Monday, January 27, 2014


How are you doing family?  Sounds like changes are happening all over the charts! I hope you are all finding strength in the gospel, I know when we keep it as our rock we will not fall.  (Helaman 5:12)
So life is happening here as well, not too many changes though for the time being.  Being a missionary definately roller coasters through changes, some times your whole world is upside down, sometimes you just coast through, but in the end the ride is worth it!
So this week after I got back from Glenwood I went to Red Oak!  An even smaller town in nowhere Iowa (that's what Sister Zachary calls it :))  It is a really beautiful area that covers a whole buch of tiny towns.  It was quite an adventurous day:  We started off trying to find a family that the sisters had never met, we met a very sweet (and possibly somewhat crazy) woman who had a crazy dog.  She yelled to her husband "honey, want to start going to church again?  We are Mormon" we then proceded to get her a book of Mormon so she can start reading again.  She was grateful, but on the way out her dog bit me!  I was some what shocked and responded by kicking myself (smart right?). But don't worry it wasn't a bad bite, I was wearing like super heavy fleace tights and leg warmers so it couldn't even dream of getting to my skin the crazy dog.  And in the end I have more of a wound from where I kicked myself so that's just great! 
So then we had a cool experience with the granddaughter of the woman we had dinner with.  While we were planning we felt like we should teach her a YW song, (she's not a member) So the whole day Sister Harris and I were practicing singing "Walk Tall"  from girls camp.  It was kind of random.  But we went to her house and the little girl was just having a rough day.  We sang with her and taught her the words and I know that she was able to feel the spirit heal her a little bit.  I love the words to that song, maybe I can share with you my favorite part
     Long before the time you can remember
     Our Father held you in his arms, so tender,
     Those Loving arms released you as he sent you down to earth,
    He said "My Child I love you, Don't forget your great worth"
I love that.  It is always such a driving force to know that I am a daughter of God.  I hope you each remember this week how important you are to our Heavenly Father.  He is so aware of our every need. Never forget that.
One more cool thing that I discovered!  The credit for this will have to go to Grandpa Jensen for sending me very prepared with my not 4 but 8 generation family tree.  Sister Zachary is our eigth cousin!  Cool right?  Her Maiden name is Curtis and she is related to us through Julia Curtis.  Her some odd great grandpa is Julia's youngest brother.  So what are the  odds that I would live with a distant relative in Belleview Nebraska?  Coincidence?  I think not.  The Lord is so good to his children.  I"m so grateful for all of you and your constant support and love.
Have a tremendous week!  I love you all!

Sister McMaster

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Greetings From Glenwood!

So I'll have to be brief this week.  Thanks go Good Ol' Martin Luther King Jr, I'm e-mailing you on a Tuesday.  And not just any Tuesday but the Tuesday that I am on an exchange in Glenwood Iowa.  Craziest place ever! I'm with Sister Stutler today.  She's a very sweet sister.  We have a lot of work to do today so we will be quite busy.  I left Sister Youngberg in Fairview for the day so I hope she stays a float!  I miss her.  It's funny being on exchanges you learn how much you love your companion.  

One mild complaint, the internet in Glenwood doesn't like me so it has shut down on me like eight million times today, so I'm learning patience. :) 

Hmm... I had a good story but it seems to have left my brain.....Oh!  We went to the Temple last week and it was amazing.  It was sister Youngberg's first time on her mission (maybe I mentioned that last time?)  But It was so good to sit in the celestial room filled with missionaries.  What a cool experience, one of those memories you can always cherish.  Dad  you sent me a talk by Elder Holland a few months ago about not living in the past.  Sister Youngberg and I have been studying it lately (so thanks for sending it)  It is cool to realized how important it is to build memories and to learn and grow from them, but to let go as well and recognized that what lies ahead is what is most important. 

So being a missionary is crazy sometimes.  Sometimes you have really hard days and you feel down and lonely... then you remember that there are so many incredible supporters all over the world!  So what I mean to say is that sometimes when I am feeling down, it is nearly impossible to stay that way.  It's like wearing a life jacket,  you simply can't get your head under the water because you are so well protected.  That's kind of the life of a missionary, kinda the life of us all. We each have a Savior to be our Life jacket.  Don't ever forget that.  He won't ever let us down.  It is impossible to fall when you are on the Lord's side.  

I'm so grateful to each one of you.  I feel so blessed, more then I can write in words.  I hope you can feel the love I wish I could send in this pathetic e-mail.  You are the reason that I can keep going. You are the reason I have learned to Love my Savior.  You are the reason I have a burning desire to stay afloat and do my very best every day.  It is because of you that I am here!  You mean everything to me.  Have a lovely week and know that I pray for you too, and I know Heavenly Father will keep us all afloat. 

Take care of yourselves and have a happy January week.  Hope you're staying warm!

Love forever and always,

Sister McMaster

Monday, January 13, 2014


So guess what happened this week?  Transfers!  Crazy that they have already happened again?  But this one was different then every other one I've had because nothing changed!  Isn't that fantastic?  I never thought I'd get to be with a compaion for two transfers in a row, but I was wrong!  Sister Youngberg and I are still together and our stewardship and everything stayed the same.  Yippee!  We are going to do things differently this transfer because our area is ready to burst with miracles.  We dont' have to spend time figuring out how to work with eachother because we got that down! 
So this week was interesting.. Angie is progressing and coming to church and is just fantastic.  She wants to get baptized and everything!  But she won't pick a date.  How frustrating is that?  I was kind of bold in explaining to her that not picking a date is like deciding you're going to run a marathon without ever signing up for a race.   It is so important to commit!  I'm working on being patient but sometimes you just love people so much that you really want to see them change.   We'll be seeing her again today.  It's funny because her Dad was baptized just under a year ago and he keeps telling us "she's just like I was... give her time"  So I have faith that she will progress. 
So this morning I was reading a Journal entry from my first day in Nebraska... how weird it is to see the weird things I complained about that first day.  I had no idea what I was getting into, I had no idea who I was going to become.  I feel though like I have changed a lot since that day, I think one of my greatest fears is to go home the same person that I came out as.  I know that my confidence in my Savior has increased and that I am spiritually stronger now then I was then.   It's so cool how as you excercise yourself spiritually you really do experience a change in your spiritual health. 
So a thought I wanted to share; a few sisters have posed the question, "What do I do when I feel like my work in an area is done?"  What in interesting question!  It can be changed to "what do I do when my visiting teaching is done?"  or really why must I keep going when I feel like I am done?  The answer I found was in President Monson's talk from the Priesthood session.  He said that being a home teacher(or a visiting teacher or a missionary)  is ongoing, the Lord's work will not be finished untill he says "it is finished"   My thought was that this is like doing the dishes.  I remember asking mom why I had to do the dishes (family(aka Thomas) don't roll your eyes I did do the dishes when at home and now I do the dishes like every day...) because they were only going to be dirty the next day.  It is sort of the same idea here, why must we try to help these people when they are going to fall again next week?  When they will forget so soon what we reminded them?  The answer is because we like a clean kitchen.  And so does the Lord.  He is excited when we bring someone back to church.  He is excited when someone prays for the first time.  He will never give up on any of his children.  No matter how many times you fall and get dirty you can get back up, you can clean your kitchen and start over.   I thought that was a powerful thought and it has really encouraged me to keep going because the Lord's work isn't over!
So I hope you all have a splendid week.  Hope you keep doing awesome things and keep being the best versions of you!    Choose the Right!
Love Always,
Sister Catherine McMaster

Monday, January 6, 2014

It's C-c-c-c-cold outside!

I'm f-f-f-f-f-f-f-f-freeezing!  Can you say -11?  or better yet -40 with windchill?  Thank goodness I've received so many beautiful scarves to bundle myself!  and toe-warmers are the best thing ever.
Good Morning family! 
Happy New Year!  Can you believe that it is 2014?  Pretty weird!  Good to be in an even year though, 2013 was so odd... (no pun intended).
So I'm sure you have all in some way taken a moment to reflect on the past year and I have to tell you the Lord's plan is remarkable.  Last year about this time I considered where I would be right now.  I knew I might not be in Utah, and it was scary to think about where I would be.  What I have learned since then is that the Lord puts us in the most remarkable places when we trust in him.  I know that I am exactly where the Lord needs me to be right now.  I have seen so many miracles that truly have confirmed that this is where the Lord needs me.  I am seeing myself change in ways I never even realized I needed to change.  I am most grateful however for the change that I have seen in coming closer to the Savior.   I have felt the power of putting trust in him.  I don't think I ever could have learned that untill I left behind things that made me comfortable, the things that I didn't want to let go of, the things that made it hard to leave.  That includes all of you!  You were probably one of the hardest families to let go of mostly because you're all so fantastic.  But I'm grateful that the Lord blesses us for our sacrifices.  I know that my time here in Nebraska is precious and I know that the relationships I have with each one of you has truly helped me to come to know and relate with my Savior.    But I would also encourage each of you to look for ways to go out of your comfort zone, because it is when we are away from what we think is comfortable that the Lord can step in and teach us.  "Wo unto those that are at ease in Zion"  2 Nephi 28:24  I pray we might always be in places that the Lord can teach us and help us to become who he sees us becoming. 
So a few stories to go along with this thought.  This week we went on an exchange with the Yankee Hill sisters in Lincoln.  This was our last of 8 exchanges and man we didn't want to go.  These sisters have been doing well and it was so tempting for Sister Youngberg and myself to just stay home, tell them we were sick and spend a day recouperating.  But we went anyway, because it is what we were asked to do, we knew it was where we needed to be.   Wow.  Such a powerful exchange.   While looking for a less-active member we found an incredible couple  who had all kinds of questions about the gospel.  We thought they were members and when we walked in were surprised when they asked what church we were from.  What a powerful gospel discussion!  For some reason Heavenly Father wanted me to see this couple with sister Weber.  We testified powerfully.  I have never felt so confident in testifying of Jesus Christ as I did in that lesson.  I know it was a miracle that we taught them, and I am humbled to think that it may have been for the strengthening of my own testimony that the Lord placed us there.
I have one more story but this one is more of just a memory I wish you could all picture.   So New Years day was a remarkably snowy/icy day here in Nebraska.  So obviously a fitting day to drive to Iowa for district meeting.  On the drive the driver (who would choose to remain nameless) hit a patch of ice... and as you can well imagine slipped all over the place back and forth while her companion prayed silently that they would survive.  This odd little companionship looked at one another as somewhere after their slipping on ice found themselves in a cornfield on the side of the road.  One couldn't help but laugh at the situation.  Which is what they did.  The dificulty now came as the car couldn't make it up the hill and back onto the highway, so what did this companionship do?  Adapt and overcome of course!  They drove down the cornfield parallel to the highway, avoiding the awkward glances of their fellow drivers.  They prayed that they could get back on the road, when it no sooner apeared that their was a farm with a driveway perpendicular to the road, and a perfect place to get back on the straight and narrow.  So aside from being thrilled to actually drive in a cornfield in Nebraska I also learned a valuable lesson from this, which of course applies to the above thoughts.  (haha  haha)  The Lord puts obsticles in our paths, and we often don't understand but no matter what, he doesn't forget about us.  He knows our thoughts and our struggles.  I know that he always provides a way for us to return to the path.  He always provides.  So next time you are in a cornfield, or whatever the challenge is.  Laugh!  Recognized the discomfort you are being placed in is allowing you to grow!  It is allowing you to appreciate the days that you stay on the road, it is allowing you to become a better driver. 
I hope you all know how much I love you!  Sorry to be long-winded today, it happens!  I hope you all have a fantastic week, know that we are all in the Lord's hands and can truly change the world by standing tall in the place he has planted us in today.  Good Luck with new semesters and new life adventures!  Choose the Right every day :)
Love always,
Sister McMaster 
the nativity: brought to you by Mary(McMaster) Joseph( Youngberg) and Baby Jesus(Girlfriend)