So last Monday for P-day we went on a hike. We hiked Mt. Nittany. It was super pretty. There were tons of trees everywhere. I wish we had gone a couple weeks later so we could see all the pretty colors of the trees and flowers in the area, but it was beautiful regardless. I'll send pics of it. We went with like 10 other missionaries in the area. It was fun to be with them and get to know them better. There were very beautiful views of the city of State College below. Lots of fun and not a hard hike either. Those are my kind of hikes haha ;) ThenMonday night we went to the Vest family's house for dinner. They were so cute and they made me a "greeny" dinner. So they made chicken cordon bleu, rice and beans, and a spinach dip. She dyed everything green and gave us a green sparkling water drink. And then cupcakes that were frosted green and in the shape of a monster. Haha it was really cute and I really appreciated it. I have pics of that too that I'll try and send. Then that night our STL's (sister training leaders) came for exchanges. So I went to Lockhaven with Sister Hodson and Sister Jones stayed here in State College with Sister Sampson. Sister Hodson is diabetic too so that was cool! I have a pic of us with our pumps haha. But ya exchanges were cool.
I spent Tuesday in Lockhaven and it was really interesting to see another part of Pennsylvania. It was SO different than State College. Our area is nothing like the rest of the mission so it was cool to actually get to experience what the Pittsburgh mission is like haha. They do a lot of work with less actives rather than investigators which is different. But it's cool to help them get back on track and bring them closer to Christ.
Wednesday wasn't super eventful. We had district meeting like we usually do on Wednesdays. It was the last district meeting for one of the Elders in our district cause he's going home next week at transfers. He's a really good cook so he made us an awesome lunch and we had a lot of the other missionaries from the area come and eat lunch with us too. It's always so fun when we get together. We usually play games or just sit and talk, but it's nice to be around other people like you who are doing the same thing you are.
Thursday we were finally able to go and do service again at the Community Cafe. We've been sick the last two or three weeks in a row so we haven't been able to go. But we got to go again and help prepare a dinner for the community. I love cooking so it's so fun to be around other people and doing that together. We usually just cut up fruits and vegetables and make salads, or we plate desserts, or do dishes; a little bit of everything. And they always send us home with food to so that's nice.
Friday wasn't super eventful either. On Tuesdays and Fridays we do forums so we just did that. So we go outside the library on campus and just talk to everyone about the gospel and see if their interested in meeting with us. This is where we find most of our investigators. It's very intimidating to just walk up to a stranger and start a conversation with them, but as you just jump into it, it's not too bad, Sister Jones and I have been practicing and praying about it a lot this past week and we definitely were blessed for our efforts.
Saturday!!! So this was a great day for us! We had Loveday's baptism which was amazing! We spent most of the day at the church preparing for it. It took about 3 hours to fill up the font. I never knew that much preparation went into a baptism. That's crazy! It was a little stressful but it ended up working out really well and we had a great service for her. It was cool to see her come out of the water. As we were in the changing room helping her with everything she was just glowing. It took a lot of faith on her part and she was definitely blessed for it. She was so happy and felt so good afterwards. Also on Saturday, before the baptism, our other investigator Yuchen had his baptismal interview. We were really worried about it this whole week and didn't know if he was ready or not cause it has been so fast since he's been meeting with us to the time he wanted to get baptized but we had a really good lesson with him on Friday. We went over all of the interview questions with him and asked him about them and how he was feeling. After that lesson we were feeling a lot better. He has a really simple but strong testimony. Then like I said on Saturday he had his interview and he passed! Yay! So he'll be getting baptized this Saturday.
I have been super blessed to have had even one baptism within my first transfer and now if everything goes according to plan we'll have another one. It's super crazy. This mission is one of the lowest baptizing missions so it's pretty hard for most missionaries here to get more than one baptism and there are even some who don't get any at all. So I definitely feel really blessed to have started my mission so strong. The Lord has been a huge help in that and He has helped His work really progress in this area. Thank goodness for prayer and guidance from the Holy Ghost cause we couldn't have done it without Them.
Sunday was great too. I was supposed to give a talk but ended up not having to because our program was pretty full. It was a good experience to prepare the talk though. It was on humility and I learned a lot from it. So ya in church we had Loveday's confirmation and also a baby blessing which is super rare because we work within a YSA/Newly Married couples branch so there are no kids. Usually when a couple has a kid that's when they start going to the family ward in the area. But ya they blessed their baby and it was awesome. And then after the sacrament they had Loveday bare her testimony and it was so great! She really knows her stuff and has a strong testimony. A huge struggle she's had while meeting with us for the past year has been the question of if there really is a God. She's come a long way and it made me so happy to hear her say in her testimony that she knows that there is a God and that He is our Heavenly Father and that He loves us. Man! That's sooo cool. It made me tear up a little :P
So ya it's been a great week! It's the last week of the transfer now but I already know that I'm staying here with Sister Jones because I'm training. I'm excited to stay and continue to see the work progress. It's so great to be a missionary :) I hope everyone is doing well back at home. It's nice to finally start seeing Spring here! I hope the weather is good there too. It's fun to see things starting to bloom here and get some color. I love you all and hope you're doing well!
Sister Kayla Johnson