28 June 2013


As a missionary, you can expect to encounter certain hazards.  Hannah’s father had warned her about the inevitability of a dog confrontation.  He had even given her some tips on how to prevent pursuit by a canine.  Nonetheless, she was not prepared for her first animal encounter.  Having no investigator appointments for Fathers’ Day, Hannah and Sister Allred decided to go tracting (that’s dedication!).  Perhaps they were less alert than usual because of fatigue and heat, or maybe their senses were dulled by rejection, whatever the cause, they initially dismissed the motionless gray bulk on the far end of the porch they were approaching.  As they ascended the steps, the beast heaved to its feet to confront the trespassers.  It was a vicious guard. . . .er, pig!  Hey, pigs will eat ANYTHING (even bacon), as evidenced by the remains scattered across the porch.  Wisely, the Sisters slowly backed down the stairs and left that door unknocked.  Hannah felt bad that the residents of the trailer would not have the opportunity that day to hear the restored Gospel.  To comfort her, we’ll remind her of Matthew 7:6.  Go ahead, look it up – you won’t be disappointed. 

That reminds me of another unpleasant encounter the Sisters had – this time of the two-legged variety.  An older man invited them to play basketball, and then added, “I’ll be shirts and you can be skins.”  Hannah would rather face down a guard pig any day.

Some highlights from the past two weeks:

The neighbor of someone they were trying to contact ended up becoming an investigator himself.  This past week he committed to be baptized!

This past Sunday, two investigators and one family who had recently been inactive, attended Church.

Hannah and Sister Allred called a potential investigator.  The person who answered the phone listened to their introduction and then hung up.  Hannah assumed that the man was no longer interested in being taught.  A few moments later, however, they received this text:  “This isn’t John*.  I stole his phone.”  Hannah wondered how you even respond to that.

An investigator’s wallet was stolen from his home.  Hannah and Sister Allred offered a prayer for its recovery.  Less than an hour later, one of the man’s neighbors came over and said that he had found the wallet in the road.  The cash was gone, but all of his cards and ID were still inside.  He recognized this as an answer to prayer.  I can’t help wonder if the neighbor who “found” the wallet also experienced a change of heart.  Wouldn’t it be weird if the neighbor was the same guy who has John’s phone!

Sister Allred sent a sweet letter to Hannah’s family.  Basically it told us how great we are to have a good daughter (for which we cannot take the credit).  Nevertheless, in our book, this makes Sister Allred the best companion EVER!

We are also grateful for the wonderful people who, upon finding Sister Bonner and Sister Allred at their door on Fathers’ Day, invited them in for a delicious steak dinner (and wouldn’t take “no” for an answer).  God bless you.

*name changed

20 June 2013



Hannah has been in Texas for just over two weeks now.  Her and her companion, Sister Allred, have the distinction of being the first (but definitely not last) female companionship to NOT receive a mission car.  In the first few days, Hannah discovered that it is possible to get a blister on a blister.   Also, it appears that no one remembered to include sidewalks in the city's construction plans!  Since she is not dead on the side of the road, she knows that Heavenly Father has protected her.  She also recognizes that because of their increased visibility, they have several investigators that they probably would not have had they been cruising around in an air-conditioned sedan.  An Elder kindly gifted his old bicycle to Hannah.  Although this necessitates some wardrobe modifications, she appreciates having an additional mode of transportation.

Hannah gave away her first Book of Mormon on the flight from Dallas to Houston.  This story illustrates how important it is to "just open your mouth."  It also confirms the existence of a cosmic sense of humor.  Here's the account in her own words:

"I started out casual.  I asked if he [the stranger seated next to her] was from Houston.  He responded that he was from Korea, coming to Houston for a few days of business.  I asked his name.  He said I wouldn't be able to pronounce it and to just call him "Denny."  But then Denny made the mistake of asking me why I was going to Houston.  I uttered the first of many, "Have you ever heard of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints?”  We talked the entire 40 minutes.  But then, just as I was reciting the First Vision and quoting, “One spake unto me, calling me by name, and said. . .,” the pilot cut in with, “We are beginning our descent.”  Moment ruined.  Although I’m pretty sure Denny thought I was a delusional lunatic, he did accept a Book of Mormon, and said he'd think about finding missionaries in Korea."

Way to go, Hannah!