Monday, November 30, 2015


 Alright, so Happy late Thanksgiving! Hope you all had a wonderful holiday, and got to eat a lot of yummy food, cause I sure did! We had dinner on Thanksgiving with the McAllisters, some members here in Wexford. Such a great family, and they have a daughter that was here from BYU who recently got back from a mission, she is planning to come out with us when she gets back for Christmas break! It is so weird to have people coming here who are going to school out at BYU, it's kinda like we have just switched places! because then they go back to Utah, and I stay here in Pennsylvania!
Anyways, the work in this area is slowly but surely continuing to move forward, The Lord throws in a little tender mercy every day. I have now been here for 2 Sunday's, so I am slowly starting to learn who the people are! I am terrible with names, but I recognize faces which is good, the names will come! This ward truly is just so amazing, which is such a great blessing. They seem so missionary minded, and so willing to help.
I got an advent calendar this year, I've always wanted one so I'm super excited! We have had dinner with both the Bishop's family, and the Ward mission Leader's family, and they are great people to work with, and it definitely makes me want to continue to work harder to help this ward grow!
This week we had an awesome weekly planning session! It was just so awesome to see that we both want so badly for this area to grow, and the Lord is able to work with that, and guide us by the spirit on how to use our time wisely. A great experience that we had, so we had tried several times to stop by this potential investigator's house with no success, finally we decided to give her a call. Well we found out that number and name was a member from a nearby ward, so good thing she was never home or that would have been super awkward...But this member had referred her friend who is super prepared for the gospel, and we got her name and number and we were able to actually talk to Amanda (the potential investigator) and set up an appointment for Thursday, and she sounded so excited! So I'll let you know more next week how that goes!
#ASaviorIsBorn CHECK IT OUT!!! Hey! The new Christmas video is out! IT is on seriously, go watch! And then after, share the video, and the Christmas spirit with others, and help CHRIST be the center of this Christmas season, as he should be. What can you do to come closer to Jesus Christ this Christmas season?

 Got this email from my mission President this week, looks like I get an extra week on the mission! So my return date will be like June 22 or something I believe.
 The McAllisters made these adorable Turkeys for Thanksgiving!
 We helped the Bourquins set up their Christmas decorations :)
 Me and Sister Maya by the Christmas tree, we finally actually took a picture of the two of us! Haha
 So we were trying a Less active member the other day, and her husband came out with this... It was really cute and little, and He offered to let us keep it... Too bad we can't have pets.
 The Bourquins also let us borrow their cute little Christmas tree :)
 We were all over, we went around and through the whole city, went to the strip district, I got some sweet clothing souvenirs, this is "dahntahn" (down town)

 A cool wall
 The Bourquins were kind enough to take us, Bro Bourquin was raised in Pittsburgh so he was a great tour guide!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Transfers and Wexford

Me with the Rasmussens, they have 4 little kids who are adorable, they kept jumping in and out of the picture..
 So I didn't have an area for a few hours... That was fun..... This is our Area Book Planner, but it usually actually has things on it..

Our new district, there is our ward and the Cranberry ward missionaries (elders and sisters in both wards) left to right Elder Hoyt, Sis Maya, me, Elder Rackham, Sister Huffaker, Elder Mink (our District leader), Sis Beutler, and Elder Glick (Elders Hoyt and Glick are in our ward)
 We made Christmas cards for ladies in our ward, these are the ones I made :)
 Me, kinda Elder May, Elder Listen, Sister Jarvis, and Sister Maya
Me, elder Mays trainee, Elder May, Sister Jarvis, and Elder Liston. We served around eachother in Lancaster Zone.
 Last pic as comps. Sister Landa and I.
Alright, so this week: Monday I basically just packed the whole Pday, not that easy to fit your whole life into 2 suitcases. 
Tuesday was transfers, I was super nervous like all weekend, and then Tuesday I could barely eat I was so nervous, but we went up to Harrisburg, then me, Sister Smith (one of my old comps), sis Wadsworth, and Sis Thompson all drove out to Pittsburgh together. Then transfer meeting was there, it was very different with the change of telling us where we were going before, it was more of a teaching opportunity for President and Sister Johnson, and we got to hear advice from departing missionaries. But after that we headed up to Wexford! We are only about 30-40 minutes from Pittsburgh, like some people in our area have Pittsburgh addresses, so weird!
My companion is Sister Maya, she has been out 3 months so I am her "follow up trainer". I have really come to realize how much I have grown over the past almost year! I still have a LOT to work on, but I have gained much more confidence and I am actually able to talk to people sometimes! hahaha. Amazing what can happen when you allow the Atonement of Jesus Christ work in your life! 
But Wexford seems to be a great ward! We have an awesome Bishop and Ward Mission Leader, which is great! There isn't much work going on at all though, so that's rough, but we are finding work to do! Actually a cool thing, our Bishop came up to us yesterday at church and was telling us about one of his daughter's friends that is at school up in Ferie, Nikki who is coming back down here for Christmas break and Thanksgiving.
The Eerie sisters have been teaching her, and will be passing her over to us, and she is scheduled to be baptized December 21 by our bishop! So that's super exciting!
Wexford is Very different from my other 2 areas, really all of my areas have been SO different. But there are a lot of very wealthy people here, so there are a ton of nice houses. I have heard a lot of "first world problems" hahaha such as spray tan incidents, or nails breaking. But they are great people no matter where I am!
Hope you all have a wonderful week! Don't forget to pray, read your scriptures, and go to church! The best ways to strengthen your faith in Jesus Christ!

Monday, November 16, 2015

Busy week, ending in transfer calls!‏

Sister Talbot and all her babies (me, Sister Yates-she had to go home early for medical purposes, and sister Bartlett)

 Our zone #1ancaster
 Me, Deb, and her mom Gene
  Me and Sister Aipa
Grace and I
 Us with sister Yordy
Me with the Fergusons

 I'm f'real leaving Etown... Our shakes before weekly planning
 3 mile island
The Stoffels


 Brother Allen
 After 3 missions this suitcase may need to retire..
 Sauerkraut... Why is this a thing? pork and Sauerkraut is super big in Lancaster county..
Packing during and after...It takes some skill to fit your whole life into 2 suitcases...

Alright, so this week we had a super busy week. We didn't even get to spend too much time actually working in our area. 
We started out on Monday by going up to Harrisburg and spending the day with their zone playing sports. Then we headed up to Sunberry for exchanges with sister Talbot and Sister Bartlett. It is about 2.5 hours from where we live so we got a fun little road trip in there. So we blitzed the area which is when we both stay there and each go with a companion. I got to go with my mom/trainer sister Talbot! It was so cool to be able to serve with her gain for a day to see how much we had both grown in the last 8 months!
On Wednesday we had zone training. We were trained on the same things that we learned at MLC, how to help others observe the Sabbath day. Sister Landa and I were able to train on the new mission initiative, #StressFree3. 1.Getting someone out with us to their lessons. 2. Inviting them to come to church and explaining what it will be like, and 3. Informing the ward leaders! I thought this was such a good idea to help us be accountable, and the help people get to church! We also got to see the church's New Christmas initiative again, #ASaviorIsBorn. It Really is so great!
So I pretty much knew that I was going to get transferred so on Thursday, the first day that we actually got to work in our area this week, we basically went all over our entire area to see a bunch of people that I wanted to say goodbye to! We ended with dinner at the Ferguson's. So Tom is not a member, but he usually asks us every time we go over what our messages for the day. His catchphrase is "bring it don't wing it". He said this right before we started our message, so I was a bit worried bu twent on with the message anyways. We shared a Mormon Message called "in the spirit of Thanksgivig" (feel free to add a link to the video or something) after showing them the video we talked about things that we are grateful for. The spirit was so strong as we talked, and by the end of the lesson Tom said "Way to go Ollie (this is the nickname I have been given..) you brought it!" YESSS!!!
Friday we did weekly planning, it is so hard when you are leaving an area to want to plan for their next week! But we got our Milkshakes and went to work and I was actually a lot more focused than I thought I would be. 
So on Saturday I was basically nervous the entire day, and have been since. Saturday is when they were making calls for transfers. We got to do a lot of service that day, helping the Larsens move, and racking leaves, there was also a stake Fiesta. Finally when we were at the fiesta the zone leaders were there and they told me where I am going. I will be getting transferred to Wexford! It is about 30 minutes North of Pittsburgh, so I will be heading back out to the West side of the mission! My new companion will be Sister Maya, she is just getting done with training, so she was been out for 3 months! Sunday we went and contracted a referral. Usually when we get referrals for a Bible they aren't as promising, but this one was awesome! The referral, Justin, was so receptive to the message that we had to share, and seems so sincere about learning more. So sad that I won't be able to continue teaching him, but I'm sure he will progress in the gospel!
I am so glad that I have had this opportunity to serve here in Elizabethtown, I am going to miss these people so much, but I look forward to the things to come in my new area! I know that I will be able to learn a lot and have so many more wonderful experiences!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

This week!

Thought this was funny

This week was so great! We seemed to get a lot of work done, which is always great. So Tuesday it was just awesome. I for some reason seemed to have extra motivation and was sharing lots of scriptures and personal experiences. We also started a super cool new thing that we like to call #skaipa. Sister Aipa is an amazing mother with 4 younger kids living at home, their lives always seem to be crazy! So since we now have Internet in our apartment we decided to Skype the Aipa family every night for scripture reading and family prayer! It has been so great to be able to get all of those kids together to have that spiritual upliftment every day.

Wednesday was another awesome day, we were able to have some really awesome lessons with some less active members. First we were able to see Sister Minnick. She was having a really hard day and we went and gave her a lot of comfort, but more importantly we testified of our Heavenly Father and our Savior Jesus Christ and their love for her. We told her that if she came to church this Sunday she would be able to feel that love even more in her life. Sunday morning we texted her to remind her about church and she was hesitant to come saying "I'll try". As missionaries we come to know that this means no, so we didn't give up. We continued to testify of that love, and she came to church!!! We were also able to have a lesson with Brother Meaney. Such a great man who seems to have just been a lost sheep, we had sister Herbert, the bishops wife, with us to the lesson, and he also came to church this week!!
Thursday we went on exchanges with the Lewisberry sisters! I stayed in Etown with Sister Taunima. She is probably to coolest person ever and we were able to have a lot of fun, while still working hard! One of the people that we talk to was Tom. Tom is not a member but his wife and five kids are, with two of them being on missions. I have felt for a while that I should ask Tom why he has not yet been baptized, so this was my day to do it, to be bold and just ask. We picked a great day, he came right outside and talked with us. He is even ponderizing! We asked him why he had not baptized and we were able to find the concerns that he has, so now we are able to work with that!
On Friday we had MLC. This time we had it in Harrisburng. We also have a guess, Elder Kunz, an area seventy. It was a great day full of learning in the spirit. Sister Landa and I were able to present the idea of changin ghow they do the calls for transfers to them telling us on Saturday where we are going.  We were super nervous before hand but had a lot of support from President Johnson and Elder Kunz, and President Johnson decided that that is how we will go froward with the transfers! So I will probably find out this Saturday where I am going (since I will most likely get transferred). The focus of the training was observing the Sabbath Day, So important!!! Elder Kunz did a role-play, he asked me to go up and be his "investigator". He first started out by inviting me to church in which I said yes. But then he re-practice focusing on the Savior and having that invitation come from him, the spirit was so strong. As I stood there, him looking me in the eyes with his tear filling eyes, he invited to go to church as a representative of Jesus Christ. I know that our Savior loves us and that he wants us to follow his commandments, one of which being keeping the Sabbath day holy. I know that this brings such a blessing! We were also able to watch the new Christmas initiative!! It is not even out yet, so we got an amazing opportunity to watch, I AM SO EXCITED FOR EVERYONE TO SEE IT!  It just invites all of us to discover WHY, so great! Don't forget to check it out the Sunday after Thanksgiving, Novmeber 29th! I'm sure I will remind you though, don't worry :)

Sunday when we went to church we went knowing a few people who would come, but weren't expecting the great outcome that we had. There were 15 less active/recent converts at church! It was so wonderful to see so many people that I love there, and to see the fruits of the labor! I am so grateful to be a missionary at this time, I know that this is where I am supposed to be, and I'm grateful for the many people that Our Heavenly father has placed in my life!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015


So I got a flu shot this week...that was exciting...We also had interviews with President Johnson, our mission president, I seriously love the Johnsons so much! So basically I am 99.999% sure I am going to get transferred in 2 weeks. He was asking me how I was liking my area and if I was ready to leave, I said I had mixed emotions about it, then at the end I asked if that meant I was getting transferred and he said, "Sister Oliver, you are going to be transferred, when that is, we don't know, but you have been there for a while, all I'm going to say is don't get too comfortable." Yeah totally getting transferred. I really really really love being an STL though, and I love the people in this area. 
We also had exchanges this week with the Ephrata sisters! I went there with Sister Wilson! I realized how much I miss doing service in nursing homes! We played bacci ball, and it was so fun to talk to the residents there! We also got to go to their trunk-or-treat which is where we met our comps, so Sister Landa and I got to be the judges for best car decor and best costume!
So last Pday we carved pumpkins and then we decided to use them in our car for trunk-or-treat, our trunk was so cute! Sadly they moved it inside, but we have the picture so it's alright!
So for Halloween we have to go in at 6, as well as on the day for trick or treating, apparently it is a thing here to have an assigned day and time for trick or treating so we stayed in on Friday for trick or treating day, we did weekly planning, but Saturday, Halloween, Sister Landa was sick so we ended up staying in all day. We basically only had a meeting over the phone to plan out ideas for our transfer committee, but I got to watch the Restoration, Our Heavenly Fathers Plan, Together Forever, Meet the Mormons.. Plus we had candy! :) So we picked up a new investigator this week, Richard, who seems so sincere about getting his life in order! He has been through SO much in his life, and just wants to do tings the right way now! His girlfriend Tara is a member, and they are both working together, ti's awesome!
Also, our ward was doing a 40 day fast which ended yesterday, I can testify of the power of fasting. I know that great power can come, as well as that unity in the ward, I just know that this area will and is being greatly blessed.

Exchanges with Ephrata! I was with Sister Wilson, Sister Landa was with Sister Wadsworth!

And a little more fall.
 Getting ready for the Trunk or Treat

Our cute little trunk
Our PDay. We went with a bunch of people from our zone, but I never got the pictures they took, here is sis Wadsworth, Me, and Landa


Cause you know.. Gotta have that gap between Elders and Sisters.