Once & For All

I cannot believe that this will be my last email as a missionary! The
first nine months felt like and eternity and the last nine months felt
like a month. This whole mission experience has been quite different
than I was expecting, but I would not change it for the world. This
last week will be jam packed with things to do, including a baptism
for Angel. After much tribulation he has finally been prepared to be
baptized this weekend!

My mission has been one of the most challenging things I have ever
done. Going from living a carefree life to one with many rules and
expectations was a difficult adjustment for me. To be honest, I am
kind of shocked that I am still here today and that I have made it to
the end. I know that I am a weak person and that I could not have made
it here by my own strength. I know that that strength -without a
doubt- came from the Savior.

My first transfer in the mission field I clearly remember sitting at
my desk just right before studies were about to start and wondering
what exactly I could say to my mission president to get him to send me
back home. I thought that the mission life just wasn’t for me, that I
would never be able to do it. It was at that point that I slowly
started to realize just what Jesus Christ did for me and all of my
problems seemed so small compared to such a sacrifice. I wish I could
say that that was the only time I ever felt incompetent as a
missionary, but those moments came and went throughout my entire
mission – and each time I learned something new from it.

Last Monday we were heading back from a lesson when I saw a truck that
broke down right in the middle of the road. We quickly pulled into a
nearby parking lot and jumped out of the car to help him push it. We
run across the street and Hermana Escobar hops in the front to steer
while I helped this guy push his truck. All of the sudden this other
man comes into the middle between us and said, “Sister?! What are you
doing??” Then helped us push. I just laughed as we tirelessly tried to
push this truck out of the middle of the road. But when he said that I
began to wonder… What WAS I doing? I think I must’ve looked pretty
funny: this young, blonde girl in a skirt trying to push a truck off
of one of the busiest streets in Mesa. I probably would have never
done that before the mission! Once we got his car into a safe place we
talked with him a bit and asked if he wanted to meet with missionaries
in his town. He told us that he wasn’t sure if God existed, but
because we stopped and helped him out he said, “I can see that good
people still exist in the world, and maybe it’s time for me to be
quiet for once and actually listen to His word.” We got his
information.

As we walked back to our car I kept thinking about him. Here was this
guy, obviously struggling, he had tattoos up and down his arms and
neck and just looked like a tough guy. He clearly had a rough past
behind him, but his Father in Heaven was reaching out His hand once
more to help him so that he could change and find out what true
happiness really is. It just proves to me that truly everyone is a son
or daughter of God and none of us are ever forgotten.

There were many things before the mission that I just didn’t
understand that I have now come to understand. There are still many
things that I know I will learn. I have loved being a missionary! I
love the people I got to see baptized. I love the investigators who
actually taught me quite a lot. I love the members. I love the
anti-Mormons who made me question myself at times. I love all of the
priests and pastors I ran into who yelled at me. I love Heavenly
Father. He never took away any struggle I had, He only let me know
what I needed to do in order to get through it. I know for a fact that
if I would have not come on a mission (or given up in the beginning of
it) that my life would be terribly different.

It is so hard to say goodbye to the place that I have come to love so
much, but I know that my time has come. To all of those missionaries
still serving: enjoy the good times and appreciate the bad. Be
obedient and never be discouraged. Know that you really are doing the
work of the Lord, I have a firm testimony of that!

I know that this church is true! I have said it a million times and I
will say it until the end. I know that God is real and that He loves
us and cares. I know Jesus Christ suffered for all of our sins and
weaknesses and that it really is through him that we can have burdens
of guilt and shame lifted from our shoulders. I know that Joseph Smith
restored the keys of the priesthood and the gospel to the earth. I
know all of these things because I have prayed and studied and read
the scriptures. And I also know, that if you don’t know these things,
that you can – but only if you desire. God will not take your agency
and force you to have faith in anything. But just as we can see in the
case of the man that’s truck was broken down, He will always give you
another chance.

I would never be able to express all that I have learned, all that
I’ve experienced in one email. But just know that I love the Lord.
They can take my name tag away but I will never stop serving Him. I
know that I still have a responsibility to share with everyone the
only thing that truly saved my life: the Atonement of Jesus Christ.

Les amo a todos. La mayoría de ustedes les veré el próximo martes.
Sigue haciendo fuerte!

Hermana Hershey

Here’s a few random pictures:

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El Bautismo de Luz Maria

This week was so much better than last! Well first of all we had Luz’s
baptism and it was seriously one of the most powerful baptisms I have
ever gone to! After she went under the water she started crying. When
she bore her testimony she was talking about how much her life has
changed for the better since she met us five weeks ago! She is so
excited to go through the temple in a year, she can hardly wait. I am
telling you, I have never met someone so prepared to receive the
gospel as Luz Maria. I’m so blessed to have known her.

This Sunday was my last fast Sunday. It’s funny because I spent my
first fast Sunday in this ward as well! Actually it was my first
Sunday in general in the mission field. I remember that day my
trainer, Hermana Del Valle went up to bear her testimony. She went up
and sat on the stand and I was so worried that I would be in trouble
for not sitting next to her so about 30 seconds later I went and sat
next to her. But then I realized that I didn’t actually have to sit
next to her and that now I had to bear my testimony in a language I
could hardly speak! I can’t remember what I said but I am pretty sure
it was terrible Spanish! Luckily this fast Sunday I could speak the
language a bit better. But the embarrassing thing is that I totally
cried at the end when I told them I loved them. It was so
embarrassing, ugh.

Sacrament meeting was so good! We went to visit Jesus (our recent
convert) right before and invite his parents to church (they are not
members). They actually came! And they brought Omar, the little boy we
gave the minion to a while back. I was worried because Omar has autism
and usually can’t be quiet or sit still but it was no problem at all.
I was actually leading the music in sacrament and Omar was sitting in
the front row following my hand motions, haha. It was so weird because
I saw that the last hymn was #338 and I was looking in the Spanish
hymn book and there was not hymn #338 and then the bishop stood up and
said that we would be singing the last hymn in English! It was
“America the Beautiful” and let me just say, I am SO HAPPY that I was
conducting the music that day because it was hilarious to see people
try and sing a song in English! About 2/3 of the congregation was just
looking at the hymn book in confusion.

We also did a “Tree of Life” activity which was a big hit. The point
was to recreate Lehi’s dream from the Book of Mormon. They all thought
it was so cool! I was worried because I thought the set up was a
little ghetto since us missionaries were in charge of it and our
supplies are limited but it was really a great activity.

Well Happy Independence Day everyone! This is one of my favorite
holidays so enjoy it for me. We are so blessed to live in this
country. You should hear some of the stories I hear of all of these
immigrants who have come here from different parts of the world. It is
very humbling and really has changed my outlook on a lot of things in
life. Count your blessings!

Hermana Hershey

1: Luz Maria!!!
2: serving nachos at the tree of life activity
3: we had a nerf gun war to celebrate our 2nd amendment right! 🇺🇸
4: I got Hermana Gutierrez sick on accident.

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Luz Maria!!!
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Serving nachos at the Tree of Life activity

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We had a nerf gun war to celebrate our 2nd amendment right! 🇺🇸

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I got Hermana Gutierrez sick on accident.

Well everyone… this week was different.

On Monday night last week I felt terrible. Just absolutely terrible! I drank tons of water hoping my nausea would go away but it kept getting stronger and stronger. The elders came and gave me a blessing and then about an hour or so later I threw up. Then I threw up 5 or 6 more times that night NOT being able to sleep whatsoever. I was so exhausted I was almost delirious. 
The next morning I woke up at 6:30am (after falling asleep around 4am) and I told my companion that I needed to rest probably just until dinner and then we could go out. She texted the mission nurse and she FORBADE me to go out that whole day! I was not very happy about that. There I was, one month left in the mission and I was forbidden to go out in our area. But seriously I don’t really remember that day because I just slept and slept and slept and sweat off the fever I had. The next day I woke up and did my studies normally, I felt a lot better. I even went for an interview with President Jenkins that morning. I felt weak though, I was running on saltine crackers and sprite, but I guess I thought that was sufficient. At dinner I felt terrible. I asked Hermana Knudson and Gutierrez to go on a mini exchange with us so that one of them could drive so I didn’t have to (foreign missionaries are not allowed to drive in our mission). We went to a lesson and afterward we were walking to the next one I told Hermana Knudson that I felt really light like I was about to be lifted off the ground or something. I was just laughing about it and then she got really serious, made us go back to the car, and had me call the nurse.
I called the nurse AGAIN and she chastised me for a good 20 minutes telling me that I needed to stay inside, resting until SATURDAY. Keep in mind it was only Wednesday at that time. She said, “I don’t know what it is about you missionaries that makes you think you are invincible! There are about 8 other missionaries with the same thing as you!” I wanted to scream but I just ended up laughing since I was still a bit delirious… lol. Anyway, I won’t go on any further on how disappointed I was knowing that I practically had to stay a whole week inside. However, I also can not explain to all of you just how much a learned in that time as well.
As I was throwing up Monday night/Tuesday morning, the only thing that was on my mind was Jesus Christ when he was in the Garden of Gethsemane. It is weird, I know. But that was all I could think about. And when I would miraculously get about 5 minutes of sleep in between throwing up, it’s what I would dream about too. I thought about how much pain I was in in that moment, but how I can’t even imagine what the Savior had to experience for me and for you in Gethsemane. And he did it willingly.
The elders brought over tons of church DVDs for us to watch and during one of those days I watched a video about Jesus Christ’s suffering, death, and resurrection. I’ve seen countless videos like this one before, but it hit me harder that day I watched it. In the end, 2 Nephi 2:8-9 popped up on the screen:
“Wherefore, how great the importance to make these things known unto the inhabitants of the earth, that they may know that there is no flesh that can dwell in the presence of God, save it be through the merits, and mercy, and grace of the Holy Messiah, who layeth down his life according to the flesh, and taketh it again by the power of the Spirit, that he may bring to pass the resurrection of the dead, being the first that should rise.
Wherefore, he is the firstfruits unto God, inasmuch as he shall make intercession for all the children of men; and they that believe in him shall be saved.”
This week was a bit of a tough one for me. I was physically sick, I felt weak and tired – more than I ever have before on my mission, I have been somewhat stressed as this is my last month in the mission, President and Sister Jenkins are leaving and many changes are coming my way. But at the same time I feel comforted, knowing that the Son of God understands me and knows exactly how I feel and reassures me that it will all work out.
If I could tell you all that I’ve done, all that I’ve learned and experienced in one email for each week it would surely never end. But I hope you can understand what I am trying to get across here. I really love serving the Lord. I know that I am doing His work here in Arizona. I know He loves me. I know He loves you.
Hermana Hershey
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Hermana Escobar happily enjoying her Taco Bell as I eat soup.
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This is Mariana, her mom is getting baptized this Saturday! She is so golden!
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President and Sister Jenkins had a farewell breakfast this morning for all July departing missionaries (since they leave tomorrow morning and won’t get to be there at our farewell dinner) and after we all got our itineraries. I will be flying first to Utah and then to Idaho from there.

¿”Dónde está el minion”?

Hi everyone!

First of all, Happy Father’s Day to all of those fathers
out there! Hope it was a great day for everyone.

This week went fast as usual but a lot of miracles happened. We went
looking for this referral we received a while ago named Isabel. When
we got to the door, this man opened it up and told us she wasn’t home.
We asked what his name was, etc etc and ended up talking to him for a
bit. He just got here from Guatemala and was in a bad accident over
there. It was so bad that he shouldn’t have lived but he was telling
us that he has faith that God saved him for a reason. We shared a
scripture and our testimonies and asked if we could come back again
and he said that we’d definitely could because he believes we were
sent from God. He told us that he had prayed that God would send
someone to teach him about His word and then we showed up! It was so
cool!

Also, we went over to Luz’s house to visit. She was really busy and
asked us to come in. She had learned about priesthood blessings at
church and so she asked for one for her two daughters and her sister
and mother. The elders came over and gave them all blessings. At the
end they were all in tears and the spirit was really strong. The next
day we went back for a lesson and Luz’s sister really opened up to us
which was a miracle! She told us of some problems she has had and how
she thinks it’s amazing that two elders, that she has never met in her
life, came the day before and said exactly what she needed to hear.
They mentioned something very specific to her that she has been
worried about.

As she was sitting there telling us all of these problems she has
(which are pretty tough problems if I might add) I was feeling
inadequate and not really knowing what in the world I could say to
her. Then all of the sudden the thought came to me, “What are you
doing, Hermana Hershey? You have almost all of the teachings of the
Presidents in your hands (on my iPad) that you could share!” So I went
through my tags and shared this from Elder Dale G Renlund:

“At the same time, I can emphatically state that because of the
Atonement of Jesus Christ, ultimately, in the eternal scheme of
things, there will be no unfairness. “All that is unfair about life
can be made right.” Our present circumstances may not change, but
through God’s compassion, kindness, and love, we will all receive more
than we deserve, more than we can ever earn, and more than we can ever
hope for. We are promised that “God shall wipe away all tears from
[our] eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor
crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things
are passed away.”

The other day one of my recent converts messaged me and told me that
she is so grateful for all that I taught her. As I read that I
wondered if she – and all others I have taught while on my mission –
will ever know how much more I learned from them. Watching people
change because of the atonement has been one of the best learning
experiences for me. I don’t think these experiences could ever be
replaced by any others.

Our recent convert, Jesus, has a younger brother named Omar who has
autism. Omar is so fun to be around! He has so much energy! He also
loves the Minions. Hermana Gutierrez had a stuffed minion that she
told us we could give to Omar. So yesterday we went over and gave it
to him after a lesson with his family. I have never seen someone so
excited to receive anything! It was so cute to see his face just light
up over something so small!

Well I have so much more to say but this email is already pretty long
but I will leave you all with my testimony of the priesthood (aka the
authority from God to act in His name). I know that that power was
lost for many centuries after the death of the original twelve
apostles but that it was restored by the prophet Joseph Smith. Many
think that we may worship Joseph Smith, but that it far from the
truth. We only worship God the Father. Joseph Smith was just another
prophet as Moses and Abraham were. But I do know that he was an honest
man and that if anyone ever has any questions or doubts about the
church the first thing they need to do is read the Book of Mormon and
pray to know if it’s true. Because if the Book of Mormon is true, then
everything else we teach and believe goes right along with it.

I love you all –

Hermana Hershey

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Omar and his minion
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 blurry but this is my best friend!
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we tend to carpool with our roommates

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I have been drawing things that happen during the week in Hermana
Escobar’s 12-week book (for trainees)!

El Bautismo de Brent

This week we had Brent’s baptism! Even though none of the bishopric
came and neither did our ward mission leader, it was still so great! I
felt the spirit really strong and I could see how happy Brent was!
Brent is only 11-years-old and he comes from a part-member family. He
has a sweet spirit and he said that he wants to go on a mission just
like his brother! Definitely a baptism I won’t be able to forget. We
actually met him and put him on date Hermana Escobar’s first night!

I had a really cool experience while teaching an investigator named
Luz. She was telling us about her hardships in life. She is from
Mexico and has two little girls, one with some medical problems. She
was telling us how she came here for a better life and that it has
been hard but that she has so much faith and she knows that God gives
us trials for a reason. She said she didn’t know why she had the
trials she does but that she has faith that everything will work out.
As I was sitting there listening to her I just felt so much compassion
for her! I couldn’t even imagine what it would be like to be in her
situation and yet there she was with so much positivity and hope. She
has come to church twice since we met her and she is really excited
for her baptism!

Friday we were weekly planning in the church building and this lady
walks in and sits in the couch across from us. She was there for a
mid-single adults party that night and came to cook something in the
kitchen. I was talking to her just trying to get to know her and I
asked if she needed help with anything. I could tell she was a little
bit… different. Anyway, I literally just said, “we can help you if
you want” and she just replied, “I don’t think girls should be
missionaries. It makes since that the boys would do it… They have
the priesthood and it’s their job to teach the gospel.” I was in
shock! And so I told her that I disagreed and she laughed and said,
“Well I’ll just let God speak for himself.” And so I said, “Oh, He
already did through a prophet when he extended the invitation for all
worthy young men AND women to serve missions.” Then she just looks
down at her phone and we stood up and left. I think to say I was angry
would be an understatement.

So with that whole thing on my mind, Friday night I was a little
worried because we had been so busy with set appointments and meetings
that we hadn’t found any new investigators. So Friday night every one
of our lessons cancelled beforehand and we were able to go find. We
knocked on a referral’s door but no one answered. So we decided to
just walk to the other street all the way around and see if anyone was
outside. We talked to those we saw (which were few) but they were not
interested. I had a prayer in my heart as we kept walking when all of
the sudden I just turned my head and saw the lady coming out of her
house. I have never seen someone with such a desperation in their eyes
and she looked at me. I walked toward her and said “Hermana, are you
okay?” And she burst into tears. She came towards us and then told us
how she doesn’t want to live with her husband anymore because they
constantly fight. We walked with her to a chapel about 10 minutes away
and called the elders for a blessing. Then one of the members (Hermana
Gonzalez – she’s the best!) came to talk with her. We ended up
spending the whole night with this lady and her two little children.
Turns out she is a member but has been inactive for more than 10
years. At the end of the night when we were saying goodbye, she
grabbed my hand and told me how thankful she was that she saw us and
how we helped her so much.

The next day we found four investigators and one more on Sunday. We
ended up hitting our goal within the last days of the week. I know
that we needed to be walking down that road that evening and that she
was crying out for help and Heavenly Father sent us to her. I can’t
explain how or why I turned my head to see her, but I am glad I did.
Even though we didn’t find as we had planned that night, Heavenly
Father needed us to be somewhere else. I also know that that rude lady
I was talking about earlier was wrong and that girls CAN and SHOULD be
missionaries! I know that sisters can get into places that elders
can’t, just like the prophet has said. To comfort this lady in her
time of need would be not as easy for an elder as it was for a sister.

I know that everyone is a child of God, including the super rude lady.
I was angry but now I’m over it. She obviously has some trials that I
cannot see and I have some that she couldn’t see either.

Anyway, I hope you all have a great week!

Hermana Hershey

 

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Brent’s baptism!

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I went to downtown Mesa again

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I will miss the sky here

El Principio del Final

Dear family and friends,

This week has been good. I literally cannot believe that this is my
last transfer! I started “My Plan” today and it was weird. I am
staying in the same area and finishing training Hermana Escobar.
President already told me beforehand so I wasn’t surprised. I am so
glad though! Also Hermana Knudson is coming with Hermana Gutierrez so
we will get to be roommates!

Wow so many things happened this week. First of all we went to the
visitors center with Jesus and an investigator named Osman. We watched
the Joseph Smith movie. In the middle Jesus tells us that he feels
sick and then runs out of the room. I think he had the flu because he
was shaking and sweating pretty bad. Poor guy threw up in the trash
can outside. We ran to a senior couple that serves in the VC and asked
he elder for a blessing. He was talking to this member who was
visiting the VC and asked if he would help in giving a priesthood
blessing with him. They take Jesus in the office and this random
stranger – who I have never met and still don’t know his name –
proceeds to give Jesus the most powerful blessing ever! I look up
halfway through and see that this man has a tattoo on his arm. It was
obvious that he is either a convert or was inactive for a while
before. My testimony of the Atonement was strengthened in that moment.
I was in tears at the end of that blessing. I tried to hide my face so
Jesus wouldn’t see me crying, haha.

One thing I have really come to realize is that no one is perfect. We
ALL make mistakes and fall sometimes. Everyone is different and has
different strengths and weaknesses. But we are not expected to be
perfect, and we are not expected to walk this life alone. We have a
Savior who understands us and is always there to help. I have come to
realize that there are many things I would not be able to do without
Him. And training a new missionary is definitely one of them.

“My Plan” is kind of strange and definitely not what I was expecting.
My whole life right now is the mission and “My Plan” helps me to see
that this is just the beginning and the best is yet to come after I
return home. I was kind of thinking that this was the best thing that
has ever happened in my life (even though it’s been tough) and I
wasn’t very excited to go back to a place where I know things will be
different and I will most definitely be different as well. But I can
see now that change will be good. However I am still glad to be in the
mission and I am still overwhelmed thinking of how much time I don’t
have.

Anyway, enough of that. It is so hot here! Above one hundred degrees
every single day! If you would like to feel what Arizona feels like I
invite you to turn your oven on and just sit in there. I’m not joking.
That is what it feels like. But I’m not complaining because I actually
think I will miss it in a weird way.

Things are going so well in the area. We have an investigator named
Angel and he is very prepared. He asked for Sundays off from work just
to go to church. He basically bore his testimony on the sabbath day
during one of our lessons. We also have a baptism this Saturday for a
young boy named Brent. We are seeing many miracles!

I hope you all have a wonderful day!

Hermana Hershey

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El Bautismo de Manuela

Hey everyone!

This week I went back to Pueblo for Manuela’s baptism! It seriously
was one of the most spiritual baptisms I have ever been to. She was
crying through her whole testimony. Her daughter was recently baptized
2 years ago and she has been taking to lessons for at long. When I was
back in that area last transfer we felt inspired to ask her to pray
for a date she could be baptized since she already had a testimony.
She chose her birthday. It was such a great experience!

I’ve still been recovering from having the flu. Not much I can do, I
just keep going and my voice is slowly coming back. It’s kind of been
a bummer not being able to sing but I’m sure my companion and
roommates were grateful. (Just kidding).

Yesterday we felt like we needed to visit this inactive family we had
just met a week earlier. I was kind of second guessing myself because
we had a family home evening planned with them the next day, but we
decided to go and see them. We read Ether chapter 12 win them from the
Book of Mormon and then showed them the “Because of Him” video. The
spirit was guiding every single word we both said. And I was so proud
of my hija (Hermana Escobar)! We both walked away from that lesson
just blown away at how strong the spirit was.

Things in the area are goof really well. We still get a referral
everyday, mostly from the English missionaries. I feel bad for them
since this area is basically Mexico. It’s crazy how half of my mission
is complete opposites. One side has tons of Spanish speakers and the
other has few so finding is harder. But I honestly have loved both
areas just the same.

Next week is transfers so I won’t write until Tuesday. I also start
“My Plan” next week which is this thing that the church set up for
missionaries in their last transfer… 😦 it has six different topics
and I’m supposed to do one a week. It’s basically what my plan is when
I return home. I just really don’t even want to think of that right
now to be honest.

Anyway, things are going well. I hope you all are having fun and
choosing the right. Miss you bunches.

Hermana Hershey

1: Manuela!
2: all of us with our panchos
3: since it’s hot sometimes all we eat is cold watermelon for lunch.
4: Guatemalan dresses 🙂

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Manuela!
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All of us with our panchos

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since it’s hot sometimes all we eat is cold watermelon for lunch.

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Guatemalan dresses 🙂

I’m Training?

Hola todos!

Shortly after I wrote my email last week, President Jenkins called and
told us to hurry over to the mission home to pick up Sister Escobar.
On the way over it was bitter-sweet because this transfer in a trio
has been the best one I have ever had so far! We got to the mission
home and President told us that I would be her trainer. She only had
one transfer in Guatemala which means I will be second-half training
her. I was really excited but also kind of nervous! We ended up taking
the south area while the other sister have the north.

Since we use iPads everything we do is digital. So our area book (aka
all the information we have about investigators i.e. Where they live,
what lessons they need next, etc.) was completely messed up all week
long. It made it hard to work but we managed to get around. Our first
night together we put someone on date to be baptized! It was awesome.
It’s still a little messed up but I’m sure we can work it out.

Jesus got baptized on Saturday! It was a great experience! It’s cool
because it’s the one investigator we taught from the beginning to the
end together in a trio. He was so nervous but his testimony was so
great! Not to mention he is the only convert I have heard talk about
the law of chastity in his testimony, haha.

So I don’t know what it is with me and getting sick in this area but I
have the flu AGAIN. I punched through it the first few days but now
today on preparation day I’ve decided to give myself a break and rest
until 6pm. Hermana Gutierrez is also feeling sick so we both stayed in
the apartment while Hermana Escobar and Brown went to do some fun
things, sigh.

I want to share part of a talk I love by Elder Jeffery R. Holland. He
is talking about Peter the apostle and how after Jesus Christ died
Peter went fishing again instead of preaching the gospel. Jesus kept
asking Peter if he loved him and Peter kept saying yes. Elder Holland
paraphrases in his own word what Jesus Christ said to Peter:

“Then Peter, why are you here? Why are we back on this same shore, by
these same nets, having this same conversation? Wasn’t it obvious then
and isn’t it obvious now that if I want fish, I can get fish? What I
need, Peter, are disciples–and I need them forever. I need someone to
feed my sheep and save my lambs. I need someone to preach my gospel
and defend my faith. I need someone who loves me, truly, truly loves
me, and loves what our Father in Heaven has commissioned me to do.
Ours is not a feeble message. It is not a fleeting task. It is not
hapless; it is not hopeless; it is not to be consigned to the ash heap
of history. It is the work of Almighty God, and it is to change the
world. So, Peter, for the second and presumably the last time, I am
asking you to leave all this and to go teach and testify, labor and
serve loyally until the day in which they will do to you exactly what
they did to me.”

I feel the same obligation as Peter as a missionary. I know that this
is the work of the Lord. I am so privileged and blessed to be here
knowing that the Lord has confidence in me.

We went to the trainers/trainee meeting on Tuesday and my mission
president asked me to share some thoughts just randomly to all of the
new missionaries. I told them, “One thing that I have learned is that
we are not perfect. But if we sincerely try to help assist in this
work, God will make up for what we lack. This is His work that we are
doing. I know that you are all just starting your missions, but in
reality I hope you know that you don’t have much time left. Enjoy this
time and use it wisely.”

Hermana Hershey

1: Hermana Escobar!
2: Jesus’s baptism
3: these are called popusas. It’s kind of like a tortilla stuffed with
cheese and beans and meat of some sort. This is probably why I always
get sick here.
4: no fun being sick

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Hermana Escobar!

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Jesus’s baptism

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These are called popusas. It’s kind of like a tortilla stuffed with
cheese and beans and meat of some sort. This is probably why I always
get sick here.
image4.JPG

 

 no fun being sick

No More Trio :(

Hey everyone!

This week was good and super busy! We had three baptisms this week.
The first was on Thursday for a young girl named Andrea. It was so
stressful because she and her family were late! Our mission prescient
and his wife were there too. But luckily they showed up and it was a
very spiritual experience in the end. Afterward President Jenkins
comes over and says, “I need to talk to you three.” Then he pulls us
aside. I was just like, “Oh great. He’s upset because the baptism was
kind of rocky at first…” But then he surprises me by telling us that
a sister in Guatemala had just received her visa and that she was to
be coming in a few days! So he is putting her with one of us. Who? We
don’t know yet and he STILL hasn’t told us. We pick her up today at
5:30. They are splitting the area again which is a good thing since we
have no time for members and less actives since they just combined
these two areas last transfer. So next week I will be telling you
which area I’m in and who my companion is.

On Saturday we went back to my old area for Christian’s baptism! It
was so good to go back and see him and people from the ward. Then that
night we had a baptism for Socorro which also started like 30 minutes
late (Spanish people tend to do that a lot). Both were so great and
spiritually uplifting!

The weirdest thing happened on Friday. We were in the church weekly
planning and at the end we ran quickly to the bathroom. When we came
back Hermana Brown couldn’t find her iPad anywhere and she had just
set it down next to her bag. We were the only ones in the church and
all of the doors were supposed to be locked since we never unlock
them. We search almost everywhere for her iPad when o felt the
impression to go outside. I went and saw this little girl walk by and
I ask her if she’d seen an iPad. She said, “I think I saw one in the
primary room but I didn’t touch it.” So we ran there and found the
iPad sitting on the chair. It was super creepy. Then we found like
hundreds of pictures taken from across the street just 5 minutes
before. A couple days later as we were setting up for a baptism this
man tells us to be careful to lock all of the doors because they found
vandalism in some rooms and the sacrament table. It kind of broke my
heart that someone would do that, but yeah this chapel is in a ghetto
part of town…

We got the chance to go to the temple this week and I ran into our old
neighbor from North Salt Lake, Megan Hanks! It was great to see her.
In the temple I felt like I learned so much. I decided to read the
Bible while I was in there and I find it so interesting that some of
the most controversial things that the church stands for are right in
the Bible. I wasn’t even looking for anything specific but yet I found
things about being God’s children and the pre-earth life.

As we were preparing a young man for his baptismal interview this week
we decided to share a video called “Dare to Stand Alone” which is a
story of courage that President Thomas S. Monson shares. As I was
listening, this video really hit me and I felt the spirit so strong. I
invite you all to give it a watch:
https://www.lds.org/media-library/video/2012-05-005-dare-to-stand-alone?lang=eng

It’s getting very hot here! On Saturday we went and got shaved ice for
lunch to try and cool down. It was a good way to also “celebrate” my
16-month-mark. Hard to believe I have been out this long. I hope you
all have a good week!

Hermana Hershey

1: Andrea’s baptism
2: Christian’s baptism (we had to do a selfie version since the other
were blurry -.-)
3:Socorro’s baptism
4: Bahama Bucks (shaved ice)
5: Dinner with the bishop and his family

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Andrea’s baptismimage2.JPG

Christian’s baptism (we had to do a selfie version since the other
were blurry -.-)

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Socorro’s baptism

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Bahama Bucks (shaved ice)

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Dinner with the bishop and his family

Last Skype Home

Hey everyone!

This week went by so fast I can hardly believe it. Talking with you
all on Mother’s Day was so much fun! I called mom’s phone to ask if I
could Skype a little bit earlier and Brooke picked up he phone. It
almost made me cry! I hadn’t heard her voice in almost 16 months! It
was so weird to see everyone so big and grownup. I miss you all a lot
but I will see you real soon.

On Thursday we went to the visitors center to have a baptismal
interview for Andrea who is a ten year old girl. While we were setting
it up we all kind of had the feeling that Elder Hoffman should be the
one to do the interview, so we asked him (he and his companion also
serve in the same ward as us). When he walked in the VC I told Andrea
that he was the one that would be doing the interview. Her eyes got
really big and she said to me, “Really? I prayed that one of the boys
(referring to the elders in our ward) would be the one to give me the
interview and I specifically prayed for him!” I felt the spirit so
strong in that moment. It was so cool! At the end of the interview
they both come out and they were both crying! Elder Hoffman told me
that hat was on of the most spiritual experiences he had ever had.
Andrea comes from a part-member family with quite a few problems but
she had so much faith and is so excited to be baptized!

We also had interviews this week with our mission President and his
wife. It went really well. It’s always nice to talk with them! It’s
sad that they leave on July 1st and I’ll have a new mission president
for 19 days! But President Jenkins and his wife will always have a
place in my heart. Thank goodness they live in Meridian.

Today we deep-cleaned our apartment. I just couldn’t do it anymore. I
have come to realize that missionaries are terrible cleaners.
Hopefully the cockroaches will be going away soon. Have I mentioned
how grateful I am for a mom who is super tidy? 🙂 Our whole apartment
smells like bleach now but it was worth it!

Things in the area are busier than ever. We keep getting referrals out
of nowhere. I never though I would say “Please! No more referrals!”
Until yesterday when we received two more. That makes 20 uncontacted
referrals and we are suppose to visit them within 24 hours of
receiving the referral. So much work it’s somewhat stressful but I
honestly wouldn’t have it any other way! On top of that we have temple
trip this week and three baptisms. The Lord is really keeping me
occupied during these last couple months.

Well I hope you all have a great week!

Hermana Hershey

1: saying hi to Hemsley and Brandon
2: everyone says “you look just like your mom!” 🙂
3: this is Andrea’s little sister while we were waiting in the VC
4: we all got some panchos!

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Saying “Hi” to Hemsley and Brandon

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Everyone says “you look just like your mom!” 🙂

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This is Andrea’s little sister while we were waiting in the VC

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We all got some panchos!