Wow. This week felt so long! It feels like ages since the last P-day.
This week was transfer week so, as usual, it was pretty hectic.
Last P-day was shorter for Sister Fisher and I because a new missionary named Sister Heno had just arrived, fresh from the MTC. Who else but me and my companion would she get to spend a few days with ;). So we picked she (I am talking bajan...it is normal, trust me) up from the Mission home Monday late afternoon. She was with us until Wednesday Morning. I love she so much! Literally, we had a blast with she :) Don't worry, I won't write too much Bajan...It might be too weird for you to read.
Tuesday was a day filled with goodbyes! Sad. I had to say goodbye to a lot of great missionaries that I was blessed to serve around. They are doing work on their new islands I am sure. Transfers are hard here. Instead of like in the states or other places, if they leave your area you may never see them again on your mission. But, that is how it goes.
Wednesday we picked up Sister Norris from the Airport and her and Sister Fisher went around to see some of her old Members and investigators from when she served here. So while they were out doing that fun stuff Sister Maughn and I were on bikes....It was hot. We always look like sweaty orphans...everyday. By the end of the afternoon I had to change clothes I had sweated so bad. If President Herrington saw me he probably would have thought I jumped into the ocean.
But it was a fun experience as well :) I loved being on bikes. My body didn't though. I was so sore!!!
Then we dropped Sister Norris off at the mission home before she departed on Thursday. Now she is back home...living the normal life. Exciting! 9 months from now that will be me!
Then Wednesday night we also picked up Sister Call!!! How awesome!! Reunited at last! We are in a trio! Her companion is stuck on St. Vincent because she doesn't have the correct paperwork to get into Barbados right now. . It is so fun to be in a companionship with Sister Call again. I love it!
So #trioswag #wecool So we shall be a trio for the time being. It is the funnest thing on the planet. Love she. She is bae.
We contacted some pretty promising people this week! Loved it.
In my personal studies I have been focusing on learning the Book of Mormon stories better. If you think about it, the prophets that were writing put these specific stories in there for a reason. A reason that we might not yet understand by through the Holy Ghost can come to comprehend. So that has been what I've been doing this week. Focusing on really learning the stories and understanding the messages it teaches in each chapter. It is crazy how much the scriptures truly go hand in hand. You can't have one book without the other. I got through 1 Nephi 1-8, about a chapter a day. I'm taking my time :)
Something cool that I learned that I want to share with you I learned in 1 Nephi 4. In Verse 6 it clearly states that Nephi "was lead by the spirit, not knowing beforehand the things which [he] should do". Wow. What great faith! As I was pondering the power of that simply verse the spirit helped me feel how important that lesson can be. Nephi had no clue what was going to happen or what he needed to do as he was led by the spirit. In verse 7 the first word is Nevertheless. I have taken that word to heart as I go about my missionary work. The day was hard...Nevertheless I worked hard and did all I could. The work Nevertheless carries so much power! And determination! And optimism!! Elder John H. Groberg says, "Be willing to take reasonable risks."
I had an experience similar to Nephi's. (no I did not chop off anyone's head...:))
We were driving to an appointment and I looked out my window. A house far back off the road caught my attention. I had the distinct impression to go contact that house, but we were already running late for our next appointment. We didn't have time! So for the next 75 seconds I was having a wrestle in my head. I kept thinking, "we don't have time...what if they don't want to talk to us and we are even later. We already drove too far past it." while my entire being was pushing me to go back! I felt sick the further we drove away. Eventually I came to my senses and I told Sister Fisher we needed to go back and there was a house we needed to go to. So we drove a ways back, parked out car, and figured out how to get to the house I saw. Along the way we ran into an investigator of ours named Natalie. That was amazing! Finally when we got to the house a nice older lady named Joan came to the door. She was so friendly! And guess what?! Missionaries used to stop by them a couple years back!!! They already had a book of Mormon, she knew right where it was, went and got it, and showed it to us. It was a really good experience and I am looking forward to going back.
It might not go anywhere and she may not be interested, but I did my part and I feel excellent knowing I followed the prompting of the Holy Spirit. I didn't know what I was going to say but I was truly helped and as I opened my mouth it was filled.
Sister Fisher's mom is the sweetest!!! I love she too! She sent me a package and I got it last P-day. I am so grateful for her. She sent me a camera! I can send you pictures now! How amazing is that! I am seriously so grateful.
Had some fun adventures this week. Love and miss you.
Sister Breana Stewart
You want to hear something cool about this last transfer?
As usual at the end of a transfer you add up your numbers on how many lessons you had, Book of Mormons given out, contacts/gospel discussions, and such. So of course we did that last night. I bet you couldn't guess what our numbers were?
To some missionaries they might not seem too crazy high but here in the Caribbean we did a dang good job. In the last six weeks we had 239 contacts, gave out 74 Book of Mormons, and had about 162 lessons. Feels good. Sometimes you get home after a long day, all of your appointments fell through, you faced rejection most of the day, and you wonder: What good did we do today? Some days are harder than others but the principle of Enduring to the End is one you learn well and often. When we can look back and see all that we did, we feel a lot better.
Angela came to church this Sunday!! She could only stay for the first hour but she made the effort to come for Sacrament meeting.
Wednesday the elders forgot to show up to scripture study and they have the keys so that didn't end up happening. I guess it was ok that people didn't show up this time.
Fun night was awesome! I am slowly getting better at my shots in basketball and my futbol skills are slowly improving as well. Just know I'll be as good as Neymar or Messi one day.
Transfer calls were on Saturday. You excited to hear what is happening?! So was I. So, I will be staying in Barbados and Sister Fisher and I will be staying together as well! Also, Sister Call (I trained her haha) and Sister T are coming here and will be living with us! Our area will be split and they will be taking over the area nearest to our house. So we are losing some of our amazing investigators. I will miss them :( But like the song says, "I will follow God's plan for me". It will all be for the better and I know the new sisters will take good care of them.
Sad news: Sister Robinson is leaving Barbados :( I am so sad! I am going to miss her tons!!! It won't be the same. It is like saying good bye all over again. She will be serving on St. Vincent with my old companion Sister Nelson. They will only be together for 1 transfer because this is Sister Nelson's last one. Then she goes home! Sister Robinson will be greatly missed.
Elder Lindsey is my District Leader right now and Elder Smith is his companion. Elder Smith is going to St. Maarten! My home!!! Lucky. And Elder Page, my old District Leader when I was on St. Maarten, is going to be companions with Elder Lindsey. So starting Wednesday Elder Page will be my District Leader.
I reach my halfway point in about a week and a half! INSANE! There is no way it is coming that fast. So much to do, so little time!
This transfer is going to be great.
We get money on Wednesday!! We have hardly had any food this week and it has been a struggle. If I am not tiny when I get home they are putting something in the water. I am so stoked for Wednesday. Food! #missionarystruggles #starving
I love and miss you so much!!! I hope you have a good week!
Sister Breana Stewart
This week was busy busy busy! Most of our appointments have continued to fall through. I think all missionaries know how that feels. Amazingly we were still able to have 32 lessons this week, 38 contacts, and give out 19 books of Mormon. So I'd say it was a good week work wise. We got rejected A LOT this week. However, we were blessed with a few contacts that looked pretty interested. So, we shall see how that goes :)
We are basically out of food so we were very grateful when brother Collucci loaded us up both with a piece of apple pie, a piece of cheesecake, and a piece of red velvet cake to take home after a lesson with him. He rocks! One of my favorite people in the Caribbean. He is such a generous person. Last night he sent us home with some rice and turkey. At least we won't run out of food for the next 24 hours!
Transfer calls are on Friday or Saturday!! So excited for that! Saturday there is a Baptism. His name is Kemar and the missionaries that are teaching him are Elder Mills, Elder Page, and Elder M (his last name is hard to spell and sounds like Mike Wazowski sort of). I will be playing a piano piece at it and have almost no time to practice it. I have been keeping it a secret that I play, but now they will all know haha. I will let you know how it goes :)
Sorry the email is so short.
Love you long time!
Sister Breana Stewart
My investigators are doing pretty good. We have 2 progressing investigators right now!!! WOOP!! We are stoked about that. Zero baptism dates but we are working on that. Our investigator Nicole is doing very good and can feel the peace our message brings. She has been telling us that things have been going more smoothly in her life since we've been meeting with her.
We had our investigators Angela and her daughter come to the Sunday afternoon session of General Conference. That was amazing. A couple of the members are fellowshipping her and it is amazing the difference that makes. When members are involved in missionary work it truly skyrockets. They are essential!! I am committing you right now, if you have a desire to serve God and Jesus Christ more in your life, ask the missionaries what you can do for THEM. What could you do to help them in their missionary efforts? You could be the perfect person to form a friendship with someone they are teaching. You may already be friends with someone that could use the gospel in their life. Use the missionaries!! They are not there to just come over for dinner, they are there to bring others to Christ and the best way for them to do that is through the efforts of the members. Find out from the missionaries if the ward has a "ward mission plan". Then, go to work.
Funny spiritual experiences from the week:
1) Wednesday morning we helped at Less-active named Sister John water her garden. I have mentioned said garden in previous emails and commented on how it looks like the Garden of Eden. With the blaring sun drying up the plants we offered to help her. So of course she said yes and we did. It was awesome. Doing service truly helps you feel God's love for you and for his children. So on our way home from this service we drove passed a pepper field...we actually drive passed this field a lot. It is about 15 minutes away from our house. We were almost home when me and my companion started talking about a lady that we saw in that garden. After a few minutes of contemplation we decided to turn around, go back to the pepper field, and talk to the lady. You are probably thinking the same thoughts I was..."we are going to look insane." Did we? Of course, but we followed the promptings of the spirit and met two new people from doing it. Lesson learned: Always follow the promptings of the spirit. It shows your willingness to follow the guidance given to you. In return, you will be trusted with more promptings in the future.
2) I received the additional promptings from the spirit on Sunday. Almost all of our appointments, as usual, had fallen through. So we decided to go visit an investigator named Mary. As we were walking down the street I turned and looked at a house on my left. In my head I thought, "that sounds fun. They must be having a good time." There was laughter coming from inside. After I turned away I had the distinct thought run through my mind, "Well what are you doing? You need to go talk to them." I kept walking since we had already passes the house and a second thought came.. It was a very urgent ,"GO! And don't forget a Book of Mormon". So, after learning my lesson and remembering to act on the promptings I said we need to go back and get some Books. We met the nicest lady inside that house. Her name was Elizabeth. She is a Catholic. She let us share a message with her so we had a lesson right there on her porch. The energy and excitement coming from my companion and I was very apparent and Elizabeth was getting excited as well. We ended with the song, "I know that my redeemer lives". I learned a lesson that night as well. When the spirit prompts you, do not delay!!! Act on the prompting and move immediately.
Conference was such a blessing. What a blessing we have in our lives to hear from the Prophet and the Apostles.
One point that stood out to me was: "You can have what you want, or you can have something better!" That was a comment from Donald L. Hallstrom's talk. What a powerful and true statement. The truth of it can be seen as we make choices in life. I have learned a lot about agency on my mission. Yes, I will continue to learn more as well. Depending on the choices we make we can receive temporary enjoyment or we can receive lasting happiness. You truly can have what you want, but as you humble yourselves and allow God to work through you the choices you make lead you to what you need and guide you to something better.
Another thing I learned was: Differences can promote tolerance and learning. When you are around someone who is different than yourself you have the opportunity to work on those aspects.
I have been around many people that are different than me during the past 8 months. Sometimes it can be difficult. Living with someone different than yourself and being with them 24/7 was not meant to be easy!! It is a learning opportunity, and one I am truly grateful for. When you find yourself in a situation when contention seems to be rising make it a learning situation. Have a humble and loving attitude. "Blessed are they who humble themselves without being compelled to be humble."
Oh, and did anyone notice who gave the opening prayer at the afternoon session on Saturday. I do believe it was Elder Martinez :) Hmmm...That was pretty awesome. :):)
I love and miss you! I hope you have a fantastic week filled with many great experiences.
Love you long time!!
Sister Breana Stewart