Monday, August 25, 2014

Week 22: Hermana Sosa's feeling 22

Hola todo!! Well, on to the week! Things are going well with our 3 progressing investigators!! Even though Aurora and Peggy couldn't make it to church yesterday...gahhh.... Vicente came!!! He is so awesome!! And I think he liked it! This past week we taught the Word of Wisdom with them and it went super well! Peggy doesn't have any problems with it obviously, but Vicente drinks coffee. And has soon as we finished with the lesson he told us that he will not be drinking it anymore! Talk about determination!! And it was so funny haha cause the moment he got to church, the first thing he said was, I didn't drink coffee this morning!! Woo! They are so great. And Peggy expressed to us that she feels like she has received an answer. Progress!! Hermana Sosa and I are SO excited! With Aurora, she absolutely loves what we are teaching her and always reads and everything and has the biggest desire to receive an answer, but says she still hasn't yet. "But I go forward with faith!" she says, which is the perfect attitude! She wants to see a baptism before hers though.. so we are coordinating with the Elders of our District because they should have a baptism this week. Vamos a ver!
So, I have two more names to share with you guys! One is Ivan! Ivan is someone that we contacted and we've already taught him twice this week! He is almost blind, so with the Book of Mormon it can be hard, but he listens really well and takes everything in. When we talked about the Priesthood he was super interested also and has a desire to know! We are planning on bringing him to church this week!
The other is Janis. Janis's husband is actually the cousin of Hno Nunez (the member who lives above us), so family! Woo! But her husband Edgaurdo always happens to be out of the house when we are there.. but Janis is so awesome! She has a little bit of confusion with all the different churches and people who claim to be prophets, so this was a little bit hard for her to grasp when we taught the Restoration. But when we talked about the Book of Mormon, she seemed super interested to know and promised she would read it! So we'll see what happens with these two investigators this week! We're excited!

Also, our inactive family came to church again this week!! We ran into both the mom and the dad throughout the week and so we reminded both of them of church this Sunday! There are no coincidences ;) And, we also have a lesson planned with them this week. They are so great! And they speak English so that’s always great too :)
Well, it rained like CRAZY this week!! Which it hasn't done in a while so that was a surprise haha. Also, Hna Sosa turned 22 this week!! Woo!! Saturday night we had dinner, cake, and ice cream with the Nunez's! Super fun! Things are going good with the ward, Hna Sosa and I were actually able to have more member lessons this week which was so great! And also, a couple in our ward went to Florida this week to get their endowments and be sealed in the temple :) They have only been members for about 4 years or so, and are so awesome! Super strong in the Gospel! So everyone in the ward has been talking about that!! How us missionaries and the members here long for a temple in Puerto Rico!! But I know that as we work hard here, members and missionaries together, one day the Lord will bless us with a temple in Puerto Rico!! Talk about motivation, right?! Yay for missionary work! Have a great week everyone!

Hermana Holt

Monday, August 18, 2014

Week 21: SNAKE!

Hola todo!!

Well, this week I can honestly say I don't even know where to start haha. I have good news, I have bad news, and I have crazy/scary stories!! And for some reason, I'm not sure why, but this week has gone by a lot slower.. but all is well!! I think it felt slower because this week was full of meetings! Tuesday we had a Zone Conference and then this past weekend was Stake Conference, which we had to attend both Saturday and Sunday. And then Stake Center is about an hour away in car so there was a lot of traveling involved! These meetings were amazing though! I feel so grateful to have such amazing zone leaders and also stake leaders! President and Hermana Boucher joined us Sunday as well as Elder Cornish, who is the Area 70 for the Caribean. He is awesome!!

So I guess I'll start with the bad news.. actually it's just a lot more surprising! So I'm pretty sure I told you about that family last week? The mom and 3 kids? Well we had an appointment with them Thursday and Wednesday night the daughter texted us saying that the mom didn't want us to come anymore. Huh? What happened!! She then tried to explain to us why, but we couldn't understand her texts so Hna Sosa called her and the daughter put the mom on the phone - I'm not sure what all she said, but it looks like we won't be teaching them anymore. I am so crushed!!!! We both are! Especially because we have no idea what happened. It was so out of the blue. But, I'm just praying that sometime in the future they will accept missionaries again!

But, Heavenly Father is definitely part of this work because we still have 3 progressing investigators (Peggy, Vicente, and Aurora) who are doing well!! Reading and praying and everything. They couldn't attend Stake Conference because of the distance but we are really really really praying for this Sunday! We have moved all of their baptisms to the 20th of September and they are all willing to work for that date. Only Vicente says he has recieved a specific answer, so we'll see how this week goes. I know going to church will make a big difference! Haha oh my goodness and guess what? Peggy was so excited when we taught her this week because she says, look what our TV has!! And then she pulls up the Mormon Channel! With all the videos and talks and the scriptures and everything! Haha she was SO excited and of course so were we!! So we watched some Mormon Messages :) My favorite!!

So, are you ready for this story? You are not going to believe it! But it happened!! So, we were driving back from Mayaguez (where the Stake Center is) and we were just silently listening to the music when Hna Sosa screams "CULEBRA!!!" (snake)! So I'm looking outside the front window obviously haha thinking uhh where? How could she have seen a snake? When all of the sudden, lo and behold there was a snake outside Hna Sosa's window wrapped around the sideview mirror!! And it was HUGE and LONG!!!!! Hahaha so of course we all start screaming our heads off (Hna Sosa had already unbuckled her seat belt and was half way in my lap hahaha) and I couldn't stop the car because there were tons of cars! So I just screamed TAKE A PICTURE, so you guys would have evidence haha, but after about a minute of screaming and Hna Madrigal struggling for the camera, the snake fell off the mirror into the street!!! Wow. Haha I still can't believe it happened. I still get chills! But really! It was SO big!! And so long and so gross and so close to us!! Luckily Hna Sosa didn't have the window open because it totally would have got into the car!! Now, how did it get there? Yeah, that's been our question all week haha! So I guess the members who live above us weren't kidding when they said check the car for snakes.. we'll be a lot more cautious the next time!  

Well, that's all I can think of right now. My companion hit her 1 year mark this week and we celebrated with some delicious gluten free cake :) And her birthday is next week so we'll be celebrating all over again! Things are good here in San Sebastian, the sun is hitting us super hard here that's for sure! And then, I think of the Arizona heat and then I can't even complain :) I hope all is going well with everyone!! Saludos de Puerto Rico!!

Hermana Holt

Yo, Madrigal, Watkins, Sosa

un año

Monday, August 11, 2014

Week 20: Designated driver

 Hola todo!!
Wow, a lot of walking this week. Haha a lot of walking this week, BUT it was a good one because we extended baptismal dates... to a family! Finding families in the mission is basically Christmas haha, especially if they are receptive! So I might have mentioned them last week, but I'm not sure. The mom's name is Migdalia and she has 3 awesome kids, Shakira who is 13, JessMarie who is 11, and Edwin who is 8 (all baptism age :) haha). The first time we met them was just a getting to know them and explaining a little bit of what we teach as missionaries, and right off the bat the kids were so excited, especially when we gave them the Restoration pamphlets! After we had left, made an appointment, and passed the house later again that day, Shakira was outside answering the questions at the back of the pamphlet!! So we went back to their house this past week and taught them the Restoration and it went SO well! Haha I thought so! We had little activities for the kids to help them pay attention so it wasn't too boring for them :) And as we were talking the mom said how she just feels something different when we talk. She had told us too that she had taken a lot of different classes from different churches which has left her a little confused! So as the lesson finished, my amazing companion said the baptismal invitation and all of them accepted!! Like what?! So we are hoping and praying that all will continue to go well with them! They weren't able to make it to church yesterday, and now it's a little complicated this week because we have Stake Conference at the Stake Center which is an hour away in car... so I'm not sure how many investigators we will have at church this next week.. but we'll see!

Speaking of investigators at church, Aurora came!! We haven't had a lot of success with investigators attending church so this was huge!! And since this was the first time she has attended church, we are going to have to push her baptism date back a little bit, but really, she is so awesome. She reads from the Book of Mormon every day and has been praying hard to know if it's true! Little by little I know she'll know. So we were SO glad when she came to church because that's so essential as well. We have 2 appointments with her this week and she is hoping to go to Stake Conference too! 

Ohh Peggy and Vicente. Haha I love them so much, they are hilarious. But sadly, again, they couldn't make it to church... gah! So we will have to push their baptismal date back too. And also, because of Peggy's health they can't make it to Stake Conference. But all is well!! I really love the lessons with them because the Spirit is always there! And since she has a computer we watch Mormon Messages and other videos with her which are SO powerful! And of course since it's in English it makes it that much more fun haha! But really, one of the hardest things here in my mission is getting people to come to church!! A lot of people here have such a desire to come closer to God and have TONS of faith, but they don't act on it. And helping them change that is the hard part. But, as missionaries we just keep going!

So guess what?? I have been assigned as the "designated driver" of our area!! Oh my goodness driving the car was so nice haha I kinda miss it! I sent a picture of us 4 in the car, and don't worry haha that is not how I actually drive, that's just how I feel!! :) Oh and listen to this!! A while back we were teaching a lady who had been taught by the Jehovah's Witnesses and we kept stopping by and she was never there. I was SO sad because I thought she had potential!! So it's been about 2 or 3 weeks since we had seen her and we were walking in the rain when a car came up and it was her!! She offered us a ride!! And then she was saying, I am so sorry I've been so busy and haven't been home but you guys are welcome to come back and teach me! So we have an appointment Tuesday :) AH!! I about died!! 

Well, we were able to teach new investigators for the first time this week so hopefully next week there will be new names for you guys to read :) All is well here in San Sebastian, it's hard at times, but that's the mission! I can't believe it's already the 3rd week of the transfer.. where is the time going?? My dear companion hits her 1 year mark this Thursday... party!! Haha love you all!!

Hermana Holt

I'm the new designated driver

Wow! It feels so good

Monday, August 4, 2014

Week 19: Just keep teaching!

Hola todo!!

So, this week! It started off a little sad because Tuesday morning we had to send off Hermana Howell! She was transfered to Saint Kitts! And Hermana Madrigals new companion wasn't coming in until Wednesday (because she was in Saint Kitts) and so guess what happened Tuesday? TRIO!! Haha oh my goodness. So fun!! A little different, and a little hard because we had to try and get as many of both of our investigators in as we could, but it was SO great! So wednesday, Hermana Watkins came in and oh my goodness she is hilarious! She's from California and has been out in her mission 7 months, but has been in the island the whole time! And the island speaks English!! So we are in the same boat together continuing to learn the language together!

So onto the investigators!! Aurora - we are trying our best to try and teach her more than once throughout the week to help her continue to progress, but we can only get a hold of her once a week, so we work with that! Sadly she couldn't make it to church..... but she has been diligently reading the Book of Mormon and loves it! We asked her to read the Intro to the BofM and she had underlined words she didn't know and wrote down questions to help her to understand! We have to teach the lessons in parts because she always has SO many questions, but she has such a desire to know it's amazing!! However.. she needs to come to church! So we are praying and praying that she will be able to this next week. But she is doing great!

Peggy and Vicente - Peggy got super sick this week so we were only able to teach her once and she wasn't able to make it to church either. But listen to this!! So, first, we had intercambios (exchanges) this week for the first time in a while apparently! I guess the sisters haven't had them a lot in their mission. But anyway, I was paired with Hermana Brotherson who is from Utah and has only about a month left in her mission! She is the best!! But to be honest, I was kinda freaking out for these intercambios haha being the "leader" I guess you could say for the day. But wow, I loved it!! I learned so much and I actually gained a lot more confidence in myself with my Spanish haha since she made me do a lot of the talking. Anyway, so we stopped by Peggys and her daughter answered saying that she has sleeping and was still super sick. So, we started walking to our next lesson which was a good 25 min or so walking distance. Once we got there, they weren't there either!! Gah!! But then, Hna Sosa called me and said, where are you guys?! Uhh working? Haha apparently, her and Hna Gomez (her companion for the day) had passed by Peggys house and Peggy had just woken up and heard that we stopped by and so she freaked out saying, are they coming back to teach me?! Hahaha so we basically sped walked back to Peggy's house and taught a great lesson in English about 3 Nephi 11 :) She has such a desire to know and has been reading as well! So we are hoping her health gets better so that she is able to come to church!! It's SO crucial!

Anyway, sadly our other investigators have dwindled which has been really hard on Hna Sosa and I. But, we contacted a pueblo we haven't gone to yet, (it's a walk haha but it's worth it) and found some great people to teach! So we have a lot of lessons to teach this week and we are praying all goes well!! Sorry I can't write more!! I love you all and have a great week!! :)

Hermana Holt

 Mayaguez zone conference

pretending to eat a bug

 too close for comfort

 I can't do it