Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Lauren Arrived in Chile

February 26, 2013

We got a quick note from Lauren and she has arrived safely in Chile. Here are some fun pictures!


I made it t Chile!  I love it already!  Traveling by myself was just fine.  I love my companion, she is from Argentina.   I hope ya'll are doing great!  Learning Spanish is going to be fun!  They talk very fast here. Love ya'll so much! Have such a wonderful day, I'm doing great. The Church is true & I'll work hard.

Hermana Lauren Jennings

Monday, February 25, 2013

Chile Mailing Addresses

Here are Lauren's new addresses so you can send her letters! We got to talk to her when she was in the Dallas airport tonight! It was wonderful to hear her voice. She is super excited for her mission in  Chile!

Mailing Address:
Chile Santiago East Mission
Pedro de Valdivia 1423,
29 Santiago
Regional Metropolitana (Santiago)

(the best way to send a letter is to use the Pouch system and go through www.dearelder.com - you write the letter and they print it and send it out once a week, this is free to send letters this way)
* The LDS Church in Salt Lake City sends out Pouch Mail only once a week. All pouch letters received before 12 am on Monday will be sent in this week's pouch delivery.

Hermana Lauren Emery Jennings
Chile Santiago East Mission
POB 30150
Salt Lake City, UT 84130-0150

Friday, February 22, 2013

Last Week in the MTC

February 21, 2013

Meeting Sister Chyna Miloa

Today was a rough day and at night I felt so sick like I had terrible heart burn. It was awful and in couldn’t sleep so I left the room and went to go sit in the bathroom and try to read. I then just started to pray. I asked the Lord to help me endure the pain, ten minutes later sister Chyna Miloa walked into the bathroom and was an answer to my prayer. She was from Tonga and was just the sweetest ever. We swapped stories for like 2 hours and it really helped me keep my mind off the pain. I know the Lord answers prayers I know he sent me sister Chyna to help me get through my sickness. I am so lucky to be able to have met her and call her my friend. The Lord is aware and will send others in our lives when we need them. We need to remember to live in tune with the spirit so that we will be able to respond to the prompting to help or be that person for someone else in need. I just want to say that God knows us and loves us more than you can comprehend. He wants to shower blessings upon us - so we need to live right and serve him and one day we will rest in his presence forever.
Hannah & Lauren - Please Pray for Hannah!
Hannah's Cancer (Gratefully Hannah was seen by her doctor and she does not have cancer and is now out serving in Chile)

Today we had a fireside and to my surprise my friend from school, Melissa’s parents were the speakers. They talked about faith and how trials can be the greatest miracles in our lives. Afterwards I ran down to see my friend Melissa except I missed her as she had already left, but I was able to talk to her sister. Melissa’s best friend, Hannah is also in the MTC and I wanted to find out if Melissa had seen Hannah before leaving.  Hannah was my second counselor when I was Relief Society president my freshman year. Hannah and I had a bunch of classes together last semester and I just love her. Hannah is the reason I came early on my mission - she is the friend that messaged me over Facebook about getting her mission date moved up. She is the reason I called President Parker and the reason I got to go out on my mission 6 weeks early. Melissa's sister said, “You haven’t heard about Hannah?”  I said, “No”.  She then told me that Hannah went home from the MTC 3 days ago because they think she might have cancer – leukemia. Hannah had not received one of her immunizations so she needed it in the MTC and they randomly took a blood sample and found a really low WBC (white blood cell) count and that she also had swollen lymph nodes.  It’s a miracle they found it, but it’s terrible all at the same time. When I found this out I started to cry. She must be so scared right now and I just wanted to give her a hug.  My companion and I left and then found a quiet place and knelt and prayed for my sweet friend. We then went back to our classroom and grabbed our stuff and Elder Edso asked if I wanted a blessing I said yes and asked Elder Russell to give me a blessing.  The blessing was perfect for me today. I know those Elders truly hold the power of God. I know that the Priesthood is literally the power given to worthy men to act in God’s name on this earth.  I know trials are necessary to gods plan. I don’t know what will happen to sweet Hannah, but I do know that the Lord has a plan for her. I also know that He has a plan for me and I need to trust in Him.
Splits with Gordon B. Hinckley’s Great Grand-daughter
Today was such a fun day I got to go on splits with Hermana Jenson. She is so sweet and I really enjoyed being with her today!   We had a heart to heart talk today, and she told me a secret. She told me that she was Gordon B. Hinckley's great granddaughter~ how neat is that!  She got to spend time with my favorite prophet! It’s crazy, I have been rooming with a great granddaughter of Gordon B. Hinckley for the past month and I didn’t even know it.

Lauren & her friend Tiana - whom she met at the Hill Cumorah  Pageant last summer
Welcoming the New Missionaries
Today was such a great day, one, because it was Hermana Hanson’s B-day and we partied all day and, two, because we got to welcome new missionaries and be the ones to pick them up.   We took them to their rooms and then got their books and dropped them off at class.  It’s so fun! I love when new people come to the MTC! It’s awesome! It made me sad cause I am about to leave and I am really going to miss the friends I have made here!
I love being here and I am so excited to go to Chile soon! 



PS: Keep Hannah in your prayers

Friday, February 15, 2013

Valentine's Day in the MTC

February 14, 2013

MTC Life:  Ok so the food is good/ok... but the desserts are great so that’s pretty much all I eat I figure I need to eat enough sweets to last me for the rest of my mission just in case Chile is like Europe and has weird chocolate.... and I exercise every day. I run a lot and do pushups and lunges and sit ups its great so pretty much my day goes wake up eat breakfast go to class for 3 hours where we teacher a fake investigator, study Spanish, and study the gospel. then we have 1 hour of personal study then we go to lunch then we have 1 hour of companion study then we have 3 more hours of class and then we go to dinner then we study language for 1 more hour and then we go to the gym and then after that we plan and study for an hour and go home and get ready for bed. On Tuesdays we have devotionals which are amazing and Tuesday morning we have free time in the morning and Saturday we do service! Wednesday the newbies come!!! It’s great but I am ready to leave, being in the MTC for a long time does stuff to ya! hahah We are ready to get out into the real world. hahah I get up at 6:30am and go to bed at 10:30pm.

Could you send me a list of all ya’lls favorite church talks? I am making a talk binder and I would love ideas of awesome ones, and lots of them!

(I thought it would be great if all of us could print off and send Lauren our favorite talks this week. She only has about 10 days in the MTC - then she can have a good start on her talk notebook)

Send to:
Hermana Lauren Jennings
MTC Mailbox #287
2005 N. 900 E.
Provo, Utah 84604
You could also copy and paste your favorite talk on www.dearelder.com and let them print it off.

Thanks Grandma & Grandpa Emery & Aunt Alicyn
for my favorite donuts (chocolate)!  

So now I would like to tell some stories:

1. Teaching a Lesson to a true Chilean - So today we got to teach 2 - 20 minute lessons to volunteer members who speak Spanish. Most of them are returned missionaries. So one of the lessons we taught a girl who was born and lived in Chile and now goes to BYU. It was so very hard to understand her and I was a tad overwhelmed, but super stoked to go live in Chile and meet the wonderful people.  I accept the challenge of learning Chilean Spanish. haha It was nice to see what I am going to be encountering. It’s going to be so fun and I am sure I will be quite the entertainment for the people of Chile for a while, as I learn the Spanish language better. Learning Spanish is not easy, but it is fun and rewarding I can’t wait to speak to everyone in Chile!

2. Embarrassing Moment- #1 Raptor Dance -  So real quick this is what went down I was out in the hallway with just 5 other Hermanas and we were talking about funny dances (we do weird things for entertainment here haha) One of them was talking about a raptor dance where you make T-rex hands and just dance around like a goof.... in a circle. So of course I started doing it and of course right when I turn around there is President Call...awkward...Ya so this is a funny story about me getting myself into ridiculous situations like always.  I sure have fun though!

Me and my dear friend Hannah Peterson.  She is the one that messaged me that she was going in early so she pretty much is key of why I am here right now.
3. Giving my first talk in Spanish at church -  The way they give talks at the MTC in our branches is that everyone prepares a talk before sacrament meeting and then they call you to speak during the meeting. Usually one of the presidency gives you a hint that it’s your turn.  Well today no one gave me a hint when they said "Hermana Jennings will speak", my heart dropped! hahah I was prepared but nervous, but it went great I am so thankful that I had the opportunity to speak.  One day I will be able to give a talk in Spanish without writing the whole thing down.

4. Embarrassing moment #2 -   Today after gym we were jogging back to our room and then Elder Miller comes out of nowhere and said lets go sisters so we started to race.  We were going fast and it was dark and then I hit a slight incline that I didn't realize was there till I was flying through the air...yep i crashed to the ground.  By some miracle I didn't get hurt cause I hit hard! Ya it was super embarrassing so I just got up and started running home. Yep another great story/entertainment for others.   P.S. I probably shouldn’t be racing people...

So my companion is an amazing singer and she tried out with her friend from home for a solo and she made it and now gets to do a song in front of the whole MTC. I am so very proud of her she  is going to do so very great.

 I ran into Wyatt it was so great to see someone from home tell his mom he is doing great!!!!

This week has been so great! I just love my district we are like a little family and we sure have some good times. This week at devotional the speaker talked about conversion but I got a lot of different things out of it. First I got out of it that families are so important I just love ya’ll so very much you are really what makes life worth it and I appreciate everything you do! Dad thanks so much for the box of valentines I loved it so much and they were the best cookies!!! YUM! The second thing I learned was that enduring to the end is kind of synonymous with true conversion. Enduring to the end is constant conversion because conversion requires constant daily action it requires us to be constantly changing and becoming humble and childlike - most importantly like our Savior.   Being converted requires a new way of thinking, it requires us to align our will with the Father and true conversion gives us the desire to bring to pass the Lord's desires and to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man. We want others to be converted also and feel the joy of a life ever pointed toward God! I love being a missionary it is the best ever! I have made it a goal to always be positive. It’s no fun not to be. I am so glad that we have the choice to be happy!

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! It is so fun to be in the MTC on Valentine’s Day.   We got to go to the temple and participate in Sealings, it was so tender to unite families for eternity on Valentines Day - how neat!
Valentine package from my Dad - I sure love him!

Well love ya’ll so much and I’ll talk to ya next week.  Two more weeks till I will get to live in Chile!!! oh yay!!!!!!

Hermana Jennings

Sunday, February 10, 2013

MTC fun & study time too! - February 7, 2013

So this week was great all the days seem to run together. But this week we had to send off a zone of missionaries - so sad!  As a missionary you meet a ton of great people and then in a few weeks or more you have to say goodbye. It’s crazy how I feel so close to the Elders and Sisters and I have only been here and known them for 3 weeks. I sure hope we are still friends after the mission. They are some great people. I am so thankful that there is so much more than this life. Goodbyes would be so sad if this life was all there was but because of the restored gospel we know there is so much more than this life and so much to look forward too. I can’t wait for our Zone MTC party in heaven I hope we all make it!!!

I love my mission it’s all about the people you meet and how you can touch their lives and how you can learn from them and improve yourself so you can help others. I also love all the fun goofy things that we do on the mission too. We are really good at being silly and having fun, but being serious and spiritual too!
So nothing crazy new has happened this week. Spanish is coming great. One of our lessons we taught the teacher told us that we had done so good and it made me so pumped to leave and teach real investigators. We got to do this thing called TRC this week where we teach volunteers a lesson. They are members. It is really neat! My Spanish is always the best when I teach. It’s crazy how I can just speak when I teach and it’s harder when I am just trying to talk about everyday stuff.

Sister Missionaries are the Best!
So I got to talk to dad this week on the phone!!! So fun to talk to you dad. I found my card..... but it expires soon so it’s a good thing I guess I am getting a new one before I leave the country hahah sorry about that....

I sent a ton of pictures hahah i hope you enjoy them. It's so fun here!!!! I am just going to end my letter and let me talk about my companion. She is from South Jordan, Utah she is really good at basketball super outgoing and fun and she is funny and super spiritual and has the best testimony ever! She is really good about lifting me up and helping me be the best Sister I can be. She is also
a ton of fun we are so goofy and silly it’s the best! She has a guy at home waiting for her... ya I have not heard of that before -  but they are so cute! Um she is a lot like me but very different all at the same time. She is 1/4 Japanese and she has 3 sisters and she also did swim team! um that’s pretty much it!

Hermana Jennings
Winter is in full force in Utah!  

Sickness in the Middle of the Night - January 31, 2013

Hola Mi Familia! I am so excited to write to you today! Lots of crazy and awesome things have happened this week so I am going to start off by telling a couple of stories:

Lauren & Her Companion Sister Hansen
Lauren & Elder Solomon - Old time Georgia friend
1. Sickness in the Middle of the Night So around 3 AM I woke up because I was not feeling so well and then I finally fell back asleep and starting having weird dreams about coughing. Once the dorm light was turned on I woke up and realized that the coughing was real and my companion had jumped up and turned on the light and we looked over and saw poor Hermana Dayton throwing up in her bed. The reason I am telling ya’ll this story is because of what happened next. All three of us Hermana Hanson, Hermana Jenson, and I jumped up at 4:30am in the morning and started to help her get cleaned up. We cleaned up the throw up and got her new sheets and then she took a shower and got to lie back down. It was neat how my love for this sister increased as I served her. This strengthened my testimony that serving someone will help you develop a greater love for them. It also satisfied another principle I have learned on my mission: it is all about others. End of the story because that’s how Christ lived his life.
Nemo gets to go to Chile also!
2. Meeting the General Relief Society President Today for Relief society in the MTC we had the privilege to hear from sister Burton who is the general Relief Society President. She talked about how Relief Society is about serving the one and helping sisters and others make and keep sacred covenants. After she spoke my companion Hermana Hanson, and I got to meet her!! Best day ever! She even gave me a hug. I told her I was going to Santiago Chile and she said she had just been there and that is was beautiful and the people are so strong in the gospel. I just love Relief Society so much. Serving as Relief Society president my freshman year was the best calling ever and I miss it so much. I just love those women and I know Relief Society is truly ordained and organized by God and we have a vital purpose as sisters to further Gods work on the earth.

3. My Blessing for my Cough SO here at the MTC I have developed a cough and a cold. Fun stuff.... It is hard for me to sleep and my poor roommates to sleep because I keep everyone up because I cough all night. Today I had a coughing attack in class and left to get some water and my teacher came in and suggested that I get a blessing. So after class I got a blessing from a sweet Elder in my zone. It was such a neat experience. All the other Elders were there so they placed their hands on my head also. The spirit in that room was so strong. The blessing talked about how I would get better with time and that if I am sick again to know that the Lord is always with me and He hears me when I pray. It was such a neat experience to have an 18 year old guy give me a blessing and how the power he held could invite such a great spirit into the room. They truly are men of God and they do hold the power of God, the Priesthood. I know that the power of the Priesthood is real and that blessings given to me are for me and are testaments that the Lord knows me individually and knows what I need and He also knows everyone that way and loves every one of his children individually so very much!

  4. My Study Journal This week my teacher told us about how he organized his study journal and it is the neatest thing!!! I got a small three ring binder, the kind that has the little paper inside, then got 5 dividers and label the first one, “Doctrine”. In this section is my own personal topical guide, on each page I write a gospel topic and arrange them in alphabetical order from Agency to Blessings to Word of Wisdom, etc. It’s the best, so when I am listening to a talk I just flip to the page that has its subject on it at the top and take notes there. If I don’t have a page with that subject I can just add it. It’s great because then I can go back if I have a question or want to study a topic like “Faith” I have my notes from last time and I can find them quickly and easily. The second tab is called “Testimony”. This tab is where I put how my testimony has grown or pretty much any thoughts I have about anything. The next tab is labeled, “Questions and Answers”. When my investigators ask me questions that I don’t know I put them on a sticky note and go find the answer and then write them down on the pages in that sections. Also when I have a question and don’t know the answer I can do the same. The next tab is “Quotes” which is one of my favorites. I write all the great quotes I get in this section. The last section I have titled “Stories”. This is my journal section I write the stories that happened to me and what I have learned from them. I title them and maybe one day my kids can read this and flip through till they find a title that looks like it could help them out in some way. I just had to share that will ya’ll because it really has blessed my life this week. I have already seen the blessing it has brought into my life already. I know it’s important to write down things you learn from the Spirit and it is also important to go back and read them. My teacher has given me a great tool that is organized and that I look back on the insights I have written every day. I love being a missionary and I love being at the MTC. The spirit is so strong here and I learn so much. It defiantly is not easy but it is so worth it. Spanish is coming along great I love learning the language and I can’t wait to speak it to the people in Chile.

So to end off I want to share something I learned about patience this week. Jesus Christ’s life on earth was not spent rushing around attempting to check off things off of his “To Do” list. He purposefully lived each day. He was not impatient, He considered every person who passed his way. I guess in a way patience is in a way of putting others time before yours; likewise we need to place the Lord’s time before ours. The Lord has given us time and we must in return give Him our patience and spend our time improving others. We must patiently wait for our turn when it is the Lord’s time, for it to be our time. I hope that made sense haha but I just have learned that the Lord’s plan for me is more important and better than the plan I had planned out for myself. I love this gospel and I love the Lord and I love love love all of ya’ll!!! Have such a great week! GO make someone else smile!

 Lauren aka Hermana Jennings

Arrival at the MTC - January 16, 2013

Arriving at the MTC was so fun. Liz dropped me off and she started to cry and I cried a little I sure love her and her family they are so great! I went in a met my companion and we went to an orientation thing and then they threw a group of us in a room with an investigator and we had to group teach them. The teacher said go and there was silence... and I was sitting there and the first thing I thought of was you mom I was like she would have spoken up 5 seconds ago - so because of your fearless example and the love of the gospel I was the first one to speak up. My companion & I started tag teaming and it was great! Thanks for teaching me to not be afraid!

Lauren's friends form BYU came to see her off
Lots of heavy bags!

So days at the MTC are amazing they seem to last forever but the weeks go by super-fast, it is weird how that works. A neat experience we had was on Sunday when we got to go to the movies (well it’s just talks they play in the MTC) we saw one by Elder Bednar. He talked about the characteristics of Christ. He talked about how we need to be as Christ and turn outward and not inward. It was one of those life changing experiences and it motivated me to look outward to others needs and not mine. The whole point about a mission is to serve others. Our purpose is to bring others unto Christ because this gospel is amazing and brings so many blessing into your life. Today is P day and we get to go to the temple this morning. It was a crazy experience. My companion is named Hermana Hanson and she is 19 just like me. She is from South Jordan, Utah and wants to be a nurse too and she currently is a EMT. We are so similar, yet so different all at the same time and I just love her so much. I know that being her companion is why, or one of the reasons why, I needed to be here 6 weeks early. We have been to similar trials and I have never met someone who has been through trials like mine. It made me so sad that that happened to her too but it really was amazing because I could see the hand of the Lord in my life I know He sent Hermana Hanson in my life to help me and I am so thankful for her and Gods awareness of us individually. So anyways back to the temple . . . right as we were about to go in a man yells, “Someone help, go get help!” We run over to the man and there was an elderly lady to had fallen because the sidewalks were so icy and she hit her head and blood was everywhere. I got an Elders umbrella and held it over her while the man and the Elders helped her sit down on a bucket full of salt we flipped over to make a makeshift chair. While I held the umbrella Hermana Hanson took off her scarf and the man wrapped it around her wound till the paramedics got there. Hermana Hanson took her pulse and it was really fast so we told her to take deep breaths and I talked to her to help her not to go into shock. The Elders just came right in and gave her a blessing. The paramedics finally came and helped her and I think she is going to be fine. It was such a neat experience and after it was all said and done Hermana Hanson & I had blood all over our skirts, but we went to the temple anyways. It was such a neat experience I just knew that this is where I am supposed to be right now and that the Lord is real and that He does have a plan for us. Lucky for us it is P day and we washed our skirts and all the blood came out!

Gives you chills to see those Elder's out there Serving!
Hermana Lauren Jennings

My district is the best! I love all the Sisters and Elders in there and I love my Zone, we are all really close already and I feel like we are one big happy family. We sure have a lot of fun and sure do work hard all at the same time. My Spanish is coming along. I have learned so much in only a week!!! We have already taught our actor investigator 3 times in all Spanish. It is amazing because the gift of tongues is real because I can see it in my life. Our purpose is to bring others to Christ and if we focus on that our language skills will come faster as we keep our focus in the right place.
Lauren's MTC District
I love the MTC so much and I love the gospel even more. I found a mission scripture it is D&C 29: 4-6.

  "Verily, I say unto you that ye are chosen out of the world to declare my gospel with the sound of rejoicing, as with the voice of a trump. Lift up your hearts and be glad, for I am in your midst, and am your advocate with the Father; and it is his good will to give you the kingdom. And, as it is written—Whatsoever ye shall ask in faith, being united in prayer according to my command, ye shall receive."

 I just want to end and tell you that this gospel is true and that Christ is our Savior and he loves us so very much!!!

 Hermana Jennings