Monday, November 30, 2015

Thanksgiving and Semana Loco!

Hi everyone! 

We haven't had any snow, but we HAVE been able to enjoy our wood burning stove! I feel like I'm back at the cabin!  

So to first off tell you our transfer info....  I think Heavenly Father must have a sense of humor, and of course an intelligent mind. I have been called to train another new sister missionary, and I will be LEAVING Toppenish. These past four months have flown by, and Neither of us thought we would leave... I will be sent to a BIG area in Yakima, to cover just Spanish work *secretly so excited to meet a new branch!* and I will be training this sister, which means neither of us know ANYTHING about the area... This should be a good challenge for me! I am incredibly excited and nervous at the same time, but this is what Heavenly Father has asked of me, and I have accepted! As for Hermana Parry, she will be going to Sunnyside, and will be taking over for a sick sister to finish being trained by someone she came in with. She and Hermana Pons will finish training each other!  As for Toppenish, there will be two elders sent here to take over. Our area is pretty awesome, but due to more Elders coming in this transfer and to less number of Spanish Sisters, Heavenly Father guided President Lewis to DOUBLE US OUT. Yeah, I still can't believe it. She's only a half hija to me now... hmph. 

Other than that, this past week was again, slow. Everyone was incredibly busy due to Thanksgiving. We've all heard of missionaries getting multiple meals for Thanksgiving, right? Well, luckily we only had one! As I explained last time, we basically became part of a family reunion... I was a bit 'trunky' seeing all the grand kids of the members and meeting all their family, but in the end, it was fun being with the family!  We had a blast!  For most missions, at least hearing from friends in other missions, not too many missions had to work on Thanksgiving.  Unfortunately, we worked still on Thanksgiving, and NO BODY WOULD TALK TO US. pft...  It's all good, we over all had a good week!

I honestly still can't believe that we are both being sent out of Toppenish, but I know that there are these wonderful Hispanics waiting to hear from the elders!  Upon my calling, again to train a sister, I have definitely learned so much about not only being trained, as I experienced with Hermana Wortley, but to train is such a privilege. I feel very honored that Heavenly Father would want me to train another sister, and especially going to a new area, and as some of you can imagine, I am under quite a bit of stress, to prepare an area for elders, and to prepare myself to be completely new to this sweet area of Yakima, but I am extremely proud to accept the call to train, OTRA VEZ! Again! I can't believe it still, I can't express how i feel! I had to explain to Hermana Parry about how we can totally feel the spirit as we listen to the voice mails of where everyone is going and what companionships will be new in our zone.  We just felt so much power after talking with President Lewis this past Saturday morning. 

I am very sad to leave all these wonderful people behind, but I am now looking forward to starting fresh in Yakima, and being even closer to rely on my leaders, (4 of us sisters will be living together, our Sister training leaders!) I sure do love them and I always seek for their counsel, and not only theirs but the Lord's, and I look forward to coming to know my Heavenly Father even more! 

We will be back for Molly's baptism next Sunday and for when Burt gets baptized, and even Joann! I am leaving behind a wonderful place, and I absolutely love this place despite how unsuccessful I feel as I prepare to leave, but excited to leave off what the Elders will have to work with. I don't feel like I've done enough, but I know I have because I've been called to train again. 

I have no doubt in my heart that I know The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day-Saints is true. I feel such great power and authority as a missionary, and I am extremely happy to be a Disciple of Jesus Christ!
That's all I have for this week, have a good week!

Me and Tana Johnson, who is the daughter of Joann, who we just got permission to teach, and who referred us to Burt, her husband's handyman on the farm. 

Monday, November 23, 2015

!Aye Carumba! the weatha....

Buenas Tardes, Ustedes! Como Estan?

This week wasn't too busy, but we did get in another lesson with Burt and Molly, and we will be starting Molly's baptism program soon!  I'm glad her mom is taking care of it, because this is my first baptism, period... so we are happy to let Sister Ibarra take over the project. We are so excited for Molly!  2 more weeks!

Burt has now been taught the main commandments, and has no problem with keeping them, but he does drink beer once in a while before he goes to bed if his back hurts, but we are going to get him started on resisting it as much as possible. 

We taught Guillermina again this week, and we were able to explain the story of Nephi and his brothers going to get the brass plans, and it was awesome!  She's learning to manage her time better to find time to read and pray, and she had plans to come to church... but she ended up having family in town for a Quinceanera (15th birthday party in the Hispanic culture) for a family member.  We have an appointment with her tomorrow night.

We are having Thanksgiving dinner with the Barney family, who are a big family in the ward, so we will basically be eating dinner at a family reunion, which sounds weird, but it should be fun!  The elders are also going as well. So it should be interesting. We have been asked a couple times from guys if we have boyfriends or if we're married... cough cough, yes!  Boyfriends for both of us in defense... Haha, it ended pretty quickly, and then we were on our way.

We also found an old former investigator who asked us to come back!  Anayeli is in middle school and she was taught with her brother, but unfortunately over the summer the elders never got in contact with her for a long time. Then I remembered last night as we drove past her trailer (Hermana Taua showed me where she lived) and we stopped by!  She wants us to come back tonight!  So I guess that's exciting! 

That's it from me today. Thanksgiving should be fun. I am excited for it, and lots of fun member dinners.  We are excited to visit and enjoy meals with the members of the branch and of the ward.

It was over all a 'more or less' week, but we're happy with it!  It's a great day to be a missionary, and I am so incredibly grateful for the opportunity I have to train Hermana Parry, to work along side with President and Sister Lewis, and to be a missionary, a disciple of Christ. I love my job, it's the best thing I could ask for!

Tengan una buena semana, Les extrano!

Monday, November 16, 2015

Planner out the window, JOANN!!

Hi everyone! 

When I saw this week flew by, I mean it literally flew out the door, and into the street.. literally. 
Not too much has happened, Molly is still on date for baptism, and we've received permission from our Branch President to have the baptism and the confirmation the same night. It will be December 6th, and we are extremely excited!  We've already got some talks figured out, Brother Ibarra is baptizing her, (her dad) and all their family from Yakima, Seattle, and some from Utah are coming. It is soooo exciting!

We didn't get to teach Burt this week, but luckily we know he went to a mid singles dance in Pasco with another mid single member in the ward. We haven't heard from him for a few days, but we are planning on pushing his date back to December 12 so we will have more time to teach him and help him get his interview. 

Best news of this week...  Remember the excommunicated member that is Sister Johnson's mom who wants to be baptized?  WE HAVE PERMISSION TO TEACH HER! She will just need to have her interview conducted by Bishop Stauffer and all will be well :)  We are so excited!  She and Burt have already come to church twice, but neither showed up this past Sunday. Oh well, we'll see them this week!  We are planning on teaching him and her this weekend! Woot Woot!

I have so much to share, but so little time, and I unfortunately lost my planner Sunday at church... I have no idea where it is, We've looked everywhere. Oops!  But on that note, this week... a LOT of appointments have fallen through, we've been trying hard to find, and in result, we've found 3 more investigators!  They are all thirsting for the gospel, and we cannot wait to visit them all again this week!  We are visiting Yolanda and her family tonight, and then we will be visiting George and Mari this upcoming week!  

Since this week wasn't too rewarding, we ended up buying Ben And Jerry's ice cream during a canceled dinner to make up for the feelings... Because you know... we are sisters, and sometimes we need a pick me up. Haha!
We are doing great, and I LOVE training. I feel inadequate sometimes, but I sure do love her and she understands that I tend to stress sometimes, but I've been doing better, and I know I am training her for a purpose only Heavenly Father Knows. She's my hija!  I can't wait to see what next transfer brings, but that's not until November 30th

Love you all, please keep Joann Gibson, Burt Ramsey, and Molly Clark in your prayers!

Monday, November 9, 2015

Temple Pday and Itsy Bitsy Miracles!

A member fed us dinner at the church while they participated in a lesson with the elders at the same time.. Best Chicken Noodle soup for all the rain and our colds. 
Hello everyone! 
What a WEEK! Let me get down to business!

Monday sadly we dropped Paula, and then we went off to visit a member in the nurse and rehab center. Sister Arnold was married and raised her family in Wenatchee (I got to ask her all about where she lived and I got to connect with her a bit).  Afterwards we were on our way to go knocking, we had stopped in the car behind a truck that was about to turn left, when the car behind us hit us... Oh snap! I was about to stress out until I pulled over and I got out and looked at the car and there wasn't a single scratch...  The person had just bumped us, and they were even members from the Sunnyside ward, down the highway 30 minutes.

 Mis hermanos y hermanas, Les amo!
Tuesday we went to the temple! Holy cow, I missed this beautiful place... Sitting in the Celestial room again brought so much comfort and peace. I was surprised that it came in a way that wasn't very strong or significant. I just felt, p e a c e . . . and that's all I needed, and I'm so glad Heavenly Father knew that!  Later that day we found Marissa, who we had a lesson with the next day about the restoration. While teaching her she expressed her feelings about how close she has come to Heavenly Father through prayer. She was a drug addict since she was a YOUNG teenager.  After years of guilt and shame, she searched diligently for help, and she has been clean for 6 years!  She has a solid testimony of prayer and Heavenly Father's divine help.

Wednesday we had that lesson with her, and we also stopped by a potential Hermana Taua and I met before transfers. Guillermina has the great responsibility of taking care of her grand kids after working in the harvest all morning. She has told us she wants to be baptized, but she wants to come to church before she makes the decision of when.  Well, perfect Guillermina, because you have to go to church to progress, and in order to be baptized, you have to progress... It just all fit in! Then later that day we helped the Young Women make cookies for the great big Harvest Dinner for the following Friday

Thursday was full of fallen-through appointments, no service to be done at the food bank, and not too much happened...  We did get some good knocking in and visited by some other potentials and members, and shared some short messages of encouragement and of strength. 

Friday we finished planning and went to the Ward Harvest Dinner, and it was a great turn out!  Burt came, Joann came, Joann even brought a friend who we were introduced to, and we even had a short lesson with him before the dinner about what we do as missionaries. He knows the Bible in and out!  He wants to read Daniel this upcoming week, and wants the missionaries to read it with him... Haha, of course!  Why not?  We passed him to the elders at the dinner since he lives in their area, and they hit it off pretty well!  They have an appointment with him on Saturday, and he lives over 30 miles away, almost to the edge of the elder's area... Haha, good thing that they have a member taking them!  A whole bunch of our less actives even showed up!  It was so awesome!

Yakima Valley Spanish Zone
Saturday we went to Yakima for a Zone Training Meeting about inspired questions and discerning the needs of our investigators and less actives. We later went to another baptism of the Elders' investigator Masae, who's originally from Samoa.  With permission, Sister Taua came down to Toppenish with a member to the baptism, and it all ended up going well!  We were planning on seeing Molly, but she made different plans with her Dad, but she's been doing so well anyway! Then, we had a lesson with Burt that night, which went so well!  We reviewed the Restoration and the Gospel and invited him to be baptized!  He said yes!  I was personally prompted to ask him for November 21st, when we had planned to ask him for November 28th. It turned our that Burt was very close to his Dad growing up, who sounds like may have passed away some time ago, and his birthday was November 22nd, which will be Burt's confirmation date!  We've truly been able to work well with him and help him see the plan that Heavenly Father has for him. He agreed to November 21st

Sunday, Burt, Joann, and Joann's friend were all at church! Then later that day we had a lesson with Molly, and invited her to highlight Christ's name in yellow or underline it every time she reads it in her scriptures. She's growing so much! We've made plans to have her confirmation the same day as her baptism, and her Dad (Brother Ibarra) is going to baptize her. She's become so wonderful!

I guess I might as well mention that I'm hitting my halfway mark this Tuesday.... *Runs and hides under bed crying*   NO! It's flown by sooooooo incredibly fast!  I can't face it right now... Nope, can't do it... And Hermana Parry hits her 2 months tomorrow... its an unbelievable week for both of us. It's so weird....  I can say I have truly enjoyed the journey of these 9 past, crazy, happy, sad, disappointing months. It's help me grow so much even when I have become frustrated and wanted to give up, I've always had Christ to lean on, and my Heavenly Father to talk to.  It's brought so much comfort to me with in this past roller-coaster time. There's no where to look but up from here. If I didn't change many hearts within this past year, I know mine was changed for the better. I have come to know my Savior better than I ever have since I have been sent to this earth. I can't wait to see what's in store for my next 9 months.   I am in no way, shape, or form a perfect missionary, but I have become perfected in Christ, and I am still becoming perfect in Christ. I love my mission.  I wouldn't trade it for anything else in the world.  It's time to live up and take advantage of every moment I have, because I've got these few months left, and I can't let any moment pass by without coming closer to Christ with my companion or with my investigators. I continue to love my sweet trainee, she is a hard worker, and I don't doubt she will train after I leave, whenever that is, but that's not my point. :)

Have a wonderful week everyone! Love you all!

Elder johnson and I saw eachother at The temple! He's the only spanish elder Hermana Harston and I came in together with from the CCM, he even gave me a few blessings before we left the CCM. He's doing well and has now become a Zone Leader already! He says Hi to my email list, including Elder Asher Chia, Hermana Hooker and Hermana James!
Received a cute little gift from a member while we were out knocking doors, knocked into her and she gave a little prayer box for both of us!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Buenas Dias de El Templo!

Hey everyone! 

I am emailing on a Tuesday this week because we went to the Columbia River Temple, so we are taking today as our P-day. This morning at the temple was BEAUTIFUL! It was just a bit chilly, but it was wonderful to go and to be with my trainee Hermana Parry and to be reunited with my Zone, Hermana Taua and everyone else. 
I don't have too much time today, its been busy week, but let me give you a run down!

We met Michael (just graduated high school and wants to be an example to his siblings) about a month ago and went back to visit him this week and we invited him to pray to know if baptism is the right thing for him.
We met Nanci this week, who's a junior in high school, who's actually friends with a member, but we knocked into her and we left her with a Book of Mormon and an invitation to read 3rd Nephi 11 about Christ coming to the America's. We plan on inviting her to be baptized this week when we get in with her.

Burt and Joann came to church this past Sunday! Burt was greeted by so many members and Joann was able to reconnect with everyone she knew before she stopped going to church. Burt asked if he could meet the Bishop, and commented on a young member's testimony about becoming a missionary, who's reporting to the Boston Massachusetts Mission Portuguese speaking, and told us she would be a great missionary. He and Joann, and even Tana Johnson are all coming to the Ward Harvest Dinner this week, and then we are having a lesson with them the night after that. It should go really well!

We had a funny little incident this week while knocking in a close-by neighborhood where Sister Parry, out of nowhere  had to use the bathroom really bad... We don't know why, I won't talk about it, but we then ended up leaving a guy on the phone who we started talking to, got distracted with a call from Mexico (Typical for the Hispanics) and left us hanging...  Well, she really needed a close-by bathroom, and asked me if there were members in the neighborhood... "Uhh.... There aren't any members in this neighborhood, Why?" 
"Hermana, I really have to use the bathroom!"  We zipped over next door where we saw a lady walk back into her house from taking out the garbage, quickly introduced ourselves, and then impatiently asked to use the bathroom, and Laura, who was currently home, let us in. It was a good save, but that's all I may say about that.... 

This week has been rewarding, and it all yet happened in a flash. Just goes to show how long It's been since I started my mission.... cough cough, 9 months.... next week...  Nope, can't face the realization right now, haha! I have 9 months left to live up the best job I've ever had, and all I am given in return is blessings, for me, for my companion, for my family, and the strongest testimony I've ever had of the gospel of the best person that ever lived on this earth, who I can't ever thank enough for His sacrifice, and His blood which was shed for me, for you, and for everyone on this earth!

My time is up, but I love you all and I wish you all the best week ever! Share the gospel with someone this week! :)