Wednesday, August 31, 2016

This week was amazing! Elder Hamula, of the 70, came and toured our mission Friday for 6 hours. It was a blast! We had the coolest opportunity to sit next to him and his wife at lunch and speak with them for awhile. It was funny too, while introducing ourselves Sister Hamula shakes my hand and says, "Hello Sister Silotti! Ooops. I am so sorry, Elder Silotti, I have never done that before." Then we shared a good laugh. It was great. She is such a sweetheart! Then we had Stake Conference on Saturday and Sunday and they were outstanding!!! :D The spirit was so strong. We had so many amazing speakers there. We got to hear from the Stake president, the Temple President and his wife, President Welch and his wife, the Stake Patriarch, and Elder and Sister Hamula of the 70. I believe one of the most important things I will ever learn was learned these 2 days about parenting.  It won't be word for word but raising a righteous family and temple work were 2 huge focuses in conference. And what I learned was from President Foister I believe. 

1) We cannot and should not try to give, push, or force a testimony on our children. What we should do is create an environment where the spirit is to be felt so it will impress their heart and give them their testimony. The way we do that as counseled is daily prayer and scriputure study. If we can help them connect items or activites like prayer and scripture study to feeling the spirit they will desire those things on their own naturally. Also one of my favorite quotes was, "if our children sincerely pray morning and evening they will have the strength to withstand any tempation throughout the day." That was by a prophet whom I can't remember.    
2) From everybody I learned the importance of regular temple attendance. It is: 1) Where heaven and earth connect and 2) the only place where Satans influence is literally barred from entering therein and the spirit has full power and is unrestrained in the temple.  And an amazing promise given by our stake patriarch was, "Every time you enter and leave the temple, you will be a better Husband or Wife, and a better Father or Mother.
Those were two of my favorite things I learned in Stake conference this week that will change my future and my families future. Someone from our ward usually records and posts talks given. I will try to get them and invite you and father to listen to them. They were incredible!

I also want to say I am so grateful for you and Father for raising me in a way and preparing me to become who I am now. I never thought I would become who I am becoming. The change that Christ has made in my life is outstanding. Father is a very hard worker. I agree. I am so grateful for that! :D 
As for how my week went I am just going to send you my email to President Welch because it's to much to retype haha! :D Love you!!!

Good morning President Welch,
First off I would like to say thank you for all of the hard work and effort you and Sister Welch are putting forth. You are amazing examples and the spirit is very strong when you are around. There hasn't been a person I have spoken to yet that has had any complaints against the work you are doing that I can remember. All things I hear about the work and changes you are making have been uplifting and positive. I receive time and time again, confirmation that you are my key holder and I will continue to do my best to follow you in all aspects of my missionary work and apply many of those things into my life after the mission as well.
The past 3 days have been incredible. Few times in my life have I felt the impressions of the spirit so strongly as these past 3. My ability to retain info is weak for things such as memorization or being able to remember things I read or am told in things like blessings. But I do remember the impressions and the impact the spirit presses upon my mind and heart. That is also why I take notes, so I can review! It's a marvelous thing. ;) But the opportunity to hear from so many important key holders was such an honor and privilege. I have been very blessed. This week I have loved the focus on families, going to the temple, and sanctifying and preparing yourself. The things being taught have been outstanding. Though I am focused on the mission, I am excited for that day when I will have the privilege to be sealed in the temple and raise a family in a "celestial home." (That's the goal anyways). This week helped me recognize even more so how much I need to be doing everything I can to become like Christ to be able to provide the best future for myself and for my family. I know the only way that is possible is by following the counsel of all prophets, apostles, and other leaders in my life and putting Christ first in all aspects of life.
One other experience I had, was as Elder Glad and I were watching the Legacy on the D&C videos, we witnessed the pioneer who prayed for her Ox to be healed and witnessed her faith in doing so. Pondering on that  and speaking/listening more to Sister Welch, Sister Hamula, and Sister Chrisman confirmed to me that women have power in the Priesthood and can do many amazing things as they are diligent, obedient, and faithful. I am grateful to be able to serve around such a wonderful woman as Sister Welch. Elder Glad and I, during Sunday morning as she bore her testimony, both turned to each other at the same time and said, "I could see Sister Welch in a General Presidency." He said Relief Society or Primary. I said Young Womens. (She speaks of womens medallions often and her love for it.) And we both agreed she could righteously serve in any.
My companion, Elder Glad, is still as great as ever! He is ready to serve in any aspect the Lord needs him in and is a diligent servant of God. It is a blessing to be able to serve with him. He has helped me to grow a lot and improve the Christlike qualities I am working towards growing. He is a great example to all and is a true disciple of Christ.
Our investigator, Henry, has been struggling the past couple days. He has a great testimony of the Prophet Joseph Smith, the Book of Mormon, and that the Church has been restored. But his faith and testimony of the Atonement of Jesus Christ to give him the power to overcome and change is weak. So smoking being such a hard task, is difficult for him to humble himself before the Lord in order for his weaknesses to be made strengths, as spoken about in Ether 12:27. His hope is going down but just this morning as we were speaking to him on the phone he apologized to Elder Glad for being stubborn and tough these past couple of days and said he wants to be better. Which is a witness to me that God is changing him and helping him become better. It's a marvelous thing to witness.
The spirit and the power felt in missionary work is amazing. I am so grateful beyond words to be a part of His work. The more I become converted to the Gospel the more I desire to share it with others as I experience the redemptive power of Jesus Christ in my life. At the beginning of this week I was struggling a little bit with discouragement and with something that had been bothering me. The experience I had was when I served in Kettering. There was an inactive member of the Church who brought up how we "worshiped" Joseph Smith. While that hadn't really bothered me before, it did Tuesday, Wednesday and especially Thursday. I know that Joseph Smith is a prophet of God and I will never deny that. I also know we don't worship Joseph Smith but Satan was working hard against trying to tear down my testimony. I was trying to overcome this as I listened to all the talks from the 200th anniversary of Joseph Smith Conference and attempting to grow my testimony of him. I listened to the song "Praise to the man" and it bothered me. Even though I realized praising is not a bad thing. I praise others all of the time when they do good things. Anyways, as the day went on I was praying and trying my best to overcome this trial and was getting a little discouraged after a tough lesson. As we were getting ready for bed, Elder Glad and I were reading the Book of Mormon and I started to pray, and to bear my testimony to God and within a minute of doing so I felt the Spirit come over me and wash me of the doubts I had been having, and reconfirmed my Testimony of the Prophet Joseph Smith. While I was ashamed of the doubt I was having and did not want to share this experience I understand it is necessary for us to go through trials for Christ to help us grow. And I rejoice in it and know Christ is preparing me for something greater. And through stake conference my testimony was confirmed again and again. I love this Gospel!
I apologize for taking so long but I wanted to share these things with you President Welch. Also, unless you feel otherwise or I request otherwise, my emails to you are always available for Sister Welch to read as well. Love you President and Sister Welch. Have a great week! :)

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