Wednesday, July 30, 2014

July 28, 2014


We've done a lot of service this week!! We helped stain an extremely less-active's garage door which led into a teaching opportunity for her and her hispanic live-in house maid. We invited the Spanish sisters to join us and a lot of good things happened as a result. That was definitely a miracle. Hopefully this member will reactivate herself by helping her "maid" learn English and the gospel. By the time we finished staining I looked like a freckled ginger. I wish a had a picture! We got to use a spray gun and I was the victim of being down wind of the spray. On top of that we did lots of service for the other members in our wards, but we did all this service in one day.

We were so jammed packed we didn't even have time for studies. I'm thinking to myself "Well, that was really dumb. Why would you let that happen?" I continue to ask myself this a lot.... As a result we didn't really get to plan our lesson with Al or find a a member to come with us. Needless to say I was stressed and disappointed in myself that I neglected one of the most important elements of the day: companionship study. After dinner we had 30 minutes to find a member and plan our lesson. We knew we were going to teach the Restoration but had no clue how or what scriptures we would use. Rather than letting my stress and anxiety cause me to doubt and abandon the lesson, I began to pray A LOT. I haven't prayed so desperately before. I prayed that our lesson would go well and that we would be able to find a member. I also apologized a lot for the poor planning and not doing the essentials like studies. It was the weirdest feeling... Well, not weird but new. I felt reassurance behind all the stress. I felt a determination to not give up finding a member even though we have called almost half of the ward directory. 10 minutes before the lesson started we called a member and she was available and agreed to come to our lesson. What a relief!

The lesson we had with Ed was amazing. It was an actual lesson as well and that made all the difference. He was always so busy that we struggled to even teach a single principle. He sacrificed his time and gave his full attention to us and to the Spirit and we had an amazing lesson. The Spirit was so strong and Ed can feel that it is true. I think this is one of the only lessons where I felt that everything that I thought and said was all from the Spirit. I could just feel him emanating from me and it was very powerful.

We're working a lot to have God be the most important person in his life. Even though he knows these things to be true, he isn't at the point where he will do anything for the Lord. He's let us down a lot after that lesson and his priorities have become very apparent. I know that as we continue to work with him he will be ready to be baptized in September.

Teaching the Lee family is going well. The cute little niece will have to wait till she's 18 but during our lesson this week she bore a really strong testimony of the church and how much she loves it. She really dislikes the Catholic church and is anxiously waiting for the day she gets to be a member of this church. We're going to teach her and invite her to start living like a member now rather than putting it off.

We've been spending a lot of time working with our members. They've been coming out with us a lot as well! I think that's where a good portion of our week went. We did a lot of finding with our members. They were great experiences and I think we really opened the eyes of one member. She has a daughter on a mission and she views that as her missionary work. She thinks that we always have appointments and that there is never a dark cloud in our lives. When we were with her, many doors remained unopened and she got to see that she needs to step up her game to help the missionaries. It's great to see the members see and understand what their role is in hastening the work. We went contacting with another member on the hottest day of the year... and I may or may not have been on the verge of heat exhaustion. But have no fear because I'm alive and well right now!

We're doing family mission plans with families and they're going great! A lot of members see that we can't really do "traditional" missionary work in this area and we need them. The members are starting to change in a good way :) CRAZY STORY! We were at the Hui family last night to help them put together their family mission plan. As we were talking, Brother Hui randomly stops the conversation and feels that he needs to tell his family about some missionary experiences he had at work the past week. He shared an experience that ended with a rejected offer to learn more about the gospel. Then we he was like "But wait! It gets better!" In my mind I was really happy for this man. He then told of his experience where one of his coworkers randomly came up to him and told him he just got baptized. He said his name was Jim. I was like "Hey! I know a Jim, but there's no way it's the same one." Then I randomly blurted/asked where he works. He said the same company where my recent convert Jim works at. I about died with excitement because he knows my Jim!! What a small world we live in!

I almost forgot! Transfer news! I'm ready for many, many, many miracles to happen this transfer! I'm grateful that I get to stay with my companions. Not gonna lie, I was caught off guard that we stayed as a trio. I didn't know what was going to happen, but I didn't see that one coming. But I am grateful to be staying with them. It was weird to not have any changes happen this transfer. Is this what "normal" feels like?

Fun times! We had a really big storm come in this week, which meant wind! We would play around and act like air benders! It was super fun! When I get home I'll have to show you all my water bending moves as well....

This coming week is going to be great! Everyone and their dog is coming home from vacation... and that means not as many empty doors! Yay! I'm excited to see what miracles are going to happen in the coming week!

-Sister Dunn

Sunday, July 27, 2014

July 21, 2014


JIM TENNANT'S BAPTISM IN GILBERT!!!!! Funny story first. I may have
lied about Jim's name.... *cough* John Taylor *cough* But President
let me go to Jim Tennant's baptism Thursday night in Gilbert!!

That's out of the mission! YEAH! I can honestly say that was one of the best
nights of my entire life. I feel so blessed to have been able to teach
that man and help him be baptized. Here's how I got permission.
President Jenkins was at the Visitors' Center for a baptismal
interview. Jim happened to also be there. They ended up talking and
before the conversation was even close to being finished President
called me and gave me permission to go on the SPOT! I never thought I
would be able to see him be baptized EVER! UGH! Such a miracle! Jim is
the greatest! Here are two of my favorite quotes he said from the

1. "I can't wait to die in a pool and come back up alive"
2. "I feel like I just stepped into a whole new world"  (he kept
saying that when we were leaving to go home)

Seriously. He's the best!

On that note, this week was MUCH better than last week. I don't know
what happened to make last week so crummy, I'm just so grateful that
it's over and this week turned out pretty good!

The Christlike attribute that I've been working on is faith in Jesus
Christ. As I was studying the other day in Alma 32 and Preach My
Gospel, the Spirit told me something that has changed the way I grow
my faith. What He told me was the study of faith will not increase
your faith. Studying the Atonement, teachings, and life of Jesus
Christ will increase your faith. If you want faith in a specific
principle you study the principle. I wanted faith in Jesus Christ, but
I was studying about what faith was. That was really eye opening to me
and I'm making sure that everyday during my studies I study something
specifically about the Atonement. I've been rereading the talks
President gave us for Easter and that's been helping a lot. I have
felt my faith in Jesus Christ increase a lot, especially after the
tough week I just had. The promise that is given in talks from General
Conference are real. That is, studying the life of Jesus Christ will
increase your faith in Him.

The work in the wards is going slow but it is steady. Ed agreed to be
baptized on September 20th! THAT IS HUGE FOR THIS MAN! If that was a
miracle, the moments leading up to it were as well! All day we were
calling members to join us for this lesson and NO ONE WAS HOME or they
didn't answer their phones. About 30 minutes before the lesson I was
beginning to panic. We had called almost everyone we could think of
and no one was home. We said a prayer and asked for Heavenly Father's
help. We also told Him we would do what ever it took to have a member
at this lesson. We still didn't have any luck and 2 minutes before we
were going to go to Ed's house I felt that we needed to ask his
neighbors (who happen to be AWESOME members and one of his main
fellowshippers). We had already called them multiple times with no
answer or call backs. After knocking three times we walked away with
saddened hearts when the member opened the door!!! MIRACLE! Heavenly
Father truly does answer prayers. They were more than happy to come
with us. We had an AMAZING lesson with them and Ed felt that he can be
baptized on September 20th. Yes, it is far away but we hope to
continue working with him to build his faith. We know he can be
baptized sooner, but he doesn't. We're going to help him see that it
is possible :)

We had an awesome miracle happen Saturday morning!! We were cleaning
our church building with one of our wards. When we finished cleaning I
heard a loud voice coming from the foyer. Who was this person you
might ask? A nonmember who felt that God directed her to this place at
this time!! A member was also there with her. She told us about her
life and we got to teach her the Restoration. She gladly accepted the
invitation to be taught by the missionaries. We got her address and we
sent the referral to Sisters Hartley and Sparhawk (this lady lives in
their area) and they were so grateful! The referral was an answer to
their prayers. Miracles, everyone! Miracles!

So the cousin who is staying with the Lee family wants to be
baptized!!!!!!!!! I got a Facebook message from Brother Lee and he
told me that she wants to be baptized. We went over yesterday and
taught the family plus 2 additional nonmembers the Plan of Salvation.
We talked to Angelique (that's her name) and she said she wants to be
baptized!! BUT there is a "but" to this situation. Her family back
home will refuse to let her be baptized. Because she is a minor she'll
have to wait until she's 18 or when her family's hearts are softened
to give her permission to be baptized.

We performed the medley we composed yesterday. I kid you not when I
say angels were singing the songs; NOT US. It was amazing! It was
humbling to feel the Spirit working through us as we sang and as we
put the song together with Sister Abplanalp. We were able to share the
message the Lord needed the members to hear through music. That was a
very sacred and humbling moment of my mission.

I hope everyone is taking part in the worldwide indexing event! We
are!!! Remember to read the Book of Mormon and to pray everyday!
Here's to another GREAT week!

-Sister Dunn

Sunday, July 20, 2014

July 14, 2014


It's Monday. I'm grateful it's Monday. Last week was a little rough...
actually really rough. I'm grateful it's Monday. :)

Interviews with President Jenkins were on Wednesday. They went well,
as usual. ZTM on Thursday did not go well though... Instead of
motivating me to do better, I became unmotivated. I actually kinda
lost my "identity" for a little bit... A guest speaker came who was
supposed to motivate us, but I was not motivated. He was YELLING at us
ALL THE TIME about commitment. He was supposed to be building faith
but he was destroying mine. I nicknamed him "The Destroyer." I did not
feel the Spirit. I felt like He came into my mind and threw everything
that I held near and dear to my heart on the floor.  It was great to
be completely shaken and then have to give a training said no Sister
Dunn ever. I completely forgot myself, but not in the good way.
Luckily I got it back later that day, but it still really shook me. I
didn't enjoy ZTM.....

Okay, enough moping and groping. Here's a miracle! We're creating a
medley of hymns about our Savior's love to sing to our members in the
Stonebridge and Las Sendas wards, the only problem was we have no idea
how to compose music or anything to its likeness. All we know how to
do is sing. BUT! There is a wonderful member who does know how to do
that stuff and she has graciously offered to help us create the song.
As we were working together and putting things together, the Spirit
was so strong there. It was amazing to feel the Spirit give us ideas
how to transition. It just testified to me that this is something that
we need to do for the wards. They need the special spirit that comes
through music.

Ed is doing alright. He's going into a small depression. The chemicals
in his brain are not being nice to him. We're working hard to help him
be happy and feel the Spirit. The members are great by reaching out to
him and helping him meet his needs that we can't fill as missionaries.
We're working with him to set a baptism date of August 21st! We know
he can do it and he knows he can as well, he just needs to get out of
the rut he's in!

We found a new investigator in the Stonebridge ward! She's the cousin
of the Lewis family and we went over last week to teach the family and
we didn't know she was going to be there. During that first lesson we
didn't get through much, so when we asked when we could come back she
immediately piped up and said "tomorrow!" Naturally we did and had an
amazing lesson. By the end she was crying and she felt the Spirit. It
was so amazing! She's one that will be baptized. She will later if not

I am hoping and I am going to work hard to have a better week this
week! I sure don't like these "rough" weeks. Oh! One more thing! I had
an opportunity to do a little family history and I found some of my
family! It was SO COOL! That was a definite highlight! I love family
history so much! I wish people could just see and feel how amazing it
is and it is not hard! It's exhilarating!

It also RAINED this week. Yes, RAIN. Despite temperatures still being
above 100 degrees, the rain was so nice! After yet another rough day
yesterday, we took an opportunity to go outside after planning and
played in the rain. Being able to feel the rain and have fun was a
much needed tender mercy from the Lord. He helped us to be happy
and I love Him for that. Also, I'm grateful for the Book of Mormon.
After praying, I always turn there for peace and comfort. It's a fool
proof way to get the Spirit back in a jiffy! Here's to next week being
much, much, MUCH better!

-Sister Dunn

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

July 7, 2014


It's July and another year has come and gone... This week has been really good overall. Despite bug bites, Benadryl, and the 4th of July many good and wonderful things happened!

I'm very excited for interviews with President Jenkins this week.  Based on everything that I've seen, they sound like they're going to be good ones. :) I've been struggling to know what I need that we could talk about, but to be honest I'm doing great! I am excited to read the talk he posted on Facebook and to discuss it. Someone asked us the other day why we were so happy. I thought about it for half a second and told him that I was happy because I'm repenting! I see now the power and JOY that comes from repenting everyday. Even for the little things that may seem insignificant. I'm happy because of the gospel and my companions help me to live it more fully everyday! They help me learn and develop Christlike attributes and motivate me to try harder to live by them. I am happy. :) This is the happiest I've been in a long time and it's great!

I'm also working on my Personal Progress! It's exciting! To pass off one of the knowledge experiences we needed to lead music and what is a better place and time to do it than during Sacrament meeting! It was awesome to lead 40 people. I am not exaggerating when I say that almost everyone in the wards I serve in were gone. Even the entire bishopric in one of the wards was out of town! Not as intimidating I guess. :)

ED CAME TO CHURCH! He actually got work off and came! I wish you could see my face right now because I am SO HAPPY! He loved church! When we visited him later that evening he kept making comments that he could see himself going every week and learning and growing a lot. Up next is to get every Sunday off... We're praying extra hard with A LOT of faith so that can happen. We got to meet 3 out of the 4 daughters he has as well. They're super bright kids. I feel that as we continue to teach Ed that those girls will learn and feel something as well. Only 2 are baptism age, but they are going to be great potentials soon as well. I am just so excited for Ed! He is making leaps and bounds. He's progressing like crazy. If he could just get Sunday's off we would be baptizing this month. We'll keep praying for that miracle to happen.  Most of his court stuff has passed and he's a lot calmer now and in a state of mind where he can really begin to learn the gospel. I am so excited!

So Ed is in Las Sendas and we have a super promising investigator in Stonebridge named Jessica . We haven't been able to meet with her yet. Her family is giving her a hard time for taking the lessons and keeping her super busy. BUT! We've found her Facebook and she agreed to be taught online! Yay! Her family will be leaving at the end of the month, but until then she can get her fill of the gospel via Facebook. After almost 4 years, Stonebridge WILL have a baptism. I have the faith that this can happen. I hope I'm doing enough so that the Lord can facilitate this miracle through me.

We've started to help families in the wards start their family mission plans! It's exciting! We've come up with a general outline of how we introduce the plans to families and it's interesting to see reactions. Some are really excited and throw both feet into the pool while others are hesitant and only put in a toe to test the waters. What is awesome is to feel the Spirit work within us to help individuals and families create a plan that pushes them but allows them to still be themselves.We were at dinner with some of our ward missionaries and they kept saying how they couldn't do missionary work because the one time they went over to their neighbors they weren't home. They thought that was it... they had done enough. It was neat to feel the Spirit put words in my mouth and share my own personal experiences about feeling absolutely inadequate and not cutout to be a missionary. By the end the family was excited to go out, do their plans, and reach their goals. I'm really excited to see the growth in missionary activity that will happen in the wards.

Adventure for the week! I was on exchanges with Sister Pulley and we were teaching the most prepared man you have ever met. Well, during the lesson I got a bug bite. From what kind of bug, I do not know, but I soon found out that I was allergic to that bug and my foot began to swell like a balloon. I got through the night ok, but the next day was terrible! It was on fire and itching like crazy. We called Sister Jenkins and she advised me to take Benadryl. I did that and I was a lost cause 40 minutes later... it was funny but in a pathetic way...haha. I can't remember a thing from those days.. haha...

Also! We're putting together a medley and we've enlisted the help of members! Sister Abplanalp has been so amazing and offered her extraordinary musical talents to help us! She's the best! BUT WAIT THERE'S MORE! So, I am IN LOVE with "Lamb of God" by Rob Gardner. I can quote the music like no other. Well, this member is good friends with Rob... I don't know how or when, but I will be his friend........... We practice his music in the car ALL THE TIME! We each have our own parts. I'm Peter! Yeah!

On the 4th of July we couldn't go proselyting, so we went to a members house and sang "Lamb of God" till it hurt. We also went to a block party that one of our ward mission leaders was hosting and we took lots of photos in his photo booth! It was a great day. I am so grateful that I live in a country and in a time where I can freely practice living a religion. I cannot even begin to describe my gratitude for this country. Because if we did not have it we would not have the restored gospel. Even though things may seem bleak with all the wrong that is floating around us, we have the most right thing: the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I love it and I'm proud to be a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints!

-Sister Dunn

P.S. It's officially monsoon season! We had an awesome storm last week and got caught in a Haboob (AKA dust storm)!!!

Photo Booth!


Tuesday, July 1, 2014

June 30, 2014


Is June really almost over? It's amazing how fast time flies by. I can't believe how fast this past year has gone. This has been the best year of my entire life and I'm so grateful that I've been able to serve the Lord for that time.

ED IS PROGRESSING! This is a glorious time to be in the Las Sendas ward! I feel that we've been teaching him forever but it has only been a week and a half. I've never seen someone grow and progress so fast before and it's amazing! When we first met him he could not concentrate, he wouldn't pray, and he was too in the world that he did not recognize that the Lord was trying to help him. Now he will pray without being asked (and he also says the most sincere prayers. He sounds like he's actually talking with Heavenly Father and it's amazing), he concentrates on what we are saying and the feelings that he is receiving from the Spirit (he often teaches himself from the feelings he is getting from the Spirit), and now he is humble enough to leave his problems to the Lord and is recognizing the heavenly guidance he is receiving.

He is really growing and coming unto Christ and we can see it by his "fruits." He asking for help! We've been over twice in the past week to help him clean and organize. He wouldn't have done that but the Spirit is softening his heart and is being molded. We went over last night and read the Book of Mormon with him. We read Alma 32:21-27 and began the lesson by talking about faith, but as we continued teaching the Spirit taught us and Ed about repentance and he sees that he needs to repent daily of little things to have the Spirit with him and with that comes guidance from Heavenly Father. He's starting to recognize the Spirit and the blessings from living the gospel and doing the things that we ask him to do and it's amazing. He said he even feels that he needs to be baptized! He brought it up! We would have set a date but it didn't feel right. He's going through a lot of legal issues right now, but we're helping him to have the faith to ask for Sunday's off so he can go to church! Yay!

I feel so blessed that Heavenly Father is letting me be a part of this man's conversion to the Gospel and to Jesus Christ. PLUS! We went to the Visitors' Center on Saturday with him! When we went to the temple on Tuesday we received training afterward to learn more about the Visitors' Center and how we can utilize it more. The training we receiving on the Book of Mormon table helped us tremendously to teach him. Receiving this training after going to the temple is amazing. I finally feel like I know why we have the Visitors' Center and I have the knowledge to know how to use it the way the Lord intended it to be used.

Our wards are giving us service! We have been dying to do service because we don't have a lot to do and we feel that service will help us love the ward members. We've been super diligent in asking for service and the Lord is blessing us for our efforts! It's amazing!  We're going to paint and help organize papers and do dishes! I can't wait!

The wards are going to be getting better. Both wards during their 3rd hour meeting talked about family mission plans. The WML in Stonebridge gets what member missionary work is supposed to be like and it makes me happy :) Now, whenever we go and talk with members we are going to help them with their family mission plans and help them get it going.  I'm so excited! This is what I've been waiting for. I know that working with the members will be a bit slow, but through diligence, prayer, and faith we can help these member succeed and as a result help the wards succeed.

As you can probably tell, I am doing GREAT! I've never been as happy as I am right now. I love my companions so much. They help me, support me, encourage me, and love me. We work really well together. I'm working a lot on developing Christlike attributes this transfer and right now I'm working on gratitude. Yesterday's talks in church were all about gratitude and I felt that I received a greater understanding as to what it is and how I can develop it. One thing that really stood out to me was how powerful gratitude is. Gratitude is the catalyst to becoming like Christ. If you can learn to be grateful IN your circumstances then you will have faith that everything will work out, patience to endure, love for everyone AND the circumstances, diligence to receive more blessings, an understanding and love for exact obedience, and humility to recognize that the Lord can help you in any circumstance. I'm grateful that the Lord loves us enough that He gave us a way to succeed, learn, and grow. I love Him for that and so much more :)

Happy 4th of July weekend! Enjoy the fireworks and make July the BEST month ever!

-Sister Dunn

This photo is dedicated to all you "Johnny Lingo" fans. We found this and it proved to me that 10 cow wives really do exist!