Monday, December 7, 2015

Dec 7 2015

LAST LETTER FROM SWEDEN

Bra slut!!! (good ending  in Swedish! ) 

Hiii family. :) I just LOVE you. Okay, I am excited. Obviously the emotions have been both bitter and sweet. I am guessing for you guys.. it is mostly sweet (well unless you would rather me not come home. haha) but it is hard to leave all these wonderful people, the wonderful country and language. I will miss Sweden but I hope I can come back and visit one day. We had a great week this week, and I will miss my sweet Swedish companion sister Eriksson. She is wonderful! :)

Claudia Paz Tello Marin and family take great care of the missionaries.
Hamburgers! 
Well I can say the Lord has shaped me during this time. And I cannot even describe to you both the joy and the pain that I have experienced while out here. I have come closer to my Savior by understanding more deeply what He went through for me. I experienced rejection and persecution for His name. Yet I also experienced His pure love and peace and joy by seeing people accept the Gospel of Jesus Christ, to let healing into their lives, and as I have done the same and felt that healing as well. I know that it can come to every single one of us.

I just finished the Book of Mormon again the other day, and I focused on pulling out the doctrine, and how everything we teach in PMG can be found in the BoM and guess what.. It’s like the whole BoM! If you have a question... go to the Book of Mormon! It is the best missionary in the church. It strengthens members, and converts nonmembers every day! I know it is true and it has been a huge gift to me in my life as I have received answers and better understanding daily. I know it invites the spirit to be our constant companion as we study the scriptures daily.

I know that I have a personal relationship with God, and that the church provides a way for me to come closer to Him. I am so grateful for our prophet, Thomas S. Monson, who leads the church today. I know that he is called of God, and that while we heed his word we will find joy and blessings in our lives! I know that Joseph Smith was called of God, and that he really did see God the Father and the Son, Jesus Christ.

I am so grateful for this gospel and how it has blessed my family and I. God takes care, and I can trust Him in that forever. I know these things are true! Thank you for your love and support as I have served my mission. I can't believe its ending here in Sweden, but I am excited to see what it brings in America!

Also for the last Sunday here in Sweden.. I felt very blessed to watch seven miracles happen.. aka seven different investigators walk into church. We didn't see a ton of success during the week, because we are starting the area from scratch, but to see that many walk in, I just wanted to cry. When you have faith miracles can happen! Moroni 10:7!! 

I love you!! See you Thursday!!! :) :) :) xoxo

Syster Bolton signing off.

PS Homecoming talk will be the 13th of Dec at 9:00 in Layton at 845  North  1150 East. Everyone is welcome. Hope to see you all soon!! :)


Because Cassie is leaving she has "died" and coming home on Thursday Dec 10




Monday, November 30, 2015

Nov 30 2015

Monday and Tuesday Nov 23-24 2015, Said bye to lots of people. I love them and will miss them. But sheesh, I love Sister Austin, and I am so grateful that I got to be with her! 

We took the ferry and the lake was half way frozen, so it was just breaking through the ice as long as it could! haha It will be closed shortly, and then once the ice is thick enough, they will just open it up as a road across the ice. So legit. Fun stuff.


Said one last goodbye to Anna Newell, the Dahlqvists, Marianne Näslund, and the Muhi's.

Oh funny story, we had made an appointment with an investigator that we needed to drop because she wasn't doing anything. Well it was kind of funny because when we got there, she had made a pie and got us out tea, and stuff, because she wanted to drop us as well... haha she felt really bad.  super sweet lady, just didn't understand the importance of our message. We just thought it was funny because we were going to be breaking the same news to each other.

Wednesday Nov 25 2015 -  We flew down from Luleå (yes we.. Sister Austin came with me so that she could pick up her new companion! haha) and then we met up with the assistants, and the Beckstrands and Koyles. Then we waited for Syster Eriksson to come off the plane! She has been in the England MTC the past two weeks!


With the TRANSFER:

So they put Sister Jackson up in Luleå with Sister Austin! 4 sisters in the apartment here in Södertälje is great! These sisters are rock stars so I am grateful for them :) the apartment isn't the biggest.. haha but we make it work! I have a lot of stuff still packed up, since I knew I wouldn't use it all. The other sisters are Sister Lund and Sister Johanson! I love them! I have been on splits with both of them before, and they are amazing and just fun! We don't have many investigators to teach.. Actually zero. haha my poor greenie. But we have been able to teach a few of their investigators that I have also taught before. So that was fun. :) We also have visited members, and done some service. Then a good amount of contacting. Haven't had time to hit up the tracting yet. We have two hours of companionship studies, so it takes up some extra time! It is soo fun for me though. I love being able to teach her everything I know. Well not everything, but to teach her how to do missionary work is SO FUN! I LOVE MISSIONARY WORK!! Seriously though. 

Oh something I realized yesterday that I really like... we all call the Plan of Salvation also the Plan of Happiness. But I don't think I've really heard anyone say before, the Work of Salvation as the Work of Happiness! Well friends, that is exactly what it is! I absolutely LOVE being a missionary. I know my time is coming to an end wayyy too fast. I don't want to leave though! I want to continue being a full time missionary here in Sweden, because I have never been so happy than while I have been on my mission!! It is absolutely incredible. :) spread the joyyy.

Syster Eriksson, comes from Kristianstad which is like the very bottom tip of Sweden. So we are pretty far from her family. She hasn't been to Stockholm very much in her life, so now we get to go for P-day! It is BOMB to train someone who can already speak Swedish! I love my other daughters (Sister Lindsay and Sister Gardner that I have trained.) But it definitely makes it easier. Plus she can already speak practically perfect English, so it is a lot of fun! We speak both Swedish and English. Mostly Swedish for my sake, but at home we speak more English so that she can get more comfortable with it, and help it become more natural. It is really nice because I just correct her little mistakes, and she corrects mine. Why did I not have this before?? hahah it is great fun. But I do think she is exactly what I needed. It definitely feels fulfilling being able to teach her and help her. :) She is sooo good. Kind of funny. When I got her, she had been on her mission for two weeks. So 17 and 1/2 months to go. I had 17 and 1/2 months down, and only two weeks to go.



It has been great fun to see old friends here in Södertälje! ah, just love it! :) The Lord knows exactly what we need. It is a perfect way to end. Because I have to work my tail off to help Syster Eriksson learn! I absolutely love it :) The spirit is strong, and I know the gospel is true! 

Thank you for everything! I am excited to see you all in two weeks.. but I cannot even describe how much I will miss being a missionary. I love this work.

Love, Syster Bolton

Had Thanksgiving dinner with the other Elders and Sisters in the district.





Monday, November 23, 2015

Nov 23 2015

HALLÅ family and friends!

So, wow, I didn't think the whole coming home thing was coming close.. until everyone emailed me talking about it. haha thanks kids. :P But I am excited! But I feel super blessed to be here still.
So this week was great! Started off with another 5 hour train ride to Umeå! Woo! We had Specialized Zone Training, which was GREAT!!

I LOVED IT!! There was so much to be taken in, and it was just perfect. The main three topics were: Diligence- and being consistent in our pace, and working our hardest the whole race long.
Bearing Testimony and Joseph Smith- the power it has, and just really remembering what a testimony of Joseph Smith has done for you. For me, it has changed me life for the better. Because I know he was a true prophet of God, I know that this church is true and that in the temple the power of God is exercised to seal families together for eternity! There are so many blessings that have come to me because of this knowledge, and there is no denying. it is true!

Then after lunch we focused on the Christmas initiative for this new Christmas season! I am so excited to have such a push to end my mission on, and then be able to take it home and use it as a member missionary. It will be great! So on the 29th of November, a new video and website will be released by the church! Make sure you watch it, because it is going to be AWESOME! And then make sure you also share it with others so they can remember the true meaning of Christmas!! :)
specialized zone training was very fun, and everyone did a great job. President and Sister Beckstrand, and the assistants, Elder Sahlin and Elder Archibald. (he is in my group, and was trained with me up in Luleå. so we are good friends.) But the spirit was super strong, and I was just so happy! :) I love this gospel, and I love being a missionary!!
The other great part of our week...


We went on splits with the STL's and I got to be with Sister Kamauoha! It was a lot of fun :) love her. While we were on splits, we went and served one of my favorite members, Anna Newell! She is the best example ever. I love her! Her husband is the branch president, and he is from America, if you guys remember. They are a great family!

 

Then we also had the beautiful day of Jonny being baptized!! :) This was the best day ever. And he is so happy. I haven't talked very much about him, but that's just because I will have to tell you all at home. There is just too much to tell! :) But the spirit was SO strong, and it was seriously the best! Before the baptism, we started filling up the font, but the water was going SO SLOW. so with two hours before the baptism, we started the bucket filling and dumping . haha it was so funny, but it worked out perfect! :) Jonny is the STRONGEST convert ever. I am so excited to see what he has in store. 


Well Saturday night at about 10:05 pm, we got a call from president Beckstrand....

I am being TRANSFERRED! one more time! and hopefully the last time!! hahaha :) For the last two weeks of my mission.. I will be in Södertälje (my fourth area.) and I will be with Sister Eriksson. She is from Sweden, and is actually going on her mission to Montana, but she is waiting for her visa to the States. So she will be arriving from the England MTC and I will start her training in Södertälje! So we will have a four man in that apartment! I'm grateful it is a four man there and not a tripan here in Luleå. The Södertälje apartment has two bunkbeds, so it will be perfect! and it is only for two weeks! haha lets just say... that was a SHOCKER!!! But God has greater plans! I am excited to be pumped up with greenie fire, and work as hard as I can to help as many people as I can!! Plus to go say hello and goodbye one last time to all those who I love in Södertälje! I am probably the most spoiled missionary ever to be able to go back to two of my areas!! haha God is GREAT!

Oh it is FREEZING here by the way! Its probably a good thing that I will be moving down south so that it isn't as cold. negative eleven isn't really my thing, especially as a missionary. But it is all snowy, and that make me pretty happy! :) It makes it so it isn't so dark, so that is nice. :) 


Ah, it is super hard to say goodbye to all these lovely people, but I am grateful that I know I will either see them again during this life, or the next! We are beings of eternities! ;) haha

Although the news is fun, it was still hard to hear that I had to say goodbye the very next day to so many that I love. Three of the four Sundays that I have been here in Luleå, I have had the opportunity to bear my testimony, and share a couple thoughts! haha Oh, how I am going to miss all these WONDERFUL people. Luleå is the best, and I know that God knew that I needed to come back. Being here I have really seen how much God has changed me, and I have received a lot of peace. :) I love the Lord and His work. D&C 15:6 "And now, behold, I say unto you, that the thing which will be of the most worth unto you will be to declare repentance unto this people, that you may bring souls unto me, that you may rest with them in the kingdom of my Father. Amen."



                  




I hope you all have a great week, and a wonderful thanksgiving!! I want you all to know how eternally grateful I am for each of you!! I love you!! 

love, Syster Bolton


Monday, November 16, 2015

Nov 16 2015

Well this week was good! Monday brought on some souvenir shopping, so that was weird!! 
I pretty much am just going to sum up this week... we tracted everyday for hours on end and it was great! actually to be honest, Thursday was pretty rough, because we were standing and walking, and climbing stairs for 5 hours straight without being let in once, not one chance to sit any where because everything outside was all wet. BUT what is great is that we got a lot of potential investigators from it. So although nobody let us in once we got to teach them on the street or at their door. Lets just talk about diligence this week! haha we were exhausted, because we had pretty much only tracted all week! but then we got to get some return appts with the new investigators we found! Last week we dropped everyone because they weren't doing anything, this week, we were out finding. okay, but we are always doing both of those things. But we are really working hard at building up this area, because there isn't very much to do here, but we are out to find a handful of people who are prepared to hear the message! and I would say this week was pretty successful. I am absolutely exhausted, but I am so happy to be here doing the work! It feels so good!! 

Sister Austin driving me everywhere. haha They didn't renew my license so I am not allowed to drive.That is definitely one thing I am looking forward to again! 

Cute Rhiannon, she's 18 and was baptized this past summer. She is so strong and great! We love her :) 

 The Elders and us after district meeting. The sidewalks were covered with ice! Later our bus broke down in the middle of the freeway....literally just came to a complete stop in the right lane, but there are only 2 lanes, and nowhere he could pull off. The engine kind of just gave up. We aren't even sure. But we sat there for 45 minutes waiting for another bus to come and pick us up. haha oh the life.


The Elders in freezing cold at about 3pm. It is pitch black here about 2:30pm. 

One cool story...we walked out of a stair case that we had tracted, and we saw this guy that had walked by, and was walking away, and I was like thought, "oh we shoud talk with him, even though he is kind of out of our way." then I was like, wait he is about to get to the bus stop, and I'm sure its coming soon. Then I was like okay, no I just need to talk with him. So we ran after him, and as he was about to cross the road, I hollared, "excuse me, excuse me!" But he didn't hear me... so we followed him, and the bus pulled up, and we were like.. well I think we are taking a bus ride.. haha so we got on and talked with him, and he is LEGIT! We will be teaching him today. His name is George he is from Africa. Just cool to see how God does put prepared people in our path.

Stuff I've studied and learned more about this week would include the Holy Ghost, and patriarchal blessings. I am so grateful for the soft promptings that the Holy Ghost gives me, simple reminders of that which I know I should do, and then I do it. The talk from last gen conf, 'what lack I yet' does a really good job at explaining how I receive guidance from the spirit. Just simple thoughts that lead me to do better and be better. Also I have come to understand how personal my patriarchal blessing really is. I never really understood that, because one could say, it is more general. But I've come to understand that it truly is so directed from God to me, because of just which topics it talks about and highlights, while I am sure there are other people in there blessing it says nothing about. I would invite each of you to study your patriarchal blessing, see what the Lord has in store for you, and what he wants you to focus on in your life. If you don't have one, I would also encourage you to pray about it, and talk to your bishop about getting one. They are so wonderful. :)

Well, that's all I got for this week! I am loving Luleå and Sister Austin! We do work together! It is so great :) I am happy, and healthy. (mostly.. but like I only have so much time left to eat pepparkakor and other swedish goodis!! haha) I love you all and thank you for everything!!

have a great week and pray hard!

love, Cassie

Monday, November 9, 2015

Nov 9 2015

God answers prayers. If there is anything that I know, it is that. God answers our prayers, as we fervently pray with faith and hope. I have been working on improving my personal prayers, with being specific, and having faith in that which I say, and listening for revelation during and after saying them. God is answering me and helping me. I hope you can feel that too. :)

Monday Nov 2 2015 - Last pday we did a lot of resume stuff, and organizing classes stuff. It is coming along. It is just kind of a bummer because there isn't a lot to do here on P-days. :/ Hopefully next week we can go hang out with some members! But Tuesday we did get to go and visit Anna Newell, we served her a bit, and while we did that it was so fun to talk to her. I just think she is the greatest example! Plus she is pregnant and is due in January. It's like Mollie just on the opposite side of Sweden :) haha ps. Mollie Herrey from Kungsbacka had her baby, and he is the cutest thing ever! So Anna is just going to have her baby right after I leave here too! It's kind of lame! But I guess its okay since I can't hold the baby(s) as a missionary any way! haha 

A member pulled out these books when I said I wanted to be an engineer! haha he was an mechanical engineer as well, and it made me super excited to see that again! 

Wednesday Nov 4 2015 - We drove up to Kalix, and visited some less actives. It was really cool to see them again since I worked with them last year! Plus the good news is that they have been coming to church now and then! To add to the traveling for the day, we got on a 5 hour train ride down to Umeå to have zone training! Wow, I can say, I sure didn't miss the forever travel for stuff up here. But it's okay. 

Drive to Kalix - reindeer in road
Reindeer
Train ride to Umeå
Thursday Nov 5 2015 - We stayed the night with the cutest member from Umeås ward, and then had zone training. It was really good! It focused on the Christ like attributes and they tied in the talk "is the church working for you?" and used it as "is your mission working for you?" It was really good :) The spirit was there, and gave me direct answers to what it is I can work on to become a better person. I was grateful for that. :) I think it was exactly what I needed to focus on this transfer!


We had a 5 hour bus ride home from Umeå and what was amazing is that, God sent us someone to teach! One of our investigators (that I had not yet met) got on the bus about an hour and a half away from Luleå, he also happened to sit exactly across from us, because there was an open seat. After Jean Paul sat down was when he saw us and said something to us! So we ended up getting to know him and teaching him for like an hour. It was really cool! And exactly what that investigator (Jean Paul) needed! Then that night we got to visit Asefa!! The one that we baptized last year. He has been a little less active as of recently which makes me really sad. :( But I know he is still believing and being a good person. It was super cool to see him though :)

Friday Nov 6 2015 - We did our studies all morning and then we had just planned to weekly plan. But I felt like I needed out of our apartment for just a few minutes. So we got our stuff and walked out and down to the water and back, but before we left we said a very specific prayer that we would be able to meet someone to teach and help while we are out there just in the few minutes. And guess what! God answers prayers, we met this guy named Torbjörn, and he is really neat. I think it was exactly what he needed as well! The spirit bore testimony of all that we said, and he witnessed that he felt it! I pray that we can meet him again and really teach him more! It is crazy to me how often people feel the spirit as they talk with us, but then they say no to meeting again. Religion is just not a thing here, and so the culture has a huge swaying effect on people. :/ But, I bet we will see him again because he lives really close to us!

Jonny is getting baptized! It was going to be this coming Saturday, but now he is actually going to go down to Stockholm with the YSA's to a YSA activity for next weekend! Then he will come back and be baptized in a week! But we had his baptismal interview and everything. He is so ready to go and so converted! :) We are really happy for him!

Saturday Nov 7 2015 - Was a day full of tracting. okay, every day has a little bit of it in it, but that was most of our plans, and too bad we didn't find anyone. :/ But we are out a ton so we just pray we will be led to meet the right people at the right time.

Oh, hey to all the dads... aka my brothers, grandfathers and most of all my DAD! Happy Father’s Day!! (at least here in Sweden!) haha I think you are so great, and I love you so much. Thank you for everything. :)


Sweden is great! I love these people here! I have been reminded that Luleå is small.. haha so it makes the work slower in a way.. haha just a lot of tracting, and even when we are walking anywhere we don't see very many people to talk to. It means we have to start getting creative! Because all of Luleå has been tracted up and down! haha But I am so happy to be here! The Lord does great things to us :) 

I love you all and am so grateful for you! Have a happy week! and just remember, you have a lot more sun there than we have here, so count your blessings even if its cold ;) haha

Love, Syster Bolton


Monday, November 2, 2015

Nov 2 2015


WELL... in just a few more days.. It will be a very special day!! Why is that? Because the best mom in the whole wide world was born!! Yes and guess who is so very lucky to have her as their mother? ME! :) I love her with my whole heart, and can't wait to see her again in just a month and a week. I just want you to know that you mean the world to me, you are my biggest role model and hero. You are my biggest supporter and cheer leader. I appreciate you more than words can describe! I LOVE YOU!! HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!!! Thank you for being the best mom in the world! I love you! I hope you have a super great birthday week!!

Saying bye to everyone last week was so sad, but I am grateful for the time I had in Kungsbacka. I am so grateful to have met those wonderful people. 

At the beginning of the week, it was definitely sad, to have so many goodbyes, but it was nice and fun to have lots of hello again's!

Wednesday Oct 28 2015 - LULEÅ!! Here we are again!! :) This week has been fun. I am so happy. Of course I was a little nervous, but as the time went on, and as I arrived in Luleå, I received SO much peace. I am so happy to be here. I could have never expected this, or ever understood that this is what I needed, but it was exactly right. I am really grateful for revelation and that President Beckstrand followed it while setting up this transfer! I know this is exactly where I am supposed to be. I don't know why exactly, but I know a lot of the reasons are for me, and to be with Sister Austin again- I couldn't have asked for anyone better!! The Lord definitely knows us better than we know ourselves!! haha :)

Pence girls met Cassie at the Stockholm train station enroute from Kunsgbacka to Lulea
 

Saturday Oct 31 2015 - Saturday the branch president's daughter was baptized, and what is kind of fun is that I was here to celebrate her birthday with them last year! haha :) But it was sooo nice to see everyone here. I love these people! Also we got to teach Jonny- who is going to be baptized in two weeks! He is super amazing, and loves the gospel, he saw the water at her baptism, and he was like, ah can I be baptized now too?? It was so cool! They started teaching him only a week ago, but he actually has been being taught from two members for a whole year, and he just finally got to Sweden, so now he can learn about it. It is amazing to help him prepare to be baptized! :) He is from Egypt, and is going to be a super strong member!


The spirit world is on the earth, and it is so close. I have felt so blessed to have this knowledge. It gives me shivers. As we were walking through the grave yard, on All Saints Day, or Halloween, it was so peaceful, just think about how many are around us all the time. They are aware of us, and they are supporting us, and waiting for us. I know I will see my family again and that we will live together forever with God. :) I have prayed about it time and time again, and the spirit confirms that truth every time. :) 

 

I wanted to share this thought about watching general conference:

One moment for me that was extra special during general conference was listening to our beloved prophet, Thomas S. Monson, during the Sunday morning session. He started out with such strength and clarity in his voice. Toward the end of his message, he was exhausted and doing his very best to finish the message he wanted to deliver to the saints. I found myself praying that he would have the strength to finish and that nothing would happen to him. I wondered why others would not come to his aid as he was starting to slump at the pulpit. Well, as you know, he finished his message and President Uchtdorf assisted him back to his chair. It was later that I was made aware that small children watching conference had seen something that I had not. As the small children drew pictures of what they beheld, President Monson did indeed have help to finish his message. These pictures that small children had drawn showed the presence of angels on his right hand and on his left hand. Truly, as the Lord has promised us in the Doctrine and Covenants 84:88, "I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up."

That was something President Beckstrand shared with us.. and as I heard/realized this, the spirit was super strong, and it just hit me how clear this work is. It is heavenly, and I feel so blessed to be able to witness such miracles as this. God loves each one of us, he is holding his prophet up, just as he is also holding his missionaries, and children all over the world.

I am out here loving life and preaching the gospel! I hope you guys are doing the same as well as fulfilling all the other tasks that you have. Life is hard to balance, but God will provide the aid you need as you lean on Him! I love you all!!

Love, Sister Bolton


Monday, October 26, 2015

Oct 26 2015

Well, I don't really know what to say about this week! It was good full of the spirit, driving from one thing to the next, and a little bit of a freak out... why?

I'm being TRANSFERRED. say what? did NOT expect that one at all.. but I am going to go to my birth place in the mission... LULEÅ!! whhaaattt. soo crazy. But I am really excited. plus.. I will be with my MTC comp, Sister Austin! haha we will "die" together, so that will be weird! But the Lord has adventures ahead for me.

I pretty much am drained, but happy. We went on exchanges this week, and I was with sister King, from my group, and can i just say, we would be a KILLER companionship. It was SO fun. we are really similar when it comes to missionary work, and just how we work throughout our whole lives, etc. She is the most amazing person ever. We had SUCH a good time! :)


And.. so it was super sad to say goodbye to everyone! we had a good week with investigators and everything. It is weird to know we will be handing it all over to the elders. But Gods will is greater than ours. So I know it will go well. :)

I love the Lord, and I am grateful for the power of the Priesthood, I will be honest, when I found out I would be going to Luleå, I got really nervous, for lots of reasons. It just was not expected at all that I would be transferring! But after some tears, stress, and talking it out with Sister Giles, I went and asked the elders to give me a blessing, and it was SO good. I am very grateful for that, because since then, I have had just comfort and strength. Gods power is INCREDIBLE!!

Well, I love you all and I know this church is true, and that God hears our prayers, even if he answers them in ways we don't expect at all! Keep the faith!


Love, Sister Bolton