Missouri, Independence Mission

Missouri, Independence Mission

Monday, May 23, 2016

Week 53 - Things I didn't think I would learn to do on my mission

Seeing some of my favorite people at the temple. Bishop and Sister Christensen from my first area!
When I decided to come on a mission, I thought that my life for the
next 18 months would consist of talking with people about the gospel,
going to church, teaching lessons, visiting members, those kind of
normal missionary things....yeah, as a missionary you do a whole lot
more than that!:) Missionaries turn into counselors, landscapers,
painters, dog chasers, mediators, expert hoarder organizers, teachers,
chicken catchers, mechanics just to name a few! And after this week we
can add to the list, funeral planners!:)

That's right ladies and gentleman, we are planning a funeral!
Hopefully this next part makes sense because it's kind of
confusing...Our investigator Sandra found out that her friend passed
away and that his mom would be planning the whole funeral. It was
really unexpected and they had no plans so she knew this would be
really hard and the first thing she thinks it, "my sisters at the
church can help!" (Super glad our investigators think that but they
have pretty high expectations for us!) So Sandra calls us up and after
talking with the bishop to get permission we told her that we could do
it, so she ran over to Kaylen's house (the mom of the man who passed
away) to get the planning started!

We took Sandra and Kaylen on a church tour to let her know how the
service would go and everything and as we were standing in the chapel
everyone was very emotional. She was grateful for what we were doing
and we were glad to be able to do it but Sister Flake felt prompted if
there was anything else she was thinking of. She said she had just
been feeling really guilty because she's always been Christian but
they never had a church. Her and her son Stephen had always talked
about getting baptized but never did it and now it was too late for
Stephen so she asked if we were a church that would be able to do a
baptism for her. Only the golden question!!! The spirit rushed into
the room as we explained our purpose, to help people to come closer to
church though things like baptism and then said, but we had more. We
explained that it wasn't too late for Stephen, but after she was
baptized herself, she could prepare his name and take him to the
temple to be baptized and receive the same blessings she would. She
was completely overcome with the idea that he could be baptized as
well and said I know this is what I want to do. Even though this is
such a hard time in her life, this trial is bringing her closer to God
and I know she is more ready now that ever to apply the gospel in her
life and receive these blessings.

So although planning this funeral has been stressful, we know there
are going to be many people like Kaylen at this funeral who don't know
where Stephen is, or what is going to happen to him. They are feeling
lost, confused and are grieving. But as they come to this service,
they will be able to feel the spirit and love of our Heavenly Father,
they will feel peace and understand and they will be able to come
closer to Jesus Christ just like Kaylen. We just pray all goes well
and the Lord will make up for our lack of experience!:)

A couple other little highlights for the week: in planning for the
funeral, we needed to ask the church across the street if we could use
some of their parking lot because ours is being redone. The priests
weren't at the Christ’s Church when we went so they sent us over to the priests
home. I didn't know they all lived at the same house, but we met a
whole bunch of the priests who were super nice and let us use the
parking lot! But the funniest part, we were able to meet Father Adam
who had a dog named Eve...real creative buddy!
These little dogs are EVERYWHERE in Kansas City, Kansas where I was on exchanges!  Luckily this one was actually someone's but usually they're just walking up and down the streets!

We also had a Ward party, had Sister Flake's birthday and got to go to
the temple!!!:) a pretty jam-packed week but a wonderful week as well!
I hope all is well with everyone at home and hope you've been able to
see some miracles this week too:)

Love you all, All is well and God is good!:)
Love Hermana/Sister Courtney Baggett
Sister Flake and I at the ward party. Below: Sister Flake in her birthday glasses!

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