Monday, October 19, 2015

Week 12: From Lone Mountain to......

Hello All!
Sorry this email is so long..I have been writing it throughout the
week which is why it is but nonetheless here it is! Make sure you read
it all cause I'm getting transferred....
Monday: Monday was a pretty chill day. For pday we spent it at Sister
Nickles house.We used to live with her so it was pretty fun to just
hangout and chill with her there while we emailed. We had dinner with
the Manleys. Guess where we went?!?! My favorite restaurant here so
far. I swear everything is delicious at the Edge of Town grill! It was
a nice little time getting to know Sister Manley and answering all of
her missionary questions since her son is about to turn in his papers!
After dinner we went out for the rest of the evening and made some
less active visits. We didn't get in to anybody really except we did
talk to Brother Ogle and made a return appointment so that was good.
He is a funny guy. After we went there we stopped by a potential
investigator that used to be taught. She yelled through the door that
she didn't want us over or anything, so we left and sat in our car to
see what to do next. Then all the sudden her garage opens and put she
comes with some random guy. Haha go figures. We decided to go visit
the Hasselfeld. They are fairly active in the church. It was sister
Hasselfeld and her daughter Celeigh. Celeigh has special needs and is
seriously the sweetest and funniest person. She has such a special
spirit about her. She kept bringing down her monkeys. I kid you not
they look and felt like real babies. It was super cool and super
weird. We were there for a long time because they both can talk
 I think sister Hasselfeld just really needed someone to talk too. We
listened and talked here and there. Then she turns to me and says
"have you had someone die in your family recently" I was like uhhh not
that I know of is three years recently and then she goes on to ask if
I was okay with the death. I was like no it hit me pretty hard but now
I know I will absolutely see her again. Then she started talking about
herself. It was a little weird. We got out of there after curfew and
it was a nice little chat with her.
Tuesday: We had zone training for two hours. This training is from our
Zone Leaders. They gave a really good training on our missionary
purpose and how to gain a testimony. I really needed to have a better
understanding of my missionary purpose. I have been having really hard
time separating in my head the difference between Lauren and Sister
Camilleri. It really hit me when I realized that the name that I wear
on me everyday is the name of the savior. I'm doing his work. I
wouldn't be in Vegas if I wasn't doing his will. Sister Camilleri is a
different person set apart from the world and working really hard to
being focused on being in service of our Heavenly Father. I'm amazed
that I have the ability to have the authority of God with me to
proclaim his word. It truly is a beautiful work.
Later in the evening we had a lesson with a less active member named
Mike. We talked to him about studying the scriptures and about the 1
chapter of the Book of Mormon. It is one of my favorite lessons to
teach. I love bringing the Book of Mormon to life and watching people
learn and understand. It was a very spiritual lesson. I'm really
grateful for the scriptures. It brings a lot of strength and
conviction to my life as I work to overcome myself. One thing that I
heard this week was that this life is not that of a physical war but
that it is a spiritual war. How true is that? We are consistently
fighting our own personal spiritual war. How are we going to win? Read
the scriptures! 😀
Wednesday: it didn't start out to be the best day ever. I wasn't
feeling that great since this whole head cold thing has been going on
and I did not want to go out and do missionary work. However I decided
to just get up, pray for strength and go forth. OHMYGOODNESS IT
WORKED. There is no way that I was going to make it through the day
without divine help. It turned out to be the best most spiritual day.
We had three set lessons that day. We first met with Kiana and read
from the Book of Mormon. It was a powerful lesson. I could feel the
spirit testifying to her that the Book of Mormon is true. It was
amazing. I'm so proud of her and how I have seen her grow as she
continues to grow in the gospel and in her relationship with God. Then
we met with Victoria. Victoria hasn't been to church since she was 12.
She however has a strong desire to come unto the gospel and go back to
church. She has really been struggling with strength to talk to her
mother about it though. She received a priesthood blessing and we
shared with her a video about Ester and her courage to stand up for
herself. It was again very powerful and she felt strength from meeting
with us. This made my missionary purpose very clear. I could feel
Heavenly Father working through me to give her strength. It happens
people. Heavenly Father works through people.
Later we had a lesson with Ruth. Our new investigator. She is golden
and seriously already has a testimony of the gospel. It is a beautiful
thing to witness. We talked to her about the Book of Mormon as well.
She agreed with and knew everything that we talked about. I was
baffled because I'm not used to people agreeing with or understanding
everything right off the bat! She is set with a baptismal date and I
am so proud of her and where she has come. The work really is amazing.
I'm grateful that I am able to be hear and witness Gods miracles. He
prepares his people. Our hearts just really need to be open to his
gospel and his word. I hope that everyone has the chance to at least
pray to know if the church is true. It doesn't matter who you are or
what background you have, if you pray about it you will get an answer.
It is a beautiful thing.
Thursday:Mike got married! The less active guy from Tuesday! He got
married on Thursday to a woman from Hawaii who just got baptized in
Hawaii a week ago! It was super sweet to be there and to watch them
get married. I just love them both! After the wedding we were running
SUPER late to dinner so we had to rush and that pushed some
appointments back. It okay though because in of them didn't answer
there door even though we could see them watching tv! Haha people and
their agency! What a gift! We then went over to the Giles home for our
lesson with our investigator named Mike. We had a pretty solid lesson
with him about faith. There was a line that I read from Preach My
Gospel that really stuck out to him and to me. "Heavenly Father
blesses those who have faith to obey His Son." We were talking about
the things that his son has told us to do. Even in those times of
don't wannas we have to read or pray or get up for church, that is how
we show our faith and then we will be blessed!
Friday: It was quite the day. We started out with our two hours of
studies and then started weekly planning. We went to our favorite
restaurant for lunch with Kiana. It was really nice. I loved having
lunch with her and just talking like we are all the best of friends. I
just love her so much! After lunch we finished weekly planning and
then headed out to our evening of back to back appointments. We met
with Eryka and she was in a crazy 13 year hyper mood so that was an
interesting lesson. We went from there to dinner (nap time). Then we
went from dinner to probably the awkwardest visit I have ever had so
far on my mission. It was with a brother in the ward. Let's just say
he is one the nutty side. He did serve a mission in Seattle though so
that was pretty cool. Then we went to a part member family who has a
son on a mission in Montana right now. That was nice to sit and talk
and have a normal lesson. Then we had a lesson with Cherry..that
wasn't the greatest lesson. She isn't really progressing😢 After our
lesson with Cherry we received transfer calls and to my surprise I am
getting transferred! I will be serving in Elkhorn Springs in the
Centennial Hills Young Single Adult Ward with Sister Kurtz. I've
talked about her before cause we went on exchanges. I'm getting more
excited even though at first I was super sad because I wanted to have
one more transfer with Sister Huni but all is well and the YSA Ward
will be so awesome! I'm looking forward to it. Saying goodbye to some
people in our wards now though is going to be sad especially Kiana but
the will of the Lord must go on. It was a pretty good day but I have
been so tired lately.
Saturday: I didn't get much sleep on Friday night because my mind was
racing so I was super sluggish but Saturday was full of food
basically. We had lunch with a Sister Jakcubzak who is from another
Ward that Sister Huni was in. She is the sweetest lady and has such a
powerful testimony of the gospel. I am really grateful that she took
us out for lunch because when she was dropping us off at our apartment
she bore her testimony of the gospel and of missionary work. It was so
powerful and served as a much needed reminder to why I am here serving
a mission. I'm so grateful for her! I just love her! After lunch we
made a visit to a family in the Ward who was super awesome and serves
as a church service missionary for recovery addiction. I think it is
just so cool that they have a recovery program. I never was so clear
about it but it is one of the best things to be apart off ever. Sister
Bleazard also shared with us about love and why it is important in
everything that we do. It was also very powerful. I just felt full of
love for all those around me. After her visit we went to dinner. That
was pretty fun they were a funny family.
Sunday: it was kind of a sad day! It was my last day in the area and
when the Falefitus (Kianas mom and her) found out that I was leaving
Sister Falefitu starting crying. Oh man that was hard. We did the
normal Sunday stuff. 6 hours of church, then we had dinner with the
Lasikes and then went to our ward mission leaders house to say
goodbye. I have really loved this area and the people I have met here.
It is so sad to leave but really I'm only going like 10 minutes away
so it's not horrible.
Sister Lauren Camilleri

Week 11: 21 in Vegas!

This week has been pretty out of the normal missionary schedule. It
was interesting! Let start on last Monday! Monday night we had a rain
storm. It was the best thing ever. We even had the heater on in the
car. After dinner we went and made a visit to a less active family who
has a daughter on a mission in Guatemala! They were a really nice
family and man do they like to talk! They basically got baptized
because they wanted to support their daughter. It was cool that they
wanted to support her but they have no real understanding of the
gospel. So we are trying to go over there and help them really develop
a strong testimony of the gospel. After the lesson we went and tried
some other people but didn't get in and then we went home and I
managed to lose the keys to the house in the middle of a downpour. It
was just great. I was like a madman looking for those keys. We
couldn't find them anywhere so we went to the apartment gym and called
the elders to see if they had a flashlight and if they were home. They
weren't. Then a bright idea popped into my head that we should say a
prayer. Of course Sister Camilleri. A prayer is where you always
start. So we said a prayer and went back out to find the keys and of
course we found them in the place we had looked a million times.
Heavenly Father is a great man and he loved us so much that we found
our keys. It was a little testament of the love he has for us.
On Tuesday we had district meeting and had another great training with
our district leader. I swear he will be an apostle on day. He is just
so great. After that we went and had a zone lunch a Braddahs. It's
like a Hawaiian bbq place. My steak burrito was divine. Then we went
to the mission office and after dinner we made visits. We didn't get
in with anybody and then we got a text from Steph saying that she was
done with meeting with us. It was sad. I just love her and wish it
wasn't that way, but agency is a real thing and I have to accept her
usage of agency. We then had another meeting with our ward mission
leader. On Wednesday was sister Huni's 21 birthday! It was a fun day.
We did the normal missionary work but we also went out to lunch and
had a superb dinner with members. We sang to her and then made visits
for the rest of the day. We did t get in to see anybody but we tried.
Thursday was the start of the cold epidemic. Sister Huni was sick so
we stayed inside for the first half of the day and then I went on
exchanges with another set of sisters. We spent the rest of the day
making a couple of visits and then had a lesson with Mike. He has such
a desire to be baptized again but our actions have to line up with
what we say and that is where he struggles. Friday was pretty much the
same thing. We went on exchanges and spent most of the day in the
other sisters area. It was fun! I like exchanges for the most part.
Saturday was basically the same. Except I was in charge of the
schedule for our Saturday night exchange and we went and had two
lessons with some less actives, those went really well. I made one of
them cry because they felt the spirit. It was so cool! On Sunday
Sister Huni mustered up enough strength to make it to one of our wards
meetings on Sunday. They were really good. After that we came back and
she rested. I only took a little nap....then we had a packed Sunday
night. We had dinner with a member and an investigator. That was fun.
Then we found 2 new investigators. Ana and Ruth. They are mother and
daughter. Seriously the lord has prepared these people for us and our
message. They already knew so much with our lesson. It was amazing. I
loved it. We set them with a date and they are loving it! Then we had
another appointment with an investigator Kym. Her walls are starting
to break down and I really feel for her and her situation right now.
She doesn't know where to turn but we are working really hard to help
her feel the spirit and know of these things for herself. We read the
Book of Mormon with her. It was really awesome seeing her understand
what she is reading. I love the first chapter of the Book of Mormon it
really outlines to us what we need to do to be able to know if the
gospel is true. Seriously read it and pay attention to the first 12
verses. I'm hooked I cannot wait to finish the Book of Mormon again
and have a greater understanding! We had a zone devotional last night
to set Sunday apart from the other days, it was really good. I love
this mission! I love the things I'm learning and I love growing! I
hope anyone and everyone that is reading this knows that Heavenly
Father loves you and he wants to hear from you. Pray to him! I promise
he will answer you! He is the best man out there! I love you all!
Sister Lauren Camilleri

Week 10: First General Conference of the Mission!

Hello all!
This week was fairly slow because we had a lot of different things
going on then normal so our week was kind of thrown off. Monday night
we had dinner with a family in the Cheyenne Ridge Ward. They were
super awesome. They have a son serving in Japan right now! I'm kind of
glad I'm not there! After dinner we went and made some visits. Nothing
to exciting happened. On Tuesday we had another really good training
from our district leader and we some service for a member of the Ward
that is moving. After that we made some more visits and had dinner
with the super awesome young couple. We had another lesson with the
Warrens who are a less active family but they are super awesome and
are starting to come back to church! After that lesson with had a
meeting with our ward mission leader. Wednesday was pretty good. We
spent the day making more visits to people from the list that Bishop
gave us and had a lesson with Cherry that night. She isn't really
progressing to well anymore. It is disheartening her life would be so
good with the gospel. We are going to keep seeing her though and there
is still potential there as long as we work with the spirit. On
Thursday Sister Huni had leadership training so I was on exchanges
with Sister Savea. I came out with her so it was cool to be with her
again. We didn't do to much in her area. After we exchanged back had
companion study and then went to dinner. We made some more visits and
that was it. Friday we had more trading from our zone leaders which
was really awesome and inspiring. This week is bound to be better.
After training we went to Henderson for a doctors appointment. That
was fun adventuring into the other mission. After we got back we had
dinner and we went tracting. We contacted a potential investigator and
got in to see her and are seeing her again this week. That was really
cool. On Saturday and Sunday we had general conference. It was really
good. I felt inspired afterwards. I love conference. I wish it
happened everyday. It always makes us feel so good. This week was
okay. The work is so worth it. Love you all.
Sister Lauren Camilleri

Week 9: What the Savior did for us wasn't easy, so what we do for the savior shouldn't be easy either.

Hello All! How is that for a long subject line? Haha I'll talk more
about that later! I hope you all are well! This past week was a mind
opening week for me. I learned a lot about myself, our savior and our
father in Heaven. There were a couple quotable things that I heard
this week that changed some things for me in my head. The first being
"the mission doesn't need me I need the mission." The second being
"humility isn't about you and other people, it is about you and God."
The third and last being " what the savior did for us wasn't easy, so
what we do for the savior shouldn't be easy either." Oh my it was a
testimony and relationship building week! Exactly what I needed!
Losing yourself in the service of others really does make yourself
grow! Thank goodness for that because my life right know is all about
service and I'm loving it!
Monday we had dinner with Steph. We set her with a date last time and
she seemed pretty solid about it, until we got a text from her last
night that said that she was unwillingly to commit to something when
she knows she can't do it. It was frustrating! Seriously she KNOWS
this church is true; I just hope that she comes along and stops
looking at everybody else and looks at what she needs to do. There is
an important lesson for us all. We need to stop focusing on everyone
around us and look inward at ourselves. We are the only ones that can
change. We can be an example to everyone around. We have the power to
overcome the natural man and become like our savior Jesus Christ. On
Tuesday we had a really awesome district meeting from our new district
leader. It was all about finding and following up. Let's just say I
left there inspired to work hard! After district meeting we went with
a member to bring food to some non members. She was probably one of
the most thankful people I have ever met. I wish and pray to one day
be as outwardly grateful as she was. I think they will have some
potential as long as we don't come across pushy. Which is like my
worst fear. I don't want to be that missionary! After we met her we
had interviews with President Ahlander. He is seriously such a great
man. My zone has been struggling with communication and I have just
been on the normal struggle bus. He just has such a way with words and
mentioned something about positivity and I just broke down. What's
new. Haha that was the first breakthrough moment of the week. He
helped me understand how I can be more positive and not Let the
negativity curse rule my life. It's hard but I can do it! Later in the
evening we had a lesson with Eryka at a members home. It went really
well I felt. She has a hard time focusing on what we are saying but
the member we were with used to be a school teacher and she helped so
much! Thank goodness for her! We read form Jospeh Smith History. It is
such a powerful truth. My testimony of Joseph Smith has grown so much!
It really did happen people. He restored the true church and restored
the Book of Mormon and it really happened! It was a good lesson!
Wednesday we had a lesson with the Cave Family again. We are really
trying to lit the fire for them again to want to become active again.
The mother is such a good example. The powerful of example is huge. It
is amazing what people really see from us as we are working hard to be
Christlike. People notice that Mormons are different and they know
that is is a good different! Later in the evening we had a lesson with
Cherry. It was another frustrating lesson. She has received
confirmation and revelation that she can do this. She knows she can, I
know she can and Heavenly Father knows that she can. She just says
that she isnt ready to yet. Everything about the gospel comes down to
action.It is so huge. We can have a testimony without acting but we
can't be converted to the Lord without acting. It is huge.
On Thursday we had exchanges with our Sister Training Leaders. I
stayed in my are with Sister Kurtz. I'm so glad I was with her. She is
from Eastern Washington! Thursday was break through day. As we talked
more and more we both realized the three main things that I need to
work on right know to be a better missionary. Humility, Vulnerability
and Sarcasm. The last one is huge. My sarcasm is hitting me in the
butt right now. Sometimes it feels a little scary to let go of that
because my sarcasm is who I am. However I know that it isn't good and
I want to change it so bad. When I come home without my rude sarcasm
don't hate me! I promise it is for the good! I'm ready to change. I'm
ready to be a different more Christlike person. I'm ready. On Thursday
we felt like we should go see Kianas mom. She needed to know that
Heavenly Father loved her and was there for her and we needed to share
that with her. When we follow the spirit amazing things happen! It was
so spiritual. I love her so much! Later that day we had a lesson with
Mike about following the prophet. He is such a great person who has
been through so much. He is the definition of humble. I'm really
excited for general conference this week and being able to receive
revelation from the prophets and apostles. Ahhh I can't wait. Friday
we weekly planned and had an active member lesson. That was good. On
Saturday we had service for Sister Nickles and the we had the generals
women's session of conference. It was really good! I always love
conference and the way I feel! Sunday was just church Sunday and then
we had a musical fireside for our mission. That is where I heard the
phrase from the subject line. It stood out for me so much. What the
savior did for all of us wasn't an easy task. It was hard. He
suffered, he bled, he died. He was pained for us all. Therefore
everything that we ever go through shouldn't be easy either. It breaks
my heart for all the pain that he went through.  Isaiah 53:3-5 took on
a new meaning after I heard that. It was huge, I love this gospel so
much. I love this work. I love our savior and our Heavenly Father. I
love you all.

Sister Lauren Camilleri

Week 8: It rained!

Hello All and All Hello!
How are you all? I hope you are all well! This week was well slow
again but it was still pretty good! After our Pday on Monday we had a
lesson with a semi less active family. The Caves are super awesome!
Sister Cave is active and her husband works a lot. Her kids are
teenagers and want nothing to do with the church right now because
they have more important things to do. There is nothing more important
than the gospel! I wish I had learned that early on. I probably would
have been better at studying my scriptures and having a good attitude
about going to young women's at the age of 17. I probably would have
gotten a better experience with a better understanding and a better
attitude. Everything comes down to our attitude about things.
Sometimes I have such a bad attitude about things and then Sister Huni
makes some comment and I realize I just need to get over myself and
change my attitude. Oh my it works wonders! Haha. I wish I could help
her kids understand that but I don't know how because I feel like it
is just something you have to experience for yourself. We talked a lot
about being a good example. I am such a firm believer in being a good
example. I may not have been the best example at home of the gospel
but I did try my best and that is all Heavenly Father asks of us! As
long as we try our best he will make up for the rest. The Grace of
Jesus Christ is a real thing people.
On Tuesday we went and visited Sister Dickson. We talked to her about
temples! She really wants to go to the temple and receive her
endowments. She is starting to prepare for that now. There is
something holding her back though and I am not sure what it is. I do
think though that it has something to do with the commitment and the
fear of the unknown. We told that sometimes we just have to take a
leap of faith and trust me the temple is a leap of faith worth taking!
What is a leap of faith though? That's the question of the week. What
does that really me. I'm sure it is different for all of us. For me I
think about how many leaps of faith am I willing to take? I would like
to say that my answer is how ever many is needed in order for me to
get where I need to be but I don't think I can honestly say that yet.
Who knows. Sometimes you just have to go for it though without ever
looking back. Leaps of faith in the gospel are the best ones out
Wednesday we had a lesson with Steph! She committed to a baptism date!
It isn't until January but she has so much going on. It is still a
date though! She is ready though. She knows the things that she has to
do in order to get baptized and she can do them. I hope that she
follows through with it. She has changed so much already from the
gospel! We made some more visits that night. We visited the Brito
family and they haven't been active forever. She said that she got
into an argument with teacher at church and she has never been back.
People seriously ruin the gospel for other people and although it
shouldn't happen that way people fall into the natural man. It is sad.
Really sad. I think it just comes back to our foundation and
intention. If we are apart of the gospel for ourselves than it will
work out but if we are doing it for another reason then it will be
easy for us to get offended and turn away. Just remember why you are
attending church.
Thursday we weekly planned and had a lesson with Cherry! The lesson
seemed to go well. We read from the Book of Mormon with her. She
understood it pretty well. She hasn't been responding to us lately
though and she didn't come to church. That was disheartening. We did
set a lesson with her for this week though so hopefully that goes
well. I think she is scared of the lifestyle change that the gospel
brings. She doesn't feel ready for it. She could use a leap of faith
Friday we went to another less active who is 86 years old. She doesnt
go to church though because she thinks she knows everything. Lol at
people. There is always more to learn! Seriously though our knowledge
never stops so never stop learning! We also saw one of our
investigators Eryka and talked with her about church attendance. She
is doing good for a 13 year old but she didn't come to church. Go
figure. Hahaha. Saturday we had an activity at the church with the
primary! That was fun! Sunday was busy as usual! We had a really good
lesson with Kiana at a members home! We talked about the importance of
studying the scriptures. It was good. One big that stood out to me was
it was said that when we don't study the scriptures it is because we
don't know how important it is to learn from the book of more. We have
to read the book if we want some guidance and help! It was a very good
lesson! Anyway. Life is pretty good. I'm about to fall asleep writing
this. Such is life. I hope you all are great! I love love love you!
I'll send pictures in another email!
Sister Lauren Camilleri

Week 7: miracles!

Malo e lelei, talofa, and hello family and friends! 

I'm hoping that this email doesn't decide to suddenly delete itself because I want to actually write a good email for once! So if you're reading this than you know that  it worked! Yay! I'm sorry my email sucked last week! Such is life. 

On Monday we had transfers! It was a park and clean day which means that we had to stay  inside for most of the day and clean the apartment. Ours was pretty clean so we spent most of our day shopping for food, and getting ready for our new companion to come into our area. We also got together with our zone and signed transfers journals (basically a yearbook but for missionaries) it was pretty fun! We headed to transfer after that where we met Sister Sasa! Not going to lie I was/am slightly nervous about being in a trio but Sister Sasa is great and brings a lot of fun and life into our companionship! She is also a beast when it come to sharing the gospel when we tract or street contact which is good because I hate it right now! Later that night we were going to correlation with one of our Ward mission leaders and Sister Sasa went to go kick her water bottle in the street but then she all the sudden her skirt just ripped basically all the way up. It was the greatest thing to witness ever. She then wore a blanket around her during our meeting. Oh my it was the greatest. We now have four hours of studies in the morning! That's crazy! They are all each worth it though! Most days I'm surprised at how focus I can stay when I study but then there are other days where I can't sit still. Who knows but it is so worth it! We went to Kiana's volleyball game on Tuesday night at her high school! That was a lot of fun! It reminded me of being in high school just that short time ago and let me just say I don't miss it at all! Hahaha after her game we went tracting. I am not good at the whole knocking on doors thing. I currently just don't like it one bit and I'm pretty sure that my companions get annoyed with me because I'm so stubborn about it. However humility is key and I have to keep humbling myself to the will of Lord and if he wants me to tract then he wants me to tract! On Wednesday we had another lesson with Cherry. Oh man that was a long lesson. She can talk! We talked to her about the importance of scripture study so that we can receive answers to her prayers and about having purposeful and specific prayers. She didn't realize that she could have specific prayers so we talked to her about that and she was pretty happy about that. Oh my I just love her! That lesson really taught me how to make reading my scriptures better. It's amazing the things that come out of your mouth that ends up probably teaching me more than the investigator. It happens all the day. I guess that just goes to show us that when we serve others we are really serving our selves. I love prayer. I'm not the best at it but I love that I can communicate with my literal father in Heaven about anything and everything that I need to or want to. I love being able to ask for specific things because that shows my faith in him and well as my clear desires of my heart. I love that Heavenly Father answers my prayers when he knows it is best. I'm grateful that I have someone watching over me and has planned my life so that when I ask I can be guided. We have to ask for the things that we need. We have to ask with a sincere desire. Heavenly Father will not just all the sudden help you and give you a miracle because he gave us agency and with that agency we need to use it turn to our father in heaven in prayer and pray with a purpose and specifically for the righteous desires of our hearts. Just try it out and see what happens. Thursday was another pretty slow day but there were a lot of little miracles that happened throughout the day! The first one was that we woke up to a text from one of bishops with a list of names that we should visit because we asked him. That was really good. We texted them all and set up some appointments. After that we were in the lounge where we get internet and we updated our area book app and we got 14 new referrals!!!!! They were from church headquarters but it was crazy! I immediately was like oh my goodness that is an answer to our prayers! We texted them as well and set up some appointments. I was amazed. The church is true. Later that night after dinner we visited some of them. When we knocked at one of there houses a woman answered and said that she didn't know anybody by that name. We got talking to her and she said she was a Christian. We kept talking about church and although she declined us coming and talking to her she did seem interested in coming to church. Who knows what will happen with that but it was cool! We finally got to meet another woman who we have been trying to see for weeks. We set an appt with her. After we had those experiences we had like 15 mins before we had to go home we went and saw one of the referrals. He was a super nice guy. He was a born-again Christian who belongs to a church in San Antonio, Texas. He was so devout about his faith that I'm pretty sure he thought he was preaching to us and telling us things that he believed that he probably thought we didn't know or believe in. The sad part for me was that everything he said was at the basics the same as everything that we believe in. There is just more to it and that other stuff brings forth so much clarity and hope. We left that house by giving them a Book of Mormon and testifying that it goes hand in hand with the bible and with me saying a prayer with them. That was nerve racking but I felt the spirit very strongly as I was talking to him about the Book of Mormon and during my prayer. My only hope is that one day he will see the book and read it for himself. I love the bible. I love the Book of Mormon. I believe they go hand in hand with each other because Heavenly Father loves all his children and because he loves his children he gave all of them another opportunity to hear the words and teachings of our Savior Jesus Christ. There is no greater feeling then digging yourself into reading the scriptures and finding answers to your prayers or when we have an aha moment and everything just clicks. I love the strength that it gives me while I am on my mission and the hope it brings to the children of God. Friday was a pretty slow day because of weekly planning. We had a lesson with Steph though and we talked to her about temples. She has the desire to be with her family for eternity. At the end of the lesson Steph committed to getting baptized after she graduates from college in December. It may seem a little far out there but I was a step in the right direction for us and for Steph. We had dinner that night with a family who has a son that is about to get baptized. They wanted us to teach their son the lessons. He was such a little dude but he really understood the gospel. Saturday was a day full of miracles. We started out the day by going to a stake presidency missionary breakfast and that was delicious (mom they had egg casserole like you make for Christmas, it was so good! Not as good of yours of course) then we had another meeting with some of the sisters in our surrounding areas and our sister training leaders. It was pretty nice to not be around elders for our meeting but to hangout with the sisters for a little bit. After that meeting we had a lesson with one of the referrals that we had contacted. Victoria is such a sweet girl. She is a member who went inactive after her parents got a divorce and she had been praying for some guidance in what she should do. She began telling us her story of why she wanted to meet with us and she said that she had been praying for some direction and then miraculously we had texted her afterwards and she felt like that was an answer to her prayers. We started talking to her about the power of prayer and specific prayers and she started to breakdown because she really wanted to go back to church but she knew that her mom wasn't going to be an easy hurdle to get over to get her there. We then told that she had been an answer to our prayer and that we wanted to help her in any way that we could. The power of specific prayers is real. I resonated so much with her and I wanted her to know that sometimes we have to go through the hard stuff to get the easy stuff. With great trial come great reward. We left that lesson with a strengthening of her spirit and duty to God and with a strengthening in my testimony of the blessings of God. After our lesson with Victoria we were supposed to take Cherry to a baptism of some of the elders in our zone but she bailed on us saying that it had been a hard day for her. As we were going back to our apartment to get our dinner from a member we decided to ask her if she wanted a priesthood blessings. She said yes. My heart literally skipped a beat and I was nervous. Especially since we had never talked to her about priesthood blessings before. We explained it over the phone slightly and then called the elders closest to us for their help. We went over there immediately to give her the blessing. It was a powerful experience. Cherry has been going through some hard stuff and she needed the comfort of the Lord. During the blessing she started bawling and then after she said she felt better and at peace. The power of the priesthood doesn't just work on the faithful members of the gospel, it works for any faith in God person that is willingly to act of their faith. It couldn't have been a better experience. I'm so thankful for those elders and their willingness to respond to their call as priesthood holders. After the blessing we had an amazing lesson with Mike. We had the lesson at a members house and it was so spiritual. I can't remember what I have said about Mike but he is a faithful follower of Jesus Christ who is trying to fully come back into the fold again. This time for himself not anyone else. We talked to him about keeping the sabbath day holy, studying the scriptures, and prayer to our Father In Heaven. Mike expressed to us that he had a strong desire to continue to better himself in the things of the gospel. As we testified of the necessity of each of these things in our lives it became clearer and clearer to Mike that he could do it. He could fully come back. After the lesson he told us that it was exactly what he needed and that he was so thankful for us. People like Mike and Victoria make this work worth it. Honestly this week has been really hard. We haven't been the busiest and the work is hard work. It can be super defeating. People don't know how to communicate with others and believe it or not there is still girl drama in the mission field. It never ends. However this week has been full of miracles and testimony strengthening experiences. There is no way that this work would be possible without our savior and our Heavenly Father. Relying on the lord is not a weakness. Saturday night we found out that Sister Sasa was being emergency transferred to another area because a sister was going home because the food here is fake and she is from the Philippines. I was super sad because we were with her for like a day and she was the best. His will be done though. Yesterday we spoke in our other Ward about temples and had another lesson with Cherry. Cherry is so solid I hope everything works out soon so she can get baptized! Our talks went really well, I love the temple. Man I wish I could go there everyday. This week was rough but Heavenly Father is real and I'm grateful for the miracles I have seen in my life this week and the growth. Believe or not I'm changing but for the good this time! 😉
'Ofa Atu, I love you! 
Sister Lauren Camilleri