Monday, May 30, 2016

Another Week in Cambodia

Dear Family and Friends,

All my letters start off the same way, but nothing really happened this week, so not much to tell you guys about. We had 4 investigator lessons fall through... haha. They just didn't show up... things always seem so good at the beginning of the day, looking at our day that we have planned, and then things never go the way we plan them to and we have a ton of free time on our hands and contacting doesn't really work here. No one wants to listen to us. We start talking to them and they just keep walking... not even giving us the time of day. At first I took it super personally, that is was because I was white and couldn't speak their language perfectly, but they do it to Sister Soem too; that made me feel a little bit better about myself. (: When people just walk right past us, we just look at each other and just laugh. I’m getting really good at taking things as they really are and just laughing at it. That's really all we can do to stay sane here. (:

Investigators wise, we still only have the 1, Jia Mian, and she's not really progressing... she just isn't keeping her commitments. She tells us how bad she wants to get baptized but then doesn't read the Book of Mormon or come to church. I'm not baptizing her until she has a habit of doing both, so this could take some time... haha.  I just know that if we baptize her now she will immediately go inactive. She has to show us that she is truly converted before we will baptize her. We also need to know that she is doing it for herself and not for us. It’s tough to try and find a balance.

On a happier note, we had 6 less actives come to church yesterday!!! I was so so so happy. Something we taught them stuck with them and helped them feel the spirit. Cool. Gotta love it when that happens. (: Two of them, they are sisters, you bined and sday owey'd them... which means to just call them out, so that's the reason they came, but as for the other ones, they felt the spirit. Hopefully they all keep coming!!! (:

That’s all I've got for you guys this week. Keep reading your scriptures every day, praying every

day, and going to church every week. NEVER GO INACTIVE. Literally the worst thing you could do for yourselves. If I don't learn anything else on my mission (don't worry I am learning lots more than this) at least I know that I will NEVER go less active. Love you all so much. Thank you for the sweet birthday emails and for the prayers and words of encouragement and love. You guys are the BEST!!! (:

Sister Loftus
Double D

Aren't they just the cutest?? I took out my camera and they both just started posing and cheesing it up. They are kids of a less active and up until this point they hated me, but they love me now. (: The younger one always says "cumbrisupsue Sister". It just melts my heart as he sompayas me (when they put their hands together and up to your face) so stinking cute. 

Birthday bash that actually took place over a week ago. So fun. Just to let you know all this food was cooked in the dark because we didn't have any power. (: One birthday party I will never forget. 

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

No Time Today -sorry!

Dear Family and Friends,

I have zero time today, so you get like 5 sentences. 
I am doing well. I have a new companion and she is the cutest thing ever. Her name is Sister Soem (pronounced Sum). She is 19 years old, just like me, and she knows SO much English. She is an incredible teacher. This transfer will be good with her. 
Our area is really slow; only 1 progressing investigator and 2 others that can't ever meet us... so that's rough but it’s okay. We are asking for member referrals and trying to contact in order to find those that the Lord has prepared. We had Stake Conference this week, which was weird because in South Stake there is an international branch, so half of the conference was in English. I liked it. (:  We didn't have any investigators or less actives go, so that was a huge bummer.... Oh well, church comes around every week. They've got another chance!!! 
That's all for today. Love you all!!!! 
Sister Loftus
Double D
I have more pictures but will send them next week. This is Sister Soem. Don’t mind that fact that I look bald.  It had rained for 6 hours straight so we were soaked. Isn’t she the cutest?? 

Thursday, May 19, 2016

And so it begins...

Dear Family and Friends, 

This week was literally one of the longest of my life. I was thinking about what I was going to write in this weeks letter and Monday feels like an eternity away. I think it has a lot to do with the homesick blues that always set in after skyping the family. Another good contributor is the fact that we don't really have any good investigators and we are exhausting ever effort to try and find them with no results, but it was still good. We made each day good and we found things to laugh at. That is really the key to making this work fun and enjoyable when it gets hard. Laughter and loving the time you have with your companion. That being said... 

I have to say goodbye to Sister Leng. She is FINALLY leaving SMC. She has been here for 6, SIX, months. That is such a long time. Yes, last night we got transfer calls. She is going to Battambong. She actually called that. She is so excited. She was screaming on the phone, I’m sure it broke our district leaders eardrum haha, and she yelled "ruac phot" which means to be freed. I was dying. (: As sad as I am and as much as I don't want to say goodbye to here, I couldn't help but get the biggest smile on my face. She is going to tear it up in Battambong. As for me, I am staying in SMC. I will be getting another Khmer companion. Her name is Sister Sum. I don't know much about her, but I am excited to get to know her and work with her. Oh, also, another part of my transfer call... I am going to be a Sister Training Leader. Super cool. I feel very inadequate, but I know that it will be a super good experience and will help me learn so much. I am excited to work with the sisters and do whatever else the title of "Sister Training Leader" entails... I’m not really sure, but I feel honored and blessed that the Lord and President chose me.

As for the work in SMC, slow, like usual, but things are good. We tried to meet with Om Im, the one that is preparing to go to the temple, every day this week, no joke.  Every time we went she was busy and she seemed kind of annoyed as well. We felt pretty silly to keep going over there, but we just really really wanted to meet her. Then yesterday at church she gave us each a hug and apologized, so everything ended up being okay. (: We didn't have any Less Actives or Investigators at church yesterday, but when we met our Less actives during the week, they were all very happy and seemed to open up to me a little bit more. We were able to joke around with each and laugh and smile. They talked directly to me as well, which doesn't usually happen because it's just easier for them to talk to a Khmer. I get that, but boy was I so grateful that they opened up to me; it will make leading the area next transfer just a tad bit easier. I think I’m ready. Ready or not, here Sister Sum and I come. (: 

Here’s the best part of this email. Rainy Season. Last night it started raining at 10- raining, lightning and thunder: the perfect thing to fall asleep to. It rained pretty hard and pretty long. I just laid in bed thinking. Super relaxing. Eventually I fell asleep, but when I woke up it was raining again. So happy. I love it even though it kind of ruins the work. You can't contact and you feel really bad walking into people's houses soaking wet, but I just love the rain so much. Plus, it helps the heat be not so hot. 98 degrees and rainy is so much better than 108 degrees and scorching hot. I'd take the rain any day! 

After English class, while we were waiting for the Elders to take us home, I was sitting with my good friend Srey Roat and she just happened to be listening to Taylor swift. So I was taken back to the good old days of high school dances, freshman year of college, trips up the canyon, and rocking out to 22 with my best friend Han Jan. Man, it was a good trip down memory lane. I decided that I should be able to listen to t-swift. It would be good for my mental and emotional health. Maybe I’ll mention it to president. (: 

That is all I've got for this week. Love you all and hope you guys are doing well. Thank you for the love, support, and prayers. You guys rock!!! 

Sister Loftus
Double D 

Sister Loftus and Sister Leng
Biking in the rain. Man, I am going to miss her SO SO SO much 

Monday, May 9, 2016


Dear Family and Friends,

This email is going to be super short because I just Skyped with my family, but I’m still giving you guys an update on what's going on. 

We had three LA's (less actives) come to church this week, Bong Nim, Bong Moam, and Bong Sokhaa, super cool. As Sister Leng has started saying "success!!!!" she is the cutest thing and when we aren't companions anymore I think I’m going to die... 

This week we got a new investigator, Vina. She came from English class and she is AWESOME!!!!! Our lesson with her was super powerful. We haven't had an investigator lesson in FOREVER. I forgot how good it was to declare glad tidings. I love the message of the Restoration so much. She seemed to understand it all and didn't really have any questions, so that was good. She prayed for the first time which is a huge indicator that she is liking our message because usually investigators say no that they don't know how to yet... but she just started doing it and it was so good. We had a member help and after the lesson she turned to me and told me that I was pukae (really really good at Khmer) and that she felt the spirit so strongly. I felt super good about myself. 

Mother’s Day was good. They gave a rose to all the mom's and it was the cutest thing. Everyone was bawling -the bishop, all the deacons, teachers, and priests. It was really emotional. All I wanted to do was give my mom a rose and tell her thank you. So, this will have to do THANK YOU MOM!!!! And for all the other mom's in my life. THANK YOU!!!! You guys are the greatest and I wouldn't be on this mission without you. 

That's all I got for today. Love you guys so much!!!!

Sister Loftus
Double D

Family Home Evening

Power Outage for 2 HOURS-thought we were going to die!

Sister Leng, Srey Roat, and Sister Loftus.  I love them.

Sister Loftus Skyping on Mother's Day

Monday, May 2, 2016

Happy Mother's Day

Dear Family and Friends,

I'm sure you guys get so sick of my emails every week. They are always so boring.. I wish I had a super exciting story to tell you, but not much is happening here is SMC. We have investigators, but they can never meet us and our less actives are less actives that have been less active for years... so the work with them is super hard. It’s basically like they aren't members. We have to start from square one with them. We are still really trying to focus on using the Book of Mormon, because we know how much power there is in that little book, but they just don't seem to understand and have 1001 excuses why they can't read it: they don't have time, they don't know how to read, they don't understand it, they can read, but can't see... they are so stubborn. I don't know what else we can do to help them. We go every week and nothing is accomplished. This is a huge work in progress, but I believe that eventually as we keep going week after week, teaching by the spirit, they will begin to keep their commitments, read the scriptures, pray, and come to church, and little by little they will start to feel the Holy Ghost in their lives again and have the desire to follow the example of their savior Jesus Christ. 

So now that you guys have got the background for all of our less actives, let me give you a little more details about a few of them.

First we've got Srey Lyn. Man she is a spitfire. Super sassy... even just the way she walks. So the youth here just hang out at the church all the time, so she is there literally every night, but will never meet us. This week, she came up to us and said "sisters are you free right now?" and we said "yes, do you want to meet us?" she said yes, and then quickly said niyay leng which means just kidding and walked away from us laughing. You've got to love sassy teenage girls. It's so frustrating because I see so much potential in her. We met her earlier this week and she told us that she really wanted to start a serious reading of the Book of Mormon so she could learn more about the gospel. She had set 45 minutes aside every night to do it. Super good. But then she wouldn't meet with us and didn't come to church... so we weren't able to follow up on that one with her... 

Next we have Ming Phoan. She is a less active recent convert. She was semi active and then she got in a car (moto) accident and broke her collarbone and strained her ankle or something and couldn't walk for like two weeks. She used to go to the church every Saturday and clean it, but she couldn't walk, so that didn't happen... she was in really poor condition before, but we visited her this week and SHE CAN WALK AGAIN!!!  She was so much happier. It was so fun to see her smile. Only problem is that she isn't reading her scriptures. She says she prays everyday, but she doesn't read. They just don't understand that just praying isn't good enough.

Then we've got Ming Sary and Ming Rit who have been inactive for years... they always give us the perfect answers in lessons, makes it seems like they've got a lot of faith, but they don't do anything to act on that faith... 

I met 2 less active sisters last night, Phiap and Jani. They seemed really good at first, and then as the lesson went on... it was really hard to feel the spirit. They were just preaching some false doctrine and wouldn't really listen to what we were trying to tell them... their brother and his wife also joined the lesson. They used to be investigators but were dropped because they weren't progressing... I see why. We bore powerful testimony about the Book of Mormon and the power that is has and how much it can improve our lives. The brother asked us what he was supposed to do if he couldn't read. He said it kind of laughing looking at everyone else as if he had stumped us. I was really prompted to share my experience with learning how to read Khmer through the Book of Mormon. It was super powerful... I said that if an American that had never seen Khmer before could learn to read Khmer by reading the book a little bit every day for 4 months, then he could too. Left them pretty speechless. As we were leaving their house Sister Leng gave me a fist bump and said "good job, sister. Super powerful testimony." she thought it was pretty cool. haha I love her so much and wish you guys could all meet her. She is the best ever. 

Time for members. There’s only one member that I want to tell you guys about this week. Her name is Om Im and she is the funniest old lady ever. She pretends that she can't understand me and yells "thaa meec???" every time I talk but I know that she really can understand me. the cool thing about her is that she is currently preparing to go to the temple. Super super cool!!!! I'm super excited for her. She’s trying really hard to prepare herself spiritually and understand the truth. She asked us what the difference is between revelation and inspiration... I had no idea how to answer that... I always just kind of group them together and think of them as one, but if someone would like to enlighten me with an explanation. i would love that. (: 

Then we've got Srey Roat. She actually isn't in my ward, but she is one of the youth that is always at the church, so we see her a lot. She is the coolest girl ever, with the strongest testimony. She is getting her Patriarchal Blessing on the 8th!!!! Super exciting!!! This week we were able to help her prepare to get her patriarchal blessing. I could not be more excited for her. She can't wait to serve a mission and I know that she is going to be the best missionary ever!!!!  

Update on the lice situation because I know you guys are all dying to hear ... they are pretty much all gone. There are no more eggs and I’m only finding dead small ones, so I call that a success. Sister Leng said I got rid of them super fast. Hallelujah!!! (: 

Happy Mother's day to all you mothers out there. You make the world go round. But for reals, where would we be without you? Special shout out to my mother. you da best and I love you so much!!!

Sister Loftus 
Double D 

No photo, just info- So yesterday we had an interesting experience with cockroaches... we have a little patio thing it the back of our house and there were 40 cockroaches out there... 40. All dead. Super interesting. We don't know where they came from... but Sister Leng made sure they were all dead and swept them all up. What would we do without our little Khmer??

  We took this young women with us to teach on Saturday. They call that doping.. if you haven't grown up doing it like a native, it's really hard and you feel like you are going to crash... and Sister Leng thought it was the coolest thing because she just got to sit on the back and read the Book of Mormon. hahaha when someone sits on the back of the bike like that. let me tell you..

  We teach a “preach my gospel” class and we were practicing teaching. I was the investigator with that little boy as my child. He’s 11, which means I had him when I was 9. Super cool. hahah I was laughing super hard at the situation and it made it all better when I was getting ready to leave the church after the class got over and he said "bye mom!!!" haha super cute. Sister Leng and Bong Bov were my missionaries and they killed it. (: haha