Happy Bee-irthday to me!!

Wow this week was seriously jam packed with great stories and miracles. I’m just gonna get right to it. Deal?

Monday was Sister Doxey’s last.. P-Day… EVER. Dun dun dun. Yeah that was weird.

So we had a chance to stop by Vicky’s place this week. She’s the one we went to the temple with when she went to receive her endowment. When we got there, she asked if we could help her with something and pulled up familysearch.org. She’d been working on trying to get all of her fan chart filled out and she had some technical complications… And before we knew it, I was searching census records and Sis. Kerby was looking through her family bible and all other records that she has and we were just like on FIRE with the Spirit of Elijah. We were seriously giddy.  It was so exciting. For some reason lately, family history has been this HUGE  push in all of our meetings. Missionary zone conferences, Relief Society, even 3rd hour combined meetings at church. It’s been really cool to look through my ancestry and learn more about those I’m a descendant from.

We had a lesson with a less active member named Steve. He’s been a member since he was 8 because his parents converted when he was 5 years old. But he didn’t really stick with it once he found out that girls and cars were cool and had a drivers’ license. So, he has had Bro. Gubbins as a home teacher for years and recently, Bro. Gubbins asked him if he might be willing to let us come and have a lesson with him. It was AWESOME. He was totally quirky but I like him a lot. He wanted us to teach him as if he didn’t know anything—like an investigator, basically. He was really receptive. He expressed so much gratitude to Bro. Gubbins  for his diligence because he is the only connection to spirituality and the Church that Steve has. It was just an overall awesome lesson. He accepted an invitation to read the Book of Momon and pray, and then told us he might come to church on Sunday before we could even get the words out to invite him! He also accepted a regular appointment on Tuesday evenings with Bro. Gubbins. So, that’s awesome. Evenings can be tough if you don’t have appointments.. Especially as it starts to get dark earlier. So I’m excited that we’re slowly building up our schedule. Our area is really growing and developing and I’m just really excited to keep working hard to help it flourish.

We stopped by Ann and Alex’s. And I guess I need to recap… last week I forgot to write about Ann. We stopped by and visited with her one night and she was just really stressed. She seems to always have a lot of hard things going on in her life. But we talked with her and then asked if there was anything we could help her with… she normally says no, even though she’s got tons of yard and house work that needs to be done. But this time she said we could come help her with her garden. So the next day, we totally helped her pull up  her whole garden and she was seriously just so grateful. It was awesome. Pretty sure I’ve never loved weeding so much as when I’ve been on my mission. Actually, I’m positive about that. But I all of a sudden have this passion for gardening so maybe when I’m a little mom and have nothing to do at home I’ll just garden. (Right now is where all the moms are just laughing when I say I’ll have nothing to do.. Hahahah okay anyway). SO, we stopped by their house the other night and Alex was on the front porch and he said Ann was asleep but that we could come back another time… but then we asked how he was and it lead to him asking if we wanted to watch one of his dance videos he wanted some feedback on… And an hour later we’re in this deep conversation and have to leave and it stinks. But bottom line, I’ve realized something. Even if Alex doesn’t get baptized soon, there are two great successes I’ve seen here. 1. I’ve made an awesome friend. Like for real though. Alex and I get along so well and it’s just a hoot to talk with him, so that’s sweet. And 2. We helped a guy who hadn’t had ANYTHING to do with faith or religion in years recognize that he received an answer to prayers. So maybe later in life when his circumstances change or he’s looking for something, he’ll remember these two persistent missionaries that brought a glimmer of hope back into his life and he can make some changes. So, I just feel really grateful to be working with him. He’s got so much potential even just as an awesome human being. That’s always cool… to get a little bit of a glimpse into heaven’s eyes and see God’s children how He really sees them. I can’t really describe it but it’s honestly just something that we can all experience if our hearts are open and soft and we’re living in a way that we’re receptive to the Spirit and His guiding.

On Wednesday we received a media referral for a guy named Ryan. Oh man. The referral said that he already reads the Book of Mormon and he is a miracle. Well, let me just tell  you that he totally is. We called him and he said he wasn’t off work until Sunday, but that he’d love to come to church. He ended up not making it to church but we met with him last night outside his house. Okay picture this. We’re walking up to the house and we see this guy in tight leather-y pants and a wife beater with a blue bandana and a white baseball hat on. He had tattoos all over his arms and neck and he had a wad of chew in his lip. And you’d think that in my head I’d be saying, “Oh great, what have we gotten ourselves into?” But seriously, truthfully, honestly what was going through my head was, “YES. This is awesome. I love being a missionary!” And man, I love being a missionary even more after that lesson.
This guy is the definition of prepared. He’s had so much leading him to the truth in his life. But I guess I’ll just tell you some of the things that he said on his own without us prompting him to say them in the lesson:  “I feel like a lot of the truths in the bible have been lost through a lot of translations,” “I think that there should definitely be a prophet on the earth,” “I try to live in the world but not of the world,” and “Faith kind of seems like a seed that you plant, ya know?” …. UM YEAH HELLO GET BAPTIZED. So.. That was pretty awesome.
We also taught Deb at a member’s house this week and it was just a powerful lesson. The members were so crucial in that lesson, and Sister Ellsworth was a boss and asked Deb for a ride to the Women’s Meeting broadcast so DEB TOTALLY CAME! It was so cool.
My birthday was so awesome everyone. It seriously was like birthday week! I had birthday dinners throughout the week with: The Jacob’s, the Calvert’s, the Raleigh’s/Evan, and the Shaffer’s. It was so great. I really feel at home in this ward. There’s just something about Etown.
And I totally have to give a shout out to everyone who sent mail! Man. I got mail every single day!!…. Except my birthday. haha. But it all came before and it was awesome to have there. On my birthday we went to this awesome Chinese buffet and I really mean awesome. Like it had all sorts of awesome seafood. It wasn’t a ghetto Chinese buffet at all. Man, I was stuffed, that’s for sure.
Saturday I got to be A BEEKEEPER!! I’m not even kidding. I was going to be really funny and title this email with “Here’s a picture of me in my birthday suit!” and then show the picture of the beekeeping outfit but then I thought maybe I’d better not totally scare everyone to death. Haha. So, I’ll just include the bee pictures at the end. But the Raleigh’s have two beehives they’ve started this year and they need to Re-Queen one of the hives! So.. Nobody else really wanted to help and we volunteered! It was seriously so amazing. If you want to feel just in AWE of the beauty and magnitude of God’s minute details in the world, just go study about bees. They’re pretty awesome.
The General Women’s meeting was really phenomenal. I enjoyed it a lot and it was fun to be with all the women in our stake! What a fun night.
Okay… Yeah I’m kind of out of news for the week but this email is ridiculously long. And today we’re going to hang out with Josh, Kendal, and Ian. Playing board games MY FAVORITE. So fun. Love you all! Praying for you!
#1. This was actually on my birthday when I was trying on all the bee stuff!
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Happy Bee-irthday to me!!

“Start fast. Run hard, and to the tape! You can rest later.”

That quote? Pretty much running through my mind every single day. Even if it’s just in the context of the day, it’s relevant. But if you think about it in an eternal perspective… The kingdom of God is often referred to “the rest of the Lord” in the scriptures. We really have no reason to rest in this life. We just have to work hard and push on and spread the good word and learn and grow. That’s what we’re here for. We didn’t come to earth just to return to live with our Heavenly Father again–we already lived with Him. We came to earth to learn to become LIKE Him. Just some perspective I gained this week.
So this week was pretty awesome. It FLEW by. I seriously feel like this transfer was over before I even had a chance to recognize it had started. Which makes me nervous for this last transfer that’s already packed up with fun activities and events.
Let’s give the rundown of the district with transfers
All the Elizabethtown missionaries are staying! Sister Kerby and I, and then Elder Durham and Elder Masina.
Elder Gibson is being transferred out of Lititz and is being made a zone leader somewhere else. And Elder Boren is staying in Lititz and is training a new missionary. So that’ll be another fresh little greenie elder and I’m excited! We’ve got a huge range of missionary age in our district and that always gives great teaching and learning opportunities.
Sister Doxey is done with her mission! She expires today. Haha. So we’ll be getting a new STL here.
So, it should be pretty awesome!
This week… BIRTHDAY! woo. We had a birthday dinner with the Jacob’s yesterday and we’ll have another one on Sunday with the Shaffer’s. hahaha. People are too good to me. Oh, and then this recent convert, Evan, insists on taking us to this Chinese place in Lancaster on my birthday so I think we’re doing that. It’ll be fun. I’m seriously old though. Last transfer… Finally old enough to actually be on a mission… yeah. And they really do treat you like an old lady when you’re an old missionary. During your last transfer you get “red dotted” which means you can’t drive any mission vehicles. It’s like they take your license away because you’re old and senile or something!! Haha. So I’m just going to be the professional “backer” and back Sis. Kerby up in the car all the time.
This week has been great, though. We had a new opportunity to teach a less active member, Kelly. She’s had a lot change in her life recently and just moved back in with her parents in the new part of the area that we got with the ward boundary change. She told us that if we had tried to talk to her two months before she probably would’ve told us to get lost. But she let us have a lesson with her this week and I think we’re going to really be able to make some progress with her. She got really emotional talking about how she wants to do anything to get her daughter baptized because she wants to see her daughter in her baptismal dress she wore. It was pretty awesome. I love the spirit. He’s a pretty good guy. And it was so cool because it was seriously just one of those “if we hadn’t been here then we wouldn’t have gotten there…” at the right time sort of things. It was perfectly lead by the Lord. So awesome.
We also taught our investigator Chris again and he accepted the invitation to be baptized! this week we’re going to try and set him with October 25th as his baptismal date. When we asked him why he said yes, he just said, “because I want to be apart of your church and come closer to Christ.” PERFECT. We can do that! Haha. He did text us some things this week that were kind of weird.. Like asking about polygamy and then asked if Sis. Kerby and I were in a relationship… But I guess in the church he’s gone to, people have to be married to be missionaries. But I think not to each other. I don’t really know but it kind of freaked us out and hopefully we can clear some stuff up this week!
So, I’ve been studying a lot about manna this week. Not sure why. We watched one of the Daily Bread Mormon Messages (TIME OUT EVERYONE GO WATCH THE NEW MORMON MESSAGE IT’S AWESOME)… Anyway, I was thinking about manna and the principle of diligence like ALL night after that. And then in Gospel Principles yesterday, Sis. Ferguson was teaching about Tithing and she started talking about manna and relating it to tithing.. don’t ask me how, she’s a genius. And so I decided to study it this morning in Exodus 16 and it was awesome. I just think the thing I like most about the principle of manna is that it really took exact obedience to the circumstances the Lord gave them. Go and get the manna every single day, you can’t store it, and double up before the Sabbath because it’s holy. I read a talk the other day talking about how we would never dare leave our houses without our cell phone battery charged. And I thought about how I get even like nervous if I don’t have a way to communicate with others when I’m out and about because I feel unsafe. Shouldn’t I feel that way about my spiritual battery? I should feel unsafe if I don’t have that spiritual communication. And I do, but not as much. So I decided I need to reevaluate a little bit and I’ve set some awesome transfer goals and plans to help myself stay focused and excited about the work.
I’m so excited to keep working hard and doing the Lord’s work! What an honor. Pray every day. Keep the commandments. Go to church. Serve others. That’s my best advice for the week.
Love you all! Make it a fantastic week!
Hello McBurger.. Hahahaha.

We found a beautiful sunflower field in Wrightsville! ahhhh. I wish you all could see it in real life.

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Sister McKann Hanseen
316 Rivermoor Dr.
Marietta, PA
“Start fast. Run hard, and to the tape! You can rest later.”

Relax, let God be Good

So… On the way to the library today I saw a sign that said “Relax, Let God Be God” but I thought it said Let God Be GOOD and I like that lot better. So, that’s my advice for the week. That’s all! Have a great week everybody!
Hahaha just kidding. Okay sorry that wasn’t a funny joke.
So this week.
Tuesday was crazy. Within about ten minutes our teaching pool increased exponentially. We were sitting at the senior center doing our service when our phone goes off. Text messages start flooding in. It’s a long message from one of the youth in our ward, Hallie. I love her, by the way. Anyway, we got a bunch of texts about her friend that she wants us to teach!! What??? Yeah. Then, I look down and a random number is calling us. It’s this guy Chris and he was asking for Sister Romero and Sister Stovall… Sorry, they’re not here. But he just wanted to follow up on a pamphlet that they had given him TWO YEARS BEFORE. It was a Restoration pamphlet. So… Set up a time to meet with him and guess who we brought along? THE Sister Romero herself! Because she ended up marrying a guy from our ward here in Elizabethtown and she and her husband are living at his parents’ house here between semesters… best team up ever, right? Someone who served here before?! Hahaha. So.. We picked up Chris as a new investigator and that was awesome!
Then, there’s a part member family in our ward, The James Family. Well, a guy in our ward, Josh, is here for the semester break as well and is living at home.. And he’s great friends with their family. Well, a month ago or so, Bro. James started coming to church with his daughter like out of the blue. Then, last week, he came by himself! And I had been thinking about them a lot and it just seemed like a perfect opportunity to teach him. So, Josh being the awesome recently returned missionary that he is set up a lesson for us that he came to! It was sweet. Bro. James talked about how he was offered a job that would make him work every Sunday and he decided not to take it because then he’d never be able to come to church. And after he turned it down, was offered another job and totally recognized the importance of putting God first. He’s from Utah and is married to a member so he’s had the lessons dozens of times but has never gotten baptized. Lots of times because missionaries are pushy. But I just promised him that our job is NOT to be pushy, it’s to guide him at his own pace and help him build his faith. He seemed to really resonate with that. So, he agreed to continue taking the lessons and then was at church on Sunday! That was so rewarding. It’s been quite a while since we’ve had an investigator at church and it was just really awesome.
So… The other really big thing for the week was Zone Conference. ahhh. How could it possibly be my LAST Zone Conference? I refuse to believe it!! Ahhh but it was seriously so good. All of the training that we received was just top notch and I felt so inspired by it all. There’s nothing better that we could’ve had to help me just work really hard until the end of my mission. For the musical number, we ended up changing it a bit. Elder Durham played the guitar, and Elder Masina and I sang “Abide With Me” and it was just really awesome. I actually was happy with how it turned out. I was a bit nervous since we only practiced for like ten minutes right before the meeting but that’s just so typical of the musical numbers! Then we had all the instruction and President Johnson saved the departing testimonies for last… There were 6 younger missionaries and one senior couple. (Actually Dad… it was the Burbidges?? I think you know them?? We took a picture I’ll have to send you…) The other five of the missionaries are all going home next week. Then there was me. And I had to give my testimony LAST. It was such a privilege, though, to be able to bear witness of the Savior and His infinite Atonement. And what a great opportunity to leave that last thought with so many missionaries that I truly love! It was an experience I will remember for a long time to come.
That’s about it for this week, though. We’ve had cooler temperatures and Autumn has FINALLY arrived and I’m loving the cooler weather! Though I’m sure it will be short lived. As President Johnson was leaving the parking lot at Zone Conference he shook my had and said, “Thank you so much for your testimony. That was wonderful. And I guess we’ll be seeing you all too soon in Pittsburgh! Work hard these last few weeks.”
And that’s precisely what I’m going to do. E-town doesn’t know what’s comin’ to it!
I’ve been mildly obsessed with jumping pictures lately….Oh, and we picked up a free tree at the library the other day. Sweeeet.
Sister McKann Hanseen
316 Rivermoor Dr.
Marietta, PA
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Relax, let God be Good

Take your Sin to the Altar and drop it like it’s HOT!

…. no joke that’s what the sign by our house says right now. SO GOLDEN. Don’t worry, we’ve been singing the new lyrics all week long. Pictures or it didn’t happen:
I may or may not also have a video of Elder Durham and Elder Masina dancing next to the sign.. Too bad it takes eight thousand years to send a video.
Quick side note.. The man next to me in the library totally smells like Frito’s.
So we’ve had some pretty killer storms the past few weeks. Killer being a good thing. Like SO awesome. It’s finally started to kind of feel like September so that’s been nice. It’s been wet so supposedly that means that the autumn will be COLORFUL! Sweet. So excited.
We had a quick exchange this week. Sis. Doxey came with me to Etown and it was alright. I was feeling kind of sick and they came on the day that we never have like ANYTHING so we usually do Area Book work, but we obviously wouldn’t do that on exchange so it was kind of just reeeeaaaaally long. But hey, that’s okay.
So… Crazy life stories right about now.
On Friday we were having a pretty normal day.. Weekly Planning, did some work in Marietta, met the elders to drive to our dinner appointment, had an awesome dinner at the Greenway’s… then we get a phone call.
Sis. Aipa called and she left a message saying that things were really bad with her daughter and son-in-law and the cops were on their way and to call her ASAP.
We call, the cops were there, she only talked for a few seconds. We drove to her cul-de-sac and waited out the cops. After they left, we saw Sis. Aipa drive off and we followed her to the park. She told us all the details and she was in such distress and I really could think of anything else but getting down on the grass with her, holding her hand, and singing a primary song.
I started singing the first song I could think of.
Heavenly Father, are you really there?”
..the tears welled up and the lump in my throat started forming.
And do you hear and answer every child’s prayer?”
Sis Aipa’s face was full of concern and distress as I choked out a few more words.
Some say that Heaven is far away, but I feel it close around me as I pray.”
By this point I’m barely audible and there are tears streaming down my face.
Heavenly Father, I remember now, something that Jesus told disciples long ago: ‘Suffer the children, to come to me.’ Father, in prayer I’m coming now to Thee.”
My hands were shaking as I held her hand in mine. Sister Kerby joined in.
Pray, He is there. Speak He is listening. You are His child. His love now surrounds you.”
Sis. Aipa was rocking back and forth, emotion showing in her eyes as she looked up at the stars.
He hears your prayers. He loves the children. Of such is the kingdom, the kingdom of Heaven.”
We sat there and I wept with Sis. Aipa. My heart was so heavy for her at that time. There were threats her way that if she was to go back, she could have her children taken away–the only thing that she says she lives for. She had 7 days left until she can move into her new house and everything was being held together by a string.
We called her home teacher and he said they could go there for the night. So they’ve been there ever since and things have been smoothing out just a little bit. It’s still kind of chaotic. But, they came to church on Sunday and her 12 year old son was ordained a deacon and he just cried during his setting apart. It was a powerful day.
Saturday was AMAZING. We actually don’t really have p-day today but we got permission to email still because the libraries were closed on Saturday. But we got to go to the temple AGAIN!! And I totally saw other people I know! The Matthews’ family and Bro. Hill from the Greensburg ward were there. That was AWESOME. Anyway, the real reason we went…
Vicky, formerly less active, was going through for her endowment for the first time. We got to go down and catch the session beforehand, and then be in the session with Vicky and another formerly less active member, Grace, who was there for the first time in 15 years. I was so overwhelmed by the power of the temple when I was there. I honestly sincerely have the greatest love for the temple. I feel so blessed to be found worthy to be within the walls of the Lord’s house and to be able to make and keep covenants that will help me obtain all the blessings necessary to receive exaltation and eternal life. What a joy that brings me! When I am there and can feel of the pure peace and serenity that is there, I just honestly cannot understand why that could ever be forfeited. But I guess the little things lead us carefully away. Satan doesn’t necessarily need us to do terrible things. He just needs us to NOT do good things, and then he still wins. What a jerk! My heart just breaks for those who have chosen other paths. This is happiness. And this is TRUTH. There’s no denying it. And I could feel that almost stronger than ever before as I sat within the temple on Saturday with wonderful members of my ward here in Elizabethtown. What a privilege.
I hope everyone has a fantastic week! As for me, I’ll be attending my last zone conference… Ahhh departing testimony. That’s not even real or fair or anything that I like! Haha. And hopefully we’ll be doing a cool musical number with me, Elder Masina, and Elder Durham.. elder Durham on the guitar. woo! Cross your fingers we pull it off!
Love you! Miss you! Stay safe.
And last week’s letter that dumb dad forgo to post!
So it’s been one of the mildest summers I’ve ever experienced in my life and then all of a sudden it’s September and it’s like BOOM I WANNA ROAST EVERYONE IN PA!! Seriously. It’s been so muggy and hot the past few days we’ve been totally dying. EXCEPT there was this sweet like traveling lightning cloud last night that I can’t really describe but it was like glowing and the whole thing just kept lighting up from the lightning and it was kind of red at the bottom and it was awesome. Freaked Sis. Kerby out but I wanted to like chase it down and find out what sort of creature was controlling that thing! It was sweet. My little video I took just doesn’t do it any sort of justice.
So this week. Let’s see.
We were able to see Ann and Alex for the first time in a while on Monday night and it was really positive. They are just always so sweet. Now if they would just come to church…
We have been doing a lot to help the Aipa family recently. They’ve been looking for a place to stay and they finally signed a lease! But they have no furniture and they can’t get the keys until September 12th, so we kind of just keep checking up on them and meeting them at the park and playing with the kids to keep Sis. Aipa calm and help her just have someone to talk to. That’s taken a lot of the week but she wanted us to tell our parents something. She said, “I want you to tell your parents how much you girls mean to me. I know it sounds ridiculous but sometimes when I really feel like jumping off a ledge because it’s all to much to handle, I remember you and remember the love you have for me and then I know I can just do it. You have made the biggest difference in my life and your family needs to know how much difference you’ve made for someone in Pennsylvania.”  or something along those lines. But she said it with tears running down her face and was just so grateful that we were there to love and support her. Those are my favorite moments of missionary work.
We had a particularly neat experience with one of our less actives, Jalinn. She loves the church but she just has put some things off because of some challenges in her family’s life. But, we decided to show her the Mormon Message “Choose You This Day” from a talk by President Henry B. Eyring. It was kind of last minute that we decided to do it and we weren’t sure how it would go. But when we looked over at the end, she was totally crying her eyes out and just felt such a strong spirit. She said that she knows she’s been procrastinating a lot of things and is ready to start taking steps to get her family back on track. It was a great confirmation to me of how aware Heavenly Father is of each of His children. That video was NOT on our agenda at all. In fact, we were totally out of time for comp study and we just decided, “Hey, let’s just watch this last video and see if we could share it.” It was truly a miracle of the Spirit.
We were able to have a lesson with Ann on Friday and it was really so awesome and I was 100% sure that she was coming to church. And then she didn’t. And I was really sad. Devastated, in fact. But, alas. Agency exists. Better luck next week? I’m crossing my fingers!
On Saturday I’m pretty sure I hate half my weight in delicious food. Every time I turned a corner someone was offering me something else delicious.. homemade chocolate soufflé, Utz chips (straight from Hanover, PA) and just all sorts of other delicious things. I kept thinking, “awesome, it’s fast sunday tomorrow. I can fast it all off.” Yeah.. It wasn’t fast sunday, just BTW.
And last but not least… Yesterday was an AWESOME P Day. Because of Labor day and no emails, we decided to go do a hike in Columbia. It’s this little dinky hike to a place called Chickies Rock.. But it was the first time I’ve been hiking since before my mission! And I was craving hiking so it was great. And the view of the Susquehanna was to die for. Plus, we got some pretty awesome pictures.
After that we went to this little diner for lunch and then Sis. Kerby and I went home and took naps because we were BEAT!
I hope everyone has a great week! I’m loving this. Just keeping my eye on the Lord and His will and timing for everything. It helps to broaden perspective a bit. 🙂
Love you! Miss you! Have a great week!!
1. Me swinging from vines in nature. YEAH!
2. Pro hikers! –Elder Boren, Elder Gibson, Elder Masina, Elder Durham, Sister Kerby, Me.
It was also like 88 degrees outside and the most humid day I’ve felt in a while.. hence the sick nasty sweat face I am but hey.. I’m healthy, right?

Sister McKann Hanseen
316 Rivermoor Dr.
Marietta, PA
Take your Sin to the Altar and drop it like it’s HOT!