Sister Sydney Barber

Sister Sydney Barber
Sister Sydney Barber

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Keeping it Short

Sorry! Have to keep it short this week! Everything is great! We have transfers this week, but other than that not a lot has changed! I am so sorry it has to be so short! I promise to write more next week! 

Love Sister Barber

                       Liz and kids ran into Sister Barber by accident in Baskin Robins Ewe Beach

The Clevelands shared this as a response to a previous letter from Sister Barber:
We are enjoying reading Sister Barber's missionary blog. Located about 2 blocks from the Honolulu Tabernacle, we drove by Itchy Butt several times a week. It never appealed to us to stop and eat there.  
-Russ & Sharon -

Wednesday, June 24, 2015


Hello all! I have so much to tell you!! Last week we went hiking as a district. The hike was to this lookout spot, but we didn't make it all the way, because it started pouring down rain about halfway through. It was a blast though!

Spiritual Experiences:  The Mendez family, the family that was baptized just a while ago was going through some really big challenges this past week, but they were amazing as they pushed through them. At the end of the week Sister Soriao and I were talking with them, and their faith has only grown as they have struggled. They are such an example to me.
 Another family, who has been taking care of the Mendez family, just found out that they have a week to get out of their apartment, because the owner wasn't paying their rent. The husband is on the Mainland right now, so the wife has to do everything. We went to help her pack, and she started getting kind of teary-eyed. I feel bad, because she does so much for others, but she is strong and she knows that she will be taken care of.
 The investigator that I said we may need to drop has started progressing again! When I went on exchanged, Sister Lea'Toa and I went to visit him, and he really was touched by our message. He even said that his neighbor is also looking for a religion and asked if he could come to the lessons. We are so excited!!
 One of our less-active members just got her temple recommend renewed and is coming to church every Sunday, so that is pretty exciting as well!
 Also, Rachele is going to be baptized on July 12th! We have seen so many blessings and miracles!!!

Funny Experiences:  I got Kati Stone's wedding announcement in the mail, so that was pretty exciting! Her fiance looks a lot like an Elder from my district, so my roommate and I teased him a little about it.
We had stake conference and a little 7-year old boy went up to speak. His talk was about how he knows that Jesus loves him. He would say something and then sing part ofa primary song to go along with it. About halfway through he started crying, but he kept on going! It was one of the cutest things that I have ever seen in my entire life.
Sister Soriao had a dream the other night, and she was trying so hard to describe what happened in it, but she kept pronouncing things weird. She was trying to say that "there was a river and it was starting to flood," but I heard, "there was the reaper and it was starting the blood." Kind of gory, but it was hilarious. 
We have had a lot of funny experiences while tracting. A lot of people try to pretend like they don't hear us when we are talking to them, and they flat out ignore us. One lady pretended like she had a phone call. The funniest time though was when we saw an old lady across the street, so we started walking over to talk to her. She saw us and started speed walking down the street, almost running. Sister Soriao sped up and basically ran up to her, and started talking to her. She didn't notice that she was walking on a bed of thorns though, so as soon as the thorns started poking through her shoes and she had to stop, the woman took off again. It was so funny. 

I have learned so much this week! This is the last week of my first transfer, and I feel like a completely different person. I love this gospel, and I have seen the change and the miracles that come from taking it seriously. I want to live every day as if the Savior was standing right beside me. He is so real. His atonement is so real. His love for us is so real. He is our brother and he has done everything for us. I am so grateful that I have this time to give my brothers and sisters here in Hawaii the opportunity to also come to know those things. 

I love you all. Until next week! 

Love, Sister Sydney Barber

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Tender Mercies

Hello!! I have had such an amazing week!!! On Tuesday we went to the temple! It was so great! I love the temple so much. I love how strong the spirit is there. I wish I could have stayed there all day. After the temple, we went by the fruit stands on our way home. We got mango otai. It was AmAzInG! I love otai. After that, we had an appointment with Miriama and Mark. . I asked Miriama last time if she would read 3 Nephi 17. That is my favorite chapter in the Book of Mormon, because it shows how much Jesus loves us. I asked her how she liked it, and she said that she really liked it. She liked the parts where he healed the sick especially. After that, we talked to them about the Plan of Salvation. She really likes it and says that it makes sense. While we were talking, Miriama's sister came in and started asking a ton of questions. She was really interested and asked if she could join in our discussions. Of course we said yes! On Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday Sister Soriao tracted a lot. Usually, we don't tract that much, because it isn't very effective, especially in Ewa. We felt that we should tract though, so we did. I am so glad that we did! We met a ton of people. Not all of them are seriously interested, but a few really are. We are really excited to see where things go with them. We had exchanges on Friday night and Saturday. I was with Sister Lea' Toa. She is fantastic!! We got along super super well! I am running out of time, but I have a lot to tell you still! I guess it will have to wait until next week! I love you all!!! Love, Sister Barber

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

blog link

It's crazy how time flies! I have already been out for over a month, and I have been in the field for three weeks! There is so much to say and such little time to say it. This week, Sister Soriao and I did a lot of service. We were able to clean the U.S.S Missouri on Wednesday with our zone, which was incredible, and we helped a family move. Some things that are interesting about the mission so far: 

1. I am learning Tagolog. There are a TON of Filipinos here, so I am learning Tagolog. Sister Soriao is fluent, so she is teaching me. I am teaching her English. Her English is super super good, but there are somethings, like past tense, there are a little difficult for her. It's amazing how many different languages are spoken here. There are missionaries who have to learn Samoan, Tongan, Chukees (Micronesian), Tagolog, and lots more languages. They were all called English speaking, but they ended up in wards that only speak those languages. It will be interesting to see how many languages I end up learning. 

2. We had another visit with Rachel. She is getting more and more excited about her baptism. I met her daughter Cameron this week, and she reminds me so much of Aspen!! She is only nine, but she is about Aspen's size. She's a real sweetheart, just like Aspi. 

3. We had to go to Honolulu for a meeting, and Sister Soriao introduced me to the most popular missionary restaurant there. The name of it is... Itchy Butt... yeah... I was kind of hesitant at first, but it is actually really good!! Sister Warner (our mission president's wife) hates the name, so she just calls it, "that chicken place." 

4. We are getting further with our primary and PMG classes. We talked to the ward counsel, and they are game, so we are going to try to get the other wards on board now. Supa exciting!!!

We are teaching one investigator who we may have to drop pretty soon. He is an older guy, and his wife is a member. He is a real sweet heart, and he loves having us visit, but he is not progressing. The problem is that he refuses to pray. He will read the B.O.M, when he has time, but he won't pray about what he has read. He says that he will "pray when he feels like it." Yeah... It is really frustrating, because we can bear our testimonies and read the Book of Mormon with him all we want, but until he takes the steps to know for himself if what we have been teaching is true, there is no point in us meeting with him anymore. We are going to meet with him one more time, to try to see if we can help him understand that, but it doesn't look to promising. We are praying and fasting a lot. 

On a happier not, we are going to the temple tomorrow!! I am so excited!!! I have missed going every week. After the temple, we have an appointment with Miriam and Mark. Mark is a member and Miriam is an investigator. We are going to invite Miriam to be baptized tomorrow, so I will keep you updated on that. Yesterday was so awesome!! Sister Perry, an older lady in our ward, came to church for the first time in months. She is in a wheelchair, so it has been difficult to get her to church. Her caretaker, who is the sweetest lady on earth, took her yesterday. Sister Perry was so happy to be there!! We had an appointment with Rachel and a few other people after church and then we went home and studied. After study, we made dinner. We made, or rather, tried to make chicken. It was pretty disgusting, but at least we weren't hungry anymore. ;)

My testimony and love for this gospel has grown so much, even in just this past week. I feel so blessed to be able to share it with others. The Book of Mormon is so true!! I have seen it change lives, including my own. I know that I haven't been out very long, but I can tell that I am already so different, because my knowledge of the gospel and my testimony of the Book of Mormon has grown. The Church is true. Jesus Christ died for each of us, so that we can be cleansed from our sins and can return to our Father in Heaven. I have met so many different people who are facing countless trials in their lives, but they still press forward in the church, and strive to build others, because of their faith in the Savior and Heavenly Father. I've been thinking a lot about the atonement lately, and thinking that maybe instead of just seeing our challenges as things to get through, so that we can become stronger, we can look at them as a sacred opportunity to understand our Savior a little bit more. He felt the pains of all of us, and because of that, we don't have to feel alone when we are experiencing that pain. If we think of our Savior especially during those times we are struggling, we can understand him more, because he went through those same struggles in the Garden of Gethsemane. I know that I have a lot of flaws, and that repentance is something that I need in my life daily. It is painful to do that, because I am prideful, and change is something difficult to do when you are prideful, but I have felt the peace and comfort that repentance brings. A little bit of pain is so worth the change that repentance brings. 

I love you all and I hope that you are all doing well. Stay safe and remember to always rely on the Savior. 

Sister Sydney Barber

Wednesday, June 3, 2015


My family and I had the wonderful opportunity of having your lovely daughter over for dinner tonight! I just returned home from my mission 2 months ago, and what a blessing it is to have your daughters sweet spirit in our home! I could only hope that I portrayed a least of the spirit I've felt this evening! Thank you for supporting, and loving your daughter enough to serve me, my family, and the people of Hawaii! May Heavenly Father continue to bless your family on behalf of your daughters faithful service! If there's anything that I can do for you, or for you FOR Sister Barber, please let me know!! Take care and endure to the end......enduring well!! Much Aloha, Sister Reyna Ae :)

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Sister Barber's in Oahu!


We had your niece for dinner on Sunday. We took this picture. I figure you or your sister could post it on Facebook so more people in your family can see it. Have a good one.

Ben Thomsen

Miracle May

Hello all! 
I have seen so many miracles and I've only been here for two weeks! I don't even know where to start! 

So I will just start with the baptism on Saturday. This baptism was such a miracle!! The investigator's family had all been baptized recently, but he couldn't because he had some serious things he had to take care of first. We were waiting for the First Presidency to write back to see if he could be baptized. President Warner received a letter in the mail on Tuesday that said our investigator could be baptized, he called us to give us the good news, and then he told us to baptize him on Saturday. Saturday! We started making phone calls and printed out a program and told as many of the members as we could. Of course, since it was such late notice, most of the members couldn't attend, but our district all came, our zone leaders were there, his family was there, and some of the members were there. It was a miracle even that we got everything organized in time. 

Okay. Miracle #2. Ariel. Ariel is a close family friend of our recently baptized convert. She was at the baptism, and has been coming to church with the family. We invited her to take the discussions and she accepted. We have our first lesson with her this week. 

Miracle #3. Rachael. Rachael is a referral from the zone leaders. She is married to a member and her best friend is also a member. We met with her yesterday and she told us that she feels like she has been being prepared for the gospel her whole life. We committed her to be baptized on June 27th. 

We also have another investigator who has committed to baptism, but she still needs to come to church. Rachael is a golden investigator though. She has two little kids who want to get baptized as well, but there are some issues with the father that we have to sort out first. Anyways, the Lord has been so good to us! We are still working on the PMG and Baptism classes, but I am still optimistic! The members are so incredible and talented! They will be a great strength to the work! I know it! I am so grateful for this gospel! I love how it is centered on family, because I know it has blessed my family. We are ALL family, because we are all children of our Heavenly Father, and I want ALL of my family to be able to be together forever. I know that I don't have control over anyone else, because we all have our agency, but I do have control over myself. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father directed me towards a mission, so that I can at least try to help others be blessed by this gospel. 

Some other news on the side. There has been talk of a hurricane that is supposed to hit soon. I don't know if it is actually going to happen, but we have been asked to prepare anyways. I haven't heard anything else about it, but yeah. Anyways. Just something interesting. 

I love you all so much! Thank you for your letters and support! 

Love, Sister Sydney Barber