Monday, November 20, 2017

Mission Tour!


The beginning of last week we had Elder Keetch of the 70 and his wife touring the mission! Monday night we had an MLC at the mission office. The multizone in the North half of the mission was just ending, so I got to see so many people, including Hermana Flores!!! It was fun to catch up and see a lot of people I haven't seen in awhile. We ate some MLC pizza and then had a training by President and Sister Hammon and then by Elder Keetch. The Hammons spoke about spiritual gifts- really good! And with Elder Keetch we basically had a discussion on the strengths and weaknesses of the mission and what we can do as leaders to help the mission overcome those weaknesses and help that no other missionaries in the mission will fall into those weaknesses. I won't explain it all in detail for times sake, but he gave this analogy of a man who sees a whole in a sidewalk and falls in multiple days in a row, sometimes because he doesn't care and sometimes even when he tried to avoid it. Eventually he finds another sidewalk to walk down, and finally he goes back and repairs the hole so nobody else will ever fall in again. He said we need to be the ones repairing the holes we have fallen in so the missionaries we serve won't fall in again. 
South Half of the CRM!!! With Elder & Sister Keetch

Then Tuesday we had the multizone with the south half of the mission (the better half, cough cough). It was fun again to see a lot of people I haven't seen in a long time- like Hermana Chandler (in her last transfer). So basically I saw the whole mission in 2 days. Pretty fun! Wow we talked about a lot of stuff! One thing I"ll share is from Elder Keetch. He served in Germany on his mission and only had 1 baptism. He lost contact with this man and always assumed he fell out of activity in the church. The day Elder Keetch was sustained as a member of the 70, the next talk in conference was by Elder Anderson (I'm pretty sure) and he started telling a story of 2 couples. One of those couples was Elder Keetch's baptism and his wife. They did not fall out of activity. They ended moving to the Ivory Coast (where there weren't even missionaries there yet) and starting a sunday school class w/ this other couple. This couple lived there and basically helped started the church there and just completed a mission serving in the temple. Elder Keetch told us to never underestimate the work we are doing and the influence it'll have in future generations. We may not be able to see or hear about the effects of our service, but they still exist. 
MLC w/ Elder and Sister Keetch

This week we met w/ one of our investigators, Herminia. We read the testimony of Joseph Smith and she loved it! She was super impressed by his comments and experience. She wants to be baptized and already has a testimony of Joseph SMith and the BOok of Mormon!
We gave some service this week at this train museum/kid place. We moved old bails of hay and swept up the old hay. It is a pretty interesting little place!
We found this new investigator, Rafael. At first he seemed pretty normal, we didn't have much time to meet with him. But he gave the closing prayer and gave thanks that we came by and he really wants to learn with us he said!
We also met w/ a less active lady. The hermanas have met w/ her a few times before, but this time she just completely opened up to us. She said she has been out of work for 8ish years now and has lost hope of ever getting a job again. She was praying and telling God about this fear, when we knocked on her door. We helped encourage her and lift her up and we talked about service. She says she really just wants a job where she can serve others, so we told her she should do community service while she keeps looking for a job. She loved the idea! It was a really cool lesson!
Lol we went to open an investigator's gate, but it was like impossible to open. I kept trying, and trying- and then suddenly it like flung right up and I let out a little scream in surprise and almost fell down. Haha :)

So met w/ the son/husband of the recent convert family again! It is amazing! Last week he had already planned to start this week to stop doing drugs, etc. He should be starting today. We haven't even taught the Word of Wisdom yet! We are going to try and see him everyday to support him! It is awesome! We wanted to bring an hermano with us this week who has had some of these same issues in the past, but we couldn't think of anyone. Then yesterday sunday school was about the WOW and the hermano teaching it has some majors issues with it in the past- AKA we found our teamup!
We started teaching the niece of that family last night! She is 8 and already knows quite a bit!

Our Ward list is a bit of a mess. A lot of people are less active, or at least we just don't know them. We are finding a lot of people have moved. So we are trying to clean up the ward list and get to know all the members in our area. It is a big project, but it will hlep us and the ward a lot! THe ward is focusing on retaining recent converts and bringing back less actives. So this will be a lot of our work, but of course we'll keep working with investigators as well.

I had my first 2 exchanges this week w/ the other Hermanas in our ward. In one we gave some service at a food bank unloading frozen turkeys and putting them in a freezer. We had a cool experience that night! A less active daughter of a sweet, older hermana in our ward called us saying she had a bad day and didn't know who else to call. Within the past year, this hermana has drifted very far away from the gospel in her lifestyle, but still has a testimony. We told her we were already on our way over. When we arrived to her house, she broke down crying and my comp comforted her and listened to her. This hermana explained to us how she was tired of her lifestyle, but also tired of trying to come back to the church but falling. She received a letter from the Corona MidSingle Adult ward (a super new/tiny ward recently started) and felt like the ward could really use her help. Receiving that letter and picture of Christ really touched her and she kept thinking about it. It was amazing to watch my comp comfort her, lift her up, motivate her, and literally be a shoulder to cry on. At the end of our visit this hermana said she would like to receive a priesthood blessing and have an interview with the bishop. 

Lol sorry I copied that from my email to President Hammon #savetime
The next day w/ the other hermana we had a lesson w/ one of our investigators- except she was caring for an older lady, Juanita, who has dementia. Basically we couldn't teach b/c this lady loved to talk, but none of it made sense. But we were nice to her and listened. Also that day we were seeking- we tried talking to this guy who was working on his car but he wouldn't talk to us. Then we kept walking a saw this dead dog. We made sure it was dead, but then the guy we just tried to talk to starting yelling out "Is anyone there? hello! somebody?" So we went back and tried to talk to him. But it turns out he was yelling at somebody in his house and then he starting cussing. NICE! (lol not). But in that time a man in the next house came out. He asked if the dog was ours and we starting talk to him. Turns out he is from Mexico and has been taught by missionaries before! he said we could come back a different day.
Lol we took this at the parking lot of the library because we keep forgetting to take a pic together

Tonight we are making arepas w/ a recent convert family! #prosofhavingaColumbiancomp Tomorrow we have interviews w/ President. Thursday I'm not 100% sure what we are doing, but we are having dinner w/ all the missionaries in the ward w/ Hna Gonzalez (super cute) and we'll have a zone activity. Also sometime in there 2 more exchanges w/ some English sisters. Crazy!

That's about it!
Hermana Schooff

Monday, November 13, 2017

Perris (or Paris?)


It was a good first week here in Perris!
I live with 3 other sisters- all of the spanish sisters here in the stake! It is a lot of fun! I've never lived with more people than my companion before, but I'm enjoying it! I didn't really know the other sisters I live with, but am getting to know them.
Here we don't drive a corrola or a chevy cruze, etc. We drive a Nissan Rogue! fancy! The area can get pretty bumpy, so a lot of missionaries here have higher up cars. So far I'm enjoying it!
There are a good amount of Hispanics here, yay!
It is a huge area! We cover west of the 215. The elders here are on bike, so their area is tiny, so between 2 companionships of sisters, we have a large area. A lot of it is kind of spaced out. There are some fancier neighborhoods, a lot of dirt road, etc. A lot of like little pieces of some of my old areas- a little old folks area, some like "downtown" lake elsinore, mira loma farm stuff, etc. But I'm trying to learn the area.
Hermana Buitrago is super cute! Sorry we forgot to take pictures this week! She is sweet, loving, and super wise. She is 21 and has been out for about 5-6 months. 
We are super close to Murrieta, which is weird because my brother served there. 
We are also super close to Hemet and Lake Elsinore! Now 3/4 of my areas connect #southhalfofthemission

Good news about Alberto! So last Sunday in Jurupa, President Hammon told us Alberto said he would do the thing he has to do before he can be baptized. And he did it! On wednesdayAlberto went back to Guadalajara to be with his family. He'll come back here probably in April. So we have to wait a little bit to get the good to go for his baptism, but once we get it President Hammon will call Alberto's new bishop and see what happens. He might get baptized in Mexico or maybe wait until April, I'm not really sure. But it was great news!!! He is such a good man! I'm excited to find new Albertos here. So Hermana Flores gave me a little more info. Like our last 2 weeks with Alberto he got sick and couldn't work. But it turns out he used that time to read in the Book of Mormon. Last week he was in Ether. Wow! It looks like that it was reading the Book of Mormon that played a large role in him being willing to do what he had to do to be baptized. The power of the Book of Mormon, folks! :)
Do you remember Carlos? From Hemet? Hermana Chandler and I are trying to get back in contact with him, because he should be able to be baptized now. His cousin lives in an English ward in Hemet, so the elders there are helping us get in contact with him. It has been a long process, but hopefully it all works out and we get in contact with him again.

So here are some things that happened this week:
The english sisters "passed off" an investigator of theirs to us because she understands Spanish better. She is from Peru and is very nice and lives in a Senior trailer park (hemet days). But in the end we think she isn't quite all there enough anymore. It was kind of a weird experience. But a nice lady, nevertheless!
Miracle! So there is a recent convert family here! One of the adult sons was less active, but a few months ago the hermanas reactivated him and baptized some of his family, including his sister-in-law. The brother, or the sister-in-laws husband was never interested and would never sit down in a lesson. But this thursday the recent convert sister-in-law called us saying her husband wanted to listen to the lessons! wow! So we've taught him twice! He has a very unique situation, but he has a lot of potential! He even came to sacrament meeting sunday- for the first time! His daughters were so excited to see him sit down with us and come to church. too cute. The little daughter said a prayer the other night and was just so grateful and excited her father was listening to the lessons and would come to church. We need to go slowly with him, because he doesn't have a lot of religious beliefs/background and a lot of struggles. But we are excited to work with him and continue working with the family (who are going to do baptisms for the dead this weekend for the first time!)
Every friday we have dinner w/ Hermana Gonzalez or "abuelita". She is super cute! She wants to feed all her missionaries on thanksgiving, christmas eve, and christmas! Too cute!!! I think she is like every missionary's favorite.
Friday was had a DL/STL meeting in Riverside. It was a lot of fun to see elders I haven't seen in a long time! Good trainings on leadership skills, how to hold exchanges, and becoming disciple of Christ. 

Lol this week we contacted this guy who soon after told us to come closer on his property. We explained that sometimes people don't like it when we come up closer and get scared. Afterwards he was like" Scared? of you two? how could anyone be scared to 2 tiny girls like you two? - Idk brother.... I'm not sure....

Well I think that is about it! I have my first 2 exchanges this week w/ the other spanish sisters! It should be fun!
Today and tomorrow we have Elder Keetch of the 70 in the mission! Tonight we have an MLC with him and tomorrow we have a multizone conference with the whole south half of the mission- should be good!!

Hermana Schooff

Forgot to take pictures this week, so the only ones I have are from the Hammon's blog from the DL/STL meeting this week:

Monday, November 6, 2017


Hermana Silva gave us these jackets
Hola todos!!!

The library is kind of busy today so we'll see if I get kicked off...

Ok let us just start with transfers! I am leaving Jurupa and going to.... MENIFEE!! Technically my area with be more of Perris (lol Paris, nope, Perris).
My new companion is Hna Buitrago. She is from Columbia and is learning English. She has been out for about 6 months (mas o menos). 
I also got called to be a Sister Training Leader (STL). 
So lots of changes! I'll head there this afternoon!
The ward is el barrio Tres Lagos. There are currently 3 companionships serving in that ward, 2 sisters, 1 elders. So that'll be fun!

ok so what happened this week:
On Monday we got some Thai food for lunch (too good, Hna Flores is a fan!) and as we were walking in, I saw a former investigator of Hna Alvey and I- Jimmy!! He did end up going to 2 men's home to help him stop drinking and he said he was doing well and thanked us for our help! Crazy just to run into him almost 3 months later! Pero, no coincidences!
car pics #lotsoftraffic #vanburen #onestreettogoovertheriver

This week we found a new family while seeking with faith! (I love that neighborhood- lots of success there!) We were walking and we heard noises coming from this one street (meaning people outside), but I felt prompted to try the next street down. While walking down to the next street we found the mother of this family sitting on her steps (almost scared us because at first we didn't see her) and she let us teach her and her 2 teenagers! They are from TJ and the kids are learning english. Super cool though! The 14 year old daughter is super interested and when we gave them a Book of Mormon, we didnt really have time to explain it, but she snatched it right away! They said they wanted to come to church, but in the end we didn't see them there (it was stake conference this weekend). But they have a ton of potential!! Awesome!!

On Halloween we had DDM and found that family. Then we grabbed some tacos really quick for dinner (we were low on miles) and went to our zone activity. Both zones in the stake were together and we watched The Other Side of Heaven. Good movie- different watching it as a missionary. By the end it was time to go home!
Speaking of tacos, we've had a lot of really reallly really good fish tacos lately. Too good, mis amigos. too good.

 Wednesday I got a call from the APs inviting me to attend MLC (missionary leadership council). Since it is the last week of the transfer, but also MLC (first thursday of every month), they invite people who will be getting a call to serve in MLC. So Hna Grover and I were the sisters invited, and a lot of elders from my incoming group were also there!
MLC with part of the incoming group!

MLC was a lot of fun! I have served with a lot of the missionaries there. The Hammons are amazing and full of love and inspiration and motivation. We talked a lot about leadership skills and becoming a spiritual leader. And of course we had MLC pizza, salad, and brownies.
An Hermana serving in Hemet told me she is teaching a former family I taught- the Hernandez family! We had to pause them because he worked on sundays and they got really sick for a long time. But now his work schedule has changed and they have gone to church and are progressing towards baptism on Dec. 3! Wow! Milagros!

Alberto! He started getting sick again, but we taught him about temples and family history work! He says he has a goal to go to the temple once he is ready. He is likely returning to Mexico this week. He went to stake conference this weekend with us! He seemed to really enjoy the talks- they were perfect for him! Afterwards he and President Hammon talked for a good bit. Alberto told him he will do the thing he has to do so he can be ready to be baptized! Hopefully he does it! He might be in Mexico by the time he can be baptized, but in the end it really doesnt matter. I'm so glad for the time I had to meet and teach Alberto. Truly a life changing experience!!
Alberto!!! and Pasa (el perrito)

Bien chistoso

This week Hermana Flores was sick a decent bit, so we had some rest time for her. Pobrecita!
For service at the old folks home, we played volleyball w/ balloons and talked to them. The old folks are funny people. I was talking to one who only speaks Spanish, but she wanted to talk to the English elders so I was translating. It was a little interesting, because a lot of the old folks repeat themselves. like a lot.
One girl in our ward leaves on her mission in like a week, so she had her farewell party! Houston Texas Spanish Speaking!
the dominguez girls!

Do you know what Mazapan is? It is so good, especially the Mazapan flavor of La Michoacana ice cream (if you ever go to So Cali, you need to go to a La Michoacana. NEED).

Stake Conference was really good! Elder Acosta of the 70 came! Saturday evening there was a choir from our ward that we participated in. President and SIster Hammon spoke too! Then Sunday early morning Elder Acosta wanted to meet with just the Spanish ward and we did a Q&A session. He and his wife are such loving, spiritual people! And then we had the normal session. On sunday Alberto and his brother-in-law and kids we are teaching all came! yay!
A lot of talks on the rising generation, parenting, and the Book of Mormon. Elder Acosta compared the BoM to a flashlight. If you are in a dark room, why wouldn't you use the flashlight if you have one? Do you want to stub your toe? (I added that last part).
One cool thing they did Saturday night was Elder Acosta pulled up a RM. He talked about how the 3 most important things you can do in your life are: baptism, serving a mission, and temple marriage. He talked about it this RM has 5 kids and raises them well, then teach 5 kids will make the same important 3 steps and have 5 of their own kids. He did that going down like 4 or 5 generations, making the adults in the audience stand up for each generation. BY like the 4th generation, everyone was standing up. Crazy to think the things we are doing now (or not doing) can potentially affect many generations from now!

That's basically it from this week! 

I'm sad to leave the De Anza ward, but I can tell it is time. There are so many amazing members here. I've been able to teach many awesome people too. Last night I called and told Chaba bye (we just stopped teaching him). There are truly no coincidences. I believe he and I will be friends forever. Meeting and teaching Alberto was like a one in a lifetime experience. Being with Hna Flores for 2 more transfers here was no mistake or coincidence. A lot of fun and growth happened here. Truly I am not the same missionary as I was when I came into the De Anza ward, let alone just 1 transfer ago.
Hermana Amaya


I'm excited for what lies ahead of me in Menifee though! Most likely this will be my last area :( but I am ready to go out there and do all I can!

Hope all is going well for everyone!
Happy November!

Hermana Schooff

Monday, October 30, 2017

Happy Halloween


This past week was a bit crazy! But for weird reasons I guess... I'll just jump right in!
FYI this email might be sent in two depending on if the computer will kick me off or add time.

We can start with Alberto.
He didn't go to Mexico! Most likely he'll go back at the end of November. So luckily we have more time with him!
So last week I said we have to wait for something before he can get baptized. And part of that something requires a little bit of work on his part. But it brings him a lot of pain and he told us he doesn't understand why he has to do this thing and doesn't want to. It is hard to explain since I can't really give details. But he told us so far he feels like he has been rejected and that God is telling him to wait before he does this thing so he can be baptized. We've tried to explain to him that he isn't being rejected, just there is one more step to do. We had the bishop in our ward go over and talk to him (they've been friends for years) and so he is working with us. There is so much potential in Alberto! We don't want to push him too hard, so right now we are focusing on helping him strengthen his testimony (because he has one!) and have spiritual experiences. He still loves meeting with us and reading in the Book of Mormon. 
We saw him Saturday night and had the funniest conversation with him! He and Hermana Flores realized I've never been to a quincinera before so Alberto gave me the run down with impressions of everyone: the father, abuela, the girl herself, etc. He did how the girl walks, how she dances with her dress, the speeches the family gives, etc. I wish I had a video because it was the funniest thing of my life so far!

We have stake conference this weekend and Elder Acosta of the 70 will be coming! He has asked for there to be a Spanish choir Saturday PM so we are singing with our ward!!! Also he's having a special meeting early Sunday morning for just our ward- all in Spanish (you know it!) !
There was a fire this week! On tuesday we were trying to drive down to our church building but the road was blocked (there is one road that will take you over the river. And they closed it because of the fire). So we had to turn around and go to the stake center and go to our district meeting with the other zone. Crazy! That was the first fire I saw pretty close up!
With the fire came the HEAT!!! Wow! We were back in the 100's again! I didn't think I'd see that again! It got real hot, let me tell you. I haven't felt that hot since like June in Lake Elsinore!! But it seems to be cooling off now (yay!)

On Saturday I went to Hermano Aguilar's baptism!!! Yay!!!! Sadly we got there a little late, so I missed taking pictures with him in the jumpsuit and everything. But I was so glad I could go! It was great to see a lot of the members from the El Cariso ward! It is such a cute and loving ward!! :) Hermano seemed so happy and all of his family too! The family and misioneras sang "Soy un Hijo de Dios". It was great to be there and see the Aguilar family. They are planning on going to the temple in 1 year!!!
Hermano Aguilar's baptism!!!

The Aguilar family! To be sealed next year :)

This past week I hit one year in the field! I remember my first week in Hemet- Ward halloween party, zone activity, etc. Crazy that was one year ago and here we go again entering the holiday season!

We had exchanges this week! I spent 2 days in the English sister's area (they changed how exchanges work. Now we only have 1 STL over us and so we exchange 2 days so both companions are with the STL). Being in English land was super weird. It is way different and I didn't feel 100% comfortable. It is weird how different it is, haha! I can't explain! We got to teach an investigator of theirs who got baptized yesterday and help out in a lunch for a funeral too.

Our ward and an english ward had a combined trunk or treat Saturday night! With chilli (not chile) and corn bread and then the trunk or treat! We had a returning less active family come! And Sister Burrola (old homeshare) was there all decked out like the Adam's family!
De Anza missionaries- trunk or treat!

Hno y Hna Ganuza!! Hno was singing (lol I don't remember what the name of the song is) "the lion sleep tonight" (?)

Trunk or treat!

One thing I think it super cute is when investigators pray for our families! Cute!

I read President Eyring's talk from April 2017 Priesthood session! I really liked this part:
        The Lord’s work is not just to solve problems; it is to build people. So as you walk with Him in priesthood service, you may find that sometimes what seems like the most efficient solution is not the Lord’s preferred solution because it does not allow people to grow. If you listen, He will teach you His ways. Remember that God’s work and glory is not simply to run an effective organization; it is “to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man” (Moses 1:39). This is, after all, why He gives His priesthood authority to flawed mortals like you and me and invites us to participate in His work. Our progress is His work!

That's about it for this week! We hiked mount rubidoux this morning, halloween activity tomorrow, stake conference this weekend, and transfer calls!

We hiked Mount Rubidoux!! (but behind us is Riverside, not Rubidoux)
from the street

Mount Rubidoux

The sun started to come out!

Hermana Schooff