Wednesday, November 26, 2014

November 24

Dear Mom,

Well, Sister Byers has left, and seems to be well. I was a little unsure about training a third time, but I am starting to realize why. Sister Takeuchi is awesome! I needed to be her companion. She is brand new, and straight from Hawaii. Fortunately, she went to school at BYUI, and is a little prepared for the cold. It is different here, though. She is doing really well! I love being her companion. I have been praying for her, and she is definitely an answer to my prayers. This week, we had a referral for a woman named N. She is from Flint, Michigan. Sister Takeuchi invited her to be baptized on our first lesson, and she set a date for 12/27/14, and her daughter is going to be baptized the same day. I am so excited for them!

We are looking forward to Thanksgiving this week. We have some good plans set up. The holiday season as a missionary is definitely my favorite. Not only is winter great, but everyone is in such a good mood around now. People are more loving, and quick to forgive and to give. It makes our work as missionaries so much more enjoyable. We have a lot of families out here who are ready to take care of us, too. I am so happy to be back in the same place for the holidays, I love this ward.

I love you all! Keep doing all the things that are important. Heavenly Father wants us all to go to heaven, and we get to choose if we are going or not. Go to heaven!


Sister Bakker

The Lineage from Sister Frampton

Sisters Greenwood, Bakker, Morris all trained by Sister Frampton

Sisters Olson, Bakker, Kunz and Takeuchi, trained by Dani

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

November 18

Dear Mom,
You can officially just send everything to Canfield until I leave.  I
was just called to train again, and I will be staying this transfer.
Sister Byers was pretty surprised, and disappointed to leave right
before the holidays.  I don't blame her.  This is a great ward to be
in, especially this time of the year.  I pick up my new trainee
tomorrow at transfer meeting.  I am pretty excited.  I am not the
greatest trainer ever, poor Sister Olson and Sister Kunz.  Maybe I
will get it right this time around.  What I am really excited for is
to be training at the same time that Lyssa is being trained.  I will
be going through the same 12-week packet that she has in front of her.
That is pretty cool!
We are doing well after our "deer-car hit" (that is what the Sargent
called it).  It is actually a miracle that we have a car right now.
Our car is currently in the shop, and it is unknown when it will
return.  We went for a few days without a car, but we are now driving
again.  The office misread the odometer of one of the cars, and
thought it was time to sell it just a few days before we hit the deer.
They weren't sure what they were going to do with it, and President
Vellinga had them get it to us pretty quick.  We are so grateful for
This last week we found a less-active member in Youngstown.  It was a
pretty interesting turn of events.  Turns out they are moving this
week.  She is living with her foster-daughter, and she decided to sit
in our lesson for a bit.  Right then and there we invited her to be
baptized, and she accepted!  She set a baptismal date for January 3 so
that she can start off the New Year right.  We will just have to pass
all of that info along to the lucky missionaries in Oklahoma.  They
must be praying for referrals down there. I have really had a neat 

opportunity to meet some pretty amazing people out here.  I have learned
 so much about life in these short months out here in Ohio.  I am grateful

 for these experiences as hard as they have been at times.
I love my mission so much!  I am excited to be back in a place where I
feel at home for the holidays, again.  It still feels like deja vu
most of the time, but I know that the Lord is wiser than I am and
needs me here now.  I love being able to be used as an instrument in
his hands each day, and to be able to just turn my life over to him
and be led in this way.
Sister Bakker

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

November 10

Dear Mom,

Raking leaves in Ohio
So we had a pretty crazy week....... There has just been an
outpouring of stuff going on. Some good things, but as of right now
we have no car. I am not sure when we are going to get another one,
or if we will. I guess I should explain.

Coming home, at about 9:00 pm, from the R’s, on highway 62, we
hit a deer. Needless to say, since we were on the highway, we were
going 55. It was a bad accident! Considering everything, I responded
quickly as the driver, but there is no way we would have been able to
see it coming. It was running at full speed, and Sister Byers didn't
see it either. It jumped out right in front, so we hit it while it
was jumping and it hit us pretty high. Upon further inspection of
where it hit, many people told us that it was a miracle it didn't go
through our windshield. We remember it came up pretty close, but
somehow it went the opposite direction. A few very nice people
stopped to help us. Fortunately neither of us were really injured. I
slammed my left side against something. My hand was a bit swollen for
a bit, but I think it is okay. Sister Byers is pretty sore too, but
overall nothing bad. We called J pretty fast, and he and his wife
showed up shortly after! I am so grateful to be here right now, to
know how loved I am that in a crisis, they are there for us. J
helped us figure everything out and get things situated. Sister
Byers was on the phone with our mission office, when the State Patrol
showed up. When I handed him my license, I told him he couldn't say
my first name out loud because I have to be "Sister" right now. He
thought it was funny, and just called my "Little Sister" for the rest
of the night. I got to sit in the back of his patrol car and fill out
some papers for a bit. He and I had a good heart to heart about some
gospel principles, and then he had to let me out, because wouldn't you
know it there are no handles in the back of a patrol car. He said,
"not everyone is as nice as you." Pretty funny. He told me that they
received more deer hits that night than he had ever had before.
Crazy! J and J were so great! They helped get so much taken
care of to make sure we were safe and taken care of.

When we think back to everything that happened, we can really see so
many ways that we were protected. That was something I kept asking
myself. We hear as missionaries all the time that accidents happen if
you are disobedient, but we weren't. We were doing everything we
could to be obedient, but the blessings really came in how we were
protected. That deer should have gone through the windshield, and
could have killed us. Thank you for your prayers to keep us safe. I
know that we were so protected because of the prayers. As the most
prayed for group of people, I can tell you that we honestly feel it.

As far as everything else goes, I am not sure what is going to happen.
I don't even know if we are going to get a rental car or if we are
going to have to get rides pretty much everywhere.

I love you all! Thank you for your protective prayers! I will let
you know how things are going next week, and keep you up to speed.


Sister Bakker

Thursday, November 6, 2014

November 3

Dear Mom,

Everything here is going well. We spent Halloween with Sister
C. She is older, and has a hard time getting up and down to
hand out candy. She tried to make us bratwursts (she said she
resisted putting the beer in just for us, I think she was kidding, but
we never know with her), but it took a pretty long time, and we ended
up having to leave. She is really sweet, though.

We have a family that is new here since I left. They are so great,
and we had a good lesson with them. The wife has a few people she
wants to share the gospel with, and asked us to bring by some
material. So we came back with some things, and started going through
it all, when her mother-in-law came in. She sat down and talked with
us for a bit. Come to find out she is a very faithful Christian, and
has attended many kinds of churches. Her son, the member here,
converted in college, and even served a mission. So she is fond of
the church, but has never taken the opportunity to pray and find out
for herself. Her daughter-in-law, courageously invited us to teach
the restoration right then and there, with no warning or preparation
on her part. We did so, and it was incredible!! Everyone there could
feel the strong spirit. There is something so special about our
unique message as members of Christ's true church. I know that it is
true. I know that it changes lives because I have seen it. There is
no other declaration on earth that can provide that spirit. I hope to
be able to have the courage that this sweet sister did, and share the
gospel as boldly as I can when directed by the spirit.

I love you all! I hope you have a great week.


Sister Bakker