Monday, February 25, 2013

Feb 25,2013 Another grand week ofmissionary service

Dearest Family,

HELLO FRIENDS!!!! So, first things first!!! Ben- I MET ELDER
JOHNSON!!!! Awww, it was so tender!!! He is this super sweet, short,
little Elder and when we got to the mission home I told S Holmes I had
to find him. She tracked him down for me and said, "Elder Johnson,
this is Sister Bishop!" Immediately his eyes lit up and he got this
huge grin on his face!! "I met your little brother and he sent you
this. . . (He holds out his hand and gives me a BIG hand hug)!!!" ha
ha!! It was so adorable!!! I loved it so much!!! Awww!! Yay for
missionaries!!!! We got to take S Sirstins out last Monday and when we
walked into the mission home to pick her up she gave all of us sisters
a big hug, but when I told her who I was she gave me another great big
hug, her eyes got a little watery and she squealed, "Wait!! YOU are my
companion!!" I immediately loved her!!! :) We had a great night and
got off to a wonderful start the next morning when our alarm didn't go
off until 7:00 and we were supposed to meet S Holmes at the mission
home at 7:20!! ha ha! I've never showered and got ready so fast in my
whole life!!! But it was great!! I miss S Mecham a lot, but I think
that is just kind of how it goes! :)

We had dinner last night with the Hill's and they are the ones who
sent you the pictures of us! They are the greatest, I love them so
much!!! Sister Hill called though and passed on the message from Dad
and this has been my thoughts! :) I had NEVER wanted to serve a
mission. But I had been blessed with parents who BOTH served missions
and would tell stories and experiences about how much they loved their
missions. I think though the biggest thing was growing up in a home
where the doctrines and principles were taught and gaining my own
testimony of them was the biggest thing that impacted me. Instead of
just hearing or reading about faith in Christ, or covenants I
experienced it first hand. I loved how you (Mom and Dad) were always
so good at teaching by example, you helped us learn the importance of
tithing by letting us pay our own tithing each week. (One of my
favorite memories was racing to get the change out of Dad's pants
pockets every Sunday morning so I could pay my tithing!) It was like
that with every thing and I experienced the blessings of the gospel
first hand by living them myself. I learned how to pray and
communicate with my Heavenly Father and we learned together how to
recognize the spirit talking to us and guiding us in our lives. Then
when the time came and I knew that I needed to pray about going on a
mission, I knew I could trust my Heavenly Father and knew how to
recognize that voice telling me "YES!!! YOU NEED TO SERVE A
MISSION!!!!" It hasn't always been easy, in fact it has probably been
one of the hardest things that I've ever done in my life!!! But I
think that's one reason that I love it so much!! Now I KNOW for a fact
that Sister Bishop can do ANYTHING with the Lord's help!!! Even come
all the way to Detroit, Michigan for a year and a half and go way out
of her comfort zone and see more miracles that she ever thought
possible!! Seriously, missions are the BEST!!

Any ways, this week has been SO great!! I LOVE training, mostly
because you have the wonderful advantage of a new missionary full of
faith and enthusiasm for the work. Sister Sirstins is amazing!!! I
feel more like she is training me than I am training her- there have
been so many things that she's taught me this week! :) She's taught me
patience (that's always a big one with a new companion) and love and
faith to expect miracles! I think one of the best things about
training is how hard it is! Just because you have to be completely
selfless, focusing more than ever on your companion and the people
that you are working with. I've really appreciated the promptings this
week from the spirit that reminded me if I was tired or a little
discouraged or hungry, how much my new missionary would be feeling
those exact same feelings, even stronger! As I've made it a bigger
focus to look out ward I've seen already how it has strengthened our
companionship. The other thing about training is that is forces you to
evaluate where you are at-- it leaves no room for half hearted goals
or justification. (This probably sounds awful, but it has really
opened my eyes and helped me to recognize my weaknesses and set goals
to improve.) I'm going back to the basics, I'm really treasuring up
the word (one hour of personal study just never feels like enough!)
and I'm really trying to be a more consecrated, diligent servant of
the Lord. I think honestly the biggest thing that has changed this
week is my attitude. I really do love this work and with all of the
faith and enthusiasm of my new missionary I'm really feeling the fire
again! Northville of course has it's unique challenges, but I know
that with the help of the Lord, we can do all things! I feel a bit
like Nephi building a boat, I've NEVER built a boat before and I
really have no idea what I'm doing, but he's given me the tools and
I'm just going to go for it! :) Elder Law and Elder Jones (the new
Elders in our ward) seem to be doing pretty well also.I was so proud
of them this last week! They were hard at work and at our coordination
meeting, the ward council was so impressed. They can tell the Elders
are here to work hard and are determined to succeed. They are really
great!! I love our little Elders! :) Good things are happening-- we
ARE going to baptize this coming month. .. we don't know who yet, but
Heavenly Father does and He will help us to find them!!! :)

We had a really neat experience this week with finding. We had planned
to go tracting and felt really, really good about this street. We were
excited and ready to see miracles! We knocked and knocked and door
after door, nobody would talk to us. We kept thinking, "the next door,
our family has GOT to be behind this next door." Dinner time rolled
around and we were getting close to the end of the street. I was just
praying so hard, "PLEASE, PLEASE, Heavenly Father! Please let this be
our family." We kept going and still nobody was interested. A little
disheartened we got in the car and headed home for dinner. Sister
Sirstins asked if we could say a prayer of gratitude. I of course
repented quickly and agreed that that was a wonderful idea!! :) She
prayed and I felt the spirit whisper, "it'll be okay, Sister Bishop!"
All day I had been thinking that we should go and meet our neighbors,
but I just kind of shook it off thinking, "They are not interested!
The last missionaries have tried and tried to teach them, and plus we
have to find our family!! We just don't have the time!" Well, we
walked in for dinner and our down stairs neighbor was outside talking
with her son and his friend. I figured we'd just say hello quickly and
introduce S Sirstins. Well, we got talking and the 2 boys started
asking questions. Before I even really knew what was happening we were
handing them both a Book of Mormon and teaching them the
Restoration!!! Ha ha!!! We taught them, set up an appointment and
committed them to church on Sunday!!! They asked the best questions
and one even said, "Man! This makes so much sense!! That's why I don't
like your church mom, cause I feel like it's missing pieces, but these
two girls, they sound like they have all of the answers!" We walked
upstairs to grab some dinner and I couldn't even believe what had just
happened!!! Ha ha!! It was SO great!!! Even though we hadn't found our
family on the street that we had felt so good about, we had done our
best and Heavenly Father blessed us with 2 new investigators!!! BUT
the best is yet to come!!! The one boy ran into us on Saturday and
asked to make sure we were still coming on Monday, we assured him that
we would be there and he said, "Oh good!! Because I invited my cousin
and her 2 best friends too, they are all curious and we all wanted to
learn more!" :) :) What a tender mercy!!!

There were so many good things that happened this week, I really
appreciate how Sister Sirstins just jumps right in at every
opportunity. (Training new missionaries is such a unique experience
each time because of course, they are unique! It makes it challenging
and fun!) In all of our lessons with our investigators she was ready!!
We had practiced and prepared that morning in comp study and she just
went for it!! Our last appointment of the night on Sunday night fell
through and our back up was to go tract an apartment building. I could
tell that she didn't really want to, it was a little cold and she
wasn't as well prepared as she would have liked to be with her big
warm coat and gloves, but we improvised and made it happen. :) We
pulled up at the complex, prayed and set a goal to make this 45
minutes the BEST!! We got each other all pumped up and excited and
went to work!!! It was SO amazing!!! We found 2 potentials, taught a
lesson and found a family of like 5 that asked us to come back later
this week!!! Heavenly Father recognized our desires and faith and the
blessings were poured out on us!! :)

Wow, there are so many good things happening that I feel like I could
go on for days and days in this letter! But, I think these miracles
really sums up our week. Sister Sirstins is really amazing and I'm
grateful to have this time to work with her and to see all of the
wonderful miracles that Heavenly Father has in store for us and for
this area!!! Northville is going to be SOAKING wet this coming month!!

Family!! I love you all SO much!!! Thanks for all that you do, thanks
for your prayers and love!!! It really means so much!! Ben- I hope
Portugal is treating you well!!! I'm hoping that you have the most
amazing trainer ever and just know that you'll be the BEST missionary
that Portugal has ever seen!! Keep up the hard work, pray lots and
just have fun- love every minute!!!

Have a wonderful week!! RWLY!!!!

Sister Bishop

Feb 25, 2013 Ben's letter from the Mission Field

hello family
well ya know how I said that I was serving near the mission home well the next day I figured out the truth and I am serving in Maia that is about 3 hrs north of the mission home by train so my address is. . .
Elder Benjamin lynn Bishop
Rua Nova do seixo No 693 r/c Dt
Senhora da Hora portugal 4440
so now you can write me :) any way I also have Elder fry as my comp and he loves to cook so for now I am being taken care of. but the food is diffrent they have alot of rice and its not like our rice so idk but we have a huge area normally there are other missionaries here but the area hasnt had much success so there is just us but we are going to change that. our house has room for 6 missionaries and we want to get aleast 1 more set here before the next 12 weeks is up.~
miriam I did meet Pheobies grand parents on my 2 day here so thanks for having them watch out for me.
one of the hard things to do here aside to trying to talk to preople is the jet lag to give some perspective my watch tells 2 times if I want it so so I go to bed about 4 pm utah time and I get up at 12 midnight utah time it is so wierd and hard but i am getting used to it well family I dont have time because i went bowling with the zone leader today andmy day is shot I will try to write a letter but it is faster to do emails
again i am sorry this is short but I have to go I love you all keep praying for me ctr and all the important stuff
Love E. bishop

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Ben's first letter from the Mission home Feb 19,2013

Hey family I made it to the mission home!!!! I have been fed and interviewed and all the important stuff I only have a minute so it was awesome to talk to you all yesterday I wish we had more time but such be life. My companion is from the US but I can't remember his name right now I will tell you when I meet him I am so excited after our interview I know that this is right for me and I am so excited I will be serving in a very strong ward that has me my comp and 2sisters serving there and it is really close to the mission home I love you all CTR and all the important stuff!   love Elder Bishop love you all

Lisa's esciting news Feb 18,2012

Dearest Family!!

Hello to all!!! I can't believe all of the crazy things happening. . .
Ben, Hollie, and Dee all leaving!! Where did time go!?!? :) That's so
great though!!! I'm excited for all of them to be out in the world
again and putting all of their faith and excitement to work! I know
you'll all be great!! So, I know Ben is flying out today and that he
get's to call. . . or maybe he already had? If not, you should record
it though!! I would love to hear his voice!! :) Ben, thanks SO much
for the package!!! I LOVED IT SO MUCH!!! We are going to have our
closets all full of coordinating clothing! ;) Ha ha! It'll be great!!
And I'll proudly wear my Portugal shirt every opportunity that I can
get!! I will try to try to get your package off today! :) Good luck
though!!!! You probably won';t even read this letter until you get to
there, but sleep as much as you can on the plane! It's a LONG flight!
Chew bubble gum and that seems to help with the air pressure, and just
enjoy the journey!!! You'll be fantastic!!! :) I love you so SO
much!!! AND I will get to see the Missionary that you ran into at the
MTC TODAY when we go to take out the new sister! SO, I'll be sure that
he passes on the message!! :) Just know my thoughts and prayers are
with you, now and always!!!

So, fun fact: Ben and I are on the same transfer schedule! WE just
finished up week 6 and so that means we got transfer calls on
Saturday!!! First off I have to explain a little back ground info. . .
Our mission got 2 sisters from temple square for about 2 transfers.
President told us that we would be hosting one of them for about a
week until transfer meeting. We were SUPER excited of course!!! So, we
got Sister Hee on Wednesday. She is absolutely fantastic!! The past
week has flown by!! We were having so much fun that we told President
he could just forget about Northville for transfers so that we could
all stay together and we would be very happy little campers! :) But,
unfortunately that didn't happen. . . Sister Hee and Sister Mecham are
both being transferred and I GET TO TRAIN AGAIN!!!!!
AHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am SO EXCITED!!!! HA HA!!!!! I'm sad to
see both of these great sisters leaving me, but to train a new
missionary is so fun! I love it!! Of course I am nervous and a little
scared, but the faith and excitement of a new missionary is so
incredible! The fire and love that they bring to the work cannot be
matched!!! We get to meet her tonight and take her out with us and I
can't wait to meet her!! As I've been praying for her yesterday and
today the only impression that I've got is to just love her! And
honestly, I already do!!! :) The next 12 weeks are going to be the
BEST ever! :) It's so exciting and maybe even a little more tender to
my heart thinking of Ben, Hollie and Dee all meeting their trainers
and hoping and praying for the best! I guess if I had any advice for
you, it would probably be the same thing I've been feeling. . . JUST
LOVE THEM!!! They are just as scared as you are! :) They aren't
perfect missionaries, and they WILL make mistakes, but just love them
and do all you can to be the BEST companion and BEST new missionary
ever!!! The relationship that you have with your trainer will
(hopefully) be a very treasured relationship and have a special place
in your heart! :) :) <3 You'll be great though!!! (Oh plus!! This
transfer is only a 5 week transfer, at least here in Michigan! We are
shortening it so that we will be on track with the MTC, so it's going
to go super fast!) And with 10 sisters coming in next transfer, just
about all of the other sisters will be training! The Lord is truly
hastening his work!! It's so exciting to be a part of that! :)

Any ways, this week has been so much fun! We were kind of crazy
getting everything ready for the Elders coming. . . so we will now
have 2 sets of missionaries in our ward! The ward is super excited and
have already started praying for our elders and have people for them
to see. It'll be a busy, but great week ahead of them! But on top of
that we had Sister Hee in our companionship as well! She is such an
incredible missionary!!! It was really amazing to see Heavenly Father
bless us this week in so many different ways. We had time to do some
tracting in our area and in the Elder's to help them to get off to a
better start, and found so many prepared people! In our lessons we
were so unified, and we hadn't had time to practice like we needed to
but still the lessons just kind of seemed to flow all together. Our
lesson especially with Sharon this week was really incredible. Martin
and Sharon are great!! Martin has been less active forever and we just
started teaching Sharon about a month (maybe a month and a half ago.)
As we were studying, Sister Mecham and I both felt very strongly that
we needed to invite Sharon to be baptized!! So of course we worked
that into our lesson plan. Right before our appointment, the spirit
prompted us to change what we had planned on teaching her. It was a
little scary cause we weren't sure exactly what it was that we needed!
We had their home teacher, Brother Youngs coming to their lessons and
this week we asked him to share his conversion story. He did and the
spirit filled the room so strong!! He started crying and so did
Sharon!! He described the peace and joy that has come with his
conversion and membership in the church and Sharon said that is
something that she has been searching for and craving. We promised her
that as she continued to learn about the gospel she would find those
things for herself!!! The spirit in the room was so strong! We were
getting to the end of the lesson and still hadn't extended a baptism
invitation. Right before we were about to close and leave, the spirit
wouldn't let me NOT extend the invitation. It was a little harder
cause the conversation had drifted to other things, but I knew it had
to happen!!! I prayed and asked for help and then just opened my
mouth. . . . I extended the invitation and after addressing some of
her concerns she accepted and said she would gladly be baptized!!! We
weren't able to give her a specific date, but I was so thankful for
the spirit in giving me the courage to open my mouth and for giving me
the words to say! :) Martin was so happy, he was practically dancing
around the living room and is convinced that he is going to baptize
her! :) It'll be great!!! We'll baptize Sharon and reactive Martin!!

There were so many other good things happening this week , but I'm out
of time!! I'll try to get snail mail out today. . but you know how
that goes! :) I love you all SO, SO much!!! Thanks Ben and Rach and Di
for the packages!! You are the greatest!!! I love you all and keep you
in my prayers every day!!! Choose the right and all of the important
things!!! But always remember WHO loves you!!!!

Keep me and my new missionary in your prayers too!!! We need to find
and baptize a family!! :) Love you all!!

Sister Bishop

Ben's last 2 letters from the MTC

Hello Family :):):)):
so I guess that this may be my last email from the mtc man where has the time gone? I love the mtc but I am so not ready and so ready to leave!!!!!!! Any way like i said I leave Monday @ 11 i go to the travel office and do what ever then about 230 my flight takes off so I should get to call between 12 and 130 i think. and i am so excited to call and hear everybody because you will all be home for the Holliday:):):)
so here is so sad news on tuesday E horne had an appointment for his knee and found out that he tore his meniskis idk and he needs another sergury idk on his knee so he had the options to go home and get it done or to stay here because he cant go to the field without that getting fixed so he decided to go home so I have had an interesting time without a companion so its been diffrent without him and I have really missed him so if you could pray for him to recover soon that would be great.
Dear Lisa so funny story the other night as i was getting a drink an elder saw my sanpete crew shirt and asked if I was from sanpete and as we talked I found that he was from Fountain Green and his name is E. Johnson. thencome to find out he is going to serve in the Detriot Mission!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! so I freaked out for a few min. then showed hima pic I had of you and told him to give you a hand hug from me so Keep an eye out for him he is shorter and I think he has blonde hair and he is going to get there Monday with all of your new sisters I think.!!!!!!! :):):):) so just know i love you the best!!!!!!! I hope you got my package I know that it was small but is was all I could come up with. :):):):)
Well family I think that the biggest thing I am going to miss here is going to be the dear Elders because I wont get any more because they dont print them out till the evening and the next evening I will be here is tonight and they close early tonight and I wont get any on monday because I leave too early dang it I guess that you will just have to send me more emails so I can read thoes on p-day. :) well family I think I will understand if i dont get very many packages or hand written letters but just remember I love you all tons!!!!!!!!!!!! and I am super excited to talk to you on Monday talk to you all them. :):):):):) love you all super tons
Love Elder Bishop :):):):) <3 <3 <3 talk to you on Monday :):):)::):))

Hello family how is it going?
so Yes I got my travel plans I leave Monday the 18 @ 1135 am so its not going to be bad. i sent my mission address home so it should be there soon. any way yes i am going to be ahost again tomorrow and I am super excited.!!!!!! I will tell Dee happy birthday if i see her tomorrow thanks for taking care of that :):):):)so anyway here is some funny stories that have happened.
last week when I hosted they had some sort of camera crew there and they were recording alot of the stuff that happens for the drop off i guess. so this one sister when i got her bags and everything they were basically recording me it was so awesome so maybe if you looked that up you might see something on the news with me i really dont know what they are using it for though. oh well.
so when i got here to the mtc it was somewhat crouded but it is nothing in comparison to now. now they are putting another bunk bed in each room because of how many new missionaries are coming in. then when we go to dinner the line is almost always out the door when before it was only half way to the door it is so crazy. but i had a funny story from that I was going to get another brownie and i looked over as another missionary sneezed so I said Saude (good health) and pointed at him and walked on and he was going up for another sneeze he stoped and looked at me really funny and I think i was able to steal his sneeze on accident it was so funny to see the look on his face when i said saude.
any way I write down what I want to write you but then I think that it will take longer than it does so I am always hitting these stops and dont know what to write so jsut know that I love you all tons thank for all of your letters but just know that the next time i write you an email i will be in Portugal and free to teach the gosple to everyone i want to . . . even if cant talk that much.
so another random fact I weighed in the otherday and I have gained 8 lbs since I got here that is like a lb a week so i feel super fat and I think that going to portugal will be super good. :):):):)
still havent heard from hunter yet. but I hope to hear from him soon. I have met his cousin though and I think he has some cool cousins. his cousin is in my zone and he is just a few classed down the hall from me so I see him regularly
well family sorry this is so short I love you all ctr happy v-day
love Elder Bishop :):):)

Monday, February 11, 2013

Lisa's letter Feb. 11,2013

Dearest Family!!!!

Hello to all and Happy Monday Morning! :) I don't know if you follow
the weather in Michigan at all, but it is the craziest thing ever! And
I thought that Utah weather was bad! It can't decide if it's gonna be
freezing cold, or warm up and rain and wash away all of the snow. . .
but I'm not complaining- I am well prepared for both!! :) A few weeks
ago after wading through like 5 inches of watery slush on the
sidewalks S Mecham and I broke down and went and bought rain boots! :)
They are super classy! The best part is, all that wal-mart had was
dark blue so, YES! We have matching dark blue rain boots- super
classy, right!?! :) It's great though, and life if so good!! :)

This week we went on exchanges, I stayed in Northville and S Evans and
S Farnsworth came here with me, then S Mecham went to Ann Arbor with S
Hoopes. She got to spend the day on campus contacting and she LOVED it
so much!!! It was really fun because they are teaching Van, (a guy
that S Thompson and I found and he is on date for March 2.) So, while
she was there she got to meet and teach Van too!! It's so great to
hear that they are teaching people that I worked with and he is
preparing for baptism!! When I heard that, it totally made my day!!!
Any ways, so I was here with S Evans and S Farnsworth and as we talked
about goals we wanted to focus on for the exchange we all decided that
we wanted to have more faith in finding. It's something I think that
we were all kind of struggling with but we knew that with the three
of us, and God on our side we could do anything!! That day of course
all of our teaching appointments fell through so we spent the majority
of our time together tracting, which made it really great to
accomplish our goals. :) We had planned the night before and picked
out some streets that we all felt good about and then that morning we
went to work! The FIRST house that someone answered the door it was my
turn to do the door approach and I was praying so hard I don't even
remember what I said, but before I knew what was happening, the guy
invited us in!!! I was in such shock that I just kind of stood there
for a minute,but quickly regrouped and sent a prayer of thanks
heavenward! We taught him the Restoration, extended an AYWY and had an
amazing spirit filled lesson the entire time! (One tender mercy I've
seen when we go on exchanges is that we are able to teach together and
be unified so fast!!) After that, we were so excited we went like 2
more houses and then again, the guy let us in!!! (Another blessing of
exchanges and having a trio is that we could just walk right in and
not have to worry about having a 3rd woman.) Again we taught the
Restoration, and invited him to be baptized. He didn't accept the
invitation right then, but said that he would let us know! He
committed to come to church and was so excited and grateful that we
stopped by. At the end of the day I was SO thankful for the miracles
that we had been able to see that day and for the reminder that
finding really is a principle of faith. :) If we have faith and do all
that we can to find these people, Heavenly Father will bring prepared
people to prepared missionaries. This work is all about faith. . .
it's something that I'm working on improving, but recognize that it
comes, line upon line and precept on precept.

This week we are going to have Specialized training and in preparation
for that we read Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, by Elder Pearson.
(Mom it's really good!! And might have some good stuff for the lesson
you are working on!!) But, the thing that really stood out to us as we
studied was the important connection between faith and obedience. As
missionaries we have another whole set of rules that we get to follow.
Now, I feel like S Mecham and I are pretty good at being MOSTLY
obedient. But there are so many blessings that come from EXACT
obedience. Even the tiniest little details of the rules. So, in a
quest to help our faith grow we went through the White Handbook and
PMG to see what we needed to do to be more obedient. We found most of
the things we could improve on in the schedule. We are good at getting
up on time (we even get up early so we have enough time to get ready.)
We exercise, but not necessarily for the full 30 mins that is
recommended.. . . just lots of little things like that. SO, we are
repenting!! ha ha! We made a list of everything we need to do and set
goals to do them all. It's taken some work and even some sacrifice,
but we have been SO blessed the last few days!! I have loved it!!!
Blessings come from being obedient, but miracles come from being
exactly obedient!!

Our days all seem to kind of run together, time goes so fast! But this
week our Wednesday was SO crazy busy! It was one of those days that
you literally fall into bed so exhausted but extremely happy!! We
worked hard all day, but mostly I felt like it was spiritually
exhausting. We taught several lessons and each of them seemed to be
exactly what that person needed to hear. I'm SO grateful for the
guidance and help of the spirit, I couldn't do this alone!!! :)

Angela!! I forgot last week to tell you HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!! Sorry it's
late! But I really do hope it was GREAT!! :) I love you so much!!

Other exciting news this week: We are getting THIRTEEN new sisters in
the next 2 transfers!!! YAY!!!! I am SUPER excited!!! Here is the
crazy part though: we only have 13 sisters now and 2 of them are
leaving in a week!!! Ha ha! So EVERY single sister will be training!!!
And some of them will have to do 2 at a time! :) :) :) I'm not sure
how President is going to work it all out, but we are all STOKED!!!!
:) :) :)

Well family! Know that this is kind of short, but this computer has
been kind of silly and won't let me type like it should! I still have
to write President, so I better go. But I LOVE you all so dearly!!
Choose the right and all of the other important things!!! RWLY!!!!

Love you all bunches and bunches!!

Sister Bishop

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Ben Feb 5,2013

Hi Family
So guess what I finally get to host tomorrow !!!!!!!!! and so if you could you should go up in the van and use that to drop off Deanna so maybe you could all see me again ha ha that would be great!!!!!!!
Elder Bodhaine says hi and he love you even though he doesnt know you or any thing :) so tonight you should tell me who to watch out for coming in tomorrow via dear Elder tonight that would be great!!!! So this week has been so good.mostly because I got an awesome book from my Awesome family I was so excited to get that I looked through it all for the next 3 nights. so I think i found the only mistake in the whole book. :):):) on the last page with all of us in the pic infront of the Temple it says that I am in there 2 times and jake isn;t in there at all but taht is the only mistake i can find. um speaking of book s do you think you could send me a cook book so when I get to Portugal i can remember what i ccan cook :):):):):)
so last night i met an Elder from Portugal and guess where he is serving St. george ut!!!!!!!! so I am going to his home town and he is going to mine!!!!! his name is E Augusto. so keep an eye out for him he just got to the mtc so he wont be there for another 2 weeks but he might serve in sanpete!!!!! or he might just come for pageant to help with the refferals ect but it would be great if you saw him!!!:):):)
So Lisa i have heard that you and your comp are twins but I never got any pic i was a little curious but I guess i dont have to see for another 2 years:):):) jk but i would like to see if you could.
here is another random story E lamkin got another comp. last week. his name is E Merkley and he is so fun kind quiet because this is his 2nd time around in the mtc and he was only here for about 1 week last time so its kinda rough for him but he fits right in.
So dad how is your shop coming with this weather they should be able to pull off forms and put some others up or something mom said tath things were moving in baby steps but I would like to hear what you think are they actually getting some where or how is things from your perspective? I love getting letters from you they are like the best :):):) but that doesn't mean that all the rest of you should slack off i love any and all of your letters!!!! so keep writing:):):):)
I am curious how many broken bons are we at now with the tramp there do you all use the ski bikes? mark tim how much food is left after meal are you still able to clean up the pot? who ended up with my snow board and is hannah driving Phyllis or is mark? you should write me and tell me all of thoes adventures and how quiet it is in our room at night? what funny stories have happened since I left? idk i just dont hear that much about all of thoes things and I'm a little curious so I wold love to hear from you all. :):):)
Well Family i am going to try to write a snail mail home today but my time here is always limited but just know I love you all tons!!! and I havent forgotten to write you I just am so busy I cant write that much. well My time is up but jsut so you all know Eu Ama Voce (I love you all)!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ctr
Love Elder Bishop!!!!!! :):):):)

Monday, February 4, 2013

Lisa's letter Feb 4,2013 winter wonderland

Hello Family!!! :)

How is everyone!?!? :) Life here in Michigan is just grand! The
weather has been so crazy the last few days. . first it warmed up to
like 50 and rained like crazy!! (So much rain that we finally broke
down and bought rain boots) then it decided to be FREEZING cold again,
and today it looks like it'll be snowing all day! But, you know
what?!? I'm loving it because miracles always happen, but they seem to
happen even more often in inclement weather! ;)

In Relief Society yesterday we were talking about some of the ways
that we can improve our gospel study and recognize promptings of the
spirit. One sister mentioned the importance of being grateful for the
small steps that we take. That thought hit me so strongly!! I am
really grateful for the progress that I've seen in myself and honestly
the progress of all of the people that we are working with. Sometimes
it's easy to wonder why things aren't happening the way that I want
them to, but then I have to take a step back and remember who's work
this really is! :) I would LOVE it if everybody we met and started
teaching was baptized in 3 weeks, it would be fantastic if every ward
member was as excited and enthusiastic about missionary work as the
missionaries themselves are! But all of that is a work in progress. .
. it takes time, faith and work!! I guess what I'm really saying is
that this week I've really learned the value of patience and waiting
on the Lord's timing. But also the blessing of noticing the progress
(even if it is just a baby step) that each of these people are making.
:) Here are some of the things that I noticed:

-David Howie, our scuba diver investigator is still afraid to come to
church and now he has cut our meetings back to once every other week
instead of weekly. BUT Bro Mangum from the ward called him and asked
him to come and help teach the boy scouts about one of his many
talents. (He scuba dives, is a professional rifleman, professional
sailor and is doing cross fit.) Any ways, David was SO excited about
helping with the scouts that HE called Bro Mangum and they chatted
forever about ways that David can help! :) He's not ready for church,
but we'll get him there one way or another! :)

-We are teaching a couple, Martin and Sharon Brooks. Martin has been
less active for a vary long time and Sharon of course, is not a
member. Her father recently died and her she has no religious
background. Their home teacher, Bro Youngs has been trying to get into
their home for the last 5 years and had no luck. BUT We got Sharon's
cell phone number and they have been letting us (and Bro Youngs) come
into their home weekly to teach them the gospel. Sharon is trying to
figure out how the spirit talks with her, is reading the Book of
Mormon and praying and is one of the happiest persons I've ever seen!
:) As she is making these changes, the spirit is also working on
Martin. During our last lesson he admitted that he has a long way to
go, but knows that God has NOT given up on him! As he talked, the
impression that I got was he knows what he needs to be doing and his
heart is being softened so that he can make those changes! :) The
other miracle was saw was after these couple lessons with the Brooks,
Bro Youngs has been SO excited!!! He is the HP group leader and in WC
yesterday he animatedly told everyone about the progress he's seen and
was very excited to continue to come with us and teach the Brooks'!

-Our English class is starting tomorrow and the ward is SO excited!!
The relief society sisters have volunteered to make cookies and we
have sisters signed up to bring cookies clear until April! :) :) 5 or
6 people came up to us at church yesterday and offered their help and
lots of great advice and everybody was amazed at what a wonderful idea
it was! Ha ha! The ward is so great! I really, really love these
people! :)

-Matt and Sarah dropped us last Saturday and we had some feelings that
it was because of family pressure. We met with the Harvey's this week
(The Harvey's have been fellow-shipping them.) and they confirmed that
Matt's family was really against the church. BUT they keep in frequent
contact and promised to keep track of Matt and Sarah and let us know
if there was anything that we could do! AND several other families
noticed that Matt and Sarah weren't there yesterday and after we
explained the situation, they promised to make plans with Matt and
Sarah too. I love this ward so much! They are great at
fellow-shipping!!! And Matt and Sarah will know that we are always
here for them and that we love and support them no matter what! I
really feel like they will come around, but it needs to be the right
time and right decision for them. :) We'll just keep praying for them
and know that Heavenly Father will work it all out! :)

- Nate and Vanessa were at church yesterday and blessed their baby,
Isla! :) Nate's heart is really being softened and he is doing so well
at coming to church and working on his prayers! (We are still working
on the book of Mormon, but one step at a time!) The baby blessing was
so neat and then they even stayed for Sunday School for the first
time!! :) AND Nate even answered a question! AND him and our WML, Bro
Bingham really hit it off. :) :)

- We were tracting this week and found a man named Pat. Sister Mecham
and I are working on being bold and that day it had been raining ALL
day and nobody had answered their doors. We knocked on his and started
talking. . . honestly I don't even remember what we said but he
ensured us that he was NOT interested. BUT we just kept on talking and
testifying and pretty soon he had a change of heart! Ha ha! He
wouldn't let us leave! We stood on his porch for almost an hour
answering his questions and teaching him. We tried like 4 times to
leave and then he would have "just one more question!" We finally left
and were a tad late to our next appointment, but it was the BEST
feeling!! I loved it!!

Isn't life amazing!?!? Good things are happening!!! :) We are still
searching and praying for our family! We haven't found them yet, but
know that they have GOT to be close!! :) :) I love being a missionary,
it's the greatest thing ever!!! :) Plus, S Mecham is the best!! I love
her a lot and missionary work is even better when you have an amazing
companion like I do! :)

So, other news: I got that book that you sent me and I LOVED IT SO
MUCH!!!! Thank you!!! It made my day!!!!! I opened it and started
looking at all of the pictures, and just about started crying. . . I
just love you guys so much!!! Family is everything and with the gospel
we have the promise of forever!!! I'm so grateful for all of you!!! :)

I do know Elder Buchmiller!! He's a great elder! He got transferred
into the Hill St district right after I got transferred out, but we've
been in the same zone for a while and he's fantastic! :) He's one of
those elders who loves the work and isn't afraid to work hard. :)

I did get Ben's letter this time! Hopefully we got that all
straightened out. Mom sent me all of the letters I missed before, so I
think I'm all caught up! :) Life is so good!! I'm just living it and
loving it because each day seems to go by faster and faster! :) I love
you all so much!!! Keep up the good work! :) Keep reading your
scriptures, praying, going to church, praying your tithing, going to
the temple and following the spirit! :) Thanks for all of your
prayers, your examples, your letters and your love! You are the
greatest!!! :) Love you all bunches and bunches!!


Sister Bishop

Ben Jan 29, 2013

Hello Family :)
so I dont know how much I will be able to type but here we go
First of all thanks for all of the letters and the package Laura I will try to write you but I am supper busy right now so we will see. I think that I will use all of the things in there but when i leave the MTC i will send what i dont need back home.
So I had a few amazing experiences this week on monday we met as a zone and we had a prayer for an Elder in our zone because of what he had been going through. then in the next day or 2 we heard that E Hatch had had a cyst in his body that looked like they may be cancerous so when we prayed for him he went to get everything verified and the doctors couldn't find any sign of the cyst at all it was so amazing to see the Lords hand in our life :):):)
Dear seminary students we encourage you all to memorize the 100 scripture masteries and I have a testimony of them in my life. the other night we were doing TRC teaching and our investigator was asking questions about how he could get more blessing from God and we were at a loss as to what to say because we were speaking in portuguese and we only had port. BOM and bible with us so we sat there for a min. and then I was reminded of the scripture mas. in d&c 130 20-21 and with that we were able to teach and actually help our investigators it was so good for me what a blessing:):):)
so when we did service we were looking at some bom painting and we saw some awesome ones by joseph brinkley they were so good maybe you could look them up they were awesome.;0;0 the other night we were talking to our branch president about all of the new missionaries and what he thought was going to happen with them and he said he thought that there were going to open new areas but also we were going to fill all of the missions and a full mission had about 250 missionaries and that is going to be crazy!!!!!! poor mission presidencies.
mom i did get the package and I love it the only thing is that the book you sent me I cant read till i am out in the field cause our pres. wants us to focus on the bom mostly so i am super excited to read it in about a month ha ha :):):))\
so I love my district but for some reason they think its funny to play tricks on us and i get tired of it the other night I found an alarm clock in our vent but since then they have moved it and woke us up at 12 then last night they put E williams thats really loud they hid it to go off about 2 i was not very amused soI hope that they stop because we aren't supposed to play tricks on people here so that will be interesting .
the day sister Hedielus came in E Horns best friend came in too so we were hoping to see him when all of the sudden she stops and talks to me I was like what when where . . .  I was super shocked it was great but yea you should have Hunter write me and tell me where he is going as well. ps I meet his cousin who had a farewell the same day as me and he chose to come to mine ha ha small world but I need to go now Love you all supertons ;0;0;0; keep writing me I love you all. :):):):):):)
Love Elder benjamin l bishop :):):)