Thursday, January 29, 2015


   Wow. I really have no idea what to say. I feel like this has been the fullest week of my mission! Elder Russell M Nelson came to our mission to speak to us, and it was such an amazing experience. His wife also spoke, as well as Elder Alder and Elder Martino (of the 70) and their wives. I cannot even describe how wonderful I felt as I watched each of them testify of our Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ. My hand was flying down the page as I tried to capture every word of what they said. I know that I didn't get everything, but I at least preserved a portion of the Spirit that I felt there. 
   President Winder is an inspired man. He knew that we wouldn't be able to understand or digest everything that would be given to us at that meeting. He gave us counsel found in 3 Nephi 17:3.  "Therefore, go ye unto your homes, and ponder upon the things which I have said, and ask of the Father, in my name, that ye may understand, and prepare your minds for the morrow, and I come unto you again."  We were asked that after the conference, we would leave and go straight to our apartments to have an hour of pondering and reflection.  Then we had an hour of companion study where we talked about what we learned and how we can apply it to our missions. It really helped me to internalize everything that I heard, but I'm not sure how much of it I can really articulate. 
   One of the things that stood out to me as Sister Nelson was speaking was a comment she made about a "pre-mortal dvd player."  She said that if we could just see 10 minutes of who we were before this life, our problems would melt away.  True peace and an ability to make the correct decisions come from increased understanding of who we truly are and who we can become. I found that interesting because I've always focused on having an "eternal perspective" by thinking about my potential in the life to come. I haven't ever concentrated on the other direction of eternity. I don't often let my divine nature and my knowledge of my pre-mortal character and decisions affect my life here.  I know that is something that I can improve on.
   I don't have time to tell you all of my impressions and thoughts throughout that meeting, but I can tell you that I have an unshakable witness that Elder Russell M. Nelson has been called by our Savior, Jesus Christ, to be a special witness of Him. I know that he is a prophet of God and that he can receive revelation for us.  I know that by following the words of the Prophets and Apostles, we will grow closer to Christ and have the opportunity to improve the quality of our lives. I'm grateful for the lessons I learned this week, and I'm grateful for all of your continued support.
Sister Pratt

P.S. The power trio got split up today! Sister Rogers is going back to her old area, and Sister Gummow is off to Eagle! My new companion is Sister Kingsolver!! (If that sounds familiar, it's because we were companions last July.)  Crazy!
SIster Rogers is crazy about selfies...especially ones in the car!

We always had to take a nice one and a weird one.

My Crazy Companions!

We made this nice old man a cake for his birthday

This is us with the Ward Mission Leader for the YSA ward right before an appointment. I know. Super professional :)

Sometimes Sister Rogers would surprise you with taking pictures just to make us look awkward.

We went to Texas Roadhouse as our "last hoorah" when we found out about transfers.

                          This morning, driving to the mission office with all of their luggage spilling out of the car!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Wow!! News!!

 I'm so sorry that I REALLY don't have any time today, but I forgot to tell you all that Elder Russell M. Nelson is coming to our mission on Saturday!! I'm so excited. I will tell you all more about it next week.
   Other than that, everything is great. I love being in a trio with Sister Gummow and Sister Rogers! They are just a party all the time. Sister Rogers is really trying to help us be healthier, and I love it! We decided to go off of sugar this week, and we just tossed all of the candy in our whole house.  We've started running, too, in the mornings which feels so nice.
I hope you all are doing so well. I love you and pray for you!
Sister Pratt

Monday, January 12, 2015


Ok. SO much happened this week! This will probably be the longest email I've ever sent on my mission, so get ready. I don't even know if I will be able to fit it all in! I will try to just start from where I left off last week. As many of you may have inferred from my email, last week was a little rough. Honestly, it was actually probably one of the hardest weeks of my mission. On Monday, we tried to have a good attitude.  We knew that the Lord was teaching us patience, so we just kept working. 
   On Tuesday, we had our Mission Leadership Council, which is really where everything started turning around. There is such a wonderful spirit there, and I love any opportunity to hear from President Winder.  Our training was on finding people to teach (based off of ch 9 of Preach My Gospel). However, as President Winder was talking to us about different strategies and ideas we can use, Sister Gummow and I couldn't help but start to feel discouraged again about our area. We honestly felt like we had tried everything. Then, President Winder promised us that if we were diligent, we would be able to find a new investigator before our Zone Meetings on Friday. Sister Gummow and I both felt the power of that promise, and we knew we could do it.  I know that President Winder is inspired and that he is called of God to lead this mission. He also promised us that this experience would change the rest of our missions. 
   At that point, everyone in the meeting was asked to separate with their companions and find a place in the building to pray together. We ended up with the maintenance closet :) It was pretty much the only room left! We still were able to have an amazing experience, though, as we poured our hearts out to Heavenly Father and asked Him to help us, guide us, and soften the hearts of those we would meet during those next 2 days. It was truly amazing. It was then that we saw our first HUGE miracle! We checked the phone, and there was a voicemail from a member of our ward. When we listened to it, we started crying almost because she was calling to tell us that her friend wanted to take the missionary discussions!!! MIRACLE!! We were speechless. The friend couldn't meet until the next week, though, so we didn't get to count her officially as our "new investigator."  However, it gave us the assurance that God knew us. He knew our area and the people we were working with. He had already been preparing people to hear our message.  We left that meeting with the faith we needed to get through anything the world had to throw at us.
   Well, MLC didn't end until about 5 pm on Tuesday night, and we already had appointments booked that night--no time for finding. We had faith, though, that we would continue to see miracles. Wednesday, we had planned to go on exchanges, so I was in our area with Sister Johnson (amazing missionary).  We worked hard that day, but despite our diligence, we weren't able to find someone willing to hear from us. 
   You can imagine how anxious Sister Gummow and I were Thursday morning when we got to our area, knowing that we only had 1 day to find our promised new investigator. We knew that the Lord would do His part. We just wanted to make sure that we were doing everything in our power to be where He needed us to be. We made a goal that we would pray every hour to know what Heavenly Father would have us do.  Let me tell you, I have never worked so hard in my entire life.  We saw miracle after miracle.  We talked to so many people. We were bold and confident in ways that I had never seen myself capable of being. We began to see what President Winder said about our missions changing forever.  Again, though, we went hours without having the opportunity to teach anyone.  At around 4 pm, as we were walking into an appointment (about the only one we had all day), Sister Gummow turned to me and said, "I just realized that since the Lord is trying to teach us patience, we probably won't find anyone until around 8:50 at night."  Although she was half joking, she actually turned out to be only 10 minutes off! That day was the biggest turning point for me in my mission. I can't even describe the feelings that we had throughout the day.  When it was drawing close to the end of the night and we still had nothing, I usually would've gotten discouraged a little bit. However, I knew that when I got on my knees that night, I would be able to tell Heavenly Father that I did everything that I could. I could tell Him that I did everything that He asked of me.  I decided that I wanted every day of the rest of my life to be just like that.
   Anyway, fast-forward to 8:40 at night, and the day has pretty much gone the same. Insane amount of miracles and following the promptings of the Spirit, but we hadn't found anyone to teach! We were driving to an apartment complex to try another potential investigator when our bishop from the YSA ward called to tell us that someone had brought a non-member to sports night at the church and that she had agreed to meet with us! Sister Gummow almost started crying as I drove as quickly as I could to the church building. We got there, met Lisa and taught her about the Book of Mormon. It was amazing. We knew that God was watching over us and blessing us. 
   Friday, we had Zone Meeting which was also amazing! We had to direct the meeting for about 20 minutes, but it turned out OK. Wow. I'm running out of time! I'll make this short.  
   The rest of the week was SO GOOD! We went on exchanges on Sat, and we found another investigator yesterday! We were just reeiving so many blessings! We don't know what to do with them all!  To top it all off, today we got Sister Rogers as a companion. It's a little bitter-sweet becasue her ompanion had to go home today to have surgery, but I'm excited to spend the next 2 weeks with a FloMo buddy. It's gonna be a party!
Sorry this email turned into a novel :)
Love you!
Sister Pratt
The average day.  Gotta love the hair.

This is the family we spent Christmas with.  They are awesome!

The family we live with was sick, so someone made this sign. I thought it was hilarious.

The sun on a super foggy day.

Ok. There's this house that has the FUNNIEST Christmas decorations. They put half of their tree on the roof, so it looks like the tree just busted through the ceiling!

Sad Day.

Monday, January 5, 2015

It's officially COLD!

   On Christmas Eve, it snowed, and I haven't seen the grass since then! Every time I think it will clear up, it starts snowing again. I'm starting to get pretty tired of it, but I can't complain! At least I have a car, right?
   This week was one of those weeks that makes you laugh and shake your head because EVERYTHING goes wrong. For the first couple days, I was getting stressed and a little discouraged.  Then, I realized that the only way I was going to survive the week is if I looked on the bright side.  There were honestly times when we were laughing because we knew that if we stopped, the tears would come in its place. I'm so grateful, though, for a companion that understands me.  This trial would be much harder without her. 
   I don't want to go into all of the frustrating things that happened this week because honestly, I don't want to remember them. The main one that pushed me over the line was when I got a call from Sister Venable and Sister David this week, telling me that Emily's parents weren't letting her be baptized on Saturday. For those of you who don't remember, Emily was the teenage that I taught in Star that had Joseph Smith's account of the first vision memorized! She was so prepared, and everything was going smoothly until her parents thought she was rushing into things, and they cancelled the baptism. That, plus some other things that happened, put a damper in my week, to say the least.
   I want you all to know, though, that I am growing and learning from this whole experience!  I've decided that it's ok for me to go through trials as long as I get something out of them.  Sister Gummow and I are working really hard to find out what it is that we do need to learn. 
   Well, I hope that you all are doing well and are staying warm!
I love you.
Sister Pratt
Christmas!  We matched!!!

Some belated Christmas decorations that we put up in our room. They are snowflakes that change color!

Exchanges! I got to be with Sister Schick :) It was way fun, but we ran out of miles, so we had to walk some. It was really cold.

I found this in some store... It reminded me of those Birthday chairs we had. This would be the new and improved version