Monday, August 19, 2013

(139) ET free moont

Subject: (139) ET freee moooont
so long story short, I just got emergency transferred to fremont! right when miracles were happening in san jose...but that's okay. thursday afternoon president called me into his office and said, we need you in fremont, see you at 8 am tomorrow morning. pretty much. So. My new companion is Sister Ikegami, who came out at the same time as me. she is from tokyo/seattle, which is super fun, someone who will eat sushi with me! finally.
I did get one last meeting with our main investigator, we brought along the relief society president again and she just went wtih the whole lesson and invited her to be baptized AND SHE SAID YES! it's been at least seven years, it's incredible how amazing these past few weeks have been with her. I'm so happy for her. hopefully it will be soon so I can go down to San Jose. it's amazing the power of faith, miracles really do happen when you set those goals and work for them.
Fremont is...different haha. There is no one in the streets, a cornfield in the middle of downtown, and lots of roosters in the morning. we live right outside of the niles district (in a HOUSE with LAUNDRY, it's wonderful.) with the spanish sisters, and it's us four covering the whole stake. we focus on three of the wards, so we were at church for seven hours yesterday, starting at 7 am. that was fun. so we visit mostly widows and teach single sisters that the elders can't for all three areas. sis ikegami's companion had to go home with medical issues, that had kept her in bed for a couple of weeks, so things have really slowed down here. so plenty of work to do! we have a double baptism next week, which will be really cool! There are a ton of rms in these wards that speak portuguese, including one that just got home from my mission, so it feels like a blessing in disguise, that even though I miss my spanish ward like crazy (and can't pray in english anymore) I'll have some time to focus on portuguese for a bit. they are definitely keeping us for the transfer so i'll be here until at least mid-september. so we'll see how this goes!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

(132) that ain't the language they taught me in the MTC

OI                                                                                         12 Aug 2013

okay this week was WONDERFUL. we started our new crazy high goals for the transfer and we met ALL OF THEM so far. it's been insane but we've been blessed so much. it seriously all comes down to faith. we got six new investigators all last transfer (6 weeks), and we got the same amount in three days this week. we also totally surpassed our goals for lessons and contacts as well. unfortunately not for church attendance but that's okay because our little eternal investigator came for the second time!

it's a very interesting story, her mom was baptized, as well as her sister, and her two older kids, but she didn't feel ready so she hasn't. she did go to church all the time in her other area with her kids and her mom but she never got baptized. she loves the story of joseph smith, but never really understood the lessons, even though she has gone through countless missionaries. but we've been working with her and going over the lessons step by step, she reads the pamplets and circles everything she doesn't understand, and she is not afraid at the end of explaining a whole long concept when you ask if she understands to say nope. haha. I love her though, she is hilarious. but she has really been feeling the spirit, especially at church, and she has never been able to pray out loud (in ten years, mind you), but with the help of her friend she did it last week!! it's been amazing to watch her grow, I really think she is ready! and for all of this visa waiting nonsense, if I hadn't been here this transfer I wouldn't be able to see it. so I'm just going to have to tell her that I won't get my visa until she gets baptized, so she better get on it! just kidding. but really.

we also met some amazing people this week. so this one day last week we decided not to jaywalk since we were being "exactly obedient" and ran into the sweetest man, he can't read or anything but was interesting in meeting with us. we walked by his house yesterday and had a quick lesson, and he is going to talk to "la hermana" and try to come to church next week! so we had a little (big) scratch on our door from trying to park too close to a pole (long story), so we got the estimate on fixing it and everything last week. so we come back to our car and he said "oh by the way, I cleaned off the paint from your car" so we look and he got ALL the paint off! i have no idea how but the scratch is now barely visible! it was incredible! the Lord definitely takes care of us through others.

so funny story: I went to Yerba Buena to help out Hna Kofford, so I got to be sister barker's companion for a couple afternoons last week! we contacted in spanish one day, but the next day we went to the little portugal area to contact in portuguese too. okay THAT IS NOT THE SAME LANGUAGE JUST SO EVERYONE KNOWS. this is how the conversation went:

"excuse me, but what language do you speak?"
"oh yay! estavamos buscando para pessoas com que podemos falar!"
"Oh sim, shsmshsmshmsh shmshmshsm Portugues shmshmsh shsmshshshmsh"
"heh heh...uh huh?"
"shs hsmshsm shsm shmshsm shm Santa Clara shsm shsmhsmsh"
"heeh okay, obrigada! tenha um bom dia!"

holy cow that was not brazilian portuguese. So that was a bit of a flop but we've been sufficiently humbled now. but sis voyles got a brand new visa waiter who is going to sao paulo east, so we are going to practice every week! so i'm excited. plenty of work to do...

(124) two down four to go 5 Aug 2013

so the big news this week: sis williams and sis oborn got their visas! which I am really sad that they are leaving, but I'm excited for them. we got to go to President's last night and have dinner with them, so at least we got to see them before they left. they got them last tuesday and friday, and both left this morning! crazy. I'm still doing fine here, no I won't know anything until I get it, which no one seems to get so EVERYONE asks me. which is getting annoying, but that's okay. They are just trying to be nice. but seriously I will have no idea until I get it. but I still love it here, my spanish is getting so much better, I'm learning a lot, and our ward needs so much help right now.

other big news: i'm staying in los alamitos! President originally told us that he was planning on breaking up more trios but I think since two got their visas he thinks we'll be getting ours soon, plus there are so many more missionaries coming in. plus three more brazilian visa waiters! one will be in our zone so i might have someone to practice with, which will be good. our ward and district are all pretty much staying the same, we are only losing a few people out of the zone, which is nice. still got my spaniard! i've officially been her longest companion haha she's moved around so much. but her and hna anderson are amazing, we work so well together and we are really making progress in our area.

our area is doing well! we had a huge free clothing event at one of our chapels on Saturday for the community, which was INSANE amounts of clothes, all donated and all free. we had so many people show up, including some of our investigators and their families, and some less active members! one family we've been working with came to church on sunday, and that was really cool as well. our zone has set insanely high goals this transfer, we are going to be working SO hard but I can tell it's going to be so good for the area. we are hoping for 12 baptism in our district for the transfer (I think we had one last transfer...) and we are going to do all we can to reach it! we've gotten some really good potentials and some people are starting to progress, so it could happen!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

(118) ovejas perdidas

                                                         29 Jul 2013

We surpassed all of our goals (except baptisms of course) and we got a ton of member presents this week, which was our goal, and I gained such a testimony of the power of setting goals. Really, especially as missionaries the Lord always helps us reach our goals somehow. We have had weeks where we just set them without thinking about it and work hard, but if we take the time to PRAY for help we always meet them.

Story time: so our zone has been setting goals for baptismal invitations, our monthly goal for our companionship was 12. So we were going along, inviting investigators as we felt prompted too, and we ended up yesterday with 11 out of the 12 we needed by that night. so being the stubborn person that I am (luckily me and hermana anderson are the same person and hermana santidrian just goes with the flow) we set out at 8 pm last night walking around our neighborhood looking for the last person who needed to be invited to be baptized. so it's getting dark, the air is starting to smell like Eugene at night (if you catch my drift), so we decide to go down one more block past our house and loop around (It's always at the last minute. I guess so it can make a better story later). There is literally NO ONE outside, we talk to two people in forty minutes...but alas we are turning the corner home and run into a guy who says hi and within the first few sentences says he is looking for a church. What. That doesn't happen in English. so we keep chatting and he is totally open, he knows God saved his life for a purpose, and wants to come to church first (THIS IS WHY I WOULD LOVE TO BE IN THE ENGLISH PROGRAM SOMETIMES), and when I invited him to be baptized he said Absolutely! TRUE STORY. And he's a Christian rapper, which just makes it even better. Moral of the story: ASK FOR HELP meeting goals. you always will!

and the highlight of the week was that we got a less active family we've been working with to church!! they came EARLY and brought the whole family (except the dad who was working) including the daughter's boyfriend, and everyone except those two stayed all three hours and we didn't even get to talk to her because different members kept whisking her away so quickly to sit by them and chat (which is fine really, hermana santidrian is the only missionary that's ever been able to understand her (including all the native speakers) and half the ward can't. I have been extremely blessed with the gift of tongues and have been able to get the gist of what she is saying enough so she thinks I can understand her and I can respond. Ish.) BUT IT FELT SO GOOD I haven't had any baptisms yet but I'm pretty sure it's the same feeling. we almost had three investigators at church! one flaked last minute, one really was sick, and our baptismal date came. but the bishop is coming to our lessons with him now and I really think he can make it.

AH so much happening. I'm probably going to get transferred (yes right now when EVERYTHING is happening and our ward is about to explode in a good way) next week...we'll see. AH don't want to leave...unless it's to brazil...even then it'll be hard. Quien sabe. well I will know by saturday if I'm leaving, so I'll find out soon! If not our zone leaders literally made it a goal to "go nuts" this next transfer and invite and talk to EVERYONE (they are seriously going crazy), so it should be a pachanga here.


    22 Jul 2013

No, we didn't have any miracle baptisms or golden investigators or anything and our investigator that we thought was finally ready for baptism disappeared again on saturday.
and it's fantastic fantastic fantastic

So, this week we have really been thinking of what we can do to help the ward. We visit so many less actives and are working with the young women and we are trying to hold up so much of the ward that it's been really overwhelming. our original question was what we could to do help our investigators progress, but we honestly concluded that we just need to have more time to focus on our investigators and the members that sincerely need the missionary lessons. So since we were getting a new bishop and all, we were studying the preach my gospel ideals for how to work with ward and stake leaders etc etc and we just had this major epiphany of exactly what our ward needs from us, and made all these plans for how we can meet with the new bishop and all these other back up plans for what we can do to help, and all of these hopes and dreams all at once

and then sunday they announced the new bishop and it's our high council representative, Hermano Laugenour! which is amazing. he's been bishop before, and in the stake presidency, and he's been a part of the ward and ward council and has seen everything. he literally got straight to work right after sacrament meeting. pretty much all of the auxiliary leaders have been replaced in the past few weeks, and I can definitely tell that his leadership is going to help the ward so much. he has already made plans to meet with the mission president and with us this week (he said he would cancel anything if he had to). sis laugenour has already adopted us and made plans to go hiking next pday, she is so sweet! she doesn't understand a word of spanish but hopefully we can help her a bit.

Hopefully I'll get to stay here past the transfer, I might get transferred just to alleviate the trio buuuut i reallydon'twanttoleavenow. only if my visa comes. the last thing I need is get attached to more people here before I leave, it's getting really bad. At least I can come visit when I get home! As far as everything else that happened this week...I got sick again (yay) (which is also really weird, I've gotten sick more times in the past three months than in the past two years. WHY). but I'm doing fine, it's just a cold so far. we picked up a couple of new investigators so hopefully they are interested! AND WILL COME TO CHURCH :)