Sister Lund

Follow Lori and her LDS Mission in Brazil

Happy Official Christmas season! November 29, 2010

Filed under: MTC Letters — companion of honor @ 4:36 PM

Any news from Alabama? Didn’t get a letter this week so I was just wondering how Elder Lund is doing :) Sister Powell wrote one of the sisters this week and said that her and Sister Stahley (who had been companions in the MTC) are companions again in the field. Not quite sure how that works as far as someone being trainer… but at least they’ll be able to keep up the Portuguese!

I’m actually reading Mosiah 1-5 right now in the Book of Mormon. I started when we reported and I’ve read a chapter or two a day since paying special attention to questions that are answered through the Book of Mormon that investigators would have. Those are some seriously powerful chapters!

Be sure to cheer extra loud for BYU this weekend!! I’m glad the game isn’t in Provo this year, it’d be rather distracting tomorrow.

Mom, I’ve been waving to you too every time I pass the front of the MTC this week. You’re sooooo close! I could throw a paper airplane and you’d get it :) Sorry to hear that you won’t be able to make it out to Michigan for Christmas. I’m glad Jeffrey and Kelli will though, that’ll be good for Grandpa to have company. I’ve tried to send a few letters with pictures here and there. Wish I could do more for him. I’m excited to get to talk to you guys though! I wonder where I’ll be!!!! We should find out this Wednesday. Sister Barnhill is going to Texas! Pretty sure we’re all hoping for some place warm :) As far as my birthday, I’ll most likely be flying out that day so I don’t really need anything as far as stuff mom. But I would LOVE if you find time, to write out your conversion story. I pretty much know the gist but I’d love to have that for my own record. You really are my hero mom :)

I hope you all had a fantastic thanksgiving!!! I can definitely say that this year was like none other before. Elder Holland spoke at the morning devotional. He is probably my most favorite apostle (not that I don’t love each and everyone of them… :) but Elder Holland’s way of speaking always really stands out to me. It was neat because he had his entire family with him; wife, three children, and 18 grandchildren. He started by saying that no one should be homesick today. He wanted everyone to consider the Holland’s their family for the day. It was good to hear because to be honest I had been thinking a bit of my own family right across the street. He had his grandchildren sing a primary song which was adorable!! He told us to consider these kids our little siblings, nieces and nephews for the day. It really was a sweet devotional. He talked a lot about the Savior and how grateful we should always be for his life and sacrifice for us. It reminded me a lot of the talk he gave a few years ago “None were with Him”. I love Elder Holland!!!

We then had a delicious thanksgiving dinner, cafeteria style :) It wasn’t quite the quality of Mom’s cooking but that wasn’t my expectations so I wasn’t disappointed. It actually was really fun to sit as a district and enjoy a Thanksgiving dinner together. We went around the table and said what we were all thankful for. I’ve seriously been so blessed here at the MTC. I have the most amazing district, wonderful companion, fantastic teachers, and the opportunity to hear apostles speak! I’m loving my experience here :) It really has been a blessing to be here in Provo.

After Lunch we had a program put on by President Breiholt of the MTC presidency. He spoke about the importance of the Book of Mormon in conversion. It really is such a powerful tool. Every question anyone could possibly have about the church comes down to the Book of Mormon. If they have a testimony of the Book of Mormon, everything else is either answered or doesn’t matter. Sister Owens and I found this out even stronger this week with one of our “progressive investigators”. He asked the question of how do we know that authority was ever really lost from the earth. After looking at each other, hoping the other would answer… it all comes back to a testimony of the Book of Mormon and the Prophet Joseph Smith. Through the 1st vision Joseph Smith was told that none of the churches currently on the earth had authority from God. Anyone can gain this testimony for themselves through reading and praying about the Book of Mormon, once they know this, they know the first vision did in fact happen and that God himself has said that authority was lost from the earth. EVERYTHING comes back to the Book of Mormon!

This week I’ve also spent a lot of study time trying to better understand dispensations. My testimony has been strengthened so much that the gospel is the same throughout every dispensation. Every prophet has taught faith, repentance, baptism, and the holy ghost. Each dispensation is unique but they all have this fundamental truth. As I’ve studied more and more about this, I know more than ever that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is truly the RESTORED gospel of Jesus Christ, the exact same gospel that has been taught from the beginning of the world. I feel so blessed to have the opportunity to share this knowledge with others. That God loves us just as much today as he did in the times of the bible and that we have a living prophet on the Earth President Thomas S. Monson who speaks to us the words of God today. The gospel is true, we have the truth!!! We really need to recognize what we have and share it with others.

I hope you have have a great weekend with Jeffrey and Kelli and that everything goes well with Bekka’s blessing. I’m looking forward to seeing pictures of our little princess! I love you all so much! Next week I should be able to tell you where I’ll be going in 10ish days!!!

LOVE YOU!!! Merry official Christmas season!!!!!!

-Sister Lund

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Happy Thanksgiving week! November 19, 2010

Filed under: MTC Letters — companion of honor @ 8:11 PM

Hello all!

I LOVED READING ELDER LUND’S LETTER! It was so fun to read about him interacting with people who actually need to hear the message of the gospel. As fun as it is to teach fellow missionaries and teachers I’m really excited to apply what we’re learning here. Still no news about visas. Our district didn’t have any online applications called in this week either. Oh well, at least all 12 of us have gotten to stay together! I love our district!!!

This was a really good week. In relief society the lesson was on grace. Not in the sense that it is by grace that we are saved after all we can do, but more focusing on the fact that through grace we can do good works that when left to our own ability we couldn’t. This was a good thing to be reminded of, that missions definitely qualify as good works and that we can’t do it on our own, but through grace our efforts will be magnified and we will be able to find people who are prepared to hear the gospel. Very comforting to keep in mind! Devotional this week was Elder Pearson from the 70. He referred to 3 Nephi 5:13 all throughout his talk which made me think of the nights that both Travis and I were set apart because we each read this scripture right before. I love how bold it is in declaring that I am a disciple of Jesus Christ. Elder Pearson stressed that we need to understand who we are as missionaries, as representatives of the Lord Jesus Christ in order to be trusted with the elect.

We have SO many new Portuguese sisters!!! We were down to 5 of us who ate breakfast in the halls each morning and yesterday morning we had 11 all going to Brazil. It was awesome! Sister White reported this week and she’s the first sister I’ve met going to my mission! We’re pretty much thrilled beyond all reason :)

Another exciting achievement to share from this week… I figured out the snapping thingie! The big day was yesterday. Some elders were doing it in the hall and I just decided that today was the day I was going to figure it out. My right wrist is rather sore but I can make noise from flinging my wrist and a weird angle now :)

We taught our second Portuguese lesson in the TRC this week. As far as the words and phrases this week definitely went a lot better. I’ve noticed that we teach so much more simply in Portuguese than we do in English and that’s probably a good thing. Because we really don’t know how to say much we have to keep the message simple which is perfect because it really is such a clear and simple message that people need. We still need some work on the clear part though :) I feel bad for the volunteer who must have to work pretty hard to figure out what we’re saying. We both got the artwork book that Mom is using for sunbeams and have used it almost every time we’ve taught in Portuguese so that helps when we can point to what we’re trying to say :)

We got new sisters in our room this week! The other 4 hermanas all reported monday so sister Owens and I had a few nights of just us. The 3 new sisters are all English-speaking and going to various visitor centers. It’s weird to think that they’ll only be here one week past when Sister Owens and I leave because they’re not learning a language.

Our district was asked to be hosts this week for the new missionaries on Wednesday. It doesn’t feel like we’ve been here long enough yet to be the ones showing the newcomers around. I hosted a sister from Ellensburg Washington which was fun. Time really is so weird here. I feel like I’ve been here forever but at the same time it feels like just last week my host sister was showing me around and I felt like I’d never learn where anything was. We should be hearing where we’re being reassigned to in 2 weeks!

Well time has started flashing once again. It’s crazy how fast 30 minutes go!

I hope you all have a fantastic Thanksgiving week. Some things I’m grateful for:

Like I mentioned before, I’m thankful that Jeffrey is married so that I can hear how he’s doing through Kelli :)  my most favorite sister! I’m thankful that our family is sealed in the temple for time and all eternity. I’m thankful for the opportunity to be serving a mission at the same time as Travis and that we can share this experience with each other. I’m thankful for the most amazing parents who have set such a wonderful example for me and given me so many opportunities in life. I’m thankful for supportive friends and family. Most of all I’m so thankful for the knowledge of the gospel. I am so thankful to know that God loves His children today as much as He did in times recorded in the Bible and that He has again restored the truth and authority to the earth. I’m so grateful for Jesus Christ and for all that He has done for us. I know that this church truly has the fullness of the Gospel.

I love you all!!! Happy Thanksgiving!!!

-Sister Lund

 

Week 6- The Gospel makes so much sense! November 13, 2010

Filed under: MTC Letters — companion of honor @ 1:34 PM

I can’t believe it’s already been another week! This really was a week of goodbyes. 3 Brazil districts left for their reassignments including Elder Lund. We said our final goodbyes Sunday night with lots of pictures taken so I’ll be sending some of those home shortly. I’m so excited to hear how the mission field is treating him! It’s been weird this week without him at meals and what not but I’m so excited for my little bro to be putting into action everything we’ve been studying so hard here at the MTC. Hermana West also left this week so no more buddy from home singing with me at devotionals :( It was so fun to share that with her each week! She’ll do great in Chicago!! Another Brazil district that was on our floor headed out this week so it’s been weird not having them around. These are the Elders that first introduced us to secreta oracao.

I was glad to hear that BYU did so well this week. We could hear the game from our room and when Irmao Halverson came for class I asked for an update: thumbs up or down and he gave two thumbs up :)

Sounds like things are working out with the house. Exciting to know I’ll have a place to come home to visit even if my room has since been taken over.

Surgery doesn’t sound like a very fun way for Grandma to spend my birthday but it’ll be great in the long run. I’m glad you’ll be able to go down for a bit Dad. Send my love as well!

I loved the e-mail from aunt Nancy! I can see Uncle Rick enjoying an experience like that. I love how confident we can be when discussing the gospel, because we really do have the truth! The more and more I teach lessons the more that becomes so clear in my mind. The Gospel makes so much sense!!

Well Travis was right, he may have left one week too soon, we had ANOTHER apostle this week! Elder Bednar. It was such a good devotional. My personal gospel study is forever changed. He talked about the importance of understanding the Doctrine behind the principles and applications. I tend to focus so much on the application of things because that’s what you can put on a check list and I most definitely am a check list person. For a true change of heart to occur however, one must clearly understand the doctrine. As we teach we need to focus on the WHY behind the things we do. I’ve started re-reading general conference this week- thanks to the awesome spiral bound copy from my BFFFEFSR Torrie :) and have been focusing on understanding the doctrine that is being taught. I love how in the opening remarks by President Monson he talks about missionary work and the importance of sharing the gospel with others and the need for more missionaries! If that doesn’t pump us up here in the MTC I don’t know what will! Another thing that I noticed reading through again was Elder Holland thanking his parents for supporting him on his mission. I can’t say it enough, I am SO THANKFUL for you mom and dad for providing me with the opportunity to serve a mission. I have loved every minute of it and I can’t wait to start teaching people who are really in need of the gospel message. You’re the best :)

This week Sister Owens and I taught our first lesson completely in Portuguese! I can’t say it was the most amazing lesson we’ve ever taught in our lives but it was so neat to be able to go through all the points of the restoration in another langauge! The volunteer we had this week was an older man (not a BYU volunteer) and he was so patient with us and helped soooo much. I think we really amused him as well because in some instances we resorted to hand motions and sound effects to get our point across. After the lesson was over he stepped out of character and told us he was really impressed with how much we could say only having been there 5 weeks. We’ve got a long ways to go but at the same time we’ve really learned so much! I taught the first lesson again in Portuguese this morning spontaneously to Sister Calder and Sister Denson over breakfast. It’s so much fun!!! I love teaching the Restoration, like I said earlier it just makes so much sense!!

News on the visa front: 5 visas came in on Monday, still no one from our district but at least some people are getting down there! Both sisters that got visas were in different trios which didn’t throw anything off because their trios just went to two. It just goes to show that the Lord really does know who needs to be there and has a hand in the work. Sister Owens got called down to the travel office to fill out the online part of the visa application so her papers are progressing. I’m yet to be called down but hopefully soon! The online application expires within 30 days of filling it out so it’s the hope that within a month of getting called down for the online part you get your visa. At this point we’re all still expecting reassigments. Another Brazil district got the reassignments this week, much more spread out than last weeks district who almost all went to Alabama. This week calls were made to Washington, Texas, and Idaho. I’m hoping for somewhere warm where my wardrobe is a little bit more suited for. I’m fine while at the MTC because I’m outside for a total of 10 minutes a day walking from the classroom to meals but I’m thinking much longer and it’d start to be a little on the chilly side for these winter months. Again, thank goodness for Grandma’s coat that Grandpa gave me!

Well time’s about up. I love you all! I love being a missionary. I love the Gospel and being able to share it every day!!!

have a great week!!!

Love,

Sister Lund

 

Week 5- I love being here! November 9, 2010

Filed under: MTC Letters — companion of honor @ 7:19 PM

Hello there!

This was such a good week! We had ANOTHER apostle! Elder Ballard spoke at devotional this week. 3 in 3 weeks, Provo is amazing! He spoke a lot about becoming master communicators. One thing that stood out to me was him saying that we need to have strong enough testimonies that we’re not afraid to ask people questions because we know that we will be able to respond to their answers clearly. He also started his talk by sharing a missionary experience he had only 4 hours before. He used this example to show that missionary work doesn’t end when you go home, it’s a lifelong responsibility. Another thing that I loved was that he told us to always smile :) We’re sharing the Plan of Happiness with the world and the spirit can’t testify to the plan of happiness through a grumpy face. The spirit is always so strong at these devotionals. I love being here!

I’m excited for Elder Travis Lund to be going to ALABAMA! He’s going to the mission that an Elder in my district is from. This Elder is somewhat timid and quiet but he really got excited that Elder Lund was going there. My district finished TRC this week right as Travis’ was going in so he told me as we passed each other and Elder Higley gave him a hug he was so excited for Travis to be going there.  I told him that his friends are in good hands with my brother serving there :) It’ll be different not seeing Travis at every meal but I’m really excited to hear about his experiences out in the real mission field!

With his group leaving our Portuguese group of sisters gets even smaller. This week one sister left for California and 2 sisters are going to Alabama with Travis. Of our group of Brazil sisters that stick together for gym, relief society, and all that fun stuff there’s only one sister that’s been here longer than Sister Owens and I and she’s only got us beat by a week. We’ve been here as long as the sisters now leaving had been when we got here. That also means that I’m half way done here!! CRAZY!!! I can’t believe how fast the time is going. The days are really long but holy cow do the weeks go fast!

That’s awesome that we’ll have another Brazil missionary from the ward! Congrats to Justin, we’ve got north and south Sao Paulo covered :) Any other young men getting ready to go? There’s a few more missions in that city we need to represent! Fasting for visas is something you definitely won’t be alone in mom. I know our district is going to fast this Sunday for the process to move along. I’m excited to go wherever I end up but hearing about the desperate need for missionaries down there really gets me excited to eventually get my visa and get to work down there!

Speaking of fasting, in 16 minutes Sister Owens and I will end a 3 day fast from English! We went to a language tutor and he challenged us to go 72 hours only speaking portuguese (with very few exceptions, we could still do personal study in English and a few other things that like…) but I have been amazed at how much I actually know! And how much I don’t…. I have learned so much though. I’ve learned a lot of little words/fillers that I wouldn’t think to study but in talking you use them all the time. We’ve also gotten really good and hand signs for various things and acting out what we’re trying to say. A lot of times I’d start saying something and then say (in portuguese of course), never mind, I’ll tell you in three days :) I noticed a big difference with our TRC this week, the portuguese contacting went so much better! The guy we taught served with Jeffrey. His first name was Joe, and saying as Jeffrey probably only knew him by his last name that probably doesn’t help much… but he said you were his first Zone leader and you’re friends on facebook :)

Sister Owens and I started teaching a progressive investigator in the TE this week. Before now we’d go to teach lessons to teachers but only teach the one and then get feedback right away. Now we’ll be teaching the same teacher each lesson and only get feedback through comments she makes as the investigator to our teachers. It’s been a really good learning experience because it’s treated as a real situation. There’s no do-overs with this investigator like there are when we teach other lessons. And when we leave we don’t hear right away what she thought about it until class when our teachers report. While it’s a lot harder, it’s also a lot more rewarding. We can actually see her progress, thus a progressing investigator :)

Well the time is now flashing at me so time to wrap it up again. I know with all my heart that we have the truth here on the Earth again! The Book of Mormon contains the fullness of the gospel and can answer all of life’s questions. I’ve loved being able to teach this to people here and can’t wait to share it with people who aren’t pretending to not have the truth :) I love being a missionary!!!

I love you all, thanks so much for your love and support!

Have a great week!!

Love,

Sister Lund