Missoula for life!

3 Feb

Transfer news: I am staying in Missoula with Sister Moore! This is my fifth transfer here in Missoula now, so that makes it my longest area… but it feels like the shortest because time is going by wayyy too fast. There were a lot of changes in our zone with the other missionaries though- we are one of the few companionships still “intact”. I am so happy that I got to stay, and I am just hoping and praying that I will stay through next transfer too and finish my mission here.

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Last Monday for preparation day, we hung out with Karen (a recent convert) and went to lunch and ice cream, and then she came over to the stake center with us to play games with the other missionaries. So fun! On Tuesday, we met with the less-active that called us last week, Brittany. She decided to move back home to Reno because she and her boyfriend broke up. I really hope that she stays true to her good desires. I committed her to three things when she gets down there: (1) read and pray everyday, (2) meet with her bishop, and (3) meet with the missionaries. I set a daily alarm on her phone for her to remind her…. hahaha. Our recent convert Brett is doing a lot better this week. He also made the decision to move in a couple of weeks, which makes us really sad, but I know that it will be good for him. He was kind of just drifting with no purpose in his life, which contributed to his depression. He’s headed to Arizona in a few weeks to live with some other family and find some work (Missoula isn’t the best place for finding work right now). I’m not too worried about him- if we can get him connected with missionaries and the ward down there, he’ll be set. Brett told us that the next thing he is working towards is going on a mission…!

I had a good learning experience with the Spirit this week. One thing that was really impressed on my heart is that it’s important to be where you planned to be, when you planned to be there. On Thursday, we got a little off schedule of our daily plan because some things ran long. We missed our scheduled lunch hour, and let me tell you, lunch hours are sacred on the mission. Our next activity was an hour of tracting, and my natural self told me, “yeah, don’t go tracting… take your lunch hour instead”. I felt in my heart though that we needed to go, so we did. In just forty five minutes, we found a new investigator and two potentials! I am constantly reminded that God honors the plans we make if we stick to them.

This week, we had an OYM competition in our zone between the elders and sisters! (OYM means “open your mouth”, and it is where you talk to someone brand new and actively try to have a gospel centered conversation with them). Needless to say, we all got a little competitive, haha. We ended the week with 56 OYMs, which is a mission high for me. A lot of those came from a family history booth that we did on Friday on campus. It was fun to get to talk to people about family history and see them start to get interested. One of the best things about family history booths is that less-actives come out of the woodwork and introduce themselves… pretty great!

What people think missionaries are like.

What people think missionaries are like.

What missionaries are actually like!

What missionaries are actually like!

Funny story: On Friday, we had dinner and a new member lesson with Karen. She introduced us to her fish, named “Melchizedek”. I asked her, “Ok, when did you get/name this fish?”. She told me the she got it the day after our very first lesson with her, and she named it Melchizedek because we had talked about the Melchizedek priesthood during the first lesson, and she thought it was fun to say! She also told us, “My fish usually die within a few weeks of me having them… but Melchizedek is still going strong! I took that as a very good sign while I was investigating the church”, bahaha. Karen also accepted a calling as one of the gospel principles teachers, and she is going to do amazing!! She’s on track to get her patriarchal blessing soon too… ahh, she is wonderful.

My trainer Sister Bateman finished her mission this week! We got to take one last picture together. :)

My trainer Sister Bateman finished her mission this week! We got to take one last picture together. 🙂

Another way the Spirit helped me this week is that I was guided to talk to someone at church. We’ve been going to both the YSA ward and 4th wards recently, and I’m still learning all of the ward members in the 4th ward. During Sunday school, I saw a lady slip in late and sit at the back. I felt this intense urge to go introduce myself. After class, I bounced over to her and said hello and something about how I’m trying to get to know the ward better. She looked up at me and said quietly, “This is my first time at church in eleven years…”. Not even phased, I sat down next to her and said, “Ok, let’s talk about it!”. We proceeded to talk for a good long while, and I introduced her to some ladies in Relief Society and the Relief Society President, all of whom immediately adopted her into the ward. We got her phone number, and I dearly hope that she comes back again. I feel so strongly that everyone needs to be included, and who knows what her experience might have been if she had slipped into class and slipped out with no one ever meeting her. The black nametag I wear everyday makes things like this a little easier to do, but I know that there are people who need to feel loved and included in every single ward in the church, and we can personally minister to each of them.

I sure do love you all so much! Thank you for being you. Because YOU are GREAT!

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One Response to “Missoula for life!”

  1. Peter and Linda Gorshe February 4, 2015 at 2:15 pm #

    Great letter, Sister Hoggan. Sounds like you are touching a lot of lives for good. We realy look forward to your weekly posts ’cause they are so uplifting. Keep up the good work.

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