Sister Stewart & Sister Kingston

Sister Stewart & Sister Kingston

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Hey Family!

 Well I'll keep this short since I get to talk to you all in a few short days :) Speaking of which, Mom I was actually planning on calling around 12 my time which would be 9 your time. Sorry so early but we have a zone activity later and a member dinner and my comp needs to call her family too, so I dont have another time. Sorry! I hope everyone can make it! I'll be sure to call the cell numbers.
Mission Conference was SOOOO GOOOOD! The spirit was so strong the entire time. Our song went well. My favorite was when we sang part of the last verse acapella. It was powerful. Another one of my favorite parts of mission conference was when we had the opportunity to bear our testimonies. Each zone was assigned a choir box (in every corner of the temple) and there we shared testimonies with each other. The most powerful testimony came from a non-missionary. His name is Andrew and he is a recent convert of a few months. His story is incredible and I'll share it with you one day when I have more time. He was invited to come to mission conference because he is thinking of going on a mssion. Anyways, I wish I could remember what he said...but I cant. I just know that I was weeping as I felt the Spirit witness of the truths he spoke.
After the temple we went to the stake center and ate lunch and finished in the chapel. We sang Christmas hymns and then they passed out our letters and we all read them as we sat there in the chapel. Im not gonna lie, I was a bit dissappointed that I didnt receive any hand written letters but I know it wasnt your fault. I was glad to receive the e-mails at least! The same thing happened to my companion last year so she empathized lol.
We're still teaching the twins and preparing them for baptism. We're hoping to find some more investigators soon too! The gospel is true and there's no greater work than this!
I love you all and will talk to you later...this week :)
Sister Kingston

Monday, December 13, 2010

Mission Conference in the Kirtland Temple

Wow, sounds like you all had a busy weekend full of festivities! I love Christmas! I'll have to send some pics of Kirtland with the lights and all the snow and the nativities. Sister Stewart and I helped Elder Butterfield send some pics off to Mormon Times the other day and theyre supposed to do some type of article on Kirtland. Im so blessed to be here at this time of year again :)
Im glad Jacosa will be moving in finally! I know what its like to live out of a suitcase for long periods of time haha. Im excited to see the condo when I get back. So, the weather here is pretty crazy right now. There's a huge blizzard and it's 17 degrees outside. Hopefully we'll still be able to drive...last p-day we werent allowed to. We HAVE to this week though because we've been living off of cereal and ward Christmas party leftovers lol.
Im sooooooo excited for tomorrow! We're having Mission Conference in the temple! We were told to come fasting and to prepare spiritually. The sacrament will be administered. The Brethren gave our Mission President special permission to bless and pass the sacrament in the Temple. It's not done very often and I know it's going to be an amazing experience. The zone leaders will be passing it, I'll be thinking of you James and your awesome calling. Im also singing in the Temple for mission conference. Sister Stewart and I are singing in a quartet with 2 Elders. We're singing Oh Holy Night too! It's the only musical number being performed in the Temple so I hope it goes well!
This past week was good! We're still teaching the twins Corri and Jaclyn. Did I tell you that they came to Sites one day in the summer just because they saw it as they drove by!? They took a full tour. A couple months later Jaclyn googled "mormon" and was lead to where she began chatting with missionaries on-line and then decided to meet with them in person. Pretty cool huh? The Sisters who were in this area before us started to teach them and now we are continuing to help them receive the restored gospel! But you want to hear something amazing? I was the one who took them on that tour when they came to sites for the first time! The Lord's hand is definitely in this work!
Something pretty cool happened in the phone room this week. We get incoming calls from people who call the 1-800 numbers (on the pass along cards) to receive a free dvd or Book of Mormon. Well the phone rang and I answered. The man was a member and was calling the number to see if it was still valid so he could post it on his website. I told him "yup it still works"! He then introduced was Allen Osmond haha. He has a family website and he's going to post the 1-800 number for anyone who wants to learn more about the church! Those Osmonds really are great missionaries! I know of two members of the church here in Ohio who have joined  because of the Osmond family! You should have seen Sister Putnam's face (a woman in the Kirtland ward) when I told her I talked to him on the phone! Well, I couldnt just let him get off the phone. I asked him to sing to me. Just kidding! I did ask him for a referral though. He gave me a name and number. I called his friend and he accepted to have missionaries visit him! Mom you would like this guy he's into natural medicine lol. I guess he's helping Allen with his MS. He has a website if you want to check it out...I cant remember exactly what it is might be Im not sure? I wrote it down somewhere. His name is Robert Butts. Anyways, check it out and tell me if it helps you  lose weight haha. No really though, he said it does!
Ive seen a lot of miracles in the phone room lately. My zone leader Elder Hunt has left tons of referrals! I called his uncle the other day and he accepted. Because he hasnt been afraid to write those names down and give them over to us, 5 of his friends/family members are being taught by missionaries! Ive called other family members and friends of missionaries and its amazing to see how hearts are softened and prepared!
Oh that reminds me Mom, if you get the name and number of Pres Treadways friend you can just call the Visitors Center (440) 256-9805. Just say you have referral information and theyll have you talk to a young Sister. Just give whoever it is the info and it will get passed along to me :)
Well I love you all! Thanks for all your support and your examples! I love this work and my testimony continues to grow each and every day! Hope you all have a great week and cant wait to talk to you on Christmas!
Love Sister Kingston
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Monday, December 6, 2010

Zone Leader Council

Hey Family!
Well, I think Im definitely going to have a white Christmas this year! It's been snowing like crazy! Im having de ja vu, I cant believe Ive been here for a year! 3 weeks til I get to talk with everyone!!! YAY!!!
I was super bummed that I missed President Treadway! :( Normally, Im at sites all day Tuesday...but I was in a meeting in Cleveland that day. President Sorensen (my mission president) invited Sister Stewart and I to Zone Leader Council. The meeting lasted all day so I couldnt make it back to Kirtland in time to see President Treadway. Im glad he had a good experience though. The sisters told me that he brought a non-member friend who lives here in Ohio? Can you get her name and number from him and e-mail it to me next week? I want to call her and invite her to the nativities exhibit here. Thanks!
Although I was super sad to miss Pres Treadway, Zone Leader Council was amazing! We were there with all the Zone Leaders in the mission and the A.P.s and President Sorensen. We met in President's office. It was so neat to see how a Priesthood council works. Before we started we watched a clip of President Eyring, explaining how different the Lord's councils are in comparison to those that he learned about as he studied business at Harvard and then taught at Stanford. Im not sure how you can find it on the internet, but if you can WATCH IT! He was at some type of press conference, if that helps at all. Anyways, one moment during the meeting stood out to me. We were discussing an item on the agenda and we couldnt agree. After quite a while one of the Elders suggested that we pray. We all knelt down and he offered the prayer. We stayed on our knees in silence for a moment...and then sat back in our seats. As we went around the room everyone agreed on the matter. It was an experience I will always remember.
That same day of Zone Leader Council, Sister Stewart and I had our first training meeting. We talked about diligence in relation to the phone room. We had them study a certain section in Preach My Gospel in preparation and we did a little demonstration with beans and buckets. Its hard to explain but it went well :)
My Birthday was GOOD! Thanks everyone! It was pretty much a normal work day except that the Butterfields took me out to lunch :) and then the Sisters in my house decorated and we had hot chocolate floats that night! I took a few pics and I'll send them next week.
The rest of the week went well. We're doing our best to find a family to teach and baptize! Oh Mom you asked about Brenda, I hope she's doing well but since Im not in that area anymore I dont know for sure? But we have two invsestigators (they are twins!) who have a baptismal date for jan 1st!
Well, I better go. Thanks everyone for your support and love!!! Have a fantastic week!!!
Love you all!!
Sister Kingston

Sunday, December 5, 2010

My Companion is from Hurricane!

Hello everyone!
 Mom thankyou so much for telling me about Pres Treadway coming today! Im soooooo excited to give him a tour! I'll make sure to take pics and send them next week! Im glad you all had a good Thanksgiving! I cant believe Christmas will be here in no time! I did think of a few things that you could send me for Christmas, if you want to that is. Any colorful/cute scarfs would be much appreciated! There are some good ones at Target.
Well, this week has been crazy! Nope, Im not quite settled into the house yet, all of my clothes are still packed up. Im hoping to unpack today, but it looks like I might run low on time. The good news is that this is the last time I'll have to unpack before I come home :)
Sister Stewart my companion is from Hurricane, Utah! Her older brother Brad dated Jaycee's sister Amber way back yonder. Jaycee you probably know some of her older siblings too. She's one of 14 kids, so youre bound to know a few Stewarts right? haha I love Sister Stewart! People (senior couples) would always get us confused. They say we look alike. We lived together in the Boynton home and she's a really close friend of mine here. So needless to say I'm happy :)
Thanksgiving was good for me too! I ate LOTS! The weather wasnt so great so our Turkey Bowl had to be altered a bit. Instead of playing out in the rain (c'mom we're Sisters we cant afford to get mud in our hair!) we decided to go to the church building and play knock out and a few other games. It was fun! I didnt take pics because my camera died but I got one group photo. Elder Butterfield even played with us in his white shirt slacks haha. The dinner was awesome. At the end of the dinner one of our favorite senior couples (the Grays) bore their testimonies because they were leaving the next day to go home. Their last request was to have all of us Sisters sing the Ohio Cleveland Mission song. It was a mess! We were ALL in tears after the first verse.
The rest of the day we took it easy. We had to plan for the upcoming week, and that took 5 hours! The longest weekly planning session of my life. If you want to know what we do for weekly planning go to chapter 8 in Preach My Gospel and we do everything from 1-13 under weekly planning! Since Sister Stewart and I are both new to the area it took longer than usual.
We've already seen a few miracles in the past few days. We were able to find 2 new investigators, one of which came to church and we set a baptismal date with him! His name is Bruce. He's a character! Ill tell you more about him next week!
Tomorrow is our first training meeting. Sister Stewart and I are nervous, but we're relying heavily on the Lord. We are responsible for training all the Kirtland Sisters (24 of them) each week. We use Preach My Gospel, our Kirtland Guide, and the scriptures to give workshops.  This time around we're focusing on diligence in the phone room (referral center).
 I'll let you know how it goes! Also tomorrow, Sister Stewart and I have been invited to attend the Zone Leader counsel. It's a meeting where the Zone Leaders, Assistants to the President, and the Mission President get together to discuss the needs and concerns of the missionaries in the mission. I'm sure it will be inspiring and least I hope so because it's 51/2 hours long!
Well, I better go. Thankyou all for your love and support! Oh and for the birthday wishes too :) I cant believe how old I am! Yikes. Anyways, I hope all of you have a great week!
Sister Kingston
p.s. Mom thanks so much for putting money into my account! It looks like my school
applications arent technically due until Feb. 1, 2011. Whew! So the money will just sit for now until Im ready to send them off :) Love ya!
p.p.s I think the photos are pretty self explanatory except for the one where Im in the tub haha. Well here's the back story. Once upon a time there used to be only 2 "showers" in the Smith home. One of them (the one you see pictured) we call the midget shower. Sorry it's not pc. Anyways, no one ever wanted to shower in it because you have to sit down (the ceiling is too low to stand). Well, I didnt want to wait forever to get into the shower (6 girls and one shower= no good) so I decided to just use the midget shower. It then became my shower. So when I moved back into the Smith home this past week, I found this in the bathroom. Sister Schumann and Sister Wright (they just went home this week) put it together! The sticky notes say "Welcome Back Sista Kingston" and something about sitting Indian style haha. Oh and the pink thing is a sheet. One day my companion decided to wash my towel w/out drying I had to use a sheet haha. So there are now three showers in the Smith home......but I still use the midget shower! Its more for nostalgia than anything else. Yes Im weird.
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Monday, November 29, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hello Everyone!

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you all eat extra for me and James! haha Take lots of pics for us. I'll make sure to take pictures here too! Sounds like you had a busy week. Things will get even crazier as Christmas approaches Im sure. Tis truly the most wonderful time of the year! I cant wait to have Christmas here in Kirtland again, it's going to be awesome! I'll miss all of you of course, but there's something about this place that is magical at Christmas.

So tomorrow is transfers and as you all know I will be getting transferred. I actually already know where I'll be serving and who my companion will be. I have been extended a call to be Training Sister. No this doesnt mean that I'll be training a new Sister. I think I may have explained what a Training Sister is before, but I'll do it again just incase you have forgotten haha. Well, basically Training Sisters are a companionship that act as the assistants to the Site director. It's the Sister equivalent of an A.P. I guess. I'm not telling you this to brag by any means....Im actually telling you all this because I feel extremely overwhelmed and can use any advice you have to offer! Prayers would be nice too! I'll be Training Sister until the end of my mission. I feel humbled yet blessed to be able to serve in this capacity. President Sorensen, my Mission President, pulled me and Sister Stewart (my companion starting tomorrow) aside after the investigator fireside the other night. He told us that we are the "transition" Training Sisters. Meaning that we'll essentially be the ones to train the new Site Director who comes in January. No pressure! Yikes. I'll only get to serve with our current Site Director (Elder Butterfield) for one transfer before he leaves I love the Butterfields so much, Im gonna have a hard time when they leave! But this new Site Director will be awesome too. His name is Elder Edmond (not sure on the spelling?) and he's a former Mission President and former President of the MTC. It's going to be a crazy next 6 months, but I'm excited. I'll end my mission in the same ward that I started out in and will move back into the Hyrum Smith home!

In other news the musical fireside went well! Sister Park and I did a duet of "Jesus was No Ordinary Man". Tonight all of us Sisters get another opportunity to sing in the Kirtland Temple! Its for the Thanksgiving program. I LOVE being able to be in the temple! Did I tell you that the Stake President here (President Haymond) promised that KIrtland would receive a working Temple if members here attend the Colombus temple more regularly? Pretty cool huh?

Some more news, we gave a tour to a former Mission President (and his family) who are from Sacramento! He knows President Treadway too, because he used to be the Antelope Stake President. He just got back from serving as the President of the Arizona Mesa Mission in June. I think President Bassett was his name. We had a good time with him and his family.

Also, we had a lesson with our investigator Brenda in the baptismal font at the church. Yes I said IN the font, but no there wasnt any water in it haha. We talked about her baptismal day (Dec 18th) and how she'll feel as she steps into the font to make that covenant with Heavenly Father. It was pretty sweet!

Well, that's all the news from me. I hope you all have a great week ahead and know that you are all in my prayers! Love you tons! Thanks for everything! This gospel is true!
Sister Kingston

Thursday, November 18, 2010

You ARE worthy!

Hellllllooooo Family!

Its a beautiful day here in the Ohio. Mom and Katrina thanks so much for sending that music! Hopefully the fireside goes well, Ill tell you all about it. Thanks for the pictures too! The kids all look so growed up, it's crazy! It's weird to think that one year ago tomorrow I entered the MTC. So long ago, yet it seems like yesterday. Mom, to answer your question I havent heard back yet from BYU or Long Beach because I actually havent applied yet haha. I just never have the time. But the deadline is December 1, so I HAVE to get my applications in by then. Which reminds me, I forgot that it costs money to apply :( I think it's around $50 for each application. I dont want to sound needy but I am lol. Can you put $100 into my account? It can be my birthday/ Christmas present. Money's really what I need the most anyway. Sorry to be so lame. I cant wait to hear Cosa's band! I bet they sound amazing. Mom, my health is pretty good. I havent been sick for about a year now, and my weight is back down to what I was when I came out. Now I just have to maintain during the Holidays which we ALL know is really hard. Speaking of Christmas, people here already have lights up and lawn decorations out! It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! :)
Well, the highlight of this past week was Sunday. It was the primary program at Church and it was AMAZING. Also, Dalon my former investigator that was baptized in September, received the Priesthood. We're still teaching Dalon's mom Lakeisha. She's had a rough life and she has a lot of sorrow for things she's done in the past. She recently told us that she knows she wont make it to the Celestial Kingdom. She has a hard time understanding/applying the Atonement as well. Well, we told our ward mission leader about her concerns just before gospel principles class. (He's the teacher). He right then and there changed the lesson to meet her needs! He is one of the best teachers Ive ever known! He taught about the Atonement. By the end of the lesson Lakeisha was in tears. I know she received answers to her prayers. The lesson in Relief Society just built upon her experience in that second hour.
The lesson in RS was all about the Holy Ghost. Toward the end of the lesson Lakeisha raised her hand and said the reason why she keeps coming to church is because, " I feel the Spirit, even though Im not worthy of feeling God's love." As she said this everyone in Relief Society looked at her and said (in unison it seemed like) , "You ARE worthy!" It was amazing to see women of all different ages and backgrounds uniting togther to testify of God's love, to someone who's never felt truly loved her whole life. There wasnt a dry eye in the room. We're meeting with Lakeisha tonight for the first time since Sunday, so I'll let you know how it goes.
Well I have to go, sorry not a lot to report this week. Next week my p-day will be Tuesday because transfers is on Wednesday. Im probably getting transferred but you never know. And yes Dad you read correctly we are having a Turkey Bowl! Hopefully the weather will cooperate and yes Ill make sure to take pics. I love you all and hope you have a great week!
Sister Kingston

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Miracle for Sister Dalton

Hey Mom Dad and fam,
Thanks Mom and Dad for your letters! Its ok that you forgot my p-day, I know it's hard to keep all of the changes strait. Thanks for the pics too! Looks like you had a fun Halloween! I'll attach a couple photos from Halloween, although they didnt turn out the best. One of the senior couples was taking pictures for me...but they had their finger covering the flash on a lot of them. Oh well haha. We had limited resources (i.e. money) to make our costume really we just wore brown and wrapped sticks anround us and put sticks in our hair.
We tried to find nametags to wear (the ones that say HELLO my name is ...) but we couldnt find any so we had to do a guetto version and just print the names off of the computer. People here in Ohio go ALL OUT for the Holidays. Halloween was crazy. Some lawn decorations were literally disturbing haha. People have already begun to put out their Nativities! I cant believe it's the Holidays! Next week is my year mark! I come home 6 months from tomorrow. Crazy!
Life here has been good. It snowed a few days ago! It's gotten a little warmer but winter is definitely here! All the leaves are already gone :( Mom or Dad asked about Thanksgiving. All of the sisters and senior couples have a Thanksgiving lunch at the Visitor Center at 1:00 pm. Before that we have a turkey bowl at 10 am...David and Kenji Ill be thinking of you when I play lol. After our lunch in Kirtland we all go back to our areas and spend the rest of the day with families in the wards that we're serving. Im not exactly sure where Ill be though because transfers is the day before Thanksgiving. Im about 99.9 % sure that Im being transferred so we'll see where I end up.
Mom and Dad thankyou sooooooo much for going out with the missionaries! You have no idea how important that is! Also, we pray and ponder about who would be best to go to certain investigators so you must be doin somethin right! haha Mom, it is a sad day when we have members come to lessons and the investigator doesnt show. It happens quite often. Here in the OCM when someone doesnt keep their appointment we say they flamed us. Just a little mission lingo for ya. Mom and Cos Im glad you were able to make it to Pele's farewell! Can you send me her address if you have it? And that's cool about China. I have heard rumors about that too. It reminds me of the prohecy that Joseph Smith made at the Morley Farm in Kirtland. That the gospel would grow to fill North and South America, and that it would fill the world!
Well, this week Ill share with you a small miracle that happenned in the phone room at the Visitor Center. I have been put in charge of International Referrals (which means that I get to call people who live around the long as they speak English of course...those who dont I send to the MTC). Anyways, I was going through my stack of cards and came across one that didnt seem to belong. It wasnt an international referral and I saw a senior couples name on it. That senior couple was working the front desk that night so I went down to ask them about it. Sister Dalton filled me in on the info. She was going through her purse to find something that pertained to the card and she came across her Sister's address and phone number. She then gave it to me and asked if I would call her. Sister Dalton is one of ten kids and the only member in her family. I agreed and went up stairs to make the call. Well, to make a long story short I talked to Sister Dalton's sister and she accepted to have missionaries! I went down and told Sister Dalton and she gave me a big hug! She started to cry and told me that her and Elder Dalton had been praying for a miracle to happen in her family. It was a testament to me that the Lord knows each of us and answers our prayers!
Ill be calling Sister Daltons sister back in a couple of weeks to see how it went with the missionaries. Ill let you know how it goes!
Oh also I wanted to share something that happened on Sunday. Well, as you all know Sunday was fast and testimony meeting. Well, this Sunday there was a visitor from out of town, who got up to share her "testimony". Well, I dont want to be mean but basically she was sharing everything BUT her testinomy and taking a LONG time to do so. I was literally praying with all my might that she would finish and sit down. It got to the point where I couldnt even look up I was so disturbed. Finally I turn to my companion and I say, "Im going up there." And before she had time to respond I was on my way up to the stand. I thought I would take matters into my own hands and hopefully by going up there it would signal her to stop. Well, she kept going haha. Sister Gaugh in the ward came up and sat by me and said," Were you praying too?" Well, finally one of the councilors in the Bishopric gets up and tells her she needs to stop. As she goes to sit down, about 7 of the kids in the ward (all under the age of ten) rush the stand. One by one, they bore the most heartfelt and pure testimonies Ive ever heard! None of them had their parents telling them what to say. Sister Gaugh and I sat there on the stand crying our eyes out. I was quickly humbled by the Lord. Here I was thinking I was going to change the Spirit of the meeting and bring it back. But the Lord had other plans. He chose those kids to do the job. The gospel is simple and the kids in primary remind me of that constantly! It's no wonder that we're told to be like little children!
Well, I have to go. I love all of you and Im grateful for your examples! The church is true!
Love Sister Kingston

                                        1.At the Solon ward Halloween party with Yoda :)
2. Check out the sticks in my hair!
                 3. My comp and I and the other sisters are the she bears from the Old Testament
                              4. Spirit Paradise and Spirit Prison and one of the lost manuscripts :)
      5. The Brother of Jared, the Jaredite Stones, and the finger of the Lord (only a little blasphemas!)

6. That my friends is two 50 piece chicken nuggets (100 all together)! And yes we ate it all. The four of us collectively consumed about 5000 calories. Yikes.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Happy Halloween!

Hey Mom Dad and everyone else!
Mom thanks for forwarding James' e-mail! Dad it sounds like you did get a little taste of what missionary work is like. It's a roller coaster of emotions isnt it? Im glad you had a good experience though. Im excited to see Cosa's condo! You should send pics! Im glad to hear that the primary program went well. The ward Im serving in has theirs in November. Im really excited for it! I hope you had a good time with Aunt Leslie and Uncle Max. That pic of Dad and Uncle Max cracked me up! The story of Maile almost made me cry! I love those kids so much!
Well, you all fail in helping me figure out my Halloween costume. Fortunately, I already came up with one. So I've been shooting down (very nicely of course) all of my companion's ideas for costumes. She wanted to be the two women in the King Solomon cutting the baby story in the Bible. (I could have phrased that better but Im too lazy haha). I told her that wasnt good enough...that we had to think of something clever. Well, I did my best to channel my inner Jim (from the Office) and come up with something. After a few different ideas (including dressing up in 80's clothes and being characters from all the outdated church movies haha) I finally decided. Sister Lee and I are going to be the Stick of Judah and the Stick of Joseph. So we're trying to figure out how to make ourselves look like sticks. Ill send you pictures of the end result! Lol Make sure to send me pics of all of your costumes too!
Dang I dont have much time but I have another p-day on Monday (november 1st) because we're moving that day. So Ill make that one a good one! Real quick though I just wanted to tell you about a couple experiences that I had. Stake Conference was this past weekend and it was AWESOME! I love the Kirtland Stake President! His name is President Haymond and he reminds me A LOT of President Treadway. To open the conference all of us missionaries in the stake (about 30 of us) sang our mission song. It's to the tune of "We'll Bring the World his Truth". We sing it at all of our zone conferences and transfer meetings. The first verse is the same but the second and third verses and chorus have been changed. These are the words:
We have been called and we will obey
repent and work with our might each day
we'll call on him through fasting and prayer
and with His help we will be prepared

Chorus: We are in the Ohio Cleveland
we have prepared since our youth
and we are in the Ohio Cleveland
to bring Ohio His truth

We have been called to serve in the place
where Christ our Savior has shown his face
we know the words the Lord has proclaimed
Kirtland will be built up again!

repeat chorus

Wow, I get teary eyed just typing the words out lol. Everyone in the congregation was wiping away tears. It was powerful! Then we sang "called to serve" with the youth of the stake. They have a Kirtland Missionary Academy here (kinda like the one Pres Treadway started), so we sand with them. It was an amazing experience.
The other quick experience I wanted to share happened just last night. We ate dinner at President Haymond's house because he's in our ward. There are two sets of us Sisters in the ward so all 4 of us ate there. Anyways, at the end of the dinner he told us that our mission President (President Sorensen) e-mailed him and thanked him for letting us be a part of Stake Conference. President Haymond told us that he told President Sorensen, "The missionaries mean everything to me." He then went on to talk about how much he loves us and supports us. Tears were streaming down my face, and I looked around the table and the other Sisters were crying too... and Sister Haymond. It's hard to even explain except to say that the love emulating from President Haymond was something Ive never felt before. I got into the car afterwards and just continued to cry. (sometimes I wish this wasnt the way I felt the Spirit because it's so draining haha). Anyways, it was a really neat experience that I will always remember.

Well, I have to go. I love you all and hope you have a great Halloween!!!!! I pray for you daily and miss you tons!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Still in Kirtland . . . Yay!

Hello Everyone!

Mom and Dad thanks soooo much for the Halloween package! It was a pleasant surprise! Are you all ready for Halloween? Is the house decorated with the usual? Remember when the kids used to call you "Scary Grandma"? haha. What's everyone gonna be this year? So we have a big dinner for Halloween and all of us Sisters are supposed to dress up...but we have to be characters from the scriptures. We're still trying to think of something creative so if you have any suggestions let me know! I saw some pics from last year and they were pretty amazing. One companionship was the Tree of Life and the Iron Rod haha. Another was Samuel the Lamanite and the Brick Wall. So we have some big shoes to fill. Send me your ideas! Tell Max and Leslie hi for me! Hope you have fun together! Tell Taizo and Hillary congrats, I didnt even know she was pregnant haha. Dad it's so weird to me that youre not off track this month. How are you liking the new schedule?
Well Im trying to remember what happened this week. Transfer week is always a big blur. We got our schedule for this transfer and it looks like we're still going to be in Kirtland three days a week!!! I thought we would move down to two days a week since it's slowing down, but the Lord must have known how much I would have missed sites so he allowed me to stay half and half :) The highlight of the week was when our investigator Lakeisha came to church. We havent been able to meet with her for three or four weeks now and she hasnt been coming to church. We fasted to be able to see a miracle in our area. Seeing her walk through those doors was the greatest feeling! To make matters better, after sacrament she came up to me and whispered in my ear, "Who do I pay my tithes to?" I just about died with excitement. Tonight we're meeting with her for the first time since then and hoping to set a baptismal date! Ill let you know how it goes!
Well I better go. Im short on time because I have to start school applications today. Time to face the reality that my mission will one day come to a close. Im applying for BYU Provo and Long Beach State so we'll see what happens. Anyways, I love you all so much and thanks for all you do! Youre all so amazing! The gospel is true! Have a great week!
Here are just a few pics Ive taken with my new camera. Ill take some more this week and send them next week.

Pic 1: Me and my District. Elders Carter and Hunt in the back are the Kirtland Zone Leaders.

In the Front: Sister Lee (my companion), Sister Schwanke, Sister Mazza, and me :)

Pics 2-3: At Pioneer school. We get to dress up like pioneers and teach elementary school kids how to make candles

Pics 4-5: Kirtland! The white building is the Newell K Whitney Store.

Pic 6: Me just outside the Visitor Center

pic 7: Mom do you recognize Sister Schwanke's outfit?! haha I went to the bathroom and came back and she was wearing it. She was just sitting and working away making phone calls like nothing was different haha. It was pretty funny!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Singing in the Temple!

Hey Family!

So I forgot to tell you that today is my p-day because transfers are tomorrow. Sorry! This just means that you'll have to write twice as much next week to fill me in on all the happenings back home. Oh and no Im not being transferred and neither is my comp. This means I will be in this area (Solon) for six months. I think Ill definitely be ready to be transferred after this next one haha. First of all David and Jaycee HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!! I know it's late but I was thinking of you two on your b-days. Hey I met some people from Utica the other day who remember you two. There was a big youth group who came through and when I found out they were from Utica I told them that you served there. I cant remember the names of the family that said they knew you sorry! I think it started with an F...something like felly or falley Im not sure?? If I would have taken them on tour I would have talked to them more, but I had a different tour I had to take.
Some cool things that happened this week. We (the Sisters) got to sing in the Temple. The LDS Family Services had a meeting there (it was about adoption) and Elder Butterfield spoke. The Spirit was super strong. He spoke about Eternal Families and how those sealing keys were restored in Kirtland. At the end of the meeting we all sang The Spirit of God as the closing hymn. Almost everyone was in tears as we all imagined the saints singing this very song at the temple dedication 175 years earlier. It was awesome!
This morning we had a pretty neat experience too. All of us Sisters have training meeting every Tuesday where we hear workshops by the training sisters and Elder Butterfield. The last training meeting of the transfer is always a tear jerker because every sister who's going home bears her testimony. This meeting was especially hard because it was held in the School of the Prophets. Each Sister who is going home (there are three this transfer) recited one of three testimonies of men who were in the School of the Prophets to witness sacred things. The combination of testimonies was powerful! Also, to close the meeting we sang one verse of We Thank Thee Oh God for a Prophet and Praise to the Man. I couldnt even get through the first verse haha. One of the ways I feel the Spirit the most is through song. Add being in the School of the Prophets singing with 25 of your best friends on top of that...I was a goner. The experiences I have here are unlike anything else!
These experiences with singing hymns and feeling the Spirit remind me of a story we tell here in the Whitney home. Newell K Whitney wasn't quite sure if he wanted to be baptized. His wife Anne had already joined the church. He had actually asked her to wait for him to gain the same conviction that she had, so they could be baptized together. But Anne knew it was true and she couldnt wait...she went ahead and was baptized without him. Well, it was a few days later that he did gain that same conviction. During a meeting they held in their home, while they were singing hymns, Newell felt the Spirit so strong that he couldnt deny it. It was then that he decided to be baptized. Pretty cool huh? It reminds me of Doctrine and Covenants section 25.
One more cool thing that I got to do this past week. I gave a tour to a former Kirtland Sister. Her name was Sister Hymas (she has since been married) and she served here about a year and a half ago. She came with her husband and her parents. It was the first time she'd been back since her mission ended. I took them on tour by myself, but she gave part of it. It was really neat to see her bear testimony of Kirtland to her family. It was really special and hard to even explain. I guess youll just have to wait to come to Kirtland with me to know what I mean haha.
K well I have to go. The gospel is true and Kirtland is AMAZING! I wish I could just bottle it up and take it home with me! I love you all so much! Have a great week!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

I LOVE this gospel and my mission!

Hey Family!
Mom thanks for all the pictures! I still haven't gotten a camera yet :( My MSF card still hasn't arrived so I've had to use my own money to buy groceries. I'll reimburse (sp?) myself once my card gets here, but it's taking FOREVER! I'm sure by next week I'll have it though. Oh and Mom that check from Barnes and Noble should be coming sometime soon, if you could deposit that for me that would be great! The weather here has been quite drab lately. The leaves are beautiful, but it's been raining and cold the past few days :( It's too early to be this cold! So do you remember in the summer when our AC in our apartment didn't work? Well now that it's cold our heat doesn't work haha. We're getting it fixed SOON! We won't be in our apartment for very much longer though. We're moving in with members on November 1st. I'm not sure if I'll be in the area still, since transfers are one week from today and I've been in the area for 3 transfers. If I do stay it will be my last transfer in Solon for sure, because they usually don't keep us in areas for longer than 4 transfers. It's the longest I've ever been in one area. If I stay for another I will have been here for 6 months. I'm ready for a change...which is why I think I'll be here for another transfer haha. What the Lord wants and what I want can sometimes differ lol.
The highlight of this past week, for sure, was conference! Watching conference on your mission is like hitting the jack pot. I cant even put it into words. We literally count down the hours haha. We got so mad when members came to Sites on Saturday, because we're like, "What are you doing??? You NEED to be watching conference!" Before coming on my mission I didn't understand the importance of watching ALL sessions. I used to think that Saturday was just an extra, but now I realize it's just as important as Sunday! On Saturday they showed conference in the theatre at the visitor center. I missed most of it though due to tours :( I did get to see Elder Holland though (he's my favorite) so I wasn't too mad. I'll just have to read the others in next month's Ensign. One of the tours that we took during conference was pretty cool actually. We took a group of men who are members of the Remnants of the RLDS Church. They broke off from the RLDS church , now Community of Christ, when the COC started giving women the priesthood. They were in Kirtland for some priesthood meeting that they held in the Temple. I was really nervous for the tour but it was AWESOME! They told us they loved how we bore testimony of what we believe. One of the men said that he hears a lot of members in his church talk about how we don't focus on Christ. He then said, "Next time I hear someone say that I'm going to tell them...that's not true! They took me on a tour in Kirtland and it was centered on the Savior." That made me feel good because I knew we had done our job. Our main objective here in Kirtland is to testify of the Savior and His gospel!
On Sunday we watched the first session of conference at the church. For the second session we went to a members' home. The Rust family had us over to watch conference and then we had dinner after. My companion actually prepared the meal too! Sister Lee is from Froglevel, Louisiana and she's Cajun... so she decided to make Gumbo! She cooked as she listened to conference, (they had it playing in the kitchen on the computer because they don't have TV). The Rusts are my favorite family in the Solon ward! They just understand member missionary work. The reason why Brother Rust wanted Sister Lee to make Gumbo was so that he could invite non-member friends to have dinner with us! He invited 50 people! Unfortunately those who said they could come originally, changed their minds :( I know he'll be blessed for his efforts to share the gospel.
Well I'd better go but thanks for your e-mails and letters they mean a lot to me! Just know that I LOVE this gospel and my mission! Have a great week!
Sister Kingston

Monday, October 4, 2010

Conference Weekend

Hey Family!
Ok so it took me forever to upload those pics cuz this computer is really slow! So I don't have much time left. Mom, I'm glad you had a fun trip to Idaho! I'm looking forward to those pics. Dad, wow I can't believe it's that hot there! It is most definitely fall here in Ohio. The high has been in the 60s the past couple days. A lot of the trees are still green but I'm sure in another couple weeks they'll all turn over. I'll make sure to take pics. I still haven't gotten a new camera, but I plan to today so you will hopefully get more pictures soon :) I'm super excited for conference this weekend! There's nothing more exciting when you're a missionary haha! On Saturday we're scheduled to be at sites all day so we'll watch it there. Unfortunately if a tour comes we have to take it so we might miss some of it. On Sunday we'll watch the morning session at the church building and then we're watching the afternnon session (which is more like evening here) at a members home. I can't wait!
Big things that happened this week. One of my Best friends Sister Wirig came back to Kirtland! Just to visit of course. She finished her mission in July and came back to see her former investigators (The Fortes in the first picture... Sister Wirig is the one making the peace sign) get sealed in the Columbus Temple. Sister Wirig's Mom and Dad came with her and we got special permission (Sister Wirig and I) from Elder Butterfield to take them on tour together! It was a really cool experience.
Also, we had interviews with our Mission President (President Sorensen) the other day. The number of interviews that we have has changed (church wide) from once every transfer to 4 times a year. Since I knew I wouldn't have many more interviews with him I decided to ask him if there was any way that I could coordinate my flight with James' so that we could arrive to Sacramento on the same day. I was a bit nervous asking him because I didn't want him to think that I was already thinking about going home. Fortunately, he had the opposite reaction. He was all about it! He said they could try to work it out with church travel to arrange it. He said James and I might even be able to meet on a connector flight like in Texas and then fly into Sacramento together. After we talked about it for a minute President started to get choked up. He said, "Thinking about the experience you two will have makes me cry. What a sweet reunion." I then was in tears and we both had to reach for the kleenex box. I think my companion was worried when she saw me come out of my interview because she could tell that I had been crying haha. Anyways, nothing is set in stone but it's a possibilty! Isn't that cool!?
Well I have to go. Hope you all have a great week! I love you all tons and tons!
Sister Kingston

Here are a few pics:

Me and some of the other Sisters with the Fortes (Faith Leroi and Lee Jr) with their grandkids Dalon and Deon who just got baptized earlier this month!
 Me giving a comment to Abe. One of the buses from the Boy Scouts
 Playing Simon Says with Scouts
 Sister Park and me outside the Temple
           Sister Decker in the middle had to go home early because of health reasons :(
                                                                 In the Newel K Whitney Store
                               Elders Robison and Erckinbrack...this is when my camera broke :(
 At zoned out on labor day. This isnt the Kirtland zone. They split up our zone since we're pretty much all Sisters. So we joined the Findlay zone. Don't they look like you sense the sarcasm? Lol

Some of us Sisters got to go to a steak dinner because we helped out at a community event called the Strawberry Festival. The steak was HUGE and soooooo good! The first time Ive had steak on my mission...and possibly the last.
Sometimes you just don't have time to use the ironing board haha.

Letter from week of September 22:
Hey Mom and Dad and family!

Mom tell Grandma and Aunt Leslie and Sabrina I said Hi! Hope you all have fun. You'll have to tell me all about it! Thanks for sending my card! I haven't gotten a new camera yet because I've had to use my money from home to buy food haha. When I get my mission fund card I'll reimburse myself and buy a camera. So you'll have to wait just a little longer for pics. Wow, you might be moving? Thats exciting! Just make sure you dont throw any of my stuff away when you move haha.
Yup, James e-mailed me and told me he was training. We almost trained at the same time. I was only with my greenie for one transfer though. And Dad thanks for the congrats on hitting my year mark...but I haven't yet Lol. It's coming up pretty soon though in November! Crazy!
Well, this weeks letter is gonna be really short because I waisted a bunch of time trying to figure out how to load pics on a card reader. I was unsuccessful so now I only have a few minutes to write.
Main news is that we set a baptismal date with our investigator Michelle for October! We're super excited! Also, one of our investigators Lakeisha invited two friends to church on Sunday! It was a miracle that they came but another cool thing is that we had contacted one of them on the Street just 2 days prior. When he saw us he was like, "Didnt you give me a card the other day?" We were like,"YEAH!" haha. We're hoping to teach them both as new investigators.
Well I have to go, sorry so short! I love you all and hope you have a great week!
Sister Kingston ;)

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Retirement Center

Hi Mom, Dad, and Fam,
Thanks for your e-mails and especially the pics! The triathalon sounds like fun. I'm in for next year as long as I'm not away for school :). Wow, lots of changes in the Stake. I'm happy for Katrina, I know she will do AMAZING!
Mom I'm not sure what kind of usb cord my camera needs, I forgot to look. But I only have one memory card so if you could send me another then I could mail the other one home.
This e-mail's gonna be a short one, sorry. It's the day before tranfers so there's a lot to get done and I don't have much time. Yup I'll be getting a new companion tomorrow. I was only with my greenie for one transfer, but I know this is what the Lord wants. I actually like change. The longest I've ever been with a companion has been 2 transfers. So it looks like the Lord has established a pattern with me haha. I think it's because I just go with the flow. I'll let you know what happens!
Last week was good! One of our investigators, Michelle, stopped drinking coffee before we even taught her the Word of Wisdom. I love her! She has a physical disorder called prater willie (which I have no idea how to spell). Giving up coffee was a HUGE deal for her so we're super excited about her progress. She lives in a group home and I love going over there to teach her. Seeing the other residents puts a smile on my face.
Speaking of residents putting a smile on my face, we volunteer at a retirement center for a couple hours each week. I LOVE it! We start out by doing exercise with them. We all (there's about 30 of us) just sit in our chairs and do different hand motions and march in place. We follow the instructor Hector and he plays some 80's work out music haha. It's so cute to see all of these seniors doing these chair exercises in unison! After exercise we help with whatever activities are going on. Last week we had a pizza party! As we helped to serve pizza all of the residents kept telling us that we were so beautiful and they would ask us about our missions. We've definitely made lots of new friends there!
Well I'd better get going. Oh yeah, this weekend we have two baptisms!! I'll make sure to take pics and talk about it next week. I love you all tons and pray for you daily. Write me!
Sister Kingston


Hey Everyone!
Dad, your e-mail did make it on time. So I would never have even known that you forgot about me...except that you said you did Lol. I'm glad you had fun at the Michael Buble concert. I love him! In fact all of us Sisters do. Sometimes when we make referral calls we get to listen to some of his songs on people's ring backs. We put it on speaker so everyone can listen haha.
Things in Kirtland have been crazy! Four sisters left in the past 2 weeks. Three of them went home for health reasons and then we had a visa waiter who finally got her visa and left for Spain. It's been kinda sad around here lately. We really do become best friends so losing Sisters is hard.
Tours have slowed down a lot! If I'm still in my area next transfer (in a week) they'll probably cut us down to 2 days in Kirtland a week rather than three. I'm pretty sure I'll stay in this area for one more transfer at least, but you never know for sure.
I've been thinking about the random experiences that I get to have on my mission. For example, a couple days ago I took a married couple from Switzerland on tour. He teaches seminary there and they'll be studying church history this year. It hit me that kids all around the world would be learning about the place where I get to serve!
I've also thought about how my mission will effect the rest of my life and how I raise my family. As I've served with different companions I've come to truly appreciate my upbringing. I've had multiple comps say the phrase, "Only on a mission" and my response is usually, "You mean you've never seen that before?" I guess I'm still surprised that a lot of these Sisters haven't been exposed to different cultures and backgrounds before. Dont get me wrong 'Ive had plenty "Only on a Mission" moments, but I'm definitely happy that I didn't have to wait until I came on a mission to be well rounded :)
Well, I have to go. Sorry not much exciting news. It's cooled down a lot which I'm excited about! I can't wait for fall,  it's going to be AMAZING! The gospel truly does bless us and don't be afraid to share that with someone you know this week! Thanks for everything and I love you all!
Sister Kingston
p.s. Cool experience. This girl calls into the referral center and I answer the phone. Her number pops up on the computer screen and I see the 916 area code :) Her name is Jenae. She's 16 years old and has been less active for a long time. She just moved back to California about a year ago after living in North Carolina. She was calling to get the number of her assigned Bishop because she wants to start coming back to church. I put in her address on to find out who her Bishop is. At first I thought she was in a ward in the East Stake because instead of looking at "assigned meeting house" I looked at "closest meeting house". I realized this after calling Bishop Timpson and leaving a message haha. Anyways, I find out that she's in Natomas 1st ward! I called the Elders and told them to visit her. She lives with her non-member grandma so hopefully they'll be able to teach her! So family, here's your assignment for the week. If she comes to church make her feel welcome and introduce yourselves to her! Tell her I said hi too :)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Midlife Mission Crisis

Hey Family!
Ah,  Im sad I didnt get to see Zach. Ask him what color shirt he was wearing so I can find out which Sister took him on tour. Mom, thanks sooooooooo much for the package!!! Youre the BEST! Every time someone gets a package all the Sisters crowd around to see whats inside. They loved hearing about camp and the miracle popcorn and Grandma and Grandpa's missionary experience! Oh and Dad your zucchini bread got eaten right up. The travel cross country did make it a little dry, but it was still really good! Can you do me one last favor Mom?! I promise this will be the last thing I ask you to send! Can you send me a couple copies of David's cds for some of my investigators and my gray Vans (shoes). I need the shoes by Sept 6th for something called zoned out. All of the zones get together at the Johnson Farm and we have competitions between zones. Anyways I need some regular tennis shoes to run around in. Sorry Im so needy.
So Bishop Sharp eh? He'll do awesome! The ward luau sounds like it was a success. Oh and Mom, sorry about your fingers! It sounds like youre healing nicely though :)
Well, today is my official 9 month mark from entering the MTC. Its so weird how time just flies by. Every time there's a new month, I cringe a little. Dont get me wrong I'm going to be so excited when I get to see all of the fam when I come home, but everything else not so much haha. Eight Sisters went home last transfer. Some of them were my best friends out here. Theyve written me since and have made me even more nervous to go home haha. Sorry to be such a debbie downer. I really dont think about coming home very often but today it just hit me. Mid life mission crisis Lol.
Well, moving on. This week we had some good lessons. We have a cool investigator named Michelle. I dont know if I already told you about her. She lives in a group home because she has a physical disorder. She is accountable though. She was a former investigator about a year ago but I guess she randomly didnt want to be taught any more. We decided to stop by and meet her one day. When we met she told us she had been praying for a change in her life and knew that we were an answer to her prayer. On our first lesson we committed her to baptism and she said, "Oh yes, definitely!" We're taking it slow with Michelle because of her disorder. She just started dialysis this week because one of her kidneys is failing so we're not sure how it will affect her progression. In other news we have 2 baptisms scheduled for Sept 4th. Delan (13) and his little brother Dion (9). Theyre really excited! We're meeting with them every day that we're not at Sites so that they'll be ready. Ill let you know how it goes.
Well time is about up. Just know that I love you all so so much and pray for you daily. Thanks for everything! This gospel is AMAZING!
Sister Kingston
p.s. Mom sorry I havent sent pics lately. I lost my usb chord
so I dont have a way of sending them through e-mail :(

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

13 Bus Loads of Scouts!

Hey everyone! Wow, a new Bishop. Youll definitely have to keep me posted on who it is! Thanks for sending those garments Mom and Dad! Im glad your having such a nice summer there. Here its crazy hot. Plus we dont have any A.C. in our apartment so its pretty uncomfortable. We have a fan which helps a little but I swear it's more humid in our apartment than it is outside Lol.
We had a cool experience on Monday. 13 bus loads of scouts came to Kirtland that day. 13!!! There were 14 of us Sisters working sites (some had to give up their p-day). We did something a little different. We all went to the Morley Farm, which is about a mile away from the visitor center. Normally a senior couple gives the tour. The Morley Farm is where the 4th conference of the church was held, where the first High Priests were ordained, where Heavenly Father and Christ appeared, and where Joseph Smith prophesied that the Church would grow to fill North and South America and the world. Most of these events took place in or near a log school house on the Morley's property (they had about 100 acres, the church owns 16 of those acres now). The school house no longer exists so the tour is given outside on some benches (pretty much like how they give tours at the Sacred Grove). Well, since there were so many scouts, it would be impossible for all of them to take a tour at the same time. So each Sister got on a bus and we told them about the Morley Farm standing at the front of the bus. I got to use the mic and everything! haha It was a cool experience! After our quick speeches , they all got off the buses and ate lunch there on the grass. It was neat to see all of these young kids, who will become missionaries one day. We told them that as they prepared and eventually served missions that they would be helping to fulfill the Prophecy that Joseph Smith gave there about the growth of the Church.
After the Morley Farm, we all headed over to the Visitor Center and gave them tours there. There were too many scouts for any companionship to take a tour together, so each Sister took multiple tours by themselves. We were all dead tired at the end of the day! It didnt help that it was super hot and humid outside. I think I drank about a gallon of water that day lol.
I had a really neat experience taking the scouts into the School of the Prophets. It was almost overwhelming to see this room full of Aaronic Priesthood holders. I pictured them as younger versions of the men who gathered and studied there. I know they felt the Spirit in that room and I hope they remember that experience.
Well, Im about out of time. Thanks for everything! I love all of you! Have a great week!
 Sister Kingston

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

It's so hot!

Hey Family!
Dad, yes it has been HOT here. I hope it cools down soon too! Good luck this school year with your class. Mom, wow camp sounds like it was a huge success! I teared up as I read about the iron rod experience. Camp was always a place where I felt the Spirit super strong. I know the girls will always remember how they felt that night...and throughout the whole week. Don't you just love working with the youth?! My favorite tours to take here in Kirtland are youth groups. I've had some really powerful experiences lately with youth. Last Monday, I came into the visitor center and Sister Butterfield (our Site Director's wife) handed me a note. I wish I brought it with me so I could tell you exactly what it said. The leader of one of the youth groups that had come over the weekend called into the visitor center and talked with one of the senior couple sisters, who then wrote down what she said to give it to me. Does that make sense? Anywho, I'll paraphrase what the note said.
"Sister Kingston,
So and so (I forgot the name) called in to thank you for taking the youth group on tour. She especially wanted to thank you for the testimony you bore in the School of the Prophets. In the testimony meeting they held many of the youth mentioned your name and talked about how your testimony strengthened them. Many have now resolved to go on missions themselves. "

Getting that note really helped me to understand the impact the Spirit can have on youth. We're always told by Elder Butterfield that the people here won't remember the little facts or the history, but they will remember the feelings they felt. I thank the Lord every day for the opportunity I have to bear witness of the hallowed ground in Kirtland, where the Savior has walked.
Well, It's now been a week since my new companion and I have been together. Her name is Sister Debenham and she is from all over. I think she's lived in 6 states thus far. Nope her Dad wasn't in the military, he's a Doctor. He just likes to move a lot. She said they moved every few years. She actually used to live here in Cleveland, when she was in elementary school. Isn't that funny?! Dad to answer your question, as a trainer you are responsible to teach your greenie pretty much everything haha. No pressure right? Basically there are a lot of mission rules and ways of doing things that aren't taught in the MTC, so I get the privilege of teaching those to her. I'm not worried, she's been picking things up really fast. I'm just hoping that we find more investigators so she can teach more.
It's been a weird adjustment to have 8 sisters leave and 10 new ones come in. Some of the 8 were my best friends so it was really hard to see them go. It is weird now to be one of the oldies, because I still feel like I just got here. I have a feeling the last half of my mission is gonna fly. So 'Im trying to take advantage of the time I have left and really focus on my purpose as a missionary!
Well, I have to go. Thanks for all of your support! I just love each of you soooooooo much. Seriously, I always brag about my family to the other sisters haha. It usually ends by them saying, "I want to meet your family one day!" I'm not even joking, everyone loves you all lol. Have a great week!
Sister Kingston

Wednesday, July 7, 2010


Hey Mom and Family,
Mom, thanks so much for sending those! The heat has been killin me lately! I def need summer clothes. I bought a few things the other day. We cant use our missionary fund to buy clothes, so I probably wont have any money when I get home. Oh well, that's life haha. I hope you have fun at girls camp! That's awesome that there are non-members going. I hope the girls reach out to them and are a positive influence! Happy Birthday Takai! I hope you all have fun at the Birthday party! Im glad everyone had a good 4th! Mine was pretty good. We went to church and then had lunch at a recent converts house, a lesson with a less active, dinner with a member, and then we went home and weekly planned. We weekly plan each week, normally in the middle of the week but we saved it for sunday so we wouldnt have to tract on the 4th. We did get to see some fireworks that night. There's a park right behind our apartment complex where they did a show. On Monday, the Butterfields (our Site directors) had a big BBQ for all of us Sisters and Senior couples. It was lots of fun. I took a few pics, hope you like them.
We're still struggling to find new investigators. We do have one though. Her name is Brenda. She was actually a former investigator just a couple months ago. She knows the gopel is true and has a testimony, she just has a smoking problem and has a hard time making it to church. We set a baptismal date with her for Aug 21, so hopefully she'll be ready. We took her to Kirtland on Saturday. We watched the full length Joseph Smith movie and then we took her to the School of the Prophets. She loved it, and it was a cool experience! We then went to the play, "This is Kirtland" at the stake center. It was really well done! I just love it here!
Well, this transfer is over in just two weeks. This next transfer will be CRAZY. With 8 sisters going home and ten new sisters coming out it will be an adjustment for sure. I found out a couple days ago that I will be training one of the ten. I kind of already knew I was going to train, just because of the numbers. But now that I know for sure Im kinda stressed. Usually they dont tell you youre training until about 3 days before transfers. Then on the monday before transfers (which are on wednesday) everyone training goes to a training meeting at the mission home in Cleveland. Well, apparently there are changes that have been made to the way new missionaries are trained. So all of us who are training and all of the Zone Leaders and District Leaders have to go to a four day training (2 days this week and 2 days next week) to learn about the changes being implimented. The first day is tomorrow, Ill let you know how it goes! Oh and next week the meeting is on Wednesday and Thursday so my p-day wont be until Saturday. Its gonna be a long week haha.
Yesterday, We had our weekly Kirtland training meeting (with all the sisters) in the temple. We practiced for the Emma festival, which will be on the 12th. It was so neat to be in the temple early in the morning and singing hymns from the original hymnal. There were a few solos that we got a sneak peak of too! A new missionary, Elder Bills is an award winning singer (according to our Mission President haha). He sang "A Poor Way Fairing Man" and it was incredible. He sang the last three verses acapella and it was AMAZING. The spirit was so strong. Also Sister Watt sang "Asleep in Jesus" at least I think that's what it's called. It was in the original hymn book and it was Emma's favorite. It's supposed to be like a lullaby. It was sung at her funeral. I balled the whole time Sister Watt sang it. I wish I could video it for all of you but cameras arent allowed :(
Thanks for sending pics! All the kids look so big. I cant believe that Ill hit my half way mark next transfer! Time is just flying by. Im trying to take advantage of the short time I have here. The gospel is true and Im so blessed to be a part of this great work! I love you all!
Sister Kingston
p.s. I thought my face was going to melt off on the 4th and 5th! You can tell from the pics how moist it is outside!

Hey Dad,
Yeah the weather here has been...HOT! Today it's supposed to be like 93. The humidity is definitely not my friend. What happened with the lawn mower? You didnt tell me the story. Well, I hope you're doing better. You hurt your ankle? Are you on crutches or anything?
Wow, I had no clue that there was a hurricane in James' area. As missionaries we really don't know much about what goes on in the outside world, which is a blessing. A couple weeks ago there was a tornado that came through an area of our mission. A bunch of the Elders helped with the recovery. Service is a great way to soften hearts!
I'm glad you all had a good 4th! I'll describe what I did on the 4th in the e-mail I send to Mom. Just wanted to say a quick hello :) Love ya!
Sister Golightly (sister Shoells last companion), Sister Shoell, Brenda, and me
Sister Shoell's (my companion) mom sent us glow sticks and a 4th of july banner amongst other things.
This is another favorite of the sisters here, take a picture while making razz (I dont know the word?) noises
Ok this is what us sisters like to call shake face! You shake your face while you take a pic and this is what it
looks like.
Sister Wilks (my first comp) and me :)
Two of my VERY BEST friends Sister Wirig and Sister Wright
More Sisters :)
At breakfast after the Temple on Tuesday

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

School of the Prophets

Hey Mom and Family,
Wow, thanks for the rundown on the reunion. Sounds like all of you had lots of fun! Ill be looking forward to seeing those pics! Im not gonna lie though, missing the reunion does hurt my heart a little. It sounds like everyone was there except for James and me :( Tell everyone that they ALL better come next year too!
So Ive been having my bff out here (Sister Wright) call Uncle Max's mom and talk with her about the gospel. Shaefer gave me her name as a referral. Sister Wright talked with her for a good 45 minutes this past Sunday, and she's going to keep calling her every couple weeks to see how she's doing. She left her with some scriptures to read and sent the missionaries to her house so hopefully all will go well.
Well, I dont really have much to report this week. We still dont have any investigators in my new area. We have a few potentials though so thats good. Sites has been crazy! Ive even had to take some tours by myself. There were so many groups that we had to split up companionships. On Friday we had about 1600 people come through. One of my favorite tours thus far was one that I took by myself the other day. The youth group was from Las Vegas. There were about 60 of them, and I took about 20 on my tour. They were the sweetest kids ever! My favorite room is the School of the Prophets. The spirit there is amazing. After reciting a testimony by John Murdock, I bore my testimony that Christ lives and loves us all. I tried not to cry, but I couldnt help it. Normally, however, if I do cry I at least have a companion there to jump in when I can no longer speak. When I felt the tears coming on I thought to myself, "oh no, what am I going to do!" Fortunately for me the man who organizes this youth trip (this was his 36th time) was on the tour and he asked if we could sing a hymn. One of the kids suggested "I Know that My Redeemer Lives". So, we sang the first verse of the hymn and it was powerful. Ill always remember that tour. I saved some of the comment cards that the kids left and Im putting them in my journal :)
Sister Shoell and I met a cool man last night while tracting. He was sitting out on his front porch enjoying the cool summer breeze. His name is John Turner. John is 60 years old, African American, and has dark blue eyes. Just by looking at him you can tell that he's had a rough life. After talking with us for a while he told us that he's been trying to change his life around. We taught him the healing power of the Atonement and that he can be forgiven of things he did in the past. Before we left we asked if he would offer a prayer. We knelt in his front yard and he prayed, probably for the first time in years. Maybe even for the first time ever. After he closed, he had tears in his eyes. He was so humble and sincere. We're going back tonight to give him a Book of Mormon, Ill let you know how it goes. Well that's pretty much all I have to report. Hope everyone is back safe and sound at home. I love you all! Ill be thinking of you on the 4th!!
Sister Kingston

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Busy Summer!

Hey Mom Dad and Family!
Dad , Happy belated Father's day! It sounds like you had a good day up at the farm. Tell everyone at the reunion I said hello and update me on how everyone's doing! That's cool that Jake gets to be baptized in the river! Take pictures! Who from Auntie Leslie's family will be there? If Mike and his wife are there tell them the Sisters here who know them loved them! Mike sold security systems(?) in Ohio last summer and lived in one of the ten areas that sisters serve in. My last companion Sister Frisch was serving in their ward. She said they probably wont remember her, but she was super impressed with them. Kate talked with her one night at an activity and Sister Frisch said Kate made her feel normal because she talked to her as if she didnt just see the name tag :)
Mom Im so proud of you for being a missionary! I used to think it was so hard to talk to people about the gospel, but really its not. What do you have to lose? The worst they can do is say no, and you move on to the next person until you find people who are prepared to accept. You should carry around pass along cards with you. I like the "Finding Faith in Christ" cards and the "Book of Mormon" cards. They have a website on the back that I always tell people to check out ( I challenge you to get some from the missionaries in Grandma's ward and then give at least one away as you travel home. All you have to do is say, "Can I give you this card? It's for a free Book of Mormon. Reading the Book of Mormon has helped me find happiness and I know it can do the same for you." You can tweak it to your liking of course. Let me know how it goes :)
Well this week has been good. As far as investigators go we don't really have any. We are in finding mode. We have one at the moment but he's what we call an internigator. He's been investigating for a year and a half now. His name is Tony and he's a youth minister. I love him, dad he looks like Emit Smith haha. Tonight will be my first sit down lesson with him so I'll let you know how it goes. I love Tony's neighborhood. He lives in Maple Heights. It's part of my new area and it's just outside of Cleveland. There are a lot of humble people there.
Sites are getting busier and busier. This Friday we have over 1,000 people scheduled to come. Not to mention all of the families that come through. There are some extra things happening this summer too. We have the Emma festival, held in the Kirtland Temple in July. "This is Kirtland" a play put on by the Kirtland stake is every weekend in July. We just had strawberry festival (it's a carnival at the Kirtland Highschool) where all of us Sisters sang. We also had a BBQ with the Community of Christ this past week. I have a feeling that summer is going to fly by.
Well I'd better get going. Have fun on vacation and dont forget to write me! Tell everyone at the reunion to write me too!! Love you all!

Sister Kingston

Monday, June 7, 2010

Fourth Transfer

Hey Mom Dad and Family!
Hey fambam! Can you believe it's summer already?! Crazy! It sounds like you have a busy few weeks ahead. Make sure to tell everyone at the reunion hello for me! Have fun at girls camp Mom! Dad I'm sure it was sad leaving the River City ward. There's a quote from the Kirtland movie that we sisters usually recite around transfer time, "Whatever happens the Lord is in it" haha. Youll love the Talaofa Ward...try not to butcher their names lol.
I have to make this e-mail short. It's tranfer time again which means we have to deep clean our house today. Plus I got the news that I will be getting transferred so I have to pack again. This will be my fourth area in five tranfers! Most Sisters serve in 4 areas total their whole mission. Im sad to leave but I know everything happens for a reason. I just wish I could stay for a couple more weeks because our investigator Christy is getting baptized on the 18th. She's 16 and super cute! She has turned her life around 100%. She now has a sense of who she is and why she's here. She comes from a very wealthy family and her parents are so busy that they're not really involved in her life. She lives in a mansion and has everything she could ever want, but until she found the gospel she was sad all the time. The gospel is our greatest treasure in life! Christy bore her testimony yesterday in church for the first time. It was AWESOME! As I listened to her simple and sweet testimony of how the gospel of Jesus Christ has changed her life, I couldn't help but cry. The Spirit was so strong. After Sacrament everyone asked about her baptism and wanted to know if they could participate. Ive never been in a ward where the people love and support everyone like they do here. It's truly the way it should be!
Well, I have to go. Thanks for all of your love and support! I look forward to hearing about your lives each week :) Love you all tons!

Here's some pictures from sites: