Monday, May 27, 2013

To: Mom
I mailed the package for you all this week.  It should arrive there like normal, 3-4 weeks.  I wanted to go by the mail office but I forgot.  Tomorrow is transfer day, and today has been a little hectic.  Sister R. received a phone call yesterday that she will train a new missionary.  I am so happy, excited and proud for her.  I know she will be awesome.  It doesn´t happen very often, that someone trains the transfer after they finish training.  She´s going from trainee to trainer.  So it´s been exciting.  Our mission seemed to have been mixed a little too.  I'm being transferred.  I'm going to Campo Mourão.  My new companion is Sister H. She´s from Chile and I don´t know her very well, but she´s really sweet.  We´ll continue as sister trainers leaders.  I don´t know too much about my new area.  I think its a branch, but I've heard great things about the area.  I think it's about 2-3 hours by bus from here (and a little bit farther from Londrina).  Ha and I'm being transfered with S. Butler.  She´s going to be companions with the other sister there Sister S.  So it´ll be 5 transfers now living in the same house with her. But we´re excited. 

This week was really great.  We had a really neat meeting with the ward leaders that we loved.  We talked about the missionary work and how our ward is going.  We´re excited to work a little bit closer and better with our members.  I know that missionary work can´t go anywhere without our members.  They have testimonies and so much to offer.  Vanessa, our primary president also loaded us up with food as we were leaving.  They were having a primary activity and loaded us up with lots of food and juice to take with us.  It was really sweet.  She´s an amazing sister in the ward.  It´ll be a little sad to leave this area, but also, I'm excited to start in a new area. 

I love how the Gospel really does answer all of our questions or doubts.  We can be guided in all aspects of life.  If we have questions and sincerely look, we will find peace, comfort, and guidance through the restored gospel.  I know that the Lord makes us capable to do what we need to.  We are never alone.  I know that Christ is our Savior and that he loves us.  We are children of God with a great purpose here.  Our families can be together forever through the Gospel of Christ.  I know that we are blessed when we make right choices and follow the example of Christ. 

Monday, May 20, 2013

5-20-13    1:00 pm

     To: Mom
Happy P-Day!!

This week was really good.  We had 2 companionships who came from a nearby city - Aropongas - who went on splits with me and Sister M. this week.  So between divisions and working normal, the time seemed to fly by even faster. 

This week we made a contact with a woman who had already been taught in the past by missionaries and when she was talking with us she talked about how she doesn't believe in eternal marriage, nor does she want it.  But it was really sad.  Not in the way that she doesn´t like her husband (because she says she does).  She just was confused about, well what happens if I meet another man in the future, etc.  It was kind of sad to hear her point of view.  We had a couple of experiences this week like this and the lesson in Relief Society was about temples.  Also, the lack of people being married.  We encountered a few amazing families this week, but only a few are legally married.  This week just really seemed to strengthen our testimonies about eternal marriage.  I'm so grateful for my parents and their decision to marry in the temple.  I know there is no substitute.  If we want happy, successful families, the first step as a couple should be to marry in the house of the Lord.  If we want to start a college education, we´re going to start at a good school.  If we want to buy good food, we´re going to go to a super market.  So, if we want the blessings of God in our life and with our family, we should follow his counsel and start our families after the order of God.  I know that families can be together forever, through the power and authority of God.  That families are most likely to succeed when parents put the focus on the family and following and teaching Christ in the home.  I know I'm not married and I don't have kids.  But it's an amazing feeling when 2 young missionaries can share a message with a family about eternal marriage or eternal life.  We choose how we will spend eternity.  We start making the decision today, in our lives, the way we are going to live for eternity.  I remember sometimes my Mom would spend all Saturday morning saying you need to clean your room or you can't go to town this night.  And sometimes I would spend the whole day procrastinating or doing other things that were more important to me.  And when the hour arrived and I hadn´t cleaned my room, it was always somehow a big surprise.  I had never taken her seriously or I thought the night would never come.  This is kind of a weird example.  But it's exactly how it will be when it comes to who will enter the celestial kingdom.  We have the gift of agency in this life.  I know that God answers our prayers.  I know that he gives specific answers to specific questions.  I know that He wants us to be happy.  I know that we can search for the help of God in our life.  That he will never leave us alone. 
I know that the Bible and the Book of Mormon are true.  That they testify of one another and of our Savior. I know that Jesus Christ suffered and died for us.  I love you all and hope you have a great week!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Laura Ann Bullen   5-14-13   1:41 PM
To: Mom

Mom how did your talk go? I’m sure it was great.

The rest of Sunday went well for us and it was neat to get to see/hear the other sisters talk with their families. I forgot to tell you that Monday would be a holiday - it was the anniversary of the city, so everything was closed.  So President authorized us to use internet today.  Yesterday we and the other sisters helped a sister in the ward with a service project.  She´s moving store locations and it was nice to help her out.  Sister G. and Sister A. arrived yesterday to go on splits with us today.  Sister G. was my companion in Ibiporã, so it’s been good to see her again. It’s so neat to work a little bit more with these sisters and to work with them.  To see how our testimonies can grow together and how special and dedicated they all are.

Ha I don´t really know what to say after talking to you all the other day.  Just how good it was to talk to and see you all.  My family is so beautiful! ha but seriously it was really neat to see you all.  I’m so grateful for this time to serve a mission for the opportunity it has given me to know my Savior better.  I know that this Gospel is true.  That Joseph Smith restored the Gospel on the earth and that today we have the authority of God on the earth.  I know that our families can be together forever through living the gospel righteously.  I know that God is our Heavenly Father and loves us all.  Thank you all for everything!  I hope you have a great week!

I haven’t had any experiences toooo bad.  But I’ve had a couple of run-ins with cockroaches.  I’ll have to write about it with more time if I never told you about it yet.

Mom, one more time, happy Mother´s Day!!!  You are the best Mom, and I hope you enjoyed the day.  That you got to celebrate in a special way.  I’m so grateful for you, for your love, and for all that you do for me. While I will and am enjoying every moment of the mission (and I’m not counting the days yet).  But there's nothing like the love of a Mom and getting a hug from you.  I hope you know what you mean to me.  I’m so grateful for a Mom that loves me and supports me so much like you do.

I did get the photo of Brian and Kaycee that you sent.  Thanks!  It was very cute! tell Brian and Kaycee that I thought it was really pretty, and hope that Kaycee had a good Mother's Day.  Love you!!

With lots of love.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

May 9, 2013

I copied the following from one of the Elder's blogs, it explains a bit about the Sisters being leaders:

This last week, on Monday, we went to Londrina for the leader’s council.  And that was really good.  There are sister leaders now in all the missions in the world.  Its kind of like they made a Relief Society in side the mission because…the district leader and the zone leader are still supposed to be leading the sisters, but within the sisters, there are one or two designated to do divisions and stuff.  So, that’s pretty interesting I guess.  So, there are six sisters in our mission that are called to go to all the leaders councils now.  Pretty interesting.   That was on Tuesday, we came back on Wednesday.  And, on Wednesday I went to Toupao.  That’s that city that is part of our zone, which is about two hours away.  Because after we to to each leaders council, we have to give our training thing.   So, I went there to give it, and I went with another Elder in division.  So, I stayed there, I gave a training, then we came home. 

Monday, May 6, 2013

To: Mom

Thank you soo much for the package.  I loved it!  The shoe fits great and can´t wait to get the other to wear them!  Thank you for the love and support!  You´re an amazing Mom and i love you!!!  I hope you have an amazing Mother´s Day this Sunday!!  I can´t wait to talk to you.  It's sad that Dad can´t be there too. It's strange that this will be the last time I talk to you until I come home.  I can't believe I have almost a year in the mission.

This week was really good.  Our trip to Londrina was really good.  We arrived in Londrina/Ibiporã late Monday (well late as in 8 pm) and left early Wednesday morning.  Tuesday was spent almost the entire day in a meeting.  President and Sister Tavares took pictures of us at the meeting that hopefully you will see soon if you haven´t yet.  It was also the birthday of Sister Tavares the same day, so it was really special to get to do a little something with them on her birthday.  I am so grateful for them and the sacrifices and love that they give to all of us.  I imagine it's a lot of stress sometimes taking care of 180 young missionaries.  But it's really neat to see how they care for us.  For example, this week we have had an Elder in the mission who has been suffering with some serious issues with his heart.  President is often times running to or from the hospital to see how he is doing.  Sister Tavares even filmed a short clip on her cell phone of us at the meeting to take to him to share.  It's the small things that mean all the difference.  I am so grateful to the Lord for the health and the blessings that I receive.  I am so grateful for this chance to serve and to get this opportunity to be a missionary. 

It was really neat to hear a talk that President Tavares gave for us in the training that talked about how the mission and the work can progress and grow so much more with the help of us sisters.  How this change is supported and is connected to all the aspects of the Gospel and the mission.  For example he talked about how the changes in the lessons/programs for the youth are preparing youth earlier to be prepared to serve missions.  Which is connected to how they can leave earlier now.  We also have a 12 week training program in the mission that is designed to help missionaries be prepared to train earlier.  And with more and more missionaries arriving, all of these are united to helping this work progress.  And now that we have sister leaders, we can help all of the sisters progress and be motivated together.  It's been so exciting to see how this work is growing and the changes that are happening.  Normally 1-3 sisters arrived each transfer, sometimes 4.  But in this next transfer 10 (TEN!!) sisters will be arriving.  We only have 26 sisters in the mission right now and 4 will be leaving at the end of this transfer.  So its really exciting to see how marvelous this work is. 

I'm reminded each week how important Sunday is for us and the importance of going to church.  We have a special day to remember and honor our Moms.  Imagine the sacrifice our Savior made for us.  We have 1 day every week to honor and remember the sacrifice he made for us.  To go to church and to gain the blessings.  What better thing could we do with our time?  I am so grateful for the Gospel and the blessings that we receive from the restored Gospel.  I am grateful for the love Heavenly Father has for me, and for all of his children.  I am grateful for my Mom and the sacrifices she has made in raising all of her children to know the Gospel truths (Dad too, but as it's Mothers Day.. :)  )  I'm grateful for my sisters (and their families) who are mothers too.  For the examples they are and love they share.  Happy Mothers Day!!

Love you soo much!