Saturday, November 26, 2016

Week 42 - Calgary


Alright so like always I will jump right into it! So it is getting SUPER cold here now!!! And right now it has only gotten to -6 so I just can not wait for -30 or -40! haha just kidding so crazy. So last Tuesday I got pretty sick, maybe from the cold. I got some kind of flu I think, I was super weak and my body ached and pretty bad stomach and head ache. So I was in bed all morning and tried to work in the afternoon but it didn't really workout so I had a good amount of time that I thought about y'all and just home in general and all the sweet, loving, and awesome memories we have. I really had such an amazing childhood because of you mom and dad, for basing our house and life on the gospel and sacrificing things to do things in the church and help people and really love the gospel. I owe everything to y'all and really can't repay what y'all have given me. So I thought about all of this a lot while I was sick and also all the amazing miracles I have seen and lived throughout my mission and how everyday I am able to feel the Spirit so strongly. So then I got out of bed an knelt down and said a long prayer of gratitude for my mission and for y'all and for the gospel. It was so amazing. As I was praying this thought really sunk deep into my mind. From what I have seen in my life I have learned that the greatest miracle of all is the change that the gospel of Jesus Christ brings to someone's life according to their faith in living it. Living the gospel is such a sweet and great everlasting joy. That night I still wasn't feeling a lot better so Elder Ibañez asked if I wanted a priesthood blessing and I said sure. So Elder Tate and Elder Ibañez gave me the blessing and I really felt the Spirit and I know I received counsel from Heavenly Father. It was so cool. He said that my future family will be blessed for the decisions I make everyday to be serving here and that I am learning so many important things here that will help my future family. It was Elder Tates first time giving a blessing in Spanish and it was so good. He also said that I will be healed when I raise up in the morning. I was! That morning I woke up and felt great and was healed. So crazy and awesome. Then that night we had another lesson with Carmen and Jorge(from Venezuela) and Carmen's daughter was there too, Omaira. Omaira is pregnant with her second child and their family is super sweet. We brought Hermana Wichita Ferro with us to the lesson, she is the relief society president and is such a strong, faithful, and fun member in the church. We taught them all the Plan of Salvation and the lesson could not have gone better. At the end we shared 2 Nefi 31:3-"Porque mi alma se deleita en la claridad; porque así es como el Señor Dios obra entre los hijos de los hombres. Porque el Señor Dios ilumina el entendimiento; pues él habla a los hombres de acuerdo con el idioma de ellos, para que entiendan." We shared this because Carmen and Jorge have been going to the Evergreen English Ward because they want to learn English and also that chapel is a lot closer to their house. They really can't understand a thing in English right now though so we read that scripture and invited them to the Spanish branch but then of course they say they would much rather learn English. Then Hermana Ferro threw down on them and shared her experiences with coming here to Canada and trying to go to the English wards to learn English but it just didn't work. It's harder when you are older and you can feel the Spirit way stronger when you hear and listen to it in your own tongue. After we invited them again to the Spanish branch after reading the scripture again and they all said yes! Then we invited them to be baptized on Diciembre 17 and they all said yes! It was so funny and cool because right after the question Jorge was like "well I have already been baptized twice, three times won't hurt" Jorge is so cool. Then Carmen and Omaira say yes they want to be baptized and explain why and it really is so simple. Carmen just said "well if the church is restored and if we want to follow Jesus Christ and be clean from sin then why not?" We were all so happy and they all are so ready for baptism. It is such a fulfilling feeling to see people have faith and accept to prepare for baptism. We meet with them again this Tuesday and Wednesday. I am so excited! BUT we get transfer calls this Tuesday! AGH!! I really do not want to leave but now Elder Tate and I are finished training Elder Ibanez and we have been in the branch since the beginning of our missions so we will just see what happens. In the end though I know I will be happy wherever I go because I know that will be where the Lord wants me to be. I will let y'all know what happens next week and I really love and miss y'all and hope y'all have an awesome Thanksgiving with all our family at our house!! Looking forward to seeing pics!

District Missionaries

Hermana Amaller with Mama Lola

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Week 41 - Calgary

Estoy aqui de regreso! Yo he tenido muchas experiencias espirituales esta semana :) (No subject) 

Alright so I am going to jump right into it!  So I will tell 2 quick but incredible stories about following the promptings that you get from the Holy Ghost. They both happened yesterday and it really is so cool how many miracles there are each day if you just following the Spirit and trust Him. So Saturday night as we were nightly planning we remembered that Sister Linares invited us to go to their primary program because her husband would come. He is kind of less active. Our church starts at 9:00 and theirs starts at 11:00 so we were trying to decide if we should go or not because it is far away in Cranston and Rene was able to come to church. So we ended up deciding to stay and then that night in my personal prayer I had the feeling that we should go and support Sister Linares and see Hermano Linares. So after sacrament meeting we went and got to see the primary program and it was probably one of the best decisions I have made in my life! It was sooooooo crazy and different being there at church and everyone is white and it is all English and there were sooo many kids! Haha and it was cool because the design of the chapel was just like ours. So we watch the program and of course it is super funny at points when the kids speak and some of them are dancing and stuff but you still feel the Spirit and the love that Heavenly Father has for them. At the end the primary president shares her testimony and it was really strong and then the story about one of the primary kids whose name is Ethan and he is 7 years old and super smart and just an amazing primary kid. But just a month and a half ago he got hit by a car and is now paralyzed and when he talks now he speaks super slowly and it is all drawn out really long. So when he was in the hospital all the primary kids fasted and prayed for one day and then the next day Ethan was out of the hospital! So amazing and the primary president really testified of miracles and of prayer and fasting and how special children are in the eyes of the Lord and how powerful the Atonement of Jesus Christ is and His love for us. Then after she testified Ethan came up and recited John 3:16 and the Spirit really penetrated my heart as he spoke the words so slowly and drawn out and was looking at all of us. I started to cry and so did Elder Ibanez. It was sooo powerful. Then all the kids sand the last song called "The Miracle." After the program Sister Linares thanked us so much for coming and then she introduced us to 2 Spanish families! We got both of their numbers because their grandparents live here and dont know English. So we are setting up for them to come to church with some of the members from our Spanish branch! So awesome. So that is just one story and now I will try to tell this one faster.

Last night we still had not gotten to do language study and do our 12 week training study we do with Elder Ibanez and President Miles said we really got to do it. Then Elder Ibanez says I feel like we really got to go to the Hermanas ESL class and Elder Tate and I were like no way, why?? And he just said I dont know I just have a feeling that we should. We said we have to study and do 12 week. Then about 20 minutes later he says it again and so Elder Tate tells me "remember what President said? if your trainee has a prompting or an idea, you should probably follow it." So we go to the Hermanas ESL class and our new investigators Carmen, Jorge, and Luis were there!!! Then Hermana Amaller says "oh my gosh! I was just about to text you guys to tell y'all that you should come!" So crazy right? So each of us taught them English one on one and towards the end I noticed that every single one of us were talking about the gospel with them! It was so cool. After the class was over and they left each of us talked about what we talked about with them and wow it could not have been better. This Wednesday we meet with them again and we are so pumped and excited. They are so ready to receive the gospel! So this week I have learned more clearly how important it is to follow the promptings you get from the Holy Ghost and also you have to be living your life centered on Christ and His gospel so that you are worthy to always have the Holy Ghost to be with you as your constant companion. It really is such an incredible gift that I am so grateful for and just want to share. The joy that comes from feeling the love of Christ and the Holy Ghost really drives you to share it with others. As your understanding of the Atonement of Jesus Christ grows, your desire to share the gospel and the love of Christ will grow and you will do it and you will do it very well because you will have the Holy Ghost with you.

Alright I don't have much more time but I want to say I love y'all and I hope y'all have an awesome week and remember to follow the promptings you get from the Holy Ghost and do what you got to do to receive them! Live the gospel! Alright time to send some pics :))

Trump and Hillary

I got a bunny... Chrissy!

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Week 40 - Calgary

Ya es Lunes de nuevo. COMO!?! :D

Another amazing and super fun week!! So I will try to do this as fast as I can because we have a lunch to go to. Here we go! We had exchanges this week with the zone leaders, Elder Ibañez went with Elder Pugh and Elder Forsyth came here with Elder Tate and I. Elder Forsyth is hilarious because he took Spanish in high school and actually paid attention so he can say just a couple of things but during companionship study while we were practicing teaching he just listened to us speak Spanish and at the end he tried to speak the little Spanish he knows and he said this "Sé Libro de Mormon es bueno. Hermano (pointing to me) y Hermano (pointing to Elder Tate) ... es Dios." Then Elder Tate and I start cracking up because it kinda sounded like he said that we were God. Elder Forsyth is awesome haha. And what's great about him is that he is super obedient but still has a lot of fun. We prayed during the day a ton when he was here and we ended up finding 2 potential investigators! One guy from Guatemala and one from Venezuela. It really is amazing how if you just really believe in the things you know and do them, it actually works!! Like prayer.

I loved that talk by Elder Bednar this past general conference about the four steps to actually get to know the Savior. I think believing is the most important one. We know that prayer is super important but yet some of us don't really pray too often. It's because some of us don't truly believe that it works wonders and how incredible it is so we kind of forget to do it. Elder Bednar and Elder Forsyth helped me realize that. Prayer works!! So we have been praying much more often now. Also while we were on exchanges Geomaira called us and said she is super busy now with her new job that we helped her get and busy with the kids and everything so she said we can't meet until maybe next month. Same sort of thing happened with René, after his baptism he started working for the job that we helped him get so now we are only able to meet with him like once every 2 weeks. And he has only been to church 3 times since because of work so maybe we should stop trying to get people jobs! Haha no I'm kidding. Work is pretty important especially right now because there has been a bit of a recession here in Calgary and it's super hard to find and get a job and a lot of people get laid off. Anyways if we put God first in all things and apply His teachings and live His gospel that we know to be true and actually believe that the miracles will happen and the blessings will come then will find a higher level of happiness in our lives because we will be closer to our Savior Jesus Christ.

Agh I'm already running out of time so here's the rest, we found 2 new investigators this week. They are an old couple from Colombia. They are Catholic. They loved the Restoration lesson we shared and thought the story of José Smith was super cool. The story of Joseph Smith really is so amazing. It's always such an awesome experience sharing the first vision to someone for the first time and then the Book of Mormon and testifying that if you read and study the Book of Mormon and pray and know it is true then you know that Joseph Smith is the prophet of the restoration and that he translated it by the gift and power of God. I love it. So yeah they are super sweet and they committed to read and pray about the Book of Mormon. Also this week I had the opportunity to do another baptismal interview for this family from Colombia! It's so cool being the only district leader in the Spanish program because I get to do all the baptismal interviews and see these people commit to baptism and really following Jesus Christ and be a member of His church. I love it and sometimes it hits me that yo puedo hablar Español!! Todavía no puedo hablar con fluidez pero estoy mejorando cada día, poco a poco. So now here are a couple funny stories. I forgot to tell y'all last week that for Halloween we "ding dong ditched" President and Sister Miles house (the mission home) and left them pumpkin chocolate chip cookies we made! It was super fun and Sister Miles sent us a text "Elders!!! Gracias por las galletas deliciosas!" Then we send, "No problema Hermana Miles, que tenga una buena semana!" Sister Miles, "Ok I'm not quite sure what you said-haha" Us, "No problem Sister Miles, have a good week :)" Sister Miles, "You too. Keep up the great work!!" I really love President and Sister Miles. They are so loving and awesome. They definitely are an example for me and have taught me so much on my mission and am so happy that I will have them for the rest of my mission. Alright I have a couple more funny stories but I will tell them when I send photos!! Also I got the Halloween package y'all sent me!!! It was soooo cool! Yall always send the best packages out of everyone! My companions loved it too :) I love y'all so much. Yall are the best! 

Thanks for the Halloween Masks mom!


Chapel in Calgary

Mission Meeting

They got it all wrong here...

We didn't even know we had a cat
until we found this one under Elder Tate's bed...

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Week 39 - Calgary

Me encanta mi mision!!!

Alright so I have 3 stories to tell! The first happened last Tuesday! (What!? It's already been that long?? Its already Halloween? Time goes by in a blink of an eye) So we taught this guy named Sean with the STLs (Sister training leaders) and it was super weird teaching in English but cool. So he is the STLs investigator. Anyways we met him at Rene's baptism and we got to talk with him for a while after the baptism. He has been investigating the church for 8 years!! Like almost fully investigating for 8 years and knows a ton about the church. He is Jewish and loves religion. He is super cool. So Elder Ibañez really connected with him while we were talking with him at the baptism and he said some things that really made Sean think. Also Elder Tate and I bore our testimonies of the Book of Mormon and how living the gospel and being a member of the church has changed our lives. It was really awesome. So the next day the STLs text us and say that Sean really wants to see Elder Ibañez again because he caused him to really think about being baptized and how receiving a testimony works. So finally last Tuesday we got to have a lesson with him and the STLs and the lesson was super deep and cool. We taught the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and what's funny is that the last time, Sean actually taught the STLs the lesson. So yeah and he knows a lot about history and random things but anyways it was a super spiritual lesson and I think each one of us said something that really caused him to think and to feel the Spirit. We shared with him Doctrine and Covenants 6:22-23 and 8:2-3 and when we did he realized that he really feels the Spirit by him making connections with how the gospel works in his mind and the peace that he feels. It was super sweet and then he said I think I have progressed more towards baptism these past couple of months than I have in 8 years! That was so cool to hear. He goes to all the YSA stuff and I think he's like 28 years old. I really believe he will be baptized soon. Also it was super cool to listen him talk about how Jews view Jesus Christ and Christians and it really opened my mind even more. I really do respect and think other religions are super cool. After my mission I would love to learn more about every religion and how it all came to be and how they all think and believe and what they do. So yeah then after the lesson we had to go get "the miracle stick" (a stick that each companionship in our zone writes a miracle on, really cool) from the STLs pad and as we were going to leave I was going to say one more thing to the STLs but I accidentally slung open the door and hit this dudes van.... and he had just gotten home and was getting out of his car. He had quite a few choice words to say. He was fuming and I felt sooooo soo bad and was anger with myself. It scratched off a little amount of paint. He didn't even look at it and then walked off. It was so weird and we had to wait there but then about 10 mins later he comes back with a flashlight and looks at it and says some more choice words and tells me to be careful and walks away. Then we waited to see if he would come back but he didn't and we left our number there and drove off. He never called us back so it was all good. But as we were driving back home that night I felt like really mad at myself and bad for that guy. It's like why did that have to happen? We just had such a nice lesson and then this has to happen? Why did I have to ruin that guys night? Then I took some deep breathes and said a quick prayer and then started to realize that with every small and or big problem or mess up or mistake we make, there is always something to learn from it. We shouldn't get mad or sad or frustrated about it. It's how life works. Obviously we should not choose to mess up but when we do we can always learn from it. What I learned is that the gospel really does bring peace in these kinds of situations. If someone were to hit my car after I had a bad day, what would I do and how would I react? The thing is you can always have a good day, it's your choice, and if I chose to have a good day then I would react differently to someone hitting my car. I would probably be a lot nicer to the person and of course be a little frustrated but it would be different. I would be more thoughtful and ready to deal with the problem. So as I was thinking about all this on the drive home I thought of how much the gospel of Jesus Christ changes you. If you live a Christlike life then everyday will be a good day and you will make all of your problems easier to solve because you will be stronger and smarter. No matter what the problem is there is such a peaceful and happy feeling you have when you are living the gospel of Jesus Christ. This feeling is the Holy Ghost. I love it and I just realized I am running out of time again. It's so crazy how time just goes by!!!

This week we said goodbye to Miguel Pompa, well now Elder Pompa, as he was packing up to leave on his mission to Argentina and all the memories of me packing up and leaving flooded into my mind. But then I thought, I have been out here for 9 months and it seems like last week I said goodbye to all of y'all!!! Before I know it I will be coming to the end of my mission. Even just the thought of that makes me a little sad because I would love to just stay out here forever serving God and the people here. It is so amazing and I am learning so much everyday. I always find myself wanting to tell y'all like 5 stories and miracles but then I run out time haha that's ok though. Just know that I'm loving it out here and doing my best and have grown so much closer to Jesus Christ and my desire to serve has increased a ton and also my desire to be obedient. Over the course of my mission I have learned more and more of how much Heavenly Father loves us. He has given us our life. He has given us our freedom to choose. He has given us commandments. He has given us everything. Most of all He has given us the gift of His Holy Beloved Son Jesus Christ. We should show our love to Him by choosing to follow Him and obey His commandments. As we do we start to get an idea of how God works and how much He really loves us. We are His children and we are brothers and sisters so let's be kind to each other and love one another. Every person you see or come into contact with this week, think of the Atonement of Christ and how each of us have that same connection with Christ and our Heavenly Father. We are family. We have the same goal to be happy, so live the gospel and take your commitment to live a Christ like life to another level and do not let little or even big problems overwhelm or get you down. If you are living the gospel you will have the strength of the Lord. :) Well now it's time to send some pics. I have a lot!!! We went hiking this morning and it was incredible!!!!! I love y'all and hope y'all have a fun and awesome HALLOWEEN!! (My favorite holiday other than Christmas, I'm gonna miss being with y'all tonight)

Nice aftermarket . . fin?

Awesome Hermanas

You will be obedient. . .

Christmas tree up already.