Saturday, December 19, 2015

Crazyest week of Goodness

Ashley's mission call!

California!

Coco!

Bike Day!




September 21, 2015
Dear Framily,

This week was insane for sooo many reasons. I don't even know if I will have enough time to write it all so wish me luck eh?

So Tuesday morning we were going to district meeting early because Sister Shaffer had to do a driving safety video. As we were on our way we texted the zone leaders and they had no idea that this was
happening so then it fell through. We ended up going to our chapel to finish studies and when we were going to leave some of the relief society was there for cooking group so they let us taste everything.
Can I just say we have some amazing cooks in this Ward! They even have a blog...now that is legit! Haha! After district meeting we didn't stay to eat lunch with everyone because we were going to go and do
service at the Berkeley Heights rehab/nursing home! It was so much fun! We gather all the old people together and played with a horserace board game. There was this cute woman with Down syndrome that had the most contagious laugh! She looked a lot like Syd too! It was kind of weird because I felt like I was seeing Syd 50 years from now! It was a blast! After that we went and taught Sarah. Her parents aren't letting her go to early morning seminary and she is really sad about it. She has so much desire to learn more about the gospel! Ahhhhh I love her!

Wednesday morning we were going to Ellis Island and Sister Shaffer was so excited! We got out to the car and I realized that I locked the keys in our apartment. There is something seriously wrong with me
locking our keys in things. So we broke into our apartment (skills for that came from Syd :) Sister Shaffer climbed through a window and there was this HUGE black spider that we were flipping out about! She
thought she was going to die. We got the keys and made our way to Ellis. When sister Shaffer saw the skyline of the city while we were driving on the highway she was so excited she pulled out her iPad and started taking so many pictures haha! It is fun to see the new excitement! We pulled up to security at Liberty Park to cross the bridge to the island and the security officer was hilarious. His name was Moen and he had a total southern accent! He was telling us about this cross country tip he and his wife are doing, "road side camping the whole way. We’re roughing it big time. Bathing in rivers and all." We were cracking up! We crossed the bridge and went into the island. The day at Ellis was the best yet! The spirit was soooo strong. It is really fun now that I am really familiar with the site and how to find even the hard names. It was really fulfilling to actually be able to be a good help to people. I helped this one man and his wife who were searching for a great grandpa that came from Palestine. They had searched his name and were really getting absolutely no results. I came by and notice that they had none and offered my help. I started working through the filters and explaining what each one does. I opened up the search to alternate spelling and names that sound similar and then out in an ethnicity. I told them that their last name is pretty difficult to spell and the people that wrote these documents didn't take the time to spell things correctly. Then they had 4 results. Immediately they saw one that had the right age and date on arrival. I opened up the manifest for them and they both got pretty emotional. I started reading the manifest to them and showing them some cool things about it. The spirit was strong and I am so grateful that I was able to help them. Similar instances happened person after person. I even met someone who was from Calgary and new Michael Christmas! Interesting eh? After a very fulfilling day at Ellis we said goodbye and headed off the island. As we were driving away through liberty park sister Shaffer was searching in her bag....she couldn't find the phone! So we pulled over and tore apart the front of the car looking for it. We said a prayer and decided to go back to the island to look there. We went through security again and ran into the building. We got the office and the office is very poorly lit. I put my hand under one of the desks and couldn't find anything. I decided to try again and j saw the phone immediately! We were so thankful! We left again and had about an hour to get to our appointment with coco at the Elton’s house. As we were driving through Newark we hit HEAVY traffic and realized we wouldn't make it on time. We started to panic because this appointment was so important it was without investigator Coco from China. We were praying sooooo hard and with my jersey driving we were able to make it only 10 minutes late instead of the estimated 20! The lesson was amazing! Coco went to Salt Lake City on vacation back in May and met the Mandarins sisters at temple square. They taught her almost everything over the phone. When I was with sister Irvine she showed up at church and we taught her twice before she went back to China for the summer. We found her again
last Sunday we felt prompted to stop by her house. While she was in China her grandfather passed away. In our lesson she said that before this summer she didn't believe in God or in life after death, but now she does. She know that her grandpa is still living in spirit. She had so many questions and the Elton’s really helped answer a lot of them for her. Sister Shaffer after the lesson was going crazy with me about how prepared she is! It was amazing!

Thursday we rode our bikes for the first time and it was an adventure haha. My seat is sooo high and we don't have he tools to fix it so I just dealt with it haha. After about 10 minutes of riding my little tush was killing me haha! We rode to Alexandra and had a lesson with her. She said that she really wants to be a part of our Ward family, but her family has been giving her and Matt a really bad time about it. Please pray that her family with soften their hearts. She doesn't want to tear her family apart. I told her about how awesome my mommy was and how you just took the biggest leap of faith to be baptized. She really wants to meet you mom!  We then rode over to the George's and had a lesson with them. Brother Dowling was with us and he was a perfect team up! He just totally hit is home and it was so good that he did because I was really struggling in the lesson for some reason. It was really frustrating me afterwards because I was trying so hard to go by the spirit...bah! I did a lot of praying during and after! In the lesson Jennifer opened up about how she know that the church is true and what she wants for her and her family, but she needs John to feel the same way.

Friday we started the day at the nursing home again and we got do trivia with the. In the morning and then we helped feeding during lunch. I sat with a woman named Mary at lunch and she was so cute, but
so stubborn because she really just didn't like the food. I was really trying to make her laugh and it was so cute to hear her little giggle. I will say that she did love potato chips! Haha! After that we went to
a member referral in another nursing home in Livingston. The woman's name is Alice and she just had a grandson get killed in Irvington a couple weeks ago. As we were on our way I got a bit lost and we were
turing around in a neighborhood, but this police officer was following me. I he pulled me over and I was so confused because I knew I didn't do anything wrong. He came to the door and asked if we knew why he pulled us over and I said, "We have no clue, I've never been pulled over and I have no idea what to do!" He was so sweet and helped us find the registration. Turns out we had a tail light out and he just
gave us a warnings. I got pulled over on the same street as the church so we invited him to church and gave him a pass along card. We were then running late and when we go to Alice she was eating dinner and asked us to come back the next day. We then headed to go to s lesson with Leilani and her girls. It was an intense lesson! We started by talking about prophets and revelation. They opened up with their
concerns with authority and told us the whole story as to why Leilani left the church and why the girls aren't as active now. It was really sad. We talked a lot about forgiveness. Forgiving others and also
realizing that Christ will forgive all sins. The spirit was really strong. They are in need of a lot of healing.

Sunday we had the Multistake conference! All my past wards were there and it was so fun to see everyone! I was almost in tears the whole time at the front doors! I got to see sister Roberts and Sister Mason and Jose everyone! The meeting was amazing too! Elder Christofferson is amazing! He talked about his much we need to be serving other and inviting them to come be a part of our lives. He said that we aren't inning people to be members of the church and we don't have to go out of our way. What we are doing is inviting people to be a part of our regular lives and our family. It was cool! It is amazing how much the church is growing here in 31 years ago there was one branch...it is now 3 stakes! It is amazing! Coco came to the conference with the Brunts and she LOVED it we were texting her afterwards and she felt the spirit so strong. After the conference I got the opportunity to go see Ashley open her mission call! It is so cool to see the people you teach grow so much! I can't believe she was baptized just over a year ago! She is going to be an amazing missionary! She got called to San Francisco Spanish speaking! She will be leaving December 30th! I am going to go see her on her missions with sister brown! We have it all planned out!

We then taught coco at the Gardner’s apartment and it was an amazing lesson again! We talked about the plan of salvation. At the end I reminded her that before she left we asked her to be baptized. We
asked her if she had received an answer. This is what she said, "I am ready to be baptized!" Then she asked if she just does it now today! Our mouths dropped! Mayara and Jeff looked at each other, then Mayara started to clap! Hahaha! We told her that we could do it next Sunday! She is so excited! We have a bit more to teach her and flip she is so cute! She was asking about what she should do if she has to be on an airplane on Sunday during church sometime and if she had to call to let people know when she can't come! She is not taking this lightly! Man she is the most prepared person ever! We teach her something and then she will testify about it! It is crazy! All the members are so excited too!
That night we had an amazing dinner with the Egans and had Sussy come with us! Then we stopped by Alexandra again and she and Matt had read the Book of Mormon together!

All in all it has been an amazing week and I just want to cry with happiness! I apologize for always writing so much, but I just have so much to tell you all! I LOVE being a missionary and there is nothing better than feeling the spirit of the work! God is in the details and he is moving forward quickly and we much move forward with him! Invite people every day to be a part of your life! I love you all! Pray for Coco as she prepares to be baptized in Sunday! As well as Matt, Alexandra and the George family! They need them :)

Mostest,
Sister Cooper the Jersey Girl

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