Thursday, February 23, 2017

Home, the Final Frontier

That is right friends and family, I have been home for over a month, almost a transfer now and it's been weird. Great, exciting, fun, terrifying, but mostly weird. I think I've accomplished all the things that are expected of someone when they return from their mission like get a job, register for classes, and see 90% of the movies that came out while you were gone. Star Wars: Rogue One was fantastic, by the way. I am doing regular member things now too like attending the temple weekly, having a calling, and working at the Gilbert temple. I am doing my best to keep the habits I learned on the mission like regular scripture study and daily prayer. So overall things are going well.
To any returning missionary the most common problem people have warned me about I can testify is a killer is being less busy then you are used to. I'll confess I was pretty excited to not have my day packed with things to do from 6:30 am to 10:30 pm but when you get back to the real world that throws you off pretty bad. Sure for the first week I was pretty busy catching up with family and movies and working on my homecoming talk but all of it caught up to me when all the extended family went home and I saw my days with nothing to do. Luckily I had pretty good friends who were there for me when I need someone besides family to spend time with, either physically or through digital communication. That was another thing too, was not having someone my age to talk to 24/7. It's been weird to adjust to that. But if there is anything I knew to take away from my mission, my trainer taught me "Embrace the Awkward".
I'd say another really important thing I have learned from my mission and used in my 6 weeks home is the power of personal revelation. Just like how everyone's mission is unique and different, so is everyone's return home. Since I have returned home I have had to make some pretty important decisions involving things like school and I truly don't know how I could make those decisions without God's influence. When things to tough I try to remember that God loves me as His daughter and so He wants to be involved in my life. He also sees the bigger picture and knows what path is best for me. I feel pretty blessed with that knowledge and I hope to continue to take my mission and apply it to my life. This has been a crazy transfer, but a good one and I know it can only get better.
I attached some photos of my time at the Boston Temple and my return home. I love you all and home you have had a good month!
Sister Wright
The Boston Temple!

Good to be home!

More Family!

At my mission homecoming with my first mission president and wife,
President and Sister Stoker.

Monday, January 16, 2017

"Final Vermobster squad rap album cover. This can be posted on Facebook"
Hello and Happy Monday friends and family (and Martin Luther King Jr. day for my American friends). This is the last time I will address you all in a mass email with my email and I truly don't know what to say. This has been one of the best weeks I had as a missionary and I can't wait to share it with you all. But I need to say thank you to everyone who has ever supported me through this journey be it a kind word through an email, a letter in the mail, a meal on a rough day, or text/call of encouragement (obviously from the people who I serve with out here). I would not have been able to make it these past eighteen and a half months in a place of the world and even country that I would have never put myself in. Before I came here I thought Northern New England seemed like the least warm, least exciting, and least fruitful place to serve a mission, and there were times out here when I would allow myself to believe that. But through the Atonement and love of Jesus Christ, which often made itself manifest through the loving charity and works of others I have come to make New Hampshire, Maine, and Vermont my home. It will always be another home for me because the memories I made here will always remind me of our loving Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ and how blessed I am to be a part of their church. There are many reasons I titled this email "Stronger", the first one being I really have no idea, it just felt right. Everything about this mission has made me stronger, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. My testimony of Jesus Christ and His restored church has been strengthened. I know whatever doesn't kill me makes me stronger, and sometimes I did feel like something was going to in some way kill me. But I am stronger, and just to wrap up my testimony of my mission I know that it is through the Atonement of Jesus Christ that we can all be made stronger. This mission is just one example of that. And I know things can keep getting better as I trust in Him and turn to Him.
But as for this last week, like I said Sister Clegg and I worked very hard to make it the best ever! We had so many miracles happen that made me so happy to stick through it til the end! Our friend we have been working with and trying to help progress came to church yesterday! She hadn't been my entire time here and I could tell it gave her the energy she had been telling us she has needed all week and even month. We were able to teach her twice this week with members present, once with an actual member there and another time where we had a member call in. The member shared her testimony of the Book of Mormon over the phone and it was SO POWERFUL. It was probably the most spiritual testimony I have ever heard shared and I was so glad we used what we had to get a member there creatively. 
We also had the stellar and spontaneous opportunity to have a FaceTime call with another friend (the one if you remember who was hoping to be baptized in Utah but he found out it wasn't that easy) while he was visiting a member's house 20 miles away from the church where we "taught" him. It was so cool! He has been around the church for 30 years and he now set a date to enter the waters of baptism in April and we are so excited we were able to set that with him through our iPads. He'll be going to church next week to so it will be official. Thanks technology! 
Wrap up miracle: We had a teaching opportunity come from a member who invited his friend and his family to learn and he said yes! His wife wasn't able to come Saturday but we were able to teach him a bit at the member's home and testify of the role of the Book of Mormon and how it will bless his family. He asked if we could meet again with his wife so we are really excited to see where this is going. He also closed the lesson with a prayer in Hebrew which was really cool.
We were also able to find someone who gave us total New England directions when we met him in one of the snow storms a few weeks ago. "It's a blue/gray house up the road with a big front yard". Oh yeah, we totally know where that is... We didn't but we hunted for it for twenty minutes just hiking up the road and somehow we ended up on this hill with apartment buildings. We asked the woman at the door if she knew anyone by the name he had given us and she said No but as we turned around we saw across the street and down the hill was this little gray/blue house with a big yard. So we ran (well, kinda, it was icy so we kinda face walked/slid) to this house and he answered the door and was just so glad we had taken the time to find him. We gave him a Book of Mormon and committed him to read the introduction by next week. Cool finding experience.
Non-proselyting things though: Monday Sister Clegg and I had steak and tots in honor of our love for Napoleon Dynamite. Wednesday I took my death picture. May I just say my district is the best because when I texted them Wednesday morning it was going to be Clue themed they all went with it (well, the Montpelier Elders more than others). Thursday I had my exit interview with President Blair. I love him and Sister Blair so much! And we had stake coordination in Essex so we had to take the last Vermobster Squad photo. Friday we helped at Days for Girls again. The Montpelier Elders also had their car hit last week so we were in a car share with them for a bit until they got their loaner car AKA SALLY FROM SACO. She was already at the mission office to be sold because she is over 50,000 miles BUT WOO SALLY made a cameo for my last week! Saturday we had seven lessons and ALL OF THEM FOLLOWED THROUGH. And yesterday was just a really good and saying good bye to the members here was hard but no tears!
In summary, this last week has been fantastic. These last eighteen and a half months have been great. I will love and miss New England, but you know what? Rogue One and 60 degree weather will be pretty nice too. I love and miss you all and pray you have A GREAT upcoming week!
Sister Wright
"Squad Calls"

"Jammie Studies"

"Steak and tot dinner"

"I always hold their dogs in the lessons"

"Us at Ashley's house"

"Breakfast Monster crepe at the Skinny Pancake"

"Brother Sypher let us borrow his leather jacket so we had to have a photo shoot"

"Death Photo"

"Who doesn't love the rainbow bat of Batman"

"Not as good death photo"

"Best death photo

"Official death photo"

 "Squad photo"

"Inside jokes"

"More inside jokes"

 "Sister Calya is a sweetie"

"Us at the garage where we got our oil changed"


"Sally in Vermont"

"Pretty scenery in East Montpelier"

"She's pretending she's floating weightlessly surrounded by tiny baby sea horses"

Brother Sypher was so sweet to send these pictures to Mom

"I get to be by Sister Daughety on Brother Sypher's board!"

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Vermobsters - January 9, 2017

At Mission Leadership Conference
Hello and Happy Monday friends and family! We meet again on a cold Vermont day. Sister Clegg and I had a chance to clean out the car this morning and we knew it was cold but we didn't know how cold so we started the car and Chad (our Ford Escape named after Chad Danforth from the High School Musical franchise as portrayed by Corbin Bleu) told us it was 7 going on 5 degrees outside. We weren't really shocked by cold it was but rather how ok we were with the cold. We were betting it was somewhere in the teens at least. Regardless, it will still be 50+ degrees warmer for me in 9 days. The milk we bought today expires before I do! This has been weird moments with Sister Wright. This last week has flown by but at the same time lasted forever so I am going to try to summarize the events as best I can.
Monday wasn't too exciting. We were supposed to see that family we found a few weeks ago but the mom hasn't been feeling well. We actually saw her Saturday at the hospital and are taking her flowers with the Relief Society President this evening. They still want to learn, typical Satan is just being a jerk and keeping us from seeing them so boo. We did have a lesson with our other investigator who has a baptismal date. We saw her twice this week and with the time we were supposed to teach the family we found a few weeks ago we found another family with four kids that we are still trying to pin down and teach this Wednesday so pray for that!
Tuesday after service at the food pantry we went to Burlington to spend the day with those sisters in their area. I was with Sister Lewis and she is so great! She is such a wonderful trainer for Sister Stegall and is probably the best teacher I know. We had a lesson with a less active part member family, and we found out from the elder's later the husband set a baptismal date! We had some good times and good finds in Burlington. We had lots of little finding miracles like we couldn't find this potential investigator and next thing I know Sister Lewis is walking to the neighbor's house which has two, literally two, front doors. We knock on one and the mom answers and says they are about to have dinner but we were still able to get her a copy of the Book of Mormon and commit her to read it! We also got into the home of a lady the sister's kept running into everywhere and invite her to church on Sunday.
The coolest thing in Burlington happened on Wednesday at District Meeting in Essex when I ran into the kid I was co-representative of my seminary class with senior year at Perry. Turns out his family moved to Vermont and he was on a mini-mission with the Burlington elders. So that was a crazy district meeting. Wednesday we also went down to THE LAND OF MY INHERITANCE AKA MANCHESTER jk we spent the night in Canterbury MY FIRST EXCHANGE AND STL HOME but we went down in the "Mystery Machine" with the Essex and Montpelier elders aka the Squad. We don't have squad goals because we are THE Squad. Squadpelier. Or the Vermobsters. I won't tell you too many details about what happened the rest of Wednesday and Thursday because what happens at MLC stays at MLC but I will tell you there was a break in to an apartment, Sister Wright buying everyone Taco Bell at the Holy KFC in Lebanon, NH, and a new album of inside jokes to enjoy. At least, that's a summary of the car ride. At MLC we learned how to juggle. Literally, juggle. Like with balls at clown school. We also had someone from the MTC tell us some things that are going to be announced at the worldwide missionary broadcast January 25th *loud whisper* It's a guy from the District 3. Ok, I'll tell you, it was Brother Jolley who is from Burlington/Barre Vermont so he came to train us on somethings that are going to change soon for missionary. But again, what happens at MLC stays at MLC. And President taught us to metaphorically smoke a pipe. And then Sister Blair told us to not smoke anything from any pipe ever. To summarize, I loved MLC. Everyone warned me to not get too stressed out because it was my first one and they say that tends to be really rough but I loved it! Maybe it was because there was no pressure because I leave like really soon. It actually makes me sad that I am missing out on all these new things. But AH I really can't explain how fun that was.
I guess flash forward to Friday which was mostly weekly planning and teaching the people aforementioned and dinner with Brother Sypher. Saturday was mostly Skype meetings in response to the changes made at MLC. And seeing people in Barre. Did I mentioned Barre is pronounced "Barry"? A member took us to dinner at a place called Ladder One, a firehouse grill that was pretty good. And Sunday was church, more meetings, and a tiny smidgen of finding. We are working on finding people in Montpelier because right now everyone is Northfield which isn't the best for our miles but we make do. Pray we will find people nearby!
But that was my week and I enjoyed it a lot. Good stuff is going on in Montpelier and I am so lucky to be a part of it. I love and miss you all and can't wait (for a lot of you) to see you soon! Have a good week!

Sister Wright
"Sister Lewis and me after exchanges"

"The kid from my seminary in AZ"

"Too swag"

"Actual swag courtesy Sister Adams from the office. Except Elder Barrett, he's blinking"

"Trying to be swag"

"Official album cover"

"Vermobsters. We may have been breaking a law at this point..."

"Because we haven't done selfie a day for like weeks"

"With Brother Syper"

"Casually 0 degrees going to church"