Hermana Millington - Notes from New Jersy

Monday, April 18, 2016

Training at Ellis Island - April 4, 2016

Hermana Pace and Lady Liberty
March 2016

New Jersey is crazy. It's so awesome! SO different from Idaho, though. I drove for the first time yesterday (I was finally authorized to) and that was something else.. We only almost got hit twice, it's fine. And one was a school bus, but it's casual. We're still alive, no worries :) But you can't really take any left turns on the big intersections here, so we end up driving in circles around jug-handles and all kinds of funky stuff.
It's super nice of the Jews to have those scroll things on their doors because then we know that we probably ought to not knock that door! How kind of them :) It's pretty easy to tell the Jewish v Hispanic v who-knows-what homes here, it's a blessing when we're knocking doors! We've been doing lots of that lately. We're looking for new ways and trying to get creative, but we're both still pretty new and inexperienced and it's a little tough. but it's all good! We'll get there :) 
Monday: We went to Hermana Dircio's for dinner (the RS president here ) and then zoomed out to a great lesson with the Vega family! They are so darling. we love them MUCHO. We then had a little FHE with the Saavedras, a family that was baptized kind of recently. They have a bunch of little crazy kids, it was fun! 
Tuesday: We had a great lesson with Sergio we invited him to be baptized! He accepted, but we've got lots of work to do. He's got great faith, though. And his health is improving, little by little!
Wednesday: We made cookies! Woo! We took them to some families that we hadn't seen at church and heart-attacked their doors. It was cute :) We're trying to show as much love as we can for our members and less-actives and bring them in! We had dinner at Hermana Salazar's and that was lovely as well. She's the only member in her family and she's so strong. What a kind woman. On Wednesday nights we help out at our little Family History Center at the church! It's cool to see all the work that gets done! 
Also today we met some very passionate safety advocates on the streets in Clifton.. They were yelling and going on about how we need to put our phones down when we cross the street. It's a good message, but they were really fired up about it! hahaha too funny.
Thursday:Thursday was CRAZY this week. We went to Ellis Island and got trained on how to serve there! I won't go back while I'm here in the South, but someday I hope to when I got up North! It was so cool though! It was about a two-hour trip up, but we got to see New York and the Statue of Liberty and everything! And I got to see my little MTC hermanas again, which was so fun! It was funny, I was talking with Hermana Davis about our areas and she was like "yeah we have a pretty little branch.. it's got like 300 people, but only about 150 actually come to church." and Hermana Pace and I were laughing because we have about 60 members and 33 were in church that last Sunday. Haha different areas, different people, different challenges :) it's all good!
When we came back down to Lakewood, we drove about 30 minutes farther and had a lesson with Gerardo, a less-active. He's got lots of faith, but he works on Sundays and can't make it to church. But he works in his uncle's restaurant (where we visited him) and they fed us! It was great, we'd been eating nasty car snacks all day. But we had yummy, fresh shrimp and fruit wraps. So kind of them to feed us. 
This night we went to Norma's house (a less-active lady) and brought our elders and tried to help her figure out her cable.. We weren't successful.. but we had a good time talking with her. We listened very patiently while she told us about her religious views and why she doesn't come to church and all that. Poor lady, she doesn't really have anyone in her life she can talk to or spend time with. So we're showing her all the love we can! And she was very touched that we came and we listened. We bore testimony of the goodness of the church and the blessings it brings. I know it didn't change her mind or her heart, but she needs love, and we've got plenty to give!
Friday: This morning we met with Gloria (who is recently re-activated) and read from the Book of Mormon. She told us about how she wants to get her patriarchal blessing and prepare to serve a mission and all that stuff and it was GREAT! We are so happy for her. She's awesome. 
After a crazy morning of calling pretty much everyone in the branch, we got Hermana Bolanos (she's an angel) to go with us to visit Sergio. We taught the ten commandments using cute hand signs and it went well! We then went contacting on Lucy Street and met Drunk (but very nice) Joe. Good stuff. We went to the Vega's later and taught about the Holy Ghost. Man, they have so much faith. We've just got to get that faith into action! 
We drove through a CRAZY rainstorm (Hermana Pace drove, thank heavens) and met with Ramon (a recent convert) at the church. We talked about the Word of Wisdom, and he said that's the reason he really joined the church. He's so great. He's actually Argentina's son! We didn't get the chance to see her this week, she's working on her citizenship and it's a tough process. But we WILL meet with her and it WILL be great! We love her lots. 
Saturday: HERMANA PACE'S BIRTHDAY  Saturday was a great day! On Saturday mornings we volunteer at a 3-hour English class in the library. It's fun! The people there are really nice and we're happy to help! After that we went to Panera and I bought Hna Pace lunch for her birthday. She turned twenty! She's like a grandma, pretty much. 
The first session of conference was great! I LOVED the first talk by President Eyring. Unfortunately I left that notebook at home so I can't write you all the things I loved, but know I have pages and pages! We then went to Alex's house and he'd bought a cake and cupcakes for Hermana Pace! It was so sweet! So we had a lovely little lesson and ate some cake, and then went back to the chapel and watched more Conference. We watched in the chapel in English, but on Sunday they had Spanish in the RS room. We still watched in English, though, so we could really take it all in :) But oh man, this second session was rough. The talks were great and everything, but this lady near me was snoring the WHOLE TIME. REALLY LOUD. Oh man. Good stuff. hahaha
We contacted a little bit that night and found a nice guy, Krystian, that let us in and we taught about the Restoration! It was super great! Hopefully we'll continue to meet with him. 
Sunday:We had our full four hours of study this morning and then went to watch Conference! Between sessions the Spanish branch had some pizza and chips and stuff, so we joined them for a little bit, and then we went contacting and talked to a nice guy, Jose, and showed him a video. This is when we almost got hit twice. But we DIDN'T and it's fine! 
After the second session we met with a nice lady, Angelica Fernandez. She's met the missionaries at People's Pantry, and wanted to meet with them, but they would never get in touch with her. But we found her again and she was so happy to see us! We taught a little about the restoration and it was really great. She's got a lot of faith and she loves us a lot already! She really loves to talk, though, so it might be a struggle to get some doctrine in.. haha but we're excited to meet with her again! I'm hopeful about it! 
Anywayz, life is good :) Go love on the missionaries. They need it. Have them over for dinner and let them take the left-overs plus some granola bars or something. 
Que mas... well I'm playing the piano a lot! Every Relief Society and District Meeting! And I'm singing in Zone Conference next week, that'll hopefully be okay! Pray for me!

Anyways, I think that's about all! The gospel is a beautiful thing and I can't wait to really watch it change lives. I'm still pretty new here, but I know we'll see lots of miracles in this area. This church is the kingdom of God on the earth and I'm so happy to be here helping others find the light and truth and joy that we have. Thank you all for your love and your prayers, I know they strengthen me every day! You're in my prayers as well and I know you're being watched over and blessed. 

I love you to the moon and back!

Hermana Millington

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