Tuesday, 31 December 2013

December 30th, 2013, Boxing Day Foo Foo

Happy New year!!!

Christmas was wonderful! It didn’t feel like Christmas at all really but I had a really fun time with all the missionaries and had some toast for Christmas dinner!! But I loved talking to everyone :) it was GREAT!! Poland pretty much shuts down on any kind of holiday. Here the holidays last pretty much until after New Years day so the work has been a little slower BUT on boxing day Dennis, an African man from my new branch, invited all the missionaries over for.. FOO FOO!!! And now Boxing Day will forever be foo foo in my life. So let me give you a little back ground although it wont do it any justice but I will have it all on video when I come home. Dennis has been in Poland for 12 years and hasn’t seen his family the whole time; they are all in Africa still. It was really nice that he had us over because we weren't with our families and he wasn’t with his. But this man is the funniest most amazing humble person ever!!! He’s really loud and laughs a ton! So we all go over to his house and make foo foo together! This is a traditional African dish that everyone eats all the time and we ate it! You eat it all with your hands and oh man I can’t explain it more than that but it was so good and so fun! After we ate he told us his conversion story and all about his family, culture and all about how awesome it is. We had so much fun!! Other than going to Dennis's we did some white boards and talked to a lot of great people!
I had an interview with President Edgren before transfers. Everyone is gearing up for transfers. I have no idea what will happen. I’ve never had so much anticipation for it before. In my interview I just told President I would do whatever he needed me to do. As a mission president he deals with so much and I just wanted to help it be a little easier on him. I thought of all these things in my head that I wanted to say and about who I wanted to be with or where I wanted to go but when it comes down to it, this is the Lord's work and that’s why I came here! So I need to be ok with whatever happens!

I love you all and I miss you!! But I just love my mission!
I had no idea I could love it so much! But I’m happy I do :)

Sister Hailey Pearson
Our Boxing Day dinner, Foo Foo

Our District, with President and Sister Edgren in the Front

Sister Tobler & I  eating a fantastic burger

Great minds thing alike, we didn't plan on matching!

All of us go karting
Saying goodbye to Sister Packard

In front of the church building. The only chapel in Poland.
Sister Mikalouska and I at the Boxing Day dinner at Dennis's eating Foo Foo

December 20th, 2013 - Change, I am here to do exactly what the Lord needs me to do

This week was crazy and it wasn’t even a full week!!
Monday was my first full day with my new companion, Sister Petersen. I received a call from President Edgren and after our discussion he told me that there was going to be MORE changes. He said he needed my continued patience and some other really nice things and of course I was willing for anything.
So on Tuesday another Sister missionary came to our district meeting and President announced that her companion had to go home for medical reasons. He asked if we could have another sister in our companionship for a couple days so I said of course! It was Sister Swenson. I have heard about her my whole mission!! I heard that we are really similar and that we would be best friends one day and now here she was! One of my companions! She is awesome! So Sister Petersen, Sister Swenson and I were all companions and it was great. We new it would be temporary until President decided what to do. We did some more caroling with all the missionaries!! Which meant.. I got to see SISTER TOBLER!! I got to sing and talk to people about Christmas and the Savior. It was the best night ever! I miss Sister Tobler a lot.. Anyways it was really fun and a lot of people stopped, listened and talked to us about the gospel!!
The next day was just as crazy. We went to President and Sister Edgren’s house because it was SISTER PACKARDS LAST DAY, she was my first companion in Poland!! All the sister missionaries went over to the Edgren’s and Sister Edgren made us a wonderful meal. We sang hymns and had a testimony meeting. I loved it!! I got to be with Sister Packard and see how far she's come from when she first started her mission and tell her how much I love her and how grateful I was that she was my trainer. She taught me what a mission was and how to love it. I am going to miss her SO MUCH!! But I will see her after my mission. She is such an inspiration!
Other changes tool place with the Sister companionships and my new companion is Sister Mikalouska! So many companions in one week!! It was crazy!! It feels like I’m flying by the seat of my pants but at the same time I feel more peace with it all. It’s all from the Lord and he knows why when I don’t. Yesterday,(December 19th),  I had to pack and move all my stuff again. With the help of the Assistants and their lovely car again!! (They’re the best). By the time we moved to the new house and got to the place we had 15 minutes of contacting time before we had to leave and so we went for it! We just talked to as many people as we could, and in that 15 minutes Sister Mikalouska and I both taught a lesson and gave them a book of Mormon! The Lord provides us miracles!
After that we met all the missionaries at the mall for dinner because we were taking our culture night!! I convinced everyone to go GO KARTING! You know how much I love go karting!! We all went together, 14 of us and it was so much fun!!! I haven’t driven in 10 months! And I’m sore from tensing up so much. It was nice to go and have a fun time with all the missionaries and.. I am really excited to find out why the Lord wants me here in Warsaw 2 and all the things we are going to do in these last couple weeks. After all of this I can say FORSURE that this is his work. It is inspired and I LOVED The quote you sent me so I’m going to send it back

“The sweetest experience I know in life is to feel a prompting and act upon it and later find out that it was the fulfillment of someone’s prayer or someone’s need. And I always want the Lord to know that if He needs an errand run, Tom Monson will run that errand for Him.”

That is what I am here to do, I am here to do exactly what the Lord needs me to do, not what suits me or where I want to be. I want to be doing what he wants me to do and help the people he wants me to help. That is a mission. That’s why I’m here. I love this work :)

Sister Hailey Pearson

Monday, 16 December 2013

A Baptism, transfer and looking inward

What a week! I think that this week was honestly one of the best of my whole mission. Sister Tobler and I seemed to reach a new level in our companionship and really witnessed miracles. KASIA IS BAPTIZED AND CONFIRMED! It’s really hard to describe what that actually means to me right now. Our whole purpose as missionaries is to help people make that choice and she did. It was beautiful and I am so grateful I got to be a part in it! I don’t know if I have ever felt more like a missionary than on that day when she came up out of the water. I could just see the happiness and light of Christ radiating off of her. She came out of the water and greeted Sister Tobler and I with giant soaking wet hugs. I was just filled with love for her! It was a day I will never forget. Sister Tobler and I sang the primary song called baptism and I almost wept like a child! There were quite a few people in attendance and I just felt so happy!!! It was one of the best things I have ever been a part of. This gospel is true and it changes lives! I got to watch it change hers and I seriously cannot tell you through an email how amazing it was!
In other news, President Edgren called me on Friday morning and told me that there was a change that needed to take place with the Sisters Missionary companionship in Warsaw 2 (branch) and that I would be transferred. So on Sunday I was transferred to the other branch with Sister Petersen and Sister Wendel took my place in Warsaw 1. So now I’m training Sister Petersen it’s her first transfer! I will be here for at least the next 3 weeks. This change was really hard. I really felt that it was so inspired for me to be in Warsaw 1 with Sister Tobler and I know that’s where the Lord wanted me to be. We worked so hard and saw so many miracles! I was really getting to know the branch and I love our investigators. In other words it was a lot for me to leave. I know you know all of this and that this too is inspired but I’m sure you can see how the adjustment is just a little harder. I know the Lord needs me here now and I am going to do everything I can to make it a great experience and learn from it, but it was really hard for me to leave. I guess that’s the point of a mission in the first place. I am here to serve no matter where I am. I think for me it’s just that it was hard to leave Katowice and Sister Petherbridge but when I got here and I just knew that it was right, everything with Sister Tobler and Kasia and working with the branch. I just felt like I was needed in Warsaw 1 and that it was exactly where I needed to be. It became home. I know that I can have that here too and I know the Lord will help me. Sister Tobler was a little heartbroken to say the least. She has become one of my very best friends and it’s like we reached this ultimate bliss! Kasia was baptized and everything was going so good! We laughed so much and worked so hard! Plus we had our whole Christmas planned out. But I know that I need to be in Warsaw 2 now and we don’t always understand everything. I do know that the Lord knows everything. He knows me and He knows my purpose here. I just trust Him! So since we weren’t going to have Christmas together anymore we had a fake one :) on our second to last night together we had Christmas Eve and slept with the tree lights on and then the next day was our Christmas!!!!
I opened one of the gifts from Amber and it was perfect!!! I loved everything about it and it made me so happy!!! Then Sister Tobler opened one from her mom and then we opened each of ours from you guys aka she opened the one from you and I opened the one from her mom and it was so amazing!!!!!!!! We felt so loved and so happy to have a mini Christmas together :) the next few hours were a little rough and then Elder Wilson and Neuner came and took me to my new apartment. I was still able to go to the branch Christmas party!!! I was so grateful!! I got to talk with everyone and say goodbye and it was so nice. I just love those people and I was finally gaining their trust and love! Anyways that was this week!
This last week I really looked inwardly. I decided I wanted to choose the person I want to become and the character traits I want to have and obtain. I took it to the Lord and it was a really spiritual experience. It made me feel very humble and I recognized that the only way I can obtain these attributes is with the help of my Savior and my Father in Heaven. I know I can grow and obtain these attributes through the experiences I will have. I know that this experience will teach me a lot. I have been praying that I will be able to know why I am here and what I can do to help Sister Peterson the most. I love my mission, not because of the companion I have or the area I’m in but because of the work that I am involved in. The work is still true in Warsaw 2.
Christmas Eve is a bigger deal here than Christmas Day just like Germany and at ou wigilia I ate SLEDŻ!!! It was nasty!! You'll have to look it up but it’s a Polish tradition. Apparently, you are not a Poland Warsaw missionary unless you try it! According to the Elders of course, so I had to.

We did some more carolling this week with all the missionaries in Warsaw and we tied books of Mormon up with bows!! it was really successful and we are doing it 3 more times this week!!
Kasia's Baptism on December 14th: Sister Hailey Pearson, Kasia and Sister Tobler

Kasia's Baptism

Spreading the word!

One last goofy picture with my awesome companion Sister Tobler

Monday, 9 December 2013

I've never felt more like a missionary than now!

This week was awesome!!! We had so much fun! On Wednesday we had special zone training by the AP’s (assistants to the President) and President and Sister Edgren!!! It was great!! I LOVE trainings!! There’s so much inspiration and we get to hear from President and see all the other missionaries!!! I’m always committed to be better and change things after I go to our meetings.

Thursday we had GERMAN NIGHT!! With Elder Stumpf and Brown!!! We made spaetzel and schnitzel for dinner! It was so delicious!! I felt connected to my ancestors!!! Elder Stumof is straight up German so we had a lot of fun!  After dinner we met with the other elders and went CAROLLING!!! For the first time! iI loved it!! There’s only like 4 Christmas songs translated into polish so we sang English ones too and it got me in the Christmas mood!! It was freeeezing but worth it!! We will be doing carolling a lot these next couple weeks so I can’t wait!!
FRIDAY was one of the worst days of my mission.. No joke. It’s winter here finally!! It snowed! then it was a blizzard and there was thunder and lightning. The wind is soooo bad it cuts right through you!! 
All the trams broke that day so we had no way to get to the chapel!!! We walked and took like 8 different buses it took us 2 hours to get to the chapel! All the trams broke and it was a blizzard so the buses weren’t really coming either!! We were and hour and 10 minutes late to our meeting with Kasia!! Good thing she is so patient!! It was a rough one though but Sister Tobler and I just laughed the whole time :) it was great in the end!

Saturday I witnessed the first baptism of my mission!!!! This young guy Michał was baptized and it was beautiful!!! I’ve seen so many baptisms before but there was something so different about it now that I am a missionary! Maybe it’s because this is my life. This is what I focus on all the time is teaching people and helping them know for themselves that this is true. I help them with their desire to follow the Savior’s example and be baptized and become happier than they ever thought was possible. I been working my whole mission with people and sharing with them how they can be happy by following the gospel of Jesus Christ. Saturday I was able to see that. I never met Michal before but when he walked back into the room after he had changed clothes and was baptized, it was like he was glowing he looked so happy and clean! Like a physical light was around him and it just about brought me to tears. 
It also got us really excited for Kasia's baptism THIS SATURDAY!!! Kasia is doing really well and we are all very excited about her baptism!!  She has experienced some opposition but at church yesterday she said she knows this church is true. It warmed my soul and I just love her so much! She’s so brave and strong! I can't imagine the struggles and hardships she is going through but her testimony is strong and in a few days she will be a baptized member of the church :) I am so HONOURED that I get to help her in her conversion and that the Lord chose me to be here and help her. I have never felt more like a missionary than now :) and it’s wonderful!

With Love,

Siostra Pearson
Christmas Carolling in Warsaw

Eating a German Feast

Preparing the German Feast

Siostra's at the Baptism