Called to Serve

Called to Serve

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Hello my wonderful family and friends!

As you may have heard, I am in Anaheim, California! I've been temporarily reassigned here while I wait for my visa. To be honest- I am LOVING it!! The people here are great (missionaries, members and others) and it is a cool city. And yes, Disneyland is in Anaheim. Although I can't go there.

My companion and trainer is Sister Fernandez. She is Filipino and about 5'3. Seriously, the best, funniest and sassiest thing ever! We're getting along great and both working really hard. I am in a family ward that is amazing. We've had dinner with members every night so far and they are all so much fun. One couple, The Worley's are particularly great. They heard that I sing and went to school in Nashville and asked if I would sing for them. They love old folk music, play guitar and travel to Tennessee for festivals and things. After singing a couple of songs, per their request they said, "we're gonna pray that you don't get your visa!" Haha they have a jam session every month and they and I are hoping I'll still be here for the next one! (Which would be a great missionary opportunity). There are some videos posted below from our dinner last week.

My companion and I were driving to an appointment last Friday when all of a sudden a police officer on a motorcycle pulls up behind us. Naturally, I start freaking out wondering how fast I was going and why he would pull us over. He walks up, asks for my license and then says "are you a new sister missionary?" Turns out, he's in a local ward and just wanted to say hello. SCARIEST moment so far. I actually cried a little.

There are TWO missionaries here from West Virginia! Well, kind of. One missionary is from Franklin, WV which he said is right on the WV/ VA border so he's in a VA stake. And the other went to high school in Morgantown. He knows the Waldrons! Also, there are Waldrons (some relation) in my ward that we had dinner with last night!

Been teaching some great people, too. Taught a friend of a member who is a less active, Scott. Teaching him was GREAT! The Spirit was so strong AND he came to church! We taught him about a lot of things but he really understood scripture study and the priesthood. Seriously, amazing!

One night we were looking for some potential investigators and they either weren't home or they didn't live there anymore. Instead, we got to teach THREE new people and got an appointment with one! One woman initially did not want to talk to us, but after about two minutes opened up entirely and we got to testify of Jesus Christ, his love for us and his Atonement.

I love this gospel and I love all of you who continue to support me and my family.

Until next time!!
Sister A
President and Sister Taggart
Anaheim Mission President & Wife
Sister Fernandez
Companion and Trainer
Sister Atkinson singing 'Nearer My God to Thee' and 'Down By the Riverside'
with Sister Worley, a local member in her ward. 

Friday, April 17, 2015


They don't have my visa yet so I am temporarily assigned to . . . the California Anaheim Mission while I wait!

I leave Monday morning at 3:35 AM... yuck. I will get a phone card and call you from the airport to let you know where and how I am. I'm super excited!!

Love you and thank you for all of the love and support!
Sister Atkinson 

p.s. be sure to spread the word!

Hi Everyone!

I am actually LOVING the MTC (Missionary Training Center)! I've really enjoyed classes and my teachers are really good. The Spirit at the MTC is so strong and I have absolutely loved my time here so far. It is certainly different but I already feel closer to Christ having been here only a few days and learned so much. I know that coming here was not a mistake. I know that I am meant to share the gospel with these people at this time. 

My companions and I are getting along really well. I'm in a trio! Sister MacMillan is from South Africa so she's got a really awesome accent! She's brilliant and an amazing example to me. And Sister Serdar is from Sandy, Utah. She's got such a sweet spirit and such a passion for sharing the gospel. We've been able to teach a few investigators already which was initially daunting but we're now getting a lot more comfortable with it. My district is great, too! The elders are all going to Detroit. 

The food is actually really good! We actually had all three meals on Sunday, so no starving in district 66 A! We had a really cool music fireside from the BYU Men's Chorus, which was amazing! They sang a bunch of songs having to do with deliverance. They even sang songs from "The Prince of Egypt." Seriously, AMAZING! 

The schedule is pretty standard i guess. Tuesday is my p-day (day to do laundry, email home, etc.). 

We're already teaching three investigators, so thats cool. (Investigators are what we call people who are interested in learning more about the gospel of Jesus Christ and are taking lessons from the missionaries). Every time i think of the word investigator or write it, I think of the alligator in a vest! haha (When Ali was on her mission, Mom sent her a stuffed animal alligator in a vest with the quote, "What do you call an alligator in a vest? An investigator!")

We went on a walk around the temple which was nice and we get to do a session at the temple this afternoon! CAN. NOT. WAIT. 

I'm so glad Ethel was at church and doing well!
I'm sorry to hear about Nancy. Please tell her that I will be praying for her!
Yay for Hong Kong!! Jefferson will do great! 

Thank you for all of your love, prayers and support. Thank you for teaching me to live and love the gospel as you do.
Sister Atkinson
Sister Atkinson with her two MTC companions!
(Sister Serdar and Sister MacMillan)

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Tomorrow I will enter the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah as a full-time missionary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to prepare to serve in the Australia Sydney South Mission. OH. MY. GOODNESS. I still can't believe it. Now might be a good time to come to that realization, huh?

I received my mission call back in November so I have had plenty of time to prepare. But I must say, I am still SO nervous! This is unlike anything I have ever done and will ever do. And in reality, I'm as prepared as I will ever be. But I am the kind of person that loves to plan and know exactly what I am getting into. So this unknown journey that I am going to take is about to rock my world! I know that what I am about to do is not a mistake. I know that this is a good thing that will strengthen me and bring me closer to Christ. I just hope that my nerves will take a chill pill and let me really soak it all in and learn all that I can to bring others closer to their Savior. I want to thank EVERY SINGLE SOUL that has loved and supported me in this endeavor. You have each truly made a difference in my life and the lives of my family members. While I am nervous, I am excited to get this show on the road! So stay tuned for the next one, folks!!