July 29, 2013


Dear Mom,
That all sounds pretty fun. I think it's really funny that Steven, Carmen, and Chloe all seem to come up with things to save up for, since I don't really remember doing that past the doll house when I was like 5 or so. It sounds like your billets were super nice, and that's funny that it felt like having missionaries, hahaha.
So the big news...I GOT TRANSFERRED!!! I'm going to Cole Harbour, which is part of the Halifax Metro, and used to be an elders' area. It's a huge shock, actually, because we were like 95% sure Sister Leavey would get transferred to Halifax because of health problems, so we assumed that meant I was guaranteed to stay here. But they decided to make Mount Pearl an Elders' area and make Dartmouth and Cole Harbour sisters' areas, so Sister Leavey will be in Dartmouth, which has the mission home in the area, and I'll be in Cole Harbour, which has the temple in its area, which is super exciting, since I can go once per transfer on P-days now!!! Since I'll be right by the mission home, everyone should send my mail and stuff there. The address is:
202 Brownlow Ave, Unit F Bldg F
Dartmouth, NS B3B 1T5
And now to describe my week.
We had a "sister's P-day" last Monday, wherein us and the East sisters drove out to Bay Roberts, and one of the members taught us how to make nail wraps, do our nails, and wax. It was really fun to see the sisters, but I may or may not have been sitting there bored out of my mind at some points, hahaha. It was really glad we did it though, because we found out that Sister Nelson was getting transferred early, since she's the STL and had to fly down for the leadership training anyways! It was a huge shock to all of us, so we were glad to spend some time together. After that, we taught Christine, but it wasn't really a noteworthy lesson or anything, we just followed up on some of the commandments. We wanted to teach the Word of Wisdom, but she wasn't feeling well and it didn't really happen.
On Tuesday, we had district meeting, and Sister Nelson went crazy trying to write in everyone's goodbye books before we left. After district meeting, our appointments with Tina, Jeremy, and Leonard cancelled, which set a trend for the entire week. But the Lord's hand really is in all things, since Sister Leavey was feeling super unwell this week and we probably would have had to cancel half of them ourselves anyways. So after district meeting, we went with Sister Nelson and Sister Keeler to see Brother Moores, a member from Bay Roberts who is in the hospital, and then we dropped Sister Nelson off at the airport for an emotional goodbye. Sister Keeler stayed with us for the day. Then we went to Swiss Chalet for dinner, since Sister Leavey LOVES Swiss Chalet and we discovered one in our area. After that, we went to teach Jaxcine. She has BPD, so she tends to flip out fairly easily, but it hadn't happened to us...until that lesson. We were teaching the Word of Wisdom, and after we explained that prescription drugs were okay but illegal drugs were not, she asked if pop was against the Word of Wisdom. Now, she has a speech impediment, and marijuana is HUGE out here, so about 75% of our investigators ask about medicinal marijuana. So I thought she said "pot." She was SO mad. "You can come back...and you can come back...
but I NEVER want to see you AGAIN!!!!" She was actually more offended that I didn't understand her speech impediment than she was about the pot. Sister Leavey was so mad at her for flipping out at me, but I actually didn't really mind it, since I knew it was just a product of her mental illness. The next day, she called us and didn't even seem to remember she got mad.
On Wednesday, Sister Keeler and I continued to work on our giant wall map, and then we went to do the MUN booth. It was pretty slow at first, but finally it started to pick up just as we were beginning to leave. And then this atheist came up and we were chatting a bit, and I asked why he didn't believe in God. He replied, "Are you familiar with the concept of the burden of proof?" I was just like, "Yes b'y." So we had a fairly long conversation. It became pretty obvious early on that he wasn't willing to be convinced, but it just felt like a philosophical discussion and not contentious (at least on my end), so I basically just decided that I wanted to talk to him long enough so that he could see that a person could be smart, think about these kinds of things, and still have faith. Most of it was pretty intellectual (Well, if you take the existence of a perfect, omnipotent God as axiomatic...), so Sister Keeler and Sister Leavey were mostly just listening, but at one point he said, "If I threw a baseball at God, would it hit him or go through him?" and Sister Keeler replied, "I think he'd catch it." It was hilarious. But it made us late to drop Sister Keeler off for an appointment with the East sisters, who needed a third sister, so I felt bad about that. On the other hand, on the way out we got to have a really nice chat with a sweet lady who is TOTALLY prepared, but still didn't let us set up an appointment, and we wouldn't have done that if our discussion hadn't gone so long. Then that evening, we taught Jay, one of our on-date investigators. It was a really great lesson, and he's becoming so much more spiritually solid. It was really great to see.
Oh yeah, we had a bit of a fiasco on Wednesday with picking Sister Hart up from the airport. Sister Keeler thought she got in at 6:30, but she actually LEFT at 6:30 and got in at 8:30, so we cancelled our lesson with Jay, and then un-cancelled it, and ran around all over town to the airport and back. Haha. So yeah, Sister Hart flew in with the Zone Leaders from leadership training. Elder Wolsey was bringing a wheelchair back for the Moores, and he was popping wheelies and stuff in the parking lot. It was hilarious. With all the missionaries at the airport, one guy said, "It's like a Jesus convention around here!"
On Thursday, we had an appointment scheduled with Lisa, who cancelled on us, and Patrina, a really awesome potential with a FAMILY, who also cancelled because her kids had chicken pox. Sad face. Then we went to the hospital to give the Moores their wheelchair, and then we taught Bible Study. We weren't supposed to teach Bible Study, but the Elders called us like an hour before to say they weren't going to make it. Fortunately, we knew enough to pull together a fairly good lesson. After that, we had a dinner appointment, and then we went to this home for mentally ill women that one of the members owns, and all of us missionaries sung hymns. It was fun, but it was over 30 degrees all day, and there was no air conditioning, so we were all dying a little bit, haha.
On Friday, we had a marathon meeting since our district decided to create a long-term district plan. Elder Amaya put me in charge of it, since apparently I'm good at planning, but we have a LOT of people in our district who are like me, in that they have a lot of good opinions and insist on sharing all of them. Haha. So that took FOREVER. My brain was totally fried. Then, we got a call from Elder Thatcher, the senior missionary in charge of cars, to inform us that were were going to trade the Zone Leaders our Subaru and get their van, since they were running it into the ground. So we did that, and for the weekend we got to drive Big Bev the Adventure Van, also known as the Loser Cruiser. Haha. We then had a REALLY good lesson with Christine, wherein she really recognized a desire to do everything she could to draw closer to God, and then a REALLY good lesson with Jay, where we taught him how to recognize the Spirit better. We asked how he's felt since taking the discussions and making changes, and he said, "I just feel really happy, and I just have a sense of peace with me." I was so excited, I had a hard time not interrupting him before I whipped out "Did I not speak peace unto your mind?" etc. Then we had call night with the DL, which was pretty good. Sister Leavey said, "I'm sorry we just have all these emotions," to which Elder Amaya replied, "Don't be sorry! Emotion is why we CAME to Earth!" She said, "You will do well here." Hahaha.
Transfer letters were SUPPOSED to come on Saturday morning, but instead President decided he'd just personally call whoever he was deciding to transfer at some point throughout the day, so everyone spent the day in a state of anticipation and freaking out every time their phone rang. Haha. Our lesson with Tina cancelled on us (again), so we had a pretty unproductive morning until Brother Hobbs' funeral. The other sisters sang "More Holiness Give Me," his favourite hymn, and I accompanied them. I was also the organist. After that, we did weekly planning, since we didn't get to it on Friday, and then we had a lesson with Lisa. We taught the Restoration using the pamphlets, which has been the focus of all the training for the last transfer or so, but it was our first time, so I'm glad we finally got to do that.

And THEN President Leavitt called, and told us about transfers. So we then went frantic packing all our things and calling people. I think the most gratifying part of the evening was when we called the Zone Leaders to discuss the logistics of it, and at one point it came up that I'd spent my entire mission here. Apparently this surprised Elder Wolsey, because I could just barely hear them say to each other, "Wait, she's only been out 3 transfers?" "Yeah." "She's a fantastic missionary for only being out three transfers." "I know, right?!" That made me happy. I'm really sorry to leave Newfoundland, since I love it here, but on the other hand, 3 transfers is a quarter of my mission, and there are 4 provinces in the mission, so I guess I couldn't really ask for more. I just feel kind of like I could have given more to the area in that time, I guess. On the other hand, I'm pretty proud of the fact that when I came out, Mount Pearl was one of the lowest-performing areas in the mission, and now we're leaving it with three people on date, solid potentials, an organized area book, a knocking record, and a giant map. (Although the area book was nice when I got here too.) Sister Leavey and I feel like we did a pretty good job.
And then came church on Sunday. We had planned to get there at 9 because we had stuff to do, but we didn't realize that the Telly Ten, a 10-k race, was being run on Topsail Road. So we tried to get to church, and every. single. access. point. was. blocked. We ended up all the way on Portugal Cove Road on the East end of the city before we could drive around it! So it took us an hour to get to church, and we were late, haha. But it was kind of a blessing in disguise, because we basically got to tour all of St. John's before we left, haha. When we got to church, Mostafa was passing the sacrament for the first time, which made me super happy. I still remember meeting him at MUN, handing him a card with the church address, and then being a new missionary and totally failing to set up an appointment, and thinking, "Well, there goes that." And now he's the epitome of a golden convert. So we basically spent Sunday saying goodbye and running around to everyone. We went to see Jaxcine, and she let us take away her coffee and cigarettes, and she also said the closing prayer for the first time! The elders and us met with Jay, who was scheduled to be baptized this Saturday! But they're going to be at Zone Training in Grand Falls, so his date was pushed back to August 10 so that someone could actually fill the font. It's a bit of a pity to have to leave before he's baptized, but as long as he GETS baptized, I'm okay with it. Christine was super heartbroken that we were both leaving, but fortunately, she seems to be prepared to continue to work towards baptism, which is great. And Jeremy was mostly just excited we'd get to say hi to Elder Hadley for him. We also showed Elder Amaya around our apartment, explained how to work the archaic washing machine, and walked him through the area book and map, which he was super happy about. He said, "Sister Olson, what are you going to do when you go to Cole Harbour and don't have all this stuff?" and I said, "Make a new one." Haha.
Which brings us up to today, where we are emailing at the church before catching a plane to Halifax. Brother Cartier's going to be in my ward, which is super exciting. Actually, Sister Leavey is also going to be in my ward, just with a different companion. Also, it will be a ward, which will be a totally different experience. Halifax is seriously a completely different world from Newfoundland. I'm excited to go call everyone "me duckie" and say "Yes b'y" to them, haha.
Sister Jaclyn Olson

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