Monday, December 30, 2013

I'llll be homeeeee next Christmas . . . youuuu can couuuunt on meeee. Unless I decide to stay in Washington.

Jordyn’s weekly email 
December 30, 2013
Puyallup, Washington 
Companion: Sister Dudek 


Oh man, it seriously doesn't feel like Christmas was this last week at all! I hope everyone had a great one, mine was definitely my favorite Christmas yet! (no offense to the family)

Christmas eve we had district meeting, visited people all day, and then had dinner with the Bushnell's. After we visited people/delivered cookies before heading over to the Murray's to say hi. We ended up getting into an intense game of apples to apples. Which I was super close to winning before Gavin ended up snatching the last green card before I could get my fifth.

bummer deal.

But that's okay. Gavin and I are still bffs

So on Christmas we got invited to brunch at the Whittingslow's and we got the most delicious breakfast I have ever had in my life! I may come back next year just to eat sister whittingslow's food. While we were there we got to say hi to their son who is on a mission (over skype), and then watch their daughter open her call. She's going to San Diego! Woooo!

Fun fact! On my mission I have now seen:
-2 farewells
-1 homecoming
-1 call opening

The homecoming was definitely the weirdest/most uncomfortable one, so we won't talk about that. (p.s. the guy that came home is married now. his homecoming was in october.)

After brunch we went and saw one of our investigators, visited some other people, and then went back to the Bushnell's and skyped. Most of the people who read this email know what happened then, so we'll fastforward to after that.

We went to go visit a less-active family and then as soon as we got there our bishop called us and said that dinner was ready so we told the family that we would be back in a few hours to visit them and then rushed off to dinner. Which was one of the funniest dinners of my life!

They got to talk about seeing their son on skype, we talked about what happened in our skypes, and then Bishop Critchfield told a bunch of mission stories about putting laxatives in brownies, painting rabbits pink, knocking in the snow, and picking on sisters in the zone.

Elders never change. But we did get some good ideas of what we can do with the animal problem outside of our apartment . . . more details to come.

Their family gave us the best Christmas present ever!!! (after the BYU stuff and the calendar obviously) We got flashlights to see where we're going and for the creepy streets where there aren't any streetlamps, and then a golf ball to knock on doors for when it's freezing outside.

Brilliant!

After the Critchfield's we tried to visit some more people before going back to the Zavalas and seeing how their Christmas went. I was able to redeem myself for apples to apples by beating Matthew in ping-pong, Sister Zavala made us cookies, and then we shared 1 Nephi 11 about the birth of Christ. It was really interesting to have the feeling in the house go from silly and goofy to as soon as I started reading from the book of mormon, the whole feeling in the house changed, and the spirit was there instantly. That book is definitely a powerful one.

Thursday we taught brother jennings,

Friday I got my future husband picked out for me (again),

Saturday I played at a baptism for one of the members sons,

and Sunday Sister Dudek and I spoke in sacrament meeting. Ahhhhh!
It went fine though. The best part of being mormon is that people will come up to you and tell you how much they loved what you did even if you did horrible. That and the spirit really can touch people's hearts, but mostly the first one.

So we survived speaking, and then hung out at the church for two extra hours while brother jennings got interviewed. He passed, so we're officially clear for Tuesday at 8:30!

Starting 2014 off right!

p.s. I can't believe it's almost 2014

We had our last lesson with brother jennings last night and went over the plan of salvation, and he's super excited for Tuesday. I absolutely LOVE the gospel of Jesus Christ, because it creates change. We focus a lot on change at this time of year, and we've been pondering a lot about lasting change. What's they key to keeping a resolution? How can you make it last? The key, is to let the Savior help you. There is nothing and no one too lost, too least, or too broken for him to fix.

Love you all! Hope you have a wonderful New Year!

Love,
Sister VerHoef

Shoutout to:
DALLAS!!! CONGRATS ON YOU CALL!!!!!

And to finish off, we have our Line of the week:
We're sitting in district meeting and Elder Blaney asks Elder Dawson a question. I don't remember what the question was, but Dawson's response was the most true statement I have ever heard a missionary say:

"I don't know, I just want to survive the next two years and maybe someday get married!"

Well said Elder Dawson, well said.

I'llll be homeeeee next Christmas . . . youuuu can couuuunt on meeee. Unless I decide to stay in Washington.

December 30, 2013
Jordyn's Weekly e-mail 
Serving in Puyallup, WA 
Companion: Sister Dudek 

Missionary Christmas

Guess Who's Mom made her Miss BYU just a little bit!! 

Drawer Full of Candy...Going to the Elders...They eat everything! 



Oh man, it seriously doesn't feel like Christmas was this last week at all! I hope everyone had a great one, mine was definitely my favorite Christmas yet! (no offense to the family)

Christmas eve we had district meeting, visited people all day, and then had dinner with the Bushnell's. After we visited people/delivered cookies before heading over to the Murray's to say hi. We ended up getting into an intense game of apples to apples. Which I was super close to winning before Gavin ended up snatching the last green card before I could get my fifth.

bummer deal.

But that's okay. Gavin and I are still bffs

So on Christmas we got invited to brunch at the Whittingslow's and we got the most delicious breakfast I have ever had in my life! I may come back next year just to eat sister Whittingslow's food. While we were there we got to say hi to their son who is on a mission (over Skype), and then watch their daughter open her call. She's going to San Diego! Woooo!

Fun fact! On my mission I have now seen: 
-2 farewells
-1 homecoming
-1 call opening

The homecoming was definitely the weirdest/most uncomfortable one, so we won't talk about that. (p.s. the guy that came home is married now. his homecoming was in October.)

After brunch we went and saw one of our investigators, visited some other people, and then went back to the Bushnell's and Skype. Most of the people who read this email know what happened then, so we'll fast-forward to after that.

We went to go visit a less-active family and then as soon as we got there our bishop called us and said that dinner was ready so we told the family that we would be back in a few hours to visit them and then rushed off to dinner. Which was one of the funniest dinners of my life!

They got to talk about seeing their son on Skype, we talked about what happened in our Skype, and then Bishop Critchfield told a bunch of mission stories about putting laxatives in brownies, painting rabbits pink, knocking in the snow, and picking on sisters in the zone.

Elders never change. But we did get some good ideas of what we can do with the animal problem outside of our apartment . . . more details to come.

Their family gave us the best Christmas present ever!!! (after the BYU stuff and the calendar obviously) We got flashlights to see where we're going and for the creepy streets where there aren't any streetlamps, and then a golf ball to knock on doors for when it's freezing outside.

Brilliant! 

After the Critchfield's we tried to visit some more people before going back to the Zavalas and seeing how their Christmas went. I was able to redeem myself for apples to apples by beating Matthew in ping-pong, Sister Zavala made us cookies, and then we shared 1 Nephi 11 about the birth of Christ. It was really interesting to have the feeling in the house go from silly and goofy to as soon as I started reading from the book of Mormon, the whole feeling in the house changed, and the spirit was there instantly. That book is definitely a powerful one.

Thursday we taught brother Jennings,

Friday I got my future husband picked out for me (again),

Saturday I played at a baptism for one of the members sons,

and Sunday Sister Dudek and I spoke in sacrament meeting. Ahhhhh! 

It went fine though. The best part of being Mormon is that people will come up to you and tell you how much they loved what you did even if you did horrible. That and the spirit really can touch people's hearts, but mostly the first one.
So we survived speaking, and then hung out at the church for two extra hours while interviewed.Brother Jennings got   He passed, so we're officially clear for Tuesday at 8:30! 

Starting 2014 off right! 
p.s. I can't believe it's almost 2014

We had our last lesson with Brother Jennings last night and went over the plan of salvation, and he's super excited for Tuesday. I absolutely LOVE the gospel of Jesus Christ, because it creates change.

We focus a lot on change at this time of year, and we've been pondering a lot about lasting change. What's the key to keeping a resolution? How can you make it last? The key, is to let the Savior help you. There is nothing and no one too lost, too least, or too broken for him to fix.

Love you all! Hope you have a wonderful New Year!

Love,
Sister VerHoef

Shout out to:
DALLAS!!! CONGRATS ON YOU CALL!!!!!
And to finish off, we have our Line of the week:

We're sitting in district meeting and Elder Blaney asks Elder Dawson a question. I don't remember what the question was, but Dawson's response was the most true statement I have ever heard a missionary say:
"I don't know, I just want to survive the next two years and maybe someday get married!"
Well said Elder Dawson, well said.

Monday, December 23, 2013

A Heart Full of Love‏

December 23, 2013
Jordyn's Weekly e-mail 
Serving in Puyallup, WA 
Companion: Sister Dudek 
Merry Christmas Week!! 

This is how is snows in Washington....Not very much!! 


Pre-Zone Christmas Caroling Puyallup, WA 2013
lft to rt. Sister Goaslind, Sister VerHoef, Santa, Sister Sheffer, 
Sister Babb (a mini- missionary) & Sister Dudek 


Zone...Christmas Caroling
..Sister VerHoef will have to name everyone 

First of all, skype. We're still not 100% sure what's going on, but Sister Dudek's family wants her to call at 3, so I'll probably call from someone's house at 2 Washington time (so 3 Utah time). Sorry! I don't have any more info than that. But we will talk on Christmas. Promise. 

We went caroling as a zone on Tuesday! It was really fun! We went to an assisted living place in one of the areas and sang to the seniors there who loved it!

I had a cool experience this week where I realized how different I really am as a missionary. Everyone talks about how we have a different spirit about us, and I've always brushed it off because I didn't feel it and have never been around missionaries before. On Tuesday we were talking to an investigator who has a big decision to make, and isn't sure exactly what to do. We taught her about prayer and revelation, and it was awesome to watch her understand what we were saying. She was in tears by the end of the lesson and said something along the lines of "I don't know how describe what I feel with you girls, but the best word I can use to describe it is a peaceful feeling." Cue Galations 5:22. 

It was cool though. I felt so much love for everyone recently. As I've prayed for charity more and studied it more, there hasn't been a home (member or nonmember) that I've walked out of in the past 2 months where I haven't had my heart feeling like it's about to overflow. It's a lot different than anything I've ever experienced before, but I absolutely love it. Never want to stop feeling it. 

So . . . miracle of miracles this week! We got pulled into teaching primary so for the last hour we did that. After we found Will Reins after church and gave him their Christmas present from us, and then as we were walking to find our bishop we got pulled over by Robert and his home teacher and they were like, "We're trying to plan a baptism for New Year's Eve and you need to teach three more lessons to Robert. When can you come over?" 

bjhraejlweiowernasdfmlksdafknasdfklmuhrfioedwnfvkdlijefwmoadkdincz

Yeah, I think we might be able to fit that into our schedule. 

So we taught Robert last night, and it was one of the sweetest moment of my whole mission. Get this: Sister Dudek and me teaching the commandments. Robert sitting across from us, his wife next to him supporting him 100% with this decision. Brother Bryan there as fellowship, and Robert&Lavae's home teachers there as well. Guess who they are: Brother Steck and Brother Reine!!!

Life is good out here in Puyallup. 

That's not even the best part. At the end of the lesson Brother Steck turned to Will and was like, "Brother Reine just got baptized 3 months ago. How was your conversion?" And then every missionaries d.r.e.a.m. happened after that. Brother Reine turned to Brother Jennings and said, "What you're feeling now, I was feeling 3 months ago. I used to drink like a fish, I don't miss it. I used to smoke like a chimney, I don't miss it. I used to drink coffee like it was nothing, and I just don't miss it. I'm a completely different person now that I'm baptized."

I almost cried in the middle of our lesson! To hear my recent convert testify to my investigator put me on to love-overload. 

We also had our mission christmas party this week. Just to let ya'll know, I have theee best mission president in the world! We're singing some birthday song to some elder and all of the sudden President Eaton jumps out from behind the piano playing the accordion. 

nbd. 

If I could send the video, I would. It's fantastic. 

I also played the piano for Sister Goasling who sang O Holy Night. I love being able to play for her for two reasons:
1. Gets me out of any possible singing
2. I get to reflect on the words that are being said. 

As I've been able to ponder about my Savior more this Christmas, I love the last little part of O Holy Night:

"He knows our need, to our weakness no stranger; Behold your King! . . . Truly He taught us to love one another; His law is love, and His gospel is peace. Chains shall He break, for the slave is our brother, and in His name all oppression shall cease."

I love being able to celebrate Christ's birth, but I love even more being able to testify of his life and what He has done for each of us. For me and for you. He truly does understand everything we go through, and because of him we can be free from the bondage of sin. "God be thanked for the matchless gift of His divine Son."

I love you all! I hope you have an awesome Christmas!

Love,
Sister VerHoef

I biffed it in front of a general authority. What'd you do this week?‏

December 16, 2013
Jordyn's weekly e-mail 
Serving in Puyallup, WA 
Companion: Sister Dudek

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas 


Sister Bryan is the ward mission leaders wife
who works with the Sister missionaries 

Sister VerHoef says she knows Santa???
I really wonder about that!! 

Sisters quilting with Sister Diane Bryan...WOW Jordyn!!! 

















This week was wonderful! It seems like it flew by, and I can't believe it's already Monday again. 

Tuesday was definitely the highlight of the week. We had a mission tour with Elder Corbridge of the seventy who taught us what the most important thing for us to teach is. But before I get into the spiritual stuff, let me tell my embarrassing moment of the week. 

So since I've admitted that I play the piano, I play the piano at everything. No lie. Every single district meeting, every single zone meeting, every single zone conference, accompany singing families in sacrament meeting, and now mission tour. I also get asked to accompany people for their special musical numbers (meaning Sister Goaslind will get asked to sing and then asks me to play for her). She sang at the mission tour on Tuesday so we decided to meet at the stake center at 8 that morning to run over the song a couple of times. 

She and her companion weren't there when we pulled up so we were gonna wait in our car for a few minutes because it was cold outside (and it snowed!!!! finally!). Of course with our luck, President pulled up in his car right after so we decided to get out and talk to him. Also with our luck, Sister Eaton isn't in the front seat, it's Elder Corbridge. 
-_-

To top it all off, as soon as I put my left foot on the ground, I fall flat on my face because of the snow. embarrassing right? The missionary from California is completely fine, but as soon as the one from Utah tries to walk in the snow, she's on the ground.

all i can say is thank you mom and dad, for not naming me grace.

So after President ran over to see if I'm alright we got to meet Elder Corbridge a little earlier than all of the other missionaries! And on the bright side, he'll most likely remember that one missionary that fell flat on her face in front of him (aka, Sister Verhoef). 

After that little episode we went inside and got taught things that totally change the way I do missionary work now. In the briefest way I can say, we learned that the most important thing to teach people is about Jesus Christ and his atonement. Constantly referencing back to it during lessons and teaching it with all of the points. Focusing on how we can become clean through that, and because of that we do other things. It was amazing, and as we implemented that in our teaching later this week, Martha committed to be baptized on January 4th! Happy new year!

On Tuesday we also went to young men's and had an activity about missionary work with the deacons. They were split into companionship's and taught Sister Dudek and me about the priesthood. Seriously one of the funniest nights of my life, but I have to explain it in person because it's not funny over writing. Sorry folks. 

On Friday we had our ward Christmas party which was awesome. I got to slice meat which was exciting. And Sister Dudek and I got our picture taken with Santa! We had a couple of investigators come with members and they seemed to really enjoy it. 

And Saturday we knocked a lot! Got all the best parts of missionary work in this week :)

Meddi Kirijmoj!


Peace on earth,
Sister VerHoef




Monday, December 9, 2013

Proud Mother Moment!

Monday December 9, 2013


This is an e-mail 
Lori got from a member in Puyallup that Jordyn has worked with, I feel it important to share with her mission experience...Words can not express how much this meant to Lori and how proud she is of Jordyn (Sister VerHoef)  


Dear Sister VerHoef:
I'm the Ridgecrest Ward WWMLWM (Wife of the Ward Mission Leader Ward Missionary) and part of my job is to interface with the Sister Missionaries serving in the Ridgecrest Ward.

I LOVE YOUR DAUGHTER!!!!!! Absolutely, positively LOVE her! I have been so very blessed to have been able to work with her since I was called to this position in August of this year. She has been so kind and tolerant of my "Green-ness" and I am grateful beyond words for your lovely daughter.

Over these few months she has truly blossomed into a very competent and capable missionary! Her teaching skills have improved exponentially since her first days serving here. She and Sister Dudek taught our Relief Society lesson this Sunday and it truly was one of the best lessons we have had. They were confident, asking questions, listening to the answers, bearing testimony and witnessing the Truths taught like it was second nature!  (that was Sunday Dec 8, 2013) 

Your daughter, although technically the junior companion, usually takes the lead in the lessons, but not in an inappropriate way in the least. This companionship I think is truly ideal. They both are naturally shy but both have very strong testimonies and are doing all they can to do their absolute best in serving their Lord.

I love going with them when they teach! I only wish I could do it more and help provide more opportunities to teach with them.

I want you to know that our Bishop is wonderful and very missionary-minded. He knows it is our (the ward's) responsibility to find and fill the Sister's schedules. We aren't "there" yet in the process that is required to change the natural culture in our ward, but I promise you we are making great efforts to make the changes necessary. Your sweet, wonderful, patient daughter is helping make these changes possible. I am blessed beyond words to be able to serve with them at this great time in the history of the Church!

I am attaching a few pictures of Sister VerHoef. I'm including a picture of Sister Kartchner, her previous companion here in the Ridgecrest Ward. The majority of these pictures were taken when Sister VerHoef & Sister Dudek were over helping me prepare dinner. (she is going to learn how to cook one way or another) 





I hope all is well with you and your family. If there is anything you know of that I or our ward could help in serving your daughter please let me know! If there's something special we could get her for Christmas it would be wonderful as well.

I have 5 daughters, with only 1 daughter really active in the church. I love your daughter as one of my own and in some ways feel closer to her than to some of my disobedient daughters. Thank you for sharing her with us!

Much love,

Sister Diane Bryan

#Christmas Devo‏

Jordyn's weekly e-mail 
December 9, 2013
Puyallup, WA
Companion: Sister Dudek 
NO Pictures this week :( 

So Sister Dudek and I have a goal to figure out how to do member-missionary work. We've been doing visits every night to see what they're doing to share the gospel, and then what else they can do. They've been awesome, and the ward has really seemed to started to catch the spirit of missionary work. It's been interesting to see as well: as we've become more involved with them, they've become more involved with us. (!)

So we got asked to go to mutual with the young women on Tuesday. They did a Q&A session,so Sister Dudek and I got to talk about ourselves for 45 minutes. They asked us a million questions that ranged from "what inspired you to go on a mission?" (beehives) and "do you always have to wear flats?" (mia maids) to "do you have a boy back at home?" (good 'ole laurels).

So that was fun. We got to know the girls a little bit better, they learned that we're normal people too, and also got to help them with short things they can say when they get questions at school.

Then we had like every sister in the ward last Sunday invite us personally to the progressive dinner that our ward was doing. So we went to that and Jennifer came with Sister Wayne! It was awesome to see her get to know the sisters in the ward in a more casual setting than church.

If that's not enough, we got a call on Saturday from the first counselor in the RS presidency asking if we could teach the next day because "who better to teach about Joseph Smith than our sister Missionaries??"

Anyone Sister Crandall, Anyone

Thank goodness for the Spirit though! We had no idea what we were going to say, read the lesson, had no idea what we were going to say, got to church, had no idea what to talk about, got to relief society, had no idea what to talk about, got up to teach the lesson, and then the words came. And we like to think it went well, but hopefully we won't get asked again.

Every year Puyallup does a Community Christmas Concert where a bunch of people come together and sing Christmas songs. It was pretty fun, our stake choir did an interfaith choir with a Presbyterian or Methodist church from Downtown, and they were fantastic! It was also really funny: the college choir that came sang Bethlehem and for the very final song they had everybody stand up and sing the Hallelujah Chorus. Even in Washington, I can't seem to get away from Mountain View High School Choir songs

#bruinpride

That's about it! When you combine a slow week with my lack of desire to write the email's gonna be short. Buuuuut, there's a party going on this week. SO expect a good one to make up for this week.

Until we meet again,
Sister VerHoef

Monday, December 2, 2013

HAPPY THANKSGIVING EVERYONE

Jordyn's weekly e-mail 
December 2, 2013
Serving in Puyallup, WA 
Companion: Sister Dudek 


I don't think I've laughed as hard on my mission as I did this week. Sister Dudek and I had a nice week full of:
-Food
-Bone chilling weather (wind+rain)
-No miles on our car
-Lots of weird people as we knock on doors

Awesome! I love being a missionary for this very reason. Testifying to people in the pouring rain of the truthfulness of the restoration is something that I never saw myself doing, but something that I never ever want to stop doing.

On to my week though.

My Thanksgiving was FANTASTIC! We were basically out of miles on Thursday so we carpooled with some other Sisters in the zone to Auburn and had a mission activity. President split the mission in half, so half went to Federal Way while the cool half of the mission partied it up at the Auburn stake center. There was basketball, volleyball, board games, and some sort of movie going on, and it was really fun! I had a little embarrassing moment when I had what I thought was an elder shaking my hand and after I realized it was President Eaton in a t-shirt and basketball shorts. So I got to watch him play basketball with the elders (and kick most of their butts!) which was really entertaining.

my president's cooler than yours


 Sister VerHoef's district..Puyallup, WA
November 2013


Stephen Giles was there too. It's still weird to see someone from high school up here!

After we got back from Auburn we changed and ran to Thanksgiving dinner at the Owen's. This was most definitely the smallest Thanksgiving I've ever had: Brother and Sister Owen, their four kids, and me and sister Dudek. The food was

A.M.A.Z.I.N.G.

Oh my goodness. We had the entire thanksgiving works, and to top it all off: pumpkin cheesecake (aka everything JoLynn hates for dessert).

We went into a little food coma for a few minutes before we weekly planned. Thanksgiving as a missionary=best thing EVER!

So that was fun. Black Friday was interesting to proselyte because everyone was in a turkey coma and didn't want to talk to missionaries.

But Althea did invite us over to have to have a lesson. We taught her more about the gospel, she taught us how to make fried chicken, and we got to eat it.

Althea McDaniel
(an investigator Sister VerHoef & Sister Dudek are teaching)  

Sister VerHoef learning how to cook.
NOTICE she doesn't have the fork in her hand!! 
"It's a win-win-win situation!"

Sister D and I started our own new tradition for the day after thanksgiving. We call it Black "Fry"day

Hahahahahaha!














That about sums up the exciting stuff of the week. I wish I could have taken my camera to church and gotten a picture of all the member's faces when they saw Sister Dudek and I still here and together. I think they were mostly surprised to see me there.
 Some of the comments from members:
"You're both still here??" Yes, yes we are.

"You've already been here like 9 months haven't you?" Not quite. Give it two months.

"Let's just keep Sister VerHoef here her whole mission--she's been here long enough already" I agree Brother Bushnell, I agree.

I hope you all have a grand week! Until we meet again.

Sista VerHoef


     

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

TRANSFER OR NOT IS THE QUESTION

Jordyn's weekly e-mail 
Tues November 26, 2013 
Serving in Puyallup, WA 
Companion Sister Dudek 


Big Letter this week...Will she be transferred or not...Puyallup WA, Ridgecrest ward or transferring?? Read on and see what happens! 

I get two reactions whenever I tell a member how long I've been here in Ridgecrest:

1."Oh my goodness! You've been here that long?? Time sure does fly . . ."
2. "You're still here??"

Neither of those reactions really comfort me.
But within the past couple of months I have come to absolutely love and adore the entire ward here, so the thought of leaving completely broke my heart. But everyone was absolutely positive that I was leaving because I've been here six months already.

And the ward started to say peace out to both of us this past week. Sister Dudek and I said the opening/closing prayer in ward council (which hasn't happened in the entire time I've been here), we got called up to bear our testimonies in sacrament meeting because there was extra time (hasn't happened since I've been here), we got asked to visit a Sunday school class and talk to the kids there, and a bunch of other things. The whole ward came up to us and said bye after sacrament meeting, and then I was a wreck after that.

Naturally, I was a little stressed out when Elder Popp called me on Sunday night to let me know what was happening. The conversation went as follows.

Me: Hello!
Popp: Who am I talking to?
Me: Sister VerHoef
Popp: Sister VerHoef, how are you feeling right now?
Me: Let's not talk about that, I've been a basket case all day. Just give me my transfer call.
Popp: Sister Dudek will you give us a drum roll?
Me: GIVE ME MY TRANSFER CALL!!
Popp: Sister Dudek, a drum roll please.
*Sister Dudek starts a drum roll on my desk*
Popp: Sister VerHoef, you will be . . . staying in the Ridgecrest ward!
April Fools! Uh, Thanksgiving fools! I'm staying right here in the wonderful city of Puyallup and partying it up with the Ridgecrest ward for the rest of the year!

Both Sisters are STAYING in RIDGECREST WARD!! 

Fun fact: Most of my 2013 year is gonna be in Puyallup. (Did not see that one coming this time last year)

Sister Dudek is staying too! We're super pumped to be together and in RC. Love it here, love the members, love being a missionary, don't want it to end.

We had a cool miracle this week. On Thursday we had 4 or 5 set appointments with people . . . and every single one of them went through! We got to teach the restoration 3 times, feel the spirit testify to people, and testify ourselves of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.

By the way, it's true. Don't have much more to say than that. Hope you all have wonderful Thanksgiving!

Peace,
Sister VerHoef

Shoutout to:
Mike for having a birthday! 
Everyone that's cooking thanksgiving dinner. I'm grateful I don't have to cook it :)

Monday, November 18, 2013

Rain, Rain and More Rain

Jordyn's weekly e-mail 
November 18, 2013
Serving in Puyallup, Washington
Companion: Sister Dudek

Next week are transfers..so e-mail will arrive on Tues instead of Monday

Sister VerHoef & Sister Dedek walking in the rain in the dark..which is a no, no 

It rained this week! I know, I know, surprised me too. Some members told us that there's a chance of snow happenin' up here in Puyallup, so I'm pretty stoked. 

Anyways, on to the happenin' of the Ridgecrest Sisters (aka the adventures of VerHoef and Dudek):

So I told you about Jennifer and her family last week right? She didn't make it to church, so we texted her on Monday and asked if we could stop by again and meet with her. The response we got was quote "I actually got all my questions answered and need to process and think about what I want to do. Still looking to investigate other churches and keeping all my options open." Not quite the response we were expecting. So, after pondering and praying together, Sister Dudek and I decided three things.

1. Jennifer is looking for a church
2. Sister Dudek and I are trying to use the members better
3. The Wayne family in our ward has been praying for missionary experiences

So we decided to go with this, and have everything come together. We met with Sister Wayne and talked about missionary work, and how to do it boldly but simply, and how it's not scary when we have the Spirit with us. We invited her to talk to Jennifer (she knows her from their kids preschool) and invite her to church this next Sunday. Sister Wayne was super nervous, but texted us after she talked to Jennifer and said quote "It was a natural conversation and it was not hard to ask!"

And Jennifer came to church on Sunday with her kids! I believe with all of my heart that invitations from members are the most powerful ones, and ones that investigators will respond the best too. 

Like I said, we've been trying to figure out how to find better through the members of our ward. President Eaton gave us an awesome idea of simply showing the members how they can share the gospel, and not have it be scary. We've been doing 15 minute visits with families at 8:00 and 8:30 every night, and just talk about what they can do to share the gospel with the people they're already coming in contact with. It's just starting, but we'll let you know how it goes! It's been awesome to see our ward catch the spirit of missionary work a little bit more these past few months (and they've made HUGE progress in the six months I've been here).

We also went on another exchange. Sister Wolfe came out to Ridgecrest with me (I'm telling you, I'm never leaving this area) and we had an awesome day! She's been out for 5 months, but seems like she's been out for a year or longer. She's an awesome missionary, and was able to give us some good ideas for the area. 

That's about all of the exciting stuff (that I can remember). But I had a cool realization last night. 

So we're walking along this street at like 8:00 in the pouring rain. It's pitch black except for the street lights and the cars driving by, and we're both freezing. The family we had an appointment to go see wasn't there, so we trudged through the mud (because there's no sidewalks in our area) back to our car. We're walking back though, and I realized how happy I am. I've felt so much charity and love for everyone recently, and it's blown my mind. I never thought I would love this area this much, the members here so much, and the random people I come in contact with each day. But that's what's cool about a mission. I feel like I have this endless capacity to love, and then also know that it's not a love that's coming from me, it's the Savior's love being manifest through me. Amazing. 

And oh my gosh. I'm probably the worst daughter ever for this, but HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD!!!!! . . . last week. Hope it was awesome, despite the lack of acknowledgement from your [favorite] daughter. 

Hope you all have an awesome week! 

Love,
Sister VerHoef

Shoutouts to:
Jo for personal progress (and keeping it a secret! :)
Julie! Even though I don't think I got the forwarded pictures
Mom for getting my violin out to Washington!!!


Monday, November 11, 2013

Being Creative

Jordyn's weekly e-mail 
November 11, 2013 
Serving in Puyallup, Washington 
Companion: Sister Dudek 

Hey all! Since it's Veteran's Day we only have a few minutes to write, and a TON happened this week. I only have time for the coolest story though. Get ready.
Since Sister Dudek and I baptized the Reine family we haven't had too much luck with investigators. It's either been that no one is interested, or they start off interested and then drop off the face of the earth. We've been knocking a lot of doors, but out here in R-town (Ridgecrest) that isn't the most effective thing to do. So we've been trying to figure out how to better work with the members.
Last Fast Sunday I decided to fast for an investigator who is really interested, and would want us to come into their home and teach them. We had a great fast Sunday, most of the testimonies were actually about missionary work, and then kind of forgot about it. We went about our business on Monday and part of Tuesday until we got a call from our Zone Leaders. Elder Blaney called us and said that they had a referral for us (which we never get)! He said that a member in their ward had called them and given them the name, address, and phone number, but didn't say anything about her. She ended up living in our ward boundaries. We finished up what we were planning on doing, and then went and tried to contact Jennifer.
As we were driving to her house, we realized that it was on a street that we had knocked a ton, had visited a ton of people, and had no success on this road at all. Our spirits started to get a little disheartened, but we knew that we needed to come and see her regardless of our past success in this area of the ward.
OH MY GOSH! We knocked on her door, and she welcomed us in right away! Turns out, she goes to a preschool that is run by a member, and has an acquaintance that is a member that goes to the same preschool that had briefly talked about the church. Jennifer has a number of Mormon friends, and absolutely loves the welcoming feel that she gets every time she goes to a church activity. So, that morning she had called her friend, asked if she could learn more about the church, and then we got sent over.
We had an awesome lesson! She wanted to know what was different about our church. I guess she had heard for a long time that the Mormon religion was different, but she didn't know why. I cannot explain how perfect of a question that was, so we immediately jumped into . . . the Restoration! We taught it, and she said that everything made sense, she loved the one-on-one time that we gave her, and loved how clear we (tried to) make everything. It was one of those lessons that you know the Spirit was there, because Sister Dudek and I were a little rusty on our Resto and felt like we were everywhere. But that's what's cool about the spirit--we can say the most jumbled up things, but as long as we're teaching with the Spirit, he is going to testify of what we're saying and turn our "blah, blah, blah" into something they can understand. Love it.
Needless to say, we were shocked as we left Jennifer's home. Neither of us knew what to say to each other, and finally Sister Dudek went, "I can't believe it. This is what I fasted for." Which reminded me, that was the exact same thing I fasted for as well. As soon as we got to our car we freaked out a little bit, did a happy dance, and then said a prayer of gratitude to Heavenly Father for the tender mercies and miracles we've been able to see in the Ridgecrest ward.
That was such a testimony to me. It reminded me that Heavenly Father really is listening, and really does want to bless us. That he cares about the little things and will grant us miracles according to our faith. We also had zone conference this week where President Eaton talked to us about having "real faith." He said something that I really loved; that if we all had the faith of Ammon, we wouldn't necessarily baptize thousands like Ammon did, but we would baptize a lot more.
I know that Heavenly Father hears and answers prayers, and is waiting to bless us with the things that we need. The church is true, Joseph Smith restored it, and it is our opportunity and blessing to be able to share with others the things that we know.
I love you all! Hope you have an awesome week that is just filled with miracles!
Love,
Sister VerHoef


Jordyn sent a picture of Mt. Rainier..apparently it is just beautiful and is in her mission..

Mt. Rainier 


Monday, November 4, 2013

EXCITING WEEK AND GREAT NEWS!!!

Jordyn's weekly e-mail 
November 4, 2013 
Serving in Puyallap, Washington
Companion: Sister Dudek 



Hey all!  

Quite the exciting week if I do say so myself. We went on exchanges on Tuesday with our Sister Leader thing or whatever it's called (it's like a girl version of a zone leader). More importantly, her name is Sister Wolfe, and her companion, Sister Gosalind came out and partied with me in Ridgecrest (I'm forever gonna stay in this area). We went and saw a less-active Tuesday night with our ward mission leader's wife and the elder's quorum president. It was awesome! He told us more of his story, and why he wasn't active and then we talked about the restoration, and how Joseph Smith's story is still applicable to him today. Super awesome lesson, super strong spirit, and now we're gonna work on getting him to come back to church. Pray for Jerry. 

Our ward had a trunk-or-treat the day before Halloween. It was really funny--Sister Dudek and I would get two reactions toward the way we were dressed (normal missionary clothes). That we either had the best costumes, or that we didn't dress up. To appease the members, we switched our tags. So for Halloween, Sister VerHoef was Sister Dudek and Sister Dudek was Sister VerHoef. (don't worry mom, I'll send pictures of it)




So the trunk or treat was a par-tay! We went around to talk to the members, and then ended up getting our bags stuffed with candy. There were even some parents who would go, "give some of your candy to the missionaries!" So we had like 9 year old boys reaching into their well-earned supply of candy and giving it to the poor missionaries. #consecration #statesidemissions

And then Halloween was just a blast on top of that (definitely different than any other one I've had before). We met with our mission leader and then tried to stop by some people. We went to go see this less-active named Cory who we met a few weeks ago and told us to come by on Halloween to see the haunted house he and his roommate were building. We went while it was still light out, but they decided to take us through it. Now, we all know that I'm the biggest baby when it comes to haunted houses, and of course I got to go through first. We're walking through, he's telling us what's gonna be where, and I turn this corner and there's this little kid with a creepy clown mask on. Scared the tar out of me. Everyone laughed, we moved on, and around the next corner there's a teenage girl who jumps out and scares me. Naturally I screamed again, and wouldn't move until I got a promise that there wasn't gonna be any more surprises. We finally made out into the light, but I did get scared on Halloween. Just like always. 

We had dinner at a member's house after that, and then tried to see a couple more people before 7:00 hit. No one opened up, and President Eaton asked us to be inside by 7 to do weekly planning. So we planned, and partied, and ate a lot of candy. Awesome day.

While I was on exchanges, Sister Gosalind and I were going to visit one of Sister Dudek and mine's investigators. We had a car pull up next to us and it ended up being an investigator we had dropped just a few days earlier. They invited us over on Friday, so Sister Dudek and I went over planning to teach a lesson, but they had a huge buffett set out and ended up feeding us a lot of food. Right after we had just come from dinner. We hadn't been that full in a longggg time haha. 

So on Saturday we tried to get a bunch of people to commit to come to church. We had dinner at a family's house last sunday and they really want us to work with their son who's really less-active and doubting his testimony. He told us if we bought him eggnog that he would come to church, so on Saturday we showed up at his house with two half gallons of eggnog, and left with a commitment to come to church! And he did come to church! We could tell he looked really uncomfortable because he hadn't been in so long, and ended up leaving after sacrament meeting, but he was still a rockstar. He's totally coming back. 

Saturday night we saw our investigator Robert and taught him the gospel. He has a lot of sin in his past, and when we talked about once you're baptized your sins are completely washed away and you can start new in God's eyes, he was amazed. He told us that he never thought he could have those burdens lifted away and have those feelings of guilt removed. It made me so grateful for Jesus Christ and his atonement. It's so powerful, and I love being able to see people change because of it. 

By the way, Robert's getting baptized on November 30th!



So daylight savings ended on Sunday. We set our microwave and oven back an hour, but our phone never changed. So we ended up waking up at 5:30 in the morning, but didn't realize it. We thought it was 6:30, we were sitting at our desks studying at what we thought was 8, but then our phone switched to 7. We were both super confused, couldn't remember what we had done with the clocks, and then had to end up calling our zone leaders to figure out what time it was. We found out it was 7:15, so we both went and slept again until 8 haha. So we did get a little bit extra sleep, but not the way we were planning on it. 

Dad this one's for you--My ward mission leader told us that Pierce county (where Puyallup is) has some of the lowest gas prices in the country right now. There's a Safeway by my apartment where gas is $2.89! But every time I see gas prices here I think of you :) 

Mom, the weather up here isn't very cold, unless you're one of the whiney people, or my companion from California who's freezing. It's been about 50 and goes down to around 40 at night, and I've heard that it doesn't usually get much colder than that during the winter. It's pretty mellow up here except for the wind. I've seen the sun twice this week! Best moment of my life! We've had like two weeks of overcast, and then the sun popped out the other day and I saw some blue sky. It was glorious. And my asthma and allergies have been good, I just try and avoid all of the dogs up here. And oddly enough, they all seem to gravitate towards me. 

That's about it for me, hope you all have an awesome week! 

Love,
Sister VerHoef

p.s. I didn't edit--sorry!
Shoutouts this week go to:
Jeremy for his birthday!
Karli for sending me Halloween pictures
JoLynn for her banner thing
Dallas on Mission papers!!! Woot!!!
Des for first place on the crossfit competition!

Pictures that came this week: 
Huge Willow Tree they found

Sister VerHoef in front of a beautiful Fall tree 


Jordyn's weekly e-mail 
November 4, 2013
Request to be sent to her 

I just found out I can have my violin! I've actually been wanting to play it for my investigators, so that was funny that you said that in your email :) Is there any way you could send it out to me, and with my music as well? (suzuki books 7, 8, 10, the solo books that I have [by like barbra barbra i think] and my church music)

And if you know where my green ipod is can you send it as well? I just learned that we can have them out here, and I have church playlists on it! 

I love you! Thanks for writing me, and being the wonderful mom that you are :) It's been awesome to hear about your mission experiences, and whenever I meet with our Relief Society president out here I think of you :)

Monday, October 28, 2013

"The Mornonites are Here!

Jordyn's weekly e-mail & Pictures 
October 28, 2013 
Serving in Puyallup, Washington 
Companion: Sister Dudek 

Entertainment during our weekly planning 

Time for my week I guess. 

We had district meeting on Tuesday and talked about weekly planning, and also did two truths and a lie to get to know the district better. We went over to talk to Martha after and gave her a large print bom so that she can actually read it. We haven't been able to get over there since. Later that night we went and talked to a less-active that we knocked into.
Party Hat for Zone Planning Meeting 




Party Hat for Zone Planning Meeting 



Funny story about that: So when we first met her she told us her name, we completely forgot it, and all we could remember was that she was from Cambodia. Naturally, as we talked about her, she was the Cambodian Lady. Somehow, over the past few times that we visited her, we switched her to the Cantonese lady, don't know how or when. So, when we went over there the other night, we were reminded that she's from Cambodia, and found out that her name is actually Souin (I have no idea how to actually spell it, but it sounds like Sue-in). Success! She told us to come over on Halloween and have a party with her as she hands out candy haha. 

Wednesday we taught some less-actives, Debby and Chris. They're both super sweet ladies, and just need some help getting to church and a stronger testimony. We've been going through the missionary discussions with both of them, and it's been awesome to see them progress and come unto Christ more and more. 

WE FINALLY SAW ALTHEA!!!!!! Prayers are answered!!! We went over and she told us all about her trip to Arizona, and then we went over the Restoration with her again, and tried to focus on the apostasy like President Eaton wants us to. It went well, but we think that she thinks the Mormon church is a "new" church, so we're gonna focus on how it's the same church since the beginning of time. 

Awesome story. So Althea took her Book of Mormon to Arizona with her and had been reading it! That never happens! Anyways, her daughter Samia had been telling her family over and over that the "mornonite sisters" were coming over and reading scriptures with her mom and that her mom made fried chicken for the "mornonite sisters." So now whenever we go over Samia runs to the door and yells, "the mornonites are here!"

I love five year-olds. 

Oh! Althea has already picked out mine and Sister Dudek's husband's! She says it's her goal to have us look at her at the end of our mission, and then say we know who we're gonna marry. Hahaha! 

Sister Dudek has also picked out my husband (a different guy). 

And so has my District Leader (different from both). 

None of them are right. 

Thursday we had our weekly planning party topped off with our mormon party hats that we made to make it more fun to do. It was still boring, but we got some funny pictures!

On Friday and Saturday we knocked all day because we're out of miles. So, we walked everywhere, and we decided that you don't realize how far everything is until you have to walk around your whole area. It was fun though, definitely got some good laughs and stories out of those two days. 

Sunday we had ward council and church and the normal stuff. A family in our ward hosted an open house to get to know the new families in the ward, which means we got to go and talk to the Reine's! Words cannot express how much I love that family. 

I hope you all have an awesome week, and a great Halloween (even you mom)! Sister Dudek and I have a good costume planned, so we'll send you pictures of it for sure next week.

Love,
Sister VerHoef

Shoutouts this week go to:
Everyone with a birthday (too much family to remember)
Grams for being a rockstar after surgery!
Amanda and my mom for actually emailing me (guilt tripp!)
Jo for sending me pictures