Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Week 47: I got to do intercambios with Hna Corona in Lambayeque!

Lunes, 23 de Febrero del 2015  [Feliz Meses en la Mision para Hna Furness!!]
     This morning after studies, we went to visit Jose at work because he talks about us to the kids all the time.  We called him to find out where we were meeting, and he told us at the park up the street from OUR church.  Well, we headed there and he was standing outside and waving.  We answered all the questions that the kids had and then we took some pictures with them.

with Jose and the kids at the school
     Jose invited the children to visit the church and told them that it was really beautiful.  He is a great guy!  After talking with them for a bit more, we went shopping and bought the things we needed.  We headed home to finish up some cards before heading to internet.  It was lunch time, but we weren't hungry, so we didn't eat.  We just went and printed out some talks that I wanted.  Two are by Brad Wilcox called, "His Grace is Sufficient" and "If we can laugh at it, we can live with it."  Both are great!  I highly recommend reading them both.  I also printed off a talk by Elder Holland called "Remember Lot's wife".  It's amazing!
     After that, we headed home and relaxed, read, drew, and talked.  Once P-Day was over, we headed out to our citas.  Unfortunately, every single one of our citas bailed on us.  Luckily, we found Lili and Antony.  We read some of the Book of Mormon with them and talked to them about whether Segundo is going to give Lili his permission to get baptized.  She said that he won't give permission until she has been going to church for a long time.  I really hope she will come to church.  She still feels uncomfortable coming to church, because she doesn't have a skirt to wear.  We told her that Heavenly Father just wants her to be there, and that he won't care if she is wearing pants.  We left with a prayer and some hugs and kisses.  Lili is really special.
     After teaching them, we went to dinner.  While we were eating, Harry came in and handed us a bag of mangoes.  He told us that a young man named Jonny told him to give them to us.  When we looked out, the "young man" ended up being Jose.  When he noticed that we saw him, he waved and then ran away.  We ran out of the restaurant to try and catch him, but he was way too fast!
     We went home and then took our dirty laundry to Shirley and Enrique.  Then we went back home to plan and fill out the area book.  Then we got ready for bed.

Martes, 24 de Febrero del 2015
     This morning we went on a wild goose chase.  We were searching for a woman named America. We had Columbus' luck....and didn't find her.  :)  Anyhow, we ended up contacting some people and one of them was a guy named Luis.  He asked us when he could visit the church.  We told him on Sunday.  He said that he wished he didn't have to wait so long.  Hopefully he really comes.
     At noon we taught Jesus and Manuel Risco, the parents of Gma Risco.  We shared Luke 7: 3-5, which is about judging.  I shared the story about the dandelions in the front yard.  They liked it. When we were leaving, Jesus cried because she wants us to stay at her house forever!  Jesus is 83 years old and Manuel is 93 years old.
     After teaching them, we went to lunch.  I ate my favorite fried egg, fried bananas and rice.  It was delicious!  After lunch, we went home and got ready to go teaching some more.  At 3:00pm, we met up with Dominga, so she could come teaching with us.  We went and visited Erika Vasquez.  We taught her about the  Plan of Salvation.  Dominga and Erika really hit it off!  It's when people reach out that people start to feel comfortable going back to church!
     After that, we went to visit Katty.  She is so ready to hear our message.  She was listening really well and we even invited her to baptism.  She accepted and said that she would prepare herself.
     We said goodbye to Dominga and met up with Sharon at the Dulceria, so she could come with us to visit Angela and Estefany.  We decided to be direct with them, because they have been listening to missionaries for years and are not progressing.  We talked about knowing for themselves and that they need to put forth effort to know.  It was a really good lesson and the entire time the spirit was super strong.  There was one point when I was talking about Joseph Smith and the silence and the focus in the room was tangible.  I really hope that they do their part now and ask, meditate and act on their answers.
     After that, we visited Venessa Juliana (daughter of Celia).  We talked to her about the importance of being at church and reading the scriptures.  We all shared spiritual experiences and by the end, she agreed to start studying her scriptures again and going back t church!
     Then we went to visit the familia Risco.  Everyone was home and it was super fun to have them all there at the same time!  They are a lot more united and happy!  Before we left, we got lots of hugs from them all.  I love their hugs!  By the time we left their house, it was almost 8pm, so we dropped off Sharon and headed to see Jose.  We had an amazing experience with him tonight.  We entered his house and he told us, "I only got to Chapter 5 in the Book of Mormon.  I'm sorry that I didn't put forth more effort."  We told him that being on Chapter 5 was GREAT!!  Then we discussed Joseph Smith and when we told him that he was called to be a prophet, he perked up and said, "That is one of the needs of the church!"  We had discussed with him earlier that the legs of the table (church) are prophets, apostles, priesthood and revelation.  We both smiled huge, because he was catching on quick.  He then realized that Joseph Smith restored all four legs of the church.  He told us that he wants to study better because Christ wants him to.  At that point, we invited him to baptism for the 14th of March.  He accepted!!  He said, "Yes.  Because after I am baptized, I am going to feel like a better person and that I will have the emptiness filled!"  We ended with a prayer.  He thanked God for us and then told God that on the 14th of March, he would be making a promise with Him that will allow him to enter into His kingdom."   We walked out of that house smiling, shining and speechless. All we could do was hug one another!

Miercoles, 25 de Febrero del 2015
     We had our district meeting in La Cria.  To get there, we had to take some weird bus...it wasn't a combi...it was a bus, and it was really worn down.  Once we got to the meeting, we talked about commitments.  At the end, Elder Watkins invited Elder Caceres to bear his testimony.  His testimony was about the Atonement and it was so powerful.  I really look up to him.
     After the meeting, we went and got Chicolas (frozen chocolate milk) and then we headed to Patapo.  On the ride back, we talked to Elder Caceres about the snowy weather in Utah and Idaho. He is scared because he has lived in San Antonio, TX since he was 10 years old and he has a really nice car (2012 Red Camero) and he will be taking that car to Idaho with him when he goes there for school.  Hna Furness and I were giggling at him and telling him that he will really stand out in his red car in the potato farms!  hahaha
     When we got back to Patapo, we went to lunch.  Then we headed out teaching.  We met up with Celia at the mercado so she could come teaching with us.  She is so adorable, but she is hard to teach with, because she likes to agree with the false doctrine that others offer.  Ahhhhh.....
     We dropped Celia off and then went to visit the familia Risco.  We shared a little message.  Enmanuel said, "Hna, you are a good person.  I am glad to have you as my friend and that you come visit us a lot."  My heart was brightened.  He always has something wonderful to say.

Jueves, 26 de Febrero del 2015
     This morning as we were getting ready to head out teaching, when we got a call telling us that Hna Furness would be going to Lima tonight to do some paper work, so she can stay in the country...and that I would be going with Hna Corona to her area to work. (Lambayeque)  I couldn't believe it!!  I was super pumped!  As we hung up the phone, it rang again.  This time it was President Williams. He only calls when it is really important.  He told us to go to the Elder's cuarto and tell Elder Caceres that he has to call him.  He said, "Do it quickly...leave now."  We ran out the door quicker than you could say 'okay'.  We flew to their cuarto and starting yelling up to them.  Elder Caceres poked his head out and asked us what we needed.  We told him to call President Williams right away.  Then we headed out to teach.  We visited Jesus Risco (mama de Gma Maria Risco) and Maria.  Maria gave us a note that sweet little Maria Jose had given her about us sister missionaries.  It said, "Las Hermanas son muy hermosas de verdad y yo las quiero mucho."  It made my heart melt.  As we left, Maria hugged us and cried and told us to never leave.
     After lunch, we packed so we could have our stuff ready to leave in the night.  After packing, we headed out teaching again.  We went visiting with Meri.  We stopped by Erika's house first.  She and Meri are friends, so this made the visit really fun.  Erika opened up and asked us some questions that she had about the church.  It was fun to see the understanding in her face every time we answered her questions.
     Our last cita of the day was with a reference.  Her name is Maria.  Maria is special...she is 101 years old and lives alone and does everything for herself.  She is very small...she is only up to my elbow and she is the sweetest little thing ever!  She grabbed chairs for us to sit on...not just plastic chairs...they were heavy wooden chairs, and she was carrying them without any problem!
     We left and went to dinner early so that we could head to Chiclayo.  We ended up getting on the same combi as the Elders.  Once we got to the offices, we waited for everyone to show up.  Hna Corona and Hna Wood were the last ones to show up.  We all talked for a bit and then I left with Hna Corona to Lambayeque.  The entire car ride and walk...we were just laughing and remembering our fun times together.  We got back to her cuarto and we talked for hours on end.  We planned and got ready for bed.  I have really missed Hna Corona!  She is the best!

Hna Corona and Hna Wood's cuarto that I got to stay in

Viernes, 27 de Febrero del 2015
     This morning Hna Corona did her weekly planning.  As she was planning, I was studying the talk by Brad Wilcox called "His Grace is Sufficient".  There is a lot that I loved from this talk but there was one part that stuck out to me.  He says, "I have born again Christian friends who say to me, 'You Mormons are trying to earn your way to Heaven.' I say, 'No, we are not earning heaven, we are preparing for it...we are practicing for it.'  A life impacted by grace eventually begins to look like Christ's life.  While many Christians view Christ's suffering as only a huge favor he did for us, Latter Day Saints also recognize it as a huge investment He made for us.  As Moroni puts it, 'Grace isn't just about being saved.  It is also about becoming like the Savior.'"  I love that.  I love that we are here to learn how to live so that when we go to heaven, we will be prepared to be with God.  The miracle of the Atonement is so powerful and we are so lucky to have this gift given to us to use everyday of our lives...and we should, because when we use His Atonement, we are showing appreciation for what He did.  Use the Atonement, not just for repentance, because the Atonement isn't just to help bad people become good, it is to help good people become better.
     At 1:00pm, we ate lunch. (Peruvian spaghetti and meatballs) As we ate, we joked around with Johana, the younger sister of the Pensionista.  She is super funny and she was excited to talk with a gringa. :)
     After lunch, we studied language and then headed out teaching.  Poor Hna Corona...Lambayeque is almost as bad as Pimentel...there is hardly anyone to teach here.  So we just knocked doors.  As we were walking down a street, there was a man outside his house looking at us, so we walked over and started contacting him.  A few minutes later, his friend (who looks like a Peruvian Bill Cosby) came over and talked with us, too.  They were hilarious!  The Bill Cosby guy's name is Luis, and he was so funny.  I was laughing so hard.  Anyhow, he asked me what parts of Peru that I knew.  I told him Lima, Motupe, Pimentel and Patapo.  When I said Motupe and Patapo, his face shrunk up into a sour look and he said, "It's hot there...but at least you haven't gone a little more north to Puira....because it is so hot there, that the people just run around naked!"
     They invited us to have some oro, a drink like inca cola.  As we drank, Luis talked to us about Michael Jackson and even pulled out some of his dance moves.  The entire time we talked with him, he kept shaking our hands and saying, "Thank you for your time.  I do not want to take more." And then we would try to leave and he would follow us to ask us more questions. :)
     After that, we went and taught a less active woman named Yolanda.  We read 1 Nephi 2.
Then we went to our last appointment with the familia Rojas.  They are a family of 5.  The parents and 3 daughters.  The daughters are 23, 21 and 17 yrs.  Just like my family in 3 years!  Weird!! Anyways, we talked with the mom and two oldest daughters about the Book of Mormon.  They all know the lessons really well, and are just "waiting" for their answer.  Well, since I was just a visitor to Lambayeque, I decided to be really direct with them.  I told them that unless they are completely willing to follow the answer they receive, that they are not going to receive one or recognize it when they get it.  They took it to heart and I really hope that they get their answer because they are amazing.  They invited us to eat bread with chicken inside and melon juice.
     Then we went to dinner, went home, planned and then talked the entire night again! :)  I LOVE HNA CORONA!

Sabado 28 de Febrero del 2015
     At 10am, we met up with our comps in the office in Chiclayo.  Unfortunately, Hna Furness lost her passport when she was on the plane, so now she has to go back to Lima on Monday to get a new one.  In the office, we ran into Hna Kingsford and her comp Hna Pranes (from Ecuador).  They have emergency transfers.  We talked with them for a bit and then left to go back to Patapo.
     We got into Patapo around 11am, so we started our weekly planning.  At 1:00pm, we went to lunch at the house of Julio and his new wife Maria. (dad and step mom of Moroni)  Well as Maria was serving our plates, the elders called to ask us who they were eating with.  I told them that I don't write down their schedule, so I had no idea.  Maria heard my conversation and told me to invite them to eat here with us.  They showed up after we finished, but Elder Caceres begged us to stay until they finished eating, so that they wouldn't have to be alone.  So we stayed until they were finished.  It was fun to laugh and joke around with them.  Maria gave us chicha de mani....which is basically peanut water.  It was super delicious in Pimentel, but not so much here in Patapo.  We chugged it down anyways.  haha
     After lunch, we all stopped by the Dulceria to tell everyone we were back.  They were so cute and told us how much they missed us while we were gone.
     After that, we went home, and Hna Furness felt sick so she rested from 3-6pm.  During that time, I studied the Bible and Jesus the Christ.  It was a great study.  I love the New Testament!
     At 6pm, we went out teaching to Jose.  He is the greatest!  We read Chapter 1 of Nephi with him, and he loved it.  We asked him to give the closing prayer and he told God that he cannot wait until the 14th of March, so he can get baptized and be completely happy.  He also prayed for us and said that he is grateful for our visits and all that he learns from us.
     Then we went to visit Yohana.  We taught her and her kids about the 10 Commandments, using the finger game.  It was good.
     Then we headed to the familia Risco, but they weren't home, so we went searching for others to teach.  No one was home, so we just went back to our cuarto and planned, studied and got ready for bed. I have a big hope for tomorrow.  I hope it all turns out to be a good and happy day!

Domingo, 1 de Marzo del 2015
     Holy....Cow...March!  How!?  Time is flying by way too fast!  Anyways, today was a good day! We went to church, but Jose wasn't already in there waiting like usual, but a couple minutes after the meeting started, he walked in and sat with us. :)
     After sacrament meeting and during Sunday School, I got called into the hallway.  Well Clara Leyton was standing there.  I was so excited to see her!  I couldn't stop smiling and hugging her.  She stayed for the rest of the church time, and then we took a picture together.

Hna Dodson and Clara Leyton 
     Then I went to coordination with the ward mission leader (Nelson), the ward missionaries (Sharon and Viviana) and the Elders.  Nelson is so funny, direct and dedicated.  I am so excited to work with him.
     After our meeting, we went to lunch with Sharon.  Then we called the hermana leaders to find out what we are doing for intercambios tomorrow.  We found out that I will be going to Polmaca to be with Hna McGinnis, and Hna Furness will be paired up with Hna Ortiz to go into Lima.
     At 3:00pm, we met up with Viviana at Jose's house.  We taught him about the Plan of Salvation.  He is loving studying the Book of Mormon every day.
     After we taught him, we went to teach Itamar and her mom, Maria.  We read the Book of Mormon.  It was good and we learned a lot from one another.  After that we taught Enmanuel, Maria Jose and Gma Maria.  We taught them the 10 Commandments.  Enmanuel's comment tonight was, "Your hair is so yellow and so soft."  hahaha  He cracks me up.  When we left, Gma Maria cried again.  I love this family!  They are very special.
     We went to visit a few others, but they weren't home, so we just contacted until it was time for dinner.  We ate dinner, planned, reported and got ready for bed.

Shirley, Hna Furness, Hna Dodson, Sharon
They all wanted me to do the "Dodson Braid" on their hair,
so I did and then took a picture.
pakuell or something like that...it's a yummy pastry here!
a drawing I did of Abraham's stuff

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