Sister Sydney Barber

Sister Sydney Barber
Sister Sydney Barber

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

First week in the field!

Oh man! This week has been crazy! It has been wonderful though! Yesterday was holiday, so we didn't get to email, but we have some time today. I am just going to share some special experiences, because that's all i really have time for. First, I just have to say that I am very happy to say that I have lost weight since I have been here. Not gained. I know I have only been here for a week, but I am very optimistic. Our ward had a good mix of Hauli and Polynesian blood, but they are all wonderful. We have had dinner every night. My trick is to control what I eat for breakfast and lunch and then exercise. I have already lost ten pounds since being at the MTC. Anyways, I am healthy. My trainer, Sister Soriao is wonderful! She is from the Philippines. She is small and dark like me! Our district is great! We have four Elders and then Sister Soriao and me. The Elders remind me a lot of my friends from back home. They're really nice guys. The work is pretty slow here, but I am determined to change that. Our ward has so much potential to be fantastic missionaries. They are just a little shy when it comes to sharing the gospel. Sister Soriao said that they are supposed to have a Preach My Gospel class for the ward every week, but it is usually overlooked. Also, in ward counsel, one of the sisters brought up the idea of having a night where investigating children can come to take lessons from the missionaries, so they can understand a little bit better, so they will be more prepared for baptism. Bishop said that the children who are coming in for interviews have no idea about the gospel, so he has to make sure that they understand before they are baptized. When i heard these things, I told Sister Soriao that we are going to geth the Preach My Gospel class and the Primary Power class going. Her concern was that it would be too much for us, so I suggested that we combine with the other two wards in the building. That way, we have three sets of missionaries helping. When we are done, we will have three wards of missionaries, and the children will be more prepared for when it comes time for the baptismal interview. I really want to make this happen, and hopefully it will be effective, but we will see. As far as investigators, we don't have too many. We have a lot of less-active Members though. That is who we have been focusing on. My hope is that when they ward starts to become more confident in sharing the gospel, the fellowshipping will come too. The ward is great. I have faith in them. So, something cool! I have cousins in the ward! Kind of. I found out that one of the members is related to Lisa Keawekane!! They're cousins! That was way cool! They seem super nice, so it will be good to get to know them better. Also, a lot of people here know cousin Michelle. One guy went to school with her, and then Auntie Loke (one of the sisters in the ward) coached volleyball with her! It is so nice to feel that I have a huge family here already. Oh. Also, this is kind of funny. So, I found out on Saturday that the missionaries usually teach the gospel principles class. Well, I prepared a little, but I figured that Sister Soriao would take the lead. Here is the funny part: she never stood up. She had me teach the whole lesson by myself. haha yeah.... It was good though. I got to know the members better, and I learned a lot. Sister Soriao is the best. She has helped me grow a lot. Anyways, that's about all I have time for. I love you all! I will be sure to write more next week! Aloha!


Sister Barber

Monday, May 25, 2015

Sister Barber's arrival

Aloha Brother Barber!

Attached are a few photos of Sister Barber with President and Sister Warner and her group. Sister Barber is a delightful young woman, and she will be a wonderful missionary!

I only have your email, so if you can forward to your wife and send me her email, I’ll update our files.


Sister Gardner
Hawaii Honolulu Mission Secretary


Day 1

Hello! I have just finished my first day here in Hawaii! I love the President and Sister Warner! They are the sweetest! We didn't get p-day yesterday, so we just have enough time to send a quick message to our parents to say that we are okay. I am meeting my trainer, Sister Sario, tomorrow morning, and I will be serving in the Ewa Beach 1st Ward in the Waipahu zone. It is on Oahu, so it's going to be nice not having to get on a plane again. I think I can deal with a little break from planes, after the 6 hour flight here. I am happy, I am healthy, and I am excited to get to work! I love you all so much, and I am excited to tell you all about the adventures I have throughout the rest of the week! Aloha!

Sister Barber

Thursday, May 14, 2015

So it begins....

Hello, family and friends! I am going to try to get as much as I can down in the time that I have, but I hope you are all doing well, and that your lives have been as blessed as mine has in the past week and a half. I have so much to say! I guess I will just start at the beginning. I am just writing journal passages as my letters, so it is easier to just copy down. 




   At the airport today, I met an Elder who was also leaving for the MTC, so I talked to him for a bit. He is serving in Argentina, so that's cool Anyways, once the plane landed, I went straight to baggage claim, and then I met up with the shuttle. Two Elders were on the shuttle with me. One is going to Jamaica and the other is going to New Mexico. The driver was nice and joked with me the whole time. It was nice, because it made me feel less nervous. Once we arrived at the MTC, an Elder came out with an older brother to help with our bags. The Elder happened to be Elder Thomas Stock, whom I know from the PMP at school. We studied Middle East together with Morgan Parsons. That was a lot of fun to see him. All of the missionaries that got there early introduced themselves, and then we helped with luggage. I met a sister from Grants Pass. She is going to the West Indies. After that, we went to lunch and then went to our classrooms, where I met my district. There are only 8 of us, and we are the only district in our zone. My district is made up of 4 elders and 4 sisters. Half of us are going to Hawaii and the rest are going to Jamaica. My companion, Sister Smith, is going to Jamaica. Sister Smith is wonderful. She is so bubbly and sweet. She is really tall and she is beautiful. She was studying opera before she came, so she is very talented musically. We hit it off right away. The other people in my district are Elder Poe, Elder Lybbert, Elder Galbraith (who I met on the shuttle), Sister Frost, and Sister Biggs. They are all SO great. After we got to know each other, and our teachers, we went to classes and then had a meeting where we all asked questions to an investigator. It was interesting to hear the different questions, and to see how they were answered by each investigator. After that, we went to dinner, and then met our branch presidency. They are fantastic! After the meeting, we all went home and then went to bed. It was a great first day!



     So... we slept in... our alarm didn't go off. We had companionship study and other study time, so we got up, got dressed, and ran to class. We studied until breakfast and then Sister Smith and I went to get her signed up for musical performance auditions. After we got signed up, we went to class and then went back for Sister Smith's audition. After the audition, we went to a meeting. In the meeting, we talked about our missionary purpose. I realized how important members are going to be in bringing forth the work. I love this gospel so much. It applies to EVERYONE. We can all learn from it. We talked about how, to fulfill our purpose of bringing others unto Christ, we must be our first convert. It is so so true. We also talked about the importance of the fundamentals of the gospel in our classes. Something I love about the fundamentals, is that they are all about love. Love for our companion, love for our investigators, love for our members, love for everyone, but most importantly, love for God and our Savior, Jesus Christ. Okay. Super random tangent, but something funny happened at breakfast today. Sister Smith and I walked into the cafeteria and these Japanese Elders were eating breakfast burritos, so Sister Smith walked up and asked one of them if they could tell us where they got them. He had no idea what she was saying though, because he didn't speak English, so he just looked at her, put his hands up to his mouth and said, " I sorry, Sister." It was so cute. Anyways, we have started teaching our teachers as investigators. Our investigator is Andre. He is looking for a real relationship with God. Our first lesson with him went really well. Sister Smith and I set another date to meet with him. After the role play, we went over the Restoration, and practiced explaining it, using the pamphlet. Then we went to dinner. After dinner, we had interviews with the Branch President, and then we got our assignments. Sister Smith and I were assigned as Sister Training Leaders. We are very excited to fulfill our purpose through our new assignment. 



      Today was so great! We all woke up and went to the gym. It was wonderful. Sister smith and I did cardio and weights. After the gym, we went to breakfast and then to the classroom to study. Sister Smith and I, during our companionship inventory, decided that we needed to strengthen our companionship, and encourage the other sisters to strengthen theirs as well. We set goals to accomplish this. After our inventory, we did some online training, and then we met with Andre again. The spirit was so strong throughout the lesson. Andre had lots of questions, which ended up having us scrap our planned lesson, and go by the Spirit. Sister Smith invited him to be baptized, but he said he wanted to learn more first. Sister Smith then asked him to read 2 Nephi 31:17-18 with us. he read the verses and the spirit was so strong. Sister Smith then asked a second time, if he would follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized. This time, he accepted. Sister Smith is amazing. Today really testified to me that I am here for a reason, and that I am in the right place, doing the right thing. 




      Today has been a roller coaster. We woke up on time and went to a service project, had breakfast, and worked out. After the gym, we got ready for class and then went to class. We taught Andre again. It went well, but it felt different. Sister Smith and I, after the lesson started feeling super down, and so did the rest of the district. Brother Hanson noticed and told us to go to different rooms in our companionships, and pray to know why we are here. After praying and talking to Sister Smith, we rediscovered our purpose, and started to feel a ton better. We realized that this mission isn't about us. It is about the Savior, and it is about our brothers and sisters that don't have the gospel in their lives. It was very eye opening, and very humbling. 



     So, yesterday was hard, but I learned a lot from it. Today, we had a lot of meetings before church. They were really great though. We spent the whole day with our branch presidency, so that was really nice. I gave a talk in sacrament meeting, which was fun. Tonight, we heard the talk, "Character of Christ," by Elder Bednar. All I can say is that it was life-changing. 


 Well, I am out of time, but I hope you will enjoy this letter. I got as much down as I could. I hope you all have a wonderful week. I love you all so much!




Sister Barber