Monday, December 21, 2015

Christmas this Week

Dearest Mother!!

Christmas is this week!! Yay! That means I get to Skype with y'all and talk to you face to face. You will probably all sound so different from what I remember, I mean other than mom, I haven't heard any of your voices in 7 or so months. And mom's I only got to hear because a member called her while I was there.. So excited for Christmas! Also someone should measure Robert before then so I can know how tall he is now. In the pictures y'all send me it seems like he has grown about a foot, so now my head probably doesn't even reach his shoulder..

Just so you know, I am creating a list of things to talk to you about on Friday but I really don't think I will run out of things to say just because you know how I am and talking, and it will have been so long since I talked to any of your that I will probably have a million and a half things to say. Also just so you know, we can talk to a max time of 40 mins. The white handbook says 30-40 mins and President Cottle has asked us to keep as close to it as possible. So hopefully y'all can talk fast..

As I told you last week, we had transfers this week! It has been super crazy trying to get everything in order, and I realized after my new companion got here how under prepared I was to be her trainer. There are so many things that I am not the best at doing, and it is amazing to me how much the Lord has helped me and how much the Lord will help me as I strive to fulfill my calling as His representative. 

My new companion's name is Sister Maher. She is super awesome!! She is the 2nd of 5 children and she loves cats. Like a lot. Every time we see a cat she always gets so excited, whether its a stray or somebodies pet. Super funny but also really sweet. She is the first of my companions that has been significantly older than me since my trainer, and it is a little strange since I am supposed to be helping her understand what a mission is going to be like, and what is expected of her and of myself. Granted it's not like she is that much older than me, she is 20 while I am 19, but the rest of my companions have been within a month of me, so it is a little strange to be there to help her. She already knows a lot though of what to expect because of her friends at home who are return missionaries. She says she is really shy and that she doesn't talk a lot, but really she talks a lot but not usually at the first meeting. Something I have learned here is that the people who say that they are shy end up being the ones who are the loudest and who talk the most. Haha it's great fun though.

The next two transfers for us will be a little strange because of all the shifting President Cottle will have to do. First because of the no-fly time around Christmas, last transfer was only 5 weeks, and this one will be 7, but then also because of the English missionaries now being in the MTC for 3 weeks instead of two, the following transfer will also be a 7 week transfer due to the lengthening times of their stay in the MTC. So crazy stuff, which means that all of us will be on our missions one week longer than we thought. Which means I won't be home for Thanksgiving, but I will get home the following week.. One week after my Ministerial Certificate expires. Funny story about that, so the purpose of those is to show to people when they think that we don't have the legal right to be missionaries for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. But because of the extra week that is going on to all the new missionaries for the next while, all of them expire a week before we go home. I have not yet ever been asked to produce it, but I am just waiting for the moment when I have less than a week left and somebody asks me for it, but I can't show it to them because it is expired.. Haha. Haven't quite figured out how I will get past that one yet though, but I am sure it will all work out.

Oh another story you might like. So yesterday in church was the Christmas program in Sacrament Meeting. A week earlier, the person putting this on had asked the missionaries to sing at it, and one of the other missionaries to play it. but then.. Transfers! and half the missionaries left, one of them being the one who was supposed to play. whoops. Anyway she just had us sing Away in a Manger instead of the other song, and asked someone else to play it for us. So pretty much with absolutely no practice, we went up and sang. I thought we did pretty well considering there was no practice involved. Later that day we were visiting with our 96 year old investigator Willie Mae, and he cousin, who was a member was with us, and told her that we had sung at church. Of course, our investigator wanted us to sing to her since we had done in in church and she missed it, it was only fair she got to hear it too.. Sister Maher and I looked at each other, kind of shocked at the request, well demand really, so we began to sing. When we finished, she said that it was so beautiful and she had felt something special as we sang. Knowing that she goes to sleep earlier, I knew we wouldn't be able to go caroling to her when we were with our district Christmas Eve night, so I asked her if Sister Maher and I could come stop by on Christmas and sing some carols to her then. She said of course we can! So before we come skype our families, we are going to go over to her home and sing some Christmas carols to her. Should be fun! Also its nice because Sister Maher is a good singer so we can do spontaneous things like that and not be too scared to sing with each other. (Expect for the fact that she is shy when first meeting with people, and that was the first time she met with them.) Haha it was fun though:) I will probably do it again. The spirit it brought was wonderful. And it made for a good end to the lesson we had just taught. Especially in honor of the Christmas season:)

Love you all and Still super excited to talk to you on Friday!!
Sister Monica Walker

Your favorite person in the whole wide world!

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