Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Feliz Navidad!!

Hello my dear family!
This is going to be a really short email, so I will apologize in advance.  What a crazy week though:)  Every time I go to a new area, it is always a bit crazy.  But I came to this area and we have one investigator.  So we are both pretty much whitewashing!  I LOVE my new companion soooo much! She is so good with obedience and just wanting to work. We are like the same person.  She is from Orem, and still new to the area, and our area is huge!  You are right though, Hermosa Liahona is a very nice area.  I am still getting used to it -- I'm not in Hollywood anymore.  There are a lot of white people.  I feel lost like all the time, but it's okay!  We have some really wonderful members here.  It is a great ward, it's really small.  So I am still working on adjusting here. 
Hermana Shepherd and Hermana Warner at the Mission Christmas Devotional
We had a really amazing Christmas Devotional.  I was so overcome, I feel like I just broke down during it.  I have never in my whole life understood and felt Christmas the way that I have on my mission.  I just get it.  If you listen to the Christmas songs in the hymns, then we are really able to feel it.  So I guess that is what I will focus today on.  I hope that you all take that time to sit down and feel what Christmas means.  There is obviously a special meaning to it when it has that sacred name in it, Christ.  I don't think I will ever see Christmas the same after this.  Presents are wonderful, but they don't matter.  It is the ability to share your love with others, that matters.  To help others to see the blessings they receive through using the Atonement of Jesus Christ.  It is remembering His sacred birth, and all of the many things we have through that simple birth.  I have shared a lot about how I have learned to use the Atonement on my mission.  It is so special and I hope we can all strive to use it better.  It brings so much peace into our lives.  We taught our investigator J. this week (she is getting baptized next Sunday!) about how the Atonement isn't only for sins.  That we are able to feel the peace and joy that He has so willingly given us.  It was so cool to see her face and to see her realize that she can use the Atonement to find happiness in her life.  All in all, I hope that you take time during this busy season, sit down with Bry and Rachelle and Dad, and read about the birth of Jesus Christ.  Obviously this invitation is not just for you, but for anyone that might read this email.  As you do so, I promise you will feel the amazing spirit of Christmas and what it really means.  I know that I have been able to!  Holidays on a mission are a million times better than they are at home (no offense). 
Michelle with President and Sister Weidman, her wonderful Mission Presidents
I love Christmas here.  It is so special to be here and learn and understand the why's on this special day. I am going to talk to you on Wednesday, so I will save it until then!  I am so excited for you to meet my new companion and the sweet family that we'll be with (start busting out your Spanish, momma!)  I love you so very much, my dear:)  Love, Hermana Warner
P.S.  This is short, sorry.  But I am so happy here.  I never, ever thought I would love my mission the way I do. I have to go, but I'll see you on Wednesday!  I love you so very much :)
Hna Wright, Michelle's old companion, reunited again at the Christmas Devotional!  She loves her so!
Michelle's old district in West Hollywood, one week before her transfer

Monday, December 16, 2013


Good morning, family!

I never know what the time difference is, so I think it's morning.  Anyway, we had a great week here! Seriously one of the best weeks I have had in a long time. It was good and I saw a lot of sweet tender mercies in my days. My birthday was so special. I will never have a birthday like the one I had here. I felt so overwhelmed with gratitude.  There were many that remembered me and I received so many kind words. The temple was amazing! I had one of the most spiritual temple visits I have had in my whole life. It made me so grateful to know of the perfect plan that our Father in Heaven has for every single one of us.  We are so important in His eyes. And then yes, we went to Cafe Rio!! :)  I don't know if President has ever seen me so happy before. We went and visited some people and had dinner with a really great family. They got me a little present and a big birthday cake! They are less active and it was so nice to be with them, they have such a special spirit about them.  

I feel like we saw so many sweet tender mercies this week it was so awesome. There were multiple times this week that we visited someone and they told us how they had been praying to know that Heavenly Father was aware of them, or that they had felt sad. And we were able to be there and give them that moment and help them to understand that their Heavenly Father really does love them so much. As well as we had so many people at church on Sunday!  It was just a good week. 

I just wanted to reflect a little bit on the last transfer. It has been one of the hardest transfers that I have had on my mission. I have never even thought about learning the things that I have learned this transfer. Something that I have focused on lately is just accepting what Heavenly Father has put in my path and what He wants me to learn from it. It has been really hard to understand that and even more so, to apply it - but it has been truly amazing. I know that through all the things I have received lately, I am truly becoming what I need to be. I have learned so much patience and just love. I think that is the biggest thing, just to be able to love people. And not love just the people that you get along with. But sincerely love those that would be hard to love. I have learned so much about the Atonement and how it is something that we must, not should, but must use in our lives every single day. I love my mission and all that I am learning.  Through the ups and the downs, every second is worth it. 

A. got baptized!!! It was so awesome!  She is 84 years old.  

It is Christmas next week....I don't know how that happened! I will figure out details when I get to my new area. I am going to an area called Hermosa Liahona (in South Torrance) and I am finishing a sister's training so it will be good! I am sad to be leaving my area...but I know that I have done what I could here. This area has grown so much and I have seen the most incredible miracles. I love you so so very much! I hope you have a wonderful week! Love, Hermana Michelle

ONLY in LA!!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Happy 20th Birthday!

Hello Family!
This week was really cool.  It was seriously just a week of constant learning.  So I will start with this.  Let's be real, we all know that this has been a hard transfer for Sister Warner.  But -- my whole mission, I have always remembered what Bryan said to me at my setting apart.  He told me that no matter what was going on, to wake up every morning with a good attitude.  I have referred to this about ten times through emails, because it keeps biting me right in the toosh.  So I realized that perhaps my attitude was what was holding me back from certain things.  So I made a goal with myself this week to work on my attitude.  I don't care what is happening or if I am frustrated, it's not worth the bad attitude!  So, I will just tell you that this week was really good.  I saw so many different things that I wish I would have been looking at earlier.  But I am so grateful for this because I know that these are lessons that I am going to be using for the rest of my life.
Half way through the mission!
We have had some really good lessons this week.  But something I have been thinking about a lot, is one that we had last night with a girl in our ward.  She has been struggling a lot and has been needing the Atonement.  We had a training the other day about the Plan of Salvation.  And in this training, the Elders talked about how to help others really feel their importance in this life.  It was amazing because I was able to use the training in this time.  I haven't felt the Spirit that strong in a long time.  Something that I absolutely love about my mission, is the ability that I have to feel the love of our Heavenly Father for His sweet children.  We all know that Sister Warner doesn't always love everyone immediately... and the same goes here.  But I do have an ability to see others for their potential.  It is something that I love, to know that our Father in Heavenly sees us as our potential, not as who we are right now.  So I want you to think this week about others that need to feel this.  That really need to feel their importance in this earth, because it is huge.  We don't understand how big the love is that Heavenly Father has for us.  And we don't understand how big our responsibility is to share that love with others.  I know that there are others waiting for this feeling of belonging.  
This sweet sister will be baptized on Saturday!  84 years old.  Los Angeles Temple Visitors Center.
I am writing a letter today and I don't have much more time.  But thank you for your sweet words mama :)  I am so excited that I will be able to be in the temple tomorrow for my birthday!  I also am going to Cafe Rio!! This will be the best birthday that I will have, because it will be focused on everyone else.  And that is the best gift that I could have!  I love my mission and I know that I will have it with my in my heart forever.  I hope you enjoy your week, don't stress yourself out with Christmas --- presents aren't important!  Just remember the whys of this beautiful season.  I love you so much!! Thank you for the packages --I LOVE THE CHRISTMAS GARLAND!!!  You are so awesome!  I am so excited for tomorrow --- mostly to go to the temple!  It is so special to me.  Thank you for everything my sweetheart!  Bry sent me pics and I loved them :)  I am so genuinely happy for them.  It's a good feeling to have.  I love you so much my dear!
Love, Hermana Warner
Michelle and her companion, Hermana Garcia, in the LA Temple Visitors Center
Michelle and her old trainer, Hermana Moeller

Monday, December 2, 2013


Hi my dear family!
   I cannot believe it is P-day again, I don't know how this happens!  So yeah!  I have seen a lot of miracles this week.  I told my mission President that this has been really hard, but never in my mission have I seen miracles the way that I have, this transfer.  Our area is growing so much, it is amazing.  I hope that I am still here for Christmas - we are having transfers a week early this transfer, because transfers would have fallen on Christmas day.
   We've received a lot of referrals lately.  We received one for a man that has lost contact from the church.  We went over and he was so excited to go to church again.  Unfortunately he is going to El Salvador for a month and so we have to wait until he comes back.  But, we had another cool referral.  We contacted this referral, and her husband answered the door.  We talked to him for a minute and he just kept staring at our tags.  When finally, he told us that he had been baptized in El Salvador (everyone here is either from El Salvador or Guatemala) but he hadn't gone to church in about 13 years.  We taught them the Restoration last night, and it was so cool to watch him as he was beginning to remember things that he was taught when he was little.  We have an appointment at the Visitor Center planned with them tomorrow!  
   Literally everything about last transfer, has prepared me for this transfer!  Selflessness, patience, charity, love, obedience with exactness.  One of the biggest things I have worked on was diligence and exact obedience.  I have seen miracles daily from this!!  I have the strongest testimony of it.  It is crazy to me how tough a mission can be at times, but how ncredibly rewarding it is.  I love everything about being a missionary and even in Hollywood.  I love how quickly I grow as a missionary.  The progress I have made, even this last transfer, is crazy.  I understand the 'whys' of life so much better.  Everything I do from now on, will always have something to do with my Father in Heaven.
    A while back, I asked my Mission President how I could become a better missionary.  It wasn't that I was a bad missionary, just felt ordinary. So he started working with me, and I changed.  I changed everything I do with missionary work.  So, while we were talking recently, I was telling him how this change is what is making it possible for me to do this task I have received.  As I was talking about this, I looked at him and he had tears in his eyes.  He has watched me change and grow through every step.  He expressed his love and trust towards me.  I've worked hard for it.  So, even though my tasks have been hard, I am thankful.
   My heart is in my mission.  I've never felt so much joy.  I've never seen so many blessings and miracles.  I've never loved my family more than I do right now.  Our message blesses others.  It gives them literal light.  I've never felt so tired.  I've never felt so frustrated.  Sometimes, I feel like I have nowhere to go.  And because of those feelings, I've never felt so, so close to my Heavenly Father.
   Yes, this week was really hard, but I saw countless tender mercies knowing that the Lord is aware of me. One day was super hard for some reason.  I had to take a minute before we went out.  I knelt down and just prayed.  I did it until I felt good enough to try and help someone else.  I called my Zone Leaders to ask if they could come and give a Hermana a blessing.  Before I asked, the Zone Leader asked if I would like one, too.  I didn't think I needed it, but afterwards I felt so much love and peace in my heart.  We got to the church and he asked me if there was anything specific going on because he wanted it to be a specific blessing.  I looked at him, and said, "I'm just tired."  He gave me an incredible blessing.  He mentioned something that really hit me.  He said, "The better you develop Christ-like attributes, the more challenges come your way."  That Heavenly Father give us, ever so lovingly, weaknesses to make us humble. It was as if my Heavenly Father had his arms around me.  I have an immense testimony of humility.  It is the only way we can live - humbly.  I am learning through many experiences.   It spoke of the Atonement.  I have learned and applied this beautiful gift to my daily life. Jesus Christ wants us to use his sacrifice for everything - sins, physical pain, weakness, trials, etc.  I have learned so much about the Priesthood on my mission and how incredible it is.  I am so grateful that we have the gift of the Priesthood and for those who keep themselves worthy to be able to use it.  My testimony is growing so much.  I am so grateful for the blessings that it gives to our family and to others here.  Things are good and happy!
   We had thanksgiving dinner with la familia Castro, a sweet young couple in the ward.  It was a good day!  I didn't really realize it was Thanksgiving - and it doesn't feel like Christmas is close.  Good news: Our zone is going to the temple on my birthday, Dec. 10th !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I LOVE my life! 
   Yes, I am excited.  We missionaries, are all reading the BOM in the mission, before Christmas.  I started 3rd Nephi the other day.  I LOVE the Book of Mormon.  It is so amazing to see how much it applies to my purpose.  You better be reading the BOM every day.  Yes, I hit my 9 month, half-way mark this week... gross.
    Mom, this work is amazing.  I know I have guidance and help from my Heavenly Father and from loved ones on the other side.  Michael is always with me.  He loves you, mom.  As do I.  Never forget that.  I hope you get to feel Heavenly Father's arms around you, always.  You are so precious to Him.  I love you with all my heart.