Monday, December 15, 2014

I'm Forever in HIS Debt - GOODBYE COLORADO - December 15, 2014


Well, this is it. It is my last email as Hermana Mangum. It is strange. It doesn't feel real. I got up this morning and it just feels like any other day. It truly hasn't hit me that my mission is over. I don't think it will until I am out of Colorado and at home. But, let me tell you what has happened this week! :)

On Wednesday we had a Progressive Dinner with the Relief Society. I had never been to a progressive dinner before, it was fun! Sister Benson was in charge of preparing all of the dinners by herself. And so she asked us to help her out :) It was so fun!! We went over in the morning and got all of the meals prepared! I love Sis. Benson! She is so wonderful :) Then that night we went to the dinner. We kinda ended up at the reject dinner... Everyone canceled for one house and so they asked the missionaries to fill in. I am so glad they did !!!! We ate with Sister Hochstien and one other Sister. Sister Hochstien was just the cutest ever!! I didn't really know her before. She not only is just straight-up beautiful, but she just glows with the spirit. She served a mission in the Netherlands. She told us some crazy stories about companions, etc. And how she came home and didn't get married until she was 27 and she ended up converting her husband to the church. They have the cutest story of how the met!! And they have only been married about 7 years and he has already served in the Bishopric and is now Executive Clerk. They are just an amazing family!! And it was SO clear to me how much her serving a mission has blessed her life, strengthened her testimony, and how much she is a better wife and mom from serving!! It was so clear how much better off Sis. H is for having served and I just got overwhelmed with joy for having made the same decision and to have come out here to Colorado and served a mission!!!! I AM SO GRATEFUL!!!!!

On Thursday we had our Mission Christmas Devotional :) It was so great!!! TONS of musical numbers!! I even participated in one!! All of the STL's and ZL's and AP's of the Loveland, Longmont and Boulder Zones sang :) It was awesome! And then... I had to give my departing testimony! I can't believe that day came... I think it went well :) And I didn't cry! #proudmoment 

On Friday we went over to the Monreal’s house for a lesson and they surprised us with a HUGE dinner!!!!!! It was a feast!!! SOOO yummy :) And they they surprised us again with Christmas presents!! They gave us each a purse and a scarf, hat and gloves. SOOOO nice!!! It meant so much and I just love their family!!! :)

After we headed to the Pearl Street Mall and sang Christmas Carols with 6 other missionaries from my zone. It started out kinda rough... Luckily Sis. Heintz is in our zone because that girl can sing! So she helped A LOT! Quickly we got a rhythm going and it was awesome!! 2 other missionaries went around passing out the He Is The Gift pass-along cards to people walking down the street and then we also had a white board set up asking people what their favorite Christmas gift has been. People would go up and write down their answers. This one lady came over and started singing with us for over an hour. She just stood in front of us as we were singing and sang back to us. We later found out that she is actually a less-active member of the church. Her parents were in the MOTAB and so she had grown up singing all of the Christmas Hymns and just loved listening to us. She then told us that her sister is going through a nasty divorce right now with her husband, who was a bishop, and now decided he is done with marriage, and the sister had just had surgery that morning. Wow! So she asked us to sing a hymn for her sister. We sang Be Still My Soul, and she recorded it and sent it to her sister :) It was really cool!!!

On Saturday and Sunday we said LOTS of goodbye's… and on Sunday we gave talks in Sacrament Meeting. They went well :) All 4 of us missionaries spoke and so we decided to talk about He Is The Gift. One talked about Discovering, another about Embracing, I talked about Sharing, and Ally talked about the Blessings of the Gift. 
Later on Sunday evening I got some really sad news. I got a phone call from Hermana Stratford, telling me that Elsa had passed away that morning at 2:00am. I was so sad to hear this! I love Elsa Hernandez more than anything in the world. She has blessed my life in SO many ways!! I am so grateful I was able to attend her baptism. She is a beautiful woman with a strong testimony and faith. I feel so honored to have been the one to have found her and taught her and introduce her to the gospel. I know she is going to be the BEST missionary on the other side :) I am so sad she is gone, 50 years old is far too young, but oh how grateful I am to know she is no longer in pain and that she can have peace. Elsa, I love you! I thank you for your wonderful example and the light that you have been to me. :)

Well family, these last 18 months have truly been better than I could have imagined! I am so grateful to have served a mission! My life has been so richly blessed!!! My testimony has been strengthened so much. I have felt and experienced so much joy! My heart truly is full!! I hope you all know that I have a firm testimony of the Gospel. I know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God. I had the pleasure to finish reading it again today :) What a perfect way to end my mission! I know that Joseph Smith translated the Book of Mormon and that he was a prophet and that he restored the fullness of the gospel on the earth today. I know that we have a modern day prophet, President Thomas S. Monson. I love him so much. I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer. I know he died for us and that because of Him EVERYTHING is possible! I know He lives! I know He loves us! I know the gospel of Jesus Christ is truly and simply the ONLY way to have true, full, and eternal happiness and joy. I know all of these things are true. 

I love you all so much!! And I will see you very very soon :) Thank you for all of your support and love you have given and shown me. You have no idea how much it has meant. Lennon, I am so proud of you and all of your hard work! Keep it up girl!! 

With much LOVE,

Hermana Mangum


1. Gourgouris Family
2. The Croppers (she is a convert of Ben Roush's and now is in the Boulder ward!! How cool is that?!?)
3. Sister Bench and her Mom, June.
4. A sad/hard goodbye to the girls Bead for Life
5. Check out their Christmas Tree
6. Radhika at Gurkhis (her restaurant)
7. Rebekah and Johah!! I LOVE THEM!!!!!
8. Beautiful Bensons :)
9. Nissa and her boys
10. The wonderful Davis'
11. It was Adolfo's 15th so we built him a Coca Cola Birthday Tree :)

Sunday, December 14, 2014

My Name is on the "Exit" Board - Wow! Really? - December 8th, 2014

Hello my beautiful, wonderful family!! 

I had a great week!! It was busy busy busy, but simply amazing!! Filled with so many happy and wonderful miracles and blessings!

So last Monday, Sister Kaiser took Ally and I out to lunch with her daughter Chelsea and her friend, who have both been home from their missions for 3 weeks :) It was AWESOME!!!! They are so cute and I know we will all be good friends after the mission! It got me really excited to see how much your missionary service blesses you AFTER the mission! Chelsea and her friend just glowed!! I want that!! I want to still have the missionary glow when I return home! 

Tuesday we had exchanges with the Sisters in Longmont. They went SO well! I went with Sister Allen :) She is ADORABLE!!! I love her so much!! This is her second transfer in the field! She is so cute and a great missionary! We had a great time together!

Wednesday we had our Exit Interviews with President Brown. It was awesome!! We talked about the things I have learned on my mission and how it will bless me forever and how I can apply those things when I go home. He did talk about marriage and told me to not follow the white handbook when I go home, but to FLIRT haha!! And then told me to apply Preach My Gospel to my life when I go home and instead of using chapter 9 for "Finding people to Teach" I need to "Find people to Date". hahaha!! The interview was really amazing!! I left feeling SO happy and just on Cloud 9 :) I really love President Brown!

On Thursday we had our departing temple trip!! It was SO fantastic!! There were 14 of us there! The spirit was strong and I just felt so good and happy to be there! The session was wonderful! President and Sister Brown were awesome! Everyone was just so extra excited and happy!! After, we went to lunch at a Mexican restaurant and ate good food and stuffed ourselves on chips and salsa and flautas :) Haha!! Such a wonderful trip! I am so glad we got to end our missions that way!!

Friday we had MLC's. They were fabulous!! Really amazing!! I loved every minute of it! We talked and prepared for our Christmas devotional this upcoming week. I am so excited! It is going to be really amazing! And I will give my departing testimony there... Oh boy!! It really is all coming to an end... :( At MLC's I got a little overwhelmed. I just became really sad to be leaving. I LOVE IT HERE!! I love the other missionaries and President and Sister Brown! I love my investigators and ward members! I love being on a spiritual high all of the time. I am really going to miss it!

Saturday, the sisters in our ward had a baptism for Tina :) She is so cute and amazing!! The baptism just went so well!! I got to lead the music :) Haha! (We also visited more investigators and members, helped decorate a Christmas tree and a ton of other things I am remembering now but forgot to mention earlier - busy busy Hermanas))

Then on Saturday night we had our ward Christmas Party. It was AWESOME!! Super classy and fun and cute! The food was delicious and lots of people were there! BUT... I did experience one of my most embarrassing moments ever A sister fromf our Spanish group decided right before to have all of the Hermanas  go up and sing "Drummer Boy" in Spanish. Just a spur of the moment decision There was no practicing...  So we get up there and to say it was a disaster is an understatement! It was SO off key!! And even WAY off tempo!! No one would start singing when they were supposed to... our rom pom pom poms were SO off!! I was just laughing by the end because it was so terrible. I would occasionally put my head up to catch very concerned looks in the audience.. I just had to finish with my head down out of pure embarrassment. It was bad family. It was bad! haha!! 

On Sunday, Brother Gourgouris b-lined straight for me after Sacrament meeting and asked me to give a talk next week since it is my last week. I tried to get out of it by saying "Sure, I would love to bare my testimony! Great idea! I would be honored". But he made it clear he wanted it to be a talk... ha! Ally has already spoken in this ward when she first got here like 4 or 5 months ago. And since she was the one who threw me under the bus to speak, I threw her under too. And then we decided to throw the other 2 sisters under as well!! So now we only need to give 7 minute talks :) I am actually really excited and think it will be really amazing!! And it is great prep for my homecoming talk :) 

Well family, I love you all so much!! I am so grateful for this Christmas season! I love my Savior, Jesus Christ, and I am grateful I get to really remember Him every moment while serving Him as a missionary. He truly is the GIFT!!! 

Have the best week ever!! And I will see you all the just 1 week :) Ah!!!!


Hermana Hannah Mangum :)

3 Thanksgiving Dinners - December 1, 2014

Feliz Dia de Accion de Gracias!!!

It has been a great week! I just love this time of year! I love Thanksgiving!! Such a good time to remember all the blessings we have :) There is just magic in the air!

So, good news, I FINISHED MY TRUNKY PAPERS!! Feels so good to have them done! Big weight off the shoulders! Especially with all we have to do these next 2 weeks. 

And... we got a new investigator this week!!! She is a referral from la familia Monreal :) #ilovemembermissionaries We made contact with her a couple of weeks ago and she had to cancel but we went over to help Andolfo with his homework and she was at their house. We were able to start to teach her and we have another appointment set up with her for wednesday! I am so happy!

Monday we had to move out of the Davis' for the week because they had a bunch of family in town for Thanksgiving. So we house-sat a members home while they were gone for the holiday. It actually ended up working perfectly because we just got a new set of sisters in our ward and they didn't have housing yet so we all crashed together for the week and it was super fun!! We moved back to the Davis' last night :) It is good to be back!

A great member of our ward took us to dinner at Carrabbas this week! So yummy :) She is just amazing!! I love her so much!! She has the cutest little boy ever!  Anyway, she wants to go to the temple with us on the 18th Mom, when you come to get me!! She has never gone to the temple before and wants to receive her endowments!! I am so excited! it is going to be great!!!

Thanksgiving was awesome!! Our ward started their first-ever, now annual Turkey Trot! It was really fun!! Betty came with us :) Then we had district meeting, which was great. We also visited M and D in the afternoon. They didn't have any plans. Lots of crazy things going on in their lives right now. Really just broke our hearts. But they are so grateful still!! Just simply amazing people! 

We actually had 3 Thanksgiving dinners!! Our first was with Sister Bench and her family! There were about 30 people there and it was so much fun!! We mostly just chatted with everyone and they were hilarious! It was great! 

Our second dinner was with the Bishop! I love Bishop McMurtrey! He seriously is the most giving man I know! And he is hilarious too! He reminds me a lot of Bishop Svendson!! So, Bishop had like 30 people over as well, none of which were family. All people from the ward and friends who had no where to go. So sweet!! It was so much fun and the food was delicious!! We loaded up a ton of plates with food from his house and doorbell ditched it at M and D’s :) No one deserved it more than them. Wish we could have done more!! 

Then we had dessert at the McDonalds house :) Great way to end the day!! It was super fun! They had family in town and it was fun to get to know them!! 

On Friday we did our first exchange of the 5 we have to do. I was with Sister Heintz here in Boulder :) So fun! We had a great time! She and her companion got swept into our ward and so it was great to be able to help her get to know people and get more info on the ward members. 

Then on Saturday I had my second exchange with good ol' Sister Johnson in Louisville. It was a blast! Had a lot of success contacting atont of people! She also made me a shirt that says "I heart Sister Johnson" Hahaha!! 

Sunday was great! But, I was completely exhausted by the time it rolled around! haha! I am just glad it is Pday so I can relax a little bit because we have SO much going on this next week!!! But it will be wonderful!! 2 exchanges, ward christmas party, MLC's, help with the Sister's baptism on Saturday (because it was the Elder's investigator) and we helped teach her, and also lots of service planned for the ward! Gonna be busy! But great! I am excited :) 

I love you all!!! Mom, thanks so much for the wonderful package!!! Made my day!! The cookies were fabulous!!! They didn't last long for me either! With a house of 4 sisters we pretty much devoured them!!! Hahaha!!! You're the best!! I love you family!!! 


Hermana Mangum Sr. :)

Saturday, December 6, 2014

The Blessing of Baptism - November 24, 2014

Hello Family: 

It was a week of miracles...

Elsa was baptized!!!!! Here is the story! One of my investigators from Fort Collins was supposed to get baptized on Saturday. I was talking with Hermana Stratford trying to get the information so I could attend the baptism, when she told me her baptism is being postponed for a couple of more weeks. She is waiting for her boyfriend to come so he can be there for her baptism. But then I was informed that Hermana’s Stratford and England went to see Elsa the previous week for the first time since I have left. They found out that Elsa's kidneys have completely failed and the doctors told her she has anywhere from a few days to a few weeks to live. When I got the news my heart just completely broke and I cried and cried. Elsa means the world to me!! She has been such a huge part of my mission!! So, Elsa really wanted to get baptized before she goes to meet our Father in Heaven. Her daughter, who was an Atheist, wanted to make sure it happened. The only thing holding Elsa back was that she had only been to church 2 times and she needed to come 1 more time. So, her daughter brought her to church yesterday and we had her baptism last night. I got permission to go!!! Which was a HUGE miracle!! Elsa asked that I give the talk on baptism, which I was honored to do :) When I saw her, we just grabbed on to each other!! She looked beautiful! She looks like she has lost about 50 pounds from all of her health problems. But she was just glowing!! The service was so unbelievable! It was the first baptism in the newly started Fort Collins, Alta Vista Branch :) It was just WONDERFUL!!! Elsa literally touched my heart the first time we met her and we asked if we could help her with clean up her yard and house after a huge hail storm hit the week of the 4th of July. So much has happened since then, and I know I heard the spirit that day. I am so glad I listened and that she found the gospel. It was also fun to see people from the Spanish Group in Fort Collins!! I love them all soooooooooooooooooooooooo much!!! They were so supportive at the baptism. Fort Collins has a very special place in my heart!! I know I will spend an excessive amount of time there after my mission :)  

We also did lots of service this week! We helped Adolfo with his homework for almost 4 hours this week. Well correction, Sister Mehner helped him. I haven't taken the math class he is in in 8 years... yikes, I am so old!!! :( So I was of no help! Haha! So I just played and entertained Vicki :) And then Hermano Monreal made us delicious Mexican food!! 

We had a really fantastic Zone Meeting this week! Brother Boss, from my ward came and spoke and gave a training lesson on Power. It was really wonderful. He talked about how many people desire power for the wrong reasons and many run from power and having any responsibility and how both are wrong. He talked about how power is everything! In order to be successful we need to have power. We should be striving to have it and using it for good. It was wonderful and very inspiring!

We met with one of our investigators that we have been trying to see forever this week! Finally! It has been so hard to get a hold of her. She's been working 12-15 hour days because of the snow etc. But the lesson went really well and she told us she is living the word of wisdom!!! Yay!!! :)

We had a dinner appointment with a member of our ward and while we were there her friend came over. The friend was saying things that hinted that she was a member and it turns out, she is! She has not come out for awhile.  So we taught the Plan of Salvation, LOVE lesson and it was wonderful, but she cried a ton! She asked a lot of questions, and at first I felt bad that she was crying and that maybe we should have shared a lighter message, but I actually think it was exactly what she needed. She seemed to be kinda mad a God because she had taken care of her dying mom for 8 years, while the rest of her family abandoned her, and she feels like she has not received any blessing from it in the last 3 years. I think we helped clear up some of her feelings and she felt the spirit, which made her cry so much. It turned out to be a really cool experience!

The Benson family really spoiled us this week!! Boy do I love them :) Sister Benson drove to Denver for something and actually brought us back Cafe Rio for dinner with an entire gallon of horchata!! Yay baby! Then Bro. Benson sent that pic to you Mom :) And then on Sunday at church, Ally and I were just crashing. Soooooooooo tired!!! We had a fiesta activity at the church earlier in the week, and it would not have happened if Sister Benson and the other missionaries were not there to help. They are fabulous people!!

As you can tell, It has been a great week!! Really wonderful!! And to top it off I am found out I am finishing my mission here in Boulder with Ally!!! Yay!! We are still the STL's and have to do 5 exchanges in 3 weeks, go to a leadership meeting, zone conference, departing temple trip, finish trunky papers, plan a baptism for the Elder's investigator that were in our ward(because they got swept out) and also get things ready to leave. It is going to be craaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaazy busy!! But busy is good!! I am so excited :)



Hna. Hannah Mangum :)