Monday, May 30, 2016

"You're all up in the koolaid and don't know the flavor"

Dear family and friends,

Happy Memorial Day! Quote from a recent convert who is 10. :)

Guess what this week is? My birthday!!!! And I am going to be so old. I can't believe I've been in Florida since I was 19 and I'm turning 21. Crazy. 

Not sure what happened this week. Oh yes, we are out of miles this whole week so we biked like crazy and did a lot of tracting. I think multiple days we biked like 15 miles. I am glad that I exercise everyday. 

Someone we are teaching, Angel, went to the Gladys Knight concert. We finally got his gift bag and biked it over to him. We taught the restoration outside to him and he felt the spirit. He said he felt something different at the fireside and that God was telling him to join her choir. One problem-you have a to be member! So we are going to keep teaching him!!!! 

There was a book mentioned in Relief Society on Sunday titled "Not withstanding my weakness" by Neil A Maxwell. It said something along the lines of, "if you are proceeding, you are succeeding." I thought that was very profound. The Gospel isn't about perfection, its about trying. As long as you are progressing, you aren't failing. Its when we become complacent, and don't want to change that we are "spiritually damning" ourselves. We are here on Earth to experience life and its challenges. They shape us into who we are. When we do the right thing, we become more like Heavenly Father. I know there are times that I want to say "Heavenly Father, could you give me a break?" But he won't, because he doesn't give up on us. He loves us and can see our potential. So if it seems like he is pushing you a little over the edge, take a deep breath, pray, and ask him to help you through your trial. Thank him for the trial. Tell yourself "this is for my personal growth and development." I can promise that he doesn't give us anything too hard for us to handle. Look forward with faith, not backwards with doubt. 

Anyways, love you all. Thanks for the support and the prayers. Have a great week!
Sister Morgan
 Pink cactus

 Biking selfie

Sis Nasman

A weird tree fruit from Turkey....

Monday, May 23, 2016



Since I know my mom is dying to know.... I stayed in Mulberry! Sister Judkins got transferred which is sad, a hard change, we were together for 7 months! But we also both saw it coming, can't be companions forever! Everyone can write me now too, address is the same. 

My new companion is.... Sister Nasman!!!!! (pronounced nase-men) and she is from Nampa, Idaho- right outside of Boise. She has been out 3 months-just finished her training- but has been tossed around to 4 areas already and has only been in trios. So hopefully I am not going to bore her! ;)

This week has been so busy. We found out about transfers and cried, Wed was transfers, Friday was Gladys Knight, and Sat was Ryleigh's baptism! Yikes!

Gladys Knight and the choir she directs, Saints Unified Voices, came to the Tampa area on Friday. This was a once in a lifetime opportunity for this area. We got to Brandon at 11am and did what is called a blitz. Basically, all the missionaries are assigned an area far from the stake center to go tract and invite everyone to come to the event. Not sure if anyone we talked to came, but that's okay! We tracted until 4pm and it was hot. But we were excited for what lay ahead! And it was exciting!!!!!! It was loud, and definitely a PRAISE THE LORD devotional. We were clapping, saying "amen!", and the like. It was so fun and everyone enjoyed it. The focus is missionary work- to get people in our building and see that we are Christians. Gladys shared her testimony and I just can't describe in words how amazing it was. Our investigator, Angel, was blown away. He is a huge fan of her. I was blown away too. I want to listen to their CD when I get back! 

Ryleigh and Miranda were baptized on Saturday. It was a beautiful day, everything worked out. When their grandpa asked her if she wanted anyone else to join in on the confirmation she said "Sister Morgan" haha but was quickly told no! I love them. They were sad Sister Judkins wasn't able to be there but she was there in spirit. I am so happy for this cute family and that we were able to teach them both. Ryleigh is 9, so she was a convert baptism, and Miranda is 8. 

Yesterday was Young Women in Excellence, they do it here at the end of the school year. We were asked to share how Personal Progress has helped us to become missionaries and add "sunshine" to our lives. I miss YW's. I love serving in this ward and being around so many youth. They are awesome. 

Spiritual thought of the week-  

Opposition is a part of mortality. We came here to be tested. Yesterday at church there were some talks given on this. What stood out to me was that no matter what trial we go through, no matter how bad it is, it is nothing compared to the suffering Jesus Christ did for us. He was faced with every sin. We have so much more help in our trials. Heavenly Father will never leave us. Our trials are personalized to us- what we need at that moment to stretch and grow and reach our potential. Sometimes we don't see the faith we have until after we are being tried for our faith. Don't give up- know that God won't give you anything you can't handle. Look forward with hope and try to see the eternal perspective. 

Sister Morgan

PS. I met Bro. Jorgensen's daughter at Gladys Knight- Mary Perello? 

Yes mom, I got my haircut and its super short now! But I like it.
Above - before / Below - after
(Love the tan line on the feet! :-)  --Mom)
Its above my shoulders!

Our last week as companions...
Sister Judkins and I and our street sign in Mulberry!

Smith family- Ryleigh, Caden, Miranda
Being silly!

Sis Judkins and I on the way to transfers...

Ryleigh and Miranda's baptism with Sister Nasmen and I

Miranda and Ryleigh after their baptism

Highland Ward Young Women in Excellence

Monday, May 16, 2016

"Not everyday is a good day, but there is good in every day!"

Hello everyone!

That's a quote I heard in church yesterday and I loved it. 

Another quote I read this week was one on obedience by President Benson.
          "When obedience ceases to be an irritant and becomes our quest, in that
            moment God will endow us with power." 

As I was pondering over this, it made me reflect on my life but more specifically my mission. I have truly come to live the principle of obedience to God. People think that everything is just full of rules in the church. That we aren't free to do what we want. Its completely opposite. We have the gift of agency and we have these "rules" or commandments set to keep us safe because God knows all the temptations out there, trying to get us because we are free. I have seen in own life times when I didn't do what was right and I have faced consequences because of it. I have also seen times on my mission that I have been obedient and diligent in my calling as a representative of Christ and because of this, I was blessed. I am happier when I am keeping the commandments and putting my faith and trust in the Lord. I'm definitely not perfect, but I have the understanding now that commandments are made so God has the excuse to bless us when we follow them. Its really simple, we just make it complicated. He has a plan for us and lays the map out, wide open, on the table. Obedience is a law of Heaven, we need to learn it now because it will continue on past the grave. 

This past week we had zone conference, our last one most likely with President Cusick. :(  He pulled a few of us going home after him (new mission President starts in July 2016) to a room and gave us some important advice on returning home from the mission. I look up to him with great respect for his calling and experience. He will be missed. 

Also, I found out that Sister Judkins is going home with my transfer now! So crazy but I am happy! That definitely means though that we won't be together until the end of our missions because this area won't be white-washed again. 

Ryleigh is doing well, she is set to be baptized on Saturday!!!! So excited. We also have Gladys Knight's devotional of Saints Unified Voices coming on Friday. Yes, I will be able to see her live and she will be bearing her testimony of Jesus Christ and why she joined the Mormon church. SOOO excited, I hope I don't get transferred! 

Anyways, love you all. I know I am where I am suppose to be! 

Sister Morgan

Sorry, not many photos this week...

 Cute old house

 We went to a young woman's powderpuff game this week, it was fun!

Jimmy Johns!!!!! This is for mom! :)
(She thinks this is funny....sending me a pic every time she goes to Jimmy Johns!!! 
However, I get a pic of my darling daughter and no calories! :-P)

Monday, May 9, 2016

"It'll all come out in the wash"

Hello Family!

This will be short. I was happy to talk to my parents and Allison and Richard last night! It was good hearing every one's voices, even with all the technology not working. I wish I could have bore my testimony more and remembered everything I wanted to, but that's okay. I can say it in a few months! I love my family and am so grateful to have all the love and support, it has helped me throughout my mission and definitely helped me to stay on a mission in the beginning. 

We taught a lot of lessons this week, had interviews with our mission president, and a bunch of other stuff! Busy busy! 

There is a great service website the church has put together called and it is taking off! Its been in the making since I've been on a mission but it's great. If you want to do some service, go check it out! Maybe a food pantry is open or someone needs help cleaning up their yard. I am def using it after the mission!

Shout out to the St. Pete young women who sent us a card! It made our week, we were so touched! Thank you to everyone who wrote to me the past few weeks, you have no idea how much it means to me! I am behind in replying to your letters, will try to catch up today! Thank you!

The subject line quote is something Sister Judkin's mom would tell her all the time. I love it. It's saying don't worry, everything is in God's hands and it'll work out over time as we have faith in Him and rely on Him. I know that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world. Life isn't fair sometimes. Most of the time, really. But if you think about it, it's a good thing life isn't fair. If it was, then Jesus Christ would have never died for us. It wasn't fair for Him to die, but He did it anyway. Without His sacrifice, we wouldn't be able to overcome physical or spiritual death. We need life to be unfair so we could have a Savior pay the penalty for our sins. I am able to be clean every week by taking the sacrament, the bread and the water, that represent His body and blood. Without this unfair act that He had to go through, I wouldn't ever be relieved of guilt or have peace in the hard times. I love Him for doing what no other man could do. I know Jesus Christ is the Son of God, sent here by our Father, so we could someday return to live with Him as eternal families, free from sin. God's plan is perfect. 

Sister Morgan
 A pretty magnolia tree, only in the South!

 Random Pic of me

Why did the rooster cross the road? 

Monday, May 2, 2016

April showers bring May flowers

Hello family and friends,

Its kind of backwards here in Florida. May is the month that the rain starts coming...bringing lightning and thunder with it. It hasn't started yet but I'm not a rookie anymore so I know its going to start soon! 

First off, I wanted to talk about a talk given by Elder Kevin R. Duncan from this last general conference. It was titled "The Healing Ointment of Forgiveness". (See  At church yesterday, we talked about this and the principle of forgiveness in general. Now, I don't have any big grudges held against anyone and none against me (as far as I know) but this lesson really hit me. I need to be more quick to forgive small things. "An unforgiving heart harbors so much needless pain". When we choose not to forgive, we are stopping ourselves from progressing. We are not to judge, God is. And when I think of Jesus Christ, I think of humility, forgiveness, and hope. He did not hold grudges against anyone. Even when he was betrayed, and his apostle smote off the ear of the soldier who was taking him away, he healed the man's ear. There was no second thought, he just did it. I also like what was said about Paul. "There are Saul-like individuals with Paul-like potential". We don't know what someone is going though, why they reacted the way they did. Everyone is equal in God's eyes, everyone has trials. Try to look at the whole picture and don't make assumptions. Everyone can change, that's the message of Jesus Christ. Just because they were rude in the past, doesn't mean they will be in the future. 

Some things we can do to forgive:

-pray for them
-try to understand them and the situation
-say you forgive them or you're sorry
-show them charity
-pray for help and for forgiveness ourselves
-let them know your feelings
-forgive and forget
-serve them
-if its continual pain and the situation is getting worse, separate yourself from the situation. TIME.
-let it go 
-accept that you may never get an apology (this is often the hardest one)

Those are just some notes I took that I felt I should share in this weekly email. It's really hurting us when we don't forgive. I am learning how to say I am sorry quicker and praying for help. I have found that serving the person who hurt you really works. It's even better when they don't know its you. I promise. 

I have to tell one more story that touched me this week. 

Last Sunday (a week ago) we went to the Williams family, a cute Haitian family in our ward, and we shared the message of the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ with them. The spirit was so strong in their home, I want a family of my own as strong as theirs. They asked us to say a peace and blessings prayer before we left. I accepted the offer to say it. I prayed for each one of them individually. I prayed for the eldest boy to do well with his school work and to remember what he needs to, to do well. Yesterday was fast and testimony meeting. He went up to bear his testimony, and he said that many of his questions have been answered this week. He was in a car accident a few weeks ago and had a concussion that kept him away from school and soccer. He said he was struggling really badly in school, something that he wasn't used to. He was struggling personally, wondering if Jesus Christ really knew him and if he was there. He said that the sister missionaries (us) came over on Sunday, and that when I prayed he knew his question was answered. He said "How did she know? How did she know that I was struggling with my schoolwork? Then it hit me: God knew. He knew I was and sent them over to tell me that He knew." I started crying. I am so privileged and just grateful that I could be His instrument and help this highschooler know that God is there, that He loves him and will never leave his side. It was a very spiritual experience for me. It helped me to know that God knows me too because he picked me to be His vessel. Wow. 

I know the power of prayer is real. It is so real. Don't forget to use this tool to communicate with Heavenly Father daily. He is there. He does hear prayers. He answers them in His way and in His timing, but He answers them. I have gained a strong testimony of this on my mission. 

 "Ere you left your room this morning, did you think to pray?" "Oh, how praying rests the weary! Prayer will change the night to day. So, when life gets dark and dreary, don't forget to pray." I love this hymn. 

I love you all,

Love, Sister Morgan