Wednesday, April 30, 2014

April 28th, 2014

What a wonderful time!

Ah.... the joys of spring! :) I seriously love this place!! There are so many things to be grateful for. One of them, is the blessing of being able to serve! This past weekend, 11 of us missionaries who are serving in or near State College were able to do service picking up trash along a 2 mile stretch of road  for 3.5 hours. This kind of service isn't something that we get to do very often so we were all really excited!  It seemed like such a simple task, but throughout the time we spent there, SO many people either honked and waved as they drove by, shouted a big "THANK YOU" out their window, or stopped to see who we were/what we were doing. Afterwards, as we were driving in "Big Bertha" (the name of the State College sister's red minivan that all the sisters cruise around in) back home, we all felt so much joy from the simple service we had just performed. It was 60 degrees outside, so we rolled the windows down to enjoy the sunshine and fresh air as we sang along to the wonderful EFY music and marveled at the blessings we have been given! We all concluded and said together, "THIS is the life!" :)

Sister Moss and I began teaching a Chinese student this week, named Michelle! We had met her on the bus last week traveling to campus. I had begun talking to her and asked her where she was from, when she said China I immediately embarrassed my companion by pointing to Sister Moss and saying, "She speaks a little Chinese!" Michelle was so excited and exclaimed, "really?!" Sister Moss gave me a look as if to say, "you are crazy Sister Walborn!!" But proceeded to say the one phrase that she knows in Chinese, which means "I am a child of God." Michelle could understand what she said and was very impressed that she knew any Chinese at all! :) She said she would love to talk to us about our church and yesterday, we had that opportunity! She is finishing her Junior year here at Penn State and has discovered Christianity during her time in America. She spoke of people in her home country as knowing that you come to America for a better, happier life but they do not know why! She believes that it is because of religion - so cool! She already has an incredible testimony of the power of God, and what He can do for our lives and she was so excited to learn that there is another book available to her to learn about Jesus Christ! Yay! Michelle is one of those people that is actively seeking truth in her life, it makes me so excited to think the blessings of the gospel that are waiting for her!! THE GOSPEL IS TRUE!!

Oh.. and before I finish this email, I wanted to tell you something that I thought was worthwhile to share..... ELDER HOLLAND IS COMING TO OUR MISSION ON MAY 22ND!!!! :D So insane right?!?! He is coming to speak to our entire mission and I cannot express how excited I am!! It's coming up so fast! I can't wait! 

Anyway, I love you all so much. I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior and that He knows exactly how we are feeling, no matter what is bombarding us in life or going on around us. There is so much peace and comfort available to us if we simply turn to Him and seek His will :) Have a wonderful week!

Sister Walborn

p.s. Pictures: 1) Sister Moss and I in our Penn State gear! Woot woot! 2) Our group before the service project - we love missionary work!!  LOVE YOU!! 


April 21st, 2014

Hi Family! :) How was everyone's Easter??

Mine was wonderful. We had a miracle happen that I want to share with you! But first I want to tell you about Justin Hatch (my branch mission leader). He is an amazing guy, he has had this calling for about 3 years now and he has the one of the most profound testimonies of this gospel that I have ever heard. He fell away from the church when he was "younger" and joined the marines, etc. Finally he started experimenting with keeping the commandments and saw IMMEDIATE, UNDENIABLE blessings pour into his life! Now he is happily married to a returned missionary (super awesome girl), is graduating in a few weeks and is headed to Texas for his PhD in the fall :) Stellar guy, he has an awesome vision for our branch! Okay, now that I have given you a little background on him I will explain the miracle! 

Last week after during our coordination meeting with all the branch missionaries, he told us that he wanted to have a special fast over Easter weekend for 5 members of the branch who are either a varying degree of less-active, or who have been struggling a lot recently. A couple of the branch missionaries moaned and groaned about it since there would be lots of opportunity to eat, since it would be Easter! But everyone agreed and the attitude changed as we began discussing their needs. We talked about each person specifically and what we could do as a support system for them. By the end of that meeting, you could feel the desire to help them among the missionary force of the branch. Then, as we knelt together and petitioned the Lord to help and guide them, as well as help and guide us in our efforts to be a blessing to them, the Spirit was so powerful in the room. 

Throughout the week, so many things happened and the fast hadn't even taken place yet! Sister Moss and I were able to teach one of the less-actives and his heart was completely open!! He committed to coming to church even though he hadn't been in a very long time! Then on Friday during Forums (where we are allowed to proselyte on campus for a specific time, in a specific place) on of the other people we were going to fast for, stopped and talked to us for a good amount of time then offered to feed us dinner that night AND come to one of our lessons the next day!! YAY!! Then, as the four of us missionaries came into sacrament meeting Sunday morning, we were anxious to see if the less-active we had had a lesson with would follow through on his commitment and come to church. To our great joy, he came!! Not only him, but 2 other people that we had been fasting for came as well! :) Heavenly Father responds to the faith of His children and is always wanting to bless us with our righteous desires. I know it!

I am so grateful to be a missionary. I am so grateful for the opportunity to serve the God I love in this wonderful part of His vineyard. I know that my Redeemer lives! I feel so privileged to have this knowledge, and I feel an increased sense of urgency to share it with these incredible students here at Penn State! I love you all so much and I'm grateful for the role you play in my life, I wouldn't be here without you.

Sister Walborn

p.s. Picture: 1) Sister Moss and I on Easter Sunday outside of the Pasquerilla Spiritual Center where we have church :) LOVE YOU!!! 

Friday, April 18, 2014

April 14th, 2014 is sooooo good! :D

HOLY COW YOU GUYS!!! I have been called to serve in State College, PA as one of the sisters in the University branch! So what that means is that I no longer have a specific "area". We cover any young adults who should attend the branch and we spend the majority of our time on Penn State University campus and downtown State College! I LOVE it here so much already!! There are so many things about serving here that are unique to anywhere else in this mission! For example, our main mode of transportation is the Cata Bus system. It is so fun because it is a built-in finding opportunity whenever we get to ride! 

When we are on the campus grounds, we are not allowed to proselyte EXCEPT for every Tuesday and Friday from 2:30 to 4:30 in front of a certain building (either the Palmer art museum or the Pattee Library - depending on the day). We call those times "forums". I got to participate in forums for the first time on Friday and holy cow, it was such a blast!! At first it is a little awkward because you have to be pretty forward in approaching people or chasing them down to talk to them, but after a few tries it became easier. haha I cannot even express how much I love talking to people about the gospel! And to make it even cooler, I met a girl from Grand Rapids!! Her name is Alison and we are hoping to meet with her this week :) But yeah, it was such a fun moment because usually the Caucasian people here are from PA, Virginia, New Jersey, or New York so when she said Michigan and then continued to say grand rapids, Michigan - I about died! She might have been a little overwhelmed with my excitement.. haha :) The cool thing about Penn State though, is that there it is so culturally diverse! While walking around campus, I typically here 4 or 5 different languages in the matter of minutes. The are so many chinese people here that President Topham requested a mandarin speaker from temple square to do her "out bound" here. Right now the sister from temple square is so sweet! Her name is Sister Ying and she is serving with Sister Wade as the other sisters of the branch, along with Sister Moss and I. 

Oh! I should probably tell you more about Sister Moss!! She is the cutest thing on the planet! She is from Oregon!! And her parents live in BEND!! What the heck, right? She has only been out for 3 months but is stellar at teaching and pretty much every aspect of missionary work! We have had so much fun together so far and we have already clicked so well, I cannot even wait to see how close we will be at the end of the transfer :) Ah... pure joy. I feel like I have said this so many times before, but I truly know that Heavenly Father is so aware of me and my needs!! He knows what is best for me, and I know that I am supposed to be here in State College right now, with Sister Moss! I have had so many opportunities to share my testimony here, and I can feel it getting stronger everyday. I know that our Redeemer lives!! And because I have been given that knowledge I want to share it with others so badly! I want to start by sharing it with all of you - the people I love most in this world. Could you please take just a few minutes to go onto and watch that wonderful video? I know that when you watch it, you will be filled with the Spirit and feel an urgency to share it with others. Please follow that prompting when it comes :)

I love you all so much. I know that this gospel is true! I wish I could film my mission and send it home for you to watch, because these emails do not in any way do it justice. Please know that my heart is overflowing with joy because of the power of this work! God lives!

Sister Walborn

p.s.  here is a picture of Sister Moss and I downtown! A member took us out for Rita's :) LOVE YOU SO MUCH!! 

p.p.s. No one says yinz here... haha