Sunday, October 19, 2014

Welcome to Ocean Springs, Mississippi‏

I am finally in Mississippi, Y'all!

It was so sad to say goodbye to Sister Sowards.... it's funny how quickly you become best friends with your missionary companions.

I rode a transfer van for about 10 hours with all the stops we had to make all the way down to Ocean Springs! I literally went from one end of the mission to the other.
I am now located right on the Gulf Coast, close to Biloxi, Mississippi in a little town called Ocean Springs!

The town is really cute and artsy. My kind of place! There are so many fun little places to eat and shop! I love that they are all original and there are very few chains here! I am really close to the beach and it is fun to see the water!

What's cool is that when we're out tracting, I  find seashells and crabs.... it's like a whole new world down here. Can you see the crab?

Hurricane Katrina really devastated this place back in 2005 and they are still suffering from it. A lot of houses and lots are still bare or torn apart.
People talk about Katrina all the time and refer to every story they tell like "Before Katrina" or "After Katrina."  It really impacted the people here.

Funny story, in the newspaper the hurricane Katrina damage clean-up was quoted to have been helped most by "the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints" and the "Mormons."
That made me laugh.

Well Saturday was a big day for us. Sister Nielson and I went out tracting for a few hours. We only talked to two people. One of them was a British lady who didn't want to hear our message but she offered to drive us back to our bikes because she had seen where we tied them to the fence a couple miles away.
We didn't realize how far we walked....
So we got to ride back to our bikes from a British lady on her golf cart!

We realized why no one was home.... Basically the whole town was at an event downtown called "Cruising the Coast" which is basically the biggest special event in Mississippi and it's like a car show of vintage retro classic cars.
So we decided to go for a while and talk to people there! It was fun.
I took lots of pictures but will just post of few of my favorites including meeting a famous guy named Dennis Cage. He has a really cool mustache.

We have eaten at some really cool places here...
Including Stonewall's, the Shed, and Belgicans.
I don't have time to tell you all about them, but here are some pictures!

My companion Sister Nielson has been pretty sick and it has been so sad! She has an upper respiratory infection and a double ear infection and basically is coughing non stop! We finally took her to the doctor because she wasn't getting better and she is on antibiotics now. I'm so glad I haven't gotten sick yet!

Also, this was a little scary a couple nights ago!

The coast is so alive! It's booming and thriving and the gospel is spreading like a disease! There are so many people accepting the gospel down here and getting baptized! The ward here is pretty big, about 150 active members and there are 2 wards that meet at our building. The Ocean Springs ward and the Biloxi ward.

Basically I am really happy! I miss Shreveport, but it is so good to have a change. Mississippi has a different feeling that Louisiana.
I don't really know how I'm ever going to settle down because I love being a gypsy! It is so fun to get to see so many different places and meet so many diverse people.

I have made so many life long friends here and people that I will forever love.
Christ brings us all together!

Well I can't wait to tell you more about how the missionary work is going here next week, but that's all for now!

I know that the Lord loves each one of us. I know that he is mindful of our every prayer! Those times that we feel we are alone are the times that we can most sincerely rely on God to help us through! We have to humble ourselves and come unto him with our whole hearts.

I know that the we have to hold onto the iron rod to make it safely home.
The Iron Rod - being the word of God.

And I know that we can't just hold on with a finger... or a toe. We have to CLING to the rod continually! So that the mists of darkness do not lead us astray!

(see 1 Nephi chapter 8)

Thank your for all your love and support! I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!!!! :)

Love, Sister Brown

Fun Fact: Elvis used to love to vacation here and Al Capone had a beach house down here too!

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