Saturday, November 30, 2013

Sister Betti!

No one can pronounce my name here.  I try to say it really slow and pronounce all the syllables, but they still have difficulty.  I think I'll just go by Sister Betti.  :)

Friday, November 29, 2013

My English and Spanish Don't Mix!

Last Sunday, during the Spanish Ward, I had to do English translation during sacrament meeting.  It was super hard, but super fun!  I learned that in my mind, English and Spanish simply don't mix.  I was trying to listen to what was said in Spanish so I could translate it in English, but then I would find myself just repeating what was said in Spanish.  I somehow managed to get the message of the talk across and the English-speaking members understood it and even felt the spirit!  Apparently, I look like the Ward Mission Leader's daughter.  Everyone was telling me that yesterday.  It was so funny!  I don't think we look alike, but apparently everyone else did!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy People!

My "new" area is SO different than the last two areas I've been in!  We are surrounded completely by tourist destinations.  Most of the people living here work for resorts or hotels.  There is a lot more Spanish and it is a lower economic area.  That is okay though, the people seem so happy here.  We are in two wards, a Spanish one that meets in a tiny chapel in one city, and an English one - which meets in another.  We didn't get to go to the English Ward last Sunday, so I have yet to meet anyone there.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Well Established "Old" Area!

My new area is the oldest of all the areas I've served in!  It's already very established, the members are fantastic and absolutely LOVE the missionaries!  We get fed multiple times almost EVERY day! :P  I really am going to gain SO much weight :( but it's all good, I'll just have to lose it all when I get back.  No need to worry about us not having anywhere for Thanksgiving.  I believe we are up to 7 meal appointments on Thursday with members, investigators, and others.  We are currently working with a lot of people.

Monday, November 25, 2013

New Surroundings!

So....I got transferred!  I am no longer training, but I am still senior companion - although it doesn't feel like it since I don't know anyone here!  But I'll get the hang of it some day!  So much has happened this week, I don't even know where to start! First off, my new companion is awesome.  She is from everywhere in the U.S. - most currently St. George, Utah.  She went to BYU before her mission.  Whereas my last companion was really short, she is really tall.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Final Highlights In This Area!

Among the highlights of this week:
I learned how to make Samoan pancakes from a fellow sister missionary in our house.
We helped out with an activity with the Spanish Ward.  It was super fun and I taught the little kids how to play that game "colored eggs" we used to play at the babysitter's house
We got delicious cupcakes from a ward member who recently got a job at a bakery.  Among the flavors were dark chocolate strawberry, almond joy, pumpkin, carrot cake, and blueberry.  They were delicious!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Really Flourishing!

This area of South Texas is really flourishing.  It's amazing because when I started out here, it hadn't baptized in almost a year.  I'm super happy about where it is, and sad I don't get to see it grow even more. 

Thursday, November 21, 2013

We Have a Message For You!

We met this wonderful lady!  We went and knocked on her door.  We asked her how a message about Jesus Christ could help her.  She opened right up and told us about a vacancy that she's felt in her life.  We taught to her needs, told her about the Book of Mormon (which she eagerly accepted), and invited her to be baptized.  She now has a baptismal date!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Close to Hitting Our Goals!

This week, we came super close to hitting all of our goals!  It's been a fantastic week. We've worked hard and we had three of our investigators with a Baptismal date come to church!  Yay!  It was a very successful Sunday!  One investigator is progressing well and is scheduled to be baptized during this next week.  Unfortunately, I will be gone by that time :(  She is fantastic and is so prepared!  The members already love her and want to help her out in whatever way they can.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Goodbye... I'm Being Transferred.

The zone leaders told us yesterday before church that I am finally leaving this area :'(  I have really enjoyed this area.  I will be going back to an island. Apparently they speak a lot of Spanish there.
So I wasn't going to tell anyone that I was being transferred because it's a huge distraction, so I just went around at church like normal, focusing on the investigators and what still has to be done before I leave.  However, I was invited to play the piano for the Spanish Bishop's daughter's baptism after church.  After the baptismal service, the ward mission leader (the girl's grandpa), went up to the pulpit and announced in front of everyone that I was leaving and how much I'd be missed.  It was sweet, but super embarrassing haha.  But it gave me a chance to say goodbye to many of the wonderful people I've met. 
When I said good-bye to the two sisters that were baptized, they were crying.  I told them that they can come visit me in Salt Lake next summer.  They're totally planning on it.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Oh, I'm Sorry!...I Bled On Your Porch!

Whenever we are outside, we get eaten by mosquitoes.  Being a missionary has taught me that they like to bite right on the veins where it bleeds the most.  So we went to contact these people in this nice neighborhood at this super big house.  We had a nice chat with them - completely in Spanish! - and we got ready to leave.  All of the sudden my companion starts apologizing - a lot.  She had scratched off a scab where a mosquito had bitten her a little too soon.  Her foot was bleeding a ton!  It had dripped down into her shoe which had some holes in it.  She ended up leaving a nice puddle of blood on their porch right by the door.  We had a good laugh about it!

Primary Kids Are Adorable!

Last Sunday was the Spanish Ward's Primary Program.  It was adorable to say the least!

Saturday, November 16, 2013

How to Kill a Cockroach!

Other highlights of the week include the decapitation of a cockroach with a dish soap bottle.  So we get home, turn on the light, and there is a giant cockroach on the wall.  My companion immediately goes and grabs the skillet, and all Rapunzel-like, she starts trying to use it to hit the cockroach.  She managed to take of a leg as it ran over by the sink.  That's where I came in with the Dawn bottle.  Just so y'all know: Dish soap bottles kill cockroaches!  We took of it's head.  The grossest part was both parts kept moving for like the next half an hour :P

Many to Teach, Part 4

Some of our investigators wanted us to meet their friend.   We had three churches represented in the room, so we began very cordially talking about a belief we could all share - Jesus Christ.  Soon, we transitioned into the Restoration lesson.  I don't think I have ever taught that lesson with such conviction as I did last night.  We tried our hardest to follow the spirit, teach in unison, and teach to their needs.  We committed them all to read the Book of Mormon.  We have a return appointment with their friend, and another appointment with the rest of the family after they read the Book of Mormon.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Many to Teach, Part 3

We are also teaching a super fun family!  We taught them a great "How the Gospel Blesses Families" lesson.  It was super fun, we laughed a lot, but it was also very spiritual.  We are really focused on their needs.  My companion and I are working in unity.  We have had some very amazing and powerful lessons in the last few days.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Many to Teach, Part 2

At church, we had a investigator - who we have been working with on and off since I got to this area -  show up --- without any push from us!!!!! That made us so excited!  We were super excited and surprised to see her!  She brought other family members with her..

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Many to Teach, Part 1

Last week was full of appointments. We have been blessed with lots of people to teach!
We are teaching this wonderfully, wonderful investigator.  She is so prepared to receive the gospel and is preparing herself for baptism.  I ask for all your prayers, that things stay on track for her baptism.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

There Is No Other Way!

In District and Zone Meetings this week, we learned about the importance of the basic principles of the gospel.  We can never stop learning about the first principles: Faith, Repentance, Baptism, Gift of the Holy Ghost, and Enduring to the End.  The more I learn about them, the more I realize the importance of missionary work. If we don't do these things, we cannot reach our highest potential.  Missionary work is so important because it provides a way for people to return to live with Heavenly Father.  There is no other way.

Visiting Teaching is Practically Missionary Work!

In Relief Society in the Spanish Ward, they had this huge presentation about Visiting Teaching.  Visiting Teaching is super important because it practically is missionary work!  They gave some tips that I think Mom would like since she's Relief Society President!

- Pray daily for the sister and her family
- Seek for inspiration to help you get to know the sister and her family
- Visit her regularly to see how she is doing and to comfort and strengthen her in time of need.
- Maintain frequent contact with her through visits, phone calls, cards, e-mail, texts, or little acts of service
- Greet her during church meetings
- Help her when she has an emergency, is sick, or has another urgent need
- Teach her the gospel through the scriptures or through the visiting teaching messages
- Inspire her by your good example

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Angel Moroni Pumpkin!

On Halloween, we had to be in by 6:30 p.m., so our zone got permission to celebrate by carving pumpkins!  So first, we had to buy the pumpkins.  I don't know if any of you knows this, but buying pumpkins on Halloween is
hard.  We were able to buy a small one, but on the way home, we found a family selling a truck load of good pumpkins for $5!  We were stopped at a stoplight and my companion asked out the window, "How much are your pumpkins?"  Then we pulled over and bought one.  It was super fun! 

We carved Angel Moroni in ours.  We figured, we're only on the mission once on Halloween, so we might as well make pumpkin carving spiritual!  We then cleaned off the pumpkin seeds, covered them in cinnamon sugar, cooked them up, then, of course, ate them!  They were a hit!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Praying for Direction From God!

We found some solid new investigators this week, all of which have baptismal dates.  They all have great desires to act, and they are all willing and ready to learn.  We now have more investigators than we've found in a long time!
One of the investigators told us that the night before she met us, she had been praying to know which direction God wanted her to go.  Then, we showed up.  She is looking for the right church.  We taught her the Restoration.  She is so willing!  I love it!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Lofty Goal!

Well, what can I say?  This week was super fun and full of miracles!!!!
The mission made a goal to baptize 110 people this month.  It's more than we've baptized this entire year!  Every zone needs to do their part to hit this goal and since my zone is the smallest, it means that everyone in this zone needs to hit their goals.  It's quite lofty, but we have already seen so many miracles!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

It Can Be Done!

We have been working with an individual who is working on giving up alcohol.  It's been a roller-coaster process, to say the least.  So many times when we have gone over, he is just in despair, thinking he can never do it.  We give him encouragement, and he always responds with his fist in the air saying, "Sí, se puede!"  Which means, "It can be done!"  It makes us laugh every time.