Return: July 21, 2011

Monday, July 19, 2010

July 19, 2010 - Oakdale, Louisiana

Dear Everyone...

Well tell Jessie HAPPY BIRTHDAY yesterday and I love her! Sorry I didn't get a card, but I don't know their address! Would you mind getting that for me? The weather here is hot and humid... need I say more? It's so bad we never want to get out of the car and tract, but we MUST! "Why? Because he must!" (Can you name where that comes from?) But, luckily it has rained the last 2 days, and luckily we were in lessons...okay, that is NOT lucky. I would much rather tract in the pouring rain than the humidity ha, ha! Either way you get soaking wet! Our companionship will actually be staying together the whole transfer! Sister Holmes said the temple square sister came JUNE 24th, not July 24th! Ha, misunderstanding!!! So I will officially be in Oakdale until at least the 2nd or 3rd week in August. When are y'all going to Lake Powell? It sounds like the Hansen family party was fun! How is Kevin doing without his leg? Is he in a prosthetic yet? Or still in a wheel chair? Oh! Did I tell you someone else sent me a package from the Glendale ward? Her name is Barbara Christensen. Have I met her? I am going to write her back and thank her. Also the Singles ward in Provo sent me a big package. Are the boys still going there? I will definitely write Miss Francis back. I will anxiously await her letter, because my friends still don't write me too much. It's been 2 weeks since I got a letter! Well, I got one today from someone I don't really know, so I am not counting that. Tell Grandpa I love him!

Anyway, it is Sister Jack's birthday today and we have been partying it up! I bought a suit jacket today for $18. Sorry. I needed another one that was lighter, and it was on clearance. Ha, everyone keeps telling us that next month is going to be HORRIBLE because when you are outside, the wind just stops. There is no breeze...just the humidity and the sun beating upon you! AH! Ha, it's going to be so much fun :D I'm serious! Yeah, Sister Jack is 22 today, and we are going to make her brownies. I am going to use the last of my flour and make some gluten free mint brownies. Can I tell you how excited I am?!

So teaching!...It hasn't been the greatest week, but we did get some great things set in motion! On Wednesday we went to the Hospital and got set up to do the Chaplaincy Program...I probably butchered that spelling. But there are about 5 billion churches here in Oakdale...Let's see... Population is probably about 7,000 and Churches probably 55-65...No lie. Can you believe that!!!! Ha, it's crazy. But because there are so many, some of them go to the hospital and pray for people for about an hour, and people can ask them questions, but you can't force anything on anyone. So hopefully this will help people see that we do believe in Christ, and that we aren't some creepy, crazy cult! I think that it is really going to open some doors, so we are excited about it. We also have set up plans to have a musical fireside on August 28th. We are asking some of our investigators, members and others to participate. We are keeping it acoustic, and because we know some people that work for the city we might be able to get it to air on the local channel if it will be appropriate, we'll see I guess! We are also starting a scripture study so we can get some people more excited about church! Some great things are happening here, we just need to get them moving!

On Wednesday we also went to Mamou and had a wonderful lesson with Jimmy & Veronica and their kids. If you remember, their kids have crazy names (Jimmy, JaKeira, JaKinski and JaKinzi) but they are all so adorable. Jimmy and Veronica are always busy, and always on the go, but whenever we get to see them our lessons are amazing. Ha this time we were talking about the fall of Adam and Eve, and we asked them what the understood about Adam and Eve and Veronica said, "Didn't like Eve partake of the fruit and get Adam to? That's why we have periods right?!" We all looked at each other and started laughing way hard and she said, "I'm serious!" Ha, it was funny. We said "I guess so!" And we looked at Jimmy and he said, "I dunno! Don't ask me!" Ha, that was a funny moment... but! We just had an amazing lesson with them. The spirit was there even though their kids were running around going crazy. It was a wonderful lesson and I can't wait till that family gets baptized.

I told you how Jennifer came to church Sunday and how awesome that was! Well...let me tell you more of the story. So we went over on Thursday to see how she felt about church, and she said she liked it, but she went to church with her Aunt, and while she was there she received the Holy offense to anyone, but I FREAKIN' HATE SATAN!!!!! Just because you speak in gibberish and no one understands you, doesn't mean you are speaking in tongues and have received the Holy Ghost. Satan is deceitful, it is cunning and you should never ever trust him or let him get in your head. Even me being angry at him isn't good, but sometimes I just wish he had a body so I could kick him in the shin and run away. But that isn't something Christ would do, so I am working on that. But on Saturday we had another lesson with Jennifer and we watched "The Restoration" and talked about other stuff that brought the Spirit. At the end of the lesson she told us she was confused about which church she should go to, so she is going to go to each church every other week. So there is still hope!!!! Man she is so wonderful and so ready, she is just being deceived by a stupid evil dude named Lucifer.

Friday we went into a lesson with the Mayor's secretary. Her name is Jeanette Swallow and it was a very funny and interesting lesson. We go in there and socialize for a little bit, because she loves talking, and lets be honest, most women do. But, I finally asked her..."Jeanette, were you ever able to read and pray about The Book of Mormon?" And she is silent for a minute and says "Yes...................I'm being disobedient." WHAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yeah, so she knows the church is true and just isn't baptized for some odd reason. So we are really going to try and get her there and find out what is really holding her back.

We also had a lesson with a girl named Nedra. She also has really cool names for her kids (Mekelvis, Tempest, Hailey, and Ethan). I like it! It's fun. But, every time we go to Nedra's she just asks the most amazing questions and she is pretty much pretty swell. I love her. But! We really need to teach her a full on first. All we have done is answer her questions.

There is also a girl named Amanda and she is the girl that we found at WalMart last week, and she is awesome! She has a lot of questions and we are trying to meet with her. We might see her tonight, but we aren't sure. All I know is that she has a lot of potential and we are excited about her.

Last night we decided to go knock some doors because our appointment fell through. Sister Holmes and I REALLY did not want to tract. But. We decided to go try someone. *Knock, Knock, Knock* no answer. Lame. So we went to their next door neighbors! They are so cool! Their names are Anthony and Kristi. They have 3 kids who are 14, 12 and 10. They are pretty excited to learn. They are really nice. Ha, they let us right in, and she was cleaning her squirrel cage! She has 3 flying squirrels. Anthony actually kind of reminds me of Uncle Roge a little younger, but I'm serious. I'm way excited about them.

Anyway, I love you all and hope all is going well. You are the best and I want you to know that I know that this is the true church. There are a lot of things I am unsure about in this life, but that is not one of them. I know with everything I have that this is the true church of God upon the earth. I just wish I could make EVERYONE understand that! I know that Thomas S. Monson is truly a prophet of God, along with the twelve apostles! They all know so much! Ah! They just amaze me. I love reading the conference Ensign and studying their words. They are amazing and I can't wait to get to know them better after this life. I know that the Word of Wisdom is important. I have seen so many people here that do not keep it and it is so annoying! I know that if the Lord commands it, it's important! Don't question why, just do it! That is something I am definitely learning here. I love you all so so much and I miss you. Can you believe I come home in 1 year and 2 days? Crazy. Time is already flying by!

Love you,

Sister Stacy Earl

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