Monday, July 28, 2014

Week #37: Hello Family!

 Congrats to Jared and Brittany! I cannot wait to see more pictures of that sweet girl! That is just so exciting! 3 new babies and almost 4. That is just exciting!! It also sounds like New York is such a blast! I love it there. It would be amazing to see the Newsies there. Part of my tour we talk about the Battalions march to Santa Fe and everytime I talk about it I think, "Sante Fe are you there..." Haha I love it. I miss the good old times with the cousins watching Newsies in Grandma's bed haha. Sounds like things are all going well and Destini is doing awesome!! Wow that is just amazing. She is going to be famous. Try not to buy anymore $30 hamburgers haha that is crazy! not even a cheeseburger haha! The Fishers came to the Battalion yesterday, Jan, Dallin and Amy and their families. It was so fun to take a tour with them. Jan showed me pictures that Rachel had sent her of baby Tanner! It made my day! I also took a tour with the Ulrich family from Farmington, UT who is neighbors to Dan and Lindsay Snell. It was funny how it came up because they said, "Oh we have a family who moved from Pocatello a while ago, but you probably don't know them.. Dan and Lindsay Snell!" Haha I was so excited to tell them they are my cousins. They said their girls had just gotten done with girls camp with Bailey on her first year. I can't believe she is that old! 
              We got a Ward Mission Leader this week. It was such a tender mercy. He is such a hard worker and ready to work. We are in contact every day and it has been 2 days and we can already feel the work progressing. It is amazing how drastic of an impact the WML makes on the ward. I was thinking about Scott and how great I am sure he is as Ward mission leader in Boise. That is great. We have such an awesome investigator right now haha. His name is Adrian. He is going to be baptized just has a few law issues first. He is hilarious though. He prayed last week and he goes, "Dear God.. This is Adrian speaking. I know it was you that sprained my ankle and I am thankful for it.. even the toe jam..." Haha it was so great!! Also he has Schizophrenia and the other day we taught about the holy ghost and he says, "Sisters.. I need to be honest with my doctor and tell him that I am going to be Mormon and because of that I am going to be hearing more voices than ever now." He is just the best. We have had about 3 members who have called us telling us they have a friend they want us to teach. That is a miracles because we all know that is the most effective way to do missionary work. 
                We had interviews with President Schmitt last week. He is amazing. It was a very sacred experience for me. He is definitely called here for a reason and many reasons, but I am so thankful he is here. I have already learned so much from him. Crazy Story from last week!! So we have been trying to contact this less active girl. Well we were on splits and her grandma came out and told us that she really wants us to come back, but to not come back when her boyfriend was there because he would not be responsive etc... Well we went back a couple days later and her and her boyfriend were there. The boyfriend was in the other room and she was talking with us. She said that she is ready to come back to church and that she knows it is true still ( She was baptized 5 years ago) Well halfway through her boyfriend came and sat down with us and we asked him some questions. He was very responsive. Then he says to his girlfriend,"Wait.. You are baptized mormon??" She goes "Ya. I was baptized 5 years ago.." and he goes." I am mormon! I was baptized when I was 8 but I haven't gone to church for a long time!" It was so crazy. They were both so excited and they committed to coming back to church. It is so crazy!! 
           Well we are just having a blast in Helix. We will be losing about 8 people in a month for school but we are building up the ward. I have been teaching another less active piano and lessons and his testimony has grown so much. He is coming to everything now! Miracles! Well I love this gospel, I have been really praying hard to be bolder with people. Sometimes I get too worried about pleasing people, but I know that you can still be bold in a Christlike way and that means that we love them while we are bold. I am striving to work on that and improve. I strive every day to be a better more consecrated missionary. I think of the assistants and missionaries in Nashville who were consecrated and such good examples to me. I wish I was more like them and I am trying every day. I love this work!! I do! I am definitely not the best but I am learning to become more like the Savior and improve every day. I love it. I know the church is true. I know that this is the only church we can make those sacred covenants here on the earth, because this is the Lord's church. It is His way and His authority. I love you all!

Keep being awesome. Go tell everyone in New York about the church! 

Love you
Sister McKee:)

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Week #36: Hello!!

Hello everyone!!

               I hope that Jaren and Brayden had great birthdays!!! They are the best. What great nephews I have ( and niece now:) ) Sounds like crazy things are happening home with New York, sacrament meeting excitement, babies, cows, Sports etc... That is so fun though. I love hearing about all the hard work you all are doing!! And missionary work!! You are all the best. That is so great that you have been inviting non-member friends to assist in the firesides. What a great idea! This week I saw Kathy Stephans from Pocatello - she said she knew mom, dad and Scott I think . They own Party Palace! I also met an Elder Stone who served with Hayden McKee in California. And I also met the parents of Elder Sherard Lier who served with Scott in Costa Rica. So that was exciting! Also I just wanted to remind you of Angie's story with the mouse.. That is why she got called to Ecuador and that is why I did not haha. Just kidding, but seriously that would have been hard for me. 
              This week we have been able to go on splits with the members a lot which is just awesome for so many reasons. They are able to teach and testify and get fired up to introduce their friends to the church. This week I went with a member, Stacey , who is leaving for her mission in 2 weeks to Provo, UT - Spanish Speaking. She is awesome. We went to see a referral who is named Clay. Well we were walking down the street and we see this huge 6'6 guy walking toward us and I go " Hi! Are you Clay??" He goes, " Uh.. Ya... How did you know?" Anyway we kept talking and he is awesome. 27 years old and he loves the Book of Mormon. He knows it is true. He would be baptized, but he works every Sunday! So.. He is trying to find a new job and we know it will happen as we continue to have that faith. Another cool miracle. Adrian is still set for baptism! He he on fire and already a missionary. Our less active who wants to play the piano is awesome. He is learning so fast ( It is so much different teaching an adult piano vs. children ) And more importantly his testimony is growing fast too. He has come for 2 weeks now and has been a huge help in the ward. My tours this week have been incredible. Book of Mormons have been given out like crazy and many members who are visiting! 
               This week we have been reorganizing our ward because there are so many ward lists/ papers/ teaching records. We cover 2 stakes El Cajon and Sweetwater which is a total of about 12 wards. There is about a 2 hour span East to West and about a 45 minute span north to south. It is a huge area. We are trying to figure out the best way to go about with organization with half the time in our area. It is not easy haha but we are working hard. We are calling every bishop about the YSA's in their ward and we are about to see a miracle here in Helix!! We know that as hard as it is with half the time that if the Lord wants us there we will do what we can because He qualifies who he calls and I have seen such a testimony of that. 
              I know this church is so true. I know that we are given the Book of Mormon as another testament of Jesus Christ and I know that as we read from it every day we will find strength that no man could ever find without it. God is so aware of each of our needs and he is looking to us to be an example to everyone we see. We are all wearing His name and have since we covenanted to do so at Baptism. We must wear it well and represent Him in all that we do. I love this gospel and I love the opportunity I have to be a missionary. I have the best family and I get to be with you all forever. I know that is true. 

Keep up the good work!!!! I LOVE YOU!!!

Be safe!!!!


Sister McKee

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Week #35: Fourth of July!

Hey family!

      Wow it has been a great week!  Mary Jane and her husband Stirling came to the Battalion! It was so fun to see her. The Little's from my old area also came and it was so great to give these tours!! I feel so blessed with the great influences I have in my life! Sounds like the 4th of July was great for you all except still no baby for Britt haha! Hopefully she will come soon!! I am loving all these pictures of Tanner and Caroline!! What beautiful babies! We have been adding people a lot this week. We added twins this week and they are both very christian and they actually were curious and requested a Book of Mormon online. The love learning and they are coming closer and closer to a date! Adrian should be baptized pretty soon just waiting for some things to be taken care of! Cool thing too, Some Elders got a call last week from a guy who wanted to learn to play the piano, well come to find out he was a 25 year old who lives in our area and he got baptized with he was 16. His whole family are not members except for his dad who has been less active. This 25 yr old hasn't gone to church is a while! So we went over and met him and he asked who we know that he can take piano lessons from. Well I am the only person that I know that plays the piano in our area haha so we called President Schmitt and we are going to teach him piano with the lessons again! Super great and exciting! He came to church Sunday and he will be a huge asset to the ward. We tried contacting a referral this week and she was not home but we ran into the worker at these apartments and he is so nice and is excited to learn from us! He is from Iraq but is Christian and has been looking for a church! Miracle! 
              We serve in some way sketchy areas. Fights happen all the time and we get yelled at more and more. A lot of people are on drugs, in fact we serve in the meth capital of the world, El Cajon. So sometimes that is crazy but I do not really know when things are sketchy ( Like that time that I let a guy get into my car in Nashville..) I do not know what my problem is, but it really is amazing how the Lord is always with us in whatever we are doing. I am so thankful for that. 
             Our 4th of July was actually amazing. We were able to go down to the Old Town Square and help little kids with games going on ( The dream!)  I love those kids. It was amazing because I talked to so many people who recognized my tag and said that they "used to be mormon" So many less actives! I challenged them to come back to church and let the missionaries in. They said they would. I am excited for them. Miracles everywhere! That night was the most awkward night because we wore jeans and watched fireworks. It was so fun but it is really hard to not think about mission work haha! 
              Andrea is still set for baptism! Wahoo!
                    Well we have to go but I love you all so very much! Thank you for your love and sacrifices. Thank you for all taking care of the missionaries!!! The work is progressing every single day. I am thankful for the lessons I learn from trials and for my amazing family!

 I love you all! 


Sister McKee:)

Monday, July 7, 2014

Week #34: July!!


            Happy July! Can you believe it is July?! Wow... That is amazing. Time is insane. 2 new babies!!!!! Wow Welcome to the family Caroline and Tanner!! The pictures look so great and how fun to have new babies the same day!! I cannot wait to meet them:) It has been another great week! Many emotions this week as President and Sister Clayton went home. We love them dearly and they will be missed, but just as dad always says when new people come in it is not good or bad just different and perfectly different for the needs at this time. President Schmidt and his family got here last Saturday! They have 4 kids who are so cute! David is 14, Tyler is 11, Ellie is 9 and Clayton is 6. Our zone was able to meet them yesterday and it was the most amazing thing to be a missionary when they were introducing themselves. So many memories came as you can all imagine. Our first day in Nashville was almost exactly like it. Kinda funny to because the assistants called me the night before and asked if I would sing a musical number and play the piano for the meeting. It was special to me because of all the times we sang together at missionary meetings as sisters. I miss that. It was a blessing that they asked me. The Schmidt's are so great and I already have a deep love for them. It is fun to have kids too:) They said they are going to come to P-days every week! Wahoo! Just like old times. Sister Schmidt asked my advice for her and the kids after I have experienced it. I told her to let her kids go to everything with missionaries! That is where I learned so much. Even on P-days! They will be a great asset here in San Diego. 
            Our ward is amazing! We had 7 nonmembers at church on Sunday. One of which was brought by our less active. We taught her and her friend that night and she is praying about a date to have tonight! Miracles. She is so ready to be baptized and she loves the gospel. She has been going through a lot. We will meet with her tonight. Adrian is on a great track to baptism. Just a few things to take care of which is good! He is so funny though! Gospel Principles class was so funny because our investigators teach each other and it makes us laugh. He made a comment and said to our atheist investigator ( Who has been coming to FHE and church for over a month now:) ) " How can you not believe in God man?? He is everywhere. We all just need to come together more and help each other as we believe in God, because He is real, that is all. Can you just imagine all of us believing in God holding hands in a space suit around the world?" HAHA We were dying. He is so awesome and funny. So prepared too. I had an awesome experience this week! I took a couple from Manchester England for a tour. At the beginning of the tour they said, "Wow Mormons are just so nice." And by the end of the tour they just kept going," Wow this is amazing and there is such a good feeling etc..." Well we started talking and they are from the Church of England but love history and were fascinated with the Book of Mormon. We talked forever and it was such a great conversation. They ended up going out to lunch with the Mormon Battalion Director, The Barnes and we sent missionaries this week. They loved their experience and left in tears. They told me that I have a place for them in England always and that I will forever be their, "American Daughter" It was so sweet. I sent you that picture with us. I LOVE THEM! I would love you to stay in contact with them. It is so exciting. 
            I ran into quite a few people this week. I hope I can remember them all. The Johnson's from Laketown knows Gary's family really well. They also said that they know the Seegmillers our last director. Gary - Do you know them too? If so tell them hi from me! That would be crazy! I cannot remember if you already told me that. There was the Gagnon family that came from Boise. Their dad used to teach seminary at Eagle and they are cousins with the Gagnon's in Pocatello, Keith and family. They also grew up in the same ward as Elder Huffaker! Super funny! Also Rachel and Joe Chandler from Nampa knows Seren really well and said she taught you in YW! They had the cutest baby! I told her you were pregnant! I also met Paul and Bonnie Titus from Idaho Falls who said they knew mom and dad! I hope I remembered everything. Patty gave the Rasmussen's money for me this week. Please tell her thank you. That was so nice of her and needed especially that day. It is amazing how when you need something the Lord will take care of you. Please tell Patty that was the biggest tender mercy. We also got fed by a member last week - Stacey who is amazing! She bought us each a pair of shoes and a shirt. It was so nice and they are so cute! I cannot even believe she did that. I love them too! If my camera starts working again I will take a picture! 
          I have such a strong testimony. I know this church is so true and that we are where we need to be for a reason. I know that I am learning every day and I am thankful that I am learning to rely more and more on the atonement every day. It is amazing how when people are struggling they accept the gospel so fast. I have thought about that and it is because they have truly humbled themselves so they are submissive to receiving an answer. The questions is whether we continue to be humble when times are good. That is the hardest. When life is going our way we find it hard to find a need to rely on the Lord. I challenge each of you to notice that this week when times are good and bad if you are humbling yourself. I definitely am working on that and you are all good examples to me of that so thank you all. I know the gospel has been restored. I know God is here for me and each of you specifically. He is in the details of our lives. Keep praying , reading and coming to church! Satan knows how to get us down and he is sneaky. I love you all so much! Keep me updated and I want to see these babies grow! Good luck Brittany if she comes this week! I am so lucky to be part of this family. Keep smiling and helping everyone. In our Mormon Battalion packet it tells us our first responsibility is to strengthen the testimonies of members and second to introduce the gospel to all who come into the battalion. Interesting right? As I have pondered this though I have realized that we are all in this together and we are missionaries to every single person no matter if they are atheist or have been LDS their whole life. Everyone needs us. I love you all and thank you for being such a great family. I hope Alisa is doing better and tell Josh congrats on the wedding! 



Sister McKee:)