This week has been really something, primarily because our companionship was a little different than usual. A sister in a neighboring unit was having some medical problems and needed to go home to recover, and so her companion joined with us and we combined forces. It was so fun because our additional companion just added to the party but it was also crazy because we had stewardship over two areas at the same time. We were bouncing back and forth and doing lots of splits PLUS we had two exchanges last week so I had a total of four different companions throughout the week. This week Sister Allen is getting a permanent companion, though. I feel like I learned a lot about motherhood, probably. I don’t really know why but it seems like it.
The three of us went to a doctor’s appointment for one of us and we introduced ourselves to the NP: “Sister Asplund, Sister Anderson, Sister Allen.” She said, “Oh, I didn’t think you looked like sisters but now I see the resemblance in your smiles” and we had to explain that we were not biological sisters but rather Sisters in Christ (cue my new fave Gladys Knight song). It was kind of beautiful though because the joy of the gospel, manifest in our smiles, is the resemblance that we have to one another as sisters in Christ despite our many differences (for example, Sister Allen is six feet tall! Seriously!). When I’m with lots of missionaries I do see a resemblance in the brightness of their smiles. Happy are we!
On our way out of the doctor’s office the three of us walked onto an elevator with two ladies who appeared to be Amish or perhaps Mennonite, with their beautifully made dresses and their hair covered. We chatted politely and as the five of us stepped off the elevator I could see many people on the crowded floor stifling giggles. I felt like I was in a joke. Also felt like I was in a joke when we had to stop the car this morning and wait for a chicken to finish crossing the road.
On Tuesday we had zone training. We got to instruct four times. Well, once for the whole group and then three of the same instructions in a row for smaller breakout groups. We talked about Ammon and being area-changers. During the instruction I quoted our wise mission president and of course I wanted to do him justice using his own voice so I did my best President Christiansen impersonation. Afterward our extra-stern zone leader got up and took out his white handbook and said, “One clarification, page 90 of the white handbook states that we are not to do sarcastic impersonations of our mission president…” just to be clear, the white handbook says no such thing. I just heard that zone leader’s companion on the phone with President saying, “Hey have you heard Sister Asplund’s impression of you?” He has.
After zone training I got to return to my beloved Charles Town with exchanges with the other Sister Anderson! Oh my, we had so much fun. They are amazing sisters. As we were walking, the spirit told me that one of my favorite families would have a referral for us. I was suspicious of this prompting because I was worried that I just wanted to go see them, but I obeyed anyway. As we were talking, I asked how their missionary efforts are going and the mom in the family said, “Actually, my friend’s daughter just told my friend that she wants to join the Mormon church one day!” and of course we sent the missionaries right over.
The next day we went on exchanges with the sisters in the Berryville ward. Sister Wingo is a brand new missionary but she is one of those pre-trained sisters. She’s so good. We had a great time. In the morning we went for a walk in an “enchanted forest” near their home, we visited a jolly fellow with a big white beard who showed us a scrapbook full of pictures of him in his Santa suit posing with little kids at the mall. We also went to talk to a fellow and he said, “As soon as I saw you I knew you were good church girls. Wait, no, I mean good church women.” Thanks buddy. That’s correct.
On Friday we had dinner with our Bishop and his wife and one of our investigators. It was Canada Day and they are both Canadian. I was in heaven. They had Canadian flag napkins, coasters that said, “eh!” on them, and for dessert Bishop cut out red Jell-O maple leaves to top slices of white cake dolloped with vanilla pudding. It was perfect.
Saturday brought Erica’s baptism! I forgot to get pictures but it was wonderful. She is in the Charles Town ward and I taught her a few times on exchanges. We brought our investigator who is about Erica’s age and she just loved it. It was a sweet experience. This girl’s family all got baptized a few weeks ago and she needed a little more time so her dad, a brand-new priesthood holder, got to baptize his daughter. It was also such a blessing to be able to see all my old friends from Charles Town congregated together. I got hugged so much. I felt like a freshly squeezed orange, in a really good way of course.
Usually President Christiansen writes us general conference-length emails about gospel topics every Monday. They’re great. Last week we had none, here’s what he said about it via text: “Dear Fellow Servants, Some of you have noticed that there is no email in your inbox today from me. This has met with varying degrees of jubilation and even some relief. However, please do not be too hasty in your celebration. The email was written and sent yesterday (or should I say very early this morning. It took me a considerable amount of time I might add) and the illustrious electronic fairies that decide whether to cause trouble in the Ethernet have put a bug in IMOS-I don’t know what that stands for, it’s what mission presidents have to use to send an email. Anyway, the email may be lost, for that matter every mission president that sent an email yesterday would be experiencing this same misfortune. At least that’s what I was told. It’s just possible that my email is being reviewed by a censorship committee somewhere to determine whether the doctrine is correct. I’m crossing my fingers that they find it. I’ll let you know if it ever surfaces. My wife says she hopes it does. She said it was the best one yet. Not sure about that, but if it’s lost nobody would know the difference and she makes me feel great at the same time. It makes one wonder if the lost 116 pages were really that good? Who knows the Lord may have thought, ‘I’ve really got to find a way to get rid of this part without making Lehi feel bad? I don’t know- just saying. Well, have a great preparation day and just know I was thinking about you very early this morning when I completed and sent the ‘lost Weekly Letter from President Christiansen’. Love you, President”
That was a text message!! What the heck?
Finally, here’s a sentiment the Spirit gave me during the sacrament yesterday: “Bread to make me whole and water to make me clean.”
I love you siblen! 841 Thomas Ct #57, Winchester VA 22601! Write me 🙂