September 8, 2013

September 4, 2013

Sister Hammer and I at the Fresno Temple
Well this week was more uplifting then last.  We now have an official new investigator, Shen.  He's been a handful however.  At church Sunday the lesson was on Word of Wisdom.  He had to make sure he had everything correct.  It was making everyone giggle because he just kept asking the same questions over and over again to make sure he was hearing us correctly even though we knew he was. 
"Wait, so to be a Mormon you can't drink coffee?" 
"So all of you don't drink coffee?"
"Why can't you drink coffee?" 
"Lord has told us not to." 
"So to be a mormon you can't have coffee, alcohol, or tea?" 
"What do you mean by no hot drinks?" 
"Coffee and Tea." 
"So you can't drink any of that?"
"Let me get this straight, to be a Mormon, [all of you], you don't do these things." 
It was exhausting.  Ha ha.. So that was Sunday.  Well last night (Tuesday), we went and taught him Plan of Salvation.  We could NOT get over Adam and Eve.  He can't not get past the fact that God had conflicting choices of 1- multiply and replenish earth, 2- don't eat the fruit. "Why did God send us here to mess up?  God is dumb for doing that.  He sent us all here to be perfect."  We had to explain to him that we could not have been here on the earth had it not been for the fall because Adam and Eve didn't know how to fulfill commandment #1.  We were there for over an hour going over this over and over and over.  Luckily the Fairbanks were there to help with scriptures and stuff, but it was also frustrating because it turned more into bashing and trying to persuade.  Hna Hammer and I were very composed the whole time trying to say a few words here and there.  I think we talked for like 3 minutes total the whole night.  Shen just loves to talk and cut you off before you explain anything.  Sigh..  We came home all wound up to do anything, so we just went outside, laid down, and watched the stars.

We went through the ward list and found a Less-active whose Birthday was that day.  We went over and visited with her.  She was baptized a long time ago but only got baptized to be baptized.  She is now in her 50's and has joined other churches, but feels it's time to really know about the Mormon church and hopefully come back.  So we will be reteaching her the lessons and helping her come back to the church!  It's sad to see how many names are on the list that no one knows or will go out and try to get to know.  My heart broke Sunday when we brought up her name to the Relief Society.  They had no clue who she was.  We told them to reach out to her and invite her to the

Broadcast later this month.  We then found out that our Pres only sends invites to those ladies that come to church or that she knows.  I was so angry that she is letting all these other ladies in the ward slip through the cracks by not inviting them to the Relief Society activities.  A simple letter in the mail to them with the info I'm sure would work miracles!  I love the RS Presidency, I do.  I was just saddened by their logic and felt I didn't want to bring in any new RS members because of the fear they would be forgotten and left out too.  We will be working more with the RS and other quorums to help them in things they need and to help them do their Home and visiting teaching.  Thank you Mom for reaching out to ALL the ladies in the ward no matter what.  I know visiting with those "forgotten" ones here in California, I see how much they do appreciate just the thought of an invite.  So even though it may get frustrating when you feel like you're not getting through to some of the ladies you try visiting and reactivating, just know they are grateful for you and the thought.  They will come around.  Thank you all of you for putting your time and talent in your callings.  The ward just does not function without it.  I have truly seen that here.  Thank you for going the extra mile and taking more on your load then you even have to.  I wish I could help this ward in the ways I could if I wasn't a missionary.  I just have to figure a way to help them AS a missionary.  But I know it all comes down to loving them.  Serving them.  And helping them when they need it or even when they won't accept it.  I do love this area and ward SO much.  I will be so heart broken when I leave.

I wish more exciting things happened this week to tell about.  I did go on exchanges to Chowchilla and worked with Hna Peters for a day.  It was fun!  That area has recently been open to missionaries, so the members and people are really happy to have them there and the energy of missionary work is out the roof!  They are baptizing like crazy!  I learned a lot there.  Their Ward mission leader has a son on a mission and so it was so cute to hear the mom talk about her son and his experiences.  She is TOTALLY a mission mom.  Wouldn't surprise me if she pulled out a giant cut out board of him.  Ha ha..  It made me wonder how all of you respond to my letters and stories.  Hopefully they are enjoyable mostly and worth reading.  Some missionaries write incredible letters full of testimony.  Hopefully mine are fun to read about the area and yet you still feel the spirit of missionary work.  Please let me know how I can improve my letters/emails.

Luckily my next Preparation day is just on Monday this time, so I guess I will hear from you soon and hopefully something fun will happen to write about in my next letter.  I guess not TO exciting like getting stranded at a vineyard again, but maybe something like that.  We'll see. ;)  Oooh I did help out at a wedding reception!  I was in charge of the chocolate fountain.  It was broken, but I fixed it and everyone thought I was the greatest. :)  I love you all!!!!!!  Thank you for getting me through my hard times.  I feel your love always.  I know things will get better.  They have.  I just need to enjoy my time here and work harder!
- hermana Sorensen

At the Church Welfare farm
How raisins are made
Dry and thirsty after a day in the vineyard
Almond Trees!

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