A big switch up from the dirt roads of Ayacucho!!
WOW! this week has been crazy!! Here’s an update!!
New Companions!- Woo! This week I received my new companion Hermana Molina! She is from Chile and is seriously the cutest thing. She totally reminds me of a chilean disney princess! She has such a strong testimony and every time she shares her testimony in lessons the Spirit is so strong! It’s also been great because I’m still with Hermana Esser! I think I win the prize for having the most trios in the mission, but I also have lucked out in each one!
Opening Area!- Wow! for those of you who know what opening an area is, know it is difficult. Mostly because my sense of directions is awful but also because you don’t have that base with the members or investigators that you normally have when you come into a new area. Even with these struggles my companions and I are having a blast and seeing miracles. Even though we get lost at least once a day- we’ve really come to know one another and we truly enjoy our time together! We’ve also had wonderful experiences being led by the Spirit and seeing the hand of the Lord directing us to people who are being prepared to hear the gospel!
Lima! – Okay, Lima is a whole new culture for me! I’d gotten so used to dirt floors and people taking their pigs for a walk that walking down these paved roads kinda caught me off guard! It’s so funny because Hermana Esser and I are always shocked with how beautiful the houses are here and how there aren’t mamitas walking through the streets! We’re also getting used to a huge ward! Seriously, there are so many wonderful members and so many wonderful programs and activities through our ward! We even had refreshments after our ward council…. that’s a first!
Miracles!- Our miracle this week was finding a new investigator named Juan! The hermanas who were in our area before left his name written on the whiteboard in our room and not knowing anything about him made an appointment to visit him! As we began the lesson we found out that his wife was an inactive member and after years of hearing about the church he finally had the desire to receive his own answers. It was amazing because our 2 lessons with him this past week were extremely short- but also filled with the Spirit! We could truly see the Holy Ghost working within us and helping Juan to recognize the answers to his prayers! When we invited him to be baptized, he expressed to us the real desires he has to take this step and be an example to his wife and his son! He accepted a baptism date and committed to doing all he can to receive answers to his prayers. It was a truly remarkable moment for me because after days of getting lost, not having lessons, and walking trying to find people to teach…. the Lord blessed us with this tender mercy. Someone who is so willing to accept the Savior in his life. And someone who truly has the desire to follow the example of Jesus Christ! It made me remember that when we do our part, the Lord helps us do what we can’t do alone. The Lord blesses us with tender mercies and miracles! —- we just need to notice them!
I love being here in Peru. I love being a missionary! I love seeing how the gospel changes lives everyday! I feel so blessed to have the opportunity to serve in this time with these people and I know the Lord is guiding me in each moment!
Love you all!!
Our last day together!!
Saying goodbye to Cruz de Sur!!
My last 12 hour bus ride from Ayacucho to Lima!!
Saying goodbye to Yolanda!!
Everyone loves ice cream!!
The Mitma family!! I love them so much!!
Wow! This week has been Crazy! Here’s an update!
Cambios!- This week I received the dreaded call of Cambios! After six months in Ayacucho…I was changed to the Zone Chorrillos …. the same Zone where I started my mission!!!! ahhhh I will be serving in La Campiña and will be in a trio with Hermana Esser and a new missionary! That’s right, I will be training again and Hermana Esser will be my companion again! So CRAZY! We will be opening the area so I’m totally relying on the spirit to help me with my total lack of direction- skills!
Family Mitma- This week was especially hard because I had to say goodbye to the many families that I have grown to know and love! One such family was the Family Mitma. When I arrived in Mariscal, the mitma family wasn’t attending church and didn’t have too much interest in talking or visiting with us. But as we continued visiting them and serving them in any way we could, we began to build a relationship with each one of them. They began to attend church and keep their commitments to read the Book of Mormon and Pray as a family. Little by little we could see their faith growing and their testimonies growing! This past week as we taught about temples and the blessings of having an eternal family, the Spirit filled the room and my companion and I were moved by the Love we felt for this family. After our lesson the family thanked my companion and I for helping them remember their goal to have an eternal family. And for helping them come back to the church. It truly was a testimony builder to me that the work of salvation is not only for those that don’t know the gospel, but all members everywhere!
Yolanda!- This week my companion and I witnessed a miracle! For the past 2 months we have been teaching an investigator named Yolanda! Even though she has always been very receptive, she has never been firm in her decision to be baptized. After countless lessons on baptism and the importance it has in our lives, we finally saw the Spirit working within her. When we passed by her house on Sunday she was dressed, ready, and even had prepared her 8 year old son to come too! As we walked to church together she told us that she had made her decision. She wanted to get baptized and she was prepared to make the changes in her life because she knew the gospel was true! My Companion and I were touched by her true desires to follow Christ and her determination to receive the blessings of baptism!
This week was amazing! My companion and I witnessed many miracles- Families coming to church for the first time! A better relationship with the members in our ward. And countless other tender mercies that truly touched our hearts! Saying goodbye to Ayacucho was so hard, but I know that each transfer is done by revelation and the Lord has a great plan for each of us!
Love you all!
Hanging our laundry out to dry!!
View from our roof!!
Look who we found on our roof! The peeping pug!
Wow! This week went by so fast! I cannot believe it is already Monday! This week was filled with hard days, but also amazing miracles!!!
Concilio!- This week was another Leadership Council, so I made the trek to Lima!! The theme of the Council was how we could work better with the members in our ward to find more families to teach! Our president proposed a challenge to each of us….Teach the first vision to active members of the church and strengthen their families while asking for references! It was amazing because after returning back to my area in Ayacucho, my companion and I applied it… and we saw miracles! We decided to visit the family of one of the counselors in the bishopbric. As we taught the First Vision (Joseph Smith’s incredible experience of seeing Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ in a miraculous vision) we felt the need to also share “The Family- A Proclamation to the World!”and talk about the importance that they have as parents to change and improve the world! Even though we didn’t receive any references in that 30 min, we felt that our visit had been inspired. Exactly what they needed in that moment. The true miracle happened the next day in Church when the counselor gave a talk in sacrament and talked about our visit and how it had touched his heart in a critical moment, and when his wife shared her testimony in Relief Society…that she had been praying for help and guidance when we arrived at her house! It’s amazing to me how the Spirit really does work through us to help those who need it!!
Finding a Family!- Last week as we were walking to an appointment we felt the need to contact a family who was walking our direction! As we contacted them we were amazed to discover that years ago they had listened to the missionaries and were happy to receive us in their home! When we arrived in the home of Georgina and Ronald the Spirit was so strong it was incredible. And as we sang “Families Can Be Together Forever” an even stronger Spirit of love and happiness filled the room! I felt as if I had met them before, I felt as if I knew this family! As we taught the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ we were stunned by their want to find out for themselves if this message was true! Even more amazing were their children- David and Nisha. Nisha, due to an accident that happened when she was a baby, lost the ability to hear…. and even with this inability to hear our words, I could see a light shining in her eyes. I could see her flipping through the pages of the Book of Mormon and feeling the power that it possesses. It was one of those lessons where you remember why you are a missionary. It was one of those moments where you truly feel the Love that our Heavenly Father has for his children!
This week was filled with tender mercies such as these. Listening to a father give a prayer kneeling with his family and ending with tears because he was overcome with the Spirit. Contacting an old investigator and finishing the contact testifying that she will see her sisters and her parents(who passed away recently) again. Being able to share my testimony that I know I will see my Father again- I know that my family will be forever. Testifying of the ressurrection to a woman whose sister is dying from cancer and is suffering seeing the pain her sister is experiencing. Each person we found, taught, and served this week was a tender mercy and a sweet reminder to me that I am here for a reason… I am doing the Lord’s work!
I love you all!
Picking up investigators for Conference!!
The Baptism of Velid and Piero!!!
This week was crazy!!!
Trio… Again!- This week the companion of Hermana Esser, Hermana Trejo got super sick and they had to send her to Lima. Because she finsishes her mission in 2 weeks, she won’t be coming back to Ayacucho and Hermana Esser has been in trio with us all week! It’s been crazy working in two areas again, and training two hermanas at the same time! But it has also been an amazing learning experience! I love my two companions and together we have seen so many miracles! It’s amazing how the Lord seriously guides you and carries you in times of stress and difficulty!
Velid and Piero! – This week we saw a great miracle, The baptism of two amazing youth! When I was in Garcilazo we had begun teaching Velid and Piero, but they had not been able to be baptized due to their father and his objections to the church. Even though their mother is a member, their father kept them from baptism until just recently. Through some miracle, their father finally gave permission and this last saturday they were both baptized! It was so amazing to me to see how the Lord answers prayers and fasts! After months of waiting they were finally able to enter into this important covenant with their father in heaven! Even more remarkable is that I was there to see it!
Combi for Conference- This Conference was one of the most amazing but also most stressful! Stressful because our Bishop wanted to rent out a bus to bring all of our investigators to conference! It was crazy directing the bus driver and showing up in front of the houses of our investigators and less actives with a giant bus to bring them to the stake center! It was so funny and in the end it was so successful! We truly saw miracles as we were able to bring all of our investigators with baptismal dates and also many less actives and new investigtors to enjoy the words of conference! It truly was a conference of inspired words and personal revelation! I truly know that there are living prophets who recieve revelation specifially for us in these times! I know that the Lord hasn’t stopped communicating with his children- miracles and revelations are real!
I feel so blessed to be here in peru in this time! I know that the Lord knows each one of us and he knows what we need when we need it! I love this work and I love this gospel!!
ahhhh I loved this letter!!!! seriously it made me cry!! I was thinking about you during conference and during elder Holland’s talk I was just thinking about you!!! I know that the Lord has an amazing plan for you and I know that he is guiding you little by little!!! Evelin is doing well- she went to conf this week but we weren’t able to visit her because her aunt keeps lying and telling us she is not home.-….. it’s so unfortunate because her room is wayyy in the back of the house so we can’t directly knock on her door!!! but we are working on that!!! Right now I am still in ayacucho!!! I know. I will have 6 months here!!!! I’m just in a different ward…. it’s called mariscal caceres. and it is def in the poorer part of the city!
the plan for peru sounds perfect!!! and as for my flight I have no idea… I just know that I will be landing sometime on dec 1.
love you so much and I am so grateful to have you as my mother!!!
This is were I teach!
Duaght and Daniela’s Baptism!!
The Streets of my area!!
This week was wonderful! My companion and I have been working hard this week to find new people to teach and serve… and as a result we have seen many miracles!!!… we’ve also had many laughs this week!
Here is a rundown of what happened….
Peeping Pug- Okay, so in our shower there is a window that leads to the roof of our apartment building. The first time I ever showered in this apartment I heard a quiet grunting noise and I thought that maybe there was a pig that lived on the roof…. about 2 seconds later the eyes of a pug appeared and I connected the dots. Since this day…. when we turn on the water and get ready to shower, the pug comes just to look at us showering! I’m been trying to get a photo for the past few weeks, and finally I was swift enough to catch him in action! haha
Conference!- This Sunday was the General Women’s broadcast! As we began watching the talks and videos, I began to feel like I had seen this program before… the talks were so similar and the songs practically the same…. after talking to the other hermanas we realized it was the conference from april!!!! ahaha they ended up making an announcement and switching it to the right one…. but it was still funny to see the confusion of everyone in the stake! I loved listening to Elder Bednar’s talk, and reflecting on how this message or this story can truly relate to each one of us in our lives. How can we be happier? How can we find joy each day?… for each person it’s different, but it all begins with Love. Love for others. Love for ourselves. and most importantly Love of the Lord!
Miracles!- This week we found a new investigator named Evelin! Evelin is 19 and has a 8 month old baby boy. In our first lesson it became apparent that she was one of those people that the Lord had been preparing to receive the restored gospel. Her father had abandoned her family at a young age and her mother had passed away about 3 years ago…. she now lives alone with her little baby boy after his father abandoned them as well. As we began to teach about the love of the Savior, and the blessing we have to be cleansed from sin through his great sacrifice, her face lit up. The spirit was so strong, and her desires to find truth and light in her life were so amazing! We could see the light of Christ working within her. She accepted the invitation to be baptized, and Sunday went to church with her son and stayed all three hours! When we asked her if she was able to read the chapter we left in The Book Of Mormon, she began to explain the chapter perfectly and told us she had read it two times! I have already begun to see the change in Evelin, I have begun to see how she is beginning to feel the Love that the Savior has for her! I cannot wait to see how this wonderful gospel will continue to bless and change her life! It is such a testimony builder to me to see how there are people that the Lord is preparing to hear this message of hope and love.
I love this work and know that I am where I am supposed to be!
Love you all!!