Monday, October 5, 2015

"You know years ago they wouldn't let colored people into Payette"

Hi Everyone,

Now I know all of you clicked on this email because you want to know the scoop on that subject line. I think most of us thought maybe just maybe  sooner or later something like this was gonna happen and it just so happen to be my first week. So here's the story: My companion and I were visiting members starting to get to know them and there is an elderly couple two houses down from us. So we stopped to visit them after a conference session. She and her husband are sweet as can be  she actually has a hearing aid, but she greeted my companion and I with a hug and smile. we went in to sit down to chat since we are working with her husband to visit some investigators. She stops us and says (because she didn't know we were in conversation) now before we start I just want to say "Years ago they wouldn't let colored people cross the town line into Payette." I was like oh boy here we go. She proceeds to tell us how she was raised not knowing any different, and that her parents were racist but they never came out and said it. I just kept sitting there listening to her. Then she shared her experience seeing a "colored' man and a "white" woman together in Oregon and it took her a while to accept it because she was in shock. Also how a really heavy set "colored women" gave birth to her child while she was in labor herself. I was fighting to hold in my laughter the whole time. She ended by saying I'm going to shake this town up  and baptize tons of people she's so happy I'm  here. My companion and I got in the car and I turned to her and said " No one says colored any more were not a bunch of TV's" We laugh about it till this moment its still very funny. 

Believe or Not i have a million stories and I have only been serving here for a week. I love being a missionary and continue to grow serving the lord. I am actually in Payette ID which is about 5 minutes from the Oregon border. We had a super busy week and had a zone conference in Baker City in Oregon about two days after I got into Payette.  Our mission President and his wife picked us up and She so happily informed us this is a 40lb mission. All the sisters groaned, although it does not inspire my companion and I to do anything other than stretching during our 30 mins of exercise (we are working on it). So we have been knocking on doors, being rejected the typical missionary routine. We  have a lot of HBH ( Home but Hiding) we know they are inside cause we can hear them. hah But we continue to pray and ask the lord for assistance finding new investigators and those who are ready to hear the gospel. One night my companion and I had about an hour left until we needed to go home. We pulled over said a prayer and asked the lord to direct us to the home we needed to visit that night, we went to about three homes no answers or lights out. It was frustrating a little bit. So we ended up at a members home, who told us about their less active daughter and some of the things she was struggling with. As her mom spoke tears rimmed my eyes and the though came "You need to earn the trust of the members" I knew in that very moment that the lord had been hearing our prayers he knew of our anxiousness and readiness to find but taught me that things happen in the lords way and in his timing that as instruments for the lord he will open doors for us. 

We have a number of investigators we are teaching families right now and it is nice to work with children again. One of our investigators name is Truffle he is in jail right now but is very interested in the church and loves hearing the lessons. We right him letters because we cant visit him anymore. Many people here are less active. One family has a pet raccoon names BoBo its super weird. My comp. touched it I took a pass on that part. There is also a family who has what feels like a whole petting zoo in the back on their house I fed an alpaca and saw tons of ponies. Anyway the mission is definitely interesting and everytime I tell someone where I'm from they say aww this must be so different for you. I always say you have no idea. I'm adjusting well to the country life (i think) and learning a lot about the people here. We have our work cut out for us here, because president white washed the area three  transfers ago. The elders got in quite a bit of trouble in this small town. WE are working hard to find and teach we have a list on our whiteboard in our apartment of about 40 people to go visit. I'm out of time but thanks for all the prayers we feel them everyday! Also Conference was amazing President Nelson, Elder Holland, and Brother Durrants talks were among my favorite. Hope all is well with everyone :) 

All my Love :)
Sister Cleveland


  1. Yay Crystal!! Love the stories! Keep up the awesome work, girly!

  2. Dear Sister Cleveland, thank you for sharing your stories and precious pictures too. Oh, your missionary plaque is hanging in the foyer now. Stay happy any healthy!