Hermana Millington - Notes from New Jersy

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

First week in New Jersey! - March 28, 2016

Hermana Pace and the bus!
March 2016

Well here I am in New Jersey! It's been crazy, folks! But I'm here and I'm working hard.

My trainer is Sister Pace and she is AWESOME. Sometime today I'll send you a little video we took on her iPad. I won't get mine for another 6 weeks, which is a huge bummer, because the planning and everything is way rad on the iPads (whaaat that rhymed). But soon enough I'll be there! I love technology. Always and forever.
So Sister Pace. Like I said, she's only been here about 14 weeks, but she's great! Her Spanish is definitely better than mine, but we're working together to get better. She's got an awesome work-ethic and a great sense of humor.
Man, what did I even do this week? I knocked a few doors! That was fun! And we're working together on door approaches, she hasn't abandoned me yet. That day will probably soon come, but not yet! So that's really sweet. But one lady let us into her house and we talked about Christ, shared an Easter video, and left her with a Book of Mormon. We're going to call her tomorrow and hopefully get another appointment! We're really hopeful, she was awesome. Great spirit in her home. But unfortunately, we got juked SO MANY TIMES this week. Almost all our dinner appointments fell through and I didn't actually teach a lesson with anyone until Saturday. So lots of time to contact! But we've been teaching lessons and everything is going well! We have one family, the Vegas, that are super great. We're going to go see them tonight!
Also, our little branch! They are so cute. I'm in the Tom's River Second branch, and it's where the Rose's served! Every time I tell someone I'm from Idaho they say, "oh, like the Roses!" (well, in Spanish) and I say "yes, I love them! Aren't they great?" and man, the praise just never stops! They LOVE the Roses here. And so does Sister Pace! They had such an amazing influence on this little branch. They really saved it. It's awesome to be able to come into a place that has been so strengthened by that great couple. So if you see the Roses soon, tell them they have lots of love still coming from Tom's River!
Church was a little tough this week.. because it's all in Spanish.. that's pretty fast... Haha but I bore my testimony and told them all that I love them and I'm excited to work TOGETHER to help invite people to come to Christ. It's a tiny little branch, so I got to meet all the members that were there. We have lots of work to do in this little branch. I love them mucho. And I know we need to build them up some more and love them till it melts their shoes so we can find others to bring into our little fold. We have dinner appointments tonight, tomorrow, and the next day with members and I look forward to getting to know them better. 
So we have this area we go to contact, in Clifton Square in Lakewood, that's pretty funny. Pretty much if you aren't Mexican in this area you're a Jew. Holy Yalmakas, they're everywhere. It's so sweet! This place is SO different that Idaho and Utah. Haha! We don't really talk to them, I don't think they really like us or want to hear what we have to say.. But they're nice enough, they keep to themselves and do their thing. But we walk around Clifton feeling very white and mormon. But we are! It's the best! The missionary life rocks. 
Also, I went to WalMart today! Woo! I'm outside the walls of the CCM and living a real life! Kind of!
Funny stories: We saw a bus this week that said "Jesus Christ is the Answer" on the front when we were knocking doors. It's TRUE. So we took a picture with it :) And the best thing that happened for me this week: We were calling some potentials in our area book and I saw the name Hilda, so I decided to call her. She was the first one I was going to try, Hna Pace had done all the other ones.. So here's how our conversation went: 
me: Hola hermana! Como esta?
her: bien...
me: Bueno! Pues, somos las misioneras de la Iglesia de Jesucristo de los Santos de los Ultimos Dias, y solo queremos ver si usted tiene interes para reunir con nosotros? (we're the missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Days Saints and we just wanted to see if you have any interest in meeting with us)
her: no.
hna pace: bueno, pues, estamos buscando para Hilda. Usted es Hilda? (well, we're looking for Hilda. Are you Hilda?)
her: no. She died in July. She was my mother.
us: ..... oh. we're so sorry to hear that....
So that's good stuff.
 I'm so blessed to be here doing this work. It's the greatest work in the world. It was a little bit of a bummer to have WalMart orange chicken and stir-fried vegetables for Easter dinner yesterday, but I couldn't be happier anywhere else. Our Savior lives and loves each one of us and that's why I'm here. I want everyone to feel the overwhelming joy I feel because I know that. So much joy that I wake up every day and go out and look like a crazy person talking to them about Jesus. We definitely aren't normal, but we shouldn't be! That's what's so great! I know the Lord wants me here and I'm so happy to be on His errand. 
Les amo muchisimo! Go read your Book of Mormon! Alma 26!  
Hermana Millington

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Estoy Aquil! - March 22, 2016

Miracle in the Atlanta Airport - March 21, 2016

Note from Momma Millington: 
When Lexi left for Mexico we gave her two calling cards so that she could call us from the Atlanta airport on her way from Mexico to New Jersey. We've been looking to talking with her since she left!! We knew that Lexi was going to be traveling on Monday, March 21st which happened to be spring break for Seth and Chloe so we were out of town. I was SO glad for the invention of cell phones so that she could call us anywhere we happened to be. Monday morning came and we knew approximately when she would call us because of her flight schedule. Lance and I were so excited - we were paralyzed looking at our phones waiting for her call. The window of time when she could call came and was slowly closing, and we were all trying really hard to not be VERY disappointed. Lance was thinking that flights might have been delayed and I thought that her calling cards were not working. Finally, when we knew that she would be boarding in 15 minutes, and we were ready to give up hoping, Lance's phone rang showing a call from Colorado. It was her!!!!!!!!!!!! It was our Lexi's voice! 
Lexi told us that they (her Hermanas and Elders from the MTC) could not find a pay phone anywhere in the airport and they were SO sad and frustrated. As they were trying to figure out how to call home, a nice woman approached them, introduced herself and asked if there was anything she could do to help them. She let them use her phone and all of them got about 5 minutes to make their calls!
I have to say, that when our phone wasn't ringing, I started praying and hoping that Lexi would find a nice person with a cell phone and ask if she could make a call. I'm sure I wasn't the only mom praying that morning for a miracle, but it truly was a missionary miracle! One of many that Lexi will experience in her service.

The photo below is a picture that this nice sister sent to us along with this sweet note:

"So blessed to run into these disciples of Jesus Christ in the Atlanta airport. Hermana's Hettinger, Woll, Millington, Davis, and Elders Hunt & Follett of the New Jersey Morristown Mission Spanish. On their way from the Mexico MTC to the mission field to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ. My journey has truly been blessed. I love and admire these beautiful young men and women."

March 21, 2016 - Atlanta Airport

Last week in the MTC - March 16, 2016


Sorry this email is so late in the afternoon today, we went to the temple again today! It was lovely. But the trips take foreverrrrr. But it was still lovely, and we got to go waltz around a cute little tienda after. It's still within the walls of church property, though, so it was nice and safe! Driving through Mexico City is a blast, it's so darn loco. Chickens everywhere. Not really, but people everywhere and sometimes dogs. 
Oh man I just remembered, I was going to send yall a picture of some of my first lessons and my lessons now! My Spanish is getting muy bien. I think in a few days I'll get a little slap in the face with some real Spanish, but I'm excited. I know I'm still learning and stuff here, but I just need to be there with the people to actually really get there. And the Gift of Tongues is so real. It totally is. It's not like I just randomly blurt out words I didn't know or anything, but I find words coming out of my mouth that I've only looked at once, and they totally work! And I love Spanish so much. I was definitely meant to Speak Spanish, and I thank the Lord every day for the opportunity to learn it to serve Him.

So last PDay was awesome! Really relaxing. My favorite part was when we all gathered around a cute little piano in some classroom and sang some hymns! I'm so glad I brought my music :) And we're doing a special musical number in our branch sacrament meeting on Sunday, so we'll probably practice some more this afternoon! It was so darling last week, it reminded me of when we sang together as a family. Those are some of my happiest memories of home. I think about all y'all all the time. You're always always in my prayers. 
Hey cool news, I sang a solo in front of the whole MTC yesterday! Haha it was just a couple lines in I Need Thee Every Hour (in spanish), and it went well! Nothing too exciting to report about that, but I was glad to have the opportunity to share my testimony through music just a little bit :) We all miss music quite a bit in our district, we sing all the time!
Another cool piece of news, Elder Cook is coming to the MTC on Friday! So that'll be cool! Yay for apostles. I'm excited :) 
Funny spanish mix-up of the week: we were eating dinner together as a district, and I accidentally dropped a grain of rice on my skirt.. So I said "que embarazada!" which sounds like "how embarassing" but actually means "how pregnant." Haha I did it on purpose cause it's funny, but then I said I was just kidding, I'm not "embarazada," and Elder Follett said "well you should be!!" hahaha he didn't quite know what emarazada meant. So funny. 

So Hermana Davis and I are teaching two investigtors right now, Martin and Luis. They're just our teachers, but they do a good job of asking questions and whatnot. But I'm excited to actually talk to real people with real problems that I can actually teach! And Hermana Hettinger and I (we switched up companionships for a lesson a day, just to switch it up) are teaching Elder Follett as Beau, and that's awesome. She's so well-read in the scriptures and I can always rely on her Spanish! I really enjoy teaching with her.
A couple days ago I had a cool experience with Hermana Woll, my little sister. She's so darn cute. But we were practicing teaching, and the situation was this: an investigator, Chris, had just had his family killed in a car accident. So we were practicing using the Book of Mormon in all situations. I taught Hermana Woll as Chris and we read in Alma 40 about the paradise that awaits those who have lived righteous lives. I said I couldn't understand her situation, but Christ could. We read in Alma 11 about how Christ took upon Himself our pains and afflictions and temptations and everything. I then talked about how the world is a crazy place, but the Book of Mormon and Christ are the light we need to make it through. I'm sure that those words came from the Spirit, they weren't part of my plan at all. But after the lesson, she started giving me feedback, and tears started streaming down her cheeks. She said her grandpa is on the verge of passing away and she's been praying to find peace about it all. She said the lesson I gave was what she needed to hear. I was so so so happy. And I know that it wasn't so much what I had said or what I'd planned to say, but that I opened my mouth with faith in the Spirit and the words came to me that she needed. It showed me that I can't know all the needs of my investigators (whether they're investigators really or teachers or other missionaries), but the Spirit always knows. And as long as I'm worthy to have it with me, together we can change lives. I'm just so ready to be in the mission field and watch it happen. 
Anywayz, life is so good. Galatians 2:20 (I think?) talks about living your life in faith, and that's the goal here! I don't know what I'll face and who I'll meet here in a few days, but I have faith that I can help someone who needs the gospel in their life. 
PS to all those people that ask how I'm doing (lol like I have a fanclub back home), tell them I'm living the dream. I couldn't be happier, and I never want to come home! But good news, I've got 17 more months :)

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

WEEK FOUR - March 9, 2016

I'm losing track of time guys. But I know today is our four week mark! woo! Time flies. I know I'm doing important things here at the CCM and that I have to be here learning all this, but I can't wait to be in New Jersey! I can't wait to meet everyone and let them laugh at my broken Spanish and tell them to read the Libro de Mormon and all that good stuff. The missionary life is a good one, and I think it fits me nicely. I wouldn't rather be anywhere else right now, life is just so dang good.
This week I feel like a lot happened! I keep a list throughout the week of things to write home about, which is helpful because I get here and I get panicked for time and I forget everything! But this week really was a good one. 
 I had a cool experience reading D&C 19:15-20 this week. It's about what Christ suffered for all of us. When I got to verse 20, though, it commands us to repent so we don't have to suffer that same pain. I had always thought of this to be a rather threatening passage, but this week it changed for me. I guess I realized the love and concern in the Lord's eyes when He gives us commandments. It's not to be threatening or mean, it's because He loves us so much. More than anyone could ever comprehend. He knows the path we have to walk in this life to be happy, so He's trying to help us along the way. He doesn't want us to suffer, but rather to have joy and to return to live with Him and our families forever. We're so blessed to have the commandments. They aren't always easy for everyone, but they're wonderful and we need them. We're simply children trying to get home and He's helping us every step of the way. We have our families, we have church meetings to uplift us, we have the words of God in the scriptures to teach us, and we have the Spirit always with us to comfort, guide, and help us. We are so blessed. 
Last pday we went to the temple again! It was great! I understood a lot more of the Spanish (although I still used English headphones) and it was awesome. We had time before to go to the visitors center there and that was way awesome.
Funny Spanish mix up of the week: escritorio means desk and escritura means scripture. I've asked investigators twice now if they'll read this desk for us. Haha what a gringa.
Also, last night Hermana Hettinger told me in a lesson that if I keep the Word of Wisdom I can have "pes in su mente", which means "fish in your mind." haha she meant paz (peace). So there you have it! If you want fish in your mind, keep the Word of Wisdom. Actually, just do it anyway. That's good stuff. 
Oh my goodness gracious, I love my district. We've had a couple district talent shows, consisting of lifting chairs, juggling apples, showing how to help someone who broke their leg, and telling a story about monkeys and bananas in sign langauge. These always seem to happen after dinner when we're all losing our minds and just need a good laugh. These guys are the best, I'm so happy we're all going to the same mission and I don't have to leave them! 
We had a testimony meeting this Sunday that was really nice! I bore my testimony (as did our entire branch) in my Spanish, and I think it made some sense! But I'm bearing my testimony all the time in Spanish, so I'm not too afraid to anymore :)
The longer I'm here the more I realize how crazy we are as missionaries. We literally run from place to place and spend all day smiling and telling people that God loves them. We base our knowledge on feelings and impressions we receive and we believe in a book that came from gold plates that a handful of people have ever seen. We love the Lord more than anything, so we give years of important parts of our lives to serve him every single day. But folks, it's all true. We wouldn't be so in love with our message if it weren't! We're crazy to a lot of people, I think, but it's because our joy and our love is so full that it overflows and we just have to tell everyone! I feel that joy and that love in the gospel and I can't wait to get out there to share it with everyone.
I love my hermanas here so much. I tell them every morning it's going to be a great day, and I tell them every night that I love them and that it was a great day! We're trying to speak only Spanish these days, but it's hard. But we're helping each other learn and grow and it's awesome. We don't look too hot sometimes, but we always tell each other that it's the light in our eyes that matters. As long as they can see and feel our love, it doesn't really matter that our hair is in a messy bun every day or we can't conjugate all the verbs correctly. It's okay! The Spirit is the one teaching them anyway :) And thank goodness for that!! 
Oh I forgot to mention in my email to dad this week, lancé means "I threw". So there you have it. Dad threw.
I love you mucho, keep on keepin' on! Read your Book of Mormon, pray all the time en su corazon, and never forget to be kind to the missionaries there. Have them over for dinner and feed them some good potatoes for me. I miss good potatoes. 
Les amo!
Hermana Millington

Sunday, March 6, 2016


Wow, this week was a crazy one for sure.
I had a little bit of a crazy experience on Friday this week. My district leader told me I'd be spending a few hours in a Latino district that evening. I was immediately pretty nervous, but it was just an experiment to see what I could understand and how I felt about it. But if I wanted to, they would probably let me finish my time here at the MTC with them. So I left my district family and was in a trio with Hermana Ortiz from here in Mexico and Hermana Rios from Kuzco, Peru. Neither of them speak hardly any English. But we taught a lesson together about the restoration and I spent a couple hours in class with them. A couple of their elders speak some english so they helped me out a little. But I really understood almost everything! Except for most of their jokes.. They probably thought I was so pathetic, I just laughed when they laughed and had no idea what they just said.. Haha! And at one point they asked me how I felt and I said "me siento alta y blanca." which means I feel tall and white. I was a little nervous the whole time, but I loved it. When I got back to my district though, our district leader came over and talked to me about how I have the opportunity to learn a lot of things in our American district that I couldn't learn else-where. Spanish will come for me eventually, but I don't have to learn it all now. And I don't want to leave my family here. So anyway, now my teachers are looking for opportunities for me to spend some time with them every once in a while. But I see my Latino district often and it's awesome! The elders call me Hermana Wellington and the sisters still call me their compañera. I'll take a picture with them tonight and send it next week! They're going to the temple today too, but they've already left. It's actually Hna Rios first time through the temple and Hermana Ortiz is her escort! Super cool. Anyway, I'm their hermana adoptiva and it's awesome. Way cool experience.
Check it out, I found a great scripture this week! So ya know how I bought a new Book of Mormon and am color-coding the Christ-like attributes? It's awesome. I love it. Everyone needs to do it. But I was reading in 1 Nephi 18, and verse 16 is amazing. It's when they're on the boat coming to the promised land and Laman and Lemuel tie up Nephi. For three days there's this awful storm and the boat is going crazy, Laman and Lemuel and their families are pretty much partying, Nephi and his other obedient brothers are suffering, and Lehi and Sariah are pretty much dying, but somehow Nephi finds a reason to rejoice. He's humble and grateful despite his awful circumstance. I know we don't have the same trials he did (thank goodness) but life isn't always easy. BUT there is always a reason to rejoice and thank the Lord. Cool example of humility and gratitude right there. 
This Book of Mormon project, though, has got me all distracted sometimes! Isn't that a funny thing to say? I know I should be reading my español Libro de Mormon and studying my conjugations and everything, but I just want to read in English and find all the good stuff! I've never been so in love with the scriptures. I could read them all day and be totally happy forever and ever.

My Spanish is coming along! But since my trip to the other district I feel like it's taken a little bit of a nose-dive. But that's okay! I'm still learning and still working and it's all good! As a district we're going "solo español", and whenever someone says something in english in our classroom they have to write it in Spanish 20 times. It's been good for us! That's the only way to really do it. We've just got to do it. Word. 

We've also been singing a lot of "Free Fallin" as a district lately, and we tried to translate it, but "libre cayado" doesn't have quite the same ring.. But the other night Elder Follet and I had a little sing-off with some Phantom of the Opera stuff and that was pretty funny! He actually wasn't too bad, I was impressed! I've been blessed with a lot of opportunities to sing here. It rocks. And little Hermana Woll hasn't ever been away from her family before and sometimes she gets really homesick so after we turn of the lights for bed I'll sit on my bed across the room and sing to my hermanas. It's sweet. I love these girls so much. I attached a picture of us at the temple last week! My camera isn't very good, I might try to buy a new one when we get to America.. Almost all the pictures come out blurry.. But it's okay! Some are great, and my hermanas send me some good ones to send to yall too. 

Also, sometimes I forget we aren't in America. And sometimes when they have especially good food at the comedor (cafeteria) I'll say "it's a good day in America" and then I remember.. Haha but every day is a good day in America! And Mexico! But this campus is more like America than Mexico.. It's so beautiful and safe and lovely.

We're so lucky to be here at the MTC working hard and being so spiritually uplifted every day. Our teachers are amazing and all the leaders here are just awesome. This is truly a blessed place. There's so much light in everyone's eyes and it's so easy to see the joy that the gospel brings to those who are fully converted. In D&C 90:11 it talks about how the gospel will be preached to everyone in their own tongue. We are really on the Lord's errand here. It isn't easy to learn another language, but I know that the Lord called us all here and to our specific missions because He knows we can do it and He knows the lives we can help change with His Spirit, His strength, His gospel, and His love. And I can't wait! My time here is about half over and it's a little bit of a bummer, but I can't wait to get out there. And good thing my whole district is going with me, I love them way too much to never see them again. And we're already planning epic Utah reunions jamming to John Mayer and eating Graham Canyon ice cream. 

But I really am living the dream here. 

Thank you for your emails, your love, and your prayers. I love you so so much and I can't wait to be all together forever! But this is the most important work I could be doing right now and I'm thrilled to be here. Life is so good.
Hermana Millington
Images by Freepik