Friday, August 22, 2014

Brooke's New Blog

Hey Family and Friends!

I have started a new blog as a continuation of my STAND STRONG blog! Here is the link.... check it out! Thanks for all your love and support that you showed to me on my mission, I hope that this new blog will allow you to feel of God's love and see His hand in our daily lives. Life is beautiful. And it is a changing and growing experience...if you let it be. My new blog is called "There is more to You."

Here is the link:

http://morethanwethinkweare.blogspot.com

Thanks for all your love and support! Hope you have a wonderful week!!

Love, your biggest fan,

Brooke Weenig

Monday, July 21, 2014

Still Standing STRONG

I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY. I can't believe that this is the last letter that I will be writing you as a full-time missionary for the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Time has flown. Too fast. I feel like I just got here, but yet have learned and loved so much to fill 5 lifetimes. I AM IN HEAVEN RIGHT NOW. Literally, this has been the BEST week BY FAR of my mission. I have never been so happy, so spiritually high, so close to God and Christ, and so exhausted in all of my life. I have decided to go out HARD. I want to be so tired when I get home because I WASTED and WORE out my life in the service of God, then only to continue onward to the new mission and chapter of my life that is ahead. This is the greatest work that there is on the face of the earth. It has become my life---it is all I think about, all I dream about, all I am and all I want to become. It is IN MY BLOOD. And NO ONE can take it away from me. What I have become on my mission and how I have gotten to know my Savior Jesus Christ is something that can't be bought or sold. I know that my Savior lives. I know who He is. I have walked side by side Him for the past 18 months. I AM NOT ASHAMED OF WALKING WITH CHRIST.I never will be. I will always seek to be His disciple and know that my number one priority in my life is that I AM DAUGHTER OF GOD, WHO LOVES ME---AND I LOVE HIM. That will NEVER change. I am His, and I will always submit to His will and what God's plan is for me. I hope you know that too. This has been the GREATEST journey and time of my life. It has been the hardest, best, roughest, nicest, sweetest, bitterest, saddest, happiest time of my life. It has taught me to see things and be as God is. I love Him. 

HOW I STOOD and WILL FOREVER STAND STRONG WITH MY SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST:
One of the most important things that I have learned on my mission is about my best friend and hero--Jesus Christ. I know Him. Before, I didn't know Him as well as I do now. I always thought I was strong enough to face and fight life on my own. But I am NOT. And I will always be weak. I was BORN to be weak and to rely totally on my Savior to guide me along. I don't know anything about this thing called life. I don't have the answers, but I know EXACTLY who does. He is my beloved Savior and my light and my life. Christ is REAL. Not only is He real but He died for all of us so that all of our burdens, our stresses, weaknesses, hurt, and sickness could be taken upon His back. Because He walked in my shoes and your shoes, He can make us STRONG enough to overcome Satan. To be much stronger than He is. To STAND fast when the world is swirling about around me. I am STRONG when I am His. I am STRONG when I submit and turn to God for help. I am STRONG when I am WEAK. I am STRONG when I repent DAILY. I am STRONG when I spiritually create my day through prayer. I am STRONG when I read my scriptures DAILY and have revelatory experiences DAILY. I am STRONG when I go to church and renew my covenants WEEKLY. I am STRONG when I remember WHO I am, but more importantly WHO'S I AM. I am STRONG when I use and confide in the atonement DAILY. I am STRONG when I see through God's eyes and see His children and myself as HE SEES. I am STRONG when I seek to be like Christ. I am STRONG when I have the Spirit with me. I stand STRONG amidst the temptations of the world when I put God's glory and opinion and expectations of me ABOVE everyone else. I am STRONG when I follow the Spirit. I am STRONG when I discern the voice of the Spirit and listen to what God wants me to do. I am STRONG when I learn of God and His Glory. I am STRONG when I remember WHY I am here and where I am going. I am STRONG when I forget about myself and focus on others. I am STRONG when I give my heart, might, mind and soul to the One who LOVES ME MOST (God). I am STRONG when I have trials. I am STRONG when I don't know what to do, so I confide in God. I am STRONG when I am too weak, that I kneel. I am STRONG when I control my thoughts and my actions to be virtuous unto God. I am STRONG when I keep covenants. I am STRONG when I serve. I am STRONG when I trust in Him. I am STRONG when I know and feel His love. I am STRONG when I acknowledge my weaknesses and choose to better.  I am STRONG when I let my faith carry me through the darkest nights, even thought I might not think it will turn out. It does. STAND STRONG. ALWAYS. I have stood with my Savior for these past 18 months, and I AM NEVER LEAVING. So yes, naturally Satan is going to be waiting for me---so I am declaring war on him. Bring it. THIS IS WAR. And I am determined to STAND STRONG for the rest of my life and into eternity. The adversary will NOT be able to plan my life, because with God, I will be able to PLAN my life according to His great Plan and STAND STRONG. I know WHO I am, and I know that ALL of God's children are of INFINITE worth. We are all in this together. I AM HERE TO HELP ALL THOSE AROUND ME STAND STRONG. And I am dedicated to do it. With all that I am. I love my Savior. I know Him. I love my God. I know Him. And He knows me. I never want that to change. I want my life to be PERFECTLY in line with His will. OH HOW GREAT IS THE GLORY OF MY GOD! HOW GREAT HIS PLAN IS! God is real. And He loves us infinity. 

My heart is so full and beating so fast right now I can't really write fast enough on this keyboard. I have like 10,000 thoughts flowing from my head and wish that I had all-day to just sit down and tell you how I feel and what I've learned on my mission. All I can tell you is that God is real, and so is the adversary. So we need to be prepared and we need to be aware of what we are doing. If we are doing anything that is contrary---STOP. Get back on track. THIS IS YOUR TIME TO SHOW GOD YOU LOVE HIM. So, keep His commandments. Serve Him. 

This past week was sent from HEAVEN. We have never worked so hard, found so many elect, and seen so many miracles. We have been finding families up the wah-zoo and have seen SO many people coming unto Christ. My companion and I set a goal to just KILL it with lessons this week. And we did! We taught 40 lessons this week. WOAH! Also! I asked the Elders if we could take their bikes for a few days, so we have been on bikes!!! BEST WEEK EVER. I have never been so happy and so fulfilled in all of my life.

We had a really cool miracle this week that I have just got a share, and I am excited I will be able to see you and tell you some of these stories when I see you in just 4 short days! I literally can't believe it. So we were on bikes. And our area is MASSIVE. But I must say that there is nothing like biking down a metropolitan city like Arlington, in a SKIRT, in 100 degree weather. IT IS THE BEST FEELING IN THE WORLD. We talked to everyone. We headed over to Patrick Henry, which is basically like a small version of all of the south American countries. So we went. While there we talked to everyone. We knocked a TON of door and taught a TON of lessons. Then, this random man came and bought us frozen yogurt. Then, we were guided to the Spirit to a certain row of apartments---there we found two families that are ready for the Gospel. INCREDIBLE. And if that wasn't enough....listen to this....we had ridden our bikes 7 miles to do some service for a family, and that is when we felt prompted to go all the way back to Patrick Henry to check on this family that we had met the other day. Well, we arrived there at 8. Outside, the mother, Lisset, what WAITING FOR US. She said we are all waiting for you!! WHAT?! We went in and the ENTIRE family---including the mom, dad and daughters all sat down and where like, "we are ready to learn." They sat and they listened to us teach the lesson. They asked questions, we asked them questions, THE SPIRIT WAS SO THICK.....more than ever. And they kept receiving more and more light as we talked to them and testified of the true church of the Savior Jesus Christ. They loved it. They had read the pamphlet we had given to them and they want to know more. They asked US if they could come to church. OF COURSE!!! We pretty much danced the whole way home on our bikes. They are the family we have been PRAYING to find! AMAZING MIRACLE! On the bike ride home I sang at the top of my lungs, "How Great Thou Art". God is so great and His tender mercies are all over the place. WHAT A MIRACLE! 

I had the opportunity this week to attend the DC temple this week with all the other departing missionaries and my mission president and his wife. What a sacred and special experience full of revelation. Temple. WOW. The most INCREDIBLE temple trip I have ever gone on in my life. I love the temple, and plan on going there weekly. When I was in the temple, I realized something. Sometimes we say, "I'm going to the temple to get away from the real world." I realized that is a lie. When you go to the temple, THAT IS THE REAL WORLD. THE TEMPLE IS THE REAL WORLD, we live in a world were Satan has power over many hearts and this is telestial ground. The temple is how the world should be and how we should act and carry ourselves and look at people. The temple is Holy Ground and it is always where we should run to get back to WHO we are and WHY we are here and WHAT we are supposed to do here in life. The temple is a reminder of THINGS AS THEY REALLY ARE. It is a reminder of WHO we are meant to become. It is a reminder of our HEAVENLY home. Who we really are and what we truly belong to. It is a reminder of things that we REALLY want. If you haven't been to the temple in a while, I would invite you to do so the soonest that you can. 

It's been really hard to say goodbye. I'm not going to lie. I feel like my heart is being ripped out and stomped on. A TON of people from every area that I have been in have been coming to our area and coming to lessons with us and taking us to dinner. I LOVE THESE PEOPLE. They are literally my family and I am literally leaving another home that, with God I have created here in Virginia. Part of my heart will always be with these people. They mean the world to me. And I love them and have loved seeing the CHANGES and the joy that they have felt as they have let the Gospel into their lives. It has been absolutely inspiring to see the atonement in action in all of their lives and I can't wait for someday for you to meet these people that have literally changed my life forever and ever. I love these people and know that they will always be apart of my life. I can't thank all those who have been such a big part of my life for so long enough. They are my heroes. And I love them so much. I love these people and can't even describe how I feel about them. They are my family.

Wow. Well, I have like a million more things to say. But I talked in church this week and sang as well and half of the Old Town ward and the Little River ward came. That meant the world to me. It was so amazing to see everyone and see this place growing. I LOVE THIS WORK. I LOVE THIS PLACE AND THESE PEOPLE AND NEVER WANT TO LEAVE. But, I know that God has something much greater in store for me.

I am part of the fellowship of the unashamed. The dye has been cast.
I have stepped over the line. The decision has been made; I am a
disciple of Jesus Christ. I won't look back, let up, slow down, or be
still. My past is redeemed, my present makes sense, and my future is
secure. I'm finished and done with low living, small planning, smooth
knees, colorless dreams, tinted visions, worldly talking, cheap
giving, and dwarfed goals. I no longer need pre-eminence, positions,
promotions, plaudits, or popularity. I don't have to be right, first,
recognized, praised, regarded, or rewarded. I now live by faith, lean
on His presence, walk with patience, am lifted up in prayer, and labor
with power. My face is set, my goal is heaven. My road is narrow, my
way is rough, my companions few, my guide is reliable, my mission is
clear. I cannot be bought, compromised, detoured, lured away, divided
or delayed, will not flinch in the face of sacrifice, hesitate in the
presence of the adversary, negotiate at the table with the enemy,
ponder at the pool of popularity, or meander in the maze of
mediocrity. I won't give up, shut up, or let up until I have stayed
up, stored up, and paid up for the case of Christ. I must go till He
comes, give till I drop, preach till all know, and work till He stops
me. When He returns for His own He will have no problem recognizing
me-- my banner is clear.


And to all of you who are reading this letter, THANK YOU. Thank you for all the support and love that you have shown me and given to me while I have been on my mission. I can't wait to see you soon! I really am excited, even though I am so heart-sick about leaving. You will and always have been in my heart and in my prayers. I love you more than words can express and I pray that you will never forget the Savior and that you will get back up every time you fall. Because you will. I have. We all do. But the most important thing is that we GET BACK UP and that we TRUST in Him and that we do everything in our power to STAND STRONG. 

so....STAND STRONG.

Hermana Weenig
Temple trip with President and Sister Riggs

Temple, I love you.

Washington DC. Here is to you!  I LOVE YOU!

The Barrios family! How I will miss them! From Paraguay!

BIKES, how I love you.

Bishop Magelby and ward mission leader Hermano Apocada from Mexico.

 JORGE! My Mexican older brother. Totally inactive when we met, now has received his endowments in the temple and is the ward mission leader!! :)

 I got to teach and sing to these SISTAS!! They are so legit! They are from Nigeria! WOAH.

 Teaching a man outside of his window=hilarious. I just had to take a picture. We were teaching him the restoration like this. So classic.

The Casteneda clan came to my farewell!! amazing!! 

Oliver threw a pie full of whipped cream in my face as a "goodbye" present. He is like one of my best friends. Great ward mission leader.


Monday, July 14, 2014

Souls to Save

I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY. I NEVER WANT TO LEAVE THIS HOLY GROUND. Ever. Ever. I love this place, these people and everything so much. Most of all, I love my Savior Jesus Christ and I am getting to know Him more and more every single day. Seriously that has been my favorite part about being a missionary, besides seeing people changing their lives through coming to Christ. I know who I am, what I stand for, and I know how much He loves all of His children, I know that His plan is perfect, because I know my Savior Jesus Christ. I know Him and I love Him with all that I am. "And this is life eternal, to know thee..." (John 17:3). Seeing people get to know God and understand of His love and watching them rely solely upon the Savior Jesus Christ is possibly the most beautiful thing that I have seen in my life. We are all in this together...we are all part of a HUGE family of God, and it is our quest to help each other, to walk around in each other's shoes and try to love ALL. This literally is my dream life, and I think I just will do this forever. 

MIRACLES left and right. CHANGE left and right. The Spirit has literally guided us every step of the way. Through our plans, our goals and EVERYTHING. The Spirit has literally propelled us forward to speak with power and authority and God is leading us to PREPARED people. THIS LITERALLY is the hastening. IT IS HASTENING QUICKLY. God is preparing more and more people to hear the Gospel, and we are all the instruments that He is going to use in order to bring that work to full fruition. 

Miracles of technology. Adrian Magill. Do you remember her? She was like my best friend when our family was living in Alabama. Well, back when I was 13 Adri was falling away from the church. I lost contact with her for 7 years. But the other day I had a strong impression to find her via Facebook. With a LOT of prayer....we found her!!! MIRACLE! She is in the Navy and has lived in Japan for the past 3 years. We got in contact and I got to teach her via SKYPE!! God's timing is amazing, because this time of her life she has been searching for the truth and has been searching to be happy and hasn't been able to find it. Just recently, she has been moved to go to church and renew that hope and happiness that the Gospel brings. We are working with her to bring her back to full-activity! When we taught her last, she was in South Korea! We are teaching people from ALL around the world!! And it is incredible to see how all of these doubts and struggles that our investigators have are UNIVERSAL. That is why there is a need for a UNIVERSAL answer....and that is the Gospel. I love this work.

Going a long with that, we are teaching a woman from Bolivia. Her name is Ema Olmas! Do you remember me telling you about her a while back? Well, she moved to Bolivia, 3 days before her baptism because of a family emergency. Well, we have been teaching her and now the missionaries there in Bolivia have connected with her and......SHE IS GETTING BAPTIZED AT THE END OF THIS MONTH!!!!!!!!! WHAT A MIRACLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We couldn't be more happy. She is one of the most prepared people that I have ever had the chance to meet on my mission, and she is really ready to be baptized. I might have to fly to Bolivia to see her get baptized....hahahah joke? not really? :) Anyways, we are excited that miracles are happening ALL throughout the world. THE HASTENING IS REAL. 

WORLD CUP. The Hispanic culture goes through DEPRESSION when their team looses....its pretty much like the world is over. Everyone went into shock yesterday after Argentina lost. Some were angry and many totally drunk. Made for a fun Sunday afternoon. It was a perfect opportunity to talk about hope and through Christ we can find peace and win the ULTIMATE battle against Satan. I love razzing the Hispanics about soccer. I have no preference when it comes to soccer, but I had to take a stand way back at the end of June of who I wanted to win. So I picked Germany. To be random. And I have NO IDEA about their team or players. But I pretended like I did so that I could talk smack. (Hey, it got us in a TON of doors and now our teaching pool SHOT through the roof) Well, apparently, GERMANY BEAT ARGENTINA in the finals. HAHAHAHAHA all of our investigators where in panic and some cried. I was tempted to sing, "Don't cry for them, they are Argentina." But I resisted. It was really fun using the world cup as a conversation starter and a way to solidify relationships. Poor Argentina. Luckily for us we only teach 3 people from Argentina. They will be okay.....I think :) !! Maybe next time. 

Finding. I LOVE TO FIND. It is the aspect of missionary work that I love the most. It is like this exhilarating thing. You pray. Then you listen. The Spirit directs. Then you ACT. Then you FIND. And then you teach according to their needs and their doubts. The Spirit guide you. IT IS AMAZING. We had a couple of incredible miracles finding this past week.....

Miracle #1: We had just got done teaching Tocarra (a woman from Nigeria, Africa), about how she can have hope through the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ and were walking down this ally way. All the sudden I felt prompted to look up. So I did. There, staring down at us was a older man named Walter. We started talking to him about the world cup. We made him laugh and boldly told him who we are as representatives of the Savior Jesus Christ. Something was screaming inside of me that this man suffers from depression and was extremely sad that day. So I asked "Porque esta triste?" (Why are you sad?) He looked confused as if he didn't know how we knew he was sad. But slowly his face lit up. He asked, "Do you know how I can be happy again after being so sad all the time? What do I do?" So began an incredible lesson on the atonement and coming unto Christ and receiving strength and hope through Him and his restored gospel. All of this was in a shout, because he wouldn't come outside to talk to us. But the Spirit was so strong. He finally came out of his house. He asked, "How did you know I was sad? I wait by this window everyday and ask God to send me a sign of His love, and I think you two angels are it." WOAHHHHHHH! Literally God had sent us there and had prompted us to look up and start talking to this man. He is from Honduras and is working here in the states for his family back home. His eyes filled with tears as we explained that families are forever and that we can be born again through baptism. It was one of the COOLEST most SPIRITUAL lessons that I have ever had the opportunity to be apart of out here on the mission. This man has been waiting for the Gospel, and wants to change and be happy and come closer to God. And we were sent there to him. He had never prayed in his life, and so we got to teach him how to communicate with God. He kept calling us his angels sent from heaven. He said, "I have felt empty and far from God for so long, and this is the truth that will carry me on." WOW. Prepared people are placed in our paths. It is INCREDIBLE.

Miracle #2: We were walking down the street in what we call "little Honduras" aka Patrick Henry. and we had 15 minutes before we had to go home. We were determined to use that 15 minutes to find and teach someone about the restoration. God put them in our path. Pedro and Simon were outside smokin' their cigars when we started to talk to them. They were casual with us and then after we said that we represent the Savior and started speaking exactly what they needed to hear they dropped their cigars and sit up straight to listen. They told us they had been on a wrong path for a long time and have desired to get back for so long. YES!!! We told them about the one true church on the earth today. They want to know more. YES! MIRACLE. I LOVE THIS WORK. I LOVE THESE PEOPLE. I LOVE MY COMPANION. 

Lately, I have been reflecting a lot about the story of Moses and how his people were given DAILY bread for what they needed to survive. As a missionary, I feel like the Lord is constantly giving us our daily bread. It is never more or less than we need. We go off of faith knowing that life will be good and miracles will happen if we are just obedient and follow the Lord's will for us. God gives all of us our own personal "Manna" if we are willing to receive it and we are humble enough to recognize that we need the Lord's hand. I need the Lord. I can't do this alone. I just can't. We can't. No one can. But everyone tries. And that is why people end up finding happiness that is empty. God's happiness/manna that He will give to us on a daily basis if we seek it out. We all must "look unto [Him] in every thought; doubt not, fear not." (D&C 6:36) and then everything always seems to work out just the way that it is supposed to. Christ should be our daily bread. He is mine. I need Him, oh I need Him. "And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. I am the bread of life....I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world." (John 6:35, 47-51)

Also. Love who you are. Understand you are a child of God, and that HIS opinion is the ONLY thing that should ever matter. It doesn't matter what everyone else is doing or what is going on around you....the only thing that matters is what God thinks. Channel your drive and love for God by loving yourself and others for who they are. You are strong. You are wonderful. You are His. You don't have to prove anything to anyone. God already knows you and loves you. Love who you are so you can love yourself. 

Thanks for all you do for me. You are always in my heart and in my prayers.

STAND STRONG.

Hermana Weenig

We heart attacked a family in our ward, whose mother just passed away. What an incredible family and what a wonderful woman. 
Virginia is beautiful....on the coast of the Patomac River. 

Driving down the streets looking at all the beautiful churches. Glad we've got the true one :)



Monday, July 7, 2014

Live TODAY and DECIDE to be Happy

Hola Querida familia! Cuanto yo les amo y deseo que todo este bien. HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY (late) WE ARE SO LUCKY TO LIVE IN THE GREATEST NATION EVER!!!

I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!!! Still. And I am positive that will never change. This week has been incredible, to say the least. Sometimes God's plan is so perfect and the people that He puts into our life is so perfect for what we need to learn I just stand there with my mouth open and hold on for the ride. And if I have learned anything on my mission, I have learned the more I come unto Christ, the more WEAKNESSES that I have are exposed and the more I get the chance to tap into his GRACE and learn how to rely on Him. Also, I have learned that in order for us to grow, God has to constantly pull ourselves out of our comfort zones, and often asks us to do things we don't necessarily want to do. 

BEST FOURTH OF JULY EVER!!! There is honestly nothing like being the nation's capital for the fourth. It was incredible. I AM SO PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN. I LOVE this country, and am so grateful for the freedom that we have. Think about it: We have the freedom to speak. And the freedom of religion. Those two make missionary work possible and make the expression of truth and the growth of happiness possible as well---which is the greatest blessing in the world. We had a blast on the Fourth of July. Since, we were asked not to knock on people's doors, we attended the HUGE ward party. It was a blast! Super un-American though. There was Salsa music blasting from the background and a whole bunch of Hispanic food. But, hey! It was still a blast! I love these ward members SO much, and feel honored to serve around them. We spent the day with them. And then we had the opportunity to go an to watch the fireworks that they shoot off in downtown DC, inside an ARMY fort---Fort Myer. It was a total blast and we got to know the members really well. We are so lucky to live in this amazing country, and I LOVE AMERICA!! 

GIVING SIGHT TO THE BLIND. Miracle of Hugo's eye. This next miracle literally is proof that God is real and that miracles STILL happen. So our investigator, Hugo, who had a stroke 2 weeks ago, was blind in his left eye. We taught him about the priesthood and how the same power that Jesus Christ had when He was on the earth is on the earth today. We taught him about faith and how his faith would give him the strength to be able to heal his eye. He then asked us if he could receive a blessing. We had a member with us and he said, "Of course!" So the next days we had invited the Elders and this member to use their priesthood power to heal Hugo's eye. Well, what happened next was incredible. We read Hugo the story of how Jesus Christ healed the blind man....but that it was according to the man's faith that he was actually healed. We asked Hugo if he thought that he had the strength to be healed, and he said "Si." So, the Elders continued to give him a blessing of heal and of strength. Probably one of the most incredible blessings that I have ever heard in my entire life. After we said "Amen" we sat there in SILENCE. It was so silent you could hear a pin drop. The Spirit filled the room in a way that I have never felt it before. Hugo was speechless. EVERYONE was speechless. It was like there was a blanket of comfort and goodness that was so thick that we couldn't do anything else but just smile. The Spirit was there, it was working a miracle. All 6 of us just sat there. In UTTER silence....for 15 minutes straight. Hugo's eye began to open. HE COULD SEE AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHAT?!?!?!? INCREDIBLE!!!!!!!!!!!! MIRACLES HAPPEN STILL!!!!!!! Moroni talks a ton about, "Have miracles ceased among men? I say unto thee nay." And I can solemnly witness that is TRUE. MIRACLES haven't ceased. Hugo has got his sight back!!  Seriously, one of the COOLEST things I have ever seen on my mission. Because of Hugo's faith and because of the power of the priesthood, he received his sight again. He told us that he has never felt so happy and so healed. He said that he could feel strength returning back into his body. Incredible. Hugo is going to get baptized at the end of July. And if that wasn't a faith builder, I don't know what is. I have never felt so much happiness and joy and faith and gratitude for the Gospel as I did in those 15 minutes of silence. We knew he was being healed. And he was. 

Christian is getting BAPTIZED this weekend! What a blessing! He is probably the most prepared person that I have ever seen in all of my mission. He takes it all seriously and wants to live the gospel lifestyle. We were teaching him the commandments and he goes---"All of this just makes a LOT of sense. I want this lifestyle! It just makes life better." YEAHHHHHH!!!! Christian is on FIRE. And he is pretty much already a member. He bought a nice new suit and is making a ton of changes to his lifestyle. It is incredible to see. On Sunday I bore my testimony and talked about the change that the Gospel brings and I testified of baptism with a HUGE smile on my face....looking right at Christian. He smiled really big. He can't wait for his baptism, nor can we!!! We may have to push it back a week, depending on how he is feeling, but he is CRUISING and the ward is in love with him. 

Exchanges with the sisters in incredible! I am learning SO much. We have been working a TON with the Hermanas this transfer, and I am learning so much from all of their pizzazz and desire to hasten the Lord's work in this time. Having been a sister training leader for a time, I really am so grateful for these wonderful woman that have taught me so much through their examples. One of the sisters, from Mexico, told me that she could see God's love in my eyes. Honestly, I love these girls, and I know that God loves them. I know God loves all of us, so there is never any reason to think lowly or look down on ANYONE. We are ALL His children, and that is ENOUGH. We are ENOUGH. And He loves us perfectly. I was on an exchange with a new missionary from Mexico and we were out street contacting (possibly my favorite thing to do) and we found a man made of Gold! He was in a hurry, so we walked a MILE AND A HALF (speed walking, have you know) while TEACHING THE RESTORATION! What a blast. I love this work more and more everyday. It just keeps getting better. 

Jacky. We were going to see one of the in-active families in our ward and we knocked and they were home. But there was an African woman sitting outside on the curb....looking out into the distance. Blank stares. Sadness was written all across her face. We stopped and talked to her. God LITERALLY loves and knows all of His children, and we all have access to see and feel that love for others at all times if we want to. She was feeling down and depressed and we were able to share with her a message of hope and love through the restoration. She LOVED it. We went back to teach her family! They all want to learn and had talked to missionaries years ago and want to come and be baptized! What a miracle! 

I got to sing, via President's request (hahaha), at a huge mission leadership conference! It was a blast! The meeting was edifying and I learned a ton. We had a former missionary come and talk to us about how to "Own" proselyting via Facebook. He baptized a total of 10 people via Facebook on his mission. Incredible right? We are still trying to figure out how to better utilize social media as missionaries....but we are getting better. You can check out my Facebook page---I am under Hermana Brooke Weenig. Kinda fun. Still blows my mind. But right now I am teaching someone in the following countries: France, Pakistan, Phillipines, Alabama, China, Japan, Mexico, Honduras, Argentina, and Bolivia. ALL ON LINE!!! Can you believe how cool that is? Talk about hastening the work. WHAT A MIRACLE.

Everyday, I am learning more and more about enjoying life and learning how to be happy to just have the basics of life. Like breathing. Like a body that functions properly. Like the Book of Mormon. Sometimes we feel like we are soaring, and then suddenly feel as if our wings have cut off and that we can no longer fly. But God doesn't work like that. In fact, it is quite the contrary. Whenever we have trials or things that are put in front of us that seem to be impossible, it might seem like God takes away our wings for a while, but really, it is just so He can give us NEW ones to fly to GREATER heights. Life is SO GOOD. And The only SURE thing is that you have TODAY to live. So what will you do with it? What will you make of it? Will you HONOR God with how you live today? Will you decide that it isn't what you want, rather it is what HE wants? Will you give your desires to God? Find a reason to be happy...RIGHT NOW. And Be happy. All I know is that every tear that has ever fallen from my eyes or will ever fall from my eyes...has and will strengthen me. Tears and trials strengthen us. Use them and CHOOSE to be happy and LIVE today. Don't be so stressed about tomorrow that you can't even enjoy the moments today. "Men are that they might have joy" (2 Nephi 2:25) so have it. 

Thanks for all your love, support and prayers. I hope this finds you well and happy....and most importantly....CLOSE to our Savior Jesus Christ. You are always in my heart and prayers.

STAND STRONG.

Hermana Weenig
Fireworks at DC. INCREDIBLE. 

To celebrate the fourth we went to DC last Monday....we saw the library of congress and all of the Fourth of July banquet stuff...It was a blast!
They had some Chinese  celebration while we were there. What a blast. 



Me and Hermana Moore having a blast. 


 Hermana Moore, Me and Oliver Mejia at the Fireworks. We sat RIGHT on the Patomac River and watched them blast in front of the USA capitol. What a blast!!!

Hno. Montoya at the 4th of July BBQ for our ward, it was a blast!

 Hermana Castro and I at the BBQ...she and I are determined we knew each other before this life...way cool. 

We have a friend who works in the army base that sits right accross from the patomac. SO WE WATCHED THE FIREWORKS FROM INSIDE THE FORT!!! It was absolutely incredible! Super high security though! We went with a bunch of members in our ward and we had a blast!! 

Hermana Montoya and I....she is a superhero!

Hermana Coen and I! She moved to Washington state, but she is the mom of Christian who is getting baptized this weekend! What a wonderful woman!

 These two cute kids in our ward showed me up in soccer on the 4th. 
HAPPY 4th of July. WE live in the GREATEST country EVER!!! :) :) 


Grand Finale.
We were stuck in traffic for 1.5 hours after! But it was a blast. Got to know our ward members like the back of our hands.




Monday, June 30, 2014

Becoming His

I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!!! Could I shout that any louder and could I just get on the loud speaker and just tell the story of the restoration from wherever I am? Man, that is all I want right now. The coolest part about this great work is that God does it. I am nothing. I am less than the dust of the earth. But, God is everything. He lets us missionaries contribute to the work. God has given me the most wonderful past 17 months to refine and re-refine and refine some more my life. But the cool part is, that hasn't been my focus. My focus has been His children and helping them, and in the midst...I got lost. Really lost.....the type of lost that makes you the happiest and gives you understanding of who and what you truly are. I hope all of you get "lost" in the lives and service of our King daily. BEST WAY TO LIVE. And I am seeing that type of thinking change these sister missionaries we work with and everyone that we are teaching. It is something else. The more we ALLOW our selves to become totally dedicated to the cause of the salvation of souls---and allow ourselves to become more and more consecrated....we become HIS. And God can make much more out of our lives than we can by ourselves. Quite frankly, I am relieved to know and understand that my Father in Heaven has got a perfect plan that is going to keep transforming me into the woman that I need to be in order to return to His presence. And guess what? He does that with all of His children. The more I get to know God, and FEEL of the absolute PERFECT love that He has for His children, the more I understand how great and crucial this time of life really is. It is nothing to stress over, but, rather it is the opposite. We should consistently ask ourselves if we are at peace with God. That is what matter most. Become His. Become at peace. Stop fighting the natural you that wants to do and have everything your way. It doesn't matter. We are God's. His opinion is all the matters. That is why I will never again let the world shift me like sands of the sea. Be founded on He that never changes. 

MIRACLES. 
CHRISTIAN COEN IS GETTING BAPTIZED ON JULY 12!!!!!!!!!! I can't even wait. He literally is one of the most prepared and amazing people that I have ever had the chance to meet on my mission. He is a standing testimony that God really is in the details of our lives. Christian immigrated from El Salvador 21 days ago. Two days after he got here, we started to teach him. The Lord has literally lead and guided every lesson and Christian really is applying all that he is learning. He has been reading the Book of Mormon, and just got a job from the bishop in the ward. He is SURE FIRE!!! He is learning so quickly and he is really changing. At first he didn't really want anything to do with religion. But then he listened. He went to church. We taught him. He read. He prayed. He questioned. He doubted---a LOT. But with the help of the Lord and His incredible Spirit, Christian is changing. That same Spirit has the power---if we let it---to change us daily. We had given him some homework to read in the Book of Mormon, and when we came back he had read the entire thing and had each character memorized with there perspective stories as well. Christian may be the most solid person that I have had the opportunity to meet on the mission. It is fascinating teaching him because he has a philosophical view of the world, and to now see him accepting the gospel and feeling the Spirit is incredible. Just last night we were teaching the Plan of Salvation, and BOOM. Christian started telling us, "If I didn't feel what I feel right now, I wouldn't keep listening to you guys. Logically none of this makes sense. But something or someone inside of me keeps telling me that this is right. I don't know what it is, but it is amazing!" We explained to him that it is the Spirit, and that God is trying to tell him that this is all true. God's plan is the best plan. I love it. 

This week we were teaching a in-active/part member family. Vicky hasn't been to church in 20 years. But we began to sing "How Great Thou Art" and she burst into tears and started singing along with us. MIRACLE! She remembered every word. She and her whole family want to come to church, and they are coming this week! The Spirit of music changes people.

We also were teaching a less-active's non-member mom named Digna! She is INCREDIBLE. We probably had one of the most spiritual and intense first lessons that I have ever had on the mission. She wants to be baptized....so we will see! :) Actually wait. YES! She is getting baptized. 

Hugo is golden....but he had a stroke this week! Keep him in your prayers! Hugo is like our new-found grandpa. We had a little hospital miracle. We went to visit him in the hospital and we sang him songs. He broke out into tears. He has no family here or anything, so we are literally all that he has got. As we are singing the nurses and the other patients flocked into the room and asked who we were. We got to share the Gospel with them. It was incredible. God always provides ways for us to talk with many people...He is micromanaging this great work. 

Rios family came to church this week!! INCREDIBLE miracle! This family hasn't been active in a while, and we are starting to work with Stephanie, the youth on her personal progress. It is incredible to see the changes.

We are busy---ALL THE TIME. From working with these incredible missionaries, to doing exchanges, to teaching lessons, opening the area, meetings with President and the bishops. It is a BLAST. I wouldn't have it any other way...but we are busy!! I love this great work and can't stop smiling. 

I am finding more everyday that when life deals us hard cards, it is wise to ask instead of "Why me?" to ask "What do I need to learn to be more like God from this situation?" or "What can I refine out of me to put off the natural man and become more like God?" That is what changes us. We can't change our circumstances, we can't change people, but we can change the way we ACT. And, hopefully every time we act we are acting like He would. Also, something that I have been learning is that sometimes we choose to let satan stress us out and make us worry about the "drops" in life, when really we should be focusing on the MORE important matters. If you feel like you are caught up right now in something, and are angry or sad....step back. Look at it from an eternal perspective. Pray to see as God sees and pray to see your life with an eternal perspective and the seemingly small and frustrating moments in life become a lot easier to handle. Moments really is what life is made up of. But every moment is like a QUIZ of sorts. We must ace each quiz that we possibly can, so that in the end we can pass the final test at hand. NEVER let satan make you fail a quiz of life....because that is really where happiness is found. The daily, little victories of becoming more and more like Christ.

Thanks so much for all your love, support and prayers. You are wonderful. Never forget. 

STAND STRONG.


Hermana Brooke Weenig

 Meet the Rios family!! They FINALLY came to church!! What a miracle!! I am so excited for them and all the changes they are making to come closer to God. What a miracle family.

 Hugo, on of our investigators, had a stroke this week. So we spent time in the hospital with him. He is the strongest man I have ever met on my mission. We sang to him, and he begged us to teach him more about the gospel. We spend hours teaching him there in the hospital. What a dream. 


Thursday, June 26, 2014

His Grace = Strength

I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY. This week was a roller coaster and possibly one of the most incredible and most growing times of my mission. I still have so much to learn, and time just seems to fly by...I can't slow it down!! I am so far from perfect, and I am SO grateful that God sent His Son Jesus Christ so that I can be healed and made into something much better. God can't work with a fine-tuned machine that runs independently on its own....He only works with broken things. I have seen that time and time again in my own life, as well as the lives of all the people that we are teaching. Miracles start happening in their lives, the moment that life breaks them. Broken=huge opportunity to change for the better. I always want to live broken, with Christ constantly mending me and making me strong to face life's ugliest challenges. The atonement is so much more than just a passing thing we talk about all the time in church--IT IS EVERYTHING. It is our energy drinks, our go-to, our confidence, our happiness, our team, our counselor....our EVERYTHING. I have changed immensely, because I have consciously decided to change everyday for the better through using Jesus Christ and His atonement. All of us can do the same. 

Guess what? I wrote lyrics to a song last preparation day--all about the atonement--here is a snip clip---

Woke up this morn' 
With a smile upon my face
The dimples show that I am carried by His Grace
Life can get tough, its mean, and gives ya lots of bumps and bruises
That's why I chose to play on the team that never looses. 

Miracles are happening and I am trying to keep up. It is INCREDIBLE. Opening a new area has been a BLAST. We are busy ALL the time.....sometimes I feel like we are drowning, but then we grab the Savior's hand and we are now walking on WATER. Just when I don't know what to do next, God lights up the way and shows exactly what to do and what to say.  This area is starting to LIGHT ON FIRE!! The members are referring us to their friends like crazy. We dedicated almost all last week to "swooning" the members and getting them on our team. Now, we are like a full-forced team sharing the gospel in various ways! It is incredible! This is going to be a baptizing zoo soon and I can't wait to see all of the miracles that are happening already coming to full fruition.

Example #1: CHRISTIAN!! Last week I told you about the amazing miracle of Christian!! He is made of GOLD. We have been teaching him, and he is just drinking it all in. This past week we taught him about the restoration and the Book of Mormon. Turns out, a TON of the ward members are all supporting him and fellow shipping him into the ward....which is a gigantic miracle! We did a huge miracle with him and a couple other families! While we were reciting the first vision, the Spirit was so strong and Christian's jaw dropped. After he said, "What is this amazing feeling that I have that is in my heart?" WOAH. It was the Spirit. The Spirit has and will always be the absolute best teacher. When we taught Christian about the Book of Mormon he just wanted a lot of things to read. So we gave him one chapter to read, and he said, "No! That is not enough! I need another chapter. I want to know if this book is from God!!" He is looking for truth, so he is going to find it. By far my favorite part of the lesson is when we get to bear our personal witness of what we have taught is true. There is a power and an authority and penetrates the room--it is astounding. WOW! He is going to get baptized on July 5. He just came from El Salvador 2 weeks ago, and the Lord literally brought him here so that he could find the Gospel and receive the blessings that come from it. GOD MICROMANAGES OUR LIVES---IF WE GIVE HIM ALL AND COMPLETE CONTROL. 

Example #2: Hugo is on FIRE!!!!!! We found him when we were out tracting last week, and he said that ever since he has been reading and praying about Joseph Smith! Incredible! What is more, is that he knows it is all true and wants to get baptized! golden!! :) Also, he TURNED OFF the world cup to talk to us----this is probably one of the biggest miracles possible. He has been prepared by the hand of the Lord. 

Miracle of the piano. We were visiting a widowed woman, and I saw that she had a piano. I asked her if I could play it. Her face lit up. No one had played it for years. We spent the next 20 minutes singing her favorite hymns. MUSIC BRINGS THE SPIRIT MORE THAN ANYTHING ELSE. She said we changed her life and ridded of her depression. Feeling down? Sing some hymns. 

Humans (or the natural man in us) try to prove. Children of God try to serve. We don't have to prove anything to anyone. That is a decision. I have also made the decision that my whole purpose in life is to SERVE God and to become like Him. So anything that doesn't have to do with those two things, don't matter to me anymore. Heavenly Father is really starting to weave every lesson that I have had on my mission together and it has been incredible to see the tapestry all being woven together. I HAVE LEARNED AND AM LEARNING SO MUCH. 

Vicky--MIRACLE. We met Vicky last week after following the Spirit to where she was at. She is incredible and she wants to reactivate and wants ALL her kids to be baptized. Miracle central? I think so. We are working with her entire family and hopefully I will get to see them get baptized this next month. I AM SO HAPPY FOR ALL OF THEM!!! :) 

The World Cup. I never watched soccer, nor did I like watching it before the mission---but EVERYONE watches it---and so I am catching the fever. It is so funny to me that the Hispanics have 6 hours a day dedicated (religiously) to watching the World Cup, but don't have 5 minutes to listen to the word of God. It has been a BLAST though. We teach a lot of people from Chile and apparently--they are doing pretty well--so that's been the hype. When we go to the highly Hispanic populated places to teach, NO ONE is in the streets and you can hear the game blasting from all the windows around. It is literally a RELIGION for these people. It has made for a lot of creativity in connecting the Gospel to the World Cup. Satan (opposing team), God's team (whatever team they are going for), Coach (prophet/God)....until we finally are able to connect it back to the restoration. It is a BLAST!! I love it.  Most of them just invite us in to watch the game. Our mission president has given us permission to watch a little of the game and then share a Spiritual thought either at the end of the game or at the half break. We are using the world cup to our advantage and miracles are coming from it!! We are using the members homes as places for our investigators to watch the world cup, so that they can develop relationships with them. It is working like a charm. I LOVE THIS GREAT WORK. EVERY OPPORTUNITY IS AN OPPORTUNITY TO SHARE THE GOSPEL.

I spoke in church this last Sunday and I love this ward SO much!!! I wish I could just take all of them around me wherever I go. I have also become the official music director for sacrament meetings. That is a blast. :) I love this work, this place and these people. 

This week has been incredible. I have been working a TON with the other missionaries. In fact, most of this week was composed of exchanges with the hermanas! Currently I am on a special assignment for President Riggs. President called and asked me to do a special exchange with one of the missionaries in the mission, and so I have been here training and helping her for the past 4 days. I LOVE HER. It has been incredible, and I am learning a lot from her! I love serving and seeing the changes that occur in these missionaries. It is fool-proof---every time we do training or anything the focus is the Atonement. That heals everything, and seems to cure everything! I love this work. God is carrying me. I am exhausted, but GOD IS CARRYING ME and giving me the words to say and what to do. He will carry you too. Thanks for all your love, prayers, letters, emails and support. I can't tell you how much it means to me!

STAND STRONG.

Hermana Weenig 

Monday, June 16, 2014

Time to OWN it

I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!!! This. is. the. DREAM. LIFE. and honestly I feel like I am seeing more miracles than I have ever seen in my entire mission in these past few days. God is literally crafting the perfect end to this mission so that I come out stronger. NOTHING SHINES UNLESS IT BURNS FIRST. I am in love with this mission and these people and this place, I couldn't ask for more. Seriously. But, I just want to stay here forever. and ever. and ever. :)

Transfers happened! I AM SO EXCITED HAPPY AND PUMPED!!! GUESS WHAT?!  I literally can't stop smiling I am so happy!! This is going to be the BEST transfer EVER!!!  I am "Pink-washing" the Bella Vista ward! Pink washing is when President Riggs takes out the Elders that where serving in that area and he puts in sisters. I will be spending all of my time in downtown Arlington, preaching the gospel of the Lord. WHAT A BLAST AND BLESSING! I couldn't ask for a better way to end my mission. Re-starting an area and helping an area that has really been struggling to get some baptisms!! It's the dream!! My new companion is Hermana Moore, from Utah. She really is a wonderful young woman, and we are going to set this place ON FIRE. I literally asked President Riggs if I could open an area and it actually HAPPENED! YES! I will still be serving as a sister training leader, and also training Hermana Moore on how to be a sister training leader. She is a hoot and she is my dream team mate! I'm excited to work with her! 

So we are starting over from square one. IT IS AWESOME! God has given me a chance to start COMPLETELY over, and apply everything I've learned over the past 17 months. No investigators, no member relationships, no knowledge of the area...nothing, CLEAN SLATE. And now it's like I am able to apply everything that I have learned on my mission up to this point!! What an opportunity!!! It is a HUGE adventure and I can't explain to you how much FUN we are having. It's like going on a roller coaster and not knowing what is around the next corner and just taking it all in! It is such an adventure and seriously, we are relying on the Lord in every minute of everyday because we have no idea what we are doing, but God is literally helping us to climb mountains and see miracles. We are diving in HEAD FIRST and it has been an absolute blast to see and feel the strength of the Lord carrying me and my companion so that we will be able to have success and see miracles. Just when I think I can't, I kneel. And pray, and then God opens up like 10 windows of opportunity. I love seeing the ways that the Lord is perfect orchestrating this area and helping us to develop a love for these people. Honestly we have seen miracles after miracles. Bella Vista was the ward I served in for 2 weeks at the beginning of my time here in DC. So, I am able to recognize faces, but mostly we are just starting completely over and helping the members catch the vision. WE ARE CHARGED UP AND READY TO SET THIS PLACE ON FIRE!!!! I can't even wait to see what happens in this area over the next six weeks. It is like this nervous, stressful, intense feeling of urgency and happiness that I wish I could explain to you. All I know is that the Lord is guiding our every footstep. For that I am so grateful. Without the Lord I literally would be nothing. GROWTH NEVER HAPPENS INSIDE OF THE COMFORT ZONE---God is a God of growth and a God of change, so he is consistently throwing us out of our comfort zones, so that we can become the absolute best people that we possibly can be. That is what I asked for and that is what he is doing! I love it! 

TRANSFER VISION: TO OWN IT. Own the area. OWN the investigators. OWN the members. It is time to OWN it. Not a second to waste. :)

As we have been praying about what we could teach these people and what we could achieve this transfer, I got really excited. This truly will be the best transfer of my mission, because God has in store for us so many miracles and so many people that are ready to hear the gospel. I AM READY TO RUN!! I told Hermana Moore that I want her to send me home in an ambulance because I want to feel like I have given EVERYTHING to this work, and have completely submitted my will to the will of the father and have truly become ALL HIS. That is the beauty of a mission. Any one that is reading this and thinking about going on a mission, don't think anymore...it is the best decision I have ever made. I have changed. My very nature has changed and I have morphed into someone who loves the gospel and loves life. But most importantly, I have gotten to know my Savior Jesus Christ. 

The first night here was like anxiously waiting a new Harry Potter movie. I AM SO SO SO SO SO SO stoked to be here. I have dreamed of doing this my entire mission!! As we sat there praying about what God's vision is for our area and this transfer, we called Danny Montoya. He is a member here in the ward that has truly changed my life and allowed me to see others through the eyes of my Savior Jesus Christ. I called him to tell him that we are back in the ward, and he began to cry. "The Lord sent you two to change our ward. We needed you back. What a miracle." Whoa. I can't stop smiling and it is starting to hurt. It is a beautiful thing. Can I just tell you that miracles are happening right and left? Listen to this.....

On our first full day here MIRACLES SPREAD like a wild zoo of amazing monkeys. We felt inspired to visit the Riley Family from El Salvador. Well, guess what? We called them ahead of time and we came to their house and they had an investigator there for us to teach!! WHAT A MIRACLE! Seriously! His name is Christian and he just came from El Salvador 2 days ago!!!!! BINGO! BONUS! Heavenly Father led us to a place that we would literally be able to teach a member-present lesson and get a new investigator! I just smiled. Turns out, Christian didn't want anything to do with God 2 years ago. But, after crossing the border and having to rely solely upon the merits of Jesus Christ, he has gained a desire to come closer to Christ. Whats more, is that he is the cousin of one of the ward members. He is one of the most prepared people that I have ever seen and we are SO excited to work with him. AND GET THIS!!! He came to church on Sunday, and He also came to the baptism afterwards! He loved it all! He went out and bought a suit, just to come to church! It looked really nice! We are going to teach him IN the member's house tonight! I know that he is going to get baptized in just a short amount of time! I am so stoked! We prayed to be led to the elect and see miracles, and God responded---the same day. God doesn't always work like that, but I know that all prayers always go answered in the exact way that they are supposed to be answered...if we just submit to His will. 

Another miracle! We were tracting some apartment complexes in Arlington and we were headed one way, when I felt super strongly to walk another way. So we went with haste! There at the top of the hill was a bunch of moms chatting. We started talking to them and explained who we are as representatives of the Lord Jesus Christ. They were all kind to us, but one of them, Vicky, was particularly interested. She started firing us with questions and she told us that she is a member of the church!!! WAHOOOO!! MIRACLE!! She said that she was baptized 20 years ago....and has always wanted to come back to the church, but hasn't been able to find it anywhere. What a miracle! She started to cry as she told us that her two small children are being raised without a spiritual guide, and she so desperately wants us to help them to have that. Her husband is not a member, so we will be baptizing him as well. :) What a miracle! God literally guided us to where we needed to be. 

ONE OF THE COOLEST MIRACLES I HAVE EVER SEEN ON MY MISSION: Benjamin. He is such a prepared child of God!! Get this: So we were walking down the street and there was a man at a bus stop--his name is Benjamin. We started talking about his life and why he is here. He was so interested. Suddenly, I was prompted to ask him, "If Jesus Christ was right here with you today, what would you ask Him?" His face became pensive. He asked, "How do I develop peace in this life?" PERFECT QUESTION OF THE SOUL! Since Preach my Gospel and the Book of Mormon have literally become my best friends here on the mission, I turned to Mosiah 2. THIS WAS A PERFECT EXAMPLE of how if we prepare ourselves, and treasure up the words of life continually, God will put the words that we need to say in our mouths so that we can help people come unto Jesus Christ. That is exactly what happened. I had no idea what to say, but suddenly I found myself turning to some obscure verse in the Book of Mosiah. There in the scripture it talked about how "finding peace comes from finding the path of eternal life"!!! WHAT?! AWESOME! We have that as missionaries. I wish you could have seen Benjamin's face after we read that to him. The Spirit of the Lord answered his question and filled his soul. Not only does he want to learn now but he wants us to come teach his ENTIRE family. Also---King BENJAMIN was the one who said the quote in the scriptures. Coincidence? I think not. God is so amazing, and his timing is absolutely perfect.

Also! That same day, we prayed to know what building to knock. A picture came into my mind. Whoa. We went there. We taught one of the most powerful first lessons that I had ever seen on my mission! One of them said, "What is the feeling of sheer joy and happiness?" We said, "That is the Spirit." He wants to get baptized. INCREDIBLE. 

I feel new. and all I crave is the Spirit. It is a beautiful thing. I am so grateful to be here right now. Christ is my strength and who I hope to give ALL my glory to. 

It has really been incredible to see some of these people that I haven't seen for over a year. It has caused me to do a LOT of reflecting upon the woman that I am becoming and the woman I still have yet to become. Seeing how my life has changed and how the lives of these people has changed is truly incredible. I am so grateful for the people that I have met and been able to see how they have been turning points for me and have allowed me to become more than I ever thought I could on my own! The Lord is helping me learn everyone's name quickly, and we are trying hard to get the members on board with us FIRST so that we can teach their friends and help them and train them to be better missionaries! I hope all of you are taking time to study preach my gospel and learn about how YOU are a missionary but the way you live and the way you act. 

Thank you so much for you love, support, emails and letters. God helps us to find out who we truly are and shows us what we can become. But He also shows us and helps us to see that everyone around us is also a child of God with infinite potential. Never forget WHO you are and WHAT you are. And remember, God only works with broken, humble things. He can't work with us if we are being too stubborn and hard of heart. But he can work with us if we are soft and broken. So, be a little more broken. It is cool what happens. WE ARE READY TO TAKE THIS AREA AND SET IT ON FIRE!!! it is well on its way! 

STAND STRONG.

Hermana Weenig

Hermana Moore and I with a new family that we are teaching that is a part member family! AMAZING people!

 Campos clan, I love these guys.  Going to miss them!

I will also miss Hno. Delafuente, the best ward mission leader EVER!
We got in a car accident -- a man backed into us! SAD!

Monday, June 9, 2014

It's Raining FAMILIES!!!!

I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY. Families. Families. Families. It is INCREDIBLE. I love this work so much, and what is more, is that I love all of these people and seeing their families come closer together trough the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Miracle!!!! EDUARDO'S ENTIRE FAMILY CAME TO CHURCH AND THEY LOVED IT!!!!! Eduardo is an 8 year old who is a friend to Dana (who was baptized a little while ago). He has been learning with us and has been wanting to get baptized for quite sometime. Well, we felt inspired to go and visit their entire family and to see if we could teach them all and baptize them all together. Well, when we got there, his mom (from Puerto Rico) was SO interested and SO kind. We invited her to church and she said, "of course!" She has been so prepared by the Lord. We taught her about what church is like and how she and her kids will be more united as they learn about the Gospel together. She loved the idea. Cute little Eduardo came and whispered in my ear---"Ask her about baptism!" So I did! And she said YES, as long as he is totally prepared! MIRACLE!! Eduardo was so excited, and will be the spark that gets his entire family baptized! After the lesson, Eduardo prayed (we have been teaching him how to pray, because he had never been taught) and after his mom was in tears. "I have never heard my son do such a beautiful thing!" WOW. Spiritual high. ALL of them came to church Linda (the mom), Abigali (daughter), Alyidia (Daughter) and Eduardo (the son). It gave me chills! Nothing short of a miracle and Linda asked us if we could come teach them as a family. THEY WILL BE BAPTIZED SOOOOO SOON!! :)

Sacrifice: Giving something good for something better. That statement has been tried and true every single time. It seems that God is really refining us as well as our teaching pool. We have been rejected, we have been dropped and we have dropped a lot of the people we were teaching, and God is now blessing us with elect and incredible FAMILIES...who are all ready to be baptized!!! Example A: We went to teach Elba, one of our investigators, and she told us that she prayed, and felt that she didn't want to change religions. So we went outside, and there was a family playing outside. I sat down by the oldest and started talking to her about change and about how God loves us and has a purpose for her life. She started to cry. She said, "I have been so sad for so long, and have waited for someone to tell me something like this." WAHOOOO!!! We have been teaching her every other day WITH HER FAMILY!!! They all want to be baptized. She is programmed to be baptized on the 29th of June!! SO HAPPY for her!!

YES!!! Another family is on board and learning together!! Mina, Alcidus, Anahy and Fransisco. MIRACLES have been happening in that home. When we first met them, they were really rowdy and rude. But now there is a peace in the home. The mom, Mina, received news that her mother was dying this week. It softened her heart. As she was talking to us she looked at us and said, "I know that you have the answers. Teach me and will you pray for my mom?" OF COURSE. We were so excited, because up to this point she hasn't been super interested, just her kids. We found out 10 years ago she came to our church and had read parts of the Book of Mormon. She wanted to change, but never could. Now, she is ready to completely change her life around! What a miracle! She has completely changed from when we first met her, and her, along with her kids, are praying and reading the Book of Mormon. Its amazing.

The miracle of "Bath St." I was on exchanges with Hermana McDonald, who is one of the most fabulous missionaries out here, and we prayed to find a street with a whole bunch of Hispanic families on it. Lately, I have been praying like crazy to find families---because it is the most incredible thing to see an entire family coming unto Christ as a FAMILY. Anyways, we were led to this door that we had tried to contact earlier but no one was home.  (The way we tell if they are Hispanic is if there is gigantic moving vans, maroon drapes, toys scattered across the yard, and the smell of beans of rice easing throughout the door.) We knocked. Rosa answered. We taught her a quick lesson, and then asked her for referrals. Rosa wasn't very interested, but she said---"There are a ton of Hispanic families on Bath St." We looked at each other---WOAH! An direct answer to prayer. We went. As we walked down the street there were LITERALLY 5 or 6 families that were all Hispanic. They all accepted us to come back and teach them! It was a huge miracle! God literally led us there. THE FIELD IS WHITE, and ready to harvest.

That same exchange we saw HUGE miracles! The night before when I was planning for the exchange, I felt super inspired to go visit a family we hadn't seen since January. Well, when we got there the next night, both Emanuel and Elizabeth were firing questions at us about the plan of salvation. They LOVED it. They want to get baptized. They were so confused why their parents had baptized them at such a young age. We told them families are forever. We told them that they could be sealed forever in the temple. They want it---and they want it NOW. They were awe-struck and the Spirit was so strong in that room! I love them already, and know they will be baptized soon!! :) God keeps putting them in our path, because we saw them the other day, and they said that they can't stop thinking about God's plan for us! AMAZING! I really am starting to learn that God really does PLAN and do all of missionary work if we let Him take control. He can do much more with it all that we ever could. Divine and Spirit-filled planning allows miracles to happen the next day.

We are working with a total of 6 FAMILIES---->MIRACLE!! "Ask and ye shall receive, seek and ye shall find, knock and it shall be opened unto you" Is coming to full fruition! I love seeing the hastening happening right before my eyes.

This is the greatest ward that I have ever served in. The people are so willing to work and share the Gospel with all of their friends. I am learning so much from their examples. We are really trying to train the members on how to do missionary work. And it is happening! We are getting referrals like crazy, and it has been amazing to see the joy that the members feel when they share the Gospel with someone else. Becky, age 7, took the challenge on! We dared her to invite one of her friends to church! And she did!! It was incredible! Although her friend didn't end up going at the last minute Becky was fearless in sharing the Gospel. We should all be a little bit more like Becky....totally FEARLESS.

I can't tell you how many times this week, we were going somewhere and then the Spirit prompted us to do otherwise. We have found 2 less-active and part member families through listening to the voice of the Spirit. Each time that we showed up to their houses they were in desperate need of help, it is just another proof that God really does GUIDE us....each step of the way so that we can be successful in doing this, the greatest work. It blows my mind how integrated the plan of God is. So often, God does use the means of other people as the answers to our prayers.

Transfers are this week. Can you believe it will be my last one? SAD! I am still in denial, and just think I will be a missionary forEVER. Anyways, I love Hermana Woodbury, I have learned a ton from her! She is a stellar young woman and is going to change the world forever. It has been amazing serving with her and with this incredible ward in Little River!

I cannot find the words adequate enough to describe my joy, happiness, and blessings that have come from serving a mission. It is BY FAR the best decision I have made in my life thus far. I have loved seeing people change their lives, come unto Christ and have seen how applying the gospel in their lives has made them happier than any other thing that they could do in life. But most of all, the greatest joy, happiness and blessings have come through getting to know my Savior Jesus Christ, and His atonement. I KNOW Him, and FEEL His strength and changing power daily. On the mission we have the opportunity to represent Him--and He carries me and directs this great work daily. I have been refined through His great atoning sacrifice, and know that it is only through Him, and putting Him at the center of our lives that we can truly experience joy, happiness and blessings. The biggest joy and blessing that I have received is change. I have changed, and been able to put off the natural man, through confiding in the merits of the atonement of our Savior Jesus Christ. I love Him. I know Him. And I know that He loves me. Because of that, I have learned my purpose in life, and will never leave His side as a disciple of Jesus Christ. I have the opportunity to walk daily with my best friend, the one who understands me the most---Jesus Christ. And He has shown me all that I can become, and all that others can become. The joy, happiness and personal blessings from serving a mission are immense, because each day I become more converted, and know I will be on this journey to become more like my Savior for the rest of my life
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I love this work so much. I love all of you so much. I am so grateful for all of your love, support, and prayers. You are always in my heart and in my prayers. Remember whenever you feel weak, that could be an opportunity to be STRONGER than you've ever been....if you rely on Jesus Christ. His life and His Atonement is a reflection of what we should be and what we should be becoming. If you don't know Christ, get to know Him---and apply what He taught, and still teaches through living prophets in your life. And guess what? You'll be happy. I can sure testify to that.

STAND STRONG.

Hermana Weenig

P.S. SHOUT OUT TO THE BEST DAD EVER!!!! HAPPY FATHERS DAY DADDY!!! You are MY HERO AND YOU ARE SUCH AN INCREDIBLE EXAMPLE TO ME. I am so blessed and lucky to have such an incredible influence in my life! I hope one day to be more like you!! THANKS FOR ALL YOU DO!

Jill and Adla, who we baptized while I was in Old Town, came to visit me at Little River ward! It was amazing to see them!
 Vivi and I. She has come SUCH a long way. She went from the party and drugs life to the Happy way of life. She is a huge example and influence on everyone she meets!


 Becky, the greatest missionary ever, who invited her friends to come to church and was persistent until they came! She is incredible. ALL OF US CAN DO MISSIONARY work.

Lake Accotink last P-day, it is a beaut!
Dad, I took your suggestion. Last p-day we fed geese....but then!! They ATTACKED me!! It was so funny...my companion caught it on film.

GROSS! We ate octopus and squid! Interesting texture.... Yummmmm.....