Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Hello Family and Friends!

      This week has been GREAT! Its been pretty cool because we are at sites Sunday, then our p-day is Monday, then we are at sites Tuesday and then in our area for 4 days straight! I love love love being at sites but it really has been cool to have a good chunk of area time to really get some work done! It's really tricky trying to juggle what we want and need to get done in our area when we have to be at sites half the week! So its been awesome! We are seeing a lot of really cool things.
     We are starting to finally see some real progression with some of our investigators. We have three with baptismal dates now!!!!!!! ding ding ding ding!!!! Jeff (Dec 28th) and Tessa and Bradley (Jan 4th). I love them so much and am so excited for them to discover the great blessings of making those covenants with our Father in Heaven. They are all choice children of our Heavenly Father and I feel so honored to even be a part of helping them learn about the Gospel and what they must do to return and live with their God together as a family. It has been so special and I am so excited to continue to work with them!  The last lesson we had with Tessa and Bradley we taught the Plan of Salvation, their dad couldn't make it so that was really sad, but we started teaching them and Sis. Jones got down on the floor to lay out the Plan of Salvation papers and Bradley got down on the floor too! They are so awesome and so eager to learn! At the end they had just set a baptismal date for Jan 4th

 and we all were joking about how we must have known each other in the pre-earth life and how we promised them we would find them to teach them the Gospel! And it really is true! I just know that teaching the Molynuex's is one of the reasons I need to come to Ohio on my mission. They are such a special family!
       God is so good to us. We have so many awesome people in our area I just know it. We are trying really hard to get into more homes and teach more families and help those the Lord has helped us find to start progressing....it has been a hard slow start, but things are at the breaking point and I just know miracles are beginning to unfold and I am learning so much as I watch/help it happen. I am really working on trying to follow the spirit more and the one thing I have noticed is how humble it requires me to be. I mean I can teach and explain fairly well, but to really have the spirit so that those we are with can truly become converted, I have to step away from all I know and say "okay God, This is your lesson, help me to speak for thee" It has been awesome to see how much more powerful our lessons are when we turn it over to God. I love being a missionary!!!!!  
     We have had some crazy stuff going on with the Mejias...They are such an awesome family and one we have been working a lot with ever since I got here. Well last week Bro. Mejia was to the point were he was seriously considering coming back to church. He just wanted to meet the Bishop and  "see where they stand and how they feel about my family"  Well Bishop is an awesome guy, but a little bit on the formal side....and Bro. Mejia did not like him....oh it was so sad! and it wasn't the Bishop's fault at alll! but now they are pretty much right back to where they were. Its just so sad because ever since his heart transplant Bro. Mejia has been really paranoid and he just is really struggling with feeling like everyone is out to get him! On the bright side they still love having us over and hearing our messages about Christ. Sis. Mejia taught us how to make some traditional Honduran food the other day, it was so delicious! 

    Well I love you all and hope you have a fabulous Thanksgiving!!!!
Love, Sister Hannah Newren

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Happy holidays!

Hey hey hey everyone!!!!
     So last night we were at sights, getting our work done. We had noticed it was a blustery, dreary yet oddly warm day yet thought nothing of it...well we had just had an entertaining conversation with Elder Norton (Senior Elder), He was telling us all about the story of those 10 sister missionaries who were trapped in their home during the Hurricane in the Philippines. We were spell bound, then he says,"sorry we can't get anything exciting to happen here for you Sisters (jokingly of course...its always exciting at Kirtland and in Painesville:)" haha well, not even an hour later they tell us a Tornado warning has been issued and they want us all to get to our homes as quickly as possible. Apparently the Tornado had by that time touched down in Toledo and was heading our way...So we grab our things and headed out while Sis. Norton explains to us to go to our basement if it gets bad. It was indeed a nail biting drive up the hill to the Hyrum Smith home where we live. Lots of rain and wind....To carry on the theatrics of the night we did indeed check out our basement and wondered aloud if we really would have to spend the night here:) well pretty much we ended up just sprawling on the floor making calls and updating our area book for the rest of the night. Planned for the next day and calmly went to bed. yup...so much for all the hype.  But it was good, it did get pretty windy and rainy but turned out to be nothing to worry about. Still I know it never hurts to be safe:) And I am sure this isn't the last time we will just narrowly avoid getting swept up by a Tornado:)
   This week has been a good one. Mostly we have been doing a lot of stop by's, trying to stay in touch those we have found who are harder to meet with and don't yet realize that this will change their life. We have so many investigators who have such potential and its just so hard to help them have that desire and motivation to keep moving forward and progressing! Its frustrating but its so worth it when it works out and those really sincere ones pull through:)
    We had another amazing lesson with the Molynuex's. Bro. Molynuex and Tessa came right out and said "I am so sorry we didn't read this week!" It was sad to hear but the remorse was evident and we stressed that reading and praying is how they are going to get their answers! I think it sank in a lot better. Bradley, who is Bro. Molynuex's 17 year old son was finally able to be there and is the most incredible kid I have ever met! He is so grown up and responsible and so interested! You can just tell he is searching for truth and was recognizing what we taught as truth. When we asked them to be baptized he said "if this book convinces me..." He has such a desire to find out if this is true and I know once he does he will be rock solid! We love them so much! They are such a special family and we live for them now! We have been able to get the McIntosh's over there every lesson and they have been amazing fellowship. They just rave about how awesome the Molynuex's are after every lesson and it is just so sweet to see the responsibility and connection they feel for them now....I have no worries who they will sit by at church and who will take them to Kirtland. Members are so key in helping investigators progress and feel welcome. Its been just amazing to watch.
     The thing I have treasured most about my mission is people. Learning to care about and love and serve people just as Christ would has changed my life. There are so many people who need so much love....and it has been the most precious privilege to be an instrument in God's hands to give them that love. It moves mountains and its the most powerful, worthwhile thing in the world. Sometimes I come so close to crying, with the people I meet and situations I see, its just heart breaking. And its not always the horrible living situations, I know they are much worse off in other 3rd world countries. But its the emotional hurt and spiritual denial that is the hardest to witness. What really is there to live for if you don't have hope? But that is what the Gospel of Jesus Christ brings. And that is what drives me. We stopped by Don's house a few nights ago and met his son Andy. Andy is 25 and so bitter. He just railed at his father..."why are you doing this, God doesn't exist....you are the man who raised me and taught me that God doesn't exist and now you are dabbling in this #ji45#@ saying maybe he does????!!!" It was so sad and Don just calmly said..."Why not? I am changing my mind, I believe its possible that He does."  It was a powerful moment to see how far Don has come. He still has a lot to work through but he is an amazing person and is beginning to accept the healing power of the Atonement in his life.    The Church is true!
    I love you all! Have a fabulous week!
           Sis. Hannah Newren
P.S thank you so much for the package!!!!! You all are the best! All the senior couples were admiring the outside and how cute it was! You guys are the best family ever!!!!!!

Monday, November 11, 2013


Hi Everyone!

Man, Holidays on the mission are so weird! Halloween? Did that even just happen????? and now its Veterans day which means all of the libraries and our favorite store is closed...ugh. But I still love holidays and I am crazy excited for Thanksgiving and Christmas!
     This week has been awesome but I don't have much time to tell about it. I will just share one miracle:)
   The Molynuex's: Bro. Molynuex is a less active who hasn't been to church since he was little (soooo he is pretty much an investigator) and Tessa his daughter is our investigator...we have taught them several times but haven't been able to meet with Bradley the 17 yr old son...well we finally briefly met him one day and will be teaching all of them this week but we found out that they totally have been keeping him updated on everything! And he was the first one in their family to actually pick up the Book of Mormon and start reading it!!!! So amazing...He is a cool kid! This family is so golden and I was praying and praying that I would not get transferred so that Sis. Jones and I could keep teaching them and my wish came true!!!!! Both of us are staying for another transfer! So happy. I love being a missionary!
 Well got to go. The Church is true!

        Sis. Hannah Newren!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Fall is finally here!

Hello Everyone!
     So I know I said we had snow last week. And it certainly is getting bitter cold. But the leaves have FINALLY all turned (well the majority anyways) So it actually feels like fall! Wahoooooo. Its beautiful, I am so glad I am not the one who has to drive so I can just look out the window and enjoy the scenery wherever we go. Its awesome.
     We had a Halloween party with our ward last Tuesday and it was so much fun. The best part was when the Kurzhols walked in. They all looked so happy. Even Bro. Kurzhol which is HUGE for him. He seriously used to never crack a smile. But they were just all so happy and Sis. Jones and I were able to talk with them for awhile and really get to know Sis. Kurzhol. I think we really helped her feel welcomed and loved and it just was the best feeling in the world. They are actually the Elders investigators but we gave them a tour at Kirtland so we definitely feel a strong connection to them. The Elders told us they committed them to baptism again and Karen, the wife was like...."okay so how are we going to do this because its going to be kinda hard juggling two religions." hahah! Whaaaat. The Elders definitely had to clarify on that point:) They are so awesome though and someday they will be members of this church. 

      We have been working more in some of the nicer neighborhoods in Painesville. We feel very strongly that there is a very special family in this one area, right by where two of our members live. So we have been being very thorough in that area. We have one new investigator named Debbie who lives there and she is awesome. She has had a rough life but she has strong morals and knows what is important. Her husband has had two affairs but she just said "Divorce is too easy now days. It was the hardest thing I have ever done to get over that and let myself love him again but I do love him and we are married so we just keep going and making it work" The Gospel is exactly what she needs and I think she is beginning to see that as well. We also were able to have some awesome lessons with two of our less active families. The Mejias really have no interest in coming back to church but they are very welcoming to us and just recently we encouraged Bro. Mejia to let us have the Bishop call him and he agreed. That was such a miracle and I think a big step towards bringing them back. The Molynuex's are amazing. They are really lost and I think are really hoping the church has what they want but still don't quiet see it yet. Bro. Molynuex and his daughter Tessa both excepted a Book of Mormon and seemed really excited about it. We brought a couple from our ward over with us and it was just a very powerful lesson. We are excited to keep working with them all and see a great future comin' for the Perry ward!!!! The Bishop has been awesome! Really been turning around and pushing missionary work and we love it! It is truly an answer to prayer. 
     OH yes I almost forgot. Service this week. K so we had another project that the Elders needed our help with. We went over to that same trailer park (we are getting way too well known over there:) and were helping a Less active, Sis. Barth and her sister Judy (investigator) with washing the walls in her home. It was a big job but we got it done quickly with 4 of us and Bro. Cuttler. Then we got dragged on to the next service project. The trailer home next store where some of the Elders investigators live was burned really bad inside. So we had the pleasant task of ripping that place apart and are now working on putting it back together. We tore down the ceiling, pulled up the floor, ripped off the walls, sheet rock insulation and everything. We smelled so bad and were breathing in all of this horrible dusty, smelly, insulation thick air and coughing and blinking like crazy. When we went home that night. It hurt to touch our faces because there were literally shards of plexi glass all over them! Ah it was awful, but we loved it. Bill(the sweetest man who was in charge of the reconstruction going on)  wanted me to make sure and tell you Papa that I am learning valuable life skills out here, I now know how to demolish a house. 
      Well I better get a goin' but I will talk to you all next week:)
            Sis. Hannah Newren
  p.s. The Jones, one of the senior couples finished their mission this past Friday. We had a nice breakfast all together and then sang to them over the balcony. We sang our mission song and it was just the sweetest thing. All of us missionaries that serve at sites all together saying goodbye to one of our own... I was definitely tearing up.  We are sure going to miss them, They were one of my favorite senior couples!

Friday, November 1, 2013


 Hey Everyone! Hola from OHIO! Where the leaves fall before they turn pretty colors, where everything can be blamed on "the lake effect" and where it snows before Halloween. haha..  Seriously though, snow! ugh, not ready for that. But I still love love love it here. And the leaves really are beautiful, they just are all falling off and half of the leaves still on the trees are still green...what is happening! People are saying this Fall is being a little weird. Anyways....:)
       We were not able to get into too many homes this week. It was so sad, everybody just kept canceling and not being home! But we tried our best and this week is looking awesome. We did find some neat people though that I really hope will be more committed to progressing in the Gospel....arg...its so hard to be patient sometimes, I know though that it is hard for people to change, and that is what we are asking them to do. To change and come unto Christ.
    We had an awesome lesson with Bro. Molyneux and his daughter Tessa. He hasn't been to church since he was a teenager and Tessa doesn't know anything about the church. We feel really good about them, I think they both don't realize this is what they are looking for but they are very willing to experiment with it. Well lets just say you don't hear us complaining!!!!  They are an awesome family and miracles are happening with them! Sis. Jones and I have decided that we need to "flood the world with the Book of Mormon!" So we have been using it a lot in our proselyting efforts and we can tell some amazing things are going to happen with that! Also, I am pretty sure almost everyone of us missionaries in the Perry ward asked Pres. Vellinga in our interview this week about working with the Bishop and ward etc.. and answer to prayer... We went in there with a sincere desire to step it up and the Bishop surprised us all with an hour long meeting and discussion on how he is there for us and he is re-committed and is willing to help us move the work forward. He read us a quote from Elder Nelson I believe from a meeting with Stake Presidents and such they recently held somewhere and it said "the Full time missionaries no longer belong to the mission president, they belong to the Bishop." basically he says, they are members of the ward and the Bishop has full responsibility of helping them move the work forward. So It was amazing! He is so pumped about this and so are we. Which is just what we needed. The Perry ward has been really struggling with unity and supporting the missionaries but with that communication and support from the Bishop I know things are going to explode around here. So excited! I really hope I get to stay here for awhile yet. Transfers are coming up again in a few weeks and since I will be done training its a possibility I could be transfered and/or get a new companion. I am sure it will be awesome whatever happens but there is just so much more we have to do here!!!!!! And with the Bishop now on board we are already seeing miracles.
      Well, hmmm...I am trying to remember what happened this week.....its all a blur! I think that was pretty much it! We have our ward Halloween party tonight which we are all super excited for and we invited everyone we know so hopefully they all come!!!!! Well I love you all and will talk to you next week!
    Sis. Hannah Newren