I really liked your letter. I cried a little when I read about the hope chests. I was just telling sister packer the other day about the hope chest you made me and how it was probably the only possession back home that I will really care about when I come back. The boards are second best but the sentimental value is so much less. So thank you for putting that in your letter. It made my heart happy! I was also excited and enlightened to hear about your graphics class you taught, you are a great example to me. And yes, I really am excited for you all to go on that trip! When do you leave again? I'M STOKED TO SEE ALL THE PICS! :D As much as your week was awesome, here's why mine was awesome: ELDER DAVID A. BEDNAR CAME TO OUR MISSION. He came on Friday to talk to our whole mission and parts of the Colorado Denver South Mission. We have been preparing for a long time by reading talks and preparing spiritually. All the missionaries were there an hour early to study from the scriptures and prepare to be taught by the spirit. When he came into the room EVERYONE stood and didn't sit until he was seated on the stand. He brought with him Elder Martino from the quorum of the 70 and Elder Christianson, also from the 70. They spoke first and then Elder Bednar spoke. There was a silent tension in the room before he spoke because we were unsure of what was going to happen. As soon as he started speaking my soul almost jumped out of me from being so excited and filled with the spirit. I have only ever heard his voice on TV and to recognize it as he spoke to us live was a STRAIGHT UP THRILL. We were all very shocked at how the meeting went, but in a good way. We basically had a 3 hour Q&A with an apostle of the Lord. The spirit was strong and even if you didn't have a chance to ask the question that was in your heart, the spirit answered it. When he first got up he spoke about how they were debating on whether the meeting was going to be really good or really bad but as soon as he walked in he felt a special spirit about us and he said to the other two elders, "I know exactly how this meeting is going to go." He commended us for being prepared to receive the spirit and taught us in that meeting how to teach by that same spirit. I wish I had the words to explain things better but all I can really tell you is that I have gained a true testimony that Heavenly Father has a prophet on the earth today along with 12 apostles that lead and instruct us in His ways. They walk and talk with God himself and with His son, Jesus Christ.
On Saturday we witnessed another miracle. Sister Packer and I have been working very closely with the zone leaders, Elder Bassett and Elder Rusick in order to help this zone to do its part in seeing the 1001 come to fruition. So, we decided that the whole zone would gather every Saturday and we would blitz in two areas. This Saturday was the first run, we split everyone up so they had different companions and then we broke off into the two different areas. I got to pair up with Sister Bush, one of my favorite missionaries in the world and one who I hope to be companions with one day, and we went to work, first we prayed and asked Heavenly Father to let us see miracles because we were expecting them. We were able to find 2 pretty solid potentials in 40 minutes and then we came back together and from Coal Creek we found 10 potentials with 3 return appointments. We said a prayer of gratitude and thanked Heavenly Father for letting us see miracles. It was so amazing to see the faith of the individual missionaries grow in that short time. We are all really excited to do it again this Saturday and get closer and closer to the goal of 1001! :D Yesterday was a day I will never forget. Elder Bednar attended our sacrament meeting. We have known for about a week and couldn't say a word, THAT WAS SOOOOO HARD. But we opened the program on Sunday and there was only one speaker assigned.... ELDER DAVID A. BEDNAR. Man, it was amazing. He spoke to us about how we need to "look unto the Savior in every thought, doubt not, fear not." and how there was NO way Joseph Smith could have made it all up, and if anyone thought that, it was ludicrous. He gave several reasons why NOW is the greatest season of the restored gospel. One being technology and family history work. He promised us that if we looked unto the Savior, doubted not, feared not, then we would be able to replace our fear with faith and that as we did our family history, we wouldn't ever feel alone. It was so powerful and we were so happy; Ruth and Bill were there, a recent convert and an investigator. We explained to them that it was like being taught by a modern day Peter, James, or John. This week has just been amazing, sorry if this email is really scattered and doesn't make sense, there has just been a lot of thoughts going through my head and so much spirit that my mind and body are exhausted! Anyways, I love you so much. I hope you have a GREAT time this week and STAY SAFE! xoxo <3 SISTER HOOPES