Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Caminando, Caminando, Caminando...

Sometimes I feel Like I walk for eterntiy and for hours. We have been contacing more and more people that are further away from the central part of San Cristobal... so we walk for quite a long time somedays. But it is the Lords work and we are finding more and more people in the outskirts!

This week we had iinterviews with Presidente Smith and his wife. So that was nice to get to know them better! But each interview was 45 minutes long! In my interview with him he told me taht I need to speak 30 minutes every day to Hermana Pena in english. WHich is seriously so hard! I start all of my sentances in Spanish, then realize that I am supposed to be speaking in English, so then have to switch mid sentance. It is really funny to hear and so hard! I have only been out for 2 months! I guess that is waht happens when you only speak Spanish all day!

One Month in San Cris
Thursday or Friday.. i think marked my one month of being here in San Cristobal and becuase of this HErmana Pena gave me the phone, keys, and leadership in guiding our daily and weekly planning sessions. I was fine with everything but the phone... becuase it si 10 times harder to understand people! But hey it is what it is and i am trying! But Saturday night we were out on our way to a lesson and Hermana Pena had to use the bathroom. And since I had the phone I had to call a member who lived close to where we were and see if they were home so she could use the bathroom. Long story short I called the wrong person.. because there are two Hermana Raquels in our phone and i called the one that we dont know very well and told her that Hermana Pena had to go pee hahahaha.... ooops!

Corro en Sacramental
All the missionaries in my ward, there are 6 of us, had the special musical number in sacrament meeting. And so we sang A child's prayer, the first verse in english and the second in spanish. It was so funny though becuase everyone was just so intrigued that we sang in English. And afterwards i got asked to teach a class this week in English. So we will see if that actually happens. But it wil be interesting considering the fact that I dont know how to teach english... oh well. I do help a lot of the kids here with there English homework!

We started teaching a mom and daughter this week. Josefina and juliana and extended a baptismal committment to them. They said that they would pray and if it is gods will for them that they would. Literally as soon as we finsihed talking and extending the committment, there was a knock on the door and guess who it was... a pastor! Oh the devil really is trying to stop this work from going forth. But they said taht they would pray about it and i know that the Lord answers prayers!

Raquel Navarro is 18 years old and is a member here who loves to go out and contact with us and teach lessons. She loves to talk but is really fun to have around because we are always joking and laughing. Anyway she has a 2 year old daughter and this week I found out that she changed her daughters name to.... Ashley Alejandra TALAITUPU! To say i was shocked would be an understatement! But they will definitely people that i will never forget!

I continue to grow everyday here and love being a missionary. There is no better work then this! The spirit is so strong and seeing the Spirit work within the people here is amazing! I would encourgage all of you if you are not reading the Book of Mormon everyday to start! There is so much knowledge for use to obtain and so many things for us to learn. Read and pray everyday! Your testimony will grow so strong and fast! I have already learned so much. Personal Study is something that I look forward to every day!

A quote that I liked but am not sure who said it.

"All that the devil needs, is for a good man to do nothing"

Let us not sit by while there are people all around us who the Lord has prepared to receive the gospel!

Le amo Mucho!

Hermana Loo

Megumi! She is crazy and calls me "Loca Loo".
But she always makes me smile and laugh.
This is what native Guatemalan women wear too!
Hermana Raquel... she named her daughter after me
Getting artsy with the walking pics...
because sometimes we walks for what seems like eternity! 
Ashley ALejandra Talaitupu ... hahaha 
2. Noche de Hogar (family Home Evening) with the ward.
It was really fun even if I did have to do the chicken dance
 in front of everyone because I lost one of the games ... hahaha

Monday, August 18, 2014

Hablando en Español solo

This week i have really tried to focus on speaking only in Spanish. Even when i am around the other Nortes in my zone. Hermana Peña always scolds me when i speak in English which is good. Because that is not my mission language!

Temple with la familia Sapon
On Thursday we got to go to the temple with one of our investigator families, this is the family of emmanuel who was baptized last Saturday. It was really special and the spirit was so strong. we watched the Restoration video which i always love! I could also tell that the Sapon family really felt the spirit strongly and know that they want to enter into the temple to be sealed for eternity. Now if we can only get them over the fear of their dad/grandpa

I have really come to appreciate Joseph Smith and the first members of the church. What wonderful strength and faith they had in the Lord and trusting that in His time He would deliver them! May we all strive to have that same faith in our Lord and trust that when the time is right for him, not us, He will deliver!

Familia Juarez Mejia
Well we had everything set up for two of their kids to be baptized this Saturday. but because they are young we needed the permission from their parents. And we had gotten it from their mom but we wanted to have permission from both so we still needed it from the dad. But unfortunately he was really angry with his family this week for whatever reason. So when the kids asked him he said no and that was the end of that discussion. So we are hoping that the kids do a better job of listening and we can get them baptized on Saturday!

Menos Activos
We are doing a lot of work in trying to retain! Retain! Retain! and trying to get the members more and more involved with this work. Because as we read in Preach My Gospel every new member needs a friend, a calling, and to be spiritually fed! And the members are willing to help! So hopefully we get more less actives to church on Sunday! Because the fruits of our labors as missionaries don't really mean much if the fruit isn't permanent!

I said a prayer in English this week out loud because Hermana Peña wanted to learn the prayer language in English. And it was seriously so hard! because i usually only pray in English in my head! half my sentences i am pretty sure made no sense and some of my words just came out in Spanish! but hey i guess that is a good sign that i am learning!

Can i just say how much i miss food! Like real food! especially mom´s cooking! ugh! I feel like i am never full because i never actually get real food. Only cereal, oatmeal, and bread. hahaha but a small sacrifice that i am willing to make for the time that i am out here. 

Something else that I have really gotten used to is having people hug me all the time, or want to hold my hand. especially our families with young children. They are always hanging on me. So that is something that I have really gotten used to.. cant say that I like it... but have gotten used to it hahaha.

Also just want to say that everyone should be thankful for the education that we receive and for the opportunity that we have to attend good schools and go to college. There are a lot of kids here who don't get a good education. That don't really know how to do simple math or read. There is a thirteen year old girl hear who is just beginning to learn how to read. so no matter how much you hate school and homework be grateful!

A couple of quotes that I really liked and have helped me throughout the week:

¨Your progress begins at the end of your comfort zone¨ (know that you are going to like this one dad haha)

¨Your example isn´t the best way to influence others, it´s the ONLY way!¨

¨Do your duty, that is best, leave unto the Lord the rest¨ - President Monson

Love you all so much and thank you for your constant examples, love, and prayers!

Strive to live in a way that when we return to our loving Heaving Father and he asks us what we have done with his name we can reply and say that we were worthy holders and representatives!

Love you all!
Hermana Loo
Hna Raquel.
She always likes to come with us during the day to teach
and loves to talk! And is always making jokes with me which is really fun 
Familia Garcia.
Just one of the families that we visit that are less active.
But their kids are always hanging on me!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

2 Months!

Can you believe that I have already been out for two months! I cannot! Time has really just flown by so quickly! ugh.. Where did it go?

I will admit thought that this week was rough. I struggled with Spanish and was so afraid and timid to talk. Which was frustrating. But I know that those feelings were from Satan and so this week I am determined to speak 10 times more. Putting my faith and trust in the Lord and knowing that He will help me!

Saturday I had my very first baptism of my mission! Which really helped to brighten my week! Emmanuel is his name and he is 10 years old. But has such a strong testimony of the gospel and is so quick to accept our teachings and keep the commandments of God. Seriously though I wish you guys could meet this kid, he is amazing! If you could have heard his answers to the baptismal questions, he was quoting scriptures and I was blown away. He talked about God being the same yesterday, today, and forever. So why not have prophets on the earth today! OH my... his spirit is just so strong. And when he received the Holy Ghost he was just grinning from ear to ear. Anyone who says something or does something that we as members do not do, he straight up tells them oh I cant do that because I am Mormon. Even before he was baptized! He loves this church and tells everyone that he is a member. I have learned so much from him.

As you can see from some of the pictures I sent, we also had some challenges getting ready for his baptism on Saturday. And I know that that was because of Satan. He was trying really hard to stop this baptism from happening. But we persevered! We got to the church and there was no water! Anywhere, the bathrooms too! But we called a water company and they brought water in one of those huge tanks, so then we filled the font through a window. And then the water was freezing, and then the spouts or whatever in the font once it was all full. Spit out some nasty things. So the water was dirty. But Emmanuel didn’t care! I know that he is going to be a great member of this church and one day a great missionary! He already refers to himself sometimes as elder Aguilar and wont tell people his first name because missionaries don’t do that. Hahaha seriously he is so amazing!

I went on exchanges this week with the sister leaders. So my companion for the day was Hermana Estrada. Funny because I had an instructor in the CCM who was Hermana Estrada as well. And they know each other! Hahaha. But my area for the day was Momostenango. And it is really pretty as well but I love San Cristobal so I missed being there! Also the fact that I had to sleep in somebodyels bed and that they were sleeping in mine was really freeaking me out. And so I didn’t really sleep well that day. But I did learn a lot from Hermana Estrada. She is amazing and I can see why she is a leader. 

Hermana Peña told me this week that I also talk in my sleep sometimes, and 90 percent of the time it is in Spanish! Which made me really happy! Although I was frustrated this week with Spanish it is coming slowly but surely.

New place of the week
I have already told you of all the place people think that I am from which is always funny to hear. And this week I had someone ask me if I was from France. Which was new and something that I have never gotten before but was funny to hear.

Investigator Update
We also found a new family this week that is always willing to hear and to listen to our message and they accepted a baptismal date for the end of this month if they find out for themselves that this gospel is true. Which I know they will if they ask and pray with real intent.

Although I thought that we were going to have 7 baptisms this week we only had one. But the good news is that they are still interested in learning more. They just each have their own challenges. So please pray for the following

Guisella and Brizna, they are the mom and sister of Emmanuel. But they are scared to get baptized because their dad or grandpa is a pastor in a different church and they are afraid that if they get baptized the dad/grandpa will run them out of the house. Because they live with him. So please pray for them to put their faith in the Lord and trust that through him all things are possible!

Sandra, Fernanda, and Sebastian. Pray that their parents will give them permission to be baptized and also have a desire to learn more about the church.

Oscar Garcia. Just that him and his family will continue to come to church, they are less active, and that he will have a desire to learn more about the church and be baptized. He just turned eight so we are working with him and well as his parents so that his dad can baptize him.

We did a service project this week and so we had to wake up at 5, which was just so early I almost cried hahaha but not really. But I spent an hour of my life painting the trunks of trees white. Why you may ask? I have no idea. Because to me trees are perfectly beautiful the way they are. But apparently they do that here in Central America. Someone asked me during the project if we do that in Oregon... umm no not really. Plus there are to many trees to even begin doing that. 

P-day Hike
Also for Pday today we went to a lagoon and hike to a waterfall. Although their was no trail to the waterfall. SO we literally climbed up a side of a mountain. And then eventually found a trail. But that was definitely an adventure!

Love you guys all so much and think and pray for you always! It is such a blessing to be a missionary and representative of my savior and redeemer, Jesus Christ

Le amo mucho!

Hermana Loo
This is what happens when the church decides to have no water on the day of a baptism.
You call a water company and they bring you water and through the window you fill up the font ahha 

Baptism on Saturday!
This is emmanuel he is 10 yrs old and already has such a strong testimony of the church!
He is amazing and tells everyone he talks to that he is Mormon 

Elder peña he baptized emmanuel
The Hermanas in my zone today during Pday.
We went to a lagoon and then hiked to a waterfall
Hermana Palomion, yo, Hermana Peña, and Hermana Marcheschi

Photo from the top of the waterfall!
Badges of all the elders and hermanas in my zone
Guats Up!  Waterfall
The hike to the waterfall...

Monday, August 4, 2014

Hola! Hola!

So... you wanted to here a little bit more about my area. I sent pics so hopefully you can understand a little bit more from those.

San Cristobal is gorgeous. Lots of trees and green hills which reminds me a lot of Oregon. 

The people are amazing! For the most part they are all really friendly. It is only creepy when the older men whistle and honk their horns at you. Or you are walking in the street and they slow down there car a little bit to stick there head out the window and whistle. But besides that I love the people. They are all so kind and patient with me as i try to learn spanish. Which is really coming along. I talk so much more in lessons and we have been doing street contacting and i can actually participate! Which is awesome and I am having so much fun! although it is really hard and i am exhausted and ready for bed when that time rolls around.

The house that I live in is pretty nice. A tiny little bathroom, which hardly ever has warm water so i have somewhat gotten used to cold showers. although it still is shocking jumping in each time. 

There are suprisingly not a lot of bugs or fleas. So i dont have that many bug bites. Just some occasionally here andthere. Which i am toatlly fine with. Also we never eat dinner! So I think my stomach has shrunk to half its original size! And i have definitely lost some weight! We only have lunch at a members house once a week. and the only other times we eat at others houses is when we are teaching a lesson and they bring us a snack. Speaking of which this week we were teaching a lesson and the family brought us this drink that was brown and had chuncks of somthing in it... i dont know what. But i tried to drink it all and just couldnt i thought that i was going to barf! ugh it was nasty. But besides that nothing to bad! thank goodness!

The weather here is like Oregon too. One moment it is raning and the next the sun is out and shining! But i wouldnt want to be anywhere else!

There are a ton of dogs and cats running around, a lot like Samoa, that all have some kind of infection and disease... yuck!

Also there area ton of little kids who love the missionaries and playing with us. And they all make me think of Noa which makes me miss her.Tell her that I love her and to not grow up while I am gone!

This saturday we hopefully will have 7 baptisms which I am really excited for!

That is all that i can think of... what else would you like to know? Also you can put this on my blog too.

Love and miss you guys like crazy. And am eternally grateful for your worthiness and raising me in the gospel. Being here and hearing about other missionaries home situations makes me so grateful to have an eternal family!

Love you lots!
Hermana Loo
In Guatemala City.  Like the Favellas in Brazil.
San Cristobal 
Hermana Call in the CCM
Hermana Marcheschi, Hermana Pena, and I.
Hermana Pena trained us both 

my first time doing laundry with water, soap and a rock slab!
Oh how i do miss washing machines!

Market here it is crazy and there are bugs everywhere ... yuck 
Mi Casa...
San Cris at night. This is how all the streets are! 
San Cristobal

All the Hermanas in my zone.
Excuse my weird posture.
I was trying to make myself as big as possible!