Erica's Missionary Adventures

Erica's Missionary Adventures
Merry Christmas from Mesa!

Friday, June 27, 2014

June 23, 2014

June 23, 2014
Letter from Erica

It was way cool to talk with you on the phone!! [Erica called us from the airport on her way to Mesa.]

I love telling everyone about how my brother is dating my [former] roommate.

Mesa is hot. There is no denying that...... But it's realllyyyyy not that bad. I would rather be out here than in than Hawaii 85 degrees humidity (although in Hawaii I do get to go to the beach). But seriously, I love Mesa and I've decided that I might live here someday. But I should probably make it through this summer before I fully decide that.

Mesa is beautiful. It has quite a different beauty from Hawaii or Oregon, but it really is beautiful. When I would go hiking in Oregon I would look over the edge and see tons of Evergreen trees and typical Oregon trees. I went hiking this morning with my zone (such a great hike), and I looked over at the top and saw hundreds of cacti. And death. Just kidding there was no death. It was actually a great hike because we left at 5am and so it was super cool. I even wished I had brought a sweater when we were near the top and stopped for a devotional.

I've acclimated very quickly to the heat and I now have to take a sweater with me if I know I'm going to be inside for long amounts of time. And when Sister T****** (my companion) and I do personal/companion study, I just wrap myself up in my comforter in our 79 degree apartment.

A day in Mesa:

Wake up
Get ready/Breakfast
Dinner at 5pm
Home by 9
Bed by 10:30 (I've been getting into bed by 10 every night though because I've been so exhausted, but now I am really getting my energy back :))

Every day has been very different. Sister T***** and I are white washing [covering the whole area, meeting people, etc.] the area so she knows as much as I do about the people and we are still trying to figure things out, but so far we have mostly been contacting potential investigators and less active members to see where they are at.

Companionship studies are great!! Sister T***** is a fantastic trainer and I really am glad she is my companion! When we are in the car we have great conversations. Oh yes, we have a car and I feel so fortunate!! It is probably part of the reason why I haven't had such a problem with the heat. :)

I love working with the ward members. Sister W****** is my favorite person in the ********** ward. She has 6 kids and 12 grandchildren(2 or 3 of her kids live close by) and she is a widow now (I'm not sure how long ago she lost her husband). We had dinner with her last night and I think at first she must not have been sure what to expect by having the missionaries over, but at the end of dinner and our lesson when we told her we had to go she exclaimed, "I have really enjoyed this!" I was so happy to have made a new friend and to have brightened her evening. We watched "Good things to come" the Mormon message by Jefferey R. Holland and it really touched all of us.

Henry is the funniest person in the world. I love him so much! Haha I love to tell people in the ward stories about my nieces and nephews!

Yes! Please send letters! Michelle sent me a letter via Dear Elder and it was so sweet!!

Whose funeral was it??

I heard about the shooting at Reynolds. One of the young Men's leaders in the ********** ward served in the Portland mission about 5 years ago (He even served in one of the wards in our stake!) and then he said "Oh yeah! did you hear about he shooting?" And I said "" and then he felt bad for even saying anything (I think he realized there was probably a reason a missionary hadn't heard about a shooting from their home town), but of course I wanted to know what had happened so he told me. I don't think I knew the boy, but the family name sounds familiar. If you could tell me more I would really appreciate it, but obviously if you don't think I should hear something about it I will leave it up to you whether or not you say anything.

I love the zoo. The zoo in Arizona is in Phoenix so I will probably not get to go to it on the mission. But I get to go to the temple on Friday! Yay! And we will most likely get to go to the Phoenix temple open house at the end of this year :)

I love the Silver Falls hike! Sorry you had to do an extra long drive!

Did Sarah like Napoleon Dynamite??

I hope she has fun at camp!! She told me about her skit and it sounds funny! Are you going to go see it? You should record it and save it so I can see it in a year and a half.... :)

How is the job searching going?

Mailing address:
Sister Erica Brady (make sure you put my first name in there too!)
[message Shelly – me – for her address]

I don't know my actual apartment address! But it's on the corner of **** and *****. The apartment complex is called "***********"

Today during companionship study I had a profound experience where I really came to understand the Atonement more fully. 

Sister T******** and I were talking about how it was necessary for Christ to suffer our sins so that we could be forgiven of them if we turned to Christ and eventually return to Heavenly Father. This is something I understand. I also understand that Christ has felt all of out pains and sorrows. But suddenly I wondered why He had to suffer those pains as well. When we stub a toe or lose a loved one, we feel pain that Christ has also felt, but those aren't pains that come from sin! Those are just pains we experience as human beings! I was getting a little frustrated that Christ had to suffer those pains as well, because I can't understand how it would be necessary for Him to suffer those kind of pains in order for us to return to Heavenly Father. 

Then Sister T****** turned to Alma 7:11-12 (I think those were the vs.) and we read about how Christ suffered those pains because He had mercy on us and He wanted to fully understand us so that He could know how to take care of us and have compassion on us. 

We read the verses and there was just silence between us for a moment.

Finally I just kind of laid down on the floor and started weeping. 

I had understood before that Christ felt our sorrows, but I had never questioned why He did that for us.

Now I know. It is because He loves us. Christ loves us so much. He loves us so much that He paid the price for our sins. He loves us so much that He experienced our sorrows and sicknesses so that he might better understand us and love us even more. I cannot even comprehend how full the love the Savior has for us all, but in that moment, this morning, I certainly felt His love for me.

And I love all of you so very much!!

I hope you have a great week and I will talk to all soon!

Sister Erica Brady

p.s. mom, if you don't forward this right away to my siblings I might just put them on the list because they like to read it as soon as possible.....

p.p.s. mom, will you friend Wendy Cornelison on Facebook and ask her for Chris's email address so I can email him?! I won't be on Facebook for another 2 weeks, and even then I might not really be able to message him. Okay thanks :)

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