Monday, January 26, 2015


This week was a lot better:) Also, I hit my year mark this week! Mission Birthday! Time flies.
We were finally able to teach A this week, which was great. We were worried. But it seems like he is on the uphill slope now, which should be good. He still is not making the gospel a priority in his life, which is so sad to see, because I know for myself that as we put the gospel and our Savior first, that all else will fall into place. But he doesn't quite see that yet. We focused a lot upon asking specific questions when he prays to know that this is true. One has to experience it for themselves. They have to gain an ownership over their answers from Heavenly Father. But he still is struggling. 

During training this week we have been focusing on the fundamental of Teaching People, Not Lessons. We have really been striving to implement this in our teaching. We had a really powerful experience this week with this. We went into a lesson with our investigator, R, and we had a plan that we needed to address of few things in order to teach to his needs. We didn't have a complete set plan but we had an outline and what he needed and then we strove to teach by the spirit 100%. I have such a testimony that the Lord really does fill our mouths as we open them and trust in Him. When we have done our preparation, the spirit can do the rest. We focused a lot on asking inspired questions and those questions lead us exactly to where the lesson needed to go. We ended up teaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ, without intending to, but we fit it exactly to what he needed. The spirit was powerful and we helped him through some of his concerns. We got out and talked about it and both just were amazing at how smoothly the spirit guided the whole lesson and it covered exactly what we felt he needed. It was an incredible experience. I absolutely love teaching with Sister Jensen. 
We both just get along really well. We have a lot of fun every week. I just love it. We both just want to do our best, we are open to change and correction, and we strive to be better every day. Love her! 

A new program that the Fort Collins Stake is implementing. It is a new way to do referrals that I am super excited about and it seems so much more effective. What happens is, the members let us know about friends that they feel like are ready for the gospel, but we don't go an contact them right away. We take their names to the Ward Mission Leader and then he calls the member to set up a council with them. The member can then invite anyone they want to these councils. Then in the councils they make a plan on how to best help these individuals be prepared to hear the gospel. Whether it be fellow shipping  dinners, missionary visits, etc. The members are in charge of the process because they know their friends best. It is amazing to see. The members are so excited about this and since Friday we have already received 6 referrals from members who are excited to try this out. We have seem miracles come from this already. I love how this process is so guided by the spirit as well. It is going to take a bit more time, but that is just fine because these individuals will be more prepared and members we have more opportunities to fulfill their responsibility to share the gospel. We are testing it out but I know miracles will happen! 

We are teaching this couple and they haven't really been progressing. They wouldn't read their scriptures and we couldn't figure out why, and then last time they told us that they just aren't very good readers. So we gave them the Book of Mormon on CD. We went over the other day to teach them and they told us that they had listened to the whole first CD of the Book of Mormon and they really liked it a lot! It was amazing to see how the spirit has been working on them for sure. They are going to take a bit more time to gain testimonies but they are slowly moving forward. It is so neat to see. Good things are happening. 
Just a lot of random things this week.
The work is moving forward and I am grateful to be here in this area with my companion. There are always new struggles every week but the Lord really is in control and guides His work. We are building trust with the members back. It is just coming really far. There have been some rough experiences with missionaries in the past, it seems like, because the ward has been hesitant to trust us. But we are gaining their trust and it will continue. Thank you for your prayers!!  I love you all! Have a great week!! Make a 1% improvement everyday and after 100 days your will be 100% better. The Lord is pleased with every step we take closer to Him

Sister Young

Just a reminder. Here is my new address for the rest of my mission: 

Sister Karissa Young
Colorado Fort Collins Mission
500 Hillspire Drive
Windsor, CO 80550

One year mark!

Monday, January 19, 2015

We're Still Smiling

Well, we're still smiling:), even after one of the toughest, most trial filled weeks, of my mission. 
This week we were only able to teach one of our investigators. Somehow, the rest of them fell through or they are going through really hard times and don't want to meet, or they all together have just told us that they are not interested anymore. One thing right after the other. Not quite sure why. Most of our days were filled with appointments and then we would get to the day and no one would be there for their appointments or they would cancel at the last minute. It's been a bit crazy. Plus, I have realized, as a trainer, along with all of my strengths being magnified, allll of my weaknesses are as well. Holy cow, I have a long ways to go!!! haha.

But, we have decided that we are just being tested and strengthened for good things to come. We feel like the Lord is seeing if we can endure through hard times and when he sees that we can, then He will bless us with the family that we are searching for. 

Despite the struggles, there were some neat miracles this week. First Saturday was rough. We just both were exhausted and struggling. But throughout the whole day, Heavenly Father showed his love to us through other people. Plus, I have gotten many letters this week! Thank you all sooooo much!!! It was a blessing to have those letters during this week. It was just one thing after another of blessings. It was great. Then, remember the less-active man, E? He came to church yesterday!!! The first time in a super long time. He said that it was so hard for him and he almost turned around like 3 or 4 times and went home, but he kept pressing forward and he was there! That was amazing. There were many other Less-actives there at church this week too. Including a girl who we have begun to teach. We taught her this week and it is amazing to see how much Sister Jensen just clicks with her. The spirit was so strong during the lesson and we were able to testify to her about the Atonement and teach her the restoration again. We are excited to continue to teach her. This area is a bit of a tricky place, and we are trying to figure out how to best go about finding and teaching people. We have some promising potentials this week. We have dinner with a member this week who is inviting a friend and his family. We have met them and they have agreed to learn more. We are praying this this may be the family that we have been waiting for. They are a really neat family. 

Even though this week was tricky, I know that even through this whole week, the Lord has not deserted us and that that His work is never frustrated, only the work of man in frustrated. Doctrine and Covenants 3:3  "Remember, remember that it is not the work of God that is frustrated, but the work of men." 
This is our motto:) We will continue forward!!!!
I love you allll!
Sister Young


Thursday, January 15, 2015

Precious in His Sight

Monday - January 12, 2015

Hello All!

This week was a whirlwind of all kinds of crazy! The week started off and I felt fine and excited about training and then came Tuesday when we got to take the new missionaries out for the night and I got so nervous. It was such a neat experience though. We showed up to the mission home on Tuesday night, ate dinner with Pres. and Sister Brown and the new missionaries and then we got to just take one of the new missionaries for a couple hours for their very first experience in the mission field. It was great! I took an Hermana out and we did some contacting of Potential investigators and then she was just so fired up that she wanted to go knock on some doors! So we did. Haha. Then we taught one of our investigators. It was just so neat to be reminded of when I first came out into the field and see how far I really have come and also see what I want to re-incorporate into the work that I do now. I took her back, and then Hermana Mondragon and I headed back to our apartment for the night. The next day we had trainer's meeting and then headed to the mission home again to pick up our new companions. My new companion's name is Sister Jensen. She is from South Carolina. She is super great. She is a really focused missionary and just has a lot of excitement about the work and desires to be exactly obedient. We are similar in a lot of ways and especially in the ways that we like to teach and follow the spirit. That has been really great. She is so willing to learn and has taught me a lot as well this week. 

  Training is really great and it has just re-opened my eyes to the joy that we can find as missionaries and how to truly involve the Lord more. I am so grateful that Sister Jensen is so willing to do the work in the Lord's way. We both are working together to become better. I have been working so hard on being humble and teachable because I know that I can learn so much from training a new missionary and it really has been great. I realize how far I have come on my mission too and how much I have learned and become comfortable with being a missionary and teaching doctrines through the spirit. I am pretty tired this week, but I know the Lord will continue to strengthen me. Sister Jensen is just really prepared and is a full contributor in the companionship for sure. It is really great.

So, one thing that I forgot to tell you all last week is that this week we had an apostle come to our mission for a mission conference. Guess who it was? Elder Bednar!!! It was probably the most amazing meeting I have been a part of on my mission. The spirit was so powerful throughout the whole meeting. He is a very wise man and truly speaks by the spirit. His whole message was about the pattern that we use to teach and learn by the spirit. And while he was teaching it, he was demonstrating it perfectly.  He helped us to see how to pray as agents. Not to be acted upon but to act! Instead of praying, "Please bless those who aren't here this week that they will come next week." At church, we should pray, "After this meeting, each one of us is going to go to someone's house who wasn't here today and see how we can help them to come next week." Praying as an agent. He also talked about how key the spirit is in our teaching and learning and helped us to see how to better teach in that manner and to learn each day through the spirit. I just can't even describe the love that I felt in that meeting and when the time came for him to close I felt like the people in the book of 3 Nephi when the people don't want the Savior to leave and they tell him to tarry with them longer. I know that we do have a Prophet, the First Presidency, and 12 Apostles to lead and guide us and that their words are directly from God. We can NOT be lead astray if we follow their words. That was confirmed to me powerfully at this meeting. 

One of our investigators has disappeared basically....we can't get a hold of him and no one knows where he is. So that is different...but we keep praying for him. It's been a bit of a struggle because our investigators are not really progressing. But we have been finding some less actives that are ready to make some changes in their lives and come back to church. So I will focus on those 2 in this e-mail. One is a women who has not been contacted by members in 30 years. We showed up at her door and she asked us,"Why now? After all these years?" We could only tell her that Heavenly Father is aware of her and that she has great purpose in her life. She is just a sweet lady and truly wants to come back. We left her with a copy of the Book of Mormon and she said she was start a consistent study of it this week. Another Less active is a man who has not been to church in many years but has such a powerful testimony. He has had some really hard things happen in his life but still has a goal to get back to the temple. He is so grateful that we come over because he feels a bit forgotten. Last night he said that he has a goal to ready from the Book of Mormon each day and he is going to come to church next week. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father has helped us to find these less-actives that are ready to come back. Seeing them come back is just as powerful to me as seeing a new member get baptized. I know Heavenly Father cares about all of His children and He doesn't want to lose any of them. 

That is my week in a nutshell. I am grateful for this time I have to serve the Lord. That was another powerful revelation that the spirit hit me with while Elder Bednar was speaking, I only have 6 more months to be a full-time missionary, set apart for this cause specifically. I find great joy in it and want to strive to make the most of this time that I can in serving His children, my brothers and sisters. All of His children are precious in His sight. I love you all!! Have a wonderful week! Share HIS love by showing others your love.

Sister Young

Sister Jensen & I

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Here Goes!!

Monday - January 5, 2015

Transfer NEWS!!!

On Saturday afternoon we got a call from the Assistants and they asked for me. They said, "Sister Young, the Lord has called you to train a new Sister missionary. Do you accept this calling?" Of course I said yes. haha. That wasn't as long of a story as I thought it would be. haha. But, for transfers I will be staying here in the Terry Lake Ward and training a new English speaking sister missionary. In the days leading up to it I had been feeling like this might happen. I had been talking to Sister Budge, who is awesome by the way, and she said that before she had trained she had prayed to Heavenly Father and let Him know that she was open for an experience like that. Either training or some form of leadership. I, up until now, have not done that. I figured if the Lord wanted me to train or lead, he would just call me to do so, plus I knew that those callings hold a lot of responsibility and I didn't know if I was quite up for it yet, but I took her advice. For a few days before Saturday, I prayed to Heavenly Father, letting Him know that I was open now to leadership and that I would accept His will whatever it might be for me. I felt that it was going to happen but I knew there were only a few sisters coming in and I thought all of them were Spanish Speaking, but I guess there is one English sister coming into the mission. It will be a great experience and I know the Lord will help me to help her. 

This week was such a good week. There were many trials that happened with our investigators but being with Sister Budge this week was such a blessing. Her and I are so similar and I feel so close to her even after only a week. We clicked right away and I haven't laughed this much and this hard in a really long time. We both think the same way, work really hard, strive to be obedient, and still have  so much fun while doing it. She actually is now going to be my Sister Training Leader so we will still get to see each other and go on exchanges. She is so great!! We both were secretly hoping that she would stay in this area as my companion. But Heavenly Father knew that we both had things to learn from each other. 

G-Had a lesson with him. He said he would come to church but then we got a text from him the night before saying that some things were changing in his life and he wasn't going to be able to make it to church the next day. Not quite sure what that means. We have an appointment with him on Wednesday night so we will see what happens. He is reading more from the Book of Mormon now though. 
A-We are a bit worried about. His girlfriend is back in the picture now and when we went over to teach him this week, his countanance had changed, but not for the good. We are worried about him but know that he will be able to progress as we continue to work with him and he feels the spirit. 
R- Has set a date for January 31st to work towards being baptized, now he just needs to come to church consistently and we have some more vital commandments that he needs to learn. 

One miracle that happened this week happened when we were contacting some Part Member families. I had been feeling like we needed to be in a certain area, and we were there and trying all of the PMF that we could. We knocked on one door and the wife, not a member, invited us right in sat us down, got us some hot cocoa, (we've had a lot this week;)) and then we got to know her a bit and she invited us over for a dinner that Friday at their house. The dinner was great and the family is so great! They have 3 kids, the kids are involved with a Youth Theatre Group here in town and so we connected well. We had gone in planning to invite them to take the lessons but when the time came in the lesson, the spirit prompted us not to. We aren't quite sure why. We shared a message on the Doctrine of Christ and they all have strong testimonies and go to another church. But we did invite the kids to YM and YW on Wednesday nights. The kids are also just really powerful and have such good standards. They are just such a loving family. We will continue to serve them and work with them and the Lord will let us know when the timing is right.
Well, it's not too much, but here is a bit about my life right now. I have realized this week the many ways that I have to improve and the many weaknesses that I have, but I know that the Lord will make those strengths as I continue to do His work. We are all striving. Striving is the key. It is a process, a continual process. We must continue forward, leaning on the Savior and trusting that He is working with us, weaknesses and all! I love you all!!!!
Sister Young

Here is the new address to our mission office. It is changing now. Please send ALL letters and send all packages to this address now for the rest of my mission:) 

Sister Karissa Young 
Colorado Fort Collins Mission
500 HillSpire Drive
Windsor, CO  80550
               All the Sisters in Terry Lake. From L to R: Me, Sister Budge, Sis. Mondragon, Sis. Snow

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Christmas and Smiles

Monday - December 29, 2014

Anyway, I don't have much time life today to write but I'll type a bit. Christmas day was quite unexpected all day, but it was the Lord telling us that He was in control and we didn't need to worry. We didn't have very many set plans on Christmas, being in a new ward, and to be honest I was getting worried that we would have no place to go all Christmas. But we had that wonderful family offer to let us Skype and then join them for christmas lunch. We had a brunch a few hours before that with a Less Active lady who was alone on christmas. Then after the Christmas lunch we got a phone call from a family who we didn't think we had any set plans with but they were calling to make sure we were coming over at 4 for dinner with their family. They are a Part Member family and they are so sweet. We spent some time over there and then our mission president had given us permission to watch a movie on christmas day. We didn't have anywhere to watch one though. Every other missionary in the whole mission watched, Frozen...but Sister Snow wanted to wait until she gets home in a week to watch it with her family, so we didn't watch it. But we went over to someone's house and they found out we could watch a movie and told us that they have a family tradition of watching, "A Child's Christmas in Wales." haha. So...they "convinced" us to join them and watch it. So while everyone was watching Frozen, we watched...this other one. haha. It was a once in a lifetime experience. :) As in, I will not watch it again. haha. But it was so sweet to join with that family in their tradition. More stories later about time,.

So, yesterday some crazy new changes happened. We are now in a Trio with a sister because her companion got her visa and is heading to Bulgaria now. We just found out about it yesterday and went and picked her up. Then Sister Snow will be going with another Sister for her last week and speak spanish, and I will be with this new Sister for the week. Her name is Sister Budge. She is super sweet. It will be good but such a random change. And then we find out about Transfers this weekend on Saturday so I will find out who my new companion will be. 

One neat experience I had this week was a random, simple experience, but powerful to me. We were in the library because Sister Snow is doing her going home papers, and I was just writing in my journal. I then looked up and saw a man about to go down the stairs and I just smiled at him. He then did a double take, walked back up a stair, waved at me, acted like he knew me and then walked away. Ha, that is unusual here in Fort Collins. People don't usually wave or smile back at us. haha. Then I had almost forgotten about it and kept writing. Then we were getting up to leave and he came walking back up the stairs. He told me that I looked like someone he knew but then he realized we were missionaries from his church. He told us that it was a miracle that he saw us because he had been praying to run into missionaries or to find some help. He wanted the bishop's number and as Sister Snow was writing it down, I kept talking to him. Found out that he is from Leeds, UT, right next to St. George. He talked about how growing up there was so great because he just felt so innocent and life was so easy. He then got tears in his eyes and said, "I wish I could be like that again." I then looked him in the eye and said, "You CAN get back to feeling like that." He said, "I hope so." We gave him bishop's number and ours and then shook his hand goodbye. He help firmly to my hand and said, "Thank you." I am so grateful for experiences like this where I know that the Lord has put people in our paths to help them find the Atonement again. I know that each of us CAN get back to that feeling of innocence and joy. We can have the burden of sin removed, and feel the freedom that the Atonement gives to us. All of this came about because of a smile. If I would not have smiled at him he never would have recognized us as servants of Jesus Christ. Always SMILE!!
 I love you all!! 
Sister Young

Christmas PJ's

One more day til Christmas!
Christmas Stocking

Christmas Morn in Fort Collins!