Saturday, December 17, 2016

My Welsh Heart :)

Dearest faithful readers,

      What a week to be had! Wow. I am amazed that Sister Berrett and I are still standing after this past week. We have been running on fumes, but it has been great! We had 2 zone meetings and my first exchange. We gave our first trainings together as a companionship and they went beautifully. So fun to be with someone that you just click with. 
 My beautiful Anne. Is this photo just the cutest?? 

Cardiff & Merthyr Zone meetings. LOVE these missionaries! 

      We gave a training in Cardiff about the question "Are you the missionary that your mother thinks you are?" It was such a fun topic to plan a training around. We raised a lot of questions and had the missionaries thinking about the qualities that their mothers assume we have as missionaries; hard working, obedient, honest, faithful, etc. We talked about how we can achieve these qualities and strengthen our testimonies at the same time. It was great! 

      My first exchange was with Sister Wadsworth (former companion) in Caerphilly! I ended up seeing nearly all of my favourite members while there in a space of 24 hours and nearly all of them were not planned. We went tracting with Sue, Blodwen remembered me, had dinner with Andrea & Lowri, coordination with Brother Holman, enjoyed a hot cocoa at the Wilkinson's, surprised Anthony, saw Anne getting off the bus in town, ran into a former investigator, Deb took us out for a burger on Caerphilly mountain, saw Deb & Phil a few minutes before leaving exchanges, and was still able to have an incredibly successful exchange. The miracles that were flowing absolutely took me by surprise. I was so grateful. 
Andrea & Lowri...❤

 Just a cute family photograph of my first exchange in Caerphilly. 

      It was amazing to be back in my greenie area and to see how it had changed, but also how it stayed the same. It was fun to be with Sister W and to see how we had changed and progressed as well. I know that I am absolutely meant to be back here in Wales. I know that I have a Welsh heart (it has Jones written on it). I love this land and the people that reside here. I AM HOME.
My dearest Deb and I on a sleigh ride. 

Lunch w/ the Williams

      I love the sisters that we are working with. We have 5 teams and they are all wonderful! South Africa x2, Zimbabwe, Australia, Thailand, Arizona, and Utah. So fun! Before exchanges, Sister Berrett and I are writing and recording each team their very own song. I know, right? I'll send a few home so that you can hear em! 

      On Thursday we went to follow up with a less-active member and found that she didn't live there, BUT her mom did! Turns out that she was a member, not on our records, but definitely a member! She said that she still reads the Book of Mormon, keeps the word of wisdom, and tells people about her faith. When she told us this, I took a deep breath and just said "So, what's keeping you from coming to church?" Ahhhh. Long story short she ended up inviting us in, we taught her a lesson, and then she invited us back! Woot! We are excited to work with Pam this week.

      I have been studying the last few days of Jesus Christ's life this past week and have been filled with an overwhelming amount of gratitude for Him. He knew that Judas and Peter would betray Him, but He still loved them and eventually forgave them. What an incredible example of ultimate forgiveness. I am so grateful that I can be forgiven for my sins and be freed from those things that with hold me from being happy. What a perfect time of year to be grateful for our Saviour and the life that he has given to us! 
District breakfast.

      We had a lot of things going on this week and it was quite exhausting, but we were still able to find 30 potential investigators! I know that miracles/baptisms don't just happen in certain areas, but in fact, they can happen anywhere...all according to our faith! 

      I am continuing to love the absolute craziness of my mission! Sister Berrett and I have found the balance of fun and hard work, which indeed keeps us going. The Christmas spirit is thick in the air and people's hearts are open to the word. No better place to be, than here in Wales. 
        Bless you all and have a beautiful week! 

Oddi wrth,

Sister Sydney Jones

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