I've been all over the place this week, and I'm sure this email's going to be all over too.
We've been having a difficult time getting lessons. I know that one of my weaknesses is street contacting and talking with everyone. It's been a struggle my whole mission, and even though I know it brings blessings, it's still hard. I'm hoping to find the courage to open my mouth that comes from knowing I'm a representative of Jesus Christ.
Yesterday, President Perkinson came to church in Artyom with Elder Neuenschwander, the traveling patriarch in our area. Lots of members throughout our mission are going to be receiving their patriarchal blessings this week. Several members were able to recive them after church yesterday. It's so exciting to see these people prepare for this opportunity. It was also nice to see President Perkinson. I could talk with him for hours.
We visited with a member (nickname Sweet) that Sister Watts baptized when she served in Artyom. This cute member has such strong faith and is at church every week. While we were talking with her and helping her prepare her lesson for primary, her drunk son kept yelling at her from the other room. They yelled back and forth at each other for a while, and then Sweet just broke down. She's so sad because her son is drunk and doesn't appreciate her. We cried with her, and it was one of those moments where all we could do was "mourn with those that mourn and comfort those that stand in need of comfort." Her life is so hard, but still she has faith. All I wanted her to know was that she was doing a good job and just needs to keep enduring.
On Friday, we were invited to go to Vlad. to help with a Halloween party. I saw a member from Nakhodka that I haven't seen since I left. Sister Woodland and I taught the people some line dances, and one member recorded us and put it on the internet. All the members now are telling us that the movie's all over the internet. During one of the dances, I accidentally said one of the words wrong (and, of course, nobody told me I was saying it wrong until the next day) and ended up inventing a new word. It was a super fun night. Hope you all had a fun-filled Halloween too!
Notes from Mom--These are answers to some questions we asked Ash. Her answers are both insightful and funny. We love her fun personality!
. I just love hearing about home. I also love it here. I'm grateful that I am happy. There are so many missionaries who go into depression and are just negatively affected by bad attitudes and dark spirits, but I'm happy. Even though I was nervous to come to Artyom, it's not as scary as I thought it was. Thanks for the packages!!! They were wonderful. Thinking about you, praying for you. Love ya love ya love ya!!!!
Ashlin had been debating going to Study abroad Israel with BYU when she gets home. (It is April 26-Aug. 11, 2016.) This is her final reply--she is being funny, and by the way, that is exactly how the scripture is in the scriptures.
- Jerusalem is a yes. I see nothing that could go wrong with it, and I really believe that God will tell me if it's not right. In fact, I read a scripture the other day that says "So Hilkiah the priest, and Ahikam, and Achbor, and Shaphan, and Asahiah, went unto Huldah the prophetess, the wife of Shallum the son of Tikvah, the son of Harhas, keeper of the wardrobe; (now she dwelt in Jerusalem in the college;) and they communed with her." (2 Kings 22:14). I don't know if the scriptures can get more specific. There's even a winky face. Thanks for being so willing get this all organized. I wish I could express how much I love you all via internet, but the internet can only do so much.