My trainer went from Vietnam to Cambodia yesterday and she didn't get a p-day, so we're doing it today. This morning we took a seven hour bus ride from Phnom Penh to Saigon. The bus was air conditioned so I'm not mad. Seriously, I could be having the absolute worst day and the second you put me in air conditioning I'll be happy. Haha
Our house is SO nice! It is probably the nicest house I have ever been in here! I have a California queen bed all to myself. Haha Vietnam is already being the bomb.com!
So here's are some really interesting things about the work here:
I am the second Sister with an American last name to ever serve in Vietnam! The first Sister, Sister Stevens, lives in my house. And this is the first time there have been two Sister missionary companionship's in Vietnam. The work is going forward here and it's moving forward quickly! Everyone keeps telling me that I'm a pioneer for the work in Vietnam. In the words of Marty Mcfly, "This is heavy." Being a pioneer of the Gospel for Vietnamese people runs in the family though. Dad started the Vietnamese branch in Georgia, mom was the first member in her family to be baptized, just less than two years ago the Vietnamese cousins joined the church, and now here I am serving a full-time mission! I love this work, I love it a lot!
Spreading the word is difficult though. The LDS church is currently not a recognized church in Vietnam so we're not allowed to proselyte or even wear our name tags. We cannot start conversations with people, and if they ask what we're doing here we can only say that we teach English classes. Somehow it all works out though and the branch I am serving in has about 100 members attend each week.
Not wearing a name tag has been very difficult though. You know how you hear the stories of missionaries not being able to take off their tags once they're released from being a missionary because they wore it for so long? Not putting on my tag this morning was so hard! Whenever people ask me what my name is I just point at my tag where it has my name and the name of Jesus Christ. It's such an odd feeling to not have that name over my heart.
I am so grateful for this call to serve! I love being a missionary and serving the Lord and my favorite people on earth! I miss you all and hope you're all CTR'ing it up back home!