Tuesday, 26 December 2017

Merry Christmas!

Sorry! Just pictures this week! 

1-4 pictures from zone Christmas morning breakfast 
5-10 Christmas eve and morning! 
11- 14 Christmas Eve dinner! I had Italian and my own version of raspberry mousse (ice cream and raspberry jam haha) and later we had some tamales 
15 Our miracle dollar! Found it on the street, bought a donut with it haha 
16-17  Christmas Zone Conference! 
























Monday, 18 December 2017

Tender Mercies

Hello all! 
This week has been wonderful, just like all the other ones :) We found 2 new investigators, both by the grace of God! This week I have just been so aware of just how involved God is in this work. 

The first new investigator was Ray. We found him when we were contacting some less active referrals from the Bishop. The woman we were looking for had moved and Ray had just moved there 3 weeks ago! He said he was interested in going to some of our activities and learning more of our message :)

The other tender finding mercy was Aaron! One of our investigators didn't show up to Church so we went over to his place after; he was sleeping, haha. There was a former investigator near by we felt prompted to see, and it was Aaron! He is really nice :) God is just so good! 

We were also able to walk with our investigator Savanna to church this Sunday. She enjoyed my surprise lesson in Relief Society about the Atonement. I was glad she enjoyed it because I had about 5 minutes to prepare for it haha, but I could talk about Jesus Christ and the Atonement all day long! So it was great, I am very glad I had the opportunity. 

Another tender mercy happened when we were dropping off a 12 days of Christmas present for a member to another member in a family ward. She asked us to come inside and something said to go in! We did and long story short she ended up having some referrals for us to stop by! 

I'm going to be honest, we don't really know what we are doing, haha. I have just been praying for God to guide our little steps. You don't really need to know the big picture, if you trust in God He will guide you little bit by little bit. It has been amazing to see that happen in our area this week! 

Also... I got pretty sick this week. So that wasn't awesome but I'm better now :) 

ALSO! Elder Kearon from the presidency of the 70 came to the mission last week and we had an awesome Zone Conference with him! It was amazing. The goals I have set from this conference are to treat invitations to those we teach as gifts! To be more personal in sharing my testimony and to ATTACK THE MORNING! Start the day off right-pray meaningfully, work out energetically, eat healthy, study intently! I have been trying to apply this and I have already started to see the blessings that have come! 

We have had a couple of lessons with our investigator Eddie, he can be kind a goofy sometimes but at least once a lesson, we are able to kinda cut through that and teach something, as guided by the spirit, that touches him. He gets all quiet and serious and it is awesome. 

Also, another miracle! This morning we went out to breakfast with some other sisters and a sweet anonymous family paid for our food. I almost cried, legit haha 

When people find out how long I have been out I usually get questions like, "what is the worst thing that has ever happened on your mission?" I can honestly say it takes me a minute to think about it, and then I usually come up with a lame story because I really don't remember the bad parts! My days are filled with way too much AMAZING to leave any room for lingering bad. 

I love this work. I love my Saviour, I know the Church is true. 

Sister Holt 
Sister Holt and Sister Herrera

Sister Biberston and Sister Holt at Zone Conference

Whittier! In La Habra Heights



Monday, 11 December 2017

Mar Vista!

Hello all!
This has been a wonderful and challenging week- which was exactly what I needed! I love nothing more than being "anxiously engaged in a good cause," and there certainly isn't any time right now for anything else haha!
So our new area is all of the Whittier stake, which is the biggest one in the mission, so it's a pretty big area haha. I really do love it here though! They have these cute little "mountains," really just hills, but I like being up there because there are less people and it feels a little more like home!
Also my new companion is pretty cool! Her name is Sister Herrera, she is from Coeur D' Alene, Idaho. We pick up the new missionaries Wednesday now because they come in later on Tuesday. So, before I got her I still had to leave Sister Polaulu and go to the Santa Gertrudes ward with Sister Hicks! It was great :)
We have already seen so many miracles! We found (kinda) 7 investigators! But really just 5 because 2 of them gave us bad numbers and didn't show up to their appointments... but still 5 is awesome!
We also got to meet with some of the members and they are really great :) also! Jose got baptized! haha we met him at his baptismal interview... but it was really great, he got confirmed on Sunday and we will be seeing him later this week to start some family history and his after baptism lessons. They also have some other really great recent converts I can't wait to work with.
Also this week, I passed out! It was super weird. We were teaching a lesson to our investigator Julius and we were walking back to our cars and all of a sudden I felt super yucky and my vision was going dark and the next thing I know I am waking up from what felt like a nice cat nap buuuuut I'm on the pavement haha. It felt weird, but it was good :) I got some taco bell after and I was right as rain!
We also got to speak in church on Sunday, and teach gospel principles. The second one was kinda a surprise but it turned out great! 
I know there is more... but I left my journal at home haha I will be better next week!
I love you so much! I will pray for you if you pray for me ;) kidding! I pray for you always!
The Church is absolutely true!!!

Sister Holt 

Monday, 4 December 2017

Transfers!

Well transfer calls have come and gone and... I'm staying again! 


Juuuust kidding ;) I am bring transferred to the Mar Vista YSA ward in Whittier and I am also training, so I will be white washing for the first time since the beginning of my mission and in a YSA ward for the first time ever! I am so excited that I get to have such a great adventure for my last 2 transfers :D 

Lakewood 4th has been so good to me; physically and spiritually. I have learned so much here about the Gospel, people, myself, and my Heavenly Father! 

This week has been Great! We found 7 new investigators! I was inspired after exchanges on Tuesday to get out of the car and walk a little bit more! This led to us street contacting 4 great young men in 2 days who are interested in learning more about the Gospel! Blessings! 

Speaking of exchanges, they were Great! Sadly, my sister training leaders were switched and so no last exchange with sister Allen before she goes home on Tuesday... but happily, my new sister training leaders were sister Mitchell and sister... Rhoton! My MTC companion! It was really great to be with her for the day :) I realized how I am barely the same person I was at the beginning of my mission haha. She would be recalling memories and say, "do you remember when you did this crazy thing" or "said this crazy thing?" And I would just be shocked as I looked back. The Gospel certainly is a gospel of change and I am so grateful for that! 

An awesome miracle we saw this week was finding Anthony! Well, I guess we didn't actually find him, some other missionaries did and then they sent his referral information to us :) He is 16 years old and so open to the Gospel! Sister Polaulu and Sister Badger will have a great time with him :) 

Saturday morning our ward had our Relief Society Christmas breakfast and our investigator Maria came! She absolutely loved it and made some good friends, she also took a calendar and is planning on coming to every activity:D 

In the evening we had a lesson with Bill and Mark, we taught more about the priesthood to help them prepare for the interview, it went very Well! 

Sunday was Stake Conference and Elder Kearon of the Presidency of the 70 was there, it was super Great! He talked about letting go, forgiving, and not worrying so much! 

I know the Church is true! I know that God does inspire, call, and ordain men to lead and guide his people in every age, including this one! 


Sister Holt 






Hahaha - snowy trees is SoCal

with Maria at the Relief Society breakfast

the district
teaching someone over the phone in the car
goodbye to Dice

Cuban food!





Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Bill and Mark!

Hello family! 

This week I have really seen faith overcome the Adversary, and I am so glad for that! 

Last Tuesday we had a lesson with Brother Toliseli, it went really well! Sister Polaulu is such a pro :) we worked out in companionship study how we were going to teach in English and Tongan. Brother Toliseli speaks and understands English but it doesn't quite click the same and we really wanted to make sure he felt the spirit and understood what was being taught. So, we kinda planned out what she would teach and where she would pass it off to me. She would say a key word and then turn and nod at me and that meant it was my turn haha, it worked out really well actually and he accepted a baptismal date to work towards! December 23rd, what better gift to give the Savior than a willing  and repentant heart! 

Wednesday we had a lesson with Mattie. Every week I am just blown away by her sincere, steadfast testimony of the Gospel! I sure do love her a lot! She never ceases to amaze me.

In the afternoon, we felt prompted to stop by 2 former investigators; Skyhler, and... DICE! Yes, the rumours are true, Dice is back! We are hoping they will be able to progress as we follow the Spirit and focus on their needs. 

 Thursday was Thanksgiving, yay! We were with the Toliseli family, and Bill came too! Mark was also supposed to come but was unable last minute :/ it was really good! And I think Sister Polaulu like the mix of traditional thanksgiving food and Tongan food :D 

Later in the evening we stopped by our friend Jeremy, who was baptised in June. I sure do miss having him around and we are doing all we can to have him around more, prayers on his behalf would be appreciated :) 

Friday, we were supposed to go over to Bill and Mark's with Brother Patrick to practise for the baptism, but something came up with Bill’s job so we couldn't. We decided we would just meet extra early at the church before the baptism.

Well Saturday night was the time of the baptism and at about 5:30 we were desperately trying to make sure the font was filling with warm water (it needed to be warm because of some of Mark's health concerns), but the water would only run warm for about 5 minutes. So every little bit we would have to turn off the water and let it heat up again. It was touch and go for a bit but eventually we got a full font of hot water! 

The next challenge on his wonderful evening was the program. I think 2 items on the program remained the same by the time the service was over Haha! Last minute fall throughs and unfortunate events led to many last minute changes, but we were blessed to have willing people step in and help out! 

Then it was time for the baptism itself! It took a couple tries, but hey sometimes that happens. After Mark was baptised he said, "thank you sister Holt for making sure the water is warm!" Haha, that made me smile. 

They really have both changed so much over these past couple months! So much light and optimism! They know that they are getting a fresh start. 

The next morning was their confirmation and an emergency came up and they were late to sacrament meeting so they were confirmed in the middle of the speakers; I thought it provided for a great little interlude to the meeting :) 

My favourite part of teaching someone who is baptised is being there when they receive the gift of the Holy Ghost! I love being able to hear a little glimpse of what God has in store for them! I am amazed at the awesome potential that every single one of Heavenly Father’s children have, no matter what age, no matter who they were before, or what they did! 

I know that repentance is real. I know that people can change and become who God would have them be through Christ! I am grateful for clean slates and second chances...and third chances... and sometimes fourth chances. Something I have been talking about a lot with people we teach is that if you fall down 1,000 times but you get back up 1,001 times, God only going to care about that 1 more time that you got up and decided to try again! Repentance is such a joyful choice! 

The Church is true! I love you dearly! 

Sister Holt 














Monday, 20 November 2017

One Lucky Girl!

Hello family!! 

This week has been wonderful as always, the work is stabilizing, getting to a comfortable and yet engaging pace... so naturally I'm trying to figure out ways I can stop that from happening haha. Something I remember my friend Emma telling me at the beginning of her mission was that there is no comfort in a growth zone and there is no growth in a comfort zone. We will see what God and I can come up with this week to shake things up haha.

Monday night we found 2 new investigators, Hector and Michael. We have had return appointments with both and I see a lot of potential with them! I'm excited to continue to meet with them :) 

Tuesday we had lessons with Alyssa, Vaiola, Bill, and Mark. Vaiola also came to the Relief Society service project with us, and Maria, one of the people we are teaching, came as well. 

Wednesday we taught Mattie the Plan of Salvation as part of her new missionary lessons. It was a really wonderful, powerful lesson. I love it when I am able to teach by the Spirit in such a way that I say things I didn't even know I knew haha, that's what this lesson was like. Something amazing happens when you recognize Heavenly Father work through you for the salvation of one of His children. Mattie really is so special, I am so blessed to be able to know her! She is growing so strong in her knowledge and conviction of the Gospel and love for the scriptures and Heavenly Father. 

Thursday, we had Zone Conference which was so needed, as always. What really hit me was the discussion of faith. Faith is a power that makes things happen that need to happen. Sometimes I leave the miracle of conversion entirely up to the investigator thinking, well all I can do is invite... which is true to a certain degree. But when I think of King Mosiah' s faith... that was converting faith! It was because of his faith, not his sons' or Alma's, but his faith, that they had that remarkable experience of being called to repentance and changing their hearts. 

I love everything about being a missionary, the ups and the downs. I have never learned so much about the Gospel, life and myself as I have these past 15 months. 

Also I'm super lucky because I have had the honour of serving with an amazing sister for almost 3 months now. It is a real blessing to be able to spend everyday teaching and learning with sister Polaulu. She really is one of my very best friends and I am grateful 😊

On Saturday we got to go to the Family History center with Bill and Mark! Bill really liked it! I think we will be going back :) they are very excited for their baptisms this Saturday! And so am I! Later we also went to a ward dinner with them. 

Sunday... no one came to church unfortunately :( Bill and Mark had a friend have an emergency they needed to attend to so, we missed them. 

After church we saw Maria, Alex and the Toliselis though :) we kinda had a break through with brother Toliseli, thanks to Sister Polaulu! She followed the Spirit like a pro and taught a little bit right to him in Tongan. We will be meeting with him one on one now as well as with the family! 

I know this is the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ! I love sharing it with everyone who will listen! 

I love you all like crazy, 
Sister Holt 





Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Hello!

 This week has been really great! We've kind of been turning over a new leaf in our area. We had a lot of investigators that were really great but not really moving forward... so we got to find this week! It was great :) we found 3 new investigators, Melvin, Pancho, and Salvador. 

 Last Monday we went bowling with the district. It was a lot of fun! Then afterwards we went and played baseball and soccer baseball with the rest of the zone.

 We got to do some family history work with Mattie on Wednesday. We started getting some names ready for her to take to the temple. Next week she should be getting her recommend and then we can plan a trip to LA!

We also met with Bill and Mark a couple times this week. We went over the baptismal interview questions with them, they are progressing well to get ready for their baptism on the 25th! They both really changed a lot and its been wonderful to see that change take place.

This week we also had the opportunity to meet with some member families in our ward. One of the families was the Christensens. Brother Christensen is my dad's second cousin! Who knew? Well actually I guess it is to be expected since he is from Southern Alberta! Haha 

We shared the new Restoration video with them and then discussed what blessings have come into their lives as a result of this event. There was no shortage of answers, that's for sure! We then talked about how some people don't know about this and therefore do not enjoy those same blessings. We encouraged them to pray about someone they can share this message with so they can receive those same blessings in their lives. 

Also, a miracle that happened this week, someone we have been teaching has been working on quitting smoking and they did!!! We are so excited for them, God really is so good. They said that what made the difference was what they were praying for. They stopped praying to make something happen and instead prayed for understanding and acceptance. It was such a miracle and we are so excited to see this person progress! 

We had 4 investigators at church this week! Bill and Mark came, as well as brother Toliseli and Maria. The theme for sacrament meeting and Relief Society was missionary work, so that was nice! 

After church, we got to meet with Melvin, one of our new investigators, and go to family home evening with the Toliseli's first, then with Mattie at the Bon family's home. 

I sure am grateful for every single moment I have been given to serve the Lord. I love Him, and I love the plan and Gospel He has created and provided for us so we can feel joy, happiness, and love! 

The Church is true!
Sister Holt 

Ps I've been here so long the dog had puppies again! 












Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Anthony!

Happy Halloween everyone! 

Hope everyone stayed safe and had a fun time 😁

We stayed in and in-putted some teaching records onto our phones! It was just about as fun as it sounds haha but it was good! 

Last Wednesday we had a great lesson with Mattie, she is just on fire. It is so amazing to see the difference the gift of holy ghost makes in people's lives! God is so good. 

Another really awesome thing happened on Wednesday! After district meeting,  2 Spanish elders approached us and said a guy had flagged them down on their bikes when they were on their way to the church and had requested missionaries to visit him! We weren't able to get a hold of him til the evening after, but his name is Anthony and he is so cool. We taught him the Restoration and he accepted the invitation to be baptized! He also came to church with us on Sunday and got a blessing to help him with some physical therapy he is starting. 

Thursday morning we also did service again for Mark. At our lesson with Bill and Mark on Saturday they decided who they want to baptize them and everything so they are progressing towards baptism well 😁

Friday evening we had our "Meet the Mormons" movie night at the church for investigators, members, and potentials. Didn't have quite the turn out we had hoped but at least people came! So that is an improvement from the last finding activity we tried haha. Bill and Mark came and the Lakewood 3rd elders had some people come as well and we had a few members so they were able to fellowship, which was good 😊

Sunday night we had another FHE with the Toliseli family and it was great! We watched the Restoration video and then talked about what they felt as they watched Joseph's vision. 

Today we are going bowling so I'm super excited! 

I love you lots! The church is true! 

Love, sister Holt 


Monday, 30 October 2017

Chili Cook Off!

Hello family!

So I actually already wrote an email but it apparently didn't send so I'm going to really quickly give a recap sorry it's not going to be the same email that it would have been.

This week has been really good; the weather has been beautiful, it was really warm at the beginning of the week but it’s cooled down today.

We started off Monday night last week with great lessons with Alex and Maria and Bill and Mark.

 At Bill and Mark’s lesson we had Brother and Sister Patrick with us and we watched the Joseph Smith the Prophet - the Restoration video. The Spirit was really strong and we asked them to  pray about whether or not Joseph Smith was a prophet. The next day we went over to follow up and they said that they had felt that he was a prophet and they're ready to move forward with baptism! Yay! They're scheduled to be baptized on the 25th of November.

 Wednesday we had to lessons back to back at the church building. One with Maddie and one with Edward. Maddie's lesson went really well Justin came with us he shared his conversion story with her. It was really great because it helped her to feel comforted knowing that somebody else went through something similar to what she went through. Her faith is increasing so much! She's really wonderful.

Thursday morning we did service with Mark with Viola. We did some yard work and it was really wonderful because he was so appreciative! It's really wonderful to be able to see somebody through Heavenly Father’s eyes and I find that when you do service for somebody you're able to experience that. Charity really is the pure love of Christ!

Later that evening we had a lesson with an investigator that is having a hard time feeling the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon. We were able to read some of it with him and bear testimony to him of its truth and divinity. The Spirit was really strong and it was a special opportunity for me to be able to find that my testimony is stronger than I thought it was. I'm so grateful for the Book of Mormon and for how it helps to build my faith and the faith of those around me, I love the Gospel!

Saturday night was our ward’s chili cook off Halloween party activity. We had four investigators come! Tom, Valda, Maria and Alex all came and had a really great time. It was a lot of fun!

The next day at church we had Bill and Mark with us, sacrament meeting was really wonderful. Brother Toliseli also went to church at a different ward because their family was involved in the sacrament meeting.

After church we found a really awesome new investigator name is Carletha. She seems really interested in learning more about the Gospel. We invited her to a Meet the Mormons movie night that we're going to be having at our church this Friday. We hope she comes!

Later that evening we had another FHE with the Toliseli family, it went really well again! 

Well, I sure love you folks! The Church is true! Make good choices, counsel with the Lord always! Pray without ceasing! 


Love, Sister Holt