Denver is Awesome!

September 14, 2015

21st birthday
Well hello again!!! This week we had some really special experiences!! One of them being Horalia. She is one of our progressing investigators that is now on date! On Thursday night we had a lesson set to teach her about the Plan of Salvation. We got in there, and there were just a lot of distractions. I had been praying all day for us to find some way to set her on date for baptism, even tho the first time Sister Chandler and Allison tried on exchanges, she rejected it and wouldn't accept the date. Well, as we're in the lesson, there are just all kinds of distractions and it just wasn't going as planned. I kept praying in my heart for an opportunity to arise, for the spirit to be there, and for us to invite her again to be baptized.

Met my cousin, Crystal's husband, Scott
 for the first time at transfers!

Well, we were towards the end of the lesson when her granddaughter finally left and all distractions were "miraculously" removed at once. We started talking to her about the changes she wanted to make in her life and she told us that she was feeling really alone. I testified boldly that if she wanted to see a difference in her life and not feel alone, then she needed to rely on the atonement of Jesus Christ (we had just taught her about this concept in the lesson). Well, sure enough she began to cry (which she never does) and BAM.... the opportunity was there. I testified to Horalia that I know the way we can become closer to Jesus Christ is by following His example and by entering into a covenant with Him - baptism. She knows this is true, but has never thought about the ordinance of baptism seriously. I felt the spirit testify to me so strongly that we needed to REALLY invite her... not just half way invite because we "thought we should." After applying this principle to her current situation, we invited Horalia to be baptized on October 18th. She accepted. It was such a tender mercy and miracle from the Lord. As I had been praying so fervently, the Lord allowed the perfect spirit and setting to arise so that we could fulfill our purpose and invite. It was one of my favorite experiences in Denver thus far and Horalia is SO excited to change her life.

Perfect birthday...tamales and cake!
In other news...
STELLA IS GETTING BAPTIZED THIS SUNDAY AND I COULDN'T BE HAPPIER! She came to the whole ward activity Saturday night and is just so excited to be baptized this Sunday. She has invited EVERYONE to her baptism and is finally going to receive the blessings of this covenant :)

Stella and her babies with me and Hermana Chandler at church!

I am really starting to love the ward here. Things are going great and I can't imagine that my time is coming to a close as a missionary. I have felt so upset this week at moments when I think about doing anything else in life other than this. The gospel has become such an important component in my life and I can't imagine focusing on anything else. But, all things are within the Lord's timing and I must accept that :) I have loved forming even stronger bonds with the members here and have felt like I am really here for a strong PURPOSE. The Lord has such an amazing plan for each of us!!!

Love you so much, have a great week!

Hermana Pierce

PS: Lots of pics today from surprise bday parties from the members this week...one on monday night and then we had a ward talent show on saturday night. At the talent show, we did a really special musical number... "Come Thou Fount" in spanish with a flute and cello and piano and me singing!) Afterwards members made me a bday cake and sang to me; such a sweet action from these wonderful people! :)

Post talent show with Hermana Garcia!!! Love her!


"We Have Left All and Followed Thee" - Luke 18:18-28

September 7, 2015

The title of this email is dedicated to this awesome mission I get to serve for the Lord. I can't even hardly believe that I am only 12 weeks out. It is scary and I may have had a few breakdowns about it this week, but alas, we are seeing more miracles than ever. I can't even hardly believe how much love the Lord has been pouring out His Spirit upon Sister Chandler and I. It has been hard and especially exhausting, but most definitely WORTH it. I have never felt more satisfied in my WHOLE life, never mind in my mission. It is amazing what can come to pass when we put our faith and trust in the Lord. He will NEVER forsake us. If we are righteous and obedient to the commandments, nothing we don't deserve will ever come to pass. That doesn't mean it will be easy, but it will be worth it.
This week was GREAT.
My birthday! everyone has asked me how it went! Sister Chandler made me pancakes in the morning, then we headed out to get all of our shopping and emailing done. Thanks for all the birthday wishes! Then, we went and got Mani-Pedi's with the South Hermanas and enjoyed a great dinner at my favorite Chinese restaurant in Denver. The evening of proselyting was filled with some good ole' hearty TRACTING. But, nevertheless, it was a blast. We finished off the night with a delicious ice cream cake (made by yours truly--- thanks to Lance for the tips), and some candle-blowing fun. The BEST way I could have ever imagined to spend 21!
We saw a miracle!!! One of our investigators that I don't know if I've told you much about is Stella! She is awesome and I love her to death. She suffers a lot of mental challenges, but has been taught by missionaries since 2002 and backed out of her baptism 5 times. (Seriously... font filled and everything). Well, we had a little falling out with her after a member offended her in a lesson. We were praying and fasting so hard that she would forgive the member and allow us to keep teaching her. We weren't having any luck until we went and brought her flowers (that I arranged- thank you BYU floral design class). She wouldn't come to the door so we left them with a sweet card for her to find.
Well, we texted her on Monday night after not hearing back for several days since we had dropped off the flowers. At 6 when we woke up the next morning, we had a text waiting from Stella that we were permitted to come by and teach her that day!!! We were ELATED and went over to see her. She acted as if nothing had happened and we were able to set up a meeting with her and the bishop to help her with some financial needs. She has so much faith and expressed her deep desires to be baptized, even though she is suffering so much at this point in time. (recently divorced, 2 young daughters, mental challenges, no job, rent, health stuff, etc.) It was most definitely a miracle to be able to see her again! We continued throughout the day, had some awesome lessons with less actives and a few investigators.
At 6 AM we got to go the TEMPLE!!! It was an early session, but I loved it as always. Such a beautiful and sacred place. Later on, we found a new Less Active family - Los Nevarez. I love them so much! The mom, Rosa, is amazing. She is going in for surgery tomorrow to scope out more cancerous cells. She has already battled and defeated cancer once and is continuing in the process now. After a long visit on Wednesday, they came to church on Sunday and she bore a powerful testimony about her faith and trust in the Lord's timing. It was amazing to hear such a beautiful woman testify of the love of trials and timing in her life.
We had a great last district meeting of the transfer!! TRANSFER NEWS is that I will be staying in Denver 1st with Hermana Chandler for the next transfer!! We were so relieved to hear the news! But, unfortunately, two of the elders in the district are getting transferred. Because we all serve in the same ward, all 8 of we missionaries have become so close. It's so fun being in such a strong bond of missionaries and we are sad to see them go :(

Weekly PLANNING! We planned a ton and at 8:30 started our exchange! I went to the Denver South area with Sister Allison! (same ward, just south) WE stayed up entirely too late talking, but boy do I love that girl!

EXCHANGES in Denver South were awesome! We taught basically all day and never stopped. Sister Allison and I had set a challenge at the beginning of the exchange to invite someone to be baptized without teaching the restoration--- just based solely on FAITH and the Spirit. Well, we had the opportunity, and I took it! The member that was with us must have thought I was crazy, inviting this random man to be baptized after only briefly explaining the Book of Mormon. BUT... He accepted! It was such a cool experience to rely on the spirit to testify that we were true messengers of God, called to invite him to repent and be baptized. He accepted a baptismal date and a return appointment. Such an amazing experience of fearing NO MAN.
Later that night, we had a lesson with the Campos family and Sister Murdock accompanied us. The Campos family are amazing but some were stubborn about the purpose of baptism by the correct authority. Since Sister Murdock was there, the lesson had to be in English, which was fine because all of the kids speak English... BUT, Susanna, the mom, does not. SO, while Sister Murdock and Sister Allison were boldly testifying and teaching, I had the beautiful task of translating everything they said.... and they weren't taking pauses to breathe. As I sat next to Susanna and translated their words, I could truly feel the spirit guiding my words. I haven't had many out of body experiences with the Gift of Tongues on my mission, but this one was definitely one for the books. I can't even begin to describe the power of the spirit I felt as I translated every word spoken. The words were just flowing out of my mouth at a speed I couldn't even control. Susanna was listening intently and her heart was completely softened. What an amazing experience to truly be an instrument in the hands of the Lord. Although I wasn't teaching, I was playing such an important role in allowing Susanna to hear, understand, and accept the teachings of Sister Murdock and Sister Allison. This was, by far, one of the most powerful experiences with Spanish on my mission. I love this language and I love these people. I can't imagine not having had the opportunity to learn this culture and love every aspect of their lives. It was such an uplifting exchange and gave me so much faith to continue moving forward.
Wow. WHAT AN AMAZING DAY! Stella came to church with her girls and had her baptismal interview!!! She is so excited to be baptized on the 20th!! She texts us the countdown every day and tells everyone about her baptism. We are so excited for her!! After church, I had a quick lunch (Sister Chandler was still fasting, but I am unable to because of health) and headed out to work. We went to some new apartments and just started walking around trying to OYM people. We talked with EVERYONE and taught 6 lessons in the 2 hours we had before dinner. SUCH a miracle, especially since we still needed to teach 6 lessons and find 1 new investigator to hit the standards of excellence this week.
After dinner, we thought we had a lesson set up with a former investigator of the sisters. His name is Luis and he called us the week before to ask us for the elders' phone number to help him move. He has previously been waiting for a baptism acceptance letter from the first presidency, but in the process, the previous sisters lost contact with him when he moved. We had been trying to get in contact with him all transfer and thought it was such a miracle when he called us! We set up an appointment for last night and had the member that knew him come with us. Well, needless to say, IT WASN'T EVEN THE RIGHT LUIS!!! The Luis we met and scheduled the appointment with was already a member and speaks both English and Spanish (he attends an English ward with his wife). We felt SO awkward because we set up an appointment with a complete stranger, who we thought was a former investigator. The Luis we were trying to get in contact with also moved and speaks both English and Spanish, so it seemed completely logical that we had the right guy! Well, needless to say, Member Luis is super active and has a beautiful conversion story. Luis, his wife and 3 kids live in a trailer park that we didn't even know existed!!! We taught the whole family and the nonmember family that he lives with (The Zuniga's). Turns out the Zuniga's have been to church several times and used to be taught by hermanas in the past. They all became new investigators and were happy to be in contact with missionaries again! Such a miracle and tender mercy! Then, after the lesson, Member Luis took us around to meet all of his neighbors and gave us about 5 referrals. It was SO cool and so awkwardly inspired!!! We ended the day with 11 new investigators, 8 surveys, and 10 total lessons. Why is our God so good to us???
Well folks, like you read, it was a week FULL of miracles and tender mercies from the Lord. I don't know what I ever did to deserve this beautiful life and the opportunity to be a member and a servant in Christ's Church. I KNOW that this is the only true church on the face of the Earth and that the Book of Mormon is in deed the word of God. I love you all so much... make it a positive and diligent week!!! Here's to another transfer in the Mile High City!!! CHIERCE. (Chandler & Pierce). LOL. I'm funny.
Hermana Pierce
Picture: The District 3

The Greater the Struggle, the More Glorious the Triumph

August 25, 2015

Hello all! WOW such an amazing week... let me try to explain!

On Saturday we had sister's conference. It was AMAZING and Sister Murdock gave a great training on charity! It was SO uplifting! Then, I was in Green Mountain ward all day on exchange with Sister Domon! It was super fun and she is a great missionary. We attended the District Leader Council with the STL's that day since we were on exchange with them and just had a really uplifting experience. We are making a goal in our zone to baptize 10 people in the month of October. We decided to join the leadership in their fast for the next 3 Sundays to find FAMILIES and we are also beginning the water fast again. Sister Chandler and I had been having a pretty good week as far as teaching goes, but while I was out of the area on Saturday, she and Sister Allison found 5 new investigators for us! I was jumping up and down when I got back Saturday night and heard all about the miracles they saw! Our sprits were definitely up and we were completely set on hitting the standards of excellence that week. (standards set by Pres. Murdock that if we hit them consistently, we are PROMISED that we will baptize monthly.)

Well, Sunday we set out. We had to set 2 people on date for baptism, do 12 surveys, and teach 5 lessons all in one day to meet our goal of hitting standards that week. we finished church at 12:30 and headed out. We were also fasting... not my strong suit haha. Well... reeeeeeally long story reaaaaaally short, we found 8 new investigators, taught 9 lessons, set 4 people on date for baptism and did 13 surveys. We FAR surpassed our goal and doubled the size of our teaching pool... IN ONE DAY. It was by far one of the greatest miracles I have seen on my mission. We were running from house to house, LITERALLY talking to EVERY SINGLE PERSON we saw and asking them to do our survey so we could teach them, and were completely EXHAUSTED by the time the day finished. We broke our fast at 5 pm that night. During the whole fast, I did not have the urge to eat or even drink water (in 95 degree heat) ONE TIME. I can't even begin to explain or even describe the true, incomprehensible JOY we felt knowing that the LORD had truly LED US to every single person we had spoken to that day. There are so many individual stories of people we met that are just SO prepared by the Lord that I unfortunately don't have time to type out. All I know is that the Lord knows each of us individually, he listens to our SPECIFIC prayers and answers us very specifically in return. We prayed so hard to reach those specific goals and did not even think it was possible, BUT, because we finally decided to be humble enough to see the miracle, we did. It was BY FAR, one of my favorite days on my mission yet. we finished the week with having taught 24 total lessons, 6 on date for baptism, 21 surveys, and 13 new investigators! WOW. MIRACLES MIRACLES MIRACLES. That was not us whatsoever.
I love this gospel so much. I know that Jesus Christ knows us individually and that he extends his grace to us every single day as we strive to become more like HIM. I have felt his grace so strongly this week as I have completely FLIPPED and had so much physical strength! I LOVE THIS MISSION I GET TO SERVE!!! Remember that He truly is in the details of our lives.
ONE LOVE and make it a great week! :)
Hermana Pierce

PIC: GABY AND FRANSISCO CAME TO DENVER!!! Fransisco was leaving to go and live in Mexico this Thursday, SO they came and surprised us in Denver to say bye! We were so so so happy to see them, but so sad to say goodbye to fransisco forever :'((( I LOVE THEM! Just brings me back to the good ole' steamboat days!

"Mija... We Already Crossed the Border... Everything Else is Easy Now!"

August 17, 2015
Well folks... That is a DIRECT quote from our wonderful recent convert, Emma Zuniga... Her mom used to say that to her when she would get discouraged as a kid... I found it somewhat comforting ;) HAHAHAHA.

So the family history center is closed today so I don't have quite as much time, but this week was good! We were able to see a pretty cool miracle last night!!

We went to go and try a new less active, the Munoz family. The sisters had previously taught her but it had been a while since anyone had been to see them. We met the mom of the family, Natalia and started talking with her. She let us in willingly, but was pretty closed off to us at first. Well, we kept chatting with her, getting to know her, her family, background, etc. We got into a really great conversation. She began to tell us about a lot of the struggles she is having right now and the reason why she's inactive.
As our conversation continued, Sister Chandler and I continued to feel inspired on what to tell her. We shared a scripture in Alma about prayer (Alma 37:37) and continued to resolve her concerns. As we continued to talk, I had a never-ending stream of quotes from apostles running through my head, all of which, I had heard on my mission! It was one of the coolest teaching moments I've ever experienced... Natalia would say something, and almost immediately a quote would come to my mind from one of the apostles to help her. I know for a fact that it was not me, but direct revelation from the Lord. He was truly speaking through me, THROUGH the words of modern day prophets and apostles! It was so amazing and every quote I spoke she just about began to cry. Sister Chandler later said she couldn't believe the relevance every quote had to the conversation... she says they were "zing!" quotes... ones that leave the person thinking... haha. It is so true that what we put into our mind... STAYS. So put in good things! And that truly the Lord will bring to our remembrance what we need in the moment that we need it. We met the rest of her daughters, and she eagerly called the rest of her family to set up a return appointment for us to come back on Tuesday. It was the strongest I have felt the spirit in a long time and the strongest I have felt it in Denver thus far.
When we were about to leave Natalia told us, "Ya know hermanas... I really don't know why I'm inactive... I'm so grateful for both of you for coming and finding us today... I think it's about time I come back to church." Prayer answered.
I hope this message find you well wherever you are! Love you all, thanks so much for your endless prayers and LOVE!
Hermana Pierce

PS: Yesterday I sang Savior Redeemer of My Soul in sacrament meeting... Man... That's a tough song. Haha. But, there was a cello involved so it was all okay! :)

PIC: A district selfie last night after a baptism well... because why not?

Cracked Windshield = New Investigator!

August 10, 2015

Hello everyone! This is going to be a quick email, but this week was good! We were able to proselyte this week, which was great!
Quick update on investigators!
Stella Mendoza! :) She's been investigating the church since 2002 and she is awesome! She's almost gotten baptized like 5 times, but is SO ready to do it this time! She's on date for September 20th! We were kinda bummed she wanted to do ti so far out, but it had a lot of personal and family significance to her, so we're just going with it. We see her almost every day and she is so ready to be baptized! She already says that this is HER church and cant wait to baptize her girls when they turn 8. She struggles a lot with mental health so she really depends on us as missionaries. It's been really awesome to develop a relationship with her so quickly. She is sweet and we can't wait for her baptism!
​Funny Story/Miracle of the week!
On Monday evening Sister Chandler and I were sitting in our car ​next to some apartments getting ready to pray and go see a former investigator. Well, we were just about to get out of the car when all of a sudden a rock hits our windshield and cracks it! We were so jumped by it, so we got out and turns out a little 10 year old girl was throwing a rock as a joke at some kid (bad joke if ya ask me... hahah) and missed and hit our car! Well, we told her that it wasn't our car and that someone now had to pay to have it fixed, even tho it was an accident. The poor little girl felt so badly, but we had to have her go and get her dad. So, the dad, Juan, comes out and we talked with him about what happened. He was hispanic so we chatted in Spanish and then got all of his insurance info. As I was writing it all down, we got chatting with him and found out he's met with missionaries twice before. We shared a lttle bit about our purpose and set up an appointment to come and teach him that Thursday! Well, we went over on Thursday, and had a GREAT lesson with Juan! He is awesome and has so many wonderful questions about the gospel! It was definitely the most unique finding experience I've had, but what a great story it will be when he gets baptized ;) 2 HUGE cracks in the windshield later and he is now a new investigator!
​Love you all!
Hermana Pierce​