Monday, May 30, 2016

Slightly confused about the week

I am really confused about what in the world happened this week and I am even more confused that I emailed on Tuesday last week.

SO we had a really cool week. We have a member that just returned from his mission in England and after we had emailed last week we went to the church building and we were sitting there and then I went to the hall and then I was walking back into the room where my companion was and I saw a guy walking upstairs and I said hello and then I just stopped in my tracks and I exclaimed "Jan!" and he responded "Dangit How did you know?" Duh. obvi it was the spirit. hahah no the members documented his pictures while he was out so I saw him before. 

We had a super miracle this week where we were contacting and I told my companion that we were going to go to a members house to say hi, because we had time. so we went rang her door bell and she didn't answer. So then I was embarrassed and we started headed back to the streets when we saw some coats hanging out of her window and we yelled to her and she told us to come in and help her out. She's old so she said she probably didn't hear her doorbell. 


Oh I don't know if I have talked about this, but when you graduate in Slovakia all the kid go around the streets and stop people and ask for money and stuff. so we are walking down the street and we see a herd of about 20 boys in front of us so Sister Easton and I start speed walking past these boys as fast as we can and one boy pops out and asks us to join him we said sorry and made a B-line to the bridge. NO FLIRTING OVER HERE BUDDY! 

its funny when ever we see a herd of kids Sister Easton says "Look YOUTHS" 

Wow I am just literally so hot already that I cannot even think straight.
So this email is going to be really lame, because I am completely brain dead.
Heat wrecks. 

S Laskou,
Sestra Ratcliffe
Sister Easton with the hedgehog
Sister Ratcliffe with the hedgehog. 
She was scared to touch its spikes so she put a kleenex holder over it. 
                                    Day of children
A huge party just for kids. america is making mistakes
Where was this when I was young? 
I was eating radishes for dinner and I cut a heart out of one on accident. :)

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Exhaustion to a whole new level

Honestly looking back at this week, I am not sure if this week was the longest week of my life or the shortest.
all I know is that it was jam packed with stuff.
starting at the beginning of the week we met with this really cool guy who told us that he came only to see if we were air heads in our faith or if we were deep believers. 
It was hilarious because we explained a couple principles and he said "wow I am surprised that girls your age think this deep."
Then that night we had English and our branch presdent came to english and he had been to Prague when the czech republic became a stake and we were asking him who his bestfriend was and he said "my first best friend is my wife (pausing for the AWWWW...) my second best friend is my extended family and my third best friend is the Bratislava district and the Czech stake (and then he got all smiley and sat up in his seat a little higher) " then he starts going on a rant about how incredible it is to finally have someone that can give them a patriarchal blessing that they will be able to understand. I sat there and thought about how easy it was for me and how much of a blessing it was to have these things readily available to me when I need them in my own language, and I just thanked my father in heaven that the Czech and Slovak people can now experience those blessing that I took for granted.
Then we did service this week and my district is just IN LOVE with wildlife and I am just not, so my companion finds a toad and I totally avoided that situation and then one of the elders comes over to tell me that the toad just peed on my companions hand. and I said thats what you get when you pick up a random toad in the middle of the forest. hahah
Then the week picked up speed like it was nobodys business...

One day we were at the branch president house helping his wife to prepare for the Trencin dedication. Which is where Dieter F Uchtdorf 10 years ago dedicated Slovakia for the Preaching of the Gospel and every year, we go back to that place and remember the blessings that we have to be there and what we have recieved since that day.
So that happened on saturday and we went up and I was supposed to play Brightly Beams our Fathers Mercy on the piano and they forgot the sheet music, but luckily I had played it so much I could play it by memory, but the task was playing the piano by memory standing up with everyone watching. but it worked out alright, the nerves never went away until after it was over, but it worked out. 
and we just hung around with everyone for a long time and hit some pinatas and played some games and it was wonderful to just feel the spirit and to see everyone gathered together.
One of my favorite verses in the Bible is Matthew 18:20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.
I know that the Lord was there in the midst of us. The spirit was tangible.
But the weekend doesn't end there, we were able to have a spirit filled branch conference and the next day followed zone training.
So I am not really sure if I am exhausted from working so hard or if I am exhausted because of the spiritual overload, or just a combination of both, BUT I KNOW THAT THIS CHURCH IS TRUE. 
I have felt it this weekend and know that our Father in Heaven loves each and every one of us.
Have a miraculous week.
S Láskou,
Sestra Ratcliffe

Trencin dedication

My inch worm that Sister Easton found who I took a selfie with
Reunited and it feels so good!
Family photo
Family relations in the mission are wack, but I am a mom, an aunt, a sister, and a great aunt.
happy folky

Monday, May 16, 2016

Hey mom Czech it out!

Okay, I know we are all waiting on the miracles of the week so I am going to start with the BIGGEST MIRACLE OF ALL:
Which means a whole lot for Slovakia and the mission president coming in. 
When we were in MLC President McConkie said that the new mission president would be able to sleep at night. hahaha
So last week, the district wanted to do something fun, so we went bowling as you can see by the pictures and as you cannot see by the pictures, because I am ashamed of it, I did not even break 50 the first time. 
bowlings skills out the window. guess that is never something I was proficient in. ha
Oh we had this really cool experience on the train to blava this week two older ladies came and sat next to us and they were talking to us and reading our name tags and asking us where we are from, and WOW they were just the sweetest. They told me that I didn't even have an american accent and its because of my slovak ancestors and I was thinking in my head, "you ladies must be deaf, because I know that everyone else and their dog tells me that I have an accent" but they were sweet and they took a pamphlet at the end of our conversation and said they would read it and were really interested in the difference between our church and other churches.
then we went to prague and Sister Easton served with one of her sisters from the MTC while we were in meetings. and then on the way home the zone leaders informed us that they had Enya, so we jammed out all the way home. 
We also found out that driving to prague is like taking a trip from salt lake to st. george. Good times. 
When we got back from prague, we went out with the Elders and chalked the ground with the plan of salvation. and It was such a fun time. 
I stopped this man who rejected me, and then I think some one else stopped him and then I(with the memory i have) stopped him again, and he said "this is the third time you have stopped me, what do you want?" persistence my friends. its a good thing. I ended up talking to him for the rest of the display and he ended up being super cool.

We met an american this week from Indiana. 
He married a slovak and lives here now!

Also funny story and then I will end. 
So we had a meeting this week and
Well this week was just incredible.
I love this quote from a talk Sister Parsons sent me (shoutout hahah)

Brothers and sisters, I would like to suggest to you today that the gospel of Jesus

Christ was restored in 1820 because that’s the only time it could have survived. There

is a more pointed question that needs to be asked. Why were you born when you

were born? Why weren’t you born in 911, or 1215? Is it because some computer in

the cosmos blipped and you came out now? I don’t buy that. I believe you were born

in this dispensation, with the gospel of Jesus Christ on the earth today, because you

were somebody before you got here. If you had any idea of who you were before you

got here, the hair would stand up on the back of your neck. Joseph Smith said on one

occasion, “If I were to tell you who I am, you’d slay me for blasphemy.” Wisely

never told anybody who he was, but he knew.

On one occasion President McKay, president of the Church, several years before his

death, on a Sunday evening, didn’t have anything to do, so he took his wife, said

“Let’s go to a fireside.” They went down to a stake center. There were lots of cars in

the parking lot so he walks in and their stake president was speaking to a group of

young people your age. Eight hundred of them. President McKay and his wife

walked in. The stake president about swallowed his tie. Walked down to about the

eighth row. He said, “Don’t get excited. I want to hear what you have to say.” The

president continued with his talk. About halfway through his talk, he stopped and

said, “You know, young people, I feel impressed to tell you that before the world was,

before the world was, in that war in heaven, each of you in this room served as

captains and generals in the Lord’s army.” And then he went on with his talk. It had

nothing to do with what he was talking about. As he finished his talk, he looked

down at President McKay and noticed President McKay was drilling him with his

eyes. His heart stopped. He sat down and thought, “Boy, what have I said?” The

closing prayer ended. He jumped up and ran down to President McKay. Looked up

to President McKay – everybody looked up to President McKay, he’s a great big guy

– and he said, “You know, President McKay, I got a little carried away in my talk

tonight. Did I say anything that was inappropriate?” He said, “No, you didn’t say

anything that was inappropriate, you were just inaccurate.” “Well, what did I say?”

He said, “There were no captains here tonight. They were all generals.” And he said,

“Don’t you ever forget it.” And he turned around and walked out.

I have a testimony of that, brothers and sisters. If you were to know who you were

before you got here, it would scare you. You know what that means? It means we

don’t have the right to do all the dumb stuff a lot of the other young people in the

world are doing, we don’t have the right. Why? Because we know too much. Why?

Because we’re here because we were somebody before we came here and the Lord

has sent us here to accomplish some great task. And that task is to take now and

export the reality of the fact that the gospel has been restored. No one between 96 and

1820 could authoritatively say “Thus saith the Lord.” Now we can. Why? Because

there is a man on the planet today that can say “‘Thus saith the Lord’ because I speak

with him.”
Man. We are just full of potential and we don't even know it. 
have a miraculous week.
S Laskou,
Sestra Ratcliffe

well I tried to get the sunset in the picture
our apartments art work
WE WANT SUN!!! hahah cute kiddos.

bowling on P-day. you already know I didn't even break 50
On our way. ba ba ba ba
to bla bla bla blava! 
more fotky
youre gonna hear me roar. and mother mary.
sunset across the bridge. 

Monday, May 9, 2016


Well this week flew by like a rocketship.
We had some pretty amazing miracles  all week this week. 
We were in the mall on Monday when a man who randomly gave us his number on the street a few weeks ago called us and said that he is willing to meet right now. and just "coincidentally" and by that I mean, God is so good, we ran into our branch president in the mall and said that he would teach with us! MIRACLE
We were going to go do service for our branch president wife and we are about 5 minutes walking time away from her house on a beautiful day, when all of a sudden it starts raining so we start running and we are really running and then hail starts to pound our bodies while we are running and we were literally is a ton of pain and absolutely soaking wet.
but we made it and we were able to get some nice warm dry t shirts and some nice warm food for our mouths.
Then we had a super Miracle. 
we are teaching one of our friends and we finished our lesson with him and still had 20 minutes to spare so we asked him if he had any questions for us and he responds "how do you get baptized into your church?" So we explained it, and he said "I would like to do that."
I sat there for a minute in a little bit of shock and then I pulled out the phone to pick a date!
it was quite the spiritual experience.
Sorry I am not going to write a super long email this week, 
but I hope you all have a wonderful week and continue to see the miracles.
S Laskou,
Sestra Ratcliffe

Had a former missionary come and visit so we took them to the dedication spot. 
Its always a photo party in Trencin
"selfie!" the members love pictures. 

Monday, May 2, 2016

He hears our prayers

Well the transfer has come to an end, and I sent my little greenie on a train today to go be with Sister Schaerrer in Blava.
But even BETTER than that is Sister Easton is from West Valley City. 
WEST VALLEY KREW over here in Trench-town!
hahah its great. 

SO I am really confused what I have written about this week because P-day was on Tuesday. 
So, On Tuesday Day we went to Sister K's house and she taught us how to make this awesome bread with literally FIVE ingredients. I don't know how she did it, but it literally was wonder bread magic. 
 Then we went to the trainstation to go to Blava because all the greenies had to do visa work and the train that we were supposed to get on just happened to not exist. (strange) but we had to sit at the train station for another hour and we only got into Blava at 10PM. so it was dark and we got on a tram and we were literally the only people on the tram besides the tram driver.
Then we were very not prepared for the downpour that occured. I was in flats and a sweater. I was not prepared for that! haha and then my poor comps bag just broke right off of her shoulder. So I went and bought her a candy bar to make it all better.
and we were busy.
Friday we were on the streets all day, and I don't really know what was wrond but everyone was in a hurry to get home so we didnt talk to a ton of people, but I had this really cool experience after. I was going to bed and I was praying and if you know me, you know that I am always nervous when something is coming up (AKA Transfer calls) so I was praying and I asked heavenly father to give me a clue as to what was going to happen (because obviously I can't wait one more day to find out) and immediately in my head I heard "You are staying" and so I gave him all the reasons why I wasn't going to stay(because I was like "well that was quick") and again I heard "You are staying" so I finished my prayer and went to sleep. 
and when President called me the next day he told me I was staying and I knew that God had answered my prayers. I felt a confirmation that Yes. I am staying in Trencin. And I am here because GOD WANTS ME HERE. and there is no better reason. There is no excuse that I could have said that would have changed his mind, because he wants me here.

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord."
I think I have already shared this scripture but its just SOOO GOOD. We may have all the reasons why WE should be doing something different or why WE think things should be OUR way, but we are not here to council the Lord. He is here to council us, and when we listen to our heavenly father the outcome is so much better than we could have ever expected.
Have a miraculous week.
S láskou,
Sestra Ratcliffe
Ps. This is our cute little branch here in Trencin 

we were literally the only people on the tram in blava
and my favorite tree in all of trencin
Our beautiful bread and our even better friend Sister K.
"our beautiful bread and some metal work."
Sister Van is going to Blava with Sister Schaerrer
President informed me that I was the last person he would ever give a transfer call to, so I told him I would take a selfie to remember the moment.