the sisters on Maui

the sisters on Maui

Monday, December 1, 2014

WEEK 80- Endings and beginnings

ALOHA! well, I guess this is my last email from Hawaii. This is so surreal! I am so sad to be leaving these beautiful islands and these wonderful people. I am sad that my time as a missionary has come to an end, but I am SO excited to see my family!!!!!!

We had a great last week. We talked to a lot of people and were able to share what we love and invite them to come unto Christ. We also had the opportunity last night to sing with the other missionaries in the zone for a musical fireside. It was such a great way to spend our last Sunday. Also, Sunday morning in church the ward sang aloha oi at the end of sacrament meeting. This has been a great and emotional week.

Today we went to a Hawaiian museum. It was really neat to learn a little more about the culture before I come home.

 So this is the run down for the next few days for mom : Tomorrow- packing and packing.....and a little more packing. Visit a few people and teach a few lessons. Then Wednesday, I go to Honolulu at 8:00am then everyone sings aloha oi one more time. Then we head off to the swap meet and buy a bunch of souvenirs. Then we go to a temple session. Then the rest of the day we spend at the Polynesian cultural center. Thursday morning, we have a testimony meeting then go to Pearl Harbor for a tour of the Arizona. After that we have some time to repack bags and then we go to the airport. At 7:00 we can say goodbye to any friends that have come to the airport. My ward mission leader and his wife from my first area are coming to say goodbye. Then we get on the flight at 9:00pm Hawaii time:) SO CRAZY! but I will be flying with a bunch of good friends from the mission. Then I land and see my family!!!!!

Our mission motto here is "We are grateful to be in the Hawaii Honolulu mission. The ALOHA mission. The Atonement of Jesus Christ is our message. Love of God and others is our motivation and Obedience to the commandments and mission rules is our strength. By sharing the gospel with others we can give them the HA- the breath of Life, even eternal life. ALOHA!"

I really am so grateful to be serving here in this wonderful place and with these wonderful people. I love my mission. And I love what Heavenly Father has taught me here. As I thought about my mission here in Hawaii coming to an end, a familiar scripture came to my mind: Doctrine and covenants section 4, verse 3, "Therefore, if ye have desires to serve God ye are called to the work". And a warm feeling filled my heart as I realized that my mission is just beginning. I will always serve my God- whether or not I get to wear a name tag. Yes, certainly, serving as a full time missionary for the church of Jesus Christ of latter day saints is a wonderful and sacred opportunity, but now I am called to continue my service for the Lord- just in other ways.

I don't even know how to express how grateful that I am for the opportunity I've had to serve a mission.  These memories will always be treasures to me. I have learned so much over this year and a half. I have felt so strongly of Heavenly Fathers love for me and for all of His children. I have come to know for myself with every part of my soul that Jesus Christ is our Savior, and that He lives. I know it. I know that this is His church, and that as we live the gospel of Jesus Christ we will find joy and peace, now and forever.

Maika'i ke akua and Aloha Nui Loa.  ( God be with  you and I love you forever)

Love, Sister Hodgson

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

WEEK 79-10 of the things i will miss about Hawaii

ALLLOOOOHHHHHHAAAA from Hawaii!!!!!!!!

Okay so I don't even remember what happened this week!! haha everything is a blur!

okay so we got to serve at pearl harbor one last time! we traded  a bunch of flag poles off of the battleship in a few assembly lines. Then we swept decks. I will miss Pearl Harbor.  We love the service and the people there.Wednesday night we got to go to a relief society activity and learned how to make sugar hand scrubs.

We met with great families who have become very dear to me. They are so committed to getting involved in the gospel again. They haven't been coming for a while, but they have been realizing how much that they need it and they are ready to make the change. It has been so fun to hear her talk about the changes she is already seeing in her life. She said that she has started reading the scriptures again and that she has seen a difference in how patient that she is with her little daughter. she says that she was able to be so much more patient than she normally would have been …. I loved to hear her testimony.

Then Thursday was elder N's birthday (he's one of the elders in the ewa beach 2nd ward with us) so we went over to the lady who was having us over for dinner's house a little early and we all blew up balloons. She had made a giant cookie bar and it was super fun! We all gathered around in the living room and sang and then popped little confetti streamer popper things and the confetti landed on a little stuffed poodle toy.....then their almost 2 year old daughter screamed and ran to the poodle and tore the streamers off of him in horror and threw her little body over him …poor little thing thought that we had hurt her toy poodle. such a cute little girl! I'll get pictures with this family. We love them!

Friday we went on exchanges. I TOTALLY lost my frog meets robot. For our companion study we sang an opening song and I had like a 2 note range. But my voice is back now. The exchange was fun. But like no one we had planned to see was home. But we did meet some new people tracting so that is always fun.  We love  being close to the visitors center too!!

This week in our meeting with the ward mission leader he was like "so are you leaving on December 3rd?" and I was like "Ya." and He was like "No." haha then he was like "We'll call the mission president, this will not be tolerated" This ward is so great! I am going to miss these people! I'm going to miss so many things here in Hawaii!!!!!!!!!!

So, now a list of things I am going to miss when I leave Hawaii:
1. of course the people! SO giving! so loving!
2. gekkos running away from you every step you take on the side walk.
3.THE BEACH of course! I know we don't go on the beach but we can still see it a lot and it's so pretty!
4. how every company here is ALOHA something... like 'Aloha towing' or 'Aloha dentistry' or 'Aloha cleaning company' haha something like that.
5. the accent!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and the local words. "Ho brah, it's no hAnAlulu its hOnOlulu" "na na na de was choke dakine, ya" "he wen bus up his braddah. Den he neva take care a him" "I got go to da store for buy some poke." gunna miss it!
6. the cultural diversity!!! We meet people from the philipines, samoan, tonga, japan, korea, the mainland, new Zealand, guam, tahitii, fiji, any kine place!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! you name it! So we have learned how to say hello in planny different languages!!!!!
7. shoyu chicken - wow I never thought I'd say that. we get a lot of shoyu chicken and I always thought that I was getting sick of it but now I actually think I'm going to miss it!
8. the random birds that look like they are karate masters.
9. cockroaches in the big deal.
10.the street names are all beautiful hawaiian words.

I love it!! Okay I am out of time.

There is a slight possibility that I wont be able to email next week, in which case I'll send a letter to be put on the blog. But hopefully I'll just be able to email. But if not, see you next week:) haha

love, Sister Hodgson

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Week 78- almost Pau

okay so this week was super fun! Monday, we practiced for our zone's musical number for zone conference on Tuesday.

Then Tuesday we spent pretty much all day in zone conference. It was wonderful! they played a talk from elder Bednar and he talked about how Heavenly Father doesn't expect us to be perfect but He does expect us to be clean. I liked that distinction. also, President pulled me out for my final interview with him!!!!!! I was so surprised! I mean I knew that it was coming but I didnt think it would be that day but SURPRISE! He talked about the importance of education and temple attendance and what to look for in a spouse and all of that jazz.

So our zone did the musical number and we really did a MUSICAL! we did a meddly of "I hope they call me on a mission", "called to serve Him" and I'll go where you want me to go". with the storyline of a young boy preparing to go on his mission, then the day he opened his call, to the time he had to pray about it to really resolve that he would go where ever the Lord wanted Him to go. then on to when he met his trainer and learned how to tract. it was super fun and we got it all on film so I'll show you in a few weeks:)   ( weird to say that) Then at the end of zone conference I gave my departing testimony with two other sisters. and then another SURPRISE they started playing "Aloha Oi" on the piano and everyone sang to us....... man I knew that these things happened but I guess I just totally forgot! It was so crazy….yeah, I creid .  I still can't believe I'm almost pau. ( Pau = finished or done)

Wednesday one of the elders was sick so we tried to cover our appointments and that was pretty busy!

Thursday, we helped a lady in our ward to can a bunch of jam. it was super fun!

Friday, was a SUPER SPECIAL day!!!!!!!!!!!!  But not much I can really share…just know that somedays the spirit is so strong you want to explode!

Saturday we had a neat experience. We only had a few minutes to go tracting before our next visit, so we could have just gone early but we decided to go and tract a few houses. we didn’t know what street to tract so we drove around for a bit then found one and turned back around to get to it. we picked three not super scary looking houses and the first one we went to we got invited in and we taught a lesson and we are going back this week for another appointment. super cool!! Some people want to hear about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and they are just waiting for us…

Sunday was busy. well that's just life I suppose:) but we are practicing a song for the musical fireside and it's a super great song. we are all excited.

Love you family!!!
Love, Sister Hodgson

PS anyone remember Brad Snell from TNT...many years ago...his little brother came to the best mission !!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Week 77- Miracles every day

ALOOOHA!!!! So…God works miracles every day!  Find yours!

Our zone leaders gave training to us about having faith and not doubting and boy it changed my life!! Because a lot of times I think I have faith that God can do anything, but I doubt and think "maybe He just doesn’t want to do that right now" or "maybe this is just too high of a goal" and sometimes those doubts have some truth to them, but that's not the point. The point is we should have faith that not only does the Lord have the power to bless us, but He WILL bless us!

For example: As missionaries, we keep track of how many lessons that we teach each week. This helps us to see when improvement is needed, what works and what doesn't work, how the ward can help more, etc. Here in the Ewa beach ward, with the elders lessons and our lessons combined, we had been teaching about 16 lessons a week (about 8 per companionship). We were like "wow this is kinda a hard area". BUT this week, our combined total was 41 lessons!!! That was a small miracle! , proving he is there …Because, it's not about numbers, but each one of those numbers represents a person who we met with, talked with and shared more about God's love, His plan, our Savior's sacrifice, etc. It was an eye opening week for me to see again that the Lord has more blessings than we are sometimes even able to imagine for us!

Also we met a lady and we asked her if we could come by again and meet with her family and she was basically like "no. i'm always busy". Then we ended up talking about some things she's done in her life and asking her about her experiences and getting to know each other and by the end she was like "come back any time!! I’m home during the day on weekdays!" it was really neat to see the change as we took time to talk with her. As they say "people don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care!"

We had some Filipino food this week including ground up pig's face.....nice!

Also we met a lady who let us try on her Indian saris?  It was totally fun to play dress up:) (memories of the Hilton girls and Claire Poore)

People have starting setting up Christmas decorations. and a family we had lunch with even gave us Christmas gifts because , as she said "I have to give them before you leave!!" I’m not leaving yet!!!! haha but it is beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

In Yoga this morning I FINALLY figured out how to stand on my head....cant wait to show you family:)

lots of love,

Sister Hodgson