Monday, September 29, 2014

Monday, September 29, 2014

Dear Friends and Fam,
     Hello! It is so good to hear from all of you I look forward to these two short hours that I get to email allll week! Wow where to start?! Well we started at Welfare square last Tuesday. We only go there twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays but it is from 9 in the morning til 5 at night so basically all day. I did not get much training and because there are only 4 of us sisters there at a time we are expected to just jump right into it sooo thats what I tried to do. We take tours around the welfare center to the bakery, cannery, DI, unemployment center and different places to show people exactly what welfare square is about. We show them a movie clip about Jesus Christ and the service he gave and how we try and implement that. We get a lot of referrals there because a lot of the people that come there are members. There are service Elders that serve at Welfare Square too but they just take the orders of people that come in to receive help. When it gets busy in the afternoon we will also fill peoples orders by walking them around the store and telling them the number of items they get. It warms my heart SO MUCH to see these special needs Elders doing this amazing and important work. Handicapped people have such a special place in my heart and it is a sincere privilege to work with them a couple days a week. Serving at Welfare Square is incredibly humbling. Although the people that come in there are a little rough around the edges sometimes you can truly see the light of Christ in their eyes! Can I just say that I love the security guards on Temple Square and Welfare Square? The first day I was there last Tuesday my companion and I were walking back from the cannery when this homeless guy approached us all creepy like and was asking us for help. We are not allowed to give money or really give anything to these people and he would not leave us alone so we felt a little weird and unsafe. Right as we were trying to make an escape two security guards walk out (I swear the Men in Black theme song was playing in the background) and they came to the rescue. They took care of it for us it was so awesome. I felt soo cool like I was a celebrity or something with security! We also had another homeless man approach us on thursday but I think he was harmless. As we were walking away from him we were like "okay bye, see you later, have a good day!" and he said "Okay bye Sisters, love you too!" haha we were like "uhhh sir we did not say we loved you." It was soo funny. When I am not at Welfare Square I am at Temple Square contacting people or contacting people online. Last week we had a woman named Mary from Fresno, California come on chat and she had amazing questions. She is like the perfect investigator We got her information and we have been talking to her all week on the phone. We sent the local missionaries and we are working together with those Elders teaching her the lessons. She is so receptive. On Saturday I committed her to baptism on October 25th! YES! We are so excited. She has some family that are members and she is going to have her uncle baptize her. It is sad because we will not be able to be there in person but we do get to skype it so we are really happy! We will teach her again tomorrow. On Friday I went on an exchange with my district leader Sister Jager from Switzerland! It was really cool I learned a lot from her we were able to get a couple new investigators. No I did not get to go to the Womens Broadcast on Saturday :( wahhh. They let every sister have an opportunity to go twice so I guess I will go the next 2 times. There were so many women here it was insane. I remember last year when my went to the broadcast with mom and grandma when President Monson spoke I do not remember exactly what he said but I got another strong impression in that meeting that I needing to go on a mission. A year later I am HERE. Like what? I totally forgot about that experience until I was walking home that night seeing all the women and feeling of their spirits I was overwhelmed with gratitude. My companion got to go so I went on an exchange for a couple hours with Sister Merrill from Idaho. We explored the secret tunnels and found the mecca of vending machines so I was okay with it haha. AHHH so I went to the temple this morning to the 7am session and guess who was in the session with us? drum roll please...........Dallin H. Oaks and his wife!!!!!!!!!!!! I kid you not it was amazing!!!!!! When we were walking into another room his wife was right in front of me and he came up and were holding hands RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME. (tears) It was the sweetest thing ever. I was less than 2 feet away from him and I could not say anything because we were in the temple but I was screaming inside. He brought such a special and powerful spirit I feel so blessed I got to experience that. ANNNDD when we were walking out we saw the one and only DAVID ARCHULETA! He smiled at me.(loud heart beats) apparently he is here all the time? So needless to say it was a great morning. I love my mission. Well this is my longest email yet. Thank you every one for your love, support, and prayers. I am happy to hear everyone is doing well. Don't get washed away in a flood please. Love you all.
                                                    -Sister Leavitt <3
Sister Vasi from Tonga! Ma la la lai! She's my fave! This is back at the MTC
Sister Cardus and I

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Monday, September 22, 2014

Dear friends and fam,
Hello! How art thou? Yes I have been here 5 days but I definitely do not have it down.Yes Mondays are my pdays and I get to email for 2 hours now instead of 1 so thats cool. Wow where do I begin. Wednesday was crazy long! Did you get the letter with the picture of my mission president, his wife, and I? Thank you so much for the package that was awesome! Lets try and send some healthy stuff soon so I dont come back a blimp pleaseee! haha. Wednesday morning everyone got matched up with their trainer. Everyone but me of course because my trainer Sister Cardus came back from her outbound in Texas that same day. I did not get to met her until like 7 at night so I was in a trio with 2 other sisters. Sister Cardus is from Argentina and speaks espanol! She has been on her mission for about a year. She is a really good missionary and really understands her purpose. She is teaching me a lot.  Everyone was telling me how funny she was before I met her and when I did meet her she was super shy but she has been opening up more and more every day. We have a lot of fun together and have been pretty successful so far. We got two investigators on our first night.....they spoke spanish so ill I could do was bear my testimony and have her translate but that was cool! We take spanish tours quite often though and even though I dont really know what they are saying I can still feel the spirit so strong. On Thursday I felt we should teach this old homeless man who was at the Christus. His name is John and he has had a tough life but has never lost his faith. He was baptized when he was 8 years old and because of the things he has done in his life he was excommunicated from the church. He has cadaracks (I dont know how to spell it) so he can not see very well. We love John and have continued to talk to him every day, because he has been excommunicated we can not teach him which is sad but we hope that he can get his life cleared up a little bit so he can come back to the church. There are a lot of homeless weirdies that come around here but we still love them. We talk to people from all over the world and right now we have one investigator in Leeds, England and one in Brazil. Its so great that we get to teach and communicate with them through the phone. We send the local missionaries to them and we all work together it is really amazing! So I did this thing on Saturday and Sunday where I did not eat anything but fruits and vegetables because I felt like my body needed a cleanse and by Sunday night I was SO SICK. I am not sure if that is why I was sick but my body was definitely not used to being so healthy so it was freaking out. Today I had Panda Express and I feel so much better. I guess the healthy life is not the life for me?! Like seriously its sad haha. I am sure the One Direction infection was too strong last week. I do not even want to imagine the hysteria. Is the depression still happening? So dumb. Haha anyways I hope everyone is doing well. All is well for me here I love being a missionary. The Sisters here and incredible and a little bit psycho so we get along. I am learning so much every day and my conversion is deepening. I am so grateful for you all I hope you have a wonderful week and will email again next Monday! Loves!!
                                                                         -Sister Leavitt <3
I forgot to mention that I will be serving at Welfare Square this transfer. I start tomorrow. It will be great!
I love Sister Rajah!

Its official now! Merica!

Sister Cardus and I after church :)

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Dear friends and fam,
       I guess I am emailing way earlier than I anticipated. I am really frustrated that I do not get to call home because I can not adequately express the experience I have had over the past three weeks. Visitors Center training has been a really amazing experience learning a lot about how to talk to every one and how to transform small talk into gospel principles. On Saturday we got to do a little prison break and go to temple square for a couple hours and actually got paired up with a trainer there. It was really amazing. When I walked on the temple grounds the spirit was so strong and it was affirmed to me that this is the place I am supposed to be at this time. It was so neat walking around and talking to people about the gospel. Although I have been to T2 several times this time was way different. It felt like it was the first time I had been there. I guess that comes with becoming a missionary, it brings a whole new spirit. Every sister there is SO FRIENDLY! It is a skill I need to acquire and get used to because it is a little over bearing some times. I am probably going to come home 10x nicer than I was when I left. But how is that possible when I was so nice in the first place right? Every sister is from these crazy, exotic, foreign places and I'm like "Hi I am from southern Nevada" and they are like "ohhhh.." haha.  This past week just flew by and I can not believe I am leaving tomorrow at 5:30 this in the morning! It is going to be a crazy day but I am so excited I have butterflies. I am nervous about meeting my trainer because I seriously got sooo lucky with Sister Rajah. She is my other half and we work and teach together really well. She as almost as sarcastic as I am and we are both really scared for our trainers but hopefully they can whip us into shape more. We started doing chat on and it has been interesting. We get some real gems on that thing. You know on the little thing that says "chat with us?" yeah thats us sister missionaries. I am not sure how I feel about it yet haha we get some real winners that only want to fight. Sister Rajah and I just laugh and try not to loose the spirit. Its kinda cool being "persecuted" sometimes. I feel like a real servant of the Lord because of it. Again I am pretty bummed that I dont get to call home but it will be okay. Ive learned the mission isnt really about what i want :) I hope everyone is doing well and recovering from the flood of the Earth! So theres talk that an apostle will be speaking tonight at the devotional so that might be cool. There was also talk of this last week and that was false information. We got to hear from Tad R. Callister on sunday and he gave a mind blowing talk. At this point I feel like the MTC is my mission since its the only thing I know so far but thankfully thats not the case.  I am so grateful for my mission and for the experience I have had even in these 3 short/long weeks. Thank you so much for your love, support, and prayers. I can truly feel the love and it makes my days soo much better. Wish me luck! this week is going to be GRRREAAATT!

                                              Much love, Sister Leavitt <3

p.s thanks for the socks and abundance of treats.
p.s.s keep em coming. 

Sister Dutra and I in the T2 lounge

Sister selfie is too strong. No filter!

This is my life now :)

Friday, September 12, 2014

    Wow I can not believe I am on my last week here. So much has happened this week and sadly I do not have a lot of time to report about it but I do get to email again on Tuesday and I intend on fully reporting then! 
     Like I said this week has been crazy! We had so say good bye to the amazing Elders in our district on Monday and send them off to Arkansas. We miss them already we are trying to get used to this whole "all sisters" thing in our new VC (visitors center) district. As a result of the freezing temperatures in our room I have received the influenza!! Funnn stuff haha. I missed my class on Tuesday morning but other than that I have been chugging that day quil and pressing forward. I am feeling a lot better today though thank goodness. Sister Rajah and I were asked to continue being sister training leaders and we were so happy about that. We got to meet our 4 lovely new sisters on Wednesday and they are soooo sweet. They are ASL sisters and one of them (Sister Garcia) is completely deaf in one ear and partially deaf in the other. She is the sweetest sister I have met here so far and has been such an inspiration to me. She literally gives THE BEST hugs. Ill I can do is say "thank you" and "I love you" in sign language and she laughs at me hahah. Aside from training we have started our VC training which is way fun and interesting. We spend a lot of time researching the "hot topics" in todays news regarding mormons such as homosexuality, women in the priesthood, and of course polygamy. We started working in the online referral center and its super fun. Like you know on how you can press "chat with us" thats the sister missionaries on the other end. We get some absolute weirdos but its funny! We are learning a lot about how we need to "love people" and now I know why. People have some strange insights but usually if we keep the spirit with us we can turn the chat conversation around and turn the focus on the Lord. 
    We took a tour of T2 yesterday and when someone asked me where I was from they informed me about the crazy flooding! I hope everyone is alive and safe and I will definitely keep the valley in my prayers. Is I-15 still closed down? It seems like that would be a serious problem, yeah? Keep me informed. Funny story: Sister Sughroue and Sister Vasi SWORE they saw President Uchtdorf on Tuesday so we all assumed that he was going to be the Tuesday evening devotional speaker, right? Wrong. We sat outside the gym for 2 hours to get good seats and he was not the speaker. Bummer......
      Well I wish I had more time but luckily I get to e-mail this Tuesday before I leave Wednesday morning (5:30 am!) I love you all and appreciate the support more than you know. 
                                                                                                    much love, Sister Leavitt<3

         We had to say goodbye to the Elders in our district
                  Sister Leavitt with Sister Hannah Leavitt
We pretended to be paparazzi cause he's Mitt Romneys nephew and all...he loves the attention!
               Our Mitt Romney pose with Bro. Davies
Our get up every night in our freezing rooms


Sister Rajah and I visiting T2

Friday, September 5, 2014

HELLOOOOOO! I have officially been in the MTC for over a week but it feels like a little over a year haha I am not complaining though I absolutely love it. A lot has happened since last week but I think the biggest news I have to share is that Sister Rajah and I were called to be sister training leaders on sunday just 4 days after we got here. We got the list of girls on monday and we were so excited to meet them when they finally arrived on wednesday! There are 4 new sisters we are training all serving in Salem, Oregon. We love this calling so much and feel sooo blessed to be able to show them around. We act like we know what we are doing but we really dont since we have only been here for like 2 seconds ourselves. We love this calling though and feel so close to these sisters already.
Thanks so much for the delicious cookies, cinnamon rolls, candy, junk food......need I go on? They have become my main food group considering the food here is not the greatest/real gross haha it
makes me pretty sick. Salads and wraps all day every day for sister leavitt here. 
Anyways I want to share with you guys about our investigator. Her name is Alex and she is a really strong Christian and plays on the BYU golf team. She is a good friend of our teachers brother davies and he is the one that got her this job talking to the missionaries AKA she is a REAL investigator unlike most here. She is really stubborn but she wants to know more about "Gods truth" we are slowly but surely getting through to her and it is our last time teaching tonight so we are crossing our fingers hoping that she will commit to being baptized. Side note: brother davies is Mitt Romneys nephew apparently and has made a point to tell us that like 97887 times its really funny. He got a sweater vest from Mitt Romney for Christmas cool huh?  Of course we dont make fun of him behind his back because that is unchristlike! wink. haha but really I have incredible teachers I am being humbled every day realizing that I truly dont know a buttload of crap about the gospel. 
I love the MTC but the blankets are here are comparable to the ones the have in prisons and our room gets to about -8736 at night. So theres that tangent for ya.
Heres what my days consist of wake up at 6:15 (I forgot that time exsisted) go to breakfast and 7 I am in classes from about 7:40-10-40. I then get to embarrass myself in a variety of sports at gym. followed by more classes, daily planning, and zone teaching....and stuff. I love the sisters in my zone we get along a little too well. I have about a week and a half left here and I can not wait to be done role playing and being my mission at Temple Square. I see Elder Grow and Sister Leavitt (hanna) here all the time its nice to see some familiar faces. 
It is so great to be a missionary. This week has been one of the most rewarding I have had. I have been extremely humbled and blessed. My biggest blessing has been being the sister training leader to these new sisters (Sister Bush, Sister Gibson, Sister Smith, and Sister Rammel.) I am so grateful for all the support I am getting I hope we can keep in touch more during the week I am going to actually start writing letters and stuff cause once a week with one hour to email is just not enough! Just know that I am having an amazing time here and the MTC and that I love and miss you all very much. Keep in touch I love getting mail!! (typical missionary thing to say). Please forward this email to anyone who wants it I dont want to get any kind of wrath from family members. Cheers! I want to be a cool Australian!

                                                   -Sister Leavitt :)

 Sometimes we like to segregate into browns and whites :)
Our Sunday temple walk

Friday, August 29, 2014

Hello friends and fam! Everything in the MTC has been so far, so good. The last couple days have been a complete blur. There have been so many emotions going in and out of my head. I got here and they barely gave me time to think about what was going on. Which is good because if they did I might have been a hysterical mess. I got here, put my stuff in my room, and within the first 15 minutes I was in my first class where I met my companion Sister Rajah! (pronounced like the tiger in Aladdin) She is this cute little Indian from Perth, Australia. She is soo much cooler than me with her Australian accent its not even fair. She says funny things like "sweet as," " I reckon." "crickey," and "cutlery." I am starting to talk like her and its only the third day. Anyways my district is really awesome. Besides Sister Rajah and I there are two other sisters that I room with. There's Sister Sughrough (sha-grew) from Temicula, California. She is the one I met before I came and we have become really close already. Her companion is Sister Vasi (vaw-see) from Nampa,Idaho/Tonga. She is really Tongan and fun.
  I sent that last email before finishing on accident. ANYWAYS. The MTC is amazing and really strange if that makes sense. That is the only way I can describe it at the moment. We go to lots and LOTS of interesting classes that I can actually pay attention in so its really jolly (another Sister Rajah word.) I have learned so much already which is good because I start teaching, tonight!! I am sort of nervous and I am not sure if is it even a "real investigator" but we will treat him like a real one anyway. So I will have about 2 more weeks of regular stateside missionary training and then I will have a week of visitor center training. We actually go up to Temple Square a couple times a week and practice I think? I don't know a whole lot yet but I am learning and I do love it here I can tell you that much. Thank you all for you support and prayers I can really feel them. Loves!

                                                                                                         -Sister Leavitt
P.S sorry this email stinks, they will get better I promise.
Sister Rajah