Adventures of Kali in Cali: September 2015

Monday, September 28, 2015

Week 8: This is why I am serving a mission....

We become what we want to be by consistently being what we want to become each day.
Elder Richard G. Scott

Fruit shack and amazing hair! 

Hola everyone!!

So this week was an awesome week.. but when is it not an awesome week! I am a missionary! :)  But we had a pretty successful week and talked to tons of people and I love California so much!

So our mission has a goal to have 20 meaningful conversations with people everyday and some days it is a huge challenge but other days it is so much fun just to talk to different people and hear all of their stories.  We have met someone from almost all of the countries of South America.  It is super cool.  But it is also cool that we are talking to so many people because we have gotten a lot of potential investigators and also I can practice my Spanish a little bit.  Before a mission I would never go up and talk to someone random and especially about the gospel but it is cool to see myself changing already and I love talking to people about Christ and about everything that He has done for us!

My week basically just consists of walking around, getting our 20 conversations and then teaching lessons everyday.  The weather here is so nice.  Some days it is really hot and it is so humid here but never unbearably hot here.  I have the best mission!   But on Saturday we had the awesome oppurtunity to go the Los Angeles temple visitors center with some of our investigators, Ignacio and Georgina with their 3 kids.  It was such a cool experience and this family is so ready to be baptized.  They read their scriptures together, say prayers and can already see the blessings of the gospel in their lives.  At the Visitors Center we talked all about the Plan of Salvation and about eternal marriage and when we talked about how families can be together forever Ignacio stopped us and said... that is exactly what I want!! He is so awesome and we have a baptism date for them on October 18 but we will see because they are not married and Ignacio doesnt have the right paper work to be married.  It is taking a lot of faith and realizing that it is all on the Lord's timing.

This Sunday we had a baptism!! Rosendo got baptized and it was the coolest experience here on a mission even though I didnt teach him any of the lessons.  I had one of those moments where I thought, "This is why I am on a mission."  He is such an awesome example for me because he has such strong faith in his Savior Jesus Christ. He knows that no matter what he is going through or how he feels he can turn to Christ and receive the help that he needs.  And I know that this is true and I have had to do that a lot on my mission so far and I know there will be alot more of that to come especially with Spanish because I barely understand what people are saying to me alot of the time but what I can say is that I know that Christ lives and that no matter what we can turn to Him and recieve the help that we need! I love my Savior very much :)

I love you all so very much and hope you have a great week! Thank you for all the prayers!
Hermana McMinn

Just a little more from a letter to mom:

I think that I have adjusted to the life of a missionary pretty well.  Still weird but I love it.  It is actually super nice not having music all the time, or a phone to distract you and time to just read your scriptures.  It was weird today because we went to the mall and it was a completely different atmosphere than what I am used to. 

Soo... I live in Torrence but our area is mainly Gardena.  Our apartment has ants, termites, and possibly a mouse but it is fine! haha :)  We are usually at our house doing studying until about 1 and then after that we leave and go to lessons.  We never really just knock on doors because there are so many people out and we have so many people to talk to.  We are kind of in a slump with progressing investigators which is kind of a bummer but we are working on it and having patience. 

God didn't design us to be sad. He created us to have joy!
President Deiter Uchtdorf

I love that quote!  I think that is a really hard thing to do.. always being happy and I have realized here on the mission that when we arent happy and when we are negative it drives the spirit away and we are told if we dont have the spirit we shall not teach so I have focused more on being positive and my mission president is really big on having faith filled thoughts and I love that because he has changed little sayings like, "we dropped an investigator" to "we turned them over to the Lord for a little bit."  It helps to stay positive in those rough moments.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Week 7: Hopped off the plane at LAX...

Well... I made it here!! It is so crazy to think that I am actually here in Los Angeles!  I absolutely love it too. And my companion and everything about being on a mission.  But anyway.. I don't really remember what happened my last week of the CCM and it feels like it was so long ago so I will have to skip that part haha :)

So I got to LA on Monday and then I had like a orientation kind of thing all day and didnt really do much.  I met my mission president and his wife and they are amazing.  My mission president is really strict compared to many others and at first I was a little nervous about how that was going to be but I honestly can already see the blessing of exact obedience.  He is all about being consecrated in the work and staying focused.  I love him already.

Tuesday I met my trainer!!  Her name is Hermana Charity Vincent.  She is from Sandy, Utah and she has only been out for 5 and a half months.  She is so cute and I love her to death.  She is super loud and loves to talk.  And She knows tons of Spanish which is so awesome.  We are already really good friends too.  I am super excited for the next few weeks with her.  But after that we just got right to work and started talking to people and having lessons.  I am in a city called Gardena, California.  There is so much Spanish everywhere.  There are some places that look exactly like Mexico it is kind of crazy.

We have a baptism this next Sunday and his name is Rosendo.  I guess he has been being taught for a long time and at first he was really hard to teach because he never wanted to except anything but now he is amazing!  He quit smoking last sunday and took away his wife's cigarettes too because he said if he was quitting they were both quitting.  He is so amazing and loves this gospel and the Savior so much.  All he wants to do is be an example to his grandkids and he is doing that perfectly.

We set 2 more baptism dates this week to for a family; Ignacio, Georgina, and then they have twins who are 4.  I love this family so much.  We really started teaching them this week and taught them the Restoration and invited them to be baptized and they accepted it right away.  They are so ready for the gospel and then they came to church and they absolutely loved it. We have such high hopes for them. :)

The Spanish is stressful but I am learning patience.  I know it will come and that I, soon, will be able to talk to the my investigators ahah :)

Do not expect to become perfect at once. If you do, you will be disappointed. Be better today than you were yesterday, and be better tomorrow than you are today!
~ Lorenzo Snow

Tons more has happened this week but I can't remember everything.  I love being a missionary though and seeing they effects of the Atonement work in my life and in the lives of my investigators.  Seeing these people change and having the desire to change is so cool.  I love showing people how they can have more joy in their lives.  

I know there is so much more that I can say but I can't remember it all.  I need to start writing it down.  I love you all and hope you have an awesome week! :) 

Love Hermana McMinn

Rob is lucky enough to receive her emails and respond while she is still available to comment. So here are a few questions from dad today:

So what did you do for your first PDay today?
Laundry, cleaned the car, went grocery shopping and then we had to take our car to the car shop in Inglewood so really nothing much.. kind of boring.  We were going to go to a swap meet thing but aren't going to have enough time!

How big is your area?  Are there other sisters in your complex or is  it just you and your companion?
My area is pretty big.  I am not sure exactly the size though. It is all apartment buildings so there are tons of people to be meeting.

We have appointments with families for meals every night and they make very basic foods.. rice, beans, meat and vegetables. There rice here is so good though. I don't know why it is different but it is!!
We have a car so we drive to the area that we are in for that day and then we walk from there.  So a little bit of both!
And we are in one of the smaller apartment complexes around!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Week 6: Welcome to Los Angeles!

If you desire to make a difference in the world, you must be different from the world.
~Elaine Dalton

Let the adventure begin.
Kali and her companion (Hermana Vincent)

President and SIster Weidman

We got to talk to our missionary really early this morning. It was so good to hear her voice. She is excited, scared, happy, ready, and willing to go and serve the people of Los Angeles. She had a few minutes to talk to each of us and by the end of the conversation I think that we were all in tears. I just didn't want to hang the phone up on her. She is doing great! We sure love our missionary! Later today we got an email from the mission office letting us know that she landed in California. I am not sure if she will have a P-day this week to email us back so we were happy to know that she landed safely in the United States! We can't wait to hear more of her stories. She says the Spanish is coming along. She understands a lot more than she can speak so she is still working hard on the language. She will be an amazing missionary!!

Dear Parents,
 We want to let you know that your missionary arrived safely to the California Los Angeles Mission today.   There were 11 new missionaries welcomed into our mission today, and they looked happy, healthy and ready to begin!  An additional email will be sent to you in a few days with more detailed information and pictures of your missionary with his or her new companion and with the mission president and his wife, so be watching for it!
           Missionaries who arrived today:

Elder Arguelles
Elder Bair
Elder Baldwin
Elder Bossy
Sister Garza
Elder Hedman
Sister Hurst
Elder Johnson
*Sister McMinn*
Elder Olive
Elder Wiedrich

Warmest regards, 

California Los Angeles Mission

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Week 5: Put on this Earth to Succeed

I have mixed feelings about the rain.. especially on days when I actually do my hair!

 But I still love it... even though it is freezing in Mexico.. what is that all about!!

Hola from the CCM for only one more week!  I am almost done here and I have mixed feelings about this.  I am so excited to get to Los Angeles and start my mission but I am going to miss my district and I would love to learn some more Spanish here.  Too bad for that.. I am about to get thrown into the Spanish!  I absolutely love being a missionary though and getting to put my name tag every morning.  This week I have realized how much joy this gospel has brought into my life and the hope also.  I have also realized the amazing blessings of prayer.

So not much happened this week.  All of our investigators are doing really well and I am starting to answer all of their questions in Spanish and almost exactly what I want to say.  It is really cool teaching lessons because my Spanish gets so much better during that time but then right after I struggle conjugating and stuff.  The gift of tongues is real and I am very grateful for it.

The Lord will reward and richly bless you as you humbly prayerfully serve him. More happiness awaits you than you have ever experienced as you labor among his children.
~Preach My Gospel

Funny moment that happened this week.. so my companion Hermana Wilson and I decided that we were going to have a language fast for one whole day so that means that we would speak in only Spanish or some really bad Spainglish.  At lunch we sat by another group of missionaries that we had never met and started talking to them in Spanish and got some general background. We told them that we were from Utah and Idaho and where we were going on our missions.  A missionsry that was kind of by us wanted to ask us a question and started to ask in English but then turned to his companion and asked if we spoke English!! We laughed soo hard!  It was a good confidence booster for our Spanish that is for sure!! :)

The spiritual moment for the week was when my district went outside with our teacher and we read about Enos and how he prayed for a long time and recieved a remission of his sins and then started praying for the Lamanites and everything.  Our teacher gave us 15 minutes to pray for as long as we wanted and to pour our hearts out to the Lord and then write down how we felt.  It was such a calming feeling to pray about going to the field and knowing that everything was going to be okay because I will have the help of the Lord on my side because I am doing His work.

"He will never abandon you.  Heavenly Father puts us on this Earth to succeed gloriously.  He will fit the task to your capability." -Richard G. Scott

This was a very comforting quote as this coming week  I prepare to go out into the field and I know that this is true.
Heel click porque solo una semana mas en el CCM!  I am coming for you LA!!

I love you all and thank you so much for your prayers!!  I don¨t know if I will be getting a Pday next week so we will see how that goes!!  Have a good week and talk to you all soon!

Hermana Kali McMinn
 Awkward photo of me and my comp Hermana Wilson

The pics from last week! our latino friends... Elder Lopez, me, my comp, Elder Aragon, Elder Quintero

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Week 4: Bring it on!

We are the Lord's hands upon the earth with the mandate to life and serve His children.
~President Thomas S. Monson

Another week has come and gone and it is P Day again!  It is kind of really crazy how fast my time here at the CCM is going.  Only 2 more weeks and I will be in Los Angeles! I am getting so excited to get back to the US and to California.  It still doesnt feel real that I am on a mission.  It kind of feels like an EFY on some spiritual steroids... if that makes sense.  Every single day we do the exact same thing and it is getting me more and more excited to teach the people of LA even though I probably wont be able to understand what they are saying to me for a while!

So the quote of the week is from one of the Hermanas that we share a room with and it is from the Emperors New Groove. "Waterfall ahead? Yep! Sharp rocks at the bottom? Most likely! Bring it on!"  We decided that our life is that exact quote.  We really dont know what to expect when we get to the field but currently we are tied to a tree and ready or not they are sending us out there.  Luckily we have the help of the Lord on our side!

This week Elder Christofferson came to the CCM and that was such a cool experience.  It was way cool when he walked into the room.  We were all standing up so of course, being the short person that I am, I couldnt see him come in but I knew the exact moment that he was in the room because I could feel of the Spirit and the love of Christ surrounding me.  My testimony of living apostles and prophets was definitely strengthened.  He did a Q&A kind of thing with us and I did not want him to leave because everything that he said was exactly what I needed to hear.  One awesome story that he told us was about this lady who was trying so hard to learn English.  She decided that she wanted to receive a blessing and when she did the language came so easy for her.  She eventually got to a point where she was not progressing at all no matter what she did.  She decided that she was going to receive another blessing.  When the guy was starting to give her a blessing no words came to his mouth.  He didn't know what to say until this phrase came into his head, "If she will express thanks for what I have given her, there will be more to come."  It was such a sweet reminder for me to be more grateful for all that Gad has given me and helped me with especially here on a mission.

The Spanish is still coming. I am learning alot and I can see progress but there is definitely a lot more for me to learn.  thank you so much for all the prayers.  I love you all and hope that you have a great week!

Hermana Kali McMinn

Note from mom: So I was really missing Kali on Saturday. Tears were falling and it was all because of some country music that I was listening to while cleaning the house. She used to hop in the car and switch the radio to a country station every time. (Sometimes I think just to make Taryn crazy). I thought it was funny that she was missing music almost as much as I am missing her. We know she is in the right place doing the right thing right now!

Hey Mama!
I am just going to start by thanking you for challenging me to look for the happy things in my day.  It definitely helped a ton. I didn't have bad days but every single day is the exactly same and  I needed something to write in my journal and realized that there is alot for me to be grateful for here.  One of the things is that one day Elder Jensen, in my district, started singing One Direction! Definitely a prayer answered ;)  and it made me so happy. Then another Elder started to sing country music.  I sure do miss music.  There is constantly songs being sung here and they are the most random songs ever haha but I love it!
And just for giggles...
Kali and Hermana Wilson

So School has started!! Woohoo!!! Did you pray to help with you patience because what I have realized is that God has a really good sense of humor.  When you ask for help with things like patience he gives you exactly what you ask for.  So technically you probably asked for (a certain student) again in your class without even realizing it!

Really?!? This is so Kali! She just says what she is thinking. Funny girl!