Tuesday, April 26, 2016

I love them. They are my people! - Week 52 (Transfer 9, Week 2) - 25 April, 2016

This week I am going to write you a quality email. So much has happened.

So this week started off strong. Which is great. I love setting up lots of appointments on P-day right after it ends at 6 pm so that we can get our heads straight back into the game.

We have been teaching this amazing guy named P* who I want to tell you all about.He is from Pakistan and is a refugee from the war. He has a very interesting back ground and an incredible story. This old, faithful, loving man has the Spirit so strong and I know that he is one of the people I was meant to teach on my mission.

We are teaching a lot of refugees. P* being one of them. Like I said, he is from Pakistan and his family got a ton of death threats because he is christian so he was forced to move here. He is reading the Book of Mormon in Urdu and started crying the other day because he said, "For so long I have been alone, and now I know that the church is with me and that God is with me and that You are with me. My only dream is to be with all my family again one day in peace and I know I can be there at the temple some day." His family is all stuck in Pakistan and in hiding. These refugees are real people who are starving and suffering. Their lives are in danger.

We have also been teaching an investigator named G* who is from Cosovo but speaks Italian better than his own language. He grew up in a very impoverished, war torn home and never got an education. Which is INCREDIBLE when you look at him because he is so kind, so clean, so professional looking. And incredibly hard worker and from the look of him you would think he is the CEO of a company. He is SO HUNGRY for knowledge. He will do anything to learn. He will do anything anyone asks him. He has so much integrity and love and is just so amazing. And if He had only gotten to have an education....
We have been working with the stake presidents counselor who served his mission in Italy and he has actually been translating for us at the lessons to make sure G* is really getting the most out of it and understanding.

These refugees are real. Toronto is full of them. They are so alone. They literally have two choices: Stay at home and die or come here and have everyone resent them. I love them. They are my people. 

P* and G* both came to church this week. :) P* was supposed to be getting baptized this Friday but it turns out he is not allowed to get baptized until he has a permanent residency....we had to push his date to July 29th. Pray that his residency will come sooner. G* has also accepted to be baptized but he does not have a date yet. But man, I want him to have the gospel so bad. It would benefit him so much. He needsss itttt. They both do. They both want it so bad.

Then there is G*. We are working with her and she is supposed to be baptized on May 7th but we may have to push it back a week because she is so busy that we have a hard time meeting with her. She was previously meeting with the elders before, but she is our investigator now that they have been transferred. So I don't know much about her yet.

This week church was incredible. I needed it. Actually, this whole week was incredible. We are so busy that we have no time to think about anything else so it makes being focused and consecrated easy. I wish I could teach everyone all the things I've learned on my mission. Last night my companions asked me for help on communicating with the ward council because they felt they didn't quite know how and it ended up being this whole long discussion about all the communication skills I've learned on my mission and how Preach My Gospel teaches us inspired patterns of communication. I will use these tools long after I am home.

One thing I wish I had known at the beginning of my mission?

1. How to listen to and recognize the spirit. I'm getting so much better now. I'm starting to be able to pick people out of crowds that will listen to the gospel. This week we were on exchanges with the Sister Training Leaders and there was this guy walking towards us. I said, "Hey look it's a new investigator." And then he was. That's been happening so many times this transfer! Where God will just prompt me to know who to talk to and they just listen and it's so easy. It's incredible. Or when I was with Sister Gousse, we were doing weekly planning and someone came to my mind who we had seen on the street. I knew he would be baptized. So we went to his house, started teaching him, and now he is baptized and he is going to the temple on May 14th. Or P*. Man, I can't wait to tell you P*'s story. Or this other girl that we found named V* who we handed off to the YSA elders. She is getting baptized next week. WE JUST FIND PEOPLE because God literally tells us who. I'm so glad He is around. Sometimes I get afraid that it will all go away. I don't want that. I want the Spirit in my life forever.
2. How to communicate. Here is what I have learned:
Identify a concern or a problem.
Come up with a solution. Make a plan
Then talk to someone about it. (An investigator, a leader, a companion, etc.)
State the purpose of your visit, call, conversation, etc. Whether it's teaching a new investigator or working with mission leaders or counseling with your companions.
Set expectations. Tell them what you want out of the visit, call, conversation and what you hope to accomplish. Basically, tell them your goal. Tell them you expect to meet with them regularly, twice a week for 20 minutes. Establish the expectation that you will have regular daily contact. If it's with a leader, let them know you want to update them regularly on the things you are doing, and ask them when would be a good time to have 10 minute calls where you can coordinate your efforts.
Then tell them the plan. Make a suggestions. If it's an investigator, tell them you will ask them to read, pray, come to church, and be baptized right in the first lesson. Tell them their role in their conversion. Tell them our role. Tell them the role of the spirit.
Ask for their suggestions. If you are working with a leader, don't counsel them. Instead offer your plan on suggestion and plan WITH THEM. Modify the plan to fit everyone's needs. Work TOGETHER.
Leave a commitment.
Let them know you will follow up on that commitment. If it's a leader, ask them to follow up with you on carrying out the plan. That way it doesn't seem like we are telling them what to do.
Promise blessings. Let them know you know this will work.
Finally, ask for referrals. Do you know anyone who would be interested? Is having a baby? Had a divorce? Major life change? etc. If it's a ward leader, ask, who can we help in the ward? What can we do for you?
Then follow through.

This applies to everything! When I have a husband, I'll do this. If we have a problem in our marriage, I'll identify it. Make a plan. Present the plan. Ask for suggestions. Then do it. It's all from preach my gospel! Or if I'm ever a Young Women's leader, this is how I will structure my lessons. Of if I ever need to communicate with the ward council in a calling at home, I will know how. Or if I need to talk to you. Or Caelan. Or my teachers. Or my friends. Or my boyfriend. Or all my bajillion fans when I'm famous. ;) Or my contractors. Or my bank teller. Or whatever. I just need to let them know my goals. What I want. What I expect. And ask for their help. Then promise blessings. And do whatever it is that we planned. I KNOW HOW TO PROBLEM SOLVE NOWWWWWW!!!!!!!!!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! When I align what I want with what the Lord wants, then that means I know how to get what HE wants.



Thursday, April 21, 2016

Silencio or the girl who turned her heart to the work - Week 51 (Transfer 9, Week 1) - 18 April, 2016

No pics, but we got this from the mission home - Sister Osman with her two cute companions, front row, 6th from the left :)

Dear all,

Another week with hardly any info. Mikkia only had 20 min to email, so no group email and the emails that she did send had four lines. Very lean in content... She is a busy girl!

Here is an update, pieced together from those emails, her companions' emails and from "mission spies" :)

  • This week was amaaaaaazing. I have AHAAAVEEEE to tell you about P* but I only have one minute left to email and then it will log me out! I'll see if I can get more time. We just had to email in a weird place today so we don't get the full two hours. 
  • We found out about P* from Sister Kehrer:
    • We have a baptism! P* is a Pakistani Lawyer refugee who bumped into Sis. Osman on the train and is now absorbing the gospel like a sponge! He loves it all. He stops and asks questions to make sure he understands because he WANTS the gospel. He is a spiritual powerhouse! He literally begged us for a Book of Mormon in his native tongue Urdu and is teaching the gospel to his family, who are back in Pakistan, over email. He says his wife is not only his better half but his better whole. SO cute. 
  • About her expanded area. from Sister Brown:
    • My companions and I got to stay together but the area that we are serving in has been extended! We were previously serving in Etobicoke and covering Etobicoke south but now we cover Etobicoke south and north! We are also serving in the Lake Ontario ward which is the only mid-singles adult ward in the whole world which basically covers the entire mission- all of Ontario!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We have so much work to do! We are sooo busy trying to reach out to everyone and in inviting returning members to church.There are Aprox. 1500 less actives in that age range that we want to work with and that's not even counting those who are active in their local ward. 

Mikkia told me that they think they can teach 60 lessons per week?! If anyone, those three power sisters can do it!

On Friday, April 22, 2016 she will have hit her one year mark. Incredible how much she has grown over the past 365 days. If the Lord is involved, we can grow in ways we never thought possible!

Thank you for all your support, she sure loves you!

Monday, April 11, 2016

A bigger area & a car! - Week 49 (Transfer 8, Week 7) - 11 April, 2016

Real quick: transfer news. Sister Brown, Sister Kehrer, and I will be staying together but they are combining our areas with the elders. So the elders got transferred out of their area and we now cover theirs as well as ours, which means we cover two wards! We have NO IDEA how that is going to work because with the elders area and ours combined that is about 60 lessons a week on average! I've never done that...time management is what I'm learning...hahaha.

Our area will now be called the Lake Ontario Area. We are now teaching a family ward and the only MSA (Mid Single Adult) ward in the world. Super stoked!

We are getting a car sometime...today or tomorrow? I don't have any time to write anyone today, so don't feel bad. Haha

Highlight: We went to the temple this week for a training meeting and I saw all of my companions there. EVERY SINGLE ONE. The list is as follows:
Sister Jolie
Sister Anthony
Sister Chelson
Sister Bell
Sister Price
Sister Tang
Sister Gousse
Sister Brown
Sister Kehrer

We got a picture together which I will send! Except Sister Jolie wasn't in it. :( 

Anyway, I love you all! The church is true.

Sister Osman

Monday, April 4, 2016

Filled to the brim! - Week 48 (Transfer 8, Week 6) - 4 April, 2016

This week was awesome! Conference was the best. I feel so filled up. God loves you all. Sorry, not enough patience to write this week. Haha, pictures will have to do.

Have a great week!

Sister Osman

From another email:

Man, conference was...I don't even have a word for it. I felt the Spirit so strong. The whole time I was wondering, "I wonder if my family is there..." It was so interesting the tone of the meeting and the behavior of the saints during the sustaining. I know that Christ is coming soon. It's at the gates. And His servants know it as well. I've never had a greater desire to hear what they have to say. I know I will need it. And I want it. I loved it. I loved Elder Holland's talk. Of course; who didn't. I loved President Monson's talk. In our mission we are only allowed to teach 15-20 minute lessons so we really have to learn to TEACH SIMPLY. Try teaching the whole restoration in 15 minutes while answering questions, setting a next appointment, sitting down and settling, following up on previous commitments, and leaving new ones. So what I really loved about President Monson's talk is that he said ONLY what needed to be said. No extra fluff. No show of shiny words or intellect or wisdom. It was so NOT ABOUT HIM. It was just what the Lord needed him to say. And he said it. Where we are going matters. So decide where you want to go and take the path that will get you there. Christ is the way. He is the light and the life.

I also loved Elder Cook's talk about the temple and Elder Christofferson's talk about FATHERS. I couldn't help but think about mine the whole time. I miss dad. I like dad because he is quiet. I feel like I can just BE around him and it's okay. I have found this transfer that I am very....chop chop. I just want to work. Don't want to eat. Don't want to sleep. Just want to GET IT DONE. And you can do that around people like dad. They allow you to just...be and to do what you know you should do. I think I will be quieter when I am home. I don't know. I think it will be a difficult transition for me. Watching TV will be difficult for me. Sitting will be difficult for me. I just want to be about the Lord's business. Nothing else feels important....oh man. It's freaky.

I hope I can get it in time. And we got the PJS!!!!!!!!!! WE LOVED THEMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM. They are so soft. My companions were freaking out. They are good for me. They remind me how to have fun. I love them. :) I'm learning a lot. It's been really humbling to say the least.

Well I got to go. I'm really sad that President is leaving. (Sister Osman's mission president, Weatherford T. Clayton got called to be a general authority.) July 6th or something. He has become one of my best friends. I love being around him because I feel like Heavenly Father is there. It's very odd. I don't know how to explain it. He has the Spirit so strong that I just feel like I'm home. I always want to call him and talk to him about our day and vent. President has become like a second father to me. I am honored to know him. I want him at my wedding... that's a random thought. IDK. He's taught me so much. One thing he said to me once in an interview: "Sister Osman. It's not about you." That has been something I have been trying hard to learn.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

A new Call to be a General Authority Elder Weatherford T. Clayton

A new Call to be a General Authority
Elder Weatherford T. Clayton

General Authority Seventy
FULL NAMEWeatherford T. ClaytonBORN
March 1, 1952
Los Angeles, California, United States
Elder Weatherford T. Clayton was serving as president of the Canada Toronto Mission when he was called to be a General Authority Seventy at the April 2016 general conference.
Elder Clayton received a bachelor’s degree in psychology in 1977 and a medical degree in 1981, both from the University of Utah. He worked as a resident physician at UC Irvine until 1985 and had his own medical practice until 2013, after which he worked as a laborist until he retired in 2014.
Elder Clayton has served in a number of Church callings, including full-time missionary in the French Canadian Mission, bishop, high councilor, Gospel Doctrine teacher, counselor in a stake presidency, stake president and mission president.
William Weatherford Touchstone Clayton was born in Los Angeles, California, on March 1, 1952. He married Lisa Madeline Thomas in 1976. They are the parents of five children.
During the April 2016 General Conference, it was announced that President Clayton would be Elder Clayton. So sad for the missionaries of the Canada, Toronto Mission but no surprise to anyone. Several of the missionaries including Sister Osman had expressed that they thought President Clayton would be called as a general authority at some point because of the man he is. We are so excited for him and wish him and his family well in their new assignment. He will be leaving the mission on July 1, 2016.