I only have 25 minutes to write this e-mail, and I want to send some pics, but I'm not sure if I'll have time...so please excuse my grammar and or spelling/ I might have to go with the bullet point approach...we'll see :)
Sister Pennington and her companions on P-Day
I'm excited for the fall here! It's starting to get cool and the leaves are changing! I definitely feels like home!
It was a good week this week! Cindy was able to make it to church on Sunday, and she really enjoyed it! It was so great! She is on my list of favorite humans ever made. She's the best!
Anyways, we didn't do anything too out of the ordinary this week. Just goin' though the day teaching people about the gospel an eating desert (EVERYONE feeds us desert). It's a good life.
We met with this really old Colombian lady this week, and so I tried to teach a lesson to her in Spanish. It was tough! I kept saying things in Portuguese or with Portuguese intonation...also she was really old, so I'm not quite sure how much she was able to retain...she did feed us cream puffs, though, so we must've done something right :)
The people we're teaching here are so wonderful and I love them so much. Almost all of the people we're teaching have severe financial, medial and or family problems. I was blessed to grow up without the same hardships that these people experience. Two specific examples from this week particularly stick out in my mind.
The first is a couple named Dustin and Misty. We contacted them through referrals from members, and we went over. It took a while for us to be able to meet with them, because Misty is very sick, and we would always come over at bad times for her. We came over one day, and she was talking about how she couldn't afford her medication, so her husband was out looking for lawns to mow so that they could scramble money together to get her the medication that she needs. We went and cleaned her kitchen for her, and that was really all that we could do. She was so sweet and appreciative of our visit. We're going back this week to start teaching her. I'm so excited to be able to share the peace and comfort that can come from the gospel.
The second experience is with a girl named Jane. Before I got here, Sister Goates and Sister Jacobsen were teaching her and she was getting it and she was loving it. After a while, however, every time they knocked on her door, people would answer the door and say she wasn't home. The sisters tried back a few more times, but stopped going as frequently. Jane is in her very early 20s. Anyways, on Saturday, by absolute chance (i.e. the hand of the Lord) we found her on her front porch as we were driving by. We pulled over and went up to talk to her. She is so miserable. She wants to leave and move to a better place, but she feels like she has nowhere to go. We weren’t able to talk too much so we set up an appointment to take her out to lunch. I didn't want to leave her when we were done talking. She had said to Sister Goates and Sister Jacobsen that she felt safe when they were teaching her. I could tell that she felt safe while we were there. I got in the car, and I almost started crying and my heart just ached for her because of her bad situation. We called the relief society president and got some contact information for an organization that can help her in Oak Ridge, so we'll give that to her tomorrow. I hope that we can help her.
Sorry to end with kind of downer stories, but I hope that next week I will be able to write about how we were able to help, and I truly know that because we have the strength an power of Jesus Christ with us we can help others to overcome any challenges they are facing in their life. I absolutely love everyone I meet. I can see and feel deep in my heart how important each of these people are to our Heavenly Father, and I'm so honored that He entrusts me with finding those in need and using His power and authority to help them.
I love all of you so much and hope that you are all doing well!