Thursday, January 7, 2016

Happy New Year

January 4, 2016

Hey Family, 

Hope y'all had a great New Years!!!! Can you already believe that it is 2016, that means I come home this year which is kind of weird. I enjoyed being able to talk with y'all and the family. It was so nice to be able to see everyone. Our family has grown so much. These past few weeks have been pretty crazy. 

We didn't get a P-Day last week which was different. We got the car back which was really nice. This past week we got to go see Lona. We taught her the Restoration, which it has been a while since we have taught that so I was pretty nervous. But I could feel the spirit very strongly, which was nice. We were going to invite her to be baptized but it didn't feel right so we asked her to pray about it. We got to visit with Takina and Shunta. It has been a little bit since we have seen them. We got to talk with them and share lessons with her kids. We then invited her to come to church. It has been a long time since she has come since she was baptized. So we hope she comes. When we tracted this week, we didn't get much success but a couple of people opened their doors and we got to share a message with them.  

So the Senior Missionaries, had given us a referral, The Stay’s and we got to help them move in. They moved in form New Orleans and they are a really nice couple. We got to see them yesterday and they were excited to see us. Steven had his guitar out so he started playing and singing Gospel music. It was pretty cool. He really loves our Savior and he was kind of all over the place. We were there for a long time. Finally we left after an hour or two. So for New Year’s we just tracted, helped the family move in and we went and hung out with Thelma for a little bit, but we didn't stay very long because Lord of the Rings was on TV so it was kind of distracting. Then we just hang at the apartment. So much fun right... not! But Burgess and I have had a lot of fun and a lot of laughs... at me, haha!! 

On Sunday we didn’t have any investigators at church. Our church time has changed from 11 to 9 so it's a change for people, because they have had the same time for about 3 years. But we were pretty excited to see Takina there. 

As you can see, nothing much has happened this week. It's getting cold now and it's still break. But everything will change. 

We get transfer calls on Saturday. We are thinking Burgess will go because she has been here for about 4 and a half months, but we will see. 

Oh so the Family member that sent me that letter was Kevin and Jeri. 

Hope y'all have a great week with school starting back up. I want to wish Mikey and Dad a Happy Birthday and wish I could be there.

Love and Miss y'all!!!!!!

Sister McKenna O'Connor

Happy Thanksgiving

(Sorry everyone, I skipped the email and can't figure how to put it back in order)
December 1, 2015

Hey Wonderful family,

Everything has been all good over here in the warm South. It's already December and it's super warm and humid outside. The only white stuff on the ground is sand. Haha!!

So this past week we were able to go tracting with Bree and Janae. We split off so we were able to cover more ground. We had a few people talk with us and hopefully we will visit them again. Also we met a few less/in actives. We went biking with the Thomas kids but on the way, Burgess's bike got a flat so she roller skated instead and it was pretty fun. Then we helped Shunta out with getting Thanksgiving all ready. Oh we also worked on our talks. Every 5th Sunday is Missionary Sunday so we get to speak. My topic was about Joy in living a Christ-Centered Life and relating it to member missionary work. So we got to work on that this past week. 

On Thanksgiving, we went to the ward Turkey Bowl. It was a lot of fun watching everyone playing and taking pictures. Then after we went over to the Thomas's (we were going to bike over but my bike decided to not work). We had Turkey, Ham, and Mac & Cheese, dressing, Sweet potato pie, rolls and Chitlins. I did not have any of that. We got to watch 17 Miracles. I love that movie but the problem is we all cry. Then we watched Meet the Mormons. After resting form all the food we ate, we went outside and played some 500. We had a lot of fun and it was getting really competitive with Scooby tackling people. Then we went back inside and watched some Mormon messages. Then we went home and fell right to sleep. 

On Friday we got to have a bon fire on the beach with the Chesley's. It was so much fun and we got to light some lanterns and nothing caught on fire, which is good.

We had Bishop's Storehouse on Saturday and it went very well. So everything is changing with transfer calls. We get told from 7-10 pm and they are only telling us the zone we will be going to. So we don't really know where we are going or who we will be serving with. We got to have Dinner with the Shumakers and they are an awesome family.

So on Sunday, we got to church and I'm pretty nervous with speaking, then they tell me that I am going first. So I got first and my talk was really good. I got to talk about Dad's conversion story and everyone loved it. I said a pray before I went up for the spirit to help me with my wor

ds. Then Sister Thompson went next and she talked about Faith. By the time to be done, it was 5 minutes to 12. Then Elder Nabulavula went and shared his testimony, which took a bunch of time. Then the Bishopric got up and told us that the closing hymn was going to be the musical number sung by the YW. So Sister Burgess and Elder Ross didn't get to speak, they will have to do it another time. Burgess was bummed because she likes speaking. After church we went to choir practice. We got to go over the Christmas Program and it will be pretty good. Then we went over to the Wright's home for Mercedes Farewell. It was fun getting to look at where she is serving and we really only live about 15 minutes from it.
Yesterday, we deep cleaned our apartment and also the Biloxi apartment. Sister Thompson is going back to Biloxi and is getting a new companion, which we have no idea who. Then we helped a couple in the Biloxi Ward move. They are in the military and are moving to New Mexico. That took us about 2 hours with us and a bunch of Elders. Then we treated ourselves with frozen yogurt at the mall. It was so good, then we walked through the mall for a little bit. Then we went and visited some people. Then as soon as we got home, we all just crashed. We have been pretty busy these last few days.

So the only people in my District is me, Sister Burgess, Elder Ross and Elder Nabulavua.
I am super happy that y'all had a great Thanksgiving and were able to have fun. Now Christmas is coming up and I am super excited for it.

I love and miss y'all. Have a great week!!!!!!

Sister McKenna O'Connor


 Bon Fire at the Beach
 Our Christmas Tree
 Mikey's Restaurant in Ocean Springs
 Worlds Largest it!
 Tracting on skates and scooters
 Nametag on the beach
 Thanksgiving Dinner
 Ocean Springs Ward Turkey Bowl game

 Lanterns at the Beach
 25 Days of Christmas Advent Calendar


Saturday, January 2, 2016

Sacrifice bring Miracles

December 21, 2015

Hey Family,

Hope y'all are enjoying your Christmas break. This past week has been amazing. I forgot to tell y'all that for 3 weeks we gave the car up and are walking everywhere. The reason we did this is because we have been struggling to find people to teach, so we did this to receive blessing and lose some weight, haha!! 

On Monday, we went shopping at the mall and got some new perfume. Then we took pictures on the beach. The beach isn't the same as in the west. There aren't any waves and there were a lot of dead fish. Then the Cardon's fed us and we had Caribou lasagna. It was really good.   

Tuesday was filled with miracles. So during companionship study, Sister Burgess told me that she was losing faith in the area. So we said a prayer before we went out to tract, and just asked Heavenly Father for motivation. So we start walking to the area where we are going to tract. When we walk around, I like looking for change on the ground. So Sister Burgess was looking for some change for me, and there was nothing on the ground. Then a car drove by and she waved to them, when she looked back on the ground, she saw a crisp $5 dollar bill. She grabbed it to show me, and there was another $5 dollar bill right next to me. The money was not there before and we have no idea where they came from. Then about 3 minutes later, I look at the phone and see we have a missed call and a voicemail. We listen, and this lady (Lona) tells us that we had prayed with her mother a little while back and she told us that she wants to come to church. Sister Burgess and I just look at each other in amazement. SO we call her back and she tells me a little of what is going on in her personal life, then we plan to meet her during the week, and to get a ride for her to church. We just couldn't believe that this had all happened within 5 minutes of each other. Then after lunch, we go tracting again and we had been tracting for about 2 and a half hours and nobody was answering. We came to the last house and a guy answered. He let us in and we got to share with him the Christmas video. After the video, he asked all the right questions about what the difference was with our religion. So we got to talk with him a little bit about the Book of Mormon. Then we got to give him a copy, which it has been a little bit since we have given anyone a Book of Mormon. We plan on visiting with him later. Then we go to visit a less-active sister and while we are sharing what had happened, an old investigator texted us and is wanting to see us again. We were so happy that this all happened and we know that it is because of our Heavenly Father telling us not to give up. 

On Wednesday, we had interviews with President Olson. They went very well. We got to talk about what I had learned from Elder Kopischke and also about the holidays. It was just a simple day.

Thursday, we got to have dinner with Sister Stewart and Sister Maisch. We had a cute little Christmas dinner and got to talk about a lot of things. Then Sister Maisch gave us cards and she had to ask me what my name was again and she saw that it was Sister O'Connor. But she had thought that it was Sister Humphrey, so that's what it said on the card. It was pretty funny!! 

Saturday, we went out with a bunch of the lady's and had lunch at Red Lobster. Our waitress was very nice and she asked where our church was. She told us that her mother is looking for a church and was referred to our church. We both looked at each other and we just couldn't believe that this was happening. We gave her our card and some of the lady's with us gave her their cards. Then one of the members brought their friends to the lunch bunch and they also want to hear more about the church and they in our area. We were just excited. Then Sister Cardon picked us up and took us to see Lona. So we got to meet Lona and got to talk with her for a little bit, and we got to set up a way for her to come to church. 

Sunday was a great day. We had the Christmas Program and we sang in it and it went well. Also before church had started, we got to welcome all of our people in. We had 8 people come to church and we were so excited. The program went well and we got to see everyone. Then we had the Christmas Fireside that night. You got the picture of that. 

This past week has just been filled with miracles and what a perfect week to have right before Christmas. I can't wait to see y'all in just 4 days. Love ya!!!!

Sister McKenna O'Connor

Christmas Fireside in the Ocean Springs Ward

Christmas gift masterpiece painted by McKenna

Christmas Day Skype with our Sister O'Connor.
The best gift ever!!!!

O'Connor Family Picture 2015

Forever Sisters

My Mini me...

Mega Conference

December 14, 2015

Hey Family,

So this past week has been awesome!!! These kind of weeks make the mission worth it.
We got to play 7 on the line and volleyball for P-Day. We had so much fun and getting a work-out. We got to have dinner with the Chesley's and we had a lot of fun talking about Christmas. So excited!!

So on Wednesday, we had our Mega-Zone Conference in Hattiesburg. We woke-up around 5:30 and left around 6:30 so we could get there on time. Well we got there pretty early, so we got to talk with the other missionaries there. It was a lot of fun being able to see everyone. I got to see Sister Demo and that was nice. We then all got in our seats and Elder Kopischke came in with President and Sister Olson and he shook each of our hands. The conference was amazing!!! He asked us what we had questions about. He talked a lot about the Faith Cycle with Alma 32:27-29. And he told us how we are not responsible for the results. So we can control how many people we talk to and it is up to that person if they listen or not. That took so much stress off of my shoulders. I have been able to relax more and be myself. He also told a story of his wife when she was pregnant with their twin boys. His wife had cancer and they had to do surgeries and all this stuff and it worked out, but at first the doctors said that they should abort the children so it wouldn't risk the life on the mom. Then she started to go into labor with them at I believe 20 weeks, and Elder Kopischke told the twins to stop coming and they did. The story was so cool and I just thought of my story and how with the faith that my family had, a miracle happened. I was spiritual feed from the conference and have a different view of missionary work. After we got to mingle and the mission gave us letters and I'm not sure with the one you sent. If I open it on Christmas or if I can open it now? Then we traveled back to Ocean Springs right to the church for correlation. We got to play a little basketball with the youth and we had a lot of fun. Then we got home planned for the next day and went straight to bed.

On Friday, we finally got to meet with Dimaris. We met her at the church and she brought her 3 kids. We got to know her a little better and she told us her story. She has terminal cancer and last year, she was given 2 years to live. She isn't doing chemo or anything. She would rather have quality time with her family and having them not see her as sick. She then told us that her 15 year old son had cancer when he was 3 and she was praying to Heavenly Father that she could have it instead of her son. When she was telling us everything, it was really hard not to cry. She just had this peace and comfort that everything was going to work out. I just thought of the love that she has for her children, family and for Heavenly Father. She could be yelling at him asking "why is this happening to me?" but she isn't doing that. She is the one that lives outside the mission by 100 feet and we have already talked with President to get permission. So we will see what happens. She is such a sweet lady and just have this love for her. After we went out with Sister Cardon. She took us out to eat, then we went and tried a less-active. She was home and we got to visit with her for a little bit.

Saturday we had the Bishop's Storehouse in the morning and it was the Christmas one so it was a little crazy but it all turned out good. Then we helped set up for the Ward Christmas Party. Then we went out and tracted before going back to help set up with Bobbi Scaturo. So we had 1 and a half left of tracting and we haven't gotten anyone to listen to us. One house we went to, the guy was in his garage and he told us that he had just prayed for church people. At this point we are pretty excited, then he asks us if we can pay his bill. I have never gotten anyone asking if we can pay their bills. We told him we know ways that he could then he told us to have a good day. Burgess and I looked at each other and just kind of laughed. Then the next few houses we got to meet 2 people and was able to share scriptures with them. They were really nice to us and it was great to share messages with others. We had the Faith and it all worked out. Then we went to the church and helped Bobbi out with the Christmas Party. There was a little drama because the other ward had their party the night before and they left everything a mess so people weren't very happy. We helped out with getting all of the food ready and there was a lot of food. We were running all over the place, it was insane. The party started and it went super well. Got to visit with a few members and less-actives that came. Everyone was asking where we would be for Christmas and making sure we were taken care of. Everyone is so nice and care so much about us. So grateful that I get to be here for the holidays. Then we helped clean everything up and went home and went right to bed. Sunday, we had church and it went very well and then had choir practice after and nobody really showed up so it was a little crazy. Then we went and had dinner with the Scaturo's. We had a lot of fun there, watching Christmas videos and have some good laughs. So I had a really good week. 

I am so sorry to hear about Grandma Judy. It's weird to think that they are really only 2 hours away. But it's good to know that she is in a better place. 

I can't wait to see y'all in a few days, I am so excited!!!!!

I love and miss y'all

Sister McKenna O'Connor

Traveling to the Mega Conference in Hattiesburg
 Sister Demo and I
 Sister Burgess and I at the Ward Christmas Party
Ward Christmas Party