Friday, January 13, 2017

Coming Home! 12 January 2017

Dear All!

On Thursday, 12th January, I flew from Prague to Paris then to Birmingham.  Unfortunately, my luggage is still in Paris!!!

I arrived to see my family and grandparents!

Even my big brother McKay was there!

My little brothers are BIG!

It was lovely to see my grandparents again.

I will soon be the shortest sibling!

In the evening, my Dad took me over to the Stake Center to be released by  Stake President Hamilton.

It was hard to take off my badge after wearing it every day for nearly 19 months! 

I look forward to seeing and speaking with you all soon.

Thank you for your support, letters, packages and love.

Lots of love,

Reilly Manners (that is my new daily name!)

Last Letter: 9 January 2017

Dear all,

Transfers happened this week. I am excited for my reassignment to the Birmingham England Mission (ha ha) and look forward for further lessons with various missionaries and investigators. I look forward to wearing my name tag on my heart instead of on my shirt. 

I love my mission so much! I have really been reflecting upon all that I have been able to do over the last nineteen months and I am so happy to say that although not all of these experiences have been the best in my life, because they have been hard and taught me the best lessons ever, but they have been the best nineteen months for my life. 

I know that I have met the people that were prepared to hear the message of the restored gospel through broken but bold Czech by a nineteen/ twenty year old sister missionary. I have been humbled by the spirit and also by those around me because of the examples and their love. I have come the leave my heart in a country and with people that I once never knew existed. I love the Lord so much. I know that He lives and loves us. This is His church and His plan.

This week we had the opportunity to teach a young girl named Andrejka. Her grandma is a member here and she will be turning eight this year. She is usually a crazy wild young girl but as we taught her, her heart was softened by the Spirit and we had such a sweet experience seeing her eyes light up as we testified of the Saviour and the restoration of His church. 

The people I have served here have become my best friends. I know that all the sweet sisters that I have served with were not only my sisters as companions but are now my sisters forever in the faith. They have helped me, supported me and changed me. 

I know that all is inspired. My mission presidents have been inspired men of God and as I have followed their counsel, I have seen miracles unfold themselves before my eyes. 

I know that we can truly become white through our Saviour Jesus Christ. I have come to understand his atonement and his love for us. I know that His gift for us is real and true.

I know that the work and the honour that I have had to serve here and love those around me has changed me and helped me to become more like Christ. This is my life pursuit and I look forward to holding on the iron rod, holding tight, knuckles white.

How great is my calling!

S laskou,

sestra Manners 

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Letter: 2 January 2017

Happy New Year!! 

View from our balcony at midnight!

Time really does fly like water as the Czechs say. I am so grateful for the beautiful year that we had! It really has been a spiritual highlight and I am so blessed that I got to spend the whole year on my mission! 

I saw miracles, I saw the Czechs get a stake and a patriarch!  We saw hearts changed, our own hearts broken, people come to Christ and my relationship with the Saviour deepen more then ever before. I know that God is in this work for I have seen His hand help me and guide me every single day for 365 days plus more. They have been days that have ranged from feeling on top of the world to days where I have come to understand how Christ loved us enough to give us everything and more. 

An impressive nativity scene!

I am forever grateful for my mission. I love it will all my heart and soul and I know that when I prepare to leave in just a week time, that I will leave a part of my heart behind. The members, people, food(this was more of a physical change), spirit and this country have changed me. They have helped me to become more like my Saviour. I know that as I serve with all my heart, might, mind and strength, that the Lord has helped me to truly become converted unto Him. I love that my first thought now is to pray and seek guidance, to find a way to help and find someone that need the love of Christ in their lives. I turn to the words of God to find peace. I look to my loved ones for their help. 

This week has been full of so much gratitude. We had the privilege to be together as a mission which is something that has not happened for a few years now. We had so much fun together, with both laughs and spiritual goodness. We finally got to meet everyone and the first night, we had every person introduce themselves and be welcomed to the family. The Pohorelicti really have become like our aunts and uncle or possibly our parents and they know us all so well and pray for us so much. 

All the Sisters of the Czech/Slovak Mission!

We all stayed at a hotel near Prague owned by some very kind members who very wonderfully let all 80 young adults/ teenagers stay there. all the sisters stayed in this cute cottage that was split up into apartment and the elders all managed to fit into the main hotel. Every morning it reminded me of the MTC as we all huddled around in the dark to play games, jog and I even led a little exercise class using moves from good old P90X. 

During the evening, day and following morning that we were there (so two overnights and then three days), we had a big training, had a talent show, watched a Czech fairy tale (the Czechs hands down have the best fairy tales ever!!!  Sorry family, but that is all we will be watching for a few weeks). and we also had a fear factor. President asked us all to send in pictures of us when we were about ten and we had a slideshow and had to guess who was who. It was such a good bonding moment and the gap between the language and country barriers between the Czech and Slovak missionaries is now gone forever. We are just one big family. 

On Friday morning, we had our departing testimony meeting. It was such a bad idea to have the last song be "until we meet'' because it just made me sob the entire time (I was kinda of laughing again because of the irony). But I feel so so lucky to be a missionary here! I love my mission, the people and the missionaries and the work. 

Sisters I have worked with

I felt so blessed to be able to give my testimony in front of absolutely everyone. They are my family and being able to share my love and testimony of the Saviour was an honour. 

I know that this is His work and His church. I will serve Him with honour and love as I serve His children.

s laskou,
sestra Manners