Monday, March 30, 2015

Week 51: "During Gospel Principles class, there was a huge beetle crawling around. Teo, our ward mission leader, picked it up and put it in his pocket and kept on teaching!"

Lunes, 23 de Marzo del 2015
     We woke up to a mess.  It poured rain last night and everything got soaked and it even came through our ceiling.  Our bathroom and kitchen were filled with muddy water.  
     We got ready for the day, did our studies and read letters from home.  I received many beautiful and uplifting words from many people!  Once studies were over, we started to clean up our cuarto. At 11:30am, we headed to our pension to help Cecilia cook lunch, arroz a la cubana! (egg, bananas y rice)  We cooked it all by ourselves and it was yummy.  After lunch, we went and bought some stuff and then headed to internet.
     Something that my mom and sisters shared with me, got me meditating and I thought about personal revelation.  I had studied a talk from Richard G. Scott and he said something really interesting.  "When God answers yes, it is to give us confidence.  When He answers no, it is to prevent error.  When God withholds an answer, it is to have us grow through faith in Him, obedience to his commandments and willingness to act on truth.  We are expected to assume accountability by acting on a decision that is consistent with His teachings without prior confirmation.  We are not to sit passively waiting or murmuring because the Lord has not spoken. We are to act."  
     Accion (action) gets us places!  That is the one really, really important thing that I have learned in the mission!  Before the mission, I worked hard...I did what I could...but here, I give my all.  And when we hand over our entire lives to God and live the way He asks, we will receive our answers and we won't question His will.  We will follow.  That shows complete faith in Him and His will.  Every day in the mission, we invite people to act, but most of the time, they don't.  That is one of the hardest things to watch...people not receiving blessings because they choose not to act.  On the other hand, the most beautiful thing, is when they do act, and they give their all to God...then after baptism, they live a full life of faithful action.  Action that brings blessings and more faith and more knowledge! Seeing even one person change their life around is worth all the rejection we receive.
     Luckily tonight, we didn't get any rejections.  We visited a couple named Manuel and Berbelina. They like to talk about their problems and have found a way to connect all our teachings with their problems. :)
     After that, we had a family home evening with Santos, Judith, their son Francis and a family that they had invited over. :)  It turned out to be a really good lesson.  We taught about love and the sacrifice of Christ. Then we played a game of hot potato. :)  One person goes outside of the circle of people with their back turned and begins to say, "La papa se quema, la papa se quema..." until he/she feels like saying, "la papa se querno", and whoever is holding the papa (potato) loses.  Then that person steps outside the circle to be it.  We were giggling a lot!  Hna McGinnis lost 3 times, so she had to do the chicken dance Peruvian style...first they flap one wing, then 2 wings, then they tap one foot and then two feet, then they bob their head and shake their tail.  It was so funny!  We were all crying from laughing so hard.  Then Judith served us soda (oro), papa y crema and dulce globes. (a pastry full of air and covered with sugar)
     Then we went to dinner and ate pancakes.  Then we went home to our really clean cuarto. :)

Martes, 24 de Marzo del 2015
     This afternoon we went out to San Antonio and we stopped by some member's house named Alaska and Gaspar.  As we were talking with them, Hna McGinnis took a phone call in the other room and as I was standing in the door way, I noticed a green plant hanging above the door.  I decided to ask them why, because I've noticed them in almost every house we visit here.  They told me that it protects their house from bad spirits.  If the plant is alive, it means that it is killing the bad spirits, but if the plant dies, it means that the bad spirits killed it...then I remembered that we have a dead shriveled up plant hanging above our doorway at our cuarto, so I told them, "Oh...well we have one, but it is dead."  They looked at me with horror in their eyes and told me, "You need to change it for a live one and you better do it quick!"  haha  Right after that comment, their one year old son farted....well it was more than a fart, it actually ended up spraying everywhere...all over the floor...and then Hna McGinnis came back into the room and found the mess all over the floor.  We decided to have a prayer and went on our way. :)
     We tried to find our citas, but no one was home.  Our last cita was with Antero.  It was such a funny cita.  He pulled out his scriptures and opened up to Nefi, during all the chapters where Nefi quotes Isaiah.  He would read the chapter heading to us, and then ask what it meant.  In response, we would just reread it back to him and he would respond, "Oh yeah....makes more sense."  :)  My favorite was when he read the heading that said, "Isaiah saw Christ."  and then the first verse described Christ sitting on His throne.  Antero turned to us and asked us what it meant, and Hna McGinnis looked at him and then at the scripture and said, "Well, here is says Isaiah saw Christ sitting on His throne." and Antero looked at her and said, "Thanks for clarifying."  We giggled a bit. Sweet Antero.

Miercoles, 25 de Marzo del 2015
     We visited a lot of people today and we had a lot of good contacts.  We also got contacted by the Jehovah's Witnesses and got some pamphlets.  We talked with them, and shared our beliefs...and in the end, we walked away smiling and they walked away angry because we didn't "argue" with them. haha
     Another contact was with a familia.  They assumed that I was from another part of South America because of my "dark" skin and my Spanish accent!  haha  We shared our testimonies, answered their questions and gave them some pamphlets to read.  As we left, Hna McGinnis turned to me and asked me, "How do you have such a great Latina've only had one Latina companion and I've had three!"  haha  I told her that I didn't is just the way it is. :)
     My favorite cita was with Carlota and Hermes.  Carlota told us about her neighbor who asked her why she is so different now...and Carlota responded, "Don't you know, I'm now with the Senorrrrrr!" (she rolled her r's really hard) haha  Senor = Lord  I love Carlota!
     Something really special happened tonight.  Hermes bore his testimony and the spirit was so strong.  It was so beautiful.
     Once the lesson was over, Carlota invited us to eat chicken crackers and potatoes.
     At 8pm, we met with Bishop Iman, so he could sign some papers.  He is super excited to work with us and has a lot of plans for us to do. :)

Oh yeah.  Something I forgot to say yesterday.  We got a call from Hna Furness.  She said that Pres. Williams called and told her that she has an emergency transfer and is going to Jaen. (6 hours from Chiclayo)  It is REALLY HOT there.  She told us that she doesn't know why, but she is leaving. :(

Oh and another funny thing from we were walking down a road, a man popped up from behind a pile of tree branches and said, "Thank you God for sending two beautiful angels to brighten the lives of all!"  :)

Jueves, 26 de Marzo del 2015
     This morning we had a district meeting and it really got me pumped up.  We talked about inviting people to baptism more often, and that is exactly what we did today.
     At 3:30pm, we picked up Adriana (19 year old member) and we went to San Antonio to teach. We invited anyone who wasn't already a member of the church, to be baptized, and they accepted!!  
     All day long we had great lessons.  Our last lesson was with Royer and Maria.  They live in an adobe (mud brick house, with dirt floors and no lights) It was almost 7pm when we got to their house, so it was dark, so we taught by candlelight.  It was such an amazing lesson.  The spirit was really strong and it was so calm.  They promised to come to church on Sunday, and to pray about the truthfulness of the church.  They are going to be wonderful members here in Pomalca! :)

teaching by candlelight
     Later, we dropped off Adriana and talked with her mom, Monica, and her brother, Pablo. (15 yrs) They are a really great family.  They make me laugh!
     Then we went to Gladys' house.  She is a recent convert and we taught her and her family about scripture study.  Before we left, they invited (forced) us to eat crackers and soda. :)  They also asked us if we have soda crackers in the States.  I told them, yes we do, and they couldn't believe it!  haha
     We went to dinner, went home to plan and got ready for bed.

Viernes, 27 de Marzo del 2015
     This morning ended up being very eventful.  At 7am, as I was showering, Hna McGinnis came running into the bathroom and asked me if I was ok....I told her yes and so she left.  Seconds later, the power went out, so I yelled, "Well, now I'm not okay!"  haha
     Turns out, that as I was showering, one of our outlets caught on fire, so Hna McGinnis turned off the breaker, so she was coming to check on me to see if I was ok...and since I still had light, she figured that all was well.  haha  We spent the rest of the morning and afternoon without power. Luckily it is bright during the day, but it was really hot, because we didn't have a fan.  And, the city is redoing the roads, so the big trucks were shaking our house...everything was shaking!  It was ridiculous! :)
     Today was our planning session, so we were stuck in a hot, shaking cuarto all morning long. After lunch, Hna McGinnis felt a little sick, so she rested and that gave me time to read some old Ensigns that got left in our cuarto from the other missionaries.  I love the words from the prophets! :)
     At 4:40pm, we left and headed to the church, so we could find some members to go out and do divisions with us.  We ran into a sister from the other ward, named Indiana.  She is married to the Patriarch here.  They are really cool people.  We couldn't find any members to go with us, so we didn't do divisions.  
     We went and visited with Fany and Hali.  Hali had a lot of her little friends over.  She is a cutie.  She was pretending to "make the sacrament" by breaking up crackers into little pieces.
     Then we went and visited Matilde.  As we were teaching her, her 7 kids came to the open door and just stood there staring at us.  Matilde yelled, "What do ya'll want?" and then they just ran away. With that, we taught a beautiful lesson about the Restoration.  She loved it.
     Then we went and visited Antero.  We ended up teaching him and a woman named Filomena, who is a friend of the family.  It went well.  We talked about Christ and Easter.
     After that, we went to dinner.  We ate jello and flan. :)  
     At 9pm, the electrician showed up to fix our light situation.  We did our planning by candlelight. 

Sabado, 28 de Marzo del 2015
     At 10am we went to a members house named Luz.  She needed help cooking some food that she was selling.  We helped her all morning.  Once we finished, she gave us a huge plate of food.  We shared it since their was so much.  That was our first lunch.  Then we went to a different member's house to have our second lunch.  She gave us a huge bowl of rice!!  We went home feeling stuffed and a little sick.
     At 3pm, we went and picked up a member named Elena (19 yrs), to go visiting with us.  She told us that this was her first time to go out teaching with missionaries.  She did awesome!  She taught, she bore her testimony and she even talked many into coming to church.  
     One of our visits was with a man named Rufino.  He hardly let us talk, but when we did, we bore testimony.  The best part is that the entire lesson, he sat there with a little baby chick on his leg and it pooped on him, but he didn't seem to care one bit. haha
     Next, we visited a woman named Clara, her husband Segundo and their son German, who is a Jehovah's Witness.  Well, Clara wants to be baptized in a river in October because she wants to get baptized like Christ, and in October because that is when her birthday is.  We almost talked her into getting baptized sooner. :)  German gave us some references and invited us to come back.  I think we must have touched his heart. :) yay!
     After stopping at a few more houses, we headed to the chapel to watch Women's Conference!  It was amazing.  I loved that the theme was about families.  The entire time I was imagining my family singing the video songs, so I teared up a bit knowing that my mommy would be crying.  After the conference, we talked with the sisters from Patapo. (Hna Arenqueren and Hna Walker)  They were filling us in with all the happenings in the mission.  Four people went home and one of the Sister Missionaries that went home is now married and 1 1/2 months pregnant!  She and her husband live in South America.  Holy cow!  That was fast!  
     We couldn't find a combi for the sisters to get back to Patapo, so they came and stayed with us. We just pushed our beds together and all slept in the "big bed", just like old times in my bedroom when I would have sleepovers! :)  It was fun!

Domingo, 29 de Marzo del 2015
     Once again, at church, I lead the music.  haha  As I was sitting up on the stand, I watched all of our investigadores come in...all 9 of them!  Two of them were Royer and Maria and their three sons! It was so awesome!!
     During Gospel Principles class, there was a huge beetle crawling around and Teo, our ward mission leader, picked it up and put it in his pocket and then kept on teaching.  I just stared at him in awe.  I couldn't believe it!  haha
     At 1pm, we ate lunch with Monica and her kids Adriana, Pablo and Ruth.  Pablo found me and Hna McGinnis on Facebook...and he thinks everyone in my family looks like celebrities!  haha
     After lunch, we visited Teodora and Jose.  As we were teaching them about the Word of Wisdom,  Teodora cut us off and said, "I already know, and so does  Jose, what are the five things that Mormons do not use?"  She counted on her fingers, "One?" and Jose said, "tea." "Two?" Jose said, "Coffee."  "Three?"  Jose said, "Drugs."  "Four?"  Jose says, "Tobacco."  "Five?"  Jose said, "Hummmm.....Alcohol?"  Teodora looked at us and smiled, like an impressed dog owner whose dog just did some tricks!  haha
     After a few other visits, we had a meeting for the rest of the night.  For dinner, we ate cereal and yogurt.  Then we went home and planned, reported our numbers (which were great!) and then we chatted in bed.  I love Hna McGinnis!

                                                     Hermana Furness forwarded these photos of Jose's Baptism!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Week 50: After Carlota got baptized, she walked back into the room and yelled, "FELIZ!" It was the cutest thing!

Lunes, 16 de Marzo del 2015
     After studies, we headed out and bought some things from the mercado (toilet paper, conditioner, repelant, pens, milk and butter).  After that, we went to the house of Cecilia to make Mac-n-Cheese!

     After lunch, we headed to internet.  The internet here in Pomalca is super fast!  Yay!  The sad thing is that my camera somehow deleted most of my pictures that I took in I am really sad. :(
     After internet, we headed home to relax.  I finished decorating my wall, and then Hna McGinnis turned to me and said, "Will you dye my hair?"  I agreed.  She bought black hair dye, because she wanted to fit in here in Peru more.  haha  After we washed out the dye, Hna McGinnis looked in the mirror and said, "I look a lot skinnier with my dark hair."  Then I said, "Well then, next P-Day, let's dye my body!"  Hna McGinnis in her innocent voice said, "No wonder everyone here looks so small and skinny...."  HAHA  I am going to love this companionship!

     At 6:00pm we headed out teaching.  We visited a woman named Maritza.  She is a recent convert and she said that her house is having some struggles with "spirits".  We said a  prayer with her and then went to dinner.  After dinner, we went home to plan and get ready for bed.

Martes, 17 de Marzo del 2015     ST. PAT'S DAY!
     This morning we went to Patapo to visit and study with the Hermanas there. (Hna Furness & Hna Areguen)  We wanted to see how their studies were going and share some tips and spiritual thoughts with them.  When we got off the combi, everyone was welcoming me back.  People were calling out to me, telling me that they miss me.  When we got to the house, Hna Rossana welcomed us in and she was so excited to see me.  It was super nice to be in Patapo again.  Before we left, we put on the green mustaches that my mom sent and took pictures.

Feliz St. Patty Day!
     When we were leaving, everyone kept telling me not to leave.  I miss Patapo a lot.  Once we got back to Pomalca, we went out to contact and teach.  We ended up finding an old woman stuck on the high sidewalk above the torn up roads with 2 huge bags, so we helped her.  She thanked us and then we went to do more service until lunch.

     After lunch, we headed out teaching.  We taught Teodora and Jose, the couple that recently got married.  We are planning their baptism for the 11th of April.  Later in the night, we visited Carlota and Hermes.  We went over the baptismal interview questions, so that when Carlota had her interview with  Pres. Williams, she would feel more prepared.  After we finished the lesson, she made us chicken salad sandwiches and passion fruit and peach juice.
     Then we stopped by the house of Rocio (a less active) to see how she is and she was in bad shape. She had gotten offended by some members yesterday and now she wants nothing to do with the church....except for us.  It was hard to see her like that.
     Then we headed to dinner...chicken salad sandwiches....hahaha.  Then we went home and talked forever about the mission, hardships, converts, and spiritual experiences.  It was a much needed talk.

Miercoles, 18 de Marzo del 2015
     Yesterday, my foot started hurting this morning, we only visited our downstairs neighbor, Carlota.  We wanted to finish her lessons and let her know that she has an interview with Pres. Williams at 4:30pm today.  Then we went back upstairs, so I could rest my foot.  During this time, I studied and also started filling out a booklet called, "Mi Familia".  I want to fill it with pictures of all the family, but it's hard when I don't have pictures of my grandparents or my great grandparents....cough, if you want to send me pictures that would be greatly appreciated! I would like head shots of everyone from all stages of their lives, like one baby, and then fun ones as kids, teens and adults...and if any of them are with me, it would be even better!  I want tons of pictures! :)
     We headed out at 4pm to pick up Carlota to go to Chiclayo to have her interview.  I love Pres. Williams so much.  He is very funny, open, loving and he just shines.  When she finished her interview, President said that she can get baptized on Saturday!!  As we were leaving, Pres. Williams handed me some crutches.  haha
     When we left, Carlota couldn't stop talking about what a great guy Pres. Williams is.
     When we got back to Pomalca, we went out teaching.  We visited Graciela (less active) and we talked about prayer.  She has never had a desire to pray with us or alone, but now she is really willing, because she wants to have a better relationship with God.
     We visited Anaximandro and Victoria.  We taught about Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon. Even though Anaximandro is super old, he still sits down and reads the Book of Mormon whenever he can.  Dedication. :)
     Our last cita was with a family- Santos, Judith, Frances (22 yrs) and Blanca (Gma).  Frances is a member and got baptized a year ago.  His parents, Santos and Judith, have been having missionary visits for 1 1/2 years...we are hoping that we can touch their hearts with the spirit and convert them. We talked to them about families and the blessings that we receive from the church.  It was a really good visit.
     Then we went to dinner, went home and planned.  We talked forever about our lives, our futures and our hopes and dreams.  It was refreshing.

Jueves, 19 de Marzo del 2015
     We had our district meeting this morning.  We talked about Christ and the ups and downs of missions.  When we had our lists complete, Elder Hinostroza asked us "With the good things that you learn from the mission, is it worth going through the hardships?"  We all agreed that it is worth it, because we have all learned so much.
     After the meeting, we headed home and talked about the benefits from our childhood, and the many things we want to apply into our own families, that we have learned from our parents.  Then we went to lunch.  Hna McGinnis went into the kitchen and turned the water on at the sink, and water started spraying everywhere. I laughed forever and Cecilia was in the other room when she heard what was going on and so she came running in and rescued the poor hermana McGinnis.

     After lunch and study, we headed to the little civilization called San Antonio to visit a few people. All the way out there, the moto was super bouncy, so we giggled and had a good time flying back and forth in the back of the moto taxi.

     We had great lessons with Teodora, a less active named Kimberly and a woman named Elsa.
     Once we got back to Pomalca Central, we headed to dinner early (yogurt and cereal) and then continued to visit.  We ended up running into some members and they gave us a reference named Antero.  He is a member and his sister Maria joined us.  The lesson went really well.  I really enjoyed their company because they are really nice and very accepting.
     Then we went to teach the familia Espinoza.  Tonight they were acting really weird.  They wouldn't answer our questions and didn't seem to be really listening at all.  It was really strange.
     On our way home, we stopped by to say hi to a less active named Melissa, that the elders are teaching.  Today is her birthday, so I popped my head into her work and wished her a Happy Birthday.  She hugged me and told me that it meant a lot to her that I remembered her birthday, because I was the only one who remembered!  She is really cool...I really like her.  I wish we could teach her.
     We headed home, planned and got ready for bed.  We had a race to see who could get into our pajamas first.  It was fun.

Viernes, 20 de Marzo del 2015
     This morning we had our weekly planning and it went well.  The only problem was that the power was out again since 10:26pm last night.  We had to get ready by the natural light that comes into our cuarto.  It was a bit of a struggle, but we did it! :)  The power came back on around noon.
     We went to lunch after planning and then studied language until 3pm.  At 3:00, we left to pick up some hermanas to take them to the party for the Anniversary of the Relief Society.  After we dropped off the hermanas, we filled out some paperwork for Carlota's baptism.  Then we went out to visit.
     We visited Fany and Hali.  When we entered their home, Hali looked at Hna McGinnis and asked her if she had dyed her hair.  Hna McGinnis responded, "Yes."  Hali said, "Yeah, I know because you look weird now.  That color does not look well on you."  We all laughed. The entire time that Hna McGinnis was teaching, Hali just kept staring at her in confusion, and so Fany asked Hali what was wrong.  Hali said, "I can't understand her...I think that she is speaking English."  Fany explained that we are from America and that we are still learning to speak Spanish, and so it sounds different because our tongues don't move like theirs.  haha  After we left, McGinnis said, "Well...I feel completely uplifted."  haha
     Then we went to visit a woman named Matilde.  She was a contact that Hna McGinnis and I met when Hna Furness went to Lima.  She was really nice and receptive.  I hope that we can help her find the answers that she wants.
     After that, we headed back to the church to talk with some of the women from our ward and the Relief Society party was huge by then.  It was for the entire stake, so I was able to see a couple of ladies from Patapo, so that was really fun. :)  We were served soda, chicken sandwiches and cake.
     Then we went to visit with Rocio and Edu, her son.  She didn't really listen to us, but she hugged us for a long time before she sent us on our way.
     We went to dinner, went home and planned.  Hna McGinnis got sick, so she went to bed early.

Sabado, 21 de Marzo del 2015
     This morning, we went to the Relief Society President's house to pick up a song to sing at the baptism later in the afternoon.  After that, we went to the church to practice the song and to get the font filled.
     At 1:00pm, we went to lunch at a member's house.  After lunch, we went home and studied language and then went out teaching.  We ended up teaching a contact named Rufino.  During our lesson, a young man came up to us and asked us if we wanted to buy 24 gel pens for 10 soles...we agreed.  We gave some away to the people we would meet, to thank them for their time.  Everyone was excited and wanted to learn more.  :)
     Then we headed to a recent convert named Gladys.  There ended up being a non member friend at her house, so the entire time Gladys was testifying of the truthfulness of the church and our messages. It was awesome!
     At 4:30pm, we got ready for the baptism.  Turns out...that we still live in Peru, where no one shows up on time, so the baptism didn't start until 6:00pm....this drives me CRAZY, but I love it! :)
When we finally started the program, Carlota was so excited.  When it was time for her to get baptized, she and Elder Olsen entered the water, and she got baptized.  We went to help her change into her dry clothes.  We asked her how she felt and she said that she felt good and content inside her heart.  When we entered back into the room where everyone was waiting, Carlota walked in and yelled, "FELIZ!" (HAPPY!)  It was the cutest thing.  She was just so excited.  Then she bore her testimony. After the program, she came up to me and Hna McGinnis and attacked us with huge hugs. She is so great!

Hna Dodson, Hermes, Carlota, Hna McGinnis
Elder Olsen, Hna Dodson, Hermes, Carlota, Hna McGinnis
Carlota's Baptism
     After that, we let out the water from the font and Hna McGinnis and I got our heads stuck together from our bobby pins getting hooked to one another.  So we were struggling to get the water out while our heads were stuck together.  It was funny!  haha
     Later, we went and visited Graciela and as we were sharing a Bible story with her, a man walked out of his house, looked at us and yelled, "I just want you to know....I"M CATHOLIC!!"  And then he walked back inside his house.  We all looked at one another and then started giggling.  When we tried to move on, Graciela (65 yrs) was still laughing so hard!  She is the best!! :)
     After that, we bought our dinner and while we were waiting for our chicken in the restaurant, a huge grasshopper landed on Hna McGinnis' shoulder.  Everyone in the restaurant started laughing at the two of us freak out and try to hit the grasshopper off of her.  haha

Me soaking wet from filling the font.
The huge grasshopper on Hna McGinnis' shoulder
     Then we went home with our food and sat on the floor and used our beds as our tables.

P.S.  This morning as we were filling up the font, I got completely drenched...and then when we went to use the bathroom, the man cleaning the church, walked into the bathroom and started cleaning it.  We giggled the entire time. :)

Domingo, 22 de Marzo del 2015
     Well, I led the music again today.  haha  Today, the Sacrament was really special for me, because as I was sitting on the stand, I was near to the priesthood holders.  As I watched them reverently handle the white sheet on and off the bread and water, I could only imagine them covering the body of Jesus.  His sacrifice became very real to me today.  There is a talk in the June 2014 Ensign called "Amazed at the Love Jesus Offers Me" by Cesar Lima Escalante.  It came to my mind as I thought about the sacrifice that Christ made for me and you.  Then to make the day even better, we talked about Christ in our Gospel Principles class.  I meditated in the stories from Jesus the Christ and all the wonderful acts of charity that Christ did.  It was a beautiful day.
     After church, we walked Antero home, and his sister Maria let us in and gave us crackers and soda. We shared a short message with them and then headed home.
     Once home, we studied and then headed to lunch with the familia Lalopu Tantajulca. was a MOUNTAIN of rice and beans.  We prayed to be able to finish... and we did, but we left feeling like we were going to die!

  After lunch, we headed to San Antonio and met with and taught some really cool people.  Our lessons were led by the spirit and everyone was really open to us and asked us to return again soon.
     By the end of the night, we came home, planned and reported our numbers.  The district leader was pleasantly surprised by our numbers, because Pomalca hasn't really shown much success, so we were happy.
     The funniest thing happened when we were writing in our journals.  At 10:30pm (our bed time), the lights went out for about 30 seconds and then they came back on.  We both looked up to the sky and said, "Okay, we get it....we are going to bed now."  haha

this is what it looks like after it rains

Monday, March 16, 2015

Week 49: I am in Pomalca with Hna McGinnis!

    So, my camera somehow deleted all my pictures from my goodbyes in Patapo.....I am so sad. :(

Lunes, 9 de Marzo del 2015
     My last P-Day in Patapo.  Crazy how time flies and crazy that I am getting sent away.  This morning during our studies Mila, the aunt of Rossana (who lives in the same house as us), came knocking on our door asking us if we could help her with a situation that she was in.  Rossana had accidentally locked some keys inside of another cuarto, and she needed to get them out.  We decided to help her. It took quite a bit of time but in the end we unlocked the door, using 2 broomsticks, a mirror and a string!  :)  Hna Mila was so excited that she didn't have to call a locksmith.  Hna Furness and I felt completely awesome for having solved the problem. :)
     Once we finished study time, we headed out to say goodbye to people and to also buy some things.  We said goodbye to Moroni and Karen and then we went to lunch.  We ate arroz chaufa...the Peruvian version of Chinese food.  It was really yummy.  After lunch, we went to internet.  Then we took pictures with Yohana.  After that, we took a moto to visit Erika.  When we got to her house, we saw her sitting inside and then she started crying.  We took pictures with her and her daughters Kiara (7 yrs) and Hahory (baby).  Erika cried and kept saying that she "didnt have ganas (desire) to go to church because she wants to be with me"....haha...she was just joking, but she wanted me to know how much she was going to miss me.  She cried our entire visit and she kept hugging me a lot.  When we left, she stood in the doorway and watched as we walked away. :(
     Next, we went to the church and took some pictures and ran into Dominga (Elder's pensionista) and her granddaughter Joselyn.  We took pictures with them.  Then all the way back to our cuarto, we took pictures.  When we got back to our cuarto, I read my letters and also made tons of recuerdos (little cards) for everyone.
     At 6:00pm, the pain came to my heart.  We visited the familia Risco.  Before we told them about my transfer, we shared a message with them....then we broke the news.  They just stared at me in shock and then they started to cry.  We were all crying and hugging.  We took a picture of all of us. We said our goodbyes and said a prayer.  Enmanuel offered it and the last quote from his prayer is , "Please help all of us be more humble and help me and my family stop sinning."  Right before I left, he looked at me and said, "You are beautiful.  I am going to miss you teaching me about God."  Then we left. :(
     After that, we went to visit Geraldyne, Itamar, Gloria and their mom.  We made a list of goals and plans for them to accomplish.  It was a really successful visit.  Before we left, they gave me some jewelry and a little teddy bear.
     We met up with the Bishop and headed to visit Jose.  We taught him about faith and repentance. He was so into it and he is just so ready for his baptism.  We focused on the lesson and at the end, I gave him a card and then we left.
     We headed to dinner, which we took pictures with everyone (Mila, Harry, Antony, Ingrid and Rossana).  I am going to miss the Dulceria and all my friends that work there.
      We got a call from Mery telling us that everyone was waiting at our cuarto.  We hurried home to find Enrique, Shirley, Frances (their daughter), Yohana, Esteban, Sebastian, Mery and her 2 daughters.  We took pictures with everyone and said goodbye.
     We planned for tomorrow and then I packed...and cleaned.
     One thing that happened today during our time in the cuarto, is that Francisca, her husband and their daughters Ingrid, Shirley and Frances came to say goodbye.  Francisca cried and cried, and we hugged and hugged.  It was really hard to say goodbye to her.  She is an amazing woman, who was always helping us in the work.

Martes, 10 de Marzo del 2015
     This morning we went and said goodbye to Victor (Rossana's brother) and Solema (woman who runs the Dulceria for Patty, who lives in Utah).  We also said goodbye to Jose.  I started crying.

with Solema
with Victor (brother of Rossana) in the Ducleria
with Jose
     We hurried and left because we had to get to Chiclayo.  Luckily we got there in time. I was shaking because I was so nervous.  And like always, I was the last hermana to find out where I was going.  When they said Hermana Dodson, I stood up and they said, "leaving the zone Pomalca area Patapo....and staying in the zone Pomalca area Pomalca to be a sister leader with your new companion HNA MCGINNIS!!!!!
     I literally screamed and ran to her!  It was awesome!  Everyone was so excited for us, and I am so pumped because I will be doing intercambios with the hermanas in Patapo often!!!  God loves me. :)

saying goodbye to Hna Furness
With our new companions
Hna Areguen, Hna Furness, Hna Dodson, Hna McGinnis
     When we got to Pomalca, we dropped off my luggage in our "cuarto"...its really a house!  We have 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, a kitchen and 2 family rooms!

our house
we live in the upstairs
staircase to our cuarto
our bedroom
my bed
my collage
my desk
dining room


the toilet is in the shower :)
     We headed to lunch and my new pensionista, Cecila told me that she knew that I would be coming to Pomalca.  haha  We ate lunch and then we headed back home so I could unpack.
     At 3:30pm, we went out to teach.  There is a butt ton of dirt here in Pomalca.  They don't have any paved roads.  We visited with some less actives name Fany (mom) and her daughter Hali. (8 yrs). We were teaching them, when Hali cut off Hna McGinnis and asked, "Do you like queque (cake)?"  to which Hna McGinnis replied, "Si."  Then Hali asked, "Do you like soda?", to which Hna McGinnis responded with , "Si."  Then Hali put her hand out towards her mom and says, "Plata (money)?" haha We cracked up.
     After their visit, we went and visited another less active named Rosio.  She has a son, and she was very warm and welcoming to me.  It felt nice to be loved and not just compared to Hna Ortiz who was in Pomalca for 6 months.
     So the coolest thing happened on the way to dinner.  I decided to contact a woman and her sister came up behind her...and her sister can't speak, so she was using sign language.  I started signing with her. Even though the signs are different in Spanish, she was impressed that I knew sign language. Her name is Kelly.  I hope that we can help her learn more about the church because she is a really cool lady.
     Today was a good day.  It's going to be hard getting use to a new area, but I am ready.  I am nervous to be a sister leader.  Intense.

Miercoles, 11 de Marzo del 2015
     This morning we went on a search for members that we don't know.  We couldn't find them, so we headed to a contact reference named Cristina.  She is 93 years old.  She wants to be baptized so she can go to the temple and be sealed to her husband.  She is so adorable.  We set her baptism date for the 11 of April, so we have A LOT to teach her in a short amount of time.
     Then we went and visited Luz, a recently rescued less active, who is now active.  We taught her about the Articles of Faith.  She is a great hermana who is so willing to work with us in the work.
     Then we went and visited Anaximando and his "wife" Victoria (member).  We are working with a hard situation....Anaximando and Victoria had their first child together when Victoria was 14 years old and he was 18 years old.  Well, after having 3 kids, Anaximando left and got married to some other lady.  Well, after being married to her for 20 years, he left her and went back to Victoria.  Now Anaximando's wife will not give him a divorce, so he can't marry Victoria....they are an adorable couple though.  They seem really happy and in love.
     After them, we went and visited with the familia Espinoza.  They are less active and really sweet. Their names are Cesar (dad), Diana (mom), Cirgio (12 yr old son), Sebastian (9 yr old son), and Enrique (4 yr old son).  They are a happy little family who listen well and know the answers....they just don't "act" too much.  They are making progress, though.
     After teaching them, we contacted some people on the way to dinner.  We had a huge fruit salad! Yummy!!  Then we went home, planned and got a call from Hna Furness, because I accidentally took my payment for the cuarto with me.  Oops!
     Oh, during contacting today, we taught a familia in the park.  They are evangelitas (strong believers).  We taught them about the importance of families and they seemed to really enjoy it. They also complemented my Spanish, which was much appreciated, because I was starting to feel bad about my Spanish....but they lifted me back up. :)
     There is so much dust and rocks is I come home completely COVERED in dirt. It is ridiculous!!  haha

Jueves, 12 de Marzo del 2015
     This morning we had our district meeting.  My new district consists of Hna Haro, Hna Mejia, Elder Brunis, Elder Olsen (zone leaders), Elder Lewis, Elder Hinostroza (district leader) and Hna McGinnis and me (sister leaders).  This district is really full of leaders!  haha
     Once we got back from the meeting, we went to lunch.  We ate chicken with peaches.  It was really good.  After lunch, we went home, talked, studied and then went out to teach.
     We headed to an area outside of the central part of Pomalca, called San Antonio.  It is super cute there and the people are really nice.  We taught some less actives who have desires to return to church, but "things" just seem to always pop up.
     As we were on our way out, we got contacted by two women name Berta and Elvira.  They are really sweet and we taught them a little message about the importance of families.
     Then we hurried and took a moto to our next cita with a less active.  She wasn't able to visit with us, so we headed to the ward activity  at the church.  We got there at 7:00pm but no one showed up until around 8-8:30pm...we had to get back home, so we had to leave.
     After dinner and planning back at our cuarto, the husband of the woman who cleans our clothes, dropped off our clean clothes. :)  We finished planning and got ready for bed.

Viernes, 13 de Marzo del 2015     FRIDAY THE 13TH....
     As we were planning tonight, we realized why almost all of our citas fell through was Friday the 13th...haha....No, not really, it just happens sometimes.  hahaha  But as we were trying to teach in the afternoon and not finding anyone home, we decided to pray for guidance as to where we should go.  When we turned the corner, there was a woman with tons of buckets, so we took that as a sign and asked her if we could help.  She said, "Yes.  Stay right here with these buckets, and I'll be right back."  She took off and about 20 minutes later, she popped her head around the corner and called us over.  It turns out that we signed up to lug huge buckets of water to her house, which was described to us as being "close by"....not.  We picked one up together, each holding a plastic handle. Our fingers felt like they were getting cut off.  We carried them down a really windy dirt path...about the length of my house to the Loftis' house.  Once we dropped one off, she called us back up to bring some more.  By the end, we were soaking wet from our knees all the way to our toes.  And because Pomalca has so much dirt, we looked like we had dark skin from the mud that was forming on our legs. haha

lugging water buckets
     After we killed ourselves from dragging huge buckets of water to another part of town, we headed to our cita with Fany (less active) and her daughter Hali.  We asked them what we each had to do here on earth to be able to return to live with God in heaven again, and Hali responded...."Die!" hahaha  I love kids!
     Then we headed to the best cita of the day.  It was with our downstairs neighbors, Carlota and Hermes.  Carlota is going to get baptized the 21 of March, and she is so excited!  We talked about a lot of commandments, one being to keep the Sabbath day holy....which means that we don't buy anything on Sunday, and she just looked at us in shock and then turned to Hermes and said, "Looks like I have to buy it all Saturday."  She was willing and ready to start living this commandment tomorrow.  She is ready for baptism, and her husband said that he will be ready with a little more time.  I think what will happen, is that he will see his wife get baptized and then he will want it more than ever.

Sabado, 14 de Marzo del 2015
     During studies Hna McGinnis showed me an activity called the 40 Day Fast.  You make a list of things you want to "fast" from, that are taking you away from the spirit. We decided to do it, so we could become closer to the spirit.  We decided to fast after lunch, to have guidance in what to put on our list.  We ate lunch with the familia Barturen. They are all great people.  They are super nice and cook really well.
     After lunch, we headed to the area San Antonio to help Teodora and Jose (investigadores) decorate for their marriage celebration.  They got married today so that they could get baptized in a couple of weeks.  Once we finished setting up, we headed a couple houses down the road to visit menos activos that we had found.  Their names are Silvia, her son Felix (28 yrs),  Egnaluci (13 yrs) and her grandson Axel (4 yrs).  They said that they would be at church tomorrow. :)
     At 6:00pm, the Elders had a baptism at the church. (Elder Olsen y Elder Brunis).  It turned out great!  President and Hermana Williams ended up being there, too.  It was beautiful.  At the end, I asked Pres. and the zone leaders if Jose Sandoval got baptized and they said, "Yes!"  I could have cried at that moment.  I am so happy that he could make that beautiful covenant here in this life.  It is going to bless him and change him and his family a lot.  I am very excited!
     After the baptism, we tried to teach some families, but no one was home or they were busy.  What we ended up doing was contacting.  We had some really successful contacts tonight.
     Once we reached our contact goal, we headed home to plan quickly, so we could call the hermanas in our zone to see how they are doing and if there is anything we can do for them.  I got to call Hna Furness and her companion Hna Areguen.  We talked about the baptism of Jose.  They said that he really feels like part of a family in church and that he teared up and said that he knows that his decision is going to help his family.  I love Jose!
     Well, all the Hermanas told me that I make a great Hna leader.  I am super excited to take on this responsibility and learn from it and learn from all the Hermanas in the zone.  I am just so excited to start seeing a lot of miracles here in Polmaca.  We are working hard and we are trying to center ourselves on the spirit....and with the few experiences we had today, we can see that God is working with us here. :)

Domingo, 15 de Marzo del 2015
     Here in Polmaca we have church at 8:00am.  When we got there at 7:30am, the power was out...but we still had church.  I got asked to lead the hymns...haha.  Everyone was staring at me like, "new meat"...haha.  We had tons of people at church today.  We had several investigadores and less actives.
     After church, we headed home to study and at 1:00pm, we headed to lunch.  We ate with Glenda (returned home from her mission about a month ago).  She is really sweet.  After lunch, we visited the familia Yesquen and then a woman named Mirium.  At the beginning of our lesson, she wasn't listening too well, but by the end of the lesson, she was hugging us and told us to return quickly. :)
     At 4:00pm, we had correlation.  At 5:00pm we had ward council.  At 6:00pm we had a meeting for future missionaries.  They asked us missionaries (Me, McGinnis, Olsen, Brunis) to bear our testimonies about missions.  It was a beautiful service to encourage all to go on missions.  At the end, they had sandwiches and soda, but when we went to the kitchen to help with the food, the food was covered with ants!  So we were helping to shake the ants off the food.  haha  I love the mission!
 ants on the food :) cool thing today was that Bishop Iman, who usually doesn't open up much to the missionaries, was talking to me, asking me questions, and even promised me that he would work really hard to help us. Yay!  I am loving seeing miracles come from obedience.

     "Paraphrasing C.S. Lewis...The Lord says to us: Give me all.  I don't want so much of your time, so much of your talents and money, and so much of your work: I want you.  All of you.  I have not come to torment or frustrate the natural man, but to kill it.  No half-measures will do.  I don't want to only prune a branch here and another there; rather, I want the whole tree out!  Hand it all over to me, the whole outfit, all of your desires, all of your wishes and wants and dreams.  Turn them all over to me.  Give yourself to me and I will make of you a new self in my image.  Give me yourself and in exchange, I will give you myself.  My will shall become your will.  My heart shall become your heart."  Lawrence E. Corbridge from the talk entitled "The Fourth Missionary"

                                                                          READ IT!

eating mac n cheese

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Week 48: "Bless and watch over the Hermanas so that they don't die, because the motos are crazy!"

Lunes, 2 de Marzo del 2015     [ Polmaca, Peru]
     P-Days are great days to meditate and realize the things you want to do, so I did just that.  After studies, we went out to buy some things and then we went to internet.  My emails were great this week.  I highly enjoyed them all.  They got me thinking about the work in the mission and the beauty that comes from it.  There were many things that I loved, but I loved two quotes that my mom sent me.  I can apply both of them to myself and to those I teach.  "Sacrifice allows us to learn something about ourselves- what we are willing to offer to the Lord through our obedience" and "As we are obedient, we become willing to sacrifice such things as our time, our energy and our means. Sacrifice changes our natures; it is the process by which we become holy enough to be willing to give up all we have for the Lord if we are called upon to do so."  I love that.  We should all reach that level of holiness.  We should all try and be more obedient to show God that we are willing to sacrifice.  When we sacrifice worldly prizes for God, we are blessed with more happiness in this life as well as in the life to come.
     After internet we packed up our stuff and got ready to head to the cuarto of the hermana leaders. (Hna Ortiz and Hna McGinnis) When we got there, we played the card game of Monopoly.  It's super fun!  And then Hna Furness and Hna Ortiz left to go to Chiclayo so they could take a plane to Lima. I stayed with Hna McGinnis.  I seriously love her to death!  We talked about plans for our futures and our desires.  It was really fun.
     At 6:00pm we went out to work.  We visited a less active.  We ended up just letting her talk to us about her worries and her problems.  After that, we just contacted.  We had a good time.
     At 8:00pm we ate dinner....a chunk of chicken and a pile of french fries. Small world....Hna Reid served here in Polmaca for 6 months, so anytime we told people that we knew Hna Reid and that she trained me in Motupe, they would get really excited.  It was cute.
     After dinner, we headed home, planned and got ready for bed.  Then we talked and talked.

Martes, 3 de Marzo del 2015
     We woke up at 6:30am and during our morning prayers, the fans in the room turned off. Well....this is significant because that meant that the power had gone out, which meant that I would have to shower in a completely black bathroom.  The bathroom is super tiny, and there is no shower stall, so I was afraid that I was going to accidentally fall into the open toilet.  It was ridiculous! haha        At 8:00am, we left to go into Chiclayo for the hermana leaders' meeting. I was really loving being able to participate in their meeting, even though I am not a hermana leader.  I learned a lot of things that I can apply in my mission.  Hna Williams taught the class about love.  She shared the story of the adulterous woman.  I love John 8:1-11...that story is amazing.  After we read it, Hna Williams asked us, "What do you imagine this woman felt like at that moment?"  It got me thinking about myself-And that all of us should be like Christ, and kindly guide others towards Christ with love and without judgement.  Of course, we need to look at ourselves first. (Matthew 7:1-5)
     At 10:00am, the meeting for all the zone leaders and hermana leaders started.  President Williams pointed me out several times during that meeting. :) It felt amazing.  It was very spiritual.  One thing that I really liked that President Williams said was, "You have to inspect what you expect."  Which means that we have to be wise and practical in our goals.  After we set goals, we should analyze them and see what it is that we need to do to reach them.

with President and Hermana Williams
     For lunch we had Chili's!  We got a huge yummy hamburger.  It was so good!  It had pickles!! YUMMY!!  After lunch, we got back to our meeting.  The meeting ended at 4:00pm.  Hna McGinnis and I waited in the office for our companions to come back.  Around 4:45pm, they showed up.

Hna Furness, Hna Dodson, Hna McGinnis, Hna Ortiz
     Hna Furness and I headed back to Patapo.  As soon as we got back, we headed out to work.  We visited Marilyn, who is the girlfriend of Carlos (less active).  We built up a little more trust with her. Hopefully she will accept our message one day.  After her visit, we went and visited the familia Risco.  Enmanuel and Maria Jose made us cards.  They are beautiful.  I seriously love this family. We taught them about baptism.  The lesson was powerful.
     After teaching, we headed to dinner.  Everyone had missed us and was so happy we were back. :)
After dinner, we went home.  We had to bring water from the outside in with buckets so that we would have water to flush the toilet and to bathe in, because they turned the water off and it won't be back on until Thursday.  Gotta love when you have to bathe with a bucket of water and a cup.  haha I love Peru!

Miercoles, 4 de Marzo del 2015  [a full day in Patapo]
     Because Hna Furness had to go to Lima on Monday, I had to go to Polmaca and so we had missed some of our citas.  Hna Furness had taken our phone with her, so I had no way of contacting them to let them know.  Anyhow, one of the citas was with Erika, so we went to visit with her first. When we got to her house, she came outside and acted like she was killing us.  She had invited her dad over for the first cita that we missed.  He isn't a member, and he had made a treat for us.  :( We felt bad, but once we explained what had happened, she forgave us.  We taught her about tithing and fasting.  She is super excited to start doing both again.
     After teaching her, we went to lunch.  After lunch, we went out teaching again.  Our last cita of the day was with Jose.  I seriously love him.  We taught him about the spirit world, the resurrection and the kingdoms of glory.  He happened to be wearing a cross necklace and asked us if the LDS church used the cross.  We told him that we don't, because we focus on Christ's resurrection instead of his death.  Right at that moment, he took off his cross necklace.  He is so ready to give his life over to Christ.  He is so excited for March 14th!
     P.S.  Someone else that we visited was Elita and Carmen.  When we showed up, they told us that the Elders had come by to teach them.  They told them, "The sisters are teaching us", and then proceeded to tell them about all the things that we have taught them.  They made us look like really awesome missionaries!  :)  I love missionary work.

Jueves, 5 de Marzo del 2015
     This morning we had a zone meeting.  Everything we talked about, was what we talked about in the leaders meeting in Chiclayo.  It went really well.  We took some fun photos.

Our Zone
Hna Dodson and Hna Furness

     After the meeting, we waited for a combi with the elders.  By the time we got a ride, it was 2:00pm.  We ate lunch and then went home.  When we got to our cuarto, Shirley was waiting for us to pick up our dirty clothes.
     At 3:00pm, Hna Furness wasn't feeling well, so she rested.  As she rested, I organized the area book, put up papers on the walls to help us reach our goals.  At 7pm, she started feeling better, so we went to visit Yohana.  We taught her about tithing and fasting.  She is excited to start fasting, and said that she always pays her tithing.
     At 8pm, we went to Jose's house.  He was just as ready as could be to learn more. :)  We taught him about the Word of Wisdom.  He loved it.  He accepted it and he was very willing to give it all up. He doesn't drink alcohol, use drugs or smoke, but he does drink his coffee and tea, but he said that he would give those things up.  We were teaching him the blessings that come from living the Word of Wisdom, and then he asked if it was okay to share the gospel with others.  Of course, we told him that he could, and that it would help him understand the gospel better as he shared it.  He is excited to do that.  Before we left, he asked us what chastity meant.  We gave him some information about it and told him that at our next cita, we would give him a lesson about Chastity. We asked Jose to give the closing prayer and he said, "Bless the hermanas and bless their families who are far away.  Bless them...because thanks to their parents, I have these wonderful hermanas here to bring me to your truth."   After he ended, he looked at us with tears in his eyes and said, "You must suffer a lot.... because your families are so far away."  We responded that it is impossible to suffer when we have people like him who love us and pray for us and care for us everyday.  He smiled and just kept talking about how wonderful our families are for letting us be here and that they must be just as amazing as us.  haha  I love the mission!  I love universal love!!

Viernes, 6 de Marzo del 2015
     This morning we had our weekly planning.  We decided with the elders that we would be putting up boundaries, so as we were planning, we realized that we would be losing a lot of our investigators. :(  After planning, we went to lunch and then back home to study language.  Then we went out to teach.  We visited Gloria and Itamar.  We read Alma 24 with them, to help them figure out the purpose of life and how to prepare to meet with God.
     After that, we went to visit the familia Risco.  Enmanuel came to the door and invited us in.  He told us that Gma Risco wouldn't be able to join us because she is really sick and throwing up.  We told them that we couldn't come in and teach them unless there was an Enmanuel made sick Gma Risco come out and sit so we could teach them.  Well, as we were teaching, Gma Risco had to run out of the room a few times.  Enmanuel gave our closing prayer and he said, "Bless and watch over the hermanas so that they don't die...because the motos are crazy!"
     We taught a few more lessons and then we headed to the Noche Misional.  Before it started, we divided the area with the elders.

map of our divisions
     At the 8pm, the activity started.  We listened to a message from the Bishop and then we played a game with balloons and cups.  You have to blow up the balloon and then let the air out and push the cup across the floor to the other side of the room and back again.  It was really fun.  Then Elder Caceres decided to teach everyone a new game called, "I give you a Book of Mormon" or in Spanish, "Te regalo un Libro de Mormon".  It is played like this.  One person has the Book of Mormon and walks up to someone and says, "I give you a Book of Mormon."  The receiver then says, "A what?" and the giver says, "A Book of Mormon."  The receiver then takes the book and gives it to someone else and says "I give you a Book of Mormon" and the new receiver says, "A what?", and then the new giver asks the first giver, "A what?" and then the first giver responds and then the new giver responds, and it is just repeated over and over, until everyone in the room has answered everyone's questions.  I don't know if that makes sense, but it is really fun.  haha Jose even played the games with us!
     After the activity was over, we went to dinner.  Then we went home and planned and got ready for bed.

Sabado, 7 de Marzo del 2015
     This morning I felt really sick, so we stayed in until about 3pm, and then I felt well enough to go out and teach.  Today was a pretty good day.  We visited a lot of people, to let them know of the changes that we made with the Elders.  We had to say goodbye to a lot of our contacts, because  they were in the Elder's area now.
     Our best lessons were with the familia Risco and Jose.  We taught Jose about the law of chastity. We had to teach him next door at Harry's house, because Jose's neighbors were having a really loud party.  Harry is a sweet old man that works at the Dulceria, and he listened to the lesson, too.  It went well.
     After that, we went to dinner and then went home to plan.  We are setting our goals really high, but we have faith that we can do it.

Domingo, 8 de Marzo del 2015
      Well, Feliz 11 months in the mission!  Time has flown by!!  Today we are going to find out cambios (transfers).
      Well, this morning, we headed out contacting at 8am, as we were waiting for Victor (the nephew of Rossana) to come to church with us.  At 8:45am, we headed to church.  We had a good turn out. Nelson (ward mission leader) taught our lesson in Gospel Principles. He is the coolest teacher.  I love his teaching style.
     After church, we headed out teaching and finding new people to teach.  We ended up finding a lot of families.  We were having a ton of success!!
     At 1:30pm, we went to Francisca's house to eat lunch.  At 2pm, Francisca and Viviana went out teaching with us.  We did divisions- I went with Hna Francisca and Hna Furness went with Hna Viviana.
     At 3pm, we went back to the church where we had a meeting with the Elders, so we could switch references and information.  At 4pm, we met up with Nelson and talked about a few needs and took a picture together.

Hna Dodson, Hna Furness, Nelson, Elder Caceres, Elder Encalada
     After we were done, we went to our cita with Jose.  We taught him about tithing and fasting.  Jose is so ready to be baptized.  We planned his baptism with him and he said, "I want Hermana Dodson to sing at my baptism."  I told him that I would.
    At 6pm, we headed to ward council.  When we got there, we found out that it had been cancelled, so we ended up telling Nelson about the plans for Jose's baptism.
     At 7:30pm, we went to visit the familia Risco, but they weren't home.  As we were trying to decide where to go next, we both got the impression to visit Rosa and Victor.  Rosa was home with her two daughters, and they were all crying.  They were having some family problems, so we prayed with them and shared some thoughts and feelings with them.  At the end, Rosa offered a prayer and thanked God for sending us to her house at that exact moment.
     We went to dinner and then went home to wait for the call about transfers.  At 9:48pm, our district leader called.  I asked him to tell us the cambios, but he had to go because he was getting a call from the zone leaders.  He said he would call back as soon as he was done with them.  Thirty seconds later, he called us back....and he said, "Hna Dodson, you are leaving Patapo."  My jaw dropped.  I couldn't believe it, but I could at the same time, because every single time someone is going to get baptized, I have to leave....right before the baptism. Bummer. :(  Now I won't be able to sing at Jose's baptism.
     After getting off the phone, I started packing.  That is worst part about transfers.  Next week y'all will find out where I am headed.  Pray for me.

My favorite meal!  Rice with a fried egg and fried banana
my dinner
My last day in Patapo
picture of the street we live on
our house is behind all the trees on the right
building where they fight roosters
saying goodbye
Hna Furness, Hna Dodson, Karen, Moroni and Moroni Jr.
Their daughter Rhianna wasn't home because she just
started school today