I can't believe that my halfway mark is this week!! Where has the time gone?! Crazy! Anyway, you guessed it, Mom--I am living in Phoenixville, PA with my new companion Sister Hanson! I am serving in the Valley Forge 2nd Ward in the Valley Forge Stake. (Yes, the Valley Forge National or State park is in my area, and I'm about a half hour drive from Philly!) There are three sets of missionaries serving in this ward. One set of Spanish elders, one set of English elders, and then the sisters. This ward is huge compared to my last area where it was just a tiny little branch. I love it so far, though. Sister Hanson and I came out together, so she'll also hit her halfway mark this week too. Sister Hanson considers herself from Seattle,Washington although she was born in California and grew up in Virginia. She also loves Disney and had the opportunity to work or intern (I can't remember for sure which one) at Disney World! How cool is that! She is 21, but will turn 22 in April. She did a semester at BYU-Idaho and lived in Utah with her sister for a little while. So she's been around the country a little bit. We have a lot in common which is awesome! I love her and this area already!
|Sister Hanson and Sister Davis in Phoenixville, PA|
Phoenixville is fun place to live. We live in a little apartment (I had to carry my suitcases up about 50 stairs. That was... fun) above this coffee house called Steel City where they have bands playing on the weekend until roughly 11 or 12 at night. That was fun this weekend. Surprisingly, though, I was able to fall asleep pretty quick! We also live across the street from a bar called Molly Maguires where there were several crazy drunk people decked out in their St. Patty's Day gear this weekend already. I wonder what it will be like next weekend?! I really do love this area, though. It is a busy area compared to Pottsville, which is wonderful. We have had a few service opportunities this week, which is something I have really missed. I haven't done any service for awhile.
|Molly Maguire's in downtown Phoenixville, PA|
We are also teaching an African man from Nigeria named Oluwafemi, but he goes by Femi. His wife and two kids are still in Africa, but will hopefully be coming to the states in April! Femi is here as a computer programming student. Femi is super intelligent and is progressing really well! He calls our lessons "trainings" and he asks awesome and sometimes very deep questions to make sure he understands. (He says he is going to teach his wife and kids so that is why he wants to make sure he understands.) The sisters invited him to be baptized before, but he wasn't sure because he has been baptized before (in another church) and other churches have accepted his baptism. He understands the need for priesthood authority, though. Femi is so awesome! Oh and we teach him at the Jenson's home and you'll never guess who was Sister Jenson's grandpa... Gordon B. Hinckley! How awesome is that?!
Just in the few short days I have been here there have been quite a few miracles. Firstly, we contacted a Mormon.org referral named Joseph who actually referred himself and wanted to meet with us! We met with him on Saturday and he told us that God is telling him that Mormonism is what He wants him to do. Joseph has had Mormon friends in the past and he said he did the "Mormon" thing before. He was raised Catholic, but he is going through some life changing and challenging experiences in his life right now and he wants to build that relationship with God right now. We taught him part of the Restoration on Saturday and then he came to church in Sunday! We're going to see him again on Friday. Later on Saturday we met with Femi and had an awesome lesson on the gospel of Jesus Christ! He also told us that he had received his answer to be baptized the beginning of April! Sister Hanson and her previous companion had received the answer for him for April 6th! How cool is that?! (I also had my first Skyping lesson with Femi on Wednesday. It was so cool!)
Last night we had a member call us and tell us about an Austrian lady she ran into who had been looking for a church. They initially invited her over for dinner to talk about Austria because they were thinking about moving to Austria and so they wanted to talk to her about it. They talked about Austria for about 45 minutes, and then the rest of the time they talked about the church and they set up a time for us to come over on Tuesday to teach her more! See why I love this area? :)
It sounds like you've had quite the week! I hope you have another great week that isn't quite as stressful or busy! Thanks for everything! I love you all! :)