Veronica! She goes out of town quite a bit.
Sister Larsen is going home next week and I am really sad about it 😦 But I am very happy for her and I’m excited to see what lies ahead! I will find out on Sunday who my next (and last) companion will be! I can’t wait to tell you the news next week.
We had a really great companionship study this morning about the Atonement. (We prepared a lesson for a young man we are trying to help come back to church and we have been focusing on the Plan of Salvation. Tonight we are going to speak more about the Atonement.) So we exounded on it a little for more study. We read from the scriptures and PMG and had some new insights on it. Sister Larsen pointed out that in order to “use” the Atonement, we need to partake of the Sacrament. It’s not just kneeling beside your bed and repenting. The Sacrament is part of repentance and is was cleanses us. When we look to our Savior and remember Him we are filled with His spirit and can become clean. I love going to church and partaking of the Sacrament. It really helps me feel closer to our Redeemer. For it is only through Him that we may be forgiven and have Eternal Life with our Father in Heaven.
I am so grateful for the Atonement. I am grateful for Jesus Christ. He has done so much for us. I know that He lives.
I love you all! SO MUCH! I hope you all have a good week at work and with all your other tasks. Keep working hard and do not give up!
Love Sister Jones
Advertisements

Week 70 Scotland

6 Aug
Dear Family and Friends,
This week was SO HOT! It got all the way up to 40 degrees! (C not F) I think that’s around 100 or a bit more F. You’d think I’d be used to it because I’m from Vegas but it’s worse here because it’s a bit humid. Sister Larsen and I really struggled with it because we have mostly been out finding. We were sooo grateful for the rain and cool breeze yesterday.
We got in contact with Evelyn! She agreed to meet with us this Thursday. We are really looking forward to seeing her again. Keep praying for her!
We haven’t been able to teach Veronica at all this week because she has been so busy but we have a time set up for this week. Last Tuesday she offered to take us to Troon beach for the day! We were so bummed that we had to deny it haha I don’t think she quite understood why we said no. We’ll have to explain our rules with her some time soon. She is so so sweet and is so good to us.
Sister Larsen and I had to do instruction at District Meeting. It was pretty fun for us to be in charge of it all. Our district leader, E. Butler, gave us the topic of finding by the spirit. It went well and it was a great experience to observe the role plays. I learned a lot from them.
We have been doing a lot of finding. Most of our appointments cancel. We have chapped a good chunk of Killie. We have been having really great conversations with people. It feels so good to proclaim the restored gospel!
Last night while we were chapping, Sis L and I realized how far we have come and how much we have grown since the beginning of our missions. There was a man that was not nice at all… I won’t go into details. He was probably in a horrible mood. Anyway, when we were greenies that kind of situation would have made us cry and we would’ve taken it so personally! hahah but now we just move on and continue being as Christ like as we can. One day that man will listen and thank us for trying to give him the opportunity. I feel so close to the Savior when rejection and opposition comes. In my mind I think “what the heck! I’m a representative of Jesus Christ… why isn’t anyone listening? Why won’t they agree to learning? Why won’t they take the goodness that we are offering them? Why are they mean to us?” Then I humbly remember our Redeemer. Not everyone listened to Him. They didn’t recognize Him as the Christ. He was despised and hated. Yet He reigns high in His glory. I am so grateful for His example. I know He lives. I know that it is only through Him that we can be saved. The Book of Mormon outlines that perfectly. We need to stay strong and fearless as we share the gospel with our brothers and sisters.
Today we are going to Calzean Castle! (It’s pronounced “ka-lane”) It’s just a little passed Ayr. The McAteer family is taking us! I’ll be sure to take lots of pictures! Dave Ruth and the elders are going as well. It’ll be a great day!
I hope you all have a great week! I love you all so much! xoxox
Love Sister Jones

Week 69 Scotland

6 Aug
Dear Family and Friends,
I’m glad to hear you are all doing well!
We had another long week of finding. Our teaching pool is a bit empty and we are trying to find those who are prepared. We aren’t working with as many less actives anymore because most of the ones we were visting every week weren’t making any progress and aren’t planning on coming back to church anytime soon. So instead of visiting them every week were just going to visit them once or twice a month and spend the extra time finding people to teach. We’re also trying by other less actives in the ward that we haven’t met to see if they are interested in having us over for lessons and coming back to church. Everyone that we try by, whether they be less actives or potentials, we chap 5 a side. Which means every door we try by we chap the 5 doors on either side of it. It acutally works! We have been able to set up a couple of return appointments. (Sometimes they end up not working out… like Adam… he canceled… but sometimes they do!) I forgot how much I enjoy chapping. We have some really great conversations with people. Unfortunately though, we are discovering that the majority of people don’t even believe in God! It’s a really sad thing. But we have to find those who are prepared somehow! It’s never fun to get rejected but I know that I am still successful when I’ve given them the opportunity. We met a woman last night who told us we worshiped Joseph Smith. We took the time to correct her and explain that that is not the case. Times like that make our stomach drop but at least she knows the truth now. “And we talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy of Chirst.” (2 Nephi 25:26) Not Joseph Smith!
I’m sorry to say I have some bad news…. Evelyn dropped us. We still have no idea what happened or why but she has been a bit off the map the past couple of weeks. She has been canceling appointments and hasn’t been reading the Book of Mormon or praying. She has also been a little off towards us. We finally saw her the other day on the bus. She barely looked at us and when I asked what she would like us to do she said to just “leave it for now.” We were totally heart borken. Then when she didn’t come to church on Sunday everyone asked about her. She is really loved by the members so they are taking her into their hands and are going to try and contact her. We love her so much and want the very best for her. But we really have done everything that we possibly can. We are still praying for her and we know she will be back one day. There is no way she can deny her testimony.
I can tell that I have really grown on my mission when it comes to rejection. At the start I took it really personally and it was really hard for me to get through. I always felt discouraged and faithless. Now that I’ve had a little bit of experience I have realized that agency is one of the greatest gifts we have been given and I am so grateful that every one of Heavenly Father’s children has been blessed with it. Not everyone wants to listen to us. That is ok. As long as I do the very best that I can and offer them the opportunity to come unto our Savior and Redeemer, I can go to bed at night, exhausted, and know that I have been successful. It’s hard work but it is so worth it. Someone has to plant the seeds right?? We are striving to be obedient and we are doing all that we can to find more people to teach.
Some good news! Veronica became a new investigator! I really don’t remember if I have ever mentioned her before. If I haven’t I’ll just briefly explain. She was a referral from Sister Reilly in the ward (next door neighbor) We have visited her a few times and even had dinner with her. She is such a kind woman! She loves to serve others and she believes in God and Jesus Christ. We asked her if she would like to take the lessons and she agreed. We gave her a Book of Mormon and she started reading it straight away and ever since has been able to sleep better at night! (So cool) We haven’t taught the Restoration yet but we watched the Book of Mormon DVD with her and she felt the spirit so strong. She cried as she read Moroni 10:3-5. She told us that she wants to improve her life and be more like Chirst. We love teaching her! She accepted the invitation to come to church but unfortunately she wasn’t feeling too well and couldn’t make it.
We had a really great Scotland West conference! We traveled to Glasgow and it was a combo of the Glasgow Zone and Paisley Zone. Our new member of the area presidency came with his wife. Elder and Sister Dyches. He was the Portland Oregon mission a few years back so they had really wonderful adivse for all us missionaries! Their training was all about being the best we can be and continuing to be diligent in all that we do. How to work better with the members and how to gain more spiritually. I really enjoy meetings like those!
Sister Larsen and I are still doing really great! Sister Larsen got a wee bit of a cold but I don’t think it will last very long. She got her travel plans today! AH! She won’t stop shaking! She only has about 3 weeks left. Goodness missions go by really quick!
I love you all so much!!
Love Sister Jones

Week 68 Scotland

6 Aug
Dear Family and Friends,
We had a really long week! It went by really slowly and almost ALL of our appointments canceled. But we had many miracles!!
On Monday the Minchins invited us and Evelyn over for FHE. It was sooo fun! Sister Larsen and I loved it because we felt so normal! We watched a talk by our beloved prophet. It was about enduring through the hard times (great for Evelyn to hear) Then we played a prophet pciture matching game haha. Sister Minchin and I were the best at it because we knew the song (thank you primary!) Then we had a yummy dessert. We all had a really great time and Evelyn and Sister Minchin are becoming good friends. The Minchins are a great family.
On Tuesday we had a Zone Meeting. They brought back QGC! It stands for Quality Gospel Conversations. We are counting them as a key indicator now. It for conversations on the street. We have to teach, testify, ask questions, set up a return appointment and then qualify the appointment. It’s harder than it sounds because not everyone is willing to meet with us. But Sister Larsen and I have seen success from it. We are talking to more people and really focusing on our conversation with them. From it we have been able to make 3 return appointments!
Last night we meet a young man named Adam. He told us how hard the past 12 years have been and how he has never had a good father figure in his life. We told him about our Heavenly Father and how we are all His children. We told Adam that he can come to know that that is true. Then he asked us “how do I got about doing that?” We told him that we would love to teach him! We gave him a Book of Mormon and set up a time to see him on Friday. He seemed very sincere!
Tuesday evening we did a big church building clean up. We had a really good turn out from the ward and we all got a job to do. Sister Larsen and I helped Sister Watt wash all of the outside windows! It was good fun. Evelyn came as well! She loves doing service.
We had exchanges with the STLs! I went to Irvnie with Sister Watt (she is in my group) We had a good time. I am very grateful that I was there with her because she really needed me at that time. We were able to bond which was really beneficial. She is a great sister. I always learn so much on exchanges. We taught their investigator and it was really frustrating because he asks loads of random questions. But we practiced our patience and were able to have a good lesson.
Sister Larsen and I are still doing really great together! We have become the best of friends and we’re working really hard!
This is a part of President Brown’s email from this week that I would like to share with all of you. It’s just so good.
“I mentioned last week that I had been studying the Book of Mormon on the subject of faith for some time. I have been fascinated by this subject for a long time, reasoning that if the Prophet Joseph’s statement that faith is “the power by which the worlds were made”, it must be incredibly important and of immense worth for us to understand and use this principle in our mortal probation. We obviously understood and used it in the pre-mortal world (see Alma 13:3). In my study one day last week I was reading President Eyring’s talk from the Saturday morning session of conference and noted this instructive statement
“If we choose the right, we will find happiness—in time. If we choose evil, there comes sorrow and regret—in time. Those effects are sure. Yet they are often delayed for a purpose. If the blessings were immediate, choosing the right would not build faith. And since sorrow is also sometimes greatly delayed, it takes faith to feel the need to seek forgiveness for sin early rather than after we feel its sorrowful and painful effects.”I have the tendency to think that because we are missionaries, and this is the Lord’s work the results of our proselyting efforts should be immediate – after all, surely God wants all of his children to have the blessings of the gospel! However it must be true that the development of faith is perhaps the most important opportunity of mortality and so he doesn’t interfere with anyone’s agency in any way. That said there is also no doubt that President Eyring’s statement is true that the effects of our choices are sure – so we will reap the blessings – in time – for all our labour. The long days of proselyting will inevitably bear fruit – in time. Ours is the blessing to build faith by not giving up when the going is hard – “proved by our trials we’ll be, nearer yet nearer to thee”” -President Brown
I love you all so very much!! Have a good week!!!
Love Sister Jones
P.S. Could someone please send me a picture of the Las Vegas Temple?? I miss it!
Also, do I get a homecoming talk topic??

Week 67 Scotland

6 Aug
Dear Family and Friends,
We had a pretty good week!
Wednesday was our p-day and since we emailed on Monday we had a LONG pday! So we went to Troon! There is a bus right outside our flat that took us straight there. It was a bit overcast and windy but it was still fun! Troon is a TINY town right on the coast. It was so beautiful! It was really fun to see the beach! It was pretty cold and the wind didn’t help. But we put our coats on and got ice cream then sat at the beach for a while. We watched little kids swim in the ocean and just couldn’t believe it! It must have been sooooo cold! But hey ho… we had ice cream so we were pretty happy. It started pouring rain right when we left… tender mercy!
On Friday we had some finding time in the morning so we decided to go to Hurlford and Galston; two wee towns outside of Killie. Worst weather ever! It wasn’t THAT cold but it was raining buckets and it was super windy. The wind made the rain misty. Our umbrellas didn’t last very long and we were SOAKED! We couldn’t help but laugh! We found the fun in it and just enjoyed being drenched! However, at one point we rode the bus for a minute and got warm and when we got back outside we froze!! hahahaha my shoes were FILLED with water. Just picture it… two girls walking around, in skirts that are blowing everywhere, and getting wet hahaha! It was great! We were wet most of the day then by dinner time we were able to dry off. It took my shoes a couple of days to dry out. It was pretty fun. Unfortunately not much came from that finding time but we did have a miracle!!
We were out and about from 10 until 1. We had a lunch app with a member in Galston at 1 and just before we tried by a forr investigator and found out that he doesn’t live there anymore. But the person who lives there now knows where he moved to. So ten minutes before our lunch app (going inside a dry warm house) we went to the address and met his girlfriend. We talked with her for a few minutes and she is interested in learning! So we’re going back this week! Good things come from walking around in the rain 🙂
Evelyn is having a really hard time right now. She is struggling with depression and she is having a hard time finding comfort. The Elders and our ward mission leader gave her a blessing before church started. It helped her feel a wee bit hopeful. We KNOW she will get there!! She is still smoking and President has advised that we not give her a baptismal date until she is totally off all nicotine. Sister Larsen and I love her so much and we see the great potential she has. She can do it! The members are so supportive of her and are willing to help her with anything. She is still strong and still loves the gospel!
The Book of Mormon can heal us. It has the power to do that. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the simple things that our Heavenly Father has commandedus to do. They all have to do with Him but they are for our benefit. We must continue to prey, read the Book of Mormon, attend church… the list goes on. We can gain so much strength from these simple things. I know we can.
We have a couple of conferences this transfer which I am excited about. I love the training that my leaders give. Especially training from President Brown. An area authority is coming soon! I don’t remember his name but I will keep you posted on that.
Sister Larsen and I are already making plans for get togethers we are going to have! She wants me to come to Colorado in November… I hope that’s ok 🙂
I love you all so very much!!!
Love Sister Jones

Week 66 Scotland

6 Aug
Dear Family and Friends,
First I will settle the bet between Dad and Aubrey…. Sister Larsen and I are staying here in Kilmarnock!!!! We are SOOO HAPPY!!! Sister Larsen only 6 weeks left so I will “kill” her off! hahaha (she is relieved about that) I only have 12 weeks! So that means I will most likely be here until the end! I am totally fine with that. I love it here!
Not much has happened this week because I have been sick the past few days! It was just a cold but it took so much out of me! I had a bad sore throat and an on and off fever. We were in the flat all day Friday and Saturday and then yesterday we went to church. I felt awful all three hours so we went home for the day. Let me tell you… we were so bored!!!! I can only take so many naps in one day! hahaha but it helped. I feel better. My throat is still a bit dry but it’s fine now.
Rita and Gemma were reactivated yesterday! They are so solid and just LOVE the blessings that living the gospel brings. They are so happy and everyone loves seeing them at church!
Yesterday, we wheeled Granny Hamiliton to church in her wheelchair. She just lives up the road from the church but it has quite a few hills so it was difficult but a lot of fun. She was so happy to be at church! We love her so much.
Sister Larsen and I are a bit bummed that we’re missing the 4th of July but we’re excited we’ll be together for it. We will sing all the patriotic songs, say the pledge to my tiny flag, wear red white and blue, and most likely eat a hot dog. It’ll be so great!
Kilmarnock is doing wonderful. We are struggling a bit to find new investigators to teach. We make appointments with everyone that we meet but then they don’t keep them. It’s a shame! But we are very anxious to continue to work hard and even harder if that’s what it takes. We will do the very best we can do!
A while ago a member asked us to visit her neighbor Veronica. We tried by and she was very kind and said we could come back anytime. Long story short we finally set up a time to see her and she had us over and fed us dinner! She is the kindest woman! She is so humble and loves to serve others. She has faith and believes in God but isn’t to keen on organized religion. We had a great time with her. We gave her a Book of Mormon and she was so thankful that we gave her a book we cherished so much. She said she would read it cover to cover during her trip to Ireland! We have another dinner appointment set up with her this week. We really hope that we will be able to teach her!
Over the weekend there was a program on TV called “Meet the Mormons” and it really didn’t do us any favors. It made the sacred things look a bit sketchy. We as missionaries didn’t watch it but the members and President Brown told us about it. President Brown says it may be a good opportunity to answer some questions about our faith and may make people take more notice of us. It’s a bit sickening that Satan is working so hard… but it’s all a part of Heavenly Fathers plan! We will stand strong! I am very proud to be a Mormon.
I hope everyone has a good week!! I love you all so so much!!!
Love Sister Jones

Week 65 Scotand

6 Aug
Dear Family and Friends,
Happy Birthday to my dear sweet grandma!! 90 years is a long time! I am so grateful for her! She is an outstanding example of love. Love towards family, friends, and Heavenly Father and His son. I appreciate her so much! All because of her and grandpa our family has come to know the gospel. Do we really know what we have?
This week has been great! Not one drop of rain!!!! Everything is getting dry and it’s been super HOT! I can handle heat but I don’t really like walking around in it all day. But hey ho we get through it! It’s cooled down the past couple of days so it hasn’t been terrible.
I forgot to mention last week about our Book of Mormon goal! Our zone goal was 91 copies and by the end of the week we gave out a total of 104 copies!!! Heavenly Father blessed us with those opportunities.
On Saturday we saw the Queen’s message in the baton!!! We don’t know a whole lot about it. The town was super busy and covered with decorations, booths, and loads of families. There was a baton relay that passed through. We were on our way home for dinner and say tons of people lined up along the street waiting for the runners and walkers haha. Sister Larsen and I were craving chocolate so we went and got a candy bar and headed in the direction of home. We passed through a small group of people that were taking pictures of some guy and there were some police men standing about. After we passed through them Sister Larsen said “do you think we just passed by someone who is really important?” um ya…we discovered we passed right by one of the baton holders! hahahaha so we stood with all the people and watched! I asked a couple to tell me what was going on because we didn’t really get it. Basically the Queen writes a message and then puts in a baton. Then they have relays (walking… the baton in HUGE! Kinda looks like a torch) ALLL month all the way from Buckingham Palace to Glasgow where they read the message during the opening ceremony of some games that they have. I still don’t really get it. Anyway, it was really exciting and it was really cool to watch! We felt so important! hahahahaha good fun.
President and Sister Brown came to the Kilmarnock ward yesterday! It was such a pleasure to have them there! They both gave great talks in sacrament meeting. President came to interview Evelyn. She wanted to talk with him about some things so he made a special trip just for her. So nice! President gave a talk about obedience. Reading our scriptures daily, praying daily, and attending church are what help us to remain obedient and strong in the gospel. It was good for me to hear because usually his obedience talks (ya it’s his favorite subject) are directed towards mission rules and the work that we do. Since this was in the ward during sacrament it was more directed to us as members. I can’t explain to you how great he is! He is such a good speaker and he is full of humility. He is so loving. Everyone there could feel the spirit! Rita and Gemma were there again!! They are doing so so great!
Evelyn is doing really great! She even got two new dresses for church! She has been studying the scriptures and all her other books we have been giving her. She won’t make the 28th of June for her baptism…. but it WILL be in the near future! She is totally converted and her testimony is so strong. She bears her testimony to us ALL THE TIME without even knowing it! I am so grateful for her progress. Heavenly Father has blessed her an incredible amount.
We did LOADS of service this week! It was sooo fun! We got to work in Sister Gordon’s garden. I mowed the lawn while Sister Larsen weeded. Then we help Pamela strip more wallpaper. I taught her the vinegarr trick. Very helpful indeed. Thanks mom! Then we help Sister Barnes in her garden! We had to dig a hole for a small tree. We also helped Sister Lawrence. She is 92 and is really really fit but we always beg her to let us help her. So Sister Larsen ironed and I watered all her plants and grass in her back garden (never thought I would have to do that in Scotland! It’s just been so dry this week) It was very relaxing for us and we got to spend good quality time with these sisters. Plus we got to wear trousers! hahaha it’s these little things that make Sister Larsen and I so happy!
Moves call is next Sunday! Can you believe it’s that time again? We are really nervous about it! I very well could go to another area to finish my mission but you never know! We don’t want to be split up! I’ll let you know the outcome next week! Today I got my “going home” email…. I had to email back the office about which airport I will fly to and that sort of thing. It’s coming quick….
I love you all so very much! I am so grateful that the family was able to come together to celebrate our wonderful grandmother! I love her so much! I am so sad I wasn’t there… lots of tears I have shed these past couple of hours… but I am so grateful to be here sharing the gospel. The world really needs it. We are completely lost without it. Yes… LOST. I am so grateful for our Savior Jesus Christ. Without Him none of this would be possible or even worth it. I am grateful to be on a mission along with Tenesia! I hope you all have a good week!!!
Love Sister Jones

Week 64 Scotland

6 Aug
Dear Family and Friends,
Today marks 100 days left! Good grief I am going to be home so soon! I’m doing a Scripture Mastery countdown! (Since there is 100) It’ll be nice to study them in more detail. Maybe I’ll try to memorize them again…
HAPPY FATHER’S DAY to Dad, Kyle and Sean! And to all of the other fathers out there!
This week was really good!
One of the best moments for me was church yesterday! Rita and Gemma came to church!!! I can’t even explain what that means to me! I can’t even imagine how Heavenly Father feels about it! I can’t remember what I’ve said about her and Gemma in past emails so I’ll just start from the beginning. We’ve been working with Rita since I got here. Back in February she was really hard to get in contact with her and she would sometimes cancel appointments or not be home. When we were able to teach her she would get really shy about saying the opening or closing prayer and it was uncomfortable for her. She didn’t even know where her scriptures were! She hadn’t been to church for 19 years! One night, a while back, her daughter Gemma showed up and we talked with her and she told us that she had been thinking about coming back to church. She hadn’t been since was a teenager. Now she is in her 30’s. We asked Gemma if we could start meeting with her so we all decided that we would have lessons with both Rita and Gemma. We did that for a while and Rita slowly but progressively got more comfortable with gospel discussions and keeping commitments that we gave her. Gemma started reading the Book of Mormon straight away and was more than willing to come to church. She came a couple of times and enjoyed it. We then started meeting with them separately because they were at different stages. Anyway, long story short, we have ALWAYS invited Rita to come to church but something would always come up. She told us that she wanted to but it was HER that was holding her back. So over time, Rita started reading the Book of Mormon and now she is reading it EVERYDAY! She is learning so much and is remembering the gospel of Jesus Christ. She prays every lesson and her and Gemma have connected on a whole new level! More of a spiritual relationship. Sister Larsen and I decided we would stop talking about church so much and just keep encouraging her to read and pray. Then yesterday they both walked into Sacrament together!!!! I was sooo happy!!! I ran straight over and grabbed Rita and gave her a BIG hug! She said “I’m so nervous!” But she had a HUGE smile across her face. I sat by them during Sacrament meeting and I could feel the spirit so strongly. I could tell that they could feel Heavenly Father’s love for them. It was such a sweet experience. Afterwords, EVERYONE came up to Rita and just hugged her. They were so happy to have their sister back.
Our stake President was there and gave a really great talk about looking up. We are too often looking down and not Heaven word! He told a story about bird feeders in their back garden. Him and his kids put it up the other day and while they were filling up the feeders some of the seeds fell to the ground. They went inside to watch and to their surprise, the birds came only moments later and started pecking at the seeds on the ground. President Yates said “I so badly wanted to tell the birds to Look up!! There was a whole feast just waiting for them!” He said that our Heavenly Father has provided us EVERYTHING! Even more than we realize. We need to look heaven word and partake of all of the blessings that are in store for us.
President Brown will be here net week! He is coming to meet with Evelyn and then he and Sister Brown are speaking in our Sacrament meeting. The ward leaders are excited for his visit. I’m excited to have him in the Kilmarnock ward! It should be really great!
The Birchams are moving today! They are moving into a house that needed/still needs a lot of work done to it. We’ve helped them paint a couple of times and it has been really fun! One day Sister Larsen, Pamela and I went into Pamela’s room and discovered it was wallpapered. I peeled a piece off then we all just looked at each other and got the same idea.Then for the next hour we stripped all the wallpaper off! It was sooo fun! It reminded me of our house 🙂
We visited sweet Sister Hamilton on Saturday as usual and she gave Sister Larsen and I perfume! She is so good to us. She just told us to go into her cupboard and pick which one we wanted! haha she takes really good care of us. We really wanted her and Evelyn to meet so we had a lesson at Sister Hamiltons house. Her and Evelyn got along so great!! Sister Hamilton gave Evelyn a box of chocolate biscuits and said “we can be friends forever now” haha so cute!
Evelyn is doing really well! We’ve started teaching her at members homes and it has really made a difference. It is good for her to get out of her house. We’ve finished teaching her all of the required lessons so now we will most likely start over until she gets baptized! Her date is still the 28th but we MIGHT have to push it back because she is still smoking. Nicotine is so vicious!!!!
Last conference, Sister Brown talked a bit about Family History and gave us permission to do Family History for an hour every Wednesday! (I think I’ve mentioned this before) Anyway, we were given the “My Family” booklet and we have to have it filled out by the end of the month. It is so much fun! Sister Larsen and I have been spending time with Sister Minchin (Family History missionary) and Sister Reilly (Family History consultant in the ward) doing indexing and other Family Search practice. Plus we’ve been filling out our booklets. It’s good fun and Sister Larsen and I are super excited to do more work when we are home! It is also making me realize how much I don’t know about my family! That is why we need to do it! Sister Larsen and I have come to realize that Satan is attacking the family even more now. When we talk to people about researching their ancestors they say it isn’t necessary or that they aren’t interested to know where they came from or who their ancestors are. It is a really sad thing! There is soooo much work to be done for our ancestors. We have temples for a purpose. I desire so much to be with my family for eternity and I hope that all families can be together forever. Do family history work! It’s fun I promise 🙂
Last Monday I ate liver!! AHH! Lamb liver. It was…. interesting. Funny texture and taste but it was still good. I don’t think I’ll ever have the desire to eat it again but it was good for a one time thing haha. We had it at Dave and Ruth’s. They feed us every Monday.
Sister Larsen and I are doing great! I love her so much! We are already planning trips together! hahah too soon?? There was a day this week that I wasn’t feeling too well and had to stay in the flat for most of the day. Sister Larsen took such good care of me! She made me a hot rice bag out of one of her socks, massaged my back and gave me lots of ice cream! haha she’ll be a good mom. We also watched Legacy! Good movie about pioneers but we didn’t realized how much kissing was in it! hahaha gotta love it.
Today we are both getting hair cuts! We are soooo excited!! I need it so badly! It has been almost 8 months since I last got it done! haha it is just too long now… So I’m cutting off like 5-7 inches! I’ll send before and afters next week! 🙂
Read the second half of Alma 51:33…. that is mission life!!!! hahahaha!
I love you all so very much! I hope you all have a good week! You are in my prayers every day!
Love Sister Jones

Week 63 Scotland

6 Aug
Dear Family and Friends,
Hello! Everything is going really good! I don’t have too much to report on so this may be short… sorry about that.
Funny story: Sister Larsen and I are very much the same. We discovered recently that we wore the SAME shoes at graduation! hahaha orange wedges from Target 🙂 So great.
We had Zone Interview Training this week! Interviews with President are always something I look forward to. This one was really funny though because we started talking about my future children and he was giving me some parenting advise and then at the end he said “wait.. this feels like an exit-interview!” hahaha oops!! It’s closer than we think!
I can’t believe Beckham is WALKING! That is so fun! I’m so proud of my wee nephew.
Evelyn is still doing great! She just can’t stop smoking though!! Well she’s actually doing a whole lot better than she gives herself credit for. She gets really down on herself all the time for messing up. But she has made great progress in the right direction. She finished reading the Book of Mormon and has started again! She LOVES it! If only everyone in the world loved the Book of Mormon as much as she does. It’s the word of God! I know it is.
Speaking of the Book of Mormon, our zone has a goal to hand out 91 copies this week… each team giving out one a day. Our whole zone fasted yesterday for this goal. Sister Larsen and I are excited to do it! We are going to focus on the Book of Mormon with everyone that we talk to. It should be a lot of fun!
We were able to meet with quite a few potential and former investigators this week. We hope to start teaching all of them on a regular basis and help them progress in the gospel.
I love you all so very much! I hope you all have a great week! You are in my prayers! Just remember that someone in Scotland loves you!
Love Sister Jones

Week 62 Scotland

6 Aug
Dear Family and Friends,
This week was really really great!
Evelyn has a baptismal date! June 28th! It’s the day before moves call. Evelyn is doing exceptionally well! She is still trying to quite smoking but she is getting there! Sister Larsen and I decided to give up sugar! We thought it would be a good idea to give up an addiction with her. I crave chocolate and ice cream almost everyday so it’s hard haha but we’re doing it!
We did another word of wisdom lesson with her to explain the WHY of it all. It was an amazing spiritual experience. We showed her a picture of the temple and discussed how beautiful it is and how well it is kept. So much detail and care goes into building, decorating, cleaning, and consecrating the temple. We are so blessed to have them. It really is the Lord’s house. Heavenly Father cares so much for His temples and what goes on inside of them. We then told Evelyn that she is more important to Heavenly Father than a building. Her body is more sacred and is a greater gift. We told her that she has great worth and that our Father wants us to take care of ourselves while on this earth. We are worth so much more than we think. We are divine beings. We have the capability of being virtuous and healthy. Evelyn was very touched and it all made sense to her. She wants so badly to be baptized so that she may be cleansed from all sin and sorrow. She has such a great determination to be rid of her addiction. I know she can do it! The ward has been very supportive and helpful to her. Evelyn has also been reading the Bible and is really enjoying the New Testament. She LOVES the Book of Mormon and is sad that she is almost done with it but is excited to start again!
The Book of Mormon is so powerful! I love studying form it everyday. This morning I read Alma 39. The chapter about sexual purity. Alma counsels with his son Corianton to be rid of these transgressions. He is so loving towards his son and promises him that sweet peace can come through true repentance.
The gospel has been restored. We have it in beautiful simplicity. We are children of a loving Heavenly Father. He loves us so much. More than we can even comprehend! He wants us to be happy.
I am so grateful for the Book of Mormon. It outlines the Plan that our Father has for us. We have it right in front of us. Eternal life will be ours. That is promised. We must be faithful and worthy of that promise. Every person is important to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. They want the very best for us.
Last Tuesday we had our usual district meeting. When we got to the church we noticed a HUGE tent set up! ALL of us went straight for it and decided to have district meeting in there hahaha it was good fun and a GREAT meeting. We had the time to contemplate why we are here serving. It was a good time to reflect on how I feel about my mission.
When we were skyping, Heather asked me a really great question that I didn’t know the answer to. It has been on my mind ever since then and I feel like I finally found the answer. She asked me what was the one thing that has reoccurred throughout my mission that I have learned the most about. 1 Timothy4:12 explains my feelings quite well. Time and time again I have been told, through blessings and leaders, that I am to be an example. I’m still not entirely sure how I am going to fulfill this. Throughout these past 14 months I have thought about my family. I hope that my service will be noticed. I want to work as hard as I can so that I can help and uplift future generations. I hope that one day that my neices, nephews, cousins, and even my own children will serve missions. The work of the Lord is an absolute privilage to be a part of. This world NEEDS the gospel. We would be completely lost without it. I have reflected on this over and over and what keeps coming to mind is “keep going… your thoughts and actions are being recorded in heaven… be thou and example.” I am so grateful for my Savior Jesus Christ. He is the perfect example. I want to be just like Him. I am so grateful that He can take away my imperfections and mistakes. I continually think about Ether 12:27. We all have weaknesses but through Christ, weaknesses can become strong.
Thursday is Zone Interview Training! We get to have interviews with President Brown. I am so excited! I’m sure the training will be excellent as well as it always is.
Zone Development was pretty good. We went to Paisley and it was sports alll day! Sister Larsen are not sporty people so we mostly just sat out and chatted haha. It was so fun to get together with the zone. There are some missionaries in my zone now that were in my previous zones. It is always a pleasure to see them agian. I love missionaries! Most of the Elders got sunburned yesterday! The sun is ferocious here haha
I love you all so very much! I hope you have a great week!!
Love Sister Jones