Monday, April 25, 2016

April 25, 2016

Hello everyone!

Thank you to everyone who sent me a letter this week! It really meant so much that so many people kept me in their thoughts and prayers! So thank you!

This week was seriously just a blur. We did have a funny miracle while contacting a media referral. We had called and no one answered but since we were in the area we decided that we would still stop by and see if anyone was home. We walked up to the address and it wasn't a house or apartment, but a corner convenience store. It was a little weird, but we decided to try anyway. We went in and I asked if the man who requested the bible was there. The lady there said no. I introduced us and told her why we were there and how we got the address and she said "Oh! Well you can give the bible to me!" It turns out that just earlier that day she was wishing she had a bible! She also accepted a Book of Mormon, a return appointment and she said she would be coming to church next week! We got back into our car and tried calling the man who actually requested the bible again, this time he answered and gave us the correct address. It was amazing to see how Heavenly Fathers hand truly was there. If we would have gotten ahold of him to confirm his information before going to see him we never would have met Kia! I know that the Lord truly does palace us where he needs us!

This week we also found two new families to teach! One is a total miracle story. They're less actives that just moved here from Washington state. Out of the blue we got a call from them Monday night that basically went like this "Hi, are you the missionaries? ... Okay, I just moved here. Will you come visit me?" And that's literally all we knew. We go and she tells us all about how they were less active back home for a while but wanted to get back to church because their two youngest daughters haven't been baptized and how she knows she needs to be there so she can change her life. It was amazing and I just felt so much love for this woman. Like, I left feeling like we were best friends. We saw them a couple of times this week and they were all at church yesterday! And the plan is to have the baptism for one on my last Sunday here and then the other has her birthday the day after I leave so we're planning a birthday/deathday party. :) This family is already basically like a second family. They're just wonderful. 

I know this gospel is true. I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior and our exemplar and that He's there to give us strength each and every day. I know that we are doing His work and that He has such great things in store for us. I know that His love and our Father's love is so real and so encompassing. I know that They are there to help as we call upon them. This week I was really able to experience how Heavenly Father sends the Holy Ghost to be our comforter and how the Holy Ghost truly can and will guide our thoughts and words. I know that this is Christ's restored church and that there is no where else that we can find these blessings and promises. I LOVE being a missionary!! I am so grateful that Heavenly Father has given me this chance to serve his children in this way.

I love you all!!
Sister Rachel Petrick

Monday, April 11, 2016

Back to Delaware

Hi everybody!

I have a really sad story for you all. I typed up a really good, pretty long email, went to click send and then it just disappeared. It's not in sent, not in the outbox, not in drafts, nowhere. So I'm going to attempt to recreate it but I promise that it won't be as good. Sorry!

Anyway, I have been sent to the Wilmington 1st Ward!! I cannot express how grateful  I am to be back in Delaware! I have been hoping to be sent back since I left Camden and Heavenly Father has given me this tender mercy for my last six weeks in the field!

Already I have learned that miracles come when you and your companion are willing to work hard. My companion and I doubled in to the area, which means neither of us had been here before and neither of us know the area or the people. The first day we literally had nothing. No area book, no lds tools, no names, nothing. So once we found our apartment we decided to call the bishop and the WML and we met with them both that night! And then we started setting up meetings with the other auxiliaries. Day two in the area we met with the primary president who gave us the name of a part member family, the Walkers. We went by the next day after district meeting, met the non member mom and kids, and set up an appointment for two days later. We quickly followed up with the primary president and let her know about the appointment and asked for fellowshipping advice and she gave us the name of one of the members who we were able to call. On Saturday we met with them, they didn't have a lot of time, and the kids were jumping around and wanted to see our tablets so we showed them #Hallalujah and testified of the restoration and the Book of Mormon
and we invited the mom and the 9 year old son to be baptized! They now have a date for May 14! I know that working with the ward brings the best results. There's no way we would have been able to find this family so smoothly without the inspiration and guidance of our primary president. Please keep this family in your prayers! I know that the gospel can and will change this family but there are a few miracles that need to take place if they are going to reach their date. I know with your prayers those miracles can happen! :)

I also had an amazing experience and learned a great lesson when I met a less active couple. The missionaries before had been visiting this couple on a weekly basis and had been doing a scripture study with them. This couple isn't able to come to church due to being home bound by illness, but they're a great example of living the gospel in whatever way possible. As we were meeting with them there was a knock on the door and it was their home teachers who came so that this couple could partake of the sacrament! As these men were blessing the sacrament I gained such a great appreciation for the sacredness of this ordinance. As the prayers over the bread and water were being said I placed all my thoughts on how because of the ordinance that was being performed this home that we were in was hallowed. Just like our chapels it was a extension of the sacredness of all that happened during Christ's suffering in the Garden of Gethsemane. I was able to watch as this sweet old couple knowingly took part in this sacred  ordinance and took the bread and water with their frail and shaking hands. Their joy and gratitude was so great the spirit that was there
has stuck with me since that moment. I thought about this experience as I prepared myself to take the sacrament on Sunday. And for a little background, this ward has A LOT of kids. There are 110 kids in the primary. That's a lot! So there was a lot of noise throughout the entire meeting, but as I thought about the meaning behind the sacrament and the individual nature of Christ's suffering I really came to realize how reverence begins with me. Despite all that was
going on around me I was able to have a spiritual experience as I reflected on all that the Savior has done for me. And I testify that that can be the same for all of us. As we approach the sacrament with a humble mindset, being ready to make changes in our lives to draw nearer to the Savior the spirit will be there. He will guide us.

Every single day I become more and more aware of how special my calling as a missionary is. My mission means everything to me and I'm so grateful for all the lessons I learn each and every day.

Here's my new address for anyone who was waiting for it:

2209 Prior Rd. Apt D
Wilmington, DE. 19809

I love you all! :)

Monday, April 4, 2016

Bye Morrisville!

This is going to be a really quick email but hopefully it will be a
good one too! On Saturday I got the news that I'm getting transferred
tomorrow! Seven weeks in Morrisville definitely doesn't feel like
enough time and this change came as a huge shock to my my companion
and I, but as I've prayed and have talk with some of the mission
leaders I can honestly say that I know Heavenly Father needs me
somewhere else at this time. I am so grateful for the many wonderful
lessons that Morrisville has taught me. I've grown more in this
transfer than I ever would have expected was possible in seven weeks!
I had no doubts before but after all that has happened this transfer I
can say with full certainty that I KNOW that Christ's atonement is
meant to be used in every aspect of our lives. Our Heavenly Father
WANTS us to turn to him in prayer. The Savior is waiting on the edge
of his seat waiting for us to allow him into our lives, but it's up to
us to let him in. He tells us "I stand at the door, and knock: if any
man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will
sup with him, and he with me."
I also want to bear my witness that I know that Thomas S Monson is
called as the prophet of God. As He spoke, even for those few minutes,
I felt the spirit testifying of that truth to me like never before. I
know that as we follow his counsel we will find peace and joy.
I love you all! Please enjoy the included pictures and if you have
anything to send to me, hold onto it until next week!
I love you all!
Sister Rachel Petrick
Sister Rachel Petrick
The Morrisville gang for the last time.