May 23, 2016


Raleigh North Carolina


Sister Higgins

Soarin' Flyin'

Dear family-

This week was amazing!

Sometimes you know there are spiritual highs that leave you in the words of HSM Troy and Gabriella "Soarin'. Flyin'." Well this was one of those weeks. Let me tell you all about it....

Monday we had a great zone activity in Apex ! We played kickball like elementary school kids at the field by the Raleigh temple. We had so much fun. Sister Higgins and I got there early to eat lunch in the grass and relax for a minute, and while passing by this lady we just talked to her for a second and asked how her day was going. She asked if we were the missionaries from that church across the way. We said yes and started a conversation! She told us that she could tell we were, because of the light in our eyes. I still don't know how people recognize it, but they do, and it is special. It was a good reminder to me that I am a representative of Christ, and that I always should be (in all times, in all things, in all places). During the kickball game there was an Elder sitting out because of a back injury. I realized he was the Elder over the Apex area we were in, and went to introduce him to Tina, our new friend. We invited her to stake conference that Sunday, and she wanted to start meeting with the missionaries. Those are my favorite kinds of missionary moments.

Wednesday we had a missionary leadership training in Raleigh with Elder Zwick of the 70. (He told me he was just in the East Valley creating 2 new stakes or something crazy!) I was so uplifted and edified in that meeting. Elder and Sister Zwick are powerful missionaries! They have learned Spanish and Portuguese to help them in their work around the world, and they were able to use it this week. Elder Zwick and President Bodhaine of the Apex stake went to visit our investigator Danielle (from Brazil) and her husband Ethan. They invited Ethan to become worthy to hold the Melchizedek priesthood so he could confirm his wife after she is baptized. We are so grateful they took the time to visit Danielle and Ethan. At our following lesson, Danielle was so excited to tell us about how Elder Zwick could speak Portuguese, and that Ethan was now preparing to confirm her. It was just what they needed.

Friday was Zone Conference in Raleigh with Elder Zwick again. Now, these are all day meetings, from 9am-4pm, and one break for lunch. Not sure if my bum is more sore from the squats I've been doing or all the sitting I've been doing.... haha But it was worth it! (No pain no gain.) We did roleplays (basically teaching pretend lessons to see what we learn, and to practice) and Sister Higgins and I learned a lot. We used that roleplay all week in fact. I will explain it to you.

Elder Zwick asked us to flip open or Preach My Gospel manuals to a random page and find a simple principle. I opened mine to page 84 (Lesson 5:Laws and Ordinances). The very first sentence under the section titled "Missionary Work" says the following: "Members who share the gospel experience joy and have the Spirit of the Lord more abundantly."

Sister Higgins stated the Principle, then I shared a personal experience I've had in my life with the principle and testified of it's truth, then Sister Higgins shared a scripture and testified of the principle again.

I can tell you that missionary work truly has blessed my life. I have never been so happy. The joy I feel is different than any other. I have also felt the Spirit more abundantly in my life. That is one of the greatest blessings of missionary work!

This model of teaching is so powerful! Di it with your friends, do it with your family, do it in your Sacrament meeting talks and in your lessons. It's so simple and a good reminder. :)

Okay lastly, SUNDAY! Sister Higgins and I decided to fast and pray yesterday for some guidance and help, and for the investigators in Cary 2/ YSA that are preparing for baptism. It was a powerful day. I have so much that I felt and it is hard to put it into words. My favorite part of stake conference was when Elder Zwick asked all of the parents of missionaries currently serving to stand. He thanked them for their sacrifice and love. Then he asked all of the full time missionaries serving in the Apex stake to stand (that means me). We stood, and he asked us to imagine these were our parents, and to feel the love they have for us, and to imagine them giving us a big hug and telling us how proud they are of our service. Well you could say the tears started flowing in Apex that day! It was really special. Later on during his talk, Elder Zwick called up some recent converts from our stake. First was Shawn, he is the Asian Sisters recent convert from China. He is solid as a rock. This sweet man shared in testimony in the best English he could muster. It was so simple, but so powerful. If I could sum it up, he taught us that living the gospel brings joy, peace, and comfort. Simple, but true. Then Elder Zwick called up Marcos and Santiago. Because of the exchanges and accounting calls I get to do with the Hermanas I know Marcos, Santiago, and Christina well. They were taught and baptized since I have been here. They are some of my favorite people. Elder Zwick asked Marcos (17) to share his testimony. It was so pure, so powerful, this 17 year old boy was in tears. He told us about his father who is still in Columbia waiting to come to the United States, and how when his family found the missionaries, they sent missionaries to their fathers house shortly after. Their dad was baptized a week after them in Columbia, and they are excited to be reunited with him and be sealed in the temple one day. Santiago (14) was in tears also as he testified of the restored gospel, and how the gift of the Holy Ghost has helped him in his life during the last few weeks. These boys will be powerful missionaries one day. I cried during their testimonies because I realized just how lucky I am to be a part of their lives. Missionary work is the sweetest thing I have done in my life. I will always remember these moments.

Running out of time, but I love you all so much! Stay strong! Remember to learn it, live it, and love it!!!

-Sister Wilcock


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