Monday, 28 December 2015

And a Happy New Year!

Hey everyone!

Well, this week was fabulous! We had so many awesome things going on! Let's start with Monday..

So for P-day, Sister Saito and I decided to take a trip to Boston, since neither of us have really been around Boston much. So we took the "T" and went on our way! It's not too long of a trip! It was so much fun! We went shopping and saw the city a little bit. I forgot what it's like to be in a's kinda scary, but we had such a great time!

A familiar store in Boston!
On Wednesday we had our Christmas Conference! That was a blast! We started off with various trainings and talks. My favorite part was when President White, the First Counselor on our mission presidency, got up and gave a talk/training on how we can become consecrated missionaries. I've been thinking and praying a lot lately about how I can be a more consecrated missionary and that just answered all my questions and gave me A TON of action items! I LOVE MISSIONS!

Me with all of my companions! Well, the ones who are still here!
After lunch we had all the Zone videos and songs. It was SO much fun! We had such an amazing time! :D

President Miller and our zone at the Christmas Conference!
On Christmas Eve we had a district meeting where we all brought some food and did some Zion building activities, and our District leader gave a spiritual thought about Christmas. It was really nice to get together as a district and build Zion together! Then we helped the Digital Sisters, Sister O'Keeffe and Sister Markert, with one of their Skype appointments. It was with a Brazilian guy. We read Alma 34 with him in Portuguese and we all bore our testimonies to him. It was really sweet, and it was cool to teach with them :) They're awesome missionaries!

Then came the big day! Christmas! It was so great to talk to family and friends! Also, the ward was more than welcoming to us on Christmas day. We had more appointments than we could handle! We had a breakfast appointment, a lunch appointment, a random in-between appointment, and then a dinner appointment with our investigators, Gilka and Tarcio. Gilka made a Brazilian feast! I felt like a beached whale afterwards, but all is well now. It was a really great Christmas and I just loved celebrating the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Yesterday we had an amazing day at church! We had members coming up to us left, right and center telling us that they have people for us to teach! We were like "WHAT IS HAPPENING?! THIS IS BEAUTIFUL!" This ward is a blessed place and the members are incredible! First of all, this woman in the ward, Sister Carson, came up to us and said that she has a family for us to visit. They're less active members but they came to church yesterday and we're going to see them this week! They're super sweet :)

Then during Sunday school, these 2 Brazilians just came in. They're not members, but a family in the Portuguese group invited them to church. They're a couple, Michelle and Gil (we noticed we're teaching like 5 people named Michelle) and they just moved to the United States 2 weeks ago! They're super solid! They have so many questions! We're so excited to teach them!

Also, Sacrament meeting was just beautiful yesterday. The talks were all about how we can be better disciples of Jesus Christ and they were really powerful. Also, in the Marlborough ward we have a musical number every week in Sacrament meeting, which I absolutely LOVE. Like I said before, everyone here is super talented, and it's amazing to see all these people using their talents to bring such a sweet spirit!

I love this place so much! I LOVE being a missionary! I love sharing the gospel with everyone! The church is TRUE!

I love you all! Have an amazing week and HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Love always,
Sister Rebekah Barrett

Monday, 21 December 2015

Merry Christmas!!!

Hey everyone!

This week was fantastic!

It started out with a special Musical Fireside in Revere. We went on Monday night, and it was beautiful! We went with Rayana and another member of the Portuguese group, Sister Souza. Missionaries from our mission organized the whole thing and put it all together. We have some really amazing, talented missionaries in this mission! I just love how sacred music really brings the spirit into our lives! Also, Rayana really enjoyed being there, and she really felt the spirit as she listened to the music.

Speaking of Rayana...we had a great  lesson with her this week. We talked about the real meaning of Christmas and invited her to take time to relax this Christmas season and just think about Jesus Christ, the real reason for this season. Sister Saito was speaking most of the time because Rayana only speaks Portuguese, but at the end, Sister Saito turned to me and said "Would you like to add to that?". I was a little nervous to speak Portuguese, but I went for it anyway...and somehow, Portuguese started flowing! I spoke to her about how this is a special time of year to reflect on our Savior, Jesus Christ, and everything He did for us. The spirit was SO strong, and I can testify to you that the gift of tongues is SO real!

Yesterday we had a wonderful Sabbath day. We had a special sacrament meeting. First of all we had a missionary homecoming talk, which was fantastic. I love hearing about other people's missions, and how much they've changed. I know missions can really change people. Missions really mold us into who Heavenly Father wants us to be. It's a special experience. After that we had a Christmas program. We have a really talented ward here in Marlborough! I don't think there is one person here who doesn't play an instrument or sing! We had a flute trio, a violin solo, the Ward Choir sang and it was beautiful! I am amazed at the talent here! 

This is an awesome family in the ward, the Patanao's. They're from the Phillippines :)
For our dinner appointment yesterday, we went to an AMAZING family's home, the Nixon's. They are just the sweetest people! They're an older couple, but they had their whole family over. There were kids and grandkids everywhere! It was so amazing. They really made us feel at home as they told family stories and laughed and joked together. We shared "A Savior is Born" with them, and we bore our testimonies of the Savior, and afterwards, one of their daughters thanked us for sharing the video and thanked us for coming and serving missions. She said that last week the missionaries in their home ward came over for dinner and shared that same video and she said that it's really amazing to see the whole world come together in the spirit of Christmas and celebrate Christ.

All of my planners from my mission! Shaped like a Christmas tree!

I hope you all have an amazing Christmas. Always remember the reason for this Christmas season. Remember that we are celebrating the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. It is a great reason to rejoice! :)

"For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace."

I love you all!! Merry Christmas!

Love always,
Sister Rebekah Barrett

Monday, 14 December 2015

Zone Conference & Miracles!

Hey everyone!

This week was amazing! I don't even know where to begin!

So Tuesday we had a Zone Conference with Elder Allan F. Packer of the Seventy. We had open discussions with him and everyone. Sister Packer talked about the things we need to do to be worthy of the Spirit. She said we need to get along with our companions. That's absolutely not a problem with me and Sister Saito! We have a lot of fun and we work hard together and I'm SO grateful for her! Also...BIG NEWS! We're staying together for my last transfer! I'm SO excited! This will be our 3rd transfer together, and we're ready to make it the best one yet!

I got my Portuguese name tag this week! It's official!
Sister Packer also talked about keeping our apartments clean, being EXACTLY obedient, and doing family history! I'm excited about that last one. We talked more about Family History in Zone meeting on Friday and our Zone is piloting this new family history program. We all have to complete these family history booklets and do our own family history, and then we have to help our investigators to do it, and then make a little gift for them with all their family's information that they've gathered so they can have a cute book of stories about their family! :)

Sister Haws and I at Zone Conference! It was a beautiful reunion!
During Zone Conference we also made some goals with our companion and talked about what we're going to do differently after we leave Zone Conference. We have set some solid goals and we're ready to see some crazy miracles!!
Sister Saito and I at Zone Conference :)
Speaking of miracles..we got 2 new investigators this week! We've been doing a lot of finding lately. We're just going through all our old records in the area book and finding a ton of people! We had a lesson with this guy Sergio this week. He came over to a member's house and we had the lesson there. They're an awesome family. We talked about our purpose and helped him to understand what we do as missionaries. We taught him about the Book of Mormon and committed him to start reading it! We have another appointment with him this week and we're super excited!

Also, on Saturday when we were going through all the old records, we decided to call some people. This one woman, Selma, answered and she was like "Yes! Come over tomorrow morning! So we went over at 9am yesterday morning and we taught a lesson and we shared "A Savior is Born". She was speechless. She loved it. She's so awesome!

This week at one of our dinner appointments I got to hold a snake. It was so fun!


Then on Saturday night, we called our investigator, Michelle. The last time we were with her we committed her to read the Book of Mormon every day and when we talked to her she was like "Sisters I've been reading the Book of Mormon every night! I love it!" We're going to see her this Saturday. MIRACLES ARE HAPPENING!

This place is amazing! I'm so glad that I get to spend another 6 weeks here with Sister Saito! This is such a blessing! I LOVE being a missionary!

Our ghetto Christmas tree!
Merry Christmas from Marlborough!
I love you all! I hope you all have the best week ever!

Love always,
Sister Rebekah Barrett

Monday, 7 December 2015

A Savior is Born

Hey everyone!

This week was so good! Where do I start?!

So we went to see Rayana this week and we watched the new video that the church put out, "A Savior is Born". Afterwards, we bore our testimonies to her about how grateful we are for the Savior, and then Rayana told us that she wanted to share her testimony with us. She bore her testimony and the spirit was so strong. It was in Portuguese, but I just knew that it was heartfelt and sincere. It was amazing. She's incredible! Check out the video!

We had a zone p-day last week where we had an Arizona snowball fight. So basically we filled tights with flour and threw them at each other.

Before ...

aaaaaand after!
We had a great day on Friday! We went to see a bunch of people who were on old lists of potential investigators. Turns out, they really do have potential! We stopped by this one house and this older lady answers the door. We ask her if her name is Mari and she says yes so then we told her who we are and she was like "Okay come in". Just so you know...that is a rare event! So we went in and we got to know her a little bit. She's from Egypt and she moved to America so she could practice her religion freely. She said it's not easy being a Christian there. We told her what we do as missionaries (because she didn't remember missionaries coming years ago) and she said we are welcome in her home anytime! She was such a sweetheart! We're so excited!

Then on Saturday we had 2 Ward Christmas parties! We had our normal Ward Christmas party in the morning and everyone had breakfast together! It was awesome! One of our investigators came! It was a miracle! We haven't seen her in forever because she has a busy schedule and so does her husband, but she came! And she brought her little girl! Her husband was away on business so he couldn't be there but it was awesome to see her! We didn't even know she was there and then the Bishop came up to us and was like "Do you know Melissa?" We were like "YES!!" Then the rest of the party was wonderful! The whole ward was AMAZING! Everyone made her feel so welcome there and she's meeting up with a few members this week! She made friends real quick!

Then at our other Ward Christmas party, it was just the Portuguese group, and the Framingham Spanish Branch. I didn't have a clue what was going on half the time but it was awesome! We had another investigator, Gilka, at this one! She loved every minute of it! She said it's a "igreja linda"! I understood that ;)


This week we also  went to see one of our investigators, Michelle. She is struggling! Bless her soul. She has such a tough life. She was just crying and pouring her heart out to us. At one stage we asked her if we could all kneel down and pray. She couldn't even get words out. We invited her to read the Book of Mormon EVERY DAY and we promised her that if she did, her life would improve. We KNOW that's true! Keep her in your prayers :)

I love you all so much! I love this gospel! I know it brings the greatest happiness to our lives. As we approach Christmas, remember the reason for the season, our Savior, Jesus Christ :)

Love always,
Sister Rebekah Barrett