7.18.2017

 Stupid Sleek and Shine



So.... both Sister Halversen and I are sometimes dumb... but I am going to share my favorite Sister Halversen moment. I still laugh about this... but she would kill me if she knew that I shared it... so I will embarrass myself as well to balance it out.


So Sister Halversen was looking at her hair and said "AUGH! IT'S SO SHINY I HATE IT!" and she had been complaining about how shiny her hair was for a while then I say... "Well... you do use Sleek and Shine Shampoo and Conditioner" Then..... the biggest look of sudden realization and shock and surprise cross her face and then she says. "Oh my gosh, I have been using that shampoo for 7 years!!!" hahaha!! Best moment of my life! Needless to say, we bought her a new shampoo today! :) It was the funniest moment ever!!

Then... we had protein powder because... well we moved into an Elders apartment and I was like... I think I will make me a protein shake. I start to drink the shake and said in my head "Ew...how do guys eat this. It tastes like pancake batter" Well... later this week Sister Halversen was looking the cupboard and pulled out the protein powder and smelt it then tried a little and said "This isn't protein powder. It's flour" .. Then from the other room, I say "That's why it tasted like pancakes!" haha! She is still making fun of me for it. and... I'm sure you guys will now too!


haha! Man ... I hope you guys enjoyed that! :)



This week was amazing! We have been having the best time here in Massena! :)
We picked up a new investigator named CARMELLO.. he is from Puerto Rico and he is looking for peace and comfort with the loss of all of his loved ones. He also wants to heal from his past. It really hit me this week that it does NOT matter who you are, THE GOSPEL CAN SOLVE ANY PROBLEM and it can heal ALL hearts. :) It was so amazing to help him out.


We started teaching this mom named Hilary! She is really trying to find a church for her kids to attend! she is amazing and we are excited to help her out! :)



COURTNEY & SONNY! Are still doing amazing! They are on date to be baptized on August 29th and they are going to pray about getting married before that!! WE are SOOO excited for them! They are really wanting to change their lives!! They came to church this week too and it was soo great! We also were able to start teaching their friend Cheyenne and man she is one of the elect. She is soooo prepared. I love her so much and she really needs this :)



Amy is also doing really well. She had family come in town this week so we haven't been able to see her a lot but she is still amazing. :)



We had an amazing lesson with Matt and Tracey on the the Book of Mormon and church and the Word of Wisdom. They just had so many questions but it was a really spiritual lesson. It was so amazing. They are really wanting to know if this is true. We are so excited for their family! :)



We started teaching a lady named Kim. She met with missionaries 10 years ago and she still remembers their names because she says that they changed her life. Her kids even remember them and say that they really helped them make good decisions in their youth. It is really cool to see that 10 years down the road the difference you make in the short months you spend with a family can have an eternal life impact. :) It was amazing to be with them.



Last miracle. We tracted A LOT this week... just to keep finding those people and we knocked on a door yesterday and a guy opens and looks down at our copies of The Book of Mormon and says.. "Hey look at that. Just the Book I am looking for" He had just ordered one a few hours earlier and we showed up on his porch and gave him the book.



I love being a missionary. I get to personally see God's hand effect the lives of those around me every day and I know that I cannot ever deny God after the experiences I have had out here!



Love you all! have a great week!



Sister DeVries

7.10.2017

"But.. you know what you can take to your grave..."

"But...you know what you can take to your grave..."

TATTOOS!!!

Man, I love the people of Massena! They are just the sweetest! haha! It is kinda crazy some of their ideas... I swear it's a whole other world up here in North Country but I love it! That was just one of the great things that we heard this week!

So Sister Halverson and I have been doing so well. She is doing great and she is an excellent missionary so it is a blast to be with her we just laugh all day long! So it is also super fun to be with her because it rains A LOT here and she always gets SO excited when it starts to rain. It is hilarious! :) But, it keeps us positive. She is amazing! :)

SO this week was insane!! We had the best week ever!  We found 11 new investigators to start teaching which is the most people I have ever found in a week and we are teaching LOTS of couples now so that is really cool!! :) I'll just give you some background on everyone!!

Joel-- a really intellectual guy with lots of questions about the church. We start teaching the restoration and we get to prophets and he says.. so where does Joseph Smith fit in and then he also had questions about the temple. He is really cool we just have to learn how to keep him focused on the right thing!

Sonny & Courtney and baby Landon-- so we found Sonny and Courtney Oyming... we just talked to them as they were loading up baby Landon in the car. They are amazing. :)  They have taken the lessons before but now they really want to start taking them so that they can change their families lives. We are seriously so excited for their cute family!

Stiles family-- they are a PM family the youngest Sariah is not baptized yet so we have been teaching her and Zach her brother the lessons. I LOVE their family! They came to church this Sunday and as they walked in we just got so excited and Sariah runs in and says "we pinky promised" :) I LOVE THEIR FAMILY!! We are so excited to get them all ready for her baptism.

Virginia- She is a recent convert and she is currently the door greeter and she is the FUNNIEST THING ever!! I love her a lot!! It was raining really hard and she said "If it keeps raining like this.. I'll just build me an arc and get to church" She is just the sweetest thing!!

We were tracting one day for a little bit and we tracted into this guy named JORDAN! He was so prepared and we taught him right there on his doorstep!

We found Coorleen, she is a 94-year-old lady who wants to know everything she can about God before she meets him. She is amazing! We are so excited for her! :)

Goodrich family! They let us right in and they weren't interested in learning more but they let us share a message and answer their questions. It was a huge tender mercy though because they reminded me so much of Mom and Dad and then their friends came who were TOTALLY Yvonne and Travis! haha!! It was cool!!

Jonathon-- is a dad that is trying to do the best to help his son. He has hated religion most his life but felt like he needed to give us a chance :)

Amy!!! She is now preparing to get baptized with her daughter Amarianna!! They are the sweetest thing!!! They are so prepared and want to change their lives. They came to church this Sunday and the Branch just loved them!! It was great!

Tracey and Matt--- cute couple who wants to know where to raise their kids!! :) They are super interested too!!

Jo, Bryan and Kirk---That was the coolest experience they are all our age and they are just curious about all religion. Jo is from Greece and she is studying here in NY and Bryan and Kirk are roommates and they are just trying to figure out their life as well. We had the coolest experience with them last night. We found this apartment complex in the middle of nowhere and their door was so hidden but they were so prepared it was so cool. They were ready to learn more about the gospel and they really wanted to find answers and get a good basis for their life. By the end of the lesson, we were all in tears. It was amazing. :)

WE have seen SOOO many miracles this week and we are soo excited to really help those in this area grow!! I love you all so much!! I hope that you have a great week!!!!!

P.s.

We saw Canada last week. It was exciting but not as exciting as we made it out to be we set expectations WAY to high! haha! :)

ALSO!!! We get Canada products at our Walmarts and there is this thing called WOW!butter! IT IS AMAZING!!! It is fake peanut butter and it is my favorite thing since I'm allergic to nuts.. so now I eat it all the time! :) THANK YOU, CANADA!

7.03.2017

MASSENA!

Hello, my friends!!

I love New York so much!! This week was crazy! So I left Fayetteville and Sister Christensen and that was really hard. But I know that those people are in good hands. I am so excited for them and all the miracles that are about to happen there!!  I am now in Massena. I drove in Wednesday and picked up my new companion SISTER HALVERSON! She is from Mapleton, UT and she makes short films and we are practically best friends. I love her so much!! It has been a blast to serve with her already! also.. she totally came pre trained. She is amazing!! :) WE are just killing it here in Massena! It is great! She is doing really well too. I am so excited for all the miracles!! I'll tell you a few!

So we get to Massena after the 4-hour drive through the beautiful country land and we pull up to our apartments... they were less than exciting on the outside but they look great on the inside so that is good. :) We then go out tracting and finding and we found so many people that first day! The funniest moment though was I was telling her that sometimes people have two doors that you have to open and someone had a sign to knock on the second door so I started to open it and I totally walked into their house... They didn't notice but it was sure a great laugh!! I prayed for bonding experiences and so far!! All of them have been involving my stupidity!! I love it!! :)

My new companion Sister Halverson
We have already picked up 3 new investigators and we have found 27 people who said that they would meet with us. We are just booming already!! It is amazing!!! :)
Massena Chapel

The area is so cute and so small!! Our church building is tiny! But I love it so much! The Branch is amazing and there were 33 people at church on Sunday including the missionaries!! It is sooo small but it is going to grow and grow! We just know it!!!

My favorite investigator so far is Carlina! She is 15 and she has been going to church with some of her friends for a while. She is so prepared and just wants to know that God is there. She is seriously the sweetest. She prayed out loud and it was soo sweet and sincere! I love her so much. I am so grateful that I am able to be here!

We are having countless miracles of walking down a street and we meet someone who needed us and we didn't even know why we were on that street, to just finding so many prepared people. I am so grateful!! I hope that I can write more next week but.. I'm off to go stand on the Canada border!! much love!! Have a great week!!!

Sister DeVries







6.26.2017

Heather got baptized!!!


This week was amazing!!! :) We worked our tails off!! :)

So first news, I am getting transferred to Massena, NY :) It is right by Canada. It has been closed and I am going to open it up with a brand new missionary! :) President told me that he announced that they were going to be Sisters in the Branch on Sunday and they all cheered right there in sacrament meeting. I am so excited they haven't had Sisters in years!! I'm sure it will take me right back to the Greenwich days! :) I love New York and I know that the Lord has so much in store for me and my little baby girl up there in Massena :) We are going to hit the pavement running! :) (If you can't tell by my smiley faces and overuse of exclamation points... I'm pretty excited)

Sister Christensen is staying. I am really sad to leave her and we are doing amazing together and I will miss Fayetteville but I know that the Lord has more in store for both of us.
So the best news of all!!
Volunteering at local OZ Museum


HEATHER SAYLES got baptized!! It is amazing!! She is so excited and she is already doing amazing things! We love her so much! She came out of the font and I gave her a dripping wet hug and we just smiled bigger than I ever have. It was the happiest thing. She was just beaming. So that was a really special moment. I love baptisms because they are little moments where I feel the earth and our busy lives meet our Eternal Lives, It is a time where we forget about all the little things the world can make us get caught up in and we focus on the eternal perspective. It is amazing. But, first I'll go into the event of that day because it was just amazing.

So we first got back to Fayetteville from Utica. We were there for exchanges. Then we worked all day long and later that day we went to go fill up the font. We get it started then went to get some things out of the car and (I'm kinda embarrassed to say but...) I locked the keys in the trunk. haha!! with the baptismal suit. YUP.. luckily the bishop was there for his daughters' graduation party so he called AAA and we got it, but it was hilarious. But that was the worst thing that happened. :) It was all fine in the end. So I don't know if you all remember but I first met Heather while I was serving in Syracuse. She attended the church there with Justin Zarian (her fellow shipper). Well at the baptism guess who came all my YSA friends from Syracuse including ARIEL!!! I love her sooo much!! She came in and we just gave each other the BIGGEST hug! I have missed her so much. :) It was so amazing to see her. Then the program went so well and Heather's family came. It was amazing! They felt the spirit so strong, They were teary eyed the whole night and the ward really fellowshipped them. Then they came to her confirmation and it was amazing as well. We asked if we could come that night to teach them about our church and they said yes and we are now teaching them. It is amazing. I was really sad to tell them that I was now leaving but I love them so much and they are excited to meet the family when I come back. They are amazing. :) So that was a huge highlight of my week.

Dave is still doing well and he came to the baptism and was really moved and stayed for all 3 hours of church. He is going to get it one day I just know it. He is working so hard to receive an answer he has to be a kingdom builder. :)

So..... NANCY from Syracuse came and visited me this week. It was amazing to talk with her she is so excited to hear all about my life and it is great because I know that we will stay in touch when I get home. She is doing well and she is still reading and praying about the Book of Mormon. :)

We had exchanges in New Hartford this week and that was amazing!! I got to see some of my favorite people like Prince and Sister Feliciano!! :) Sis. Felicano predicted my future and it was CRAZY... I hadn't told her anything and she just knew.... it's the Latina in her!! :) I also got to work with Sister Anderson. It was all around amazing. I am soo glad that I got to be there right before I go up. Definitely got some closure. :) It was amazing!! It's so great to see that the Gospel affects people the same no matter where you go. It is the same solution to all of our problems. It is exactly what we need to solve everything and it is what makes us so happy. We meet people all the time that say "Oh yeah. If I wasn't (specific religion) I'd be Mormon you guys are always so nice." It is heart-wrenching to hear that but it is so amazing to know that it is because of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It's because we are living EVERYTHING that he has ever taught. This is the recipe to the happiest life. Just like it says in Mosiah 2:41 41 And moreover, I would desire that ye should consider on the blessed and happy state of those that keep the commandments of God. For behold, they are blessed in all things, both temporal and spiritual; and if they hold out faithful to the end they are received into heaven, that thereby they may dwell with God in a state of never-ending happiness. O remember, remember that these things are true; for the Lord God hath spoken it.

Well, that was my week. :) IT was definitely a great one! Love you all!!

Sister DeVries














6.19.2017

Chittenango Falls

❤ This morning we went on a hike to Chittenango Falls... It was beautiful! :) The pictures don't even do it justice!! :) but I hope you enjoy them anyway! :)























SO GUESS WHAT!! Heather is getting baptized this Saturday! We are so excited for her. She is so prepared. Every day I am just so grateful that I am able to be apart of so many people's lives and story. It is amazing. She is so excited for it and it has definitely been an amazing experience we are proud of her. 

Monica is still amazing. We got to teach her the full restoration and she is really excited to read and pray. She is great! 

Dave is trying his hardest. I have definitely seen that the promise in Moroni 10:3-5 is true. We can receive an answer but.. we need to have all 3 components, 1) asking in Faith 2) real intent 3)sincere heart. If you are just asking out of curiosity you won't receive an answer if you don't really intend on getting baptized if you receive an answer.. you won't get the answer. You have to have it all or it will not come. Dave's sincere heart and real intent have been clouded by Anti materials and he is trying so hard to fight through it. It is possible Christ's Atonement can help with everything but that is why it is so important to not even play with the Devil's chains. It is so hard to get out of them but it is possible. Holland says "It is not possible for you to sink lower than the infinite light of Christ’s Atonement shines." 
I know that is true. Christ can pull us up out of any abyss as long as we reach for him. We have to put forth our effort and I now that Dave can do it. Faith is a gift from God that is achieved as we work hard.








Also.. we were wondering where to tract one night and we just left not knowing what we were going to do and we met this lady, Robin. We were walking and then we thought.. lets tract this street on the way to our other one. So we knocked on the doors and the last door. IT ALWAYS IS THE LAST DOOR :) (no matter what direction you take) She was praying all day that God would just help her. She has a broken car right now and someone took her home and she left her phone in their car. So she was just hoping God would help her. She opens the door and we tell her we are missionaries and something we said got her to laugh then she tells us her crazy day and we say "You could use our phone" She gives us this huge hug and calls her daughter. Then she says "Alright, now what can I do for you?" So we shared the Book of Mormon with her. Actually, Sister Christensen did it like a BOSS! She was amazing. She just cuts her off because.. you have to some New Yorkers can talk! :) And then she just testifies and the spirit was so strong. Robyn definitely felt it and she said she would read and come to our church. She is amazing and we went back this week and she did read and we were able to talk more. She really gets it. She is amazing!! :) 








We went and did service for this cute lady in our ward. We go and visit her occasionally because she can't get out to church on Sundays but we usually "dance" for her as we leave her house... it's a tradition and she loves it but this time I was in jeans so I did backflips for her and kicks and she was SHOCKED!! I almost gave her a heart attack haha!! she is amazing!! :) It was just a funny story haha! :) 








John is getting baptized. He is so excited to be baptized and he is really working hard for it! We are so proud of him. He has seen his life turn around and he is in 2 Nephi already. He LOVES the Book of Mormon. :) So it is great!! :) 







We also were tracting this week and we knocked on an extra door before our appt and we met this guy who just that day his mom had been diagnosed with cancer and his teenagers are being teenagers and we testified of The Book of Mormon and he was so excited to read it and really wants us to come back. He is amazing. We are so excited to see what happens. It's amazing how much you really see the hand of the Lord when you do his work. I definitely know now more than ever how much our Heavenly Father loves us and wants us to know he is there. 

We also put Becky on date to be baptized. She wants to soo bad and has worked for so many dates and knows that this is true but every time she works for it something happens. She is going to make this one though. I love her so much and I want her to be baptized so bad. She just wants to follow Christ. She has such great faith. 

Well to end the week. I finished The Book of Mormon this week, I was reading it and marking every time it talks about Christ and it was amazing. My Book of Mormon is all marked up. I am so grateful that I did that it made me understand my Savior so much better and I feel like I have grown so much closer to him. I love this gospel and I am so grateful for the Book of Mormon and all that it teaches us. I know for myself that this Church is Christ's church once again restored on the earth and that The Book of Mormon is an additional witness to help us come closer to God and to our Savior Jesus Christ. I love them and I am so grateful for this time I have had to spend out here. :) 

Love Sister DeVries






































6.12.2017

"Sacrifice brings forth the blessings of Heaven"

Sister Christensen and Sister DeVries
This week was so amazing and it really strengthened my testimony of sacrifice and obedience. :) We picked up four new investigators this week., We have two investigators preparing to be baptized on June 24th and we had two come to church. It was such a great week. We are really working so hard. 

So Sister Christensen really wants to be able to have nine more baptisms before she goes home so we are sacrificing things so that we can have five baptisms come from our efforts here in this area together. We have turned off all the music in the car, we usually listen to church music when we are in the car but even that can be distracting when you are heading to appointments so we have just turned it all off so that we can focus and talk on the way to our appointments. That has been really hard but really good. Then we have been tracting rain or shine two hours every day. That has been a toughie! It has been a mixture of 54 degrees with wind and rain and also 91 and humidity days! We have been working hard and we saw the blessings this week!! We were able to hit the Standards that President Rogers has told us we should be hitting weekly!! It has been amazing!:) 

So Patricia is a new investigator! She is going through a lot of health problems right now and she wants to find peace and we were able to teach her and give her a Book of Mormon. She still wasn't crazy excited about it but she said she would read and we are praying she does. Because little does she know there is soo much peace in the Book of Mormon. 

Monica!! She is one that we are really excited about!! So we tracted into her on our 2-hour stretch and she was the last door that we knocked on! She let us right in. She is a cute mom of a 2 yr old girl and she has 1 boy on the way. She is the sweetest. Her father is a pastor but she is looking for a church that fits her. She feels that the bible has been through so many different translations that it can not be pure anymore and that we need more. She also wants a place that is rooted on all of Christ's teachings. She is really going to love our church! We are soooooo excited to keep teaching her and she was so excited to take the Book of Mormon. We talked about it and I had a copy in my hands and she said..... "uh... can I borrow that" and then I told her that it is hers and she was soo excited!! She is amazing!! It really is a blessing being able to find amazing people like her!! 

We had a really good lesson with Dave this week! he is our investigator that is on date to be baptized on June 24th. Before our lesson we went and did service with him for his nephew (also, pull his nephew's 82  yr old neighbor was trying to pull all her weeds so we got to meet her and help her out and she said we can come back!! I love doing service) we helped Tommy pull out weeds and then Tommy (he is our ward mission leader and Dave's nephew... keeping up?) came with us to Dave's lesson and Dave really opened up and we helped him realize that he isn't going to know if any of this is true if he doesn't fully intend to follow  the answer he gets. He was hit with the spirit and started to tear up.. he blamed it on something in his eye.. but it definitely wasn't. :) He is soo close!! 

We also tracted into lots of people and gave out lots of Book of Mormons!! People have been either really rude or it has been the best experience. It is kinda cool to see that God is working hard to bless us while we are sacrificing and Satan is working hard to discourage us. But in the end, we have seen that God always wins!! It has been such a great week!! :) 

Heather is doing amazing!! Her baptismal interview is this week and she is soo ready!! She is the sweetest and we are definitely proud of her!! She could not be more prepared!! :) We got to teach her about Temples and Family History this week with the Stapleys and it was so great!! The Stapley's bore such powerful testimonies and Heather felt the spirit so strong!! She has been doing her own family history all week to prepare a name to go to the temple!! :) 

We also started to teach Becky.. she is an investigator that we haven't seen in a long time! She is amazing and she is really excited to learn about the gospel! 

We picked up Gene.  He is a Cat loving New Yorker!! haha! through and through! He is soo funny!! He is really interested in knowing if this is true though so we are excited!! We are just exercising faith in him!! 

We also saw John again! He is so excited to be taking the lessons! He is going through some tough family challenges and ever since we met him he has been seeing his life turn around. He is amazing! We are so excited to keep teaching him! He is definitely a miracle!! He came to church this week and he also went to a bbq with some of the ward members!! He is doing great!! :) 

Then one of my favorite things!! We picked up a new investigator that is a Jehova's Witness but they were willing to hear our message and read a pray to know if the Book of Mormon is true!! so it is amazing!! It was so great to talk with them and help him realize that there is more! :) 


GREAT WEEK!! REALLY!! WE are seeing so many miracles!! It has been a blast!! Sister Christensen and I are just working hard here!! :) 

Love you all! have a great week!




















6.05.2017

 I got my watch tan! :) (5)

This week was so great!! I got FRIED...on saturday! but it is turning into a tan so I am happy but I got a pretty sweet watch tan now! :) hahaha!!

So on Monday we picked up a new investigator named Bob. Bob is a 74 year old man who lost his wife recently. I think I may have told you about him but we went into teach him the Plan of Salvation and we taught that and Eternal Marriage. He wants nothing but to be sealed to his wife. It was such a spiritual lesson! Usually you don't just teach that kind of a lesson but we did and it was exactly what he needed he is great! :) 

We the contact some of those referrals that we got last week and we found an awesome family! we haven't taught them yet but they are super open!! We are so excited!! :) 

Heather is still doing awesome and progressing towards baptism!! we are sooo excited for her! she is amazing and it is going to be so great when she is able to be baptized! I love her lots!! it's crazy that I am able to be her for this part in her journey almost 7 months after we met! :) 

We had a miracle this week where we didn't have lots of food.. we kinda bought a little scarce and then we had random people, less actives, investigators, everyone feed us! it was awesome! God defintiely watchs out for us!! and don't worry mom!! we are going to buy more food this week! 

We taught Seham this week and we went over the title page of the Book of Mormon really slow and it clicked finally!! :) She has been taught by missionaries for a long time and now she is ready to progress!! it is awesome!! :) We are soo proud of her!! We were praying really hard to know what to teach and that is what felt right. the spirit is soo amazing!! 

Dave! We had the best lesson with Dave this week and we put him back on date to be baptize on June 24th!! he is amazing and it is going to be so great!! :) We talked about recognizing the spirit and really praying with faith and it clicked!!! it is going to be amazing!! we are so excited for him!! 

We then talked to this guy on the street on Monday and then picked him up as a new investigator on friday! he is so cool he is going through a divorce right now and he is excited to read the book of mormon and learn more about it!! We are excited about him! :) 

This week we also had an awesome District Meeting on the Book of Mormon and man I know that Book is true!! My testimony of it has been tested and tried out here and in the end it always comes out so strengthened. I read through 3 Nephi this week and it was so great. I really love the Book of Mormon and how it draws me closer to my Savior!! It is seriously so great! :) 
Oh yeah!! And I totally forgot!! we got to work at the Oztraveganza this week!! it is an Wizard of Oz festival because the guy who wrote it Baum he lived in chittenango!! so we handed out programs and that is why I got so burnt!! It was awesome though because the whole city saw us out and asked us questions and we gave out a few cards!! it was awesome!! also... I get to dress up as Dorothy next Saturday!! :)




Well... I love you all and hope that you have a great week!! 

Sister DeVries