Wednesday, July 8, 2015

June 23, 2015

 Hello everyone!

Sorry it's been so long between emails, just don't have a lot of time lately. Here are a few highlights from the last few weeks:

First of all, HAPPY FATHER's DAY!!! (I know it was Sunday, but hey, better late then never!) Just wanted to express how grateful I am for my own wonderful dad; what a privilege to be the daughter of such a hard-working, loving and generous man. I love you!!!!

For a P-day activity our zone went downtown to the Calgary Zoo! It was a really nice park, with plenty to see, even a dinosaur exhibit - hooray ;) We had a ton of fun exploring though ...

Additionally, you should know that this has been a 5 week transfer, so this week is transfer week!! It just flew by, and I can hardly believe its about to be over... My companion got a training call, so tomorrow (Wednesday) we pick up her greenie, and Thursday I go who knows where for the next 7 weeks. I'm excited to see what happens...

At a recent zone training meeting we had a wonderful discussion on the principle of God being our loving Heavenly Father. I realized that knowledge is a huge part of why I decided to serve a mission; I know that His love is real - I have felt it for myself and experienced the peace and comfort that comes from feeling a father's deep and genuine love for their child. I have evidence of His love from knowing He answers prayers, and having experienced the enabling and redeeming powers of the atonement of His Son Jesus Christ. "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (John 3:16) What a priceless gift! I want to share that with others so that they too can feel the joy that comes turning to our loving Heavenly Father. I would invite you to ask yourselves: How do you KNOW that He loves YOU?

We went on exchanges, and I got to go to central Calgary, downtown area. Interesting place to be, variety of people to meet. There's definitely a different feel to try and street contact such a busy area. Re-emphasized to me that people really do notice the missionaries, that we stand out as representatives of Jesus Christ. Got to teach some awesome lessons though!

My companion and I also had the privilege of going to the Calgary Temple! What a beautiful place, not only for it's architectural and designed beauty, but for the Spirit that's there, the peace within it's walls, and most importantly, for the work that it done within. I was able to take another family name, and felt an added sense of gratitude in doing so. I know that the temple is the house of God, that it is a place where we can be strengthened to endure the storms of life. I know that we have a great privilege and duty to do work for those who have passed on, and that because of it, families truly can be together forever!

Our mission had a goal for them month of May to have 50 investigators on date to be baptized, and it was amazing to watch as we all worked to achieve that number. In a month we managed to nearly double our number of people on date! Having that unified goal really helped us all keep our focus on our missionary purpose of inviting others to come unto Christ, by helping them receive the restored gospel, through faith in Jesus Christ and His atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end. Not only did we meet our goal, but we were able to see miracles in the process. In my new area alone there were 2 baptisms in the month of May. I wanted to tell you about one in particular. Her name is Lori, and she is a single woman in her 50's. Her dad and brother are long time members of the Church, and they have hoped and prayed for years that she would join. At a move, her brother asked us to visit her and see if she would be interested, and turned out she finally was! After knowing her for only 3 weeks she was baptized and confirmed as a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I couldn't be happier then to know that this wonderful daughter of God has been prepared for years for this time, and that it doesn't matter if we are 8 or 80, we can all receive the same blessings of discipleship when we choose to follow our Savior and keep His commandments. It's been a miracle to watch her progress in her testimony and faith, to know that she is making and keeping commitments that will bring her peace in this life and the greatest joy in the next. I know what the scriptures promise to be true, that those who keep the commandments are truly blessed and happy, "for behold, they are blessed in all things, both temporal and spiritual, and if they hold out faithful to the end they are received into heaven, that thereby they may dwell with God in a state of never-ending happiness." (Mosiah 2:41)

I love you all!
Sister Patterson

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