Saturday, June 29, 2013

June 29, 2013

Well Family and Friends, another week has gone shooting by, and I feel like it was just yesterday. I was excited to sing for the broadcast and telling you about my travel plans. I feel like the days are sooo long here but when I look back, the week goes by in the twinkling of an eye! So crazy! 

Anywho, I would like to apologize if this email is hard to understand it is five in the morning, and I forgot my notes of what to write about :) 

I guess I can start with the broadcast! If you did not watch it, (Meaning the Worldwide leadership training broadcast on missionary work and members and missionaries working together to invite people to come unto Christ.....) you need to, most especially if you are one of my Mormon friends. If not... Well then by all means check out It will probably answer those questions you have been burning to ask me but are too afraid to do so like why the heck would my friend Stephanie pay to go live in the Philippines for 18 months, following a schedule someone else gives her to get up and go to sleep, at scheduled times, just to teach the people about Christ? (If you didn't have that question but now you do I hope you ask me). Hmmmm so for the broadcast I got to sing in the Choir. If you can go look up the songs with the videos that they did for us (called to serve and hark all ye nations) it is pretty legit and I cried. I also am so excited for the church to be implementing more technology into our sharing of the gospel. I'm not sure what that entails yet, but I hope it affects my mission pretty fast! I also am sooo excited for wards and stakes to be more excited to work with me after this broadcast and to focus on working with the members more. After this broadcast I felt a little guilty with how bad I was at sharing the gospel to my friends growing up and in high school, I hope that one day I will get that opportunity. 

Also, someone is always videoing us missionaries walking away from the Marriott Center. If that is you, stop. It is weird. Sure we are pretty awesome... that doesn't mean you have to video us every time we leave our sacred fences.  :) Jokelong, pero serioso.... 
Also my favorite phrase to use is Nakakaawkward=awkward..... LOVE IT! 
So this week we taught our last lessons in preparation for knowing how to teach in the Philippines. Earlier in the week we asked Mario/Brother Soderquist if we could call Mario and ask to make sure he brought his family to the lesson on Wednesday night. And guess what!!! We show up for the lesson and he is introducing us to his "family" Ok, they were empty chairs, a soft one for his wife and two for his children. IT WAS SOBRANG AWESOME! We would try to include them in the lessons sometimes, but for some odd reason Mario always answered for them and would say oh, they are too shy to read, or Oh, he doesn't know how to pray yet, but I will teach him later. It was so great. We asked him near the end of the lesson after reading in 2 Nephi 31, I believe it is... if he would follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized by someone who holds the proper priesthood authority from God. Him and his family said Oo or YES!!!!! It was so wonderful!!! I can't wait for this to be with a real person, and not just an imaginary investigator! Ok, I'm sure brother Soderquist learned something from our broken Tagalog but it is just different. 
That brings me to the fact that in about 48 hours I will be taking the frontrunner (train in Utah that takes people to all the cities around salt lake) to the Salt Lake City airport; make a stop in Portland, and then ON MY WAY TO TOKYO AND THEN MANILA!!!!! It is pretty awesome. We were talking to Brother and Sister Waite about going abroad. I was telling them that I have never been anywhere! I've never swam in the ocean, I've never even been to Disneyland! I've been to Historic Nauvoo 5 times and as a child we took family vacations to visit family in Utah and Idaho, and never did anything! Ok, don't get me wrong... I loved visiting family, and I am grateful it was important to my parents that we siblings got to know them as kids, but I have literally never been anywhere or done anything outside of the US or even near its boarders! But the Lord just has to have soooo much trust in me because he is sending me to the Philippines to carry out his work. We all know that if the Lord wanted the world to know with perfect knowledge in an instant that he exists, he could do it without anyone's help. If he wanted the world to know that his Son has indeed risen from the dead and we can return to our father in heaven when we have faith, repent, and are baptized and then continue to endure to the end... that we can live with our families forever and live with him. Such a great message! Sometimes I wonder why he wants to work with such imperfect people! Anyways, he doesn't have to have me or the other 70,000 missionaries, but he chooses to use 18-23 (or older) young adults to share his gospel full-time. He trusts the missionaries, he trusts me sooo much I hope I can live up to it! I know that we missionaries here in the MTC are going to do some awesome things out there because Satan has really been attacking both my district and the district D (the one that came in with me and will leave with me). We have been dealing with lots of Drama. I think a lot of it is all of us being so stressed out with getting the language down before we go, and also the fact that we leave soon, or maybe that we've been cooped up in a classroom for the past 6 weeks or maybe that since we have been cooped up together we know each other really well and our true, TRUE selves are starting to come out! We are getting some power-hungry District Leader (and their companions) and some emotional and hormonal sister missionaries... not too much fun. Also, it doesn't help that since we have not gotten the results for sister Aruwititi yet she cannot come with us! And that just tears our hearts out because we love her so dearly and want her to get out of here with us and onto bigger and better things. This time for her here is for a reason though, and it is really good for her to have lots of extra practice at Tagalog! 
Infield orientation was yesterday and it was soooooooo good! I loved it! Well most of it. Some of it was a little dull, but most of it was just great! And I learned so much from it! I learned a lot about how it should feel to anyone when I walk in the room. I should always have the spirit with me. I also don't need to persuade people that the gospel is true. I just need to let them experience it. Give them a taste of it, and then pray that they will realize how wonderful it is and want it for themselves! 
Bale.... (Well...) I am out of time again. And I would love to chika-chika some more with me broken Tagalog but alas, the time has left me. 

Kita Kita, until I am in the Philippines! I am not sure when I will email again next week, probably not Saturday, but I'm not sure which one, so keep a lookout! Or don't. That's cool too. 
Mahal Kita, 

Sister Hellewell

Saturday, June 22, 2013

June 22, 2013


Well another week has gone by and I think more has happened this week than in any other week!

 To start the week off... three districts in our zone left and we miss them dearly. My district of sisters sang them a Philippines mission rendition of "Party in the USA" it was awesome and hilarious. We also got to steal their desks... the ones with the racks underneath :) Along with this change, I have lost a companion. Sister Aruwititi got really sick two Saturday’s and fainted while we were in the temple, and she spent the rest of the evening in the hospital. We were not sure if she would be able to go to the Philippines. Well... they have left her here with us so that they can figure out what is wrong. They can't send her home because she is from Kirabati, and the reason she came on the mission sick is because they do not have doctors there who could do anything. However, she is the greatest. She is really funny, and so much fun to be around. Sometimes she just starts praying or teaching in Kiribati and it's great! I might just learn Tongan and Kiribati while at the MTC... just kidding... but really. I feel for her though, she wants to leave so badly, but this time is good for her to get the language down. She has been struggling to translate from Kiribati to English to Tagalog. But, she moved into our room and became Sister Mafi's companion.

                               Sister Waldrom, Sister Hellewell, Sister Mafi and Sister Aruwititi

                                                     District and Sister Training leaders
Also this week two new sister's moved into our room so we have a full house! They are pretty fun, but they do not like to sleep! They stay up late and get up wayyyy to early. But it is a lot of fun to get to know them and help them with Tagalog. One of the new districts of sisters I have just grown close to and love already they are great! I actually hosted one of them. I really do miss the sister's who left especially the sister training leaders and Sister's Vanauku (TONGA) and Penjueli (FIGI) but I have switched that missing to getting to know new people.

Also, Ewaks on Star wars speak tagalog! Who knew!?!?! So really I can speak Ewak now too! JJ, you better suit up for getting some star wars watching done when I get back!

Also this week I got to make a Jail break to the dentist with Sister Mafi! It was so fun, and weird. The dentist is right next to Glenwood where I lived this past year... so I was just seeing normal life... also Kim (my roommate) her car was parked in her favorite spot when I drove by! It killed me to be 600 feet away from her and not be able to say hello.... so Hello Kib!!!!!! Gwen loves you! Also, all my other friends still at Glenwood too!

Also, my family got two cats this week. If anyone knows my parents or how many times I tried to get my dad to let me get a cat you would know how weird this is. Someone please go check to see if my parents were not tied up by my brothers so that they could get a cat or maybe abducted by aliens. Honestly, I would be less surprised if they had gotten a cow! probably. Also, josh and JJ make sure you pick some cool names.... not anything lame. Also, what does dad have to say about these new additions to our family???

My travel plans got her yesterday... and I am PUMPED!!!!! We are flying out on the first to Portland, from Portland to TOKYO and then to manila!!!!!! SOOOOO SWEEEETTT!!!! I"M GOING TO TOKYO!!!

So, sister waldrom has a friend who was left a treasure map to get some buried treasure left for her by some friends who were at the MTC previously. Since her friend got switched to the Mexico MTC we got to do the hunting... And we found a glass hot sauce bottle with notes inside!!!!! It was so fun... also; it's hard to break glass on carpet..... bathroom tile works much more effectively. However, it was quite the adventure... Natalia or Vanessa or Bryndi let me know when you get your calls if you will come here (or anyone else) and I would love to leave you a message cause it was sooooo much fun! I wish I had more time to tell you all the details, but let's just say it made our P-day quite the adventure.

I am also learning to liken the scriptures to my life more than ever before. Every single chapter has something that speaks right to me and is something I need to hear or is something that one of the people I am teaching needs to hear.  I learn to liken it to myself when I am reading with that purpose or for the purpose of teaching it to other's it is really cool. I am so grateful for the time that I get to spend studying. I wish I would have known how to do this so effectively earlier! I also LOVED the Tuesday devotional. We were told that we have the Power to Astonish. Because we carry the truth of a story of the restoration of Christ’s original church to the earth. I know that I was foreordained to be a missionary in the Philippines. I knew before I came to this earth that the age change would come precisely that the moment it did, exactly when I was ready to Preach the Gospel to the world. And that I was chosen to be saved for this time in the history of the world to be part of the flood of missionary work going throughout the world. I am part of the hastening of the work that was prophesied to flood the earth. I feel honored to be a part of it too! I don't know why I have been sent to the Philippines completely but I know that as a missionary I am at the right spot at the right time to learn this 
language and to grow closer to God the Father and his son Jesus Christ as I follow either example and teachings, and I go forth to tell the world something they knew in the pre-earth life, but just need to be reminded of it. I wish I had my notebook on me right now and that I could type a few quotes I've heard in this past week... but I don't Pasensya(sorry)

The language is really progressing this week. I am learning to rely on the lord for what needs to be said and I am starting to be able to teach without really any notes at all if I study the conjugations beforehand! I have memorized vs. 16 of Joseph Smith history and plan to have vs. 17 committed to memory soon. It is really cool what you can learn when you are relying on the Lord to learn it, and attempting to use it even though you know that your grammar is completely off! However, my Tagalog has progressed immensely and so has my ability to teach what needs to be taught when it needs to be taught.  I am not out here to convert everyone I come in contact with to the gospel... I am here to simply invite them to come unto Christ and to learn of him... I am here to teach them of their true identity. I am here to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to teach them how to pray to him and receive answers back. I can teach them where they came from, why they are on earth facing hardships, and where they will go after this life... but most of all I am out on a mission to invite. To invite the world to come unto Christ. Yeah, you could say it is pretty cool.

Other than that... well I would say not much has happened... but seriously sooo much has! I love our Tuesday night devotionals... and being part of the biggest relief society meeting in the world is pretty darn cool. I do miss having sister Mafi with us all the time, but I love having sister Aruwititi around.

Oh, hey, did yall hear the prophet is coming to Provo tomorrow??? Did ya know that the Marriott center is going to be filled with all the missionaries from both of the MTC's in Provo as well? Did ya know that you should watch the broadcast tomorrow at four(MST)  in the afternoon.... and look for your favorite sister missionary who will be singing!!!!!!! Yeah, that's right, I'm singing for the prophet tomorrow in a highly classified meeting that is being broadcast to the world. It is supposedly really important so you should watch it and look for me in the choir... I’ll be wearing blue. I am so excited for it! It's gonna be big cause they are asking everyone to watch it. I'm excited to hear what President Thomas S. Monson will have to say... there are a lot of rumors... but we can just disregard about 90% of those. 

Well friends, and family, I love you all! And I thank you for reading through all my emails each week to see how I'm doing. I definitely feel your support and prayers in my life.

Mahal Kita,
Sister Hellewell

Here is the picture she couldn't send last week, because the computer wouldn't load the picture. It says "Happy Father's Day"

Saturday, June 15, 2013

June 15, 2013

Just a hello from your favorite missionary!

Well another week has gone and passed by! And what a week it was! I am a little tired of being in the same classroom all day long, but I am also learning more than ever before! It is really cool to see so many people I know in the MTC. I see many girls from my ward at BYU and I see many friends who work at the MTC all the time. I also see people from Kuna, Melba, random BYU connections. I haven't seen anyone from Indiana yet.... but I'm hoping I will! I know there are some of them here! It is also fun when you find out that two of your friends are friends too cause you run into them talking to each other!

One thing is for sure I am grateful for all that my parents taught me before the mission. I am very very grateful my mom taught me how to sew, and also lead music since primary since both came in handy this week. The districts who are leaving asked me to lead them ALL in singing a song for sacrament that they had been practicing all week the morning they were going to sing it so that their director could sing with them.... I didn't get to practice it once with them.... and I have never actually led a choir singing different parts before. But it went really well!!! And I was able to help them come in at the right time and they were really good at following my lead. It was pretty cool.

Also, for those of you who don't know there is a church-wide missionary broadcast meeting on the 23rd. It is being held in the Marriott Center in Provo... Have I told you yet that there are sooo many missionaries in the MTC now that they had to create another campus using BYU dorms and housing? Well since there are so many missionaries and just the sisters... yes SISTERS fill the room that we normally would have devotionals in we get to walk to the marriott center for all of our devotionals! It is really weird, cause I feel like I should be watching sports when I am there, and they pretty much shut down university parkway for us to cross the street all 2500 missionaries or so... but it is pretty legit. Anywho.... the missionaries and a ginormous group of members are singing for the broadcast.... so every single person who reads this should watch it and look for me!!!! Ok, watch is because the prophet and some of the 12 apostles are apostles are speaking and then watch for me! :)

This is also going to be a bittersweet weekend for me. The three districts that were here when we came into the MTC leave tomorrow and I am going to miss them soooo soooo very much! They are so funny and awesome and I have become good friends with many of them. I will miss them. I will also miss so many of my Tongan sisters! They all hang out in our room and we eat cup of noodles and cheetos at night! It is quite fun... I almost think I'm going to learn Tongan as well as Tagalog in my time at the MTC!

Last week at the temple the lady was talking to me and out of nowhere she started giving me advice about my mission... apparently she gave advice to Sister Wilson too! Soooo funny. However, she told me that if I ever get a companion that is hard to work with or struggling to make the extra effort, to help them, because they have a mother at home who is praying for a companion to do so. That was really good advice and I had never thought of it like that before.

I learned a lot about faith and miracles this week. I was reading in the bible dictionary on Faith. And I was reading about how miracles don't create faith... but faith brings miracles. Just because something happens that doesn't mean we will get faith from it... but rather when we have faith and take a step forward without knowing what will come of it we will receive, see, and find more miracles all around us and be blessed. I have truly seen that in my life! Many of you may not know but my sister got diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Immunodeficiency Syndrome. That was really hard on me, and has been much much harder on her and her husband than anything else. I was really scared to leave her. I know that she has Nick and his sister, and our cousin Jess to help her do the things that need to be done, as well as other family members around, but I felt like it was my responsibility to help her more than anyone cause well... she's my sister! But I went off on a limb with the faith that others would step in and that the Lord would bless her in my absence as I am out serving the Lord and his children. I was beginning to worry about her cause she hadn't written me in a like two weeks...and then I was reading in the bible.... and it said if I have faith that the Lord is going to bless my family. It is a blessing that comes with serving a mission and it has been promised to me. The very next day I got a letter from her explaining the miracles and blessings she has seen in her life already in these past three weeks I have been gone. The lord truly does send miracles to his servants. A devotional was also on serving a mission, having faith and about miracles. The two things that stuck out to me on it were. Be Bold. and Expect Miracles. I am already seeing miracles in my family, and in my life, and I am grateful for it. I hope that you can also learn to be Bold about what you believe is true and to expect miracles when you whole heartedly put your faith in Christ.

I also had two really cool experiences this week. Me and my mga kasama (companions) were at the TRC (teaching resource center) and we were teaching the nicest little Filipino lady from Orem. It was awesome! However, our lesson was a little short since we had little preparation time. She then asked me how I know that the Book of Mormon is true. I was able to tell her in my simple, yet sincere, and limited Tagalog exactly what I wanted to. I felt the Holy Spirit so strongly in the little room. I have never before told the story of how I came to know the truth of the Book of Mormon in Tagalog let alone many times in English... yet, I was able to do so! It was sooo cool! I was also able to answer our investigator Mario's questions in our lesson. We were teaching about the restoration and the Book of Mormon. Sister Mafi was trying to explain how the Book of Mormon is not to replace the bible. It is just an extension of it. How the Book of Mormon is simply the testament of Jesus Christ from the perspective of another people, the ancient people of America. And that they were the people told about in the bible. I can't remember the scripture reference she used at this moment. I think it is in Ephesians somewhere... maybe chapter four? That talks about the stick of Joseph and the stick of Judah coming together.... well he didn't understand that... but she didn't know how to answer his question. I was able to understand what he was asking and read him another scripture that helped him understand that the Book of Mormon and Bible work together to teach us about our Savior. And in John 10:16 it says there are other sheep I have which are not of this fold and how the people in ancient America, who wrote the Book of Mormon are those other sheep that Christ visited after his resurrection. It was a really cool experience to be able to do that.... all in Tagalog mind you... all from picking things out of my brain! It was amazing! I felt the spirit so strongly and I am truly experiencing the gift of tongues in my life! I'll be the first to admit I did not use correct grammar in every sentence, I probably pronounced some words wrong... and I'm sure I know people who could have done it much better. But what I was able to do was what Mario needed to hear. And his has committed to read the book of Mormon and pray to know for himself if it is true!!! Talk about awesome!!!!!

Anywho... I am out of time. Sad, I know, but I think I need to write my dad and tell him how awesome he is :) Also.... I learned how to say awkward in Tagalog from brother Soderquist. Nakakaawkward...... LOVE IT roomies.. you should say this instead of aca-awkward. :) Also, if someone could send me the mailing address for glenwood that would be awesome I know I lived there for a year, but with all this Tagalog going through my head I'm having trouble remembering if it is 1565 of 1655... yikes... I know. Anyways... Also Happy birthday to my Sister Sabrina (sorry it was last week...) and this coming week to my little bro JJ and also Hayley Johnson on Wednesday I believe it is! I will never forget the moment you guys have the same birthday of each some curses for me. :) I love you three!!!

Mahal Kita!      Sister Hellewell

Saturday, June 8, 2013

June 8, 2013


It has been another long week at the MTC! I feel like the MTC is a rollercoaster! One minute I think the Tagalog is starting to click and the next I have no idea what is going on. I feel like we are expected to do more than time allows! My favorite part of the day is gym time! (Sad, but true) Another Sister in my district likes to go outside, so we go on splits for gym time and Sister Cowley and I just go and run a mile or more and then find something else to do! I love it! It is sooo hard for me to sit down in one spot all day long! I made a list of things I wanted to include in this email but.... unfortunately I have misplaced it somewhere....

My mom sent me a package this week that had a bunch of things I asked for and.... wait for it.... drumrollll......... Pillowcases! For me and my mga Kasama (companions) it was great! They love them! And of course I love mine.... it is so cliché, my mom is so great! Thanks mom.... we really do love them.

This week I have noticed how amazing it is what the Lord can do when you push yourself to do your very best. I have noticed that my best and the best of the other missionaries in my district is not the same thing. I try not to get discouraged when others are doing better than me or hold myself back when the person I am working with isn't completely with me. I rededicated myself to work my very hardest and to use my limited tagalog language as much as possible. It is really helping. I feel blessed. I have noticed that only when I am pushing myself and truly trying to be my best does the lord really bless and help me progress.

This week we have had two investigators... (ok teachers pretending to be someone to teach, but almost the same thing) They are Nel and Mario. I haven’t decided what I like best yet... saying as much as possible, but reading from a paper or memorizing a little and using what I know and not saying much... I prefer the later because I can feel the spirit more and I am really picking my brain for what I need to say and I feel better about the lesson at the end. My mga Kasama like to do the earlier.... so I feel bad when I don't say much. But anyways... teaching Nel and Mario is great! It makes me wish I had been a better missionary to those around me growing up.

 My entire life I have known the truth, that the gospel of Jesus Christ, the same gospel that he established during his lifetime, has been restored to the earth. Restored because it was lost in the death of the apostles, and that while many churches hold most of the truths and are blessed for that... I know that there is a prophet of God on the earth today. We taught Mario a lesson on the restoration and about prophets. Doesn't it just make sense for there to be a prophet here on the earth? Why would God give prophets to the people before his life, like Adam, Moses, Abraham, Noah, and not provide a prophet, seer, and revelator on the earth today? God is the same yesterday, today and will be the same forever, I find a lot of comfort in that. In our devotional on Sunday the speaker talked about the church God established using the bible and showed the correlations to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints today. It was really cool. I wish I could explain it better in my email, but it is kind of hard. I really enjoyed it. Ya know, the gospel of Jesus Christ just makes sense. However, I also learned and thought about this week that no one can know it is true just because it makes sense. They need to pray to God about it, and read the Book of Mormon, not the whole thing, but at least a part. I know that if you pray to know the truth you will find it! I feel so blessed in my life that my parents raised me to know how to know for myself if God does guide me today and how I can become like him, and how to gain a testimony of Christ and the Book of Mormon for myself. 

To my friends: I know many of you do not understand all of the churchy lingo that I have used on here, and that is alright. If you want to know just ask me and I would be more than happy to help you understand. I also taught Mario how to pray this week. That was such a good experience! I felt the Spirit so strongly when I was explaining to him how to pray! Isn't it just great that we can pray to our Father in Heaven in the name of Christ and ask him anything we want to, tell him everything that is going on, and receive help!  I really think I personally grew the most and also felt the spirit strongest when I was trying to explain in my limited Tagalog how he can know that God is there, listening, guiding, and helping him. I quoted a scripture in Galatians; I think it is Galatians 5: 22-23 or something like that that explains the fruits of the spirit. It's a good one.... if you ever want to know if what you are feeling is good, and comes from God read that one. Also the pamphlet that explains it is quite nice.... I really need to read through the English one here soon.

I have grown so much in these past three weeks. I have learned a lot about myself and am learning to cope with many challenges. Sometimes is it hard to not be able to go home to my apartment, talk with my mom on the walk home and go vent to my loving roommates if I had a tough day. I do miss my family and roommates and friends too.... sometimes it is weird not being able to just call them up when I want, but other than that life is good. Sister Cowley plays the Piano and Sister Wilson plays the violin as well so the three of us are going to find someone to sing for us and we are going to play a song for sacrament meeting sometime... I am very excited! I miss my violin! I sure hope JJ is taking care of it! I can't wait to pick one up again... My Kasama's cousin wrote her a letter saying lots, and since I am out of time I will have to say it fast... but something along the lines of I don't have to learn to speak tagalog today, or baptize everyone in San Pablo. I don't need to get everything done today.  I just have to memorize a few vocab words and read the Book of Mormon for thirty minutes... and one day I will be a great missionary who rely’s on the lord for everything in life and might even speak tagalog! It is really good to think I just need to take things one step, one day at a time and everything will work out.

I always love hearing from my family how everything is going. Also, my older brother... Brandon... he gives the greatest advice out of anyone I know! 

It broke my heart but really made me feel really really good that little Thomas misses me and pretended to be talking to me on the phone. I love that little guy. I hope he doesn't forget me. :)

Every night there is a little Polynesia in my bedroom. It is great! A bunch of the girls in our Zone from Tonga, Samoa,and Figi come to visit sister Mafi! They all do hilarious things every night. and Sister Vanuku (that is compeltely misspelled) always puts something funny on her head. And let me tell you they all LOVE cup of noodles... I don't know why but it is sooo funny I had to take a picture! I feel like I hear Tongan spoken more than English when I am out of the classroom sometimes but that's alright. It's great!

Well friends... I am out of time once again. I hope you all have a marvelous week and take the time to thank your Father in Heaven for all the blessings he has given you! I hope you are enjoying summer! It felt like summer, for the first time this summer, yesterday on my run it was like heaven!!!

MAHAL PO KAYO!!! (Love you all)

-Sister Stephanie Hellewell

People Stephanie found in the MTC!!!!!

                                                    Sister Hellewell and Elder Adam Hill 
                       (He is from our ward and he is headed to the Louisville Kentucky Mission.  
                             So friends in Evansville and Newburgh Wards. watch for him. 
                                          Maybe he will come down there!!!)

                                                  Sister Jess Pothoof and Sister Hellewell

                                           Sister Naomi Hutchins and Sister Hellewell

                                                   Sister Hellewell and Elder Jonah Seeley
                                                  (He is Stephanies friends little brother,)

                                                  Sister Marissa Hansen and Sister Hellewell
                                              (This is who Stephanie flew down with from Boise)

                                       THANK YOU  to whomever sent stephanie her favorite cereal!!!!
  If you plan on sending Stephanie a goody package she says she gets really hungry in the evening because dinner is early. She would like some Gluten free granola bars or protein bars. Some of which she can eat are:
                                      Luna bars, she likes the peanut butter and cookie dough.
                                      Quaker: Cinnamon Pecan Bread Soft baked Bars or any other flavor
                                       Fruit Snacks
                                       Dried fruits or trail mix

Saturday, June 1, 2013

June 1, 2013


This has been a crazy week! It has had its ups and downs, hilarious moments and moments of panic when you can't think of the right word. I feel like it has been an eternity since I last emailed!

My Kasama (companion) Sister Mafi is absolutely one the funniest people ever, I love her so much! And she shares my love of cheetos. I thought I loved cheetos, but now I think I just sorta like them compared to how many she eats! My old roommate Haley thinks one of the only five foods I eat is Cheetos... that just tells you how good they are to me. The other night the three of us were getting in bed and sister Mafi had her desk light on and was walking around. She said "I can't go to bed yet I have to eat my cheetos!" A few minutes later as sister  Waldrom and I were saying our good nights the only salutation we got out of sister Mafi was "Good night cheetos".  For some reason every small thing is hilarious here, but maybe that's cause the littlest things will entertain us! Also, usually sis Waldrom's reaction to something that is only slightly funny is even more amusing than whatever actually happened!

                                    The Kasama's: Sister Mafi, Sister Hellewell, Sister Waldrom)

One thing that is so great about the MTC right now is all the people I see from all areas of my life (Indiana, Idaho, and BYU) all together! I saw josh Winger three times a day and sometimes more for my entire first week. I also got to see Kaylyn Johnston and Hannah Christensen multiple times! I've seen some friends who work here, two who teach Tagalog, and then also Derrek Stewart.  I see Jonah Seeley all the time too! I guess if I couldn't be in the MTC with my two best friends I might as well get to see their little brothers all the time! Also, to my family, Dan Barfuss says to tell you hello for him, he works here. I just love seeing sooo many people I know especially when I find someone I never said goodbye to before I left!!! Oh! Also I saw Adam Hill for the first time Yesterday!!!! That was super cool. He didn't see me until I taped on his shoulder.... and it was great to talk to him! I am so happy to be in the MTC with him along with all my other friends! 

                                                           Sister Christensen and Sister Hellewell

                                                      Sister Johnston and Sister Hellewell

Here's a little shout out to the longest friendship I have ever had to..... wait for it..... drum roll...... Lauren Welden! Best Friends since first grade, and even a few thousand miles couldn't break that friendship, and I know a few thousand more won't break it either! Happy Birthday! (I know, it was  a few days ago...) I hope it was the greatest and that you didn't get too much ice cream in your hair! Or maybe none this year.... who knows! Love you girl!

One of the great things about the MTC are
 Sunday and Tuesday devotionals! At the Sunday devotional I believe it was... I actually don't even remember who spoke... but he shared a story/video that really touched me. It's a commercial he made for the church called SPLASH it is about a girl named Aly, everyone should look it up, I bet you could find it on YouTube or something. Anyways, Aly is a little girl who is on a swim team. She never wins a race; her team always comes in last every time she participates, which is once a swim meet. But, she never gives up. She never quits or gets discouraged, and she comes out of the water smiling brighter than anyone else. At the end of the commercial you see her legs getting put into supports, and see her walking with her team, needing the use of crutches to walk. This was really inspirational. It just tells you to never give up on what you want to accomplish. You may come in last, and struggle significantly on your way, but if you never give up you will always finish. And isn't that what the Lord wants us to do? Never give up on what he needs us to accomplish? Sometimes it can be really hard to be patient with ourselves, especially when we are working towards something we really desire and it isn't coming fast enough. The great thing about our Heavenly Father is that he will never give up on us, he will be forever patient with us, and help us finish our task, he is even more willing and happy to help when we never stop trying and do our best!

My district is seriously the greatest ever. So many people are hilarious.... Me and mga kasama used to sit next to the air thing in the room but it was super cold... so we switched with the elders who were always hot.... and now I can't look to the other side of the room and make faces at Sister Cowley cause she is right next to me... I'm not sure it would be appropriate to be making faces at elder Sorsensen all the time... so I am restraining myself now... it's a little weird. But anyways... so  many people in my district are really really funny I love it! There are seven sister and four elders, so our tiny little classroom is packed full but we love it! We also have a great view of the Y out of our window... a lot better than most views of the other buildings... so we like it! But sometimes it reminds us that we are back in Provo (four of us went to BYU) and that is a little weird sometimes... I miss hiking so much! I miss working outside!!! It is really hard to sit all day long except for the hour of gym.... but I guess that's good cause that means I will love the workout of walking in the heat and humidity of the Philippines!!!!

                                           all District members in front of the Provo, Utah Temple

                              Sister Missionaries in the district, in front of the Provo, Utah Temple

Hmmmmm.... I feel like so much happens here and I find it hard to explain all that I feel and do while I am here. Every minute is scheduled to the crossing of T's and dots on the i's. But it's really cool to see how much you can get done, I mean I can speak Tagalog now! Not very well, and it is mostly memorized sentences and phrases and probably incorrect grammar most of the time but I love it! In Tagalog as far as I understand it the word are all roots words that have other conjugations added onto the word so that you say it how you want to... which is kind of cool, but it makes for really long words. for example: “Pananampalataya” means faith. almost ALL the words are super long! It's pretty crazy... but I do love it when I find out a word is the same as a Spanish word! I took so many Spanish classes at BYU (14 credits to be exact) and spent so much time learning spanish that I was a little disappointed that I wouldn't use it for much of these 18 months.... I'm still hoping I don't lose too much of it due to practice being non-existent, but that's alright! I was talking to some sister's while running on the track the other day who are speaking spanish on their mission. I realized that right now I know more than they do in spanish after them being here for about four or five weeks. Truly it makes sense, but it also made me think maybe the Lord knew I needed a challenge right now! Confession time... in one of our lessons to a pretend investigator I couldn't remember (really, had never heard) the word I needed to say so I said it in spanish....... oops! The "investigator" understood and went with it though so that was cool!

I think in my last letter I had already taught my first lesson IN ALL TAGALOG!!!!! The second lesson was pretty good. We had our dictionary to find the words we couldn't get for the life of us and our little green book to tell us some phrases we could use. The third lesson was amazing! By that time I was able to mostly memorize the things I wanted to say, and be able to sort of respond to the things that came up in the lesson that I needed to share. By the fourth lesson this past week we had to teach without notes, and all pretty much by memory... it was pretty scary but it turned out fine! It's amazing we are already conversing in Tagalog!!! Alright, so the investigator is really a BYU student who served a mission in the Philippines and who is actually a teacher at the MTC for Tagalog... we actually see him all the time.... :) and he talked pretty slow and explained words we didn't know until we got them... but it was pretty cool. I am starting to love Tagalog... lots of the grammar doesn't really make sense yet... but I'm learning bit by bit... I feel like little concepts I didn't understand at first either are starting to make sense now or are starting to pile up!!! It's fun most of the time though!

Also... thank you to everyone who has written me in the past week! It is so fun to hear how everyone is doing and to get words of encouragement. Sometimes when I get a letter from someone it says exactly what I need to hear at the end of a long hard day! The days before Sunday were super long, but now they just feel like sort of long days instead of three days in one so I guess that is good! But thank you, really, I love it! Welp, Out of time! 

Lots of  mahal (love)!

-Your favorite sister missionary (Probably, and hopefully since you just read this entire thing!) Stephanie... I mean Sister Hellewell :)