Adventures of Kali in Cali: November 2015

Monday, November 30, 2015

Week 17: More Tender Mercies

Hello friends and family!!
How crazy is it that I am almost done with my second transfer already? These past 5 weeks have gone by so fast! And I heard it only goes faster so I am not quite sure what to expect from here on out!
Well this week we had so many tender mercies happen. It was amazing! One day we were going to go and see Maria Cendejas. She was a really solid investigator who we ended up transferring to the English ward because it was easier for her husband to understand English. Her mom had joined us in one of the lessons that we had with Maria and she loved it. She could feel the spirit so strong and we actually set a baptismal date with her in that lesson and gave her a Book of  Mormon.
We had tried going by a few times after that but she was never home or didn't want to talk to us so we ended up turning her over to the Lord. But anyway we went to go and see Maria but she wasn't there! Luz, her mom, was though! And she wanted to talk to us! We were so excited and started talking about the Book of Mormon and turns out she has actually been reading it every day! We asked her how she felt while she was reading and she said calm and that she knew those things were true!! We are so happy that we followed the prompting to stop by and go see her! The hardest thing with her is that her husband does not like when we come over and does not like when his wife leaves the house! We have been praying for him to have a more open mind and heart so that Luz can come to church! Heavenly Father answers prayers!
Another tender mercy is the whole day on Friday!! We went on a companion exchange for that day and I stayed in my area with one of my sister training leaders, Sister Bown. I was super nervous because she does not know any spanish at all so I would be the one who was doing all the talking. We started the day out with not having any set appointments and just planned on knocking on doors all day long until we found people to teach and boy did those people come! We found so many people who invited us to come on another day and who really wanted to learn more. There was one man whose name was Flabian and he is a lecturer for his Catholic Church. I had the prompting to teach him the restoration of the Gospel right then on the street so that is what I did! It was going really well and I said the first vision.. The spirit was so strong and Flabian could feel it. All that he could say was... Wow! We then explained the Book of Mormon and I happened to have an extra copy in my bag! We gave it to him and he promised that he was going to read it and pray about it!! I am super excited to go and follow up with him this week!
We ended up finding 8 new investigators that day! A family who let us in to their home, 2 teenage boys, an older lady who really wants to learn more about Christ and some other amazing people! The Lord is preparing the hearts of many people to accept this gospel! :) tender mercies of the Lord!
Yesterday there was a new holiday video that came out called A Savior is Born. It is absolutely amazing. The spirit is so strong as I watch it every time. I invite you all to go and watch it and check out the website It is a great reminder of what this season is really all about. We have a Savior who was born. who died and was resurrected just for us so that we can return to our loving Heavenly Father. Share it with all your friends and family and remember the true meaning of this season! This is the perfect time of  year to share the gospel with others because they can already feel the spirit of Christ even if that is not what they recognize it as!
As the Christmas season envelops us with all its glory, may we, as did the Wise Men, seek a bright, particular star to guide us in our celebration of the Savior's birth. May we all make the journey to Bethlehem in spirit, taking with us a tender, caring heart as our gift to the Savior.
~President Thomas S. Monson
Each of us is an innkeeper who decides if there is room for Jesus.
~Elder Neal A. Maxwell
Hope you all had an amazing Thanksgiving and also have a great week!! 
I love you all and am so grateful for all of your support and prayers!
Love, Hermana McMinn

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Week 16: Happy Thanksgiving

Hello Family and Friends!
Well this week has been a week of finding people to teach. We don't have many progressing investigators so we are in the process of contacting a lot of people and trying to find those whom are ready for the Gospel and who the Lord is preparing to accept our message. A message of true happiness!! At times it can be a little frustrating because we have appointments set and then they are either not home when we get there or they cancel on us. I love agency but I am so sad when they don't accept us and I wish that we could force them to listen to our message because we now that it will make them so happy! I am sure that is exactly how Heavenly Father feels as well when we all choose to disobey as well.
So this week we went and had the full Restoration lesson with Meda, Martha, and Cristina... Our barber shop ladies! They love us so much and they love when we come because they always say that it makes them so happy :). We started the lesson and they weren't quite listening or told us that they knew everything that we were telling them but then we told them about the priesthood. The were a little offended that we had told them that there baptism didn't count because it wasn't by someone who held the correct authority but then they really accepted the idea and really understood what we were telling them. It was really cool to see the Spirit work in them and see them process exactly what was being said. When we finished the lesson we asked all three of them to be baptized and all three of the answered that they would once they had received an answer that all of this was true. Meda is the one who really received our message. She has such a true love and desire to follow our Savior. I seriously learn so much from all of the people who I teach.
We had another amazing miracle this week. As we were walking down the street we ran into a man who we had talked to before and he was so excited to see us!! He told us that he had been looking for us because he knows that our church is true. He had been in jail for a few months for immigration problems and while he was there he chose to go to church instead of having time outside. Turns out that church was actually lessons from the missionaries! He gained a strong  testimony of this church while he was in jail and then once he we let out he searched and searched for our church but could not find someone holding the priesthood to baptism him. He was so relieved when he found us but the only problem is that he works every single day until
10 at night Except for Sunday and so we invited him to church and.... He came!! And absolutely loved it and felt the spirit so strong. We had a lesson with him after and talked about the restoration of the church and invited him to be baptized. He said no (not sure exactly why but we are working on that) but he said that he wants to read and learn a little bit more before he makes that decision. We are super excited for Edgar because he says he knows that this church is true! I am super excited to keep teaching him and seeing his faith grow!
As you all know this week is Thanksgiving!! And what better time to think about our Heavenly Father and Savior because it is because of them that we have all that we will ever need. We have our bodies, personalities, talents, families, the Gospel in our lives and so much more. I invite you all to reflect on what our Heavenly Father has given us and all of our many blessing because I know I have taken advantage of many things! :)
"The happiest people I know are not those who find their golden ticket; they are those who, while in pursuit of worthy goals, discover and treasure the beauty and sweetness of the everyday moments. They are the ones who, thread by daily thread, weave a tapestry of gratitude and wonder throughout their lives. These are they who are truly happy." - Dieter F. Uchtdorf
It is not happy people who are thankful, it is thankful people who are happy!
Have a great week and eat some pie for me :)
Love, Hermana McMinn
PS Happy 13th birthday to BROOKIE! The greatest little sister everrrr :):)

Monday, November 16, 2015

Week 15: I Know That My Redeemer Lives

Hello family and friends!!

Another week has come and gone here in California... and yes it is still cold and I guess it only gets colder from here!  This is going to be a long winter haha :)

Well this week has had its ups and downs for sure. I will just start with one story.  So my companion always has to go to the bathroom because she is constantly drinking water and one night she really had to go to the bathroom and we ended up going into a barber shop to use the bathroom. I started talking to them in my very broken spanish (but i could understand more than before.. positive thinking!)  but we started talking about what missionaries do and about how they leave their homes for 18 months to 2 years.  They didn't sound very interested because they were all really catholic and we asked if we could come to their house and teach them more but they all turned us down.  We ended up singing "I know that my Redeemer lives," and the spirit was so strong.  Once we finished singing they said that they had felt very calm and peace in that moment.  We testified to them that that was the Spirit telling them that our message was true.  They started having so many questions and invited us back to the barber shop and teach them more because they wanted to feel of that spirit again.  We were so excited after that lesson and we knew that my companion had to go to the bathroom for a reason ;)

I don't know if I have told you about Maria Cendejas at all but she is one of our investigators with a baptismal date and she is so awesome.  She is 24 and is married and has 2 kids.  She knows without a doubt that this church is true but the hard thing is her husband doesn't know very much Spanish.  He decided to come to church this Sunday and he loved it! The only probably was that he didn't understand anything that they were saying... the Spirit sure does testify even when you don't understand.  The sad thing is that they have decided to change to English speaking missionaries but we are so excited for them to be baptized together and go to the temple!!! :)

This week I have been reading a book called Believing Christ.  I would highly recommend it to all of you as well.  It talks about Christ and His atoning sacrifice for us all.  We know that we all make mistakes and will keep making mistakes but as we believe Christ we can be clean of everything that we have done and start completely over!  I know this to be true.  I know that Jesus Christ lives and loves us all so much.  So much that sometimes I can't even comprehend it.  I know that He suffered for us so that we can become clean and return to live with our Heavenly Father again.  I know that through Christ we can receive strength to do all that we need to do and more.  We must trust in Him and all that He has done for us!

Sorry for the short email this week but hopefully I have more stories to tell next week!  I love you all so much!

Hermana Kali McMinn

Fight all of your battles on your knees and you will win every time.
~Charles Stanley

Monday, November 9, 2015

Week 14: Tender Mercies of the Lord

Hello family and friends!!

How is everything going at home?  How is the weather?  I am sooo cold here.  I don't know what i was thinking when i thought that california was always warm.  At night it gets to about 65 degrees and I am absolutely freezing.  I guess not bringing a coat was not the smartest thing that I have done.  Good thing my companion was prepared and has 2 haha :)

Tender mercies of the Lord are real and they do not occur randomlyor merely by coincidence.
David A. Bednar

This week has been filled with so many miracles and tender mercies from the Lord. I know that as I am obedient and follow the promptings of the holy ghost that the Lord is guiding us to those who are ready for the gospel.  We have one investigator whose name is Maria Cendejas.  We actually found her in the area book.  She had been taught by missionaries a few years ago and was not quite ready but now she is so ready!  She knows that this is the church that she wants her sons to grow up in and to learn more about Christ.  She is so awesome but the best part is we are meeting with her husband this time around and the missionaries last time couldn't even talk to him.  He was so against the church then but now he has so many questions and it is so awesome and the spirit is always so strong! Maria has a baptismal date and we are working with Brian, her husband, to have one as well. 

Another miracle or tender mercy that come from meeting with maria is her mom Luz.  We went over to Maria's house for a visit and her mom was there so we invited her to be a part of the lesson and she accepted right away. It kind of caught us off guard because it rarely happens like that.  She is a non-practicing catholic which is very big here.  She has amazing faith in Christ and His love for her.  We had a lesson on the gospel of Jesus Christ; faith, repentence, baptism, receiving the gift of the holy ghost and enduring to the end. Luz loved talking about baptism and receiving forgiveness of all that we have done.  We showed her a video of when Jesus Christ was baptized and she thought that is was so beautiful.  we invited her to be baptized in that lesson and she accepted!! :)  We are so excited for her.  The hardest thing for her is going to be her husband.  He does not like when we come at all and he does not like when Luz leaves the house.  We have really been praying hard for her and her husband to have an open heart and for her to be able to come to church this next week!  

One more tender mercy from this last week was our lesson with Ramon. I met him last transfer and we had a really good beginning lesson with him and ended up giving him a book of mormon to read.  We set up a return appointment but when we went he ended up being in mexico and he also lives in an area that we don't spend a lot of time in.  We ended up going to that area last night and i had the prompting to go and see ramon.  we went to his house and he told us that he had been waiting for us to come and see him!  He had read a little bit of the Book of Mormon and had some questions that we answered for him and then we taught him the restoration.  He absolutely loved it!  He understood everything so well and he knows that what we share is true.  He told us that every time that we come by he gets the goosebumps when we talk and he just wants to learn more :)  We invited him to be baptized but he wants to know for sure that this is true before he does that and he doesn't understand the importance of being baptized if he hasn't done bad things like drink, smoke, or kill anyone so we are working on that with him.  Another cool thing with him is that we are teaching him english as well!  So we spend 30 minutes teaching english and 30 minutes teaching the gospel.  It is so fun to see him learn and improve :)

There is a huge focus in our mission about focusing on the tender mercies of the Lord and all of the blessings that He has given us.  Throughout our day we stop and think about all of the things that God and Christ have done for us and it is such a blessing to do this.  Even though we get rejected so many times when we talk about our tender mercies it is so hard to be frustrated with our day.  We see the Lord's hand in the work so much more when we focus on the tender mercies.  It also has helped me to be more grateful for all of the little things that the Lord has done for me.  So this week i invite you all to take some time throughout your day and stop to think about the tender mercies that you have seen throughout your day.  I know that as you do this you will feel the love of Christ more in your life and you will be so grateful for everything that he has done for you!

When we put our problems in God's hands, He puts peace in our hearts. (John 14:27)
In the most difficult circumstances of life, there is often only one source of peace...
The Prince of Peace.

I hope you all have a great week and thank you so much for all the letters, emails and support!
Hermana Kali McMinn

Monday, November 2, 2015

Week 13: Heavenly Father is mindful of us

Hello Everyone!
Happy Halloween from Hermanas McMinn and Ortiz!

So I have a new companion this week!  Her name is Hermana ortiz.  She is from El Paso Texas and has been out 14 months.  She already knew Spanish before the mission so it has been fun learning a ton more from her.  She is absolutely amazing.  She is exactly the kind of person that I want to be when I am getting to the end of my mission.  She just has so much faith and knows exactly what to say to people and follows the Spirit so well.  I am so excited to keep learning from her.

As we lose ourselves in the service of others we discover our own lives and our own happiness.
~President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

So this week we have really been working on finding more solid people to teach.  At this point we don't have many that are completely set on getting baptized like Ignacio and Georgina were.  We are working on really following the Spirit and having a lot of meaningful conversations with others.  This week we have also had a lot of rejection. A lot more than usual and more than Sister Ortiz was used to.  After about the 5th rejection one night. We decided to talk about the tender mercies that we had seen that day and after we talked about them I said that the next person we were going to talk to was going to say yes! and I was just hoping and having faith that it would happen.  Then a few seconds later we heard someone yell Joseph Smith? and we were so confused. At first I was a little nervous because I wasn't really ready for someone to fight with us about Joseph Smith again!  But we went over to talk to him and turns out that he was a former investigator who had been lost during transfers a few months ago!  We ended up teaching the Restoration right then on the street and he knew that it was true. He had this huge smile on his face when we told him about the first vision.  He wanted to read the Book of Mormon and he told us that he wanted to be baptized!  It was such a cool experience.  I realized that when we work hard even after a lot of rejection the Lord is still putting people in our path who are ready for the Gospel.  There are so many people here  in Los Angeles who are ready for the gospel and I am so excited to find them and help them to come follow Christ more. 

 It really helped to build my testimony especially of faith.  Heavenly Father is always mindful of us.  He knows exactly how we are feeling and what we need at that moment.  As long as we have the faith to ask and to know He will answer.  Another thing that I have learned this week is that faith leads to action.  We can't just say that we have faith in Jesus Christ.  We must show that faith as well.  This is done by trying to come closer to Him through scripture study, prayer, repentence, going to church, serving others, etc.  

It is so much fun here in Gardena California.  I love serving a mission and serving others.  Oh and another cool thing... we received a referral the other day and his name is Angel Moroni!! His grandma named him and she is member so I have the feeling there is a lot of potential there haha :)  We are meeting with him this week so I will let you know!

Have a great week :)

Hermana McMinn