North Dakota Bismarck mission February 2016 to August 2017

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Well this week has been crazy with a lot of ups and downs

    A ton of our appointments got cancelled so we knew the Lord wanted us to do something but weren't sure of what exactly.  We tracted a lot and tried to find less actives.  We have to clean up the ward list since so many people move in and out for the oil.  Our ward is also shrinking each week because everyone is loosing jobs in the oil industry its so crazy.  It's really hard to find investigators especially since most people aren't sober a lot of the time.... 

   We have some amazing members that welcome us over all the time to talk about the work and a bunch of them have served so they get it.  They also give us points on how to help people and how to find them as well.

   This week has been weird and very exhausting.  We had a couple of bad days and it was really hard.  We weren't really excited to do anything else that day but thankfully members made it a lot better. 

   One of our investigators is having a hard time understanding the Book Of Mormon and I'm not sure how to help her.  We may have to walk away for now.

  Thankfully another investigator wants to get baptized asap.  We almost had a date but because of her school schedule we aren't sure when that will be.  But she is so sweet and is so into everything we ask.  She has already read 10 chapters of the Book of Mormon in two weeks which is awesome.

  We changed the area with the elders so we had to pass off a few of them.  It was also cold here it snowed most of the week but I'm adjusting.  I'm not totally freezing at 30 degrees now which is good lol.

    I read the book our search for happiness and it has so much insight into the church.  I didn't want to put the book down but I have missionary work to do.  I hope everything is going well there!!  I love you all!!

p.s. sorry for the lack of photos haven't been doing good about that oops
Sister Haley McDonald

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

 Well its been crazy week.  We are so busy or everything is canceled there is no in between.  We are changing the area a little bit since we have a trio of elders in our ward and they get bored at times so hopefully that will help a ton and I can try more door approaches.  The ones I have done the people arent home or arent interested and slam the door but hey its their salvation not mine and they have their agency.  I can only do so much and this is the Lords work and he has placed people here for me to teach and I'm so excited to be doing his will.

    Me and my companion are getting along great and I love her so much.  I got really frustrated this week and lost it but she helped me go through it and showed me ways to help get through those hard moments.  She is so wonderful and I'm glad she is my trainer she has a lot of patience but I'm still teaching her apparently.

    Okay so our investigator we got last Sunday is progressing so well.  It's amazing!  I asked her to get baptized and she is going to pray about it but in our first lesson she talked about it so can't wait.  Her boyfriend is a member and me and my companion are planning their life because if she gets baptized we know what will happen! 😉 

     I have met almost everyone in the ward and am remembering names wohoo.  We have checked a lot of referrals and man those are so important.  I am just now realizing how much missionaries need members.  Apparently 2 of 3 investigators taught in a members home will get baptized.  How amazing is that.  We as members can do so much by just by inviting someone over to dinner with the missionaries.  Plus missionaries don't get to know people as well.  You know the area more than we do.  Every member a missionary!!!!  Don't forget it

        So we dropped like three people this week but they weren't doing what they needed to and in one home I walked in and wanted to leave so fast.  The spirit was gone and I felt so empty inside and lost on what to say to this person.  It was bad so we dropped her another investigator wouldnt get baptized because of her family and it would cause issues and another one believes everything but in Thomas S. Monson now.  It's crazy the things that happen here.

     Last week we bought pepper spray and its pink.  I swear I'm okay its just for safety from drunk people and dogs.  I do however smell like smoke alot and it smells like rotten eggs here a ton because of the beat factory not fun when it smells really bad.  We have handed over a recent convert to the elders because we aren't comfortable and we think he did everything mainly for the sisters so its the elders turn.  Our bishop is so awesome he told us if he comes around to call him and he will come handle it.   I love this ward. 

     On Thursday we had to go clean a home because the sister who lives there got life lighted to Billings.   She's really sick and is older.  We thought she wasnt going to make it but she did and now is going to be in the hospital for a while to recover.
   On Friday we had Zone training which was awesome.  The zone is amazing and the elders are pretty funny and intense at times.  Weird conversations occur a lot.  The new initiative is amazing go watch Hallelujah its a great video to share!  Well I love you all have a great week. 

Sister Haley McDonald

Pictures that were sent this week

Monday, March 7, 2016

Well im not in North Dakota!  I'm in Sidney Montana. its a small city with only about 6000 people here and we cover three other cities which only adds another 500 people.  People are also moving out because the oil has gone down and people cant afford it.  A lot of our members are loosing jobs so its a hard time up here.
   So obviously last week I left the MTC thank goodness I missed real food.  My mission president and wife are amazing.  They have an ice cream machine and so kind and they were so happy when they found out dad was a member.  They asked me to tall the group of greenies and trainers.  My trainer is Sister D'vaz and shes from Canada.  She's awesome and she says I came pretrained which is funny because I'm not.  They have asked that we memorize part of the first vision and the missionary purpose.  I just need to memorize JST 1:16-17.  Do it if possible and if going on mission it will help.  I also get to go to the Temple 8 times on my mission.  If im in Bismarck and their temple is small and is closed a lot. Its kind of shocking.  The members have at least a 4 hour drive which sucks.
  So we had to already dropped some investigators that weren't really moving forward but we already have a new one.  Plus we are teaching some less actives.  One of our less active families the Williams have some different beliefs.  They dont believe we are the true church and not one church can be true plus they are also Buddhist.  Interesting and I'm not sure how to help them feel the spirit testify of truth.
   One of our other less actives (we are working with them a lot right now) Angie is so much fun.   We go over every other day.  She had a brain injury so she'll forget if we dont go over often.  But she has given everyone nicknames and mine is pea wee.  Don't ask me why I have no clue.  She also trys to set up every sister with one of the brothers in our ward.  Its funny but weird.  She loves having us over.  We are really the only ones who visit with her and stuff.  Its nice making people happy by just talking to them.
   One of our investigators likes to research everything about the church and try to prove what we are saying is wrong and how the bible is of god but the Book of Mormon isnt and she wont open her mind or heart to really try.
 Another Less active family just lost some family and are wanting to come back so we are gonna meet with them to help them.  Our new investigator is dating a less active and they both want the discussions to learn more. 
  According to my companion the area is already changing and she is amazed at how things start to change when someone new comes in.  The area is flat and there is a lot of open fields but the winter wasn't bad here.  However its not over we are supposed to get snow this week and the last frost isnt until MAY How crazy is that.  Hopefully next week I'll have more to tell you about who I meet and what the lord is having me teach.  I'm so grateful to be here and its really exciting. 
Love you!
Sister Haley McDonald

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Haley and her new t-shirt

This is my district so starting at me then Sister Bennett on the floor is Elder Townsend above him is Elder Fowlks Elder Miller Sister Harris and my companion Sister Ewing and then There is Elder Lamb who couldn't get his whole face in.

The Prove Temple

Haley Welcoming the new Missionaries

One Week Down

Hey Everyone 
    I have now been at the MTC for a whole week which is crazy and this time next week ill be in North Dakota. I"m so excited.So as i mentioned Sister Ewing is my companion and she is wonderful. we get along so well and have grown so much in this last week. plus she is no longer shy and will laugh at knock knock jokes and we have connected so much during our lessons. We are practically finishing each others sentences. The other sisters are awesome too as well as elders. We definitely have fun getting to know one another. I'm having a hard time adjusting to not saying guys and the schedule. we are sitting in class for 3 hours at a time but it does go by fast and we have been learning so much. I was called to be the Sister Training Leader which is awesome i get to meet with all the new people in my zone that enter plus i got to decorate the door.But it snowed on Tuesday but we were stuck in class and it didn't stick.

     Me and Sister Ewing we able to start teaching investigators. We had one sister who got really interested about the plan of salvation so we talked to her about that for 45 minutes even though it seemed like 10. We only could have 3 lessons with her so we said goodbye but we had a good connection and In hoping she finds the truth in it. We taught one other Sister as well and she started to really understand prayer and the need of faith with prayer. Its amazing to see the change in the investigators and the desire to want to know for themselves. i cant wait to be in the field. 
     Since today was P day we got to go to the temple which i didn't know that so i was really excited. I miss going every week. Its weird not being able to go whenever anymore. i miss it. So i challenge everyone to go for me!
 I love you all!!!!
Sister Haley McDonald