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Monday, 29 December 2014

Almost a White Christmas: Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

First off I hope y'all had a wonderful spectacular Christmas! I know I did!!! 

We had a bit of a slow week with christmas hope this week will be a bit better!

It all started Christmas Eve. We decided as a district that we would go out christmas carolling to our investigators and members and people in our area. (We unfortunately needed to exclude Kanab cause they live way too far) So Our District Leader Elder Bolokoski played the Guitar. And we all sang Christmas songs! It was the best! We wer able to see one of our investigator families and our landlords (who had a foot operation a few weeks back and just last week broke 3 ribs trying to go to the restroom :( And is now in a rehab center) They really appreciated us coming by and I think we made her week! it was great! We then had some milk and donuts supplied by the elders :) But as we were leaving the La Verkin suburbs to go back to Hurricane for these refreshments we had a mini race with the elders, they got infront of me cause I was kinda on the wrong side of the road and there was a car infront of me so they were in front of us in their car, and we had to lead the way, so I decided put the indicator on showing right instead of left, just to see what they would do.... They fell for it too! MWHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!! Good thing we have some awesome elders and they laughed it off. Even gave me a high five B-) They are so much fun!

Then Christmas Day started off great! (We actually had a number of gifts under the tree thanks to one of our less actives and Sister Massengales mom - shes great! But now we have WAY too much candy) then we had breakfast with one of our Bishops and Skypes home at the same place It was sooo great to see my Family!!! Too bad baby Fanner was not born yet but I He IS just the cutest thing! Don't you think??? I am an Aunty again!

Then we watched 17 Miracles cause its been a while since we have seen it and it was one of our approved movies to watch on Christmas. I cried like a baby. again. But it was sooooo good! And since it was all about the pioneers in the snow I was like "How cool would it be if it was snowing right now...." (Cause there was snow in the night and we woke up to white mountains) and well we walked outside and it was Sleeting!!!! YAY!!! that was good enough for me. So yes it has been pretty cold! But its all good. The worst was probably our walking day on friday when the "Huricane" winds - being the place not the storm - But i guess luckily I decided to have an allergic reaction to something.. and my lower lip swelled up like crazy and we didn't got out till it had come down. took 2x Benadryl to get it to start coming down. But we were still out that night walking in the cold.

Well Christmas afternoon we had Dinner with our Senior Couple again. Then we had a Zone Activity by going to an alcove mountain thing and had a bon fire And some bonding time it was fantastic!

Ok my companion is the funniest. So at the bon fire somehow we have been dishing out names to all the missionaries in our Zone Like Sister Liu is President Liu (Long story) well our one ZL (Elder Grover) and our DL (Elder Bolokaski) - they are like 2 peas in a pod - got the names Oracles but at first was Oracle and Oracles side kick, but Elder Bolo did not like that then it changed a few times then at district meeting (Friday) the next day we wanted it to be oracle 1 and 2 but they did not want superiority over the other so we also tried Oracle A and B... that didn't work. So I decided Oracle G and Oracle B.... My Companion is sitting next to me typing about this in her mass email and says "Oh I finally get it! Why it's Oracle G and B" LOL ROFL (Roll on Floor Laughing) Man Welcome to my life. I wish you could hear half the things that happen in our week... Its the best!

At the Bon Fire My companion also got the name Chief of police... It fits!!! haha and I read in the NT this week that "whosoever will be chief amoung you let him be your servant" and well I got named this morning a detective... PI Hollander. I was hoping to go under the radar guess not.... haha

Anyway hope y'all are making some new years resolutions :) Here is a video for the new year. Remember "Look not behind thee".

All My Best,

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States

Monday, 22 December 2014

It's Still a White Christmas in Zion

Wow Sister Massengale and I have just seen sooo many miracles her in Zion!!!

Ok First off Crazy old Vi got BAPTIZED this week. Wow that lady ceases to amaze me! I KNOW we had exercied ALOT of faith this week for this to happen. At our last Zone traingin meeting we were committed specifically to pray twice daily so we can read our daily and monthly goals (for the area, district and zone). But we decided to pray for daily, weekly and monthly goals. Anyway we have been saying alot of LONG prayers lately and we have seen so many miracles because of it! One of which being Vi. She is so funny when we got to our lesson this week, we got there and she told us that we didn't teach her everything the last time we came (we taught tithing last) and well we really do struggle to teach her cause she doesn't really want to be taught. But  we always give the pamphlet as a committment and she reads them several times. And when she read about fast offering she decided that we tried to cheat her out of another $20 lol. Man it was just fun. Luckily we know now when she is kidding... I think. But yeah we got as into her as possible and prayed that everything would go well with her baptism, and ot did. But we first had to get through the interview. We were kinda stressing about this one. We wish we could be a fly on the wall with that one. well an hour or so later the district leader came out and SHE PASSED!!!! man I love Vi. I know one of the reasons I was in this area at this time was to help her get to the waters of baptism. She was beaming too it was just a perfect day. I love her so much! 

And we have now hit our goal of 4 Baptisms for the month. 
We are now working on our new investigator goals, we have been receiving golden refferals from the Princes we picked up 2 news investigators with their help and another from the ward. we have about 9 other referrals to contact and our tuesday is PACKED with lessons we are really excited! We are really working very hard here. I want to speak about 2 of our new investigators. The first is Emily, she is 11 years old, her parents are pretty active now and she is a bit mentally handicaped and so when she was 8 the bishop said she was not read for baptism so they have been waiting for this time where now her mental capacity is that of an 8 year old. so we are teaching her and she is doing sooo well!!! we love her to bits! Unfortunately she will be getting baptized after I go home but I still feel priveledged to teach her. The other new investigator is Brentson, he is 20 years old, he may not be termed a "golden" investigator, but it was very interesting after we showed him the He is the gift video he said "wow I have never thought of Christmas like that before" It was such a power lesson - so we then watched because of Him too. if you have not watched it yet PLEASE watch it. If you have not shared it yet please #ShareTheGift, you will never know - there may be someone there that does not know why we have christmas. we take it for granted all the time.

Here are some other great Christmas Vidoes:

Some other highlights of the week:

I finished the Book of Mormon yesterday!
We had a Missionary Musical Christmas Fireside yesterday and wow it was powerful! We Sang like angels and Our mission president played the guitar. Sorry no pictures.
started the New Testament today and I absolutely LOVE IT!!!!

Sorry my emails have been so short lately. I love you all. Thanks for your kindness and support.

MERRY CHRISTMAS And a Happy New Year!

All My Best,

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States

Monday, 15 December 2014

Last Transfer in ZION

You Guessed it! We got our transfer calls on Saturday and We are staying together in Zion and I will be ending my mission here. So if there are some of you who are confused as to why I am going home this transfer and my companion is not (since we were in the MTC together) Turns out I am needed back in SA with my family.

But I am really excited to have another transfer in Zion and that we are staying together and that we are seeing miracles everyday! I love this area and I love my mission! I think I am especially excited that I can have the Holidays here :) 

No Big Chirstmas Presents this week at Zone conference. There was actually no real special reason for it but that there were more things they wanted to train us on so we can be better missionaries! But they did give us a Christmas present. they gave us a Brand new New Testament and our commitment is to study the 4 Gospels and mark every instance you read the words that Christ spoke. (much like the red letter bibles that everyone speaks about that they had as kids where it does the same thing - another suggestion was that we look at all the questions he said as well. I am excited to get started but I decided that I first want to get my Book of mormon read before Christmas and lookis like I may get it finished this week which is exciting. At the conference we also got to hear from some of the patriarchs of the nearby stakes and have a question and answer session - I wish I could come up with better questions that what i did. But thats ok. But I learned alot and am excited to implement alot of what I learned such as making more frequent contact with my ward mission leaders.

Just quickly we had some fun walking in the rain this week. Its winter... sort of, the weather has been really mild, but there is a bit of snow on the mountain tops.

Yesterday we saw some great miracles we first just went to Our High council man for missionary work's house to update him on a few things, and then a Non member walked in that they were working with for us to teach. Well I wish I can say we had a lesson with her right then and picked her up as a new nvestigator and put her on date, but no we didd not, but we were able to speak to her a bit and get to know her a bit - but it was a miracle that we got to meet her :)

Then we contacted a referral from our senoir couple, unfortunately we were not able to pick up a new investigator from that yet either but we were able to teach a lesson, just  need to set up an apointment. The mom was sick so we kinda had to get out in a hurry... And then we went to contact this other home where we actual got a media referral from them (part member home) and contacted them but though that they were just a less active home and gave it over to the Princes well turns out there are 2 kids in there that we have not strated teaching!!! they are such a Golden family - they have just moved here from Vegas and have decided to start going back to church. We gave the kids book of mormons and explained a bit of it and the one kid turns around and says "I now know what the Book of Mormon is, Its a book about Christ!" I just loved it! Cause it is! 

Well Hope y'all have a great week! I know we will!

All My Best,

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States

Monday, 8 December 2014

White Christmas

Well I think I had my white christmas early this year... No, no snow. Even better - we had 3 baptisms this weekend! It was a fantastic week! I really loved it!

We had to go through the baptism interview process twice (cause the two boys are bothers so we could get them done at the same time :) They have been investigating for about 6 months and their parents are becoming active again and it was way fun to teach them The kids first had a hard time accepting tithing but their parents were able to teach them and help them in that. Well it hsa been tough to set up appointments with them because they are soo busy they play like 5 sports most of them at the same time lol so scheduling with them is intense, but we finally got them into the waters of baptism and everyone was there that they wanted (except sister eyers that got transferred) But it was especially special because their dad was able to baptize them!!! It was wonderful! So this baptism went pretty smoothly but leading up to the baptism was rough... But I won't lie I think I might become a utah mom when it comes to the cool hings they do for the kids getting baptized.

So the 2 brothers happend on Friday night, then saturday morning was stake baptisms (so here in Utah only the stake center has a font and because there are so many kids and they all turn 8 round about the same time they have stake baptisms each ward would take a turn and have individual services according to ward, and they would baptize the kids one after the other pretty much. Well there was a wonderful family the sisters were working with to reactivate that happend to be cousins to a family we were teaching in huntington and it was a very special tender mercy for me that I was able to be at this girls baptism - she really reminds me of elaine in Huntington :) they are definately cut from the same cloth. I was also able to speak at that baptism. But what was even better was they told me that elain is one date for baptism in januray! Happy day!

So But it was fun so our other investigators names is John and he has been investigating for about a year now and he was going to get baptized 6 Months ago and couldn't because something came up that he needed to be dealt with first, well we got everything cleared and now it was becoming real, for the past month it felt like he wasn't really excited for his baptism but watching him stress over getting the program together this week was great cause we could see his excitement :) Then we had the baptism interview and got to see his sincerity and love for this gospel! His baptism was definately a highlight on my mission! It was truely a special service. THIS is why we are out on a mission to see a change in people I know that John felt the spirit really strong! I know that everything happens for a reason. I love being a missionary.

So Sister Massengale can be pretty funny when she is tired. I don't have time to write them all but yesterday she said "We can't watch this so I'll mute it." Think about it... HAHA

So WE have ANOTHER Zone Conference happening this week which is unheard of. Firstly it is a SHORT transfer (we only have 5 weeks in this transfer) and we usually only have Zone Conference every second transfer. this is going to be the usual 6 hour conference so we think something big might be happening but so we are not disappointed we are excepting "Oatmeal and the district" hahahahahahahaha Quote Courtesy  Sister Prince :D

So remember about the crazy old lady? well she is on date for baptism next saturday... Yeah I know crazy right??? We are preying that her health improves so she can...

Anyway running out of time again.... But we are getting transfer calls this week and well we don't know what is going to happen we hope to stay together but they are also white washing kiabab - cause sister davis is going home and her companion got her visa to Scotland - and we both kinda want to serve there again and we are the only ones left in the mission who have served there.... and this will be my last transfer... last 7 Weeks AHHHHH

Have a great week!

All My Best,

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

Where does the time go???

So I don't know how my companion and I do this every week but we don't have time again today. 

We went to the Temple again. Sister Massengale has not been since Feb so it was good for her to go. We went with Sister Prince (our Snr Couple in our stake) But just sister prince not elder prince, was fun to be just us girls. And to bond with sister prince we also headed to deseret book which is like the BEST store ever!!! Its funny everyone asks us what we would like in our christmas packages so they can send out to their missionaries but we don't even know what we want. I don't know if I really need anything. 

So this week has been crazy! We had thanksgiving dinner (in the afternoon... still doesn't make sense) but we spent it with one of our ward mission leaders and the Princes. But before all that we had our district meeting and after that we had a nerf gun war with the elders it was SOOOOO much fun!!!! but wow was I in PAIN the next day from going up and down all day

But then we got to watch The hobbit #2 in the evening but we started a bit late so didn't get to watch everything.

We had a baptism on saturday 2 kids got baptised. Just wish we could have a baptism with any flaws... thats all I'm saying...

Oh and Watch the video in #ShareTheGift!

Just do it! 

Thanks for all your support! Have a great week!
All My Best,

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States

Monday, 17 November 2014

Miracles in Zion

So got a few funny stories. 

But first my new companion : Sister Massengale. From Fort Worth Texas. Such a great missionary and we are getting along surprisingly well. We were both excited but a bit worried that we wouldn't get along but oh were we wrong. I odn't know if it is because we both have been out the same amount of time or that we have had very similar missions (like we traded first areas) and had some of the same companions. It has been great reflecting on our missions and just seeing all the miracles that we have both seen. and how we have been able to make new miracles together! It has been a great week!!! 

Miracle #1
We had a hard day of working on Wednesday, we had number of lessons planned and seen some success with few of them, but we had some down time at 7 and we were just going to contact some people on our back up plans when we got a call from our senior couple saying could we come to their house right now so we can teach a new investigator. YES!!! of course. Turns out they found someone they will be doing the stop smoking program with and we will teach her son who has wanted to be baptized since he was 2 (he is now 10) we are really excited to teach him! He has a good knowledge of the gospel already. 

Funny story #1
We were knocking doors on friday night in an area where we had received a referral before but we couldn't find the house but thought we should go there again so we tracted into this guy (not the referral) but another man. But he first turns the light on, sees we were girls, turns the light off and goes into a back room... being confused sister massengales peers through the stained glass window and sees him putting pants on... #Awkward But he was a nice man - funny black guy from Kansas City He said we could come back another time so we will.. hopefully he will have his p[ants on already.

Funny Story & Miracle #2
We continued tracting the area and knocked on another door, and just because of the experience that we just had we were joking that it would happen again. so I peered into the stained glass and was like "well at least he's got pants on." Then he opens the door and he wasn't wearing a shirt... #LifeOfaMissionary Haha but it turned out to be the referral and he was actually interested in learning more!!! It was great! Don't judge a book by it's cover he invited us to come back the next day. this time he left to put a shirt on and explained why he was not wearing a shirt. he has neropathy or something like that just last march he got his big toe chopped off cause he stood into a nail and did not feel it. But he is super solid but is headed to salt lake for 2 weeks.

Funny story #3
So we have 7 people on date for baptism and we got 2 new investigators so it is pretty easy from there to make standards so Sister Massengale and I worked really hard to get our 22 lessons, but we had 4 lessons scheduled on sunday and needed 9 for the day and well we didn't make it but it was funny when we looked in the communicator this morning we had hit standards hahaha!! The Zone Leaders messed up but it's all good! 

Well we have a baptism coming up this week and we are sooo excited! He is super great! He lives up in springdale and we had a lesson with him in the Bishops home (who happens to be my sisters Mission Presidents Son) it was great! We are really excited his name is Carlos and he is 17 years old and he is doing really good!

We are having a baptism every week for 3 weeks. One this week, 2 next week and 3 the following. We are going to be down to 1 on date but we are excited to find new investigators.

Hope y'all have a great week! We are off to play Pickleball now :P (Look it up)

Sorry no spiritual thought today.

All My Best,

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States

Monday, 10 November 2014


So Just a quick one today. (Always have so much to say and no time)

We finally got our transfer calls on saturday and as pridicted sister Eyers is off to Richfield (in the cold) I won't lie I have had a pretty perfect mission so far - weather wise. My new companion is Sister Massengale!!! Who was with me in the MTC. We were in the same Distict and were roommates so it was great! I am excited to be companions with her. We have shared the same areas and have been close to each other up until just recently. I am really excited! It is going to be great! I am sad to see sister Eyers leave we really got on great! And she is going to do so great in Richfeild even in the cold. We are having a 

This has been a tough week for numbers - everyone cancelled appointments this week. we finally got to see some of our investigators this weekend. 

Yesterday we spoke in one of the wards and it's funny I got all the luck with areas and weather. started my mission in the south and slowly moved my way north for the summer and have come back down for the winter and the totaly opposite happend for sister Eyers she started in the MTC in the dead of winter and got to go to St george (Washington and La Verkin) for the summer and now going up north for the winter haha. Its great. 

Anyway our talks were GREAT!!! totally by the spirit and we both had to speak for 20min each. WE spoke on some of the general conference talks I spoke on Elder Hales Talk: "Eternal Life: To know HEvenly father and Jesus Christ" This was such an eye opener to realize that THIS is such a fundamental doctrine to KNOW to gain Eternal life (God's life) That is also why we need to first teach - as missionaries - "God is our loving Heavenly Father" I love this gospel.

REad the talk here Read it. study it. as if you were going to present it to a class or FHE or something.

Have a great week. here are some fun pictures.

Snow in the Mountains! (from last week) Snow melted after 2 days. so No we don't go running anymore....

All My Best,

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States

Monday, 27 October 2014


Well this was a good week indeed!! So I think in every mission the mission sets standards of what key indicators (lessons and New investigators etc) that we need to achieve to reach "Standards of Excellence" And Sister Eyers and I did it this week!!! It was such a great feeling! and when you make standards your name gets put in the weekly newsletter for the mission. We really worked our butts off this week to get it. So Standards are:
New Investigators x 2
Total Lessons x 22
Less Active and Investigators at Church x 5
On Date for Baptism x 3

We got:
New Investigators x 3
Total Lessons x 22
Less Active and Investigators at Church x 15
On Date for Baptism x 6

How cool????? We worked really hard for it to happen! We saw many many miracles this week!

#1 There is one investigator that we have that we have had on date but have not met with him since I have been here. He is Hispanic and 17 years old. He also lives up in Springdale (30min) away. We FINALLY got to meet with him this week and he is really excited about his baptism, we did however need to choose a new date, and he said the most sincere prayer at the end of the lesson it was wonderful! He also went to church yesterday! 

#2 As we were driving from La Verkin to Toquerville we saw this man walking on the street... And sister Eyers goes: "I'm pretty sure that was Cyrell" But then she reasoned that it could not have been him cause he was supposed to be in prison... Then we left TQ and Headed back to LV and again we saw him walking at about the same place... and She says that HAD to be Cyrell! Well we eventually went to his grandmas house and found out that he is out and we taught him a lesson. This is such a humble man and such a great heart he has a few things he needs to work on but he is really in a place where he wants to learn and grow... slowly... But it was a miracle cause sis eyers taught him before and he was on the road to baptism but life got really hard and he made some bad decisions. We are really excited to teach him again.

#3 We picked up 2 new investigators this week. She has been investigating the church in another area where sister Hee (one of my previous companions) is serving - she was really excited that we found this lady - there were elders that started teaching her and she is interested in being baptized. She has cancer but is does not seem to be deadly. But her biggest vice is smoking. And the same goes for her boyfriend - who she is not living with and they both want to go to church and be baptized! We are really excited to teach them and try help them get to the waters of baptism they are GOLDEN! :)

#4 Picked up another new investigator - a Lady with an autistic son and ALL her concerns in life and about, I am pretty sure we could give her an answer from the message that we want to share with her. We think it might take a while with her but seeing all her concerns I am now very grateful for all the knowledge I have about the Gospel and about my Identity - being a child of God. And also knowing that I have a loving heavenly father that I can call on at any time.

#5 Our little old lady Vi. 88 Years old. She makes me laugh. Wow we saw her twice this week. she is a tough one to teach because she contradicts herself all the time. She wants to be baptized but she doesn't believe that there is one true church she believes that they are all true. We taught a powerful Restoration lesson (well when we could get a word in) but she didn't want to accept some of our invitations so we asked her, well why do you want to visit with us Vi? and she turned and looked at us in a side ways glance and said "Well, cause I like Ya" It is a fun experience. I will try add a quote from Vi each week. But one of our visits this week we were trying to teach her more about the apostasy and the Priesthood and how necessary and important they are. And it actually got to a point in the lesson that we wanted to drop her. Cause she did not want to go to church and she had read up to 4th Nephi in the BofM (Which happened in the space of about 3 days) and she said that she did not learn a thing from it, that there were too many wars and she didn't understand it. But to this day neither Sister Eyers or I can figure out what happened in the lesson but all of a sudden after trying and trying to resolve her concerns and inviting her to church, she said " Well I guess I am going to do it. I am going to church on Sunday." And we were like WHAT???? We and well one of her excuses was that she did not have church clothes. turns out she did have some and she looked great on sunday. We also got a call from her on saturday morning and she was so worried that she would not wake up in time to go to church so asked us to give her a call at 8am to make sure she would have enough time to get to church. We got a Fellowshipper to take her to church and when she got there it was the best thing. one of the reasons she did not want to go to our church was that she heard that we don't greet each other. And we re affirmed her that that was NOT the case. it was great when we could see everything happen where the bishop came and greeted her along with other counselors and other members of the ward. We sat in the second row of church - right in front of the sacrament table. when we sat sown she asked: " Is this were we go to church?", "Yes Vi this is the chapel.", "Then Why is there a casket over there (pointing at the sacrament table)" haha we explained what it was and it was great. And when we took her home the fellowshipper asked her is she would need a ride again next week. And she said "Yes, and every week after that" She also asked for her number in case Vi could not make it to church and she said "Well I don't know why I wouldn't make it unless the Lord Calls me."

I wish I could record everything she says - she is great we love her.

#6 WE spotted 2 new plates - South Dakota and Connecticut

I was in my element with this cute black kid :) Oh how I miss the culture in SA :) - She did not want to look at the camera...

On the road to Kolob:

Ok and one super great thing for Kanab. Sister Roth got resurrected (set apart again) and is now serving with her old companion sister Davis in her Greenie area of Kiabab. 

Time is up but I want to thank everyone for their love and support. Here is a cool quote I read this morning.

 "I pray because I can't help myself. … I pray because the need flows out of me all the time, waking and sleeping. It doesn't change God. It changes me." C S Lewis

All My Best,

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States

Monday, 20 October 2014

Serving in "Zion"

Ok let's see if I can get all of the past two weeks summed up this week.

It's so great that I can laterally say I am serving in "Zion" We go up near Zion Nation Park every week which is a HUGE tourist attraction:

(The pictures don't do it justice)
 It fits in great with this little game I started for myself of the way down from huntington. I had heard this to be a fun road trip game in the states well in this area it's like a road trip all the time. So I started tring to find a Licence plate from every state. Well it has been quite an adventure! It started as a quite game that I was doing on my own to keep me entertained as I was driving then sister Eyers started helping me out trying to find them all and well now when we see a plate that looks unfamilair (especially when we go up to Springdale) we end up saying things like "FOLLOW THAT CAR!!!" haha it is way fun, and only sometimes distracting. But we have found all the western states, and as we were going through all the states to see which ones we still need to get we were thinking that we would not be able to find obscure states like Maryland or Dalaware and New Jersey Etc. BUT we HAVE found a few of them like
MARYLAND (On a day that we said we will never find maryland)
RHODE ISLAND (Which we found both of them an the same day!)
ALASKA (there are actually quite a few of those)
And the best of all we found HAWAII!!! WHATTT??? That is an island.... haha we thought at the beginging that we would write that one off and last week at cosco we found it!!! 
Well it is strating to slow down a bit but I hope we can find at least one new each week. We got Pennsylvania last week we have about 15 left to find. I do think I have become a pro at the western state plates I can glance and say where they are from. It has been quite a surprise though I think there are as many californians as there are utah'ns.

Anyway on other news Sister Eyers started doing something last week which I think is a great idea (I just need to humble myself a bit before I can do it.) she is doing a 40 day fast 
(similar to lent) to help her to be a more concentrated missionary. She started it with a fast (of food and water) to find out what 10 things she can "put on the altar" to become a more consecrated missionary so she can be a powerful missionary, and the idea is to abstain from these things for 40 days. I do think that Satan really did not want her to do this. On the day of the fast of food and water she faced many trails that day, it was a tough time for us both, but I think more so for her. Well we finally got our heads together and started battling one thing after the next. And we saw many miracles in overcoming each of those things. Then the next day was the day she was to start the 40 day fast and one of the things she decided to give up (which is probably the hardest thing for her) is Movie quoting. This sister can seriously quote the whole series of harry potter and almost all the disney movies. the first day was really tough for her but I have seen how it has been getting better. it is still hard though. I really admire her for doing this. I think I will start doing the same thing soon I just need a real desire to do it. I have heard of a few missionaries that have done in across the globe and have seen the blessings from it.

Speaking of 40 day fasts, we have challenged all the wards to participate in a 40 day fast so that one family each day for 40 days will fast for missionary opportunities and growth of the ward. A ward in Arizona did this and at the end of the 40 days their membership increased by 40 people: 3 families were baptized into the church and a few other families moved into the ward. What a miracle. many of the wards have started and I think we are starting to see the miracles come to pass. This week was incredible on Saturday we had a bit of a hard day - not being able to find anyone at home and lessons being cancelled. Well After dinner one of our ward mission leaders called us up and gave us a referral for a couple that are not members (but are related to members in his ward) that want to take the lessons :) - we hope that they are both non members - sometimes people get their facts mixed up because they are so inactive that they have never gone to church and seem to be non members. #UtahMissionProblems so we were soooooo excited!!! and still are we know of 3 other potential investigators this week. We are sooo excited! These are miracles of diligence and obedience and also from the fast that we had as a Zone last week for new investigators - unfortunately we don't think we will have any baptisms this month but our baptisms are looking good for novemeber we have 6 on date for baptism 5 in Nov and 1 in Dec (they may not all make it on these dates but we are really concentrating on getting them progressing).

We also met a wonderful family this week - they are just passing through and I forgot the pamphlet at home but see if you can google the "Jucan foundation". they are a fantastic family walking from "one magic kingdom to the next" from Disney land to Disney World. California to Florida. They are doing it one day at a time. They have an incredible story I wish we could have been a part of their cause. If you can please follow their story.

Anyway running out of time again but here is a great talk about Missionary Work and the Atonement By Elder Holland. I used parts of this in my talk yesterday (it was so strange I spoke in sacrament without my companion... apparently they do things a bit different in LaVerkin) Oh and I had to change my 10-15min talk to a 30 min talk cause everythign ended too quickly.

But all in all there were MANY miracles in LaVerkin this week. "All is well in Zion"

Love and Blessings to you all ;),

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Crazy Maddess

Well I am sorry to say I don't have alot of time this week But I really appreciate all the emails and love from everyone.

I have to apologize that I did not email on Monday but it was a public holiday and then we went on exchanges yesterday (with sister Calves from France) so today was the day where we could email. And we had a crazy morning so yeah. but a happy missionary is a busy missionary.


It is so great they have asked us to have one day a week where we use as a walking day. and I have a testimony of obedience and walking. We did not see many miracles from walking per say but it is a real great way to get to know your companion. Sister Eyers and I have been able to really get closer as we have done that.

So sister Eyers is a go getta. We are starting something big in La Verkin so we decided to organize an open house. It is going to be a big deal. WE are going to try have all the wards assigned to a room and auxiliary we have 12 wards so we have alot of areas to cover. We are really excited! We are going to call it "Come and See" (inspiration from Elder Bednars talk in General conference) If anyone has any ideas for an open house of getting an appeal for non members to come please drop me an email. We are really excited about it though.

Oh my goodness I have not time left this week I think I will put it all in next weeks email. 

But we saw miracles yesterday during exchanges we found a new investigator and I got a golden referral from a missionary serving in the Visitors Center which we are hoping to contact this week. 

Oh and So I have met sister Clark briefly before but we were able to take a pic together and guess what - we have the SAME necklace! it was so creepy yet so epic! We are BOTH proudly south african.... well she may be a bit more cause she has a thicker accent haha but it was great I was able to give her some south african goodies too! It was so great! 

Oh and new hair cut! With love from sister Eyers.

Well the time is far spent. 

Love you all. Here is a great mormon message you should all check out!
All My Best,

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States

Monday, 6 October 2014

La Verkin Madness

Wow What a WEEK!

We had a loooong drive to St. Geroge But I'm just glad Sister Schnider and I were able to see almost everyone that we wanted to see.
John!!! Looking Good!

So it's kinda funny we have had a lot of crazy things happen this week! First off When I got my transfer call they did not tell me that we would be in a trio. Well We were in a trio. We were "training" a Visa waiter for Taiwan. Her name is Sister Price. She's from Kansas and learning Mandarin Chinese and is so funny! At first it was a bit tough to be in a trio cause she had already been here for 2 weeks and so Sister Eyers and Price were already great friends and felt like I was intruding on a great relationship. Well we still became friends. Sister Price was supposed to stay with us for another 2 weeks. I have never been in a trio before so it was interesting but Just as I started getting used to it Sister Price got her visa!!! and she left on friday morning at 6am. It was just so crazy! But we got to watch her do a role play bike approach "talking with everyone" on the streets of Taiwan :D that was sooooo funny!!! I wish I could have learned more mandarin while she was here...

Anyway transfers have just been crazy. We don't have enough missionaries in our mission right now to keep all the areas open. (Hence why huntington closed) Do you remember my first area: Kiabab? Well my previous Companion Sister Davis is serving there and well they have now combined Kanab and Kiabab stakes and they are in a trio. And sister Davis has about 30 lessons a week and so she is going out with members now every day I am sure that it is pretty stressful. at least there are great members there that support us really well. I love that area. And they are in our district!! yay!! so I get to see her every week!

Well about my companion: Sister Eyers (said "Airs") From Nottingham England :) She has been on her mission for 9 months and is teaching ME alot about missionary work. I fell like I will grow alot as her companion and as we work together here. She is also a huge Harry Potter fan, Very Clean, great teacher, Doesn't Drive (which is kinda funny cause they made her designated driver and she doesn't have a drivers licence. lol) She was a hairdresser in her past life, and I feel like I need a change... Yup going much shorter methinks. AND we go running every morning! Ahhhh I am so excited - and usually dead tired every day. We are trying to run a mile everyday. We usually get to 3/4 mile and I give up. Good thing she has been able to be my motivation now to do more and be better and things. WE have also given us all deserts at dinners which I am really excited about (well sorta) I love desert but it is about time. else I will never lose weight. Sister Eyers has lost a stone (15lbs) by trying to eat healthier and running everyday (well except sundays and mondays) Its great! She also wants to learn Zulu so any tips and tricks? fun words or expressions? I have also learned to really set goals with sister Eyers. I hope that I can acheive my goals this transfer and that I can stick to this pattern for the rest of my life. I love her already! GREAT Missionary.

So good news!!! I think I may eventually loose a bit of my american accent... but it may change into a British accent.... haha

So about La Verkin, We cover 12 wards:
La Verkin 1-7
Toquerville 1-3

I have not seen all of our area just yet :| eeek. Its a big area and I think it is going to take a while to get used to. I can at least get us home  each night without needing directions. But it is an interesting experience. I am pretty glad to be ALOT closer to civilization. This is a good area though we have been teaching a lot of kids and we have 5 people on date for baptism right now. There is alot of excitment in this area and this is going to be a good week of teaching and finding! We have been a bit slow on finding but we hope that we can get back into the swing of things this week! 

Hope a lot of you were able to watch general conference. I heard in SA they are only going to watch it in Nov Officially. It was way good! I hope you all get to watch it and take questions to conference! Some of my favourite talks were from Elder Lynn G Robins (of the 70) Elder Chi Hong Wong (of the 70 - who spoke in Cantonese) Elder Jorg Kelbenagt (of the 70) Elder Holland and President Monson. These men are inspired from GOD. I love this work. I love General Conference.

Have you heard about the Meet the Mormons Movie Go here to find out more. We will be watching it for Zone Conference in Nov and I am soooooo excited!

Good luck to everyone this week!

All My Best,

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States

Monday, 29 September 2014


So this week has been a tough one. Well all mainly because of transfer news. Wow. I have never been so stressed about transfers before. But I now know why. We got our call Saturday morning before the end of our personal study from the assistants. And the call went something like this:

AP: "Are you ready for your transfer call?"
Me: "No...."
AP: "Well I guess we better give it to you, Sister Hollander you are being transferred and you are going to LaVerkin with Sister Eyers." (Who is from England btw)
Me: "Yay I always wanted to go to LaVerkin!"
AP: "Good.. Well, Sister Schneider I guess this is your first transfer call."
SS: " No I this would be my second."
AP: "Oh yeah, but this time you are getting transferred."
Me: "WHATTTTTTT??????? Your kidding right?"
AP: "No, Sister Schneider You are going to Bloomington Hills and your companion will be Sister Reimer" (From French Tahiti - called French speaking on her mission in the visitors center)
SS: "WHAT????? That's my MTC companion!!!!"
AP: "Really? Well you will have to both be going down in the transfer van together and you will need to meet at Salina at 1pm." (which is about 2.5 hours away) "Please get your area book up to date for the next missionaries."
Me: "WHAT???? Huntington is being white washed!? Who is taking over the Area???"
AP: "Yes, Castle Dale is going to take over Huntington."

So I Hope I have been able to express my deviation and horror. I don't mind leaving an area but it is sad to have BOTH missionaries to leave the area. Our Leaders are sad and so are we, but there is nothing you can do about it really. The AP's also said that we don't have enough Sister missionaries in the mission to take over the area. We heard that it is probably only temporary. Shame the Elders now have a massive area to cover. They are practically going to cover the WHOLE Emery County. But they are really fantastic missionaries Elder Finnie (Who is our DL) and his companion had 10 Baptisms last month and 7 of those happened last week. They really are on top of this and are on fire I really hope they see much success in the area. I know that they will be spread thin but I am sure they will do well!

It's funny I am all worried about the area closing and Sister Schneider could not get over the shock having her MTC comp as her new comp lol.

Anyway. Well that kinda explained why we struggled so much to find inspiration on Friday when we did weekly planning.

I'm glad to finally know. But I am really sad to leave. I love this small 'ol town. I have spent a day in LaVerkin before when I was waiting for Sister Hee to come to Kaibab. It is a great area I think we cover about 13 wards and the stake goes all the way up to Zions border. So it is down south in Washington county near Huricane (said Huricin) we cover areas called Virgin and Springdale. I am real excited to go back there. Hope we won't see too much snow. But I think we will see some of it.

Well on other news. Do you remember John? Our miracle baptism with sister Phagwah. Well we went to see him this week and well He is in Pinicale (a rehab center) He went to the hospital about 4 weeks ago because he was swelling up so bad. Well I am so glad Elder and Sister Mecham were there to make sure he got the care he needed. He has lost 40 pounds and is looking way healthy!!! I am so glad they did this for him. We are going to see him later today. I have really grown to love this man. He is a son of God and I have seen God's love in his life. His mission here in this life is NOT over yet.

Womens Conference was absolutely spectacular. I think I got a bit home sick with the opening prayer by Dorah Mkhabela and just to be able to see other black people on the vidoes and another sister mentioning her dad served in SA man but it was a real powerful conference!!! I love general conference. I would encourage everyone (male and female) to watch this conference session. I would love to hear what you are able to learn from any of the conference sessions.

Well also on other news. We did not end up checking out the Rochester panel last week - we couldn't find it..... Thank you for everyone for the birthday wishes :)

All My Best,

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States

Monday, 22 September 2014

P-Day + Birthday = FUN

Yup best birthday present ever is that it falls on a P-day!!! Thank you to EVERYONE for the mail and emails wishing me a happy birthday! I really felt very loved this week!!! Thank you also for all the love and support you have given me!

This has been an average week and well not all too eventful. But I am really excited for today - we have arranged to go out sorta hiking to the rochester panel (Indian writings) down in Emery, with Michelle. We are so excited! I even made us some brownies and added some cadburys choc for flavour (thanks to my package that made it on time for my bday) I
I Opened it 3am SA time - so I claim it as my birthday! My family is the best! I love them to bits! There are so many things that I miss from home. But I know there will be many things I miss from the states when I get back.

Anyway we saw quite alot of people and were able to pick up a new investigator, we have been doing alot of service for them and I guess they have had bad experiences with missionaries in the past but I think our service was able to soften their hearts alot! But they will eventually be moving to wyoming so I wont hold my breath. 

Well columbias baptism has been postponed :( And we get transfer calls this saturday and well its lame. But I think I will be moving on. But so is the life of a missionary.

Another thing Sister schneider has found out is how awkward mission life can get. So this is an old one but we are really starting to love this one family - but we always have the MOST awkward lessons with them. At first we met them at their house but they were on the street. You could tell they were a bit apprehensive about us talking with them. even though they are members and they have a little girl getting baptised in a few months. But it was awkward. The husband offered to feed us for dinner one day and the wife kinda said no. lol But we set up a FHE which ended up being really good and the kids loved it. The dad also opened up to us afterward. We have not been able to get them to go to church yet. So we went by again to invite them and I guess hey had company over and wow it was like pulling teeth to get people to speak. And sister Schneider is a bit shy in asking questions so I did most of the speaking... if I had not... well I have no clue how awkward it could have become. Luckily the fact that I am from SA and my Comp is from Germany can aid our conversations quite a bit. But there was a room full of poeople and yeah... I think that has been one of the most awkward times on my mission cause more poeple came into the room and yeah... And well we went back this week and it was awkward again. (It's probably all in our heads.. I know the more you act like it is NOT awkward the better it is for everyone.) But we have been making some situations even more awkward lately by asking people if we could sing for them... haha when ever we ask that it is way interesting to see their reaction. 

Sister Schneider and I have only discovered the real power of music this week. sometimes we feel like sharing a scripture - especially with less actives is not always something that can really grab their attention. but singing can sure do that and we are also able to help them feel the spirit. I have a testimony on the Power of music. We have been able to touch so many lives these past 3 weeks. One of the ladies we teach it was exceptionally funny to watch her countenance change. from the time we said can we sing to while we were singing to the end. People have also been really shocked that we have the courage to do that. But we are just sharing a talent that God has given us. If we use it we wont loose it right (D&C 60:13 "... Thou shalt not idle away thy time, neither shalt thou bury thy talent that is may not be known.)

We atended the re-dedication of the Ogden Utah temple and it was wonderful! I have only ever witnessed One other rededication - of the Navoo Temple. And Ithink this was a great opportunity to Understand a bit more about the Temple. It was also wonderful to hear more from Our Prophet and David A Bednar I love the Temple and I know there is way more to it that I understand.

But i want you all to know that I know that this is the Church of Jesus Christ. I know that President Monson IS our living day Prophet and he recieves revelation for the church today. General conference is coming up and I hope you have all made a decision to attend and watch it. Prepare yourselves for it by reading and studying this talk by Pres Utchdorf and go to this site which talks about ways you and your family can prepare to recieve personal revelation. Remember that this is a church of revelation. It is the rock upon which Christ's church is built. I would exhort you (Invite you) to take at least one question to conference. Start preparing NOW. I know you will be able to feel God's love for you as you do this.

PS Just so everyone knows I have a distinguished american/cowboy/huntington accent now... I think I am going to need alot of work when I get home. lol.

All My Best,

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States

Monday, 15 September 2014

Fall time begins in Huntitngton

So the Leaves have started turning and the "fall" time has began. everyone is decorating their homes with "fall" decor and its cooling off in the mornings and its hard to catch people at 8pm cause its dark and people go to bed with the sun. 

This week was a good one though. we had one super amazing Miracle happen though. So you know that our 2 baptisms have fallen though this month well, we got a call on thursday last week from the EQP of the YSA ward in Castle dale and said that they have someone that wants to get baptised!!! She has been going to church for the past month and she has prayed about baptism and wants to get baptised. We met with her the next day. The next day she got baptized. 

Just Kidding but we did schedule a baptismal date for 27 Sept (which will probably be my last week in this area, and almost like a birthday present for me :D ) and wow she really is golden and wants to know for herself. She is a real spectacular women. she has had a bit of a hard life but wants a fresh start! I am so happy that we get to teach her. She actually lives in our area but technically its not a part of our stake. Anyway, she has had such great fellow-shippers in some return missionaries helping her understand the doctrine of baptism. she has been doing a lot of reading and she is golden. there may be a few things that will keep her from being baptised that day but I think it will all work out for the best. Hold thumbs!!

I am excited for this week we get to go to the temple re-dedication of the Ogden Temple. Well it is being broadcast I think across the state. So we have goaled for 0 Investigators at church lol. First time in my history as a missionary... But I am so excited that will be my second time at a Temple Re-dedication broadcast. Want to learn more about temples? Here is more.

If you want to learn more about what we believe as a "Mormon Culture" or if you want to share the Gospel but don't know how. Have a look at this website and these videos

I hope you are all having a Exceptional week! 

Sister Schneider and I decided to match yesterday at church :P

All My Best,

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Missionary tuesday :P

Sorry I am only e-mailing today but we had a Zone conference yesterday in Manti with Elder Clarke from the 70. It was such a good conference and what a way to start our week. We needed all the help we could get.

We had another tough week last week. Including finding a dead snake in front of our apartment. I don't know what is up with us finding dead animals by our apartment. (which is actually not an apartment it is a house....) Anyway. I think Heavenly Father is really looking out for us - looked like the snake choked on a stone. And then Sister Pene picks it up and plays with it - I don't mind snakes but I probably would never do that - we had the manti sisters sleep over at our place that night. Might not have much time. Having a thunder storm outside. (sounds like home)

Well Both our baptisms for the month have fallen through. Well I guess they have been postponed till next month but still. it was a bit disappointing. 

Sunday was the worst. Sister Schneider accidentally set the alarm for 05:55 pm instead of am :| and we had a 07:00 am meeting with all our ward mission leaders... we woke up at 06:55 am .... and that was only the beginning. :( so we got ready pretty quick and went to the meeting came home to get ready for church... then I stepped on my glasses... and I REALLY broke them this time. 

Luckily I have my red pair but yeah. Lame. Then we were late for church in cleavland (at least we got to hear Hunters testimony. After some studies we went knocking on doors and seriously no one would answer/was not home. we finally got into a door at 04:45 pm and had dinner at 5 pm at least dinner was really good! We also had both our appointments cancel on us.

But we did have a few highlights for the week:
  • I got my credit card working so I have extra money feels so good.
  • Hunter bore his testimony in church on sunday!!! what a kid!! Also paid his tithing on sunday! it is so great he really just soaks up everything that we teach him. and wants to obey immediately... we will be teaching Law of chastity next week... wish us luck :P teaching 9 year olds is always fun lol
  • Tim and Kelly did not make it to church but we had a real good lesson with them on sunday evening which was able to lift our spirits and his. Mormon messages are the best!
  • We also had a few other good lessons in the week
Biggest highlight though was the zone conference. 

It was such a spiritual experience!!! But I learned that I should really stop complaining.

We learned so many things though and I really hope to show a 10th of what I learned in this email and hope and pray that it can help someone today.

Sister Center spoke a lot about preparation. how we prepare every day for something and that we prepared in the pre-mortal world as well. All those with a patriarchal blessing please read your blessing today and find out who you were in the pre-mortal world. And also pray to know who YOU were. I know that you had so much faith. and because of that you were able to come here to earth to be tried and tested. When you read the scriptures also look out for themes of preparation. "Obedience prepares us for the blessings Heavenly Father has in store for us."

President Center spoke a lot about CONVERSION, What it is and what the steps are to conversion:
  • Knowledge
    • Faith
      • Testimony
        • Repentance
          • Baptism/Scarament
            • Holy Ghost
              • Obedience
Sorry I do not have time to explain each one but think of this. Why is knowledge the first step in conversion? How does that influence our faith? On a scale of 1-10 where are you on the process of conversion?

"True conversion is when you want to help others gain a testimony or to be converted"

Please know that the road to conversion is NOT easy. It will be hard - you WILL face trails (I saw many trails this week) But I know that it is WORTH it! Repentance is also a part of conversion.

Elder Clarke is REALLY Bold... I have alot to change. I wish everyone could have heard him. what was sad is that he prophesied that there were missionaries in that conference that would go inactive in a few years. It had better not be me. I hope I am converted enough that I will remain faithful.

Just some basics of what we spoke about:
  • Member Missionary Work
    • We watched an amazing video Please watch this and pray and see how YOU can share the gospel today. I know we can ALL do better (myself included) We have been asked to DOUBLE our baptisms. This is the HASTENING OF THE WORK. we can do this. But we as members need to gear up a bit.
  • Retention
    • Please show interest in recent converts. we as missionaries have been asked to visit recent converts for the last 2 years. There are way too many that go inactive because the members and missionaries stop going by or that they never get a responsibility. Are you involving the new members? They really have the coolest testimonies! You WANT to be their friends and feed off their excitement for the gospel
  • Activation
    • Those that are currently not attending church right now count too!! I really loved that he brought this up I feel like there are some missionaries that don't think of less actives as poeple or worth it.
  • Temple & Family History Work
    • Get the new and returning members to do work for their ancestors - get yourself involved too!! you will see miracles!!!
  • Teaching
    • Missionaries need to help investigators keep commitments. 
Well Sounds like he wants us to be perfect. but it IS doable and possible to do all of these things. we are going to work hard this week!

Love you all. Thanks for all the emails and letters!

All My Best,

Sister Karen Hollander
Utah, St George Mission
881 South River Road
St. George Utah, 84790
United States