Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Love for my family week!

September 28, 2015

Hey Family,

So this week has been a pretty good week. We had two babies born. Cynthia and Jottie had their babies. They are so cute and I so wish I could hold them!! Also remember when I had that Joseph Smith week, well this week was Family. It always got brought up about our future husband and family. And they talked a little bit about it during the Women's Broadcast. It made me really think of what I want in my future husband and how I should be the women my husband deserves. 

On Tuesday, we went out with Sis Bryant to go visiting teaching. But we ended up in the emergency room with some less actives. Her mom wasn’t feeling good so we stayed with them to make sure that everything is going well. Sis Acosta is doing better now, just trying to get better, so keep her and Yadi in your prayers. 

Wednesday, the Zone Leaders came up to teach ZDM. They introduced some new rules that have been made. Yay, more rules :( It was really nice though to hang with Elder Clyde and Beckstrom for a little bit. Then when we went tracting that day, we came across a less active. Her name is Melissa. She was very sweet to us and let us in. She goes to another church because something happened that were not sure about, but we're just going to be doing practice lessons with her and hopefully bring her back. We sang How Firm a Foundation with her and she sang with us. It was pretty cool. Then later that night the West Elders had a baptism. Carol McCool was baptized and her baptism was amazing. You could just feel the love and spirit there. There was only one glitch, when the elder told us that we had to teach about the Restoration. But we did it, and it went so well. I could feel the spirit while we were teaching it and was able to bear my testimony. It was such a great experience. And being able to see the difference in Sis McCool and she has just been glowing. It has been amazing to see the change in her life. 

On Saturday, we got to go visit with Miss Mary. She can't talk because she had a stroke, so she writes everything down. Last time we visited with her, I shared Isaiah 41:10 and she really loved it so we shared it again. Then Sister Williams and I sang "I Need Thee Every Hour" and she loved it. She then wrote down, "I can feel the Holy Spirit" and I started crying and so did she. I was so overjoyed that she could feel the spirit because I could too. She then wrote down, "I feel better since y’all come here". I will never forget this experience. These experiences/moments help me remember why I am out on a mission. To be able to bring joy and happiness to others has made all the hard times disappear.

Also I really loved the Women's Broadcast. I learned so much and am excited for General Conference this weekend. I am interested in who the 3 new apostles will be? 

On Sunday, in church we talked about Missionary Work and it was cool. Bishop Blalocks parents came up to talk, which they were in the Brandon Ward so it was nice to see familiar faces. Also, Payton taught in YW's so we went in on her lesson, and she did a really good job. We watched the Stop Bullying Video and talked about using good language. Then we had the linger-longer and it went very well, then we stayed after to help clean up.

Then later we went over to the Slaughters home to teach Jaylon and Payton and also figure everything out about their baptisms. We taught them the 10 commandments, Pray often, Scripture Study and Obedience. It went very well and they understood everything. We then talked with them about their baptisms. They will both be baptized on October 10. This will be enough time for them to learn all the lesson and for them to ask us questions. So now they won't be so rushed. We are super excited for them. Then we figured out that we will be over at the Slaughters for General Conference :). 

So excited to hear how Mikey is doing and crushing it out on the field. I knew that he can do anything he puts his mind to. I will for sure keep Chaz in my prayers and hope he has a speedy and healthy recovery. I am happy that Ashleigh is doing well and hope she knows that she is always in my prayers, all of you are!!! Tell President McMurtury Hi and that I am doing great!! We have interviews this week so we will see what happens. 

I love you all and miss you!!!! Just remember that Heavenly Father loves you and is always with you!! 

Sister McKenna O'Connor

P.S. Today I have been out on my mission for 8 months. Time flies by!!!

 New dress that Sister Fern gave me....she loves it and it looks great on her.

Out doing Sunday visites with Sister Connie!

Happy Birthday Sister Williams and just a great week....and service

September 21, 2015

Hey Family,

So this week has been pretty good. On Tuesday, it was Sister Williams Birthday!!!! We went out with Fern to go visit people and we felt prompted to go visit Essie. When we got there, she welcomed us in and we could tell that she was struggling because she needed help with getting her mother-in-law off the pot. So we were able to help her with that, and we could see that she appreciated it. Then after meeting with her, Fern took us to Outback Steak house. We were able to eat with her and her husband Dale and got to have some laughs. I know what Fern did this for us and especially Sister Williams, it really made her Birthday special.

Wednesday was super busy. So this was our bike week this week and the Elders had to go down to Brandon so we were able to get the car on Wednesday. We got to see some less-actives and some investigators. It was so great to be able to see a lot of people and when we were visiting with them, Sister Williams and I sung a bunch of Hymns. We have been singing a lot this week and it has been amazing how you can feel the Spirit with music. I was able to feel close to Grandma and oh how I miss her singing. 

Thursday, we were about to bike to Temple Theater, but Sister Williams hurt her knee while taking the bike down the stairs. We called the Elders and Elder Homer and Elder Shreenan came over to check it out. They put this KT tape on it and then they took our bikes (which we have a blue and purple bike, so it was really funny to see them on it) and they rode down to the Theater and they gave us the car. Sister Williams was putting on a good face but I could tell that it was really hurting. After the Theater we drove back to the house and the Elder rode. They then told us that they were going to go grab their bikes and they were going to give us the car for the rest of the week. We tried telling them that we would be fine, but they wouldn't take no for an answer. So they gave us the car and know are biking this week. We are so thankful for what they did and we pray every day that they will have success in finding people. 

So we were going to have baptisms this Wednesday, but we will need to push it back. We met with Jaylon and Payton this past week. And the first visit went well, but the second visit some questions came about. After the lesson, I was bold with Jaylon and asking him if he even wanted to be baptized. He didn't answer me and we don't want to push them into it. So were going to wait and not rush anything. 

This past weekend we had Stake Conference and it was amazing. The main thing that they were focusing on was going to the Temple and shepherding others too. Talked a lot about our covenants that we make with our Heavenly Father and we will receive blessing when we attend the Temple. I am excited for this Saturday for the General Women's Broadcast and being able to learn more things.
Mikey looks so cute and I am happy that he and Sadie had a fun time. WOW, that doesn't surprise me with Herriman. Good thing I wasn't there, Ha ha!! 

There's a film producer down here filming a documentary about a Community College and how some of their players are going to really good teams and even getting drafted into the NFL. We got to have lunch with him yesterday with Connie. We got to talk about how Football is a religion down here in the South, and how he went to the Alabama vs. Ole Miss game and telling us how insane it was. Oh how I miss Football. 

Sister James was such a great STL and I loved serving with her. I met Elder Whitney right when I got off the plane. He welcomed me in and told me how I was going to be serving in Flowood. The next day, I got called to Flowood. He was such a great guy and was super nice to a new missionary and helped me not be scared about the mission. Even though I only met him for a short time, I am so grateful to have met him. 

That is so cool that you are helping out with Zone Conference. It is a lot of fun and I know that you will feel the Spirit strongly there with a bunch of missionaries there. I know they will be so grateful for you doing that. Those missionaries that you met at the gas station, you probably made their day. And they are right, that you will be blessed for helping his servants. 
 Sister Cruz serving in the Orem Utah Mission from Gulf Port, MS

I am so grateful for the Family and Friends that I have. With Williams and I getting to our half-way mark, I have been able to love and appreciate everyone and this Gospel. I know that this Gospel is the true Gospel that Christ established on the earth and was restored by the prophet Joseph Smith. I have gained a testimony that he was called by God to be the prophet of this Last dispensation and how much he sacrificed for the Church (D&C 135). I know that I have been called to the MJM for a reason and that I am meant to be here and meet all of these wonderful people. I love this church so much and grateful for everything that my Heavenly Father has given me. I know that he loves me so much that he sent his Son, Jesus Christ down to the earth and that he died for me. A Daughter of God!!!!

I love you all so very much!!!!
Sister McKenna O'Connor

Monday, September 14, 2015

September 14, 2015

Hey Family,

This past week has been stressful, emotional and great. It was so amazing to see Tyana and Orlando Clark get baptized and being confirmed as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Ernest was supposed to get baptized but will be getting baptized with Jaylin and Payton Milstead on the 23rd of September. It was great to have Sis Demo come back up for the baptism!!

On Wednesday for mutual, the Young Women's had a PJ-Party and we had a lot of fun. I was wearing my onesie and eating a bunch of snacks and pizza, with red sauce. You will be proud to know that I ate pizza this past week and it was pretty dang good. But the party was a lot of fun, being able to hang with all the girls and having some laughs.

A couple members feed us this week, which has been great for Sister Williams being able to get to love the ward. I love the people here so much, I feel like I have gained so many family members here in the South.

On Friday, we had the movie night at Temple Theater and watched The Other Side of Heaven. There was a great turn-out and we had a lot of fun.

Saturday Morning, we decided to go visit Miss Mary who can't talk, but she writes things down. We got to talk with her about the Atonement and how much our Savior Jesus Christ loves us. This past week, I have focused a lot on the Atonement and repentance. On my mission, I have realized how important it is and how much love our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ has for every single one of us. Oh how great and merciful he is!!! Miss Mary told us how grateful she was for us visiting with her and how she needed it. But for me, I really needed it.

Sister Williams is so great. We have gotten along very well and have had a lot of fun this past week. She has been there for me through this super stressful week and has been there to listen to me. I am so grateful for that!!! Sis Williams is from Sacramento, California and has 3 older brothers and a younger sister (All three have served missions).

Don't keep the letters short, I love hearing about what is going on at home. I am taking pictures, it just has been busy but I am sending some today. With make-up, I might need eye-liner and powder. 

I love you all so much and am so grateful for all that you have done for me.

Sister McKenna O'Connor

Tyana and Orlando Clark's Baptism

Clark Family

Companions all around.

Sister O'Connor and Sister Williams

PJ Party with the Young Women

Last day together and Fern provided a special time for the
two of them. Forever Memories.

They ate at the Diner that the Movie The Help was filmed at

 McKenna holding the BYU helmet with 9 all star signatures

Elders Eells and Ah Chang with us at Zone Conference

Relief Society sisters forever

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Another great and busy week!

August 30, 2015

Hello Family,

So these last few weeks have been super busy. Sorry for not sending an email last week. Last week we went fishing on Monday and it was pretty fun. Some of the Elders caught fish, but I didn't get anything. While we were fishing, it reminded me when we went to Strawberry with the Tanner's and fished. We had a lot of fun. 

Later that week we got to see Ernest, Ty and Orlando (Clark Family) and the three of them have a baptismal date for this Saturday, September 5th but we will probably change it because Saturday is the ward temple trip so they are probably wanting to go to that. Even though they’re not baptized, it would be a great opportunity for them.

Last Wednesday for mutual, the youth played water kickball and it was a lot of fun hanging with them and eating ice cream. We were singing songs also with Connie and everyone and one of the members filmed it. 

Sunday the 23rd, has been one of my favorite Sunday. In Sacrament meeting, the Stake Young Men’s Presidency talked about belonging/fellowshipping. They did a really good job. They brought up "Serve those you love, and love those you serve". And how through Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father we can change.

This past week, August 29th, we had 7 people in Sacrament and it was nice to see so many there. We have 8 people with a baptismal date but most of them we are changing. Jaylin wanted to move his date to September 26, so that he can go to church more and go through the lessons. And we're still working on his sister Payton's date. They are going to the temple trip this weekend so we hope that will help her. 

Then we got to visit with Tidd, Janice and Jaleaa and stupid Satan got his hands on them. Tidd now believes in that Heavenly Father has a name and that Him, Jesus and the Holy Ghost are one. They were so golden the first times we got to meet with them, but now we don't know what to do. We had a member come with us to help us in the situation, and have been advised by Brother Morgan our Ward Mission Leader, to take a member with us every time we go over. 

Then on Thursday, I got to go to Jackson with Sister James for exchanges. I had such a great time being able to hang with Sister James because she goes home next week. A member took us out to eat at the restaurant that was filmed in the movie, "The Help." 

On Friday, we had Zone Conference in the Brandon building and it was nice to see the place where I first served. It was a lot of fun to see other missionaries and being able to learn new things and get to know more about President Olson. He is such a great guy and am excited to see what else I can learn from him. Oh and Zone Conference, we won the award for cleanest car in the Jackson Zone, so we were all pretty excited about that. 

Sister Demo  and I want to stay together one more transfer. We told President about it, so we will find out this weekend. 

Y'all are busy just like us. Well we are the O'Connor Family so that's part of our lives. So excited about Mikey and football, and also AJ with school. 

Love and miss y'all!!!!!!!!
Sister McKenna O'Connor

Pictures from Pioneer Day

Connie, Sister O'Connor and Sister Demo

100 plus year old LDS Church in Mississippi

Dinner with the Campbell Family