This week has been one of the hardest/most exciting/ crazy weeks of my mission!!! SO MANY EMOTIONS I think my head is about to explode still!!
I'll start with last Tuesday-- Goldsberry and I were able to drive all the way to Omaha with half of the branch to go to DEPARTING TESTIMONIES!!!!
It was PACKED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The chapel was SO full and there were people all the way back in the far parts of the gym. It was crazy!!!! But probably the BEST day in my entire mission.
I got to see ALL my companions!!! I said goodbye to Sister Carpenter who is now home in Washington, it was great to see her and how much she has grown!
I got to see my baby, Sister Weber and see how AMAZING she is doing!!!! AHH We just hugged for FOREVER!
I got to see SISTER MUASAU!!!!!!! AHHHHH I cried when I saw her too!!!
And then Sister Goldsberry and I were there together <3 <3
There were people there from ALLL my areas!!! I could not stop BEAMING the whole night!!! I saw the Denkers from OMAHA,
The Nix's, the Braytons, Sister Marcantel, MIchelle (one of our investigators), the Dahls, and more, all from RED OAK.
The dearest Fergusons were there from Lincoln,
And half of our branch was there. It was like a GIANT family reunion!!!!!!!!!!!!!
That, my dear loved ones... is what HEAVEN is going to be like <3 <3
It was so crazy to say goodbye to 3 Elders and like 16 sisters..... I still don't think it has hit me that they are gone. Lots of them had their families there and there were just tears EVERYWHERE!!!!
We left Omaha around 9:30 and so we didn't get back to Kearney until about 1 in the morning. Jordan, our investigator came with us and he had loved it!! I think it was real cool for him to see all the missionaries!
That night, the Denkers had informed me too that Sister Brough had recently been back to the mission to see MARIA get baptized!!!!!!! Maria Lopez was the very first woman I ever began teaching over a year ago in Millard!!! In the last couple weeks, she got married and baptized and I started crying!! That was the GREATEST news!!! I love Maria sooooo much!
The next couple days after that were somewhat a blurr... I knew I would be leaving Kearney, because president had told me that about 5 weeks previous... silly president! And so I tried our best to let everyone know how much I loved them. I wrote letters to them all and spent as much time with the branch and our investigators as I could. I saw so much growth and love in Sister Goldsberry and we helped each other a TON. She is my forever sister <3
Thursday morning came.... and we got a call from The STL's.
....... They were closing YSA.....
SO SAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! With all the sister missionaries leaving, President is spreading us more thin than we have been in the past. The Kearney sister serving in the family ward would not be over the family ward, AND the YSA branch, as well as being STL's.... CRAZY!!!!!!!! I thought for sure Sister Goldsberry would be staying... we were both really devastated, but we knew everything would work out:)
We spent that day packing up both of us, AS WELL AS getting all the last minute stuff together for our BAPTISM that night!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It was the craziest day.
Ian Winkelmann got baptized Thursday night!!!! It was the best:) We showed up to fill the font and get everything ready and he was SO ready!! Excited, and nervous, and just looking forward to the things ahead.
His baptism was wonderful. It has been sooooo cool to see Ian transform into a more shy guy who had questions in his heart, to this excited and friendly guy sooo determined to learn about the gospel. He kept telling us "thank you" over and over again.
Then after the baptism, we both had to say goodbye to the branch. I love them so much. They have transformed my life forever.......
It's a normal thing I think to worry about your areas when you have to some-what close it... and the people taking over don't remember all the little details that you would... but we have seen the BIGGEST miracle and we've began to see some of Heavenly Fathers plan for this area.
Throughout the last few months, one of my dearest friends, Nya, has been able to come out with us a LOT on teamups. She's met most all of our investigators and knows what we were doing every step of the way.
Something that brought Sister Goldsberry and I a lot of comfort was knowing that Nya has become the PERFECT missionary for this area. The sisters taking over are going to be leaning on her a LOT because she knows how to do it. THAT Is a huge miracle that we have seen. I KNOW the YSA is in good hands, and I'm grateful for the strength that I have seen come to each and every member of that branch since I have been there. They know what they are doing and they are at the point where they can take care of themselves:): ) They're growing up!!! :') hahaha no really though, those members are some of the strongest I have ever met, and will FOREVER be my friends and family!!!!
The next morning, we took off to Omaha!!!
I am now serving in the Elkhorn ward IN Omaha,
and get this.. Sister Goldsberry is serving with SISTER WEBER in Glenwood!
It's strange having two of your companions serve together... hahah they'll be telling all my secrets now. LOL. I'm excited for them though!
At transfer point in Omaha, while we waited for our luggage, we were able to talk to so many sisters that we hadn't seen in a while. It's going to be fun being back in Omaha-- ending my mission where I started it, with SO many activities and missionaries around me. I'll actually get to go to the zoo! Finally!! After having a free zoo pass for over a year!! hahah:)
The funny thing about me serving in Elkhorn... is I have family, 2nd cousins, who JUST moved out of THIS ward only a few months ago. EVERYONE here already knows the Checketts and, YES, we are related! My family that just moved away from here have been the BEST member missionaries and fellowshippers to SO MANY people. It's SO GREAT that I get to be here to carry on the work they already started.
We have already noticed that some LA's we tried are a little more open to us, just because I am a Checketts. MIRACLES <3 So, THANK YOU GUS, AND NANCY, AND ALL YOUR KIDS for all the work that you have done for people here in Omaha.
This area, I have heard is actually the wealthiest area in the whole mission. Some of these houses are MANSIONS and it is a bit intimidating... I catch myself asking... what do I have to offer these people...? So many of them seem so well off already... in many ways, I have no clue why I am serving here. My companion is an AMAZING teacher and feels at home here with everyone, and it's going to take me a little while, I feel. At some points, I REALLY miss my YSA... hahah but it's okay:) The greatest knowledge I will always have is that even despite changes and obstacles and unsure-ness, the GOSPEL is always what we can hold onto in these moments and everything will be okay!!! We live in a cute little apartment and will be here for the Holidays.
I really love my companion. Here name is Sister Tourtillot from Sacramento, California! She is the greatest teacher and is soooooooo determined and focused on the work. We will work wonders together. So far, she's a little more reserved and we're still getting to know each other, but it's going to be good!
I'm going to be the 2nd companion she's killing off. She just barely killed off Sister Kent.
I'm excited to be back in Omaha. I hope I can make the family name proud.
It's so important to hold the names we have high. We ALL hold the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Are you going to be a good example of Him? Are you going to treat HIs name the way He deserves? You carry His light. Your carry His name.
Something else I have learned is how important it is to ask God the "Why's" and the "What's" for the places we are put.
WHY am I serving in this calling/area/position??
WHAT do I have to give???
Pray, ask these things and Heavenly Father WILL give you the answers. I haven't receive mine yet, but I know I will. The most important thing is just to try and do your best to reach that potential you and your Father see in yourself.
I love you all!! NO ONE is letting me forget how much time I have left....:( it's awful. BE NICE!!!
Keep your head up!! Thanks for ALLLL your support!!!!
This is my new address:
Sister Megan Elise Checketts
20235 Wirt Street #11
Elkhorn, NE 68022