Sunday, January 20, 2013

Bring on the New Year

The New Year brings new outlooks on life not for only us, but for our little missionary! Sister Mason was pleased to announce that she has been having a wonderful time and the weeks are flying by! She stated that, "This is the last week of the transfer and after this I will NO LONGER be a GREENIE." Greenie (n.) A missionary new from the MTC. Kelsie shared this experience:

At district meeting last week Elder Thomas, the Zone Leader, said that as long as you are trying your hardest to reach all your goals you will find people to teach and your efforts will be magnified. Now, I know this idea has been shared with me before, but I actually put it into action this week and I can testify (look at me being all missionary-like) that it works. We reached nearly all of our goals and we saw blessings all week through our efforts.

For example:
Yesterday was the last day of the week and we still had 68 street contacts to get before dinner. (We have the goal of 150 contacts a week). Sunday was overcast and rainy and I was afraid that there would be no one on the streets- which had been the reason we weren't finished with our contacts yet. I prayed and fasted all day that we would be able to contact enough people to meet our goals. I am sure you can already anticipate where this is going, but we went to one street and as expected NO ONE was out. We did manage to get 11 people though and then decided to go to a different location up in Mountain View (the area of vineyards-very cute fancy places up that way, but people usually don't like to stop.) There were TONS of people! and even though most were in route from point A to B they at least took our pass-along cards. In 45 minutes we had contacted I think 82 people. Prayers work.

Sister Mason was pleased to be in contact with an amazing lady, Susan. She is very excited about the progress that Susan has shown! Susan will be baptized in four weeks and is striving to bring the spirit into her very Catholic home. Kelsie hopes that she can watch Susan go through the Temple before she comes home. Keslie was able to spend New Years Eve with some members from the ward. Brother and Sister Fitzpatrick was kind enough to let our missionary have a place to eat and celebrate such an event. Kelsie had a good time but is also looking forward to homemade Chinese Food come 2014.

Sister Mason has rebounded very well after having a homesick Christmas. We are proud of her and are praying for her success and comfort. Kelsie is blessing so many lives, but more then that she is being blessed by those she is teaching. We are so thankful to have a missionary. Kelsie is so thankful for your prayers and kind words. We hope you all had a Happy New Year!

Friday, January 4, 2013

A Merry Christmas!

When Kelsie was first called to the San Jose mission, she was well informed that it was a "Service Pilot" misson.  Which means that she will be participating in a lot of service projects.  On average, they do ten hours of service a week.  This past service project, the zone arranged to clear branches from a mountainside.  Little did they know, it was filled with poison oak.  The whole zone got infected and blistered.  One Elder had to get steroid shots, some had to take a steroid medicine, and the rest received a topical cream.  On Christmas Kelsie's arms were so swollen, she couldn't get her sweater off.

Kelsie is currently in Santa Clara, California.  Sister Kim and herself lives with an older member, and refer to her as "Grandma".  Just like all Grandmas, She had a solution for Kelsie's case.  Kelsie loaded up on Vitamin E and is doing much better.  Instead of her blisters oozing, they are now hard and flaky.  The itch comes and goes, but she is on the rebound!

For Christmas we had the opportunity to Skype with Sister Mason.  She was a little emotional as it would be seeing everyone on such a "Family-based" holiday.  But Kelsie is very strong and knows that she is there to do the Lord's work and to bless those in the San Jose mission.  Just a week after Christmas, Mama Shannon (Kelsie's Mom), received an email from a lady that had the chance to be with our little missionary. This is the e-mail:

I am Beth Ball here in Sunnyvale, CA. I just spent a very nice evening with Sister Mason and Sister Kim and thought I would email you a picture and hello from her. We just went up to the Oakland Temple tonight with Susan DeMedeiros (their investigator) along with Alyssa Lunny from our ward. Susan is set to be baptized on February 2nd. Your daughter has been a real blessing in helping in this conversation process.
Susan has had a very special connection with Sister Mason. Susan once said that when she listens to Sister Mason it is like listening to an angel. The VERY first day Sister Mason was here from the MTC, Susan was her first discussion that night. During a part of the discussion, Susan had said that she was still struggling with gaining a testimony of Joseph Smith. Sister Mason boldly asked Susan if she would pray about it--right now. So we all got on our knees right there and Susan prayed (I think that was her first public prayer) and fervently prayed and asked. We all quietly stayed there on our knees for several seconds after. Then Sister Mason asked "what are you feeling?" Susan answered "I feel very peaceful." I knew that we had a special missionary here. You should be very proud. What a blessing she must be to you. She is doing a GREAT job.
I also feel a special connection with your daughter. She went into the MTC on the very same day as my daughter: November 14th. Knowing that she was there with my daughter is a very special thought to me. My daughter is still there learning Spanish. When I told her that Sister Mason had Susan get down and pray about Joseph Smith, she emailed back "Sister Mason immediately put into action exactly what they teach us in the MTC. Good for her!"
Know that your daughter is well and doing good work. She is an excellent missionary and we all love and appreciate her here. Thank you for preparing her and sending her to us. Susan has been accepting the gospel as a result of the inspired teaching from Sister Mason and Sister Kim.

Merry Christmas!
 Beth Ball

Attached with the email was this picture of Sister Kim, Beth, and Sister Mason.  We are so proud of our missionary and the progress she is making!  Her testimony is growing and she is truly doing the Lord's work.  Kelsie is very thankful for all those that sent their love this Christmas Season.  She knows that she has a lot of support back home!  Thank you to all that have helped Kelsie and our family!  Happy New Year!