Thursday, August 1, 2013

Dear Family,

    Well this week was not very exciting. We still have three investigators that aren't progressing and so that has been really frustrating but we will keep working. Missionary work is hard but I still love it. I just love these people that we are teaching and it is so hard that they aren't even reading their scriptures or saying their prayers and then they wonder why they aren't developing a testimony. I just want to shake them and make them see that if they want an eternal family and if they really want to be together forever like they say, then they have to start making some changes. I just didn't expect to love the people this much. I didn't expect that it would hurt this much when they cancel lessons or don't show up. One thing they taught us in the MTC is to envision the people that you are teaching dressed in white. Doing this however makes it so much harder when they aren't progressing because I can see it. I can see where they can go and I can see what the end result is. But they can't and so it hurts that much more because I know that they are preventing themselves from attaining all of those blessings. So that has been hard. I am sorry I just needed to vent. Don't worry though I am still having the time of my life here in New Zealand and I am loving being a missionary.

   So last Sunday when we were at a members house getting ready for dinner, Sister Whiting was sitting next to me and all the sudden she started to wobble in her seat and she said that the room was moving. I asked her if she needed to lay down and she said she was fine and that the room stopped moving. I just thought that she was dehydrated or hungry or something but she didn't think so because it only lasted a minute and then she was fine. I didn't give it another thought until the next night at dinner when someone asked if we had felt the earth quake the day before! That's right it was an earthquake and I didn't even notice it. Another Sister Missionary said that she just got really dizzy all of the sudden and then a member told her that they were experiencing an earthquake. So ya I have been in an earthquake and I didn't even feel it. I just thought Sister Whiting was crazy. Wow my first earthquake. I guess they are becoming more frequent here. All the members say that it is a sign of the times. That or they also say it is because New Zealand legalized same-sex marriage. Don't worry though I am protected so its all good. 

    I had my first real interview with President Rudd this week. It was nice because I got to spend fifteen minutes just talking with him instead of the three minutes we had last time. He said a few things though that have me thinking. First of all he said that he has been told by a number of people that I didn't even need to be trained. Pretty much the first thing that he said to me was "Well Sister Simkins I hear that you came pre-trained?" so that was a great compliment. He also said that Sister Whiting and I make a powerful pair. But the thing that scared me is he said "Are you ready to train? Because ready or not its happening." At transfers we are getting 18 new sister missionaries and 5 old ones are leaving. This means that every sister in the mission is going to be training. I am so scared. I don't know if I can do this. I don't think that I need more training myself, I just don't think that I am ready to train a new sister yet. So I have been thinking a lot about that. President Rudd also said that we will only be in a trio for three more weeks and we are then having a mini-transfer. I really hope they don't take Sister Whiting away from me but I am pretty sure that it is inevitable. The thing is that Sister Whiting and I are just so similar and we have the same teaching style so I love teaching with her. I really don't want her to leave. I guess we'll see what happens on the 14th.

   Guess who I met last night! SHERI DEW! Can you believe that? She is here in New Zealand for the Time-Out for Women conference that was in Auckland and so she traveled down to Hamilton to do a fireside for the YSA last night. The mission policy is that we can't go to any firesides or ward activities unless we bring an investigator or a less-active. So we heard about this fireside and we really wanted to go so we prayed and we thought about this less-active 20 year-old who lives with her active brother and family and we decided to ask her to go to the fireside with us and she said yes! She also committed to coming to church this Sunday. Anyways we were standing in the foyer waiting for her to come in and then in walks Sheri Dew and Virginia Hinckley Pearce (President Hinckley's daughter). I got to give Sheri Dew a hug and I shook Virginia Pearce's hand. Sheri Dew asked where I was from and I said New Mexico and she said asked which part and I said Farmington and she said that she has been there so that was neat. We then got to listen to the wonderful fireside. It was a great night. Who would have thought though that I would have to travel all the way to New Zealand to meet Sheri Dew?

   Well that is about it for this week. Not too much happened. I love and miss all of you and I hope that you have a good week!

Love, Maquel

P.S. The spiders here are crazy and so this is a web that is on one of the trees in our front yard.

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