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Monday, June 13, 2011

June 13, 2011 - Covington, LA

Hi family and friends!
It's me!  Your favorite person in the whole entire world.  Sister Stacy Earl!  WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!  Yeah, I'm basically awesome.  Ha, okay no but seriously.  It has been a good week, but it was harder than I thought it would be to say goodbye to Lafayette. On Tuesday night I went to go say goodbye to Shawndricka's family, and Shawndreia wasn't there.  It was really hard to say bye to her over the phone.  We were both crying really hard.  It was sad.  But there was a lot of good news to be heard by the time I got here to Covington.  Sister Smith informed me that Shai Richard was baptized!  (She was someone I taught in LaPlace.)  Apparently her mom was the reason she didn't get baptized, and when she turned 18, she didn't need her mom's permission any more, so she did it!  Ah, that made me so happy.   She is amazing. 
On Thursday we taught a young man named Dustin.  He is one of the friends of some youth in the ward.  He is REALLY searching.  Man, we are pretty sure he knows it is true, but he is very very scared to tell his mom.  She doesn't like Mormons, and she doesn't even know he is meeting with us.  He is just trying to figure out how to tell her, and he is working to solidify his testimony.  Everyone else in his family has kind of gone away from what she has taught them, and she feels like he is the only hope.  So he doesn't want her to feel like a failure of a mom, so we have been trying to figure out how to help him.
We also taught Gary.  He is a funny old man who is restoring a 100 year old house.  It is a BEAUTIFUL house.  He is also searching, but he lets things get in the way of coming to church, so we are going to have to figure out how to help him overcome that.
Also that night, President Woods came and interviewed a funny lady named Sunny for baptism.  She was baptized on Saturday, and it was beautiful.  She came out of the water and just kept saying "Wow."  Sister Smith later asked her "How do you feel?" And she said, "I feel like I just lost 50 lbs."  It was neat to be able to be apart of her baptism. 
You will never guess who the Sister's started working with again before I got here...Bettie.  Ha, ha!  That is right!  Good ol' Bettie who wants to be baptized in a river!  Yeah apparently last week she went to Stake Conference and told the Sister's that she is ready to set a baptismal date!  Well we went over on Friday, and she seemed bound and determined to get to church, quit smoking, and everything.  She seemed different.  Well, she didn't make it to church, and our teaching appointment with her was on Sunday after church.  We went over there and were very serious, and we talked about the Word of Wisdom, and if this is something that she really wants.  We talked about why missionaries had stopped coming by in the past, and guess what I did...I asked her for her cigarettes...I have never done that before, but it was kind of liberating!  She gave us her cigarettes, ash trays, and what not, and right before we prayed I asked "are you sure there is nothing else?  We are just here to help you."  She said, "Nothin' else."  Then we prayed.  After the prayer she said "Okay I lied to you, there is some in the car."  So it was really neat to see that happen.  We will see on Wednesday how serious she is about it.
On Friday we also taught this woman named Suzanne.  She is a sweetheart.  I am really excited to be able to teach her.  She has depression, and she is really searching and wanting to know if this is true.  I will update you more on her later.
Yesterday was a pretty cool day.  We went and saw a less active/part member family, and we are teaching their children, and they are so cute and funny!  We are seeing them again tonight.  We are going to a family home evening with some members out in Bush, and they are coming, so it should be fun!
We also were able to teach this guy named Charles.  One of the members actually contacted him, and she came out teaching with us, and she was REALLY excited.  She actually just got her mission call to Las Vegas Nevada West!  So she is really excited to get a taste of what it's like.  So yeah.  Charles is awesome and we will see him later this week.  He is in very humble circumstances, and is just a very humble man right now.  But yeah!
I just want y'all to know that I love you so much, and I am so grateful that I am a missionary and get to meet such wonderful people.  I am so happy that I get to help people come closer to Christ, and I am just...I dunno...I am glad I went on a mission.  It's been hard, but worth it.  I wouldn't trade it for anything.  I am so grateful for the gospel in my life, and I hope that y'all have a wonderful rest of your week. Y'all are amazin', and I am excited to see you soon!  You are the best, and I will email you next week!  Happy Father's Day Pappy!  Love you bye!
Sister Stacy Earl

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