Tuesday, December 27, 2016

White Christmas

Sister MacFarlane Christmas noon, she's wearing her apron that she received as a gift and I'm wearing a new sweatshirt. If I hadn't pointed it out you would have had no idea im sure. 
Sister Brito and I in the Winter Wonderland
Christmas morning we woke to hardcore fluffy snow everywhere and it was coming down like it wouldn't ever have the chance to snow again. (I'm sure the skiers  and snowboarders up in the Utah area were stoked) Temple Square was a beautiful sight to behold and we loved having a white Christmas.
Jesus is a friend of mine (this was up at the Christus statue, the visitors centers were empty so everyone was skyping everywhere it was a sight to see)

more sno

more square

White is such a wonderful symbol for so many different reasons but it was cool to be so near the Temple and have everything covered in white. When we go to the temple, we wear white to symbolize purity, worthiness, and cleanliness and that we are all equal before Heavenly Father. With the fresh blanket of snow I was reminded of the daily snow we are able to have in our own lives through repentance and the happiness that it brings. An even greater happiness than snow on Christmas Day.
 Our zone #lighttheworld, "if sick had a face, it would be your face in this picture sister cox" <---words of my companion

We had the chance to skype family, open presents that we had received from family and some donated from local wards nearby, and our mission had an hour long musical presentation about the nativity. 
My family came!!! And I had the chance to take them on a tour of the Beehive house it was a wonderful Christmas Eve eve present and I was so grateful I could see them.

It was a day full of energy, joy and gratitude. Thank you to everyone who sent me gifts I felt so full and loved. The rest of the week has been busy. We had Zone conference, my companion and I have been sick, and there has been opposition in every single day. But I have enjoyed the challenge of this week and am grateful for the things that I learn from difficulty. 
I also had the privilege of seeing one of my best mates ever, she wandered onto temple square

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year everyone. I love you!

xoxo,
Sister Cox
Sister Cysweski from Idaho and I at the Christus Christmas Day 

Our new Temple Square crewnecks from the mission. "All nations shall flow unto it."

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Feliz Natal

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE! 

Christmas here on Temple Square is G L O R I O U S. I will be sad when it is over. A lot of the sisters are ready for it to end, just because the schedule is kind of exhausting. But after Christmas the square will be so empty and quiet so I want to take advantage of the time we have now to speak with as many shiny happy people holding hands (literally so many couples), as I can. 

This is my weird zone this transfer. Love them.
We are witnessing miracles, baptisms, new investigators, and losses of investigators Someday I hope to have time to share more with you.
 Two wonderful souls that we met while taking them through God's Plan for His Family, a video that we play here on Temple Square. The little girl's mom passed away, she is not a member but loves her grandma, who has an incredible understanding for God's plan for all of us. We hope to continue to be part of their life and to teach Chloe more.

I just want to share one thing that really stood out to me this week. Yesterday while we were Introducing the narrative up at the Christus, there were little kids gathered up in front of the statue of Jesus. There was this one little boy who really stood out to me as he was listening to the words of the Savior. His face was glowing from the lights right in front of him and his eyes didn't leave the statue once as he listened. I had such a powerful feeling of appreciation in my heart as I watched this unknown boy watch the Savior and listen to His words with sincere, pure interest and love. One of my favourite parts in the Book of Mormon is when the Savior appears to the people and spends His days with them, teaching them as He did the people in Jerusalem. 

 "20 And they arose from the earth, and he said unto them: Blessed are ye because of your faith. And now behold, my joy is full.
21 And when he had said these words, he wept, and the multitude bare record of it, and he took their little children, one by one, and blessed them, and prayed unto the Father for them."
The Savior, wept. Because he was so full of joy, and felt so much for all those that He was with. Even the Savior who is perfect shed tears for them. Such a beautiful expression of His humanity and love. And he blessed the children one by one. Prayed for them one by one. The Savior also prayed for all of us one by one, saw our faces one by one, as He suffered for our sins in the Garden of Gethsemane. I love Him and will forever try to show my gratitude for what He felt for me
I hope that you all feel our Savior Jesus Christ with you this Christmas as you celebrate His birth, His life, and His love. 
Kids make the world go round. Talk to you soon my friends.
Xoxoxo,
Sister Cox

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Would you like to take a tour?

A few days ago when we got home, a first transfer sister, Sister Cardona from Argentina, was standing in the living room just kind of dazed. We walked up to her and I was like "Hey you alright there?" and she just goes, "Would you like to take a tour?" Straight faced. We all broke down in laughter just dying. The constant teaching and taking tours is turning us into zombies at night who share the gospel in our sleep. But it also turns us into better missionaries. Haha first transfer takes its toll.

Every week during sacrament meeting the Sisters who are going home next transfer give departing talks. This past Sunday my companion gave her departing talk )': She spoke about the Holy Ghost and how when the savior left the disciples He let them know that He would not leave them comfortless. I love the relationship that Jesus has with all of the disciples and it always makes me think of the talk that I love love love by Elder Holland The First and Great Commandment where he says that the "crowning characteristic of love is always loyalty." He also says,

"What I need, Peter, are disciples and I need them forever. I need someone to feed my sheep and save my lambs. I need someone to preach my gospel and defend my faith. I need someone who loves me, truly, truly loves me, and loves what our Father in Heaven has commissioned me to do. Ours is not a feeble message. It is not a fleeting task. It is not hapless; it is not hopeless; it is not to be consigned to the ash heap of history. It is the work of Almighty God, and it is to change the world. So, Peter, for the second and presumably the last time, I am asking you to leave all this and to go teach and testify, labor and serve loyally until the day in which they will do to you exactly what they did to me.”

I'll keep it short this week and leave those words with you and let them chance or inspire you however they may need to. Listen to the whole talk and watch it. His powerful authority always speaks right straight to the soul.
Here is one of our annual mission fotos. If you zoom in real closely you will see the humor in it. (Or the lack thereof) HAhahah good luck finding me it's like a game of I spy.



Hope you are all enjoying this Christmas season. Shout out to my sister Shan and her husband for bringing me Christmas decorations to put in our aparment. I was seriously glowing as bright as the christmas lights at temple square I was so happy when we put them up. I dont have a foto this week but I'll try to send one next week.

Love you all,
xoxox
Sister Cox

Thispicture is one of my favourite human beings, Bob. He is always on the square. He has been in a wheelchair since a traffic accident when he was young and his body and speaking abilities were affected by it. We always see him zooming around in his chair and we walked into the visitor center the other day and he was like this, tilted almost upside down. Hahaha the camera was out and he put up the deuces. He is one of the best souls I've ever known.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

It's LIT FAM

Hello my dear friends and family,

We heard some teenagers making a joke on the square about the square being "so lit" the other night. (for those who are unfamiliar with this slang, it means awesome, cool, rad ask your friends or kids they'll know). So I couldn't resist making reference to it in the subject line.

IT's SO LIT (view from the Joseph Smith Memorial Building)
Last week was transfers, and because my p-day was on Friday and switched to Tuesday, and transfers were on Wed I didn't have p-day last week so I was not able to write. It has been a crazy week!

 We may or may not have had a little snowball fight on the way home from the square. Last night as a district!










Transfers:
My new companion is Sister Brito. She is also Brasilian, from Manaus. Second Brasilian companion, what is Heavenly Father trying to tell me? Haha it's crazy because we originally weren't supposed to be companions but there was kind of an emergency switch. So I am sending her home. This is her last transfer of the mission and then she is heading back to Brasil. We get along so well and are already close friends probably because we share an intense love for Coldplay and babies and probably the gospel. I'm excited for this transfer ahead of us.
My new companion sister Brito.

My new assignment is at the Beehive house, the home and church office of Brigham Young, the second prophet in these Latter-Days. We are there for a few hours several days a week giving tours and sharing our testimonies. For our Christmas schedule all the sisters are out on the square, singing, playing videos, and talking to all of the wonderful people. My companion and I are a little exhausted already but it is so worth it. Hopefully our bodies will adjust to the late Christmas schedule soon. We go to bed at 11:15 and wake up at 7:15. Our mission is probably the only exception to the white handbook schedule of wake up 6:30 in bed 10:30.

My zone is wonderful but it is weird adjusting from our last zone, district and companionship. We grew super close and I'm so grateful for the miracles we witnessed together and the new friendships. My new ZL are from Germany and Peru (Sister Hammer and Sister Carasco), DL is from Germany (Sister Fehlman), and there are like 5 other Germans in my zone. Sprichst du Deutsch? 

Light the World:
How has the challenge been going for you all? Serve in 25 ways in 25 days!! https://www.mormon.org/christmas/in-25-ways-over-25-days/jesus-read-the-scriptures Here is the link for today's. On the very first day I opened a packet of herbal tea, they all have little quotes on the teabag string, and it said,

"Live light, travel light, spread the light, be the light."  

How ridiculously appropriate is that?? It's been so cool to see how God just kind of hands out ways for us to accomplish the idea for the day, at least that is how it's been for me. It's kind of like, "you've shown me your heart, now I'll show you my miracles." That's kind of how it is being on a mission. Keep doing it everyone and I would love to hear about experiences you have. Think of the Savior and He'll lift you as  you lift others. 

Words:
Just kind of a self reflection scripture that was really powerful for me that I read the other day. It's in Alma 5: 13-22 "I say unto you, can you look up, having the image of God engraven upon your countenances?" Can other's see the hope of God's light through me? What can I do to to engrave His countenance in everything I do? The whole Book of Mormon can answer that question. 

The only Christmas decoration we have in our apartment, luckily we are on one of the most festively decorated Christmas lighted places in the world, so I suppose that's decoration enough for me:)
There is always so much more I could share but my brain forgets everything. I can't wait for the day when I will hopefully get to look on everyday of my life like a movie. Wouldn't that be neat? 

Hope you are all enjoying the Christmas season and staying warm. I am healthy, happy, and I love bumping into random people on the square that I know. It is not difficult for me and I am not homesick so don't worry about sending pictures for fear of making me miss home. I know I am where I am supposed to be and the best gift I have ever given my Savior so far is being here on this mission. I feel His love continuously and I hope that as you center this Christmas season on Him, you will feel His love surround  you and your families and friends. I love you all so much. I love this Gospel. it is SO REAL and so very good and true. 


Sister Gomes made me sushi, I'll love this pretty girl forever she taught me so much in my first few months here.




XOXOxoxo,

Sister Suzie Cox

Friday, November 25, 2016

3rd down

3 months here on the mission, 15 to go.

This week:

1. We went to members homes for Thanksgiving and we went with the Robb family for a few hours. They were wonderful and it was nice to be with a family at a home for the holiday. Temple Square mission isn't with a ward so we don't get much interaction in member homes. It made me excited to go outbound (where we go serve in another state in the US for a few months).
The Robb Family

2. Sister Gomes saw her first real snow on Wednesday. It was seriously so beautiful walking around in it at night. God has blessed us with
such a beautiful world I will never get over it. Sorry for no pictures, I'm really not very good at taking pictures of everything.

Their home & my companion for the next 4 days.
3. We have a few investigators that are doing so well. I love them to death. But it's so hard for people to understand that even in the busy times in their life, it is the best time for them to follow Christ completely, to be baptized and to have the Holy Ghost as a constant companion. But I have had a few humbling wake up calls where Heavenly Father has had to remind me that people are ready to be baptized when they are ready, when the Lord has prepared them, not when we as missionaries are ready. But it's important for us also to recognize when people aren't ready. That we sometimes need to move on and find those that are ready right now to accept the Gospel rather than spending our time with someone who isn't going to accept this gospel now, or even in this life because we might miss out on those opportune people.

4. Christmas schedule starts tonight, when the lights turn on in about 15 minutes. President Risenmay told us this week that there are an
estimated 1 million people coming to the square this Christmas season. The part of me that hates crowds is honestly intimidated by that fact, the part of me that loves human beings is excited to experience the Christmas spirit here on Temple Square with all of those incredible people. I will also have a new p-day and assignment next week because transfers are next week. OFFICIALLY ALMOST DONE WITH TRAINING.

5. We went to welfare square and the humanitarian center this week, which are part of our mission and I WOULD LOVE TO SERVE THERE. The welfare program of the church is so wonderful, I have gained a newfound testimony for fast offerings.

Serving at welfare square for the day. About to head home. Recieved free bread. Grateful.

This week, friends, I have a favor to ask of you. Will you send me pictures that we have taken together? I didn't bring pictures with me and have been regretting that the past few weeks and would love to see your familiar faces.

Hope all of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving. One of my favourite examples of the Savior and gratitude is the story of the 10 lepers (Luke17:11–18.) Sometimes I wonder, especially lately, if I would be one of the 9 who didn't return to say thank you. Or on the night Jesus
has the sacrament with the 12 disciples and tells them that one of them would betray Him. This is from one of my favourite talks where Dieter F. Uchtdorf reminds us to ask "Lord is it I?" I want to share the very beginning with you:

"It was our beloved Savior’s final night in mortality, the evening before He would offer Himself a ransom for all mankind. As He broke
bread with His disciples, He said something that must have filled their hearts with great alarm and deep sadness. “One of you shall betray me,” He told them.

The disciples didn’t question the truth of what He said. Nor did they look around, point to someone else, and ask, “Is it him?”

Instead, “they were exceeding sorrowful, and began every one of them to say unto him, Lord, is it I?”

If the savior came to the square disguised as a homeless man, or a clean shaven someone in a suit, would I recognize Him? I would like to think I would. Just something I have been thinking about lately.

I love Him. I love you all. And I love this Christmas season.

xoxo,
Sister Cox

I laughed so hard when I saw this very Sister Oeser with "vodka" sauce. Because it's the closest we will ever come to even seeing anything related to alcohol. BTW this mission has the silliest girls handpicked from all over the world, and I suppose I'm one of them. Haha this sauce is actually seriously yum.



Friday, November 18, 2016

Remember November

The first snowfall, Sister Gomes was THRILLED, she hasn't really seen snow in her lifetime. I think I've seen enough for the both of us in my lifetime haha.
Hello Friends and family,

Just a short note to all of you today. Watch the new "Light the World" initiative on LDS.org. You'll feel light bulbs in your heart. And take the challenge, I will be too!

Our zone made a really really high goal for the month of November and our zone has been working so hard and trying to be exactly obedient. We pray every morning at 8 in the morning and 10 at night for our investigators. And I have been studying a few verses every day to help to remind myself of our goals. 3 Nephi 19:12, Helaman 3:35 and 2 Nephi 1:21. My companion and I also refer to the hashtag often, Remember November that we made up. Nosomos gatas.

Here are some pictures for the week all with my companion. We only have about 1 week left together, wowwww.
xoxo

Sister Cox

Companions who wear beanies together stay together. 

Bumped into my favourite human last week. Sorry I am not supposed to go out to eat with friends and family usually but this was with special permission and the timing of it all was sent from Heavenly Father. This mission is crazy, I would never be able to go out to eat with my sister in any other mission.
The first day of having Christmas decorations up. We're pumped.

All of the Sisters attended Savior of the World this week. It was SO GOOD, I recommend 10/10.


Friday, November 11, 2016

Sweet Dreams are Made of These

So those of you who know me at all know that I have a hardcore habit of sleep talking. I have now entered the realm of sleep teaching. In the middle of the night, multiple times, I have woken up sitting up in bed, sharing the first vision (btw there is a new depiction of the first vision in the Church History Museum come see). I have also woken up bringing a Book of Mormon and a restoration pamphlet to my bed. When I asked Heavenly Father to help me become a more consecrated missionary, I don't think I understood the depth of how much He would actually help me hahahah. My companion is a trooper, we are both lucky she sleeps deeply. 
I do know her, yes, she is training me... :)
I have been thinking a lot this week about when I went to Peru a few years ago. We visited a little school up in the mountains near Cuzco and met the kids there. They were all really poor and lived in little shacks. At one point during our time there at the school, we pulled out some balloons and blew them up for the kids. They crowded around us waiting anxiously for the colorful round things that for some reason, are just super cool. Even I think so. As they received theirown balloons they thanked us with straight up pleasure in their eyes and the happiness that exuded from their tiny little Peruvian frames was something that I can't easily forget. It made me think of those
who have been waiting to hear this message of the gospel for so long. They hear it and see it and wait eagerly to receive it. Now, balloons might not be something that would bring a significant amount of happiness to those that are above 3 feet tall. But learning about Heavenly Father's eternal plan for us, who Jesus Christ is and the impact He can have in our life is something that will bringhappiness to every single human soul.
Amigos
I feel like I am not really very good at sharing the things we do on a daily and weekly basis I just talk a lot haha. But hey, this week we had zone conference and had training on the Plan of Salvation and our calling as representatives of Christ. President Risenmay shared a quote from Bruce R. McConkie that I can't really remember but he basically said that as His representatives and missionaries, our words are His words, our acts are His acts. Oh my goodness I hope to represent my Savior well and that I can be the vessel that will speak the words He would have me say. Another thing we also talked about is how when we are teaching, it is so important to bear your authentic, personal and powerful testimony. It seals the truth of the principle or doctrine you are teaching. Overall, SUPER great training wish I could share more with you. But the time is limited.
Zone activity. Laser tag.

Sorry for not emailing last week, it was a muito busy pday so was today actually and we have had minimal time to write. Hope you are all doing well. It is such a good time of the year and the best time of the year is coming soon. CHRISTMAS. The lights will be on in about 2 weeks. YAAAAA


Oquirrh Mountain temple visit for pday today.


Love you all, xoxo
Sister Cox

Friday, October 28, 2016

Half Dressed, Completely Blessed

I just want to begin this week by saying thank you to everyone who wished me happy birthday. I felt so loved this week. I wish I could give you all a Karla Cox hug. If you see her maybe you can ask her for one from me. I'm sure she would have no objections. ;)
The morning of my birthday my wonderful zone decided to surprise me with cupcakes and balloons and wonderful things (crepes made by Frenchie, even makeup from Milan, Italy #blessed). The knee slapper about this story is that they entered my room to surprise me and sing after I had just gotten out of the shower and I started to change. Lucky enough, I still had my Velcro towel on. We laughed for days and they all received wet hugs from me in return. I really have such a great zone. And friends in my life. And family. Because I have been given much I too must give right? Hope to do my best in that endeavor the rest of this week and the rest of this mission and the rest of my life.
One more pic from my district that we took in the family history center library.
This Thursday morning during Relief Society, President announced to us that on Halloween, the square will be closing at 5 and we will have a mission dinner catered by Olive Garden, which will be followed by Narnia,The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. Might've been the loudest cheer I've witnessed from the Sisters on Temple Square so far. It's hilarious what great pleasures we find in small simple things that we never used to appreciate, like movie nights and popcorn (A VERY rare occasion on the mission). President just laughed at us all and said humbly (the usual) "wow my popularity points just increased by a lot." Yes, President by a lot. (even though he was already super popular)
Love that man so much already. He reminds me of my own Dad in a lot of ways, and he has really helped me understand the importance of my calling and that I'm supposed to be here on Temple Square.

The other night I was talking with a convert and he gave an analogy of this mission. This mission in Salt Lake City is where the Saints moved and established Zion, it is where Church Headquarters is, where the Prophet and Apostles live, and where the largest temple in the world is. "...in the last days, that the mountain of the Lord's house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; AND ALL NATIONS SHALL FLOW UNTO IT."(Isaiah 2:2) So many nations visit Temple Square and hear the gospel here, and in turn we are able to share and spread the gospel online and outward. The man said, "Temple Square is the heart of the church in location and functionality. It is continuously pumping. The blood and oxygen that flow--the teachings of Jesus Christ--pump both to and from this heart, keeping everything alive and strong." Wow. Such a good analogy for me to hear to remind me of the beauty of this mission. People who come here are constantly helping to build my testimony of the importance and value of this mission. 

I am continuously gaining a stronger testimony of the Book of Mormon. I never want to spend another day of my life not reading the words from this book. It is love sent in the form of words and it is such a powerful tool of conversion here on the mission. Friends and family, I am doing my best to preach what I practice and practice what I preach. READ THIS BOOK and you will never have the desire to leave the Lord's side. Reading everyday is really not so much to ask, knowing that He never leaves our side. 


Love, from the ends of my fluffy hair to the ends of my disfigured toes, 
xoxo Sister Cox

Last Pday we went to the corn maze. Here are some pics to display:
I still like to do handstands surprise, But hey doesn't it look like flames are shooting from my feet and I'm flying like a superhero? Lawlz
Love this pic because it combines two of my favourite places. ND and UT.
Sister Cochain didn't getting the jumping in the corn maze memo. It's easy to interpret a lot of different thoughts fgrom that facial expression hahaha

Friday, October 21, 2016

TRANSFERmation

Here at temple square transfers happen every six weeks. We get a new companion, a new assignment, and often move from one apartment complex and/or room to another. But because I am being trained, I will stay with my companion Sister Gomes another 6 weeks. We are in the same zone, with the same zone leaders, the same apartment room/building,
with the same roommate and we will still be in Guest Services. If you are calling temple square to book a tour or ask questions I might be there to answer your questions;) It's really relaxing and is a good change of pace from the rest of the day. Other assignments on Temple Square are at the Beehive House, Welfare Square, West Gate Desk, and Humanitarian Center. So fun so fun.


This is where we get to have sacrament meeting every Sunday morning at 7:30. We only have one hour of church on Sunday morning and then we are out on the square teaching about Jesus Christ and the Restoration of His church the rest of the day. Love love it.

A quote I really liked from conference: “… Kindness is the power that God has given us to unlock hard hearts and subdue stubborn souls.” (The Righteous Judge)
I have seen that so much here. People gravitate to kindness. It helps them to feel important and loved and as we share the teachings of Jesus Christ with kindness, people slowly open their hearts to us when they normally never would. It's an incredible and special experience.


The ensign cover for October General Conference features some of the cutest, sweetest, and funniest sisters on Temple Square. I almost feel famous for knowing them.   Sister Tageshike from Japan, Sister Sookhoo from Canada, Sister Carrasco from Peru, and Sister Davis from Idaho. The cover is in the Gospel Library but I don't think the new Ensign has been sent out yet.


The weather continues to be as beautiful as the sisters here on Temple Square. A fresh batch of babies from the MTC came this week as well as a bunch of sisters from their outbound missions. Outbound is when we go somewhere in the US for a normal proselyting mission for 2 transfers or about 3 months, and then we come back to Temple Square. I still have a long way to go before I get to that point. Hope all is well for you all my people.


Sayonara,  
Sister Cox

Friday, October 14, 2016

Friday Fotos




Foto 1, This is my favourite Norwegian, Sister Steffensen. She was in a band before coming to Temple Square and she loves Sufjan Stevens and Beirut as much as I do. She gave me Norwegian chocolate and ultimately that's really why I like her so much. :)

Foto 2, This is Cleiton. We found Cleiton through a member that came to Temple Square and he is living here in Salt Lake so we have been teaching him through the phone and he has come to temple square to learn. It's cool because we have so many resources here to teach him. He has also been meeting with the local missionaries in the ward close to him so he's been moving at a really fast rate. Cleiton is going to be baptized tomorrow. He is so incredible and we are so proud of him. He is the most sincere and Christlike human and his willingness and desire to do what is right is incredible. It makes me so excited for all of the people we will continue to meet and share the message of this TRUE AND WONDERFUL GOSPEL!

Foto 3, we took this picture this morning because we realized we hadn't really taken any pictures this week. Thanks wind for making an appearance with hair.



Au revoir, arrivederci until next week, I'll try to give more details in my email then. 

Friday, October 7, 2016

La Vie En Rose


One of the highlights of the weekend, I got to see my best frand!


We show different sections of Meet the Mormons at the legacy theater in the Joseph Smith Memorial building and today there was a huge family that was there because a family member was getting married in the temple later in the afternoon. They were all gussied up and the dudes had roses on their lapels. One of them (he was like 13 probably) was talking to us afterward and he gave me his rose and basically made my day. Such a sweetie. I'm amazed by the kindness that is just all over on temple square all the time. I thought seeing people getting married and families all the time would make me trunky--a phrase we use on temple square to describe a feeling of wanting to go home. (quite similar to FOMO) But actually, seeing people in love and glowy and babies just makes me really happy that I get to serve a mission where I am reminded everyday of the blessings we are able to have because of the temple. Heavenly Father has allowed us to be with the people we care about most in this world not just until death but FOREVER. Looking for living evidence and proof of God's love? There's some.
and this Ben brother of mine!
General conference this past weekend was so fun and so exhausting talking to people 18 hours of the day. I think my body just barely recovered a few minutes ago:) I loved it. I love people. Human beings are so cool. You're all so cool. 

Have a good week. Te Amo


Sister Cox