See my brother's mission blog here!

Monday, December 28, 2015

The End is Only the Beginning

Dear Family,

I can hardly believe that I am here at the end. The past 18 months
have been amazing! No words can describe the things that I have
experienced. I am so grateful for it. I am happy to say that I am not
the same person that I was when I started. I have been changed by the
Atonement of Christ. And I have watched His influence change other
people's lives as well.

This week I am so grateful for the Christmas season. I had the best
Christmas of my entire life! And it had nothing to do with
decorations, presents, or Santa Claus. I was able to spend my days
lifting and helping others. I was blessed because other people served
me and my companion.

I am most grateful for all of you! If you ask any missionary what they
loved most about their mission, they will always tell you, The People!
Thank you to my companions, the wards, my family and friends from
home, my new friends out here and anyone else who let me in to their
homes and hearts. I will never forget what you have all done for me. I
may not be the best at writing, but I want you all to know how much I
care for all of you. Thank you!

If any of you are in Utah, my Homecoming will be Sunday January 10th
at 9 am in the Church Building on Orchard Drive in Bountiful.

I just want to share my testimony with you, that I know that Jesus
Christ lives. He is our Savior and Redeemer and He loves us more than
we can ever know. Because He loves us so dearly, he has called a
prophet in our day, to lead and guide us back home. He gave us the
Book of Mormon so that we can know how to draw closer to Him. He
called Joseph Smith to be his prophet in the last days. I know that my
Redeemer lives!

Let me finish with our mission theme for the year.

 "Shall we not go on in so great a cause?"

I love you all so dearly!!! I will miss my East Coast family that I am
leaving behind. I am excited to see my West Coast family again. And I
look forward to seeing all of you again soon! See you next week!

Love,
Sister McGuire

"There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind." 
                                                          -C.S. Lewis


   

   

Monday, December 21, 2015

Merry Christmas!!

Dear Family,

Merry Christmas Everyone!!!!!!!!!
I hope you all have a fantastic Christmas! I know I will, because we
are planning to serve that day. Service is the most selfish thing you
can possibly do! Hahaha! It just makes you feel so good!
Anyway, today was PDay and we were caught in the insanity known as
Walmart 3 days before Christmas. We also had to emergency run a bunch
of Book of Mormons to a family in the Ward who wanted to give them out
as presents. So, once again, we have no time to email.
But I want you to know that I love you! And I wish you all a Merry
Christmas!!!!!!!!

Love, Sister McGuire

P.S. You ALL need to check out Christmas.mormon.org It will change your life!

Monday, December 14, 2015

Christmas Miracles!!

Dear Family,

As always, I got busy doing some things, and now I'm out of time to
write. But, thanks to my lovely companion, you still get to hear the
stories for the week! So, hear you go! This is Sister Eastmonds
version of what happened this week, mixed Dear Family,
As always, I got busy doing some things, and now I'm out of time to
write. But, thanks to my lovely companion, you still get to hear the
stories for the week! So, hear you go! This is Sister Eastmonds
version of what happened this week mixed with some of my own
commentary.

This week we did a lot of service. We also taught quite a few good
lessons. The ward Christmas Party was on Friday night so we spent a
lot of time working with the ward preparing for that.
Anyways, on Tuesday it was pretty warm, so we decided to do some
street contacting in Spring City (one of the towns in our area, and by
warm I mean 58ish°) so we were walking around talking to people, and
headed down the street from where we parked our car, and all of the
sudden we got a text saying we had a new media referral (someone who
went on mormon.org and requested something) this referral happened to
be in spring city and the address was the other side of Main Street.
So we started walking back that direction, and we stopped to talk to
this man that was outside of a door. Come to find out that he is a
door to door salesman. So we start talking to him about missionary
work and how we go door to door sometimes too, and he asked us how
much we get paid. We told him that we don't get paid, that we're
volunteers, and he was floored. He gained such a respect and
admiration for us that when we gave him one of the pass along cards
that has the new Christmas initiative and the website for it, we
didn't even have to invite him to visit the website, he was like "You
know, because you two girls are so dedicated to sharing this message
of Christ I'm going to go visit the website here on this card!" Then
he wished us luck and a good day, and he continued on his way down the
street. So we continued down to the end of Main Street where this
referral lived and knocked on the door. She had requested a Joy to the
World DVD, and unfortunately we had just run out of them, but weren't
going to be back to spring city for a few days. So we stopped by,
shared "A Savior is Born" and then set up an appointment to come back
and bring the DVD to her. She was a really nice lady, but all she
wants is the dvd. She is very devout in her faith and not planning on
changing anytime soon.
Wednesday we had dinner
with a less active family, the Palmers. They are this super funny
family of young girls. While we were at their home we were able to
build a pretty good relationship with them. Then we went to the church
to help set up the decorations for the ward Christmas party.
Thursday we had district meeting, and then we went out finding all
day. People weren't very open to talking. People were all in a rush
and didn't feel like talking. Then we had dinner with the Chiarlanza
family. Sister Chiarlanza is a member, but her husband is not. So we
are going to try to start teaching him. Sister Chiarlanza told us
later that the Sister missionaries were teaching him, but then they
dropped him and stopped meeting with him. She told us how devastated
she was when the sisters told her that they weren't going to meet with
him anymore. It has been about a year now, so we're going to try
teaching him again. He seems to already like us!
Friday we spent the day weekly planning and then helping out with the
Christmas Party. We got everything ready for it. We had tons of
non-members come and it was amazing! The food was great and everyone
had a good time! The best part was that every single nonmember that
was there, was being fellowshipped by a member of the Ward. They were
all taken care of! It was amazing! I loved the theme of the party. We
had a Christmas Luau. Surprisingly, three of the biggest families in
the Ward are Polynesian, so they put it on. The young men did the
Hakka and the young women did the hula. It was so fun! And we had
pulled pork, rice and macaroni salad for dinner.
Sunday was when the biggest miracle happened! Sister Lee was assigned
to speak in sacrament meeting. We were waiting anxiously by the door
to make sure that she was coming. Well, time kept rolling on and it
was almost time for the meeting to start. Then, finally at 9:59, we
see Sister Lee coming through the doors! We were so excited that she
came! And then........ We caught sight of Brother Lee and their son
coming in behind her!!!!!!!!!! We nearly fell over!!!!!! Brother Lee
hasn't been to church in a year! And he told us he would never come
back! Yet, there he was! And they stayed all three hours of church! It
was a Christmas Miracle!
Well, I love you all! Have a fabulous week!

Love,
Sister McGuire

December Already!!

Dear Family,

Time continues to fly on angels wings! I can't believe it's already December!
I have to apologize! We ran out of time today. Just know that I love
you all and I hope you have a fantastic week! I will send some
pictures, so hopefully that will make up for it a little bit.
Love you!

Love,
Sister McGuire

We went to Friendly's to get some Ice Cream Sundaes!

Robin, and us after we helped her decorate the Christmas tree.

Sister Hawk brought us food from Shady Maple! Shady Maple is a super famous Amish place in Lancaster.



Tuesday, December 1, 2015

What a Week!!!!

Dear Family,

Things are fantastic here in Pottstown!!!
It all started on Tuesday. We packed up Sister Sullivan and headed out
to transfers. There, I got my new companion! Her name is Sister
Eastmond! She is from Lehi, Utah. She has been out for a year. I have
known her from a distance, and we are super excited to be together!
She also has served in Salisbury and Newark (which is the area right
next to Bayview). So we have had a lot to talk about and we are
becoming fast friends.
Also, I'm not the driver anymore! Hahaha! Sister Eastmond gets carsick
super easily, but it helps her to be the driver, because she can focus
more and anticipate the cars movements so she doesnt get as sick. So,
we talked to the vehicle coordinator and we switched her to be the
designated driver. So, I dont have to drive anymore and I love it.
Over the course of my entire mission I have only spent 5 weeks not
driving.
So, we came back to our area and got to work! That first night we had
a huge miracle! We were going to service for a less active family in
the ward. We ended up staying for dinner. And for the first time ever,
the father of the family actually engaged in conversation with us! We
got talking about the gospel and Sister Eastmond asked them about the
last time he had had a spiritual confirmation that the church was
true. He shared some neat experiences from his mission, but realized
that he hasn't had any since then. So, we are now planning a trip to
go to the Priesthood Restoration Site with their family on December 7.
That will be an amazing experience for them!
Whew. That was all just on Tuesday... Hahaha! Honestly, I dont
remember much else from the week. It was just one blur of amazing
miracles and so much fun!
Oh yeah, and it was Thanksgiving this week! I had the BEST
Thanksgiving I have ever had in my entire life! We started off the day
by going to Manor Care, which is a nursing home. We have three members
of our ward that are living there right now. We were able to see and
talk to all of them. We read scriptures and sang songs and talked and
laughed with each of them. It was fantastic! After that we saw another
member of our ward who lives alone. We spent some time with her as
well. Next, we went to our Thanksgiving dinner with the Former Bishop
and his family! It was amazing! We got to spend time with their family
and friends. We even got to talk to his non-member parents a bit. The
food was great and the company was better. It was such a joy to be
with them.
Then we went and visited the Relief Society President and her family.
We got there just in time for pie. It was so good! It was also amazing
to meet her family! Sister Hawk is the only active member in her
family. The rest of her family is either less active or non-members.
But we were able to get to know them and start building relationships
with them as well. We even invited the whole family to our Ward
Christmas party next week. After Sister Hawks family left we were on
clean up Brigade! It was awesome! We made sister Hawk sit down and
talk to us while we did the dishes, cleared the table, sept the floor,
and put everything back together. We had a good time! She put on
Christmas music so we were singing along as we worked. It was great!
Finally, for our last stop, we saw Sarah. She is one of our
investigators. She is so sweet! She lives alone with her four dogs.
So, we brought some much needed company. She was especially sad,
because she didnt get to go home to see her brother in Virginia. But
we had a good time talking and laughing with her.
All in all, it was the best holiday ever! I am so blessed and so
grateful for the opportunity that I have to serve others! I think that
this Thanksgiving was so special because we simply spent the day
helping other people, and showing our Heavenly Father just how
grateful we are for His blessings.
I am so grateful for all of you! I Love Love Love LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!

Love,
Sister McGuire

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Dear Family,

Happy Thanksgiving!!!! I just want you all to know that as always, my
family is what I am most grateful for this holiday! I am also so
grateful for the gospel and the opportunity I have to share it with so
many others!
Hope you are ready for some stories!
We started off the week by doing some service for a less active lady
in the Ward. She needed help pulling out Christmas decorations and
winterizing the yard. So we got to take turns driving a John Deere
tractor around! Haha! It was awesome! We got some pretty cool pictures
from it, but I will have to email them next week.
That night the Relief Society President took us out to dinner, and she
brought along her less active sister!!!! That was awesome! I love it
when members reach out to others and invite them to meet us! We were
able to talk about the gospel and we invited her to come to the Ward
Christmas party, and she committed to come! We can't wait to see her
there!
On Wednesday we got to see Sister Irina again! She is so sweet! I love
teaching her the gospel! Even though she has been a member for quite
some time, there is so much that she doesn't know! And every time she
learns something new she treats it like a great treasure! So amazing!
On Thursday we got to help one of our recent converts give her crazy
little dog a bath! We looked like a comedy show! It was Robin and
Sister Sullivan and I trying to hold down this little tiny peekapoo
dog and give him a bath! That little sucker put up a fight! He did NOT
want to get wet and kept nipping at our fingers and the brush! I
wonder if that was how Daniel felt in the Lions den! Haha! At least
the lions mouths were closed!
On Friday we had three appointments fall through... Ugh. That's the
worst! Especially because we had a member out with us. But, it turned
out great because we were able to go a different investigator named
Morris. He hasn't really been progressing lately and we were about to
drop him. But when we got there, he told us that he had actually
started reading the Book of Mormon!!!! What!!!! We were so happy! He
had a lot of questions about where the book came from and other things
like that. At the end of our visit he told us about how much he misses
his wife, who passed away three years ago. We told him that God has a
plan for him to be with his wife forever. He said, "really? Do you
really mean it?" We said YES!!!!! He said, "Will you please teach me
how to do that? I would do anything to see her again." We almost died
of excitement! So we started teaching him the plan of salvation. It
was amazing! I LOVE LOVE LOVE seeing the gospel bring hope to people's
lives. And I am so grateful for the Plan of Salvation that tells us
about it! We are so blessed!
Well, we walked out of that lesson on cloud nine! We jumped in the car
and had another appointment to hurry off to. So, we pulled out of
Morris's driveway and I backed right into the car parked across the
street. Crap. No one was hurt. And the damage to both cars was
minimal. I think my pride was more damaged than anything else. Haha!
God said that he would have a humble people! And he works in
mysterious ways.... But..... Rather than going to our next appointment
we spent two hours going through the process of getting everything
taken care of with that. We now have an appointment with the body shop
in December. Whoops. Oh well!
That night we got transfer calls...... Drum roll please!!!!!!! ......
I am STAYING in Pottstown!! But, Sister Sullivan is leaving. :( so, I
will be getting a new companion tomorrow.
So, we have spent the last two days trying to get her packed and
saying goodbye to everyone. I can't believe the transfer is already
over! It went by so fast!
Anyway, I am so excited for Thanksgiving this Thursday! I hope you all
have a wonderful holiday! I LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Love,
Sister McGuire

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Stake Conference and More!!

Dear Family,

Well, Once again, so much has happened this week and I don't have much time to write about it! Haha! But, hey, what's new? The biggest thing that happened this week was Stake Conference, so most of my stories are about that.
Story 1: Sister Lee
Sister Lee is a less-active woman in our ward. She hasn't been to church in over a year. She has many trials in her life that are pulling her away from the gospel. Last week, she showed up at church!!!! We were astonished!!!!! It was an amazing miracle! But, now comes the real problem..... How do we keep her coming? Our biggest obstacle was the fact that this week was stake conference. If it took her a year to get the 3.5 miles to church, how on earth are we supposed to get her the 25.6 miles to Stake Conference? We thought and worried and prayed about it all week. Well, on Saturday she called us up and needed some help with her house. They have been remodeling the dining room, and needed so extra hands. So we went up and helped. While we were working, I slyly asked her what her plans were for stake conference. She replied, "Hmm... I don't really know. I'm thinking about going." In missionary language that means, 'I'm not going, but I'm just saying that because I don't want to say no to your face.' Great. What am I supposed to say to that? Then, the thought occurred to me. So I said, "Oh okay. We just really need a ride, and we can't seem to find anyone who can take us." With that she perked right up! She said that there was no way she could let the missionaries miss stake conference and she would be at our apartment early the next morning to make sure that we got there in time to get a good seat. WOW!!!!! Miracles!!!!!! That was awesome!!!! So, not only did she come to stake conference, but we got to talk with her the whole hour drive there and the whole hour drive back. It was fantastic! On our way home she said to us how she knows the church is true with every fiber of her being. She has just been letting things get in the way. She apologized for not always coming, but she asked us to never give up on her. It Was INCREDIBLE!!!! It made me so happy to hear that from her!
Story 2: The In-Laws!
So, we got to Stake Conference early right? We got walking into the auditorium (the meeting was held at the local high school, because there isn't enough room for everyone in the stake center) and the first people I see is Brandon and Jeanette Mattson, Amelia's sister and brother. I start heading over to them when I realize there is someone else there too. It was Sister Koltz, Amelia's Mom!!!!! I was so excited to see all of them! It felt like a mini family reunion! Hahaha! Out of all the places to see my Brother's in-laws, it would be stake conference!
Story 3: Whitehall!
Since we were at Stake Conference, the entire Whitehall ward was there as well! I LOVED IT!!!! I got to see some of my dearest friends again! My favorite was seeing Sister Britto, the lady we lived with in Whitehall. It was awesome!
Story 4: Absolutely nothing to do with stake conference.......
Hahaha, random funny story. On Sunday morning I jumped in the shower to get ready for the day. I have noticed over the past week that the drain in the shower is getting slower and slower. On Sunday it hardly worked at all. I saw a little bit of hair build up on the top of the drain, so I assumed it was just plugging up the holes. I reached down to pull out the hair. As I pulled it got longer and longer and I kept pulling and pulling and pulling! It kept coming! There seemed to be no end! It started out the size of a small string and it kept getting bigger and bigger and nastier and nastier. Finally, this ball of hair the size of a small rat popped out of the drain! I was fighting a gag reflex like mad! It was made up of hair from I don't even know how many sisters for I dont even know how long! It was so gross!!!!!!!!! Hahaha!
Story 5: On a much more Spiritual note.......
We went out finding last night and we met 4 people who are interested in learning more about the gospel! One of them was named DeAnn. About 3 weeks ago, we got a media referral that she had requested a bible. So, we went to her house and knocked on the door. The dog was barking, she was on the phone and someone else was coming over to talk to her. Obviously, it was not a good time to talk. So, she took the bible and we left. Normally, bible referrals never want to see us again. with the whole experience it really didnt seem like she was interested at all. But, we have had her in the back of our minds. On Sunday we could no longer ignore the prompting that we HAD to go and see her. So, we awkwardly knock on the door while to the chorus of her dog once again howling like a banshee. DeAnn came to the door and chatted with us for a minute. I managed to ask her why she had requested the bible. She nearly broke down in tears while she began to tell us her struggles. Her health is declining and she has several auto-immune diseases that are basically eating her body away. She feels lost and like she has no where to go. She doesn't know much about God and has never really been a religious person, but she felt a need to start turning to God. We testified to her that she does have a loving Heavenly Father who wants to help her! We told her that we are messengers sent from Him and we share a message of love and hope and healing. It really touched her heart! We are going back to see her again this week! I am so excited!
The gospel is amazing! It is beautiful! It is the answer that we seek and the happiness that we yearn for. It is a blessing. and I am so grateful that I can be sharing it with others!
I love you all family! You are amazing! Bloom where you are planted and keep sharing the light!

Love,
Sister McGuire

Monday, November 9, 2015

Apology Letter and Miracles!!!

Dear Family,

First off, I owe you all a huge apology for not writing last week. It
was so strange to me, because we finished emailing so much earlier
than usual! I had totally forgotten to write! I didn't even realize it
until that night when we were planning for the next day. By then, it
was too late to write until today.
So, with that said, the stories of last week....
Tuesday: Sister Sullivan woke up sick. Which was terrible because we
had 6 appointments scheduled for that day! The most lessons we have
had since I got to Pottstown. But, we were able to call up some
members and go on splits for the day. I went out teaching all day with
Sister Bunting while another sister stayed home with my companion.
Saturday was Halloween and all missionaries have to be home at 6:00 on
Halloween night. So, we picked up pizza and watched church movies that
night. We really enjoyed it!
Basically, that's all for two weeks ago.
This past week has been crazy! Our area exploded!
It all started on Tuesday. We went on exchanges with the Sister
Training Leaders. So, I stayed in Pottstown and Sister Hepworth joined
me for the day! It was amazing! We got so much work done together. We
taught 4 lessons that day alone. And we met 2 new people to teach! It
was amazing!
Wednesday we volunteered at the Salvation Army, preparing and serving
food for the homeless. That was so cool. There is something so
humbling about serving in a place like that. I love the people that we
serve with there. Especially this one lady named Bonita. She's
hilarious! I also find it ironic that the people who usually serve in
soup kitchens are in poverty themselves. Very rarely do you find rich
people serving in that capacity.
That night we saw Sister Khohlovaia. (Try saying that! Hahaha!) She is
one of my favorite people ever! She is from Russia. She is convert to
the gospel. The missionaries found and taught her in Russia 20 years
ago. She has such a strong testimony and so much to share! She came to
America a year ago to live with her daughter and grandchildren. She
struggles a lot with her English, but she wants to learn so bad!
However, she is a professional Pianist. Even though she doesn't speak
English, she shares her talents every week by playing the piano in
Primary. I love that music is its own language! And, it just so
happens that there is a man in our Ward who just recently got home
from serving a mission in Russia. We teamed up with him and we have
been teaching Sister Irina the gospel in English so she will be able
to understand Sacrament meeting better.
Thursday was Zone Training. It was fantastic! Easily the best one I've
ever been to! Our Zone Leaders are Elder Holden and Elder Curtis. ( I
don't know if you remember Ryan Curtis from Bountiful, but I went to
high school with him. He played on the football team.) anyway, it was
great. We talked about the importance of the Book of Mormon. We also
talked about how obedience creates a climate where the Spirit can
dwell. That really hit us. So we have been trying really hard to
always have a climate of obedience so that we can see miracles.
Right after Zone Training we had interviews with President Anderson.
It was amazing! I just want you all to know that I have the best
mission president in the world! I didn't want to make anyone jealous,
but it's the truth! Haha. He helped me recognize just how much I have
changed over the last 16 months. It was awesome. We laughed about some
growing experiences that I have had and we talked about the moments
that have shaped who I am today. It was great.
Basically we were riding on a spiritual high, and we went out to work!
And boy, did it work! The rest of the week was pretty much a blur of
too many miracles to count. If I took the time to write it all down,
it would be a book series longer than Harry Potter. And that's if I
can find the words to describe it all. Suffice it to say, we were
blessed to find 6 new investigators this week and we ended up teaching
18 lessons. It was a miracle! This area hasn't had a new investigator
in almost 8 weeks. And we haven't taught more than 10 lessons a week
in the last 2 months. Heavenly Father is so good to us! He truly
prepares his people to hear the gospel! And when the time is right, He
orchestrates it perfectly. I also truly learned one thing this week.
Obedience brings blessings, but exact obedience brings miracles. Exact
obedience doesn't mean we are perfect, because I am definitely NOT!
But, we can perfectly put our trust in the Savior, His Atonement and
His commandments. Mosiah 2:41 Blessed and happy are they that keep the
commandments of God.
Another miracle was that Sister Lee came to church!!!!!!!! She hasn't
been to church in almost 6 months! It was amazing! We basically
knocked her over when she came in the door. I love her so much!
Kinda funny story to explain the picture! Sister Nicholls is an
awesome lady in the Ward! She has been dying to make chick food (like
soups, salads, and sandwiches) but her husband is a big macho guy and
just wants the heavy hearty food. So, she signed up to have us over
for dinner this week and she kicked her husband out of the house for
the night! Hahaha! She was so happy! We had squash soup and candied
walnut salad. It was so good!
Anyway, sorry for the long shpeel today. I sure love you all!

Love,
Sister McGuire

Sister Nicholls and the the Chick-Food!! 


Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Susquehanna!!

Dear Family,

Well, I am loving Pottstown! I had a fantastic week!
It all started with Tuesday. We woke up early and drove the three
hours up to Harmony, Pennsylvania to see the Priesthood Restoration
site. President and Sister Anderson were there. They spoke to us, as
well as the Visitor Center Director and his wife. It was such a neat
place! We spent the day touring the homes of Isaac Hale and Joseph and
Emma's first home. We also got to see the graves of Joseph and Emma's
infant son and the Hales family. It was such a neat experience!
Since the bus dropped us off in Whitehall, we made a quick pit-stop at
Sister Britto's on the way home! Unfortunately, she wasn't there, but
we got to see her daughter Katie! So, that was cool! It was so crazy
to be back in Whitehall! I can't believe that it has been a year since
I've been there.
We had the Halloween Carnival this week. While we were there we met a
woman who is from the Ukraine. She is a member and she just moved to
America a year ago. She asked us to come and teach her the gospel in
English so that she can understand what is being said during sacrament
meeting! That was super cool!
The next day was Saturday. I haven't been feeling too good, so I
finally broke down and went to the doctor. Well, I have bronchitis!
So, they hyped me up on meds and sent me home. It was nice because a I
got to sleep the rest of the day.
Also, I had a panic attack yesterday when I realized that it was my 16
month mark!!!! Yikes!!! I can hardly believe that it has been that
long!
Another cool fact. I was just browsing around our family history this
past week when I discovered something very interesting! Charles Alfred
Harper's family is all from Pennsylvania! And not just anywhere in
Pennsylvania, but right here where I'm serving!!!!!! His grandfather,
Jacob Evans, is from Montgomery county! The other Harper's are from
Philly. And his Great-Grandma, Ann Foulke, was born in Limerick
Township IN MY AREA!!!!!!! That was such a neat discovery for me! I
feel an even greater connection to this amazing place that I have come
to call home.
Anyway, I love you all! I hope you have a fantastic week!

Love,
Sister McGuire

I  got to see Linda from Medford at transfers!!! It was so great! 

Sister Sullivan and I at the Ward Halloween Party


Sister Sullivan and I found this funny sign while tracting this week! 
This is Me and The Susquehanna River, where Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery were baptized

This is a replication of a wooden box that Joseph would have kept the plates in. It was heavy! It weighed 50 pounds

This is the Isaac Hale home where Joseph and Emma first met!

This is where 70% of the Book of Mormon was translated

The monument

I ran into my old friend, Sister Ipson!

I also ran into my old companion Sister Veater!

The gorgeous Fall! (The pictures really dont do it justice!

Scenic Route



Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Super Lame Email

Dear Family,

I've been transferred to Pottstown Pennsylvania!!!! I am super excited
for this new area and I already love the people here!
As the subject line says, this will be a super short, super lame
email, because our PDay is being cut short today. It's a short PDay
because tomorrow all of the missionaries in the mission are going to
be taking a tour of newly dedicated Priesthood Restoration site in
Susquehanna, New York!!!!!
We are going to leave our apartment at 4:30 tomorrow morning and drive
to Whitehall. From there we will board a bus at 6:00 and ride the rest
of the way up. While there, the Visitor Center Sisters will be taking
us on tours of the site. We are super excited and we are so lucky to
be going!
You should read up about the site in an article in the September
Ensign called Joseph Smith in Harmony.
Anyway, I promise more stories and plenty of pictures next week. Love you all!

Love,
Sister McGuire

Monday, October 12, 2015

Farewell to Bayview!!!

Dear Family,

I have to apologize, because I don't have much time to write this week. I got the call that I am being transferred tomorrow, so I am spending the day packing and saying my last goodbyes. I have come to love Bayview so much! I am going to miss it dearly! But, just like the seasons change, so do the times in our life change. Heavenly Father wants us to have new experiences that will keep us progressing, so that we become the people He needs us to be.
As far as the week goes..... On Wednesday I went to Dover for the day with Sister Asi on exchanges. We had a good time down there. We did a lot of service and taught a few lessons, so it was fun! Then, on Thursday we drove back up to Newark for Zone Training. It was an amazing meeting! The Zone Leaders had invited 5 converts from their ward come and share their stories about 'their missionaries'. It was so sweet and so touching! Sometimes as a missionary it can feel like we work so hard, but it doesn't make a difference. It was so great to hear them talk about the enormous impact that missionaries can and do have on people. So, that was neat!
On Friday we had transfer calls. I'm leaving and so are 2 other missionaries in our district. It will be exciting to see where everyone will go!
The rest of the week has been full of packing, teaching, finding, and saying goodbyes. It's been a crazy whirlwind!
So, Farewell to Bayview! I have truly loved it here! I'm looking forward to a new area full of new adventures! Here I go!
LOVE YOU ALL!!!!!!

Love,
Sister McGuire

Lots of goodbyes this week, which means lots of pictures!

Goodbye to the Aultman family!

Sister Schettler trying to keep the kiddos entertained while I taught a lesson! Divide and conquer!!!

YW Selfie!!!

Saying Goodby to the Walkers! They're awesome!!

Laying floor tile at Brandi's this morning! Sister Schettler and I got into a grout war! Hahaha!

Monday, October 5, 2015

Amazing Week!!


Dear Family,

It has been one of the most Spiritually uplifting weeks of my mission! So much good has happened this week!

Last Monday, Kim came out teaching with us! I'm so glad she did! I know that it really changed her perspective of missionary work. Basically, we showed up to our appointment, with an inactive woman that we had run into last week. Well, something must have changed her mind, because she told us that she had burned her Book of Mormon years ago and she told us to go away and then she slammed the door. Sister Schettler and I didn't bat an eyelash, we just turned around to keep going. Kim, however, was amazed! She was blown away! She was pretty upset too. It was a good thing that she was standing behind me, because she was gonna go tell that lady some things that she would probably regret later. Hahaha!

So, we just went to our next appointment a little bit early. Kim loved it! We visited June, a sweet lady in our ward who lives in a nursing home. We had a very nice chat with June and invited her to watch Conference on her computer, after we showed her how to use it. June loved the visit and Kim and June really connected. It was awesome!!

On Wednesday, we were super busy! We ran around all day going from appointment to appointment! It was like a missionary's dream day! We had good lessons and saw a lot of people. Then, we went with Tobie (Bill's grand-daughter) to mutual! It was amazing! Tobie is a really shy girl, but the other Young Women in our ward were so kind and welcoming! Tobie loved it! And she is becoming fast friends with another YW named Laura.

Then, Thursday was Zone Conference!!!! It was amazing! We had to wake up super early and drive all the way to Broomall for it. And guess what!?!?!?!? There was a team of people there from Salt Lake. They installed something called TiWi devices in all of our cars. A TiWi is a little black box that runs off of a GPS system and it monitors your speed, your seatbelt, your location, and any sort of aggressive driving. It then reports everything back to President Anderson and Elder Rose (the Mission's vehicle coordinator). I guess all the mission cars in the United States and Canada will have one soon. We are taking safe driving to a whole new level! The rest of Zone Conference was amazing. We learned about the gathering of Israel from President Anderson. It was incredible! The Assistants taught us about the importance of bearing a pure and simple testimony.

And then, we had General Conference! Wow! I think I took about 12 pages of notes! We were so richly fed! This morning in my studies I read D&C 1:4 " And the voice of warning shall be unto all people, by the mouths of my disciples, whom I have chosen in these last days." I loved it! I decided that this will be the verse that I 'Ponderize' this week! What verse will you learn this week? I also love this scripture because I know that our 3 new apostles were indeed chosen by the Lord in these last days. We need them and their experience and their counsel. Most of all, we need to hear the Voice of the Lord being carried to our hearts through them. I learned so much from conference, and I simply hope that I can begin to put all these new goals into practice in my life.
Well, I LOVE YOU ALL SO MUCH!!!!!!!!!!! I hope you have a fantastic week!

Love,
Sister McGuire

Monday, September 28, 2015

September is Gone??????

Dear Family,

I can hardly believe that September is almost over! I swear that the 4th of July was yesterday, but instead October is upon us! They say that time goes fast on a mission. I say that that is the biggest understatement I've ever heard! Time doesn't fly, it just disappears like it wasn't even there in the first place! Haha!

Anyway, we have had a crazy week of meetings! We are trying to work really hard with the auxiliary leaders in our ward. This week President Anderson asked us all to meet with each auxiliary leader in the ward and the bishop. All this week! Haha! So, on top of our already crazy schedule we had to squeeze in 9 extra meetings this week! But, it was a huge blessing! I am so grateful for those meetings because we are now on the same page as all of the leaders in our ward. That is going to help things move along so much better! And we received 37 referrals in the process of the meetings. So, needless to say, our plates are full!

We are also super excited for this week! We have Zone Conference this Thursday. I always look forward to Zone Conference! They are amazing! I am so excited for General Conference this week! I am so excited for our investigators to see and hear from living prophets and apostles! My testimony is nice, but lets face it, an apostle can say it SO much better than I can!
Okay, so for the miracles this week.....

Miracle 1: Jason and Mary
First off, We went to see Jason and Mary yesterday. They told us they had a surprise for us.... So, we were waiting excitedly for a present or something. Well, it wasn't wrapped with a bow, but they told us that they had done something big. Jason has officially gone a week without coffee and Mary has completely quit smoking!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We almost died! We were so happy! They decided to quit and so they did the day of their wedding, but they didn't tell us until last night! It was amazing to hear that! Mary is so excited to be baptized and we can Jason's heart softening, whether he admits it or not! The gospel is such a blessing!

Miracle 2: Bill
Because Bill is retired and blind and really has nothing else to do, he sits around all day and listens to the Book of Mormon on CD. Well, he finished the entire thing this week and he loved it!!!! Hahaha! Now that he's done we started rummaging through the apartment to find ANYTHING on CD that we could lend. We found a couple of General Conferences on CD, sop we gave those to him too. He loves the gospel and you can really see his testimony taking off! He is awesome!

Miracle 3: Beverly
This morning we were walking to the clubhouse to get on our emails when we saw this lady in the parking lot. Her name is Beverly. She is the type of lady that always has to complain about something to whoever has ears to listen. We have often been the target of her pity fests, and we have tried to share the gospel with her on several occasions, but she has flat out refused. So, naturally when we spotted her, I wanted to die! We tried to sneak as stealthily around the parking lot as we could, but it was no use. She spotted us, and since we were the only people outside, she came running to pin us down! But today was different. Her usual look of contempt and irritation was replaced with genuine distress. She came right up to us and gave us a huge hug! (We were slightly concerned at this point). She told us that she was going through something really hard right now, and in her desperation she had sent up a prayer for God to send someone to help comfort her. And then we had come walking around the corner. We were stunned! So we sat down and talked to her for about an hour about Heavenly Father and his love for her. We testified of the Spirit and the peace that comes from the gospel. Her entire demeanor changed. By the time we were done, she had calmed down and seemed to be doing much better. We gave her a Book of Mormon and invited her to read Alma 32. We gave her our phone number and told her to call us when she had finished reading the chapter. She thanked us profusely and then sent us on our way. We were stunned! but wait! The story gets better! About 2 hours later, our cell phone rang with an unknown number. It was Beverly! When we answered she said, "Sisters I read the whole chapter! It was amazing! It changed my life! What can I read next?" WWWWWOOOOOOOWWWWWW! What the What!?!?!?!?!?!?!? Sister Schettler and I were looking at each other saying, 'Did that really just happen?' And it had! We assigned Beverly another chapter to read and we are going to be seeing her at the end of this week to talk more about it. Wow! Sometimes, people just aren't ready for the gospel, but Heavenly Father has a way of softening their hearts and preparing them for when the time is just right! We are so blessed!
I LOVE being a missionary! I LOVE YOU ALL!!!! I hope you enjoy Conference this weekend. Have a great week!

Love,
Sister McGuire




The Army of Helaman
(Tiny story about this picture. All the missionaries serving in our Ward and our ward mission leader had a meeting with the relief society president at her home this week. Her 3 year old son, Easton, thought that we were all there to play with him (Because that's what missionaries do, right?). So while we were meeting, he kept bringing toys for us to play with. By the end of the meeting we were all dressed like avengers and had some sort of weapon that we were supposed to be using to fend off the bad guys. So, of course, we had to end our meeting with a photo shoot!)

Yep........ Don't ever give 19 year old boys fake weapons and tell them to pose! Lol!

District photo! Front row: Elder Morgan, Elder Allred, Sister Schettler, Me.  Back row: Elder Malcolm, Elder Weisler, Elder Bryan, Elder Lake


Monday, September 21, 2015

Short and Sweet!

Dear Family,

My letter this week will be short, because a couple in our Ward took
us to Longwood Gardens to day! It is a beautiful botanical garden! It
is made up of miles and miles of pathways, gardens, fountains, ponds,
and a HUGE conservatory. It was beautiful!
But here's the gist of my week!
Mary and Jason were married this week!!!!!!!! We held the wedding at
the church and bishop performed the ceremony! It was beautiful and I
loved it! Everything went so well!
On top of planning a wedding and everything else, I was sick all week!
Haha! Go figure! But, Heavenly Father helps his missionaries, and I
was able to do everything we needed to anyway.
Also, Bill (Mary's father) was ordained a priest this week! We are so
excited for him to be on the road to the temple! And even more
importantly, he is now going to be able to baptize the rest of his
family, when they are ready! It is so neat to see this family change
and accept the gospel. I am so blessed to see so many miracles and I
love being a missionary!
I love you all! Have a great week!

Love,
Sister McGuire

The Conservatory at Longwood Gardens!

Sister Schettler, Meggie, and I by The Meadow at Longwood Gardens

Meggie and I at the Italian Water Garden

Mary and Jason's wedding! It was a huge success!!!

Tobie (The maid of honor) Jocelyn (The Flower Girl) and Me after the wedding

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Food, Laughs, and Miracles!

Dear Family,

Honestly, I never know what to say or where to begin! Hahaha!
Fall is in the air here in Bayview! The air is finally cooling off! We
are starting to see hints of red and yellow leaves in the woods
outside our window. I can finally start wearing cardigans without
wanting to die! Haha!
To answer Parker's question, Yes! I do have more miracle stories this
week! And I have a few funny stories too!
Miracle 1: We had stopped by our investigator, Tim's, house, and he
wasn't home. We were super bummed! We were about to get in the car and
head out to our next stop, when I felt prompted like we needed to
knock other doors on that street. We left our car and spent about 20
minutes knocking on doors and talking to people. But, no one wanted to
listen. Finally, we had to go to get to our next appointment. I felt
super disappointed and thought that maybe I had just made it up, and
it wasnt really the Spirit. We started walking back to our car. Right
as we were about to climb into our car, Tim pulled up! He waved us
over and wanted to talk to us! It was awesome, because we set up an
appointment with him again and invited him and his daughter to church.
Heavenly Father knew that Tim was on his way and that we needed to
talk to him! So, He gave me that prompting to keep us there long
enough so that we could talk to Tim.
Funny Story 1: Normally, missionaries are two starving young people
that have no money and no food, right? NOT in Bayview! LOL! I don't
know why this week was different, but EVERYONE gave us so much food
this week! We usually get a lot of food in the first place, but this
week was extra crazy! This one family bought us enough Chinese food to
last through the Apocalypse! Then, our investigator made us a pot of
soup! Then, another couple in our ward brought us 2 family size
packages of Oreos! Then, someone else got us a chocolate cake and
doughnuts and cookies! Then, another lady gave us a snack bag with
apples and granola bars. Another lady heard that we liked hummus, so
we have 4 packages of that in the fridge! There's another lady in the
ward who likes to buy us cereal. and it was on sale or something, so
we now have 10 boxes of cereal! The list goes on! Hahaha!!!!! I guess
the key to building up your food storage is to be a 'starving
missionary' and you'll never go hungry! The only problem now is that I
may have to invest in some new clothes, because my skirts are starting
to get a little bit tight!
Funny Story 2: This week, the weather has been really mild and nice.
So, everyone wants to sit outside to talk to us, which is great! When
we saw Stacey, it was the same deal. She had set up a bunch of chairs
underneath her tree in the backyard, so we went and sat out there.
About halfway through the lesson I started to feel things on my
legs... Gross! I look down and I see 6 mosquitoes all going at it on
my leg! I'm trying to sit nicely and pay attention to Stacey, who is
bearing her soul to us while at the same time swatting away at the
mosquitoes that are swarming me! I'm doing war cries and screaming in
my head while simply nodding and acting interested in what she's
saying, while gently wiggling my legs and flailing my arms constantly,
trying to fend off my blood-sucking foe! Seriously, it looked like
something off of a movie. I must have looked like an idiot the whole
time! And when I got home that night I counted 63 bites all over my
legs! I basically have been bathing in anti-itch cream all week! Then
on Friday morning we had one mosquito flying around our apartment and
I chased after it for about 10 minutes until I killed it, while Sister
Schettler was dying of laughter in the study room. I REFUSE to be
bitten again! Haha! So beware mosquitoes!
Miracle 2: we had a fantastic lesson with Jason and Mary and Bill this
week! Mary is excited for her baptism in November, but Jason has
always been a bit of a skeptic. But, this week was awesome! We had
really prayed and prepared for this lesson. Jason felt the Spirit and
he even said that he knew he needed to read the Book of Mormon and
give it a try. So great! Mary and Jason's wedding is this Saturday! We
are excited and nervous! Haha! We just hope all of the plans work out
and that it goes well.
Funny Story 3: we were at Rosemarie's house again. While we were there
she asked us to put some things away for her. We opened up the drawer
and found about 20 different pairs of sunglasses!!!! Apparently, she
collects them. Haha! So, we tried on a bunch of them. They were great!
So, I sent the picture of me wearing the funny ones.
I guess that's all I can think of right now. I hope you all have a
great week! Have adventures and miracles of your own! I love you
all!!!!!

Love,

Sister McGuire

Sister Schettler during a lunch break! Hahaha! This is what a missionary looks like at the end of the day. :)

This is Mount Sweets on our counter. It keeps growing Bigger and Bigger everyday!

Playing around with Rosemarie's sunglasses collection!

Sister Schettler, Me and Meggy! Our favorite little helper!

Monday, September 7, 2015

Mission Life!

Dear Family,

So much has happened, I don't know where to begin! We had so many
miracles and funny stories and everything in between this week. And
basically at the end of each experience the only way to describe it
was simply saying, welcome to mission life! Haha! So, get ready for
story time!
Miracle 1: Kristen
So, last week this lady showed up at church with a less active. We
thought that she was just visiting for the day and was going back home
that week. Well, this past Sunday she was there again, without her
friend..., hmm...., So the bishop met her after sacrament meeting. We
found that her name is Kristen and she actually lives in our area! She
came with her friend last week, and she was so interested that she
came again this week. She asked if there was anyway she could learn
more about the church. Of Course! We started teaching her and her 4
children this week! They are awesome! The Lord really does prepare
people to hear about the gospel!
Miracle 2: Sister Boyle
So, there's a completely inactive woman in our Ward named Sister
Boyle. She hasn't come to church in about 35 years, even though her
husband is the Ward Sunday School President. So, of course we have
been trying to get her to come back..... It's hard! Hahaha! Well, we
were talking to her this week about her Book of Mormon reading and
once again, the conversation was going absolutely nowhere. Then I
randomly blurt out, "Are you still smoking?" In my head I think, 'oh
crap! I just ruined it! Where did that come from? Why did I say that?'
Shockingly she answers back, "Yes I am and I am so tired of it! I want
to quit so bad, but I'm scared and I don't know what to do." Wow!!!!
No way!!!!!! Brother Boyle has been trying to get her to quit for
years! So, we are going to get her into the Quit Smoking Program as
fast as humanly possible! We are so excited that she wants to take
this step! It will be awesome!
Miracle 3: Stacey and Penny
We have a new investigator named Stacey. She is so sweet and so ready
to learn! We have only taught her once before. We felt inspired to
bring a less active woman from the Newark Ward, Penny, teaching with
us. (How random is that?) We managed to get it all figured out, and
Penny even left work early to come with us! So, we get there and
Stacey shares with us that one of her biggest problems is that her
daughter died in a tragic car accident last year and she is still
trying to deal with the grief of that. Well, Penny lost her daughter
in a tragic accident about 20 years ago. It was almost the same
situation! The rest of the time we were there, Sister Schettler and I
basically sat there in silence while these two women shared their
stories and comforted one another and cried together. It was
beautiful! And then Penny bore the most beautiful testimony of the
plan of Salvation. It was incredible! The Spirit was so thick you
could cut it like butter! It was truly Heavenly Father who
orchestrated that. I know that both of them were changed for the
better that day!
Miracle 4: Mary and Jason and Tobie
Remember Bill? Well, we have been teaching his daughter Mary and his
granddaughter Tobie. Yes, Tobie is a girl. They had originally planned
on being baptized with Bill, but some things slowed them down. Well,
we had an appointment with them this week, and we were going to see if
we could help them understand more about the Book of Mormon. Once
again, the lesson was going absolutely nowhere! Then, out of the blue,
Sister Schettler blurts out, "Do you still want to get baptized?" Mary
replies back, "yes! Of course!" Wow! "Okay, when do you want to shoot
for?" Asks Sister Schettler. "November 6." Okay! Then, Tobie says,
"Maybe I could be baptized that day, too!" Wow!!!! Sometimes I am just
blown away! Well, this week, Mary and her fiancé, Jason, decided that
they want to get married soon! They asked if they could do it at the
church and if Bishop could perform the marriage! The answer was Yes
all around! They are getting married next Saturday and we now have a
wedding to plan! Yikes! And we have two weeks to do it! Man.... I'm
getting a little bit too good at weddings! Hahaha! We can't wait!
Funny Story 1: Ann
So, there's a recent convert in our Ward who gave us a referral for
one of her friends. So, we went to go see Ann this week. We get there
and we find out that she's a Born Again Christian and self appointed
Minister and Missionary. Yikes! Hahaha! Seriously, her license plate
says, I am Saved! Luckily, she liked us and had a lot of respect for
what we are trying to do. But she jumps into this forever long story
about how she has saved thousands of people and she can speak in
tongues and how she has the gift of prophecy and she knows that the
world is going to end this year and so many other crazy things! We just
sat there, not really knowing what to do. Haha! Finally, we convinced
her that we had to go, but she insisted on praying over us first. So
she said the longest prayer I've ever heard! Haha! It seriously lasted
for at least 20 minutes! She didn't even take a breath the whole time!
And she blessed us up and down with everything, while simultaneously
quoting scripture and basically giving a sermon at the same time. It
was nuts! Haha! But I loved it!
Anyway, mission life is the best! I love Bayview! I love the gospel! I
love my Family! Have a fantastic week!

Love,
Sister McGuire

Monday, August 31, 2015

September and Transfer Calls!!!

Dear Family,

Wow! It has been an amazing, crazy, super fun, one of a kind week! I
realize that I have sent some pathetically short emails the last few
weeks, so I will try to make up for it today. Story time!
Last Monday, we cut our PDay short because we were helping a single
mom with five kids set up her school room to get ready for the
homework to come piling in. We got pretty far, but we're going to go
help her finish tonight. It was super awesome! Then she took us out to
dinner at our Ward Mission Leader's new food truck! He is Mexican and
his life long dream has been to have a restaurant. Well, he is just
starting out now with a food truck, but if they do well enough, he
will expand. I think they will do well. The food is so good!
Tuesday we started off the morning with a new investigator! He had
been meeting with missionaries back in New Jersey, (just miles from
where I was in Medford!) but, he had unexpectedly needed to go to
Vietnam for six weeks for his mother in laws funeral. Well, he finally
got back to the U.S. and ended up moving here. Then, he got back in
touch with the Jersey Sisters and they called us. Whew! Long story
short, he is golden! He is so ready to hear the gospel and he is
amazing! We taught him the Restoration and he loved it! When we gave
him a Book of Mormon, he was so grateful! He picked it up so carefully
and held it like he was holding a baby. It was so neat!
Wednesday we went to see a less active man in our Ward. His home
teachers had invited us to come with them. When we got there, this
mans sister was there. We got talking to her and found out that her 15
year old daughter had passed away a year ago in a tragic car accident.
She was searching for answers and help. We were able to teach her the
plan of Salvation and tell her that she can be with her daughter for
eternity. It was so sweet! We are teaching her now too and we can't
wait to go back this week. Once again, I would like to point out, that
this wouldn't have happened without two dedicated and faithful home
teachers that took the time to care and followed the Spirit in
promoting them to bring the missionaries. People! Just do your HOME
AND VISITING TEACHING!!!!!! This is the reason why!!!!!!!
Thursday we met another new girl to teach! Her name is Mariah and she
is so sweet! The Spanish Elders actually knocked on her door, looking
for someone else. So, they referred her to us and she is awesome! We
are super excited to start teaching her too!
Friday seemed like it was the longest day of my life! We spent the
whole day, simply dreading the phone call that was coming..... Yes, we
got transfer calls! And Sister Schettler and I are BOTH STAYING in
Bayview!!!!! It's so crazy! I have never been in an area for this
long, or with the same companion for this long, but I LOVE IT!!!! I am
so excited to stay here in Bayview! This is my favorite place in the
world. I just feel like I'm home.
Not much else happened this week, but it was awesome! This morning we
went hiking with our investigator, Rachael. It was fun!
Anyway, I love you all! I wish you luck with School and everything!

Love,
Sister McGuire

Elder Morgan's Mom made yummy 'Minion'aries and sent them for a District Meeting treat! :)



Monday, August 24, 2015

Short and Sweet!

Dear Family,

I can't believe another week has gone by! I also can't believe another Summer has gone by! All the kids are back in school and Walmart put out their Halloween decorations today...... WEIRD!!!!!!
Well, I am just loving life and enjoying every second of it!
This week was Bill's baptism! He was baptized on Saturday afternoon, which was his Birthday. It was super special and it all went well! He had been really nervous about the baptism, because he doesnt swim, but the Elders did a great job practicing with him. He did everything perfect..... except...... he forgot to close his mouth! Hahaha! Oh dear! He went under the water just fine, and he came up alright too, but he was coughing and spluttering. Woops! Oh well. But, he was beaming and he was so happy! He was confirmed on Sunday by Bishop and he was practically glowing. I love the gospel! I love the joy you see in people once they've made covenants with God. That is truly when you see the light of Christ in their life.
Well, unfortunately, we are helping someone re-do their house tonight, so that cut our P-Day a little bit short. But I LOVE YOU ALL!!!!! I hope you have a fantastic Week!

Love,
Sister McGuire

Me, Bill, and Sister Schettler!! It was a great day!

Me, Bill, Sister Schettler, and Elder Morgan!!

Monday, August 17, 2015

So Sorry!!

Dear family,

Once again, I am absolutely out of time. But I love you all and I hope
you have a fantastic week! I promise more stories and pictures next
week.
The main highlights in Bayview right now.......
Bill! Bill is getting baptized this Saturday and we are so excited! He
is so ready for this and is so awesome! Please pray for him this week.
And many other things...... We are so busy that we spent three hours
of our day today in teaching appointments and meeting with the Relief
Society President, so that's why we didn't have time for anything. But
I love you all!

Love,
Sister McGuire

Sunday, August 9, 2015

A Taste of Eternity

Dear Family,

Well, it's funny because once again I know we were so busy this week,
but I don't remember what happened at all! Haha. We had an amazing
trip to the temple today! That's the only thing I can think about
right now.
We woke up at 5:00 this morning to get ready to go. At 6:30 Brother
and Sister Todd picked us up and we headed out. On the drive there we
crossed the Susquehanna River. It is so neat to know that in that
river, the ordinance of baptism and the Aaronic Priesthood was
restored to the Earth.
Next we passed Bel Air. And yes, we all had the Fresh Prince theme
song stuck in our heads. Next we drove through Baltimore! What an
interesting place! I pulled out my camera to snap a few pictures
and......... It was completely dead! Figures.. The battery was totally
exhausted. While we were passing Fort McHenry, Sister Todd told us the
story of how Francis Scott Key was stuck on a British ship that
fateful night. We thought about the words to the Star-Spangled Banner.
It was so neat!
Then came my favorite part! We were driving along and we rounded a
corner of the Freeway and BAM, right in front of us was the temple! It
was all shimmering in the light of the morning sun! It was
breathtaking! Kim was so excited to see it!
We walked in the front doors and the Spirit was overwhelming. Kim
whispered to me, "this is heaven, isn't it?". It sure felt like it!
Kim loved the temple. She said that the beauty and the spirit there
made her want to be different. She said that she felt so close to
heaven. Sister Schettler and I had the honor of being baptized for
Kim's ancestors. When Sister Schettler was baptized for Kim's
grandmother, Kim was overcome. She said that she felt so great. It
always touches my heart to see families being brought together on both
sides of the veil.
We ended up waiting in the foyer for our turn in baptistery. People
were trickling in slowly. I glanced at the door and in walked.......
Sister Katherine Armstrong!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! She was an inactive
woman in Salisbury that we were teaching back in December! We had
worked with her so much and on my last Sunday in Salisbury she finally
came to church for the first time in months! I hadn't heard from her
since I left, so I didn't know what had happened to her. Well, the
sisters had kept working with her and now, here she was! Standing in
front of me in the temple! I ran up to her and we embraced. I couldn't
help but cry. It was such a tender mercy. She said to me, "Can you
believe it? Can you believe I made it?" As a missionary, we don't
always get to see the fruits of our labor. Whether we are the one who
plows the field, plants the seed, weeds the garden, waters the plants,
or truly harvests the fruit, each one of us has an important role to
play. It also reminded me of the scripture in D&C 18:15 "And if it so
be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this
people, and bring, save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be
your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father" My joy was so great to
see Sister Armstrong standing there in white, being baptized for her
Mother. That was a huge miracle for me to see!
So, I have had a fantastic day! Always stay close to the temple!
I love you all! Have a great week!

Love,
Sister McGuire

The Susquehanna River!!

Monday, August 3, 2015

August?!?!

Dear Family,

It's August?!?! Wow! Where does the time go? We are so busy all the
time, but once again I am sitting here at the computer, thinking to
myself, "What did we do this week?" Hahaha! Well, here's what I
remember!
Story 1: Laura. Remember the funeral we went to back in May? Well, we
have been visiting that family off and on ever since and this week we
started teaching her daughter Laura! So, we were super excited for our
first lesson with her. We had planned to teach her the restoration and
then invite her to be baptized at the end. So, we go in and sit down.
We say the opening prayer. We look up and sister Schettler looks at
Laura and says, "have you ever thought about getting baptized?" Wow!!
Bold sauce! Honestly, I was kinda freaked out at that point. But Laura
says, "yeah! I want to get baptized! Soon! How do I do that?" Wow!
Hahaha! So, after my companion had to revive me off the floor, we
talked about the covenant of baptism and we explained about the
lessons and everything. She is awesome! She wants it so bad! So, we
are starting to teach her now and we can't wait!
Story 2: Water to Wine? There's the story in the Bible where the
Savior turns water into wine. Well, I've never heard of any miracles
like that before, but it happened to me this week! So, there's an
awesome lady in our Ward that we are working with. She is just coming
back into activity. She lives in a broken down little trailer and has
the biggest heart in the world! Well, she has been insisting that we
HAVE to come to dinner at her house, and we have been putting it off
for a while. So, this week she finally pinned us down for dinner. She
had been promising for weeks that she would make us Tilapia Fillets
and potatoes. I now know that fish is actually kind of good when it is
fresh and cooked right. However, I KNOW that the Tilapia that this
lady wanted to make was going to come out of a plastic bag that has
been sitting somewhere in the back of her freezer where it has been
slowly decaying for the last 6 years.... So, I'm more than a little
nervous for this dinner appointment. The fateful day arrived and we
were so busy that day, that we hadn't even had time to eat lunch. So
we are starving! And I am even more nervous, because I did NOT want to
dry heave on this lady's table. So, we say a very heartfelt plea
before we go inside to please protect us from food poisoning and from
embarrassing this sweet sister. Well, we go in and sit down to dinner.
She says, "Sisters, I pulled out the bag of Tilapia today and it turns
out that it was actually chicken! How weird is that? I was positive
that it was Tilapia! I'm sorry that you don't get fish tonight. I'll
have to make that next time. So, tonight it's chicken!" Yes!!!!!! We
were so happy! Haha! So, we cheerily choked down our freezer burned
chicken fillets and we were SO grateful with every bite that it wasn't
fish!
Story 3: Sabbath Day Miracles! The best part of the week is going to
church. And the best part of going to church is seeing all of the
people we are teaching come to church! This week we had 4 totally less
active people come to church this week! It was incredible!!!!!!! There
is nothing in the world better than seeing someone walk through those
doors on Sunday morning! It was awesome! So, that was just a sweet
cherry on top of everything!
Well, I'm out of time. But, I promise there will be more stories next week!
Also! We are going to the Washington D.C. Temple this Saturday (the 8)
to do baptisms for the dead with Kim!!!!!!!!!!!!! We are so excited!
So, that means that the 8th will become my P-Day and we will not have
P-Day on the 10th. So, if you want to email me, you have to do it on
Saturday! We are so excited!
I LOVE YOU ALL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Love,
Sister McGuire

Monday, July 27, 2015

In Our Lovely Desert!

Dear Family,

Well, this week was, once again, jam-packed with stuff! And
unfortunately, I don't have a lot of time, but here are the
highlights!
It starts off with a sad story. We have been working really hard with
our investigator named Keith. He lives with his grandma who is a
recent convert in our Ward. Well, out of nowhere, Keith's mom decided
that she was ready to have him come home. So, Keith moved back down to
Baltimore to live with his mom. Honestly, we were devastated. We are
so happy that he gets to be back with his mom, but we were so sad to
see him go! Before he left, we made sure that he had his Book of
Mormon and he promised that he would continue to read and pray about
it. We are trying to convince his mom to let the missionaries in
Baltimore come and visit with him, but we will have to see. She
doesn't seem too excited about the idea. We just really pray that he
will keep going strong!
On to happier things! We also had a mini Pioneer Day celebration at
district meeting this week. Sister Schettler and I made rolls and
honey butter to share with the district. We all told stories about
pioneers and I was able to share about how Grandma Lemon used to make
7 loaves of bread a day! Pretty impressive! It was fun!
We were also able to see the Blankley's again this week! They are
super solid and progressing so well! We set a date for all of them to
be baptized on August 22nd! It was super special because that day is
the Dad's Birthday! We can't wait! To top it off, they all came to
church this week too! We were super happy that they came!
Kim was confirmed this week! It was beautiful! Truly, "in the
ordinances thereof is the power of God manifest." I always feel the
Spirit so strong whenever I see an ordinance performed. And I know
that this has changed Kim's life! I love her so much and I'm so
excited for her to continue to progress! We also set up a day that we
can go do baptisms for the dead with Kim! I'm so excited to go to the
temple soon! I haven't been in over a year, and I miss the sweet
spirit that is found only in the temple. And I'm so excited for Kim to
experience it as well!
I love you all! Hope you have a great week!

Love,
Sister McGuire

P.S. Sister Schettler and I found our new favorite hymn! It is In Our
Lovely Deseret. You all need to go look it up, because it has been
stuck in my head ALL week!

Monday, July 20, 2015

An Incredible Week!!

Dear Family,

I had an incredible week! We saw so many miracles and blessings this week! I don't know where to begin!
Story 1: The Tickets. So, we were weekly planning at our apartment, but we had left something in the car. We ran out to go get it really quick. Well, in the parking lot, we met a super nice guy who wanted to chat for a bit. While we were talking he told us about his wife who passed away a few years ago and how it had been hard on him. We were able to testify to him about eternal families! It was so neat! After that, he said that he had two tickets for a baseball game in Aberdeen that night, and he wanted us to take them, because he wasn't going to be able to make it. We tried to turn him down because we had plans (Oh yeah, and it's SO AGAINST EVERY MISSION RULE IN THE WHITE HANDBOOK!) But, he insisted! So, we got the man's information and left.
On our way up the stairs to our apartment, we remembered a cute young couple that lived below us! They would love the tickets! So, we stopped and talked to the wife for about 30 MINUTES! She asked what church we were from, and we told her "the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints" She jumped and said, "NO WAY!!!!!! I used to go to the one in Missouri with my best friend!" Wow! She asked where our church was, and she totally wants to come next week! It was awesome! We were super excited! Hahaha! It turned out that two baseball tickets=two New Investigators!!!!! Super awesome!

Story 2: Rocking the Plan of Salvation! So, we had dinner with Brandi and Rocky this week! We were able to teach Rocky the Plan of Salvation and it was AMAZING!!!! Hands down, the best lesson I have ever had! He had a ton of questions and we were pullng out scriptures and explaining things like crazy! It was awesome! At the end, he told us that he had a huge question that he had asked every preacher/priest/bishop/pastor he had ever met, and none of them could answer it, and he wanted to ask us! (No pressure!) He had a super confusing scenario that I didn't really understand about how the Lord will judge people, but Sister Schettler was so in tune with the Spirit! She testified that no matter what our actions were, the Lord will judge us by what was in our heart. He was stunned and over-whelmed by the Spirit. It was awesome! He paused for a minute and said, "It's true. That's the answer I have searched for my whole life." AWESOME!!!!!!!!!

Story 3: New Horizons! So, I live in Maryland right? What is Maryland most famous for? Crab! Remember how much I HATE seafood??? Yeah, it's not a good combo. Luckily, I have been able to avoid my fishy foe thus far.... Until this week. We have an awesome couple in the ward that wanted to treat us to dinner. Not just any dinner, but they wanted to take us to the fanciest place in North East! Which is....... A Crab House! Oh dear..... I was so worried! But, I decided that I would pray extra and hope there was Chicken Alfredo on the menu! So, we go in and Brother Shepherd orders FOR us. He gets the Net Buster, which is the biggest array of every type of sea food they serve at the restaurant!!!!!!! Now, I'm practically sweating! They bring out the smelly net, full of food! I realize, that there's no getting out of it, because Sister Shepherd wants us to try some of everything! I crack open the Snow Crab Leg and resign myself to my fishy fate...... I prepare myself mentally to choke it down........ and in goes the meat and.......  Actually, the consistency is pretty good.... It tastes alright..... actually, it's not even chewy and slimy....... actually, this is incredible!!! Before I know it, I am chowing down on the crab and the crab cakes and the Lobster and Mahi Mahi like there's no tomorrow! That stuff was amazing! Except for the clams. Those are definitely still gross. But the rest of it was awesome! I never thought I'd say it, but I actually LOVE Sea Food! It just has to be done right. And don't dip it in cocktail sauce.

Story 4: The Miracle of the Week! The Crowning miracle of the week was Kimberly's baptism! It was a beautiful service! She was beaming! I can't believe the changes we have seen in her over the last 6 weeks. It's hard to believe that just 6 weeks ago she didnt want anything to do with us. It was an incredible experience. She asked me to play Amazing Grace and two little girls sang it. It turned out so beautiful and the Spirit was amazing. I felt the joy it talks about in Doctrine and Covenants 18:13. How great is His joy in the soul that repenteth! What an amazing thing it is to know that she came to know  her Heavenly Father and now she is on the covenant path towards meeting Him. Missionary work is the best!

Story 5: The Cherry on Top. To finish of this awesome list of tales, we got transfer calls this week! I Am STAYING!!!! So is Sister Schettler!!!!! We get to spend 6 more weeks here in Bayview together! We are so excited!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So, I LOVE YOU ALLL!!!!!! Have a fantastic week! And Don't EVER forget to appreciate the little miracles everyday!!!!!!

Love,
Sister McGuire



The Giplin's Covered Bridge in North East!!


The Plumpton Park Zoo! I think we fit in a little too well with the Monkeys! ;D 

A little Jungle fun!

Kim's Baptism!!