Friday, November 27, 2015

Happy Holidays!

Well Thanksgiving is over and do you know what that means!?!?!?!


To start off I just want to say how grateful and blessed I feel to be serving on Temple Square. Right by the House of God where the spirit is present and you can feel the love that God has for all of His children every single day. With serving here comes a couple of different perks like.......Thanksgiving Day Meals!!! Because the Square closed at noon all of the Sisters got to go to a different member's house and eat Thanksgiving with them. In a real home with an actual family and Members!!!! (This is a stark contrast from the lounge where we microwave our food

I don't know what my companion and I did in the past life but it must've been good because we got to go to President Harman's home (he is a counselor to our mission President) all the way in Park City. It was like walking through a Pinterest board. His home was so cute and amazing! (soda machine in the cowboy themed basement) and we got to meet his daughter and her husband and two kids. Smoked turkey, home made apple pie, and of course SWEET POTATOES! At the end of the night my heart was so full and so grateful that we were able to spend that time with such an amazing family (and they let us take some food home which made today that much better :)

With the coming of Christmas come the change in our schedules (hence why my email is a little later in the day). We now wake up at 7:15 am and go to sleep at.... 11:45 pm..... you heard it 11:45. The square is open an extra hour and we get to be on it! Singing, and sharing the message of Jesus Christ. He truly is the reason we celebrate Christmas, the reason to be thankful on Thanksgiving, and the whole reason why we were able to come to this Earth.
I am so grateful, He blesses and loves us so much.

The work continues to progress as we share the message that Christ lives and continues to guide this wonderful Church. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I know with all my heart that this is the restored gospel of Jesus Christ and that there is only one path that leads to eternal happiness. We are all given the opportunity we just need to search for it.

Love you all so much and hope that your Thanksgiving was filled with joy and gratitude for all we have been given.

This is one of my favorite talks that is just perfect for Thanksgiving. We were able to share the story at the end with The Harman Family and hope you all enjoy it as well.

Sky is Blue
Church is true
With lots of love
Sister Melissa Eging

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Friday, November 20, 2015

Nov 20 - Miracles Happen


Okay so for the rest of the world I guess Christmas time isn't quite there yet but man, Christmas time IS HERE on the good 'ole Temple Square.

With that comes the lights, nativity scenes, and herds of people. HERDS.

As soon as Thanksgiving is over we will be packed every single night until the lights turn off. For us missionaries that means we have to stay up later to accommodate all of the people and we have to work even harder to find those who are prepared for the gospel to change their life.

Speaking of Thanksgiving, yes mom, they will take care of us :) A stake of the surrounding area has signed up for families to host us on Thanksgiving which is so special. Being a missionary on Temple Square we get little to no interaction with members and NEVER have dinner appointments (in short we live off of pb&h (peanutbutter and honey) and cereal) So it is such a big deal that we get to spend the afternoon with a family and get a nice home cooked meal. Eyes are watering just thinking about it. Ah I can't wait! And then due to my pday being on.....BLACK FRIDAY! We may just stop off at City Creek (because we can't drive because I have been #suspended from the car for 4 weeks....but that's another story)

This week we had the amazing opportunity to go and see the Church's musical production called "Savior of the World." We will be able to have extra tickets to give to investigators so that they may be able to experience this spiritual production. I'm not even kidding I cried like 4-5 times.....the mission's making me soft.

What really stood out to me was just how real the production made the story of Mary and Joseph. They were just normal people who lead good lives. They followed the commandments etc. but what truly made them special was why they were doing everything. It was out of love and out of duty to God. They forgot everything, every care, every worry, every thought and gave all they had to serving the Lord. They were willing to give their lives to build up the Kingdom of God.

That is what has really stuck with me this entire week. What am I willing to give up in order to be a better servant of the Lord. Am I willing to give up my exercise time in the mornings for all of the many meetings we have to attend? Am I willing to skip lunch or dinner to take one more teaching appointment? Am I willing to give all I have, the little vices, away? Am I willing to hold in complaints, erase negative thoughts, and more fully dedicate myself to the service of the Lord?

If everyday I am not changing and not sacrificing something more, then am I truly serving?

There is always more to give the Lord and I know that as we do this our worries and fears will vanish because we can always wonder about our choices and decisions but, if we leave it all to the Lord we never need wonder or worry.

I am so thankful to be serving a mission. To help others discover Christ and help them develop a relationship with their loving Heavenly Father. He is out there we just need to do a little bit of searching.

Sky is Blue
Church is True

Love Sister Eging

ps I am holding the empty peanut butter jar that Michelle brought me. Yes. I have already eaten the whole thing.

Pss -- Oh and the actor we took a picture with played Joseph and he plays Hyrum Smith in the Restoration movie 

Nov 14 – Let The Transfer Begin!

Wow where to start.

It has been a very eventful week here on Temple Square with new transfers and everything. Can you believe I am now in my fourth Transfer!?!?!?!

It's going by too fast, I can't believe my old companion is in Arizona and I already have a new compenera! Sister C from Columbia!!!!!!

She is the most amazing companion ever and seriously such a spiritual powerhouse. Every contact with someone is meaningful and she's not afraid to say what needs to be said. I love it!!!

With the new transfer comes some new changes.
1. no longer living in the best apartments in the mission -- they are more of an outer darkness type of apartment....
2. our assignment is Square which means we are on square basically all day everyday (perfect because the lights will turn on soon!)
3. still announcing choir coordinator..........
4. new church policy change.

That last one I for sure didn't see coming and I know, because we take all of the chats and calls into the church, that it has definitely shaken some testimonies. But when we step back and look at it for what it is, a precautionary step to help God's beloved children keep the sacred promises they make with Him, then I only know with more assurance than ever that this is the true Church of Jesus Christ. It is founded on unshakable principles and truly is centered on the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I know that He lives and loves each and everyone of us.

I love all of you very much and I'm sorry I don't have time to write much more. Thank you for the package mom it really made my day!

ps. found this awesome grocery store called Ranchos.....2 avocados for $1!!!!!!!! 3 pomegranates for $1!!!!! I was in heaven.

Sky is Blue
Church is True
Sister Eging

We are quilting!

Me and my new companion!

At the tabernacle!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

November 4: So Many Stuffs

First can I start off with a big giant HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THE LOVELY AND TALENTED AND BEAUTIFUL GWENDOLYN EGING!!!!! Shout outs all around! !

On another note, so much has been happening this past week! To start off I will tell you a tale of a missionary who should've known her general authorities a little bit better.

We were in the Tabernacle. Very few people to talk with so I was speaking with a RM (returned missionary) and his very less active parents when they wanted to hear an acoustic demonstration. I say yes and go to the front and realize there are a couple of people gathered on the stage already looking at the organ and security blocking it. I go up and ask if I can do an acoustic demonstration and he says knock yourself out! I go up. The man in a suit on the stage approaches me, smiles, says some words and goes to shake my hand. The whole while I'm thinking that this person looks strangely familiar. He says I can do the demonstration but quickly introduces me to his grandchildren and his wife, Sister Anderson. That's when it hits me......I JUST SHOOK HANDS WITH ELDER NEIL L. ANDERSON!!!!!!

In shock I go up and do the acoustic demonstration, pits sweating and all. I awkwardly go back, shake his hand again and get my stuff to leave. I shook an apostle's hand. TWICE.

Then in case you were wondering what missionaries on Temple Square do for Halloween! No we don't dress up :( I wish! But, we do get to go to the Temple! Because Temple Square seems to attract a lot of weirdos we closed the Square at 5, got free dinner, and then went to the Temple as a whole mission!!!!! It was nothing short of amazing! I love the Temple with all of my heart!

As some of you may know (maybe not) my companion and I have been in charge of the Announcing Choir this transfer (The choir that sings for everyone as they leave the Tabernacle on Sunday mornings). And we were asked to perform at a general young women's luncheon. We picked the songs, rehearsed, wrote different parts, the works and then got to perform for the current and former General Young Women's Boards!!! How cool! Afterwards Sister Oscarson and Sister Stephens, and Sister McConkie all came and gave us all hugs. WHAT!!?!?!?! Truly has been a week of meeting such spiritual and amazing people!

In other news this is my last p-day before the start of a new transfer. I will be going into my fourth transfer! I'm getting so old!! This means a new companion, new apartment, new assignment, new EVERYTHING. And I'm pretty certain it will all be new because MY COMPANION IS GOING OUTBOUND!!!! (this is where we get to go serve in a different mission for 3 months). She is going to the Tempe AZ mission and will no longer be on Temple Square :(

We change a lot here on Temple Square and I love it because it gives us the opportunity to grow and develop constantly becoming better.

The next time you hear from me may be a different day..... Only time will tell :)

Sky is Blue
Church is True
Sister Eging

Last PDay together:

Monday, November 2, 2015

October 28: Running For My Life

Hello Everyone!!!

This week we had the long awaited, much anticipated, hardly trained for MISSION 5K!

The entire mission was lead in stretches before-hand by President Poulsen and then we were off!

It was so much fun to see everyone running together and then we got bagels after!!! Woop Woop!

Your favorite sister missionary and mi compenara ran at an amazing, astounding, incredible, aw-inspiring 26 minute and 44 second 5 k ran (seriously with the amount of training we had it was aw-inspiring)

This week one of our investigators was baptized!!!!


He attends BYU-Idaho and him and his girlfriend stopped through Temple Square on the way (they were doing a roadtrip hitting all the temples! How Cool!?!?!?!) So we got to skype in and see his baptism! Tears! It was so special and his testimony is so strong, truly inspiring. It's amazing that the Lord has allowed me to be a participant and simply see how He works miracles in people's lives.

Also on a side note the Square is officially dead. As in there is no one to talk to. Which is great because we are scheduled to be on square for at least 6 hours every day. It's good though it gives us an opportunity to really make every conversation count. One thing I have learned is that when we don't invite people to come closer to Jesus Christ, learn more, read the scriptures, etc. then we are automatically saying no for them and taking away their agency. When we put the invitation out there then we are doing the Lord's work and allowing them to decide for themselves.

I have gained and continue to gain such a strong testimony of the power of the Book of Mormon. It truly is the most correct of any other book on Earth and can bring us closer to God by simply abiding by its precepts. I have the goal of reading the Book of Mormon once every transfer (which is every 6 weeks). Every time I read the Book of Mormon I search with a specific topic in mind. The topic of the transfer is Faith. We must simply have faith. When we express our faith and trust the Lord only then can He work miracles with our lives. The Lord can do marvelous works and wonders but we must first do our part and have faith.

Love you all so much! Sorry this one's a little short!!!!
Sky is Blue
Church is True
Love, Sister Eging

Skyped into the Baptism:

Pumpkins for our Secret Sisters:

Ready for the 5k!

October 21: What It’s All About

We have had quite a week here at Temple Square with the....duh duh duh DUHHHHHHNNNNNNN'

Every religion you could possibly imagine, every way of life, was represented on Temple Square this week and we spoke to sooooooo many people.

Imagine just a swarm of people all wanting to know more. Here's the tricky part: they really don't like the idea of missionaries.

The Parliament is big on Interfaith, simply accepting everyone's beliefs and working on doing the best that we can. This is all well and good and seriously such an amazing idea and program, but, what do missionaries do?

They proselyte. They teach. They encourage others to learn and invite them to consider something more than what they already know. While everyone was respectful they were 100% not interested in considering anything else. And many believed that Mormons only want to convert people so were surprised to find many members mingled in with the interfaith crowd.

So needless to say it was a harder week when most of the people you talk with think Mormonism stands against the entire convention. That's the beauty of Temple Square though. The fact that they came from all around the world and were able to see what The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is truly all about. Hearts were softened and we met quite a few who became interested in learning about the gospel.

FUN STORY: Speaking of diversity, my assignment this transfer is at the Humanitarian Center which helps refugees etc. from all over the world learn English and gain the knowledge necessary to apply for a job. With this we meet many different people. This week we met a Russian who is teaching English here. We sat and ate lunch with him and this Indian woman walks over, sets this dessert on the table and walks away. He hands them to us, asks us how they are and refuses to try it. We ask him why and he says in true, stereotypical Russian fashion "Sweets are for ladies. I am a man I eat meat." End of story.

Now getting to the best part of the week which actually happened just this morning. I. SHOOK. ELDER. HOLLAND'S. HAND. YES. ELDER.


Is this real life?

He came and spoke to our mission this morning so we all woke up at 5:30 a.m. to get there by 6:30 so he could speak to us at 7.
He wanted to shake our hands and told us afterwards that he had just interviewed all of us. How scary is that!?!?! But it's all good haha I think we passed.

He then went on to teach us about the Book of Mormon. We are missionaries, we should know the Book of Mormon by now but what he shared with us was the central message, the key part of the Book of Mormon, of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, of essence our very religion. The Book of Mormon is simply a book written by revelation about revelation. Everything in our religion points us back towards revelation. We know that Book of Mormon is true through personal revelation. Joseph Smith became a prophet because of revelation and prophets continue to guide us through revelation. This is the message, that God is living and speaks with man today. He reveals truth and it is through revelation that the Church, the teachings of Christ, the teachings of God has been restored IN ITS FULLNESS. From the beginning of time until now God has called prophets and He will continue to.

Simply put if we can not accept the fact that God speaks with man then nothing else matters.

How blessed I am to be serving on Temple Square! How amazing it is that I am able to hear from an apostle of God and how truly great it is to know that this is God's church on the Earth.

Sky is blue. Church is True.
Sister Eging

Companion and me at pumpkin patch on PDay:

At pumpkin patch:

October 14: Tour Groups

Temple Square man....Let me tell you Temple Square gets all kind of people from all around the world. And this past week we met some of the finest.

I don't know what it is about our companionship but we just always seem to have the weirdest, most awkward contacts with people and always find the ones who aren't all mentally there. We meet the strangest people.

So we were asked to contact a huge Mandarin motor coach. Like 50 people As contacters we sit with the tour, help them to feel comfortable and mostly try and guide them along.

This was one BIG group. 100 Mandarin that had to be split into two different groups of 50.

Before the tour even started we had a line of at least 20 different people who wanted our picture, all pretty young. Then there was this one older gentleman who took a picture with us and everyone was laughing saying yeah let teacher have a picture.....We didn't think much of it. Maybe he was a professor?

We take them to the Tabernacle. Acoustic Demonstration. He gets up before and starts speaking some other language and then sits down.....Okay. Maybe he is a really kind member who just wants to help out?

We go out by the Temple and everyone scatters. Selfie sticks everywhere. Lines trying to take pictures with us. Odd poses. The works. The two groups of 50 join together and become one giant group of 100 and they all want to go to the Christus as the last spot. The whole thing is being coordinated by the woman who speaks with the Teacher and then to the sister leading the tour. This is what they had come to see!

We get there and something feels off. My companion finds out that they are all here to receive the Teacher's energy.....
They're running up to the Christus all sit down around it and look waiting. They put their hand on their knees palm-up and the Teacher begins speaking before the sisters can. . . Situation out of control.

First, you have to release all bad energy.....Coughing galore.

Then Teacher can give you his energy. They all raise their arms and shake.

100 Asians all surrounding the Christus shaking. We are just missionaries! We don't have the skills to handle this!
I don't speak Mandarin! Other sisters don't speak Mandarin and Teacher definitely did not speak Mandarin. Everyone tries to tell them that they can't do this here. But they trade energies anyways and we end playing the words of Christ over the whole room.....
I don't know what it is but my companion and I meet the strangest people.

We also met a witch (wicken?). And was with this Australian pluralist? who every time he spoke would wait for someone to applaud as if he had just received some grand epiphany about how the world works. (I don't think he realized he was talking to two missionaries who know a little bit something about how God's okay because we informed him...) He is here for the world-wide religions parliament convention which is occurring this week.

People of every religion will be flowing through Temple Square and coming to learn about the gospel. God truly is aware of all of his children and all will have the opportunity to learn of His divine nature! Why else would there have been two convention centers built within 20 minutes of Temple Square!

I know that this church is true and that the Book of Mormon truly is the convincing evidence. We can not seek for facts, we can not seek for numbers, nor can the truth or nature of God be quantified or measured. He is all knowing, all reaching and all loving. The evidence is in the testament of His son Jesus Christ that He has provided for His children. The evidence is in the word and the evidence is in the power of the Holy Ghost.

This transfer is the keystone transfer. Studying the Book of Mormon and pray. Every time we read we can receive revelation and we can feel the love of God. It is so important.

I love you all so much and miss you more than you know! I hope you are all doing well and know that I am truly enjoying every minute of this special time when I can serve the Lord with all my heart might mind and strength.

The Sky is Blue
The Church is True
Sister Eging

PS -- We get to give tours at the Humanitarian Center every Monday! (And sometimes there is no one coming for tours.....) So we get to help sew blankets!!!

Me sewing (from Melissa's mom, "Emily -- did you ever think you'd see that?"):


October 7: Let's Get This Conference Started!‏

General Conference.
Oh General Conference.
So many words I could use to describe general conference.
Hectic. Loud. Spiritual. Member-filled. Protesters. The works. General Conference.

So if you have ever experienced General Conference on Temple Square that about sums it up but if you haven't or would like to know what it is like for a missionary on Temple Square read on.

The missionary's schedule on Temple Square is very VERY busy, 24/7 all year round. General Conference comes around and we times that by 1 million! 13 straight hours on Temple Square talking with people, members, anti's, confused tourists in jeans, you name it we talk to them. With 20 minute lunch and dinner breaks there is rarely (if any) down time. So you could say it was a pretty hectic weekend to say the least. But with all of the work it is always so much fun to see familiar faces, be surrounded by members, and hear the interesting stories of where people came from and what they had to sacrifice to come to General Conference.

To begin, yes, we do get to attend 1 session of general conference. And my companion and I were able to attend the Saturday Afternoon session! How cool is that!?!?! We sat off to the left side only about 6-7 rows from the front. We all got to see President Monson as he stood up and spoke and Elder Cook as he entered from the wrong side I guess. It was amazing to have the opportunity to sit in live during that most historical general conference, hearing three new apostles of the Lord called. These men truly are chosen by divine inspiration.

After the session we walk around trying to talk to members.....(who sometimes don't want to talk) and seeking out anyone wearing jeans. And the miracles were amazing. There is one specifically I would like to share. My companion and I were speaking with this older couple, who were very closed off to the church. They did not want to listen or hear the prophets speak at all (general conference is broadcast over the loud speakers on Temple Square), so we talked to them about the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, who just so happens to perform in between speakers. The gentleman was very upset and did not even want to have to listen to them speak at all, no way no how did he want to hear these men of God talk. So we talked about how important families are and begin talking about the Family: A Proclamation to the World (this is a document that the Prophet and twelve apostles wrote about 20 years ago encouraging everyone to place family and the teachings of Jesus Christ as a priority, much needed just before the disintegration of family life within our modern day culture). They loved it. And just as I was talking about it we hear, over the loud speakers, the speaker loudly and clearly says "The Family:A Proclamation to the World" and begins quoting it. I tell them that the speaker is actually explaining it right now and for a good two-three minutes we sit in silence as these people who were so closed off to the gospel and the idea of a living prophet, listen intently to their words. By the end the woman says that she is going to bring that document back to her church and show it to her pastor because it is truly an inspired piece. Hearts were softened, if only an inch, and a miracle occurred that day :)

So in summary Conference was a blast, unfortunately because we don't hear all of Conference I have no idea what "ponderizing" is or what any of the other speakers talked about. I am going to have to study up. Since then my companion and I have been trying to catch up on sleep (we get 1 "sleep-in" day after Conference hallelujah!) and fight being sick.....because we have gotten sick..... All in all such a great week.

We also had our first day in the Humanitarian Center. Seriously if you don't know anything about the Humanitarian work the church does I encourage you to look it up because it is amazing. The Church helps EVERYONE.......

Fun Story: Yesterday my companion got a personal referral!.......for her dating pool...... We met these two people visiting and after they left the girl came back and had the desk call us because she had a "teaching referral" for my companion. Apparently her friend thought she was cute so the girl ran back without him to give her his address. And so my companion’s "teaching pool" gets bigger and bigger every day. hahahaha

(Shoutout to my home girl Emily Gore for being called to serve in the California Roseville mission! What what!?)

Sky is Blue
Church is True
xoxo Sister Eging

PS – My new companion is really great. She likes running and yoga and juicing and all that good stuff! So we get a long pretty well. She's pretty quiet. But it's been a lot of fun. We are announcing choir coordinators together 5k team leaders within our apartment complex! We are now roommates with two other sisters too, one, who is from Pakistan and another from Tahiti! I didn't even know there were members in Pakistan but we have one.

We also had a special guest after general conference. John Schmidt from the piano guys and his family came and played the piano for us :)

At Saturday's afternoon session of conference:

 Running into friends: