Monday, September 18, 2017

& A Scabies Treatment...





THIS WEEK: 
- We were in a trio the whole week with Sister Taunauta because her companion had some weird disease and got sent to Guam!
- soooo along with that all the sisters on the island had to do a scabies treatment hahah.
- We had a fireside last night on service and the new elder in the ward, Elder Laughter, gave his talk in English and then at the end decided to say "In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen" in Pohnpeian BUT he totally forgot to say Jesus Christ so he sits down and realized what he had done so he runs back up there and just says "Jesus Christ" in the mic and then runs and sits back down HAHAHAHAH I died. 
- My girl Kathrene (favorite investigator of all time) chose a baptismal date.
- Remember my stolen shoes? yaaa saw that Pohlo wasn't home and totally got those back. BDE.
- Had the funnest family home evening everrrr with my family, the Ludricks!
- Nohno Paulis left for America and OH GEEZ was that sad. 
- TEAM WEITAHTA is still going STRONG. We play in the finals on FRIDAY SO HECK YA. 
this week was just a normal pohnpeian week. dang I love these dorks.
LOVE. Sister Russell

Sunday, September 10, 2017

My Week...



MY WEEK.
1. Big news. As of today I've been in Mesihsou for ONE year. been in the Sapwalap ward for even longer. bless up.
2. Volleyball update: Team Weitahta (red) came out on top. BUT there were a few ladies who left that chapel in tears and some harsh words said hahahhah. dang Pohnpeians.
3. President Poston asked Sister Bowers and I to go see the Kitti branch yesterday. Long story short. Sisters haven't been there in a LONG time and those members LOVED us. down side: had to give a talk on the spot. nailed it.
4. So there's this Pohnpeian legend that if you see a sting ray in the ocean and you talk to it that it will come and listen. SO TRUE. I saw a sting ray the other day & Suleen told me if I talked to it that it swim right to me. & it TOTALLY worked. then Sister Taunaunta threw a rock at it and it swam away hahhah.
5. Watched how Pohnpeians kill pigs. never wanna see that again.
6. Did "service" with Nohno Rohro washing her clothes in the river. Funnest service hours of my life.
7. My member presents thought it would be a cute idea to match their outfits, BRIGHT red skirts and blue shirts with a BIG butterfly on it. They are both in their 50's hahahah.
8. Was DANG sick (I don't know why sicknesses are 10x worse on Pohnpei) for about 10 day. Drank some "local medicine" and got a Priesthood blessing, the next day I was dancing around. BLESS.
9. Got this local drink at a store in town that looked like a coconut something. Oh gosh no. It ended up having like corn and beans and whatever in it. BLEH. not the best thing I've had on Pohnpei.
10. Spent the WHOLE day with my favorite person ever, SULEEN, yesterday. It was the best day ever. I'm not quite sure how but somehow I'm gonna have to figure out how to get her in my suitcase :)))
good week. LOVE. Sister Russell

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Stolen Shoes and a Slammed Door





Here's my week in a few sentences:
- So there's this game called "budget" on Pohnpei and it is SO funny. The point of the game is you can't say the word "yes" and if you do then the other person budgets you and then takes something of yours! I know it sounds awful but it's SO fun. & long story short I played that with a member during Family Home Evening and walked away with a new necklace and no shoes :)))
- Went to Guam this week for Mission Leadership Counsel! We don't have normal food in PNI so duh me and Sister Bowers ate at Panda Express 4 times hahaha yikes.
- Also in Guam I got my first door SLAMMED right in my face. Bless up that Pohnpei doesn't have doors. I'm not quite sure how other missionaries handle that crap. I was so upset. hahahahah.
- Sister Bowers complained the WHOLE week in Guam that she wanted to eat Pohnpeian food. literally ALL week. So we go to church yesterday and Nohno Elies tells us that she'd be feeding us Sunday night and so we go there and it's literally the only food that Sister Bowers doesn't like, eggs and rice with sugar and coconut milk hahahahah. I was dying. good thing the elders were there and could help her out. That's what she gets for complaining. 
- To be cool my volleyball team (ward volleyball team) decided to make t shirts. The shirts were bad luck and we lost big time. & to add to it on the final serve I totally slipped and went DOWN face to the ground. better luck next week.
- OH and I got to drive in President Postons car this week with him and his wife :))) that man is a great guy.

Not quite sure what else happened this week! Just a whole lot of meetings and running around the jungle. love love love being a missionary in Micronesia. blessed.
LOVE. Sister Russell

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Ju Gets Baptized




A little over a year ago I opened a letter from my mission president informing me that I would be serving on the little island of Pohnpei. Never in a million years would I have thought that I would have a love for these people, the culture, and the island of Pohnpei like I do now. I love my Pohnpeian family with my whole heart. 
So a few weeks ago my cute Relief Society President told me and Sister Bowers that she had someone for us, her DAUGHTER! I knew Suleen had two daughters but from what I knew they were both staying with their dads and had no chance of us teaching them. I remember going into that first lesson with Judyleen. She looked a little rough to say the least. She's lived with a family who HATES the LDS church and has never seen the joys of having the light of the Gospel in her life. In the 2nd lesson with her we asked her to give us the closing prayer and she informed us that she's NEVER prayed and really had no idea how to! So of course we taught her and she ended up praying for help to be baptized! and before even starting our 3rd lesson with her she asked us when she would be able to be baptized and if she would be able to go teaching with us after her baptism. Watching this sweet girl (who I swear was my sister in the pre-earth life) enter the waters of baptism on Saturday was the BEST experience I've had on my mission. She left the font just bawling. Ju, her mom, and me just sat there and cried and hugged and cried some more! It was a moment on my mission that I will NEVER forget. Sometimes I forget that these people aren't just being baptized but are totally changing their lives. Watching her bear her testimony Saturday night was just another testimony to me of how truly great this work is. 
Sorry I don't have a TON of time today but good heck am I grateful to be here on Pohnpei. I'm not quite sure how I got so lucky. As a missionary you are given this gift where you just have this ability to love people in a different way than you have before. That's SO true. I love love love being here as a missionary on Pohnpei.
thanks a ton! LOVE. Sister Russell

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Judyleen






HAHA I'm pretty sure I laughed my way through 90% of this week.  
So first. On Monday and Tuesday we were on exchanges and I was with Sister Milne (new sister. 1st transfer. poor girl)  in Mesihsou! & because she doesn't know the language quite yet, I was flying solo. So we go into this lesson. We start & sing & just when we start to pray these missionaries from the Every Home church (a church that started in Fiji by some members of the church. AWESOME.) walk in and ask if they can join! hahaha what? So they just take over the WHOLE lesson and start preaching about temptations & Satan & who knows what (they were using honorific Pohnpeian so I was only getting about 60% hahahah). So they just keep going and going and going and randomly the missionary who wasn't teaching would shout "Hallelujah" or "Praise the Lord!" hahahah. So I'm trying my best to keep it together and Sister Milne has NO idea what's going on. So I'm just sitting there and praying and praying to know what to do! So these two missionaries finish and then ask me if I have anything to say and in my head I was like "ARE YOU KIDDING? HECK YES". So at this point I'm still just praying & praying for the spirit & to know what to say when all of sudden it comes to me! Eternal families. I shared that our message was a little different but something that I felt impressed to share. & holy crap the spirit had my back BIG time on that one. The whole room went calm and spirit was SO strong. The Church is true my friends. hahaha still can't believe that happened. Then one of the missionaries went off about how people can lie but the Bible doesn't lie and I just sat there and smiled at her. The spirit roasted her so I didn't need to say any more.
So here's another but this one's just dang cute. So we've had this investigator for a few weeks. Judyleen! she's a straight miracle. In our 2nd lesson with her she prayed for help to be baptized & in our 3rd lesson she asked us when she could be baptized. Like huh? She gets baptized THIS week and good heck I'm soooo excited. She's got the strongest testimony of the Book of Mormon and a family in the church to support her! She's SET!
Only in Pohnnnpei!
- I asked a member if she wanted some Taki's. BAD idea. Spicy food is not her jam. I rarely hear English and she goes "Sister Russel it's like you're killing myself." hahahah and then she had a panic attack in the back of our car for a good 10 minutes hahahah.
- The members fed us SO much on Saturday & we were down ALL day on Sunday ahahah. There's something about Pohnpeian food that just isn't too good for white girls.
- Chugged a whole coconut. Bad idea. Got wacked in the back of the head by my Pohnpeian mom for it. Whoops!
LOVE. Sister Russell

Sunday, July 9, 2017

HHHHEEEYYYYY President Poston




Okayyy this week was bomb. How could it not be? I live on Pohnpei and I'm just running around sharing the good news! I'm living the liiiiife. But really all I wanna talk about is how dang CUTE my new mission president and his wife are! So on Saturday all of the Zone Leaders and Sister Training Leaders from the outer islands flew out for MLC in Guam so I had the opportunity to meet the Postons a little earlier! These 2 are SO faithful. My (old) new mission president god sick and was unable to come and so the Postons were called just 3 weeks ago! crazy. They were serving as missionaries in Virginia when the call came for them to pack up and head to Micronesia (big difference)! Oh and great story. First time I met them I had a donut in my mouth and looked like a total idiot but ya know, classic Sister Russell and we all just laughed it off. Handled that first impression real good.  
Before Mission Leadership Council started President Poston and Sister Poston pulled all of the sisters together to speak with just us for a moment. They both shared stories of trials, faith growing experiences, and their love for the Savior. At the close of the meeting President shared his love for us as sister and gosh I wish I could explain the love that I felt in that moment. Sitting in that office and feeling that love was a testimony strengthening moment for me and a moment I will never forget! Thennnnn MLC started and geez my heart just hurt for the Postons hahah they got to Guam on Wednesday night and had 30 missionaries at their house 4 days later! They handled it like champs. They both spoke of the difference between sacrificing for the Lord and consecrating ourselves to Him. Something I loved that President Zarbock said once was that "the Lord doesn't need your sacrifice, He needs your heart." & loved the training that President Poston gave because they are perfect examples of that! 1 month ago they had non idea they would be coming to the MGM but when the call came, they were ready! He also talked about being "good enough" members and missionaries and how "good enough" people are the ones that Satan works the hardest on. Which was such a great lesson!
I LOVE Micronesia! I've grown to have a love for these people that I didn't know was possible outside of my own family. This mission is a gift and I sure am grateful to serve my Savior. I love Him and I'm grateful for my relationship with Him and how it has grown as I have served my family here on Pohnpei!
xoxoxoxoox 
Sister Russell

Monday, July 3, 2017

Happy 4th!