Heaven on earth

Monday, September 27, 2010

Week 36 9/27/2010

From: Courtney Lynn Callaway

Subject: who loves tracting!!?!!!! :)

To: macfamilyfarm@surewest.net

Hola, aloha, ya ta hay, shalom….Hello!!!!! I hope everyone had a super duper awesome week!! congrats on your meet ames! I told you you’d do awesome!!!! Thank you for the package mom!!! I loved it!!

Well lets see….not much has changed since my email last week. we tracted pretty much the entire week. we had about 5 lessons planned for this week and all of them either canceled or just weren’t home. So that was a bummer but oh well. Try try and try again right! We did have a lesson with our investigator joanie. She’s in her 70’s I think, she’s been meeting with the missionaries for a while, she’s had a baptismal date a couple times and wants to get baptized but she’s stuck on tithing. And we’ve tried and tried to help her understand that as we put our faith in Christ and in heavenly father and put them first that they will make sure she’s taken care of and of course heavenly father answers prayers but in his time or in the timing that is right for us. Heavenly father knows best!!

so our week consisted of tracting and service. We helped joanie clean her house. Oh my word. I will never complain about a messy house again!!! (well, I’ll try really hard not to) but lets just say it was horrible that’s all I can say . Joanie is soo awesome though!! She’s been through soo much in her life! She’s one TOUGH cookie lets just leave it at that! We’ve also been doing service at the Clinton engine museum. It used to be the worlds largest small engine manufacturer and now one of the members in our branch runs the museum so we help her and her husband out over there on Wednesdays. We’ve also had a few unexpected service opportunities while we were contacting some referrals and ended up helping one lady clean and rearrange some of her furniture. And from that she said she would like us to come back and help her out around her house and teach her. I hate that I’ve gotten to the point that I feel weird in pants! I don’t like it! Lol.

Saturday night we went and watched the relief society broadcast at the church. I honestly don’t think ive ever watched the relief society session, shame on me! It was awesome! President monson is soo cute! He was so funny but aside from that I LOVED his talk about not being judgmental!! It was such a good lesson about not judging someone based on their looks, circumstances etc.. im soooo excited to watch conference this weekend! Sister felix and I have been trying to encourage the members in our branch to pray specifically to invite someone to watch conference with them this weekend. It’s a great way to share the gospel with friends and family. We should all have some kind of question in mind when you watch conference and it will be answered in some way. Ive had that happen at church on Sundays and last conference! Its awesome!

You’re all awesome!!! Thank you for everything! I love you all!!!

Till next time

Sister C

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Week 35 9/21/2010

Subject: the sunny side of life!!!!

To: macfamilyfarm@surewest.net

Hello loved ones!! How was everyones week!?!anything exciting!?! come on gimme somethin. lol. good luck at your meet this weekend ames!!

Well here in Maquoketa (ma-coke-a-duh!) we’ve been trackting and street contacting a lot. And it doesn’t take very long to start walking from one part of town and end up back at the same spot. We’ve been going through our ward list and going around and trying to meet all of the less active or not active members of the ward. So far most of them want nothing to do with the church so we got yelled at a couple times while we did that this week. We had some people get mad at us and some that were just really rude to us while we were tracting this week. Sister felix started getting really upset about it so I told her about how much I despised tracting the first couple months I was out here and then I actually read a part of a letter I got from blake that helped me really realize that its ALL about your attitude. You have to have a sense of humor about stuff like that or else you’re gonna be miserable and then you start to get to the point where you don’t even care if someone yells at you. Whatever the world throws at me I just throw back a smile! Partially because I just like being happy and because I know that I have the gospel of jesus Christ and nothing is as important as that. Its sad that they are passing up the opportunity to have it too but everyone has their agency. Anyway, I’ve been praying so much to find investigators for this area, people that are being prepared because they are out there we just have to find them and we will. So Friday night we went tracting but the only problem was that no one was home, they were all at the high school homecoming football game so we went and talked to people up at the game. Its right next to a bunch of cornfields (go figure) so we ended up being there for about half of the game talking to this one guy and his wife that are actually starting their own Baptist church this week so we talked to them for awhile. While we were walking home from that we knocked on this guys door and ended up teaching him the 1st lesson and we’re going back to teach him tomorrow. He’s so cool, his name’s ben and he started reading the book of mormon. Im super excited to go back tomorrow. On sunday we went tracting and we knocked on this one door and this guy named jay came out of the house next door and told us to come over. So we went over and he invited us in to listen to his brother and his wife play the guitar and sing. So his brother and his wife are sooo good they just got back from nashville!! Faith hill and tim mcgraw are their producers and their soo good! We’re gonna go back and see them later this week.

So we had mission conference yesterday. It was really nice cuz it wasn’t the whole mission though, they split it into two different sessions so we have 5 zone at ours yesterday. We had a general authority, elder zwick come and teach us. Elder zwick is actually president jergensens wifes brother so that was really special for her. It was awesome!! We learned a lot about using preach my gospel and the scriptures together while we teach. So elder zwick have 4 companionships go up and demonstrate in front of everyone. And of course one of those companionships had to be mine. We each had to teach a principle from preach my gospel. If I can get up and teach in front of a room full of missionaries, my mission president and a general authority I guess that should probably get me over my fear of talking in front of people huh.

Well that’s about it for now. I hope everyone has a super awesome week!!!! Thank you everyone for all your support and for all the letters!! I’ve never loved mail so much in my life. Lol. I love you all!! And remember: whatever the world throws at you, throw back a SMILE!!!!!

Till next time

Sister C

Monday, September 13, 2010

Week 34 9/13/2010

Subject: hello from maquoketa!!!!!!

To: macfamilyfarm@surewest.net

hello from Maquoketa!! I hope everyones having an awesome week so far…granted its only Monday but I hope everyones having an awesome Monday! Thank you for all the letters ive gotten from everyone im slowly but surely writing you back I promise.

So they changed the way we’re doing transfers now. Instead of having everyone be picked up by the transfer van and having trainers pick up their greenies in des moines everyone that is being transferred or getting a new companion goes to the stake center in iowa city and we have a big transfer meeting with president jergensen where he announces where everyone is going and with who. So that’s how I met my new greenie sister felix. She’s from Anaheim California. She’s super cute and quiet. We are the complete opposite in every way shape and form possible so far. Its really funny! But I like her! I don’t know what heavenly father was thinkin having me train, hopefully I don’t ruin this girl. Lol.

Its really weird not being in iowa city. Being in a new area with a new companion where neither one of us know whats going on in the area. Its super awesome! So we got to Maquoketa Thursday afternoon. The elders that were there before us told me that they did their best to clean it for us. We all know what that means…so we ended up spending a couple hours actually cleaning the apartment before we got settled in. lol. Since then we’ve pretty much been trying to meet a lot of the members in the branch and meeting the investigators that the elders left for us which aren’t very many but we work with what we’ve got. There are A LOT of inactive members here. It could be a ward if even half of the inactive list became active. We’ve got a lot of work to do. And our area is really big. Maquoketa is a super small town and its really spread out. And then we cover a few other towns that are about 30-40 minutes away. We have to drive about 30-35 minutes to get to church but that’s okay cuz I get to drive a super nice chevy Malibu forget the soccer mom van I drove in iowa city. Lol. it is soooooo pretty out here, its ridiculous. Its gonna be a really busy week trying to find new investigators and starting to work with the ones we have and with the members. We’re supposed to preach the gospel to every living creature….theres a lot of hogs out here im sure theres some potential with them if we cant find any in town this week but we will.

Sorry this was kind of a pooper of an email this week but I do love you all!! I love being a missionary! This is the greatest work! To go out and to share with other people the plan that heavenly father has for all of us. To come to earth and live (no matter how long or short of a time that might be)so that we can learn and progress to be more like heavenly father and live with him again after this life. that’s what he wants for us. He wants us to be happy! thats my favorite thing to share with people and if it wasn’t for a really good friend of mine that I love and miss so much I wouldn’t be out here sharing that with people. So thank you to her and to her mom! Phillipians 1:3

You’re all in my prayers! I love you all

Till next time

Sister C
this is at the labor day picnic with the ward in iowa city last week. all the boys attacked me with water balloons and buckets of water.
one of the members sent it to me. lol.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Courtney has lived with the Gelders while in Iowa City. Brother Gelder sent me this email today. The people in Iowa City have been great.

Hi Anna,

I am told you already know, but Sister Callaway transferred away from us this morning. :( She is transferring to the town of Maquoketa, where she will be a trainer to a new missionary from the MTC. The two of them will open the town for sister missionaries--there were elders living there until today. We will certainly miss her. We love her, and she's been a wonderful missionary here, as well as a great addition to our family for the time she was here. You can be very proud of her and of the growth she has shown during the 4+ months she lived with us, as well as her great attitude. She of course loves you and misses you (and enjoyed hearing your recorded voice the other day), but know that she is where she should be and is doing a good job and has a strong testimony. She will be a great trainer.

I hope you will stay in touch. I wish you and your family well always.


Bruce Gelder

Week 33 9/9/2010

Bye bye Iowa City!!!

Hello!!!!! How was everyones week!? whats everyone up to? Happy birthday last Saturday daddy d!!

First of all, the weather has been amazing the past week and a half!! I love it!! Feels like California weather!! Football season is definatley here. Saturday was the first hawkeye game of the season and i’ve never seen so many people dressed in black and gold before. Definatley not as good as any del oro game! But holy cow people are dedicated to the hawkeyes out here. I’ve seen so many people w the hawkeye tattooed on their backs or legs and who knows where else. This week was pretty crazy for us. We’ve been in a tri-companionship for the last week because one of the sisters from a different area was emergency transferred to us. President had to move her before there was a beat down. I like her though, she’s awesome! Its really weird going tracting with 3 people. I feel like it’s a little overwhelming for the person whos door we are knocking on but teaching with 3 people is pretty nice. We’ve doing A LOT of work with the members and the less active members and recent converts in the ward this week because we haven’t had anyone to teach except for ricky. Anna is amazing as usual! She got a calling a couple weeks in relief society. She had no idea what it was but she was excited!
We saw ricky a couple times this week and he’s getting baptized next Saturday!!! Im soo excited for him. Ricky’s so awesome! And of course im getting transferred the week before. I leave tomorrow for maquokada (don’t ask me how to spell that). Im training for the next 2 transfers!im super excited but a little nervous at the same time. Should be quite the adventure!! This transfer has been really good but pretty hard at the same time so im hoping that the next 2 will be ever better. I cant even explain how much I don’t want to leave iowa city though. Im excited to go somewhere else but I don’t want to leave the people here. Ahh. But obviously god doesn’t want me here anymore, you cant really argue with him about it. Lol. Anna was really upset when I told her I was leaving! Im gonna everyone but especially anna and leslie and the elzingas! I’ll definatley be back to visit though! the last couple of days we’ve pretty much been tracting and running around so I could say bye to people. Sorry this ones kinda of short but I’ve gotta go finish packing (my favorite thing to do!! Lol)
I love you all!!! Have an awesome week!! Have a good first day of school steph!! Blake, presty, trav, vita and steph…be good! Have fun! Tell Idaho hello for me.

Till next time

Sister C

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Stormin in Iowa

I'm not sure when this was taken
but thought it was funny and fun to
see and hear her voice.