Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Other news...for the real MVP's :)

Mike is continuing to do good! His heart is softening, he is reading scriptures again, and he said he thinks he finally understands who God is!
This past Friday night, we went on a "tract out" with the Spanish branch, where all the missionaries in the area split from our companion and went with someone in the ward to cover more ground, and knocked on every door in the 3 apartment complexes in the area. There are a lot of Hispanic people there so that's why we went with the Spanish branch. So I was paired up with Sister Rodriguez... she is so amazing!!!!!! I found out that she was a convert to, but get this... she was serving a mission as a Jehovah's Witness, when she knocked on the door of LDS missionaries!!! How crazy is that!? She said she just heard this voice in her head telling her to keep going back and knocking on this certain door, and eventually she caught them home and it was LDS missionaries. She said the first time she met with them, she tried to convert them, but the second lesson she started listening to them. She ended up joining the church and serving an LDS mission! She said her parents were both baptist, but she started doing her own searching, and JW seemed the closest, she hadn't heard of the LDS church before. She said what did it for her was having dinner at a members home one night, she asked why we did temple work, baptisms, and when the man told her and showed her where it was in the bible, 1 Corinthians 15:29. She said it was like a blind fold was lifted, and she could just see light and remembered this truth she was hearing. She also said she knew the LDS or JW church had to be true because they are the only ones taking the gospel to all the world, Matthew 24:14. It was pretty exciting to hear her story!
We met a lot of people and invited them to church! No one I met came though. :(
Also, Sister Lopez ran into a telephone pole with her bike this week, it was pretty hilarious. We laughed about it for the rest of the day.
I met this awesome lady in the ward! She is a liscensed massage therapist, but she does cranial sacral therapy. She has this amazing gift where she can see whats going on inside of you, it sounds crazy but its so amazing! Basically, I need to start taking chlorophyll, because I dont eat enough greens, no surprise there lol, and she said either my kidney or liver I think, is only working 30% as a result! So I'm getting some at the health foods store!
Okay last thing, I don't want to alarm you with this story, but it's pretty funny.
So when I first got here, Sister Lopez pointed out a boarded up house where a girl had been kid napped. We dont go there to knock.
The other day we were riding out bikes and saw a man outside in the yard raking sticks. She stopped and asked him if he needed help. I followed her lead. He said no but thank you and told us how he loved the Lord. We talked a little, then invited him to church and told him it was great to meet him. Before we left I told him to let us know if we could ever come back and help (Sister lopez usually offers to do service, and lets people know we are allowed to put pants on instead of our skirts to do service), so he said oh really thank you so much, and I said "yeah, we can take our skirts off and put pants on insteasd to help if we need to!" Not only does that mix up of words sounds terrible, to start with... But we rode away and she said "Sister, YOU can take your skirt off, I'm not going back, that's where the girl got kid napped..." I had no idea that was the house!! I didnt recognize it... man oh man did I really put my foot in my mouth that time... were not going back!!
Okay sorry for the long email, I won't get to write much indivually now, maybe later this evening!

Sister Kirkpatrick

Happy Late Easter!!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter! :)
      We had a very good Easter! We attended three different ward sacrament meetings! We were filled all day with uplifting messages about our Savior and all that He has done for us! I know that it is only because of Him that there is any life at all. He lived a perfect, sinless life, and payed the price for our sins in the garden of gethsemane, and died on the cross for us. But he rose three days later, and He lives! Because He lives, we will all live again! I know that if we choose to follow Him and live for Him as our Savior, we can live with Him forever! I am so so so grateful for His unconditional love and guidance!
      My favorite part of church was in the last service that we went to. The choir sang Easter songs, and people from the choir stood up and said things between songs. One man's story spoke to me the most, he said:
      "I had a friend growing up, who was making poor choices. He knew better, he had been taught better, and lots of people tried to help him get back on the right path, but he continued to make poor choices. One day he called me and asked me to give him a priesthood blessing, and I am ashamed to say, that my first thought was, 'finally, this is perfect, now I can tell him what he's doing wrong, and he will listen, becasue it's a blessing' manipulative, I know. But when I layed my hands on his head to give him the blessing, all I felt was love for him. I knew that it was Heavenly Father's love for him! The feelings I had previously were washed away, and all I could tell him was how much God loved him. I was truly humbled."
     I love that story!!!! Heavenly Father loves us so much and so unconditonally! We are imperfect, and fallen people, but because of Jesus Christ, the Father can look upon us with so much love and compassion no matter what we have done! We are never too far gone, He is always standing with arms wide open.
      So this week we had another baptism. Tiffany Jr. decided to be baptized as well! Her mom and sister were baptized a few weeks ago! She is so awesome! She didn't feel ready to be baptized when they were, but I am so glad she took the time to prepare and do this for herself and for God. We have seen her grow so much, there is a new light in her eyes :) I'll send a picture in another email!
      I wish I could tell you about all of the amazing people we are teaching, and the miracles that continue to happen! There is just so much! I hope that something here can uplift you and draw you closer to your Savior! :)
     If you have not already, you should check out the 2 minute Easter videos about the Savior at FollowHim.mormon.org

Sister Kirkpatrick

Also, this was a surprise baptism! Her mom thought it was a birthday
party because her birthday was the next day, and when she saw her
daughter in white she just started crying she was so happy with the
choice she had made to be baptized 😊 it was so sweet!!!

Monday, March 21, 2016

Another Week of Miracles

This has been an amazing week! The first couple days were cold and
miserable and we didn't see many people, but the next day the sun came
out and the miracles started raining down!

  Some of the most wonderful experiences this week have been with
Clara, a ten year old girl preparing for baptism. The first time we
met with her, we gave her a copy of the Book of Mormon to read, and
asked her to do so a little each day. We went back this week to read
with her, and found out she had finished all of first Nephi! We told
her how impressed with her we were, and she bashfully said, "I've
been staying up reading more than one chapter at night". She is so
amazing, her mom was impressed as well. I am so thankful that we are
able to meet with their whole family. Tonight we shared the plan of
salvation with them, and her mom was moved to tears. She was so
grateful to know that we will all be made whole because of Christ's
atonement, and all of the pain and suffering in this life will be taken
away! I could feel the spirit so strongly! I am also so grateful for
the knowledge of my Savior, that because he paid the price, and died
for our sins, we will all be resurrected and have the opportunity to
stand before God to be judged. I am so grateful that we won't have to
stand alone, that we can have Jesus Christ as our advocate standing
next to us! Our Heavenly Father and Savior love us so much!!! Believe

We had a great lesson this week with 5  "rowdy", as sister Lopez says
:) teenage boys! We have been meeting with them for a few weeks now,
but when we met with them last they asked if we could just have a
question and answer session next time. So we did some studying on a
few things they asked us to and then cam and answered questions. It
was great because they participated so much in the lesson and were
really insterested in what we were saying. They appreciated it and I
think we built a lot of trust, so we hope they are just as engaged in
the rest of the lessons! They really are good people seeking for
truth! They have come to church the past two sundays so we are

We had another baptism this past Saturday! It was a 10 year old boy
named Braiden! His family was the first lesson I went to the night I
got to the mission field! I have enjoyed teaching them so much! My
favorite part of the baptism was seeing Braiden's face looking up so
innocently and intently at the man baptizing him.
 Mark 10:14-15 "But when Jesus saw it,‍ he was much displeased, and
said unto them, Suffer the little children‍ to come unto me, and
forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto
you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child,
he shall not enter therein." is so true, unless we are as little
children, we cannot enter into God's Kingdom!

It is so neat to see how the Spirit can guide you and you don't
recognize it until you get to where you're being led sometimes. Twice
this week we had something fall through and them felt like we should
go somewhere specific or knock doors on a certain street, and both
times we meet two different women who told us they knew God had sent
us because they really needed the lift and to feel the Spirit! Those
are such amazing times, and make it all worth it! I know God knows us
all so individually, and He is listening and cares!

This week during personal scripture study, I learned from
Mark 11:22-24 "And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith‍ in
God. For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this
mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall
not doubt‍ in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he
saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore
I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe‍
that ye receive them,‍ and ye shall have them.",
that if we have faith in God, and do not doubt, anything is possible;
those verses outline the simple steps involved: desire, pray, believe,
and receive! I know that God hears our prayers and answers them
according to our faith, and He wants to bless us more than we can

I am praying for you! Let me know if there is anything specific I can
remember in my prayers :)

Sister Kirkpatrick

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Preparation day is rescheduled!


 Preparation day has been switched to Thursday this week because that's
when we're going to the temple, yay!! :)

      I am doing wonderful! I am continuing to learn so much from my
companion's Christ like example. This week we had an amazing
opportunity to meet four teenage girls and teach them the restoration
upon meeting them. We saw them through the window of their home and
motioned for them to come outside and they did! They said they were
Catholic but had cousins who were serving missions. They agreed to
learn more about what their cousins were teaching on their missions,
and invited us to the back yard for a quick lesson on the restoration
of the gospel of Jesus Christ. I could feel the Spirit so strongly as
we simply taught each concept. The girls were all so sincere and had
such wonderful faith in Jesus Christ! They said that what we shared
made them smile and feel peace, and that if they would pray to know if
what we shared with them was true, and if God told them it was, they
would be baptized. We walked away feeling so much excited, because all
of our plans to that point had fallen through, but Heavenly Father
knew exactly what He was doing. This truly is His work, and He is
preparing people! This week I've been learning that if we will put the
effort in during our scripture studies, the spirit will bring exactly
what the person we are meeting with needs to hear to our minds. "But
when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak:
for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. For
it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh
in you." -Matthew 10:19-20.

We were given permission to send one quick email letting you know!
Talk to you Thursday afternoon!

Sister Kirkpatrick

Monday, March 7, 2016

"And as many as did believe were baptized..." (Alma 19:35)

These are the amazing girls we've had the opportunity to meet and teach 😊

Week number 2 in the field!

This week went by so quickly!!!
It was a really good week! There were a couple of days in a row that all of our appointments cancelled on us and we didn't have much luck finding anyone to teach that day. It was a humbling experience for me because it made me realize how blessed I am to be in a mission or at least an area where that typically is not the case. It made me grateful for all of the opportunities that I get to sit down in someone's home and share a lesson with them. I feel like that is a good thing to learn early on.
We also had two baptisms this week! I haven't been here for all of the lessons with the mother and daughter that were baptized, but I am so grateful that I got to be here for part of them and to get to know this amazing mother of 6 and her daughters. She had heard of the gospel before and some of her daughters had already been baptized. The Lord prepared her in her own time though, and when she started meeting with Sister Lopez and her previous companion she said she was finally ready for the gospel in her life. It was such an amazing experience being there for their baptisms. One of her younger daughters, 7 years old, wanted to sing a song at the baptism. Sister Lopez and I taught her the first verse of "I am a Child of God", and she went home and practiced it all weekend, annoying her sisters in the process! She has such a beautiful voice for such a tiny human! At the baptism she wanted Sister Lopez and I to stand and sing with her. We tried to be quiet so everyone could hear her amazing voice. It was such a blessing to be standing beside her because I could see the love, joy, and pride welling up in her mom as she cried watching her daughter sing. It was amazing.
A couple of interesting things happened during those couple of days we didnt have much luck. One man can to the door, and before we could speak, he said " I know your mission and I'm not interested, so you're wasting your time." Our mission president want us to get "3 no's before we go", and I could see Sister Lopez about to do that, she is so sweet, and such a good missionary. So I said quickly while we still had his attention, "We appreciate your honesty, and we know God loves you, have a good day." We turned to leave and after a few moments, he said.." He loves you too".. I said "thank you, I know, I'm so grateful for that, I love Him!"
Another boy that answered the door shook our hands, and after shaking my hand told us he was allergic. I don't know exactly to what he was referring, the gospel, missionaries, me? We had a good laugh though.
I am so grateful for my comapion. She is so down to earth, kind and nurturing with the people we teach. She reminds me a lot of my mom actually, which is a great thing because my mom is one of the best humans on the planet if not the best :)
In other news, we've had more fun on our bikes... every time we park them at a certain appartment, someone messes with our seats. The first time someone put them all the way down and turned them backwards. The second time they raised them all the way up and we didnt realize until we tried to get on! We always get a good laugh out of it though!
Also the weather in Utah is crazy! Saturday it was sunny and almost 70 degress. Sunday morning it was cloudy, rainy, and so windy we thought there might be a tornado when we left in the morning. On our way home from the 3 church services we went to, we got to ride in the biggest hail I've ever seen! It was exciting... To top it off, we got to ride home at the end of the night in snow! Don't worry though, it's sunny and melted today!
This week I have learned once again how simple the gospel truly is. Faith in Jesus Christ and His atonement, Repentance, Baptism, the Holy Ghost, and living the gospel are all so interwoven, one leads to the other and we are never finished. One thing that I learned today is that all of these things are for sactification. They all cleanse us so that we can return to live with our Father in Heaven. I continue to gain more and more appreciation for my Savior. I know that eveything we have is only because of Him. I love this scripture form the Book of Mormon: "And we talk‍ of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy‍ of Christ, and we write according to our prophecies, that our children‍ may know to what source they may look for a remission‍ of their sins." -2 Nephi 25:26
Christ loves us all so much, and knows us all so indiviually. I am so grateful for this time to serve Him and grow closer to Him!
Continue emailing me through out the week as you have time! :) I love reading them! Sorry if I don't get around to responding to them all individually but know that I get them and they make me very happy!

Sister Kirkpatrick

Tuesday, March 1, 2016


Here are some pictures of sister Lopez and I with our bike helmets!
The quilt was made by women in the relief society, all the new missionaries had one waiting for them to keep when we got here. It was so sweet!

First Week in the Mission Field!

Hello everyone! 
I am in West Jordan, Utah!

My first companion and trainer, is Sister Lopez! She is so amazing, and I am so happy Heavenly Father put me with her! She is from Mexico and speaks Spanish and English fluently, which really comes in handy here. We meet a lot of people who speak Spanish and she can talk to them, I just smile and nod. I can pick out things being said here and there and when they speak directly to me they are typically asking if I speak Spanish, she taught me how to say poquito (a little) haha it gets me by! She is so patient and loving towards everyone, even when people are rude to us, she just loves them. I want to learn as much as I can from her!

I'm so excited to finally be putting faces with names! When I got here she told me about all of the people they had been teaching and a little bit about each of them! I am slowly meeting all of them and getting to know them, so I don't have to keep asking her, which one is that? There are three people being baptized this month! It is so neat to be a small part of thier journey! They have all been truly prepared by God to recieve His gospel. 

One of the best experiences from this week was meeting a man named Mike. He used to be Baptist, and he went to school for theology to be a pastor. He said that in that kind of school they sort of tear your faith down to rebuild it, I don't know if that is the case for everyone, but anywasy he said that he dropped out at the crucial rebuilding faith phase. He now doesn't believe in Heaven or Hell or even God. He knows he's recieved answers to prayers in the past and felt the spirit, but he doesn't feel it now. I felt the spirit so strongly as i just bore simple testimony of my Savior to him. He is mostly only interested in learning about the gospel to make friends. He said he could debate with us all we wanted, but I told him that was not why we were there, we were there to build his faith and bring him closer to Jesus Christ. I think he was taken aback that we were not interested in debating. Before we left I told him to just think about how he feels now compared to how he felt when he believed in God, and the difference in his happiness. I asked him if he wanted that feeling back, and to feel the spirit in his life. I told him we wanted that for him but he had to want it to. I know that nothing I do will change him, the Holy Spirit will have to work in his life outside of our lessons. 

In other news, it is so much fun being a bike missionary! We rode bikes for the first time on friday and it was so nice out! I felt like a kid riding my bike around knollwood with Cooper and Jordan! :) However, I used to wonder how so many missionaries had bike accidents. Now I understand. When you are on a side walk riding single file, folling to closely to your companion, it's a whole new world. Last night riding home in the dark my face hit a few tree banches! Haha and a few bumps snuck up on me that almost took me out. Stay tuned, I'm sure there will be worse incidents haha. 

This week I have learned a lot of things! Most recently, while we were riding bikes I was thinking about the amount of time we are spending out here, compared to the amount we are teaching people (not as much, but a lot compared to other mission I hear) I started to wonder how efficient it was, and I realized that Christ spent His entire life teaching and spreading the gospel, ultimately taking the sins of the world and dieing for us all. Through it all people denied Him, one of His apostles betrayed Him, and the people crucified Him. Now we are nothing close to Christ, but if people rejected Him, and it was not easy for Him, how much harder should it be for us, His imperfect servants. He asks so little of us. I want to serve him with all my heart, might, mind and strength, and do what ever He asks of me. 

I wish I had unlimited time to tell you all that is happening, but I hope these highlights suffice! I have GREAT news though!!! I can read emails that you send me every day when I have free time, typically that is at lunch time. I just can't respond until Monday around 10:30 am my time. So email me as much and as often as you like! :) 
Also, we will not be giving out our individual addresses here, everything will go through the mission home and we will recieve packages or letters on Tuesdays. So if you want to send anything, the address will be the same my whole mission. (Below)

Sister Tara Kirpatrick

I love you all so much! We only get an hour to email, so I'm going to start responding to as many emails as I can now! 

You are all in my prayers!
Sister Kirkpatrick

First Week in the MTC!

Hey everyone!
It seems like I have learned so much my first week in the MTC (missionary training center)!
I wish I could tell you everything, but I'm just going to try to give you a few of the highlights from each day! 
Flying into Utah on Tuesday was so cool! The mountains really are gigantic, it's never going to get old seeing them so close. There was the brightest red orange sunset behind the mountains I could see from the plane too, it was so nice!
When I got here I was greeted by so many amazing people that have in some way helped me in my journey, and brought me closer to Christ. I felt so loved, and so blessed! 
The first day here I had a harder time than I expected. Not so much because I was homesick, but more so because I had to learn some hard things. I realized that I am not very selfless, and I am selective in who I love, neither of which are Christ like attributes. I realized the first night just how much this mission was going to change me for the better. I know that it won't be easy, change isn't, but I am so ready! 
I felt the Spirit so much more the second day! We had a lot more class time and time to study the scriptures! For personal study I studied Alma chapter 5 in the Book of Mormon, and Mark chapter 5 in the Bible! I think I got more out of those chapters, and learned more from the Spirit than I ever have studying scriptures before!
Also, my companion, Sister Johansen and I got called to be the STL's (Sister Training Leaders) for our branch! 
"There is little growth in a comfort zone, and little comfort in a growth zone." That quote has stuck with me, this is definitely a growth zone! I learned that I am my harshest critic, and I just need to learn from my mistakes and move on so that I can continue to focus on the spirit! 
Today our teacher, Brother Harper shared an analogy with us, that I really liked. He said he was watching his nephews soccer game, he's about 7 or so. He said that the ball was on the opposite side of the field, so the goalie ran out in an attempt to help his team score, but the other team got the ball, kicked a long shot and scored. The goalies intentions were pure, he was trying to help, but he wasn't where he needed to be. This relates to us because it is only our job to invite others to come unto Christ. As long as we are doing our job, God will do His. He is the only one who can truly bring people to Christ through the Holy Spirit. 
Valentines Day in the MTC! I didn't even realize it was for a long time haha! We didn't have much time for personal study, but we had a ton of really great meetings! My favorite part was the devotional by Richard Heaton, and watching "The Character of Christ" by Elder Bednar. 
In the devotional He talked about baptizing converts, and how baptism is only a single event in our journey back home to God. Missionaries can be a big help, but we really only want to help them develop their relationship with God, and try to remove ourselves as much as possible from the situation so that when we leave that doesn't change, and they continue to have a good relationship with God. 
The talk by Elder Bednar was so good! I learned that the Character of Christ is to always look outward, and our character as humans is to look inward. He gave so many good examples from the scriptures! One of them was that even after 3 of Jesus's apostles had fallen asleep while he was in the garden of Gethsemane suffering for our sins, and one of them had betrayed him, and he was being arrested, Peter cut off the ear of one of the people arresting Christ, and Christ still looked outward, and healed his ear! After all that He had already been through, he still looked outward, even for something so superficial! I want to develop that kind of selflessness. 
He also said that when we know things are true through the Holy Spirit, that is having a testimony, but being a true convert requires living and acting on those things you know to be true for the rest of your life! We all have a long way to go :)
Today everyone in the class wrote down a list of things we know are true, so that we can come back to those truths when things get hard in our missions, and remember why we are here. So that we can act on those truths :)
It is so amazing to be here, sharing a room with 5 other girls who all love Jesus Christ so much, and want to serve Him! We are getting closer and it's getting a lot more fun. :) 
We got to go to the temple this morning for P-day (preparation day). It was a lot of fun, it was strange not having to drive 7 hours round trip to go to the temple though! It was only a 5 minute walk! There are 20 new missionaries coming into our branch today, 10 of them are sisters! So our roles as STL's really start tonight! Were going to have to find a bigger space to fit 16 girls for our nightly devotional, our room isn't big enough! 
I love you all so much and am so thankful for your support! I miss you all but I am so happy to be here! I know this is where God wants me, and although it may hurt sometimes, I am so ready to be molded into the person God wants me to be, clay in the potters hands! 
Also, there's a website called dear elder that you can write a letter with online, and it  will print out here and I'll get it! It will only work while I'm here at the MTC, until 2/22/2016. After that I'll be gone! :)

Sister Kirkpatrick