Sunshine in Sydney, Sunshine in my Soul

Well somehow another week has been and gone!
For me it has a been a wonderful week, probably the laziest yet most relaxing I have had since returning. I know for others this has been a week that will have leave a memory on the rest of our lives. I hope we all choose to do something weekly that will impact our future selves for the better!

The week started for me bright and early about 2:40am monday morning, getting dressed, eating, and bustling into the car to the air port for a 4:30am check in! It was a wonderful flight, I enjoy Flying with Qantas airlines. Their fruit platter breakfast option is honestly my favourite thing I ever eat on planes along with orange juice and water. As the plane first lifted into the crisp monday morning air we were greeted by the most gorgeous sunrise.  One of those breath taking moments, where if only time would stand still. Where in that moment you can feel  the Love of the Lord whispering ” I created this for you” wellington sunrise
I love these moments, natural, unchanged by man, the Glowing deep orange of the sun sending playful rays along the purple and blue sky. Reflecting and bouncing off the deep green of the mountain ranges. The lakes as though liquid gold nestled among the emerald forest floor. No camera could ever fully capture the beauty of this view.
I arrived to wonderful 33 degree Celsius weather,  not crazy sunny but nice and warm. The first view I had of this wonderful country made me insanely happy! just the cliffs all around vaucluse, watson’s bay, and malabar. the city sky lines and even the industrial areas! first after going through customs. I went and got myself an Opal card for all of the public Transport in NSW. Now I love the Opal card system… unless you want to access the airport, then the price is ridiculous! (seriously $16.50 for three stops is pricey) Well after a train from the international air port to Central station, transferring to the T1 line form central to Hornsby. I finally made it to Thornleigh station. Where my wonderful friend Rachel was. That hug of finally being reunited without a serious 5/10 minute time limit was the best. We went to her house and just sat on her bed for a bit and talked. Ate lunch and laughed. Followed by a trip to the mission Office!
It was almost like i slipped back through into another reality, climbing between two worlds. That of home life and the things that New Zealand holds, and the of the rest of the world. Into my place and the city the became my playground. I may not know all of it yet, but these streets feel like home!  It was great to stop by the familiar temple grounds, see the wonderful office couples that I was so blessed to serve alongside. The blessed opportunity I had to stop by and visit President and Sister Checketts!
Then when leaving the grounds I saw none other than the Bishop of my last Area who came up and hugged me. not going to lie this was the strangest thing ever, we always saw Him there as missionaries so to attempt to shake His hand and to be greeted with a hug, almost felt like I was breaking rules… But hey I am not a missionary. How lovely it felt to be back!
Family home evening was great, we all talked about General conference! then Played a quick round of UNO… guess who lost, yes that is me!

Tuesday consisted of a nice quick get ready for the day and out of the door by 7:40am to catch the train into Central, get lost trying to find the address for a Job interview and find ourselves down the dodgiest looking alley way! Just completely dead and empty except two men chilling having smoko! After running late and getting in contact with the company. Having everything sorted we decided to make the best of our situation.. laugh, have fun p1100996and then find our way back to the station. I love this, getting lost and find my way to the insides of the city. Not the clean polished streets of the CBD or the busy building lined streets of people in impractical fashion and the suits, where the pace involves a hidden Jog and the hum of the streets become ingrained into you veins. But the back streets, the naked undressed up side of a city, where people seek solace from the pace, to become an enigma. This is backstage, the side of the show that others don’t often see. Without what happens here, the show would never perform. The pace would break and things may possible stand still. (Heck maybe occasionally this could be a good thing)
We made our way through the concrete jungle back to the station and headed out towards one of my favourite places for finding whilst a missionary. Bondi Junction!
Bondi Junction;p1110020
Here I introduced Rachel to the Mall (somewhere I had only been briefly) and the outside shopping area. We Picked up a few Items, browsed and had Lunch in the food court over looking the water and the city. seeing in view the Harbor Bridge and the Opera house.
We spent time just enjoying that which we had, and doing those things we haven’t done in a long time.. Like fussy Jean shopping 🙂

p1110016After a nice lunch and obtaining all that we wanted we caught the 333 bus to Bondi beach!
Where I had sorbet and Rachel had a savory scone! I enjoyed the fresh ocean water for a lovely refreshing swim, I may have got wiped out by a solid wave, much to Rachel’s enjoyment as she watched.

p1110055
We discussed many things from missions, the Gospel and just how great God is throughout the day! we read emails from those we love and we laughed. We enjoyed the side of Just living and having a friend to share it with!
Then the nice hour and a half journey home began. Arriving a little before 8pm to find the missionaries having correlation … Elder Bush whom I served with out in penrith Zone looked around to say hi and i swear He saw a Ghost “Hi! wait?!? what?! how?!” hehe
funniest moment, so after eating and them finishing their meeting I got to say hello to all four missionaries  that I had been blessed to serve alongside.
Rachel and I then sat on her bed with food and watched The errand of Angels and the beginning of the fellowship of the ring! stopping at 2am realizing we should probably get some sleep!

Wednesday Rachel, Her wonderful Mother, and I all went and did the 10am temple session! How wonderful it is to be in the temple with those we love, to be blessed to take through some of their family names as well was such an honor! I wish I could just talk all about this. But just the Joy of being there again, not Just at the temple of the Lord but at one I love so dearly with people I love as family is an absolute blessing.
We all then had lunch at home, went to the mall to pick up a few things. followed by dinner together and Then getting ready for institute.
I have never been to institute outside of the Wellington region. So it was almost a giant culture shock! A huge amount of YSA all gathered together. We talked about prophets and their role and how we follow them, it was amazing ot be somewhere where the YSA  engage and respect their teacher. It felt so good, it felt like the first lesson in a while where i was able to enjoy and ponder personally on a fer aspects of the Gospel.
Afterwards we Just hung out till about 10:40pm I met a lot of lovely people and enjoyed it very much. On the way home Rachel and I decided we were hungry so drove by Maccas to grab a snack. so we sat in the car and ate. Discussing different experiences we’ve had on missions and even a rather lengthy discussion on specific Gospel topics.
The feeling of complete peace I felt in the car home that night was amazing, the feeling of being in the right place with the right people. Another one of those raw moments, where it doesn’t need the catchy background music or even sound at all, no makeup covered photograph moments. Just those pure raw special moments where it feels like everything finally has aligned and the puzzle pieces are coming together. It just feels … GOOD!

Thursday Morning We woke up and Rachel and I headed off for another temple session, stopping by the mission office yet again to say farewell to the couple in there.
This session again was just lovely being with my best friend within those walls. Know what although 3 years have past, we’ve lived in different countries. served different people and spoke different languages. There is Joy in being united as Sisters, as Daughters of God! The friendship that although was once built upon mutual ground has grown deeper as our love o the Gospel has grown. our Friendship now has more of a base upon the important principles of eternity than that of the World!
Afterwards we went home, packed my luggage all up, had lunch and headed off!
However sitting at Thornleigh station a tradey came and sat beside us, so out of habit I ask how he was, he had the thickest accent I had heard in a long time, clearly from by liverpool England area … So we started talking, all three of us, asking about all my luggage and explaining  about how i had served a mission here and was taking it back home. So conversation grew and changed, He asked what is different about our church… GOOD QUESTION! SO next thing we know we are explaining prophets and who Thomas S Monson is, The Book of Mormon and inviting Him to read it. testifying. The flow was pretty good and the ability having never taught together in our lives to fall into a good pace was incredible. As we departed ways at central station we even obtained His contact details!
Accidentally claiming a new investigator as RMs? oops why not! we made a friend 🙂
Getting on the next train to the Airport and saying “see ya” so soon and yet again made me feel as though my heart was getting torn yet again. When you dont see someone for a long time you learn to live life with just the online contact you almost find it hard to remember any other way but you remember the fun with fond memories! But when you finally are together you realize how much you missed it. You realize when face with separating again how life maybe was missing an important person from it. Let alone the country itself I love and the place I feel at home!
I cried, no denial!
Then arrived nice and early for my next flight, waited and checked in. Hung out in duty free for about an hour and got there perfectly in time for boarding!

Thursday morning after being p14724414_542021089330905_8970125121781464311_nicked up by my wonderful mother and driven home. I cut off about half of my hair length, due to a series of unfortunate events! That lead to it needing some serious health fix!  fell asleep around 3am and slept through mostly until almost 10am. feeling rather sickly. i unpacked luggage and did the things in needed to.
Saturday again feeling rather unwell slept in and did chores before taking the niece and nephew down to a sports activity at the stake center, followed by an epic ward Quiz night, where our team was just our small family… guess who won!!! woohoo familia!

Sunday, well happy Sabbath!
Seriously this is by far my favourite day of the week every week. However it is competing with an amazing time in sydney!
But the talks in Sacrament were wonderful, I found myself asking and reflecting on how i can improve spiritually and again continue to further consecrate myself to the Lord, to refine who I am and become more of who He want’s be to be as His daughter. The woman He needs me to be as a future wife and mother, to aid my family and the community around me!
My CTR lesson went great! and I committed them all to do something special for someone else this week.
After Church we had ward lunch, where I was claimed by one of the cutest 3 yr old’s ever at church who ran up and told me she had been looking for me so she could talk to me, then she proceeded to sit on my lap and tell me about nursery and what she did at church. Honestly these small moments make my heart so happy, the sweet pure love of a happy little face running to hug me makes my soul literally soar, the cuddles, the hand holding the fun little games. They are priceless moments!  As Jesus Christ said “Behold your little ones”
They are precious! But then if we turn that relationship between Heavenly Father and ourselves, we are his little ones and we are so precious in His eyes, every bit of interaction between us and Him is pure treasure to Him, He Cherish’s those moments . However unlike this wonderful little girl at church we may not run and hug Him physically or sit and talk face to face. We kneel before him and talk, we pour out our heart and in return sit and listen. He does speak to us! through our feelings and thoughts. We can feel His embrace and all encompassing love encircle us as we turn to Him and strive to not only know of Him, but come to Know him!

I pray we all will be able to strengthen That relationship with our Heavenly Father and our Saviour Jesus Christ, through sincere prayer and study! Paying attention to our feelings and being ever grateful for all that He does daily!

I love you all so very much, I don’t say this lightly!

~ C.A. Priston-Turner xx

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Mental illness an invisible war

Dia dhuit!

I hope we are all well and pressing forward. Because sometimes this isn’t easy.
I’ve thought about this post, and discussing this openly for a while. But unsure on if it will sit well with people. I want to discuss the daily effects of living with mental illness.
we will often hear about the crippling stages of depression or the all consuming effects of severe anxiety. But often I haven’t seen much aimed at those who have maybe fought their way out of those depths. Those who think they have mastered the illness and learnt how to be well healthy. But in reality they still suffer from the effects of it in their daily life.

I would in reflection of my own personal experiences  joyfully say I have come leaps and bounds in happiness and recovery compared to where i was 3 years ago. But am I truly 100% ?  well to be honest I may have never been. not until the Resurrection. Clinical mental illness can be things we may struggle with for a life time. Just as any other disease. Some may be born with diabetes, some develop it later in life, others may eventually beat the diabetes to be fine, others may not. So it is with Mental illness. No matter when, where, or why we struggle. It is real, it is hard and we cannot do it alone.
So although I was diagnosed with such illnesses at the age of 15, I had very clearly been seriously ill for at least 2-3 years already and with in hindsight years before. First clear signs probably before the age of 10, specially as i go back and review the things i used to write in journals or just the way i felt. Now in my early 20s I see what has changed and what hasn’t. Having spent time with counselors and psychologists, having been on medication. I’ve made massive progress, I am a completely different person compared to whom I once was. However this illness it still remains.

I want to focus specifically on two things I have personally struggled with, ones that are more common than we often want to Admit. Both depression and Anxiety.
I remember the moments when I was almost crippled and held down by the dense mist, unable to make connections mentally at the speed I had used to, the empty weight in my chest that slowly felt as though it was consuming me. To randomly be replaced with such intense panic as though my pulse swirled in my own head. where my Body would literally forget how to function for periods of time. Through much assistance, of medical professionals and the Lord I have overcome the severeness of the illness. For those who are still in this place it is possible. It may seem like it is not. But as it reads in Ether 12:27 :

 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.”

We cannot do this alone, this is where humility comes in. We need to accept the help we need, medical and spiritual. We can however follow the counsel in Alma 37: 35-37:

“Yea, and cry unto God for all thy support; yea, let all thy doings be unto the Lord, and whithersoever thou goest let it be in the Lord; yea, let all thy thoughts be directed unto the Lord; yea, let the affections of thy heart be placed upon the Lord forever.
     Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings, and he will direct thee for good; yea, when thou liest down at night lie down unto the Lord, that he may watch over you in your sleep; and when thou risest in the morning let thy heart be full of thanks unto God; and if ye do these things, ye shall be lifted up at the last day.” 

Give it to the Lord, pray unto Him for everything. Put your trust in Him, there is strength here. As we do so, we can make it through.
However we may wonder why sometimes when we do all that we can, we try our hardest and keep the commandments. That we may not feel the Joy or Happiness we have often been promised. We may question why, or what we did wrong to cause us to become that exception to the rule. we may ask ourselves if this promise was for everyone else but us. That maybe we have failed God and He doesn’t love us like he Loves others. This however is false Doctrine. He loves you and He want’s you to be happy. With mental illness, our brains do not let the correct messages to be passed, making it hard for us to feel these things. Or maybe they do pass through but not as completely as a healthy person. This is not your fault!
This is something we need to Pray and find ways to push through, learn to express these emotions with those around us so they can support us. It worries them. You are not being a burden on them. No they may not understand perfectly. But Jesus Christ does.

As is reads in Isaiah 53: 3-4 :

“He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
    Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.”

He has gone through every heartache and pain we have, He knows how to understand, He does. He went though all of this so that we Hopefully will turn to Him and draw strength from Him. As we apply his Gospel, all of those beautiful teachings into our lives.

There is a beautiful Promise in the 38th chapter of Alma in the Book of Mormon, found in verse 5:

 And now my son, Shiblon, I would that ye should remember, that as much as ye shall put your trust in God even so much ye shall be delivered out of your trials, and your troubles, and your afflictions, and ye shall be lifted up at the last day.”

This promise is for us also. He never said “as soon as you do this, things will be easy”
The key thing is it will happen, in this we have an essential principle; HOPE. we can try look forward, no it isn’t easy. But this promise is sure;
In the Last day we will be free! and we shall be lifted up among the righteous to meet our beloved Saviour and Redeemer!

But even if we aren’t in the deepest depths of despair we still live a life different to that of others.  Sometimes I feel as though because I was no longer where I once was that I have no reason to feel as though things are hard. I would be hard on myself and try push myself.
However through attendance to the Temple I have discovered a crucial thing about myself.

although I thought I was free,  that the illness had left. The moment I step through those beautiful doors I experience something. This may not be the same for others this is a wonderful tender mercy I receive and I live for.
I walk through those doors, and those things that I have been bound by on earth cannot have any hold. I feel the mist lift and my spirit lighten and I experience for the time i am within those walls a glimpse of is to come. The freedom that I long for, and thanks to the goodness of God will receive.
However I realize upon leaving those sacred walls That I am not yet free. That I still rely daily upon Grace (the Enabling power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ) to strengthen me through this. I don’t have the same energy levels as others because I am daily fighting against this to Just live a normal life. It’s like walking through water compared to walking on a track course.
Each day is a new day and every hour can sometimes be a small step to focus on in itself.
People often forget that Just because we may not show that it is hard because we manage to live normal or to hold a Job, or even get out of bed, that maybe, Just maybe it took us a world of effort. Some days it may seem absolutely impossible to even fathom moving out of Bed.
But there is Hope, it is possible, even if at the current time it may seem like it isn’t. You can do this.  One of my favourite scriptures is Doctrine and covenants section 24:8 it contains one of my all time favourite promises from the Lord:

“Be patient in afflictions, for thou shalt have many; but endure them, for, lo, I am with thee, even unto the end of thy days.”

we are not in this alone,  take each day, each hour, and each minute as it comes.
One day dawn will break and we will be free, until this time we must hold onto hope and do all we can and seek the Help of those around us!

I can promise you the Lord will strengthen you!

I love you! But more Importantly the Lord loves you!

Sister Priston-Turner xx

Facing the Future

Well hello everyone,

I hope you are all well, and pressing forward with a steadfastness in Christ. Allowing your faith to grow through action and facing those trials that come your way.

One of the interesting things that happens as we return from serving the Lord, is like everything hits us all at once. Suddenly we’ve gone from focusing purely on everyone else and the Gospel. limited distractions and worries. Plus of course we have the missionary mantle. Strength greater than we could even describe.

But next thing we know, we are chucked the real world. No protection above that which we ourselves choose to keep. Working, Studying, Dating, Living circumstances, and everything that will ultimately lead to our future and where we will end up. It is to be rather blunt. Absolutely terrifying.

“Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.
     And now, behold, my beloved brethren, this is the way; and there is none other way nor name given under heaven whereby man can be saved in the kingdom of God. And now, behold, this is the doctrine of Christ, and the only and true doctrine of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, which is one God, without end. Amen.” ~ 2 Nephi 31: 20-21

I love these Verses. Because ultimately it reminds me of the essential thing of keeping perspective. We are Children of God. This life is only a short moment. No matter what happens, what trials come our way. Those things that in the moment feel like everything is crashing down. there is this beautiful truth; God Lives, Jesus is the Christ. They love us. Their church has been restored upon the earth, with all the ordinances essential to our salvation. Including the correct priesthood authority from God to perform these ordinances. So that Families can be together forever! I know this. I will continue to testify of these truths.
Our goal isn’t just to get the next good Job, or have the biggest and best house. It is about refining ourselves and preparing ourselves for the Lord’s kingdom. If that means I have to walk my through the fires of Mt Doom to do so.. so be it. Of course I know what you are thinking right now  one does not simply walk into mordor”  well one does not simply walk into exaltation in the celestial kingdom  either. But Mordor is a lot more achievable in this state of existence.
Honestly though, learning eternal lessons in this short period of time isn’t designed to be easy. Diamonds only form under extreme pressure and heat for extended time periods. For us this life is short, but the pressure is extreme. We all have our individual limits and capabilities. However we will each be tested time and time again to that which we feel is our breaking point. At times we may feel as though our very being is on the verge of being torn apart. But as we hold strong and rely on the Grace (Enabling power) that comes through the Atonement of Jesus Christ we will find more strength than we knew possible. It doesn’t mean things suddenly become easy or even feel bearable at times. But they become possible.
Through all the years of fighting depression, the enabling power of Jesus Christ (mixed with professional help) is essential to who I am currently, and how I continue to fight and move forward.  It is real. we can rely on it! We need to get on our knees and pray Like it is all up to God, then get on our feet and work like it is all up to us! because this involves effort and team work.

So as we return from the mission, we find ourselves again figuring out our way through this mucky reality. Trying to climb and scramble to where we need to be. But the Knowledge that we need to keep the Lord and His will above our own. Apply the things we have learnt and remain who we have become. We are able to do this because of the enabling power that comes from the Atonement of Jesus Christ.
We push forward. We take leaps of faith, in directions that may seem completely insane. We seek to go beyond our comfort zones and reach those things the Lord is preparing for us.
For myself I am currently trying to process in my head the current options I have. Having confirmation I need to branch out of the country to grow, to Learn, and to become more than what I am already. I am currently weighing up between Australia, and the United States of America. funny how things change right?
Between university options and the things that will put me in a better position to do those things the Lord will ask of me. Sometimes finding complete answers and direction, makes me feel like I am running into a brick wall. I wonder if i am doing my part and asking the correct questions with the right desires.
Ultimately I just want to do as the Lord sees fit. But I am an agent I am free to act for myself (Helaman 14: 30-31) he wont Just hand me a gold plate with all the answers. I need to have that desire to do those things and to then seek if it is right. Make those decisions and try for myself to progress. I know that as I continue to press forward, having Faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, seeking the Will of my Father in Heaven. Studying the Scriptures, keeping open communication, and serving those around me. I will find my answers. I will see the ways open and He will lead me by the Hand to that which He will have me do!
However whenever things get hard there is a wonderful verse in Hymn 85 “How firm a foundation” verse 5 :

When through fiery trials thy pathway shall lie,
My grace, all sufficient, shall be thy supply.
The flame shall not hurt thee; I only design
Thy dross to consume, thy dross to consume,
Thy dross to consume and thy gold to refine.
These things are here to refine us. The paths we chose, the way we seek the Lord’s will. Our obedience. Our trials and temptations. They are all here as a refiners fire. Things we must walk through. To become the best us we can be.

I love the Lord, I love His gospel. I am so thankful to be a part of it. I pray that we may all be able to seek His ways before our own. That we may be able to progress together back to our Father in Heaven. That we may stand as beacons for Good in these the Last Days.

I love you all,
Sister Priston-Turner xx

Here, There, and Everywhere

Hello everyone!

Well this week has  been amazing yet crazy.
we had zone conference, and I had a good talk with my mission president.
Penrith Zone June-July 2016Silly Penrith Zone

then on thursday night, The Amazing Kirby’s along with my dearest old companion Sister Delgado had a surprise Birthday dinner for me. What was amazing and so kind! then afterwards whilst at the train station some guy came over and was trying to tell us he was a God and that we need to bow down to him. however, Elder Lynch and Elder Blake were there and Elder Lynch kindly stepped forward and asked him in the Name of Christ to leave.
friday we had trade off we met many people and saw many miracles.
Saturday we ended up visiting un planned people. I got mistaken as my companions daughter.
well i am short on time.
Just remember that God is good and He loves you ,

I love you and pray For you always!
Sister Priston-Turner

osucos lugares – jan 18 2015

In case you dont understand the Title for the post. Please go translate it 🙂

this past week has been crazy. but great.
I wouldnt even know where to start,

I had trade offs with sister Stigen and got to meet a lot of people.
talked to a lot of people.

Our French artist less active had my companion thinking he wanted to started his own church… and then he started teaching her the Restoration using the pamphlet exactly life we do…. when one of the sisters asked “DO YOU WANT TO START YOUR OWN CHURCH?!”
he was all “NO! I want to come back to church”
Man that guy is funny.

we saw one of our investigators change his heart. a true blue miracle. he came on a chapel tour and kept ranting about how God is trying to punish him.
we went to go see him two days later… and he was glowing. He said that he said a prayer before bed, and woke up a changed man. yoou could see the spirit working with him it was beautiful!

he came to church.

today we are going out with some investigators to a nature thing because it is the last preparation day of transfers….
Sister going leaves me next week.
I AM NOT READY FOR THAT!

I have been so blessed to serve alongside such an incredible woman. I love her like crazy.
she is definitely an eternal friend.

Love you all have a great week xx

“Down in Dural”

Aloha from Aussie Land!

So I haven’t emailed a blog post for the MTC and I will try to do that as some point.

So I did meet some lovely and amazing people at the MTC. But the real Journey started at 4:30am as five of just clambered into the Van and made our way to the airport. we arrived in Sydney and in was wet and it was raining.
We had a busy few days as an Intake.

I met my Australian Mission mum Thursday, Sister Going, a lovely Kiwi Girl. Who is everything I prayed for to be my companion. I love her so much. yes before people ask she is Related to Syd Going (his brother’s Granddaughter )
We found out her passport had gone missing so we couldn’t make our way up to our area, because it is 7 hours away. Almost two of that on train and then the next 5+  by car. She needs to change her NZ license to a NSW one. But without her passport we cant.
Our area is Huge it turns out and we will be the only missionaries there .
So because we couldn’t Leave. we got to stay with the mission President and His wife.
We had nothing to do. The temple is right next to their house so we asked if we could go do a session. They said yes.
So we went and did a lovely temple Session together. sat in the temple and prayed.
We then went to the mission office and found the Assistants being goofballs doing their work and eating cheesecake (photos to come)
We got back to the house, had dinner and went to bed after figuring out what we could do about the passport.

Friday we got public transport into the central city to sort out passport. We had to then crash a two zone conference to get Sister Checketts’ Signature (president’s Wife)
the Assistants drove us around to help us and they both sung very loudly any hymns we requested (perks of being a sister)
we were in the NZ office and they called asking what was happening. when we asked how they were doing they said “we are patience and long-suffering” ahaha
they got us fresh fruit salad (well for me) and fresh fruit Yoghurt, whilst they waited for us.
They then drove us back to the mission home. we asked if we could watch “meet the Mormons”
they said “probably not”
we went to go grab stuff from the office, when we saw them they said they had hid the DVD.
we were looking through DVD’s we could watch and found meet the Mormons hidden in the “the lamb of God” dvd case. so we text them saying
“after much thought we decided to watch the Lamb of God. When we opened the case it wasn’t in there. So we have decided to watch what we found in there instead 😉 ”
their reply was lovely and kind
“Jacob 6:9-12”

we saw the text was they were talking with president and we read it :

 9 Know ye not that if ye will do these things, that the power of the redemption and the resurrection, which is in Christ, will bring you to stand with shame and awful guilt before the bar of God?

 10 And according to the power of justice, for justice cannot be denied, ye must go away into that lake of fire and brimstone, whose flames are unquenchable, and whose smoke ascendeth up forever and ever, which lake of fire and brimstone is endless torment.

 11 O then, my beloved brethren, repent ye, and enter in at the strait gate, and continue in the way which is narrow, until ye shall obtain eternal life.

 12 O be wise; what can I say more?

well played rebuking Elders ahahhaa.

after a few Hours they decided we could go live and serve with the Dural sisters until Sister going’s Passport arrives.

So they dropped us off with all our stuff.

Saturday we had permission to go to a funeral in My Companion’s Old area, so we caught the trains and attended a very lovely memorial for this young lady. afterwards we got lunch and then grabbed a little bit of shopping to last us for the Sabbath. we got home rather late and then had to help the sisters with things. My poor companion has been rather unwell.

Sunday we Had church in Dural ward. When I turned up the Assistants asked if I had seen the Burgess’ yet. So when I saw them I was the happiest person on the earth in that moment. I had missed them so much. I probably could have hugged the life out of Beckah and Holly. Who have grown so so much!
Church was powerful and we learnt a lot. After Church the Elders gave Sister Going a blessing because of her being sick.
We got home and had to wait for the other sisters. We may have dosed off on each other whilst reading (I had a headache from the gluten during sacrament and she was unwell)

the then Exchanged for the afternoon. I went to lunch / Dinner at The Burgess’ what was completely surreal but lovely. Afterwards we then went tracting for a few hours. we walked home and had dinner. Followed by language study for Sister S and her 12 weeks training.

we Had a call from our district leader …. who has asked many things about Lord of the Rings…. I may be milking the fact that you worked on the movies mum. They have given me ultimate respect. it is funny. They have been fasting with us for the passport and praying that we can get there sooner. But the Lord Knows what is best.

I have so many photos to send. and I will next week I promise x

But time is running out. The Lord’s Tender mercies are so clear I love you all. Have an amazing week

Love, Sister Priston-Turner xxxxx

The Temple With Six Weeks Left

With 6 weeks left until I report, stuff Is starting to get real (yes one transfer length of time at home)

Yesterday – Saturday the 30th May 2015.
I was so blessed to go through the temple and receive my endowments.

So Friday Night, huddled into a people mover, with a mix of YSA, Youth and leaders / other ward members we headed off on the long drive to The temple. Three vans and 26 people. I was lucky enough to be in a van with my YSA brother who I have been good friends with over the years. So the trip up was filled with talking, occasional doze offs, dance party in the back seat (well a one person dance party, and it wasn’t even me) Music, and memories. Conversations about missions and How far we have come over the years.
We arrived to the new Church Camp grounds ( Camp Tuhikaramea) not long after midnight. We hustled into Tents (yes tents in winter) set up our sleeping bags, and promptly tried to get in and sleep. other vans had arrived earlier and were already tucked up nice and cozy.  It was a long, freezing night.  However my 3am walk to the bathrooms revealed a gorgeous deep red moon and foggy fields. We woke up Just before 6am, Icy cold. Brilliant scenery (as pictured above)
we could see the temple. Gorgeous Low fog and a hot air balloon in the distance. stunning bright colours and cold crisp air.
Showers, church clothes. pack up. breakfast. Then at 7:30am we were off.
We arrived to the temple at 7:40am. Some quick attempt at photos, then inside we went, I wanted to attend the baptism session before I went up to do interviews and the endowment session. However the session before us was running at least 30minutes behind. So our youth didn’t even get down into the baptistery till 8:50am. So instead I was blessed enough to sit and watch my lovely youth for about 25minutes.  Mum, Steve, and I then headed up to start my first interview (to check all my details are in order)
As we sat there across the table, she went through,  my name, birth date, address, and then my parents. My temple recommend has my Birth dad’s name (Kerry) and my record has My stepdad’s name (Steve)
She was confused and Steve explained. However the moment I saw her confusion I realized My dad’s name would soon be removed. As having been sealed to Steve as my dad for time and all eternity, In the Lord’s eyes… He is my Dad.
As she said that she would need to change this. I felt peace and I have accepted this reality. Steve has always been cautious about this, especially feeling it from a father’s point of view. But I love him, and is an amazing father figure in our family.
I was then able to go receive my Initiatories. This for me was one of the most spiritual experiences I’ve ever had. Standing in the changing room, putting on my garments for the first time felt so right. So peaceful and so deeply content.
I then went and spoke to temple matron. Following that I spent a while sitting quietly preparing myself and talking quietly with my mother before the endowment session. I saw my grandma come it. sit beside me … then when she went to go get changed she says “save my spot or I’ll thump you” Ahahaha, some things never change :’)
My Granddad soon joined us. Not Long followed by Charles and Desiree (Uncle and Aunt) Soon a few members from my ward joined us.
We then went into the Endowment Session. A very lovely experience and I am so happy I had people I love around me. I will forever hold that dear to me.
When we got through into the celestial room, I was greeted by a rather emotional mother and a hug. All the years or pain and fighting and we finally are here together. Following her I was embraced By my wonderful  teary eyed Stepdad Steve, One seriously emotion filled hug. That made me start to cry(Steve has that affect) then I got to be embraced by each of my family members individually. A family group Hug (yes we are cool like that)   I then got to hug and speak to the other members of My ward who came to support me. Including Yvonne, Jennifer, Annette, and Carl. A few strangers even congratulated me (obvious it was a big thing maybe by the crowd of us?)  The love and peace in that room is great. My grandma typically made a comment about potentially thumping me… seriously, some things never change ;’) ahaha!
I got a few moments alone with my mum and The joy and peace of coming from where I once was through all the midst of my depression, to where I was now sitting made the tears come of pure joy and love for the amazing woman sitting beside me.
One of the most peaceful and natural feeling days of my entire life.  After that we then went down to the distribution center. I got myself a set of pocket scriptures for my mission and a nice new set for study on my mission. (a triple combination and a bible)
we all then piled back into our vans, got some lunch and then started out long journey back home just after 3pm. Another long drive and we got home a little while after 10pm.
A short temple visit. But absolutely amazing none the less. One I would not change for the world.

I am So Thankful for the blessing to have a Temple in this country, I am so blessed that I am able to attend.
The Church is true, It fills me with such Joy.
The Love of Christ and our Father in Heaven is Real. I feel it around me so often.
The Blessings of the Temple are incredible.
The Book of Mormon Is the Word of God. It is true, I know this wholeheartedly.
Just as The Doctrine and Covenants Is the word of God to The people of the restored Gospel.
As is the Bible as far as it has been translated correctly.
Thomas S. Monson Is our true living prophet on the earth Today.
I know these things, and no one can ever take this knowledge from me.

Much Love,
Kita xx