May 29, 2016

June 8, 2016


Well, emails are becoming so hard for me to write. We had a great
week! Elder Bennet, a General of the seventy came to our mission and
we had a meeting all day yesterday with the China Town, Harlem, and
South Manhattan zones. Wow, it was a special and sacred experience!
The spirit truly spoke to my heart that he is a man called by a
prophet of God. The Holy Ghost also confirmed to me the he has
specific instruction for our mission, the New York New York North
He started by testifying of our pre-existence with our Father in
Heaven..  "You were assigned here, along with your mission Presidents
before you were born." (He also said if he knew the Smiths before he
would be pleading and praying to have them. He is the best mission
president in the world. I did hear those words!) YOU love truth. YOU
were valiant.

When I got my call to come to New York all I really could think of was
my love for big cities and shopping and big dreams and the temple. Now
that I am here, I know that Manhattan is not a dream for me everyday
but being a representative of Jesus Christ is such a sacred and
important calling and I can have more power than the 1,094847363
people here. "You have more authority than any King or Queen." I have
felt this power in my life by helping people. However, this power does
not come if we don't use our agency for good, because spiritual
cleanliness is power.
I also didn't realize until coming here how uncomfortable, scary, and
intimidating it can be sometimes to do things. (Like sometimes I don't
want to talk to people. It makes me tired!!) I do know those little
things we do, give us power and I have felt it.  Elder Bennet talked
about doing those things because that's where growth comes and to not
be excuse or fear driven, like he was on his mission. He later learned
on his mission the power of his calling and was a mission president.
He proposed to his wife 4 times before she said yes!!!! Haha. He was
persistent and these things developed because of his mission.

My favorite thing and it's something I have thought about all week now
is DESIRE. What do you desire most? Are you praying for those things
I was reading this week in my studies in alma 39-42 and Enos and felt
so strongly how important it is that are desires are righteous before
the Lord. I have studied on diligence and how it comes when we wrestle
before the Lord with clear specific questions. Also by creating good
habits and being persistant. Repentance is a big part in this pattern
of diligence. Then comes peace and we can trust.

I have such a testimony in the restored Gospel and in a literal Father
in Heaven who loves us deeply. This path is the only way to joy and
living with our families forever. Those are simple truths I hold dear.

I love you all. I will share some more miracles next week! We did lots
of contacting. Our contacting goal as a district is 135 a week and we
are trying to figure out the best things. My favorite is the service
we do and the people in those service projects who want to know who we
are and where we can share a message of the Book of Mormon and testify
of it.


Xx, Sister Vassau

Buying fabric at Mood project runway style for our dresses a member
is making for us bc New York is too i'm going to look like a
tomato.. we ran into this random girl before who just moved here doing

interior design who thought we were pretty fun. ;)

May 25, 2016

May 25, 1016

Hello everyone,

Many cool experiences this week! Most importantly, I am growing
spiritually each and every day and coming unto Christ.  And it's the
last week of the transfer!! That is seriously unreal. This has been
the fastest 6 weeks of my life!! I'm praying I will be staying with
Sister Hart. She is so easy to be happy with. I've had so many great
companions (blessing!!) and I'm really not ready for change right now.

Some of my favorites this week were having lunch with a less active
Jennifer Hemkin who takes us out every week. We are some of her only
friends here and we love her so she spoils us! She plays the piano for
different ballets in New York so we ate outside the Met opera house.
She came with us right after to visit Robert, the doorman:)
A member who we love is going to Africa in a few so she took us out to
sea!! With permission from the ap's we left our mission ;) it was this
little boat that had seafood and a good view of the city. So fun. The
best news of all, Lucinda Stitt will be baptized this Saturday so at
church on Sunday everyone was so good to her. I think the ward is so
happy to have such a gem join the ward. a little different than
someone who lives in the projects. they're great too, but sadly seem
to quickly go coast. I'm serious, everyone was amazing to her. She has
put a lot of thought into this. She has been going to another ward
since she is usually with her sister on the weekends. Lucinda will be
such an asset! We're so excited! She is darling!! I will try to take
pictures of her. (Also we're teaching the Restoration at her baptism
AND I'm giving a talk in church on Sunday so I'm a little stressed. i
need a few prayers)

On Sunday night we looked up a less-active named Maria who has been
tried many times but her husband never allows people up there. She
lives at visions so she is blind. We were let up and we were able to
talk with her and her friend Martha.
The day after we had a service through New York cares at Visions.
Right when we walked in we saw Maria and Martha! Ha. (that happened to
be planned out well)
I got to know Maria a little better as I described each color bead to
her. how incredible is it that people live like that. They rely so
much on the people around them for the simple things we get to enjoy.
So humbling! Maria's beads slipped off her necklace twice and by the
second time I was thinking.. really? haha I offered to put them back
on just the way she had it and she told me, don't worry be happy. Lol
talk about patience and positive thinking. I'm grateful to be able to
see and I'm grateful I can serve. we also played with clay this week
(helping older tenants for service which seems a bit of a waist of
time maybe) but after a volunteer there asked us questions about who
we were and she wanted a Book of Mormon and was so excited to have
one! Service miracle! it's the little things. Also, Kelsi and Tyson
had us over for dinner. I love being with her:) I've told like two
people in fashion about their new business with building a perfect
closet and making use of all your clothes by simplifying! this is such
a great idea and I might just snag some more of those cards of hers.
Haha I could talk to people about simplifying their lives with the
gospel!! It's all about going back to the basics. Praying, reading,
pondering, the sacrament. These are the very things that bring inner
stillness and a real sense of joy and power enter into our lives.

As we find a stillness in ourself, our homes will be a place where the
spirit can dwell.
As our families have a piece of stillness. Temptations will be easier
to resist because we will have confidence in who we are! Inner
stillness is the topic I choose for my
talk Sunday. I love knowing who I am as a child of God. It Sparks Joy
when we go back to the simple things in life.

P.s. Congratulations to my best friend, soul sista, first person who I
saw nyc with 2X. Haylie & Chan. miss you Hay. I'm so happy for you!

Sister Vassau

1. Sister Hemkin and her friends at the Met.
2. Sister Woods & us leaving our missions ;)
3. Beautiful NY Skyline
4. Soup dumplings at Joe's Ginger on a split!

May 18, 2016

May 18, 2016

Happy Wednesday everyone,

Awesome things happened this week.
It began with Zone Conferences at the Lincoln Sq. building!
We were asked to come having practiced a 4 minute restoration. So we
did this. Video recorded ourselves which is something President wants
us to do. (Realized we are far too serious and I dread watching
myself. HA but good to do) There's is a big focus in our mission on
those New York minutes and teaching simply! I've been grateful for
this because how do you 1) get to know someone quickly 2) teach a
principle of the gospel to them 3) invite them to do something with a
promise in a 5 minute subway or contact. Things are fast here. This is
hard but it can be so natural as we share who we are and why we're

So I've had way too much sugar this week. A member took us to Harry's
last night in the financial district and ate this canoly that was the
best thing I've put in my mouth. I also feel like I'm doing well on
the walking/eating ratio.

We really do have such inspired leaders here in New York! We were
privileged to be at a training Saturday with the General RS, YW, P
presidency; Sister Lind Reeves, Sister Joy Jones, and Sister Mckonkie.
I feel like their faith and hope are in their faces and in the way
they treat others. I just felt such a spirit for the Restoration of
the Gospel through a prophet! Please read the Book of Mormon each day
as a family.
This is far more important than anything.  I also felt such a vision.
One of them said, "With increased vision brings increased motivation."
Our visions in life really do change as we change and our hearts are
opened to more truth and light. I have felt it time and time again. I
have a very different vision for my life than I did before and the
choices I make will be a lot more closely guided by the revelation I
receive. I just want to be the best self I can be. Thankfully it's a
lifelong process and it doesn't just happen over night. The Atonement
is such a real gift. It's so real that it changes us, our hearts. I
love repenting! It fills me with joy and more love!  Repenting daily
and coming unto Christ is a real life changer.

And I love doing this by taking the Sacrament. There's a special
feeling by repenting and preparing our hearts before we take the
Sacrament. Sunday we all fasted for an Elder Baldwin in our mission
and that was cool.

We had a really cool experience with a girl who goes to NYU who's mom
is taking lessons in California. We sat in Washington Sq. park with
her and taught her the Restoration and then she had great questions
and is looking forward to going back home and joining in on lessons.
Another one. We had this referral for a cleaning lady who works at the
Marriott hotel who wanted a Book of Mormon. Of course because they are
displayed so nicely. Well we've been a few times now and taught the
front desk worker instead! That has been the Lord in his work. Lucinda
will be baptized. I will keep you updated when we see her.

I love my mission. I love being companions with Sister Hart. It's been
such a blessing. Our studies each morning have been so great together.
I have been super happy lately.

I love you guys!

Xo, Sister Vassau

1. Sister Hart's photography skills
3. Rainy Day in NYC
4. This is our sweet investigator Ashley who is 16. Her birthday treat!
Secret Garden in Central Park

May 11, 2016

May 11, 2016 - 11 Months

That Mother's Day call was amazing to me. It was just what I needed!
So happy to see that everyone is happy and doing so well. We
celebrated moms by taking people's pictures in Central Park (Bethesda
fountains) and Columbus Circle with our Mother's Day board. I felt
like I was in Italy over here. Spring time in the city is so pretty.
I added some flowers to the pasteboard, put my touch on it. We took so many 
pictures!!! Everyone loved it! Met people traveling from all over the world who

can now remember that lovely interaction with missionaries. That was
happy to see the reaction of so many who'd say you made our day and
hopefully their moms too.

Wow. So we have an investigator named Lucinda who I finally met. She
is soooo great. we set a baptismal date with her for May 21st. We
would love prayers her way! Lucinda heard a lot about the church once
she came here to live from Australia. She saw all the church media in
times Square and was a self referral. She works at Golman. She's super
stressed right now at work, she barely has time to come to church
lately, but she is awesome. She reads conference talks all the time
and she has even gotten her mom back home reading them. When we met
with her Saturday she told us NO WAY can she come to church she has so
much work that's been thrown on her, but we promised everything would
flow smoothly if she came and she would get everything done that she
needed and she could get a priesthood blessing... And she came!  Right
before church Bishop Annett gave her a beautiful blessing. He thought
she was a member when he gave the blessing.  He just saw such a light
of Christ in her. She has a really great countenance.

I was on a split yesterday with Sister Lefler. She is in the area
above us so we had a great day together. We did free Book of Mormon
art tours in the morning at the temple. The temple has this beautiful
art exhibit right now with art from Walter Rein. (In the bishopric in
Harlem) IT'S BEAUTIFUL. Wish you could be here to see it.

One of our ways of finding is by going into treat shops and bakeries
and talking to the employees. We walked around West Village yesterday
(major heart eyes) and taught 5 people about the Book of Mormon or 4
minute Restoration!! It was so effective!! One man named Jeremy that
we've been back to a couple times and he's a single dad of 4, lives in
Connecticut, and is wanting to read the Book of Mormon... So many good
treats. Oh my gosh. Also, we went running this morning because we are
right next to the water in China town and it's the most beautiful
sight to see. The Brooklyn bridge and Manhattan bridge are right
there. Dreamy!! Sometimes I feel like I'm on a long mission trip with
all these cool sights to see and yet, I get to feel the spirit and
share happiness by being the Lords servant.


I've been thinking about obedience lately. Always room to be more exact.
I liked this quote-- "Obedience is the lifeblood of faith. It is by
obedience that we gather light into our souls."

Happy May. Xx
Sister Vassau

May 4, 2016

Park and Jos Wedding Week


So many great thoughts this week! Let's see! This week there was really good days with some frustrating moments mixed in there. 

My favorite thing about this week was taking the sacrament. More than anything, that time has become so special to me! I need it, oh do I need it. It just felt good and I had a more spiritual experience as I prepared to take it. I don't think I could go week to week as a missionary if it wasn't for those 15 minutes. I love the Savior and that time to think about how he can help me & what he's done already for me and each of us. 

So I shared my testimony in church (takes all of me to do that sometimes) especially when everyone is so new. I went throughout the day and I felt all these negative feelings and did not feel the spirit after church riding on the subway and such. The worst! How does that happen? So I've thought so much in the last two days about how much we have to fight for our testimonies. Never has it been easy to have one. Monday we met with a less active member who just is facing so much opposition. She is still reading and praying, but she doesn't see how she is going to come back to church based on some of the people and experiences she's had. I though about it and what I would do if I went through similar experiences. She is still doing the things she is suppose to and took the sacrament this week. We read this verse yesterday in a zone meeting as we sat in the chapel thinking about what the sacrament and our covenants mean to us. 3 Nephi 18:10-14 

I want to live the doctrine of Christ even if things get hard!! 
I WILL ALWAYS READ, PRAY, TAKE THE SACRAMENT because I know the church is true and pure. Heavenly Fathers promised blessings are so real when we do our part. He will not fail us.

Now from what I remember about this week: 

-Good deed dares: we came up with this idea. We made cards with all kinds of good deeds we "dared" people to do. Set it up at Morning Side Park. 
-Garrett's popcorn: so we have this boy named Anthony we teach @ Garrett's. We've been helping him understand prayer and how to understand the spirit. He gives us free popcorn. It's killer.   People just give us free food here, ALL THE TIME!! It's so bad!!!! I am so watching my calorie intake, even though I know I need to enjoy myself. I literally could gain 20 lbs here so quick. So much good food, fun restaurants, and good members who feed us. 
-Hand scrub: LOL. So we walked past a girl handing our free soap samples yesterday and she told us she ordered a free bible or got the app and told us what a sign this was to see us! We promised her we'd bring her a Book of Mormon. She was excited. Then.... We got a free hand scrub with sample :):) 
-Last night we had dinner with a part member couple. They just got married. She works in fashion. Love her. He is from Brooklyn.  They have been trying to do prayers together and read the scriptures. He's open to the Book of Mormon and things, he just has his own beliefs. Their relationship is very cool. 
-I saw Kelsi!!! (Toes too) Their apartment. Is so cute. It's so good to have family so close by!!! 
-We helped clean a members apartment. And shared with her a thought on mothers. 
Counting the days until I get to talk to you mom!!!!! I LOVE MOMS. 

I read Behold Thy Mother by Elder Jeffrey R Holland yesterday and I was filled. (Tears, My goodness) I miss my mom! Haha I love the story of the mom who bore her sons heartbreak along with the Savior. PLEASE GO READ THIS. I thought about my mom and Julie and my grandparent and my aunts and all the sweet moms in my life who feel everything for their children.  no love in mortality comes closer to approximating the pure love of Jesus Christ than the selfless love a devoted mother has for her child. 
Thank you for the most loving moms who have been my examples of faithful woman who know who they are and help others see that as well. I love you all. 
Xo- Sister McKell Vassau 

 Kelsi & Toes 

 NYU campus is so pretty right now with the flowers. 

 Our APF in Morning Side Park