So I have LOTS of news this week. First off, I am being transferred. After seven months I am finally leaving the Promised Land of the Philadelphia 1st Ward. I really am so sad to be leaving so many people who now feel like family to me. Saying goodbye yesterday at church was hard, but I am also looking forward to the transfer. I don't know where I'm going, my mission is awesome and does things differently, but I'll find out on Wednesday. While I am sad, it's also been incredible because I feel completely at peace with leaving. I know
that Heavenly Father knows me and all of His children better than I do and I will be placed exactly where I need to be and exactly where other people need me. This is His work and He calls the shots. And now I get to make more friends!! :) In a recent email my mission president counseled me and practically told me I was leaving. He ended his email by saying "Sister Petrick - big things are in store!" I am very grateful for him and his wonderful guidance. I just know that President Anderson counsels with the Lord so deeply about these
changes and I'm excited for this adventure!
And more big news - ESTHER AND MADISON GOT BAPTIZED!! Yesterday the Philadelphia 1st got a little bit greater as this incredible couple was baptized! Funny story - so Sister Shaffer and I filled up the font during church and we even filled it a little higher than normal. As the service began I was watching the water a little bit and by the end of the first talk I noticed that the water level was definitely going down. By the time I caught the attention of our ward mission leader the water level had dropped almost a whole foot! So the baptism ended up running super long because we had to take an extra 20 minutes or so
to refill the font. But Esther and Madison were both so happy! The smiles on their faces were so bright and warm and everyone was congratulating them and it was just such an incredible day!
I am again so grateful that I've been able to serve here in the Philadelphia 1st Ward. I'll miss my Africans, my African food, the sketchy electric gate around the church, the bars on the church window, the cockroaches in the bathroom, and all of the other little things. :) I had the opportunity to sit in at a meeting with the Stake President and I'll never forget a comment that he made. He said "the work going on in this ward is nothing short of miraculous." This ward has taught me so much about me, about the gospel, and about missionary work. Most importantly serving here has taught me just how vital charity is in this great work. This is a gospel of love! President Monson said "Actually, love is the very essence of the gospel, and Jesus Christ is our Exemplar. His life was a legacy of love." If we are striving to become more like our beloved Savior then we need to be
developing love. Not just for our family members, not just for our friends, but love for all those around us. I love this ward, I love this work, and I love the Savior. Being a missionary is the greatest thing in the world and I'm eternally grateful for the time I have to serve. Thank you for all of the prayers that I know were coming my way this week. I definitely felt them and it was an incredible thing to experience. I love you all and I can't wait to let you know what happens next week! :)
Sister Rachel Petrick
The Zone Selfie on Navy day
And me and my girls, Julie and Naomi Bowah. :)