Saturday, June 18, 2016

June 13, 2016

Hi family!

How is everyone! Happy Monday! I hope everyone had a good week. I am
so grateful for the opportunity that I have to sit down and write to
y'all today. It's been quite a week. To be honest, I am mentally,
physically, emotionally, and spiritually exhausted. Missions really
take a toll on you I've decided. My feet kill. My back hurts all the
time. It's just a struggle. But, I'm grateful for every trial and
especially grateful that sisters only serve for 18 months. I don't
think our bodies could take any longer. :) God definitely knew what he
was doing. Plus, the elders just need an extra 6 months anyways, so it
all works out. It's always nice when Monday comes around and when I
get to sit down and relax for a few hours. I am grateful that Heavenly
Father gave us preparation days.
This week was just another week. So many things happen each day that
when I try to reflect back on what happened, it's just all a big blur.
So many things happen everyday that it's just hard to keep track. I
guess the most exciting news of the week was seeing our lovely Nicole
get confirmed yesterday! It was so magical. She had a really rough
week and Satan was definitely trying to snatch her, but of course, she
remained strong and faithful and received the Holy Ghost. It was a
beautiful experience. Every time the words "receive the Holy Ghost"
are uttered, a beautiful feeling comes over me and reminds me of my
own baptism day. I am so grateful for the gift of the Holy Ghost that
I have. It's one of my bestest friends. I hope each of you feel the
same way about that special gift that we have been given. Nicole was
absolutely glowing and beaming all day. She is so happy and so proud
to be a member of the church. Everyone is just clinging to her and
bringing her in. My YSA ward is really great and I've met some amazing
people and have formed some amazing friendships. I am so excited to
see Nicole tonight at FHE . The more I see her, the happier I am.
She's just my kind of person. Another one of those people that I just
cannot wait for you to meet. I've already told her all about you guys
and she is excited too! Thanks so much for keeping her in your
prayers! She was my miracle!
We were able to do a lot of community service this past week and that
definitely filled my spiritual bucket. During the day from 10-4, we
are really slow and are having a hard time! No one is home because all
of the singles are working. President encouraged us to fill some of
those day time hours with service! It's been such a blessing and we
have seen tons of miracles come. This past week we scheduled a service
project with our YSA ward and went to a place called Second Harvest
Food Bank. All of us got together in this giant warehouse and sorted
through so much food and had a blast! We went through this big
orientation process and learned how to determine good food verses bad
food, and then we either threw out the bad, or placed the good in
their labeled bins. I was heart broken at how much food we had to
waste. Oh my goodness! I was just thinking about all my babies in
Haiti who would die to have all of the food that we were throwing
away. If any of the cans were dented or if the boxes were ripped or
anything, we had to toss it out. Anyways, it was a really neat
experience for us and really brought us closer to our ward family.
Serving definitely brings unity. When I get home I really want to do
more community service by myself, and as a family. So many blessings
come! Christ said it is more blessed to give than to receive, and I
have seen that to be very true! (Acts 20:35)
We were able to meet a few new people and teach quite a few lessons.
Some of which were really good, and some of which were not all that
great. We had a really good zone meeting and the theme was "GOLD." We
talked about how we can find the golden investigators, like Nicole,
that God is preparing. We talked a lot about visions, goals, and
plans, and how as we are working diligently and planning effectively,
we will be led to those who are searching for the truth. I have such a
strong testimony that God really is preparing his children, but it
takes a lot of faith and effort on our part to find them. That's the
challenge. We are meeting tons of great people, but I don't know how
elect and golden they are. I guess if anything, it's another contact
with the church and one day they will be ready to accept the gospel.
However, we do have a few people that we are working with who we
really feel are "golden" and we are excited for their progress!
Damon is our next potential. He is doing so great! He's just the
cutest little thing. This past week we were able to teach him the plan
of salvation and brought two members with us. We used the little
cutouts and he loved them! He was saying things and answering
questions and it just seemed like he was already a member. That's when
you know they are elect, when they are saying the right things and
it's all making sense to them. He absolutely loved the plan of
salvation and accepted a baptismal date of July 3rd! We are so
excited! We are really praying that he can be our next baptism. I have
great faith in him. He was found by Elder and Sister Garlick and I
know that they were supposed to meet him that day at the grocery
store. I love how intertwined God's hand is in our lives.
Just yesterday we witnessed so many miracles. We definitely saw the
tender mercies of the Lord. Sunday's always bring the biggest
miracles. Not only did Nicole get confirmed, but we had four
investigators at church! The members are really stepping up their
game. I think since they all experienced Nicole's baptism, it got them
all excited and they have such a greater desire to do missionary work.
Everyone had a spark go off inside of them or something! Two of the
investigators that came have been working with some other sisters in a
different area, but are YSA age and want to start coming to our ward.
They are coming to FHE tonight and I am super excited. They are
Hispanic, but they speak English really well. They want to get
baptized in July and I am really excited for their progress. They also
came to the mission presidents fireside a few weeks ago and really
enjoyed that. They are "golden." I can just feel it. The other two
investigators that came are just friends of the members and they both
agreed to start meeting with us. I'm telling you, church brings so
many miracles. If you could just get people to attend church, the
spirit will touch their hearts and most of them end up wanting to hear
more. I am super excited for this week and for the lessons that we
already have set up. That always makes it nice when we have set
lessons. I think it's going to be a really good week. I'm just feeling
it. So hot and so humid, but we got this. I may or may not die of heat
exhaustion, so you best keep me in your prayers please. Oh also,
Charlotte driving is CRAZY and we almost died like 10 times this week
so if you could pray that we are safe, that would be really great!
As my subject stated, I decided to attempt surgery on myself again
haha. This past week my toe started kind of acting up again and so I
decided to try to fix it. I think I'm super nervous to go to the
doctor and get shots and get it checked out because of all of the
horror stories that I've heard, but I may just need to humble myself
and do it before they have to end up like cutting my whole toe off
haha. I think I really succeed this time, but if it comes back again,
I have to give in and go. I can't afford to have it hurt on my
mission. Not happening. So, you can pray for that as well haha.
Well, let's see, sorry this is super all over the place. I've been
starting and stopping this email a lot today. We are at the church
playing basketball and someone brought a guitar... And I've been a
little bit distracted. :) I'll try to wrap this up with some of the
things that I've learned this week and hopefully leave y'all with a
little spiritual thought.
Lately I have been thinking a lot about faith, and a lot about
blessings. Saturday night Sister Nunies and I got a call around 9 pm
and got asked to teach RS last minute. Of course we said yes, and we
ended up planning a short lesson. It was on the law of tithing. As we
really started studying and thinking about it, it made me realize how
important it is that we ACT first, before the blessing comes. I gained
such a strong testimony of tithing and that's what I kind of wanted to
just briefly share with you today.
Tithing is an ancient, divine law. It has been given to us since the
very beginning of time. It shouldn't be something that is shocking or
new to us. It's been a commandment from the very beginning and it is
first mentioned in Genesis. The Lord gave the law of tithing. If we
follow his law, we prosper, but when we find what we think is a better
way, we meet failure. Why would you risk not paying tithing? You
basically would just be setting yourself up for failure. Whomever
rejects the law of the tithe is the man who has not given it a fair
try. President Hunter once said, "A testimony of the law of tithing
comes from living it." You must try it.
He also said, "If one thoughtfully observes the proselyting done by
the missionaries, the teaching program of the Church, the great
educational system, and the building program to erect houses of
worship, there will come a realization that it is not a burden to pay
tithing, but a great privilege." As I started thinking about that, I
started thinking about all of the things that we get to use and that
we have, and a lot of it is because of the tithing that the faithful
members pay. When Elder Zwick came to our mission, he said that a
temple in Charlotte would be built, if we could get more faithful
tithing payers here. We have so much work to do!
"Pay an honest tithing. This eternal law, revealed by the Lord and
practiced by the faithful from the ancient prophets down to the
present, teaches us to put the Lord first in our lives. We may not be
asked to sacrifice our homes or our lives, as was the case with the
early Saints. We are challenged today to overcome our selfishness. We
pay tithing because we love the Lord, not because we have the means to
do so. We can expect that the Lord will open “the windows of heaven”
(Malachi 3:10) and shower down blessings upon the faithful. We cannot
afford to deny ourselves these blessings. We cannot afford not to pay
our tithing. What we give, and how we give, and the way we meet our
obligations to the Lord has eternal significance."
I want to just invite each of you to make a greater effort to pay an
honest tithe. I promise you will be blessed. It has been really hard
being on my mission and not being able to experience the blessings
that have come from tithing. I have really tired to pay a really good
fast offering to make up for those blessings and I have seen the
increase! I promise that it's worth paying a generous fast offering as
If you are struggling to pay your tithing or struggling with anything
else, immerse yourself in the very things that helped build your core
of faith: you exercise faith in Christ, you pray, you ponder the
scriptures, you repent, you keep the commandments, and you serve
In Ether 12:6, it reads, "And now, I, Moroni, would speak somewhat
concerning these things; I would show unto the world that faith is
things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not
because ye see not, for ye receive no witness until after the trial of
your faith." TRY IT! TRY paying tithing and you will see the blessings
I LOVE YOU ALL SO MUCH!! I hope you have a great week!! Sending you
all my love!

Sister Worthington

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

June 7, 2016

happy june!

Hi family & friends!
Another week down. Another month down. It's officially Summer here in North Carolina! Ah! It's hot & humid! This past week we have had some crazy rainstorms and it's increased the humidity quite a bit. I thought that I would have been adjusted to it by now, but apparently not. I feel so sweaty and gross all the time, but I guess it's keeping my skin moisturized. Haha. We'll just go with that. :) I apologize in advance for this shorter email... The lovely elders in our district convinced Sister Nunies and I to go to this trampoline park and jump for hours... And as a result, it took up most of our emailing time. I will try my best to type as fast as I can. I'll probably do more of an Elder Parkinson style email. :)
It's been an amazing week. So much happened. So much we had to do. But oh so many smiles & tears. I hope each of you had a good week and I hope you could each feel my prayers.
Last Monday we just hung out with the district and messed around!
After preparation day was over, we didn't end up having FHE with the ward due to Memorial Day, so instead, we went and saw two new investigators that we found the previous week. They are pretty fun guys... But we aren't so sure that they are interested for the right reasons. Dang boys! I guess we will just have to see if they really keep their commitments and actually come to church. That seems to be the big test. They say they're interested... But then again.. I don't really always feel that sometimes. The spirit is pretty good at letting me know. I'd say that my spirit of discernment has gotten really good on the mission. :) God helps us find the elect and helps tell us if they aren't elect. Anyways, it was a good day and we got one lesson, so we can't complain. :)
Tuesday was great. Woke up and did our normal routine.. And then we went and did service for 4 hours at the Matthews HELP center. I am loving that place more and more each week. It's been so fun serving there and we have been able to have some amazing experiences come from it. So many people recognize us and ask us questions. So many people have been so shocked that we are out serving in the community and not just knocking on doors. Obviously they just don't understand everything that we do. :) After service we had an apt to rush to at the church. Well, due to Charlotte traffic (which is the worst thing in the world btw) we ended up being 15 minutes late to our apt with our cute new investigator named Damon. (Start praying for him.. He's our next baptism.) However, we totally forgot that transfers were still going on at the church, so our cute little investigator was greeted by all the departing missionaries and all of the brand new missionaries. He sat down and ate lunch with everyone and had a great chat with President and Sister Alexander! By the time we got there, he was basically prepared for our lesson! We went downstairs and taught him the message of the Restoration and it was incredible. This kid is amazing!!! He has such a desire to learn and is another person who is so prepared. He's just a young guy and wants to be surrounded by better people. He said he just loved how happy and nice everyone was and the way that he was feeling. We were praying that he wasn't overwhelmed by everything going on.. But he really seemed to love it and was so excited to meet with us again. He is great and we are so excited to see where he goes. We have an apt. With him this Wednesday and will set a baptism date! Then, the highlight of Tuesday was seeing my Sister Cottis one last time! Ah!!! I thought that I wasn't going to be able to see her again... But when I saw her, we ran and embraced for a solid 5 minutes. We just cried in eachother's arms and it was one of the most sacred experiences on my mission. I have come to love that girl so much. I know I talk about her all the time.. But really.  I love her. It was the hardest thing to let her go and watch her leave this wonderful mission. She has done so much for the mission and has made such an impact and will forever be remembered! I was a little thrown off the rest of the night due to seeing her.. But it was exactly what I needed. She emailed me this week and is doing well, and so I am happy. :) We had a great dinner appointment with a less active and had some real authentic Mexican food. It was heavenly. I'm telling you.. The food here in Charlotte is dangerous. Ahhhh. So good. Ended the night with seeing a few others and successfully planned and went to bed.
Wednesday was just Wednesday. I'd say that it's the hardest day of the week. Right in the middle.. Nothing going on.. It's kind of a struggle. Thankfully, our district all got together and went to a really neat park! We did service for a few hours and picked lots of weeds and picked up lots of trash. Fun! It's amazing how much I have come to LOVE doing service and service projects. I don't know if it's just because it gets us out of door knocking and finding all day in the heat, or if it's just because I have come to love service because it fills my own bucket. I don't know, either way, I'm happy! We got 16 hours of community service this week combined, and I loved every second of it. We had a great district lunch afterwards and got to pass the huge nascar speedway on our drive there. That was pretty exciting!  I cannot wait to bring the family back. It's incredible! We had a few appointments afterwards, but of course, they all fell through. Darn!  It's okay though, we picked ourselves up and kept trucking along. It's amazing how fast you learn to get over things. We had a great dinner with some college kids and basically just tried to find people the rest of the night. We got to Skype Nicole for a solid hour and teach her a lesson over Skype because she was out of town, and that was really fun! I LOVE HER! That put us at 9:00 and it was time to plan and get ready for bed. Great day!
Thursday was wonderful! We did our weekly service at the soup kitchen and then had interviews with President and Sister Alexander. I totally didn't know we were having interviews. We found out late Wednesday night. I swear I just had interviews with President. It was crazy!!!
AH! I love him so much. We had a really neat interview and I will forever be grateful for those precious 20 minutes each transfer. He is truly a man of God and just has so much to offer. Another person that I cannot wait for you to meet. I learn so much from him and am so grateful to be so close to him. I love serving in Charlotte! Speaking of the Alexander's, this week we are bringing an investigator to the mission home and are teaching them in their house! I am so excited. I have never been to the new mission home yet, and have never taught a lesson with President and Sister Alexander. They have SO MUCH power and I am just so excited for our investigator to feel of the spirit that is in their home. I've heard wonderful things about it! We did our typical weekly planning session and then had to go to dinner. We had dinner with a returning member named Maxine, and she invited her non-member cousin to dinner. It was a super positive experience and we ended up spending a little bit more time with them than our typical hour, but it was totally worth it. We built some solid trust and had some solid girl talk. It was much needed. That's definitely the bonus of serving in the YSA ward. You get to talk to people your age and "be real" for a little while. It's great! We had to drive home before we turned into pumpkins and then had to plan! Such a wonderful day. I wish we could've taught more lessons... But sometimes you just have days that are full of so much stuff that you just don't have time to go out and find & teach!
Friday was fantastic! Oh my goodness. So much fun! We were pretty busy all morning and afternoon with appointments and finding time. We were trying to go contact a less active that we have never met before and we knocked on the door, and someone else answered. It was this sweet girl named Nikki. She said she just moved in a few weeks earlier and that the person that we were looking for moved two doors down. There was no doubt in my mind that we were supposed to knock on her door.
She was so kind and invited us right in. We had a good chat with her and she wants to come check out the church sometime. It was also a miracle that she was a YSA. We don't find those very often just by knocking on doors. It was a big miracle. The less active we were looking for wasn't even home.. So it ended up working out great. We didn't have a dinner appointment that night so we just grabbed a snack and decided to keep on working! Being a Friday night, we decided to go to uptown Charlotte! Oh my goodness! It was a blast. Sister Nunies and I just walked the streets of Charlotte and were in complete heaven.  The sun was going down and there was a beautiful sunrise and seeing the city just made it perfect! We talked to lots of different people and saw quite a few interesting things. This one guy was skateboarding and stopped us and asked who we were. We ended up having a 45 minute discussion with him right on the streets in Charlotte. He is so wonderful! Such a fun guy and interested in learning more. That was another miracle of the day. Before we knew it, it was time to go home.  It was the fastest 2 hours of my life! We were having so much fun and it just flew by. It kind of made me sad because sometimes I wish I could just be home on a Friday night walking the streets and shopping with my friends, but I'm grateful that I was able to enjoy this beautiful city and serve at the same time! Such a good day.
Saturday was the most stressful day of my life. Not kidding. Oh my goodness. I'm not even sure I should write about this day haha. In the morning, we had a mission wide conference call and learned a lot from President and Sister Alexander. They mostly prepared us for the Summer weather and just encouraged us to keep working hard, even though it'll be hard and super hot! Then we met up with the Spanish sisters in our zone and went to teach a YSA that they met. He was SO amazing, but came to find out, he was married and had a kid and they had no idea.  They just met him at a gas station so they just thought he was a single guy. Well, we had a great lesson, but ended up having to refer him to the other missionaries! Oh well! Still great! Then we went back to the same park that we did service at earlier in the week, and we did some more service. I guess each year this park has a big rubber duck race and so there were tons of booths and tons of things going on, and we just helped with whatever they needed us too! It was pretty fun, and would definitely be a great family reunion activity. The duck thing was sooooo great. I'll have to tell y'all about it another time.
Then, we still hadn't even done Nicole's baptism program because not everyone had gotten back to us. That was a struggle. YSAs are great... But struggle with accountability. We rushed to the library and had 30 minutes to make a program. Talk about stress. Somehow I remembered all my crappy computer skills that I have, and we ended up making it work out! Our ward mission leader is great, but is obsessed with the gym and working out, so he doesn't have time for us. It's a constant struggle haha. Oh well, love the kid to death. We then met some bug boys (guys out here selling pest control for the summer) at the church for dinner and had a good time with them. They're great! Then our District leader showed up, and then Nicole showed up! YAY!! She got interviewed and passed with flying colors! Of course! She is the cutest thing. She was just so excited and couldn't wait for her interview. That took up the rest of the night and then we headed home and went to bed. It was raining soooooo hard, so I definitely slept well. :) today I just learned that God really does have a plan for everyone and that Nicole really needed to get baptized. It all just fell right into place so perfectly. I don't know how we did it and got everything done, but somehow we did. I know that if it wasn't supposed to have happened, God wouldn't have let it, but it did, so obviously it was supposed too. I know there is no way that we could've done it without him.
SUNDAY WAS THE BEST DAY OF MY LIFE. Not only was it fast Sunday and not only did I get to partake of the sacrament, but... As I'm sure you saw on FB, Nicole got baptized after church and it was so amazing. I literally have no words to describe how perfect the day was. The chapel was completely full and we had so much support. Her boyfriend ended up baptizing her and as I was waiting in the bathroom for her to come out, I watched her walk up the stairs after she was baptized and she just was crying and had tears running down her cheeks. Talk about a little piece of heaven. There is nothing greater than seeing that, especially as a missionary. It was such a tender moment that I will never forget. Probably the most significant things on my mission. It was heaven. Literally. Sister Nunies was outside on the outside of the font, so she wasn't in the bathroom with me, so it was literally Nicole and I locking eyes, and it was incredible. Wish you could've been there. Wow! So powerful! She is getting confirmed next Sunday and I know that'll be a special day as well! I LOVE BAPTISMS! It was great. After her baptism we all went to her boyfriends apartment and had a huge cookout at the pool! Ahhhh so fun! It was kind of weird being in that environment, especially on a Sunday, but she really wanted us there, and we went with our ward mission leader and decided that it would be okay to support her. She also had 2 of her non member friends come and support her so that was really good to meet them as well. While we were all eating, Nicole got a text from her mom that said, "Really Nicole? I cannot believe you posted that picture on Facebook. The whole family is calling us and freaking out. We cannot believe you got baptized. Wow." She read that text out loud to us and I couldn't help but just want to cry. It was so sad. Her family has all turned on her, but she was totally okay and took it like a champ.  She just said, "Well hey! I have a new family now who loves and support me." It was amazing. She is so strong. I don't know how she's doing it. I love her so much!!! After that hang out, we went back to the church for another dinner, (all we ever do is eat. Ugh) and then we had the mission President's fireside! That was incredible! I got asked last minute to play the piano for a musical number, so of course I did that, and then was able to just relax and feel the spirit! Those meetings are always the best. They are for the missionaries to bring their investigators, recent converts, and less actives! President speaks, and then a recent convert speaks as well. It's a wonderful meeting! :) We were spiritually drained and we're ready for bed. I definitely slept well Sunday night. Such a good day. Went to bed super duper happy.
Well, I have to get running, but that was basically my week in a nutshell! Super good & super fun! I love being a missionary. I love this gospel with my whole heart and soul. Just last week Robert emailed me and told me that he got asked to speak in the Winston Salem Stake Conference next week in front of a general authority! Talk about amazing! I am so proud of him and know that he will do great. It's been so amazing emailing him and seeing him progress in the gospel.
Ah! Love love love love it! Keep him in your prayers. I hope you each have a great week and know that I am thinking about you and love you lots!! Cannot wait to see you. Let me know if you need anything!
Sending all my love your way!! Xo talk to ya in seven!

Happy Birthday Corrie Beth!! I love you!

Sister Kyla Worthington

From FACEBOOK POST June 7, 2016

Sister-Erica Nunies with Mary Nicole and Sister-Kyla Worthington at Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

June 7 at 11:28am · Charlotte, NC ·
I want to congratulate our girl, Nicole Harrison on her decision to get baptized this past Sunday! I am so happy and proud of you. It has been amazing to see the life changes you have made and the strong person you have become over the last couple of weeks. Thank you for letting us be part of your special day. Congratulations again girl, we love you!
"All those who humble themselves before God, and desire to be baptized, and come forth with broken hearts and contrite spirits, and … have truly repented of all their sins … shall be received by baptism into his church" (D&C 20:37).

Kyla's Post on Facebook June 7, 2016
"Before I die..." Is a very powerful statement. My companion & I came across this wall in downtown Charlotte and it made a big impression on me. It was amazing to see what others said they wanted to do before they die and return home. It made me think of the scripture Alma 34:32. "For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors." Before I die, I hope to be able to prepare myself to meet my Heavenly Father by living righteously and being who I was created to be.💛

Monday, June 6, 2016

May 30, 2016~We're planning a Baptism

We're planning a baptism!!!
Hi my cute people,
How is everyone? Is it really already Monday again? This week flew by. I hope you all had a great week and hope everyone is enjoying the beginning days of Summer! It sounds like many of the cousins have graduated and that life is just moving so quickly! I am happy to hear that things are going well and that you are all safe, happy, and healthy. I pray for each of you daily and hope that you can feel my prayers and my love for you! :)
After my last weeks email and after my really tough week, God blessed me with an amazing week and with happy spirits! This week was absolutely amazing! Sister Nunies and I saw so many miracles. I guess the biggest and most exciting news is that Sister Nunies and I get to stay another transfer together in the Charlotte area. I kind of realized that I forgot to tell you last week that it was transfers... But I just kind of assumed that I wasn't going to be transferred so I didn't say anything to you. And needless to say, that was the case! We are staying and I couldn't be more grateful. I have really grown to love my companion and have just had a blast with her. She is the most easy going, fun-loving person that I've ever met. There is just something about them Polynesians. :) I love her though and we are creating a lasting bond and an eternal friendship. Mission companions are the best. This past transfer was the fastest one of my whole mission. I swear we just got together and just came into this area. I don't know if it was because we were whitewashing and so it just went so fast.. Or what, but all I know is that it was the fastest 6 weeks of my entire life. It was over in a blink of an eye. The thought of only having 3 more transfers Kills me. That is not enough time. We have so much work to do it's not even funny!
The second biggest item of exciting news is that our lovely Nicole Harrison is getting baptized this Sunday, June 5th! You have no idea how big of a miracle this has been. I think I briefly mentioned her last week in my email.. But had no idea that everything was going to fall into place so perfectly and that we would be planning a baptism so quickly. It's going to be a busy, eventful week! I'm going to need some more prayers haha. Sister Nunies and I are a little bit stressed. As I mentioned last week, Nicole came to church and we set up an appointment to meet with her. Well, we met with her and had an amazing lesson and ended up staying at her house for 2+ hours talking about the gospel. To make a long story short, we taught her basically every single day this last week and finished teaching her her last lesson yesterday after church. This never ever ever happens. We taught her EVERYTHING in one week! What! She was keeping every single commitment that we were extending to her and she was even going above and beyond what we were asking her to do. She never wanted us to leave because she just wanted to keep learning more. She has a full notebook of notes and she is already half way done with the Book of Mormon. I have never ever ever in my entire life seen someone so prepared to receive the gospel. She came to church again yesterday and had a very powerful experience. One of the members of our bishopric pulled her aside and chatted with her and was just so impressed with the changed person that she is.
She just kept telling us about how happy this has already made her and how she hasn't had a desire to drink or party or do some of the things that she used to do in her previous lifestyle. She says she already feels better physically and mentally and has just been so so happy. She keeps saying that she just doesn't know how to explain it! We totally get what she means. :) As Mormons, we just stand out and are so happy. Anyways, she is getting baptized in 6 days and it will probably be one of the best days of my life. I have gotten SO close to her already and she is already talking about moving to Utah and rooming with me, and she is going to help me get through hygiene school. Literally, that's how close of friends we've become. It's great. It just goes to show how God truly does prepare his children and that he has a plan for each and everyone of us. We may not know and understand his timing, but, he really does have something specifically in mind for each one of us. Sister Nunies and I did nothing. This was all through the hand of the Lord. Nicole did her part, and he is blessing her like he promised. It's been such a beautiful thing to witness. I have already seen the change in her and have noticed the light of Christ really enter into her soul. It was just another testimony to me that this gospel is REAL and that it truly changes lives if we allow it too. I know that she wouldn't be doing this if she didn't know that it was right and true. She has already lost almost every single one of her friends and her family has completely turned her back on her. But, she's not turning back because she knows how right and true it is. She is already preparing to enter the temple and has set a date for next year to enter! She took us into her closet last week and started telling us all of the things that she needed to get rid of so that she could rock the "G" life. Hahah it was the absolute best. She wants to come shopping with us on P-days and we are going to help her pick out some modest dresses and skirts. This girl is a miracle, I'm telling ya. I cannot wait for you to meet her! Oh my goodness. Just talking about her makes my heart happy. I will be sure to send you pictures next week. It's going to be a dang good email next week. :)
Aside from all of that happiness, we are continuing to see miracles every single day. I think it just took us a solid transfer to figure everything out and get the ball rolling. Now we are ready to go and have got it all figured out! We have been receiving so many referrals lately and have been just meeting so many amazing people. I absolutely love working with the young single adults. They are way more open, more kind, and way more fun! They keep me on my toes. We have a few other people that we are working with and who should be baptized in June or July. They aren't quite as quick as Nicole, but we will help them get there. Jose is still struggling with his work schedule and that has put a big damper on the whole situation, but I know that it will happen when the Lord needs it to happen. He's so ready and has the purest and most simple testimony of the gospel and it melts my heart every time he shares it with us. Thank you for praying for him! I know he greatly appreciates it. I know that there is truly power in prayers. It's amazing when people can come together and pray for someone or something. I truly think that the windows of heaven are open and the power of heaven comes down. I have seen so many miracles and have been so blessed by the power of prayer, especially on my mission.
A few days ago we were able to attend a wedding and a baptism for someone that the Spanish sisters in our district were teaching! That was such an amazing experience. I got asked to play the piano for the wedding and for the baptism and it was really neat. I've never seen a non-lds wedding, and it was super neat! Although the whole thing was in Spanish, it was still amazing to see that this woman exercised enough faith and got married first, just so she could get baptized. It was so so special. I've attended a few Spanish baptisms on my mission and they have been super powerful experiences. I love how no matter where we are or who's getting baptized, the gospel is all the same. Everywhere you go. It's "home" everywhere! I find a lot of comfort in that. I'm grateful that I was able to be a part of Claudia's special day and am so grateful for the covenant that she made!
Yesterday I had a really powerful sabbath day. I truly feel like I am so much closer to the Savior on Sunday's. I feel way more close to the spirit and just feel better overall. My talk in sacrament meeting went fairly well and I feel like I didn't even say anything that I planned to say. The spirit definitely took over and I didn't even use any of my notes. Funny how that works. Definitely couldn't have done that before my mission. I mostly just talked about missionary work and the doctrine of Christ and how related they truly are. Missionary work IS the Doctrine of Christ and the Doctrine of Christ IS missionary work. I'm pretty sure when Christ was on the earth and was doing his mortal ministry, he wasn't really going around telling the people about his own doctrine. I believe he was SHOWING the people his doctrine and was LIVING his own doctrine. He is our perfect example of what the Doctrine of Christ truly is. He went about healing, serving, performing miracles, blessing, edifying, uplifting, inspiring, motivating, and ultimately sharing what he had with others and making them aware that they didn't have to suffer alone. It made me really grateful for my mission's emphasis on trying to embed the Doctrine of Christ into our hearts. If we truly understand what the Doctrine of Christ is and if we are truly living it, we are doing missionary work. We will want everyone to have what we have and experience what we've experienced and it will no longer be a "have to" share the gospel type of thing. It will become a "want to" share the gospel. Once you have felt the amazing power of the atonement of Jesus Christ, you will want to share it with everyone. It's the best feeling in the world!
After getting that done and over with and getting another training out of the way that I had to do for our district meeting this past week, I found myself studying some more and found the spirit really speaking to me this week. Especially yesterday! I feel like I just received so many answers to my prayers and questions and that is one of my favorite things in the world.
Just yesterday we were talking about how you can truly know if you're a "converted member of the church" and I feel like my prayers and questions had a lot to do with it. We talked about 10 questions that were a complete answer to my prayer and I want each of you to ask yourself these 10 questions and really think about them.
1. Have you ever said a prayer and felt like you were talking directly to Heavenly Father?
2. Have you ever partaken of the sacrament and felt the literal powerful cleansing effect of it?
3. Have you ever felt a higher sense of purpose while reading your patriarchal blessing?
4. Have you ever been reading the scriptures and just felt like a verse hit you so strongly and stood out to you?
5. Have you ever been ordained to a calling or received a particular assignment and received extra strength, beyond your own capacity to help you fulfill it?
6. Have you ever felt like you've been put in a situation where you felt like you were given the words that you were speaking?
7. Have you ever felt a sense of conviction when talking to someone or sharing something about the gospel and knowing for yourself that it was true?
8. While listening to music or lyrics, have you felt an intimate connection to the spirit?
9. Have you ever entered the temple and felt like there was a divine presence or being in the temple. Almost like "you've left earth" kind of feeling?
10. How many of you can commit to yourself that before you made a mistake, you were first warned by the Holy Ghost or by your own conscious?
Basically we talked about how if you have experienced any of these questions to some degree or another, you are on your way to conversion. They were self evaluation questions that really helped me gauge where I am at spiritually. Throughout our life, we will have experiences that will help us grow in faith and testimony. We must be worthy to receive the promptings of the spirit and put ourselves in situations that will allow the spirit to be present. I have really come to see that you are only a religious person if you have religious experiences and that you are only a spiritual person if you have spiritual experiences. We cannot just sit back and talk the talk. We have to put in effort to be able to walk the walk and have experiences.
These questions really made me reflect on the experiences that I've had on my mission and though out my life. I want to try harder and be better so that I can have more of those experiences with the spirit and with my Heavenly Father. I want to be able to grow and be more beautiful and pure inside. It made me think of 4 areas that I could improve on in my life to help me have more experiences.
1. The Atonement: I want to strengthen my testimony and my understanding of the atonement. I want to allow it to change my life and change who I am.
2. The Priesthood: I have so many examples of amazing men who honor and respect the priesthood in my life. I think that so many people stress to women that we don't need men and that we are not good enough because we cannot hold the priesthood, but in all reality, we need them and they need us so that we can build families and use the priesthood in the way that it's supposed to be used. It made me think of a time on my mission a while back where I was really struggling and asked my district leader at the time if he could give me a priesthood blessing. It was one of the most profound experiences of my life and I will never ever forget that blessing. It made me so grateful for the priesthood and made me want that for my future family. I want a worthy priesthood holder in my life. I know that as I continue to be worthy and continue to keep my covenants, that were made possible though the holy priesthood, I will be blessed and will become more converted. Each time we participate in priesthood ordinances, the powers from on high reach downward and draw us nearer to the heavens.
3. Sabbath Day Observance: This can be very hard sometimes. On Sunday we renew our covenants to think about heavenly father all week long and to be a better person. I have found so much strength in my life and blessings come from the renewed desire that I have to keep the sabbath day holy. It is my favorite day of the week and I cannot tell you how grateful I am for this special day. I know that it is so important to keep this commandment and that it is one of the greatest ways to withstand the temptations of the devil and be set apart and safe from the crazy, wicked world that we live in.
4. The Book Of Mormon: We need our scriptures. We need to build our testimony of the Book of Mormon. We need to REMEMBER what we read and experience as well. I love keeping a journal and reflecting back on all the times that I have felt the spirit while reading the scriptures or have received revelation or inspiration from that powerful book. However diligent we may be in other areas of our lives, I can promise you that there are only certain blessings that are to be found in the scriptures and through coming to the word of the Lord and holding fast to it. I love the Book of Mormon!
I was also reading in Helaman and was thinking about what a powerful example he was.
Although times were difficult and the society was becoming evil, Helaman was steadfastness in doing the Lord’s will and I think is a great example for us to follow, especially in these challenging latter days. In the scriptures it teaches us that we have the Lord’s assurance that he will bless and prosper his people if we will keep his commandments and remember to look to him as the source of our blessings. It also teaches us about the dangers of not turning to the Lord and remembering him. Pride is one of the worst sins and all of us are guilty of it. President Ezra Taft Benson once said;

"Think of what pride has cost us in the past and what it is now costing us in our own lives, our families, and the Church. Think of the repentance that could take place with lives changed, marriages preserved, and homes strengthened, if pride did not keep us from confessing our sins and forsaking them (see D&C 58:43). Think of the many who are less-active members of the Church because they were offended and their pride will not allow them to forgive or fully sup at the Lord’s table. Think of the tens of thousands of young men and couples who could be on missions except for the pride that keeps them from yielding their hearts unto God (Alma 10:6; Helaman 3:34–35). Think how temple work would increase if the time spent in this godly service were more important than the many prideful pursuits that compete for our time”
I absolutely loved that quote because I think it is so relatable to today and the things that we are dealing with today. Pride is taking over and it's creating some barriers! I hope that each of us can put aside the natural man and put aside our pride and truly just come to the Lord. Our lives would be filled with so much more happiness and joy.
In my reading this week, Helaman 3:35 stuck out to me the very most. "Nevertheless they did fast and pray oft, and did wax stronger and stronger in their humility, and firmer and firmer in the faith of Christ, unto the filling their souls with joy and consolation, yea, even to the purifying and the sanctification of their hearts, which sanctification cometh because of their yielding their hearts unto God." I broke that down and really studied it.
Sanctification has been defined as “the process of becoming free from sin, pure, clean, and holy through the atonement of Jesus Christ." I think that is our main goal in this life, is to try to become truly sanctified. Sanctification is a step in the path of striving toward perfection.
Humility. "To be humble is to recognize gratefully your dependence on the Lord--to understand that you have constant need for His support. Humility is an acknowledgment that your talents and abilities are gifts from God. It is not a sign of weakness, timidity, or fear; it is an indication that you know where your true strength lies. You can be both humble and fearless. You can be both humble and courageous. The Lord will strengthen you as you humble yourself before Him."
Firm in the faith. Elder Russell M. Nelson said that firmness in behavior and attitude is obtained individually: “Only as an individual can you develop a firm faith in God and a passion for personal prayer. Only as an individual can you keep the commandments of God. Only as an individual can you repent. Only as an individual can you qualify for the ordinances of salvation and exaltation." I loved that and realized that I am the one who is in charge of my life, and no one else. I have my agency and can make my own decisions and ultimately determine my destiny.
Yielding your hearts. The phrase “yield our hearts” means to surrender or give our hearts to God. When one yields his or her heart to God, he is surrendering his personal desires in exchange for the Lord’s desires. Yielding our hearts and souls to God is the highest form of consecration to the Lord: “Ultimate consecration is the yielding up of oneself to God."
It was a powerful verse for me and gave me some more things to work on. Okay, sorry I am going all over with this again. I just know that there is so much goodness in the scriptures and that we can learn so much.
I am hoping that as I focus on those four areas and try my best to strengthen my understanding and knowledge of those things, I will see a difference in my life. Do you want to join me? Let's strengthen our testimonies together. :) Sorry, I don't even know if any of this is making sense.. You know me.. Just rambling on and could go for days.
I better start wrapping this up before I make y'all fall asleep. I just hope that you can feel the love and the gratitude that I have for the gospel of Jesus Christ. It's everything to me. I am so grateful that I have been able to wake up everyday and bear my Savior's name on my chest and stand as his witness and be his representative. There is not a greater calling than being a full time missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I have never felt more joy in my life. Just thinking about Jesus Christ, thinking of what he looks like, his being, everything about him can have a POWERFUL effect on us physically, mentally, and spiritually and I have come to see that in my life as I have just tried to remember him daily. I also couldn't do this without each of you. I am grateful for your love and your support and for cheering me on on my incredible journey. I'm ready to give it all I've got and finish strong with no regrets. I hope each of you have a great week. I am praying for you. Please let me know if there is anything you need or anything specific that I can pray for. Talk to you in seven! P.s. Happy Memorial Day! P.s.s. Give my Sister Cottis lots of love this week. She comes home in 2 days! Love you to the moon and back! Xo
Sister Kyla Worthington 

First time having sushi on the mission.. I was in heaven.
& This is my adorable district. :)

This was posted on Facebook On June 5, 2016

Mary Nicole Today I made the best decision of my life and to be baptized. I can now say I am the happiest person on earth to be a part of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. — with Sister-Erica Nunies,Taylor James King, Sister-Kyla Worthington andAustin Phillips.


Mija Garlick These two sister missionaries sister Worthington and Sister Nunies are angels in my life!!! Sister Garlick

Sister-Kyla Worthington Ohhhhh my heart is so so happy! I love you so much darling & am so proud of you. Can't wait to create more memories! Today was magical. Thanks for letting me be apart of it. Xo💕