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!



Sunday, June 25, 2017

We Made It.......





So I gotta start off and share my crazy news. My new companion is freakin SISTER BOWERS!!! ahhhh I'm not kidding. Who the heck gets to be companions with their best friend? YAY. best transfer call of my life.  
I really wasn't supposed to get a new companion this transfer but here's what went down last week! So remember how I said that all the missionaries were sick? Well I kinda left out that Sister Alanzo was BY FAR the sickest. Last Monday we got a call asking if she was getting better and because she wasn't on Tuesday she got shipped off to Guam! I really was the luckiest missionary ever to spend a few weeks with the funniest human alive. Right before leaving she told me she would be going to Utah when I got home so YAY! So I spent the whole week with Sister Bowers and Sister James covering mine and their area! Which made for a week full of FUN stories.
But one of those sweet experiences was being able to go to a branch for the first time! Growing up in the church I have always gone to a ward and when coming to Pohnpei I was put into a ward which has been such a HUGE blessing. However, going to the Uh branch yesterday was seriously the cutest thing ever. The members there were so humble and so willing to do anything to help. & what made it even better was that we were called on the spot to give talks, we taught primary, OH and we were asked to teach Relief Society! So really bless up for the Sapwalap ward.
So before coming on a mission I KNEW the Book of Mormon was true. But gosh not like I do now! The other night we were having a lesson and one of the investigators in the Uh area shared her testimony of the Book of Mormon with us. She explained to us that if her husband is late coming home from work and she is alone with the kids at night that she opens up the Book of Mormon and puts it at her door way to protect her and her kids. Or if there is a storm or she is scared she will open a few Book of Mormons and put them around the house. I'm not sure I've ever met someone with such a sweet testimony of the Book of Mormon. Being with her strengthened my testimony of the Book of Mormon and I sure am grateful for that experience! Like good heck. The Book has gotta be true. If not, then what the HECK am I doing?
 I'm really the dang luckiest missionary to serve here on Pohnpei! and even luckier because now I get to do it with my best friend!! wahoooo! 
LOVE. Sister Russell

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Grateful for Running Water.....hahahaha!!!!

So this past week I had a humbling experience that was just another testimony to me that 





Heavenly Father truly is in the smallest details of our lives! So for this whole week Sister Alanzo and I have had NO water (good thing it rained a whole lot this week!) & no one could figure out what was wrong! We first thought that our neighbors were just turning off our pipe. But after a few visits up there, we came to find that there must be something wrong with the pipe! So Sister Alanzo, me, and the Welter family (Nedleen and her family!) decided we would follow the pipe from the big tank at the top of the hill to our house! Within about 20 minutes Adas found the broken pipe! We were able to put it back together and I almost started to cry hahaha. I was so sick of hoping it would rain so that we could fill up some buckets to shower and do our dishes. I let my pride get the best of me and a little bit of self pity was settling in. But things were going to get better because we fixed the pipe! So we go to the small tank by our house and NO water was going into it. At this moment I was about 33 seconds from calling United Airlines and getting myself shipped off Pohnpei. But before doing that (luckily) we ran home to check again. Still nothing. So we went back up to our tank and I sat in the car while Sister Alanzo went to go check! STILL no water. I put my head to the steering wheel and humbly asked my Heavenly Father for His help. Before I was able to say amen I heard the water begin to flow and Sister Alanzo yell "It's working!" and sure enough, it was! I'm not quite sure HOW but He is so so aware of each one of us. & if you don't think so, look a little closer! Geez. I'll never take running water for granted again. Situations like this just don't happen in America.  
These past  2 weeks have been so so good! Last week the Zarbocks had their last Zone Conference on Pohnpei and the last weekend it was their last MLC in Guam! It was cute because the Christensens (senior couple) put together a tribute to the Zarbocks kinda thing and each of the Zone Leaders and STL's were about to share a simple way that the Zarbocks have touched their lives. Dang it was cute! Saying goodbye to them was HARD! I'm a better person because I knew the Zarbocks, that's for sure!
Life's good over here in Mesihsou. Me and Sister Alanzo laugh ALL the time. She literally is the funniest person I've ever met & I just love her.
Also, our investigators? going places.
Pohnpei? The bomb. (except when 6 cockroaches come flying out of the air con during district meeting. hahah not so bomb)
I'm a happy happy missionary and life is gooooood!
Thanks for the support!
LOVE. Sister Russell

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Some weeks are the bomb!



Ya know some weeks as a missionary are BOMB and some are just tough! And this week was on the tougher side! You'd think this week would have been the BEST because Jack was being baptized buuuuut that's actually the reason why it was so tough! So we went to Jack's baptismal interview and geez the interview went on for almost 2 hours! I had no idea what was going on and boy was I frustrated! After what felt like 4 years, Elder Yardley came in and told us that Jack would need to be interviewed by President Zarbock over the phone on Saturday before the baptism! So me and Sister Fehoko fasted, prayed, and prayed some more but it turns out that Heavenly Father has another plan for Jack Hadley! and it might be a little while till we see him enter the waters of baptism! 
Saturday night I was realllll upset. I felt like things were starting to get real good and that I really was making a difference here on Pohnpei! I couldn't understand WHY this had happened with Jack after we had worked SO hard. I then turned on a talk by Elder Christensen and he spoke of how the Lord chastises those He loves and how we must accept and even ask for His correction. Missions are hard, but it's the hard that makes it so great! If it wasn't tough then Heavenly wouldn't be able to shape us into who HE needs us to become. Missions are a GIFT.
But let's get real! the WHOLE week wasn't bad! So first off I learned a BOMB trick from my girl Sister Bowers that changed everything. She taught me to boil a pot of water and then put that in the bucket so then it's like taking a HOT bucket shower! holy crap it's like I'm living in the states! BEST thing everrrr! ALSO. I found Snickers ice cream at the store and I almost started to cry! That was pretty close to the hot water. EVERY week is a blessing here on Pohnpei. Even if it's tough, it's a blessing! Missions go by wayyyy to quick so I got no time to be upset! I LOVE this Gospel, my Savior, and being His missionary!
Kalanghan kumailllllll! love you all!
xoxoxox Sister Russell

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Happy Mom Day!



Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Yo Yoooo...

 




another week in the coolest mission EVER cheeeeccckk!
So here's my bad news for the week. Jack went to Kitti (the other side of the island) for a funeral and we haven't see him this whole week! Worst. His baptism will be pushed back a little but that's ALL GOOD. There must be a reason! We'll just keep on praying that he'll make his way back over to Mesihsou SOON.
But other than that this week has been BOMB. On Saturday we had a baptism for Hillary and Depo! Their parents are recent converts of the elders who served here before we did and for some reason the kids weren't baptized yet! It was cute though because they got baptized in the ocean and the night was perfect! Right up until the closing prayer when a typhoonish storm decided to roll in. ahhaha good timing. Ohhhhh and right after the baptism we went to see one of our investigators, Olter! hahahah we walked up and realized that they were having a party so we thought we'd peace out and come back tomorrow but NO we got thrown right in! I've never realized how awkward missionaries are until you get them thrown into a Pohnpeian party! We just about died. hahah. gotta love being a missionary.
ALSO. We've been working real hard with the cutest 16 year old ever, Cynthia! We've be teaching her for some time but had big time problems with permission to be baptized! Howeverrrr with a whole lot of prayers my girl Cyn got permission! & not only that but she's helping us teach her family & now her brother & sister are on date tooooo! I'm sure on day her family is going to be REAL grateful for her sweet example. it's crazy how often you see little miracles like that as a missionary! Heavenly Father is in the details for sure!
OH and Tuesday was goooood! Birthdays are dang weird in the mission field. But I was on exchanges with Sister Bowers (not planned ;)) so you know it was the BDE. 20 is old. Like geez that's half way to 40!
it was a DANG good week! Like everyyyy week in the mission field! 
LOVE. Sister Russell

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

and the teenage years are over......



Hellloooo and happy happy Easter! So, if you guys didn't already know, Pohnpei is a little behind the rest of the world and so we got to watch conference yesterday and on Sunday! and oh geez wast that bomb. Watching conference is like being home for 33 seconds. And what made this conference even better was watching as Jack (remember him from last week?) listen to intently as if he was nervous to miss even one word. There were moments when I would start to doodle in my notebook or day dream about who knows what and when I would snap back into it I would look at him and realize just how fortunate I am to hold the calling I do! I thought I understood the Atonement before my mission, but as I watched a man who had been stuck in darkness before meeting with the missionaries and now was filled with so much light! The lord truly prepares His children to accept His Gospel! 
This past week the senior couple, Elder and Sister Fulton, joined me and Sister Fehoko to go see Jack. We taught of Jesus Christ's life and the great blessing of the Restoration. We each bore testimony of the Book of Mormon and of Christ's love for Him. We gave him a specific chapter in the Book of Mormon and asked that he read it before we came back the next day. As we returned on Wednesday we walked into his house and there was a new light in him! We asked about his reading of the Book of Mormon and he told us that he KNEW without a doubt that it was true. He had stayed up all night reading it side by side with the Bible and noticed that there was a different feeling as he read the Book of Mormon. The Book of Mormon has power in it! That's for sure!!
This week was a blessing! As is every week here on Pohnpei. I'm so so lucky to serve here on this crazy island! ALSO. Thanks for the bajillion emails and the birthday wishes! I've got a whole lot of support at home so thank you thank you thank you!!
Life is GOOD.  I feel like I learn 391705800 lessons every week in the mission field and a BIG one I learned this week is that your attitude changes everything! Which is really really REALLY true. If you've got a happy attitude then everything seems to work out!
THANK YOU again! sending loooots of love from Pohnpei!
LOVE. Sister Russell

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Hey, hey, heyyyyyyy




Sunday, March 26, 2017

Pepdiiiiaaaaas




Hellloooo everyone! 
Remay was baptized this week so boooo yahhh!! I was a littttttlllle frustrated this week because RJ (Remay's brother) backed out of the baptism on Friday night just before the baptismal interview. We went to their house with the elders and Sister Albert pulled me and Sister Fehoko to the side and explained to us that RJ wasn't ready to make that kind of commitment and that he would be baptized once the rest of the family would be baptized! So I kinda just wanted to be like "Soooo do you all wanna get baptized tomorrow orrrrr?" Geez I wish people would just understand haha!
But I'm counting my many blessings because Remay was still baptized and I'm not sure I've seen someone happier than her as she got out of the font! She was dripping wet and ran up and jumped on me and was so so happy! Then as she bore her testimony to the ward she started to cry as she thanked me and Sister Fehoko for teaching her about how she can follow Jesus! It was so stinkin cute.
Soooo what else is new? 
1.I got a new house this week! It's white and it's like living in a mini temple!
2. I found THE biggest dead spider this morning my bed! (at least it was dead, right?)
3. I learned how cut open coconuts like a pohnpeian! 
4. I'm still in the process of learning how to hula.
5. lots and lots and lots of new investigators this week! Boo yah!
Yikes sorry! This is short! But not toooo much to report this week! thank you thank you thank you for all the support I get from home! You guys are the bessstttt! 
Sending loooots of love from Pohnpei!
LOVE. Sister Russell

Monday, March 20, 2017

Cockroaches for Days......




Hey hey heyyy! 
(I know I always say this!) But this week was a GOOD one!
We had stake conference on Sunday and holy crap that is so so fun!! To see all of the saints on Pohnpei come together is seriously the sweetest thing ever. But also the church is really really new on this island so stake conference is a big mess and honestly it kinda stresses me out! Like holy crap Elder Yamashita from the seventy is talking and they are all just moving chairs and doing who knows what hhahaha it kills me. But you should have seen how excited Remay Albert (the girl who is getting baptized this week!) was when Elder Yamashita came up and shook her hand and wanted to meet her! She was so happy I thought she was gonna cry! To me it's become normal to see these general authorities around but to her it was something she will never forget!
So YES Remay and RJ Albert are getting baptized this week and holy crap I cannot wait!! The mom and dad need a little more time to get permission from their parents (Ya that's a thing in Micronesia) but they should be joining their kids and getting baptized soon!
Also, yesterday we had Zone Conference and a huge part of Presidents training had to do with Heavenly Father's love! and it made me just stop and think about really how much Heavenly Father loves His children. I know I've said this before but that is one of the sweetest things as a missionary! We get to feel just the smallest amount of Heavenly Father's love for His children as we teach them. I LOVE it.
Okay so funny story from this week. So it's like 10:15 and there are like 4 cockroaches running around our house (they were HUGE and real quick) so Sister Fehoko is chasing them with a Knife and Sister Bowers has a broom and then I had the plastic bag that we were gonna scoop them into! and as you can probably tell, it wasn't working. Sooooo after like 10 minutes of trying Sister Fehoko wacks one with the knife and it freakin flies! hahahahah So we all scream and then sister Wari (who was asleep) runs out of the bedroom screaming and runs right outside hahahahah I'm crying just writing this. She thought a man was in our house hahaha. What the heck.
"This is not the Paris, France mission. We're a croc wearing, hard working mission!" - President Zarbock
so there you go!
LOVE. Sister Russell

Monday, March 13, 2017

Guam & MLC....



Helllloooo everyone!  
So first off. I'm DRAGGING. We were in Guam this weekend for MLC and ask me how much I've slept? Not enough! So I'll just apologize in advance if my sentences don't make sense. Plus my english is terrible so hahah there you go.
Sooooo things in Micronesia? Still the best!! Oh geez I love it. I think one of my favorite things about going to Guam and getting to see a bunch of the missionaries serving on the other islands is realizing that I'm in THE coolest mission ever! oh annnnd seeing Sister Zarbock. This weekend she spoke to us about finding joy in our trials and realizing that our trials come from a loving Heavenly Father and that as we are building the kingdom of God, we are also building ourselves! She talked about the story of the seagulls and the crickets and she asked us "If Heavenly Father had the power to send the seagulls, why didn't He just keep the crickets away in the first place?" Missions are HARD. like holy crap. But I KNOW that they are hard because Heavenly Father loves His children and sometimes trials are the way He shows that love!
So in regards to the work things are looking goooood! We have 4 (heck ya) baptisms coming up on the 25th so PRAY with me that everything will work out and that the Albert's and Roseleen will get baptized! OH geez I'm stoked. This week me and Sister Fehoko went to the Albert dad to ask for permission for his wife and kids to be baptized and when he said yes we both just started to cry! There REALLY are those people who are prepared and waiting for certain missionaries. 
and ALSO we have stake conference this week so guess who get's to see Sister Zarbock agaiinnnn? wahooo! BUT because we have stake conference on Sunday, we have Zone Conference on Monday so I'll be getting on email on Tuesday! SORRY. 
"We're living the dream!" - President Zarbock
It's true! I'm the coolest mission and I'm surrounded by the BEST people! life is gooood. 
Thank youuuu everyone!
LOVE. Sister Russell

Monday, March 6, 2017

tender mercies



Friday, February 17, 2017

Spanked by the Ocean



Kasalehhhlie everyyyone!
This week was a GOOD one! (I swear I say that every week but really this one was!)
The language is finally starting to not be a burden, me and my companion are becoming bessstt friends, my investigators are progressing, and life is just good! 
So you guys wanna hear the cutest story ever? Sooo on Thursday night Sister Pokipala and I were SUPER late to get out proselyting because Zone Meeting went late! So it was about 7 o'clock and we had a whole lot of people to see! So we just kinda made the decision to go see our investigator who lives wayyyy in the middle of the jungle. So as we are walking to go see Leoline I get this overwhelming feeling to turn around! So I look back at Sister Pokipala and ask her how she feels and she explains to me that she feels we need to go back to the main road! So (obviously) we pray and both have overwhelming feelings that we need to go see a new family that we've been teaching, the Albert Family! So we went there and we decided to teach simply about Jesus Christ. It was BY far the sweetest and most powerful lesson I've been in since being on Pohnpei. The spirit was so strong and I was so grateful to see the blessings from following the spirit. The whole family is now on baptismal date for the middle of March :) Heavenly Father is so dang aware of his children it's insane. 
Another coooool thing I got to do this week was go out to an outer island of Pohnpei called Parem!! like 10 of us missionaries all loaded up on this tinnnyyy boat and drove out to the island (it was so dangerous holy crap) and it was SO fun! We were all soaked by the time we got to the island! The island of Parem was opened up to a set of elders last transfer and it was so so crazy to see how the Gospel truly is spreading to everyone! OHHHH and on this island I got to hold an octopus!! so hahahah perks of living on a crazy island! and also driving on a little boat with in the middle of the ocean at sun set is probably one of the coolest things I've ever done! 
Ohhh and if you are wondering where the title of the email came from, that's Elder Glauser for ya! hahahah. But really. I'm SO dang grateful for the blessing it is to be the Lord's servant on this island. There are some realllyyyy hard days and some realllyyyy good days! But the good days always outweigh the tough ones! always! 
Udahn Kalanghan Kumail!!
LOVE. Sister Russell

Monday, February 6, 2017

Bucket Showers Brings Blessings...



 
Okayyy you're probably wondering what the heck I mean by bucket showers bring blessings! But really it's nothing! I was in Guam this weekend for MLC (a really loooong 9 hour meeting) and I was eating dinner with the other STL's and ZL's and president and sister Zarbock and all the sisters kept saying how they were taking hot showers! Sooo of course I'm laughing because not only am I taking cold showers but they are with a pump and a bucket! (President Zarbock wasn't real impressed that sisters were bucket showering) BUT something I thought a lot about after that conversation was truly how BLESSED I am to be in a mission where I get to experience these type of things. When else in my life will I be eating rice on the floor with my hands, or be trudging through the jungle just to find that one prepared investigator! I'm SO grateful to serve in Micronesia! 
Soooooo me and Sister Pokipala saw loooots of blessings this week! And one of them had to do with our cute investigator, Marlinda! So Mar is having a HARD time getting permission to get baptised and come to church. So me and Sister Pokipala thought and thought of ways to help her! So one thing we thought about was to ask her family to help us! So we went there one day and asked if there was any way we could buy some bananas from them. They were so grateful that we asked and immediately went to go get some. We bought the bananas and sat and talked with them for a little while annnnnnd we walked out of their house with permission to come to church! wahooo! We haven't gotten permission to be baptised yet but just you wait!
But this weekend was the beeessttt because I got to see Sister Zarbock wahoooo! Oh my goodness it's like seeing my mom. She's so cute because she always talks about how as missionaries we are blessed with this love for people like never before! Which is so so true. I could walk into a first lesson with someone and instantly love them. I think that's a special gift given to missionaries to be able to feel just a little bit of how Heavenly Father feels about His children! Being a missionary is the BEST. 
Sorry this is so short! We just got back from Guam and I'm rushing!! I sure hope you are all doing goooood! And thank you so so much for the support from home! LOVE you all SO so much!
limpppoooak, Sister Russell

Sunday, January 29, 2017




Aiiii Maingggg!
This week was just weird. hahaha so weird! But GOOD. I'm not quite sure I ever understood how powerful Satan is until I came on my mission but lemme tell ya! That guy is dang strong and he is the WORST hahaha.
But yes life is GOOD. I'm finally getting to the point where I understand how to be a servant of the Lord instead of a missionary with a badge. So I have the cutest story. Last night we were going to a members house to pick up our member present when everyone looked a little down! The oldest daughter told me that her parents had been out getting food for a few hours and the little kids were starting to get HUNGRY. We had lessons planned and people that we needed to go see but knowing exactly what Sises Krais would have done! So we ran home and made a whole lot of PB&J's, grabbed some chips and candy and were off! it was like Christmas morning to those kids!! It was such a tender mercy for me to see Heavenly Father reach out to His children through me. Oh I love love love the calling I hold!
So in regards to the work here in Mesihsou things are going sooooo good! You guys remember Nedleen? oh my heck that lady is the BEST. I can't wait for the day when she's called as the General Relief Society President or something hahha. She's a CONVERT not just a baptism and oh my heck do I love her and her family. I'm working with her husband right now and working with the Welter family has made me truly understand my calling as a missionary! We are constantly pointing them to the temple and helping them see the big picture. Nedleen and her husband call us her children and the kids call us their sisters. I was never quite sure why I got sent to this crazy hard mission until I watched the Atonement work through Nedleen and her family. You truly can feel the light of Christ when you walk into their home! What a tender mercy it was for me to see this lady who has been taught by every missionary ever change her heart when I started teaching her! it's TRUE. There are people prepared for specific missionaries! ALSO because of this family I'm a whole more grateful for the temple and for eternal families! I've always LOVED the temple. and that love has grown so so much since coming to Pohnpei. So many of the members pray in every prayer that a temple will come closer to Pohnpei!  The day they announce a temple in Micronesia will be the best day of my liiiiiife!
I get a whole lot of support from home and I want you all to know just how grateful I am for that! thank you thank you thank you!! On hard days I really can feel the prayers of loved one's at home! Being a missionary is the best. the toughest thing ever. but the best! 
Udahn I poakepoake kumail!
LOVE. Sister Russell

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Ayyooo....



Wahoooo! It's Mondayh again! Every missionary would be lying if they said they aren't stoked when it's Monday! But really this week was a good one!! President Zarbock flew in from Guam on Tuesday with Sister Zarbock for Zone Conference! (seeing Sister Zarbock is the best thing EVER) And the training by President was so so good! It was centered on repentance and we can help ourselves and our investigators understand that repenting is such a happy thing! I LOVED that because it's so dang true! When we repent we turn back towards God. It brings light into our lives and prepares us to meet our Heavenly Father again! I love it!
Sooo this week we were our seeing investigators and I had this impression to go see an old lady that me and Sister George used to teach! So we went and saw Ruth, she was sitting alone in here house and invited us in to have a lesson. (she's so dang Protestant so having a lesson is sometimes hard) She then went on to explain to me that for some reason she was really struggling with the death of her husband and 2 daughter but couldn't explain why because it had been years since their passing. So offff course we teach about the Plan of Salvation and how one days she can see them again! Which lead to a baptismal invitation and a "I'll pray about it." Which is GOOD ENOUGH! it was so so sweet for me to see the Lord guide me exactly where I was needed.
So another GOOD day this past week was on Tuesday when I went on exchanges with the sisters in Sekere! And I got to spend the whole day with Grace George as my member present! We laughed ALL day! She's like my family on this island and being with her for the day was the biggest tender mercy! She's a total idiot but I LOVE her.
Another tender mercy I saw was I have this investigator, Roseleen, and on the week of Christmas she yelled at me telling me that she never wanted to see us again and that she hated everyone in this church. hahah OKAY. But this week we were out and she stopped, apologized, and asked if we would come back and see her! Annnnd now she is on baptismal date for next month!! I've been praying and praying to soften her hard and would you look at that!! He sure did!
So boo yah! Life is GOOD right now! Life as a missionary is dang simple and I love it! I know Heavenly Father needs me on this island, at this time! There's no where else that's more important for me to be!
Lessons learned by Sista B, Wari, and Poki
1. Life's way easier when you don't give a crap.
2. Be grateful for running water.
3. As a missionary you literally water the power of Satan and Heavenly Father working against each other every day.
4. Rotten coconut juice is THE grossest thing I've ever come in contact with.
5. HUMBLE YOSELF.
Love you alllll! Xoxoxoxo
Sister Russell

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Hey! and Happy New Year!!





Hey! Hey! Heyyy!
Another week done just like that!! Sometimes it freaks me out how quickly weeks fly by! So this week was GOOD. Remember Nedleen?? The lady who was baptized with her son a few weeks ago!  Adas, Nedleen's daughter, was baptized this week! Wahooo! and also the dad is preparing for baptism for the beginning of February! So once he is baptized hen the road to the temple begins!! Nedleen told me that she has already started saving! The closest temple is in the Philippines but just you wait! Soon enough there will be a temple on this crazy island!
So this week I don't have any WAY crazy stories. Didn't hit any pigs, no one was licking my feet, and no frogs were in our toilet! But I do have a funny one! So here's a little background... On Pohnpei, dating isn't a thing!! The guy just kinda says he wants to marry the girl and then the girls just says yes or no! It's SO weird. So this past week Sister Pokipala and I are in a lesson with a guy and I'm in the middle of a sentence and he just cuts me off and asks me if I'll marry him after he is baptized! hahahaha no. But GOOD thing I had a Pohnpeian companion who taught me that if you say yes, even if you are joking, you are obligated to marry them! hahahahah Pohnpei is so weird. & I think the elders might be getting a new investigator real soon!
Oh geez I love this place! Some people are DANG weird but boy do I love them!! The decision I made to serve a mission was by far the best decision I've made. The Lord has blessed me so so much. LIFE'S GOOD.
Lessons learning this week! (by Sister Bowers, Wari and Pokipala)
1. Take everything out of your pockets before you wash your clothes.
2. Don't get butt hurt when your comp calls you fat, just take it.
3. People from Papua New Guinea really don't eat people.
4. But Tongans really do hate Samoans.
5. Sister missionaries make everyone uncomfortable.
Okay peace out girl scouts!! Kasalel Kumaiiiilll!
LOVE. Sister Russell