Monday, 25 August 2014

Week 46 in the Field: Week 16 in Zollikofen: A Referral - - - You'll like this one:):) God is good people. When we give our best, He's going to bless us.

Wirklich. Diese Woche war UNGLAUBLICH schön. 

Viele Dinge sind passiert, aber nur einem ist mir in dem Sinn geblieben. 

Really. This week was unbelievably good. 

Lots of things happened, but only one thing is really important to me. 

: (BG: I have had to edit this.  I don't know if its bad tying or her English is getting worse as her German gets better:)

So we received a referral from Church headquarters about two weeks ago for a women who had been watching Mormon Messages and had been really... touched by them. So the friend that sent them to her told her she should ask for a Book of Mormon and meet with the Sisters. 

So that's where we come in.

We went by that day after getting it, but she wasn't home. So we called the next day. 

She was so happy to hear from us. We asked a little about her. We asked if she had any questions and she said that she would ask us on Saturday.

The appointment. 

I don't even know where to begin. She is AMAZING. Literally. We went in there just expecting to explain a few things and get to know her, which we did, but ended up getting so much more than we expected. 

We went over the Articles of Faith and stuff. She accepted it all. We talked about the Word of Wisdom, chastity, the Sabbath Day and introduced the Book of Mormon.

We asked her to come to Church- she said " of course I'll come tomorrow". Then we asked her if she would like to have a suggestion about where to start in the Book of Mormon, and she just said she wanted to start from the beginning and get to know the whole story, right. Okay, great. Then we asked her to be baptized. She said yes.

We went LOCO. àObviously not there, but after, sure. It was  A DREAM. Really, I never thought that God would ever bless me with something like that. She is so so perfect! 

Then she said that she knew the Church was true and that God had finally answered her prayers by sending us to her..... and. Oh my. I love her already.

Then she came to church. LOVED it. The members were so good with her. The first thing I said to Bischof was that she was probably going to be a member of our ward pretty soon. Everyone loves her. She's so so so sweet and so normal :) 

God is good people. When we give our best, He's going to bless us. 

Actually, He blesses us even when we aren't 100% worthy, really. The difference we can make is making ourselves worthy. We can either experience the miracles He sends us and see the blessings from them, or we can do that PLUS receiving the blessings He wants to send us personally with these experiences by being worthy to accept them. 

I don't know where I am on that scale, but I feel a lot more towards the second part of it that the first. Hasn't always been like that, but right now, it is. 

God is good. He knows what He is doing and it is so wonderful to be able to be His instrument.

Naturally, things aren't always that good, but they can be if we make the most out of things.

In other news, 

I've been sick! Not so wonderful on my mission. Really not. But, I broke down, became humble, and took a few hours on Saturday in the evening to rest, and then a little more on Sunday. That was not easy for me. I wasn't dying and could still walk, so I felt guilty taking that time to rest when there was still so much to do. But, Sister Peacock made me. It was probably good, too. I'm not better yet, but doing a little better. I have a bad headache today, but that's probably because of the football we played for P-day. Probably shouldn't have done that. Oh well. It was good. :)

I had a really good comp inventory with Sister Peacock last night. There's just so much I have to learn. It's good I still have time to figure out a little more here on my mission. 

I got revelation that I need to go to BYU. I was a little disappointed, to be honest. I don't want to be stuck in Utah. But then I was at church yesterday, and I met a family from Provo, and the son is going to BYU London next week. Hmmm.... maybe that's also a good answer for God. Maybe He's got that planned for me. Mal schauen. Unimportant right now. But will be something I need to think about here in the next couple months. 

It's also been MEGA cold here! It's like... in the 60's today and it's August! (BG:HAHA-we got snow in utah this week, what is she talking about-cold:)) It's crazy! We'll be having an early winter, I think. Yay... 

We also had a really good Zone Training. The missionaries are great and really know what's up. I have a lot to learn from them. It's so lovely to see when missionaries are happier from one transfer to the next... I really love it. I've seen that with a few good friends and it makes me so happy to see them happy :)

I haven't been able to figure out my talents in my missionary work, yet. I'll get it down one day. Right now I'm just... battling with what's right and with what's not totally right and trying to work with it.  (BG: Spirit of the law and letter of the law, i think is what she's saying) We have all been given free agency, which is really good, but some people don't use it fully righteously and I'm trying to figure out how to work with that. 

We had a good P-day today. Went to Biel and went up a Seilbahn and played football with the district. Good times. Last week Sister Peacock and I went to Bern and walked to the top of a church and just... talked. About everything. It's amazing that we can click with people so easily after only knowing them for such short amounts of time. And that we can really find dear friends in that time. It's a miracle. I love my companion! 

  • This week is chaos. We have SO MUCH TOO DO: Sister Peacocks birthday tomorrow, going to Winterthur to do stuff for a fireside on Wednesday;

  • Austausch on Thursday, (Exchange); 
  • Zürich on Friday, Temple on Friday, 
  • A day full of appointments on Saturday and Sunday. 
Better to have too much than too little. That's for sure. Hopefully we don't die. 

Personal study today: The law of consecration. The perfect version of Communism, with God at the head, the Perfect Judge. Oh one day when we will all be perfect...... (BG: interesting insight, boy do we have lots to talk about when she gets home)

I've also just come to the conclusion that love really is the basis of all things. It all comes back to love and we ultimately become perfect once we've learned to love. But we won't learn that all here on this earth, sadly. But we can try to develop it :) (BG: deep, again)

Love you all :) I'm working on becoming my best. Failing a lot along the way. But.. it's expected. One day in eternity I'll have it figured out. 

Bis nächste Woche,
Sister Gilmour

Ich hab euch gern!

P.S. I have attached a picture that President Kohler sent us today in our email. The rod that he is looking at is the Iron Rod. Take a look at it and study it. 

Monday, 18 August 2014

Week 45 in the Field: Week 15 in Zollikofen: IMPOSSIBLE is NOTHING

This week was good. Had lots of work to do for our Temple Tour. It's finished now, so we should be able to work on our other work a little more now. We're booked this week, though, so that's nice. 

The most exciting this is week is.... our Temple Tour. It looks so good! I am really proud of our team work! We've got it in German, English, French, and Spanish. Hard work. But it'll pay off. 

We gave three tours this week. Each one to someone who wasn't a member. No new investigators came from it, yet... but the members are really proud of us.

We gave one on Thursday to a man whose wife was going through the Temple. He already knew quite a bit about the Gospel, but it was a good first run-through. We were then able to work on what it needed until Saturday. The tour went about an hour and half, with questions in between slides and stuff. It runs 30 minutes without questions until the end. Nicht schlect. 

Then we gave it during our ward BBQ. We found a man sitting on the steps of the Temple and started talking to him. He's taken a lot of pictures of the temple and the mountains you can see when you come out of the temple. So we're hoping we can use that some time. We invited him to come on the tour, and HE DID. It was really good. He was talking about how in America, all the films are made with heart, and he found that sad. (BG: don't get this?) So we told him we have a film that is really touching. He loved it. Hopefully we'll see him again. 

Then we gave another one to an investigator from the Elders yesterday and to a bunch of members. They really liked it. Now we just need to finish it in the other languages. 

We will be hanging flyers all over Switzerland; in every ward building, not only in Switzerland, but in France and Italy. And then we'll have the tour advertised in every surrounding dorf here in our area. Then we have Temple pass along cards, too. It will be good :)

Yeah. Not too much was going on this week. Just really working on the Presentation/ tour. 

Find the beautiful things in life.
Roar like a lion.
and remember,

There's my weekly bericht. 

Hope all is well :) Things are going well here too, just with a few set backs; a few bumps in the road :) Nothing I can't handle. As Nephi says,  we are only given trials that God knows we can handle. 

P.S. WE FOUND THE MOST MASSIVE WATERMELONS THIS MORNING FOR ONLY 75 cents PER KILO. They were so big!! We also bought all our food for 40 Francs, thanks to a Turkish shop. Nothing but fruit, veg, and Weetabix... maybe that's why ;) That's actually a miracle since we spend about 70 Francs a week on average. Ouch. I know. 

AND. I'll attach a few picutes of my beautiful companion(s) giving a tour :)

Monday, 11 August 2014

Week 44 in the Field: Week 14 in Zollikofen: "...I Simply Think of My Favorite Things"‏

Okay. Just so I don't forget what I want to talk about as the highlights in this email:

-Tempel Präsentation/ andere Sachen 
-Viel ist jetzt los
-Keys zu den Elders
-Freitag, wunder tag 
-Interviews mit dem Präsidenten 

Wow. This week. Too good, too good. Way busy, but that's how I like it. I always feel better about my work when I can be busy. 

So, my companion Sis Peacock, is a little older than me, and I have SO much to learn from her. She is from Watford Ward, in London.  It's so fun. She's seriously the queen of organizing events, hence why we now have about 5 things on our plates. 5 BIG things. I love it! I'm excited to see it all happen. 

First thing that is on our plate: TEMPLE TOUR. Yes. After a year of the Sisters area being open in Zollikofen, we are FINALLY doing a tour. No one knows why it took so long, or even why the Missionaries had to organize it, but whatever. It's happening now and our first tour will be on Thursday, all in German (EEK), and then we will be giving tours the whole afternoon on Saturday during our ward BBQ. Also all in German, naturally. (EEK).   (BG: Elder Escher, RM will be there this day too:)) 

Not only do we have our touch screen presentation, but we also have a tour that takes you around the temples, tells some facts about the temple, the history of Europe at the time it was built, and so on. I'm not sure if it's anything like a Temple Square tour, but we're doing the best we can.
  • If anyone has any cool experiences with the Bern Temple, can you please send them my way? We need a few testimonials and personal stories. Merci!
We are also starting to work on a musical temple fireside. It is going to be so good!!!! Sister Peacock did it in Winterthur and it was such a success! 250 people both times. It's all been made by the missionaries here. We have some INCREDIBLY TALENTED missionaries here. It is AMAZING the things they can do. My goodness. If I ever get my hands on the trailer and the stuff, I'm sending it to you. Everyone needs to do something like this. They are now working on the 3rd lesson version. It's going to be great. I hope I get to see it one day. 

We are also working on just a musical fireside in general. The things that are going to happen in Zollikofen... everyone get ready. I really hope I'll be staying here. By the sounds of it in interviews, President intends to keep me here because "I'm needed here". All fine by me. Anything but a Golden. I'll tackle that my last 2 transfers. Maybe. :):)

We have found a few new investigators and had good lessons with them in the week. Hoping for a new investigator every week. And really working for it. I love feeling like I'm being a good missionary. I'm learning so much from her. I love it. I'm really trying to work on getting my German better, too. I feel like it's too simple still. 

Friday was a day full of miracles. We took the wrong bus, ended up meeting someone that just got done with rehab for the day. He was so nice, and really spoke with us about things. He was really cool. We didn't get his number, but we bought him closer to Christ, and hopefully every time he drives passed the Temple, he'll think of the card we gave him. Maybe he'll call. We'll just make sure to take the wrong bus again at 17.30 ;) 

Then we brought a Personal Touch to Esther cause she does so much for us and it was her daughters birthday. There's only three of them, but we had brought two extra, for whatever reason. 

She then told us that Monica, a women from Mexico who has had all the lessons when she was still there and now lived next door, might want the other two cause it was her husbands birthday and we should bring them by. So we did :)  It was so good!! The husband was so NICE! So not Swiss (he's half Argentinian, though).   It was such a good example of being in the right place at the right time... they were just about the head out, but we managed to catch them. All cause we took the wrong bus :) The Lord works in mysterious ways, that's for sure :)

Today we had interviews with President. The best one I've had on my mission. We just spoke, it wasn't rushed, and it was the first time I wasn't feeling some kind of pressure or guilt for something silly in my work. It was a major relief. He asked me about the difference between Switzerland and outside of Switzerland. Sadly, there is a difference between the work and the missionaries. And every knows it. But... it's just the culture. With only Europeans here, it's bound to develop it's own culture. Which is sad, because we Americans could really learn a lot from them, I am, and vise versa. Sadly, this is the only way the Lord can get missionaries in Switzerland right now. But we have a lot of work to do, let's put it like that. I've been shocked a few times by things here. But.. I'm here for a reason. Maybe I'm just one of the lucky few that gets to learn the balance between Americans and Europeans. Mmmmmmm.

He also showed me our overall mission numbers. Oh nein. Nicht gut. We are about 1,000+ lessons short of our weekly goals as a mission. Ugh. So much to do. We've all gotta be better with that. It's hard if we aren't finding anyone. We ARE teaching, but a lot of the time we can't count the numbers. So that makes it hard. But I did see that we need to be doing a lot better. 

He also just made me feel... good. Like it was okay that I wasn't perfect and that I could be doing so much more, but that he was proud of me anyway. So Christ-like. That's something that I've really learned here: 

God and the Savior really love me no matter what. We are the sum of our parts wherever we at exactly this moment. All the good, all the bad. But everything that is happening is part of God's grand plan, and these moments are divinely planned. We must learn. Even when we are in the process of making mistakes, that is where we were supposed to be at the time and we just need to exercise our agency righteously and choose the right things to get ourselves out of things. 

Ah. So much to learn.

Speaking of that. This weeks study topic: the Tribes of Israel, Scattering/ gathering of Israel, and all that stuff. I'M SO LOST AND CONFUSED. It's so much and I don't get it. I think I need to give up with these chapters in 3 Nephi in German cause... I'm not getting anything. One day. One day I'll be pro. 

It sounds like you all had a really good week. The date up the canyon sounds like a blast! It'll be fun to be watching dad cross the Ultimate Challenge, Lotaja and another full Ironman triathlon finish line next year ;) You're a stud for wanting to do that. I couldn't. I'll be as cool as my parents one day. One day. Good thing I've got eternity to reach perfection, gel? ;)

The church ist immer noch wahr und ich kann nichts dagegen sagen. So ist es. 

Oh. And I bought the Swiss shirt you all asked for. The mirror is really dirty, no one knows how, but it is. The picture is not the best, but you'll see it at my Homecoming ;) Dad you need to wear your kilt now!:)


HA! We had a few good and funny times this week. 

The first one was on Tuesday or something. We gave the Elders our keys to the church, and they gave us theirs because they have the key to the computers on theirs and we were going to be needing them the next day. 

So, as we were on our way home that night (we were already coming in at 9.30 cause of a lesson), I realized that the keys we gave the Elders had our apartment keys on them.

Good one, Sister Gilmour. You rock. Duh!!

So we called the Elders and they were always just as sweet as ever, even though they were in the middle of eating after hardly eating the whole day. Food is important to the Elders. :)

Haha, so they came to our little town and we swapped keys. But we were all really worried that members would see us, and we really didn't want that cause it was almost 10 at that point, and then with the Elders and Sisters together at Bahnhof at that time... uh. Not good. 

But we made it back without anyone spotting us. Thanks, Elders! 

Another funny one. So we have Elder Huby in our District now. He's from France. After spending an entire afternoon on our tour, he was feeling really bad cause they had hardly done any missionary work that day, naturally. We all want to do our best and we all want to be teaching. Luckily we had had 2 lessons that day. When they called us that night for whatever reason, I asked how he was doing now, and he was like, "I took a bath, so I feel much better now!". WE DIED LAUGHING! It was so funny! He is so funny! Haha, we need a good laugh sometimes :) And sometimes all it takes is a good bath, uh, Elder Huby? ;)

I'll hear from you all next week :) 

Lots of love from your Swiss missionary, 

Sister Chloe Gilmour

Have a good think about the following:

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace

Monday, 4 August 2014

Week 43 in the Field: Week 13 in Zollikofen: America, England, France, Sweden. Taking down Zolliken... TOGETHER

Well. Craziness on our end, as well. I think the whole mission was under a little stress this last week.

Transfer calls. Always a stress.
Sister Peacock came to me. And she is wonderful!! Seriously. She's been all over the world, 25, really organized, and seen a lot of success and hardships in life. I really have a lot to learn from her. I love her already. And you'd love to see the amount of Union Jacks we have all over the apartment. I love Brits. ( BG: She'd better since she's part one:) She's American, British and German, at least).
We spent the beginning of the week saying goodbye, but was cut short when Sister Wüst got really sick, really randomly. We ended up staying at a members house for like 5 hours, as she was throwing up on the balcony. I held her hair and rubbed her back, like a good companion, not even getting sick once.
We ended up just having to go home after that. She couldn't have done any more work. And she needed to finish packing. I actually packed her bags for her. I like packing... when it's not my stuff and I'm not leaving ;)
Huby and Berstrom
Said goodbye to my Sister Wüstli, and said hello to Sister Peacock! She came in tow with three massive bags, all really heavy. We love transfers! Luckily we had Elder Bergström and Elder Huby with us to help. Elder Huby is from France and the most adorable missionary ever. Really, everyone really loves him.
We spent that first day getting Peacock a little settled in, then working on our temple presentation, and getting to know each other better. We all spoke German the whole time. I love this language! It's really fun being able to talk with the "grown up missionaries" now ;)
Friday we planned, and planned, and planned. Sister Peacock is a MASTER PLANNER, so we really sat down and organized this Culture Day on the 30th. It's going to be really good, I think.. I hope. 
Then we headed to Anita's for the 1 August party. This is Switzerland's National day, so like July 4th for us. But... there was literally no one out (what's new), so I was a little disappointed. We also had to be home at 9, like normal, so we missed the best part. Sad. Oh well. 
I got to talk to the Sisters at the Frankfurt temple! That was cool. I spoke with Sister Fuller.. .turns out she lives in Highland and went to LP. Small world, eh? But I guess their temple stuff is really successful, so that's why I called them. They give 7-8 tours a week. And when it's slow, 3-4. Which is about... 100% more than we give ;) So... We will be working really hard on that.
Saturday we played fussball in the pouring rain. So fun. I found out i really like playing. I forgot! But we will be playing every Saturday morning, so I can work on my skills. You can tell I'm American, lets put it that way.
Then we went to a service project at the Flemings. We sanded down their attic. It is all made of beautiful wood and they are getting ready to paint it all white for their daughters wedding. It's going to look great when it's finished. We were COVERED in sawdust, but had a really good time. Even though we were all... pretty much still soaking wet, we had a really good time:) Always with the Elders, too. I don't think we really do anything seperately anymore. Fine with me. 
Then it rained like I have NEVER seen before. Good thing we got stuck at Bahnhof cause we found a new investigator. Peter, he's from Slovakia. Pretty nice. Went through 4 cigarettes in the 45 minutes we were there, but we can work on that. He has a lot of the normal questions that everyone has about life, death, where are we going, and why are we here. Sister Peacock is a genius with people, so I'm really grateful that I have her to learn from. I still feel like a Golden. I'm just really hoping that he doesn't just want to meet cause we're two girls. Pray for him. We will be meeting on Wednesday. 
Sunday. Always crazy, especially with a new comp. She handled it well, even with the Fast. 
As we were getting ready to start the Sacrament Meeting, Aslan ( a man I found with Sister Couper two weeks ago) popped up randomly! He was like, I just really felt like I needed to come here. My wife and I just fought and she threw me out and here in the only place I could think to come.
As I translated and tried to explain why we don't talk to each other when the Sacrament is being blessed, I really got to see some cool things. Although he was a little tipsy, due to the 3-4 beers he had had the night before, he really felt the spirit. He said he will be coming every week, and next week he's bringing his son with him. He then said to me, "So, the people just go up there when they want to say something? Maybe I should go up there...". I was just like... uh... what do I even say to that? Then we told me that he really wanted to go up there, stood up, and went to the front. :):):):):)
Uh.... panic. 
Not just from Sister Peacock and I, but the Bishopbric was also a little scared. 

But... He bore his feelings. He told us how he could really feel something special being here, and he really liked that the people here could speak with God. He said his life is really hard right now, and he needs help, and that this was where he was going to find it. 
I smelled like smoke and probably like throw up, but it was a really special meeting. I didn't do anything for myself. I didn't even get to hear the other people, but I got to help someone know a little more about Heavenly Father and His Son and Their Church. Cool :) Missionary work is just... cool :) BG: YES it is

Then the Elders and Sisters had a meeting after church to go through the ward list. As we were doing that, a family that lives in San Diego walked in. We got to hear about their lives, their conversions, how they met, the work in their ward, and meet their adorable kids. We got to give them a spiritual thought with the help of our touch screen wall in the Church, and they got to be spiritually fed. We all needed that :)

The church is true, people. It is true.

Today we visited Sister Gianatti. I thought she didn't know the Gospel, but found out today, that she really doesn't know the Gospel. She didn't even know that God a has a body like us. And she's been a member for over 20 years. Oh no. But... we really see progress with her every time we are with her. I really love her a lot.

As we were leaving after a really good lesson, thanks to Sister Peacock and her ability to stay on point, I told her that we really love her and love coming to visit her. She had to walk away cause she started crying, and she is a pretty private person. 

I loved being able to touch her heart, and help her feel the love that we have for her and ultimately helping her understand the love God has for her :) :) 

This work is so rewarding :)

We also had a really good District Meeting about Restitution. Meine gute. I had a big "come to Jesus" moment. Sister Gilmour, you have a lot of restitution to get caught up on. I'm not a bad missionary, but I just really felt and saw that I could be doing more for these people. And that I don't need to worry about my companion and what she does, but really worry about me and my work, and what I'm doing to be the best I can be. It was really, really good :)

Also. We have these TERRIBLE... what are they called?!.... they are on the sides of freeways? Big posters? Know what I mean? (BG: Billboards) Those things... all over the place right now. They are trying to promote safe sex. My goodness. The world. They are hardly dressed and it is so bad. Sometimes men with men, and women with women, even. Sister Peacock asked a women yesterday what she thought and she said she found it good because then the children could ask what they were doing. She said we don't need to be so old fashioned; nothing is "showing". What. No. World. FAIL. 

Pray for the poor Elders that have to deal with this. I haven't actually looked at the poster, but you can get a good idea of what's going on after seeing it for a millisecond. Satan is really at work with the people. 
Although he is really at work, and doing a really good job with some people, there are still some of us, the "salt of the earth", and as we continue to do good, and to strive to be the best we can as Saints and as good people, we are blessed with the strength to withstand the evils of the world. Hide your treasures with God and all will be well. That I can promise and is my testimony,

Sister Gilmour