How are all of you doing? I didn't hear from many of you this week, so fill me in! Mama? Peder? Poul?
This week was wonderful! Let me start with yesterday!
Well, yesterday Mike and Kody were confirmed members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints! And then both of them received the Aaronic Priesthood! It was really wonderful because Mike, the father, was ordained to be a Priest and then was able to stand in the circle to ordain Kody to the office of deacon. What a beautiful day for their family! It really was a highlight to my mission. Seeing a whole family come unto Christ and now prepare for the temple. :)
Then right after church we had a lesson with little Maddie. She asked her mom about being baptized and she said she could! There may be some stipulations, but her mom did say she could! And we invited her to be baptized on July 8th. :) We are going to have to see what her mom says, but this is HUGE! We are praying very hard that all with continue to go well. :)
So can I just say, I LOVE being with Sister Jones and Sister Fankhauser! Trio can be hard sometimes, but we are having a wonderful transfer so far! We teach well together and all get along quite well. :) Life is so good here in Riverside! I just love being a missionary. I love every day. There are hard times, but I know that the joy of missionary work makes it all worth it. And my companions are just wonderful. I learn so much from both of them and we are seeing miracles.
Guess what? I prayed in ASL this week! Multiple times, actually. :) I know how to say a VERY SIMPLE prayer, but I was able to do it. I really like it! It is very cool to be able to learn some ASL. I obviously don't know very much, but I can do the important things like pray. :)
Also, HAPPY FATHER'S DAY to you, Dad! I sang to you! In the Deaf Branch, we sang "Daddy's Homecoming", while the primary children signed it! It was quite the experience! I haven't sang that in sacrament meeting for probably 10 years! :) We were also the back-up singers for that song in the Arlington Ward, so I really sang it twice in sacrament meeting. :) Both times were for you, Papa!
One of the funny stories of the week:
We were at a Deaf Family's home for dinner on Friday and I had never really met them. They were asking all of the typical questions like "Where are you from?", "How long have you been out?", etc. Then the husband asked Sister Jones, point at me, "Does she have marble syrup back home?" He was finger spelling this to her and she just looked so confused...She then asked him, "Maple syrup?" He was getting (jokingly) frustrated and said, "No, marble syrup!" Finally his wife comes into the conversation and tells him, no it is really maple syrup. Sister Jones was like, "Told you so!" :) Different language and different experiences. :)
We had quite a few investigators at church yesterday! We had an investigator named Frankie there, who is amazing! She is soaking in the gospel and would be baptized here, except she is moving the first week in July. So we are going to transfer her up to her new area and then she will be baptized up there! She told our bishop yesterday that she was very excited to be a member of the church! It was great! We also had two part member family investigators at church yesterday! Brother Snell has been coming to church for 16 years, but hasn't joined yet. We just started teaching him last week, so we are hoping to see progress! His wife is a member and he even teaches primary with her as well! The other man is the son of a member. He has never really been open to the Church, but we are now doing a bargain. We make dinner for him and then we can teach him a lesson. His mom is pretty sick, so we come over earlier in the day to help her with dinner and then her son said we could teach him. :) The Spirit will touch him. :)
I know this Church is true! This is a great work! I love it so much! Heavenly Father hears and answers prayers! Jesus Christ's Atonement is real! The Book of Mormon is true! And I love reading it!
Let me know how you all are doing! I love you soo much!
Sister Gretchen Schillemat
ps. How is Great Grandma? Almost 101 years old?