What an amazing week it’s been! I hope you all have stayed safe. This was a very special weekend that we’ve been waiting for and I have been eager to tell you all about. There’s so much I would love to write about, but I think l mostly just give a recap (that way it’s not an essay).
Here’s a recap from what I wrote my MP:
“I haven’t met many people in the Portland area thus far, but Sister Kitzman and I are really trying to make goals for this area. There are people here ready to get onto the covenant path and stay there. We have been trying to have a line in every pond. After our meeting with Elder Soares, we had a small comp inventory on the way home and discussed what changes we needed to make. We both agreed that we needed to be more FOCUSED in EVERY pond EVERY day. Or in other words, changing our mindset from (for example) preaching by the way to preach by the way, to preaching by the way to give the Lord and opportunity to work through us to find the people he has prepared. And of course, not to forget charity and exact obedience. We’ve heard many miracles from other missionaries of being exactly obedient and people coming out of the woodworks. We had a wonderful weekly planning session to discuss all of this and set goals.
I loved what was shared in relation to Elder Soares’ invitation to ponder the “A Successful Missionary” section in PMG. I’ve been reading through them every day along with the other standards nearly my entire mission, but I felt like I needed to truly ponder them like we do the Christlike attributes in chapter 6 of PMG.
I also loved what Elder Soares said about this being a journal entry. I try to journal every day (sometimes I don’t get around to it) and sometimes I just journal to journal. I felt prompted to take my journaling more seriously and write experiences I’ve had, things I’ve learned, etc. One day I won’t remember some of these things.
One more impression I received was to remember that we are here to assist the apostles in the SAME work! And that the work doesn’t end after my mission. Now is the time to learn how to assist the apostles, and I get to focus on nothing else. When I go home, I get to take the knowledge and experiences I’ve had in the mission field to the rest of my life, wherever I am. I thought a lot about apostles on the way home and how they are a special witness of Christ and represent the Savior. I pondered the following question; “If Christ was physically with us doing what the apostles are doing now, what could I do to assist in His work?
I feel I need to be better at diligence and my commitment. The things all three of the Lord’s disciples shared were inspired and I loved what Elder Soares shared about our purpose: our calling, helping, and our commitment. I loved the thought that Elder Soares ended with: The way of the disciple is never easy. (If it was easy, it wouldn’t be a sacrifice).”
There’s so much more I could write about but (time) haha. I had an opportunity to participate in a small mission choir to sing a special arrangement of “Sweet Hour of Prayer” and it was so fun. Elder Soares got up afterwards to share his remarks and said (paraphrasing here),”I think we have found a replacement for the Tabernacle Choir.” He was being funny of course.
We had an opportunity to shake his hand and take a picture (though I don’t have the picture yet) and as a mission. You know, something I noticed as we were with him is that he felt like another person. Someone we should respect and that definitely represented the Savior, but he didn’t treat anyone like he was more important or special. In fact, when Elder Nielson got up to share his remarks and started talking about how amazing Elder Soares was, I caught Elder Soares looking down and shaking his head a little. He smiled kindly when Elder Nielson finished. It was clear that he had great humility.
We had a discussion with him and Elder Neilson and Elder Johnson. It was a pleasure to speak with them, and not just be spoken to. They interacted with us. Loved us. And led us to receive additional revelation. I don’t think I could ever doubt the prophets and apostles. They aren’t perfect, but they are good. You can feel it being around them. They have no ulterior motives. They don’t live more “lavish” because they are an apostle, and they have a deep love for ALL people. It was a special experience I am truly grateful for.
That is all I can get to this week, but I make no promises about writing more about it next week. 😅 Love you all, stay safe!
Sister (Katie) Malan