How is everyone? How was your week? I hope things are going really well for you all. It's been quite the eventful week here! Tons of people in my branch have been getting their visas, and our district leader is convinced that a few of us will get ours in the next week. I guess we'll see! Pretty exciting stuff. When I first got here, everyone would tell me that the days feel like weeks and the weeks feel like days. I didn't understand that until now. That literally is exactly what it feels like! The days go on forever, but looking back, the weeks are so short! It's crazy.
I'm still getting over a head cold today that started on Saturday morning, but I'm doing well other than that. Sunday was hard though because it was fast Sunday and my district decided to have an "English fast" as well. That only lasted the morning really. I seriously love my district so much. I'm already dreading leaving them when we all head off to our missions. The elders have offered to give me blessings or anything they could do to help me get over my cold. They're great.
My companion, Sister Wilson, and I with Sister Heffernan from Hawaii and Sister Beeson from Virginia :)
Last night, a few of the elders were singing Disney song to us sisters. It was the sweetest thing. We have an Elder Packer (yes, 4th cousin of Boyd K.), and he seriously reminds me so much of you, Skyler! Just the things he says and his facial expressions. It's hilarious. I miss you, buddy! He is also fascinated by Punjabi, so I taught him the few words I do know. We all learn so much, so fast! An elder told me last week that the gift of tongues doesn't necessarily mean that words you don't even know come to you in a moment of need, it also means Heavenly Father aids you in speeding up your ability to learn the new language. And we have totally seen that. It's incredible. We learn so much. Brother Cannon taught us about the importance of helping our investigators strengthen their relationship with Heavenly Father. It's cool to have a relationship with them personally, but we need to remember our purpose as missionaries and use that to push them toward developing a relationship with Him. I just really liked that outlook.
On Thursday, we had our last lesson with Antonio, and it went so well! He loves the scriptures and the feelings he gets when he reads them and when he prays. So we testified of the importance of baptism and told him that through baptism he could have that companionship of the Holy Ghost forever as long as he lived righteously. We had just been working on memorizing the baptismal invitation in Portuguese, so we decided to try it out, and he accepted!! We were so excited, and we could tell he was too! It's amazing how these situations are pretend, but the Spirit is still absolutely there and testifies of truth. We testified to him that through his decision, he'd be able to live with his wife, Laticia, forever. He just smiled humbly and said "Eu quero isso." I literally almost cried.
This tree smells like creme soda! It's amazing!
And then the next day, we knew we'd get a new teacher. So we're all goofing off in class, and in walks Antonio! He's really Brother Miller, and he will be teaching with Brother Cannon for the rest of our time here. We're all very excited that we get to continue working with him, even though our roles have been reversed. He pulled me and Sister Wilson aside after class one night and asked us if we could try to keep the class in order while he was gone. We tend to get a little crazy. We just love each other too much :). So we agreed, and then he asks me: "Sister Ramsden, do you know a Cami Greenall?" I was way excited! I guess he met her through a friend of his at BYU and she saw the picture of his new class at the MTC and she recognized me! Such a small world.
Yesterday, we got a new investigator, played by Brother Miller again. I was nervous that I wouldn't be able to get over him being Antonio, but it was actually really easy. He's a junior in high school who loves soccer and loves his family. His family is Catholic, but they only go to church on Easter and Christmas, and he isn't really familiar with saying personal prayers. So we taught him about eternal families which he really seemed to like. And while I was giving the closing prayer, he was whispering everything I said, repeating me so he could remember how to pray. It was way cool! Sister Wilson and I realized they probably play roles of people they actually met on their missions, which is really cool.
Our class with Brother Miller :)
On Sunday, we had our devotional, and Sister Jenny Oakes Baker spoke to us. She is Elder Dallin H. Oakes' daughter and she is an accomplished violinist who graduated from Juliard. She played a few songs for us, and it is incredible how the Spirit can testify of truth through music in that way! It was beautiful. She taught us the importance of using our talents righteously, to build up the Kingdom of God. That really made me think about what talents I have and how I could be using them to lift others and build the Kingdom.
Anyways, I love you all so so much! Please write me soon! I want to hear from you. Also, if you haven't sent that package already, I like love Trail Mix. In fact, if you got me some Costco trail mix instead of Clif bars, I'd be one happy Sister :) Maybe some pretzels too... Just a thought :) And Dad, you asked how long Dear Elder takes to get to me. Well, you wrote on Saturday, and I got it after dinner on Monday. Our district leader checks the mail around 5 every day but Sunday. But I think they come pretty much the same day. I hope everything is going well for all of you. Know that I pray for you every night. I want you to continue growing and improving.
Love you forever, family,
"And any man that shall go and preach this gospel of the kingdom, and fail not to continue faithful in all things, shall not be weary in mind, neither darkened, neither in body, limb, nor joint; and a hair of his head shall not fall to the ground unnoticed. And they shall not go hungry, neither athirst." - Doctrine and Covenants 84:80