Tuesday, August 27, 2013

August 27th Letter

Dear Family,

An amazing week as usual! Here are the highlights...

Wednesday was the last MTE! Today it was with Santee YSA aka Sister Riggs and Sister Patterson. I love them both so much! We contacted a lady named Ramona outside of her house and ended up talking with her for like 20 min and her husband Cesar. He is a paraplegic and they were really excited about having a church to go to. They said they've been looking for one! They both have so much faith in Jesus Christ. We had lunch with their member Danielle. We all shared experiences of when a prayer was answered. I am so grateful for prayer and for a loving Heavenly Father who always listens and answers us. WE went to the institute and had a lesson with Anita and Jennipher. We then went to contact a referral, Roy. We ran into this kid Jeremy on the way and although he declined another appointment, I think he really needed what was said and that he'll call the sisters. When we were knocking on Roy's door the security guard came up to us and said we couldn't solicit and we tried explaining that we weren't soliciting and we ended up talking to him for about 20 min. His name is Jay and he's such a good guy with so much faith in the Lord. He said his marriage is really rocky and it's been really hard for him, but he is determined to stay faithful no matter what. We talked about prayer and invited him to pray for his wife and with his wife, and that when he prays with her, he should pray for her so she hears because that is super powerful! We gave him a Book of Mormon and talked about that and then asked him if we could say a prayer with him and he said, "yeah we can say a prayer and then i'll escort you off the property." hahaha. We ran into this lady Janet and she opened up how her boyfriend died and she's had some physical struggles and we shared a scripture with her about the resurrection and she just broke down and gave us all huge hugs. The gospel is so incredible and can help in every aspect of life! I don't know how people do it without the gospel. We had a lesson with their investigator, Vanessa who is super solid! Then a lesson with Becca, their recent convert. Then something cool is that one of our members (from Helix) brought her friend to a lesson a couple weeks ago and we ended up adding her (Alicia) and we taught her a few times and she came to church and then we realized she lives in Santee area (they are right next to each other) so we told Alexis because she knows the Santee sisters and she happened to call them tonight while I was with them and said she was with Alicia at the church and wanted the sisters to meet her and so they did! Alexis is such a good missionary. Alicia is so incredible! They shared Moroni 10:3-5 with her and invited her to pray if this is the path for her because she said she was just really excited about learning more, but she wanted to take it slow. WE all knelt down and she was nervous because she's never prayed out loud before but she said a beautiful prayer and asked the question and after she was crying and said she felt so good and they testified that it was the spirit telling her it was true. She was so excited! I had a sleepover with Sister Patterson and Riggs so that was fun :) they are both so amazing at truly following the Spirit. 

Thursday we had training and we learned how to march and do the dosey doe for when 4th graders come in. We had follow up MTE and we said goodbye to our assistant Elder Higbee because he went home a week early for school. We temple next which was amazing. I love the temple! Get this... we met the most awesome mormon couple from SWEDEN!!!!! I freaked out when they said sweden and they got married in the Copenhagen temple! So sweet :) I told them all about Jorgen though and they are going to keep their eye out for him! I even asked for referrals for him, haha. WE met this awesome kid from China named Peter and got his info for the mandarin sisters. We went to BJ's to get a pizookie! Mmmm. We visited Reed and talked with him about reading and praying. We had a lesson with Alan Klos and talked about his potential and how the Helix ward needs him and his specific talents. We just want him to be more involved. After we had dinner with Elizabeth Alvarez. She is so awesome! She made us stuffed salmon and these cheesy potatoes and we got red velvet cupcakes from costco for dessert. It was insanely delicious! We talked with her about utilizing the atonement every day, even for simple things. 

Friday we had a lesson with Eric. Eric is UNREAL. WE taught him the gospel of Jesus Christ and used the soap demonstration. He like already knows everything because he researched it onmormon.org. He asks the best questions and he has such a pure heart and he is SO excited to get baptized! He's such a miracle. We had district meeting which was awesome! We have our new laotian elders and we also celebrated Elder Geier's birthday. We had a lesson with a referral, Janess. She is 26 and she has a daughter with a sever disability and she's all on her own. Her family doesn't help at all. We taught the restoration and it was a powerful lesson. She said the most heartfelt prayer after and she committed to being baptized! Mobat was great tonight. I took a really cool family from Armenia on tour. Sister BRown and I also tried to figure out what we think is happening at transfers.. haha I love doing that. 

Saturday we had a lesson with Eric about tithing and fasting. He asked if he could pay tithing this Sunday.. oh my goodness! He is so cool. He also already knew all about it, haha. We had mobat and it was pretty busy! I got to meet Sister Patterson's grandparents and they are awesome! Sister O'Neill came in so it was so good to see her :) After mobat we went to the church to help set up for the Luau. I don't know if I have said anything about it or not.. but we decided we wanted to have a Luau as a missionary activity and we invited the Santee and Chula Vista YSA wards and so it was tonight! After we set up we had coordination and then greeted people as they came. Scott, Brent, and Holly Sadleir came so it was fun to see them. Brent just got home from his mission last week! The Luau turned out pretty good! There were quite a few people, the food was delicious, and the show was super entertaining! There is a girl in our ward who is samoan so she put the show all together and it was awesome! We had a potential, Jeremy come and lots of less-actives! I was super exhausted by the end of the night and grateful for it to be over, haha but I am glad we did it! We said bye bye to Elder Poulsen because he goes home this week. 

Sunday we had ward council and then church. Eric came and they announced his baptism. Edgar Felix brought his sister Neina to church! We've been trying to meet with her for quite a while and we got to set up an appointment! It was Don Geverts farewell. He just got baptized a year ago! He's going to Lubbock, TExas. We helped teach a part of Elders Quorum so that was fun. We had mobat and it wasn't that busy surprisingly. We weekly planned and got things all organized for this next week!

Monday was Sister Lehmitz's first day of being my trainer :) haha we switch roles this week just to make sure she's got everything down in case she trains or takes over our area next week. We had a lesson with Eric which was awesome as always and 2 of our members came which I think he really enjoyed. He also brought us socks! Haha he doesn't even know that I love socks so much! They were cute ones too. We taught him the word of wisdom and the law of chastity. He said he drinks tea a lot but he's willing to give it up! No questions no excuses.. Like i've said.. he's amazing! We had a lesson with Kevin next about temples. Shawn came and Kevin's friend Jeremiah was also there! We've met Jeremiah before and asked if he wanted to learn more, but he said no. We asked him today though and he said yes! So we set up an appointment for friday. He's way cool. Next we went and did service for one of our members who is moving to North Carolina. We helped her pack and clean and it was an eye opening experience for me. And it was so hot! She's super sweet. We are going to miss her! We had a lesson with Neina. We taught the restoration and she is excited to find out if this is true for herself. She has seen the change it has made in her brothers life and she wants it. We had mobat and it was super slow. School is definitely back in session! Sister Frampton and I had a meeting to figure out what to do for training this week. We really want to focus on being positive so it will hopefully be good!

Oh my goodness I have been studying Mosiah and I love Mosiah. King Benjamin is the man! Studying his words has made me ridiculously excited for general conference! I might have said that last week but I am still excited! Ha also Abinadi. Abinadi is such a great example of dedicating your life to God and the Savior, no matter what happens. I have been studying True to the Faith. I love that book! I am so grateful that Dad always encouraged us to study that book. It's amazing! Something I really liked from it this week was Mercy. Because of the Atonement God can be merciful to us and the way he is merciful to us is as we sincerely repent. I also loved how it said that 'every blessing you receive is an act of mercy, more than you could ever merit on your own.' That is so true! We can't do it without Him, without our Savior. Also if God is willing to be merciful to us, then we definitely need to be merciful to others. I am so grateful for the atonement and for the gospel!

I love you all a lot! I hope you have an amazing week :)


Sister Cassie Chea Rasmussen

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

August 20th Letter

Dear family,

It was a crazy week again! But so good :) Here are the highlights...

Wednesday I had MTE's again. This time I went with Sister Benfield and Sister Stephens in La Mesa. They are spanish sisters so that was fun :) I had to brush up on my spanish skills. I was surprised with how much I could actually understand! I just couldn't say anything back, haha. We had some incredible miracles though! We started off by having a lesson with their recent convert, Dolores at the temple. She loves being there. She is like 65 and she is the cutest lady! We then picked up a member Peggy. Peggy doesn't really know spanish, but she wants to learn it so she is attending their branch and likes going out with the sisters. We tried contacting a former and then talked to a few people on the street and then went to contact another former and taught him. After we saw this guy with his dog across the lawn and Peggy was like, 'We should go talk to him!' So we did. Well, we talked to his dog first, haha and then him. It's a good way to start conversations with people. His name is Jason. He asked us the difference between mormons and other religions and we talked about the book of mormon. He said he's read a lot of religious books but never that one and we asked if he wanted to read the book of mormon and he said yes! We told him we had one to give him but it was in our car down the street and so he said he would walk with us. We kept talking with him about the bible and the book of mormon and how they both teach us of Jesus Christ and help us understand our purpose here on earth. We went over the promise in the book of mormon and he thought that was very powerful. He started talking about times in his life when God has really guided him and Peggy asked him if this was one of those times and he said, 'you know what, it really is. I know I met you for a reason. My hands are even sweaty! That means God is talking to me!' Ha we thought that was awesome. He also told us how he knew our true conviction to God because we talked to him. When he first saw us he didn't think we'd talk to him because he said, 'my soul isn't worth saving.' We testified that his soul definitely is worth saving and then their awesome member told him to go in his room when we left and kneel down and pray and ask God if we are true messengers of God and he said, 'You know what? I am going to do that.' Peggy was the bomb during that whole thing! She was able to relate to him so well and we are going to send the elders to him. It was such a sweet experience! It just goes to show how important it is to talk to everyone because some people think there is no hope for them, but little do they know that there is so much hope and they are worth everything to Heavenly Father. We dropped Peggy off and went to Los Picos for some horchata which was muy delicioso and we met this awesome guy named Tim who we figured out after that he owns the place, haha he gave us some free dessert! We then went to a formers and when she first saw us she was super apprehensive. Her name is Elisia. She kept saying how she'd never make time for church because Sundays are her relax days and then finally she said 'I know you just come here to get me to go to church and I won't go so you don't need to waste your time.' We said, 'You really think our purpose is to get you to church? No way! We want you to be in heaven with God and your family forever! Church is just a part of that.' She kept coming up with more excuses how her family wouldn't agree and she didn't want to cause that conflict and Sister Stephens was able to bear a powerful testimony from personal experience because she is a convert and her parents aren't members and so that softened Elisia's heart. Then Sister Benfield whipped out 3 Nephi 13:33 and the spirit was like BAM. And suddenly it was all making sense to her. Then Sister Benfield invited her 3 year old daughter to say the closing prayer and she helped her and it was the cutest thing and Elisia's heart went from no way.. to wow.. I need this. It was so sweet! We visited a former and taught her and then we picked up Dolores to go contacting with us and she gave us delicious rice and then we taught this cute old man from Peru named Willey. After we had dinner at the Chavez's and it was soooooooooo good! I was going to burst after though. It was also way cool because during the lesson Hermana Chavez talks really fast and so I got a little lost in the conversation, yet I still felt the Spirit SO strongly. I love that the language of the spirit is universal. So amazing! I also got news tonight that Sabrina's baptismal interview went well and she is good to go for Saturday! 

Thursday we had training and Elder Day gave us a last history moment and then he and Sister Day bore their testimonies and we said goodbye :( it's weird having our senior couples leave who we have been with forever! We had follow up MTE and then we had a lesson with Gabriel and he brought his friend Muna! We read 2 Nephi 31 with them. We were able to add Muna and Gabriel is still a little confused about why he needs to get baptized in our church and not just a church. We have a great lesson planned for him next time. We had district meeting and we talked about finding. After we had a lesson at the mobat with a referral. His name is Eric. He just showed up at a family ward last Sunday and they referred him to us. We got to know him a little and then after the prayer he said, 'So what's the process to become a member of your church? I have researched Mormons and I basically already live the lifestyle and I can tell it's a really good thing and I just need to know what I need to do further.' Oh my.. I LOVE questions like that. Haha we were like well... let us tell you! We taught him about the restoration and invited him to be baptized and he said yes! He soaked it all in. We took him on tour after and he loved it. I then had a meeting with Elder Seegmiller. I love discussions with him. 

Friday I had MTE's with Sister Mendez and Romero in Sweetwater. Another spanish area! Wooo! I actually got pretty sick it was weird, but it was still an awesome day! Those two are like the epitome of teaching in unity. They are such powerful teachers together! Wow. We had some awesome lessons with investigators. And one of their investigators has a son who is 20 and so I talked to him for a while and got his info so my area even got a potential! We had dinner with a less active family and it was so delicious! Although I didn't really enjoy it like I wish because I felt so sick, but someday I am going to make what she made so I can just eat it all up, haha. 

Saturday we had follow up and then temple. The temple was CRAZY. It's definitely August aka everyone is getting married! This really nice family brought all this food for while they were waiting for pictures and they shared with us :) We left the temple a little early and went and got everything ready for Sabrina's baptism. Everything like went wrong for the baptism.. the speakers cancelled last minute.. the piano player didn't show up.. the font took longer than usual to fill.. her family got lost.. we forgot her baptismal record.. yet in the end it all worked out perfectly. It was simple and beautiful and the spirit was powerful. Her testimony at the end was so so sincere and amazing. She is incredible! She's been through so much, but she truly has accepted the Savior in her life and has let Him lift her burdens. It is so cool because at mission leadership council at the beginning of this month, Elder Ballard promised all the leaders that we could find, teach, and baptize someone in the month of August and that has already been fulfilled! Sabrina showed up at church, we taught her what was left to be taught, and she was baptized and now her life has changed! I LOVE the gospel. We had coordination after and then we taught Shawn. He's struggling a bit, but the lesson with him was much needed and he felt uplifted after. We then had a lesson with Edgar about missionary work and he got us some pizza :) yum! Edgar is such a good missionary. He gave us two referrals! And we are still hoping to teach his sister, Neina. She's awesome! We went to contact a referral after who wasn't home, but we saw this lady sitting back on this cement thing with a little girl so we went to talk with them and she was having a really hard time, problems were going on with her relationship and she just cried. So we said a prayer with her and asked if we could come teach her more about hope and peace and she said she would love that. Heavenly Father is so good at placing us in the right place at the right time. 

Sunday we had ward council and church! Sabrina got confirmed which was wonderful. Our stake president, President Mitchell spoke to us today and his talk was so good! He talked about 4 steps we can take that will lead us to the light. 1) Have a desire to be in the light. Choose it. 2) Seek Heavenly Father. Pray constantly! He wants to hear from us. He also made a good point about one time how he tried to pray for a long time and he couldn't do it and then he realized that when he was with his best friend he could talk forever and so it helped him to recognize that he needed to build a stronger relationship with Heavenly Father. 3) Turn our hearts toward Him and be specific with our questions. 4) Walk in God's light. Serve others and live the commandments. He also talked about how we should prepare for every church meeting not just the big ones like general conference. It was a very insightful talk! We had our new investigator Alicia come to church and she loved it! Shawn taught an awesome lesson about the SAvior. 3rd hour we did a blitz for our ward and went and visited less actives and invited them to our Luau this weekend! I am so excited for the Luau. It's this huge missionary activity we've been putting together for a couple months. We got popsicles after and then we had mobat. It wasn't as crazy! We weekly planned after and got things ready for this next week!

Monday we studied and then tried contacting Casey, but he wasn't home so we left him a note. We had a lesson with Robert about PMG and taught him how to plan a lesson and challenged him to prepare a lesson and teach us next time :) it will be so good for him! He also brought us in n out which was so kind. And after he came with us to Kevins! We haven't taught Kevin for a while and it was really good to see him again. We read in 2 Nephi 31 with him and it was way cool because he is starting to really grasp and get everything. He loves learning and he just soaks it all up and the change in him since the first time we met him is incredible! And his being so patient with the whole process of him getting permission for his baptism. He even brought his friend Jeremiah to the lesson. I had a meeting with Sister Frampton. We got a lot of ideas up our sleeves for this next transfer. We had mobat which was wonderful. Oh and this guy texted us and said, 'Hello sisters! My name is Jeremy. The other sisters told me about you two and said I would be in your ward. I just want to learn more about your church so I can get baptized." We were like what the!?!? We have been incredibly blessed lately with all these solid people who just ache to learn more! It's amazing. I LOVE being a missionary :)

I am studying King Benjamin's address right now. It is making me SO excited for general conference ah!! But he's helping me learn how important it is for me to serve those around me. I want to make it a point to do that better from now on! This work is real. The gospel is true! It's the only way to true happiness, it really is :)

I love you all so much!! Have the best week ever!


Sister Cassie Rasmussen

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

August 13th Letter

Dear Family,

All the sisters at the mobat, we have this saying.. when things just seem to not go as planned or we feel like we have a lot to do and not enough time we say, 'I'm in the shambles!' haha it's the best. Anyways.. this week I have been in the shambles. And it isn't necessarily a bad phrase, it just means a lot is going on and I am trying to make sure everything gets done! It's like in school when it's midterms and you have 5 midterms and 5 research papers due and it's just like ahhhhhhh how am I going to get this all done? And done well? That's how this week has been. I haven't felt like this in a long time! It's crazy. And don't worry, it's not a bad thing! It's actually a really good thing! It's an adventure :) Here are the highlights.. 

Missionaries at the Cliffs
 Wednesday we had temple and it was pretty busy! We met this awesome couple from Boston that had some great questions about mormons. At the end the lady was like, 'Well hm.. I have learned a lot today! Thank you so much! I now have a different outlook on mormons." It was pretty cool :) I just wish everyone had the right information about us and not all the crazy misconceptions. Oh also crazy thing.. near the end of my shift I saw this family walking in to the temple and there was a couple with them and the guy looked like Stephen Clarkson! But I couldn't really tell and they turned around to go to their car so I asked my companion if we could go sit closer so I could see when they walked back, haha and guess what! It was him! I got to meet his fiance and she is way cute! It was fun to see him! We talked for a minute and took a picture and then we had to go. I had a meeting with Sister Frampton and the Seegmillers and then we started weekly planning and then we went and had a lesson with Edgar, Ortega, and Sam. We also took them cake because it was Sam's birthday recently. We talked about the priesthood. Then while we were walking out to the car we saw these guys unloading stuff in their truck so we asked if they wanted some of the extra cake that we had and they said yes and then we started talking with one of the guys. His name was Saul and he is a mid 20s but married with a one year old and a kid on the way. We were able to talk with him how God made it possible for us to be with our families forever and invited him to learn more and he wanted to :) so we were able to give that referral to some of the elders. We also had a cool texting conversation with Alberto. He is someone I took on tour at the battalion like a month ago and he's actually in our area! He said he's had a rough life and just isn't ready for religion in his life quite yet and we told him how the gospel can heal the past and he thanked us for being so nice to him. I know he'll be baptized someday. Our other friend Eli who I also took on tour at the battalion, gave us a referral! Haha he said he had a friend who wanted to learn about mormons so we got his information and are going to meet with him soon.

Bin's baptism
Thursday we had training and Elder Seegmiller talked about the Spirit and blew my mind! He talked about how the Spirit is something, not someone (D&C 131:7-8) and how the Holy Ghost is what and who allows us to feel or use the power of the Spirit. I had never thought about it like that before. It was really cool. We had zone meeting next, which was awesome! I love seeing how the zone leaders decide to present and teach the information from mission leadership council. They always do so well! We talked about setting genius goals. We had a lesson with Gabriel next and we taught him the gospel of Jesus Christ and the Spirit was booming in this lesson! Wow. Right after we talked about baptism before we even asked him he said, 'yeah I know I need to be baptized.' So we got super excited, but then he was like 'i will ask my Dad and have him set that up for me.' His dad is a pastor.. so we explained the restoration of the priesthood and how Jesus went to John the baptist for a reason and he was like oh okay that makes sense. So we invited him to be baptized and he said yes! He said he'd pray for a date. We finished weekly planning and then had mobat. Edgar and Sam came! I also took this awesome chinese family on tour. They have been living in D.C. for a year on a working visa and the mom joined the church! They had the cutest 6 year old son named Shunfoon and we were best friends by the end of the night, haha. 
The Grover family visit

Friday was first round of MTE's. President reviewed what Elder Ballard talked about and I will talk about it more in detail next week because I have 2 more MTE's this week so I will sum it all up later, but it was amazing and profound as always. Today I got to coach Sister Mulipola and Jarrett in La Jolla :) OH how I loved going to La Jolla! I got to see DAVID!! woot! He's back from China. We contacted a lot of people today. It was awesome! We met this way cool guy named Mikey. We also had a lesson wtih Casmier so it was super fun to see him and then I asked the sisters if they wanted to meet the Ghanas so we knocked on their door and they were all home! We talked with them a little about the Book of Mormon and then one of them said, 'Sister Rasmussen, your face is getting bigger, have you been eating a lot?' Hahah we all started busting up laughing! I love blunt people :) We then were walking and we saw this girl across the street so we yelled hello and told her we liked her shirt and then she came across the street to talk to us and we ended up adding her and her roommate! It was sweet. She was super nice and open and you could just tell she's yearning for something. We went to five guys for dinner and there was this guy working and all of us just felt like we needed to talk to him, so we did! Apparently one of this best friends is mormon. We couldn't talk to him too much because he was working, but we gave him our information and invited him to the battalion. It was a night of miracles and I learned so much from those two sisters! They are amazing and I am so glad they are in La Jolla!

Saturday we had follow up MTE's where we all share miracles from the day before and it was awesome! And then we had coordination and choir practice and then mobat. And I forgot to write in my journal this day so I don't remember what happened at the mobat :(

Sunday was crazy. We had ward council and then church! So on Saturday at choir practice, some of the elders told us that they had been teaching this girl who they found out lives in our area and so they told us that she was going to come to church not today, but the next week so that we should look out for her. They also said that they had her with a date, but that she said she wasn't ready yet. Well we walked into Sacrament meeting and we see this girl who looks just like they described her and so we go and meet her! And it was the girl they were talking about. Her name is Sabrina and she came with her cousin Alexis, who is a member. We introduced them to people in our ward and told her how we'd be her missionaries now and she was super excited and then church started. Sacrament meeting was so amazing today! The speakers and just everything was unreal. Right after the meeting Sabrina ran up to us and said, "I got my answer. I want to be baptized. I want to be baptized this weekend." As you can imagine our faces dropped.. haha we were so excited and so in shock! ahh Heavenly Father is so amazing. We introduced them to more people and then we had a meeting about a Luau we are doing and then we had relief society and then mobat. Mobat was crazy as usual on a summer Sunday. I took a tour of 36 people and 22 of them were children under the age of 10.. nuts! Haha but an adventure. After we had a mission president's fireside. It was one of them best ones yet! Those firesides always just pump me up. Oh and Sabrina came and she loved it and we were able to talk to the elders and find out what she still needs to be taught and how we can make this all possible for this weekend :) We are so excited for her! 

Monday we went to a trainer/trainee follow up meeting which was great. President Morgan talked about how we should pray for our companion more than ourselves. I really liked that. We had mobat and then I had a meeting with Sister Frampton and then we had a lesson with Sabrina. She is so wonderful and so excited to be baptized! We went over the baptismal interview questions and she was talking about how she's so nervous for her interview because she's scared she won't pass and we told her not to worry because the interview is basically to make sure that we taught her right, so that helped her not be too nervous. We also taught her about tithing and fasting. We went to flints next and he was on his way out but we talked to him for a minute and prayed with him. Then our phone broke and we were a little stressed about it because we were meeting that referral that Eli gave us and we needed to be able to get in contact with him to know where to meet. We thankfully got it fixed and then headed to the naval base. I was so excited because I've always wanted to go on base, but sadly we weren't able to this time.. maybe next time! We did have an awesome lesson with Alexander though. His dad is apparently mormon, less-active. But he just really wanted to learn more about it and so we answered some questions and taught the restoration and invited him to be baptized and at first he was like maybe... and then we explained it more and he was like 'wait.. yeah.. I'll do that!' Haha it was so cool and he's really awesome. We stopped by Juan's and caught him home. I don't know what his deal is, but it makes me sad. We talked about the scriptures and I really hope he will come to church this weekend. 

It was an amazing week! I have been studying Jacob this week. I really admire how missionary minded Jacob is and his dedication and diligence to always be testifying of Christ, even when he has people like Sherem trying to bring him down. This work is real. And it's His work. I love it soooooo much :) 

I hope you all have the best week eveR! I love you so much!!

Sister Cassie Rasmussen

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

August 6th Letter

Dear Family,

WOW. What a week. Here are the highlights...

Tuesday night we finally got to see a recent convert I have never met my whole time in Helix. His name is Ryan and he's great! He said he's been having a hard time with prayer and he doesn't like feeling forced to pray so we tried to help him understand better why we pray and teach the simple doctrine behind it. Sister Frampton and I had a meeting with the Seegmillers and we talked about training. 

Wednesday was amazing! It was my companions 20th birthday, woot woot! We also had Elder Ballard come and speak to our mission! We all got to shake his hand which was amazing. I remember doing it last year.. I can't believe that. He talked about how we must always maintain an eternal perspective, and how that is what is going to make us successful on our missions and just in life. He talked about 3 Nephi 27:13 and how we are here because our Father has sent us here to San Diego. We must pray, pray, pray because we can't do this work without Him because it is His work. President Clayton and President Morgan sang a duet and it was awesome! I didn't even know President Clayton sang. Elder Ballard then answered questions and one of my favorites was an elder asked how we can maintain serving with all our heart, might, mind, and strength? And Elder Ballard talked about how we just have to maintain that perspective and to keep gethsemane in the back of our minds always. He talked about how sometimes he is exhausted and doesn't know how he is going to do everything he needs to do, but then he remembers gethsemane and remembers that in the strength of the Lord we can do all things. He told us that a great way to go home is exhausted, and I loved that! He said that the Lord will lift every burden if we really turn our hearts to Him. Ahhhhh it was amazing. He just really helped me to want to be more committed. We ate lunch and then had the temple. We talked to some really awesome people! I talked to this brother and sister who were originally from Costa Rica but live in Rancho Cucamango now. They referred! I also got to see one of my favorite people from La Jolla, Brittany! She is so cute. She brought me the new efy cd from Brandon :) so that was exciting (it's amazing by the way!) We went to a barbecue at Edgars after because Sister Lehmitz told Edgar that for her birthday she wanted him to have a barbecue and invite non members, so of course he did! He has such a big heart. The food was delicious and everyone he invited was really nice! We talked with them all about prayer. Also edgar got this awesome cake made for Sister Lehmitz that had a edible name tag on it! So sweet. We went to Jen's house after and talked with her about the book of mormon. Her non member friend was there so we kind of tailored the lesson towards her and she got really excited about the Book of Mormon. She was like, "So wait.. if I have questions about things.. this book can help me?" And we were like yes yes yes!! And shared some experiences. We asked if she wanted to meet and then found out she's only 15! She's way mature for her age.. ha so we are going to pass her off to the family ward missionaries. She's super prepared though! Her name is Ellie. 

Thursday was an insane day. We had training and we had this really awesome scavenger hunt planned that was meant to be fun and help the sisters work on their presentation skills and we took forever planning it and preparing it and we messed up on one tiny thing which kind of messed the whole thing up and it was just a big failure, ha but we were able to tie it in to missionary life so that was good! Then the Woolstenhulmes came and shared their testimonies with us because they are leaving soon :( They are incredible human beings and I am so glad I got to serve with them! They definitely have taken care of all us sisters. Sister Frampton and I then went to mission leadership council and guess who came?? Elder Ballard! Two days in a row with him.. so SWEET! He talked about how we can do more and that we have a power beyond what we realize and that as leaders we must set the example and have faith that we will be successful. We have the power to do it. We just can't do it without the Lord. We must get on our knees and call down the powers from heaven. He also said we are not just missionaries, we are empowered sons and daughters. He made us a promise that we could find, teach, and baptize someone this month! If an apostle of the Lord promises it, I know it can happen! I am so excited for what's ahead! But then the coolest thing every happened.. He prayed. I have never heard an apostle pray before, and it was the COOLEST thing. The way he communicates with Heavenly Father is unreal. And he even prayed for us specifically! All I can say was my mind was blown and tears were definitely coming out of my eyeballs. Probably one of the coolest things I have experienced and I am so grateful I was able to. He left and we all discussed with President what he counseled us to do. We ate lunch and took some pictures and then we headed back to the battalion. Elder Seegmiller was being all sneaky and told me he really needed to talk to me and took me to one of the rooms on the tour and then Rus and Marin were there! Ahhhhh so good to see him and to finally meet her! She is super nice and cute! It was definitely a healing experience to see Rus so happy :) All the sisters thought he was so funny and they were like 'we can totally tell you two are related!' I was hoping that meant that they think I am kinda funny :) haha. We went to edgars to have a lesson with Sam because apparently they live together now, but Sam wasn't there so Edgar gave us some ice cream and we talked to him about teaching his sister, Nayna. We tried Tiana's and she wasn't there, but we talked to her mom again and told her about the Book of Mormon and prayed with her. She's so sweet! We tried to see Roosevelt next but he wasn't there so we left him a note and as we were walking back we passed this kid who was on the phone and we kinda felt like we should talk to him, but he was on the phone so we ended up talking to these ladies and found out that we were trying the wrong apt for Roosevelt so we decided to go back and we were like if that kid is there and not on the phone we are going to talk with him. Well he was still there and not on the phone so we did talk with him! His name is frankie and we just talked about God and prayer. We prayed with him and invited him to learn more and to church and he said yes to both so we got his information. So cool how God places people directly in your path. We went to Kevin's and read 3 Nephi 18 with him and talked about the sacrament. Kevin is still so excited to get baptized and just trying to keep his chin up and wait patiently for everything. After the lesson, Sister Lehmitz asked if we could see his garden real quick so he took us to the back and was showing us and then there were some cages and he was like this is my bunny and those are my guinea pigs and I looked in and one of them looked dead and he saw it to so he just reached right in and grabbed it and it was dead and he was so sad and it was just a really weird situation.. we felt bad, but we also kinda laughed about it after because it was just so weird. But he did say...'well at least he's with our Father now' Ahhh he has such a good perspective. 

Friday we had a lesson with a referral named Gabriel. He is so COOL! So down to earth and just so open and awesome. We taught the plan of salvation and talked about baptism and he said nothing is really holding him back from getting baptized but he just wants to learn a little more and come to know it's true. We are excited for him! He does this thing called body bi vi and he's super into it. We had district meeting about prayer and went over what elder ballard talked about on wednesday and then we had lunch and celebrated Sister Lehmitz birthday. Mobat tonight was great. I got to take Carli Barlow's family on tour! She was in La Jolla ward and is on a mission now :) It was fun to see her family and hear how she's doing.

Saturday was Sister Benfield's birthday! Woot! I went on exchanges with Sister Madsen in Mira Mesa! We first got to attend a baptism for a girl named Becca who Sister Madsen taught and who I got to teach on exchanges once. It was one of the most amazing baptisms I have ever been to. She just is one of the most prepared amazing people I have ever met. I also played the piano for it haha they didn't have a piano player last minute. We ate some food and then we went and taught a guy named Albert who used to be muslim. He was so cool! We started with how to begin teaching and then before we even got to get into the restoration he was like, "do you have a book I can read to find out if this is all true?" And we were like why in fact we do! Haha so we gave him the book of mormon and talked about it and he said he really wants to know the truth so we were able to add him! We then taught a recent convert named Lynn. She has an amazing story and we read with her in the BofM. We then went to contact some potentials and ran into a former investigators of theirs. Her name is Cynthia and she is incredible and so prepared, she is just a little stubborn. We had a cool lesson with her though. We had the temple next and it was crazy busy, but awesome. I met this awesome chinese couple, Alex and Grace. They told me they just wanted to learn more about mormons and had been researching about them when they found the temple and decided to come see it. SO COOL!! I got their emails so I could continue talking with them and then I am also sending them the missionaries. I love, love how Heavenly Father guides people and how His timing is so perfect. I loved being with Sister Madsen. Her and I are really similar and we had some really good conversation about the atonement. 

Sunday we had ward council and church. We ended up teaching sunday school last minute. It went pretty well though! We had break the fast and then battalion. It was CRAZY busy. I honestly can't remember what happened because of the madness, hahah. Okay not that bad, but there were so many people. We then weekly planned and Sister Frampton and I had to make some schedules for some missionary training that's coming up.

Monday I had another meeting with Sister Frampton and we got all the schedules done so that was nice. We then went to see Frankie but ran into this guy named Flint. Flint is interesting and a little crazy, but super open. We talked about the restoration and gave him the Book of Mormon and he's coming to church on Sunday. We then had a lesson with Tony. Tony is less active. He served a mission, but it was on his mission where his testimony started faltering just because he felt like he was doing everything he could and nothing was happening.. We talked about Heavenly Father and about prayer and found out that his biggest fear is that when he asks if this church is true.. that he won't get an answer and then does that mean that it's not true? Holy moly the Holy Ghost was definitely guiding that lesson because I said things that I honestly can't even remember what I said and I felt literally like words were being put into my mouth. I have felt like that a lot on my mission, but it was more prominent this lesson for some reason. I love being a missionary :) We had battalion and it was great! I took a family on tour who is in Uncle Ward and Aunt Janet's ward! So that was fun. Also Arthur, recent convert from La Jolla, he always comes to the battalion and recently he's been bringing his friend Chris. Chris has a lot of dark past and you can just tell there are a lot of things weighing him down.. he's not quite open yet, but we were able to have a pretty cool conversation. Also guess who else stopped in? Chris Stopa!! It was fun to catch up with my cousin and just hear how he's doing and I am so glad he stopped in. 

Basically it was a really great week! I also have been studying Elder Bednar's talk again "The Answer is the Doctrine," and it just blows my mind every time. And from my experience with Tony and being guided by the spirit there was this part in Elder Bednar's talk that said, "Things that you have studied and put into your head and your heart will be brought back to your mind and to your memory by the power of the Holy Ghost. And it will not be, that you are such a great teacher, it will simply be that the Holy Ghost is operating through you and you have prepared yourself to be that vessel through whom He can operate. Because the Holy Ghost is the teacher. It's never me and it's never you." That is why studying the scriptures, and the ensign and the gospel is so important! Because the Holy Ghost will literally guide our words when we are talking to our family, friends, or random people we don't even know! And then we are able to be that vessel so someone else can feel of God and the Savior's love for them. It's so amazing. Also I found my new favorite quote in his talk, "The atonement of Jesus Christ can strengthen us to do hard things that in our own capacity we could never do." How true that is. I am SO grateful for the atonement. I am so grateful for how much I am learning about it on my mission. I love this gospel so much.

I love you all! I hope you have the best week ever :) 

Sister Cassie Rasmussen