Monday, October 28, 2013

It's A Miracle!!


Gracias for all of the wonderful birthday messages! You guys are the best! I have love for all of you! I am so glad all is going well for Grandma! 

This week was CRAZY!!! So, so, so Good! 

AREA= My companion and I helped the branch have Mutual for their first time in a long time. It was a smashing success! They had a spiritual thought, then they learned how to make Baleadas, the favorite food of Honduras, and then my companion and I played games with them. They all had fun, some of our investigators went and almost all of our conversos recientes came. YAY!!! And our branch president enjoyed it tambien. 

This week I tried the typical soup of Honduras. It is called Sopa de Mondongo. I am pretty sure it is the stomach lining of the cow. It wasn't terrible...

My companion and I also attempted to make baleadas. They weren't terrible tampoco. It is my goal to perfect my ability to make tortillas before I go back. We always need to have goals... 

We also had intercambios. I love them too much! They are so great! I stayed here in Campamento and my companion went to Talanga. My companion was from the US and so she talked to me in English a lot. It was weird. But kind of refreshing. I like Spanish more. 


We found 5 FAMILIES this week. Let me repeat that, 5 FAMILIES!!! This is the miracle of miracles. The goal is to find 3 every week and I have never done that. This week we found 5. God is in the work. We are so excited. Allo of them are going to be baptized. tHey have no idea, but it is the truth. 

Isabel, our investigator from forever, was BAPTIZED!!! it was a miracle! she has been meeting with missionaries for 2 years! Success! She shared with us the scripture that helped her make the decision. Alma 12:11. Dios es sabio. I thought it was interesting...and very direct. 

She cried after she was baptized. I almost cried. It was such a tender experience and I was so so happy. She is going to be the next Relief society president. I just know it. 

Baptism de Isabel. There are no words to describe it. She was the first person I challenged to be baptized here in the mission and the first baptism of my companion. Too bad I had to challenge her to be baptized 4 times before she was ready. But the Lord has His timing. 

We went to Cacao. It is an aldea de Campamento. There is a special spirit there. It is far from the city and just peaceufl. It was rejuvenating. 


We saw a snake... but it was after we found 2 families, so it was okay. 

My companion continues to be a blessing. I love her so much! 

I will share all the great birthday details the next time. Love you all! 

Happy Birthday to me! 

Monday, October 21, 2013

"Udderly" Irresistible. . . .or what's for dinner???

Hola Familia,

It has been a pretty great week. Be sure to let me know how Grandma is. I will be praying for her. I hope all goes well. 

My birthday is in exactly a week. I want an email from Ryan for my birthday. And everyone else!:)

Area= We had entrevistas in the Church. Pdte. went area by area. Or chapel by chapel. We were at the end of the road, so my companion and I brought fruit for President and his wife. I didn't particularly enjoy going to interviews with dad, so I figured fruit would make it a little better. I hope so. The interview lasted maybe 3 minutes. How are your prayers? Do you feel the Spirit? Questions like that. I think mine was the fastest. I understood President. But he also speaks a ton of English. But I am proud to say he only spoke to me in English my first week when I was sobbing. Not sure if I should be proud of that. Hna. Fortuna trained us on how to adapt to the mission life. 

We spent P-day with a family from the branch that goes with us a lot on visits. We learned how to make corn tortillas and then they fed us lunch. It was interesting. When I saw it I knew I shouldn't ask what it was. Later I asked my companion. We ate cow tongue and utter. Yummy. It was... okay. The utter was straight up fat. I don't think I will ever order it in a restaurant. 

People= Isabel is going to be baptized!!!! She is the one that fed me utter. But she was the first person I challenged to be baptized... and the first person to tell me no. But 4th time is the charm! She finally gave up her novio and she is going to stay in the Church for her whole life. She already goes to church more than her family who are all members. I love her. I hope all goes well. It will also be the first baptism for my companion.

Spiritual= We prepared a lesson for a member and she ended up crying. Success. We read an article from the Liahona about how we should be Saints in every season. READ IT. 
We are also working with the Jovenes. We are preparing Mutual this week and hopefully they will start that up again. 

Funny= We were teaching about authority to Isabel during the Restoration and my companion asked her if her dad could be a prophet. He was there and quickly proclaimed that he could. It is funny when you know that he has been a member for 15 years and right now is an alcoholic. Maybe not funny, just twisted. We reexplained authority...

We have umbrellas. They are necessary. We use them for the sun and the rain. Unfortunately we leave them in every house. We spend a ton of time regressing to other houses. Neither of us has ours right now..

Bendiciones/Desafios=Basically I am elated about Isabel. We had the opportunity to serve which meant people fed us. I had 2 really good meals this week. And I also proved I can beat anyone when it comes to shoveling. It is really hard to find families. Pray for me. We have a goal to baptize a family this month, but we aren't teaching any. Lots of prayers... 

Ummm...once again, NEXT WEEK IS MY BIRTHDAY!!!! OCT. 28. Don't forget. 

Love you all. Praying for you and Grandma! 

Thursday, October 17, 2013

This week in Honduras . . . or how to get a stove the quick way.

Hola familia. Life is just great here! We had a busy week. 

Area= We went to Tegucigalpa esta semana for a meeting for the nuevo misioneros. It was kind of interesting. I still feel like I am the new one. But it was great. Motivating. Inspirational. Comforting. And we got real food. 

After 3 weeks without a stove I decided to go about getting a new one the faster way. I slyly mentioned to Hna. Fortuna that we didn't have a stove (I did it with grace and subtlety) and with in 20 min the office brought us a new one. I also managed to sequester a new DVD player and a box of copies of the Book of Mormon. Success. We have never been so happy to cook. And my companion knows how to cook here! Yay food! 

We have interviews this week. Presidente is going to travel to every area. He is coming here Friday in the tarde. And they might check the house.. or might not. We have a lot of cleaning to do. Only because the water broke to the house and so we haven't had water for a few days. But there is a guy who is fixing it right now. Yay! 

We were going to have a zone activity today, but nobody has money, so maybe next week. 

DIANA WAS FINALLY CONFIRMED!!!! Hallelujah. I can finally breathe. And she is preparing to go to the temple for baptisms with her nieces. Yay! Valeria was also confirmed. But she counts like a nina escrita. Whatever that means... 

We are finally having success with the menos activos. We have had at least one in the Church for the first time in 3 months for the last 2 weeks. They are just scared. But there are menos activa twins that are going to help us teach a lesson this week. I stole the idea from your mission. 

I was feeling a wee bit down because of Spanish and the inability to teach really well, but I came to the conclusion that if I am trying to be like Christ as much as I can, then it doesnt matter. And I just have room to improve. Yay. 

It also hit me this week that Repentance is a blessing. Its an opportunity to feel happy and clean again. It isn{t something bad or something to look down upon. Its happy! 

Funny= I don{t have anything in specific. But I am laughing a lot. A lot a lot.. I get along really well with my companion. 

Our water broke, but its being fixed! 
Spanish is interesting. Basically I am learning that I have been saying a lot of things wrong for 3 months. Yay. But I am still humble :) 

LOVE you alllllll!!!!! I{ll lett you know how interviews go.
Love you so much! 

Monday, October 7, 2013

A New Companion . . .

Oh my... this week has been pretty long. But I know it has been even longer for my companion, so at least I am one step ahead. I keep having mini flashbacks to my training and then I ask her why she isn't crying. She is so so so wonderful and so ready for the mission. 

Her name is Hna. Montaño. she is from...wait for it...ESMERALDAS ECUADOR. Sound familiar, Mom? Your first area! All of your horrible stories.(They weren't horrible stories, I just described the living conditions which were pretty rough) But she is wonderful! She is 20 and is a powerful teacher. Sometime I don{t even want to talk because I want to listen to her. But I talk anyway. And my Spanish is improving a ton. Ah!!! We laugh at my pronunciation of a lot of words... a lot. I am kind of American... but I am learning. She is getting really good at understanding what I want to say. 

Area: Cambios. I still love my companion. And Hna. Clarke is in Juticalpa which is an hour away, but not in my zone. I will also miss her. 

Last week we went thrift shopping in Campamento. Basically ultimate thrift shopping. It doesn't get much better. And I found the perfect skirt. It is the one I am wearing with my new companion on the fb page of the mission... I am assuming she put it on the page. 

People= people are a lot more receptive when they understand us. It is nice. We are striving to work a ton with the members. We are finding new people, but they are stalwart Catholics who are happy as they are. But its good. We only had 2 investigators in Conference. But we worked really really hard to try to bring more. 

I loved conference. It was a bit hard to understand, but I received the comfort that I needed and answers. Basically there is a lot about the Atonement that I don{t understand. A lot. But what a great opportunity. I loved the talk of Elder Ballard. Faith preceeds the miracles. I have faith, my companion has faith, therefore, HOLA MIRACLES. This is going to be a good time together. A family will be baptized. Or 400 of them. 

I have also realized that the Spirit is the teacher and we need to open our mouth to share our testimonies or else the Spirit doesn{t get to teach. And it doesn{t matter how eloquent we are. 

Funny= So some vocabulary differs from country to country. In Ecuador, BOLO is a drink. Kind of like icecream. In Honduras it is a drunk man. We almost had a really uncomfortable situation. Turns out I know a little bit of Spanish that is helpful for my companion... We laughed pretty hard. 

Basically we laugh a lot at my spanish errors. But we are happy! 

WE still don{t have a stove. I am hungry. 
NEw missionaries are expensive and we have 2 meetings this week so basically we have no money. 

But, once we get a stove we are going to have a whole new appreciation for food. I am excited. But there isn{t a lot of hope. I really want a stove, but the missionaries are all working hard to appease me. 

Just kidding, I am nice. 

This is all I can think of to say. I am really excited to work with Hna. Montaño. Basically she is a sassy black girl who is powerful. 


Thursday, October 3, 2013

Michelle is Training!!

Sorry it has taken me so long to post her letter this week. We didn't have internet for three days and then I was busy. But here it is!!


So, due to the length of the emails and my inablilty to retain any information because I am so excited for news from home, I take a picture of your emails to read later. Or reread. It has been wonderful. But I need to mention a few things that I forgot to write in response to your letters. 

1. Dad, I am so sorry that you keep having to send home missionaries.  I know that must be really hard! 

2. Mom-- I need more direction on how to use the BoM things.  How do I use them with investigators/at what point? I am just nervous because I don't want to slaughter it with my limited vocablulary. 

3. Mom, can you please tell grandma how grateful I was for her note? It was so great to hear from her. I pray for her and grandpa everyday. I miss them so much. Tell her that I love her and grandpa! 

Can you also send me grandpa's email address? 

And I am totally impressed you drove to Hna. Hernandez's stake. Holy cow. 

Kali--I LOVE LOVE LOVE the pictures! It was so fun to see your kids! Emmitt is huge! Also, your emails are hilarious. 

Kristen= I LOOOOOOOOOOOOVVVVVVVVVVVEEEEEE hearing stories about the boys. I don't know how you do it. But at least they are entertaining. 

Allie --I got your email and it was wonderful! I will try to respond soon, but I will probably just send a real letter. 

 I AM GOING TO TRAIN!!!!! I am not sure if this fits under the heading of area, but it is the biggest part of my life right now, so I am just saying it first. President called me Tuesday morning and we had a meeting in Tegus jueves. Me, 3 other sisters and like 15 elders. My district leader is also trianing, so I will never have to travel alone. Yay. Someone is looking out for me. 

I gave a talk on sunday. Importance of the Book of Mormon. I am not sure if anyone understood a single word, but they all looked at me. Basically the branch loves me. Therefore, they are nice. 

We also helped someone move houses. That was interesting. Right before a baptism. I should have taken a before and after picture of myself. I am definitely learning how to get ready quick! 

The niece of Diana was baptized this saturday. Technically it was an nino escrito [child of record]. I have no idea what that is in English. But it was good. We almost started on time. 

No one was confirmed this Sunday. oh... esta familia es un dolor en mi cabeza. One of them went off running and the other refused to come out of her room. But, we went by the house later and convinced them to commit to being confirmed in 2 weeks. Esta familia... Pero, I am learning a lot of patience. A lot of it... 

Spiritual= This week has been crazy and my companion has wanted to say goodbye to everyone in Campamento. But, we have still had some tender experiences. She was saying goodbye to Pdte Amador and it was wonderful. He is so much like dad. He just sat there and taught us from the scriptures. I just soaked it up. He is the one in white that baptized Valeria this last saturday. He looks really grumpy, but he is actually the nicest person ever. 

Funny= I introduced sock buns to Campamento this last Sunday. They thoguht it was hilarious. I now am under obligation to teach the Relief society president. 

Quote of the week= We were in sunday school and the girl was teaching about missions and she was saying that repentance is an important step before we leave on a missin. Her exact words---, If you kill someone, you should repent before you go on a mission. She just turned in her pápers, so I hope that isn't a personal experience... 

Language barrier= we asked someone if they had questions [preguntas] and they thought we asked if they had una pelota [ball]. Almost...

I totally messed up the hymns on Sunday. No one knew what verse we were on and we just sat in silence. I decided to jump to the last verse. Too bad my companion kept playing... But I just walked off. With a super red face. 

Challenges/ blessings= 

We still don't have a stove. Which means we don't have money. Which means I am hungry. But we went to the office after the meeting on thursday and I talked to Elder Robles. Turns out he already knew who I was because he is from Guadalajara. Therefore, he knew dad and was way willing to help me. So I gave him a list of items I wanted. But he was way way nice and showed me pictures of his home. He goes to the ward by the temple. Yay. 

I think this is basically it. Next week will be more excitng. I don{t really want responsibility, but I am excited to have equality. And I will learn Spanish. I saw the list of sisters and one is named Hna. Zapata. That is the coolest name ever. And her first name is Katherine and her second Michelle. It is fate. I Hope I get her. If not, It will still be good because it wiill be inspired. 

Love you so much!