Friday, January 28, 2011

If I wasn't Mormon, I'd be Jewish.

Ok so this needs to be short because we got some dates for this Pday.
A date with S. Crandell and myself and some other pepes. We are going
to the Mason Temple, Zupas, and just enjoy life. The weather has
finally lightened up a little- still not summer, but I'm not
complaining! Ok why am I talking about the weather? Ah I have no time!
FIRST OFF- KELLLLLLLLLLLLYYYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I'm even more sad I missed you when you were looking for me on the
square! BABY GIRL MARISSA! It's official. That's what I'm calling her
until you pick an official name. I'll pray for it to be Marissa. She
will be a flowergirl!
So S. Crandell studied ancient near eastern studies at BYU so she is
pro at Jewish culture and religion. She noticed I'm a weeee bit
obsessed with peace signs and told me something I love about peace
signs. Shilome (sp? Idk) means peace in Hebrew. That's how they say
Hello and Goodbye. They just say Shilome. So when someone tells you to
"Hold your peace"- they are literally saying Don't say Goodbye or
Hello. just SHUT it!! I like that :)
P.S. Struggles this morning trying to teach our investigator Tololupe
from Nigeria- he has 3 cell phone connections but still with the
distance- the service was terrible. We will call again tomorrow. Good
thing email is more reliable. P.S. we need more missionaries!
Especially in AFRICA!
So the quick spiritual story I'll share this week is about a beautiful
middle-aged couple from St. Louis. They are Jewish and just adorable!
I love them! So the Spirit was way strong in this tour and business
brings them to SLC often so I hope to see them again. Well we are
talking and sharing and just having a good old time. That morning
during companionship study Sis Crandell and I were actually talking
about Jewish religion and how it is very fulfilled and related to this
restored church. She was explaining how Jews leave a seat open for
Elijah during Passover because they know he will return again! Oh
WAIT- he already has! At the dedication and building of the Kirtland
Temple in Ohio! Pioneer history and stories are soooo good. We share
them constantly here at temple square. So we both felt impressed to
share this with Donna and Mark on our tour. We didn't know how to
bridge to it- when literally out of NO WHERE Donna in the Book of
Mormon paintings room brings up Passover! We looked at each other and
were jaw-dropped. She noticed and that wasn't our intention but it was
crazy! The Spirit brings things to other people's minds for us
sometime! So we share the story and let her read Our Heritage about
Elijah coming again- it was soooooooo powerful! It was a very obvious
miracle and I love the way the Spirit works! We all need as much
knowledge as possible so we can take everything up with God in our
prayers and find truth!! I love this gospel, but really must go! Have
a great week!!!!!
Oh! My commitment for you: we need potentials! So please write me with
a name, a number, and how you know them- so we can call in Referral
Center Calling time and call your friends and share the gospel, find
their needs, love them, and do our missionary thing! People will
rarely change unless asked to do so (it's in Preach My Gospel!) Ok
well I gotta peace out, so Shilome!!!!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Sis. Schroe and Crand!!!

Oh hey!
Remember how I'm in my second transfer! That's so nuts! And awesome. I
already feel less stress because I'm no longer being trained! I miss
Sister LJ but I see her pretty much just as much with her as my ZL. I
LOVE LOVE LOVE Sister Crandell. How have I loved every companion? Oh
because loving someone is a choice! And they are awesome superstars at
the same time!

I'm officially unpacked (it's not a normal transfer mission thing but
over 170 girls all moving at the same time down the same hallways-
stressful) and then just piles of crap in the living room until
people's Pdays when they have the time to unpack! I love it though.
Stress causes growth and patience and all that good stuff.

I also have a strong testimony already on the importance of transfers.
I have learned and grown a lot just in the past day with Sister
Crandell. We have seen miracles! So I swear there were more guests
than normal yesterday. Talked to like over 20 just as our little
companionship. One group we talked to was in town for a business
meeting (so they were a random group) and there were five of them.
There was a feminist, an anti who has met with missionaries many
times a year for the past couple years (why can't he resist from
learning more and re-reading the Book of Mormon? Oh that's because
it's true and it speaks to our souls.), someone sleeping in the
corner, a shy chic, and MR. GOLDEN!!! aka Ronaldo (yes I love soccer,
too.) So this was a first for me- to see the Spirit work like such a
light-switch. Everytime Ronaldo would speak or I knew Ronaldo was
listening- the Spirit was there. It was so intense. Sis Crandell and I
both discussed it afterward and were just in shock! But it was a
testimony to me that the Spirit is really powerful and that you have
to accept it in your heart for it to be evident. When anyone else in
the group would talk (with contention) it wasn't there. But then it
would be! They were the strongest impressions of the Spirit- there,
not there, there, not there. It's very hard to explain but it was
super amazing! Of course with companionship unity we smoothly
separated people and had a better chance to sincerely talk more
personally with Ronaldo throughout the tour. I love this amazing crazy
strange powerful time as a missionary!

I love being in the South for computers becuase there is a bathroom in
the Referral Center area so we don't have to go to the bathroom in
companionships every time! It's the small blessings that make me happy
:) I'm the most simple and the most complex person!

P.S. Super awkward today calling from the Manti Pageant list- talked
to this woman about her son (who referred a couple years ago one
summer) but now is in Juvie. It's just super awkard calling such an
old list sometimes becuase people have died, been divorced and been
told that their husband is now gay, been sent to prison, or just CRAZY
stuff! But with all this crazy stuff- we also see miracles in "wrong
numbers" but talk to someone who has been prepared to hear our message
or talking to someone who has softened in the last 3 years and now
ready for missionaries or things like that! It's just a testimony to
me (like why has this list not been called for 3 years????) but yet
just because the people and circumstances aren't perfect- the gospel
is!! Definitely am always re-learning that! The members aren't perfect
but the GOSPEL IS!!! and we can all do better as we try to better
follow this perfect gospel :) I don't know if that makes sense but I
know what I'm saying and this blog is like one big journal entry- so
good!!

I'm also really excited for this girl I talked to on the phone today
(who is a girlfriend of a member) and we got her referral yesterday
from this whole team of Water Polo-ers from out of state (but most of
them were LDS) and it was awesome. Just like 30 jocks coming out of
the Joseph Smith movie- they were all sensitive and just filled with
compassion after that movie. And as we closed the movie- we got Kendal
(the girlfriend referral)! She seems sweet. I got a hold of her on the
phone today (but she was at work) so we talked to her for a little bit
and are calling her tomorrow as a teaching appointment!

And I need to say this!!!! Yesterday was one of the most important
dates to me! Why? Because it was my dad's BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!!!! I love
you, Dad! Rick Schroedter- everyone add him on facebook and send him a
late birthday card! K great!!!!! I love you soooooo much and am
soooooo grateful for you. I hope there was another surprise birthday
party for you- jk jk. I'm sure it was low key but still a day of love!
I love you, dad!!!! We (aka the Schroedter chillens) have the greatest
dad in the world for us! Love you, dad!!!! HAPPY BIRTHDAY WEEK! "It's
your birthday week" so you do what you want!

Ok well I know that Jesus Christ leads this church and that we can all
come closer to Him everyday. This church is for everyone and God loves
everyone unconditionally!

Happy Birthday AGAIN DAD!!!!!!!!!!! January 19th= awesomeness!!!!!!
have a good week, y'all!!!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Sister LJ and I love the SLT doorknobs. We have matching necklaces. - the scripture in Ether talks about beehives - I learn something everyday here!

This is me - doing what I do best. Referral Center computer time!!

I love Sister Rohner SOOOOOOOOOO much! We are greenies together and in the same district! Last week we went to lunch up at the Garden for a sister's birthday on our P-day.

I jump for joy that the gospel is restored (ps this was our P-day and no one was around and Sis LJ took epic jumping pics, too!
justification!)


Mommy, thank you for sending me my peace sign chase blanket!!!
It keeps me warm! so vital!!




Hey, Friends!!

Hey friends! Transfer 1 is closing this week!!!!
This is so nuts! and amazing! and just so crazy!!!!! I had a beautiful
week and I am getting "transferred" aka like moving 6 doors down and
spending more time in the South for computer times. Sister
Littlejohn is going to be my zone leader in South 2 (I am in North 1
right now) and transfers are officially on Wednesday. My new companion
is going to be Sister Crandell (I am companions with the district
leader!!!) but our P-day for this next transfer is Thursday so I will
write soon enough about all the changes! I'm very excited and
intimidated by S. Crandell but I was intimidated by S. Littlejohn,
too! It's a good kind of intimidation. They are both different than me
but it will be beautiful! Such amazing missionaries. I have loved
serving with Sister Littejohn! She's doing my hair for my wedding.
Done. And now I get to see her be zone leader- I will be subordinate
and humble and try not to wreck anything. haha. So every Monday before
transfers are over we have a mission transfer meeting. It's super
spiritual, we find out what's new or what's not going to be new, and
say goodbye to departing Sisters. It's hard seeing even the sisters
now leave- even after only knowing them for a short time!
So I passed my French tour test this week with Sis Decoeur. It was
soooo scary. Not in a fearful way but just in an intimidating way. I'm
growing so much here and I will let you know how French contacts and
tours go! Oh zoo wee mamma! I also passed off driving (we had to drive
to the airport and back with a driving coordinating sister.) Um guess
what happened to me? First of all I'm driving Thursday NIGHT in the
dark in a snowstorm- but luckily I have some experience so that was
all fine. We are rounding the bend and leaving the airport heading for
our proper exit and I GET PULLED OVER! I kid you not! I saw this cop
trailing us for like 3 minutes and he was making me nervous but I was
innocent so I didn't worry about it. No, he pulled us over! I flipped
out! Sister Smith and myself- oh man we were in hysterics! Then the
cop scared us when he came to the window we weren't expecting and it
was a mess. Basically the insurance sticker was wrong or something but
THAT WOULD HAPPEN when I was the one driving and trying to pass
off. I was like "I STILL PASS RIGHT?" bahahahh. oh that was a fun
journal entry that night!
We took an amazing tour this week with 3 Swedish siblings. All
college-age just on vacation. 2 brothers with their sister. They were
hilarious and so spiritual! Not in an organized, labeling kind of way
but their spirits and the conversations we had- amazing! I love Temple
Square! I love that half the people I talk to are guests from out of
state or out of the country! Diversity and depth- amazing!
Also fun fact for you- Sister Cheng (one of my bestie sisters who is
going home tomorrow :( She's from Hong Kong) put the trollers from
chat on the prayer roll. Bahahahahaha. We all laughed for like twenty
minutes about that one. There was a troll-raid this weekend! It was
pretty funny but good because we did find some sincere people or
changed trollers' hearts.
As a mission this transfer we got 365 IRC's with only about 100
sisters. That's amazing! Me and Sis LJ have 8 for the transfer. And
our latest one was HENRY!!!! He is so amazing (maybe Sis LJ will even
get to go to his baptism in California!) I absolutely am in love with
missionary work. I feel so blessed to have the resources, knowledge,
and desire to serve. It's such a beautiful thing. I knew it was going
to be good but not THIS good :) Henry is so amazing! I'm making so
many facebook friends on my mish! He taught me something amazing
yesterday on the phone- he was telling us how his prayer was answered
about this restored gospel just like we promised it would be. He asked
for a sign (which doesn't always work) but for him the Lord granted
that prayer. He met an old friend and found out they were actually
Mormon. They were talking and the Spirit spoke to him. He knew it was
a sign because when he had this conversation with his friend the
Spirit touched his heart and let him know that this was his sign! The
Spirit is a sign! Some people call it a coincidence but when you feel
the Spirit personally- nothing can deny! No facts, no anti jargon, no
mortal reasoning! He then went on to tell us how it reminded him of
his Book of Mormon reading in 1 Nephi 2 and started quoting a
scripture. We were like "WOAH WOAH wait let us get our scrips open"
and then we found his word for word quoting in verse 17. "which the
Lord had manifested unto me by His Holy Spirit. And it came to pass
that he believed in my words." It never stood out to me as a special
verse but to Henry- it spoke depths to him! And when he read it to us-
I could see how it applied to his situation! That's how the scriptures
work ,my friends- they are so personal. They are so deep. I love all
my investigators and Temple Square moments that re-teach me or
re-emphasize important gospel principles to me.
Well, everyday is a blessing. Every hour is an adventure! We talk to
hundreds of people a week! There are so many experiences and so many
things to share but this is all for now! If you want to learn more,
stay friends with me and I'll just talk about my mission for the rest
of my life :) Okay I won't be obnoxious about it- but I'm serious when
I say this is sticking with me for eternity! Because we all know
eternity exists :) deep down inside we know this is all true- because
we knew it before this life on Earth and will all know about it again
and hopefully are learning right now!!!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

I'M SUCH A CLUTZ!!

Ok well hello! Let me tell you how many times I have fallen today. Are
you ready? At least 10 times a day on the icy square or down the hill
to the square (I haven't really face planted yet but there were 3
times when it was super close!) I have seen a couple sisters eat it
hard. It's sad. "Hey who is that girl at BYU who always beefs it hard?
Oh that's Marissa!" and "Who is that sister on Tsquare with a mouth
full of ice and missing teeth? Oh that's Sister Schroedter." I am very
concerned for my safety but I do my best. Some of my boots don't have
traction but they are just too darn cute to worry about that!! Oh how
else did I fall this week? Remember how ALL I DID was use the bathroom
normally right after Sis LJ and it FLOODED!!!!! And it was a disaster.
THANK GOODNESS we noticed before we walked out the doors for computer
time (we were home for our 2 hour weekly planning sesh) and I ran in
there with my BOOTS ON- GROSS!!! and then I was trying to take my
boots off and it fell in the pee water and it was just a mess. Good
thing Sis LJ's main priority was getting the camera to document this
humiliation rather than helping me. hahahahah JK I told her to get the
camera. but honestly- I would get all nasty in our grossness. It's a
good story for the grandkids though! The adventures of Tsquare are
endless. The square is very slow these days (compared to Christmas)
and it gives us time to practice and think of crazy hypothetic
situations (which is one of my fav activities) and what not. Sometimes
we linger in buildings longer than encouraged to warm up from the
FREEZING weather conditioins and we will crack our backs, do back
bends, or pop our hips- then we smile at the security camera and wave-
they are always watching us. awk!!! Remember how I am passing off my
"French history tour" test this Friday with Sister Decoeur!! She is
legit French/Wales and because French isn't my native tongue but I can
announce after Music and the Spoken Word on the platform or give tours
in French or give tours in a microphone (I'm excited about that come
Summer time) - I need to pass off with her so I'm not just apostating
or speaking terribly. They gave me the history script in French and
during slow times, I've been studying like crazy or Sis LJ will give
me an English sentence and I'll translate and testify in French. With
the Spirit and my hard work- It should be fine. I'll let you know :)
I'm stoked!!! I use French WAY more than I thought I was going to! I
love it!
The talent show dance went well! It's on video! It wasn't perfect but
it was one of our best run-throughs.... so that's good :) I love
pushing myself (with dance or French) and just trying to grow as much
as possible. Even if I get scared- Perfect love casteth out fear! And
nervousness can be good because it makes you humble and rely on the
Lord more :) We have met many guests this week :) Even with the slow
times! We can't technically teach people from Israel because of all
these agreements with the church and Israel and what not but we met a
GREAT Israeli couple this week that talked with us at the Jerusalem
model in the North Visitor Center (me and Sis LJ had North Desk duty
for 3 hours one day. Just running the tours and keeping order and all
that.) and they informed me soooooo much on Jerusalem. They were happy
with how much we already knew- but just the history and the modern
culture- I was fascinated! Oh also this week I am passing off to be a
driver. Only the American or Canadian licensed sisters can drive
here-I know Racist! well not really :) haha but yah. so get excited
that I will be trained and on the roads with a car full of sisters in
my hands! hahaha Pres is always saying how being in a mission full of
sisters is his biggest nightmare- just a bunch of women drivers. hahah
I love President Holmes. So during the training for "fleet" (aka
driving) guess who one of the videos was on for like 20 minutes......
RICK SEARFOSS!!! bahahah i'm like- I KNOW HIM!!! it was soooo funny!!!
oh Mormon connections.
p.s. Spencer- SHOUT OUT! there you go, buddy!!!Oh my word Kelly- do
you know????? tell me? Boy: Maurice? Girl: Marissa? those are my
votes! i love you so much. annnnnnnnnddd.... HAPPY BIRTHDAY TODAY
LANCE BRUNSON!!! Pirate Island all the way!! love you, sir!!! make
Kelly do everything for you today! love you! happy birthday!!! you two
are my heroes! I can't wait to be a godmother ;) and Lauryn- do you
have any baby t-rexes yet? hahahaha get on that! ps Jake G and T.
SwifT? ARE YOU SERIOUS! everyone just looks at me as an apostate when
i know the outside world updates but they are all listening :) I love
you and all the updates!!! how's the new season of Bachelor? bahahah
GABE GABE? details did everything come out okay? how's Lacey? Phil?
what's going on in the outside world?
totally not distracted though! i'm focused. but seriously. keep me posted!
CHASE CHASE CHASE!!! HAPPY ONE YEAR HUMP DAY ONE YEAR ON MISH IN
BRAZIL ON THURSDAY, BABY!!!! what a year it's been! So crazy that it's
been a year already and ONLY been a year at the same time! I'm so
proud of you and grateful for your example!!!!!! so many people love
you!! me most :) ok that's debatable but I swear it is me :)
xoxooxoxoxox.
and a shout out to my family: Shelbs and her fam, Garr and his fam,
Tay, Grant, Cay!!! mom dad :) and my second fam. and my fam away from
fam. and just everyone XOXXOOXOXO (in an appropriate missionary hand
shake way!)
ok I really am focused! I'm just so giddy right now because it's pday!
Pday is a beautiful thing! I will end on a spiritual note! so I don't
know how clear I have been with what exactly is going on in Tsquare on
a daily basis. So with my transfer they started a new program (that's
why Sis LJ and I who just got back from outbound Ft. Lauderdale
Florida were so frazzled!) So we spend half the day on the computers
(it switches off morning and nights) and then the other half of the
day on the square. We work primarily off of referrals! We call from
former investigator missionary's list, the other visitor center list
like the Manti Pageant (from like 2007 or something. that's an
adventure always), chat, referrals from the square, emails, referrals
from new investigators, ETC and so square time is important to help
the square run smoothly, get referrals, and make sure everyone learns
and has the best experience at Temple Square. Well the new thing that
was started with my transfer here and that will continue for years is
that we are teaching on the phone. as a companionship. conference call
both "Marissa and Alison" with a prayer and lesson and everything on
the phone. We teach people on the phone who have referred to local
missionaries but they haven't got in contact with them. To keep them
golden and spiritually growing! And to make sure missionary's actually
show up. We get them to church, we get them to call missionaries, we
get missionaries to call them, we do everything we can to help them
reach that next step of meeting with local missionaries. It's super
important and such a good thing because now people will love Temple
Square sisters more- it helps a lot with the effectiveness and
outcomes of our mission. I am excited to be apart of this new group
that teaches and not just send the info through a computer (that may
or may not get there to the missionaries in the first place or that
people will forget and let Satan get to them and all that!) okay why
is this a novel! ahhhh I need to take it easy. well I love temple
square and am doing well- of course a mission is a rollercoaster but
it's worth it! I always have loved rollercoasters- ok actually that's
not true- I didn't like them from like age 5 till age 14. but I do now
and that's what matters :) I love you all and hope you didn't fall
asleep with your face on the keyboard just drooling and ruining your
computer!!! xoxoxooxox. hope to hear from y'all soon!

Monday, January 3, 2011

HAPPY NEW YEAR From T-Square :)



Hey hey hey! Another glorious week as a missionary! 24/7 helping other people find their purpose and joy in this life and for forever!! through Jesus Christ!

Ok so this place is amazing. Period!

So a quick story this week: Sister Seube (from France) called Sister Littlejohn and said "I feel impressed to ask your trainee to call my family in France. Sister Schroedter, right? My family's English is okay but I don't know why, I just want her to call them." Then Sister LJ says, "She actually speaks French." AND wow! She didn't even know me and vise versa. So now, I have her non-member family members to call! So much trust and faith in this work and in the Lord and in me as His servant. I'm excited!

It was amazing seeing you, TARYN!!!!!! I'm so excited that you got to come experience temple square!! My favorite little convert, you! And when I say little- I mean GIANT heart and spirit!!! I love you! AND........ HAPPY BDAY on WEDNESDAY, chica!!!!!!!! you are beautiful! A great way to welcome in the New Year: people screaming and fireworks going off! Woke me up!!! I value my sleep! Oh grumpy and laughed at the same time!

Speaking of converts: two of the people we taught on the phone and got as IRC's are GETTING BAPTIZED!! the 17 year old from Kansas is getting baptized January 8th and the Nigerian who is living in Bangkok is getting baptized January 30! And they were both from chat. Chat can work! I need to not be so grumpy about chat. It's the mostrollercoaster part for me! I get so ticked! I can see why they don't send Elders to Temple Square. They don't have a woman's compassion or poise! OH MAN!! But chat is great because look at Evan and Patrick! Amazing!

What made my week this week: So I had a seriously touching experience this week! I seriously think every heart-felt, spiritual experience is the most amazing! And this one isn't any different. May even be the best!!! So it's almost time for us, on Friday, to leave the square and go into the bat-cave in the back-freezing room for computer time. Ireally do love the square and the computers. It's such a variety. Such a unique mission where you don't have travel time or any down time. It's teaching to teaching to teaching to inviting to inviting to inviting. 12 hours a day! It's different than sitting on a bus for 5hours in Romania or walking 15 miles in Brazil ;)

So anyways, back to my story. We are in the South Visitor Center and we are standing by the "temple construction" displays about to go down and get our bags and that's when we run into Chris!!! A middle-aged stud from California! He came to Utah for a spur-of-the-moment ski trip and it seemed like he needed this escape. A hectic world! And he thought he'd see what Salt Lake City had to share. So he made it to Temple Square and had been struck with the weird peaceful feeling he felt on Temple Square. Not everyone feels it, but a lot do! I know I do. And there we are- for like 15 minutes! Just explaining and answering his many questions! He was shocked out how bold and confident we were in this restored exact same Church as in Christ's time, a living prophet, marriage being a divine principle, etc! It was amazing! I felt prompted to start talking to Him and it was amazing to see the Holy Ghost work through me! Sister Littlejohn would testify, then me, then her, ad the Holy Ghost all the time! And he referred! He is on his own journey now! The most amazing part of the whole experience was when he asked me "How have you seen the gospel bless your own family?" andthat hit close to home. I choked up! What? My tear ducts snuck on me. I was super embarassed but just bore a strong witness of how and in what ways I know personally the importance of the gospel in my family. I've seen it present and I've seen it forsaken- cling to that iron rod! It was amazing and I will never forget the look in his eye as hefelt my spirit and the Holy Spirit!

Ok well I love this gospel so much and I know that the single experience with Chris, Patrick, or Evan would make this whole mission journey worth it!!! This gospel is so beautiful! How lucky we are to be living in a time of this restoration and to have the full church and learn of these teachings of Christ on the Earth again!!.