Well, the day has finally come. I'm getting transferred! Wow. I'm being moved to Elizabeth City, North Carolina, which is about three hours away from where I am now. We're "whitewashing" the area, which means that both of the missionaries that are there now are leaving and we're both coming in fresh. And extra fresh, because my companion is a greenie! That's right, I'm training again. I have lots of emotions, but overall I would say that I am looking forward to the growth that I will make there. I have a feeling that it's going to be a lot different from Newport News, so I will learn a lot. They've never had hermanas there before, just elders, so hopefully their area book and apartment aren't too much of a mess... we'll see.
I forgot my journal (again. seems to happen more often than not), so I'm trying to think about last week. Oh, we went on exchanges with the sister training leaders (sort of like zone leaders, but just for sisters). I was honestly dreading it, but it went really well! I learned a ton from Sister Banner about planning and personal study and being bold and establishing your purpose and all sorts of things. It was great. Hermana Johnson and I have been able to put those things that we learned into practice over the past few days and have seen great results.
Sunday night we had an amazing lesson with a woman named Alma, her mom, and two of their friends. The spirit was SO strong. Probably the strongest that I've felt it during a lesson on my mission. We brought our recent convert, Melina, with us, and taught them about the Book of Mormon and the Holy Ghost. They understood really well and all committed to read it, pray about it, and be baptized when they know that it's true. After the lesson we knelt down and they asked me to say the prayer. As I was praying the spirit was SO POWERFUL there. I couldn't believe it. Then we employed something that we had learned in district meeting the week before, which is to leave right after the closing prayer so that they can feel the difference between the spirit that was there with you and how it leaves as they return to normal activities. I love it. Because often after lessons and closing prayers people want you to stay so they offer you water or juice or whatever and you start talking about other things, and the spirit slowly slides away without anyone noticing. It makes it harder for them to notice the difference in how they feel when you're there talking about the Gospel and when you're not there. Anyway, we did that and I feel like it went really well. We're going to go back tonight to see how they're reading is going and answer any questions.
Last night we did FHE with Rosalio and Melina (those same recent converts). It was so sad to say goodbye to them. I've been there with them since their first lesson, their wedding, baptism, first time praying in church, callings, everything. I can't stand to leave, but they are incredibly strong and I know that they'll do just fine without me. And in nine months they can go to the temple and be sealed!
It's crazy to me how much I love the people here. Saying goodbye is hard, but I know that I have to do it.
Funny story. The first picture is with a little girl named Melanie Flores. In primary during sharing time they were talking about temporal blessings and in particular about our five senses. Each of the children got a little piece of paper with one of the senses written on it and had to think of a blessing that had to do with that sense. For example, if I got sight I could say, "I use my eyes to read the scriptures." Well, Melanie got hearing and said, "I can hear Hermana Bennett!" So Hermana Self wrote "Hermana Bennett" on the board for the blessing. It was adorable. The other pictures are Rosalio and Melina and their kids. I LOVE THEM SO MUCH IT HURTS.
Well, I should probably go. Sorry this letter was so disorganized.
Have a great week everyone!
I LOVE YOU!!!