Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Every Effort Counts


Well it has officially been 6 weeks since I have arrived in the Bronx. I really do love it here, and I really love my companion (Hermana Skinner.) Today at Transfers, Elder Wilsher, from my last area (Inwood,) was called to be the new AP here in the Bronx! He will be amazing. I am staying here is the Bronx with Hermana Skinner.

This past week has been hard because we are having a lot of changes happening in our zone. It is hard to have friends leave, but hey, the life of a missionary. Elder Lartey, our zone leader is going up to Newport, Conn., Elder Zazueta is going to the other side of the bronx to be a zone leader! Elder Richards is going up state to Yorktown to be a zone leader! We were all really close, but we are really excited to be making new friends. 

This last Sunday we went to a members house for dinner. The ones we helped move the last week. They live on the 25th floor and you can see SOO much of NYC! I will post pictures next week (forgot my camera cord again). 

We continue to work with the less actives. Every effort counts. President Morgan told us a story at transfers today about a set of missionaries here who have continually been helping a less active member get to her medical visits for the past year. Over this amount of time, their service to her has been what has helped her to come to church, not just their teaching. It is so important to always show love. ALWAYS! 

I hope that you all enjoy the weather! This weekend is supposed to be in the 90's and I am scared! We will keep working hard though. Last week we got caught in a huge rain storm! and unfortunately, my watch is now waterlogged.
:(((( hahaha the story of a missionaries life. 

I love you all so much. I hope that this week you will pray about what Heavenly Father has in store for you. He loves you and has a plan better than you could even imagine. You just have to put your faith in Him. 

que les vayan bien! 

con mucho amor, hermana lancaster
p.s. We caught 3 rats in our apartment last cycle! Crazy and nast!!!!!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

New Awakening

Ashley and Hermana Skinner in the Bronx

This past week has been SO HOT! I am a little worried about the next 3 months. It is going to be a trail of faith for sure. hahaha

Yankee Stadium!

This week we found so many less actives who we didn't even know were in the ward. I really hate to see that this has happened. We passed by a few of them and a lot of them have health problems which keep them from coming to church. But, some of them just don't have the guidance and a friend to help them get to church. It is really a testament to me that making sure everyone has a member friend and a home teacher makes them a strong member of the church. I hope that we can help them find their way back to the fold. 

Ashley and Sulenny, a recent 17 year old convert

This Monday we helped the Garcia family move up the street close to 161st street. They moved into a really nice project building with 5 bedrooms! When we saw it we were like so surprised! AND it is on the 25th floor. The view is INSANE! You can see the Empire State building and the Chrysler building as well as the Brooklyn Bridge and oh my heavens it is amazing. 

Today we are planning on going to Forever 21 on 42nd street. It is 4 floors of amazing goodness. :) 

I had an amazing spiritual experience this past week too. Remember when I was talking about my "nitty-gritty" which was going to help me find out my "who and why" I am here? I had decided it was gratitude. But, I had been feeling a little like I wasn't hitting the nail on the head. I talked to my AMAZING district leader Elder Richards and he really helped me. He told me how usually we don't see what we need to work on, that we need to ask others because they see us differently than we do. It is kind of like when you listen to your voice on a recorder you sound so different than you really think you do. He then gave me a blessing to help me find my "who and why" I am here. In the blessing the word JOY came up and hit me hard. He expressed that that is a big reason about why I am here, and that I need to search out those who are in need of my Joy. After the blessing he told me to study my patriarchal blessing. In my blessing there in an entire section about my personality. It talks about how others will be drawn to me because of my personality. As I read it, I was filled with an overwhelming feeling of love. That all I need to do to love and serve others is be ME. Just be me. I felt so much love from Heavenly Father and I felt so grateful that God gave me this personality to help bless others LOVE IT. :) 

Thank you to everyone who has helped me to develop the personality that I have. I know that I have had so many great examples in my life of joyful people. Thank you Thank you. :) 

Sunset in the Bronx

Have a fabulous week everyone!! I love you all! 

Love, Hermana Lancaster

Monday, May 20, 2013

She's least in the LDS Community!

Sister Ashley Lancaster and Sister Kelly Rogers in Harlem, NY.

Here's what Ashley had to say about this:

"Oh my HEAVENS! Hahaha isn't that so crazy! One of our senior couples showed it to me on Saturday! I can't even believe it!" 

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Happy Mother's Day!

Hello everyone!! 

Happy Mother's Day!! Happy Mother's day to my own mother and to all of you aunts and friends who have helped me learn and grow and become the person that I am today. I am forever grateful for your loving hearts and your guiding advice. THANK YOU!!

This past week flew. Just like all of them. We only have 2 weeks until our next transfer! 

Thursday, I was down and out. I was sick and am still recuperating. Not fun mixed with missionary work but hey, LIFE MUCH! :) 

Saturday was my District Leader, Elder Richards birthday. He just turned 20 but looks like he is about 23. He is 6' 3'' and is a wall! He is planning on playing football for BYU when he gets home. He seriously is the most amazing missionary. He has the biggest heart and knows his purpose here. He is a great example. 

We went out to Dallas BBQ on Saturday with the district and our ward mission leader. 

On Sunday it was my companion Sister Skinner's birthday!! And Mother's day! She said she couldn't have asked for a better present than to talk with her momma. We had dinner at the Tifa's. I was sick with a headache and didn't feel well all day, but we got a taxi ride home. (Sister Tifa is a taxi driver in Manhattan!)

It was SO amazing to talk with my family! At first the Skype wasn't working and I was getting really frustrated, but I did get to see their beautiful faces and hear their voices. Now I just have to hold off till Christmas. I can do it right? 

Monday and Tuesday have both just flown by. We leave our house at 1 and get home at 9. Our days are full of appointments and when we get home, we CRASH. Well I crash, those of you who know me know that I tire easily. ;) 

The work is seriously amazing. I am so blessed to be having this experience. I am learning and growing and helping others to do the same. 

For my personal study today I read a Conference Talk that really hit the nail on the head at what I want to take away from this experience. 

LOVE IT. I invite you all to read it and pray to find out in what way you can consecrate your life to the Lord. :) 

LOVE YOU ALL! Thank you for your prayers and support. I feel them! I pray for you all as well. :) 

Have an amazing week! 

Love, Hermana Lancaster

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

An Attitude of Gratitude


This past week has been filled with spiritual enlightenment, if I do say so myself. 

On Saturday we had a training about Book of Mormon heros. It was awesome to talk about them and what amazing examples they have set for us! They didn't have to write it, we all know that they didn't write it for themselves but for US! Isn't that amazing?! I think so. 

Sunday is always a fun day....especially at a Spanish ward. We had 2 of our investigators come to church! They even came into Gospel Doctrine! I hope that what we are teaching them is sinking in. 

Monday was Zone Meeting where we talked about how important the Doctrine of Christ is in our lives. Faith, Repentance, Baptism, the gift of the Holy Ghost, and Enduring to the end is how we change and become better each and every day. We've been focusing on the "nitty-gritty" of what we want to change about ourselves while we are we want to be remembered. At first it was a little of a struggle to think about what I wanted to work on. My companion is focusing on Charity, which is amazing, but it just didn't feel right for me. My Zone Leader, Elder Lartey, helped me pick out what I desired so that I could better figure out where I needed to work. I told him how I wanted to be like my Grandma Jane and not complain as much as I do. So i decided my area of focus is GRATITUDE. I am seeking out all of the good that comes about so that I will bear my burdens without murmuring. (1 Nephi 16:1-3) :) 

Tuesday we had Zone Conference with President and Sister Morgan. I love when we all get together to talk about the Doctrine of Jesus Christ. We always have 4 talks, one about Courage, one about Obedience, one about Reverence, one about Effort which make up our motto: Loyal to the CORE. Cleaver because we live in the big apple no? ;) 

The talks were, wonderful. Courage was given by Elder Vanner who is from Kazakhstan. He came out with me from the MTC. He is one of about 100 members there. He told of the courage of some of the US embassy members who knew that they had to share the gospel. These members didn't necessarily know the language but he said all they had to do was share the Book of Mormon with them and that he and is family are the fruit of it. 

Obedience was given by Elder Pemberton who is from Payson, Utah! He gave a great example of how blessings and happiness come from being exactly obedient. 

Reverence was given by my zone leader Elder Lartey who is from Orem. He told the story of his father who accepted the gospel message while is family rejected it. He choose to go on a mission at the age of 21. While he was serving he was about to step on a bus, which he had been waiting for for 3 hours, when a voice said to him, "Don't get on the bus." He turned around to see who had said it but no one was there. He took another step, again the voice said "No." When he headed off the bus the driver said, "You know the next bus won't be here for 2 hours right?" and He said, "Yes, but I will wait." As he got on the next bus, he felt a calm and knew it was safe. 2 hours into their journey to the airport, they came across the first bus which had rolled, and there weren't any survivors. He then told us that we need to have reverence so that we can be able to listen to the voice of the spirit and be able to follow what it says. 

Effort was given by Sister Parkin from California. She is so awesome and talked about how we control the amount of effort we put in even though we can't control the outcome. 

I LOVE IT HERE!! It is seriously amazing to be serving a mission for the Lord at this time. :) 

I invite you all to read the Book of Mormon. I invite you all to pray about what the Lord needs from you right now. Apply the system of the Doctrine of Christ. Have faith to trust the Lord, that you can change. Repent, CHANGE. Take the sacrament with the knowledge of what it means. Listen to the spirit and endure! 

I love you all!! Have an amazing week!!! 

Love, Hermana Lancaster 
p.s. Sorry I couldn't send pictures again this week. I'm taking lots and will send them all at once.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Another week in the BX

It is so crazy to see these pictures of utah! It is just so different here. it is going to be weird coming back home. 

This last week in the BX was good! 
Last Saturday we were invited with our stake to go up to Newburg to do service at the girls camp there. It was quite a drive but SO beautiful! It was the most grass I have seen in a while! I seriously haven't seen nature like that in FOREVER! We just cleaned it up from the winter and had a lot of fun!
We have said good bye to 2 of our investigators who are headed back for the Dominican Republic. Flor and Irene are super awesome, and it is sad to see them go. But we have already sent their information to the missionaries there for them to receive the gospel!!
Just yesterday we met with a lady that the English elders knocked into. Her name is Paloma and she is awesome! She has an aunt who is a member in the DR and has attended a few times with her. We taught her the restoration and she was like, yeah that's true! We were just like jaw dropped! It is so great!

Last night we took a member home that lives very far away from the main part of our area, let alone the church or our house. It was TOTALLY THE SCARIEST THING EVER. I was like, how in the heavens does this 15 year old girl walk these streets by herself? I don't even know. God is with us, that is for sure.
Today we went to Target!! We have an amazing Elder and Sister senior couple in our area. We went to the store today with Sister McNairy she helped us out so much!! I don't know how people live here and go shopping! Without a car it is SO SO hard!
I hope you all have a wonderful week!! Love you all! Thank you for your prayers and love!!
Love, Hermana Lancaster