Monday, August 19, 2013

Dear friends and family,
Hiya! Cardiff here is still learning to love me, but I sure love it already. The weather has finally been rainy (which means I've been soaked to the bone a few times), but it's always the best feeling to come home after a day that you know you've worked hard. Sister L and I have been finding quite a few people that seem somewhat interested in our message, so hopefully we can keep them interested and show them that we mean no harm. Also, if any of you are ever even in the slightest bit mean to a missionary, I will hunt you down and hurt you. Anyway, I'm still learning how to work hard without getting discouraged because of the lack of success. I love this area! Really I do, but i really hope to get a greater understanding of how to help these people the longer I'm here.
This week, we decided to travel up to a city where we knew not many missionaries had gone within the past few years. The area is called Taff's Well, and it's one of the most gorgeous places I have ever been. There are continuous rolling hills, lots of rain, and trees galore. We found a small community that seemed prime for finding people. As we walked through the town, it seemed deathly quiet. We were about to leave, when we met a man just sitting outside his flat. We began talking to him, and found that he was Athiest (nearly 90% of the people we meet claim to be Athiest). It was sorta like the guy I mentioned in our last e-mail. He didn't have a belief, and didn't want to believe. We listened to his concerns, and just talked with him. After about ten minutes, we told him we had to leave. He looked at us a little funny and told us, "If there are people like you in the world, then I think I believe in God. Can I come to your church?" Okay. Haha, this was definitely the first kind compliment I'd had all day. Anyway, he's a single dad with an 8 year old daughter, and wants to bring her to our church activities to meet kids that have our same beliefs and standards. See, it's times like these that everything else is worth it. Also, my trainer fell off her bike twice within the space of 10 minutes, which also makes this whole thing worth it.
Well, I can't wait to hear from you all! I'm still loving it here in Rhiwbina. I miss you and love you.
Sister Kuykendall
P.S. As soon as I get a computer cord for my camera, pictures will also accompany these e-mails

Monday, August 12, 2013

Tales from Wales :)

Dear Friends and Family,
I'm finally here in Wales! I'm in a city called Cardiff in a suburb area called Rhiwbina (Roe-bye-na). The people here are incredibly kind, but not incredibly interested in change. There are a TON of old people here, and they mostly just love having someone listen and talk to. This whole mission thing has taken some getting used to, but I'm getting there. In our area, we do ALL bike riding. Every day, all day. The first day that I didn't have a bike, we walked about 10 miles all together. Now, we bike about that same amount. I'm going to be absolutely ripped when I get back home. One thing I was surprised to find when I got here, was that many of the older folk speak a lot of Welsh. Yay. So every time I talk to them, I try to listen and understand what they're saying based on the few words I know in the language, which are "school bus" and "welcome to Wales." Some of the words don't even have vowels in them, so it seems nearly impossible to learn, but so far I've managed.
My mission so far has been hard, but mostly physically. Walking and biking around has been exhausting, but I think I might finally be used to the bruises on my backside from sitting on the seat of my bike. The people I've met here are so nice, and they love to talk and meet new people. One of the ladies that we have been visiting, named Carol, Will talk for a good hour straight without letting us get in a single sentence. My new trainer (Sister Lambert) and I still need to find good ways to teach and serve people as well as listen. Sister Lambert has been amazing. She finished training the day before I got here, so we're both very new and very inexperienced. I love this work. I love the people here. I can't think of anything better that I could be doing! I've learned to completely rely on my Saviour and trust Him with all my might. Yesterday, we were talking to a man in the park. We asked him about his belief in God and Jesus Christ in which he promptly told us there wasn't one, and we were wasting our time. It was like my second day, but I decided to go ahead and bear my testimony on the Risen Saviour and His atoning sacrifice. He stopped for a second, I could see something in his eye, like he wanted to believe and the said quietly, "It's not for me." I see this happen with many people around here. They say they don't have a belief in God, yet when you bring to their rememberence the love God has for them, they sort of get sentimental, like they wish they could belive but think it's impossible. I hope I can change that in people. The peace the gospel and Jesus has brought me is incredible. I absolutely know it's true. It has to be. I miss my family too much to be here for 18 months talking about something I didn't think was true. I love you all, and can't wait to hear from you in the next week!
Sister Kuykendall

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Sister Kate Kuykendall's first area!

We are excited to be serving with your daughter.
She has been assigned to serve in Rhiwbina, Wales
with Sister L.
More pictures will be available soon on the mission blog:
President and Sister Rasmussen

With her new trainer/companion at the Birmingham Mission Home before leaving for her 1st area