Monday, December 29, 2014

Christmas in Australia!

Dear family and friends,
  This week has been a wonderful week! I hope that all of you have had a very Merry Christmas! I'm really liking this Oatlands area. There are so many wonderful people here! It has been a bit challenging getting around and getting to know everyone without a car. But the members have been very helpful. This week we've been going through a long list of unknown names and trying to figure out who they are. It is always a long process and hard when you don't see a lot of success in one day but I know that our efforts are never wasted. It has been good because we are finally just beginning to see the needs of this area and seeing who we have to work with. Even though we didn't get to see a lot of people this week we were able to talk to some people on the street and were able to find 3 new investigators this week! So I definitely know that the Lord is guiding and directing us.
    Even though it was a holiday this week we have many members willing to come out with us all throughout the week. That is true dedication right there! The members were also very kind in inviting us over for lunches and dinner to help us feel at home this Christmas season.
     For Christmas Eve we went over to a families house named the Mackie's. They are originally from Utah so it was good to have that common ground. We went out that night and delivered Cup cakes to people that were in need that night. It was great to see them smile big as they found a nice treat on their door step.
    On Christmas day we went to several different families houses in our ward. My favourite part of Christmas day was the evening. We had the opportunity to go over to the Laugery's house. They are a young couple in the ward, Racheal is the Relief Society President and her husband is the Elders Quorum President. They are so much fun! We had a wonderful typical Aussie Christmas dinner and we played some fun games! It was so much fun to finally get to play a game again and to feel a bit more like home this Christmas.
   There were so many more wonderful events that happened but I wish I had more time to share them. I know that this is the Lord's church. I learn so much each and everyday. I hope that all of you will take the spirit of Christmas with you all throughout the year. Because we are God's children and we need to reach out to those around us and help them to find the true joy and happiness that we all feel. May the Lord bless each one of you.
    Thanks so much for all the love and support you each give me!
Love always,
      Sister Sorensen

Dinner at the Laugery's

Skyping my family!

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Dearest family and friends,

    My heart is so full of gratitude for everything that the Lord has blessed me with. This week has been a wonderful week, a bit of an adventure but it has been great! My new companion is awesome! Her name is Sister Koster and she is from Denmark. She is so great! I'm so blessed to have her as a companion. She is already pre-trained, literally so its been easy to transition. She has been serving in her own country for 3 months waiting for her VISA,then she went to the New Zealand MTC, and finally now made it to Australia. So she knows already a lot about how to be a missionary and now I just help her to know the ways of being a missionary in Australia. She has said that Australia is so different from Denmark so its been fun to help her and to know some of the differences. But she has so much desire to serve and so much energy I absolutely love it!
   
   Our first week in our area has been wonderful! We've gotten such a warm welcome from the Oatlands Ward it is unbelievable. They are so excited to have sisters back in the ward. They had taken out the sisters a little bit ago and now just put us in so everyone wants us over. So its great with the timing as well so that we can have a place for Christmas. I love the desire that these members have to do missionary work. There is so much work to be done here but I can see that as we all work together, it will be a great success as we strive to bring others unto Christ. I hope that each of you are striving to do all that you can to help assist the missionaries in your area because it makes it so much easier to do the Lord's work. So if you are doing missionary work, keep it up...if you aren't I encourage you to get involved. This is the greatest work that I've ever done. I thought I knew how to be a missionary but now I realized that I was probably the worst at doing missionary work before. This work is so important and so many people are searching for truth and without us they won't be able to find it. The Lord needs each and every one of us!

  This week I had the wonderful opportunity to go back to my old area for the baptism of Donelle and Leo Tuipulotu. It was a great opportunity to see them again and to witness their baptism. The spirit was so strong! I know that the Tuipulotu family is the reason for why Sister Parr and I were there. The Lord has perfect timing and that was the time that they were ready to receive the truth. Those boys will be such great examples to their family and friends. I can see so much potential in them! I love being able to see some of the fruits of our labors as others enter into the waters of baptism. It is the greatest feeling in the world!

   Just yesterday we were able to go into Mortdale to the Mission Office. The entire mission met together for a big Christmas conference. It was so much fun to see all my past companions and all the wonderful elders and sisters that I've served with throughout my mission. It was so weird that I knew the majority of them this time around. Last year I didn't know anyone and now I have so many wonderful friends. We had a wonderful and inspiring Christmas program, the spirit was so strong! I'm so grateful for this wonderful Christmas season and the opportunity we have to celebrate the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. He is truly the greatest gift our Heavenly Father has given us. I hope that all of you can slow down a little bit this season and REMEMBER CHRIST... for he is the REASON FOR THE SEASON!

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas! I love and appreciate all of you.

Love always,
    Sister Sorensen

Pictures:
   My companion, Sister Koster and I...everyone thinks we're twins. and the other picture is with Donelle, Leo, and Nari. I love them!



 *****
This is all of my district from the MTC. We are all still here, it was fun to see them all again.

Re-united with one of my best friends, Sister Schwab. She is such a great blessing in my life. It was so great to see her!


Transfers...Shotgun Training!

Dear Family and friends,

     It has been a great week. So this weekend was transfers again. I can't believe how fast this transfer flew by. I found out on Saturday that I was being transferred again. I kind of saw it coming though. I'm going to miss so many of the investigators that we're teaching especially Nari and her boys. They have been the biggest miracle of this transfer. In fact this coming Saturday Donelle and Leo are going to be baptized! I've already got the approval to go and I can't wait for that day. Those boys are so excited and the Lord has definitely prepared them for this time to be ready for baptism.

   I've been transferred to a place called Oatlands. I've never heard of this area but I'm told it is near the temple in a place called Parramatta. I'm training a new sister! So for the next couple days I'm in limbo land with a few sisters who are also training. I haven't been to my new area yet but I look forward to go in the next couple days. My new companion arrives tomorrow! I'm so excited to meet her and to get to start in a new area again.

   I'm sorry my email is short this time. But I'm so grateful to be a missionary. I've learned so many things that I can't even begin to tell you. I'm excited for this next chapter on my mission and to meet some new people. Thank goodness that I have the Lord by my side and the spirit to guide me in this work or else I don't know if I could do it. I know that this is His work and He stands at the head of it.

Merry Christmas to you all. I love you heaps!

 Love always,
   Sister Sorensen

Pictures: the one by the sign is of Donelle and the boys and Moetahi. They are all going to be baptized soon.
The other pic is of my investigator Melelupe. I'm going to miss that girl. I used to teach her in Green Valley and so it was cool to teach her again.



Sunday, December 7, 2014

"Be not afraid, only believe." (Mark 5:36)‏

Dear family and friends,

   This week has been another great week here in Australia. I can't believe it's already December! Time is flying by but I'm loving it here so much. There are so many wonderful people here that we're working with. Here are some updates on some people. Nari and Donelle and the other boys are doing wonderful. We are still teaching them every week. We go over almost every single day to keep them going and to make sure everything is going good. They are starting to get more and more involved in the ward activities. The baptism for Donelle and Leo is still on for December 20th of this month and we can't wait for that day to come! We are so very blessed that God trusted us to be working with this wonderful family. We love them so much!
   
Here are some of the tender mercies that happened this week:
  • This week one of the recent new investigators that I met in the Green Valley area we were finally able to meet with him. I was a little unsure of how keen he was to learn. But it turned out to be a great lesson. Hamlet was so eager to learn! He read the Restoration pamphlet and we went through it with him. We gave him a Book of Mormon towards the end and he was already reading it. He was so happy to learn more and to see what it was all about. We look forward to working with him and hopefully he continues to have the fire and desire to learn more of restored gospel of Jesus Christ.
  • I went on exchanges with the Samoan sisters in this area. I had the opportunity to go with this new sister in the mission, her name is Sister Esau. She is amazing! She has only been here for about a month but she taught me so much and is a great missionary! Her area is actually the same area as Green Valley but they just cover the Samoan people so that whole day in their area I was trying to remember any Islander families that I knew of that could help these sisters find people to teach. I've never searched so much for islander, specifically Samoans in my life. I was on the lookout all day long! They don't have a car in that area so we were walking all day and so it was so great because we got to talk to heaps of different people. We had one cool experience...We were walking on our way to this less-actives home when we saw these islanders outside their house. We were so excited and started to talk to them. This one boy in particular was very interested in religion and had been searching for a while in all the religions. He was truly seeking truth and Heavenly Father had led us right to him. We taught him of the Restoration of the gospel and we testified of the Book of Mormon. He said that he would read the Book of Mormon and the Sisters have an appointment with him this coming week. It was such a blessing. I know that those sisters struggle with finding people to teach, especially Samoans so that was great to see the hand of the Lord in the work that day.
  • We had a great experience this week as we were going through the ward list. We're still trying to meet some new people and especially all the ward members. We tried many different houses and we went to one of them and no one was home. But as we were getting in the car a woman drove up. Her name was Priscilla. She said that the man that lived there was her x-partner but now she lives there with her daughter. She was the sweetest woman and we got talking about who we were. She was very interested in learning more and we were able to set up an appointment with her. That was such a tender mercy to meet her that day. The Lord is so good to us, it always happens that way. After a long day of no one home we were able to have a little tender mercy with Priscilla to help us know that he is there and that we are doing the right thing. What a blessing!
      I don't know if any of you have heard about the new initiative that has come out by the church. It is called "HE IS THE GIFT." It is a great program that is going and we are taking it on strong. We pass out so many of those cards each day and we are really seeing lots of success during this Christmas Season as we are striving to put Christ back into the Christmas season. If you haven't already seen this mormon message please do! Or have a look atchristmas.mormon.org. Invite EVERYONE that you know to take a look at this. It has been a great blessing in my life and has helped me to remember what Christmas is all about. 

   As I was doing my personal study one day this week I came across the scripture of Mark 5:36 which I entitiled this email. It was something that really stuck out to me. We've met so many people that are fearful of where the world is headed but as I got to thinking, we really have no need to fear. As we trust in the Lord and live a righteous life, we won't have to worry because we know that we are on the winning team. Are you on the winning team? Are you on the Lord's team? I encourage each of you to evaluate your life and see if you are doing all you can to do what the Lord has asked us to do. If not there is still time, the Lord is always there for us and can help us to get on the strait and narrow path towards our Heavenly Father.
  I know these things to be true! this is the Lord's church. I hope that you all have a wonderful week!

 Love always,
     Sister Sorensen

PS. the pictures are of Nari and Donelle. And then the other one is of Simi, Nari's little boy. He is so cute!



Sunday, November 30, 2014

Testify of the truths that you DO know

Dear family and friends,

    It has been another incredible week this week. I've loved it and I've learned so much. That is my favorite part, I'm constantly learning and growing each and every day. This week I have seen the hand of the Lord continually leading us and guiding us in this work. Here are a few of the tender mercies that happened this week...
  •     On Monday we were sitting in the mall eating lunch when this Vietnamese woman came and sat by us. She constantly was looking at our badge so of course we turned to her and started to talk to her and get to know her. She shared an incredible story with us...she said that about 20 years ago she lived in the Philippines as a younger girl and she said that she was in a concentration camp? We weren't quite sure what the conditions were with that camp. She mentioned that missionaries just like us would come and teach them English and would teach them of Jesus Christ. Melody was her name and she said that she grew to love those missionaries and they really helped her. Well she lost contact and it wasn't until she saw us that day that all those memories came flooding back to her mind. She then invited us to come to her house sometime. She unfortunately isn't in our area but we passed it to the sisters in that area. It was a big testimony builder of the power of ever planting seeds and no effort is ever wasted. It may even take 20 plus years to prepare someone to receive the restored gospel.
  • On Wednesday I had the wonderful privilege of going back to my first area, GREEN VALLEY! I have been looking forward to this for the longest time and it was such a great experience. That day the relief society just so happened to put together a lunch and it was great to be able to go and see all the relief society women there. It was so great to catch up with them. I was also able to catch up with Anikka, my recent convert. She's been struggling lately and so we went and picked her up and took her with us for the day and we taught her along the way. I think she really needed that boost. It was perfect timing. The sister there have been struggling to find new investigators so we parked the car and just walked the whole day. It was so great! We didn't let a single person pass us by without talking to them, it was great. We were able to find 2 new investigators and find a heap of new potentials for the green Valley area. It was amazing!
  • On Friday we had a lot of appointments to start the day off, but they all cancelled on us. Every single one of us. But we went forward anyway and just prayed constantly to know where we needed to go next. There was one tender mercy after another. One great experience that we had was this our two older ladies that we visit at the nursing home. We went to visit Dawn and Faye that day. And that particular day they were dying to have a Hamburger. They haven't had one in the longest time so we ran and bought them a hamburger. You should have seen their faces. They were so excited to have one and they ate it so fast. It made our day to see them and to do a little service for them to brighten up their day.
  • Just this past week the Tongan sister passed us a referral for a less-active that they met on the street. No one knew about this woman named Sister Allen. We were able to visit with her and she has mentioned that she hasn't been to church in many many years but she wants to come back now. She is so eager to learn, she wants us to come and re-teach her all the lessons again because she has forgotten so much. She would like to work towards the temple and just get back on track. It was so cool to be able to meet her and now be able to bring her back to Christ.
   I have learned so much this week but one main principle that I've learned this week is the importance of testifying and sharing your testimony. We had an appointment with one of our investigators and I began to feel very inadequate because he knows the bible really well and I don't. But we had our ward mission leader with us, thank goodness and he was able to testify but he was testifying more of the importance of the restoration and all of the basics. Peter, our investigators had many questions and things he didn't like about the Book of Mormon. But one thing that I learned is that we don't have to know everything. All we have to know is the basics of the restoration and the plan of salvation. And as we testify of the truth, the holy Ghost will testify of the truth, if only the investigator has an open heart. I know that this is the Lord's work and he will help us to know what to say right at the right time and I've seen that time and time again. Don't be afraid to open your mouth because this is the best message that you can share to anyone and we are on the Lord's side. I know without a doubt that He will be by our side to help us.

I love you all very much, thanks for all your love and support.

Love always,
    Sister Sorensen



Going back to Green Valley


 Dawn and Faye and their hamburgers

All of us serving in the Liverpool 1st ward.


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Faith To See Miracles


Dear Family and Friends,
    
Wow I love being a missionary! I know I say that every week pretty much but it is so true. I'm so blessed to be able to serve at this time and I know that this is exactly where I need to be at this time. Its been another great week here in Liverpool. Sister Parr and I are continually striving to get to know more members and more people in this area. It always takes time to get to know people and to see what the area needs but things are going so well.

   This week thanks to Sister Jordin Giles email last week gave me a boost in my faith to see miracles and I saw such a big difference. I noticed that we were lacking some faith. This week I had the opportunity to go on exchanges with a Sister from Tonga named Sister Taufa. She is such a sweetheart. For that day we set some good goals for the day and we were both so ready to see some miracles and to go out and find some people to teach. 

      We had some great experiences! One experience I'd like to share was when we decided to go walking for part of the day to find some people. We were walking towards this home for a potential investigator when I suddenly felt like we were going the wrong way and that we needed to turn around and go the other way. So we turned around and when we turned around we noticed this girl that was walking a little bit behind us. Yes...someone to talk to we thought! We introduced ourselves and started to talk to her. We then ended up sharing with her pretty much the whole Restoration. She said that she would love to meet again. We set up an appointment with her. I knew that the Lord had answered our prayers and because of our faith we were able to see miracles and to meet Nikki.

We had another miracle this week. On friday Sister Parr and I had an appointment at the Liverpool Library with this new investigator. Well we waited there and waited there and realized he wasn't coming. So then we started looking at the people around us whom we could talk to. We went over and talked to this african guy. It was so cool to talk to him. We ended up teaching him the whole restoration as well. He is so ready to learn more and willing to listen. I knew that we weren't there for Peter that day but we were there so that we could meet Dave.

There are so many more stories that I could share but I just know that this is the Lord's church here upon the earth. He definitely knows what he's doing and will guide us to where we need to go. We just have to have the faith. I know that as we pray for miracles and constantly expect them and exercise our faith that the Lord will put people in our paths. I'm grateful for this gospel and I know with all my heart that it is true. The gospel of Jesus Christ can change lives and will shape us to become more like our Savior, Jesus Christ...He is the way.

I hope you all have a wonderful week. 

Love always,
    Sister Sorensen

We went bowling with these sister last week. It was so much fun! 

A pic of me and my wonderful Soa, she's the best!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Trusting in the Lord is key!‏

Dear family and friends,

   It has been a great week here in Liverpool. I think we are now starting to get the hang of this area and starting to get to know the people in this area more and more. There is still so much work to be done but we are excited that we get to be apart of this work and building the Liverpool area. We have seen so many tender mercies this week. Here are a few of them:

  • On Wednesday I was on exchanges with a sister from Germany named Sister Ziegner. It was a bit stressful because I have to be the example and I really don't know this area so it was a challenge. We didn't really have too many set appointments either so I was putting down a bunch of random names that I was finding in the area book. And I also was trying to get some members to come with us and in the midst of all this panic. There was a sweet member that called us and asked if we needed her to help fellowship for the day. It was an answer to my prayer! We were able to go out with her for the morning and it was a great experience. We got to meet some more people and also be able to meet a lot of potential investigators. I love members that are proactive and help us!
  • On Saturday we had a great day! We had Sister Deo (the member that came out with us on Wednesday). We wanted someone to come out with us to visit the Tuipulotu family that we've been working with a lot. I knew that Nari would need some friends and I felt very strongly that Sister Deo needed to come to that lesson. It turned out that Sister Deo knew Nari and has been trying to for years to get her to come back to church and since then had lost contact. So it was great to re-unite them and it was good to have her there to help with the boys. We set Donelle (oldest 14 year old boy) and his brother Leo (8 year old) up with a baptismal date. They said yes! I love the desire that all of these boys have to learn the gospel. They don't know hardly anything but they love it so much. I know that they don't really understand baptism yet but they want to follow Jesus Christ and Nari wants them to be baptized as well. We are so excited!
  • After visiting with Nari and the boys we went to contact this referral that Nari gave us. She lived just around the corner so we walked. The woman's name was Ruth and she was on the phone when she answered the door but she was willing for us to come back. On our way back to our car we saw this woman out in her yard. We all said hello and kept walking but after we passed her I felt the need to turn around and talk to her more. It turns out that all 3 of us had that feeling. She was a very kind woman, she was a religious woman herself and really liked seeing young people out sharing the gospel. We began to share with her a little bit of our unique message. While we were talking I felt like we needed to give her a Book of Mormon. So we testified of the Book of Mormon and she was eager to read it and find out more about it. We are going back this week to share more with her!
  • On Sunday we thought we would just leave Nari and the boys alone and test them to see if they could come on there own without us pushing them to come. And sure enough they came! It helped us to see the great desire all of them have to come and to learn. It is such a blessing to be working with this wonderful family. We love them so much!
    There are so many wonderful things that are happening here and I can't wait to see what else is in store for this transfer. I've learned a lot about trusting in the Lord this week. He really knows what He is doing and we have no need to worry as long as we rely on Him and do His will. Sister Parr and I don't know this area but the Lord does and He can guide us to know what it is we need to do now. I have see him guiding us this week in what needs to be done now in this area. I'm so grateful to be here and to be able to be serving at this time. I learn so much each and every day. This gospel is so true! I know that there are countless blessings that come our way when we are keeping God's commandments and doing all that we can. I'm also so grateful for  the atonement and the knowledge that I know that I can be forgiven. Yes we will make mistakes, I do way too much but I know that I can be better. We need to constantly be re-evaluating ourselves and looking for those weaknesses so that we can be stronger and more like Christ.
       The Lord has given us so many tools and things that we can use to learn of Him and to become better. God is all powerful and can do all things. We just have to trust in God in all things. One scripture that stuck out to me this week was when I was reading in Mormon 1:2 it talks about Mormon only being 10 years old and the wonderful faith that he had. One attribute that stuck out to me that it mentions that he was "quick to observe." I thought about that phrase quick to observe this week and I've been striving to apply it into my life. Are you quick to observe the commandments and the promptings that you receive from God? When the spirit guides you to do something, do you do it? I know that I have a lot to work on when it comes to that aspect but as I've focused on that this week I've seen so many tender mercies as I just followed and ACTED as soon as I got the prompting. Remember faith without works in dead (James 2).
    My COMMITMENT for you this week is to evaluate yourself and see if you are "quick to observe" like Mormon. I can promise you that as you strive to more fully listen and follow the promptings of the Holy Ghost that you will have many miracles. Your life will be blessed tremendously and you will be an effective instrument in the Lords hands in bringing forth His gospel.

Thanks for all your love and support!

Love always,
    Sister Sorensen

This is the Tuipulotu boys! They are our favorites! Donelle, Leo, Beni, and Simi. Simi is the little guy, he is the cutest boy ever!


Sunday, November 9, 2014

Tuipulotu Family Miracle‏

Dear family and friends!

   Another great week has come and gone in the mission field. I just wish that time would slow down a little bit but we do what we can. This week has been a bit of a challenge as Sister Parr and I have been trying to get to know this new area and discern the needs of the people in this area. It has been great to get to know so many new people, this is a great area. It is still so weird to be back in Liverpool but I know that I'm here for a reason. It has been good to start fresh in a new area, new companion, new everything. It has been great to look back and see just how far I've come and the things that I've learned to get me to this point. I know that the Lord knows us each individually and knows where we need to be. It has been great to see how all of my past experiences are now helping me in this new area to know what to do and how to deal with different situations.

   TUIPULOTU MIRACLE:
     This week we had a huge miracle! The Lord is so good to us and definitely guides this work! Just this week we got a referral from the elders for this less-active. So we went to visit them on friday night. When we knocked on the door this man answered and he looked at us and said, "missionaries?" He then said he'd be back. Following that his wife came out, she was so happy to see us. We began to talk to her and get to know her more. We came to find out that she hasn't been to church in over 15 years. She also has 5 boys that have never been to church or anything. She expressed how much she wants to come back to church and she feels like its time for her boys to learn of the gospel too. Her oldest boy is 14, then she has a 8yr, 7yr, 4yr, and 10 month old.She was in tears as we talked about the Atonement of Jesus Christ and how it is not too late to come back and that Christ's arms are wide open and ready for us to come to Him.
  
     We set up an appointment with her and her boys the following day (Saturday). Her boys are so cute and so ready to learn! We started from the very basics. We taught them about our loving Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. They never really knew about any of that. We taught them the song, "I am a child of God" and they loved singing that one. We then taught them how to pray, we went around the room as each one of them said their own prayer. You should have seen those boys eyes light up as they came to know that they had a loving Heavenly Father that they could talk to and that could help them with anything. We then invited them to  come to church the next day. All the boys were so excited to come! Nari, the mother expressed the concern that they didn't have any clothes and didn't want her boys to be judged for their appearance. We expressed how it doesn't matter what you wear but as long as you go. But regardless we were scrambling to find some clothes for the following day so the boys could come. 
    
    Sunday morning we stopped by their house to walk with them to church with some clothes for them to wear. Nari wasn't sure she wanted to come but we were able to help her realize the importance of letting her boys have that experience as well as herself. We left her to get ready and we went to church. Church was starting and they had still not arrived. So Sister Parr and I left sacrament and walked to their house to get them. They were all ready to go just needed an extra push to get them there. We walked with them to church and they had a great experience there. The boys were so happy and loved primary and loved young men's. Nari was in tears the whole day, I know that she felt the spirit strong that day. What a miracle!
   I know that the Lord prepared Nari at this particular time, she is so ready to come back to church and to get her whole family to know of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

I'm so grateful for this gospel and all the blessings that come from living the gospel. I'm so excited to be a missionary at this time and to be able to witness miracles like the one we had with Nari and her family. I know that as we do all that we can and strive to be obedient in all things that the Lord will be able to use us as effective tools in His hands in bringing the gospel of Jesus Christ to His children. After sharing this miracle, do you have anyone that comes to your mind that you could share the gospel  with? I encourage you that if you have to ACT upon that thought. It may seem scary to share the gospel to someone that you know or especially someone that you don't know. But I can promise you that by sharing the gospel you are giving someone the greatest gift you could ever give someone. So my commitment to you is to pray for a missionary experience, pray for someone that you could share the gospel with. And if you don't know what to say, Pray! Our Heavenly Father will give you the words to say, he has promised us that. I know that this is the Lord's restored church on the Earth today. He loves us so much and is always there for us.

I hope you all have a great week. I would also love to hear your miracles so feel free to share them with me. It always uplifts me and helps me to keep going.

Love always,
    Sister Sorensen
Here are some of the photos we took at the trunk of treat activity. 
My new companion, Sister Parr (far left)! Sister Bretzing was also with us for the first couple days as she was waiting for her new trainee. I lived with Sister Bretzing for the first 6 months of my mission so it was fun to be with her again for a little bit.

These girls are some of the ysa in the Green Valley Ward. I was able to see them this week, they are all working towards their missions now. :)
I wasn't able to send some of the pics from Sister Tito and I's last exchange together. We went to this beautiful place called Narooma with some sisters named Sister Hoeft and Sister Rushing. We had so much fun there...except for the time that we got attacked by seagulls at dinner.

Narooma

This was at the Halloween party before I left Belconnen. Jennifer just got baptised yesterday in Belconnen ward, she is awesome! 
Our investigator named Felicity who is getting baptised this next week. I'm going to miss that girl, she is so strong and so willing to follow our Saviour Jesus Christ. We were both in tears as we had to leave but I know that we will see each other again. 

Monday, November 3, 2014

BACK TO LIVERPOOL!‏

Dear family and friends,
 
   This past week has been an incredible week, once again. I've loved being able to serve in the Belconnen Ward! But unfortuntely my time has come to an end in that ward. I have now been transferred back to Liverpool (which was my first Stake) but now I'm just serving in a different ward. I'm serving in the Liverpool 1st ward. My new companion is Sister Parr. She is awesome! She is from Auckland, New Zealand (another Maori). I'm so excited to be with her and to be serving in Liverpool again. We are shot gunned so we both don't know anything about this area but the great thing about that is that we have the spirit to guide us and to help us in this work. I'm so grateful for the knowledge that we are not alone. We "can do all things through Christ which strenghtheneth me(philippians 4:13)." I know that I couldn't do this work, the Lord's work on my own. I know that this will be a another great experience for me and that the Lord has sent me to this new area for a reason. I'm so ready to go out and apply those wonderful things that I've learned in my last area and to help the people here.
 
There were so many tender mercies that happened this past week. Here are a few:
 
  • We confirmed the baptismal date with our young 14 year old African investigator. She is cleared for baptism on this coming sunday. We are so happy for her. Unfortuntely I won't be there but Sister Tito will be there to help her.
  • We also have a baptismal date with Felicity for the 15th of November! She is so keen for that date and is working towards it. She is awesome!
  • Dat ( a new buddhist investigator) came to church! He is the first buddhist that I've met who is so open minded. He is so ready to hear the gospel and it was so great to be able to share with him the truthfulness and the fulness of the gospel.
I wish I had more time to give you more of an update but I want you to know that I know that this is the Lord's church. It is the only one that holds the fulness of truth and you can find true happiness and joy by living His gospel. I have gained a strong testimony on obedience. I know that as we are obedient we will recieve blessings and as we are exactly obedient we will see miracles. I have seen that so much on my mission and I know that I'm the happiest when I doing what God wants me to do. I LOVE this gospel and I know that it can change lives. I know that our savior loves us so much and is there for us. He knows what we are going through and all He wants us to do is turn to Him.
 
Have a wonderful week!
 
Love always,
     Sister Sorensen

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Goo-ba-lee-Goop!‏

Dear family and friends,
 
    You must be wondering what the heck the title of this email is all about but I will explain. But it has been another great week full of so many wonderful experiences and tender mercies. Sister Tito and I continue to work extra hard in order to help all of those that we're working with to progress and come unto Christ. Here are some of the events/ tender mercies that happened this week.
 
  • On Wednesday I went on an exchange with a sister named, Sister Ilalio. We are running low on kilometers so we decided to walk the whole day. Unfortunately we weren't able to get many set appointments so it was an open day full of unknown. But in a way I love days like that because it strengthens my faith and helps me to trust in the Lord to go where He wants us to go. There was one miracle after another. One of them that sticks out in my mind was when we had been walking almost all day and it was really hot. I was really struggling to keep going and just was praying really hard that I could have the strength to keep going and that we'd find someone that would recieve us. Just after that, Sister Ilalio looked over and saw that there was a door that was open and people inside. I said, "lets go!" We knocked on the door and it was such a nice woman and listened to what we had to say. We set up a return appointment and it was good to know that there were really some nice people that are ready and prepared at this time. I don't know if that woman will be super receptive but at that moment it was a tender mercy to meet her. She boosted my energy and helped me to keep going. I'm so grateful for that experience.
  • Emily Van Dyek is changing day by day. It has been incredible to see the changes in her. We started the stop-smoking program with her this week. She was able to crush a whole pack of new cigarretes on her own. But unfortunately she wasn't able to make it the full week. She hasn't fully decided that she wants to quit. So we continue to teach her and encourage her and I know that she will be able to quit. It has been great to see just how much the gospel can change people. Even those that you least expect. All you need is a willing heart and an open mind and the spirit will be able to teach them and show them the way. I don't know if I'll be here for Emily to be baptized but I'm grateful to be able to say that I was one of the first missionaries that introduced the gospel to her. I know that she will one day come unto Christ.
  • On friday we had a few cancellation and so we were walking around the suburb by our flat. We saw this lady spraying off her driveway. We of course went up to talk to her and she was a lovely lady. We talked about the beautiful weather and then she took us around and showed us her garden. She was so nice that she didn't even notice we were missionaries until after we'd been talking for a little bit. She then started yelling GOO-BA-LEE-GOOP! i thought it was a little strange at first and then she explained that she likes to feed the mag-pies and that is the call she uses to call them in for their feed. So Sister Tito and I joined in by yelling and all of these birds came in and started eating. It was sure a funny experience and now Sister Tito and I like to use that phrase whenever we see a mag-pie. The lady was very kind and we set up a return appointment too. Something I learned from Bev that day is the importance of treating everyone with respect. She didn't even notice we were missionaries she just talked to us like anyone else and I hope that I can do the same thing with everyone that I meet.
  • Our wonderful Mission President gave us permission to go to the temple with Mini for the first time on Saturday. Mini went with the relief society and stayed the night there in Sydney and we surprised her and got a ride early in the morning with a member. We surprised her and you should have seen her face. She was so excited that we were there with her to help her. It was a great experience to be able to see Mini glowing as she was able to help some people that have passed on to recieve that great blessing of baptism that Mini just recently was able to experience. Mini loved it!
  • Sister Tito and I also had the opportunity to do an endowment session and what a great experience that was. After not being able to go so long, it was a great blessing to be in the temple that day. I learned so much and it really was a good boost of spirituality. I LOVE the temple and I'm so grateful that we have them on the earth today.
  • We set a baptismal date with Felicity for November 15th. We are so excited for her and are ready to help her to get there. Please keep her in your prayers!
     There are so many more wonderful experiences I could share but those are some of the highlights of the week. I'm so grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ in my life. I'm so grateful to be able to now share the gospel to those that are ready to recieve it at this time. I know that the Lord is hastening the work at this time and now its our time to stand up and to proclaim the truth to all the world. I commit you to pray and fast this coming fast sunday to know of someone that you can share the gospel with. Or even someone that needs strengthening at this time. I know the power of fasting and prayer. I know that if you have the desire to share the gospel that you will know who is ready. And as the scriptures promise us that we have no need to worry what to say but the words will be given us at the very moment we need them. So go out and share what you know to be true!
 
I hope you all have a wonderful week! Thanks for all the love and support!
 
Love always,
    Sister Sorensen











Sunday, October 19, 2014

We are nothing without God (Alma 26:12)‏

Dear Family and Friends,
 
    It has been another wonderful week here in the Canberra area. I don't even know where to begin with the week that I've had. Its been full of so many wonderful experiences and lessons that I've learned. Here are some of the tender mercies that we saw this week.
 
  • EXCHANGES WITH SISTER MATA'AFA: This last monday after emails we drove to Nowra (3 hours) to go on an exchange with those sisters there. I had the wonderful opportunity to go with a sister named, Sister Mata'afa. In Nowra there are heaps of old people because its a retirement place near the coast. So we visited a lot of older people. We went to the nursing home and we talked to a lady that is a member and she was a great example to me of a faithful woman regardless of all the rough times she's been through in her life. We also visited this other member who is about 80 years old and she is so missionary minded. She doesn't even seem like she is that age and has invited so many to hear the gospel. I want to be like May when I get to be that age! It was a great blessing to meet all of those wonderful people that day.
  • EXCHANGES WITH SISTER BOITEUX: The next day we went on exchanges with the Woden Sisters. I got to go with Sister Boiteux. She is amazing as well! We got to see some cool miracles that day. The first one was when we went to visit this investigator named Jeanette. She wasn't home at first and so we tried some doors around her and no one was home. So we headed back to the car but Sister Boiteux is new to the area and can only get around with a gps. The gps wasn't working at all and we didn't know what to do. So we decided to pray. The gps still didn't work and so we decided to just get out of the car and start walking and find out why we were supposed to be there. We talked to several people and after a while we headed back to the car. The gps still wasn't working but as we were trying to figure it out we saw Jeanette walk by and go into her house. So of course we jumped out of the car and went up to her door. THAT WAS WHERE WE NEEDED TO BE!  We had a powerful lesson with her on her door step about prayer and putting the Lord first. By the end of it she said she was about to cry and wanted to go inside to pray some more and ask for forgiveness for some things. When we went out to the car the gps started working again. I knew that the Lord needed us to talk to Jeanette that day.
  • Another thing that happened with Sister Boiteux was we got to teach this little boy named Brodie. He is 9 years old and has a small attention span. So we decided to make the lesson really fun for him. It was one of the best lessons ever. I taught him basketball as we were teaching the lesson. We related basketball to prayer and Christ was a the coach and how we have to listen to him and talk to him. Sister Boiteux said that was a miracle that he was able to listen and understand the lesson. It was so fun! All those years of basketball pay off even on a mission!
  • Emily and Kristy and her family came to church! That was a huge miracle that they came. We went on splits before church to round everyone up for church. Sister Tito and Faith Stubbs went over to wake Emily up and she did not want to come. But with a little bit of the spirit and a little bit of petrol from the members she drove herself to church! It was awesome!
 
     There are so many more miracle to share but those are some of the few. It was a great week and I'm loving every minute of my mission. One thing I learned a lot about this week is the power of the Atonement. Many times I find myself always wanting to do better and always falling short of what I want to do. And instead of getting angry with myself I have learned how to turn it over to the Lord to help me to make those weaknesses my strengths and reach new heights. I'm so grateful for the power of the Atonement that allows us to be better and to become more like our Savior.
 
Thanks for all that you do. I hope you have a wonderful week.
 
Love always,
    Sister Sorensen

Momma Mini!

The wonderful and fun Kikkert family

splits with Lata and Faith sunday morning.

If this is what it takes to get someone to church then we are willing to do whatever it takes! The Green's filled up a can with petrol the night before to give to Emily so that she could come to church.


Sunday, October 12, 2014

Another INSPIRING General Conference

Dear Family and friends,
 
I know that all of you probably watched general conference last week and now that is old news for you but for us in Australia we just barely were able to watch it this past weekend. It was so amazing and I learned so much from the sessions. Aren't we so grateful to be able to listen to the prophets at this time and to know what we can do to lift to new heights and to more closely follow God's plan for us? I don't even know where to begin with all the things that I liked from conference. I think I took at least something from each of the speakers that I could use or improve on.
 WRITTEN QUESTIONS:
    One thing that I learned this week is the importance of writing down the questions that you want answered. For the first couple sessions I just had a few questions that I had in my mind that I hoped to have answered but some of them weren't very clear and I didn't fully know what I wanted answered. But thanks so my wonderful companion who helped me and inspired me to just take some time and write them down. So I did that very thing. I took some time aside and prayerfully wrote down some of the questions that I had in my mind and also some others that I had not really thought of before.
   I went to the next couple session of conference with those questions written down and it was amazing how much more I was able to get out of conference. Not to say that I didn't get anything from the talks beforehand but the spirit was so much stronger as I realized I was more ready to recieve revelation and open to what God wanted to tell me. God isn't just going to give us everything and expect us to do nothing for ourselves. He wants us to do our part and to prepare ourselves so that we can recieve all that he has in store for us. I noticed that by the end of conference that each of those questions that I had written down was answered by at least one talk. It was a great lesson to learn and what a great experience I had.
 
   One of my favorite talks from conference was President Monson's talk.  It was definitely an answer to one of my questions. I loved it how he said, "Walking WHERE Jesus walked is not as important as walking AS Jesus walked." I LOVED THAT! I've always wanted to know how I can develope a stronger relationship with my Saviour, Jesus Christ and I think I've always known but this talk just really enhanced it and helped me to recognize it more than ever before. If we want to come to know someone or even strive to become like them we have to do as they would do. Our purpose in this life is to become more like our Saviour, Jesus Christ and the way we do it is by being a little kinder to our fellow brethren, keeping ALL of His commandments, and just by putting aside the natural man and the things of the world for the things that truly matter most in life.
 
  This conference we had a few of our investigators come which was so great to see! We had our investigator Emily Van Dyek come which was a bit of a shocker. She even stayed for both sessions on Saturday. I think she was a little bit overwhelmed by the end but I think over all she really liked it. We also got Jennifer to come to one session and I think she really liked it as well. I wish that I had more time to share some of the insights that I recieved from conference but I have ran out of time.
 
I hope that you all have a wonderful week and strive to apply all the things that you learned from conference. WE ARE SO BLESSED! I'm so grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ in my life and I'm ready to share that with everyone else that is willing to listen.
 
Love always,
    Sister Sorensen

We went to the Parliament building this last pday. It is really cool!


Brother Baker (Ward mission leader) took us all out for lunch in between the Saturday sessions. We had Emily with us too. She is the one that doesn't look very happy but i think its because she's not used to having so many happy people around her. And of course Mini came with us too. 


This is me and Shayla Arnold. I love that little girl. yes I'm still a kid at heart and was playing with her, I had a lot of fun with this 3 year old.