This was a very good week! It did have a rough start when on Monday we contacted our investigator in the YSA ward to make sure that we were still on for our lesson on Tuesday and he said to us, "I can not meet with you anymore. I thought you were Christian. I am Christian...." NO!!! It made us so bumbed! We told him that we ARE Christian but he doesn't want to meet with us anymore. It was just so sad! It's interesting because I told him when I first met him that we are Christian, that we worship Jesus Christ, and when we took him on a chapel tour, we told him that we are focused all around Christ. But for some reason he doesn't think we are Christian. It makes us so sad because the only thing we can think of is that he talked to someone and they talked him out of meeting with us. It was just a total bummer!
Well, now to start talking about happy things... Monday the 4th, we were lucky enough to have Sister Duvall in our family ward look at her grocery ads and find us good deals for shopping. Then she took us out and we went shopping! We were very happy because we only spent $30 total! It was nice! And we have a lot of food! We went home and I cooked our hamburger and other foods while Sister Amataga cleaned the house. It was very nice! Now we are saving money by not going out and we are eating A LOT healthier! So that made us happy :)
Well, Tuesday the 5th we were supposed to meet up with Sister Harker and Sister Synderrgard to do exchanges early but Sister Harker had a meeting so we kept pushing it back so we didn't do exchanges until about 8:15 pm that night. And right before exchanges, Sister Amataga and I went to a less-active members home that we hadn't seen in a few weeks. When we got there Sister Lupton was home (she's a nurse so she has weird hours of work...) so we were able to go in and see them. We love the Lupton's! They are so sweet! We just go and see them and share a little message with them and say a prayer and we hope that they will come back to church sometime soon. I think the biggest thing with them is that they had jobs that make them work on Sundays and so they got out of the habit of coming to church. So we are hoping that we can help them to come back sometime soon! They are wonderful and the ward loves them and they seem to have testimonies of the gospel so we just hope to see them come back to church. Then we went to the church and did exchanges.
Then on Wednesday the 6th, Sister Harker and I did a lot of work! Not like Sister Amataga and I don't do a lot of work but for some reason, we got a lot done and saw people that we haven't been able to see since I got here about four months ago. The biggest happiness of that day was when we went to the Cutler's home. We were on our way home for dinner but Sister Harker and I looked at each other and said, "Let's just try one more." So we got to the Cutler's and they let us in. Brother Cutler has been inactive for many years and his wife and daughters are not members of the church. They were making dinner and they asked if we had had dinner. We said we were just on our way home and Sister Harker said, "Yeah, Sister Wheatley made a bunch of good food!" So we started talking about how I love to cook and Sister Cutler said she wanted to learn something from me. So I told them that I make some killer Chicken Enchiladas and that I would love to make them for them! They said yes and we set up a dinner with them for tonight. President Becerra always tells us to use our talents and no one ever takes us up on it so when they said yes, I was so happy! (Plus I had been craving my enchiladas for a while but had no reason to make them and didn't want to spend the money to buy the ingredients....) Anyway, it made me happy that I was able to use my talents finally and that it was with a less-active/part member family. So we were planning a great night but yesterday they called and said they have to reschedule :( That made me sad but I'm not giving up hope that we can have dinner and a FHE with them.
Then Thursday the 7th we had interviews with President Becerra. So happy! I know Sister Amataga and I just had an interview with him about a month ago but it always makes me happy to meet with him and learn from things that he says. We talked a lot about many things but something we talked about is how quiet I STILL am. I think I am coming out of my shell but as we were talking, I realized that I'm still really quiet and I really need to come out of my shell and talk! So, President gave me a commitment to talk to five people a day for 14 days. Sadly I have only gotten about three people per day but I'm trying and I think that's the purpose of it, to try harder than I have been. So it was really good! There were a lot of other things that we talked about but couldn't write them all down in this email and neither would I want to just because they were really personal to me. But it was so good to have another interview with President!
Saturday the 9th we went out early and met Brother Ballard, our ward mission leader, at the church because we were handing out The Mormons Next Door fliers that our stake are putting out. There's a big presentation that President O'Bryant (the Glendora stake president) and President Becerra are putting on to help neighbors, friends, and random people understand us as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe and that we are normal :) So we had sections of the ward boundaries and gave them to people as they came up. It was cool to see how many people came out to help us with this. Of course we still have more routes to do so Sister Amataga and I are probably going to be taking them and doing them this week.
Well, the last couple things to talk about.... Yesterday, Sunday the 10th was a very good day! We got up early and went to Ward Council and it was so good! We have a lot of things happening in the ward and everyone is so willing to help us as missionaries and all of the members in the ward.
Then we had three investigators at church, plus Auntie Pam was there which from what happened last week and her dropping the lessons, we didn't think she would be there. BUT she was there and she was also called to serve in the Young Women's program! So things are looking up again for her! We also had a potential investigator there. There's a family in our ward who are less-active/part member and we went over a couple weeks ago to see them. Their daughter Mackenzie has been coming out to church and mutual activities almost every week and so we want to see if she wants to take the lessons. We saw her after sacrament meeting and talked to her about it and she said that yes, she would really like to take the lessons and be baptized. So because she is underage, we have to ask her parents for permission. But we, along with the ward council, think that her parents will say yes. They of course have their agency and can say no, but the fact that they let Mackenzie come to church and mutual, we think they will allow her to take the lessons. So that was really exciting! And when we mentioned it to Mackenzie, you could see in her eyes that she really wants it! So prayers are going up and hoping that her parents will say yes.
Then that night we had another lesson with our two new investigators who we thought were baptized when their family started coming back to church. We had a really good lesson with them and then we had dinner with their family. It was Chinese New Years yesterday so they made this authentic Chinese New Year meal. It was good. I can't lie. Everyone knows how picky I am but it was a pretty good meal. We of course are not used to their food though and they had tons! I don't eat a lot so I stopped half way through dinner. Sister Amataga on the other hand wanted to try all the foods but then ended up getting sick. I felt bad. I wasn't feeling the best either because we aren't used to their foods but I wasn't feeling as bad as Sister Amataga. So we made one last stop before going home and we were hoping she would get better, but she didn't. So we went home and called it a night (it was about 8:30 pm)
Anyway, it was a pretty good week! I am opening up a lot more and amazing things are happening in the ward!
Before I end, thank you to Mark and Marta Zacheis for another letter and also Allie Parrott for her letter! And happy birthday this week to my cousins Katie Monnier and Ammon Wheatley!
Love you all so much!
Sister Rachel Wheatley
Sister Rachel Wheatley