Tuesday, January 22, 2013

A week of miracles again!


It is always such a treat to hear from you and I look forward to emailing you every week. I am sorry that I have been soo bad at getting hand-written letters out! Andrea and Roland, I hope you had a wonderful anniversary! (a little late...)

So first off, the miracle of the morning. Sister Fia and I prayed this morning and have been praying for the past couple of days that we would be able to find a family to teach. About a half an hour after we prayed this morning to begin our companionship studies, we received a referral on our phone for a family that another set of missionaries had taught. Then we received a phone call from one of the senior sisters that went to the lesson. She said that the family was prepared and receptive to the Gospel. We are so excited and grateful for the answer to this prayer. I know without a doubt that the Lord hears and answers our prayers. I know that no matter how small it is, that if we pray, the Lord will bless us with an answer. It may not be when we expect, but he will hear and answer our prayers. :) I will keep you updated on this family! 

We also taught another girl last night named Hannah, who were are super excited about. She is dating a member of our ward and has come to Church a couple of times already. The Spirit was wonderful at the lesson last night and although she didn't accept the date for baptism yet, we know that Lord will hear and answer her prayers and she will be ready for that date if she reads and prays. We have another lesson with her tomorrow and we are really excited to be teaching her. 

Randy was confirmed this Sunday, which was wonderful! Then an 8 year old, Zach, who we taught was baptized. :) It was such a great baptism. We also had another Part-Member Family come to the baptism and they all enjoyed it. We are excited for their family as well. 

The work is truly moving along in this area. I know that the Lord is hearing and answering my prayers every day. I know that He is aware of my desires and as we are obedient, we are blessed with our righteous desires. This is a great work. 

I love you all and hope that you have a wonderful week! 

Sister Schillemat
This is Ollie, a recent convert. She reminds me soo much of Grandma Haehnel and she even calls us her granddaughters. :) 

Monday, January 14, 2013

Randy got baptized!

This week was really great, but like Peder we too had a lot of cancellations. But all is well! Randy was baptized! Randy was just wonderful and it was a great baptism. He said two days before his baptism, "It had abeen coming for a long time, but the time wasn't right." Now was the time for Randy. He had just been beaming over the last week. Sunday came and he stayed for all three hours, which was wonderful! We were so excited to have him there. Then he came back to the church for his baptism at 4:00. He said that he was so nervous that he couldn't button his shirt at home. We assured him all would be well. :)
The baptism went really smoothly, except for Randy hitting his head to pull the plug to the font. He came back from changing with a bandaid on the cut from the hit. But Randy is tough and it didn't really phase him.
The Spirit was wonderful as we closed with "How Great Thou Art." It was a wonderful baptism. :)
The picture is: Me, Sister Fia, Randy, and Brother Hernandez from our ward. Brother Hernandez and Randy went to high school together over 40 years ago. Very cool!
We also moved out of our apartment today into a homeshare. We are soo excited! We are staying with a wonderful woman in our ward boundaries and are excited to be in a home. Our apartment wasn't too "homey", so this is an improvement. :) We are really excited to be there!
The work is moving along. We had two part-member family come to church on Sunday for the first time! It was wonderful! We were so glad to see them all there. We also had another mini-missionary with us this week. Sister Castro was wonderful. She had an amazing Spirit and Spanish is her first language so she helped us out a lot! We were able to talk to a lot of people and be much more effective. Wonderful week. But a lot of appointments seemed to fall through. But such as missionary work. It seems like we have one good week and then a harder one, but I know if we are just doing our best, the Lord is pleased. I just keep trying to work hard and do all I can. Sometimes it is hard, but then I remember this is the Lord's time, not mine. This is where he wants me to be. This is his work and I must do my best.
I love being a missionary. I am so thankful! I love you all and know this is the Lord's work! Have a wonderful, safe week! Love you!
Sister Gretchen Schillemat

Monday, January 7, 2013

A Good Start to the New Year

This week was escpecially wonderful! We had a lot of great lessons and we worked hard and saw miracles.
This past week was one of the best weeks that we have had and one of the fastest as well. We had Sister Morris, a mini-missionary, with us and it was a wonderful opportunity for us to go out and get more contacts and make more visits.
Randy, who is on date for this Sunday, January 13th, is just doing so well. We saw him nearly every day and had amazing visits with him. We fasted with him on Sunday for him to stop drinking coffee. As we started our fast with him on Saturday night he was glowing. You could see the Light of Christ radiating from him. We started our fast and he was just so happy. We told him that for baptism, he needs to not drink any coffee for the week before his baptism (and after). After we said that, he replied, "Well, I guess I just drank my last cup today."
Then he came to church and it was fast and testimony meeting. He really enjoyed it. When we came to end our fast with him after church, he said that he felt like one lady who bore her testimony. She said when she met the missionaries, she wanted to be baptized right away. Randy said that is what he felt like. He wanted to be baptized today! It has been truly amazing to see the Spirit work in Randy. He has truly changed through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. I know also that when it is the Lord's time, all will work out. Randy has been taught for years, but this was his time and the Lord's time.
Randy is certainly my ultimate highlight for the week.
But we just had a really good week. We taught the most lessons since we been in Jurupa, which was great since it was the holiday. We also had some really great lessons. We are teaching another guy named Jonathan. He was also taught in the past, but next was baptized. He is 21 years old and is really striving to follow Jesus Christ. We had three lessons with him last week. Two of them were with members, which was great. The second lesson was with a recent convert, who comes from the exact same background as Jonathan, so it was perfect. The third lesson was with a pre-missionary and a return missionary of about 3 weeks, which was also great because they were the same age. I have a strong testimony of the importance of members, They truly are the way to see investigators progress towards baptism.
Our New years eve was full of activities because we couldn't proselyte that evening. We hiked Mt. Rubidoux in the morning (Thats my fourth time...), went out to lunch as a zone, and then played volleyball that night. It was fun, but I really like proselyting. It was almost too much for me. haha I can only hang out for so long. I was exhausted by the end of the day and ready to get back to normal. I loved the holidays, but as a missionary, I am ready for the normal schedule again. :)
I truly love this work. It has been wonderful to see miracles and see the Lord's hand in this work. I am excited for this upcoming transfer. Sister Fia and I aren't going anywhere! :) Nearly every companionship (except Sister Fia and I and one other) are getting changed this transfer. We are excited for all the work here!
Well, I love you all soo much! This is going to be a great year! I am so thankful to be serving here and to have the opportunity to serve the Lord. This is the true Church! I know it. :)
Love you!
Sister Gretchen Schillemat