Friday, March 18, 2011

Letter from November 22, 2010

Hey Family!
This week was so amazing! Lena got baptized! It was such a special day for her, and she felt the Spirit so strongly! It was such a blessing! We had District Conference this past week (like Stake Conference), so we got to have President and Sister Allcott come, as well as a Russian member of the 70, Elder Reshetnikova to the baptizm because they were all in town. VIP baptizm! Sister Muhlestein and I stressed a lot trying to get everything put together nicely for the baptizm, and it went amazingly well. We did a really cool musical number (all translated in Russian) and we miraculously found a banya (spa) to hold the service at. We don't have our own building yet, so it has to be done at a spa place. We found a huge one, and they even gave us a huge discount. The baptizm was, honestly, one of the most spiritual meetings I've been to here in Russia! Having all of that presiding priesthood at the meeting made it so spiritual. The expereince will be so memorable for her, for the rest of her life. She told me the feelings at her baptizm were so strong, and she felt the Spirit so much, that it was a much more powerful than even when Elder Glogolev gave her a blessing. Then, after receiving the Holy Ghost at District Conference on Sunday (in front of the whole district and with a 70 and mission president in the blessing circle), she said she almost couldn't walk back to her seat because the Spirit was so strong . The blessing was beautiful. She called it "Two miraculous days" and she went home and wrote about them in her journal. Her conversion has just touched me so much, and it has increased my faith too. People are ready and being prepared by the Lord! Sister Muhlestein and I are going to have a miraculous transfer! We can just feel it. We set transfer goals, and we feel like we could get upwards of three baptizms. We have 5 or 6 progressing investigators right now, and like four of them are potential priesthood holders. They all have their specific hurdles they need to get over, but it is, of course, possible! Zone Conference was Friday, the day before the baptizm, and, as usual, perfect and so inspirtational. I really feel like my faith is stronger than it has ever been, and I really just want to bring people unto Christ more than ever before. The Church is so true and this past week was very faith building. I get to stay in Botanika again!!! Yay! I was so happy to find out! Sister Muhlestein and I will be together again! Zone Conference and District Conference was amazing and so inspirational. I have a lot of thoughts and new insights that are going to help motivate me this next coming transfer. I'd love to share some of them with you, but I don't have time... As you can tell, this past week was super crazy and amazing all at the same time!
Snow fell and stuck the same day as Lena's baptizm, the 20th. It is all white and FREEZING here now, and I pulled-out my big winter coat again. It has finally arrived and here to stay I am sure.
I love you all though! Thanks Cassi and Josh for the sweet letters,
Sister Hakes
P.S..... so the first picture is of me, Lena, and my companion. not the best picture of me, or lena, but what can you do?
the second picture is (from right to left) President Allcott, Sister Allcott, Lena, and Elder Rashetnakov (the member of the 70). YAY!
please forward these pics Mom and Dad : )

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