I am a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and have been called to serve in the Sacramento California Mission! This is my blog where you can follow my adventures for the next 18 months (January, 2013-June, 2014)
Did you know that Sacramento was the original place of the California Gold Rush? I'm so excited! See ya'll in 18 months, I'm going for spiritual Gold!

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Saturday, April 6, 2013

Sacramento - Week 10

Due to the new security measures requested by the Mission leaders, the names of all investigators and people that Sarah comes into contact with will be replaced with the name of a well-known character from a children’s movie. This will keep the identities of people safe as well as make it easier to keep everyone straight. The name given is in NO WAY intended to reflect the personality, looks, or circumstances of the individual(s).

“Happy Day After Easter!”
Monday April 1, 2013

My Mary Kay has come! God Bless the dearly departed Mary Kay for her excellence in business and cosmetics. Because of her, Sister missionaries everywhere look suitable for leaving their house and preaching the word of the Lord. 
Hello and Happy Day after Easter! It has been a very eventful week here in Green Valley so let me explain...no there is too much...let me sum up (name that movie!) 
Shortly after I emailed home on Monday we got the word that we had to make another temporary move. Boo! I sincerely believe that moving is one of life's most annoying ventures. Since Sister Doolittle is out of town we had to move in temporarily with our Bishop's family. They are awesome, but it was such a pain to move out right before transfers. We'll move home to the Doolittles on Friday but then some of us will be moving out for good on Wednesday. Quick turnarounds. They are part of missionary life. We are back how we started in Green Valley, wall to wall beds! 
In other news, a quick story about how you never know how you will affect people. I don't remember if I told this story but at the beginning of last transfer we were having district meeting and when we were done we walked outside and there was a man sitting in the foyer who looked very disheveled and was tattooed etc. The Elders started talking to him and found out that he was recently released from jail 3 days before and knew he had been baptized into the church when he was 8 and he was walking by and felt like he should come inside. None of us knew how to handle this type of situation, but luckily we Green Valley sisters live with someone who specializes in teaching people in jail and recently out of jail. So we called Brother Doolittle, the head of the prison ministry in this stake. He came and together with him we taught the man, Tarzan, a lesson about the Plan of Salvation and his divine potential. The spirit was so strong, but when Brother Doolittle went to pick him up for church he wasn't home and there was a sketchy man going through his trailer...SKETCHY!
So, for the past 8 weeks or so we've wondered whatever happened to Tarzan. This week we got a call from Brother Doolittle. He said that the prison had called because someone was requesting him. He went and it was Tarzan! He had been put back in jail for a parole violation and will be out in 30-90 days. He and Brother Doolittle talked for like an hour and Brother Doolittle said that Tarzan just kept talking about that lesson and how he felt the spirit and how grateful he was to us. Brother Doolittle has set up things with Tarzan’s bishop for when he gets home so the Elders can keep him on track and out of jail. For many people, truly changing is hard, but if they have the desire to change their lives, the atonement can make all the difference. 
We also had an awesome lesson with Barbie and Ken. I just love those kids! As they have tried to read scriptures as a family and to come to church consistently, they are happier and it is awesome to see! We had an amazing Easter lesson on the atonement of Jesus Christ with them this week. We watched the Mormon Message "None Were With Him". We talked about how Christ went through the atonement alone so that we never have to do anything alone in this life. 
(Watch it Here - None Were With Him )
This week with Daphne, we did service! We took our whole district to her house to overhaul her garden. It looks so nice now! She was so appreciative and opened up to the other missionaries a lot. Our district leader said to us, "Sisters, you just gotta dunk her! She's ready."
Sometimes, I want to punch Elders because I feel like they always tell us things that obviously, we know already. Why do they think we are spending all this time helping her with her testimony...so she can be baptized and be truly converted! Duh.
At the Temple with Daphne (middle) and our lovely ward
missionary Sister Edwards who drove us.
Haha Anyways, we took her to the temple on Saturday. They do this really cool thing for missionaries and their investigators every Saturday called a temple tour. They watch a few videos and then a guide takes you around the temple and stops and explains what goes on inside simply like, "You see these windows here? Behind these windows is a baptismal font....this is where we perform proxy baptisms for our dead ancestors so that people who didn't get to hear about the gospel and be baptized in this life can still receive those blessings..." She loved it! We talked to her afterwards and tried to commit her to a solid baptismal date, but she wasn't quite ready. She is praying about a date this week and hopefully we can get her feeling comfortable. She is ready to make that step; she just has to give herself permission. 

While we were waiting for the tour to start, I saw the ASL sisters with a Deaf member and investigator. I started signing with them and it was so fun to sign again! I felt rusty but they were nice enough not to tell me how terrible I was haha. My companions and Daphne were shocked at me signing, but I didn't care! Afterwards they were like, "Wow, did you really understand what was going on? What were you saying?" Sign Language is awesome.
Outside Porter Rockwell's
Great-Grandson's house
Did I tell you that Porter Rockwell's Great-Grandson lives near the Doolittle’s? Well he does, and he was referred to us. So, we walked up the giant hill to his house and...he wasn't home. We left him a note, but Sister Loli said he was tracted out and he knows the Sisters. He just isn't very interested...yet! 
(Read his short biography here - Orrin Porter Rockwell )

Me sticking a post-it note on Porter Rockwell's
Great-Grandson's door

Fun Side Note: On Friday we did our weekly planning. We got so stir crazy in the house that we had to get out so we finished our planning session at Fernando's a Mexican/El Salvadorean restaurant. I got a pupusa. Yummy! 
Easter Morning!!!
Easter was the best! Our members took such good care of us. We woke up in the morning and they’d made us Belgian Waffles. We also had Easter baskets and an Easter Egg hunt with their 14 year old Daughter. It was so much fun! After church we had lunch and went over to the Doolittle's. Sister Doolittle's cousin lives in the granny flat attached to the house. He made us an Easter basket full of chocolate. Brother Doolittle gave us an Easter card, but the funny thing was that it wasn't originally an Easter card. Sister Doolittle is out of town so instead of buying more cards, Brother Doolittle just wanted to use up some of the old cards they had around the house. So, he just took cards from other holidays and made them into Easter cards! I'll send a picture of ours. Words can't describe the splendor of a Thanksgiving card turned into an Easter card by Brother Doolittle haha.
Our Thanksgiving turned Easter card from Brother Doolittle.
He says it is from Sister Doolittle too, but she would cringe
if she saw this.....hahahaha!

Our gorgeous rubber boots ;)
He also played photographer for our Easter pictures. We took pictures in the flowers that are covering the back of the land. Here in Cali they call them "yellow paint". We had to wear boots because it was muddy from rain the night before. Brother Doolittle also showed us this giant mirror that someone painted "...for He is Risen" on and then leaned against their fence so you can see it from the road. No idea where it came from. Somebody in the middle of the night just put it out there.

I'll send a picture of that too. We had dinner with a member family. It was so yummy. We were late, but that was ok. They made lamb (name that movie!)
The weird He is Risen sign
They also gave us Easter baskets with nail polish and gum. My basket, of course, was hot pink because the wife says she will forever associate me with my hot pink coat. We finished off the night with another family. They tried to feed us more cake, but we couldn't do it! It was fun to share Easter messages with so many people throughout this week. Our Savior lives and that is AWESOME! 

Here is where I put in my plug for General Conference: 
I am so excited for General Conference! We were joking with some of the youth that they should pay attention because the conference talks of today are the Mormon Messages of tomorrow (they love Mormon Messages). It is always an awesome experience and it changes lives. I, of all people, should know that. 6 months ago, I had no idea that I would be serving my mission right now. I am so grateful for General Conference and for the opportunity to hear from Christ's prophet and apostles. 
Okey dokey. Now I'm gonna send some pictures. I love y'all and hope everyone has an awesome week that builds up to the best General Conference ever! 

Sister Burchett

The giant hill we had to walk this week.
We were so excited...

Finally going downhill!

Me and Jody (the Doolittle's dog)

The triad AKA the Tripanionship

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