Archive | July, 2011

July 18, 2011 – The week I had 2 MORE baptisms

18 Jul

YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY!!!

Miguel and Jesus are the 2 boys that texted that random number telling them Jospeh Smith was a prophet. I love them, they’re so adorable. They bore their testimony after their baptism and they’re so excited to learn more. And when they pray, they only give thanks, theyre awesome.

This week I was SOOOOOOOOO tired. Me and Hna bowers are seriously so out of it. We are pooped. Today we’re having a siesta fiesta, so that will be really nice.

We ran into a really old mean atheist man. He kept telling us that we’re filthy rich because we´re from the US, and we were like “uuuuh, whatever” and then he got on our case about Jesus and he just started laughing at us. He had nasty teeth. And smelled like cigarettes and shattered dreams. He was like “maybe in the next life we’ll talk” and we were like “oh the irony, he will TOTALLY talk to us in the spirit world”. Heh.

We had SURPRISE ATTACK interviews with President DaSilva. After I emailed last week, the zone leader got a phonecall from president, and so we stayed and he came back and he was like “um. we have interviews tomorrow .. so prepare yourself!” It was really awesome. We watched a talk that Elder Holland gave to the MTC in January, which was AMAZING. Watch it. Seriously. And then we had interviews. He was nice, he congratulated me on having baptisms. He told Hermana Bowers that I’m a really smiley and happy missionary. I had someone at church, Miguel and Jesus’ dad tell me that yesterday at church. It was really nice.

I love Uruguay. Except during soccer games. It’s ridiculous. It’s funny though. We were doing contacts during the Uruguay/Argentina game and a lady was like “OBVIOUSLY you’re not from Uruguay”. We did some super fast contacts, it was awesome considering we were way behind. Thanks, Copa America! But yeah, it’s getting colder, this isn’t cool, but apparently Melo is the WORST in the summer, so I’m glad im here in winter and not summer. Yaaay!

Change calls are this Sunday, and I’m pretty sure im leaving. So we’ll see what happens. I love you all!!

– Chaosito! …. everyone says that here. And “fa!” is used as “wow”, and I say it now. Like “fa! que rico!” But i don’t use the double L “sha.” I refuse.

The week I killed a tarantula in my room …

18 Jul

THE HORROR.

It was really big. Well, not typical tarantula size, but it was pretty friggin’ big. It was awful.

This week we baptized Jose Suarez!! MIRACLE! After a year’s worth of missionaries talking to him, we finally got to him, and it was a great service, his son got to baptize him and give him the holy ghost. It was tender. Then on Sunday we had lunch with him and he made us Asado, which is hardcore barbeque and it was the most delicious thing I’ve ever tasted in my life. I never want to be a vegetarian if meat will forever taste like it did. I’m tryyyying to upload pics right now, but considering I have no idea how to use this crazy old PC, I don’t think I can do it. SIKE. Nailed it. Ok. well. Aside from this awesome baptism, we have another 2 this coming week, and I’m really excited for it because they’re 2 more kids who are spectacularly smart, Miguel and Jesus.

This week we had Intercambios and I got to go with Hermana Parker and I got to lead my area! It was really awsome. She’s REALLY shy, so I basically did everything, and I wasn’t nervous to do it. She was like “you can totally train now!” and I was like “NOOOOOO!!!”. but i just might have to train considering that there are only 30 hermanas our of 200 in my mission. One day ill train. oh man.

During Jose’s baptismal interview, we talking with our district leaders comp, Elder Ladron De Guevara (yeah, thats his name!!) and he essentially told us his ENTIRE life story. He’s french, and totally Jewish and he speaks Spanish with a French accent, its really funny.

Um. I need stamps. Like, really bad. Someone wanna send me some? Thaaaanks. I also might need a poncho ….
Today is free slurpee day … so that makes me sad considering my infinite love for Slurpees, someone go get a Slurpee for me!!! KATIE AND BRIT.

We waited for a family for like 30 min to get them to church, the lady had 6 kids all under the age of 10 and she had to get them all ready … and it was crazy. But they came to church, and if they come next week, we can totally baptise 3 of the kids … i hope im not baptising only kids for the rest of my mission …

But yes. This week was great. I really like Uruguay, im getting the hang of everything, so that’s really nice. the more I learn about the gospel the more i realize it’s true and it brings me soooo much happiness. I love it. we’re so blessed. But I have to go and buy food now. Oh, and I’m not sick with the flu anymore. Yaaaaaaaaay. and the Copa America is going on right now, and so there were fireworks for the 4th of july because everyone here is soccer crazy, duh.

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I love you all. And, um, you should write me emails …. only Linnea and Byron wrote me! I HAVE MORE FAMILY THAN THAT!!! guilt trip!!! heh. i love you!

July 4, 2011 – The Week I Had My First Baptism!!!

18 Jul

YAAAAAAAY!!

And of course, its a child. He is 9 years old and his name is Junior and he is the BEST. He is soooo smart and so excited to learn about the gospel and he was so excited to get baptized. After his baptism he wanted to give his testimony really bad, and he wanted to do it in the sacrament room, but we were like “uh, everyone is here …” so he did it in there. but yesterday in sacrament he went up and bore his testimony. He is amazing. We have another baptism this week, and 2 more the week after. Awesoooome. The 2 others are brothers, 9 and 11, and they’re awesome. They got a text message from some church that sends mass texts and it said something about church and they were like “we texted back saying that Joseph Smith is a prophet”. WIN!!!!! I love them so much. and then the next day, we walked into their house and they were sitting on the couch reading the book of mormon, obviously staged, but it was adorable.

I had to teach primary yesterday. It was actually pretty cool. Except for I have the flu, and so i was REALLY out of it, but we read about Ammon and King Lamoni and they loved it, it was really good. I like primary! I should … I’m sure its my calling in life to work there … yay!

But yes, I have the flu. It was REALLY bad yesterday. I woke up and was really out of it, and then at church during sacrament I got worse and I was shivering the whole time. then we had to do all our contacts really early and fast because I seriously had no energy to move. Hna bowers was literally holding on to me as I walked because I was so weak. It was scary. But then she made me lay in bed until I had to go to sleep, and a member got me some medicine and now I feel better. I’m still out of it, but I’m better. Just pray i have the energy to go out tonight and work. I felt so useless, it was horrible.

Oh! the guy who’s getting baptized this week, Jose, he’s Matias, this 18 year old who’s pretty cool and is always at Abuelas house, its his dad, we were going through the baptismal interview questions and I was like “alguna vez ha cometido un crimen grave?” and he was like ” … si … como todos …….. no, broma. no estamos en El Salvador” … and i was like”AH!” and just laughed.

But this week was good. I love this area. I just want to be healthy. I’m in the groove of being a missionary, I just need to have patience with myself because im not where I want to be, but I’ll get there. I love you all, and I’m glad that im going to be aunty of little Jimmer Tyrone! Yaaaaay!

June 20, 2011 – The week I found a staple in my food …

18 Jul

… and so did my companion earlier in the morning. It was really weird. For breakfast she was eating cereal and she found a staple, and then we were at a members house eating flan later that night and I totally found a staple in my food. This has to be a sign … don’t eat staples?? I need all of your interpretations on this. Use your crystal balls to decipher. kthnx.

This week was pretty good. Let me tell you about some investigators. We have Jose, who is the dad of Matias who is a recent convert and is totally going on a mission in December. He has been talking with the missionaries since like August, and no one could get to him, and now he is totally wanting to get baptized. He quit smoking COMPLETELY last Sunday and his son has been like “what did you guys do? hes completely changed!!” and we’re secretly really proud of ourselves. So he was SUPPOSED to get baptized this coming Saturday, but he didn’t come to church. We saw him Saturday night at like 9 … somewhere in those 12 hours he went from being “yes, I’m going!” to not showing up. It rained. NO ONE shows up to anything when it rains. Abuela walked with us to church in the storming rain, but they can’t go. Laaaaaaaaaame. So we’re going over tonight to talk to him. Matias even gave him a blessing on Saturday to get through the addiction stuff. It was really tender. It was Matias’ first blessing and he was giving it to his dad. He was like “how do I do it?” and we were like “uuuh, we’re Hermanas …” luckily we had just read in study time how priesthood holders give blessings, so that was perfection.It was a really special moment to witness. Now he just has to get baptized.

Then there’s Mirtha, who also has been talking to the missionaries since January. All her kids got baptized and are so strong in the church and when we first met her she was like “i will NOT get baptized” and then one day she said that she knew that she needed to. And last night she was like “the elders could never get to me, but you girls could, thanks” it was special. Except she cant get baptized yet. why? because she has a boyfriend who she does NOT love at all, has no desire to marry … because she is still married to someone else, but she still doesn’t want to marry him, and straight up told us she needs his money. So she needs to dump him. She doesn’t know how to go about it, though.

But yeah. Uruguay is weird with weather. Its SOOOO humid. My hair is a huge frizz ball. Not fun. So I have it in a ghetto braid all day. The bathroom leaches are gone. I’m used to getting up at 6:30 already yaaaaay. And we have to go back to Montevideo this change so I can sign my visa paper. 6 hours on a bus to sign a paper. Weak sauce.

Anyway. I love you all.
PAPI HAPPY FATHERS DAAAAAAAY!!! I have a letter for you, but we havent gotten letters  for like 2 weeks and so we havent been able to send out letters either. Its sad. I feel deprived. But I love getting emails from you all. Even if I cant respond to you all, I read them and they make me happy for the week. Pray for me and Ill pray for you!

I love yoooooooooooooooooou!!
-Xiomara

June 13, 2011 – 2 months down, 16 to go

18 Jul

I’M NOT AN ORO ANYMORE!! We had transfer calls yesterday and it was awesome. I’m not going anywhere, I’m staying here with Hermana Bowers. Hooray! Now I’m in my “ex-oro” change … then I’m just a missionary. laaaaame.

CHELSEA! Do you remember Brother and Sister Davidson from when you were in San Antonio? Because Hna Davidson remembers you and they are totally in the mission presidency and I mentioned you were from S.A. when she told me she was from there and she was like “the ones that moved to Oklahoma?” and I was like “OMG YOU KNOW THEM?”… yeah. good times. That was at Zone Conference which was AWESOME. We roadtripped with our Zone 2 hours to Treinta y Tres and I got to see 4 other Oros I came to Uruguay with, it was nice. They gave us each a ghetto pizza, so that was nice. Elder Foster of the 70 talked to us and he gave us a talk about how Heavenly Father has created so much, and we are still important and how we NEED member support. Yup, its true. Cmoooon, members.

Ok, well, I will write more next week. Thanks for all being so cool and writing me and stuff. Hasta luego!

June 6 – The week I almost froze to death!!

6 Jul

Well, not really. It’s REALLY cold here!! It’s humid cold, so it’s more piercing and terrible. And I may have already semi hit that frumpy missionary stage. I figure its winter and I’d rather NOT freeze and look like i got dressed in the dark, then look adorable and not be able to feel anything. But starting Spring i´ll get back into the groove. Its not that terrible, im glad I got cute clothes. Anyways …

– We have Zone Conference this week! YAY! My newbieness is coming out because im really excited. We get to have it with 2 other zones in Treinta y Tres, which is 2 hours away, and an area 70 is coming. Yesssss. Its going to be good.

– I bought bright yellow rain boots, not because theyre stylish, but because they were cheap and i dont want my feet to get wet. People will know the missionaries are coming from a mile away thanks to my boots.

– We were going to have a baptism this week, an 11 year old named Lourdes who is pretty cool. But she didnt show up at church because her family went to Rio Branco, which is like on the border of Brasil. But she does want to get baptised, and she likes us, which is cute. But we still need to teach her, and shes just never home.

– So ive started reading my scriptures and marking everytime they mention a heart. Its really cool. In my patriarchal blessing it says if i continually have the desire to change my already strong heart, I will be effective in my service … um, i realized last week that probably means my mission. So im learning a lot from the scriptures. You should all do it too!

– Our beds either have fleas or bed bugs, im getting bitten on my hands only because thats the only part of my body i leave uncovered. But Hna Bowers is allergic and so hers are huge, mine dont itch. We´re spraying the heck out of our beds today.

– We FEASTED for fast sunday, like, ate until we literally wobbled out of the house. It was such a bad idea. We were so out of it for the rest of the day. But it was fine, because we had a lot fo energy at night. I hope you guys were fasting for jobs because if so, mini miracle committee was on it again. But, lets keep the faith!!

– I’m not homesick yet! MIRACLE! I high five myself everyday. I dont miss you guys at ALL. just kidding … of course i miss you all, its just not crushing my soul not seeing you. Haha. Keep praying I keep this up!

But yes, I love Uruguay. Im so glad im doing this. The more i’m here the more i realize this is where i’m supposed to be. Even though sometimes it gets hard and i realize that i have 17 more months kinda gets me down, i start to think that i GET to be here for 17 more months and that makes me feel better. this work is so necessary and im glad i get to help some people feel happy 🙂

I love you all! And Im glad you´re my family!!

Chao! Chow? Ciao?? … whatever. they say that here … but with a South American twist! Ooooh!

May 30 – the week i ate my weight in food

6 Jul

SO MUCH FOOD. WHYYYY???? Especially on my birthday. Hooray for being 22!! We had lunch with Abuela Sonia, she made us a “salad” which includes a buttload of white rice, onions, tomatoes, appleslices, OIL, oregano, ham, bologna, MAYONAISE, and salt. Yum? It was okay once you ate past … everything. But Abuela let me and Hna Bowers make it so we were trying to cut down on the nastyness but Abuela came by and drowned that thing in oil and mayonaise and I just laughed and Abuela was confused but shes spunky so she didnt care. Then we ate milanesas, which are essentially giant chicken nuggets (linnea, omgz!) and that was good. Then we ate a lot of flan. Then a member named Olga who is amazing and has cancer so she cant do much, she made me a pie thing made of dulce de leche and a pizza and then we went back to Abuelas at night because she called the zone leaders for special permission to have a birthday thing for me. Cute. So we ate a LOT of cake, some snacks, and all that hermana Olga made us. I love these ladies. Theyre adorable. And I would send you pictures, but I have no idea how to do that, and I always run out of time to do it. Anyway.

This was an okay week. We couldnt find ANYONE that we had appointments for which was really weird. And we just ran into people that were just really weird. One man got really offended when we asked him what religion he was. Like, REALLY offended. He was like”what gives you the right to ask me that?!” then when we left we laughed and we were like “well, we’re representatives of Jesus Christ, sooooo we have all the right”. It was funny.

We are pretty bad at doing contacts. We’re always running around trying to do our 20 a day at like 8;30 when we have to be in at 9 … oops. But we´re working on it. Our District Leader was like “wow, you guys do an even 20 a day, you know you CAN do more, right?”.

This week was stake conference and Elder Mervyn B. Arnold came and spoke. Hes president of the area, it was awesooooome. None of our investigators came. And when we found out that he was coming with our mission president Pres DaSilva and his wife, we did a clean swep in case they randomly dropped by. But they didnt … at least our ghettolicious house is clean. They replaced our abomination of a door! And i dont have to flick the light for it to come on! BLESSED DAY!! But we found mushrooms growing in a random cornner of the house in the way back we never go to. And we poured water on them and they started making a weird noise. It was REALLY scary. And we killed the leach things in the bathroom. I killed a mama leach on my birthday. I was proud. My soul dies less when I use the bathroom now. Hooray.  Bleach is a blessing from God. Seriously.

But overall all is well. Im a boss at teaching the restoration now. And lesson 3 about the gospel of Jesus Christ. the plan of salvation still gets to me sometimes. I just dont know how to explain it very well. but i’ll get  the hang of it. we have one man who i KNOW will get baptised, he’s great, and he just needs to have more faith in himself, he doesn’t want to set a date. but his wife and son are recent converts so that should help him. and he also needs to quit smoking, buuuut i think hes doing that.

ok, i have to go now. i love you all! and i miss you and pray for you all the time. thanks for being so awesome, seriously.

– your favorite missionary … (i BETTER be your favorite!!! *tears*)

ps … to all my friends who have sent me letters so far, i friggin love you. caitlin taffee and cecily i am writing you today! yay!! and i only get to write/read letters mondays, so sorry if you dont get a response for a while.

May 23 – The week the world didn’t end

6 Jul

But we still had an end of the world party in my ghetto house. It was awesome. Everyone would ask us if we thought the world was ending, and we would just laugh. At church yesterday we sang El Fin Se Acerca. Our bishopric has a sense of humor, it was really funny. I couldnt even sing it all I was laughing. I also had to give a talk yesterday, and sing with my companion, and we taught sunday school. They made us do everything! Fun! It wasnt that bad. I talked about how obedience leads to happiness. Cool points for me.

I get to spend my birthday with all my favorite people from the ward. We live next to Abuela Sonia, who is a spunky 70 year old who has devoted her life to serving the missionaries. So she says she already ordered me a cake, that shes buying balloons and has invited some people we talk to all the time. There is cake. I love Uruguayan cake. Its like magic. Ive fallen in love with dulce de leche because I have no choice, they put it in everything.

Oh, crazy thing that happened. We were going to a lesson at these apartments nearby with a member, and we get there and everyone looks really worried, then an ambulence pulls up, and then we talk to one of the members that lives there and she said that right before we came, a lady jumped off the 4th floor … then we saw her being wheeled away in front of us. Sick. Poor lady.

We made 2 people cry this week. One lady just started bawling when we were at her door. She was sooo uninterested at first then she just started crying. I was SO confused. But she had just gotten divorced and so she let us in. Then another boy, a teenager just started crying because he didnt know how to answer if he knew what a prophet was. Um. Ooops.

It rained on us yesterday. that wasnt fun. we’re ging to buy boots after this. I didnt really prepare on the shoe front.

Um. Yesterday night we went to a recent converts house and all her youth kids are baptized just recently, but she isnt even though she knows this is all true, she prays continually and she is so amazing. But she kept telling the other elders that she wouldnt get baptized, and it was those elders’ struggle. So yesterday she brought out a cake and we were confused, and she was like “I need to get baptized, its my time, lets do this!” and so we set up a date. shes great.

Anyway. I love you all. I pray for all of you like, all the friggin time. I hope you are all happy, and know that heavenly father loves you, and he wants you to talk to him. So get on your knees and pray!

Looooove,
Xiomara …….. ps … i miss saying my first name. Weirdddd.

May 16 – One Month Down, 17 to Go

6 Jul

Ok, so this week was terrible in regards to my body. I kinda rolled my ankle so i have a baby pimp walk. I somehow hurt my wrist. I banged my head on the wall when i woke up in the middle of the night thinking i was definitely at home… where there ISNT  a wall there.

Hermana Bowers and I get along SO well, by the way. Im never bored with her. Dont worry linnea, youll never be replaced. EVERRR. but hna bowers is hilarious. im learning a lot from her. We have an Abuela, she washes our clothes and feeds us sometimes and shes great. And all is well.

Byron, remember in the uderground rock festival skits in the new ones when the new black guy talks and he squeaks? well, theres a bird that makes that SAME noise, and I literally laugh everytime.

-Yesterday we got a US history lesson from 4 kids. They told us about WW2 … it was really funny. They acted like we had never heard of it.

-I MET A FALSE PROPHET. We were contacting on the street and we were talking to this one guy, and we invited him to pray about the BoM and he started off saying how he had before and how he knew it was true and how then GOD appeared to him and Jesus did too, and that peter james and john appeared and gave him something. I swear he had read the Jospeh Smith story and he was reciting it. But it wasnt that he was making fun of us, he legit thought it had happened to him. So uh, yeah, false prophets. They exist.

-I saw a latino ginger. I was so confused.

-Oh, the spirit guides, people. We were walking around and we both decided to just stop by a members house. Turns out she had been praying someone would drop by because she has cancer and she was having some attack or something. So we callled and found someone to give her a blessing. It was so crazy. Im so glad we stopped. Shes such a great lady, too. She fights with “abuela” for our love. Its cute.
Im learning a lot. I am a PRO at lesson 1. But when we get to other lessons im just like “wait … what do i say?!” So im studying that. Im getting out of my awkward newbie stage. Thats fun.

One of the recent converts whos a teen got hit in the head with a rock saturday for being mormon. But he still came to church with a bandaged head. That kid is great. He’s going places.

Um, ok, I ran out of time. I love you all. Next week Ill send pictures.

I love youuu! Go to the temple! All I want right now is to go to the temple. I wish I had gone more. Me and Hna Bowers have made a rule to not talk about temples in the house cause then we get sad that we cant go.