I haven't received group emails from Sarah in a little while, so here are pieces of the letters that she has written to me that I know she would not mind me sharing... Hope you enjoy and have been making time to write her. If not, her address is posted below - she is just about to hit her halfway mark, so I say better late than never! :)
P.S. There is a picture of Sarah and some of her comps! Her companion, Irma Polito, actually sent it to me this last week - I received a random, very sweet email from Sister Polito and it sounds as though she really loves and cares about Sarah - thank goodness for great companions! :)
"May 11, 2009
Yesterday was so good!!! I got to talk for an hour and I even got to talk to Bryan a bit. It was really cool. Andrew was too much of a time difference to work around church and everything, but it was great to just hear their voices. Now starts the long stretch until Christmas. It is crazy to think I have already had two of my 3 calls home from the mission field. CRAZY...I swear someone has hit fast forward on my life. I had a crazy realization that if I wasn´t on a mission I would be trying to find a real job right now and that is scary, especially with the economy. Apparently there is even a hiring freeze in all of Intermountain Healthcare. What a blessing that I didn´t graduate a couple weeks ago.
..... Heavenly Father is looking out for you. Trust in him and everything will work out.
As for my family, the are amazing examples of faith to me. I am continuously amazed at how optimistic and trusting they are with the Lord´s plan... He really does have a full time job as the Bishop - too bad he doesn´t get paid for that...that is what tithing is for right...oh no, wait, that is Portugal´s mentality. Opps, I got confused.
Portugal: is hard. We have a few investigators but they seem to only get to a point and then don´t go anywhere. We have several who have testimonies of the Book of Mormon, of the Church of everything, but just won´t do anything about it. Won´t go to church, therefore can´t be baptized, and really just don´t want to change. It is really frustrating, but week keep on trying. Such is life as a missionary. It is probably the most discouraging frustrating thing in the world, but is also totally worth it. Weird how that works."
"May 18, 2009
Okay, I had a freak out moment the other day when I realized that I am only about a month away from my half way point...AHHH. Time sure has flown hasn´t it. It is amazing to think that last year at this time I was in Ecuador. Weird. Life sure is funny. It is amazing how everything works out so differently than you could ever imagine when you leave it up to the Lord. Who would have guessed that I would be in Portugal now...I really do have a testimony that the Lord is looking out for all of us, and that he really does have a plan for us that is fantastic. We need to make sure that we don´t shortchange ourselves in the Potential department.
Anyway, keep me updated with the new crush...I am happy for you, and happy to report that I don´t have any of those here in the mission. Probably a good thing right. I just have to avoid crazy flower man and I am good. It probably won´t be too much of a problem though because transfers are the first week of June, and after 6 months in the same area I am pretty much guarenteed a transfer. That could be good...I think I am about to go crazy in Braga....something new would be appreciated....and not training would be even better. I think that everyone is just destined to hate their trainer because it is always hard the first transfer and they make you do things you don´t want to do. Mom says it is like parenting and I believe it. Maybe that is why we call our trainees our daughters. Anyway, I have to run, but I LOVE YOU!!!"
Thank you for all the support you have given and will give Sarah! Y'all are the BEST! :)
Sister Sarah Ray
Rua Padre Antonio Vieira
Nº91 5º Tras