August 25, 2014

TRASLADOS!!! (Transfers!!)

Hola Familia :) Another week complete in the mission field! WOW! How is my first transfer and almost 2nd month of my mission COMPLETE??? Time is flowing by and I am loving being a missionary :) I finally have my feet underneath me a little bit and am LOVING the work. 

NOTICIA!!! (News!!) I am getting transferred! Tomorrow! I do not know where I am going yet, (we will find out tonight where I will be serving and who my comp will be), BUT this is my last day in Steamboat :( It was sad to say goodbye to all of the members yesterday. I really have grown to love this area. The members are interesting and the work is changing, but the church is true everywhere and the Lord's work is hastening. I truly love all of the people I am serving here in Colorado and know that this is where I need to be! :)

As far as this week goes... it was great! Here is the play by play:

We had sister's conference which is all of the sisters in our zone. It was taught by our Sister Training Leaders (Dotto and Smith)  and the Zone Leaders. It was AWESOME. So powerful when missionaries get together. Sister Dotto was sick during the day so I just decorated my planner and did my training. That night we had dinner with a member named Sister Bruchez. She is a widow and LOVES me because we bonded when I told her about Trevor. We visit her often and we were at here house on Saturday night when I found out I was getting transferred. We were all sad and I will miss her. She is amazing and has been kind of like my mom here! I know that one of the main reasons I was sent here was to provide her with solace and to comfort her and give her someone to relate to as she mourns the loss of her husband. (he died a year and a half ago. Not an easy pill to swallow and I have been able to help her by relating some of the same feelings I had when Trevor died. He continues to be an example and a light in my life even in my missionary work!)

Exchanges! This week Sister Smith (companion of Sister White) came to Steamboat! We had a great day! Man do I love her so much! She will be replacing me in Steamboat when I am transferred! We had an AWESOME day and were able to teach an amazing lesson to Keyla about the BOM. I felt like my Spanish was soo on point and that I could communicate as well as I wanted. My Spanish is getting better every day and I love the language. My prayers are fluent and I can say everything about the gospel that I need to. I feel like I can finally express myself! It is wonderful and coming along nicely! I hope to be completely fluent in all conversation (not just gospel) after next transfer :)
Saying good-by to Flor & Keyla...2 investigators I love!

District meeting in the morning and we switched back from exchanges. Sister D and I went grocery shopping in Craig then headed back to SS. An AWESOME STORY from today.
On Wednesday when Sister Smith and I were out working we OYMed a girl named Chelsea (16). We did the survey approach with her and set up an appointment at 3 the next day to teach her. Well, while I was writing down the appointment, I stopped to write down her telephone number and didn't finish my entry for the appointment. As we were talking, and leaving her with a pass along card, she asks us if she can give us something too. She hands us a Jehovah's Witness website pamphlet. Yikes. The JW's here are suuuuper intense. They invite the missionaries over to BASH. We don't even normally accept appointments with them. But, me, so naive, didn't know Kingdom Hall was a JW church and I set up the appointment before realizing. I was worried about it all day and when Sis D and I got back on Thursday, I didn't have a name written in at 3, but I had it circled in my planner anyways. I was confused of who the appt might have been with, and thought about Chelsea. I was pretty sure it was her appointment but wasn't positive, so out of fear, I dismissed it. Well, 3:30 rolls around and we are at the house eating lunch when we get a text... who shoukd it be? Chelsea, asking if we were still coming. What investigator (especially here) do you know that actually KEEPS and appointment and asks if you're coming? So, we rush over to Dream Island where she lives. The whole time in the car I was soooo nervous and had a terrible feeling. I had the vision that we were going to walk in and her family was going to be sitting there, ready to bash us. I was fearful. I was not being a disciple of Christ. Well... we get to the house and I am so nervous and have such a bad feeling I don't want to go in. So, Hna. Dotto assures me if something bad happens, we can leave. I say a prayer. A really really really heartfelt prayer of guidance and that this 16 year old girl will not tear us to shreds. Well.. we get in there. She's super kind (again) and we teach her the restoration. She has a few questions... but Is SO KIND and says she will pray to know if Jospeh Smith was a prophet and she asked US if we would continue to teach her. Talk about being prepared. Here I was, freaking out, and totally scared to share the most important and greatest blessing of my life. All in all, we have continued to teach her and she has committed to reading the BOM. I have no idea what will happen with Chelsea. She may never get baptiozed, BUT... SHE taught ME  NEVER to be scared to share the gospel. Who am I to deny ONE PERSON of the opportunity to hear the restored gospel of Jesus Christ and have an eternal family solely out of MY PERSONAL FEAR? It was an amazing experience and just one of the many things I have learned.

Normal day... we had weekly planning and did all that. It was a great day and we taught Marina and Veronica. They both accepted the soft baptismal challenge. I won't go into detail, but they are AMAZING. I will be sad to miss their baptism in September :)
Veronica & Marina gave me a heart and sunflower to say good-bye.

Great day as well! We were able to serve for 3 hours at a suicide awareness convention. I served the beans in the food line and my Spring Creek BBQ days served me well. It was wonderful! Our mission is a pilot for the JustServe program the church is doing so we serve in the community 7 hours/week in addition to all of our proselyting. It is such an escape and stress relief to serve others! I love it!!!!​ That night I found out I was getting transferred and was super sad, BUT I know that God has a plan!!

Yesterday was AMAZING! We had Stake Conference broadcasted to us from Meeker and ELDER OAKS spoke at it. He is amazing and spoke a lot on missionary work and also on coming unto Christ: which literally means to be a FOLLOWER and a DOER of Christ. Amazing talk. Veronica came to church and loved it:) She and her sister are so beautiful. Later on that day we went and said goodbye to Francisco and Gaby (RC) that I love and taught them. AND that night we took Gaby, Francisco, Veronica, Marina, Their brother Jesus, Rafa, and Pedro (also investigators) to the baptism of Manuel in Craig! It was amazing! We walk into the baptism with a whole family with us and the ZL's were shocked and were so proud. They gave us "mad respect" hahah! It was amazing and such a great experience. It was a wonderful end to such a great transfer in Steamboat with all of the people that I love. 
We told Francisco to lose the hat for the baptism we attended!

 All in all, things are going great. I am happy and content with my service in Steamboat and am looking forward to a new transfer and even more lives to touch! I love this gospel with all of my heart and am so happy to be a missionary! Thanks for all of the birthday wishes... hard to believe I ill be 20 years old on Sunday!!! AHHH!! :) It's great and the church is true :) LOVE YOU ALL and THANKS FOR THE PRAYERS!!! 

Hermana Pierce


To Craig and Denver and Back to Steamboat!

August 18, 2014

Wow! I have little to no time to update today because it is Zone P-Day and we are traveling all the way to Craig!! I also forgot my journal that has everything about my week so I will try and remember the best I can!!! :)

Tuesday we were able to have dinner with the Elliott's (Nikki's parents). They took us to the Mambo Italiano and it was AWESOME! (I had Spaghetti of course;)) It was so great to see a familiar face!

After dinner, we headed off for Craig to exchange. I was in Craig from Tuesday until Friday. It was great and I love Sister White! They have 4 people on date there so it was cool to see people that have such strong testimonies of the gospel!!! On Friday we stayed in Craig to do weekly planning and then drove back to Steamboat. We taught an awesome lesson to Yesenia and she said she would pray to know if Joseph Smith was a prophet and her daughter Keyla said that if she received the prompting from Heavenly Father that she needed to be baptized, she would!! It was awesome!!! She has such a strong testimony of Jospeh Smith and the restoration.
Sister White and I on exchanges in Craig

On Saturday, President Murdock asked us to come to Denver. Sister Dotto was struggling also and so I called Sister Murdock and they wanted to see us. Sooo Saturday afternoon we headed down to Denver and spent the night in the mission home. It was fun to see them and take a little break from the stresses of Steamboat. On Sunday morning we went to Centennial Ward and it reminded me so much of home! Then we traveled back to Steamboat and had an awesome dinner with our Ward mission leader's wife, Sister Sandelin. She is awesome!!!!

We were able to drive by the temple when we visited Denver
That's pretty much the gist of my week! I'm sorry I don't have a lot of time to write and I don't have much to update on... BUT... next week is transfers! Based on my interview with president, I think I am getting transferred out of Steamboat. With that being said, here is some information on mailing... It's a little tricky.

I am getting transferred next week so if you are going to send something, send it to the mission office (999 E Tufts Ave, Cherry Hills Village, CO 80113) just in case. And make sure to send it through USPS. ONLY USPS. If not, I won't get it until I go to the mission office next which... could be never. lol. If you send something this week through UPS or FEDEX and it will get here BEFORE Saturday... Send it to 38625 Rolling Hills Lane Steamboat Springs CO 80477. BUT only to that address if it is through UPS or Fed EX and ONLY if it is going to get here before I get transferred on Saturday. If not, I wont get it. Sorry, it's super weird here with mail. BUT if you send something to the mission office, or to my PO Box address, it HAS TO BE THROUGH USPS. Also, don't send anything to my PO BOX address if it will get here past saturday. To be safe, just send everything through USPS to the mission office and they will forward it to me!

I know this is all over the place, but thank you so much for the kind love and support! You have no idea how much it means to me! The love and prayers I have felt this week are UNREAL! Also, thanks to Lindsay Cline and Rani Parkinson for the awesome package this week! It was so unexpected and AMAZING!! :) So thank you!!!

I love you all! The church is SO TRUE!!
Hermana Pierce


The Weeks Are Flying By...First Transfer Soon!

August 11, 2014

Well ,the weeks are continuing to fly by! I can't believe I am in the second to last week of my first transfer! WOW where has the time gone?!
Sister White and I on exchanges in Craig, CO

This week I don't have too much to update on because the work in Steamboat is at a little of a standstill, BUT we are working as hard as we can! Tuesday I had another exchange with Hermana White in Steamboat and it was great! It was great to feel as though I could really do this! She goes home in December and is great. She goes to BYU and I love her! We will be having 1 exchange per week because Hna. Dotto is Sister Training Leader and has to go visit other sisters. This week I will be in Craig from Tuesday night until Friday morning! CRAZY huh? But I like exchanges because it's nice to visit other sisters and get other viewpoints and learn new things from them!
The Sisters in the Meeker North and South districts

Thursday morning we had district meeting and Sis Dotto and I went grocery shopping in Craig because its cheaper. It is SO expensive here and they give us the same amount of money as everyone else.

On Friday we had to go the the Burke's house so Hna. Dotto could work on her BYU application and get some transcripts sorted out... long story short.... THANK YOU DAD for my allergy to CATS! They have THREE cats and I literally thought I was going to die. Haha. It was terrible! So for the last hour I had to sit outside because I didn't have any allergy medicine. So we are back at their house emailing today and I now have purchased a Zyrteck (spelling lol) and am doing better with the cats. haha.

Eating repollo (cabbage soup) with a corn tortilla and lime squeezed on it. YUM!

Saturday was interesting because both Sister Dotto and I weren't feeling very well so we spent a lot of time at home doing weekly planning and resting. It's been a super stressful time here and I have been struggling with my emotions. BUT I know that the work is hastening and the Lord is mindful of me at this time.

Sundays are AWESOME. I love church so much. It's such a nice escape to just sit and listen (although Hna. Dotto would say the opposite because she translates the whole time haha). BUT, we had a great sacrament meeting. None of our investigators came, but we have faith in the future! They will at some point be able to realize that this will be the greatest blessing in their life! One of the talks in Sacrament was on adversity and she said, "Adversity does NOT have to be coupled with discouragement or despair." God will SHOW unto us our weaknesses, so they can be made STRONG. We are being SHOWN our weaknesses. She emphasized that a lot and I love it. Everyone has adversity, and we are visibly able to see that a lot of the times. BUT, it is through our Savior we can overcome it. I love that :)
I literally cried while eating a chip with hot, hot, hot sauce on it!

Every Sunnday after church we go over to the Ward Mission Leader's house and the missionaries make waffles, eggs and bacon for the members. We never know how many we will get but it is always fun. It's a great way to interact with the ward... You should start it down in Texas, mom and dad!!! It's been SO fun! Sometimes we cook for 30 people!

Well, so sorry I don't have more exciting things to update you on... but just remember that this is the true church! I am so grateful for the love and support of my family and friends!!! Thanks for all of the emails from the gang in Texas this week! I loved it!!! Until next week!!!

Hermana Pierce

P.S. Please drop me a short note at erica.pierce@myldsmail.net. It really makes a difference in my day!




August 4, 2014

WOW! The mission field is going so well! I am definitely loving it so much! We worked SUPER hard ALL week so I don't have too many crazy, eventful things to fill you in on... BUT here it goes! :)

Tuesday we had exchanges! It was sooo different. I went to Craig... man, am I glad I am serving in SS! It is so much prettier than any other area! So that was good- I learned a lot... especially concerning how hard Hna Dotto and I work.

I went on exchanges with Hermana White and we got soaked in the rain!

Wednesday was just teaching after we finally got home from exchange. We went and helped Yesena Villa Parra set up for financial help from the place called Lift Up where we volunteer. We had to translate for her (well Hna. Dotto did). It was so sad. These people literally can't even pay for their parking at their trailer. She broke her foot and had to spend all of her money on the hospital. She has little to no food in the house and has 4 kids and is a single parent. The lady at Lift UP asked if she needed food for her family and Yesena said no because she felt like she was asking too much already for the parking. We knew they had little to no food. The lady told yesena that the reason they were there was to help. So we helped her pick out a whole cart of food. It was an amazing experience. She has literally nothing and is struggling so much but was so scared that she wouldn't even ask for food. So humbling.

One of my favorite converts, Francisco

Thursday we had District Meeting in Craig and then came back to SS and taught. That morning I had an unbelievable feeling while reading from the Book Of Mormon. Our mission president challenged us to read the BOM in the first transfer (13 pages per day). Well... I have been super dilligent and just have been completely losing myself in the reading. I miss just being able to spend as long as I want reading, BUT I have gained SUCH a strong testimony of the BOM since being here! WOW. It is so true. I have no doubts in my mind. READ IT! It will testify of truth. I just received the EXACT answer I was seeking on Thursday morning. We talk with God through prayer and he responds through scripture. I know that FOR A FACT. We are so blessed to have so much knowledge.

The living room and bedroom in our apartment...so nice!


Friday was great... We are continuing to teach the Villa Parra family (Keyla, Yesena, More). They are responding so well to the discussions. Later on we went and saw Nancy (Yesena's sister). She was really struggling. I can't go into all of the details... but her and her husband are in a super abusive relationship. She cried to us for an hour and a half. She was in a really bad place.

The next night... (Saturday) we went over to Yesena's and she said Nancy was bad. So we called the Elders to give her a blessing. When we got there she couldn't even open her eyes or get out of bed. She looked like she was drugged. We finally got her into the chair. The Elders gave her a blessing of health. Afterwards, they gave her a blessing of comfort and peace. While they were giving her the blessing, she passed out. Straight up started falling out of her chair. Elder Knight caught her and just kept giving the blessing. When he finished she had an anxiety attack. Started bawling, crying, hyperventilating... Her mom, Cleo, got alcohol and had to put it in front of her face so she would come back to reality. They were fanning her and all we were doing was just sitting there and crying. It was surreal. After when we finally got her calmed down, we explained what Elder Knight said in the blessing since it was in English, and shared a passage from the BOM. This family is normally a ton of super solid rocks- never shows emotion and just are so humble. Cleo, the mom of all the daughters (Yesena, Nancy) was bawling. She is a tough chick normally, and was so upset by everything; she was begging for our help during the day. After we finished sharing the message, I said the prayer. Talk about a lot of pressure. What do you say, in a language you are still learning, to a family who is literally at their breaking point with a woman who just passed out and hasn't eaten in 3 weeks and is clinically depressed? Wow! It was a lot. But I blessed their family with strength and to overcome the difficulties they were experiencing. I blessed them with the knowledge that the trials they had were from God and were making them better. Wow, what an experience! Nancy was able to stand and say goodbye. We were pretty shaken by the whole situation. It never ceases to amaze me the things we see here!

Me and Hermana Dotto on Saturday

Sunday was fast Sunday and it was great! We did a 24 hour fast mission wide for the members to be active in their missionary work. We all know that I don't do well without food... but I didn't get hungry ONE time in 24 HOURS. It was a miracle that we were able to endure. So we fasted and every Sunday after church the ward goes over to the ward mission leader's house (Fred Sandelin - He is a crack up). The missionaries usually cook waffles and eggs and bacon every week (I make some meeean waffles) but this week was a birthday party for the Burke's daughter so we got to take a little break. It was great. Then that night, we went and visited Nancy and her family again...COMPLETE 180 from the day before. We taught them Lesson 3 and they were hanging on to every word. The spirit was so strong and we have so much faith in them. The priesthood and especially blessings by the priesthood are so so so powerful.

Well that pretty much sums everything up! Things here are great. I love my mission. The work is hard, and we haven't seen the fruits of our labors yet, but miracles happen every day! I can't believe how blessed we are. We taught THIRTY lessons this week. Yes, 30. Needless to say, we are working hard. and still going. We don't have anyone on date right now... but are feeling some coming soon. Thank you all for your support and love. You will never have any idea how much it means to me.

Me in my new Colorado sweatshirt

TWO FUNNY THINGS from this week:

1) The little girls from Dream Island (the trailer park)  LOVE us. They always come up and hug us and are always outside. We spend a TON of time in Dream Island because a TON of our investigators are there. On Saturday we were there all day, and at around 4 pm they come up to us and say, "When do you guys sleep????!!!" Haha, it was funny.. and completely accurate at the moment. We had taught 8 lessons that day. We are always SO exhausted at the end of the day. I can never remember even going to bed.
2) There is another boy that lives in Dream Island, he rides around on his bike. Last week, he told us that his Grandma cut his hair and asked if we liked it. We said we did (of course- we aim to please ;)) and he said, "GREAT! SHE CAN CUT YOURS TOO!" We jokingly passed him along. Well... little did we know.. EVERY time he sees us... he says, "my Grandma isn't here today... sorry." "She can't cut your hair today... Lo siento!" We always say awwww, it's okay or something along those lines. WELL... yesterday he came up to us and asked us to schedule an appt to have a hair cut with his Grandma. (Kid is a TOTAL salesman- he's about 9 years old haha). Hna D and I both love our hair and are scared to get it cut... BUT, we couldn't leave the kid hanging... so Sister Dotto told him she would come get her haircut next Monday afternoon. WOW. The kid SPED OFF to tell his Grandma. So needless to say... Hna. Dotto is getting her hair cut by some Mexican lady we don't even know next week. It should be interesting... but maybe we will get a new investigator out of it, eh??? ;) HAHA, good times in Dream Island. You never know what you're going to get.

Taco Cabo: Our favorite Mexican place to eat

Lastly, I just want to say how much I love my family. I am so grateful to have parents set an example for me to seek a worthy priesthood holder and to marry in the temple. I am grateful for everything you, Mom and Dad, have done for me; your love, support, and insight in all things. You are always right and always strive to provide for me in every way. I couldn't imagine growing up in any other home. Thank you for teaching me to love the gospel. Also, to my sweet sister for her love and involvement in my life... constantly. You are my best friend, sisty! Eiji... thanks for keeping my sister in check. You are perfect and your growing testimony inspires me daily. Steven and Jessie... Thanks for loving me and your advice for my mission. I will forever cherish the moments we were able to spend together before I left! Jess... Keep Steve in line... No more OKC and Cougar games... ;)

​Yo se que Jesucristo nos ama mucho. Yo se que las familias son eternas. ​Por la expiacion, podemos recibir la vida eterna. Estoy agredecido por todas las bendiciones gue tengo. ME ENCANTA ESTE IGLESIA CON TODO MI CORAZON!

Have a great week!
Hermana Pierce