Monday, October 26, 2015

Pieces of the Motherland (lots of things reminding me of home)

Dear Family and Friends,

So i'm gonna be upfront and honest... i have no creative juices running through my little brain this morning, so this email may be kind of lame, but i will do my best. (:

Monday was oh so good as all p-days are. We went BOWLING!!! Goodness, it was so fun. it was a nice throwback to the good ole days of thunder alley. All my Viewmont Vikings know what I’m talking about. I loved it and I won, so that was just a cherry on top. haha but for reals we laughed so much and just had the best time. We went with the sister AP's (sister spangler and sister Uresk), sister lindley and her koon (she's khmer and i don't know her name. whoops....) and sister Collins, my good mtc mate, and sister Young. it was so fun!!!! After, we went and got blizzards from dairy queen. Literally everything we did for p-day was something I’d do at home. Good or bad? You can decide that one... (: After the p-day festivities were over we went contacting and the first person we contacted was this guy named Rith (pronounced Rut) and he is a less active. Go figure. We chatted it up with him for awhile and then moved on. We contacted a girl and she has some potential. We are planning on meeting her tonight, so we will see how that goes. Wish us luck!! 

Tuesday we had district meeting and that's about all that happened. We were planning on going to meet our investigator, Hiang Lee, but her house is in a way sketch part of town and it was already dark, so we didn't feel like we should go. Sister fields especially had a bad feeling about it... so we went home and worked on CBR's. There are so many less actives. We have a 3 inch 3 ring binder full of them. it breaks my heart...  

Wednesday we went and got crepes from the cutest little crepe shop called Marion Crepes. They were to die for, or as my mom would say, they were divine. And they had a special for October and we got a free piece of cheesecake. Oh, so good!!! It was one of those shops that you would see in downtown Provo. Super modern with hipster decorations. So cute. (: Then we went to visit Hiang Lee. Turns out sister Fields was way in tune with the spirit when she felt like we shouldn't go on Tuesday because when we got there they were all sleeping. They had just gotten back from their srok. So if we ‘d gone the night before they wouldn't have even been home. After that we went to the church for Special Activity night for English class. it was so fun!!! We played Scattergories, do you love your neighbor, telephone, and we had a giant word search, like so big. Sister fields made it. SO COOL!!! The students really had a good time and then we had our spiritual thought in the chapel. We watched three Mormon messages, Reflections, Mountains to Climb, and Refiners Fire. They were so powerful and then a missionary, Elder Morris (he's in the Vietnamese program) bore a powerful testimony of the truthfulness of the Savior's atonement and the enabling power we can receive from it. The spirit was so thick in the room. Incredible. It's so cool to see the contacts that are coming from English class. it really is such an inspired program and opportunity. I love it!! 

Thursday we had such a good lesson with Srey Neng and Srey Pov. It was their baptismal interview prep and as we were talking with them, reviewing the questions, they both knew so much. They are so prepared for baptism. I can't wait!!! They get baptized this Saturday, Halloween for all you Americans, so you'll get updates on that next week. GET EXCITED!!!! Sister Loftus' first baptisms. (: I know i am!!! But we asked srey neng a question about repentance and she completely opened up to us, she shared two stories with us. One where she was at work, she works at a restaurant, and one of her co-workers said "hey, we could take some money out of the tip jar and no one would know..." Neng thought about it for a little and thought about all the cool things she could buy, but then she remembered what we had been teaching her and said "you can take it, but i know that that's bad, so I’m not going to." and then she repented and then the second one she was really thirsty and drank some tea, but then she felt really guilty and prayed for forgiveness. She is awesome!!! She said that she knows the importance of prayer and scripture reading and that everything her mom had been saying is true and that she isn't crazy. Haven’t we all had experiences like that? I know i have. Sorry mom, for all those times I didn't believe you. (: It was so cool. it was such a proud Mom moment for me. haha 

Friday the girls had their baptismal interviews. They were all SO nervous, but they all passed with flying colors. I never doubted. They are so so so prepared. After that we went visiting with Ming sovaanaa and Ming Paw (our investigators mom, a recent convert, and the bishop's wife). Let's just say if they could be mission companions they would be quite the power duo. They are awesome and were so excited to be able to come teaching with us. During one of the lessons a little girl just peed all over the floor (because the children don't wear pants or underwear, no diapers, nothing) and the mom just wiped it up with a shirt (that's what they do, they don't use rags or anything, just shirts). it was nasty... makes me question what we are sitting in on a daily basis. Don't think about it too much. I haven't gotten sick yet. haha you just can't think about things like that in this country, or you would literally never leave your apartment. You just have to accept the culture and get to work. We had a good lesson with Ming Liang where we stressed the importance of scripture reading. Hopefully she keeps her commitment and can feel the power that comes from the book of Mormon. On our way home we stopped into our favorite bakery because.... THEY HAVE HALLOWEEN DECORATIONS UP!!!!! It's so fun. Holidays here are kind of rough because they don't really celebrate them. I'm really dreading Christmas... everyone says it's a really hard time of year... We'll see. 

Saturday we went to lunch with sister lindley and HER PARENTS. That was so weird. They came to pick her up, so fun, right? But just seeing parents was weird. They remind me so much of Kirk and Sally Green, so loving with the best stories. He used to be a mission president in Melbourne Australia, so he had some pretty good stories. It was weird being with them because I am literally on the complete opposite end of my mission, months away from going home and sister lindley is done. So crazy!!! We went and taught Ciat and Naavy (our investigators who we thought had really digressed due to Pchum Ben). They told us that they had listened to neak Ming read almost every night and had prayed as a family. WHAT?? That's exactly what we wanted to hear. Maybe we should have had more faith in them... But then ciat proceeded to tell us that he had had a dream in which God appeared to him and told him that the book of Mormon is true!!! What? No way. How much better does that get? Me and sister fields were kind of freaking out because of our excitement. so awesome!!! Then we went to FHE at the bishop's house where I proceeded to eat more than I have ever eaten in my life. I've got to learn to eat slowly... because when they see they your bowl is empty they just give you more... They are the sweetest. (: 

Sunday we literally spent all day at the church 8-5. Talk about a long long day... We went home for no joke 20 minutes for a quick lunch break and then right back for meetings. Ah, gotta love the life of a missionary, right? (: After church we were waiting for ward council to start and Srey Pov (a different srey pov, not the one that wants to serve a mission) was literally just hanging on me. It was the sweetest. She was talking my ear off, but I had no idea what she was saying. It was so funny! She told me multiple times to get my bike so we could go, but I convinced her that I had lost my bike and she got very concerned. We actually did end up going over to her house and she was on top of me the whole lesson. We taught on the importance of scriptures (something we are trying to hit really hard right now if you couldn't tell) and Ciat explained things better to Naavy than we ever could. Sometimes he blows my mind with his knowledge. I can't wait to see them enter the waters of baptism!!! Then a rat ran past and me and sister fields screamed. it was big!!!! That is like a daily occurrence here, so they didn't even react... but they did make fun of us for getting scared. haha it was such a fun experience. (: I'm sure I’ll have more of those to come in the future months!!! 

Basically I love being a missionary and I'm so grateful for the opportunity to serve the Cambodians. I love them and this gospel with all my heart!!! Hope everyone is doing well at home. Really enjoy Halloween for me!!! (: 

Love, Sister Zoe Loftus
Double D

Sister Loftus and Sister Fields having some fun at the bowling alley.
Please note Sister Loftus' very patriotic socks.

The lanes at the bowling alley

Four Sisters

Good old Cambodia!

Yummy crepes from Marion Crepes

 Giant word search for English class made by Sister Fields

Look Puu fixing Sister Loftus' bike and tire-so grateful

Little friend found hanging around in the bathroom

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