So this week has been CRAZY!!! (crazy awesome, that is)
I'll just take it day by day...
Tuesday I had an appointment with President Orgill, and when we got there he asked if we could actually both meet with him. We were a little nervous, but mostly just curious about why. Then he announced that we were getting a third companion! She is from Darby, England, and she was waiting for her visa to get here so she has been stuck in London for the last 8 weeks, but she is finally here! Her name is Sister Van Den Bron, which doesn't quite start with B, but we decided it was close enough and we are now the 3 B's instead of 2. It's quite a long name, so I'll probably just type Sister VDB from here.
Anyway, that was the most amazing way to start our week. Then, as if that wasn't enough shock, Tuesday continued to be a day of miracles. We were at a training meeting for temple tours, and we were taking a practice tour around the chapel, when two women walked into the chapel, right up to us, and literally asked us how they could join the church. We were in a group of like 6 sisters, and all of us just went into complete shock. No one said anything for a few seconds lol. They turned out to be in our area, and we are so excited to teach them! Their names are Suzanne and Lily, and they are from Ukraine, but have been living in LA for a few years. Hopefully we'll meet with them soon, as they'll be getting home from a Thanksgiving trip in the next day or two.
That night we taught Pretzer the Plan of Salvation. It was so cool! She soaked it all up, and kept asking more questions, and basically she was just amazed by how much it really all meant that Heavenly Father loves us.That's it. That's what it's all about.
It was also really fun to teach Pilar that night. It was our first time meeting with her, and... WAIT!!! I HAVEN'T TOLD YOU ABOUT PILAR!! Miracle :) So last Saturday we went to this service project called Hearts and Hands. It is an interfaith project that our church hosted and there are all kinds of family friendly projects to help with, from making scarves and hats to wooden toy cars for orphans. It is a huge event once a year, and Pilar came for the blood drive. She is about 40, and a single mom of two 9-year-old twin boys who are "on the spectrum" of autism. Pilar is originally from Colombia, but she has lived here most of her life. She used to work in Hollywood catering for TV show sets. Seriously, she has met cool people. But she wanted to spend more time with her boys and felt that God lead her to where she is now, working as a house manager. She has been dating a member of the church, and he has been an incredible example to her. So she started researching our church over the last month, and when we met her at the service project she was so happy and asked us if she could come to church and if we could teach her!! :) Of course we said yes. So we met up with her Tuesday night and just answered a lot of questions about the church (she had a TON) and introduced the Book of Mormon. She was so excited, and immediately started marking verses and chapters to read. By Thursday night when we met her again, she had read 6 different chapters!! She is already one of our best friends :) She's just a sweetheart and very easy to talk with.
So on to Wednesday! (This one will be shorter, promise.)
Wednesday we met with Paul and talked about the Word of Wisdom. We basically just went over it in more detail, because when we originally taught it all he really remembered was that he needed to quit smoking, lol. So it was really fun to talk with him about why it's actually important and the promises that go with it. Paul is doing so wonderfully! He loves learning more and more, and he has changed so much. He always participates and speaks up in class at church, and he is finding ways to help other people at the Addiction Recovery Group get through their challenges. He is just really grateful to everyone who helped him get through his.
Wednesday night we picked up Sister Van Den Bron from the airport!! It was super exciting, and we are already having so much fun as a trio :) We took her to get some food on the way home, and she tried In-N-Out for the first time. She loved it! Lol everyone has been so happy and entertained introducing her to American culture.
Thursday! Happy Thanksgiving!
We had a blast on Thanksgiving. We went out and contacted with our zone, and then we spent some time on UCI campus. But of course our favorite part of the day was dinner. We went to the Schweikert's house in our family ward, and they had lots of grandkids there. The elders came as well, since they didn't have a dinner, so it was a party with lots of people and lots of food! There was even a bounce house in the backyard for the kids which we may or may not have taken a picture in...
After dinner we met with Pilar. We answered a lot of questions about what she had read in the Book of Mormon, and then shared the Restoration and First Vision with her. She took it all in and asked a lot more questions, but she is so willing to learn and she is so sincere in wanting to know truth. She committed to come to church and even to be baptized once she knows for herself that it is true. It was our first lesson as a trio, and it was so wonderful.
I'm skipping some less exciting parts here....
Our family ward is ON FIRE :) When Pilar came with us there were just so many people who came up and talked to her and introduced themselves. Sister Bauer and I actually did a musical number (Far, Far Away on Judea's Plains) in Sacrament meeting, and Pilar loved it. We also taught gospel principles because the teacher was out of town, and Paul and Pilar both participated just as much as the others. It was so fun :) Then Relief Society was also incredible. Pilar just loved everything! And our Relief Society sisters had an incredibly inspiring lesson about loving the lost sheep as Christ does. The teacher, Sis Hamilton, had fed us the night before and asked for some input on her lesson plan and we talked about a story from Elder Holland's talk, "Ministry of Angels," which she asked me to share in class. Oh! and my favorite moment! Scott finally got to church early enough to be able to participate in the blessing of the Sacrament for the first time. As I watched his hands breaking the bread my eyes started watering, as I'm just so thankful to have been a small part of his journey, and so blessed to be able to see the gospel completely changing his life. It has brought him so much happiness in every way, and it glows from him. Last but not least, we have a new ward mission leader and he is SO excited to help us and the ward. We are going to start having members come on visits with us and we are so thankful for the effort he is giving to help us set things up and make things happen.
I think that's probably more already than anyone really wanted to hear about my week lol...
but one last thing.
My ponderize scripture this week is Matthew 1:23 "Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us." A Savior was born, and He is with us. I know He lives and loves you. Discover why He came and why it matters to you by watching https://www.mormon.org/christmas this 2 minute video. I promise it is well worth your 2 minutes :)
I love y'all so much! Have a great week!
Sister Heather Bambas
Check out <a href="http://Christmas.mormon.org">Christmas.mormon.org</a> :)
Sister Heather Bambas
California Irvine Mission
<a href="mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org" target="_blank">email@example.com</a>