The Addresses:

Sister Cassidy Cheyenne Steele
Louisiana Baton Rouge Mission
12025 Justice Ave
Baton Rouge, LA 80816

My email is

Friday, August 8, 2014

A Week Of Opposites August 4th

This first bit is my letter to President, because I thought it summed it up nicely.

Well....bit of a rough week. Heavenly Father really wanted to make sure we got our last lessons in on humility and patience before we switched to hope and charity. There's not a ton to report from the Prairieville side.

On the Vidalia side though, I had an incredible experience.

It was really cool this week though to see the end result of our efforts. I haven't had a ton of baptizing success on my mission--I know my purpose here is more of a planter and a nurturer than it is a harvester, and I'm okay with that. But Saturday I got the amazing experience escorting one of my dear friends I worked with extensively the 11 months I was in Vidalia through the temple. She has been through so much, and a lot of the time I was worried she wouldn't make it to the temple. But Saturday came, and she was there, beautifully dressed in white. She just glowed. When she got to the celestial room, we had some time. Everyone left except for us, and as we looked in the mirror I asked her if everything she had been through was worth it (mind you, she has had a harder year and a half since she was baptized than anyone I have ever known. She has literally had no break from the refiner's fire since the minute she stepped out of that font). She turned to me and said "yes. Everything I've been through was worth it just to stand in this room." So we cried and hugged and if that's the only reason I needed to come to Louisiana, so be it. It was worth everything I've been through on my mission as well just to see her there. I think sometimes I take what I have for granted. I forget how blessed I am to have the blessings of the temple. But sitting there with B was such an attitude adjustment for me and I am so incredibly grateful that she continued to allow me to be in her life. Even if I don't touch anyone else's lives, even if I don't teach another lesson my whole mission (which would stink), it would have been worth it just to see B in that celestial room. That's what it's all about, after all.

Without that high point this week, I don't think I would have made it. Everything sort of slipped through our fingers--investigators, less-active members, potentials....everything fell apart this week. All of our investigators dropped us in one fell swoop, including the one we had planned on committing to a date when we went over. The members are upset with the whole meal thing (President Hansen banned joint meal appointments, anything more than one companionship at a time. The members don't have enough money to feed us separately, and they don't want to play favorites, so they pretty much decided they wouldn't feed us at all). But it's okay, because this week is going to be good. We have a lot of finding to do, and we're back to square one with a lot of things, but I think Saturday will carry me for a long time. I hope so, anyways! I'm working on gratitude and charity for the next little bit. I haven't quite mastered patience but I think I'm doing a little bit better.

It was also a really good experience on Saturday because, well, I got to see people :) The Eplings came down as well as Sister Ackley, and so I got to catch up with them and the ward. Sister Hoskins, Elder Castro (And their companions that I don't really know--Castro's training a greenie) and Elder Adkins and his companion were there as well. It was so good :) We went to a Chinese buffet after, and Sister Stephens ate octopus and oyster for the first time, and I ate a whole squid. It was rubbery but tasted a lot like crawfish, so it wasn't terrible.

Let's see. It's gonna be hot this week, so we're playing soccer again...I'm much better at soccer than volleyball, even while drenched in sweat. Sister Weidmann goes back to temple square, so I'm going to figure out how to get it so y'all can see her. Because she is amazing. And awesome and you will love her :)

Love you!
THE Sister Steele (for the last time!)

I ate me some squid this week. It was a bit gross. But not terrible.

A week in the Life of a Missionary July 28th

This week we didn't really do a ton. Okay, we did but my life is normal to me now and so the things that might be interesting to you aren't super interesting to me! Sorry. I'm just going to give you my journal entries, how about that?
Now that I have officially been out a year, I got 2 emails from people who haven't written me my entire mission :) My theory was correct. Even though I have another like week before my actual 6 month mark. And another few weeks before transfers. But I was confused for abit why yall were concerned about the 24th (I always count the 6th as my year mark becuase that's when my 18 months or 13 transfers started) and then I realized that when I was gone, I was gone for you. If that makes sense. So if I didn't make a big deal this week, it's because it's not a full year yet for me. I was still in the MTC this time last year. And I don't really count those 12 days :)
Anyways. onwards and upwards.
"I don't even remember much of today. District meeting got pushed to 11:30. When we got there, the zone leaders were there because they were doing exchanges with our district leader, and the Assistants were on exchanges too. Elder Rodgers (Green-tastic!) was there with the zone leaders because his companion was at a doctor's appointment. Even though there was a zillion people there, it was actually pretty fun. We made "missionary kits" and roleplayed giving them out. They were basically tools we could give to members to be member-missionaries. [pass-along cards, a Book of Mormon, Restoration pamphlet, etc]. Had to call Elder Mecham by his first name in the roleplay. that was strange.
 After District meeting, we went to sSubway and then to get frozen yogurt. I was so happy :) It was a lot of fun, and we told first/worst date stories.
We saw Mama and Mame, who we invited to church (mame was less crazy than normal today), and then went to the Fitts for dinner. We had some Danish thing with meat and cabbage which I can't remember the name of. Then we went over to the Putnams for the rest of the night. I think they're my Baton Rouge family. We just got talking and it was so much fun!"
"Exchanges were today! It was my first time in a year I have been in a trio. sister Lindstrom and I were on exchanges and Sister Paige tagged along. She's fun to be around, and it was a good day. she's only with us for the day, though.
We went over to see Kelly and Brother Shute, and taught the full restoration to Kelly. She took it really well!
We tried to contacct a lot of people then and no one was home, but we saw Lindsay and Ms BJ briefly. Then we grabbed dinner at sonic and went to Jackie's, where we talked about family history. The Spirit was so strong as we talked about the Spirit world. It's funny, because with all the times I've struggled with my testimony in my life, I have never ever had a problem or a question or a doubt about the Spirit world. I KNOW it's real. I know that those on the other side are getting taught the gospel. It's so cool :)
After we saw Jackie we went to the ward party. It was pretty fun, even if as missionaries we were not able to do a ton (ie there was dancing involved). Then we played some strange game called Pioneer Squares, which was like tic tac toe with trivia and people are the game board. We saw the stake president and his wife sing in a western accent and that was funny, then we headed home. elder Griffin broke a broom playing stick pull. shattered it, actually."
"Happy year mark! It was an...interesting day.
Exchanges are always fun and apparently when the two of usa re in my area, we always get lost. Out of the year I've been out, I have served around sister Lindstrom all but one transfer. And out of the 7 exchanges I've been on, 4 of them have been with Sister Lindstrom. I never thought that would happen. But anyways, we drove around for probably an horu and a half trying to find this person...we were even using a GPS! It was way the heck out in St. Gabriel (which is right by the levee [the border of our area] so it's justified.) We found him, nut he wasn't home and so we had a 3 minute conversation with his wife.
We saw Monica, a less active who was really excited to have us come by. A little too excited, really. We're unsure of her motives.
We saw Roberta, taught part of the plan of salvation, and ate Chinese at Sister Welch's with Tiger Bend. We came home and planned and that was the end. So not really that exciting. Except we did have to reschedule a dinner appointment with a General Authority [we have a member of the Seventy in our ward] because our Stake President invited us over first."
Well, today was also interesting. Mostly the end. We did switch back, and went to lunch with the STLs at IHOP [talk about acronyms, goodness]. We met this kid (well, adult) Alex, who's mom was a member but lost her testimony on her mission to France. He;s agnostic. I felt so sad for him and his mom. But liunch was good. We came home and I got a card from Mom, Dad and Katie wishing me a happy year mark. It was a monkey riding an ostrich. That's pretty epic [the card is in my journal now]. Anyways, We saw Ms Conny and Ms BJ, and committed them to read and come to church.
We went to dinner at the Jolivettes, and had Pizza and talked about eternal families. The Spirit was so strong you could cut it with a knife. Man.
We came home from the jolivettes with the intent to weekly plan, but we were ahving crazy mood swings so we got shakes from sonic and regretted it. Came home, planned, and went to bed. Definitely regret tthat shake.
...what just happened? The weirdest breakfast of my wholl mission, that's for sure. Thus I am writing now at 9:35 AM lest I forget.
So we get up and have coordination with the elders (Fitts went out of town) at McDonalds [It's the end of the month. Most everyone is broke.] Fisrt off, we went to the wrong Mickey D's so we had to backtrack like 5 miles (grr) to the one on Jones Creek. I order my breakfast and we're eating and coordinating when this old lady comes up and hugs me. She says 'I thought I would never see you again!' I have no idea who she is. No. Clue. she just starts talking about cooking, and looks at Elder Griffin and stops and says [I can't get the vocal expression, so you're just going to have to do your best] Hello. Hellllooo. Helllllllloooooo." Totally checks him out. Totally hitting on him. She's like 70. Then out of the blue [I repeat, we are in the middle of McDonald's] puts her hands on her hips and starts singing Whitney Houston. So confusing. She talks about how her husband talks all the time and when he comes up he;s like dead silent. So they go and sit down and Sister Stephens bursts out laughing. So hard that somoen else comes up to her and says 'thanks for making me smile. your laugh made my day. Now I get to go make people miserable!' The. Weirdest. Breakfast. Ever.
Well, the rest of the day went pretty well. We came back and did studies, then went ot a seafood place for lunch with a member. I had catfish and etoufee. I didn't think I would like catfish when I cam down here, but I also didn't think I would say yall/ We see how well that went. We saw Esther and read about enoch, then went to the Putnams and picked up McKayla. She came out with us as we blew like 40 miles and ended up only teaching Ms April, Gene's neighbor [like 3 miles from where we started]. But it was a really powerful lesson and the Spirit was super strong!
We dropped McKayla off and went inside for a bit...which turned out to be 2 hours and a dinner later. I shared Elder Virgin's hair story with McKayla and Meaghan. We had grilled chicken and corn on the cob with baked beans.
We came back and finall weekly pl,anned. It was definitely a good, exhausting, and crazy day! I don't know if I coudl describe it any better.
Man alive, what a day. Actually it wasn't terrible so why did I just write that? Church went pretty well today, really! people spoke on service and the sacrament. BJ was there! We taught relief society on Elder Bednar's talk "Bear Up their Burdens with ease". IT turnde out pretty well.
We came home and slept for a bit, then we went to go see Lee in the nursing home and Mama and Mame again. Mame wasn't qutie as tame this time, but it was still nto the worst I've seen her. She's crazy. We went to the Stake President's for dinner (yum!) and shared a message about patience, That was it!! What a week.
So that was my week. Everything's going pretty well right now. Still adjusting to life in the city, and I still miss having a small ward. but if I had to choose a ward to be in, this would be it.
Let's see. This week we finalyl get to go to the temple with Becky. I am so excited. Like, this day has been my sanity for the last while. Since we foudn out about it. I am freaking out a little bit.
President Hansen is still adjusting to life, but he's doing well. He's got 6 kids and the last 2 are in college at BYU. So it's just him and his wife. But it's still weird to be in his ward.
I think that's it...I cant' think of anything else to add. Good luck at NARAM, dad! Tell everyone hello. And good luck as Katie prepares to leave!
Love yall!
Sister Steele

Humility and Patience July 21st

This week was both really frustrating and really good! Every single day this week, as we walked out of the apartment to go something our plans would fall through. It was really frustrating and I had to keep reminding myself that I am working on patience and Sister Stephens is working on humility as our Christlike attributes. But! Thursday we met this media referral (as in someone wnet online and requested that we go visit them) and he had a ton of his friends over. He was really looking for some financial help, so we couldn't help him too much there. We thought it was going to be a bad time, but it turned out that we were led there so we could meet Kalen. I love where it says in Preach My Gospel that "perhaps you have been led to this person because someone else in the home or neighborhood is ready for the gospel." I've really found that to be true. Kalen came to church this week, only 3 days after we met her! It was a really powerful testimony that God prepares people to be in the places they are at the times they are.

Something I've began to discover, especially here in the south is that the only way we can even teach people is if they have a spiritual need. Like King Lamoni needed to relieve his feelings of guilt, I noticed especially with Kalen that she has a need, and that need makes her teachable. It's all over in the scriptures. When we're teachable, we're willing to learn and trust and change. But most of the people we see, the ones we think are "ready-made Mormons" (as in the amazing Baptists, Catholics, and Pentecostals we get to work with) are the ones who are comfortable where they are. It's those who are seeking for something more that we're able to reach and teach. I can count on on hand throughout my entire mission the number of investigators who have been above the poverty line. They are sincere about wanting to change and I love them so much and want them to be happy, and I know that the gospel can make them happy. Kalen has recognized her need and is now willing to listen--and act. it's a cool experience to have.
Also. I LOVE the Book of Mormon. Seriously. It has given me so much comfort and counsel in the last week. It really is the word of God. If you need help, go to the scriptures. They will lead you where you need to go.
We got to eat dinner with the Alexandria missionries this week because they had MLC (Missionary leadership council), so I saw Elder Virgin, Elder Ware, and Sister Ogden. It was SO nice to see them but also hard to say goodbye. Hopefully Elder Virgin and Ryan, as well as Elder Castro and Sister Hoskins will be coming down for Becky's temple date, but I have missed them a lot. It's hard being isolated from old friends, and it's even harder knowing that everyone is starting to go home.
Let's see. We have exchanges this week, which means that Sister Lindstrom and I get to celebrate our year mark together! That's gonna be fun. It rained a lot this week and so it's super humid but in the low 90s so it's not unbearable.
Also, I have found that I really love running. We run for half an hour in the mornings now and it's super addictive! I'm excited to be addicted to something other than sleep :)
Um! I think that's it for this week. Kalen was really the only big news.
Good quote, though: We got told we have a free ticket to heaven by a drunk woman who just had told us to never come back to her house. That was fun. And she was an assignment from the stake president. That was even more awkward.
We don't get our whole pday today because there's an 18 year old member from Utah who was in a really bad car accident a few weeks ago down here and is in the hospital, so we're going to see her today with our Relief Society president. Other than that we don't have anything interesting going on today!
Hope yalls day/week goes well! Good luck Katie with your farewell! Send me a copy of your talk!
Love you! To the two siblings who I hope still get my letters, hello! I hope everything is going well for you. I assume I would have heard if it wasn't.
The church is true, the book is blue!
THE Sister Steele (for now)

New Transfer, New Faces July 14th

Hello there! hope everyone is doing well this fine July. This week was crazy, as all weeks in the mission are. I think it will be an interesting transfer, but Sister Stephens and I get along just fine :) I actually knew her before because she was in the Alexandria Zone before I got transferred. She was in the district with Elder Virgin last transfer so we have all the same friends :) and for once, Katie didn't know her before I did! (Since that's happened with the last two companions).
We were super busy with lessons this week, but I think it's the first time my whole mission we didn't do any service. I was a little sad by that :( No one came to church of our investigators, but we did have a really good success with one of our investigators doing the Stop Smoking workshop! It was cool because Sister baird and I had been prepping for it, and then Sister Stephens got here and it turns out that they were going to to it for someone that week too! So we were both prepped for the workshop and it went realyl really well. He's still goign strong!
While there was a lot of lessons etc, there's not realyl anything interesting for me to say. Aside from this:
1. I got to see all my friends this week at transfers aside from Sister Hoskins (Elder V had to drive the Alexandria elders down), Elder Castro is training, Elder Ryan got transferred and the STLs from Alexandria got changed around. So it was awesome!
2. BECKY IS GOING THROUGH THE TEMPLE ON THE 26TH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and I still get to be there for it!! I am SO SO SO excited.
3. We get to help out with youth conference this week! it will be fun :)
4. Interviews are this week so we really get to get to know President Hansen. Plus we get a temple trip tomorrow night! Yay!
Alright, I think that's it for the family email....hopefully yall have a great week! Love ya! 
Sister Steele

4th of July

 4th of July cupcakes

Changing of the Guard: A New Mission President June 30th

This has been one of the weirdest weekends ever. Not because anything super unusual happened, but because all the usual things are happening, just under a different mission president. President Hansen got here on Saturday night and came to church on Sunday. When we came up and introduced ourselves, Sister Hansen hugged us and just started to tear up, saying "finally there is someone I can hug!". The next thing she asks us is if she could come out teaching with us. Sister Baird and I looked at each other and said sure, she definitely could! We couldn't tell her when or where, because...well we didn't have any appointments et up. So we might have been a bit irreverent while ward business was going on and texted several people to set up some appointments (since unfortunately they weren't in church). But it worked, and we went and saw a recent convert who hasn't been back to church since her baptism about 2 months ago....awkward.  But it was really good. Sister Hansen did well, and it was really clear that she was overwhelmed and missed her family. So I think sister Baird and I are going to be a bit of a lifeline for a her for a while.
No, we didn't get 50 lessons this week, we were super wiped and last pday wasn't exactly relaxing. We got 24, which is still better than any other week in Vidalia, but we had to sort of regain our speed. With the Assistants gone all the time for the next month and the Tiger Bend Elders on bikes, we sort of are single covering an entire ward. It's super busy and fun, but also super exhausting. So we're going to try and stick between 20 and 30 lessons for the next little bit until things start to slow down with the Assistants. Elder Griffin goes home in August so after that we should be a little less busy.
Umm...what happened this week? We picked up a few new investigators! And I'm slowly but surely getting better at volleyball. We play on Saturday nights. We have zone conference this week, transfers next week, and interviews after that!
Sorry. I'm a bum when it comes to emailing. As for the 4th, we don't have any set plans. We might be going over to some members but we're not sure which ones yet. We'll go somewhere. But it is a proselyting day, so we do have to at least do a little work.
Love yall!