Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Halloween on Temple Square

HI Y'all! 

Are you all excited for Halloween? I am! Halloween means that we get fed and we get to attend the Temple! Two of the best things for a missionary (receiving mail is still in the top 5 by the way)!

The square died this past week - it's been sad and I think I'm in denial about it. The week prior there was the Parliament of World Religions being held in Salt Lake which is why it's actually stayed busy for most of October. Now that that is over though we have hit a dead patch before the Holiday Season. 
Sister Juntilla and I are still in the Beehive House and we are still loving it. I was there yesterday morning to open it up with the Senior Couple, the Richardsons (love them dearly) and Elder Richardson took us exploring on the third and forth levels! 

This was their closet....I don't even think my suitcase could fit in here. 

This morning we also were able to receive another great training from Elder Wilson, he is in the area presidency over us. He came to our Relief Society and taught us more about the Book of Mormon! I just love focusing on that book! It's truly my favorite book - there is just always more that you can learn about it! This mornings focus was on using the Book of Mormon as the tool in conversion that it's supposed to be. When the investigators and members are converted to the book of Mormon and truly know of it's truthfulness then they are prepared for any storm or "mists of darkness" that might come their way. 
We also learned that generally speaking (and this was from a study) people do not understand something until they have heard it 17 times. Which would explain why you have to take English almost every single year until you graduate from High School!
The things you learn when you are serving a mission :)

This last Sunday Sister Juntilla and I also attended Music and the Spoken Word!

The work continues to move forward! I can testify that the Lord truly does know what He is doing. We have an investigator that we are currently working with that is now sharing the gospel with his friend! His friend isn't really religious and so our investigator just invited him to pray and now they are planning on going to church together! We are blessed to be able to see so many things everyday that testify of God's plan and of His love for each of His children. 

I love you all dearly! 
Happy Halloween!

Sister Fluckiger

P.S. Cows can drink 35 gallons of water a day! Holy Cow :)

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Revelation about Revelation

Hello Family and Friends! 
So I hear that is isn't cooling down yet for you back home? I'm sort of sorry but also not so sorry. You know how you always want what you don't have? Well summer-time in Salt Lake City is officially gone and it's beginning to get very cold. This morning we had the early Beehive shift so we were able to sit in the Prophet's very old and very cold house for a few hours. I love Brother Brigham and his home but I am grateful more for modern-day heating systems :)
​Us in the Beehive :D

Well today has already been a glorious day! This morning we were blessed with the privilege to be with and hear from Elder Holland. It was wonderful! It still being the "Keystone Transfer" with our focus on the Book of Mormon, Elder Holland was able to teach us today about the Book of Mormon and how it truly is the Keystone of our religion. I love the Book of Mormon and  I'm learning more and more about it each day over the course of my mission and I know that that will continue over the course of my life. Being able to hear Elder Holland's testimony of the Book of Mormon was a testimony builder - it opened my eyes to more ways of how the Book of Mormon is that foundation to everything that we believe in. Really it comes down to the fact that everything within the Book of Mormon and even revolving around the Book of Mormon is about revelation. "The Book of Mormon is revelation about revelation!" That's why it's the Keystone because it testifies to us that God still speaks to Prophets. Together we read 1 Nephi 1 and we talked about the story of Lehi that is within those first 20 versus. If you look closely you'll see that the story of Lehi and the story of Joseph Smith are pretty much the same. And if you compare the stories of the Old Testament Prophets you'll also see that they are the same as Joseph Smith - it's because God is the same. He will always speak to His children individually and through His chosen Prophet. How wonderful it is that we live at this time. It just makes me so happy! :) 

The other days this week we did a lot of work! "Work, work, work - there is no satisfactory substitute especially in missionary work!" We were able to finish exchanges with the District Leaders this week, I was able to serve a day with Sister Burke from Australia and Sister Lai from Australia/Hong Kong. Both are amazing sisters and we were able to see some cool miracles together. Sister Juntilla also were able to have some wonderful experiences on the days that we were able to be together. We were able to take one tour in particular that touched the both of us. It was the Flagpole (I'll admit not many people take this tour because it is the same time as the organ recital and everyone wants to hear the organ). Two members of the church joined our tour and we were happy to take them around. One was a returned missionary from Sweden a few years back and the other a recent convert who joined the church in Sweden. As we went around the square we were able to learn of their story and it was quite unique and very heart-warming for us Visitor Center missionaries. Turned out that the RM met the RC in Sweden 4 years prior to his decision to join the church. He was the first missionary to give him a copy of the Book of Mormon. Even though he accepted the Book of Mormon, he wasn't ready to actually start investigating the church. So this RC stored the Book of Mormon safely on his self where it stayed for a good 2-3 years. Occasionally he would pick it up and read parts of it but nothing every stuck. Then one day he picks it up again and decides he needs to learn more about Joseph Smith - so he does which leads him to be in touch with the missionaries again and this time he is ready to start actually investigating the church. This time around he is able to gain a truthfulness of the Book of Mormon which soon leads to his decision to be baptized. After his baptism he remembers this Elder who gave him the Book of Mormon and he decides to go through all of this work to track him down! Took him awhile - he made a lot of different phone calls to some different missionaries and even the mission office - but he found him! And this week they both came to Temple Square to share that story with us. How sweet is the work of the Lord. 

Last Preparation Day we had our Zone Activity! It turned our wonderful! We had a Family Home Evening at the park. Sister Juntilla and I planned a little program, we had dinner, a spiritual thought, and then some games. The overall focus of the night was on a scripture found in the book of Matthew:
Matthew 4:19-20
19 And he saith unto them, Follow meand will make you fishers of men.
 20 And they straightway left their nets, and followed him.
So each of our games we were able to bridge to something that we need to leave behind as missionaries. 

This is us playing Missionary Tag! The entire evening turned out to be great! At the end we did a closing activity that helped the sisters realize that as daughter of God we aren't actually that different. The spirit was strong and at the end we were able to have a short testimony meeting so we could all shared what we learned. As children of God each of us has such great potential - no matter our where in the world we come from or what our story is. It's great to be able to serve with such valiant missionaries. 
I love you all and I truly know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is led by the Lord and if we are a part of it - and if we are living it - we will be guided safely, and together back to our Heavenly Home. 
Sister Fluckiger

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

2 Nephi 9:51

Magandang Hapon!!
(Good Afternoon in Tagalog!)
Temple Square lost it's flowers! It's so sad!! On Saturday they ripped up all of the flowers and today they are planting all of the Tulip bulbs. Summer time is now officially over. It's quite depressing. Now we just need to Christmas lights to turn on to make up for the empty flower beds.
Besides having the flowers ripped up and thrown away, a lot of good things happened this week! We survived last week of all early morning meetings which means that we were able to exercise again this week - Yay! Exercise really does make a difference! Heavenly Father knew what He was doing when He gave us the Word of Wisdom. Sister Juntilla and I are training for our Mission's 5k coming up next Saturday. President wants us to be "fit for the kingdom" so "more used can we be" (Hymn #131) it's been great! So this week we have been blessed with lots of more energy and the ability to focus on our different responsibilities. It took me about a year but I now have a testimony of daily exercise.
 I'll admit for most of this week it felt like Sister Juntilla and I just ran all over the place trying to get everything done while also taking care of some sisters and then making time for our investigators, but the Lord always lengthens your days. At least that is what I have experienced. This week we had our Zone Training Meeting and so we spent a lot of time in preparation for that. We focused on using the Book of Mormon in our teaching and helping the sisters understand what their purpose is as missionaries. It turned out to be a great meeting and the sisters were able to participate a lot. We actually did a Role Play using some of the sisters real investigators and their situations and, as a zone, were able to find some scriptures from the Book of Mormon that the sisters could use next time they taught them. It was really successful and we found out that the scriptures that we came up with was able to help some of the investigators! The Spirit is just so good to us!
Just like any good missionary when we're not teaching or helping the sisters we are teaching and helping our investigators and the people we meet on the square! The Lord really does take care of your investigators when you are taking care of his other children. A lot of our investigators this week were able to get in contact with the local missionaries which is always answer to prayer! And then all of our Filipino investigators were able to listen to Conference this last weekend (they watch is a week later because of the time difference)! The blessings just keep coming. Today actually we were really worried that we wouldn't have any square time before our p-day starts because of how long our to-do list was but we ended up having exactly 30 min and we were able to take a texted out tour in that amount of time. It was this super cute family that was on vacation and wanted to spend the day exploring Salt Lake City. We ended up focusing the tour on what our church services are like and also eternal families. We found out that the mother grew up Catholic but left the church because of some unanswered questions and some differences in how she viewed Christianity. As we were sitting in the Assembly hall explaining church she shared with us that she loved all the different programs that we had and how the church service was ran. We really do have a unique Sunday Services compared to other churches. We have the privilege of being able to hear from everyone and to hear how the Gospel of Jesus Christ has played a role in their own life and with their family. She really liked that. After being in the Assembly Hall we walked over the see the Temple Model and were able to teach about Eternal Families. We all were able to feel the spirit as we testified and shared different experiences on how special it is to know that our families will be eternal. It was just overall a wonderful and converting tour for everyone. As the mom was filling out her contact information for us to stay in touch and teach more she looked up at us as said "Wait a second, are you going to be calling me everyday?" and then she laughed :)
It's just been a great week! Time really does fly when you're having fun! Yesterday we started exchanges with our District Leaders and we will finish up this weekend. So yesterday I was able to serve with Sister Bellais from Tahiti! She showed me a picture of her backyard....yep I am really jealous. And then this weekend I will be with Sister Lai from Australia and then Sister Burke who is also from Australia. All these wonderful sisters who get to live on an island, it's going to be great!
I love you all dearly! I hope you are getting yourself ready for Christmas :) Because we are!
Sister Fluckiger

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Scattering Sunshine and Miracles!

Hello Family!
Did you all enjoy Conference weekend? I thoroughly enjoyed it. I can't believe it's over - it just flew by way to fast. This entire week has just come and gone but so much has happened and Sister Juntilla and I were able to see many miracles happen.
One of the miracles that I was able to witness just made my entire week. So more than 8 months ago I was on exchanges with my district leader and we had an amazing experience where we met a less active up by the Christus. He was going through a very hard time and his faith had grown week over the course of many years. We were able to testify to him about God's love and the power that the atonement can have in our lives. I remember the spirit testifying to me of the truthfulness of what we shared and I dearly wanted to be able to help this man. He allowed us to stay in touch with him and we invited him to do some different things. I was able to teach him once over the phone but then I received my call to Georgia and I asked my companion, who was Sister Fingerle at the time, to stay in touch with him and to help him find his faith again. Well the rest of the story goes I went outbound had tons of fun, came back and trained and have been busy ever since. Things were s busy that I mostly forgot about the investigators and less actives that I had been teaching before I left because I knew that I had given them to great missionaries and now I was just focused on finding more of God's children. This Conference weekend I served a few hours in the Beehive each day and this man that I had met so long ago walked in to meet with some sisters that I was serving with at the time. I'll admit, I didn't recognize him at all. The man I met was very depressed and questioned whether or not he was loved. The man who came into the Beehive house was beaming brightly with the Light of Christ. I'll admit, I didn't recognize him at first but he remembered me and as soon as he said my name I remembered. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father allowed me that sweet opportunity to see him again, even though I didn't participate a lot in his teaching it was a testimony building experience for me to see that the gospel of Jesus Christ truly does change people. It allows us to be more like our Savior. No matter what our story is or where we come from, I know that Christ can make us better. 
Isaiah 64:8
Outside of the Beehive the Square was packed with people from all over the world who came to listen to the Prophet speak. Sister Juntilla and I had a blast!
Each morning we met in the basement together as a mission to have a prayer together and to hear a spiritual though from President before we went out to work. Oh and we also had breakfast together :) Other than that though, the entire day was spent outside around the beautiful temple. Saturday morning it was pretty cloudy and we were so SAD! We wanted tons of people to be on the square and we knew that no one would come with their blankets and picnic baskets if it was raining. Sister Juntilla and I were able to attend the SaturdayMorning session and so we said a prayer asking that by the time the first session was over the sun would come out and warm up Temple Square for the wonderful members. The morning session was wonderful and we were both very uplifted and as we walked outside the sun was warm and bright! We know that God always answers our prayers, even when they are small and have to do with the weather :)
Temple Square was packed all day long and we were able to meet a lot of members and hear about their stories and testimonies. The church might be small in comparison to the world but it sure is strong! As we were walking around during one of the sessions I caught myself pondering a lot of different experiences that I have had over the course of my mission so far (there's a lot!). This transfer President has invited all of us to focus on the Book of Mormon, to strengthen our testimonies of it so we can better help members and nonmembers gain a witness of the Book of Mormon, because only the Book of Mormon can be an anchor that never fails. He is calling it the "Keystone" Transfer. As I was able to see countless families all sitting reverently listening to God's Prophets and Apostles speak the spirit was able to reaffirm to me the truthfulness of this restored church. I love it and I love the Book of Mormon! It just all fits so nicely together.
During the weekend of Conference because of the craziness we were not given any time to be on the phones to call our investigators. So we prayed that we would be able to get a hold of all our investigators before the weekend - and we did! We were able to witness two miracles. One is with an investigator that Sister Hara and I found on chat, he just came online and was interested in going to church and so he did. Well about two weeks ago we gave him the phone number for the missionaries and invited him to call them and set up an appointment with them. We called him this week and he has had great experiences with the missionaries and with the Book of Mormon. He is now reading about 5 chapters every night before he goes to bed. He told us that his goal is to finish the Book of Mormon before he gets baptized :) Heavenly Father is really good at preparing the hearts of His children. 
Our other investigator who had a great week is from the Philippines and is in a similar situation. In the Philippines they watch conference a week later because of the time difference so he is really excited and told us that he wouldn't miss it!
The sunshine is slowly fading away as we are transitioning into fall. More and more Christmas lights are being put up each day and now that Conference is over, Christmas should just be around the corner! 
I love you all so very much! Thank you for reading these letters :)
Sister Fluckiger