Sunday, October 26, 2014

Letter from Cassidy 10-21-14


Well it was a busy week out here! We got to see a ton of people and people are making awesome progress. THE MISSION IS GOOD. That is all.

Things are going really well with the Graves family! We had another awesome lesson with them this week. It is really fun because they all want to be there and want to learn. And it is always powerful to hear the parents bear their testimonies of how they have seen their lives improve as they have started to fully live the Gospel. I have just really grown to love their family so much. It is amazing how that happens on a mission. You just love people a weird amount and sometimes it freaks me out a lot.. but it makes it so fun and meaningful. It is cool that I have this opportunity to meet people and they always change my life. I will remember them forever. Crazy to think about how much my mission has changed my life. Sam is going to get baptized on November 30th... conveniently like right after transfers haha... I am preparing myself now to get moved right before. Because that ALWAYS happens to me. It is okay though because I get to do the fun part of teaching him!

Okay time for a funny story. Well I hope that it is funny. It is funny to me. But sometimes I realize that A) I have turned into a weird missionary who finds things funny that most likely aren't actually funny. B) You have to be here to understand why it is funny. But I will tell you anyways. So there is this lady that we go and do service for who is older and from Peru so she has an awesome accent. And we were there for lunch the other day.. and she asked us to move her grill off of her deck and into her garage. (PS why she thought we could lift a huge grill I have NO clue) anyways we somehow managed to get it, but she had to move the riding lawn mower in the garage to fit the grill. And we finally get this huge thing lifted into the garage (and I only broke my foot once going down the stairs) and then I guess she thought she had the lawn mower in reverse when she didn't... because all the sudden she drove smack into the grill and it is like completely tipped over and she could get it to reverse and was freaking out. hahaha I was dying. Just picture this old grandma on a riding lawn mower knocking over a grill. It was too funny. Then she asked us to help her upload pictures to facebook of all these paintings she has done. And her computer was a mess and we couldn't locate this picture and she was like 'We have to find it. It is Jesus riding on white horses" and man it was funny. One of the weirdest service things I have done. But that's okay. It is always good to help grandmas with facebook.

Also... we had 2 lessons with this less active named Billy. He is a nice guy...  BUT HE WAS EATING HIS ORANGE MUSTACHE DURING OUR LESSON. Yeah he literally would put his mustache in his mouth and chew it. Pretty sure that is an all time weird.

We had a miracle this week! We actually got to have a lesson with our investigator Susie! We haven't been able to teach her for like 5 weeks. And we had a super good lesson about the Word of Wisdom. She has quit everything and is working on quitting coffee. She is down to 1 cup a day from drinking like 3 pots a day. She is so solid. She has consistently been coming to church and she loves it! She even cleaned the church last week and loved that so much that she asked to do it every week.... pretty sure she is doing better than most the members.. hahah. But things are looking up with her!

We got to have a very interesting dinner with a family that has 890 kids who are all home schooled and apparently don't know what deodorant is. Scary times.

We had a super awesome lunch and lesson with the Grimms! They are from Germany! It is so much fun because they remind me of our German relatives so much. I almost feel like I am in Germany eating with them. Especially because they don't think that you ever get full and they keep making you eat more and more until you almost die. And Dieter was having a heart attack because he thinks I eat too much salt (which okay I probably do) but I was like "Oh well I will probably die from it." and he said "hopefully soon." and he is an old German with an odd sense of humor so I have basically no clue if he was kidding or not. haha. Then we had a lesson about Joseph Smith.. and it got pretty intense in a good way. Dieter isn't a member, and he has a really hard time with faith. And he gets really defensive when he feels the spirit. And after I bore my testimony to him he got really upset.. and then just said "You are very lucky that you really know. I wish I had that." And it is cool because he can and he will if he will just stop fighting it so much. It's hard because he promised his mom before he died that he wouldn't get baptized... so even if he does know it is true I think it is too hard for him to think he is disappointing his mom. It is just sad. But it ended really well and before we left he got out this thing and he tested my blood pressure 3 times (because he was THAT worried about my salt obsession) and my blood pressure was so low that he almost had a heart attack and told me to start eating more salt. hahah it was so funny.

Another cool thing happened! NEW INVESTIGATOR named Stephen! He is really awesome. He had us over to dinner (which was... interesting) and then we had a really good lesson. He wants to get baptized! He grew up Atheist and started going to our church a few months ago and he said that he has completely seen his life change. He said he has felt so much peace and happiness that he never had before. He has completely given up coffee and alcohol and everything. I asked him why he did that and he said "I just want to be who Jesus wants me to be." SO COOL. And he is taking us to Chipotle tonight so yeah best investigator award. haha. No but really it is so awesome. We are just teaching so many cool people who are so dedicated to it that it is awesome. Miracles just keep happening. I say that every week because they happen every week.

And with that I am out of time. It was a real good week! It is fun having more time in the area! Kirtland is starting to slow down quite a bit so that means we spend a trilion hours on chat... which is fun sometimes.. but other times when people spend 3 hours trying to argue about how Joseph Smith deserved to go to jail I just want to bang my head on the wall. Most the time I actually do. haha.

Okay well I hope you have a good week. I LOVE YOU. Bye.

love cassidy.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Picture of Cassidy 10-14-14

Cassidy with her current companion Sister Heckert at the Cleveland Art Museum.

Letter from Cassidy 10-14-14

Well my friends.. it has officially happened.


Yep. Never saw that one coming did ya? Yeah I sure didn't. So apparently the branch I am serving in requires the missionaries to participate in this big production of The Messiah at Christmas that is put on by this Catholic Nun school... so yep I get to spend my Sunday afternoons rehearsing songs with old Nuns. It is pretty much one of the oddest things I have ever done. Also, not sure what it has to do with missionary work at all.. but I tried everything to get out of it with no luck.. so looks like I am a Jr. Nun after all! And this song we sing says "His burthen is light" about 89 times at least so that is the story of my life now. But my burthen is sorta kinda heavy. But that is okay.

Also.... I had to pull out my puffy winter coat this week. That is a bad sign. People can officially start calling me a marshmallow again. YAY. Not. haha how did it get so cold so fast? I swear it was just summer. Oh well, despite the cold I had a pretty good week!

We had a lot of fun going to the Cleveland Art Museum last week! It was surprisingly good. I didn't know they had anything that good in Ohio! it was a pleasant surprise. And there were normal people there... I didn't realize those existed in Ohio either. I love the odd Ohions that I work with though so don't even worry.

We had an awesome lesson with the Graves family! I think I talked about them last week but my memory is failing so I will explain again. They are a huge family that just moved here.. and they are all at different places in life/the Gospel. We are teaching the 11 year old so he can get baptized, but we are also teaching the whole family. There is an aunt who was there last time and she was really touched by the Plan of Salvation. And it was just such a cool lesson because everyone was teaching each other.. and we just basically got to testify! And man there is nothing that is more fun than teaching a family about how they can be an eternal family. There were multiple people crying because the spirit was so strong! Nothing is better than the peace and knowledge that comes from really knowing we can be with our families for eternity and I love teaching them and helping them see that! We are going again tonight and I am pumped.

Wednesday was Fiona's birthday and it was so fun. We bought her a frozen hot chocolate at Dairy Queen which is her favorite thing.. and man if you only could have seen the smile on her face when we showed up at her apartment with it. It was like a kid on Christmas! We spent awhile with her and she was happy and laughing and it was so fun. She is the funniest and sweetest girl. Then she had a birthday cake but she didn't have any candles... which I was not okay with so I decided to go knock on doors around the apartment and find someone with candles, and yeah NO ONE HAD ANY which was a fat scam.. like who are these people?.. anyways we did meet this nice lady named Virginia and Fiona randomly invited her to come have cake and so she came and joined the party. If I wasn't a missionary it would have probably been one of the weirdest things ever.. but it was super fun. And it was kind of a miracle because Fiona and Virginia (even though she is a lot older) have a lot in common. A lot of the really horrible things Fiona went through Virginia went through too and she was already helping her a lot. It was totally part of God's plan to get them together. Also, Virgina is interested in learning we might have a new person to teach! It is so cool how that happens. Anyways Fiona's birthday was a success.

We stopped by this less-active member... and we talked to him for a few minutes at the door and then he said "hold on a second I am going to put pants on"... yeah that happened. Then he when he came back he came outside with a beer and a cigarette in his mouth totally just to try and irritate us. Then he said "God is just an extraterrestrial.. He is an alien. And we are simply robots" So yeah add that to the list of weird things I have heard. haha.

Other weird things I heard this week... So this really nice and slightly odd lady had us over for dinner.  When we got there she was talking to her dogs like they are humans.. she literally said "It is okay baby in 32 minutes you can have your dinner. Just wait 32 minutes." Then she left the room and came back and said "the doggie piddled in the bathroom" and we tried our best not to laugh... then in the middle of dinner she said "Excuse me, I must go feed the doggies" and she came back and said.. "They sure love their piddle pads." Hahaha it was hysterical. Gotta love dog pee talk over dinner that is always fun.

We spent quite a few days at Kirtand this past week. But GOOD NEWS.. now that it is technically not the "busy" season anymore.. we only work there 2 days a week! So will have about 87 more hours to work in our area which I am so happy about! But we had the coolest tour yesterday. So this couple that lives in Cleveland was driving to this like nature park thing that is pretty close to the Visitor Center, and for some reason they drove by and decided to come and see what it was. And it was crazy because neither of them knew ANYTHING about our church. They hadn't even heard of it before.. not entirely sure how that is possible but that is besides the point. So we got to start by teaching them the Restoration and about the Book of Mormon. It was funny I asked if they had heard of it and the guy said "that is part in the Bible right?" haha close enough. But they loved the Whitney Store! We could tell that they had become really interested in what we were saying. But then the weather started looking bad so they had to leave before we could finish the tour.. and I said "well you will have to come back and see the rest!" and they guy said "Oh we definitely will." Then as we were walking back he said "I want to learn more about that book. I want to read that. It really sparked my attention." I was so excited I literally ran to find a Book of Mormon to give him. Then he said "I think it was fate that we somehow ended up here today." SO COOL. First of all Kirtland is the coolest place and it is impossible for people to not feel closer to God here. Second of all... now he has a Book of Mormon and the possibilities are endless.

Because we all know that my love for the Book of Mormon is almost obnoxious but I am not even sorry. I finished it for the 10th time on my mission on Sunday! And I just wish I could tell you how much the Book of Mormon means to me. It is the number one thing that has helped me on my mission. And it is just so cool because I really didn't know it or read it very much before and I was just missing out so much. I feel like if I take nothing else with me from my mission (which I will because I have already learned approximately 1 billion other things) It will all be worth it because of my strong testimony and love for The Book of Mormon. It is crazy to me that I will only get to read it 2 more times on my mission. Time flies so fast. But I just have a strong testimony that the Book of Mormon can and will bring people closer to Jesus Christ, because I have really witnessed that miracle in myself over the past 13 months, and I know it can do it for everyone we give it to!

And there you go. Me and my Book of Mormon rants I AM SORRY I do that like every week I just really like it okay. And I really love being a nerdy missionary. I really will be normal when I get home. I hope. If not... oh well it was worth it. I have to leave but I LOVE YOU and miss you! Have a great week!

Pray that Ohio decides that it wants to be summer again so I don't freeze to death thank you!

Love Cassidy

Friday, October 10, 2014

Cassidy is in a rap video on You Tube 10-2-2014

Cassidy and her missionary companion and others made a rap video to promote General Conference. Please go to the You Tube website. Once there type in "Restoration Beat-Box."

A great video with rapping and singing will entertain you. Plus it is a great way to see and hear Cassidy!!


Cassidy's Mom

Cassidy's Letter October 7, 2014


Well... exciting news! For once in my life I am NOT GETTING TRANSFERRED! Neither is my companion! So we get to stay for another 6 weeks!  This is the first time in a trillion years that I don't have to pack and move. I am pumped.  Especially because we had the coolest experience this week!

So at the Gladys Knight event there was an option for people to fill out a referral card, which said they were interested in the missionaries bringing them a Gladys Knight CD, a Book of Mormon, and a dvd. And the other day we got one of the referrals and so we went and stopped by this lady named Angela. And she is SO COOL. She let us right in and we had the coolest discussion with her. Her and her 15 year old daughter loved the Gladys Knight fireside and are pretty interested in learning more. She is Catholic, but said she has always kind of wondered what was the full truth. She said she is excited to read the Book of Mormon! She is just super solid and it is a huge miracle. BUT the craziest thing was she was telling us about this lady that she works with, who was the one who invited her to the fireside. She  was describing her and telling us about how she can sing  and how she was tall and she said "Jenette is just one of the best people I know" and I could picture Jenette so perfectly in my head.. so I said "She really is one of the nicest people" and my companion looked at me like I was a lying crazy person and she said "Jenette is not in our ward we don't know her".. so I was weirded out because I swear I knew her. But I couldn't figure out how the heck I did.  So I asked Angela where exactly Jenette lives (because I was assuming she lived around Chardon) and she said "She lives pretty far away actually. She lives over in Avon"... which is in the LORAIN WARD. So... I know Angela's good friend from the time I was in Lorain! How crazy is that? I will tell you.. it is crazy. The odds that I was full proselyting there, then came back to Chardon, then met Angela.. who loves her... not a coincidence. It is really cool because I know that God had this all worked out. The spirit really testified to me that I am completely an instrument in God's hands right now and He is using me to help the people here... and that is the best feeling ever.  And now we are going to teach Angela! At the end of the lesson she said "Thank you so much for coming. I really am so glad you came." And multiple times she said she had "goosebumps" while we were talking... so she totally felt the spirit. And then her 7 year old daughter asked us to never leave... so at least someone thinks we are cool! Even if she is seven. Haha.

So that was the miracle of the week. Also can we just talk about how good General Conference was? I swear it gets better and better every single time. It was practically like Christmas.  I feel like I learned so much. It just makes me so grateful for modern revelation and for the fact that I know God loves us and gives us a living prophet. You can't watch conference and not feel that God is still speaking to us. Like don't even try to tell me they are making that stuff up. It is too good.  I really just loved learning how I can better live the Gospel. I especially loved how much they talked about loving, accepting, and helping others. Especially those who are different than us. I have gained even greater respect for people of different faiths while on my mission, and I know that Christ really just wants us to stop judging others so much and just love people.

And I'm glad I am a missionary right now so I can just focus completely on getting to serve and help others. I am kinda scared to going back to real life and being busy with school and all that stuff. Missionary life is just stress free and so rewarding. Like okay we are helping this huge family who just moved here.. they have a son we are teaching, and then a few members who are struggling with the Gospel... and teaching them is just so fulfilling. They have lived with the church and without.. and they can see the difference it makes in their lives, so they want it again. We had a really awesome lesson with them last week! We are meeting with them again tonight. I feel like one of the reasons I am here is to help their family.

I am trying to think of some of the funny things that happened this week.... I got bit by a dog while I was praying one day.  That was fun. And Fiona wasn't wearing pants when she opened her door so that was terrifying. Also I had one of the most awkward times ever.. so we stopped by these less-active members of the branch... and their young son opened the door and then ran away.. and the parents were in on the couch... but wouldn't stand up or acknowledge us... so we were just standing there in the doorway for what felt like 20 minutes... and finally I just asked if we could come in and then finally  the mom acknowledged our existence. We started talking to her and she said that a lot of the time the reason they don't come to church is because they have sports on Sunday... and she said "But it is okay because sports are really good for the kids. It teaches them a lot. So it is totally fine they don't go to church."... and first of all I was like... DO YOU HEAR yourself?? No offence... but WHAT. I didn't even know how to respond... I was like.... okay.... It was really interesting because we had just finished watching conference and so many people talked about how we have to set priorities and not put what is just "good" above what God wants us to do. I think it is so easy to justify things but all those small decisions make a huge difference. In the end a football game when you are 6 will not really change your life, but developing a relationship and testimony of Jesus Christ will be eternally beneficial. I mean people these days really don't think that God matters.. which is just depressing to me. I think being on a mission you get to see that the happiest people are those who put God and their family first in their lives. I have been in so many homes where people are always "busy" and involved in a billion things, and have all the material things they want.. but there isn't a feeling of real happiness in their home. I sound like I am being dramatic but it is so true. And It has really taught me that no matter what, the single most important thing is to live the Gospel. Sports, cars, clothes, trips, and all that can be good and fun.. but if you aren't living the Gospel than you won't truly be happy. And I am grateful that God has let me see that so I know how to be happy the rest of my life!

And that is all I have time for today! Sorry to be short and boring! We get to go to the Cleveland Art Museum today and I am so pumped. I hope you all have a good week! Thanks for the letters they always make my day.

I love you!

Love Cassidy