Monday, November 28, 2016

"Hermana hay chinches!" #LIGHTtheWORLD
RS
Riley Michelle Stewart







Hello Everyone!!

It has been a very interesting week hahah... but a great one!

Hermana Fischbeck is my new companion! We were in the same district in the CCM and we were already best friends so it worked out wonderfully! She is hilarious, a hard worker, and we get along great! She just wrote in her email "if I had to compare Hermana Stewart to someone I would say she is a mix between Celine Dion and Jeffrey R. Holland." So if that doesn't explain her I don't know what will haha!

So haha in our zone we are over the Sisters.... and we had a lot A LOT of crazy things happen.
Day 1 of the transfer: we got a hold of the sisters after transfers but after that nothing
Day 2: we start to get worried, its been 24 hours since having contact with the sister, we call people in their ward, they post a thing on their ward facebook page... twice, the bishop calls us everyone is worried, we leave two notes on their door throughout the day, we tell president, he calls us later that night wondering if we had found them, we hadn't. Ten minutes later we were on a conference call with President and the APs and the Zone Leaders figuring out what we should do. They decided to come down here and that we were going to search with them. They were dividing areas for the search party and we were going to meet at their apartment at the sisters apartment at 8:30. But luckily we found the sisters! At like 8:20. They had just lost their phone and hadn't emailed. It was probably one of the most stressful days of my life. President wasn't too happy with them but he is a forgiving guy. Alls well that ends well.
Day 3: Thanksgiving the same sisters call us on a members phone and they had just figured out that they have bed bugs in their house. We decided its best if they just stay with us but we take a ton of precautions.
Day 4: This is day 4 in the words of my companion:
woke up at 6:10
go on walk with sisters around the block,
all 4 of us shower
We have cereal (they eat the cornflakes)
We do personal study
Companionship study-going well, set up an appointment at 2
We call Elder Murri, he says "that is the worst thing you could have done" as we explain that they stayed with us
9:32 am, the sisters had to leave
9:33-11:30 we probe the beds, hit couch cushions with tennis rackets, vacuum floor and mattresses and couch, put everything in the dryer
11:30-12:30 chicken fiesta, i.e. Redemption
12:30 head to meeting
1:01 meeting begins and we give training on elder sister relations-confident and powerful delivery, no awkwardness
2:45 split boundaries, still no email from sisters
4:24 check sisters house, leave a sticky note for them to email us, Walmart run for bedbug spray
4:45 we spray everything in our home and send an email to the sisters
5:22 on our way to McDonalds
7:22 the elders say our sisters elders relations training was the least awkward, most- effective one so far
Day 5: Their keys are accidentally locked in their car.

Needless to say a lot of stressful things happened and I felt terrible for these poor sisters. But it helped me really develop more love for them. And all is well now, and we don't have bed bugs. Sorry that was really long and most of you probably don't care it was just a tad bit stressful!

But this week we also saw a lot of miracles with the extra time that we did have. We have been showing the new Christmas video to everyone and have seen so many miracles and so many people opening up after watching it. If you haven't watched it please do!

 https://www.mormon.org/?cid=HP_FR_25-11-2016_dMIS_fmorg_xLIDyL1-A_

Im so grateful to be learning and growing out here on the mission. And I am especially excited to be a missionary during this Christmas season when people are remembering Christ even more and trying to be more like Him. I love this work and I love my Savior. Thanks for everything.

Love,

hermana stewart
Well this week has been another great week out in Henrico! We got transfer calls and I am staying and Hermana Eddington is leaving. I'm grateful to be staying here in this area! I love it!

Biggest miracle this week is that Valery went and did baptisms at the temple and the rest of her family all went and went to the Visitor's Center. Such a miracle! They really loved it and had a wonderful spiritual experience. They were able to talk to the Hermanas at the Visitors Center and they explained to them more about the temples and what they are and the importance of them especially for the families. The next day the whole family went to all three hours of church and the lesson lo and behold was on Eternal Marriage! Haha perfect! They loved it and she brought up how they had gone to the temple before and how beautiful it was and that they saw a couple there who were getting married and they looked so so happy. It was awesome! I couldn't stop smiling haha!

We have been having a really hard time finding new investigators which has been kinda hard but this week we saw a lot of miracles and found a lot of cool people.

"Some may ask why we as a people and church quietly and consistently seek to change individuals while there are such large problems about us... But decaying cities are simply a delayed reflection of decaying individuals.... The commandments of God give emphasis to improvement of the individual as the only really way to bring about the real improvement of society."

We all have so much to be grateful for and one of the best ways we can show gratitude to out Heavenly Father is by sharing the blessings that we have. So go out and seek the individual. Trust me. It makes all the difference.

Love,

Hermana Stewart

Hey y'all! So this week was really great! We are excited for our people.

This week Valery went out with us and it was so much fun! She really
wanted to go out with us and see what we do so that was really
awesome.

Her whole fam is going to the temple this Saturday!

I have like no time this week so here are a ton of pictures! A
pictures worth a thousand words right?

Love,

Hermana Stewart


So the subject line is from the one and only Joaquin haha he is the best and says that is going to be his "baptismal theme" when he is baptized.. haha if there were such a thing.

So this is going to be a random letter.

-Last night we tracted for 3 hours straight and like NO ONE wanted to hear from us. So when it was getting close to going home we tried one of our investigators to see how she was doing and she wasn't home and then we tried her neighbor and of course(the last door, like it always is) they were AWESOME! They are a family of three, the mom and two daughters, one is 17 and one is 19 and they just moved here from Venezuela about three weeks ago! Talk about perfect timing when the biggest change in their lives just happened! They let us in right away and we just became best friends immediately I love them so much already. And they loved the idea of the book of momron! They said they had always wondered why there wasn't scriptures from here as well! Miracle!

- leticia, valery's mom said that we need more missionaries in our branch(we already have 5 sets) because we need to bring more people to church. Haha Im like your not even a member yet! But she loves the church and shes seen the healing power in her family thanks to the gospel so she naturally wants to share it! She already told her sister in Mexico to go to church, she found where it was at and everything! "Hay que traer mas gente!"

-Luciana, the woman from Brazil is really struggling she has had some really hard things happen these past couple weeks but we did have a great lesson on the plan of salvation with her this week and she really liked it! I'm not going to lie when we sat down for the lesson I was a little nervous and wondering how it was going to work out but the spirit works magic! Haha I was nervous because we brought a member but she only speaks Spanish and Portuguese and then me and Hermana Eddinton only speak English and then Luciana just speaks Portuguese and a little bit of english. So there is not one language that all of us speak! But the spirit did its job and Im actually surprised how much Portuguese we can understand! She talks to us in Portuguese and we just respond in spanish its weird but hey it works!

-Valery got the holy ghost this week yay!

- and much more but no time!!!

Love you all so much thanks for all the love and support it really does make a big difference! Until next week!

hermana estewart
So the subject line is from the one and only Joaquin haha he is the best and says that is going to be his "baptismal theme" when he is baptized.. haha if there were such a thing.

So this is going to be a random letter.

-Last night we tracted for 3 hours straight and like NO ONE wanted to hear from us. So when it was getting close to going home we tried one of our investigators to see how she was doing and she wasn't home and then we tried her neighbor and of course(the last door, like it always is) they were AWESOME! They are a family of three, the mom and two daughters, one is 17 and one is 19 and they just moved here from Venezuela about three weeks ago! Talk about perfect timing when the biggest change in their lives just happened! They let us in right away and we just became best friends immediately I love them so much already. And they loved the idea of the book of momron! They said they had always wondered why there wasn't scriptures from here as well! Miracle!

- leticia, valery's mom said that we need more missionaries in our branch(we already have 5 sets) because we need to bring more people to church. Haha Im like your not even a member yet! But she loves the church and shes seen the healing power in her family thanks to the gospel so she naturally wants to share it! She already told her sister in Mexico to go to church, she found where it was at and everything! "Hay que traer mas gente!"

-Luciana, the woman from Brazil is really struggling she has had some really hard things happen these past couple weeks but we did have a great lesson on the plan of salvation with her this week and she really liked it! I'm not going to lie when we sat down for the lesson I was a little nervous and wondering how it was going to work out but the spirit works magic! Haha I was nervous because we brought a member but she only speaks Spanish and Portuguese and then me and Hermana Eddinton only speak English and then Luciana just speaks Portuguese and a little bit of english. So there is not one language that all of us speak! But the spirit did its job and Im actually surprised how much Portuguese we can understand! She talks to us in Portuguese and we just respond in spanish its weird but hey it works!

-Valery got the holy ghost this week yay!

- and much more but no time!!!

Love you all so much thanks for all the love and support it really does make a big difference! Until next week!

hermana estewart
Hey everyone so AMAZING CRAZY WEEK!!

First off Valery got baptized!! YAY! It was amazing! The whole
baptismal program went great and everyone loved it! Tons of people
were there:) I just love that girl so much she has the purest heart.
After she was baptized she was just so happy and crying and she was
just glowing. She gave her testimony after and one thing she said
"when the Hermanas knocked on my door I was doing a lot of bad stuff.
But now I feel like a good person. Now I finally feel happy." Her
testimony was amazing and so sincere! She has sooooo much faith.
Honestly whenever we taught her stuff I would always be a little
worried(I know I need to have more faith) that she wasn't going to
accept something but she always did! When we taught tithing she was
like "can I pay it today??" She's just so sweet.

Another thing we did this week was volunteer with the Salvation Army!
It was super fun they were doing like a secret Santa thing so kids can
have a Christmas and they needed a lot of Spanish speakers to help
because a lot of the families they get only speak Spanish. The lady
who was in charge of it told us that we were her answer to her prayer
this year. And another lady said who's been doing for twenty years
that when she sees bilingual people to help she always wants to cry.
Haha they were so sweet to us, they treated us like royalty.

Brenda and her family are doing great as always! They are the sweetest
family ever and I am always so amazed that all her four kids who are
under the age of 8 always listen so intently to us as well. It is the
sweetest thing! Brenda loves the church and wants to join and be
baptized but her biggest thing right now is that she can't come to
church because she is always watching other kids on Sunday's:( She was
going to bring them to the church but she said that the mom of the
kids doesn't like our church..... So we are praying that she can find
a way to come!!

This week has seriously been a great, crazy week. I LOVE helping
people come unto Christ and prepare for the second coming of Christ
and I have learned through this service and help I have come SO much
closer to Christ as well. It truly is amazing the love I feel that He
has for me, everyone I am around right now, and all of you.

D&C 35:27
27 Fear not, little flock, the kingdom is yours until I come. Behold,
I come quickly. Even so. Amen.


Love you! Hasta luego:)

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

--------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Riley Michelle Stewart <riley.stewart@myldsmail.net>
Date: Mon, Oct 3, 2016 at 2:58 PM
Subject: Living the life:)
To: riley.stewart@myldsmail.net


Hello everyone! Great great conference week this week!

So we had a lesson with Franklin one night and he told us that some of
his family members Guatemala had gotten in a really bad car accident
and it wasn't looking too good for them. He wanted us to pray about
them so we did. It was a really spiritual experience and he thanked us
so many times. He called us later that night and asked us to please
pray for them again. It was super sweet. We had also just taught about
fasting and Franklin said that he wanted to fast for his family.
Unfortunately his brother in law passed away but his sister was okay.
But he said he thinks the fasting helped him feel peace. The poor guy
has a lot of problems going on. Problems with his job and other
things. We taught him about prophets and told him what general
conference is and showed him president Monson's last talk. He loved
it! We explained how if we really listen we can get answers to our
question during conference. He came to conference and brought a couple
questions and he said all but one was answered! He texted us later and
said that he loved the talk by president Monson and the whole thing
was really beautiful. Such a great guy!

Okay funny story one night we were teaching a lesson to this lady and
she like got up in the middle and was in her kitchen so we were like
haha okay and just kept going on because she was still looking at us
and listening. Then Hermana Valentine started reciting the first
vision and the lady legit right in the middle answered her phone and
started talking. Hahha just turned right around and completely ignored
us!,,  haha she didn't even say anything like I have to take this one
moment. Hahah it might not be funny to you but I was holding back
laughter!! Hahaha Hermana Valentine just kept going and did a 90
degree turn towards her daughter. Hahaha classic!

CONFERENCE WAS AMAZING! I loved it. I loved all the talks but I
especially loved the ones by Ronald a. Rasband and D. Todd
Christoferson. I loved when elder Christoferson talked about how we
need to learn to trust Him instead of resist Him.
A theme that I saw at least is that through the atonement and through
our trials we can still be happy because we know the purpose we know
the end goal in mind. Like elder hales said "if we loved the Savior
more, would we suffer less?" I challenge all of you to do something,
anything, to love the savior a little more. As Him what you can do and
I promise He will tell you, He told me.
Love you all. And remember the A
Also elder uchtdord! How often do we forget the amazing blessings we
have from the knowledge of this gospel??

Love you all and remember the atonement is as much for saints as it is
for sinners.


A real big miracle we have seen this week is English class! It's 
always been kinda difficult to get people to come especially none members but this week we had two English classes and we had like ten extra people come who had never gone before, both of the days. So awesome! They are planning on coming every week now and all the new ones but one aren't members of the church! Woo! After one of the classes we gave them all a church tour and they really loved it! English class is a great way to get them acquainted with the church. Gotta love it! And it's fun teaching it to! The other day in class they were asking me what I was going to study in college and I said I didn't know, they were all saying that I should be a English Teacher. Haha they are so sweet.

Also miracle with Franklin! So the big thing with him was that he was going to move to California if he didn't find a job by the end of the month and so that was kinda scary because he has limited options. He was super sad about it as well. But on Thursday night he told me that he found a job!! Miracle! And then he went on to thank us for finding him. He said he was lost before we started teaching him and he feels like that now through the church he is beginning to find himself. He talked about how his relationship with God has grown so much. Then(we had been asking him for a while but he said it was too fast) he told us that he wanted to be baptized! That he knows its what God wants for him and that he is on the right path. AHHHH!!! So crazy and such a crazy miracle. Talk about finding someone truly prepared by God. He is such a humble man, he hardly has anything but. honestly the only thing he has in his little room(he rents a room) is a bed a tv and a book of Mormon and a bible. He is the coolest. So the plan is for him to baptized on October 7. Hopefully it all goes through as planned:)

Another really cool family we found a little while back, there names are Carina and Joel and they are awesome! They are looking for a church, like they are looking for the true church which is cool. They just moved from Puerto Rico. We gave them the proclamation a couple days back and they read it as a family! Like the two of them and their two kids. I died when she told us that. She is so cool and really wants the best for her family so that is why the thing that really interests her and her husband is how this church can help and strengthen her family. Which is perfect because that is exactly what the church does! So they came to sacrament this sunday which was awesome and they really enjoyed it! They especially liked that everyone had the opportunity to get up and bear their testimonies:)(and when I say everyone got a chance to get up and bear their testimonies and I really mean just about everyone hahah)

So anyway I definitely saw some really amazing miracles and tender mercies from the Lord. You know sometimes a mission is hard and you start to get down on yourself and feel sorry for yourself but something that I love is that this mission is not about me. I wrote a couple of goals that I had when I left on my mission and one of those was by the end of my mission to be able to say I know what it feels like to serve selflessly. I'm not saying I'm perfect yet(not even anywhere near) but I have made so much improvement. Its been hard serving in this one area for so long but I think Heavenly Father wants me to reach that goal! So grateful for all the many blessing I have received from my Heavenly Father and I am so grateful that I have the opportunity to love and serve these people here in Stafford. 

Love,

Hermana Stewart 

Monday, October 24, 2016

So this week has had a lot of ups and downs.....

Lets start with the bad news. One of our investigators who was really really progressing dropped us.:( It was Anita. Shes the one who read a really huge chunk of the book of mormon and loved it!! We were tracting one day and we got a text from her that pretty much just said that she was going to return the Book of Mormon to us and that it wasn't for her. I was devastated. That was definitely one of the harder night for me on my mission. She said we could teach her one last time but when we went to her house her mind was already made up. She had talked to her husband and were pretty sure that he convinced her that it wasn't good. What really got her was the idea of a modern day prophet. The saddest thing was when we asked her how she felt when she was reading the book of mormon she said nothing, even though we know thats not true.  But we ended on good terms and she says we can come by whenever we want and she thanked us for the messages we had taught her. One day she will be prepared to accept it!

But the good happy amazing news is Franklin!! So heres a story, one day we got out of a dinner and had missed a call from a man named Hector, we called back and learned that him and his friend Franklin wanted to come to English Class.We met Franklin and he is super super cool! He came to a fireside with us and even came to the service project we had with the branch this week! Ahh!! We have taught him multiple times and he is really progressing! He loves the book of mormon and every time we ask him what he is learning in his reading he goes off for like ten minutes about all the great stuff he is learning. Something that we learned about him is that when he was a kid in Guatemala his mom passed away from cancer and the missionaries started visiting them and doing a lot of service for them and they were going to church with them a lot but lost contact somehow. It's awesome to see little seeds that have been planted throughout his life. He came to church this Sunday and loved it! Absolutely loved it! He met everyone and their dog. All the members loved him and really are taking him under his wing. When he introduced himself he talked about how much he loved it at the church and how he wants to keep coming every week! Its kinda cool because right before we met him tons of bad stuff seemed to be happening to him. He felt super lonely because none of his family lives here, he lost his job, etc, etc. But he says every since he started coming to church and the activities things have been looking up for him. And there are tons of members that are trying to find him a job and one of the members texted us a couple hours ago and says he thinks he found him one. We are so excited for Franklin!!

This week has been great but definitely hard. After Anita dropped us I was kinda just confused, like why is this so hard if all we are trying to do is good. But if it was all easy we wouldn't learn much. I've definitely seen how those hard times are when you learn the most, and really have to rely on God's strength not your own. I love this scripture that I read that goes along with that Helaman 4:13"and because of their great wickendness and their boastings in their own strenght, they were left in their own strength; therefore they did not prosper." I love that because it is so true, if we rely on our own strength we won't go anywehere but if we rely on His strength we will go exactly where we need to go.

I love this gospel, I love missionary work, and I love the Lord.

con amor,

Hermana Stewart

Monday, September 19, 2016

Hello everyone! I just wanted to thank you all first for all the
birthday wishes! It really means a lot to me! Feeling a little bit of
extra love this week, you guys are the best:)

So this week was great. We had another lesson with Anita and she had
almost finished reading the whole story of when Christ visited the
Americas! It was so awesome. She says she really enjoys reading the
Book of Mormon. She really wants to know if it is true for herself so
i am really really excited for her because that is the hardest thing
sometimes, just helping them have the desire to really read and put
the effort into figuring out for them selves.

This week was really awesome! Tons of people were put into out path
which was really cool. One day in particular we had a couple hours
planned to go tracting and we only knocked like one door! People were
just outside and guess what, THEY ALL SPOKE SPANISH! That day
especially me and Hermana were really feeling the Lords hand in our
lives. Heavenly Father answers His missionaries prayers.  I mean we
did a little detective work. Missionaries are so creepy. We started
speaking to this little boy in Spanish and asked him where he lived.
Haha we were laughing as we walked away. We told him to not normally
tell strangers where he lives Hahahaha.....

So one thing with the branch that I'm in is that a lot of people have
A LOT of problems with our branch mission president. I hear all the
time all the drama and it's just sad. It's been really hard for the
branch and has hurt it a lot. There are in particular a couple big
people as in people who were really involved in the church who
completely left the church because of him. But last week a miracle
happened. It was so cool. One of them came back to church! I was just
talking to members before sacrament meeting and in they walked.  It
was so cool and the members were so excited. It brought such a
different spirit into the room and I think really gave them a lot of
hope. The lady got up and bore her testimony talking how she felt like
a lost sheep and that now she was found. She talked about how she is
learning how to love her leaders. She's scared for what she's going to
say to Heavenly Father why she didn't come to His house for all that
time. It was really cool to see and the spirit was super strong. It
took a lot of humility from them to come. Seriously such a miracle.

This week has been great and I have really felt so loved. The branch
here, there are like family to me. Like this whole week people have
made me special big dinners for my birthday with cake and treats and
everything. I have felt so loved and such love for them as well. I am
so grateful for the opportunity that I had to get to know them,
Heavenly Father has blessed me so much.


Love,

Hermana Stewart

 good week! (The subject line is what this member says EVERY time he
sees us hahah)

So we got this one guys number randomly and called him and set up an
appointment but he lives in a really creepy house so we had to make
sure we had a member because we had no idea who this guy was.  The
first night we went there we saw this one guy and we told him we were
looking for Armando and he said that he hadn't come home yet and he
refused to give us his name. We called Armando again and set up a
return appointment for the next day. Our member told us we couldn't
ever go there by ourselves because it's a really sketchy house and a
kinda sketchy guy. So he came with us again! Turns out the guy we
talked to the night before was Armando... Awkward. Hahah but we had a
really great lesson with him and his family actually! It all made
sense to them and now they really want to start coming to activities
and church! Yay!

So I'm going to Ethiopia after my mission. Met the sweetest old man
from ethiopia and he said it was going to happen so I guess it is. He
also said I could stay with his family all I would have to do is get
myself there.  He also told us he loves us, haha cutest old man. Sorry
that was random but it was just a little tender mercy one day.

Awkward story. Went to contact this lady and she was outside and I'm
pretty sure I was saying hola for a solid five minutes and she ignored
us so I just left her a pamphlet and walked away. Hahahaha what??

Our car died on Sunday. So two Hermanas were just walking along the
side of the road. Our neighbors really wanted to drive us but we told
him it was against the rules, he thinks we have too many rules(He also
wanted to pay us really bad to watch his cat). But luckily  some
members saw us and pulled over on the side of the  road.  "¡Hermanas
corran!"

Had a really great lesson with a lady named Anita. She is awesome! She
seemed kinda skeptical and not super crazy about the Book of Mormon
idea because all she had read was the bible her whole life but by the
end she was opening up to it. We left her with a copy and 3 Nefi 11,
the next day we followed up over text to see if she had read it and
she said she did and a lot more than we gave as well. She really liked
it!!! SO that was a miracle!!

Something I've really been thinking about this week is how much
Heavenly Father really wants to bless us.

52 And continue thenceforth their labor as had been promised by the
Lord, and be partakers of all blessings which were held in reserve for
them that love him.

Hola a todos!

Well this week was kind of a harder week but ended up pretty well!
This week we had been kinda having a hard time finding new people to
teach but yesterday we knocked on three doors and they all let us in
and we taught them and they became new investigators! One of them told
us the reason really they let us in was because they know Mormons are
"Buena gente" they kept saying that over and over again because one
time something happened with their car and no one pulled over to help
for a really long time until some missionaries pulled over and stayed
with them for 3 hours, talk about planting seeds!

We have had some real struggles with Yeli this week. Her husband isn't
crazy about her meeting with us so that kinda makes things hard but we
are still trying with her.

Something I really feel like I have been learning throughout my
mission is learning how to accept Gods will.  And the thing that has
really helped me do that is prayer. I'm so grateful for it.

Good timber does not grow with ease,


               The stronger wind, the stronger trees.


               The further sky, the greater length.


               The more the storm, the more the strength.


               By sun and cold, by rain and snow,


               In trees and men good timbers grow.




"I promise you that you will one day stand aside and look at your
difficult times, and you will realize that He was always there beside
you."

Sorry I really don't have any time this week because it's zone p day
so I have like no time sorry but I love you all!

Love,
Hermana Stewart

hello, my subject line is a direct quote from one of the young women in the branch..... hahaha I love her with all my heart!!!

So we finally put Yeli on date which was like the biggest miracle ever! (Shes the one that asked for Book of Mormon scriptures to read when she was sad) Okay first of all funny story with her.... her name isn't actually Yeli. We were teaching Follow the Prophet and we had just finished watching the latest talk by Thomas S. Monson and then testifing about it when Hermana Valentine said something along the lines of "Yeli will you pray to know if Thomas S. Monson is a prophet of God?" And then Yeli said, "Yes, but my name isn't Yeli" I didn't know what to do in that moment hahahahhahh, I've known her for quite a while and we are really close friends..... hahaha I was just like why didn't you tell me??? Haha needless to say it was a really funny moment and I am still laughing about it. Anyway so after that whole fiasco we the spirit was really strong again and we asked her to baptized for the millionth time. I kid you not the  last time we asked she did not want to! She said that she'd already been baptized and she didn't need to get baptized and that would be like playing with God. She just didn't get the whole authority thing but this time she totally did. It was like a completely new person she readily accepted a baptisimal date! Hallelujiah! I kid you not when I say when we got in the car I screamed of happiness:) I think Hermana Valentine might think I am a little crazy hahahah!

Here's an excerpt from the talk by Elder Uchtdorf: He Will Place You on His Shoulders and Carry You Home, I would say you should all read it. It has really helped me:) Love you all!
 The sheep is worthy of divine rescue simply because it is loved by the Good Shepherd.

To me, the parable of the lost sheep is one of the most hopeful passages in all of scripture.

Our Savior, the Good Shepherd, knows and loves us. He knows and loves you.

He knows when you are lost, and He knows where you are. He knows your grief. Your silent pleadings. Your fears. Your tears.

It matters not how you became lost—whether because of your own poor choices or because of circumstances beyond your control.

What matters is that you are His child. And He loves you. He loves His children.

Love,

Hermana Stewart

Monday, August 15, 2016

HOLLLLLAAAAAAA!!

So this week was fun and flew by because we have been so busy!! Which
has been awesome!! First of all I dont think I mentioned this but my
already pretty small branch split because of a stake split and now its
even smaller a lot smaller. Which is great but there is definitely a
lot more work for missionaries when it comes to the branch. They
already relied on the missionaries a lot before because most of the
members are recent converts but now it is even more! Haha me and
Hermana Valentine are the temporary 1st and 2nd councilers in the
Young women presidency so that is fun! We help the presidnet a lot
because she has only been a members for about three years and never
went through the young womens program herself. I've also given talks
in Sacrament Meeting the past three weeks and taught gospel principles
and primary and relief society. Needless to say we are always very
busy during sacrament meeting. Which is fun! I'm learning a lot!

This week we went to a meeting in Richmond called return and report
which is for all the trainers and trainees just to talk about how it
is going and what not! It is a super fun meeting and we got to tract
around Richmond for a little while as well which was super fun!!

Later that night we had a combined branch activity which was really
fun but also really sad because that was the last time I am going to
see them for quite a while:( It was especially sad for this one family
that I have gotten really close to. I got them all little gifts and
wrote them notes because I just love them so much! The saddest thing
was when the night was over the little girl Jade was running after our
car and saying bye and I love you! Sweetest family:) The dad also gave
me some really good advice. He said be a "maestra de maestros" and a
lot of other things but I thought that was a really good point. Oh
that means teacher of teachers. But the activity was super fun! We had
food from tons of different central american countries!! It was all so
good, I thought I was going to explode haha!

We had some really great lessons this week and put some people on date
and we are praying that those come through!

Yesterday was kind of rough and no one really wanted to listen to us
and we were kind of getting discouraged. I was praying so hard that we
would be able to find the people that needed to hear the message that
night. Well we were walking and we saw a group of like ten kids from
ages 7-21, they were all cousins and just hanging out outside. We were
a little far off and one was like "Hola como estan??" Well then we
started talking with them all and I was like How did you know that we
spoke spanish and they all started laughing and said they didn't and
the kid was trying to be funny they didnt think that we would
respond... haha such punks! But we ended up having a really amazing
lesson with them and the spirit was super strong!! They invited us
back and I'm really excited to see where it goes with them because we
really bonded with them!

Im so excited for this upcoming week! I know its going to be
amazing!!! I don't know why I just have a feeling! Something one of
the elders said this week has really got me thinking. He said "don't
just do missionary things, be a missionary." So there is some food for
thought for you! Especially those serving missions!!

Love you all! Have a fantastic week!!

Love,

Hermana Stewart

Monday, August 1, 2016

HOLAAAAAAA!!

This week has been great!! Absolutely wonderful and full of miracles but that beginning was a little stressful.... The beginning of this week I was super nervous and feeling super inadequate I have been really impressed and gained such a testimony on how much Heavenly Father cares about each and everyone of His children, me included:) He will help you with your weaknesses and strengthen them. "I give unto men weaknesses that they may be humble, and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them." I have learned so much about who I am this week and especially who I can become with the help of God. We have so much potential we just have to work toward it and rely on God.

This week we found a ton of really cool people, a lot of tracting in Hispanic Heaven haha! But we had a lot of success! We were walking along the road and we saw this guy outside watering  his lawn and we started talking to him.  A little while later his wife came out. We ended up teaching them the Restoration and they seemed super interested! Definitely one of the familys that you hear about that are so prepared. They are so open and are looking for a church! I already love them! We are teaching them tomorrow!

And then later that day we went and tried one of our potential investigator friends named Silvia! She is really funny and awesome and has two little girls! We didn't have a ton of time to teach them so we decided just to talk a little bit about Christ and show the video, Gracias a El!! Its such an amazing video and if you have never seen it watch it! So anyway I showed them that video and that was just one of the "wow I'm a missionary" moments. That video already has such power and then I was looking at this mom sitting next to me with these two precious little girls snuggled up to her and I was just thankful. Thankful that I have this opportunity to share this message of hope with the people here, thankful that I know this is true, thankful that I have something to believe in and love enough to give a year and a half of my life to it, and especially thankful for everything my Savior did for me. I'm not a perfect missionary sadly or a perfect person but with His help I know I can get a little bit closer everyday.

But anyway after the lesson it started raining a little bit and this cute little girl insisted that we take her umbrella with us(also popcorn, ahh i died!! so cute!) But anyway we were thinking that we didn't really need it because it was only sprinkling but we took it anyway because the girl was just so cute. 5 seconds later(not kidding) IT STARTED POURING AND THUNDERING!! Haha sorry that was dramatic..... Haha so start walking to where we thought out car was but guess what?? It wasnt there!! We had been walking around and tracting for like two hours in between when we parked and when we left the house so we(me) lost track of where the car was. Anways long story kinda shorter so for about 15 minutes there were two missionaries walking around a huge trailer park in ankle deep water(that is not an exaggeration), sharing a pink ruffly umbrella, and  eating a bag of popcorn. We found the car eventually and we laughed about it but needless to say we are grateful for this little girl and that she was worthy to feel the promptings of the spirit and help two little missionaries out:) My poor greenie... I told her these types of things are just bound to happen when you hang around Hermana Stewart haha.....

Another really cool experience we had was with a less active. We have been trying to get into contact with her for a long time but just haven't been able to so we knocked on her door randomly one night and she was home! She let us in and we started to get to know her and teach her, she told us that she hasn't been to church because her husband isn't a member and her little girl likes to sleep late. Later on in the lesson my comp, Hermana Valentine had the prompting to read 1 Nephi 3:7 with her. She started crying in the middle and could barely finish the scripture. We asked her what she was feeling. She said with tear-filled eyes "I feel like I am making up excuses why I'm not taking my daughter to church." That was a really powerful moment for me and one of those moments where Heavenly Father gave me a glimpse of how He feels for this daughter of His. I felt such love for her and now she is beginning to get her self back on the right track.

I wish I could share more of the stories, big and little, that happen every week but don't want to give you a novel. I love you all though and am so grateful for all the examples I have had in my life that have got me to this point. Have a wonderful week!

Love,

Hermana Stewart

HOLAAAAAAA!!

This week has been great!! Absolutely wonderful and full of miracles but that beginning was a little stressful.... The beginning of this week I was super nervous and feeling super inadequate I have been really impressed and gained such a testimony on how much Heavenly Father cares about each and everyone of His children, me included:) He will help you with your weaknesses and strengthen them. "I give unto men weaknesses that they may be humble, and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them." I have learned so much about who I am this week and especially who I can become with the help of God. We have so much potential we just have to work toward it and rely on God.

This week we found a ton of really cool people, a lot of tracting in Hispanic Heaven haha! But we had a lot of success! We were walking along the road and we saw this guy outside watering  his lawn and we started talking to him.  A little while later his wife came out. We ended up teaching them the Restoration and they seemed super interested! Definitely one of the familys that you hear about that are so prepared. They are so open and are looking for a church! I already love them! We are teaching them tomorrow!

And then later that day we went and tried one of our potential investigator friends named Silvia! She is really funny and awesome and has two little girls! We didn't have a ton of time to teach them so we decided just to talk a little bit about Christ and show the video, Gracias a El!! Its such an amazing video and if you have never seen it watch it! So anyway I showed them that video and that was just one of the "wow I'm a missionary" moments. That video already has such power and then I was looking at this mom sitting next to me with these two precious little girls snuggled up to her and I was just thankful. Thankful that I have this opportunity to share this message of hope with the people here, thankful that I know this is true, thankful that I have something to believe in and love enough to give a year and a half of my life to it, and especially thankful for everything my Savior did for me. I'm not a perfect missionary sadly or a perfect person but with His help I know I can get a little bit closer everyday.

But anyway after the lesson it started raining a little bit and this cute little girl insisted that we take her umbrella with us(also popcorn, ahh i died!! so cute!) But anyway we were thinking that we didn't really need it because it was only sprinkling but we took it anyway because the girl was just so cute. 5 seconds later(not kidding) IT STARTED POURING AND THUNDERING!! Haha sorry that was dramatic..... Haha so start walking to where we thought out car was but guess what?? It wasnt there!! We had been walking around and tracting for like two hours in between when we parked and when we left the house so we(me) lost track of where the car was. Anways long story kinda shorter so for about 15 minutes there were two missionaries walking around a huge trailer park in ankle deep water(that is not an exaggeration), sharing a pink ruffly umbrella, and  eating a bag of popcorn. We found the car eventually and we laughed about it but needless to say we are grateful for this little girl and that she was worthy to feel the promptings of the spirit and help two little missionaries out:) My poor greenie... I told her these types of things are just bound to happen when you hang around Hermana Stewart haha.....

Another really cool experience we had was with a less active. We have been trying to get into contact with her for a long time but just haven't been able to so we knocked on her door randomly one night and she was home! She let us in and we started to get to know her and teach her, she told us that she hasn't been to church because her husband isn't a member and her little girl likes to sleep late. Later on in the lesson my comp, Hermana Valentine had the prompting to read 1 Nephi 3:7 with her. She started crying in the middle and could barely finish the scripture. We asked her what she was feeling. She said with tear-filled eyes "I feel like I am making up excuses why I'm not taking my daughter to church." That was a really powerful moment for me and one of those moments where Heavenly Father gave me a glimpse of how He feels for this daughter of His. I felt such love for her and now she is beginning to get her self back on the right track.

I wish I could share more of the stories, big and little, that happen every week but don't want to give you a novel. I love you all though and am so grateful for all the examples I have had in my life that have got me to this point. Have a wonderful week!

Love,

Hermana Stewart

HOLAAAAAAA!!

This week has been great!! Absolutely wonderful and full of miracles but that beginning was a little stressful.... The beginning of this week I was super nervous and feeling super inadequate I have been really impressed and gained such a testimony on how much Heavenly Father cares about each and everyone of His children, me included:) He will help you with your weaknesses and strengthen them. "I give unto men weaknesses that they may be humble, and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them." I have learned so much about who I am this week and especially who I can become with the help of God. We have so much potential we just have to work toward it and rely on God.

This week we found a ton of really cool people, a lot of tracting in Hispanic Heaven haha! But we had a lot of success! We were walking along the road and we saw this guy outside watering  his lawn and we started talking to him.  A little while later his wife came out. We ended up teaching them the Restoration and they seemed super interested! Definitely one of the familys that you hear about that are so prepared. They are so open and are looking for a church! I already love them! We are teaching them tomorrow!

And then later that day we went and tried one of our potential investigator friends named Silvia! She is really funny and awesome and has two little girls! We didn't have a ton of time to teach them so we decided just to talk a little bit about Christ and show the video, Gracias a El!! Its such an amazing video and if you have never seen it watch it! So anyway I showed them that video and that was just one of the "wow I'm a missionary" moments. That video already has such power and then I was looking at this mom sitting next to me with these two precious little girls snuggled up to her and I was just thankful. Thankful that I have this opportunity to share this message of hope with the people here, thankful that I know this is true, thankful that I have something to believe in and love enough to give a year and a half of my life to it, and especially thankful for everything my Savior did for me. I'm not a perfect missionary sadly or a perfect person but with His help I know I can get a little bit closer everyday.

But anyway after the lesson it started raining a little bit and this cute little girl insisted that we take her umbrella with us(also popcorn, ahh i died!! so cute!) But anyway we were thinking that we didn't really need it because it was only sprinkling but we took it anyway because the girl was just so cute. 5 seconds later(not kidding) IT STARTED POURING AND THUNDERING!! Haha sorry that was dramatic..... Haha so start walking to where we thought out car was but guess what?? It wasnt there!! We had been walking around and tracting for like two hours in between when we parked and when we left the house so we(me) lost track of where the car was. Anways long story kinda shorter so for about 15 minutes there were two missionaries walking around a huge trailer park in ankle deep water(that is not an exaggeration), sharing a pink ruffly umbrella, and  eating a bag of popcorn. We found the car eventually and we laughed about it but needless to say we are grateful for this little girl and that she was worthy to feel the promptings of the spirit and help two little missionaries out:) My poor greenie... I told her these types of things are just bound to happen when you hang around Hermana Stewart haha.....

Another really cool experience we had was with a less active. We have been trying to get into contact with her for a long time but just haven't been able to so we knocked on her door randomly one night and she was home! She let us in and we started to get to know her and teach her, she told us that she hasn't been to church because her husband isn't a member and her little girl likes to sleep late. Later on in the lesson my comp, Hermana Valentine had the prompting to read 1 Nephi 3:7 with her. She started crying in the middle and could barely finish the scripture. We asked her what she was feeling. She said with tear-filled eyes "I feel like I am making up excuses why I'm not taking my daughter to church." That was a really powerful moment for me and one of those moments where Heavenly Father gave me a glimpse of how He feels for this daughter of His. I felt such love for her and now she is beginning to get her self back on the right track.

I wish I could share more of the stories, big and little, that happen every week but don't want to give you a novel. I love you all though and am so grateful for all the examples I have had in my life that have got me to this point. Have a wonderful week!

Love,

Hermana Stewart

So my cute little greenie's name is Hermana Valentine and she is super
cute and super cool! Hard working missionary and super excited to
work. Which is PERFECT!!! Also she is this little blonde thing(someone
asked her if she was 14 the other day hahh) I mean I dont think she
understood that part, or didnt catch it so she wasnt offended.....
haha. But anyway shes just this little thing but guess what??? She can
beatbox!!! Its sick. She's my idol haha. You wouldn't expect it from
her! So ya anyway that is a fun fact about Hermana Valentine for you.

So these past couple days we have been in a trio but that is all over,
it was fun to be in a trio for a little while. And I will miss Hermana
Rodriguez so much. She has become one of my best friends. People
honeslty ask us quite often if we are best friends. I think people can
just tell if companions get along and that has been something I have
been really grateful for in in this companionship. I'll miss her but I
know that we are going to be friends forever! (sorry cheesy but true)

So the first day with Hermana Valentine we taught a lesson with a guy
named herriberto and it was so amazing! We randomly found him walking
one day gave him and pamphlet and set up a return appointment with him
and didn't think much about it. But when we went back and had an
amazing lesson with him. He had read quite a bit of the Book of Mormon
and before we even started the lesson he compared himself to Jose
smith and how he was just like him before he got his answer, he is
searching. We have had a couple lessons with him he is on date but
still not sure! He is amazing though! Such a miracle! He is one of
those people who are looking but just don't know where to find it.
UNTIL NOW!

Also I don't know if you guys remember the lady that we helped move
and how she was crying because it was an answer to her prayers.  Well
sadly we had to hand her off to the English but I just wanted to let
you know that she got baptized last week! Ahhh such a miracle!

This week has been great! I love my mission! It means the world to me.

Love,

Hermana Stewart


1- Me and Jade, literally my best friend, straight out of Mexico haha


2- PAPUSAS, best things ever!!

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Buenas tardes!

So this week was great and full of miracles! The whole district has
been kinda of struggling. It just seemed like a ton of bad things
happened with our investigators all in the same day. So all of us
decided to do a district fast, so that's just all of the missionaries
in the Spanish branch. So we did the fast and we saw so many miracles!
First we already had a baptism planned for this Saturday, we were
supposed to have 2 but then the other guy, Rogelio(the other Hermanas
investigator) who has been investigating the church before I got here
to this area backed out like 2 days before. But he came to the other
guys baptism, Jose! And the other Hermanas brought him a suit and
towel just in case. The baptism was great!mHis little brother got
baptized one of the first weeks I was here and then Jose was getting
baptized. The spirit was so strong, his brother gave the first prayer
and was crying and then when Jose bore his testimony he was crying as
well. For me it is just so cool to see the change I have seen in those
2 guys. They are completely different! We can all see it and they can
see it as well. It's amazing! So the baptism was over and Rogelio was
like I want to get baptized too! What? Everyone was getting ready to
leave and then all the sudden another baptism was happening! So we
filled up the font and had another baptism right there and then! Such
a miracle though! One of the best days for sure! Plan with faith!

We also found an awesome family. They just barely moved from Guatemala
this past month and we started out just teaching them Spanish but now
they want to know more about the gospel because of course we would
throw in gospel messages every time....hehe... They have had a hard
couple of months and I definitely think they are ready to accept this
message! We are going over there again today so hoping all goes well
with them! Cutest family ever!

Okay people time for the weekly rant! We are so lucky to have the
knowledge that we have, like honestly. And that's one of the most
frustrating things about missionary work you see these people, you
grow to love them so much and you see the potential that they have,
what they can become and how their lives can be completely changed
around for the better if they listen. But many don't. And their lives
don't change and it's just sad to see. I can't even imagine how
Heavenly Father feels!!!! We have everything that we need to be happy
and be with him again for eternity but we ignore it! We spend so much
time worrying about the things of the world that we forget that those
things are the point, there is something so much bigger for us. He's
shown us the way all we have to do is take it. In Matthew 7: 24-25 it
says

24 ¶Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them,
I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:

25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew,
and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a
rock.

I love these scriptures from the bible but then the question comes,
okay I need to build my house upon a rock but what exactly is the
"rock?" And that is when the Book of Mormon comes in! In Helaman 5: 12
it says

12 And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of
our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your
foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds,
yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his
mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to
drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the
rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation
whereon if men build they cannot fall.

So the rock is Christ! Build your foundation on him in everything that
you do not just in a few things. We have so many promises from God
that we will be prosperous and happy if we do.

I love my mission people! Love it! Best friends are made on missions
which is something I am so grateful for.

Hope all is well! Go to the lake for me!

Love,
Hola amigos!

Yes it is true my new mission president, President Smith, invented
funfetti cake. I'm not going to lie I thought that was just about the
coolest thing I had ever heard of haha! But ya the new president came
this week, and he is AWESOME! Honestly we clicked instantly and I am
so pumped for all the new ideas that he is going to bring to the
mission. Such a blessing that he is the new pres!

So I just want to start out in saying that Hispanics are so nice!! We
have been invited to weddings, quinceañeras, birthday party's,
dinners, baptisms, and just about every other thing you can think of
by people that we just barely met! It's so awesome! These people
really are just so humble and giving, they don't have the most out of
everyone but they offer what they have to the people they see. I
really have learned so much from them when it comes to giving and
Christlike love.

We have an investigator named Victoria. She's awesome, I think I might
have talked about her last week. The one who's house is invested with
cockroaches and has a lot of family problems. Well everything was
going great with her and then a couple days ago before one of our
lessons she texted us and telling that she can't meet with us anymore
and that its just too hard. We were so confused so of course we just
showed up at her house and her worry was that every time she gets
close to God something bad happens in her life so she is too worried,
especially about her kids. But we had a really good talk with her.
When investigators have problems or need help I find myself learning a
lot from the situation and also saying things that when I say them or
my companion says them, it teaches me. We had a really good
conversation about how this life is HARD! So hard. But luckily for us
we don't have to do it on our own. And that just really hit me,
obviously I knew that but I need to remember and remind myself all the
time that ya, I can't do this alone, but with Heavenly Father I can.

We also had a great lesson with one of our investigators named Jimmy.
They are an amazing family and we had a great recentish convert (just
like everyone else in the branch) who is probably the most Christlike
person I have ever met. He is this short, quiet, Mexican man with the
biggest testimony and the biggest heart ever. He shared about how he
found the church and how he gained a testimony. He said when he first
met the missionaries and they said the name of the church, "la iglesia
de Jesucristo de los santos de los últimos días" that that really made
an impact on him. As I listened to his story of how he found the
church(I might have cried a little bit during it haha) I thought about
how I would have never met this person or even talked to him if I
wasn't here, like our paths would have NEVER crossed. First of all
because he lives no where near me and second of all that we didn't
even speak the same language, just a ton of differences. But my
mission has really taught me to NEVER judge anyone by any sort of
circumstance that they have in there life; money, house, language,
country, religion.  I literally knock doors and have the most of my
investigators that live in trailer parks. I hadn't even been in a
trailer park before my mission, but now some of my best friends live
there! People are just awesome, and sometimes we have to take
ourselves out of our little bubble to find them.

This week... Wow it's been hard but also so good. The mission makes
you see all your flaws unfortunately and there is always something to
be working on and sometimes it is just so overwhelming. But I'm
learning so much out here, especially with my relationship with
Heavenly Father and who He actually is for me personally. When you are
helping people everyday all day you can't help but find some things
out for your self as well.

Well that's it for this week! Sorry that it is kind of long! I just
want everyone to know that I LOVE this work. I love what I'm doing and
I love the people I'm serving. But most importantly I love Heavenly
Father and Jesus Christ more than anything. Have a wonderful week!

Love,

Hermana Stewart

Hola Amigos!!!

Okay I am just going to start out with the best thing I've ever heard any one say. You can find it in the subject line but what he said was "you look like you are from El Salvador."

I cried.

Okay but really that made me so happy to hear! I don't want people to see me as the white girl who speaks spanish! I mean come on! Haha but really that just made me so happy!

Okay moving on from that!

So not much to report on for this week but it was a great week as usual! We did quite a bit of service with translating and moving some members in to different houses and we also helped out at this Olympics event we had with the branch that was super fun! (Pics to come)

Something I really love about being a missionary is all the service opportunities that we get. Especially in a Spanish Branch! I have learned a lot on how we can help the people in the US from Spanish speaking countries! One thing I have really learned is how to teach English class! I love it and I learn new little tricks to help them learn and pronounce things correctly everyday! Service is one of my favorite things to do, especially with translating!

But anyway, it's getting really hot and humid here. The first like 2 months I was here it rained everyday. And now it is so hot and humid! Haha I had never experienced humidity really before! In St. George, ya its hot but its dry, here it is just so humid! And with that, one day we were walking around and tracting and I was dying because it was just so hot. And no one was answering the door and if they did they were just so rude, I was just getting really frustrated. I was getting to where it just didn't seem worth it right then! And then I thought about why I was doing what I was doing. And then I thought about Jesus Christ and what He went through during His mission on earth. He was perfect and people spit on Him and people laughed at Him and people didn't want to listen. But guess what, He also did have people who did listen to Him, and where changed and who never felt the same after. And that's who I am doing this for. Obviously for Jesus Christ and also for the people that are going to be changed because of this message, because I know they are out there! This work is amazing and there is nothing else that I would want to be doing with my life. Someone asked me this week if I was truly happy doing what I was doing. I really thought about that for a second and I said yes! Yes I am happy with what I am doing right now! I absolutely love it, because I know the happiness that it brings to me and I want to share that with every else as well.Sorry for that little rant but I decided whenever I'm feeling that way again, I'm just going to think about the life of the Savior.


Hey a couple of you have asked me for my address so here it is!

8 Ferguson Drive #201
Stafford, VA 22554

Love you all!

Love,

Hermana Stewart

Sunday, June 5, 2016

1- no wonder our investigators didn't answer us.... They had a fiesta the night before.....
2- chihuahuas always chase us..... Haha
Muy mission president gave me permission to send this to you guys. If
no one else got it either could you send it to the group. I don't know
why it didn't go through.




Hello friends and family! Crazy how the weeks just seem to fly by and
then all the sudden I am on the computer again! This week was
definitely full of ups and downs. Lots of learning experiences! Lots
of laughs and tears(haha that sounds so so cheesy but it is true).

So the saddest things of my mission happened this week. I have talked
about the Diaz family a couple times I think in my emails. They are
the one that have the little girl that drank hot sauce haha. So they
come to church but that's about it but they are not really progressing
so that is hard but there daughter who is 12 is the opposite. She is
amazing! She is the one that got them to go to church in the first
place and everything. She is also reading her book of mormon, always
participating in classes, and just told us a couple weeks ago that she
knows that the book of mormon is true. I was so happy! This week we
went over to her house and just Ashley was there so we sat down and
talked to her. Everything was going great, she was on date for baptism
and everything she just hadn't received her sure answer about baptism.
So we brought it up toward the beginning. I asked her what her
thoughts were about her baptism and if her date seemed good for her.
She just looked me in the eyes and was like, I don't think I'm getting
baptized. My heart broke in a million pieces in that moment. I just
love this girl and was so sure she was getting baptized. A couple
weeks I even had a dream that she was on a mission (Florida Spanish
Speaking, she would be the best missionary). But after that lesson I
came out devastated, I just felt so confused and sad and heartbroken.
That was one of the hardest days of my mission so far. We aren't
giving up on her yet though. But Heavenly Father works in mysterious
ways after that, a miracle came!

We were just leaving our apartment and we saw that the English Elders
had called us, so we called them back and they told us that after
church this family had walked into their building wanting to know more
about the church, but the lady only spoke Spanish, they had a member
in their ward who spoke Spanish so she talked to her. But they were
super interested and felt like this church might be the place where
they could find answers to their questions so they just walked in and
asked! We had a lesson with her and some of her grand kids that night
and they really enjoyed the lesson! She felt the spirit strongly and
really took the message to heart. I have high hopes for her and her
family! We are teaching her tomorrow, she wants us to teach her
daughter as well who is going through a really hard time. We got
another family as well so now we have two really promising families!
MIRACLES!

P-Day this morning was super fun! We went to this FBI Training Academy
thing! It was so legit! We saw like all these cool cadets in training
and like tons of shooting ranges and all these official looking
people. The director of the FBI was there today so we saw his whole
entourage walking around with him, it was pretty cool haha! But the
place is so huge! And we had to go through a lot of different things
to get in haha! But it was awesome! They have this like fake town in
there too, theres like actors in there that act like witnesses or bad
guys and that is part of the training for the cadets. They have like
houses and like a ghetto area where they do fake shootouts with
paintball guns and all this stuff. They also have a race track where
they learn how to drive like in high speed chases and stuff! It was so
cool! We got in because a couple of the members in my roommate's ward
are FBI! IT WAS SO COOL!!

Anyway loving life out here! Its hard but it is such a growing
experience. I know that I am doing what I am supposed to be doing.
Thank you so much for all your support. I love you all. If anyone
wants a good read, read "What Lack I Yet" by Larry R. Lawrence, its so
good!

Love,

Hermana Stewart

Monday, May 16, 2016

Hola familia y amigos! Another great week of being a missionary:)

Miracle of the week is that we found this amazing guy named Ronald. We
were walking and saw him outside his house and went up to talk to him.
He just moved from El Salvador for work and he is looking for a
church. We talked about the Restoration. I felt the spirit so strongly
it was amazing. It was amazing and you could feel his sincere desire
to know. He is coming to English class this week at the church! We are
going back to teach him soon.

A less active and one of our investigators got married on Saturday!
I've never been so full of Bolivian food in my life haha! It was super
fun and a really good experience. We taught a couple lessons to some
of the guests as well which was really good:) We were super happy
because she got married by someone from the church so that was really
happy. There is still a goal in mind though which is to have a forever
family, sealed in the temple which I hope some day will be a
possibility for them. We also talked to her 19 year old daughter who
is back from college for a little while. She had never been interested
in any church until she saw her mom be baptized. She says that she has
never seen her mom happier! It was a really nice day! Even though it
pored like crazy shortly after the ceremony......

I have found a new obsession hot sauce! Like I kid you not, a lot of
you know. I was the biggest whip when it came to spiciness before my
mission. Like mild salsa was too much for me to handle
sometimes....awk.... But now I am obsessed with hot sauce I love it and
I put it on everything! I blame la familia Diaz because everything
they cook is super spicy and they put hot sauce on everything! Hot
sauce is life<3

I just want to say that I am so happy! That doesn't mean that everyday is perfect but this gospel and sharing it with my brothers and sisters here from all around the world makes me happy. I wish I could write more about the wonderful spiritual experiences that I am having but its hard to describe over writing. Just know that I love this gospel with all my heart. I love the language. I love these people here. And I love the Lord. Thanks for all the support and emails. You guys are the best! Have a great week! Love you all!

Love,

Hermana Stewart

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Hey everyone! Another great week as a missionary out in Stafford, VA! Haha gotta love the missionary life! This week was great! I had to say goodbye to my companion which was super sad:( She was awesome and I really just learned so much from her. She had a way of making you laugh even when you were sad. It takes a special kind of person to do that! Im so grateful that I got to be her companion. But now I have a new companion and guess what?? Her name is Hermana Rodriguez. She is awesome and super spiritual and she wants to work hard! Yay! I am so blessed that I have been able to have such good companions throughout my mission. Honestly they are like all my best friends! I love it:)

This week we saw many miracles. We were walking out from a disappointing lesson to say the least and we saw  this boy playing with a soccer ball and we felt like we should talk to him. Turns out he is 14 and just moved from Mexico. We taught him the Restauracion and he really opened up to us. He told us that kids at his school make fun of him because his accent and that he doesn't know English perfectly yet(kids are dumb....) and how he doesn't have that many friends. It made me so sad, I just wanted to hug him right there and then. We had an awesome discussion and we were talking about prophets and he was like you know that doesn't make sense, why would God call prophets during the time of the bible and not for us today. And we told him that there is a prophet today. It just made sense to him and he said he is going to read the Book of Mormon and pray about it. So many people say that to us and don't actually do it but with him you could just tell that he was going to!!!

It was so lovely talking to my beautiful family for Mother's day! Being out here has made me appreciate even more the things that they have done for me. I love them, they are seriously the most hilarious, kind-hearted, friendly, thoughtful people in the whole world and they are all my best friends. I love them.

Great week. I love life and I love being a missionary! God is so good to me.


Love,
Hermana Stewart

Hey this week has been AMAZING! Guau I really am just so so lucky!
People, I LOVE MY MISSION! And the people and experiences I am having
here have changed me so much. I love the people that I am serving
with, my investigators, and the members in my branch! Honestly they're
all my best friends. I'm so grateful for my Heavenly Father and all
the things that he has blessed me with. Not to mention that I have the
most amazing family and friends at home as well. He truly loves each
and every one of us. Trust me whatever happens in your life it is for
your benefit. I have learned that SO much these past couple months.

This week was AMAZING! Honestly me and Hermana Rodriguez couldn't stop
talking about what an amazing week we had yesterday(and how lucky we
are). We had a couple awesome investigators come to church yesterday
and we also had this family come!! Ahhh I love them so much. They have
three kids. And they stayed for all three hours! The key is that their
kids love it. They were already talking about how they wanted to come
back next week. What?? They have been taught for about three years on
and off and they have not once gone to church. Not once. I think what
really changed their perspective was us talking about how this gospel
has changed our lives and really how it's all thanks to our parents.
Our parents are the ones that introduced us and shaped us into the
people that we are today(thanks mom and dad). They really just want
the best for their kids and they can see that this is something that
can help them. Ugh I wish I could write everything about them but I
can't. Just know that they are AWESOME! I mean they progress slow but
we have faith!

Haha funny story about them. They have the cutest kids ever! So we
went over to their house and when we walked in they immediately we
like pasen siéntense. They made us these delicious Mexican things!
They are so good to us❤️ anyway so after dinner we just taught the
right at the dinner table and the lesson was awesome! The spirit was
so strong! So there was hot sauce on the table and they are from
Mexico so they love spicy stuff. And while we were teaching their
little two year old girl reaches over and takes a big swig out of the
hot sauce! Like she was drinking soda! And it didn't even phase her!!
Hahaha I couldn't help but laughing! Ugh I love them.

I meet really interesting people each week....
One guy told us he has seen Jesus three times
A Muslim guy who wouldn't stop saying "read the update" the update is
the Koran I guess
A Wicken who told us some interesting stuff to say the least.....
HAHA I love people!

Well this week was amazing and I am so so happy! I wish I could tell
you more about the awesome things that are happening but I have no
time! Thanks for all the love and support! You keep doing you!


Love you all.


Love,
Hermana Stewart


P.S. By the way my subject line mi pobre angelito (my poor little
angel) haha that's the title of home alone in Spanish? Like who comes
up with these things? La chica de verano(the girl of summer) is Raise
Your Voice. Hahah like guat??

Monday, April 11, 2016




Hola family! It's been a good week this week! Haha my subject line is really dumb but I think its hilarious at the say time. Whenever I feel awkward now I just say it haha. It means, my name is Hermana Stewart and I'm from Utah. Haha probably not funny for you guys but I think its hilarious!

Anyway, one of the general conference talks that really made me think was the one called Do I Believe? It talked about how many of us know these truths of the gospel but do we really BELIEVE them. Believe them in a sense that we are confident in them and rely on them in times of trouble. For example we know that we are children of God but do we BELIEVE it? When we are faced with trials or faced with thinking we are not good enough do we first remember that we are children of God, that he loves us more than we can ever imagine, that truly he wants the best for us. This is something I want to work on more. He loves us all so much, things in life change people and experiences come and go but this is one fact that is always constant. This week telling people they are children of God has been different for me. There is such a weight behind that phrase it's a simple phrase but it's a phrase that can change lives.

My branch and area are amazing! I love going out with members, they are not afraid to share the gospel they just go for it! It's really an inspiration for me, when they talk about the gospel their whole demeanor changes, they absolutely light up! Most of the people in our branch are converts so I love it because missionary work means the world to them. They take care of their missionaries so much, they all know us and they really show us truly that they care about us and they are so thankful for our sacrifice. This week was fast and testimony meeting and many of them talked about their conversion and how thankful they are for the missionaries that knocked on their door and shared the gospel with their family and then they in turn said how thankful they were for us. They are truly amazing people and it really helps me see what missionary work can bring!

So the other day we were walking around and we ran into these two guys and we were just talking to them! They turned to me and asked me where I was from and I said Utah. And then the guy asked me oh what language do they speak there???  And I was like English... haha it's in the United States. And he was like oh I thought it was in Russia! Needless to say it was really funny!! But cut the guy some slack because he just moved from El Salvador(there is a lot of people here from El Salvador!)! Haha still really funny though!

Speaking of which one thing I really love is that we get to try ALL types of food here! Dishes from Peru, El Salvador, Colombia, Venezuala, Mexico all of them! And the food is really so so good! So its both a good and a bad thing because they feed us A LOT. They just keep piling it on.... haha I love them, the people we teach and come into contact with are so so nice.
We have some good investigators right now. We have some good families we just need to help them accomplish their commitments. We're working with them and I have a good feeling about them. The love I feel for these people that we are teaching is crazy and I just want them to be a family forever! Honestly I have seen some of the cutest children in my life here! The cutest thing is when all these little kids speak Spanish. I really just die every time! Ugh I want one haha!

I also had something called return and report this week in Richmond and it was awesome, it's for the new missionaries and their companions! I got to see my two besties from the CCM, Hermana Fischbeck and Hermana Stacey! And I actually got to be companions with Hermana Stacey again for 3 hours while we went contacting in Downtown Richmond which was fun! Richmond is such a HIPSTER city! Like crazy! The area that we were in is where the college is so there are a ton of hipster college students walking around. Okay so for those of you who know me well you know my sense of direction is absolutely terrible! So we got lost for like an hour.... awk..... Anyway we told this guy we were lost and he kinda gazed off in the distance and was like, "if you think about it...... we're all lost." After he was done contemplating life for a couple seconds he helped us. It was just funny!

I loved this week and everyday I am learning something new about myself and the Lord everyday. I love you guys, the Lord loves you and you better BELIEVE it!

Chau!


Hermana Stewart

Monday, March 28, 2016

Okay let me just start out by saying how pretty it is in Virginia during this time! I just love the spring and they tell me it's not even fully here yet!

One thing I've come to realize is how important the members are in missionary work! Seriously they make or break it. And I love my ward! It's so cool how into missionary work they are. They all want to share the gospel because they see the huge difference it has made in their life and they want everyone to feel that as well. So ya I love my ward and I love the other missionaries in my ward. We have us, a trio of Hermanas and a set of elders. All the Hermanas are native speakers besides me and this other girl which is nice. But the other girls last name  is SanchezFace with tears of joy so she seems like less of a greenga and it's easier for people to say her name!  But ahhhhh this week someone asked if me and my companion were both from Buenos Aires! Which made me feel good about myself because that means my Spanish wasn't too awful! Haha but my comps accent is definitely rubbing off on on me! She is seriously so happy that I'm starting to get it! She's so funny! The other day we were talking about empanadas because they make those a lot where she's from and she was saying that she has to make some for me and I said "oh I think I have had an empanada before from McDonald's!" Haha she got offended and won't let me live that one down!Face with tears of joy

The General Women's broadcast was awesome this week! I love hearing from the apostles and other leaders of the church. The main focus was service so that is definitely something that I am going to pray for and go out of my way to find unplanned service opportunities. One quote I liked was "throw away the mirror and look through the windows." The only way we can truly serve is if we stop focusing on ourselves and start focusing on others.

Missionary work is great and I am loving it! Thanks for everything. I can already tell that my decision to serve a mission is the best decision I have ever made in my life. Love you all and have a great week! I know I will!

 Love,
Hermana Stewart

1- me and Hermana Rodriguez
2- The Hermanas in my ward
3- The Relief Society
4- Easter egg decorating with my roommates
5- haha some cannon from the civil war