Monday, November 25, 2013

Friends and Family,
I love Rhiwbina! I think I've said that before, but honestly I do. I saw my president a few days ago, and he asked what I thought of the area. I told him I really wouldn't mind staying here for the rest of my mission, to which he smiled and said that chances of me staying here forever were quite slim. But oh well, I'll be fine.
So, the Brits don't celebrate Thanksgiving. Sad day, but there's an American in the ward who said he and his wife would love to feed us a nice, proper Thanksgiving meal. My Swedish companion is probably more excited than I am. As I am American though, I've been thinking, naturally, about the things that I'm grateful for at this time. One thing at the front of my mind is the Book of Mormon. This is a book that works miracles. As I've been out on my mission, I've become completely confident in it's converting power. This book is another testament of Jesus Christ. We can learn of him as the Master Teacher, the perfect Example, and a Friend.
This last week, Sister Heikki and I were taking to people in Whitchurch (another small town close to Rhiwbina) and a man came up to us and said "You're the Mormons, right?" To which I replied, "Absolutely!" We talked for a bit, then he asked about the Book of Mormon. I showed him a copy, inviting him to take it. He kept saying no and saying "That book is the problem." Finally, I said "Have you read the book?" Sheepishly, he replied that he hadn't. Right then, I realized I knew the book to be true, only because I had read it. I had taken Moroni's promise and read the book, and then pray to know whether or not it was true. This is most definitely a true book. We are challenged to simply ask, sincerely wanting to know, determined to act on the answer we receive, and having faith in Christ.
The physical and spiritual evidence from this book is undeniable. Here is a church that started with only six members in 1830 and has grown to 15 million worldwide. Yet besides this and many other reasons that I know the book to be true, I have read it and found it to be true from the contents. I challenge each of you to actually READ the book. If you've read it, read it again and again. Pray about it each time. I promise you as you do so with this promise in Moroni 10:3-5 in mind, you cannot find fault in it.
Okay, sorry for the longest e-mail I've written since I've been out. I love you guys!
Sister Kuykendall
Isaiah 41:10
D&C 122

Monday, November 18, 2013


Family and friends,
This past week, we've been quite stressed about the whole thing in the Phillipines. Our fellow missionaries out there were experiencing terrible conditions, and there was nothing we could do to help. There's a sister serving quite close to me from the Phillipines actually, and I learned a lot from her this past week. This sister had no idea whether or not her family was okay; however, her faith that they would be safe impressed me. She had a feeling of gratitude, which seemed quite appropriate since Thanksgiving is coming up. 

I've found that sometimes it’s easy to feel grateful, and other times it requires quite a bit of deep reflection. But everyone has reason to give thanks. Even the air we breathe is a gift from God. We simply cannot repay the blessings we have. But we can fill our hearts with thankfulness.

My mission president said that one single thankful thought raised to heaven is the most perfect prayer.  Gratitude reminds us of our dependence on God, our need for His love, His mercy, and His watchful care.   “Live in thanksgiving daily,” said Amulek, “for the many mercies and blessings which he doth bestow upon you.”

Mercies and blessings come in different forms—sometimes as hard things. Yet the Lord said, “Thou shalt thank the Lord thy God in all things.” All things means just that: good things, difficult things—not just some things. He has commanded us to thank Him because He knows being thankful will make us happy. This is another evidence of His love.

I love this work, and I can't wait for what the next 14 months bring. I love you all!
Special K (what the members call me when they can't pronounce my name)

Monday, November 11, 2013

New Companion!

Family and friends,
Sorry I didn't write this last week! Sister Lambert has left me, and though I was freaking out for a while because my trainer was leaving my side for the first time, my new companion has calmed all my fears. Her name is Sister Heikki, she's from Sweden, and we like to laugh. Which is good because on our first day together, 12 people told us to go away. But we love it here anyway. I feel so lucky to be able to be in a position where I can meet a hundred new people in one day. When I got called to the Englad Birmingham Mission, I had no idea the I would become so familiar with the people and culture of Wales. I know the city of Cardiff better than most of the people that have lived here for years, and I can now understand the accent. I've even been told that I'm gaining a bit of an accent myself. But by golly, I love the Welsh. I think I've said that often, but I really honestly do.
Remembrance Day here in the UK is pretty big. I thought it was yesterday, but the guy at the computer next to me has just said it's today. So now I don't know. But at this time, everyone feels really close, and they all remember the people that have died for their freedoms. In sacrament yesterday, we spent a moment in silence remembering the people that died for our physical and spiritual freedom. I thought of my grandpa Doug, and the fact that he served his country with great pride and spent the last few months of his life serving his God. There have been many people who have gone before me who have been martyrs for the truth. Though I don't have much time, I'd like to leave you with my simple testimony that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God, and that through him priesthood authority has been reestablished on the earth. Jesus Christ is the Saviour of the world, and our Heavenly Father loves each of us no matter our background or weaknesses. I love this gospel, and I could not be here if I did not have a firm faith that this is Christ's gospel, exactly as he had it in New Testament times.
I love you! I'll send pictures later because I stink at taking pictures and actually don't have any new ones since the last time I sent some.
Sister Kuykendall

Monday, November 4, 2013

Letter from a sweet family in Wales

To the Kuykendall Family,

Greetings from Cardiff,  Wales UK. Thank you for sending your delightful daughter to us on a mission here in Cardiff. You can be very proud of her. She has a strong testimony, is a good speaker, a great teacher and works very hard. Also she has given lots of service including to us. Every few weeks Sister Kuykendall and her companion pop by and help us in the garden. One of the biggest time-consumers in the garden is dead-heading the flowers which helps to promote new growth. Well they have been doing that, which has helped us to get 1st Prize and the gold award in the "Cardiff  in Bloom " competition this year. Some photo's enclosed. Sister Kuykendall has blessed the lives of the people in our Ward and I know your lives will be blessed too for all the sacrifices you have made to make this possible.

Thank you again, our best wishes

Paul and Teresa