Monday, February 24, 2014

February 24: Weirdest Week of my Mission

Good morning. Afternoon. Evening.

I just had to cover all of my bases.

Ok. This week is going to be a good letter writing week, mind you.

Alright to start out this letter, let me share with you some experiences that I've experienced the last week. Some of them are funny. Some of them are weird. And some are down right hilarious. Ok, not really. And then some are them are miraculous.

On Monday, we had a bi-zone activity and we were playing volleyball. I went up to hit the ball and an elder was as well. And then in the mix-up, he ended up sitting on me. Wierd and funny.

On Tuesday we had a lesson with a new investigator, J. And before the lesson even started, we commited her to a baptismal date. Really cool. Well on our way out of the lesson, we see our car, which had been attacked by other missionaries--Spanish missionaries-- who thought we were "poaching" (teaching spanish people) them, so they left a bunch of random flyers and notes all over our car. Funny and weird.

Wednesday. Zone conference. Got to see lots of friends. And learn more about the new style of teaching they want us to do-- Donaldson style. Basically in and out in 30 minutes. Use pamphlets for teaching..etc etc

Now Thursday. Weirdest day yet. In the morning, I was speculating about what I would do if I were to be pulled over by the cops as a missionary. We were joking about how we should practice that in District Meeting or Zone Training. I determined then, that I'd give them a BoM. Keep this in mind. Later, we had our weekly planning to do. We decided to do it at the church building and outside, because it was so nice. Well a landscaping crew came and started to landscape the church. I had a feeling to go talk to them and ask if they've ever been in the buidling. We approached them, and they barely spoke English. But one of them wanted to come with us around the building. Well I tried my spanish and he barely understood. But the bishop's wife "just happened" to be in the building, helping set up, and she speaks spanish. So she was able to help translate. Miracle. Then we realized we had to do another exchange that day. So we did exchanges. Then that night, we were driving on the highway, talking about miracles. Well, I look in the rear-view mirror and see the worst combination of colors there is---red, white, and blue. (Unless it is a flag, then it's ok) So I get pulled over. Long story short. No ticket. I just didn't have my lights on.......yes I'm retarded. Well so I already determined earlier in the day to give him a BoM. So I ask him

"Hey have you ever heard of the Bom?"


"Oh. Well have you read it?"


"Well would you like a copy?" (I start handing him a copy)


"I can promise, if you read that book and ask God if it's true, He'll tell you it is."



Then I come back that night to our apartment and Sis Larsen and Field had an even crazier night. A less active we are working with was super upset and drugged. Her ex-husband was just found guilty of MURDER!!!!!!!!!


So then the next morning, we get a phone call from the elders we share a ward with. They told us about another LA/PMF family they are working with that is also crazy. And they called the cops on then they freaked out on the missionaries. And they were telling us to be careful, because that family lives like 100 feet away from us.

So then the next day, we have a weird experience with a neighbor. Here it is in Sis L's words.

Saturday: We helped at an open house in the morning for another zone who had a new church building just built. And then later that day our neighbor knocks on our door. He's in his 30's and isn't all there in his head. But he came and asked if we had $2 he could have, and then he'd pay us back. We didn't have any cash so instead we told him about a musical fireside Sunday night that he should go to. So now fast-forward to later that night. Sister Andelin and I went out to the car and were about to drive away when we realized we left something in the house. So instead of parking and everything we called the other sisters to bring this thing out to us. Well, the neighbor D was sitting outside on his little porch. And so while we are waiting we are taking some selfy pictures and we notice that he is walking towards our car. We keep doing what we're doing and then we notice that he is starting to dance, and then he proceeds to start taking off his shirt. He's not the smallest person in the world so Sister Andelin and I are covering our eyes in the car and we're like what the crap is he doing?! He takes his shirt completely off and starts wrapping it around his head and doing a belly roll type of thing. It was very disturbing!  Right then the other sisters start walking out and so he turns around, puts his shirt back on, and then walks away. We nick named him Jubbalubba! Haha.

And then to top it all off, we talked in Sacrament meeting about member missionary work. We show up and then they tell us that a general authority is going to be there. No pressure, right!?!!? Elder Stoddard of the 70 was there.

The talk went well. A lady in my ward told me I should consider being an attorney when I get back. Haha. And another man came up to me afterwards and said that he loved my talk and is gonig to try and summarize it as best as he can, so he can send it to his niece who is serving in Italy right now. It was so sweet.

But the gist of it was about how missionary work is miraculous. And we get to participate in it. But being an example is not enough. We have to INVITE.

And I said "Brothers and sisters, there are people in this audience who are here because a friend or loved one invited them to be here....And brothers and sisters..there are people who are SUPPOSED to be in this audience." 


I can't think anymore.

Life is good.

Missionary work is miraculous. I know that if we exercise faith, miracles will happen. And we can assist God in this great and marvelous work!!!

Sister Andelin

With some Spanams friends

Mama Dewey and I at zone conference.

February 17: Valentine's Day

Monday, Feb. 17, 2014

I don't even know where time goes.

Just flies by.

We had an awesome week.

We set 3 more people with baptismal dates in March. And we're so excited for them. Alona, Dennis, and Joyce!!!

I got to go on 2 exchanges with week. It is so much fun- I love getting to know so many more sisters. And I love learning from them. I think I benefit more than they do.

But thank you so much for the Valentine's Day Love!!!!! I loved the tulips, card, and box. All of the sisters I live with are pretty grateful for your kindness as well. Thanks for making it the best Valentine's Day yet.

I love this area so much!

I love missionary work. I feel like I'm at the point in my mission where I am completely lost in the work. It is exhilarating and exhausting. There is just so much to do!

Love you all.
Sister Andelin

Hanging with a heart on Valentine's Day!

Holding hour old puppies!!!

February 10 Pictures

Here are some pictures she sent. Her letter was very short.   -Taylor

                             Jesus LOVE YOU

There are so many abandoned shopping carts in Vegas and so we finally got a pic with one

Sister Larsen is a fantabulous hair-stylist. This is todays pic

February 3: This is Heaven


And I can't wait to play on Treetop Zoofari.

Well this week has been another CrAZy week. Too much stuff to tell.

We have been incredibly blessed again. 

We had a lesson with a man named D. He was in a severe car accident 6 years ago and has lost all mobility. The only way he communicates is through facial expressions and occasional words. His wife is C. She has been a member her whole life. They've been married for 30 years. He took the lessons once, but didn't join. His wife believed he would be interested in taking the lessons again, she asked and he said yes. She invited his two home teachers over for the lesson, because they have known D for the past 10 years and knew him before the accident. We were a little nervous about teaching him, because we didn't know how much he would be able to understand and we would have to really alter our teaching method. But I know that we were not the only ones in that room that night. The spirit was so strong. And I knew that he knew and understood exactly what we were saying to him. We asked him if he believed in God. He said, audibly, "Yes." I got chocked up at that and then asked if he believed in Jesus Christ. He replied "Yes." to that as well. As the lesson progressed, he really was listening and focusing on what we were saying. Our eyes met a couple of times and the coolest feeling overcame me. It was such a special experience. He wants to be baptized, but we don't know if it will be possible for him in this life, because of his circumstance. We have talked with our mission president and discussed the situation and he is nervous because of the wheelchair and health problems. We will continue to teach him and assess as we go.

This week, I have been having some chest/heart pain, so Sister Forred was nervous and sent me to the doctors. I had to strip off my clothes and put on a paper shirt, but I decided it was important to still wear my tag :) The nurse came back in and I could tell she was pretty puzzled as to why I was still wearing my tag...and then she took it off. The did some tests and told me that everything looked fine and that it was probably just heartburn. Yes. You read that right. HEARTBURN. Seriously? What the heck? So they got me some mega-tum medicine that I'm supposed to be taking and I've actually been good at taking it, mother :) But it hasn't really helped too much. Oh well. Probably JUST ANXIETY...although I haven't been feeling anxious.... life is life.

OH and we moved from Grandma Davis's to the apartment with Sisters Field and 'Ofiu. They are so cool. I love them so much already. It is going to be a blast living with them. SO EXCITED.

And then of course, I got to see my Apostolic crush, Elder Jeffrey R. Holland. I was so excited to see him. He was sick, so I didn't get to shake his hand, but I did get to elbow his elbow. And we got to talk for like 10 seconds. Sigh. He is such a stud. I almost told him I had a crush on him, but then I realized that may be inappropriate. He gave an excellent talk on how we need to reach out to all of our members. He said he is tired of the STP problem... Same Ten People... He said in the church, the leaders always tend to use the STP for callings, he said we need to reach out, especially to those who have strayed. Then he shared a personal story about his father. This is the story that I'm stealing from Sis Larsen, so I don't have to retype it, plus it's better than what my version would have been. In her words......

One evening is 1951 there was a Bishop, an Elder Quorum President, and a Sunday School President who went to go visit a less active man, Frank. [Elder Holland Excerpt: A very interesting group of men to go make this visit] When they knocked on the door a man greeted them with a cigarette in his hand. The Bishop said Hello Frank. Frank invited the 3 men inside the house and they all stood awkwardly in the room while Frank put out his cigarette in a cup of coffee. [What a sight to see. You would think there was some word of wisdom issues. This coffee table really was to put a cup of coffee on not just postcards] The Bishop then tells Frank that they would like to call him to be a Sunday School teacher. Frank holds up a cigarette and says "But I Smoke" [Thank you Frank, like they didn't already know that. The 3 men knew that Frank smoked, drank coffee, and had an alcohol problem. Everyone in the ward knew that.] There came a long moment of awkward silence. The 3 men now are all feeling awkward and possibly even re-thinking about their decision. The Elders Quorum President is looking at his shoes, as he has been the whole time. The Sunday School President is looking to the side, studying some random object, who knows what the Bishop was doing. Frank was feeling equally as awkward and so to avoid any awkward stares he turned 90 degrees and saw me. I was just standing there (Elder Holland stands with his arms by his side and makes an innocent looking face) I probably shouldn't have even been in the room. I shouldn't have been there, but I was. My 10 year old self was just standing there. The first real revelation my father ever got through the Holy Ghost was right there at that moment. In that moment the spirit spoke to him and said "They are talking about Jeff's class" No one had mentioned what Sunday school class it was. Frank looked at the men, then back at me. Back at the men and then back at me. Frank then turned to the 3 men and said, when do you want me to do this. The Sunday School president then said if your asking when do you start, you will start this Sunday [This day happened to be a Tuesday]. But as an answer to your other question I guess that is why we are here. To see if you'll do it. Frank stood there for a moment. Then took the package of cigarettes out of his shirt pocket,  and tossed it into the fireplace and said, I'll do it. [I didn't know that they made white short sleeve shirts without a package of cigarettes in the pocket. Growing up I had always seen a package in the pocket so I thought you just bought the shirt like that.] Right then there was the biggest crash in the kitchen. My mother was "inconspicuously" listening to the whole conversation that was going on. When she heard Frank say I'll do it, she didn't just drop something, she had taken everything out of all of the cupboards, all of the pots and pans were on the floor. It was a very loud crash. That next Sunday my father taught my Sunday school class. I had learned later on that after that night he told my mother that he didn't want to be a hypocrite while teaching, so he cleaned up his act and stopped smoking and drinking coffee and his beer.

After this story Elder Holland put on his Apostle voice and said with all the conviction of his soul. "Don't you ever think that just because someone has a problem that they aren't capable of doing something great!" He said that in the church we tend to stick to the STP syndrome. the Same Ten People. He said that if it wasn't for those 3 men taking a chance on Frank, that Elder Holland's chances of him being active later on in life were almost non-existent. And that it was because of these 3 men that a wife and mother's prayers were answered. For the last 20 years his mother had been praying for her husband, and that something in him would change and that he would want to come back to church. Many lives have been blessed because of these 3 men. 

It was just so cool. Loved the story!

Well. I'm learning many things about myself. The Lord is good about doing that. He'll tell ya exactly what your weaknesses are and I've had my eyes opened this week. I'm trying to be more Christ-like in every aspect of the work and it is really tough. I'm glad I don't have to be perfect, because I'm realizing how far from perfect I really am. I'm coming to understand how I need to rely more on our Heavenly Father and His strength to get me through. And be willing to accept His will. Humility. Yes- I'm working on that.

A mission is a great learning experience. I just keep learning and learning and learning. And I LOVE IT.


And I really love my family. I miss y'all, a lot.

Love ya.


Sister Andelin

Repping the badge with the paper shirt

Picture with my Apostolic crush.
These are the 3 other sisters I am so lucky to be living with

January 27: Here is my letter

We really wanted to perform something together and so we decided to throw this song together for a baptism in our district for Saturday. Well our mission also just had a test run fireside last night and we asked if we could perform our song then as well. There were probably about 100 people in the audience, although it felt like a lot more! Our mission president and his wife were there- which added to my nervousness. Haha. But I thought I did pretty well given the circumstances-- I didn't really even shake at all. So many people came up to us afterwards asking if we were either- siblings, married, or cousins, or even related. So funny. But I talked to president Ahlander afterwards and he complimented me on my voice and our performance. He told me this was a trial fireside. He'd like to eventually get a fireside going for the whole west side of the Valley. But basically, it is all run by missionaries. We had a couple different performances and testimonies given by recent converts and returned less actives. The spirit was really strong! The guy playing the piano is the amazingly talented Elder Carson. He is seriously amazing!!!! He is 24 and studied this kind of stuff in school. And he just played that all, without any sheet music. You can ask him to play any song and he can do it--and then change the key to any key you ask. Random side note---I told him we have to stay friends, so he can write me soundtracks for my future movies. He laughed and said we would--and that he even wants to do that one day. He is amazing.

HI HI HI HI HI HI HI HI HI HI HI HI HI HI HI HI!!!!!!!!!! I really wanted to say Hi! Your daughter is amazing! I couldn't have asked for a better companion!!! She seriously has helped me out so much with everything really. You should be proud! Which I'm sure you already are. Love you Mama Andelin!    - Sister Larsen 

Oh, by the way, transfers are today. Elder Andelin is leaving :( So sad....but president said last night that he'll put us together again sometime. Haha. Sister Larsen and I are staying in Palmhurst, but we are moving out of Grandma Davis's house into an apartment with 2 other sisters. It's going to be a party!! Also, we got called as new sister training leaders.

Hey have you gotten my package yet? It was supposed to have the memory card in there...but I still haven't found it.... it is seriously sending me into a depression. I have searched and searched for that thing. I think Grandma D might have accidentally thrown it away :(

Did you get my birthday card?

We work with amazing people here. I am just in awe all the time of the people I get to teach and work with. I feel so blessed.

I'm learning so much every day.

I'm learning that I'm so much stronger than I thought I was. I'm learning that I'm so much stronger when I'm trusting in God and letting Him help me.

Here I am too lazy to write this...luckily Sister Larsen already did.

In her words, which are now mine....

V, our new investigator is such an amazing woman! She is loving learning more about the gospel! We went to do a lesson with her yesterday and we were going to show her the Restoration DVD to help solidify the First Vision and when we got there she had already watched it plus had taken notes! She had read through the pamphlet, looked up scriptures, asked us questions. She told us about how lately she's been having a feeling that everything was going to be alright. She's not as worried as she use to be. We even got her to pray out loud for the first time in her life. It was such a neat lesson! We're excited to keep teaching her. Hopefully she musters the courage to make it to church on Sunday. We're hoping so. Sister Hammond from the ward has been coming with us and we think that she'll be able to get V to come. Fingers crossed!


Sister Andelin

Bonnie's Ranch

January 20: Happy Birthday to my Mumma!




This week has been on FIRE here. I almost need some marshmallows and chocolate, to make some s'mores with this heat!

Mmmmmm. I love these kind of weeks. 

Missionaries die for these.

Well not really.

No, no one got baptized or set with a date.

But still, it was a good week.

We had the privilege of having a lot of teaching appointments. It has been so fun! We have been blessed in abundance. There is SO much work to do here in the Palmhurst ward. And it has been so special, because we had someone tell us that they really liked us and when they met us, he thought "Yes. Now, these are our missionaries!" (He is an active member and his fiancee has been investigating the church for over 2 years.) It just meant so much to me that he had said that.

We have really started to build a lot of trust here in the ward with ward members, investigators, and less actives.

I'm lovin' it. 

Funny experience.

We meet C on the side of the road. C is somewhat of a druggie. He is friendly and open to talking with us. He doesn't make a whole lot of sense-- example: when he said he likes to plant things, so that made him like a god, except he doesn't believe that people's spirits continue to live once they're dead. His issue was one of faith--if he can't see it, he doesn't believe it. Frustrated, I turned to him and asked "C- do you love your wife?"

"Well sure I do."

"I don't believe you."


"I can not see your love for your wife, therefore, it does not exist."

"But I bought her this house, the car, etc etc because I love her."

"That is just a manifestation of your love for her, but I can't see your actual love. And because I can not see it, it does not exist."

Then he went on to talk about sex...yes. Our conversation went there. At that point, we tried to reign him back in. Feeling inspired, I turned to our beloved chapter in Alma 32, where Alma compares faith to a seed. I said "Hey Curly, you said you like to plant things, so you should really like this analogy that compares faith to a seed." He kept interrupting and blurting out nonsense.

Well when we realized we weren't going to get anywhere, we gave him a Book of Mormon and invited him to read it. And we gave him our cell phone number on a card. He said he was going to read it and call us when he did.

It was just a funny experience. Hopefully he really does read and call.

We had interviews with President Ahlander. That was rather exciting.

Well I love you all.


Sister Andelin

January 13: Wow

I have had quite the week this week.

We have a new investigator- V. She was a referall. Crazy story behind her-- so I used to live in the Nelson's home in my last area. They rent out their home to missionaries, while they live in Ohio. Well my second Sunday in my second area, I see them at church. I'm excited to see them, but also kind of confused because they live in Ohio. Well turns out, the other place they own for missionaries is in Palmhurst ward. Of course! So Bro. Nelson tells me about V who used to be good friends with his mother before his mother passed away. It was perfect timing though for V in her life. She has been a devout Catholic all of her life, but about 6 months ago, she has started questioning the validity and truth of what she is hearing at church, so she stopped going. She has always had a lot of faith in God and wants to follow Him, but has been confused lately. She also has a keen interest in geneology.

I got to go to my first area this past week!!! Janice got baptized, so I got permission to go back for the baptism. It was so fun to see everyone else who was there as well. I stinkin' miss that ward. It was so good to see everyone.

We had a little girl get baptized in our ward this past week, who the elders have been teaching. I did a musical duet with an elder in my district, while another elder played the piano. We sang "I Know that Our Redeemer Lives". I felt kind of bad, because those two elders are incredibly musically talented, so I kind of brought down the musical caliber- ha. Oh well. It still sounded pretty pretty.

I love having Elder Andelin in my district. Weeeee. We have a lot of fun. And it is such a comfort to have him. I LOVE HIM. He is a cool kid and an incredible missionary.

I was super sick earlier this week, but I'm coming out of it. Stomach issues. Luckily, I we didn't have to cancel any appointments or stop working. I just pushed through it. But we did have some long appointments with the bathroom. Haha

Things are going really well here. The work is really picking up. We have been incredibly blessed.



I love you all.

Keep praying for me.


Sister Andelin

January 6, 2014: I go home this year

Hello. Hello. Hello.
I had an awesome week this week.
I am literally in love with my area. It might be unhealthy.
Awww. I'm so excited to have a new cousin--Jonah. I love that name. He is so precious. I love babies. I love how pure and innocent they are. And to think that they are fresh sent from Heaven. That is something I miss desperately on my mission. I miss holding and snuggling with babies. It is seriously one of the hardest things ever. I can't wait to have my own some day.
Ok. Back to focus.
I've been out officially for over 6months! Which means I come home this year! Super weird to think about. I'm starting to get to that point in your mission where the actual days start flying by. We had a celebration of mission milestones with some missionaries. I didn't bring anything to burn, but a kindly elder let me have one of his old shirts to burn in the pit of fire. That was exciting. Pretty funny video--one day you shall get it.
Things I've done so far in 2014.
Sister Larsen and I have lots of fun together. She puts up with a lot of stuff I do to her. Like one night, we didn't have dinner with anyone so we ate by ourselves at home and we were eating some whipped cream. So I took some and threw it at her. It proceeded to get out of hand and we ran all through the house throwing whipped cream at each other. Did I already tell you this? I can't remember... Well then this week I threw water on her and that of course turned into a full-blown water war. I just like to spice things up every now and again. But she's a trooper. She puts up with my crazy and runs with it.
So remember the story from last week about finding C. Well C's story still continues. Something I've been learning recently, is how God truly is in all the intricate details of our lives. Especially with missionary work. So often, we find people at just the right time, right as they needed us. It is very cool. Well that happened this week with C again. We had a modified lesson with him on his porch this past week. He is struggling with an alcohol addiction and going through a nasty divorce. Well the lesson goes well, we invite him to church and to meet with us again the next week. Well a couple days later, we were going out trying to contact some referrals, we pull the car to the side and see C out walking with his some of his neighbors and his youngest daughter. We get out and wave. He says "What are you doing here?"
"Just visitin some people. What are you doing here?"
"Just going on a walk with my daughter."
I look over and see a cigarette and beer in his hand.
So I say "What is that in your hand?"
"A beer"
"How long have you been clean for?
"2 weeks."
"Hand it over." I hold out my hand for him to give me the beer.
"C'mon. Just one beer."
My companion says "What kind of example are you setting for your daughter?"
Then I say "One beer will lead to another and then another." I hold out my hand again.
He says "C'mon. Just one sip."
Surprisingly, he handed over the beer to me. We are standing in the middle of the street and I pour the beer down the gutter thingy.
He shakes his head and walks away. He catches up to his neighbor and daughter and we hear him say "They just dumped my beer down the street!" Then he yells to us "You owe me a large one!"
We yell back "Eh. No."
But out of the love of our hearts, we went to the store and bought him a large....bottle of Fanta soda. Lol.
It was just crazy the exact timing we had. He literally hadn't taken a sip yet, but was right about to.
I love missionary work. And beer dumping.
I felt kind of odd with a beer can in my hand as a missionary....haha
I love you all!
Sister Andelin

After our water war

Cleaning up the floor and our...faces?

C's beer dumping