Monday, March 30, 2015

Week 53: My Testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ

Hola a todos!!

Well, something went wrong with my email and now I only have 5 minutes.. TESTIMONY TIME!!!

I KNOW that Heavenly Father loves us and is SO aware of everything we are going through. If we pray to Him with a sincere heart, He will help us with what we need! He already knows what we need and what we desire, He is just waiting for us to turn it all to Him so he can help us :) What better way to go through our lives than with the help of our Savior?! And guess what week it is?! EASTER!! I know that Jesus Christ lives!! His resurrection means everything to me. He died for every single one of us, and yet he LIVES for every single one of us everyday! What a blessing that is. How grateful I am for Jesus Christ and to be able to represent him for 18 months. Also, Jesus Christ made it possible that FAMILIES CAN BE TOGETHER FOREVER!! I love testifying of that! The womens conference this past weekend was incredible and I hope all of us will defend the family!! It's the most precious thing that we have. And what greater love and happiness can we have than to live with our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, AND with our families. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is absolutely incredible in every way!

Sorry it's a short one, but it is still written with all the love I have :)

Make sure that you watch the new Easter video!! Share it :)

Hermana Holt

Sister Activity, Toa Baja Zone

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Week 52: God Hears our Prayers

Hola a todos!!

Man, did we see some miracles this week!!! For these past weeks, Hna Lopez and I have been trying to really focus on our prayers. We know that as we ask for specific things, we get specific answers. So, in these past weeks we've been praying to find a family, and a single woman. Haha we wanted to be specific! And after a long couple of weeks, we found both of them in these past few days!!!! Incredible

On Wednesday we decided to contact an area that we've never been to. That's always the best cause you can talk with absolutely everyone!!! But as we started to walk, we realized that we were entering el campo! Haha meaning that there are a lot of trees and fields and farms and not a lot of houses! So one of the first houses we see, we decided to see if anyone was there! Out walks a women named Irma. OH my goodness this lady is prepared!!! Once she figured out who we were, she asks us, so what's different about your religion than the others? BEST question!! So we begin talking about the Restoration and the Book of Mormon! And so she let us in :) Haha wow, it was awesome! She is asisting another church right now but she said that she doesn't believe in everything that they teach. She told us that as she reads the Bible, she feels that there is something more! HOW perfect is this?? We have another appointment for this week so we are praying that everything continues to go well!!

Heres the other story!! So, we contacted in another place we've never been :) and as we were walking there was this guy on the side of the road kinda looking at us haha! So obviously, we walk as fast as we can past him but as we walked by, we saw a house with a family inside! So I thought, this is perfect - as soon as we come back we can stop by! Well, obviously that wasn't what Heavenly Father wanted because as we kept walking, one of the memebers stops by in his car and says, pointing to the house we just passed, you need to visit that family. OK!! Hahaha so we turned around and contacted them. SUCH a cute and humble family! Yesenia, the mom, lives with her husband and her 4 kids! But they told us that the Elders had already passed! So we just shared a little bit with them, and we were off! Once we talked to the Elders, they told us that we can visit them!!!! WOO!! How sweet! So, we went back Sunday and taught about the family and WOW what a powerful lesson!! More to come on this family :) 

I know that prayer works!! Heavenly Father loves us SO much and wants to answer us! We just have to be humble, ask with a sincere heart, and follow the guidance He gives us!!

I love you all, have a great week!!

Hermana Holt

 Climbing into the caves

 Jan Carlos just got baptized in December

 La Cueva del Indio

Yesnia was our guide 

Peace out Mesa

Monday, March 16, 2015

Week 51: Elder Holland

Hola a todos!! 

Meeting with Elder Holland was AMAZING!!!!!! So, we got to have the whole mission together (except the people on the islands who had it transmitted to watch - I was so sad because I thought I was going to finally see the Wrights!!) and it was seriously so great to see so many people! I got to see every one of my companions and missionaries from old districts and zones! The only companion that wasn't there was my trainer Hna Sosa, she just went home this past transfer.. time has gone by too fast!! 

So, we definitely had some strict rules with meeting Elder Holland! He wanted to personally meet every one of us, so we had to do a lot of lines, and we basically got to shake his firm hand, and we told him our name and where we are from! Haha so obviously it was like 3 seconds, but it was so worth it!! Elder Hugo Martinez was there too and it was great to see him again and it was so special because he already knows Hna Lopez and I! Presidente y Hna Boucher spoke first, then Elder Martinez, and then the GRAND finale was Elder Holland! Haha and man was it grand alright, he speaks with SO much power it's incredible!!!! He spoke about a lot of things but I just want to touch on a few things!

He basically had like 2 "themes" that he focused on a lot. The first was that FAITH ALWAYS LOOKS FORWARD. How cool is that? We need to take what we learn from the past and plan for the future. We are in the mission preparing others to have a better future, we are helping in the preparation for the future of the church. We are preparing ourselves for our own future; for our future family, our future jobs, and that WE are the future of the church. So, we definitely need a lot of faith, we have to keep going! I loved it because he then began to talk about Moroni, as he was finishing up the Book of Mormon. Moroni knew that all the Nephites were going to be destroyed, he knew that the church wasn't going to last. How hard would that have been for him to be one of the last? So why did he keep going? In Moroni chapter 8, it says that he saw our day. He saw the future of the church! He saw what we are doing know! Elder Holland said that he (Moroni) might have thought, Well then, I'm going to keep going, I'm going to keep fighting, I'm going to keep trying because even though I won't succeed, they in the future will. Moroni had the FAITH that everything would turn out ok in the long run. He then bore strong testimony and finished the Book of Mormon!

HOW powerful!!

So then, Elder Holland focused on the Book of Mormon :) It was incredible and it is such an important tool for us as missionaries! Our investigators have to understand the importance of the Book of Mormon and have to gain a testimony of it! It's so crucial. He told us that he wants our mission to be a Book of Mormon Mission! So, you can imagine that now as a mission we are focusing a lot on that! Elder Holland said, Just by opening the Book of Mormon, there is a spirit about it - DON'T miss that spirit. 

WOW! It was an amazing experience and I wish I could just write down all my notes! But I hope that you can think about those 2 things this week. Have the faith to keep looking forward! Cherish the Book of Mormon and study it, feast upon the words of Christ!! I've always had a testimony of the Book of Mormon, but reading and truly studying it and pondering it every day has brought so much joy into my life that I can't even explain it! It was super special too because as Elder Holland finished he said, How did I get on this subject? I guess I was supposed to be..

I testify that God speaks to His prophets and His apostles in these last days. I know without a doubt that the church of Jesus Christ is here on this earth and that we are a part of it!! How blessed are we, Heavenly Father LOVES us so much, we just have to open our eyes and our hearts and recognize it! I love this gospel with all of my heart!

This week was a good one, a TON of walking because we are on the look out for the people that God is preparing, we know they are out there, we just have to keep looking forward with faith! :) So we will keep going, we will keep trying, and we won't stop until we find them! 

I love you all!! Have a great week!!

Hermana Holt

Elder Holland 
(I am cut out of the picture on the right)

Party in the plaza
Arecibo is 500 years old 

Windy day at the beach

Monday, March 9, 2015

Week 50: Miracles never cease

Hola a todos!!
This week was SO cool because we saw so many small miracles!!! The Lord is so in charge and we are so excited to see how the next few weeks roll out!
Well, we focused a lot of our time this week in contacting and finding and let me tell you, it was so worth it! Of course more people rejected us than accepted us, but Hermana Lopez and I just felt SO happy talking to everyone!! 
First, a couple of weeks ago we received a reference from a member and so we called to set up an appointment and the reference kinda hung up on us.. but yesterday we felt the impression to call her again. So we did, and she didn't answer. This morning, a random number called us and I thought, who could this be? It was the reference we had called the day before and she was super happy to talk to us and we should be meeting her this week!
Second, the other night it was about 8 and all of our plans had fallen through and so we decided to contact even though contacting at night isn't always easy, since no one wants to go outside! As we are walking this old lady sees us and begins to cheer! Haha we thought, uhh what's going on.. let's contact her! She recognized that we were missionaries and let us in to her house haha! She is super Catholic but she says that she loves seeing the youth spend their time as missionaries to help others! So we shared with her and invited us back that week. We stopped by again and her brother, who lives with her, came into the lesson and he already knows a ton about Mormons and he was super open, more open than her! We have another lesson this week, but it's so great to see how Heavenly Father will always put people into our paths if we are obedient!
Third, we had an appointment with a family that fell through and we were going to start heading for the house when I remembered that Hna Lara and I had contacted a house a loonggg time ago that was super close to where we were. It was a little late, but we decided to stop by! As soon as she sees us she had the biggest smile on her face and let us in! We were able to share with her for a little bit and it went super well!! Hna Lopez and I have a feeling that she has been prepared by the Lord! Prayers for her!
Fourth, we stopped by an new investigators house and I was explaining to Hna Lopez how we really have to take control of the lessons, because the investigator talks A LOT and sometimes we can barely get a lesson in! Haha I'm not sure if this was a good thing or not but when we got there, the investigator had completely lost her voice the day before!! Hahaha so we thought, the Restoration!!!! So we taught her the Restoration and she had to listen :) Haha she doesn't exactly believe in everything we said, but I felt that it was a miracle because we were able to teach what we felt she needed and we could at least feel the spirit!! 
Fifth, we stopped by with Tatiana (the joven that had a baptismal date for last month but stopped progressing..) not sure if we were going to have to drop her or not. When we got there she gave us the biggest hugs and told us that she was reading! WHAT?! We were SO excited :) We taught a good lesson with her and we are hoping to give her another baptismal date this week!!
These are only a few and Hna Lopez and I just feel so blessed and we can't wait to see what the Lord has in store for us in these next weeks! Training is going great and Hna Lopez is a natural!! She has such a strong testimony and I know that she is helping our investigators so much!!
Well, that's all I have right now! Tomorrow the WHOLE mission is getting together because we are having a special guest.... ELDER HOLLAND will be talking to us missionaries tomorrow and I am STOKED!!!! More details next week :)
Love you all and have a great week!!
Hermana Holt

Elder Martinez


Wishing my sister Anna a happy birthday

Wow!  Anna is 14

Sweet familia

Beautiful Arecibo

We've been caught

Monday, March 2, 2015

Week 49: My new "daughter"

Hola a todos!!

First week of training . . . check! WOW! This week seems like such a blur but at the same time I don't feel like I've been this exhausted since I got here in the mission!! But I've loved every single moment!!

So, Monday was full of packing and cleaning with Hermana Lara and Tuesday we were off with the Sister Trainers to Guayanabo to pick up the newbies!! So when we got there we had a meeting for all the new trainers with Presidente Boucher - there are 15 of us! It was super powerful and to be honest he kinda scared us a little bit haha but it's a sacred responsibility that I am excited to take because I know that the Lord is going to help me!! Afterwords walked in all the new missionaries! Wow haha it was like looking at the new kids entering Freshman Orientation haha they all looked super duper young! So many things were going through my mind, who is it?? Who is he going to call on first?? Presidente started with the Hermanas one by one until it was just me and Hermana Johnson left, and then two new Sister Missionaries.. He then said Sister Johnson, your trainer will be so and so (everyone cheers) so all that was left was me and the cutest little missionary I've ever seen who was already making her way towards me with the biggest smile on her face and she just shouted, MAMIIIIII!!!! HAHAHA it was the CUTEST thing I have ever seen!!!!! 

Her name is Hermana Lopez and she's from Guatemala! That's right, I'm training a Latin and I love it!! Haha it's always nice to have the Spanish help :) She is so sweet and already came with so much energy to work and a super strong testimony! She came from a family very missionary minded and the love she already has for the work is just contagious! Her dad was a mission president in El Salvador and he was also one of the counselors for Elder Hugo Martinez when he was a mission president in Guatemala so many of the ward members already know of Hermana Lopez and her family! So she was welcomed into the ward family super fast! 

This week was super good - filled with practicing together and super spiritual lessons! Wednesday we went with the Bishop to see an investigator, Annie! She has been meeting with the missionaries for a super long time and we are just trying to help her act on the faith she has! It was SUCH a cool experience because we felt the need to share with her about scripture study and keeping the Sabbath Day holy and when she was telling us about the spiritual goals that she has for the year and everything and how she wants to work on her scripture reading and go to church - haha and that was exactly what we felt like we needed to share with her!! So we did and she came to church this Sunday!! Yaya!! And it was awesome because it was fast Sunday so I know the testimonies helped her a lot :)

Well, that's all I have time for right now!! I have felt so much this week the help from my Heavenly Father! We need Him in every moment, we just have to allow Him to help us! I hope all is well and that everyone has a great week!! 

Hermana Holt
 our beautiful investigator Annie

 My beautiful new daughter
Hermana Lopez

 Just walking to church
 Fun umbrellas