April 13, 2015 – Week 29

Hello! This has been a good week, it went by so quickly! I have learned many things this transfer about patience, courage, kindness, the list could go on and on. Some highlights (I only have time for the highlight reel of the past weeks hehe) would be:

General Conference! We watched it in English at three different member’s houses. Oh I love conference oh so much.  It is so inspiring and I received many answers to my prayers through those words.
Temple conference! That’s right, I went to the temple this week! It was SO amazing! I love the house of the Lord and the spirit that is so abundant there. I hadn’t been since the MTC.  It was all in Dutch and I understood a surprising amount. I am so grateful for temples and the peace, power, and blessings, from it. I could go on for years talking about it 🙂
A baptism! Our elders’ investigator, Sophia got baptized! She is from Cambodia, and so so sweet. I’ll send pictures next week, it was a beautiful service.
Although our work in Maastricht has been a bit slower, I love being on a mission and I love meeting and teaching people. It really puts my life into perspective and I am able to understand the atonement of Christ on a much more personal level.
Update! I will be staying in Maastricht for another six weeks! Hoorah! So if anyone wants to send me some fan mail in the next several weeks, my address is
Volksplein 83c
6214 DC Maastricht
Nederland
My companion is being transfered to Belgium which is sad. I will miss her. I love her and am so proud of her courage, dedication, and strength.  She will be doing some more medical tests there.
Thanks for all the support and talk to you next week!
Love,
Sister Manning

April 6, 2015 – Week 28

Hello good people of the world! I have no time today because of a serious of crazy events. Also because everything is closed today because it is Second Easter! They take their vacation days way too seriously here.

General conference was so amazing and uplifting! Ah. Well I love you all and promise a nice good long email next week! Just know we are alive 😀

Love,
Sister Manning

March 28, 2015 – Week 27 (Surprise Saturday Letter)

Hey friends! I guess this email is just a quick tag on from my essay from last week 🙂

Yes, it’s Saturday, we had to switch P-days because my companion has a doctor’s appointment on Monday in Belgium. Antwerpen adventures! We’re really hoping they will be able to figure something out.

This week was amazing. We had a super inspiring zone training, I went on an exchange with our sister training leader, and one day we had to stay in because Sister Whittington was in too much pain so I did some good Jesus the Christ reading…but it was surely a week of spiritual growth!

Today, some members took us to the markets in Germany and then we spent the day with them.  The more I work with the members and less actives in the ward, the more impressed I am with their kindness, dedication, and endless service to the missionaries!

Also, oh yeah, we went to the ER again this week. But this time we just took a bus there haha. Sister Whittington was in a lot of pain so at 9:30 p.m. our mission president’s wife just told us to go to the hospital to see if they’d admit us. But they wouldn’t take our insurance so that was that. Back home we go.

A small cool experience from this week- we have this investigator named Jan. He is a very old, classic Dutch man. Because he’s a little hard of hearing, and he speaks in a really old dialect, sometimes we have trouble understanding each other. Funny stories. So sometimes I’m a bit self conscious with him because my Dutch isn’t great.  But this week, as we were teaching the gospel of Jesus Christ to him, he cut me off mid sentence and was fascinated by the “glow” I had and why I smiled so much when I talked about the gospel. It really hit me, because the Lord uses us imperfect missionaries, with VERY imperfect Dutch, and supplies the Spirit so that the Spirit can witness the truth to the hearts of people we teach.  It was small but impactful.  The Spirit really is so important in this work.  We are instruments in the hands of the Lord, all of us are! We just need to put our trust in Him, which is easier said than done.  Even though we can never see the complete picture of our future, the Lord will help us along our journey. Sometimes it’s freaky as a missionary because you have somewhat of an “identity crisis” wondering why so many of your weaknesses are suddenly exposed or who you are becoming. But I’ve really gained a testimony that the Lord can shape us into something more beautiful and worthy and better than we can imagine, if we let Him.

Other adventures lately include substitute teaching in Primary (haha), new baby kittens from our investigator Diana, and powerful spiritual thoughts at member dinner appointments.  Love you all! Fight the good fight!

Sister Manning

March 9, 2015 – Week 24

Hello everyone! Not a whole lot to report on, but it’s been a good week! We are getting excited for the new transfers and setting lots of goals and trying to bring new ideas to the table. Missionary work is amazing, but there is not just one way to do it!

I am striving to seek the spirit more as my companion and I work together with the ward to find, teach and baptize. I know that angels support us as we help bring God’s children closer to Him. That totally applies to member missionary work too. Just imagine the angels that are on your team when you open your mouth to comfort a friend or to pull out a pass-along card. The members in this ward are really amazing, it is fun to work with a mix of Dutch and American families! Sister Whittington went through a period of inactivity in her life so she also has a special drive for working with less actives, which is amazing to see. She also is constantly encouraging me to see my worth and successes because sometimes it’s very easy to get down on yourself about the language, when appointments fall through, etc. Even though it is sometimes a challenge, I am really grateful for the opportunity to work with her!

We are also trying to spice up our lessons a bit which is fun, because we teach a variety of wonderful investigators, so we should have a variety of ways to bring the spirit! We are teaching a really old gentleman who used to be a choir conductor so he has been teaching us how to sing African spirituals. It’s really rather hilarious/awesome. Especially because he has such a thick Dutch accent.

If only I had the time to write down all of the funny things that happen to us on a daily basis. Each night, we try to write down “wonders” and “grapjes” for the day, or miracles and funny things. This work is amazing! Pray for the missionaries and pray for those who are seeking for the truth! I know that our Heavenly Father will always hear our prayers.

Onward amigos!
Love,
Zuster Manning

March 2, 2015 – Week 23

Hello! 

Not a lot of time this week but I am alive and doing really well 🙂 I just found out that I will be staying for another transfer in Maastricht! My companion, Sister Jensen, is being transfered up north and my other companion, Sister Whittington, will be staying with me! 

We had zone training this week, which was so inspiring.  We were encouraged to pray for baptisms every time we pray, which I though was super cool! Also, we got to watch Meet the Mormons and a couple of other new clips that missionaries from our mission have been in. So amazing! 

I will have to catch up more about this week in next weeks’ email! Love you people lots, have a great week!