Monday, January 26, 2015

week 33







we saw so many miracles this week! it has been amazing. this week i realized the importance of using the Book of Mormon to help people come unto Christ. there is POWER in that book. i know its true, i know it was translated by a prophet of God, Joseph Smith. it is so special to me and i want it to bless others lives like its blessed mine. i know it's TRUE!!! and we are beginning to see lots of miracles by reading from it with those we teach.

Jose, our progressing investigator, is doing so awesome. please pray for him! he has the desire to be baptized but doesn't feel ready yet. he is incredible. he is so prepared and he is accepting everything! he has his doubts and questions and easily gets very distracted when we teach him.... also he is trying to learn english (so every lesson he'll say "como se dice... " (how do you say) to everything hahaha) but the spirit is so real and strong when we teach him. in God's time he will enter in the waters of baptism <3 u="">

here's a great story. so 2 weeks ago we called a potential named Juan to come to Church. his best friend is a member and he ended up coming! we have been calling him all week to try and set up an appointment, and after a really rude text sent back, we decided to stop contacting him. all the sudden we walk into church yesterday and he is sitting there with his Book of Mormon in his hands with the member friend... we were like WHAT THE? haha come to find out.... we've been contacting the wrong Juan. #spanishnames. He is awesome though! :)

last night we knocked on a random door, the man happened to be Spanish (super rare....) and he agreed to let us come in. all the sudden his dad is there... who is a less active member! (holy miracle!) we had a lesson with him, his name is Arnold. he is so Christlike and loving and the spirit filled the room as we shared Mosiah 18:9 with him. his son also agreed to have us come back! we also stopped by another less active last night... definitely revelation since she needed our visit so badly. YAY FOR MIRACLES!

the work is amazing here, i am learning, growing, and changing so much. i feel so blessed to be here in the work of the Lord. its real and true and SO happy! 

XOXO, HERMANA HORTON

Monday, January 19, 2015

week 32







family & friends,

this week was absolutely amazing. it had its ups and downs just like every other week in the mission, but the best part was when on Saturday, we got to meet an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ. Elder Oaks! something i will never forget :) after a plane delay we were happy he made it there! we also got to hear from Elder Allard (area 70) and Elder Kacher (Quorum of the 70), and had a wonderful morning with President & Sister Clayton. I took so many notes I don't even know where to start! 

the thing I loved most was when he talked about being a FULL time missionary. he talked about us being pens... theinstruments in the hands of the Lord. how we have to be prepared, worthy, ready, and focused so he can use us to convert and change the lives of many. we can't be part time. we were set apart to be FULL time servants of the Lord Jesus Christ. this isn't OUR mission, we're sacrificing for HIM, because we love Him and we know this work is true. It was amazing, because it was bold, but in such a loving way. he testified of how proud our Heavenly Father is of His missionaries who have sacrificed to serve the Savior; how much God loves us, and how we are here to do His work, in His way and in HIS time! the spirit was so strong! I learned so much, he really was an answer to prayers; for both the mission, the members/investigators (who ALSO got to have a meeting with Elder Oaks after... we also got to attend which was such a surprise to the missionaries!) and for me. I want to do ALL I can to serve the Savior with a full purpose heart. missionary work is incredible.

we saw lots of miracles this week as well! to prepare for Elder Oaks we were told to find at LEAST 2 new investigators, which we should do every week, but to put a big focus on finding. we found 3. yay! our progressing investigator, Jose made it to church yesterday. he is amazing! he has a hard time with English but luckily he is coming to our ESL classes. he has lots of friends in he ward and he has an open heart and mind. we have tried setting him with a baptismal date... we are hoping he will accept this week. speaking of our ward, its definitely different than the Spanish ward in Toronto! (miss that.) I am in an English ward, but there is a Spanish 'group' as well as a Chinese 'group'. we also cover another nearby ward with a Spanish 'group' (Oakville ward) so we do go to 2 correlations and 6 hours of church. 

we also got fed a TON by the members this week. something i am definitely not used to. i actually feel bad cause we got fed like 9 or 10 times... but the other missionaries never do... haha the Spanish people love making us food. and they love making us a LOT!!! i decided in order to stay in shape we have to exercise hard core (since we are now in a car area too and not walking everywhere) so now i drag my companion out in the snow at 630 and we go running. i love running and i love the snow so its awesome! but yes i did fall on the ice. haha its not as cold here as it could be... im surviving the Canadian winter!

the mission is great, i love it so much! i am so happy here. i KNOW this Gospel is true, i know Jesus Christ is the way, the truth and the light. i KNOW the Book of Mormon is true! i love that book with all my heart. thank you for all your love and support, there is no place i would rather be!

XOXO, HERMANA HORTON

Monday, January 12, 2015

week 31







wow it has been such an amazing week! today i feel so so grateful to be serving my Savior Jesus Christ. this really is the greatest time in my whole life. this is the best decision i have ever made, to serve a mission; and i am here LIVING IT! what a blessing. i have already learned and grown so much. i love being a missionary.

so they weren't kidding when they said it's cold in Canada, it was absolutely FREEZING HERE this week! we hit a low of -30 C (-22 F) with the wind chill this week. and out of all days that we could have gone to Lakeshore, we picked the coldest day of the week to do it hahaha oops! it was an adventure, and i couldn't feel my toes but it was great! we saw SO MANY miracles this week, i don't even know where to start. i am just absolutely loving this area! the members here are so great and Hermana Hoffman and i's hard work is starting to really pay off! OH! and Elder Oaks is coming to our missionthis Saturday. i can't wait to sit at his feet and hear him guide this mission! we will learn so much :) 

miracle stories:
- we were in an area contacting and knocked on a door with one our pass along cards of Jesus sitting in the window... a lady answers who was taking care of her sick mom. long story short, it is actually from 7 years ago when this lady met with missionaries! we have been meeting with the daughter, Marian who has LOTS of questions and is crazy ready and prepared for the gospel. 
- this same Marian watched Joseph Smith, prophet of the Restoration on Netflix 2 weeks ago, and we knocked on her (mom's) door. SO COOL.
- we have been teaching Jose this week, (who i mentioned in last week's email, our new investigator) and last night we had an awesome dinner with a member who has been fellow-shipping him like crazy. (THE BEST. help the missionaries!!) anyways, he's amazing and we committed him to read the BOM.
- after a long 5 hours of contacting and finding on Saturday night we were praying so hard to find some answers of where to go and who NEEDS the gospel. a man named Juan stuck out to me on a potential list, and after calling him, he shows up at church yesterday with his best friend, a SOLID member in our ward. such a miracle! YAY for finding prepared people!
- guess who showed up at the baptism in our ward yesterday? SIMON!!!!!! i was so happy to see him :) i know its only been 2 weeks but i missed him. 

how have you come unto Christ? - i was asked to bear my testimony yesterday on that question at the baptism. we watched this video and i just absolutely loved it! its the 2014 youth theme, but it always applies right? go watch it! i shared 2 Corinthians 12:9-10, one of my all time favorites. i know that if we turn to the Lord, he will turn our weaknesses into strengths through HIS perfect grace. i know that His arms are always turned unto us.... turn to Him! and let him change you. i couldn't be happier about being here on my mission. i love serving my Savior Jesus Christ. i love this work and i love this Gospel. 

XOXO, HERMANA HORTON

Monday, January 5, 2015

week 30






happy new year! i can't even believe it is 2015. how crazy is that? this week was super great, my first week in my new area of Mississauga has been wonderful! the members are awesome, i love my companion Hermana Hoffman, and we have yet to get in a car crash with me driving on these crazy streets haha :) coming to a car area has been super different, and while being in a car is super nice since it is FREEZING here, i do miss contacting and talking to people on buses/subways. i already miss that so much! this is a different kind of missionary work than i have been in for the past 6 months but change is what helps me grow closer to my Savior Jesus Christ and i have continually felt His love and guidance.

miracle story!
we have been struggling to find new people to teach, and for this whole week i have actually felt like i brought that cursewith me to this new area since they were finding just fine... and i came from the city where we were struggling with it so much! we had a mission fast yesterday in preparation for Elder Dallin H. Oaks coming to our mission in 2 weeks (!!! im so excited!!!) and my companion and i were also fasting to find new investigators. while i can't fast right now cause of my weird health probs, i did fast from "treats" (haha since we all know how much i love them:) and ate very small meals... and all day long Hermana Hoffman and i had a prayer in our hearts that God would place someone in our path. we were out proselyting last night, talking to everyone we found and asking EVERYONE for people they know who speak Spanish, when we found a man walking into his apt room. he is from Peru and doesn't speak any English... we told him we teach free English and that we are missionaries! turns out he has LIVED with a Mormon and when we gave him a BOM he was SUPER excited and wanted to learn more! i know God hears and answers our prayers, i know He placed him in our path at just the right time because he is prepared and ready to let the Gospel change and bless him :) this is HIS WORK!

that was absolutely amazing last night, my companion and i were bouncing off the walls we were so happy haha :) i have such a big testimony of prayer. for those that have asked about my test results from the doctor-- everything came back negative so they really don't know what it is... i have a sensitive stomach! im taking medicine so everything will be fine so soon!! the work will hasten :):)

im so grateful for this Gospel, i love it with all my heart! i couldn't be happier to be serving my Savior.

XOXO, HERMANA HORTON

Monday, December 29, 2014

week 29






I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas! it was so great to be able to see the fam and talk to you. how lucky and blessed I felt to have such an amazing family who supports me so much while I am here on my mission. you mean so much to me! I was surprised we didn't have a white Christmas in Canada, it actually rained all day!

Christmas on the mission was something I will never ever forget. this week has been SO SPECIAL. the best part was on December 23, when we headed to the heart of downtown (Dundas Square - a smaller version of Times Square in NYC) with 10 other missionaries, President & Sister Clayton and caroled. the spirit was so strong and so many hearts were touched! so many people listened and took pictures, and we were able to share the true gift of Christmas, JESUS CHRIST. we shared He is the Gift cards and sang Christmas hymns for 2 hours... the crowd favorite was definitely Silent Night! ill never forget that moment when I truly felt Christ was there with us... I walked up to a mom and daughter, and she looked me in the eyes and told me that she had been praying for Christmas carols to be somewhere in the city so she could show her daughter what Christmas really means. I have never felt so close to my Savior Jesus Christ as I have this Christmas season. I LOVE this part of the first presidency message about Christmas:

As we celebrate this Christmas season, our thoughts turn to that sacred event long ago when the Prince of Peace and the Light of the World was born (Isaiah 9:6). Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer, who was “wounded for our transgressions, ... and with his stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5). He promised: “He that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life” (John 8:12).

Christmas eve/day we had appointments scheduled, but people wanted to be with their families instead. we did visit with a few members and ate a LOT of food. we also stopped by several people to drop off gifts. also - THANK YOU to all those who sent me packages and letters for Christmas! it means so much to me.

I received my first transfer call last night.... 6 months of my mission with the same companion (besides a few weeks as a trio and these last 2 weeks with Hna Fife) and in the same area of Christie South, and I am leaving! I am super sad to be leaving downtown Toronto, especially the Christie ward and all the people I know here. I definitely wasn't expecting it. I am heading to Mississauga tomorrow, with my new companion Hermana Hoffman!! its about 45 minutes west from downtown, and its a car area! I will be the driver.... haha sos I think I forgot how. God is preparing people to receive us there, and we're gonna go baptize the multitudes :)

thank you for all the love and support, I wish you all a HAPPY NEW YEAR!

XOXO, HERMANA HORTON

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

week 28






Merry Christmas! I hope it is amazing for each and every one of you :) I hope you all remember what it is really about. I know I wouldn't want to be anywhere else this Christmas season then serving Him here in Toronto. there is nothing I love more than helping people come closer to Jesus Christ while celebrating His birth. I am learning how special Christmas really is. He really was born in a little manger in Bethlehem to Mary and Joseph. He is the perfect son of God given to us from our loving Heavenly Father. He did live a perfect life as our example, our Redeemer, and our Savior. He is the Gift, HE IS CHRISTMAS.

I said goodbye to Hermana Dudley this week, after 5 months together it was sad to see her go, but the change has been easier than I thought :) I am now with Hermana Fife! we were in the MTC + came to Canada together, and she has also been in the ward for a bit to it has been awesome to finally be companions with her! she is from Texas and I have already learned so much with her. God teaches you a lot when changes happen! I was very nervous for all the changes but I have learned that I really do know how to be a missionary no matter what companion I'm with. I know I can't do any of this without God's help but I did feel comfortable doing things I was nervous to do. Gracias a Dios! It has been a busy week since Hermana Fife and I have combined areas. we are running 2 areas of the mission, together! things have been crazy stressful but it has made it an adventure :) but since it has been so busy, we haven't taught like ANY lessons, or found ANY new people to teach. that has been a struggle, but we are praying to find miracles!

yes, still having health problems. I had a blood test and ultrasound this week, but ALSO a blessing from our mission President. I know that Heavenly Father is watching over me :) we are waiting on tests at this point but I know everything will be totally fine!

Christmas is so special, share the real meaning with everyone you know. discover it, embrace it, and share the love of our Savior Jesus Christ.

feliz navidad!

XOXO, HERMANA HORTON

Monday, December 15, 2014

week 27







sooooooo remember how last week I said I was super sick and received a blessing and was healed? well.... God's will is a lot different than mine! the sickness got a lot worse this week. my stomach KILLS after every time I eat, no matter what I eat. its awful! I had to go visit the doctor on Wednesday, anyways.... I have too much acid production in my stomach, and I either have a stomach ulcer, or its forming one. luckily I got medicine! but if I'm not basically healed by this Wednesday I have to go back in.... as of today I don't really know if that's possible....? #sos but hey, God works miracles. and I do know that the blessing I received last week was real.... I will be healed! but all in Gods timing of course :) but really, I'm totally fine! everything will be great!

it snowed a TON this week! it didn't stop blizzard-ing for 24 hours! we walked out to more than a foot of snow. it was beautiful :) I hope i never go to a car area cause I just love working in it! it makes me so happy :) (im being serious, not sarcastic hahaha)

we got to have an amazing Christmas zone conference this week :) we sang lots of Christmas songs including the 12 days of Christmas with President and Sister Clayton, they are awesome :) it was a great meeting, our mission is in a big transition/change right now.... we are trying to find a balance of finding NEW and working with the WARD. its been great because our ward is doing AWESOME now, we just need to have a balance of finding NEW since its been weeks since we have found any!! which isn't that uncommon for Spanish work but we're determined to work even harder. i loved this quote a missionary said as we were talking about the true meaning of Christmas, "Christmas is about giving and sacrificing. That's what Jesus did, and its HIM we are celebrating."

yes, Hermana Dudley leaves tomorrow. #CRAZY. I have been with her since I was born here in the great land of Canada... so yes I am nervous to have this change! i will be so sad to see her go :( i already know my new companion, her name is Hermana Fife :) we actually came from the MTC together, she is amazing! we don't know how long we have since it is mid-transfer but i am excited to work with her :)

Maria (the wife of the part member family we have been working with) will be getting baptized on Sunday! i am SO HAPPY for her! she is amazing and is so ready to make this special covenant with our Heavenly Father. she is so special. #whitechristmas!

i love the spirit of Christmas :)

XOXO, HERMANA HORTON

Monday, December 8, 2014

week 26






6 months......well that's just crazy. pretty crazy to think that I will be home in 1 year from now! wow how time has flown. this is also my last full week with my dearest companion, Hermana Dudley who I have been with since I arrived here in Toronto. she has 10 days left in the mish, and we are definitely going to be making the very best out of each of them! I love her.

I had such a good week! so many great things happened. first of all, I am sure a lot of you have heard about this video, but if you haven't... go watch it! our mission (and pretty much every mission in the world) is focusing a lot on this right now. its called HE IS THE GIFT. its about the true meaning of Christmas and how important Christ's birth/life is for all of us. watch it, embrace it, love it, and share it! #sharethegift.( http://www.mormon.org/christmas?cid=HPFR112814529 ) and another video to get you all in the Christmas spirit ( https://www.lds.org/youth/video/the-christmas-spirit?lang=eng )

MIRACLES of this week:
- one of the biggest miracles I saw this week was having a less active we have been working with show up at church yesterday! she struggles with depression and needs to feel loved. her name is Juanita. I love her!
- the Castros finally came to church yesterday! they didn't stay for all 3 hours but hey, one day right? we will be hopefully seeing a baptism in their family (Maria!) this Sunday... praying my heart out for that!
- my Spanish. which is slowly improving more and more, but there was a moment when i was sitting in church yesterday, I stopped and thought... WOW I understand everything that is going on right now! what a blessing! #thegiftoftoungesisreal
- church in general yesterday. I bore my testimony because I felt so much love in our ward. they are amazing! President Clayton is so inspired and it really is blessing our ward to be working with them more!
- the power in a priesthood blessing that I received after being really sick all week long was such a miracle. I know Heavenly Father watches over each and every one of us! and I know that with faith and with God, all things are possible. I know that He will do anything to hasten this work :)
- Simon bringing his mom, sister and niece to the English ward Christmas party on Saturday! they are not members (yet..... ;) but they loved it. hopefully we can get them to come to our the Spanish ward's party this Saturday so they can understand what's going on hahaha 

its pretty freezing here, but still no snow! I hope it does soon so we can have a white Christmas :) I am happy and working hard and loving the mission! thank you for all your love and support, I have lots of Christmas packages staring me down waiting to be opened and I feel so blessed.

XOXO, HERMANA HORTON