Monday, July 7, 2014

Week 19 - The Temple, 4th of July, singing in the park

Hello Family. :) We have had the most exciting and amazing two weeks! We have had a blast and have been so incredibly blessed. :) There were so many things these past few weeks that I just felt so honored to get to be a part of. So many things that happened were absolutely priceless that I hope I will NEVER forget.

Sister Paulson at the temple
Sister Paulson and Sister Raccuia
The highlight of the past weeks and honestly my whole mission so far was the day that we got to go with Sister Paulson so the temple. :) I don't think I have ever felt happier in my whole life than I did while we were in the temple with her. It was absolutely indescribable and a moment that I will cherish forever. Sister Raccuia and I basically woke up with smiles on our faces, It kind of felt like Christmas morning. When we first saw Sister Paulson she was literally shining she was smiling so much. :) Her whole family came to the church to drop her off and they each told her how excited they were for her and how proud they were of her. She has been the most incredible example to her family. I can't even describe the change that has taken place in that sweet family. It honestly is amazing. When we got to the temple Sister Raccuia and I had about an hour where we got to do as many initiatories as we could. It was incredible. We both felt like the spirit got stronger and stronger with everyone that we did. It was such a special experience. I love the temple so much. :) then we got to go into the session and there were lots of members from our ward who came to support Sister Paulson. :) I got to sit by her and while we were sitting in the room waiting for the session to start she gave me the biggest hug and as we both cried, we were so happy. :) After the session we probably sat in the Celestial room for about 45 minutes and just talked about how incredibly blessed we are. She said "I just love in here, I never want to leave.. You really are going to have to drag me out of here." We walked into the sealing room and talked about how incredible it is going to be for her to have her family there with her. The spirit was unreal while we talked about the blessings that will come to her family when they are sealed together as a family. As she cried in the sealing room she said "Thats what I want" It was so powerful and so tender. :) The blessings of the temple are so amazing. I was just blown away from the blessings that we are promised in the temple. I felt to grateful to be able to spend the whole day in the temple, and to be there with Sister Paulson was the most priceless experience I ever could have asked for. :) We got home around 8:45 that night. It really was the perfect day. :) 

I think the biggest miracle that has come through Sister Paulsons courageous example is in her family. :) When I first got here Brother Paulson used to hide from us when we came over, he didn't really want to come to church, and he just wasn't to excited about the gospel. But slowly over the past few months we have been so blessed to watch his testimony just skyrocket. :) He now helps wake everyone up on Sunday mornings, he has worked out his work schedule so that he can be there, he is preparing to bless the sacrament, he baptized his son, and is now preparing to receive his endowments so his family can be sealed forever. :) He is a completely different man than he was a few months ago. It is so humbling to watch the spirit absolutely and completely change people. :) The day the Paulsons are sealed in the temple is going to be the happiest day ever!

Tornado damage
More tornado damage
Sister Raccuia and I survived a tornado this week which was really fun. :) We were having a crazy awesome storm that we were just having a ball watching out our window, when we got a text that told us that a tornado was coming and we needed to take cover! Sirens were going off and it got pretty crazy. I have been saying ever since I got here how cool it would be to see a tornado, so Sister Raccuia and I sat and stared out the window and watched because it was so cool. :) It turns out that that is super dangerous and we really should have "taken cover". The tornado touched down about 5 miles away from our house and caused some major damage. Luckily no one was hurt, but lots of people had trees in their houses and there was lots of damage that we helped clean up a little bit. 

4th of July parade
But After the temple trip with Sister Paulson our attention shifted to the 4th of July. :) We started majorly planning and taking care of what needed to be done so that we could be in the 4th of July parade! We had so much fun getting everything ready so that we could be in the parade. :) Sister Raccuia and I didnt really realize how much work it really took to build a float, so it all kind of came crashing on us this last week. But luckily we had members and the other missionaries who were so willing to help us and support us and it ended up turning out AMAZING. Oh my goodness everything worked so good and just turned out incredible. The float looked awesome, we had tons of primary kids and ward members who road on the float with us, and we were able to see so many miracles and blessings come because we were in the parade! We were able to hand out over 3,000 pass along cards and so many people were so excited about us. Every piece of candy we thew out had "Mormon.Org" written on it and a simple testimony like "I am a child of god" or "Families are Forever" So that way we could reach as many people as we could as we walked past. :) It was such a blast. :) Seriously one of the funnest finding activities ever. Not only did the whole town of LaPorte able to see us and the church, but the parade was televised and on the radio. So a ton of people where able to hear our message and we had so much fun. 

On Saturday we went into the farmers market again and we got to talk to a bunch of people, it was so much fun. :) Us and the other companionship of sisters (Sister Edwards and Sister Green) only had a handful of pass along cards that we could give out because we had used almost all of them in the parade. So after we ran out of things that we could give away we just stood in the middle of the park and sang hymns and primary songs to all of the people who were sitting there in the park. It was so much fun. :) There was this kid named Bobbie who is 16 years old and had come to the park to play his guitar, so we invited him to come and play with us! He was super talented and could totally play everything that we asked him to play. We had a ball and it was so fun because after awhile he started to sing with us and he was having so much fun. :) He told us that he liked playing with us so much and really loved the music a lot so he is planning on meeting us again at the farmers market next week. We are so excited about it. :) 

I read a really cool talk from President Monson this week where he says that a mission is something that families and friends do together. And it is so true. I am so grateful for all of the support and love that so many of you are showing me. Thank you so much for everything that you are doing for me. :) I love my mission and I am having so much fun serving the Lord. :) 


Love, Sister Watts 

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