This is when we got to use the Senoritas kitchen that we live with and make pancakes!
Yeah first American food in a long time!
Yeah first American food in a long time!
This is me making a Nackatamale. They are not my favorite, but I always rave about how delicious it is. They are like tamales but only the maize. Also they are HUGE. There is usually a little piece of meat in the middle but it is so sketch so I NEVER eat it. I found out they put a little bit of rice and salsa in it but I have never tasted that haha. Just mush!
I just had a chance to read your email! Haha it made me smile to read that Branson and his friends are going to have a "tailgate" party everyday for school lunch. Sounds about right for him. I hope the boys really enjoy their time in High School. It goes by SO FAST! I had so many good times in high school. I hope the make the most of EVERY opportunity. I have been FLOODED with Emails for my Birthday. So to EVERYONE that sent me letters of emails THANK YOU! They made my day. I feel very lucky to know you all. Thanks for all the love and encouragement!
So like I said last week we had a wedding and baptism Monday night. Marvali and Mario looked so beautiful in white. While sitting there during their wedding and especially their baptisms I just kept thinking, "Is this real? Do I really get to be a part of this incredible moment in their lives? I must be the luckiest girl. I really feel so blessed to have the chance to see these miracles every week. I am so happy for them. They now have the opportunity to grow as a family in the Gospel. I think you already know this but they are the parents of Heydaling. They have 2 other young kids as well- Isaias and Kenya. It is amazing that they have now taken the first step to being an eternal family. Marvali and Mario as well as Heydaling and Rafeal promised to invite me to their Temple Sealing. I hope I can return to see that! After the baptism Heydaling came up to me and just said "Thank you. Thank you so much for teaching my family the truth and helping us get to know Christ." Ah she is so special I am telling you. I wish you guys could meet her. She always wants to go on splits with us and help in anyway possible. I will be so sad to say goodbye to her.
So Saturday was Isaias Baptism. He is 13 years old so next Sunday he is going to receive the Priesthood. Seriously seeing the change that the Gospel has made in this family is just beyond Amazing. I am so lucky that is all I can really say. He is such a sweet kid. The Young Men have welcomed him with open arms and he now has 6 new GREAT friends. I can’t wait to watch him pass the sacrament and grow in the church. He told us he wants to serve a mission when he is older. How cool is that! The baptism was great. One of the Young men - Edwardo, the Son of Francisco, baptized him. This Rama(ward) is AWESOME!
This week we have spent a lot of time finding new families to teach. Right now we are teaching 5 families. One of them is a reference from Yamilet - Yamili and Yudamis mom. This family is really incredible. They are very interested and want to learn more. I am excited to keep working with them. We are still working with Edwin as well. He wants to learn more, go to church and be baptized SO BAD, BUT his wife is really standing in the way. She is evangelical and does NOT want him to be baptized. She was baptized in our church 4 years ago but something happened and now she LOVES to talk to us and BIBLE BASH. I just hate it. I hope we can find a way to reach him and help him gain a testimony of the church. We also found this AMAZING family this week. Bydon and Fransis. They are a young family with 2 kids. They have just gone through a lot of difficulties and are so prepared to hear the Gospel. They are seriously a GOLDEN family. They keep all their commitments and remember EVERY THING we teach them. It is a miracle. We have recent converts of 7 months that still don’t know who Joseph Smith is, but this family does. They pray together, read the Book of Mormon and committed to come to church. SADLY, something happened we aren’t quite sure what but they didn’t make it to church. We went by their house three times before church but they just weren’t there and their phone was off. We are going to go by their house again tomorrow and see what happened.
So this SUNDAY was NUTS! The ZL told us that Presidente was going to be coming to our meetings! We were seriously nut cases. The Mission president is over all Branches and Districts as well as the missionaries here. So he checks in every once and awhile and helps out. Well Sunday came and went without a sign of the President. However, one of his counselors did show up because they were changing out everyone in the Branch Presidency. The president of the Branch, who I ABSOLUTELY LOVE was replaced as well as all the counselors. He honestly worked harder for this branch than I thought was possible. He gave his all for the members. Well we have a new Branch president and I like him a lot.
Transfers are the 4th of September, but rumor is we aren’t going to have change meetings anymore. Just who ever have changes will go to Managua and then head out to their new areas. How sad! I want to see everyone!! And eat at McDonalds...haha. We are having a lot more MultiZone meetings though. This Thursday we have one with a General Authority. I have to perform a special musical number there. I seriously doubt I will have changes though. There are ppl here that have been in this area for 8 months and I am sure they will leave before me. There are lots of changes in the mission right now though so who knows for sure. It also depends on how many new missionaries we get. President did tell us though that he is going to be putting SISTERS in areas that previously have only been for Elders. It is CRAZY!!! I really hope I don’t go to any of those areas. The Elders have told me PLENTY of horror stories. I know the President wouldn’t do anything dangerous but nonetheless I don’t want to go. You have to go back to your house at 6pm and I heard the water is literally GREEN!
Oh I also wanted to tell you about an experience I had while working with MEMBERS this week. We had a lesson planned with our new family Bydon and Fransis for Thursday night. Right before the lesson we had a quick lesson with a recent convert. They live close to Bydon so we asked them to accompany us to the lesson and they agreed! Anyways.... we got to their house and had a beautiful lesson. Seriously the Spirit was so apparent. Bydon and Fransis are new to the area and they were so grateful to have some new friends that are a young family as well and experiencing similar things. Well during the lesson the member family, Linder and Licet, bore testimony of how the Gospel changed their lives. WOW! That changed everything. It is one thing to hear this message from a couple of single girls but to hear how the true Gospel has changed ppl´s lives in your same situation is something completely different. Afterwards we invited them to be baptized and they accepted! I know it is because of the power and testimony of those members.
I want to testify that this is the work of all the members! Not just us missionaries. The members make all the difference and this work will spread faster with YOUR help than through any other means. I want to encourage EVERYONE to not be shy about sharing the Gospel- giving the missionaries a reference, inviting a non-member family to the house for a lesson or just being a friend to someone that doesn’t have this truth yet. One person will make a difference, however, we can make more of a difference TOGETHER! Imagine if all of us as members invite one person to church! What a miracle that would be. Let's help our brothers and sisters discover the truth and take the first steps towards their salvation. Let's help them find peace, hope and happiness in this life. We are so lucky to have this knowledge it is our DUTY to share it!
Okay I have to go now! I love you with my EVERYTHING!!!