7/1/13

Dad!

Thank you for your wonderful email! I love hearing all about the news of the family. It is fun to hear it from you and then from mom because from both of those I get a picture of what is really going on and how the family is doing. I love it!

I am so blessed to have so many people supporting me! I feel bad that I don’t have enough time to write to everyone I want to. Will you let all of the family and ward members that you ever are in contact with know that I think about them and love them especially David and Michelle?

How wonderful that you get to spend time with Shannon. Will you tell her that I use her as an example out here and that she is such a strength and an inspiration to me?! I love them all so much and I pray for them all the time! I hope y’all enjoy that time y’all are having with them!

One thing I have learned is to cherish time with the ones that you love. Don’t waste it worrying about things. Relationships with people and sharing the love of the gospel and more importantly the Savior is the highest priority there is!

President Holzapfel said something interesting in the last new missionary training that he will do in this mission. President and Sister Holzapfel have gone home and the new President and his wife are President and sister Hanks. (We will be meeting them up in Birmingham tomorrow.)

President Holzapfel said that we only have one chance to do this. This is the only time in our lives that we can give literally everything we have to the Lord and not have to worry about bills or money or school or anything worldly. We will never have this again, this period of time where we can devote 100% of our lives to the Lord and do His work so effectively!

I am so grateful to have been able to participate in this at this time in my life! What a MIRACLE! The Lord is hastening His work. I am a part of it. Y’all should be a part of it too. This is the time to pick sides and get to work.

I love President and Sister Holzapfel so much and I am going to miss them, but I am also excited to get to know President and Sister Hanks and to follow their counsel and their vision for the mission. President Hanks has the keys and He knows what Alabama needs at this time.

I love how the priesthood works! I love teaching people about the Restoration and testifying that President Monson is a true prophet of this dispensation and that He holds and is authorized to use those keys.

I love learning more every morning and being able to teach others what I learn (what I studied for them)! This is such an incredible experience!

Will you role play with the kids? Will you help them study Preach My Gospel? I promise that starting while they are young will bless their lives so much and then they will be prepared, not only to serve a mission, but also to share the gospel simply and clearly and BOLDLY with their friends.

I know that this gospel is true! I know that because I have studied the Book of Mormon and I have prayed and asked God specifically if it was true and if Joseph Smith was a true prophet. I received a witness from the Holy Ghost in my heart and in my mind that it is true. I know with everything that I am that it is true.

A Korean gentleman asked me if he paid all the expenses for me to go to another country to preach about Buddhism would I do it? Want to know what I told him……………………………..?

I told him, “NO! Absolutely not! “Of course he asked me why not.” I looked that gentleman in the eyes and I testified that I know that the things we had taught him are true. That I know it with every fiber of my being and that I cannot and will not deny that. No matter what you pay me, or if you threaten to kill me, I WILL NEVER DENY MY SAVIOR or the things that I have come to know are true. I would rather die than deny them.”

He was amazed and asked why I would be willing to die for it. I told him that I have received a witness and I know that these things are true. As I was testifying, I felt the Spirit almost surging through me, I felt that the spirit was testifying not really me, kind of like He took over and I was just listening.

It is true what the Lord promises in the scriptures, He will fill your mouth when you are on His errand and you are doing what He asks you to do to the best of your ability. I had never experienced that before. It was incredible and I want to have it again! I love this work! I am so grateful to be a part of it!

I am so impressed with y’all’s faith and strength! Y’all are such a strength and example to me! Mmmmmmhmm!!! Y’all are blessed for what y’all are doin’. Y’all just keep on doing what you’re doing.

How fun! I hope y’all get to go! Y’all will have so much fun! We should all go to Disney World after I get off my mission y’all! I am in love with the South! Wouldn’t mind living here… for real! 😀

I guess I better leave some info. for Mom’s email…. I love you my dearest father!

Your daughter and missionary,

Sister Wright (HMS)

Thank you so much mom!

I did get the package last Monday, it came after I emailed y’all. BANANGEY! THANK YOU SO MUCH! I loved all the treats! I love the t-shirts!

Mom, oh my goodness! Good heck woman! You are so amazing! You are like mega woman! I am so glad you get to spend time with Shannon! You deserve to play some and to have a friend to play with. I have loved watching your interaction with your siblings and learning from you! Tell them Hi for me and that I love them!

Hey so we just got some new couples in our ward for the summer. They are here to sell security systems. Bishop Lloyd had the missionaries get up and introduce ourselves in the combined RS and PH meeting yesterday and afterward one of them came up and the young man asked me what ward I am from. He thinks that he and his dad home taught our family. His last name is Henley. Does that ring a bell? It was a while ago… the ward is getting pumped about helping us with missionary work and things are starting to move forward! Finally!

There are some incredible families out here! Y’all would love them! I hope y’all will get to meet them someday!

Our stake president’s wife, Sister Millington, has a yoga studio where we are going to go to one of her classes each week so we can talk to her students and be seen out in the community. She is incredible and such a natural missionary! I love her! She has Parkinson’s disease but she did yoga and you can barely tell that she has it. Without yoga, she would not be able to move at all. She is such an inspiration!

The announcement is so exciting! Just what we need! Sister Lewis and I actually had a street contact ask us if we have facebook before the announcement. This is such a blessing. I know that the Lord is so involved in this work. It is His work and it is so important!

I received a cute, very happy package from Nathan and Becca which really lifted my spirits and I love! I am going to try to take pictures with each of the things they sent me and send them to them. I ate the Mr. Good bar already though… I was surprised that y’all know what my favorite stuff is! It means so much that y’all would send that! I will thank them, just thought I would mention it. They are so cute! They have sent me letters and I really appreciate it! I want to be a cute wife like Becca! 🙂

Thank y’all for your very fine support!

Don’t y’all fret now, your daughter is doing quite well and fixin’ to pick up a southern accent and the cooking too. The best things about Alabama, the food, the people, the land.

Until next week y’all!

Keep your heads up and keep smiling! You never know whose life it will bless. At all times, in all things and in all places share the gospel, and if necessary, use words!

Sister Lewis and I rode our bikes around in a neighborhood yesterday and picked up trash until 9pm so we could be obedient to president and not go in early even though we didn’t have any appointments. We both felt really good about it. The Lord blesses the obedient.

Sister Lewis and I had the opportunity to go to Selma for the day. Selma is an area about an hour and a half from Montgomery. There are no sisters there, only two sets of Elders. We went with the Sister Training Leaders, Sister Stahle and Sister Bush (love them!) because we were on exchanges.

We were a little late getting to Selma because the new missionary training meeting got out later than expected. When we got there we split up and Sister Bush and Lewis rode with a member in her car and went with one set of Elders and Sister Stahle and I took bikes and went with the other set of Elders.

The Elders had set up appointments with sisters and female investigators for us to meet with that they wouldn’t be able to teach. None of these people had ever seen sister missionaries before. One of the members said that she was going to write our names in her journal and say that we were the first sister missionaries that she had ever met. We felt pretty special.

We loved the people and the members were so sweet! One family fed us a most delicious meal! I had the best chocolate cake that was made from scratch. I want to learn how to bake southern! Soul food MMmmmhmm!

We had to have the Elders with us all of the time and we had to ride Elder, Sister, Sister, and Elder. President gave the Elders training and strict instructions on how to take care of us while we were there. Selma does not have any sisters for a reason…. it is dangerous. I heard that something happened, but I don’t know what. The members want sisters there so bad… we felt bad that we couldn’t say we would come back.

We were supposed to be out of there before dark, but somehow we didn’t make it out. Our appointments ran late. (Sister Stahle and I saw the space station go across the sky. That was amazing!) On the drive home Elder Bently (from Alpine) Sister Lewis and my district leader called us and made sure we were ok and were very concerned about us. President had called him to make sure we had made it back safely. Our Zone Leaders also called the sister Training leaders to make sure we were all safe. We had to call and text everyone when we got back to sister Lewis and my apartment where the sister training leaders stayed the night.

There was a huge cockroach that we had to kill before Sister Stahle could go to sleep. We tried to flush it down the toilet but it didn’t flush at first. It was my toilet and I was thinking about how uncomfortable that made me feel so I made sure that it flushed… ha ha! Fun times! I made pancakes in the morning and we also made apple dip which was a hit (no one had had it before, but they all loved it!)

Adventures! Selma is like the old south! It looks more like what I pictured when I opened my call. It is beautiful! I love the buildings and the people are so great! I hope and pray that someday they will be able to have sisters. It makes such a difference in certain situations.

OH MY GOODNESS I almost forgot! One of the coolest parts of the story!

One of the appointments we went to wasn’t home, but there was a lady next door who came outside and the Elders tried to ask her if someone was home. She wasn’t really talking back to them and I noticed that she was deaf. I walked over there and started signing with her and asking her questions and trying to understand her. It was a miracle!

After it happened, I realized what had just happened, and I was amazed! I never thought, even once that I would ever use the very little sign language that I know on my mission! The Lord new that I needed to be there at that time to speak with that lady, even though I didn’t know any religious signs, we gave her a mormon.org card and I explained that she could chat with someone online. I felt like she was grateful that I was able to communicate with and understand her and that I took the time to talk with her and ask her about herself. I am still amazed! I am so grateful that the Lord uses our talents!

All four of us sisters did the intermediate hymn in sacrament meeting yesterday. We did the Star-spangled Banner. I played the violin, Sister Lewis played the piano (she is incredible) and Sister Houston and Sister Hager sang. We did the first two verses together and then the third verse sister Lewis cut out and I played with them for two lines and then I cut out and they sang A-cappella for two lines and then both sister Lewis and I picked back up and then for the ending sister Lewis played the first two lines alone and then we skipped to the last two lines and I played with her.

Everyone stood up and put their hands on their hearts. I loved being able to share my talents! Everyone loved it and one of the sisters told us that it has been years since she has heard that song done the right way. It was really neat.

Sister Lewis and I were asked by Brother Stockman, our gospel principles teacher, to sing hymn 98 for the class. It felt great to be able to serve!

After church Sister Lewis and I were invited to sit in on ward council (that was the first time since I have arrived in the ward that missionaries were invited to attend) it was wonderful!

President Memory and sister Memory went with us all to take the sacrament to a few members. I took the violin and played for them.

We ended up visiting the Bishop at his home. His Granddaughter’s birthday was yesterday. She is living with him and his lovely wife! I love them all. We are going over there Thursday night for the 4th of July!

I love you all dearly! Even you Miriam dearest 😉 and Jaycee, and Caleb, and Andrew, and Sarah.

Great job with the yard sale! I am so proud of y’all!

Can’t wait to hear form y’all next week and to hear how you are being better member missionaries and preparing to serve your own missions! I promise that will make you the most happy y’all have ever been!

Focus on the temple! That is the goal! I can’t wait to be there with all y’all some day!

Sincerely your southern bell,

Sister Wright

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