Monday, February 29, 2016

Feb 29, 2016
50 Below and the Sun is Shining!
And this sign of -50... Is a lie :( it was actually insanely hot,
50 above. Literally was dying in a sweater #truealaskan

As you can see from the sign, I went to the northernmost Denny's in
the world! It was delicious.

So these are all the sisters I live with! Me, Sister Strong, Sister
Schoppmann, and Sister Christian being all cute as we head to do our

Investigators are falling from the sky... Almost literally. We had three people this week invite 
their friends to hear the gospel, and they all said yes and are insanely excited... So yay for 
teaching lots of people!

We went tracting in a trailer park, that's always fun. People always warn us about the 
crackheads and drug dealers... But we survived and found a kid that accepted a Book of 
Mormon and wants to meet with missionaries. Too bad we were tracting for the elders... But 
that's okay, as long as he hears about the Gospel it's fine.

Goals goals goals. Are amazing. Follow the Spirit.

Moose count: 52

Did I already send that number? Probably. Haven't seen any up here in Fairbanks yet...

I'm busy finding, teaching, and learning how to be a better person. As I was reading in Elder 
Montoya's talk this morning, work on smiling and expressing your compassionate feelings. 
The world will be a better place because of it.

Many loving words,

Sister Rollins

Monday, February 22, 2016

Here in Fairbanks, you can tell half the town is in the military because everywhere you go the houses are pretty utilitarian.

Feb 22, 2016
Curly hair and Alaskan babes
Poor Sister Schoppmann is going home in four weeks!  Pray for her soul, she’s sad.

Hey look, this is me with my combat boots in Alaska.  Yay.  Also note the new bag, my old one lasted until my hump day and then bit the dust with a death rattle…Poor guy, the strap completely broke.  Probably fixable, but with a $9 replacement I’m happy.

This week in Alaska: children were born, houses were all the same, Jeramia scheduled his patriarchal blessing for this coming Sunday (yes!) and post Valentine's Day candy was 
purchased and consumed with great zeal.

I went on exchanges with Sister Schoppmann, pictured below. We taught one of my new 
favorite people, whose words of wisdom deserve your attention: "don't y'all go diggin 
through a woman's hair without askin' her permission first, ya hear?"

I also got to see someone from my last area and teach her! She is less active and her 
fiance is taking the lessons, so that's exciting. They moved up here right after I met him, so I was really disappointed he would be up here in Fairbanks... But now I got to be there for a
little bit, so that's awesome. We taught them about the Plan of Salvation and challenged him to pray about a baptismal date with her. It was cool to see people that I knew and loved and teach them :) as Kathryn always says in her New Zealand accent: "#tendermercies"

We also had a really neat experience with a recent convert of a couple months. He has 
been struggling to know whether or not he should serve a mission at 24, and it's been really hard for him being in the military and other such problems that keep cropping up. We were
thinking "wow, it'd be cool if this one elder we know that's 26 could talk to him. Too bad he's in Anchorage right now..." Lo and behold, who shows up to our district meeting the next 
day? That very elder, here on exchanges with the zone leaders, here for one day. We
contacted Jeramia and they had one of the most spiritually intense conversations I've ever 
been a part of. It's cool God sent that elder all the way up here to have that conversation, 
and now Jeramia's opening his mission papers as soon as President Kratzer gets back in

I just wanted to mention that sharing personal spiritual experiences is an amazing way to 
really bring the Holy Ghost into a room. Usually we don't think of telling stories as a a way to feel the Spirit - you might think of singing hymns or talking about Christ or making 
covenants at baptism as some of the ways you can feel the Spirit. But when you can look 
back in your life and identify clear indicators that the Atonement of Jesus Christ changed 
your life, as you tell that story and testify that it happened, the Spirit will confirm your words. That's one thing I've really focused on this first half of my mission, identifying specific 
experiences with the Atonement and ways that Jesus Christ has actually impacted my life, 
and I am so glad the Lord has blessed me with those experiences and is helping me 
recognize them. I know I have changed, and I know anybody can change if you reach out to Christ and let Him heal you and help you. Alma 7:11-13 tells us that He does know all of our sins and infirmities and anything that stresses us out or causes us pain, and He will help us
through it - He will run to us and bring us that peace and strength we need to make it 


Sister Rollins

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Feb 15, 2016
Stop! Red light red light

Wow! There's actually snow in Alaska, yay.

This week happened! There's not many moose sightings in Fairbanks,  unfortunately. But 
we do have snow, as evidenced in the district picture below!

We started teaching a Korean guy, which is super neat. He is learning English, and there's a recent return missionary from Korea who knows him and is helping us teach, since he 
doesn't understand half of what we say. It's been really neat to introduce him to the concept of God and help him understand that there's Someone out there looking out for him.

We had a regional broadcast from Salt Lake on Sunday for church! That was quite 
enjoyable. My favorite speaker was James J Hamula, who I recognized from a really great 
talk he gave a few conferences ago - "The Sacrament and the Atonement." Well, he gave 
another really great talk, and my favorite part was when he started talking about broken
things - every broken relationship, every broken heart, every broken anything, every broken dream - is susceptible to the Atonement. We are broken so that we can offer that on our 
altar of sacrifice and He can then cleanse us as we partake of the sacrament each week in 
the holy ordinance.
So remember, things are broken so that you can let God fix them. Ether 12:27 The church is true, the book is blue! Give something to God this week. Sister Rollins

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Feb 9, 2016
Coming to you from Fairbanks, AK! #humpday

Presenting... Sister Christian, my new companion! She hails from the exotic land of Salem, Utah and has been out for nigh unto four months (I'm greenie breaking, so she just left her 
trainer). We have quite the adventures together in Gina, our truck and walking around and
teaching the Gospel in downtown Fairbanks. It's sad to say, but I literally cannot handle the city anymore. As in, Sister Christian asks where we want to go shopping, and it doesn't 
really process in my mind that we have options. #smalltowngirl4dayz

Covering the YSA branch is fun! I was a bit apprehensive, and I honestly am wayyyy worse at small talking it up with people my own age, but when it comes to teaching, it's much more natural than teaching older people. Also Sister Christian and I both look young, so it's back to the questions of if I'm even old enough to drive... Gotta love the no makeup life.

Covering the same ward as another set of missionaries is different. It requires a lot more 
coordination, and people tend to favor the sisters, or as our ward mission leader says "the 
sistren." We love teaching people, but the elders are just as effective teachers... But
changing culture is hard and takes a long time, so we'll work on that.

We have quite a few people to teach, but one of the coolest ones is our friend Maya. She 
just started coming to church with a friend a month or two ago, and then she started taking 
the lessons and it has completely changed her life! I love how she describes it - "Before I
was bad sometimes, but I didn't really care that I was bad. I mean, it didn't really matter if I 
was bad or good, but I was grumpy all the time. Now I want to be good and do good all the 
time. I love morning prayers, because sometimes I wake up and forget I'm a Mormon now, 
but then I remember to pray and I'm like yeah! I don't have to be a moody teenager! I can do good things!" She bore her testimony on Sunday and it made our stoic bishop cry. She's 
kind of awesome. Unfortunately, her parents are really nice but not really okay with her 
getting baptized, so she'll probably have to wait until she turns 18 in August. But in the 
meantime, she is loving learning about the Gospel and studying and praying and she's just 
so cool!

We were going to go downtown and talk to people during the start of the Yukon Quest (dog mushing all day!) but we ended up being about an hour late and then everyone had already left, since this is Alaska and you stay outside for the least amount of time possible. We did 
talk to one lady who was really excited that I complimented her hat that told us "you ladies 
have such great energy! It's just coming off of you, and thanks for talking to me and sharing your good energy!" So that was exciting. Then I found five dollars.

Going to two wards that start at 11 and 1 is a good time driving back and forth.

Oh, and my moose count is in my apartment, but my last week in Palmer I saw like 10. 
Apparently they're not very plentiful here, but we see their tracks in the snow all the time!

One talk this week we read with Jeramaia was "Shipshape and Bristol Fashion..." I loved 
how it talked about one perpetual lie we tell ourselves is that we have to choose between 
happiness now and happiness in the afterlife. Sure, we can be happy eventually... But if
you try and live the Gospel you won't be happy now, right? WRONG. The Gospel is about 
happiness and eternal life, and you start living that eternal life right now. You don't have to 
wait until you reach some status or get to church every single week, but as soon as you 
start trying to follow Christ's teachings you will be able to feel the peace and love that comes from every change you make, from every step of repentance. You do NOT have to wait to 
be happy - it comes as soon as you accept Christ and follow His teachings.

Love you all! Remember who you are, don't do drugs, don't eat the yellow snow. Abstinence and monogamy for days. The commandments are to make people happy. Eat your 
vegetables. Read the Book of Mormon, it's my favorite book.

Sister Rollins

Monday, February 1, 2016

February 2, 2016
Ice cleats make it much easier to walk
Hey, this is my district

Hey, this is my district. They're pretty cool. We've had a lot of adventures this week, 
including chasing reindeer through poop mud (yes, our phone still smells nasty) and 
singing to people to invite them to come to church. 

We gave one lady that we're teaching a tour of the church, which was neat (I've set up 
probably about 7 chapel tours, and this is the first one that hasn't cancelled!) The 
coolest part about it was when we walked into the chapel part of the building and she 
said she could feel a difference between that and the rest of the building. She described 
that she just felt warm inside, at peace. I love hearing other people's initial reactions 
to being in a church building or reading the Book of Mormon, especially Mary's - she's 
pretty analytical but also pays attention to her feelings. 

Oh, in other news, I'm headed to Fairbanks! I'll be over two wards, sharing one with 
elders and then the YSA in Fairbanks. Yay for coldness, I'll probably survive. I've now 
been in the furthermost southern place for sisters and the furthermost north! 

Stay strong, go to church, repent daily. Read this quote from Carol F McConkie: 
"This sacred work is about developing a broken heart, a contrite spirit, and a 
willingness to use our divine gifts and unique talents to do the Lord's work in His 

God is good!

Sister Rollins