Tuesday, July 8, 2014


Hey y'all!

Good news. I survived the 4th of July in Tennessee. If ya didn't know, hillbillies LOVE to make firework bombs and explode them in the hills. We heard them all night this week, especially when we were driving home on the 4th.

So have you been wondering how my missionary 4th of July went? Let me tell ya! We had a ward activity in the morning complete with a presentation on the history of America by Brother Stanton (Sister Stanton helped with most of that but shhh that's a secret). We played corn hole and ate hot dogs outside of the church. Our investigator, Don brought burritos for everyone and they were a hit! We then had district meeting. Then in the evening we went a member's house (the Youngblood family) and ate more hot dogs and did fireworks with another member family (the Filettis). It was so much fun! The Youngbloods live up in the hills so we kept hearing their neighbors explode things. There's also a brothel down the street... they told us it's called "Aunt Ruthie's"... I was laughing so hard but then someone corrected them and said it's called "Suga Mama". Hahahahhaaha sorry that's just some random info for ya!

This week has been blooming with success. Theron (Sister Stanton's grandson) came to the 4th of July activity. Everyone in the ward loves him. He also really enjoyed church on Sunday. After church we went over to teach him the Plan of Salvation. We brought Ryan a member who really hit it off with him at church; they're the same age and they went to high school together. Ryan helped so much with the teaching of the lesson. We were able to commit Theron to baptism on the 26th! The same day as Rick! Awesome huh!??

Met with Don on Saturday. I don't know if I've ever talked about him but he has no religious background. He struggles to comprehend that Jesus Christ could be our Savior. He doesn't recognize the spirit even when we point it out. BUT on Saturday we tried teaching him with a different approach. He always tells us how great he thinks the church is, how friendly the people are, how great the missionary program is, etc. We told him these are the fruits that he is recognizing from God and Jesus Christ's true church. If it's a good thing then why not join, right? We left him that to think about. He came to church yesterday and really enjoyed it. He hadn't been in the time that I've been in Bristol so we were really excited. We did some bird-dogging beforehand and made sure the members were extra friendly and inviting. It was splendid. We're starting to see some progress in him that hadn't been there for a while.

We get to meet our new mission president on Friday so I'll let y'all know how that goes. We're pumped!

Keep being awesome! I love y'all!!

Sister Andrea Kate Merrell

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