It is me, Sister Dahlberg. I am in Missouri and I am alive...barely. Kidding, I have made it a week in the mission field!!!! There is a lot to tell you, so bare with me. I wish you all knew how much I miss you!! I am just waiting to wake up from a dream. I really am here, IN THE MISSION FIELD. It has been a crazy week.
Let me catch you up.
All 16 of us arrived at the airport on Tuesday. President Morgan, Sister Morgan, the Ap's, and the office Elder's were there to greet us. President and his wife were exactly how I thought they were going to be! EXACTLY! Oh man, I adore them! We went to the temple in St. Louis and took pictures and we went to the mission office. Soon after that, we went to the mission home and oh boy, it is PRETTY. There we ate dinner and talked, received instructions, had a little testimony meeting and were interviewed. President likes to tease me, so I went first. I love President and Sister Morgan so much. At the airport I had to explain to him why I didn't call him back and he just laughed. He is so awesome. We all stayed at the mission home that night and woke up, knowing a big day was ahead of us. NEW COMPANION. TRAINER. NEW AREA. THE REAL DEAL. Half of the missionaries in the mission were there to meet for transfers. You stand up in front of everyone and the AP points to two things. Who your companion is and where you will be serving. Then you say it out loud and then everyone gets really excited. I said mine and of course... I said my area wrong and all the missionaries giggled. Sister Dahlberg coming in with a bang...
Oh boy, was I scared. I read that my trainer would be Sister Montgomery and I would be serving in Marceline. I was so in shock, I just sat down and everyone kind of did that... laugh... you know like oh boy...hang in there laugh.................
I sat down and asked where that was. Sister Montgomery told me it was about 3 hours away and that we would be white washing the area. My trainer if from Mesa AZ, she is 24.
FUNNY THING- President came up to me after and told me there was something I must know before I left to my new area. He said your church is in a........................................................ TRAILER............................. (I finally understood why all the missionaries gave me that laugh when I read Marceline)
No. He had to of been kidding, I was sure of it. I laughed and he just looked at me like, "YOU CAN DO IT." I was dying. He proceeded to tell me that he was putting me there because the area was struggling, the members were losing hope in the missionaries, and this little town needed HELP. LOTS OF HELP. He told me that he was sending me there to gain back the trust of the members and to brighten the place up. He said, " I trust you."
We started driving out of St. Louis and I died more and more. The further out we got, the more I started to worry.
We arrived in Marceline and to be quite honest, there is nothing here. Lots of churches from all kind of faiths, a Sonic, and a bunch of old stores.
We met with the branch president at the church and PRESIDENT MORGAN WAS NOT KIDDING, WE PULLED UP TO A TRAILER.........
He asked us to speak on Sunday. We talked about the work and told him we were READY TO WORK. We talked about less actives and he gave us a lot of referrals. He had tears in his eyes and he said, "we have all been praying for the two of you to come for a long time now."
We left, ready to WORK and help this little town!!!!!!!!!!!
First day tracting was on Wednesday..................... oh man. HOW DO PEOPLE NOT KNOW ABOUT THE CHURCH???????????????????
Our apartment.............. I feel like I am in downtown Ogden........... We may or may not of called the cops last night, but don't worry mom, The Lord is indeed protecting us. That is a funny story I will have to write you about.....
OH THE PEOPLE.
To sum it up.
We are teaching a family, The White's. They are wonderful. I think the daughters will enter the waters of baptism soon. The dad isn't very receptive, the mom is the less active, but starting to get active again and some of the girls come to church!
We go and read the BOM with a less active lady that is dying because of drugs, we read to her because she isn't able to and she just sits and rocks back and forth listening and nodding her head with tears in her eyes. Her husband is a nonmember and wants nothing to do with the church, but he listens to us. I testified to him that God doesn't give us trials we can't handle and he looked up at me and said, “You know what, you are right." I testified to him that God loves his children and that through hard times we can come closer to The Savior. We asked if we could come back and teach him the lessons and HE AGREED. THAT IS BIG YOU GUYS.
We are teaching on old man named Bob. He is a little stubborn, but we love him.
Our teaching pool consists of about 7 right now, when the district leaders called and asked for our numbers, we told them, and they about died....... that is so much more than they expected.
Another thing. This is the very first time sisters have been in Marceline, so to the members (approximately 40) we are famous. A family stopped as we were unloading our groceries and they were so excited to see us. “SISTERS ARE FINALLY IN THIS LITTLE TOWN!”
Our talks went well and the members are excited to have us here. I spoke for 30 minutes..... I spilled my sacrament cup full of water all over me right before I spoke, so the whole branch giggled and an old man laughed so hard and he kept winking at me. I got up and said. "If I look new, you are VERRRYYYYYY correct." EVERYONE LAUGHED. Once again Sister Dahlberg coming in with a bang...............
The people in this town.......... well 99 percent of our lessons are taught in trailers in trailer parks. People don't have a lot and they make do with what they have, which isn't a lot. The members are very humble and loving.
We don't have a meal calendar, but we did eat with the 1st counselor in the branch Sunday night, he is a dentist and he has 5 little girls under the age of 7. It was so fun to be in a home and to play with the little ones. I had them sing with me, "I am a child of God." I was so happy. It was the cutest thing.
P DAY USUALLY is on MONDAY, but yesterday we had mission conference in St. Louis!!!!! All the missionaries came together and we listened to President and Sister Morgan speak and a general authority was there! He is from Africa, an area 70. IT WAS EVERYTHING I NEEDED.
Before mission conference, President came up to me and asked me how I was doing. I started laughing and I said, "President if I knew which way Utah was, I would start walking RIGHT NOW, but I can't seem to find which direction it is. You live in Utah, so I was thinking we could all walk together and find our way out. You, Sister Morgan, and I. What do you say?"
I have never seen a man laugh SO HARD. The problem was I was 100 percent serious. His response. "Yes we could, but we aren't going to."
Oh man you guys. This is the hardest thing I have ever done and am overwhelmed knowing that this is my life for the next 18 months, but I am just trying to take it one day at a time. I am having faith that I can do anything with The Lord on my side. I have a message of eternal life to bring to his children!!! There is a lot that needs to be done here in little Marceline.
I miss you all. I miss you ALL SO MUCH. Homesickness is real. For real. WRITE ME.
WRITE ME! WRITE ME!!!!
Missouri St. Louis Mission
1850 Craigshire Road Suite 205
St. Louis, MO 63146
This is a special time to be a part of The Lord's work I just keep telling myself that I CAN DO HARD THINGS. Thank you for all the emails. I don't have much time, but I will try my best to reply today!
Give UTAH a big kiss for me and EVERYONE TAKE CARE! READ AND PRAY ALWAYS.
WE CAN ALL DO HARD THINGS TOGETHER.