Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Off to the valley of rainbows...

well, my friends, transfer calls came and I'm sad to say that my time in River Valley is coming to an end.  I'll be going to Rainbow Valley YSA for my last 6 weeks!  with not only one...but TWO new companions!  Sister Lefler and Sister Lee.  they have both  been out just a few transfers, so it'll be an adventure! I'm excited to see what I can learn from them.  And I'll try my best to convert the young single adult population of Edmonton and try not to be awkward...

Ethiopian Christmas lunch

Christmas was great!  We got to have an Ethiopian lunch (which made my tummy angry) with Solo (our landlord) and his mom and sister!!!  They're all Pentecostal and super amazing, and we got to teach a little about the Godhead with them as well as eternal families.  :) they're such good Christian people.  I love them so much.  Solo also invited us the next day to come to his get together with his bible study group!  They all came over to the house and we ate with them and then had a bible study.  I just prayed my little heart out the whole time that we could share restored truth with them without taking over their class, and Solo would randomly call on us to share our thoughts, so we got to share verses from the Book of Mormon and it was really neat.  Sometimes you really feel the spirit speak through you, and this was one of those times.  It was all really spiritual until the end (when they started repenting out loud and speaking in tongues...) but afterwards, I felt I needed to say more, so I piped up and said something along the lines of "Okay everyone, we want you to know that we can help you come closer to Jesus Christ through reading the Bible and the Book of Mormon, so if you want to learn we would love to teach you." then Solo was like, "wait sistahs wait i have to ask my pastor.".......hahah it was awkward.  But yeah it was good, because a couple people came up afterwards and wanted our card.  One guy took it all sneakily from Sister McKeon's hands.  :) so that was our pentecostal experience. 

We also got to go to Dawuta's for boxing day and eat some DELICIOUS Nigerian food.  She's the best.  

Here's a cool story, we were driving in this neighbourhood, and this guy drove his truck into the driveway and we wanted to talk to him so we pulled over real quick and went to say hello.  we went and he was like, "yeah yeah i know you, you were waving a sign at me from your car the other day." we were like WHAT NO WAY.  He wasn't interested in the least, but it was just really neat that Heavenly Father made our paths cross TWICE.  (also it just strengthened my testimony of proselyting while still in the car... #carsignsforlyfe ) 

We got to go sing at this disabled people home with the Lamoureux's and the Elders on Christmas eve!  it was so much fun.  Sister lamoureux plays the guitar and sings while Brother Lamoureux plays his harmonica. :) It's so great.  i love them.  also the spirit was so strong while doing service on Christmas eve, really just doing what Christ would do.  

yesterday, we were going around so i could say goodbye to people, and we (quite literally) ran into MAGGIE!!!!!!!! She had just returned from Calgary and left her phone while she was away so she couldn't receive our calls or anything.  so she's back on the radar and hopefully will come to church again this week. :) 

We taught Victoria part of the Plan of Salvation and she's now on date for February 13th!!! :) She's so smart and just loves the gospel.  It's amazing.  We asked her what the purpose of life is and she said something along the lines of... "well, each person comes here and can add a little sparkle to the world."  true dat.  

Picture of Maxim from Rwanda!!!
okay for my last little blessin to share with you this week, a couple weeks ago I received a friend request on facebook from a guy named Maxim from Rwanda.  Whenever we receive friend requests from people we don't know, we just message them about the church and what not and try to get them in contact with missionaries in their area.  I sent him the christmas video and then kept chatting with him over the course of a couple weeks, and he went to church this week and is now meeting with the missionaries there!!! :)  It was just such a cool miracle to see.  He said, "  i get there adress and i wos visited them and i got there branch near me at kagugu so thank you for helping me to follow the way of jesus christ and i am planing to stay praying there and you will get more informations about us." then he sent a picture of him and one of the elders. That was just so exciting. God is good, my friends.

I started this little program they have for missionaries in their last 6 weeks called "My Plan" where you basically make goals and plans for when you return home..it didn't go very well today probably because i had a bad attitude about it and resented it the whole time..I just don't want to leave this beautiful place and these amazing people. I have LOVED the mission thus far and serving the Lord with all I have has been an experience of a lifetime. I'm gonna make these last 6 weeks count, I've still got a lot of fight left in me for this work. :)

"Behold, the field is white already to harvest; therefore,whoso desireth to reap let him 
thrust in his sickle with his might, and reap while the day lasts, that he may treasure up for his soul everlasting salvation in the kingdom of God." [D&C  14:3] 

Onward, ever onward. 

Sister Jones 

"Dan Jones-ing" it on top of a massive snow pile

The District 3

Our Moses staff we found in our apartment

Saying bye to sister Quesada

Saying bye to Jody and my favourite kids

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Unto YOU a Saviour is born


it's Christmas and it's cold and there's a spirit in the air like none other!  

we have had 3 exchanges in the past 8 days so i feel like I got hit by a train or something, ha so exhausted, but sometimes that's good because you're just deliriously happy!  Sister McKeon and I have been laughing like crazy and we have had a great week.  I'll just update you on the funny/crazy/miraculous events of the week...

-Grandma Vera (eternigator who is basically a member) had us and some ladies from church over for a Christmas lunch. She's the SWEETEST lady on the planet and is the best cook.  We had some wicked Ukrainian food and she made us these really unique stockings.  They're all sparkly and stuff.  She's so cute.  I just love those ladies.  

-We had our Christmas Conference and it was just so much fun and full of the spirit and so much power.  The Manions are incredible.  Our district is having this competition to do the most service/creative finding around Christmas time, and one elder decided that the first one to get a selfie with "P Manny" at Christmas conference wins.  Sister McKeon and I totally won.  Mom and dad, you didn't raise a loser.  

Our selfie with "P Manny". He told us that it was actually an "ussie"
 I love that guy 
-It was FREEEEZING and blizzarding outside and we saw this African lady named Shatha shoveling her walk, so we jumped out of the car to help her.  She was really happy we did and then asked if we were tea drinkers...we said no, but that we could drink herbal tea, so she invited us in.  We went in and she made us this ginger tea (totally wasn't herbal......hahah but we didn't know that til after..) accidentally broke the word of wisdom.  oops.  But we did get to show her the Savior Is Born video and she LOVED it and said we could come back later on.  :) :) 

-Maggie is still MIA..pray that we can contact her somehow.  

-I just got a really big laugh out of the 12 days of social on christmas.mormon.org...the one by studio C.  i died.  it's so funny.  go watch it.  

-We had exchanges with the YSA sisters yesterday and it was really fun.  I was with Sister Torsak and we went to the West Edmonton Mall to contact people.  We came up with a three question Christmas survey that would get people talking about the real meaning of Christmas, and we gave out a ton of cards! So much fun.  There were so many people there it was insane...don't go there Christmas week....especially dad.  you'd just get freaked out by all the people.  But as we were walking, I said hello to this guy next to us..but he didn't hear.  So I waved bigger and said hello louder and he looked over and started talking with us.  He's from Ghana and his name is Charles. :) I love Ghanaians!!! We talked about general things like Jesus for a bit, then we asked if he heard of the Book of Mormon.  He stopped and said, "wait right here for 10 minutes. I"ll be back.  don't leave.  I"ll be back." then he books it away from us...so we waited.  We thought maybe he got freaked out and ran away, but we prayed he would come back and he did!  He said, "okay let's go sit down I want to hear this word of God you're telling me about." YES YES YES YES YES we went to the food court and taught him the restoration and he loved it.  He was like, "this is the real thing. I love this. I love it." and it turns out that he was given a book of mormon back when he was in Ghana!!!  He's coming to church this week, doesn't live in our area, but we're STOKED!!!!!!!!  so prepared.  I told him he was elect. He said, "not many people listen to you...but I know you have the word of God."  so boss. :) :)   

-okay one more miracle.  background: i read this talk called "repent of our selfishness" and it's really good.  basically gave me a big rebuking...but in it he says that before we do something, we should ask ourselves, "whose needs am i really trying to meet?" so this has been running through my mind a lot since I read it.  Sunday, before our supper appointment we were trying by this less active who never answers us.....and we were about to get back in the car because it was cold and such, but then i had that question flash through my mind, "WHOSE NEEDS ARE YOU REALLY TRYING TO MEET?" sooooo we felt we should knock on a door nearby.  Sister McKeon just testified of eternal families and the lady, Diane, was like, "yes.  Please come back, my daughter would love to hear this but we're just sitting down for supper.  Can I set up an appointment with you or something?"  :) :) :) miracles happen when you're repenting of your selfishness.  it's the real deal.  

anywho, this Christmas season is PRIME to feel the Saviour's love and to share the Saviour's love.  So don't look inward this year, please just look outward and serve those around you.  Jesus Christ LIVES TODAY!  Our loving Father in Heaven sent him to earth so that we can be made new, everyday.  You can be forgiven and you CAN be born again.  You're worth more than any earthly thing, and you have great purpose here in this great plan.  Unto YOU a Saviour is born. Don't you forget it.  

onward, ever onward. 

Sister Jones 

Aaaannnnd the greatest comp in dee whole world.
West Ed with Sister Torsak

Our Christmas lunch ❤❤

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

"Suffer the children to come to me."

There have been many spiritual manifestations in the land of River Valley this week!

Last Tuesday night, after a lesson fell through, we felt we should continue to tract out that gold mine i told you about last week!  So we went.  And it was cold.  And our toes were numb.  But we kept going.  We got to show a lot of people the new Christmas initiative video and it was so fun!  We didn't find anyone that really wanted us to come back, (except a korean man that told us to come back the next day, then when we went back, his wife yelled at us and told us to leave...ha even after sister mckeon wrote the link to the KOREAN version of the video on a card...so we left it in their door...ha) We had decided when we started, that we would go until 8pm.  It was probably like 7:57 and we were cold and we decided to be done tracting. But then we saw one light on in this house, and we looked at each other and were just like...okay fine.  So we went and knocked on it.  And she let us in!  Her name is Renai, and she's actually a MEMBER!!! GOD LED US TO ANOTHER LOST SHEEP!!!  We went in and taught her and her husband a lesson and it was all just so good.  He's not a member, his name is Pascal! :) Renai isn't too interested in coming back right now, but she said we could come back to visit.  #FINDINGLOSTSHEEP #MYFAVE 
There is absolutely no way the spirit doesn't lead us in this work. We know basically nothing.  God knows all. HE LEADS US AND HE KNOWS HIS CHILDREN.  "I am the good Shepherd, and I know my sheep." John 10:14 

We also had interviews with President and pretty much all he said to me was, "alright, now don't run out of gas on me. keep working hard until the end." SO HERE I GO ENDURING TO THE END AND LOVING IT!!!

Our english class has been failing a bit and people haven't been showing up.  We haven't been so sure if we should keep trying or just forget about it, and this past Thursday in our companionship prayer, I just asked Heavenly Father what we should do.  I asked him that if we were supposed to keep it going, to please just send one soul to our class and we would keep trying.  Around about 4 or 5, we get a text from Babu saying he wanted to come to english class!!!!!!  WHHHAT??? So he came and it went really well and somehow we were able to help him improve his english.  God has made it clear that we need to keep trying.  So... keep trying we will.  

We are now teaching Victoria!  A less active's daughter!  She's almost 9 and she's SO PRECIOUS!  such a pure soul.  When we asked her how God feels about her she just said, "well...I think God really cares about everyone.  I don't think he cares about what you look like or where you're from or who you are.  I think he just loves everyone. no matter what."  The spirit was so strong in the room at that time.  God teaches us through children, I know that's true.  The ward had the primary program this week as well, and those kids just have the spirit of Christ in them.  It's amazing.
"But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for
of such is the kingdom of heaven."  Matthew 19:14

We had an especially neat experience on Thursday night after our english class.  We were going to do our facebook time at the end of the night, and as we were driving to the Riverbend library, Sister Mckeon said she felt like we should go to the Callingwood one instead.  So I turned around and we headed that way.  We walked in and said hello to this lady who was rushing out, but when we sat down, she came back and sat by us!  Her name is Flory and she's from the Philippines.  We started talking with her and to make a long story short, she wanted to meet to learn more!!!  We had our first lesson with her last night and she said, "There is something familiar about you, I recognize you, Sister Jones, from somewhere!" ( I was so tempted to just say, "THE PREMORTAL LIFE!!!"...) but I cannot deny the spirit that filled my heart and soul when she said that.  Our God is a God of miracles!!!!!!!  I'm telling you it's true!!! 

We also got to go caroling with some members and the elders and it was just so much fun.  I love caroling.  The spirit is so present in songs of Christ.  

We also found a lady from Jamaica and we helped her shovel her walkway.  (shout out to ma boy Elder Boyer down in jamaica) her name is Paula and she's simply wonderful.  I love her already.  

man so much really did happen i don't even have enough time to write it all.  Sometimes I feel like emailing is like this scripture in John, 
"And there are also many other things which Jesus did [among the people of River Valley], the which, if they should 
be written every one, I
suppose that even the world  
itself could not contain the 
books that should be written" 
Our ward Christmas party!

One more experience i want to share!  We were on exchanges yesterday (with another tri-pan so i was with Sister Angilau and Sister Cameron) and our Relief Society president called us and asked if we could go with her to deliver the leftovers from the ward Christmas party (which was a HUGE SUCCESS btw) to this homeless shelter centre thing downtown (and we all know that downtown edmonton is Holy ground for me) so we said OF COURSE!!!  We had gone once before to bring a meal for a women's group there, and this time it was a little different.  We got to serve it to the people straight off the streets.  I had to hold back tears as I talked with these people and fed them. sometimes, God opens my spiritual eyes and gives me a glimpse of what he sees, and i am 
 forever grateful for that.  

  "And now, for the sake of 
 these things which I have spokenunto you—that is, for the 
sake of retaining a remission of your sins from day to day, 
that ye may walk guiltless before God—I would that ye should  
impart of your substance to the 
poor, every man according to  
that which he hath, such as 
feeding the hungry, clothing the  
naked, visiting the sick and  
administering to their relief,  
both spiritually and temporally, according to their wants." Mosiah 4:27

I love these people.

Onward, ever onward.
Sister Jones 

Every time we go into a store...Santa wants a picture with the us...

Tuesday, December 8, 2015


What a week!

First off, Maggie ended up going to Calgary to help her friend who
just had surgery. So we're just excited for her to come back, she said
she would read the Arabic Book of Mormon we gave her :)

We had probably the last MLC that I'll attend. It was AMAZING. so
powerful. Probably my favorite one. President Manion gave a training
on faith and our prayers, and how we can call down the powers of
heaven to aid us in the Lords work. It was the real deal. It was
definitely an answer to my prayers, because lately, it has been hard
for me to tell if I have real faith and what faith even is. He divided
it into two parts. Faith to action, and then that action translating
into power from heaven. To have faith that leads to action, we have to
have a resolve, we have to make decisions, and then have the
determination to work and work and work. Then, he talked about how we
can have faith that leads to action and ACTUAL POWER FROM ON HIGH. We
must have first, faith in Christ and in his atonement. Second,
determination to respond to the Lords requirements of us (aka
OBEDIENCE), and third, to believe that HE has the power to make it
work and to make miracles happen.  God is REAL and he truly gives
us the power necessary for His work to continue on and succeed.  I love

The B family had us for supper, and they also came to church AGAIN!!
They're coming back in full swing.  It's amazing.

We had exchanges with a tri-pan (companionship with 3 missionaries) and it
 was SO FUN!  kind of crazy, i went with Sister Persson AND Sister Kirts.
We had lots of adventures talking with everyone.  They are both such stellar
missionaries.  One of my favorite thing about being a sister training
leader is being able to get to know these amazing sisters.  The end of the exchange, we
always review what we learned and give training on things the sister needs,
and let me tell you the spirit WORKS LIKE NONE OTHER in that setting.

We did some finding/tracting in this apartment complex that we have been
wanting to tract out for a few days, and man..that place is a gold mine. We're
going back to this Egyptian family tonight to teach them! It was pretty awesome
when we talked to them, we found out they were from Egypt, and I had Arabic
pamphlets in my bag for Maggie, so we gave them one! Heavenly Father always
gives us what we need when we need it.  He knows what He's doing.

okay also ANOTHER HUGE MIRACLE HAPPENED.  Our landlord, Solo, is such a
boss.  He's from Eritrea which is near Egypt he told us.  We have been
leaving sticky notes on his door for the past little while that
have verses from the Bible and the Book of Mormon.  Man, this guy is
the definition of Christian.  He's amazing.  We invited him to watch
general conference back in October and he watched a bit of it and
loved it.  He totally gets the organization of the church, this guy knows the bible.
yes he came to the Christmas devotional and said he was "deeply touched" :) it was all so
good, we also got to give him a tour of the church, and props to the
Riverbend stake because they have the pictures around the building in
perfect order to teach the restoration!  He loved it.  We're going to
start reading the Book of Mormon and the Bible with him soon!!! He's
pretty committed to his Pentecostal church right now, but MIRACLES
HAPPEN and it's going to be legendary. :)

My heart is just really full of joy and gratitude and all that good
stuff.  I love this place.  I love these people.  I love this gospel.  thanks for all the support, keep
on keeping on!  Remember that you're not alone and that you have a Heavenly Father who will
give you what you need, sometimes all you have to do is ask.

Onward, ever onward.

Sister Jones

MLC 🇨🇦

Exchange with sister Kirts and sister Persson

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

"If you need any help...RECRUIT THE MORMONS"

hola my friends and family it has been a wonderful week full of craziness and blessings. 

first of all MAGGIE CAME TO CHURCH ON SUNDAY AND IT WAS GLORIOUS!!!  We taught her again on Wednesday, we were planning on finishing the Plan of Salvation, and we tried, but she wasn't so sure about the spirit world.  Her religious background is very strong, but we're not losing hope.  Sometimes, I think we get too impatient with people, when in reality, we need to give people time to completely change some of the things they have believed or done all their lives.  It's not an easy road, and "things of quality have no fear of time."  but anyways, we weren't sure if she would still want to come to church after the second lesson, but she called us Friday and said she wanted to come!  we got her a ride, and Sunday morning, I was playing prelude for relief society, and i look up and see Maggie walk in and my heart just REJOICED.  so much so that i botched the hymn and tears almost came to my eyes but yeah it was wonderful.  I think she was the first investigator I have seen come to church in well over 6 months so it was amazing.  And I also forgot how stressful it is to have an investigator at church, especially when members go off on random things like Kolob and signs of the second coming...hhahah *face palm* (don't worry, nobody ACTUALLY talked about kolob this week....but tangents are a real thing and get a little crazy some days) 

We were kind of stressed out after relief society, because not many people were talking to Maggie, so the member who brought her took her to gospel principles, and sister McKeon and I went to the mother's room to say a quick prayer.  We just prayed our little hearts out that people would talk to her and that she would love church and want to come back, and on the way back to class, we just decided to tell everyone individually to say hi to her, and it worked!  kind of like when there's an emergency, you can't just say, "SOMEBODY CALL 911!" You have to tell people individually to do something.  so it worked. :) and she loved it. :) and the sisters here will be teaching her tomorrow (I will be away on exchanges) but please pray that she'll accept the invitation to be baptized!!! :) #keepprayin4maggie 

ALSO HEATHER WANTS TO BE BAPTIZED!!! she wants to wait until March so she can get baptized with her son.  It's all really exciting. :) 

now for the funny stuff.  the most hilarious things happen to us as missionaries, not just spiritual things.  so here you go. :)

We had a relief society Christmas Social last week, and guess who came??!! DAWUTA!  Jody brought her!!! it was amazing.  i just love her so much.  i don't remember if i already told this story, but a couple weeks ago, we were leaving the nursing home that we volunteer at and we both got in the car.  About 5 seconds later, we hear the back door open!!!  We just screamed bloody murder because we just thought some creepy guy was coming to kidnap us or something, then we turn around and it was DAWUTA!  she was laughing so hard.  So we get out of the car and just laugh for like 10 minutes and she was like, "I am so happy I scared you.  I just feel so joyful."  she's such a hoot.  #ilovenigerians 

another funny story, i was making some toast one morning and all of a sudden this giant glass plate rolls off the top of the fridge onto the counter in front of me and shatters everywhere!  My foot got cut and it was kind of gross haha but i was still hungry and wanted to eat my toast.  So after sort of cleaning up, I took a bite of my toast and i accidentally ATE GLASS!!!  it was sketchy. hahahhahahhaa good times... 

okay one more funny story, we were shoveling a former investigator's driveway last week, and this man walked by so we said hello and tried to talk to him, and he said he was going home to shovel his driveway.  Sister McKeon was in kind of a crazy mood and she just goes, "well...if you need any help.....RECRUIT THE MORMONS!"  He looked at us like we were crazy and just walked away..hahhahah.  good times..had to be there.  

We got to volunteer at the SaveOn foods for the Foodbank taking donations! we basically just danced around and told people merry Christmas for like...4 hours.  it was really fun. :) people are so generous.

yeah.  life is real good.  For my spiritual thought, I'd like to share with you what our friend Evelyn said in her prayer this week. (she's the one in a nursing home who shares the gospel with her friend, Bill, the plant..:)) "Satan's out there...he's ready to pounce on us whenever we make a slow move.....I'd really just like to stick something to his head or something......I'm just joking with you, God.  Thanks for these fellas coming to visit me.  I really like the mormons.  Take care."   I just had to write it down because she's THE GREATEST.  and she never fails to make me laugh and make me feel loved.  She even kissed me on the cheek when we were leaving this week...hahah such a gem. 
I love this place so much and i love these people even more.  that's what it's all about.  Love. 
 "And above all things, clothe yourselves with the bond of charity, as with a mantle, which is the bond of perfectness and peace." D&C 88:125
"And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity preventeth a multitude of sins." 1 Peter 4:8

Onward, ever onward.

Sister Jones 

All the sisters in the mission at our sisters conference in October :)

A narwhal tusk