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Trains and Towers and People and Stuff

September 10, 2013

Hi dear ones!

So you know that moment when you realize that where you are is exactly where you want to be?  Yup. I had that moment last night.  It felt really good.  (I have those moments a lot around here.)  So as you can infer, life in Liberty is beautiful and great!

 I’ve spent my whole mission so far in this town.  And I just hit my 4 month mark a few days ago.  Weird.  The time is already flying and they say your first 6 months are the slowest.  I love this place SO much!  It’s just as charming and cute and endearing as it was when I first got here, but now I know it better.  It’s become my city.  I know the names of all the streets, of many of the people who live in the houses, which restaurants are good and not, how traffic moves, what most people’s lives are like here–it’s as much home as Utah ever was for me.  And it feels like Whitefish Bay, so that’s another plus.  I met someone from MKE today who knows and loves the Bay, that took me back–it’s weird that high school is so far behind me.

 Anyway!  Missionary work!  La obra celestial!  =)  Mercedes is coming along, leaps and bounds–this girls is so ready!  We talked about moving her baptism (baptiZAM! as Sis. White’s little sister wrote–yeah, we missionaries share everything, even letters from home) to the 14th, but she had just read in the beginning of the Book of Mormon about how the angel Moroni came to visit Joseph on September 21st so that’s the date we’re sticking with.  We went to the VC with her this week, with our whole Book of Mormon Book Club, and it was awesome!  So, I forget how much I’ve mentioned about the “BoMBC” as we call it–the members are us, Mercedes, Emily, and Hannah.  Usually our meetings involve Mormon Messages, drinks from Sonic (the girls remember our favorites so they always pick up a Dr. Pepper for Sister Jorgensen and a root beer for me), and obviously, spiritual discussions about the Book of Mormon and the church.  It’s a great deal.  It feels like we’re bringing a friend home more than like we’re bringing a stranger to the truth, you know?  Mercedes is the type who will roadtrip out to UT for our weddings and just to visit us–the friends for life because we’re sisters in Christ type.  It’s a good deal.

 So here’s a spot of bad news intermingled with the joy.  AJ isn’t going to be baptized on Saturday.  He won’t be baptized maybe until he’s 18.  His dad said no.  So we don’t get to teach AJ anymore and he doesn’t get to get baptized.  It’s sad to watch parents deny their children that which will ultimately give them joy and peace.  No parent who loves their child would knowingly do such a thing, so we have to assume they just don’t know. And their closed-mindedness is based in fear and caution and misinformation and they are good people, just deceived presently.  “All things have been done in he wisdom of Him who knoweth all things.” -2 Nephi 2:24 So it will work out.  

 On a happier note, we found Leslie!  It’s rare to find people who are part of stable, traditional, intact families nowadays, and Leslie is!  She and her husband have a 17 year-old daughter and they have normal, stable jobs, and they are good Christian people with questions.  Teaching Leslie the lesson of the Restoration was the ideal PMG missionary moment–she asked great questions, she has a believing heart, we bore testimony, we showed a clip of Elder Perry’s testimony and teaching on the Restoration to show her an example of a modern apostle.  Things fell into place.  And she wants to meet with us again!  This is so good, it’s unreal!  Meeting people this prepared is such a miracle–one of those moments that reminds us how this truly is God’s work.

 I can never think of funny moments when it’s time to write them down.  We do laugh a lot.  Wait, here’s one–we were listening to Sister J’s iPod while we were getting ready and this song comes on–picture a cowboy singing “Sweet Hour of Prayer” with all the drawl of a cowboy. Sister J’s reaction: “Oh that is so embarrassing! For them.”  The way she said it was just so serious and so funny all at once.  I’ve been giggling about it all week.  People tell me I’m easily amused.  I think that’s a talent, actually.  Plus, my companions really are funny people.  

 Also, random happy news that isn’t even about me: Austin got into Men’s Chorus!  So proud of him! =)

 Today my email is coming late because we spent the morning in Kansas City with the Stevensons (they really are our adoptive grandparents) at the Federal Bank Reserve Museum and Union Station, and the WWI museum and monument.  I really like learning things, any things.  I’m realizing more and more what a nerd I am, but I like it.  Soaking up information is like cleaning my glasses–it gives me a clearer, more complete view of the world around me.  I like that.  And I think there’s more to KC than I thought.  It’s not the most beautiful city ever–that goes to Milwaukee, or Brussels, or definitely Brugge–but Brugge is a town, not a city.  But it has cool things.  We went to the top of this tower today at the WWI Museum and it reminded me of Jerusalem.  Pictures to follow.  =)

 I love you all!  Keep up the good you’re doing!  Testify whenever you can–reality is a precious as scarce thing in this world–the reality is the gospel of Jesus Christ.  Eternal perspective is ultimately the clearest lens to look at life.  Keep it up, folks!  Love you!

 Love,

Sister HJ Rackham

 First: meet Mercedes =)  She’s our “favorite grey convert.”  Inside jokes.  She thought “convert” was in insult and once upon a time Sister J used the phrase “shades of grey” and Mercedes turned it into a black joke.  She’s a funny one.   Sister J and I outside the museum.  And then we’ve got my favorite people out here–the Stevensons and my compan~era!  We’re on top of a tower overlooking the KC skyline. 

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