“¡Oh hermanos, adiós, pues, adiós!”

I can hardly believe that this is my last time getting to write you all as Hermana Metcalf! My mission is just 3 days away from closing and that just doesn’t even feel real. If you’d like to come to my homecoming, I’ll be speaking in church next Sunday, April 22nd at 9:00AM at my parents’ ward and then we’re having a brunch back at our house. Email me or get in contact with my mom for more details 🙂

I could not have asked for a more perfect ending to my mission experience than the one that I’ve received here in the Cibola ward over these last few weeks. Sister Vasquez and I have encountered no shortage of genuinely good people and in our short time together we’ve received this great abundance of sweet, peaceful moments. We’ve experienced miracles firsthand and it was all just too good to be any kind of a coincidence. I don’t mean to make it sound like it was some flawless finish or with out trial from time to time- I’m still very much a work in progress! But it has been a blessing to serve here and for that I am thankful. I know God lives and He loves us.

This past weekend our friend Sam was baptized and it was the most touching baptismal service I’ve ever gotten to attend. He is converted to Christ. There was an awesome turn out from our ward family here in Cibola and everyone was crying left and right! The peace we felt was so real. What a sweet thing it was to witness.

Emotions are running high with the end so near. I was asked to speak in Sacrament meeting yesterday and I was a blubbering mess! I got to speak on the message of the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ- the very heart of all missionary work! For the last week or so in preparing that talk and trying to come to grips with the fact that I’m actually leaving, I’ve had the words to this hymn playing on repeat in my mind. It’s a hymn that we don’t have in English and can only found in the Spanish hymn book. It’s called “Placentero Nos es Trabajar.”

The lyrics are:

Placentero nos es trabajar
en la viña del gran Rey Jesús,
y honroso nos es predicar
a Su pueblo Su ley y Su luz.
Por Su luz, por Su luz,
placentero nos es trabajar.
Por Su luz, por Su luz,
moriremos en El sin pesar.

La palabra de Dios escuchad
con ahínco, lealtad y fervor.
Para siempre jamás recordad
Su pureza, verdad y amor.
Con amor, con amor,
la palabra de Dios escuchad.
Con amor, con amor,
la bandera de Dios empuñad.

¡Oh hermanos, adiós, pues, adiós!
El momento de ir vino ya.
Si guardamos la fe en el gran Dios,
nos veremos aún más allá.
Más allá, más allá.
¡Oh hermanos, adiós, pues, adiós!
Más allá, más allá,
moraremos con Dios en amor.

(English translation to the best of my ability):

Pleasant it is for us to work
in the vineyard of Christ the great King,
and it is honorable for us to preach
to His people His law and His light.
By His light, by His light,
pleasant it is for us to work.
By His light, by His light,
we will die in Him without regret.

The word of God heard
with zeal, loyalty and fervor.
Forever remember
Its purity, truth and love.
With love, with love,
the word of God listen.
With love, with love,
the flag of God grip.

Oh brothers, goodbye, well, goodbye!
The time to go has come already.
If we keep faith in the great God,
we will see one another
Beyond, beyond.
Oh brothers, goodbye, well, goodbye!
Beyond, beyond,
we will dwell with God in His love.

How thankful I am to have something so good and so hard to say good bye to. Serving a mission has forever changed me for the better. The lessons I’ve learned, the people I’ve loved and the memories I’ve made will always stay with me.

I know this is Christ’s church. I know He lives and directs it even today. I know Joseph Smith was His prophet and that the Book of Mormon is the word of God. The happiness found in gospel living is so good.

Les quiero muchisimo! Nos vemos prontito!

 

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Bela and Yahaira

Things here in the Cibola ward have been so, so good. I am thankful for a loving Heavenly Father that places us exactly where we need to be when we need to be there. Sister Vasquez and I have seen so many great things in just a matter of a few short weeks.

Just last night we got to visit a 13 year old recent convert named Bela. I actually got to attend her baptism way back on January 31st, 2016 (that makes me feel dated!) when I was serving in this stake in a different ward. She has since stopped coming to church. When I met Bela at her baptism a year or so ago, I asked her to write a letter of encouragement to an 11 year old little girl named Yahaira that I was teaching. She was a little scared to get baptized, so Bela wrote her a letter telling her about how great it was to be baptized (complete with cute puppy stickers and all) and Yahaira ended up deciding she was brave enough to do it. There was also a family I was teaching at that time, Familia Trejo, who attended Bela’s baptism. They felt the Spirit so strong and had a great experience. They as well ended up getting baptized and are now preparing to be sealed as a family. I got to tell Bela all about that and it made her really happy. She had no idea what kind of an effect her example had had on so many. We invited her to come to church with us this Sunday and she said she would 🙂 We also set up a time to go back and start teaching some of her siblings! It’s going to be great!

This coming Saturday our friend Sam is preparing to be baptized. He has got such a good heart and strong faith. Please keep him in your prayers as he prepares to take this big step!

I love you guys! I’ll see you all soon!

Homecoming Info (what?!)

Hey friends and family! The end of my mission is approaching way too fast and I realize that I probably need to start preparing a little bit for that. So I wanted to invite you all to come listen to my homecoming talk on Sunday, April 22nd at 9:00 AM at my parents’ home ward. Afterwards we’re having a brunch at my house and I’d love to see you all there! Ask my mom or shoot me an email at sydney.metcalf@myldsmail.net for my home and church addresses!

Jose got baptized and off to Albuquerque I go!

The last few days have been crazy! First off, Jose got baptized!! WOOO!! He is the sweetest. I’ve never taught anyone that loved the Book of Mormon more than he does. It was a real privilege to get to be a part of his journey. He is on to great things!

I got a call from my mission president a couple of days ago asking if I would be able to come up to Albuquerque and serve in an English ward for the remainder of my mission. It was a bit of a last minute, emergency situation. I drove up this morning, said goodbye to Hermana Wallis and Hermana Simpson (whom I will miss very much) and met my new companion, Sister Vasquez. She is super cool and I’m looking forward to all that these next few weeks have in store!

It was also the semi-annual “Missionary Monday” this morning at the Albuquerque temple. All of the missionaries from Santa Fe, New Mexico to El Paso, Texas got to attend a session and it was amazing as usual. I love the temple and I especially love Missionary Monday. It was good to get to see old friends and feel the spirit of peace found in that special place.

That’s about it for this week’s update! Have a very Happy Easter and a great General Conference weekend! Love you guys 🙂

 

Back in El Paso!

So transfer news came out last week and I will officially be finishing my mission in El Paso, TX! I’m now in a trio with Hermana Wallis and Hermana Simpson! They are both great and this first week together has been a blast 🙂

I’m already missing Hermana Duran like crazy. That was a hard goodbye. Our time together was way too short but I’m so thankful for all that I was able to learn from her while we were companions. She’s is incredibly hardworking and I know she’s going to go on to do great things. She impacted me for the better and I know she’ll continue to make a positive difference in many others’ lives. I couldn’t be more proud of mija.

Attached are a few pics at White Sands Missile Range with my old zone, a few goodbye pics with some of my favorite people in Las Cruces and a pic of the new Rio Grande Mesa dream team at a service project we went to this week (our ward is SO pumped to have 5 missionaries haha).

MARIA GOT BAPTIZED!!

This past Saturday my friend Maria got baptized! I got to be one of many missionaries involved in teaching her and her family while I served up in Albuquerque. They are such good people and I’ve missed them a ton! Hermana Garcia and Hermana Jackson have been taking care of them since I left and this morning they sent this sweet picture my way 🙂 (I guess the paper she’s holding is a shout out to me and says "Hermana Metcalf" haha)

SO proud of her!!! Getting to be a missionary is the best 🙂

Rachel’s Baptism

Rachel, a little 10 year old girl that we’ve been teaching, got baptized on Saturday! She and her family are the best. They’ve recently begun to come back to church and Rachel’s baptism was a really special experience for them all. It was beautiful and I was thankful to get to be a part of it 🙂