This week was something else. I'm not even sure where it went...
Shoutout to Yanni for the package and Mom for the shampoo! I ate all sorts of American food this week (cheese-it's and mac&cheese) and I don't regret it at all!
We had lots of meetings. Which means lots of driving to and from Perth, but we had another set of Sisters in the car, so it wasn't bad. Elder Halleck from the Area Presidency was touring the mission. He is an amazing man and I adore His wife. You can feel the love he has for the little part of the world he is responsible for. He loves his missionaries. He is very wise and together with his wife, they gave us training and counsel about how to improve and missionaries and as people. Sister Iosua-Fiu and I sang together on his behalf at the conference and he shook our hands with so muh energy afterwards, thanking us and praising us. He told me my Samoan was very good (he had to say that). I'm so thankful for opportunities I have to sing!! <3
Despite the crazy traveling and long trainings, we had a plethora of lessons scheduled and lots to do! We got a call from Brother and Sister Allen from Sydney who run the mormonnewsroom.org.au website who told us of an opportunity to be interviewed by a news reporter who is doing a story on Mormon Missionaries. We got permission from President Lindsay and our companionship along with the zone leaders met this lady at a park to tell her all about what we're about! We were a little bit nervous but the member who knew the reporter gave us a very nice report (pun) of the kind of person the interviewer was so we weren't too worried.
She asked us our purpose as missionaries, rules, and our schedule. She didn't know much about what we believed, and why we share it with others so we were able to tell her about our belief in our Savior, Jesus Christ. We told her about His role in our lives, and what he has done for each of us. She asked about the Book of Mormon and we were able to tell her about how it came to be, and that it testifies of Christ, just as the Bible does. She was so kind and made us feel very comfortable.
My favourite question she asked was how we combat people's false accusations or opinions about Mormonism. We explained that our purpose as missionaries is to teach, and most importantly INVITE people to come unto Christ. That when people question our beliefs, all we can do is invite them to pray to our maker, the one who knows the answers to every question, and ask God what is true. She asked if that actually resolves conflict. We told her not always, but the people really seeking to find an answer, the ones who were humble, always came to a resolution in time. We shared experiences of people we have taught and their experiences.
It was quite fun, really. She took pictures of us and promised us a great article. (: Check the website in a couple of weeks, it'll be up!!
We scheduled a dinner appointment with a sweet sister whom we love. She recently had 4 deaths in her immediate friends and family, within the last month, so things have been hard. She's recently been coming back to church and we just love her. We didn't think much of the dinner until she called to remind us Thursday morning. Usually those calls are people cancelling, so we were a bit surprised, but soon moved on to other thoughts of the people we were seeing that day. We rocked up a few minutes late, and she was standing outside her house. We gave her a hug and noticed she was smiling bigger than usual. "You are just GLOWING today, what happened?!"
"I've had a miracle, sisters! I was at the shops to get food to cook for tonight and I didn't have enough money to get what I wanted for the meal. I was praying to the Lord, saying that the missionaries are coming over and I needed to provide a good meal for them. Every time I looked in my wallet to pay for the food, there was more bills in there! I got it all, with the money I had!"
The minute I saw the table, I knew I had completely taken for granted the meals that people provide for us. She had set the table with a table cloth and place mats. She had made us potato salad, green salad with tomatoes and cucumbers and purple onions and peppers, and had a platter of cold cut meat. She had juice, and for Dessert, she gave us ice cream with fresh strawberries, mangos and bananas on top.
It was the best meal I had on my mission. I am so thankful for all the Lord provides for us, for the humility and sacrifice of this sweet sister, and for the beautiful meal we shared.
I don't think we realize the sacrifice, the prayers, and the diligence of Jesus Christ's Atonement in our lives. It's always there at the end of the day for us to partake of, but so often I forget exactly what He went through to provide for me. Without Him, and his sacrifice, his example and life, we would be nothing.
I am thankful for what I have learned this week. For my Saviour, Jesus Christ. For my Father in Heaven, and for missionary work.
I love Australia.
I miss you all!!
xoxo Sister Falter