This is going to be a longer email than normal, only because I had
more adventures than normal! Here we go…
Well I can just put it out there very first… We went to Bermuda! You
probably think I am joking, but I am glad I am not. Bermuda is part of
our mission because the cheapest flights are out of JFK. President
flys there once a quarter with his wife as his companion, but she
couldn’t make it this time… So he asked us to come with him! You
would think that it is a miracle in and of itself for me to go to
Bermuda on my mission right? Well let me tell you about an even bigger
The Passport Miracle
So we got a text from President Calderwood asking us if we had our
passports. Elder Nugent and I did because we are both english
missionaries and we were supposed to bring them. Plus Elder Nugent
already served there before. Anyways, our third companion Elder
Lavelle didn’t have one, he is a spanish missionary. Uh oh. We found
this out about two weeks before we were supposed to leave! If anyone
has tried to apply for a passport you can understand how difficult it
is. We still pushed for it anyways. We found a passport agency online
that could reduce the time of arrival for your passport (for a pretty
penny of course). We got the go ahead to use it, so we started! Sister
Dibble in the office worked her magic and we almost had it all put
together. Then we realized that Elder Lavelle only had a copy of his
birth certificate, not his original. We had to call his mom in Idaho
to overnight it. She didn’t have a car, and the post office closed in
about 45 min where she lived. We frantically called her home teachers
out there and they rushed to pick her up. She miraculously got it
overnighted to New York! Yay! We got that original certificate, and
compiled the papers. We took those papers to get signed the proper way
for this particular agency. We barely made it there before it closed!
Luckily all went well, and we expedited it to the agency. You would
think it is over here. But oh no! We are about a week from leaving
when Elder Lavelle gets an email. Apparently his Puerto Rican birth
certificate was invalid because he didn’t obtain a new one after 2010.
Some dumb law… So we start to panic a little bit. We have to call
and order him a new birth certificate. Yikes. They said it would be
all done and get here by next Thursday (the day before we would
leave). That wouldn’t work! So he was losing a little hope, and I
looked at him and just told him to have faith. We prayed with a lot of
faith and guess what? It got shipped out on Monday! We were waiting
for it on Tuesday… And we kept waiting. Come to find out, they tried
to deliver it to our apartment but we weren’t home!? We needed it that
day or else we couldn’t make it. We (by we I mean President Calderwood
and Sister Dibble- haha) tracked down which UPS it was at and the three
of us headed there to pick it up. The truck was supposed to drop off
our package at 9pm. We got there early and the guy kept telling us to
wait. There ended up being TONS of people, and one guy was doing a
four man job. We were waiting for an hour and a half before I got a
little serious with him. He lied to my face multiple times, and I
called him out on it, finally he said there would be no way to get our
package tonight… Well right then someone walked out with our
package. Surprise, surprise! We woke up at 3:45am the next morning to
go into Manhattan. Elder Lavelle needed to get a passport through an
agency in Manhattan. It is normally very busy, so we had to be the
first in line. That was a cold wait. Once we got in we breezed through
it. Then on Thursday (the day before we flew out) we finally had his
passport in our hands! Oh. My. Gosh. The lesson from all of this?
President Calderwood sums it up best by saying, “No just means not
yet”. You can’t ever give up on anything, or anyone!
Wow that was long. If you are still reading this I commend you. Haha!
We had to wake up at 3:55am again on Friday to catch our flight! It
was weird being on an airplane again. I was amazed when we landed.
Bermuda is full of color. It is beautiful. The houses are pink, blue,
yellow, green, etc. The water is all different shades of blue. The
beach has pink sand. I loved the palm trees too!
The first night we had an open house for the community and showed Meet
the Mormons! We had a great turnout. 20-25 INVESTIGATORS came. That
movie really touched everyone there. I was serving food for the night.
It was great to be a part of their culture.
We are really focusing on He is the Gift! We showed it as a trailer to
the people before the main movie. It is also very well done. We spent
our time on the island really working. We knocked into a family of
five and shared the video with them, they were touched by it and
invited us back to learn more. We shared it with people on the bus or
at the bus stop. Any chance we get! We have teamed up with the North
mission, and we are trying to show the video to 100,000 people before
December is over!! It is a great finding tool.
On Saturday I was on a bus with Elder Chevalier! We were on exchanges.
I met Paul. He kind of shut me down at first, but it was a long bus
ride so I kept talking to him. He really opened up. We connected, and
he came to the second open house! He loved the movie and took a Book of
Mormon home with him. It was a humbling experience to be a part of. I
am not used to that type of response because I live in NYC. Oh and I
met another guy I already love. His name is Richard! He is so cool. He
is working on getting baptized.
So Sunday rolled around. It has been the best Sunday of my life so
far. We had a fast and testimony meeting that would have knocked your
socks off. I absolutely loved the members there. They have to do so
much to pay the bills (gas is $10 a gallon, milk is $5 half gallon,
etc) and yet they still are faithful. I could feel the spirit so
strongly. Then two of the sister missionaries that live there bore
their testimonies. Wow. Sister Franklin is a recent convert, and her
whole family basically shunned her for joining the church. Her brother
just got baptized this past Saturday and she was able to skype into
it! She brought s lot of tears in with her sweet testimony. Then
Sister Cook got up. I don’t know if I have met a more powerful
missionary. She had a light about her when she was up there. She
boldly proclaimed truth and spoke specifically to those investigators
there. I have never heard or seen a missionary so powerful as I did
when she bore her testimony.
THEN we were already over time by a lot, but PAUL stood up. First time
at church… Walks up to bear his testimony… Uh oh. You never really
know what they are going to say. He said that this morning he walked
in on someone using some serious drugs. Typically he would have
started using as well, but he avoided the temptation and read the Book
of Mormon. Yeah… That is real life. He said that after he read it,
it changed him. He had no more desire! Wow. After he sat down I put my
arm around him and challenged him to be baptized this month. He
accepted. God is SO good.
I taught the Gospel Principles class. There were like 12
investigators. We had such a fun time! We laughed and joked, and got
serious too. That is my favorite teaching experience so far on my
I am almost done! Promise!
We met another potential tracting. His name is Fleming! He was really
pure too. I am excited to see his progress.
We met with a young man who was going to go on a mission, but has
stopped coming to church. We were really bold with him and told him
that he needs this just as much as we need him out here. We watched
the mormon message from Elder Holland called, “Stay within the lines”.
We asked him what he though and he said, “I think I need to get some
suits” Hahahaha! It was awesome.
Overall this trip wasn’t a vacation, because we worked til we dropped,
but I loved every minute of it. It was so fulfilling. The branch
president and his wife are from Utah but are sacrificing to be here
for work and the church because they know this place needs help. I
love and respect them. This has been the best weekend of my life. I
have gained a strong testimony that God loves me. It came simply, but
it sure came. We saw the forecast before we came to the island and it
was all rain. I was a little bummed because I expected sunshine and
clear skies. I prayed fervently for at least one day of good weather.
I really prayed. It may seem silly to you, but it meant the world to
me. Right when we landed… The clouds cleared up. The sun was
brightly shining. It stayed that way all throughout our trip! Until
Sunday night. I saw clouds assembling and it felt like a rainstorm. We
had a last minute baptism schedules for the morning before we left,
and I prayed again to have clear skies. I didn’t expect much because
He already gave me so much… But He loves me enough to bless me with
another day of sunshine. God really is in the details of our lives.
Although I won’t always get what I pray for, I can be assured that He
is my Father and He loves me. He loves all of us, and that is where we
can find peace in this crazy world.
Came to Bermuda, and Loved it!