Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Last one!

Dear Family,

Sister Monson and I have been receiving lots of referrals for other areas, mostly because we were in the right place at the right time and we talked with everyone. One man actually lives a few blocks from us in Florence, but we met him outside working in Millard. He said he'd really like the fresh start that our Savior offers through repentance and baptism. About ten minutes after meeting him we went to another area but the people we were hoping to see weren't there. As we walked around the neighborhood we ran into a lady on her way to visit a friend. We handed her a website card and she said "Oh, you're Mormon." in a very cheerful tone and immediately invited us over "Mormons never visit me. Why don't you come by sometime?" Then she wrote her name, number, and address on the card, handed it back to us, and said "Give me a call first." We barely had time to thank her before she went inside but it was quite a miracle.

I can tell you are excited to see me. Well, I am excited to see you too. I'm glad that missionary work is an eternal principle and that I'll still be a missionary, just a different kind of missionary. I read about "A successful missionary" today and decided that I've been successful. I haven't been perfect, but I've learned that I can be great without being perfect. I've grown a lot and seen a lot of other people around me grow as well. I just hope we can all keeping growing closer to the Savior together.

See you soon!
Love always,
Sister Bailey Mortensen

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

General Conference

Dear Family,

I LOVED General Conference. We had four investigators watch it at members homes! I think the interaction with members was more interesting/helpful to them at this point than the actual conference messages, but Heidi, Greg, Holly, and Scott all seemed to enjoy it.

My inspired questions were definitely answered as I watched conference. They were: 1) How can I help my family return to Heavenly Father, 2) What else should I add to my list of small and simple things (see the attached document), and 3) What is the Lord's vision for me and my family?

Elder Oaks talk about desires/vision and Elder Robbins talk about "to do" vs. "to be" really rang true. My vision, desire, and hope for an eternal family was strengthened and I realized that those small and simple things are how I'm going to get there. I also realized that rather than trying to teach people what to do, I should show them who they can become. I'm still developing this thought but so far this is what I've come up with (see PMG pp. 20,198).

know what teach principles
feel why testify of doctrine
do how invite them to apply those principles
become who demonstrate and promise blessings that come from living those principles

Anyway, what did you learn from General Conference? I'm glad Clark took notes at the priesthood session. I am so excited to get the Ensign and really study these talks more in depth. They certainly invite personal revelation.

Sister Bailey Mortensen

Monday, March 28, 2011


Dear Family,

We had a huge miracle last night! Jim's son David just moved in to our area.The Sisters in the Lakeview area had taught him about the restoration but last night was our first time meeting him. One of the laurels from our ward, Carol Ann, came with us and it was a great lesson. We prayed beforehand that he would accept the invitation to be baptized, and he did! We reviewed the principles of eternal families, priesthood authority, and praying to know the truth and then asked if he would be baptized. He said yes! In me head I thought "No way ... he said yes!" but quickly recovered from my shock and invited him to prepare to be baptized on April 16th. Again he said yes with no hesitation! I was so happy! I told him how great it would be to receive that remission of sins and fresh start in life and he smiled and nodded right along with me. He is a good man who recognizes when God is prompting him to do something. He is a trucker so he shared that sometimes he'd be driving down the road and something would tell him to pull over and a little while later he'd hear about an accident on the radio. He knew that was God's way of protecting him. We were able to explain that that is one way the spirit speaks to us. We read Galatians 5:22 and Carol Ann did a great job sharing how the spirit felt when she prayed to know the truth. I am so excited for him to continue studying the Book of Mormon, to come to General Conference and church and to be baptized! It is so great to see people hear, recognize and follow the spirit! I love it!

On Saturday night we also witnessed the miracle of a 9 month old baby taking her first steps! I don't think I've ever seen that before! It was so exciting! Little Hazel was kind of standing next to the wall as we shared a spiritual thought after dinner, when she took a step all on her own. She caught her balance without even using the wall. Her mom, Kristi, said "Did she just take a step?" And we all said "Yes" and started clapping for her. Hazel smiled really big and started clapping too. Needless to say, that was the end of our spiritual thought because mom and dad pulled out the camera and started having Hazel walk back and forth to eachother. I felt privileged to be there to witness such a special event.

I hope you are all as excited, or even more so, for general conference as I am. We have been inviting everyone to watch it. Who will you watch it with? I definitely like going to the church because it's a lot less distracting, but we are trying to get some of the people we teach to watch it in members homes so they can develop that friendship. I love making conference a big event, because it is! We get to hear from living prophets and apostles! I can't wait! Be sure to share your insights with me afterward.

I love you each so very much! Keep being the amazing family that you are!
Sister Bailey Mortensen

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Travel Plans

This is Andrea. I received Bailey's travel plans today. She will be returning April 15 around 1:30 p.m. We can hardly wait to see her!

Spring is here!

Dear Family,

Spring has pretty much arrived here in Omaha. I'm wearing my green jacket again and it is just perfect for shielding me from the wind without making me too warm from walking in the surprisingly warm weather. Sister Monson and I go without a car some days and we had to laugh on Saturday because it started out so sunny that she didn't bring a jacket. Well then it got really windy and finally it started to rain. Thankfully, one of the members let us borrow an umbrella, but it was one of those little rainbow ones. We must have looked ridiculous walking around these neighborhoods with both of us squished underneath a tiny, colorful little umbrella and me in my bright green jacket. We even came up with a little song "Let it blow, let it blow, let it blow." It wasn't nearly as creative or funny as the raps that Sister Itri and Sister Kusnerik compose (a member taught them how to beat-box) but we were pretty proud of ourselves.

On Sunday, Holly came to church for the first time! She wore a cute dress and brought her 6 month old boy, Jaxin. She fit right in with all the other young moms. Thankfully, Maria and Efrain came too. They are Holly's neighbors and missionaries have been teaching Maria for over a year. They just need to get married so that Maria can be baptized. I think having Maria there made Holly more comfortable. I think she was also glad to see how family oriented everything at church is. Sadly, Holly left before sacrament meeting because she didn't feel ready to take it. I told her she could stay and not take it, but she decided not to. When we ran into her later that night she said she really enjoyed everything else. We were also able to schedule a time to meet with her and her fiance, Scott, tonight. We're praying that he will also jump on board.

Jim is now in a nursing home outside our area but we told the elders there to go visit him. Incredibly, Jim's son, David, just moved into our area and we have an appointment to see him tonight as well. I guess he was really impressed that people from church would go visit his dad in the hospital.

We're still teaching Heidi and Greg. In fact, we're having dinner with them at a members house tonight. We're planning to teach the Word of Wisdom. She is a heavy smoker so we'll see how she takes it. We've been doing everything we can to build her faith in the Savior and His Atonement, but really it is up to her. Hopefully she has the faith to live this commandment. If she does, I know she'll receive her answer that Joseph Smith is a prophet. Living the word of wisdom makes recognizing the spirit so much easier.

I hope you are all doing well.
Sister Mortensen

Friday, March 18, 2011

Happy Pi Day (3/14)

Dear Family,

How are you? I got an email from Clark but not from anyone else. I hope you are all doing well. I love you and I pray for you.

Steven was confirmed yesterday! Again, his brother Dan was the one to perform the ordinance. For me that was probably the most exciting part because previous missionaries and members have thought that Dan would never come back to church. But now he's teaching primary, going to the temple for baptisms, and baptizing and confirming his brother. It is wonderful to see people come into but also return to the fold. Their family is well on their way to becoming an eternal family.

Jim was in the hospital again this week, but we sent some members to go visit him after church. Sister Minino (excellent team up), Brother Minino (RC who just got the Melchizedek Priesthood last week), Brother Call (amazing high priest), and Brother Jensen (our Ward Mission Leader) all went to give him a blessing. They said he was very emotional and very grateful. He appreciated the company as well as the blessing. Jim also said he loves when we visit. He figured we had been knocking on his door and worrying about him not answering and only wishes he could have left us a sticky note on his door to let us know where he was. Thankfully we ran into his friend that was helping clean his apartment and that's how we found out what happened to Jim. His comment about the sticky note made me laugh because we often leave them for him. He is just a great man, the kind I'd like to adopt for a grandpa.

We have an amazing exhibit at the Trail Center. It's the one we saw in the Nauvoo visitors center called "The Healing Power of Jesus Christ." It is powerful. I love showing these beautiful statues to people. It strengthens my faith. I'll tey to remember to send you a brochure in the mail. Please read it. I wish you could be here to actually see it, but the pictures are really good too.

Let me know what I can do for each of you. I love you!
Sister Mortensen

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Stephen got baptized!

Dear Family,

Stephen was baptized on Saturday! It was so great! I think my favorite was seeing the huge smile on his face, his brother's face, and just everyone's faces. The joy that comes from following Jesus Christ is contagious. Seeing his older brother come back to full activity in the church and even be able to baptize Stephen was so exciting! They are both on the path back to Heavenly Father and I am so happy for them. Stephen is a great kid! I can picture him becoming a powerful missionary.

Sister Bailey Mortensen