Tuesday, October 29, 2013

"Seventy on Monday, 50 People a day, & Baking with Grandma Dorothy!"

Hello hello!
Ah! This was a goood week! But here is the bad news, winter is setting in. I even busted out my huge puffy coat and hat. It was weird.... ugh New York winters are not to be enjoyed I can tell you that much! But, it's all good, because people are more willing to let us into their houses! Yay!
Ok, so here's the news from the week...
1. Remember how a general authority was coming on Monday to speak to us? Well he came. It ended up being Bruce R. Porter of the Seventy. He gave a really great talk about the gospel of Christ. Very motivating. At the end of the meeting, he said he would like to interview a couple of missionaries. He started reading some names (all elders) then he ended with "and Sister Langford" I was like.... "um what?" So I was pretty nervous! But it went well and it was so cool to get to chat with a general authority!
2. At the beginning of this week we were feeling a little bit... blah. Like, how can we get anything going in the area? Why are things being so hard? Just along those lines. So we decided to have a special fast for our area. That morning, I stumbled up this quote by Jeffrey R. Holland,
" After considering all that missionaries go through and all that the prophets have gone through, all that the apostles go through, the lives that have been given, the blood that's been shed - I have come to this conclusion - salvation is not an easy experience. It was never meant to be easy and it never has been easy.... it was not easy or painless for the Son of God Himself, of whom you are to testify. And if I am going to be his missionary, if I am going to declare his truth and His church, I cannot ask to avoid completely the pain that He felt, or the tears that He shed, or the sorrow He saw."
I realized that it wouldn't be easy, but we could do it. So we worked. That day was so great! We made a lofty goal to talk with 50 people a day! So far it's going good and we have found some amazing potentials and been given some truly inspired ideas for how to find people! I know the Lord is looking out for us and good things are to come...
3. Like being GIVEN the coolest investigator EVER! His name is Deacon and he just moved here from Arizona. He has already been taught everything and is 100% ready for baptism. But his story is AMAZING! Wanna hear an abbreviated version of it? Ok cool.
So around 12 years ago, Deacon was sentenced to 11 years in prison. He was married and had two baby girls. He was in a really dark, lost and lonely place. He really did some soul searching and found God in his life.  Then, at the very end of his sentence, he became jail-mates with a guy who was Mormon. They had MANY discussions about the gospel. Finally Deacon read the Book of Mormon and KNEW it was true. He knew he had found what he was looking for! When he got out of prison, he got permission to be baptized!
So now he is in New York and his wife has said she is ok with him getting baptized! So we are teaching her as well!!  Such an amazing blessing! And such a powerful story!
4. Trish is doing amazing and LOVING her calling in the Young Womens! 
Ok, so now you probably want to hear about the crazy, funny things right?
1. During PEC our mission leader was reading our progress record and looked at Cody and Travis, and saw that we were wondering when Cody and Travis could get the priesthood. But instead he just said...
" So, the sisters are wondering when they can get the priesthood?"
oh man. too good.
2.  "I'm not going to change. I've been in New York too long" - Elder
3. "All I want is for this purple hamster to turn into a scarf!" - Sister Hansen
4. *guy trying to ask us on a date*
"So are you ladies, like, married to Jesus or what?"
5. *Elders trying to think of creative finding ideas*
" number one, invite people over for a hammock party. number two, ask the sisters for ideas"
6. We were talking to this guy who was from some random Arab country and he said "I will pay for you ladies to come to my country"
...... um.....
It was a funny week :) We also found a cat named Nigel, helped Grandma Dorothy bake like A THOUSAND treats, and so much more! haha
Well, good things to come in Cooperstown, I can promise that much!
Sister Langford

Monday, October 21, 2013

Great Halloween Decor and "darn that free agency!"

 Hey kids.

This week was a so-so kind of week. Good things are happening but no way cool miracle stories. But hey, keep reading because I promise this will still be good :)


1. Trish and her family are still just doing incredible. I always just feel like I'm on cloud nine when we leave their home. This Sunday Trish was given a calling to serve in the Young Women's. She's excited! It will definitely be a good way to help her feel more involved with the branch! Cody, the oldest of the boys, had a really good missionary experience this week. He said in his history class they were defining the word "missionary". His teacher said that he didn't think religions really had missionaries any more. Cody raised his hand and was like "um... no. The Mormon's have missionaries!" and his teacher said "How do you know that?" and Cody said "Because I'm a Mormon!" in front of his whole class! :D I LOVE THE HOPKINS!

2. Our other investigators are progressing like champs. They even text us and make sure we are going to come over and visit them! Its soooo great! They came to church yesterday and are VERY excited for their upcoming (in December) baptism. It's very happy.

3. This was one of those "knock on a thousand doors" kind of weeks. Its crazy how often people can recognize that there is something good and different about our church, yet still won't change! like.... what? This one guy was going off forever about how incredible it was that our church was growing, when almost every other christian church was withering away. We were like, ya, because this is Christ's true church. Hello!! But he still didn't want to change. Curse people and their agency.

4. Last night we met a really nice lady. We sat down with her and taught her the whole restoration. She was a little skeptical about how their could be ONE true church. We kept trying to explain Joseph Smith and the priesthood and all that. Finally she goes, "Well, if you are going to tell me this, you are going to have to have proof!" So I said "Well, what would you say if I told you we had proof. Proof that you can hold in your hands, read, ponder, and KNOW what we are saying is true?" She just looked stunned. Like, she didn't honestly expect us to have proof. So she just stared at us. *we pull out a Book of Mormon* I said "This is the Book of Mormon. This is the proof. If you want to know if Joseph Smith is a prophet and if there really is one fully true church, then read this book, and pray about it." Well the spirit was "knock your socks off" strong. Yet she still wouldn't take a Book of Mormon. We were like, WHAT?!? Just take the dang book. So as we left, we snuck back and left a Book of Mormon on her door step. Here's praying something good comes from this seed :)


Ok, this week SO MANY funny things happened. I don't know why, but the humor was just rolling this week.

1. *as we are leaving Viktoria and Ian's*

Viktoria- "You guys are like the White Rabbit. You are always late for a very important date."

2. As one of our service activities we help bring people to a prayer circle at the old folks home. So for like 45 minutes we basically walk around and try and get old people to go and pray. While we were doing that this week, Sister Hansen said...

"All we do is try and get people to do things they don't want to do. Its exhausting!"

3. The Halloween decor out here is off the hook. People just make all of these extravagent... and terrifying yard displays. For example, we stumbled upon a Zombie apocolypse. It was pretty rad. and also hilarious. Ah, New York...

4. *As we are walking into the old folks home*

Old man- "Hey, you ladies dropped something"
*us really confused trying to figure out what we dropped*
Me- "Us? What did we drop?"
Old man *laughing really hard* "Your footprints!"

...some people can be kind of weird.

And that's  pretty much it. Like I said, not the most exciting week. But we keep going. Cooperstown must still need me here. :)

Sister Langford

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Follow Promptings, Crocheting quotes, & SAW MY SHADOW SO 6 MORE WEEKS OF COOPERSTOWN!!!

 Hello hello!
So the blog is coming at you on Tuesday today. Who knew that Columbus Day was a big enough deal to shut down all the Libraries? I didn't. So Tuesday email it is.
Well I'm sure you are all on the edge of your seat to find out if I have been transferred/where I'm going. Well here's the news...
That's right. After this transfer I will have been in Cooperstown for six months. Hello 1/3 of my mission in Cooperstown. I can't say I wasn't a bit surprised but I'm staying. I was talking to my mission president on Saturday and I was like...
"So pres, six months in Cooperstown huh?" 
and he said "Sister Langford, six months isn't long at all. The prophet has said to keep missionaries in an area for as long as a year!" 
So basically I'm going to die in Cooperstown.
But it’s ok. Sister Hansen and I are excited to take on this transfer. I'm actually kind of grateful to stay so I can see all of these wonderful investigators progress and keep things going! I guess President thinks I am doing a much better job with Cooperstownl... because I am never going to leave. Haha!
Anyway... this was a pretty eventful week. Let me tell you some of the things...
The Randoms:
1. I held a kitten. It was adorable and named katie.
2. We went to the "mall" . It was kind of painful to see clothes, hear music and smell popcorn and be like, "Hey, I'm a missionary!"
3. We still love crocheting. Here's so quotes said while we crochet...
"Dude, my thread is totally off the hook"
"Ah, the silence of crocheting!"
"Ok, but for the next 3 minutes, lets just crochet!"
The Spiritual Blessings:
1. So update on Trish and the boys. They are just doing so so so so so great! Oh my goodness it makes me want to cry! Before their baptism we challenged them to pay attention to how they felt when they received the Holy Ghost. Trish couldn't be at one of our meetings this week, but she called us to tell us how she felt!
 She said "It felt amazing. When I was baptized I felt really happy. But once I got the Holy Ghost it was so comforting. Like I could feel that everything in the past, all of my sins, were totally gone."
It made me want to cry! She is such an amazing disciple.
One of the boys, Jamison, who is eight said, "I felt happy. Like it poofed my mind!"
We died laughing at that one. They are the greatest EVER! Then later this week we taught them about temples are they are so excited to go and do baptisms and Trish is excited to be sealed in the temple. She was even like, 'Ray you have to be baptized so we can be married forever!"
2. Another message on following promptings. So this week we were going to contact a referral. We were driving and we passed this house. A tiny thought in my head said, "Maybe you should try that.... nah" so we went to the referral, but he wasn't home. So we tried back a couple days later. Driving past, and I had the same thought, "Maybe you should try that house", but again I brushed it off and we kept going. The referral was not the least bit interested. So we turned around and were going back. Well the third time we passed the house I noticed, I thought about trying it again and I was like, “ok.”  So we did a quick flip around and went to knock on the door. Well this sweet young woman with a baby answered the door. We said, "Would you like to hear a message about Christ?" and she said, "Sure!" (like what? This never happens!) So we taught her the restoration and she was like, "Yes I would love to learn more about this!" SINGLE MOST PREPARED PERSON! What if I hadn't knocked on that door. Follow promptings people. Its soooo worth it.
The Story:
Oh my do I have a story for you all this week. So Saturday and Sunday we had stake conference in Utica. We were encouraged to get rides with members to save miles. Well, on Sunday Sister Hansen and I were supposed to sing with the choir, so we were supposed to be 45 minutes early on Saturday to practice. Confusing...
Well, our ride was running late Saturday, so we totally missed the practice. We got a lot of sass from the Elders, but it was fine and we were still going to sing.
Sunday morning around 8:30 am we are sitting outside our apartment, waiting for our ride. Well they were running late too but we were going to make it ok. We were 20 minutess from Utica, when their car COMPLETELY BREAKS DOWN. Ummmm...
So I'm like, "Sister Hansen, we should probably text the Elders and let them know we won’t make it to sing." Oh good news, we lost our phone.
So there we are. Stranded on the side of the road. No phone. really cold. Oh man, it was quite the situation. But all Sister Hansen and I could do was laugh! It took me back to the talk by Joseph B. Wirthlin called "Come What May and Love it" Part of it he talks about learning to laugh when things don't go as planned. We could have easily been frustrated that we were missing singing, that we lost our phone, that we were stranded, and that we were cold... but we just rolled with it!
Thank heavens somehow another branch member got word that we were stuck and came and got us. We caught the last 30 minutes of Stake Conference. AND even bigger tender mercy, when we arrived back in Cooperstown at like 5:30 at night our phone was still on the steps outside our apartment. Such a blessing from the Lord.
Well, that was the week. Haha! Here's for six more crazy Cooperstown weeks.
Sister Langford

Monday, October 7, 2013

100 % Visiting Teaching, Crocheting, & BEST DAY and 18 MONTHS EVER!!!

The blog :)
Ah. So Monday is here once more. I swear, these weeks fly. I can't believe that we find out about transfers THIS WEEK. Like what? It seriously feels like Sister Hansen and I just started taking Cooperstown by storm.... but what do you do?
Well, that majority of this week was rather lame. We taught some lessons, talked to some people, walked around and stuff. Nothing too earth shattering. I guess Heavenly Father gave us a lame week because he knew that the weekend was going to be AMAZING and I couldn't have too many things to write home about right?
So before we get into the REALLY good stuff, here are some other highlights:
1. One of our members is now teaching us how to crochet. Yup. So basically I'm just getting prepared for when I am a lonely cat lady'!!   (Just kidding. Crocheting is way rad). So Sister Hansen and I are WAY into it. We had to go get our oil changed on Wednesday, and as we waited, we crocheted.  Good news, we made a friend that way.... so like, share the gospel while crocheting.  It's proven to work!
2.We had a WONDERFUL visit with Sister Rasmussen from home. Turns out she is my visiting teacher.  So everyone, take notes. She flew across the country to get 100% visiting teaching. We need to see some more of that commitment!  :)
3. We taught a really great lesson to one of our investigators. She basically knows that it is all true, but won't accept it simply because she doesn't believe there is one true church. So we were teaching her on Thursday night and we layed it on the line for her. I just remember being totally guided by the spirit, and boldly saying "This is either totally true, or it's totally false. This is a black or white issue. So you need to find out. If this is true, then it's the most important thing you will ever learn in your life. If it's not true, then we're wasting our time. All we ask, is that you sincerely find out." Oh man. it was bold. But, it really got to her! Here's hoping that she does!
4. This week I had some pretty big downs. I was having a pretty rough day on Friday. That night we went to teach Trish and her family and we were talking about the Holy Ghost. We read them a scripture that really hit me. I can honestly say it was an answer straight from Heavenly Father to me.
The scripture was John 14:27 which says:
 "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you; not as the world giveth, give I unto you let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid."
I guess it just really hit me, because all that Christ will give us is peace and love. Satan can try and make us feel troubled, but it's our choice. I think the word "let" is really profound. We choose if we are going to let our heart be troubled and afraid. I just really realized this week how loving and merciful the Savior really is. We are SO much harder on ourselves that he will ever be on us.
Oh my goodness. Saturday may go down in history as the greatest day of my life. THE HOPKINS WERE BAPTIZED!!! I honestly feel like my whole mission has been building up to this moment. The best moments were....
1. When Trish was baptized. Seeing her go down into the water, then the light on her face when she came back up, was so incredible. I was bawling. You could literally see the light of Christ radiating from her. To see someone come so far, to make so many changes, and allow themselves to be cleansed through baptism and the atonement of Christ.... it makes everything worth it.
2. Watching the boy's faces as they were confirmed. They were so cute and just smiling like crazy. Afterward I kept asking how they felt and all they could say was "happy. So, so happy." I can't believe the change that this will make in their lives!
3. The absolute icing on the cake, best moment, that makes me never want to stop being a missionary, was when Trish bore her testimony. She got up there, and her eyes were watering, and she started talking. She basically just talked about how she was trying to figure out which church to go to. How there are three churches in Hartwick, but she didn't want to go to any of them, and then we knocked on her door. She basically went on to say how thankful she was that we came, and never gave up. How thankful she is for the church and to know that it is true. It was the best moment of my life. To know that because I gained a testimony and was willing to come out here and share it, Trish and her family will never be the same. They mean the world to me, and I am so grateful to have been able to be here to see it all happen!
Of course conference was great as well, and I learned a TON, but I will save those tidbits for another day. This week I realized something profound....
Even though some days are rough, and we have awkward moments like nobody's business. And we walk. and talk. and cry. and love. and some people won't change...But then you find someone like Trish, and it makes me realize how this really is the best eighteen months :)
Sister Langford