Saturday, August 29, 2015

I can't think of a subject....

Good morning!!! 

It was a rough week for one major reason: we're on bike

I love biking!! I was so excited to be on bike this transfer. I could bike these hills all day. My companion on the other hand... hates biking and has some knee problems. I'm not sure what we're going to do. 
The first day we were biking down a street and her back tire just blew and she crashed. It wasn't a great start! Since we're only on bike for 6 weeks she is just borrowing some other sisters' bikes. Bishop Burt fixed one of the bikes up for us so we could get back on the road. But for the next day we got rides from Sister West everywhere. We got rides to church yesterday too. Our members are so willing to help and are so wonderful. We are so appreciative. 

We had a great experience on Saturday! We did some service with a woman named Heather. One of our ward missionaries has been serving her by helping her with her yard. We were able to go with Brother Penrod on Saturday to do some clean up. Heather is very shy so it was a huge success that she came out and talked to us! I was able to help Brother Penrod haul some of the tree branches while Sister Thumstedter was able to get to know her really well, and she opened up a lot. Sister Thumstedter invited her to church and she said she would think about it!!! We're excited to continue to establish a relationship with her. We have faith we'll be able to teach her the lessons soon.

We have a community clean up in the stake this weekend and Sister Thumstedter and I were thinking we should use it as a missionary opportunity! We're going to try to get flyers out to everyone in our wards asking for their help or if they have any service opportunities for us. We just found out about this clean up project yesterday so we're going to scramble to get it together! Hope it all works out! 

Brent came to church yesterday! That was awesome! He's cutting back a lot on his smoking. He's making progress!  :)

Well I'm about out of time! Have a great week everyone! 

-Sister Richards

I love it here!

Sister Thumstedter and I

Thursday, August 20, 2015

"Holy grandmother!"

Transfer news: Sister Call went home and I'm staying in Taylor and I'm training a new missionary named Sister Thumbstedter (pronounced exactly how it looks with all letters making their sounds- thuhm-stead-ter), she's most recently from the Chicago area and she's awesome! I'm so excited to serve with her. The explanation for the subject: This exclamation came from an announcer at my State basketball game my sophomore year when I, a then 5'3.5" point guard, got an offensive rebound (unusual), went right up with it and made a sweet reverse layup. Anyway- I'm now a grandmother because Sister Pazmino is also training this transfer! Super exciting :) The other awesome transfer news is that Sister Lyons is serving with the Sisters next door now so she's my neighbor and it's been so fun to catch up with her! 

My birthday was one of the best! We had a 24-hour missionary out with us- Auralin who's going to be serving in the WA Everett mission and leaves next month. I made egg pancakes for us for breakfast and then we got to work! We taught 8 lessons. A typical day is about 4-5, I've never taught 8 lessons in one day- best birthday present!!! We had lunch at Celebrations and they sang to me and us sisters shared the piece of almond joy cake they gave me! YUM. We had dinner with two of my favorite families up here and there were more candles and more cake. I'm so appreciative for all the packages, letters and emails- thank you! 

Last week I was able to give out two copies of the Book of Mormon which makes the total number of copies given to nonmembers while street contacting during the time I've been in Taylor two. So sad :( But we're really trying! One of the copies I gave was to a 20 year old guy named Joaquin (pronounced wa-keen, just in case you didn't know). We were trying to contact a referral we received from Elder Corbridge and Elder Southward of the seventy for a less-active they talked to at a gas station while they were here for stake conference (my question is what were they buying?? gas? or caffeine?) and Joaquin practically flagged us down. He told us that he had spoken to guy missionaries before and that they invited him to church and said they'd get him a ride, Sundaycame around, he was all ready and they never called and no one came. Sad day.. I told him we'd love for him to come to church and started teaching about the BoM and gave him a copy. He was so excited! We got his phone number and a vague address like the ones you always get up here in the mtns- 3 miles out East the big house on the left. We were able to give his info to the sisters and they're now trying to teach him! That was exciting. Not many of our street contacts turn into referrals. Oh and we did contact the referral from the Seventy and she said she'd call us when she gets settled in her new place.

One of the inactive convert families we've been working with and teaching came to church on Sunday for the first time in a long time! That was so awesome. Jeff also has to work on Sundays now until 12:00 and his ward starts at11:00 so he was thinking he was going to miss out on church but we reassured and explained to him that he can attend other wards so he came to the 1:00 ward with us and stayed all three hours! He's so awesome. He's still attending the temple and he's been exercising his Priesthood.

We had great lessons with Brent and Brother Holladay. Both are struggling at coming to church but I know that they have the desire and want to. We'll keep teaching, encouraging and committing and hopefully they'll come this week! 

I have the opportunity to speak this Sunday about- I'm sure you can guess it..... MISSIONARY WORK! I hope I'll be inspired by the Spirit to say something that will inspire our members to share the Gospel. 

I'm super excited to serve with Sister Thumbstedter. Our goal for this transfer is finding! I have faith we can find prepared people. 

If you pray for and then seek for missionary opportunities I know you'll receive them!
"We properly pray for the safety and success of the full-time missionaries throughout the world. And a common element in many of our prayers is a request that the missionaries will be led to individuals and families who are prepared to receive the message of the Restoration. But ultimately it is my responsibility and your responsibility to find people for the missionaries to teach. Missionaries are full-time teachers; you and I are full-time finders. And you and I as lifelong missionaries should not be praying for the full-time missionaries to do our work!" -Elder Bednar.

Thank you for all the support and encouragement! 

With love, 
Sister Richards :)

Sister Clonts was kind enough to help us make these last pday!

This is Auralin who came out with us on my birthday.

Sister Call and I with Katy and Mel. Their son just came home from his mission. We're praying Mel gets baptized SOON :)

Going to miss her soooo much!

One of the best Birthday's ever!

Sister Pazmino and I at the trainer's meeting. She's having some awesome success in the YSA!

My mission "family" (daughters and granddaughter haha) - Sister Lyons, Sister Thumbstedter, Hermana Pazmino and Hermana Kamalu

Sunday, August 16, 2015

How's it Monday already?
Thank you all for the happy birthday wishes! 

We had a great week. The past couple weeks we've been increasing our goal for less active and recent convert lessons and we keep meeting and exceeding it! All our work is with them... We need to up our investigator lessons- we need more investigators!!! We had a great stake conference this weekend about ward and family councils, Sabbath day observance, enduring to the end- lots of good stuff. Elder Corbridge came to organize and call a new stake presidency. I loved what the now former Stake President said, It was something like: Being faithful, keeping the commandments and going to the temple isn't enough, we need to open our mouths and share the gospel with others. I hope our members will apply what we learned this weekend. 

Two of my favorite lessons from this week:

We went to the temple with one of our inactives and we taught the plan of salvation towards the temple. We testified that through the Atonement he can overcome his sins and weaknesses and one day enter the temple. He has some concerns and doubts about that but i know that it is possible. The Spirit was strong in our lesson! He's doing really well and making good progress.

The other lesson we taught was to 10 and 7 year old girls. We did an object lesson with two cans of soda from Sister Esplin's talk from this past conference "Filling our homes with light and truth". One can is empty and is crushed by satan's influence and temptations, etc.. the other is full and unopened and can withstand the temptations. The girls really got it and we talked about what they could do to help fill their home with the gospel and the Spirit. They committed to encourage family prayer and scripture study. After the lesson the wanted the unopened can of soda and almost held us hostage in their home as they barricaded the door so we couldn't leave. It was so funny haha

My thought for the week:

"My beloved brothers and sisters, godly fear dispels mortal fears. It even subdues the haunting concern that we never can be good enough spiritually and never will measure up to the Lord’s requirements and expectations. In truth, we cannot be good enough or measure up relying solely upon our own capacity and performance. Our works and desires alone do not and cannot save us. “After all we can do” (2 Nephi 25:23), we are made whole only through the mercy and grace available through the Savior’s infinite and eternal atoning sacrifice (see Alma 34:10, 14). Certainly, “we believe that through the Atonement of Christ, all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the gospel” (Articles of Faith 1:3)." -Elder Bednar "Therefore they hushed their fears"

I know that what Elder Bednar has taught is true! We can and will never measure up but the Savior's Atonement will make up the difference if we do our very best.

Make your week a great one! :) 

-Sister Richards

F'reals from Maverick are the best 

FHE with the Whitney family and Jeff!

The soda can analogy...

Us missionaries with Elder Corbridge and his wife :)

Last pday hiking in Shumway!

Weekly lunch at Celebrations!

Our awesome district! 

It's the end of the transfer already. I'll find out my transfer news this weekend and next week 

Thursday, August 6, 2015


Happy Monday!!!

This past week was a blur. Sister Call and I were saying it's like we went to bed and woke up and it's Monday again. Hard to believe. Every week just passes faster and faster! I can't believe today marks 11 months on my mission. Sister Call is nearly dead, she hits 18 months on Wednesday and only has two weeks left on her mission!!!

It was a really great week. We taught lots of lessons and saw so many people!!! We had our interviews with President Sweeney on Tuesday. I always look forward to President's counsel and encouragement. His training for interviews was about being bold. He invited me to be an even more bold Sister missionary. I accepted his commitment and tried really hard this week to be more bold in declaring repentance and inviting everyone we met with to come unto Christ.

Lately all Sister Call and I hear is someday this and someday that. There's "Someday I'll come back to church", "someday I'll quit smoking and drinking", "Someday I'll get back to the temple", "someday I'll repent", "someday I'll share the Gospel", "someday I'll read the Book of Mormon", someday I'll get baptized and join the church". I hate the word someday!!! There is a really great Mormon message that Sister Call and I love to share when people use the word someday. It's titled Choose This Day and I recommend you all watch it!

President Eyring says that someday means not this day. And we know from Alma 34:32-36 we should not procrastinate the day of our repentance. I'll leave the same invitation with you that I've been leaving with all my investigators and less actives: Choose THIS DAY to serve and follow our Savior Jesus Christ. Will YOU? Start doing those things you know you need to do, today.

It is so neat to see people change and apply the Atonement. I know it's possible for us, no matter how far gone or lost that we think we are, to get back on the path and start doing what's right. It's hard. It takes courage and it takes faith in the Lord. We made a lot of progress with quite a few people this week- they're fasting, reading, praying, going to Addiction recovery classes and it's great! I'm excited for our upcoming week :)

Love y'all!

-Sister Richards

P.S. After 11 months I made it to a dentist (free cleaning from one of our members!) and I am cavity FREE! Flossing pays off for sure. I have a testimony of that haha

P.P.S. Mel- I know you're going to read this but you should get off Facebook and read the Book of Mormon :)

P.P.P.S This little boy about four years-old got up to bear his testimony right after the Bishop finished -he was so determined- and in his testimony he said "Jesus is a hero". It was adorable! He's right!!

Free Snocones! We're so spoiled by the members in this town :)

This is McKinley's little sister Madison. They call her "monster" and she's adorable. McKinley covered Sister Call's face...

My study desk! This lady gave us some beautiful wild flowers :)

Another tour de Taylor. Tomorrow we're going to bike to the temple!!
We think it's about 8 miles there