Monday, July 27, 2015

Week 68: "...President Williams cut it open and dumped it out, and it was....Mentos."

Lunes, 20 Julio 2015
     First P-Day in Villareal.  This morning, we got a call from Elder Epperson because he thought we were the sister leaders in his zone, but we aren't.  haha
     All morning we were in the Tottus.  We bought all sorts of stuff and we ate lunch there, too. (pepperoni pizza)  We bought a shower curtain to hang up on our window because it is a lot cheaper than buying normal curtains. :) haha

Funny magazine I saw at the Tottus
"Obama and the Americas: Hope or Disappointment?"
     Later in the night , we went out visiting and once we finished eating, we went upstairs to grab our coats and I have no idea why, but I got super sick, so we rested for the last hour of visiting.
What a great P-Day...

Martes, 21 Julio 2015
     This morning we visited Lucas Isaac and Rosa (older couple) and their daughter Isabel.  It went pretty  well.  We talked about Prophets and Priesthood.  They understood a little bit, but it hasn't quite clicked yet.  I know we can help them find the truth.
     Later in the afternoon, we went visiting with Paquita.  She is 87 years old...and by "with her", I really mean that we were 'her' members, that she dragged around to her citas.  She would stop any old person and call them unto repentance.  She got into some heated discussions with some very Catholic got pretty ugly.
     She had me laughing all day.  Anytime we knocked a door and the person answered, she would push her way inside and then she would make the situation really messy with contention.  After getting everything heated up, she would look at us and say, "Share something that will help them understand that they really are wrong!"
     Another experience with her was actually life threatening.  There is a highway running through our area ...and to get to the other side, you just have to look both ways and wait until you can run across without getting hit...well Paquita grabbed my arm, and started pulling me out onto the highway in the middle of traffic.  Once we were in the middle, she realized that we were in danger and was trying to return back to the side we left from, but I just pulled her to the other side.  Luckily, we made it. Maybe Paquita is our lucky cricket! (Mulan) :)

We had some door way lessons and they weren't super successful, but the spirit was felt.
Later in the night, we had a FHE with Rosa and her jokster son, Alan, and his wife Raquel.  We talked about the Familia Proclamation.  It went pretty well.  After the lesson, they served us cookies with cinnamon hot chocolate.  It was good.

Miercoles, 22 Julio 2015
     We had a district meeting today.  It really is so weird that we are all North Americans...I don't think I will ever get used to it.  haha
     Of our very few lessons we had today, I really enjoyed our time with Evelina and Evelina (mom and daughter).  We had a great discussion about the Ten Commandments.  They are great women and they are both so excited to be active in the church again, after such a long time of not going.  I really love them.  They always make me laugh a lot.
     In the night at dinner time, Hno Antonio (Arsenia's husband) came downstairs in his matching pj's, held up his arms in the touchdown pose and said, "All is well!"  haha  Then he joined us for a great dinner discussion.  We taught him our names.

Jueves, 23 Julio 2015     FELIZ CUMPLEANOS JENNA BUG!
     Today we saw miracles.  Not all at once or even all day, but we saw some miracles. :)
     First, Hno Antonio came into the house this morning yelling, "Dodson!" over and over again. When I congratulated him on remembering my name, I asked him about my companion's name, and he just sat there in silence.  Once a good amount of time had passed, he giggled and said that he couldn't remember.  Silly man.  But Miracle #1 is that he remembered my name!  He is a forgetful man, so it really is a miracle! :)
     Second miracle happened after we found out that the member who was suppose to help us out, couldn't help us today...then we ran into Pepe and Bertha.  They are siblings, and Pepe is a member. His sister, Bertha, really wanted to hear more about our Miracle #2 was that we got let into a house! :)
     Miracle #3 was a reference (referal) from Mily (RS President).  Their names are Martha and Angel.  Martha is a member, but she hasn't gone to church for quite some time, and Angel is a good guy.  He is an artist.  The only problem with this couple, is that they aren't married, but they want to get married really soon.  We are so excited to teach them, because Martha really wants to go to the temple and be sealed for time and eternity.
     To end the amazing miracles on a good note, we had a super awkward moment.  We had a FHE with Esther and her kids.  We taught them about putting on the armor of God (Ephesians 6: 11-18) Well, to show them that having protection helps us to not "sink" in a world full of wickedness, we put a mandarin orange in a glass of water with the peel (armor) still on and it floated.  Then we peeled the orange and put it in the water, thinking it would sink without its peel....but it floated.  We started to giggle and realized that we should have tested the experiment first, to make sure it worked...well, now we know. :)  It still turned out well.  Esther was really grateful for the time we took to teach them something really special.  To thank us, she gave us bananas.

hahaha :)

     Once we got home, we planned and got ready for bed.  We also did some nighttime chores.
     Today we finally saw blessings come from our dedication to find those that are ready to listen.

Viernes, 24 Julio 2015     HAPPY PIONEER DAY!
     This morning during our studies, we got pondering about a phrase that a contact had said to us when we told her that God loves us all.  She said, "It doesn't matter who you are, because the sun still shines on all of us!"  What a beautiful representation of God's love.  He allows his love to touch all men. ALL.
     We had our weekly planning, and after lunch, we had to go to the mission office to have interviews with President and Sister Williams.  I always enjoy my time with them, because they always brighten my day with their appreciation of the work I do, and they always give great advice. We were the first interviews in the afternoon, so we got to choose who we got interviewed by first. I went with Hna Williams first.  I truly love her.  We got chatting quite a bit and President got a little impatient, so he came in and cut us off.  haha  She gave me two peanut butter-corn flake cookie balls, and then I went to talk to President.
      So....last week, we received a call from President, asking me if my mom had sent me some pills. I said, "A while ago, she sent me some Ibuprofen.  Why?"  He responded, " in in, I have a package here from  Dawn Dodson, to you, with the package description saying  "candy", but I highly doubt it is candy."  So I said, "Well, when my mom sends me stuff, she is very honest in all she sends, so I'm sure it is candy."  So he says, "Well, I wanted to call and let you know that your package (pills) is here waiting for you."  I said, "President, if you want,  you can open it to see what it is."  And he said, "No, I will just wait until you come in for your interview."        
     So when I walked  into his office, there he was with my package and some scissors getting ready to cut it open.  As soon as I was in, he cut it open and dumped it out....and it was Mentos.   The disappointment on his face was priceless.  He wanted them to be pills. :) haha  He then told me to tell my mom that he had been waiting a week to open a package to her daughter, hoping to find pills, so that his family wasn't the only people who "smuggle" pills in packages with candy. hahahaha  He is so funny!
     Then President goes on to tell me before I left, that Elder Bednar is coming to our mission to visit us!  He is coming in August!  I am super excited!
     After our interviews were over, we went out working.  We had some crazy experiences.  First, we walked for 15 minutes to the wrong cita...and on our way to the correct cita, we got contacted by a 16 year old boy.  He was cool, but as Hna Lofgran was explaining a gospel principle, he interrupted her by saying, "You are beautiful!".  Hna Lofgran responded by saying, "That is off the topic...but you are invited to go to church with us at 8am...yeah! 8am."  haha
     After that, we went and picked up a member named Emily (19 years).  That is when the second crazy thing happened.  We got invited into a baby's one month birthday party!  haha  We ended up sharing a scripture with everyone there.  It was super funny.
     And our last experience was with a less active named Luis.  He has been inactive for 15 years because 15 years ago, his fiance left him to marry the elder that baptized her... Well in the end, he said that we were his angels, and promised us that he would go to church on Sunday.

Sabado, 25 Julio 2015    FELIZ CUMPLEANOS MOMMY!!
     This morning we had a few people actually let us into their houses, but every time we were about to explain a really spiritual principle, something would happen.  Luckily, the people still want us to come that is good.
     After lunch, we had some great lessons!  But once it hit 5:30 pm, no one was home.  At 6:30 pm, we decided to stop by the chapel to use the bathroom.  Well, the chapel has an alarm system, but luckily I remembered the password before it went off.  We used the bathroom, but when we tried to leave, we couldn't figure out how to re arm the alarm.  It took us 30 minutes to finally get it turned back on.
     Then we went and visited an older couple that have been converts for a year, so they are going to the temple next month!  Their names are Raul and Petronia.  They are so sweet.
     After that, our next cita fell through, so we went to the bakery and bought  fresh baked, buttered croissants. :)  Then it was time for dinner.  Dinner was a hoot tonight.  Whenever we would ask Antonio what our names were, he would pull out a napkin from his shirt pocket and pretend to read our names that he had written down.  haha  Anytime he would do that, Arsenia would call him a crazy old man.  I love them!
     We got home and planned for tomorrow and got ready for bed.  Hopefully all the people that promised to go to church, will really go.  That would really brighten my day. :)

Domingo, 26 Julio 2015
     Today started out kind of interesting.  When we showed up to the church 5 minutes before 8 am, which church starts at 8 am, everyone was still standing outside the gate, because no one from the Bishopric had showed up yet.  Luckily, we had keys, so we could let everyone into the church. At 8:15 am, the Bishopric showed up and we started the meeting.  We had two investigators show up, 2 people that we haven't taught yet, but are friends with a member named Robert.  He is a return missionary (came home 2 years ago) and does a lot of missionary work by inviting and bringing everyone to church. :)
     In Gospel Doctrine, the Bishop taught the lesson about Honesty.  He teaches really well.  He really knows how to work with people.
     After church, we had Ward Council, and in the middle of the meeting, the door opened and Julio and some little helpers brought in glasses of juice and a package of cookies for everyone.  Best ward council ever!  haha And not just for the treats, but the discussions that were made actually were efficient!  I am excited to see if it will continue that way.  After that, we went and ate lunch.
     Then we went to work.  It wasn't super successful....we basically didn't find anyone home until the night.  We found a less active named Carmen.  She believes that it isn't necessary to go to church to show what you believe.  Not true....
     We also visited with an active member who is married to a less active, and she is going through a lot of trials.  So we stopped by and let her talk it all out.  We shared some scriptures, which made her feel a little better.
     Right before we went to dinner, we met a Catholic who lives with a religious leader.  He wore glasses, hearing aids and had a giant cross around his neck, and he carried a doctor bag.  He walked into the front room and so I stuck out my hand to shake his hand, but he went in for a kiss.  I pulled away and told him to just shake my hand, but he grabbed my head and kissed my cheek.  Then he said, "This is a sign of peace."  haha  Hna Lofgran thought it was hilarious.  I was shocked because he is a what is he doing kissing people?

     We went to dinner and ate with Hno Antonio. :)

     Earlier this week, we met a woman named Eda from Maryland.  She is homeless here.  Her situation is super complicated, but she wants to stay here in Peru.  We prayed with her and gave her a little picture of Jesus.

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