August 30, 2013

Aug 27, 2013 - Stranded!

Well as you've heard, there is a big fire going on up in Yosemite.  Luckily it's about 2 hours away from us, but we can definitely see the grey clouds from it.  I don't hear much else, but hopefully they can get it under control.  A lot of our ward members have family up there so hopefully all goes well.  It's harvest season here of coarse and so we are getting loaded with fruits and veggies.  We were given a Canary Melon this past week!  Not to bad!  The tomato trucks are still driving in and out of town loaded.  We helped out at the vineyard again this Saturday.  Funny story though!!!!

We got to the church at 6am to carpool up again.  Well from the Los Banos ward, it was only Hna Hammer and I along with Bro Biehl and Bro Stevenson.  The Mercy Springs ward started meeting at the church and we asked if we could ride with one of the sisters since we could ride with the 2 gentleman from our ward w/o a sister.  So we road to the vineyard with Sis Tauheluhelu.  They go off and work on the Mercy Springs row, and we start working on the Los Banos row.  We thought our rows wouldn't take long since we were just here last Saturday.  Boy were we wrong.  It took us 5 hours with the 4 of us.  We were the very last groups/wards to finish.  As we were walking back, we noticed the Tauheluhelu's car was gone.  Didn't take us long to realize they left without us!  Here we are at the Vineyard with the 2 guys from the ward and the owner.  Our phone, keys, everything were left in the car.  We started calling our old area numbers asking for Pres Gelwix number and others to get ahold of and let them know and see if we could get permission to ride home with the 2 guys.  Another hour later after sitting around, we were told Bro and Sis Fairbanks were on their way to get us.  (They live 1 and 1/2 hours away).  Bro Biehl and Stevenson left as we waited around to be picked up.  The owner Bro Hansen was nice though and took us on a tour and showed us all the different kinds of grapes he's growing.  He had grapes that tasted like peaches, blackberry, and just yummy other flavors.  So needless to say, we atleast didn't starve to death.  We waited and waited and finally were picked up at 4:30.  We got home at 5:30.  Hurry took showers and cleaned up and were at the church at 6:00 for our ward movie night.  Fasts shower ever! Ha ha..  When the Fairbanks took us to the Tauheluhelu's to pick up all our stuff, Bro Tauheluhelu just came to the door staring and finally was like "We forgot about you!".  I just nodded my head smiling.  (I was pretty upset but couldn't help just laugh at the pure dumbness of the situation).  Almost 12 hours of Vineyard work, we were home.  But we still laugh that we were forgotten and stranded at the Lord's Vineyard.

For the ward movie night we watched The Other Side of Heaven!  We only were allowed if we had a progressing investigator there, which we DID!  Montserrat came and she loved it!  So glad we are starting to have more ward activities where we can bring friends and families that are not members.  Our Ward Mission Leader brought their neighbor Shen (which we will now be teaching!!!), and a girl in the primary brought her friend Ali!!!  So it was a success!

We were able to have FHE at Natalie and Junior Montes' house and had Montserrat and Joshua over.  It was so cute to see Joshua and Natalie's stepson Adrien play.  I think Montserrat enjoyed that too.  She never gets out much so it was something new for her to do.  We just can't seem to break down Montserrat's wall she has about being baptized.  But it is good to slowly take it down piece by piece.  I know down the road she will.

Sister's Conference was this last Thursday.  It was fun.  We now have 52 sisters and just under 300 total.  This next transfer we will be over 300.  It's growing! 

This Sunday Hna Hammer and I had to speak in Sacrament meeting. I didn't find out till Saturday night.  Luckily I had a little time Sunday morning to come up with something.  I talked on obedience.  I related our vineyard experience and how it seemed harmless to just ride with the 2 guys from our ward back home at such an emergency like that, but how we kept mission rules and obeyed our leaders and waited till a woman could get us.  Because of our obedience, we will be blessed and those that helped us stay obedient will.  Everyone loved our talks.  We had 3 potential investigators at church (Shen, Ali, and April), and 3 Less-active families (the Wright's, Palmer's, and Pineda's).  I was SOOOOOO happy to see the Pineda's there.  Hna Miller and I have been working on them for months along with the ward to get them to come to church.  This last week we stopped by and told them we wanted to see them at church.  They said they'd come but honestly I just figured it was them saying it but won't come.  Sunday morning we got a text saying she was ready for church and that her husband wasn't yet so they would be going to the 11:00 meeting.  We saw them and I bout cried.  It was so wonderful to see them and for them to hear us speak.  We got a message from Sis Pineda afterwards saying:
"Sisters, I have never seen you two in such the right place at the right time.  You are strong as I once was.  Thank you so much.  Heavenly Father used you today to bring me back." -Susie Pineda.   My heart just melted.  Seeing them there was the greatest highlight of being here in Los Banos.  :)  I love helping others come back to Christ like that.

Not a whole lot more happened this week sorry! OHHH!!! Just got back from the temple!!!!  I loved the new video!!!! :)  Have you seen it yet?!?  I can't wait to come back and do sessions with all of you!!!!

I LOVE YOU ALL SO SO SO MUCH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Take care!!!
- Hermana Sorensen

August 26, 2013

Aug 19, 2013

Hermana Hammer and I
Well this week has been good but hard.  Sad leaving Hermana Miller and saying goodbye to investigators from Mercy Springs.  Luckily I can still see them at church, but won't get to work with them.  Wednesday we drove down to Fresno and swapped companions.  Hermana Hammer is great.  She was born in Ireland!!!  Her birth mother was 14 and didn't know how to take care of her and so the grandma called CPS and Hermana Hammer and her little brother were put up for adoption when she was 5 and moved to Dallas Texas.  She joined the church almost 2 years ago this October.  Her testimony is very powerful and sweet.  I'm excited to work with her.  She is very energetic and spontaneous.  It's good, but at times it's overwhelming.  Hopefully I can deal with it and not get frustrated or angry.  You know me, I like my quiet moments or "stop being annoying".  Ha ha.. The mission may have changed me in other ways, but I still need my space. :)

Madera Grape Vineyard
Long vines, Where do I cut it?
Saturday we met at the church at 6:00am to head to the vineyard there in Madera.  It was very exciting but let's just say I do not want to harvest grapes.  Too complex.  The head guy was giving directions and all of us were just staring with blank expressions.  Hermana Hammer and I for sure ruined the harvest for next year. Ha ha..  What you had to do was cut the old branches off where there were 2 new branches on each side that were long enough to reach the fence.  I had no clue what were the new branches verses the old ones.  They all look the same to me!  Some were easy to tell  while others we had no clue.  There was a good turn out though so the job got done in 2 hours.  Our ward has 2 rows so it wasn't much.  We might be going back this Saturday to collect all the grapes we missed.  I nibbled on a lot and they were delicious! :)  We might go back this Saturday to collect all the grapes we missed.  Montserrat even said she might go with us!

On our way to email today, we locked up the house and realized the house keys are inside.  So we broke in through the window and found them.  Hermana Hammer said she wanted to have fun today!  I showed her the fun of trying to break in!  I am not good with keys.  That was Hermana Miller's job.
We have been visiting with Montserrat again.  Her mom let us start coming again.  And teaching her we found out what's holding her back.  I know she can be forgiven of her past, but it will be hard for her to know that herself.  She brought Joshua to church with her yesterday so that was good!  This Saturday we are having a ward movie night and watching The Other Side of Heaven.  President Gelwix told us we can go as long as we have an investigator with us.  So we are praying Montserrat will go because we really want to go!!  Not sure if I mentioned that we watched Forever Strong the other week with the Lagunas family.  It was so funny to see the connections with what Pres Gelwix says.  A lot of what is said in the movie is said in Zone Conferences.  It was fun seeing him in the movie (he's one of the ref's in yellow).  That movie just brings a whole new meaning to me now.  Great movie.

Watched Joseph Smith: The Prophet of the Restoration with the Alvarado-Calixtro's.  They really liked it and believe Joseph Smith was a prophet.  They want to go to the temple.  The dad (Carlos) broke down in tears as he told us that they have a son that died.  He is hurt that many tell them that God just needed him.  He loves that we can be sealed and with our families forever.  The only thing that is keeping this family back is that they don't understand baptism in this church.  I don't know how to push their beliefs further and help them understand.  We will teach them authority again and pray that they can understand and want to be baptized in this church.

Funny story.  We were visiting a Less Active: Mary Opdyke.  She's an elderly lady and just loves to talk away.  She has 2 dogs and is just an animal lover. We called it service after 2 hours of her talking to us.  But as we were there I noticed a bunch of deep scratches on her arms and wondered how she got them.  I was scared she had fallen.  One of her dogs came in and started licking them.  She then told us how she got them.  She was out weeding and fell and the weeds cut her.  Well this weed started growing in the cut.  So she went to the doctor and they asked her "What's that on your arm?" and she replies "a weed" (nonchalantly).  I couldn't help but laugh thinking she was joking, but I guess it really is growing out of her arm!  She teased and said she should spray her arm with weed killer to see if that would take care of it.  I have just never heard of that happening!  I thought of the Odd Life of Timothy Green.  

The Elders here are Elder Badford and Elder Andersen.  I mention them because they might not make it through this transfer.  Ha ha..  We laugh that they are going to kill each other.  It will be interesting working with them.  Our new district is all spanish.  District meetings are going to be awful now with them having to be in spanish.  The District leader is Elder Neeves from Australia.  He's different.  Hopefully he loosens up.  This is actually his last transfer!  Can you believe that I only have 6 transfers left?  I'm in my 6th transfer being here and have 6 more.  Half way!

I LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!!
- hermana Sorensen 

Aug 13, 2013

This week has been SUPER crazy!  I'm gonna have more ulcers for sure with all the stress and anxiety. Ha ha..  I don't even know where to begin.  Yes Angelina was finally baptized this Saturday.  It was a wreck getting there.  She has had 3 solid baptismal dates since Hermana Miller has been teaching her, 1 since I've been here, but always canceled it the day of.  The missionaries have been trying to get her baptized for over a year and a half now.  The family has been in and out of friends and families homes because they can't afford a home themselves.  Well they have been staying with the Grandma, but her landlord said if they don't leave, the Grandma would be kicked out as well.  Friday was the last day for the DeHerreras to be there.  The Dad has had troubles with the law, so the Grandma was scared the police would come and kept trying to get them out all day Friday.  They took their time and kept telling us the baptism will still be on.  Our Bishop kept telling us it will be canceled, but our ward mission leader and us would not give up.  That night as we were headed to our meeting with our mission leader (Bro Tauheluhelu) we got a text from the mom saying the have to cancel the baptism because they are all out on the streets.  Bro Tauheluhelu and us got in our cars and hunted them down and brought them back to his house to stay the night.  The Robles, another family in the ward opened their doors too and had 3 of the kids stay with them.  That next morning we got a call from Bro T. saying that we should still go through with the baptism.  Couple minutes later, we got a call from the mom (Joanna) saying they just can't do it today and to put it off till next week.  I told her to talk to Bro T.  She did and a few minutes later it was back on!  We got to the church, filled up the font, but no sign of Bishop to interview the 8 year old Daniel (Angelina's brother) who was also getting baptized.  We called him and he said it was canceled.  We laughed and said no, we are here with the family waiting!  30 minutes later he came and did the interviews.  What we scheduled for an 10:00 baptism turned into a 11:30 one.  Oh well.  The Elders were there to interview Angelina, and they went to the bathroom to check the font and they came back out saying it was draining.  SO we ran and started it back up again.  That's not all!  As we are running around, a gentleman from the other ward was there at the church and came up to us.  He had a black eye and dried blood all on his shirt.  He asked us if we could call bishop to help him out.  He was jumped and kicked out of his house as well.  We tried calling the bishopric but they were all out of town.  No one from the Los Banos ward helped or came over.  Brother Souza from the Mercy Springs ward who miraculously was at the church working in the clerks office said that he would let him stay with him.  So we have the DeHerrera's at the Tauheluhelu's, and Anthony Bagley with the Souza's.  I wished I could open my doors to them but seeing how I have no say and really no doors, I am so grateful there were people in the ward willing to help.  After a long LONG morning we finally got the 2 kids baptized.  It was a miracle.  We made a miracle call-out to the whole mission about it.  We all had pizza afterwards and Hermana Miller and I were out back in the craziness of other things not even getting a break.
Our Zone Leaders called us shortly after and said that they are on their way to Los Banos because they just got news that they are splitting the area and another set of missionaries will be coming and they need to find them a place.  So after the baptism, we went apartment searching.  We were excited to hear about the upcoming change, but nervous.  Transfer calls came later that night to which we found out Elders will be put in the Mercy Springs ward and the Sisters will be in the Los Banos ward.  Hermana Miller is headed to Hanford, while I stay here and get Hermana Hammer.  I've met her once, but I am beyond scared to run an area PLUS having it split and not knowing how that's going to be.  Both Hermana Miller and I were confused with the transfers though because we thought us spanish speaking would be in the Mercy Springs while the Elders would be in Los Banos.  Our Zone Leaders thought it was a mess up and Sunday told us it could be switched.  That put me into even more of a panic because I didn't know who to say goodbye to or tell someone something and then have it not that way.  It wasn't till yesterday that we got a text from them saying that they talk to the Assistants and they said that yes the Sisters will be in the Los Banos ward but cover all Spanish and will still need to attend the Mercy Springs ward to translate and be with the Spanish investigators.  So I pretty much am still in both wards, but will work majorly with the Los Banos ward.  I'm happy but sad.  This is the hard ward.  Bishop Lee is still really ill.  He's having radiation and chemo treatment.  Our dinner calender was sent around Sunday yet no one signed up.  The dinner calender for Bishop however was full.  It hurts that we don't get the attention or care that we should.  Don't get me wrong, I love the Bishop and am so happy the members are taking good care of him, but it's hard to really love the members when you know they don't love you back or just are willing to help in missionary work.  With the area splitting we will be having to share the car with the Elders which means yes, I will be out on my bike for once.  But we aren't allowed after 6 and if the Elders need the car then, I honestly don't think we'll be doing much because it will be hard for us to find member rides.  I can't help but feel sorry that I wasn't a very good member back home.  I'm so glad I was able to help the missionaries when I could with rides, because I know how hard it is to find people willing to go out.  I wish I could have gone out more with them.

Guess what Mark?  I finally met someone from Torreon!!!!  Not sure if you served in Coahuila, but I was talking to a family and asked where they are from.  I always tell people "my brothers served and lived in Mexico!  One lived in Torreon and the other in Mexico City."  They were shocked to hear Torreon and just gabbed away telling me about it!  I think I won them over to hearing more about the gospel because of that.  Ha ha..  You need to tell me what areas you served in.

Well again like I said this week was crazy and stressful.  Friday after hearing about the DeHerrera's, we got a text from Montserrat.  She told us we can't come over any more.  Her mother thinks she's being rebellious in listening to us.  They got in a big fight and she just said that it would be best we stopped coming for a while.  She said she'll keep reading though and praying.  Our hearts broke.  Our one good solid we had in the Los Banos ward dropped us.  She was just starting to get it.  I hope and pray the mothers heart will be softened and that we can get back and teach her.  Please pray for her that she can know what we have taught her is true and that it can change her life as well as her families for the better.

We taught the Alvarado-Calixtro's the restoration this week.  They were really intrigued by Joseph Smith and kept asking why they've never heard this before and why people didn't believe him.  We gave them some Book of Mormon's to read and asked them to pray.  They said they would and want us to come over again and teach them more about Joseph Smith.  I told them we would watch a movie about him (the 1 hour film about him) and they are all just so excited.  Now I just have to go find the movie!  Hopefully a member has it.  Ha ha..

Guess what?  I get to work in the Vineyard this Saturday!!!!!  I am so excited!!!!  I will take lots of pictures don't worry.  Hopefully it's not to rough and hot.  It sounds like we are cutting the fruits off and leaving them to dry. (so probably making raisins).  

Sunday Howie, Angelina, and Daniel were all confirmed during Sacrament.  It was so exciting.  Anthony Lagunas received the priesthood last night at the Bethams home.  We were really happy to see him finally receive that.  Brother Betham has been out of town so we have been waiting patiently for his return.  I am excited to see him pass the sacrament next Sunday.

Last night we went and said goodbye to the Tauheluhelu family.  Bro Tualou gave us giant Tiki's!  Sis Anna gave us shell necklaces.  They are such a sweet family.  I'm glad it's not my official goodbye and that I will see them around still, but it will be sad not having yummy meals with them and working with them one on one.  The Tiki they gave us represents love.  When the homes in Tonga have them, it brings good luck.

Well I think that sums up this week for now at least.  Oh and no we were not able to attend Bro Stenbergs funeral only because no one told us when it was.  I was really bothered by it and really wanted to go but I guess life goes on.  We will be stopping by to visit with Sis Stenberg later this week now that things have settled.  But I have lots of pictures so hopefully I can send some.  Thank you for all the love and prayers.  This week they were very much needed.  I know I will continue to need them as I begin a new transfer with a new companion, having the area split, leading the area, finding new investigators, working with the Los Banos ward, etc.
 Have a good week and know that I love you all so very much and just can't wait till we can be together again.

- hermana Sorensen

Aug 6, 2013

Have now been out 203 days with about 302 left.  Crazy how time is flying.  This week has been one where it still seems like forever away, but I know I need to enjoy every hard minute and every joyful minute there is.
Well Howie was baptized Sunday!  It was so hectic trying to get everything ready with church going on, having to go to meetings, get papers filled out, etc.  But it turned out wonderful.  It's almost nicer to have baptisms on Sunday because everyone stays and attends!  It was packed!  It was great though.  This last week we actually committed another investigator to be baptized this weekend!  She's 9 years old, Angelina.  I'm pretty sure I've mentioned her before.  She was suppose to get baptized in June with her cousins Elayna and Audrina Flores, but the parents post-pond it due to family issues.  We've been trying to get her to be baptized ever since but the family has been moving house to house and we can never catch them.  They've been at the grandma's house this last week and so we've taken every chance we had to teach and get her ready.  We had bro Tauheluhelu with us and he offered to have a BBQ afterwards (that was one of their concerns; they didn't have a house to hold a party).  So they said yes and Angelina and her new 8 year old brother Daniel will be baptized Saturday.  I'm really nervous because I know the family is being kicked out of the Grandma's because of the landlord, so they might use that as an excuse.  But I hope and pray it finally happens.

This Sunday we were informed a gentleman in the Los Banos ward, Bill Stenberg, just passed away.  We visited with them about a month ago and then have been trying to have dinner with them the past couple weeks but they kept canceling because he wasn't feeling good.  They both are from Kaysville (went to Davis High) so it was really fun connecting with them on that.  He was a trooper.  He had kidney failure and was waiting for a transplant.  So we are very sad by the loss.  His funeral might be Saturday as well and so we might have to move the baptism any way.  But I am grateful for the chance I had to meet him.

This week has been a huge challenge companionship wise.  We are starting to butt heads and it is taking a tole on both of us.  I wish we could get a long always, but some peoples way of communication is not the same as others.  We have transfer calls this Saturday and transfers next Wednesday, so we will see what happens.  I don't even know what I want any more.  I want to stay here mostly because of the security of English speaking, but the area is really hard and so it would be nice to get away from it.  With all the missionaries coming in, we are out of cars so all of us have to start biking more.  Another reason why I'd like to stay here because we are out in the middle of no where and NEED a car.  Ha ha..  I just don't want to bike miles away in this heat.  No fun.  Haven't had to ride my bike yet, but I'm sure I will in the near future.

Nothing else really happened this week. I luckily did not come down with what Hermana Miller had, but I am suffering from bad allergies.  The other day my tongue went numb!  CRAZY!! I've never had an issue with allergies, but here it's horrible.  At least I hope it's allergies.  Maybe it's a head cold I don't know.  So it's been a slow week of trying to recover and get back into things.  Montserrat came to church!!!  She stayed a little bit for the baptism too!  It was so wonderful too because she said "I don't know if it was today or later this month that I was suppose to not eat.  So I did it today anyway."  She just makes me smile.  She is reading, praying, coming to church, and FASTING!!!  HA ha.. It's still scary though because she's not opening her heart all the way.  She is still very skeptical of everything and is doing these things we ask really cause she doesn't like saying no.  But I hope something clicks for her and she does all these things because she really does want to do all of these things.  

We did service this last week with all the Elders in Merced.  We planted starters for bushes and then painted the deck.  They had a ping pong table so I challenged Hermana Miller.  She needs practice. ;)  I can't wait to play some more ping pong when I get home.  This week we also had dinner with a family that has an exchange teacher at their home.  She's from Japan so it brought back a lot of memories of Maimi. :)  I wish I learned some Japanese from her so I could have talked to Sunny or said some things to her.

Thank you for everything and all you do.  I miss you all so terribly.  But I know I need to be here.  Congrats Kaylor!  I am happy you get to go back out and serve!  Go missionaries! :)  Keep up the letters, keep up the prayers.  I love you all!!!!!!!!!!!!  Tell everyone I say hi.

-hermana Sorensen

July 30, 2013

Hello Family!  
  We've been getting a bunch of oranges, cantaloupe, and melons here from all the harvesting.  I'm excited for the Almonds though.  I will have to send you all some fresh California Almonds if I get some.  The trucks have been going in and out of town loaded with all the tomatoes and onions from here.  Brother Betham texted us the other day telling us to watch out for the tomato trucks.  I guess they can be pretty crazy drivers.  Ha ha..  It's fun being in an area full of agriculture.  Lots of corn, tomatoes, almonds, and a bunch of other fruit trees I haven't been able to figure out what they are.
Well this week has been a silly and crazy one.  We have had our days full!  Wednesday it was just lesson after lesson.  I don't know if I told you already about the Alvarado-Calixtro family.  I love them.  We found them about 2 weeks ago on exchanges.  They let us in their home instantly and has welcomed us since then.  There are 5 individuals; the dad Carlos, the mom Betty, Lupita (16), Hannah (11), and then Jesus (5).  The parents laugh because Jesus is all over me.  I'd much rather have a 5 year old crush on me than creepy 40+ old men.  But we have been teaching them and this last week Carlos asked us what happens if he dies, will he still be a father and married to Betty?  You can tell he was very troubled by what others have said.  We told him that yes he will be their father and yes he will always be Betty's husband as long as they are married and sealed in God's temple.  He was very relieved and excited to hear that.  They are just the sweetest family ever.  They are at Disneyland right now but will be back tomorrow for our lesson.  I told Jesus to take me with him and he said he would, but sadly he left without.  Sniff sniff.. ;)  

My ears have really been bothering me lately and so we got some ear candles.  I had hermana Miller helping me and guess what?  She caught my hair on fire!!!!!!  Ha ha ha.. She and I just laughed and laughed.  I still have my hair, but a good few strands were burnt off.  Luckily you can't even tell with all the layer's already in my hair.  Hermana Miller is just not good with fire.  She was playing with hand sanitizer and fire the other day and burned her hand and a hole in her skirt.  So everyone laughed when they heard she burned my hair because it's so typical of her to do something like that.  

At District Meeting Tuesday we played Hide-n-Seek.  Us sisters won!!!  When Elder Burdick (our District Leader) said we were playing, we were all a little like "uhh are you sure we are allowed to?  You do remember we can't leave our companions?"  We have a senior couple in our district and so Sister Mahlum, Miller, and I hid together while Elder Mahlum, and Elder Rader (Zone Leader) hid, and Elder Burdick and Elder Bone hid together.  The 3 of us girls hid in the High Council room under the table.  The Elders came in but saw it was empty and left.  We couldn't stop laughing.  They probably thought 3 dainty ladies would never get down and hide under tables.  We got out and sat on the chairs for a while.  We were about to give up our hiding when the Elders came back and found us sitting.  It was so fun.  We of coarse had this tied into finding Investigators.  Some are easy and not hard, others you have to look in all the nooks and crannies.  Once we find someone, they help in the efforts.  We need to get our ward members involved and get referrals.  We can't give up finding.  There are people there waiting for us to find them.  

Next story.  The sisters before were teaching a man named Jerry.  He dropped of the earth but his son started coming to church.  So this last week we had a lesson with him at Bro Tauheluhelu's house.  It was frustrating because we didn't know we were teaching him.  We thought we were going over for MCM.  Well we got talking and he just is very set to his New Testament and crazy thinkings.  We taught him again Friday night which turned out to be ridiculous.  We tried to teach him Plan of Salvation, but he was not listening at all and just wanted to argue and debate.  He said women will not be saved unless they marry and have kids.  We told him men are not saved too until they marry because they can't make it to the Celestial kingdom without a wife.  He said we were lying.  Hermana Miller gets set off really easily and so she was starting to get angry and bite back.  I tried to keep us on track of making it through the lesson.  I asked him where he thinks we go when we die.  He said that we become the earth and our spirits roam around from object to object.  We become trees and clouds.  I couldn't help but think he's been watching to much Pocahontas.  Ha ha.. So we dropped him but our Ward Mission Leader thinks he's gonna get baptized.  We politely told him he very well could but that we can not teach him right now until he softens his heart in sincerely listening to what we have to say and not degrade us.  Now we just can't look at trees the same without waving to Jerry Jr.

Lots of silly stuff again this week.  The work in the Mercy Springs ward is really growing, but the Los Banos ward is still really struggling.  We realized this Sunday why the wards are having a hard time.  When someone is released from their calling, they turn everything in.  They won't help train the new person called or go over anything.  They don't get any support from the previous person because its "not their responsibility anymore."  It's really sad.  One ward they released everyone and changed the Relief Society and Primary presidencies and we already can see that their is no help in the transitions.  I'm learning a lot of leadership skills here that's for sure.

This Sunday we have a baptism for Howie!!!  It just popped up on us but he is ready!  We've been teaching him very slowly because he has work all the time and lives over in Dos Palos.  So we've been teaching him at church and getting through the lessons there.  Well we had dinner over at his girlfriends house (the members in the ward) and taught him again and he asked when he can be baptized.  We thought more like next weekend etc., but we asked him when he would like and he said as soon as he can!  Sunday's work best for him and his family, so this Sunday we are putting one together just after church!  The other ward will be going, but I guess you do what you have to for baptisms.  We are excited! :)

Thank you all for everything! 

-hermana Sorensen

ps: Matthew Lagunas (Anthony's brother that got in trouble this last weekend) got out of jail and want's to get involved in church!  So we are teaching him now!!!!!  

pss: I had to play the piano in church for the Los Banos ward AND for Primary!  Needless to say, I enjoyed playing in primary over sacrament.