Monday, November 29, 2010

rafaela week 17 - Nov 29

Hey Fam!

Wow. sounds like Thanksgiving was a blast. It's the best when all the family is together....well, almost everyone was together. It will be weird to have christmas here, but i'm way excited! Atleast Kris will get to be home though, and then i can talk to him in spanish over the phone! Maybe a little with Jodes too...if she's up for it.

This week was a little interesting. Monday we got to go to a ward was way fun. Then I was in Santa Fe for the conference thing all day Tuesday. We did tons of practices! I really dont like practices...but it wasn't too bad. We just had President sitting next to us while we did it, is all. But it was fun with Hna. Kusilek. I've been thinking a lot about transfers...i'm ready for a change. I think i might go to Villa Santa Tome where Hna. Kusilek is. Because i think she's going to be comp mayor this next transfer (senior comp). But we'll see. Transfers are next week which means i'll probably be writing on tues.

This week was interesting because we didn't work as much. Hna. Garcia has been having a lot of pain in her left foot the past 2 weeks, and this last week it got worse. So we went to the doctor, he says she has tendinitis...but i don't think it's permanent. So she rested a day...i did divisions...and we've just been walking really slow. So our numbers were super low this week.

Right now we have 2 awesome women who need to get baptized! Norma and Nora. Norma i talked about last week. But she is now saying that she is not ready to get baptized, that she needs more time. She is also moving about 2 hours away to live with her parents so that she can finsh up her career. It was great though, Sunday all the talks were perfect for her, i hope she got the message that she needs to be baptized!!! Because we are doing all we can.....And then there is Nora, who is about 60 years old. Her kids are older and she works next door to the Flia. Franco. She takes care of an older woman. And she has been to church 2 times now and loves it!! She has really progressed alot this last week. She's just a happy person, and she loves the peace that the members of the church have, and is beginning to feel that in her own life now.

Mateo is a little more difficult...hes hasn't really been reading, only praying. Sat he said he would come to church. We called him sun morning to wake him up...his mom put the phone to his ear, but he didn't want to get up, and therefore didn't come to church. We went over to his house sun after church to talk to him. He promises to come next Sunday...i think something happened and he's just not telling us....also....Gianella hasn't been to church for 3 weeks now. We went to go pick her up yesterday morning but no one answered the door. When we passed by again in the night, her mom came outside to tell us they had friends over and that it wasn't a good time. And Gianella will be with her dad next week and won't be able to come to church. (her parents are divorced).

But the work goes on.'s hard sometimes. That's about it for the week. I'm doing good. Excited to go and eat some vegetables that we bought this morning! I'm getting sick of the grease and oil. Jodi...what is your e-mail address so i can write to you? What are julie's and Sarah's also? All i have is kris's...but i laughed like the whole time i read jodi's letter. I love you jodi! That would be cool to get something from home...i don't even know what to ask for. I love you guys! Thanks for your love and support. Always!

Love, hna. Amundsen

rafaela week 16 - Nov 22

Hey family.
Thanks for your letters. You guys don't know how much i need your letters. It gives me a boost every week. Thanks. So how is the family room coming? It would be cool to see how it looks. Also, i never got to see the finished product of Jodi's room. How she painted it…

So this week for me…we had a couple really full days of working. It was really great. It makes me happy when we have to run from appt. to appt. We stay more focused and feel better about the work. My goal, is to have every day be like that. It was also a bummer because there were like 4 people that we just started teaching, that told us they really have no interest. It's good to know, because we really need to spend our time with those that are ready and willing. One of our investigators is Norma. She is the younger sister of Marta (marta and Luis who are still trying to get married…who come to church every Sunday and are living the commandments who are awesome!) Anyway, we are teaching her sister Norma who is about 31 years old and she has 2 beautiful daughters. She is legally married, but not living with her husband…she is going through a divorcement. But she is a golden investigator because she is so prepared and wants to learn so much! She is already sharing the gospel with her friends. I love our lessons with her. She always has a ton of questions. And everytime we come her daughters (Jasim – 4 or 5yrs., and Julieta-2 yrs.) run to us and hug us really tight and kiss us over and over again. And then the same thing when we leave. But it's been so great seeing the changes in Norma. When we first met her about 3 weeks ago she was a lot more unsure of herself and just worried about stuff. But the gospel is really changing her and she is seeing the changes in herself too. She is more calm, and happier, and she has purpose in her life. It's really been a blessing to know her.

Also! Mateo was confirmed this Sunday! He even came in a a white shirt and tie. He's doing really well. He started reading the B.O.M. and he reads a lot. And he really likes it! He says he is understanding more now. Also, Lucas Franco was able to bless the sacrament this last Sunday! Which was a big deal for him. He was practicing all week. His wife says he has changed completely with the gospel. I think she is falling in love with her husband all over again, which is really great because he has been sick for a long time and i know that has been really hard on their relationship.

We went to Rosario this last week. We traveled through the night and got about no sleep…then woke up early because I had to do some legal paper stuff. All the missionaries have to do it, it was just my turn this last week. I had to get my picture taken and have my thumb prints taken….so that was an adventure. We were exhausted when we returned
though. You never get to catch up on sleep here.

Tomorrow i have to travel to Santa Fe for a conference thing and i get to be Hna. Kusilek´s comp for the day! It´s my turn to learn the new Preach My Gospel stuff.

Can't believe Christmas is around the corner. I'm excited for Christmas…i heard it's crazy here…like the 4th of July but louder and bigger with the fireworks.

Well, i love you guys a lot. I thank Heavenly Father for you guys everyday and pray for you.
Until next week…

hna. amundsen

rafaela week 15 - Nov 15

Hola ¿como te va?

Thanks for the letters. I'm doing well this week. Not a ton of new things. Can't believe Stephen and Kashia are seems like Kashia just left. And Harry Potter 7! Oh man....the argentines know about it, but i doubt it will be coming here for a while. There's no thanksgiving here..sad huh? So we don't get to do anything special.Had some interesting adventures again this week...

We had a baptism! Yes! Mateo was baptized on Friday. He has been doing awesome with his smoking...hasn't smoked for a while. But....he didn't come to church on Sunday, so therfore we was not confirmed! We were kinda worried, so we called right after sacrament meeting to find out what happened. I guess he had some family problems...and woke up, and got dressed, but he was late and decided not to come. But we talked with him and he feels bad. He is going to come this Sunday for sure. He knows. He really is so great. He reads everything we leave for him to read! And is now reading the B.O.M. from the beginning. Our next goal is his brother...

Let me see. We had a zone conference this week. That was pretty cool. Our president and his wife spoke. Hna. Villalba called on me to read something and then afterwards asked me what it meant.... I hadn't really understood what i had read because it was in spanish. And so i stumbled as a tried to explain what i thought. She kinda looked at me funny and there was a long pause, then she asked me to read something else and i started to read the wrong thing....anyway, i struggled because i didn't understand what she was saying to me. And afterwards felt pretty terrible, super embarressed. Then Elder Aidukaitis spoke. The first hour i was terrified of him. I really felt uncomfortable in my chair. It was like we were terrible missionaries because we weren't reaching our goals. But we were fine. He changed his way of teaching and i felt a lot better. I learned a lot from him.

This week we cleaned out our drain...We have a hole in the ground where all the water goes when we shower, and there was a ton of hair in it. There have been missionaries in our house for about 15 years...and i don't think it's been cleaned for a looooong time. Well, we cleaned it. I think there was about 5 pounds of hair in that thing. And the smell....oh man. It was soooo bad!

Mom...can you do me a big favor....there is this member that makes scripture covers and bags out of leather and draws stuff on them. All the missionaries get stuff from him. And i'm trying to pick out images that i want, but i don't have very many resources...he draws just about anything. So, can you look up Simon Dewey and send me a bunch of his artwork through e-mail. Just google and send pictures. Pictures of the savior. With people, alone, with kids. Or any images that you really like from anyone really. Maybe i'll get you guys some stuff too. He can draw our family if he has a picture even.

Well..i have more to write and no time, so i gotta go. But i love you guys a ton. I hope you know that. Families are so important. I really miss you guys, and am stoked to talk to you in less than 2 months! I'm learning and growing here in the mission a lot. The Lord continues to teach me lots of things. Thanks for your love and support. You guys are in my prayers too! Love ya!

hna. amundsen

Monday, November 8, 2010

more pics from Kari!

rafaela week 14 - Nov 8

Hi my family.

Thanks for your letters. crazy week for you mom, glad i could help you out a bit with the lesson. Sounds like Sarah is doing awesome in soccer! It would be fun to watch her play. Mom had a birthday! Cafe Rio...yummy. You would choose that. To tell you the truth i really miss any kind of rice and beans and tortillas. Non existent here. There isn't much variety with the food here...but it's pretty yummy. Also! I received a bunch of mail yesterday. So i was in happy land last night as i read my letters.

Well, this week was kinda crazy. I learned something new...there are buses that go around the city! Which is wonderful because it's only $1.50 (pesos) and our area is super huge. So the other day we had an appt. with Mateo at 2:30 and we found that we could take a bus from where we were (about 30 min walking) to his house! We were stoked. So we hopped on the bus at 1:45 thinking we could get there early and go contact a reference from a member!......45 min later(2:30)...we are still on the did not go to Mateo's house, in fact it went the other direction and took us farther away. The bus pulls into the terminal as one of it's stops (which is out of our area). We decide that we should just take a remis (which is a taxi) because it would be faster. But all i have is $ we took the Remis to our house first, grabbed some money, and then went to Mateo's house.

But on the way we hit almost every red light...and then the train decides to come by, so we stopped at that too. I started laughing in the car. I couldn't believe the situation. One of those, everything that can go wrong will go wrong. My comp turns to me, “it's not funny”...i'm still laughing. Luckily we were able to call Mateo and let him know we were on our way. We finally arrive! Only 30 min. Late! And as we are paying the Remis $19 for the ride...the bus drives by.....yup.

We laughed soooo hard. Oh...and a member was there at his house waiting for us too...but luckily her and Mateo found our story to be hilarious. They just laughed with us. more story....President Villalba told us to get our house fumigated because we were just having problems...a couple more scorpians and a tiny little snake...harmless, but still - a snake. So Saturday morning we had a guy come and fumigate. He first went around and sprayed outside. There are concrete slabs that cover the sewer's where all the cockraoches live apparently, because when he sprayed underneath them...all the cockroaches started running out! Big ones, little name it! We had to watch our feet, or the cockraoches would run up our legs. They all died from the smell...but they went kinda crazy first!

Luckily there were more outside than inside. And as they died we were sweeping them all into one big pile. (We wanted to take a picture!). But sadly we didn't get the chance because we had to go somewhere, and when we came back they were all gone. We think the lady in front swept them all up.....or the birds had a giant cockraoch feast. And then Saturday night i had the worst nightmare....i had a dream that all the cockroaches were coming out of the floor and the walls and into my bed! I was very tired the next day.

Well, other than that...we have the baptism of Mateo coming up! The only problem is he is still trying to quit smoking! He can do it, he wants to be baptized, and so i know he'll do's just when he's with other people that's hard for him to say no. But he hasn't smoked for a few days now, and he fasted on Sunday! He's so great. He's 19, and has a lot of potential. Just humble and willing to do stuff. He has a blonde mullet ....a lot of kids here have mullets..and he has tatoos...same thing with his 18 yr. old brother Mauro....we are going to work with him next. But Mateo is setting an awesome example for his family, and his dad is already a faithful member.

Keep up the game sarah...and yes dad, i do tell people my little sister is an awesome soccer player. I use it a lot when we talk about the sabbath day, and how sarah doesn't play on Sunday because she knows that Heavenly Father comes first. Anyways....gotta go. Thanks for your love and everything you do! Until next week!

Todo mi amor

hna. amundsen

Rafaela week 13 - Nov 1

Hey family family family….

Thanks for all the letters, and the pics. Last night as we were on our way home we saw a few kids out and i turned to hna. Garcia and was like, “oh my gosh! It's halloween!” we had totally forgotten. But the pumpkins look awesome, and i'm sure the girls enjoyed the dance…sarah's first. And also the pics of luke, i bet his family is so glad to have him home. I wish i could have been there to hear him speak, that would have been cool, but i know this is where the Lord needs me right now. Tell him not to worry about surfing, i'm sure it will come right back to him very soon, especially if Matt convinces him to go to Hawaii.

Wow. What a week. We had an amazing baptism! Lucas Franco, who is the father of our ward mission leader. He is 64, and he can't walk because of an illness. But this is one of the most humble men i have ever met. He only desires to do what the Lord wants of him, and is always extremely grateful and happy for what he has. I feel like as a missionary we are sent to certain areas to bless the lives of certain people, but i also feel like we are sent to certain areas because other people are to bless our lives. Lucas is one of those people that has blessed my life, and also his family. His son Guillermo is probably the best ward misión leader in the entire misión, and his wife Lorena is so sweet. Mom, you would love her because she just takes care of me… She washes our clothes, and irons them every week. The first week she threw away all my nylons with holes and bought me brand new ones! I lost my name tag and so she took her old one and put my name on it so that i would have one. She gives us treats to take home. The other day she gave us cold water bottles because it was hot outside. Then, she gave me her old bag that she used from the mission, because i've been using dave facer's old one and…sorry dave, but it's been repaired a few times already…anyway, she is so eager to serve, and just looks for opportunities to serve. And she is so humble, just wants to help.

I read a scripture this week that has kinda stuck with me.

It's Mosiah 16:5..."he that persists in his own carnal nature, and goes on in the ways of sin and rebellion against God, remaineth in his fallen state and the devil hath all power over him.”

I've been thinking a lot about humility. Humility is the willingness to submit to the will of the Lord. These people are truly examples of this, and I am trying to be more like that. Especially with a new comp…I feel like i have something new to learn from each comp. But dad, you're right, it is adjusting. I love hna. Garcia, i think she is such an awesome missionary, and we have been in the process of melding, because each missionary does things a little different. And for me, i have to be willing to try things a different way, because the way that i have done things in the past isn't always the best way. It's all about progressing, and trying new things, otherwise we will remain in our “fallen state”.

Mom, super stoked that you get to teach about missionary work because it is something i am passionate about! In response to your questions…

Everything that i have learned and am learning here has changed the way that i think about missionary work at home. I didn't realize the importance of it, and i wish i had before. You do not have to be a full time missionary to share the gospel, that's for sure. You just have to let people know you are mormon, and that they should be too! Really. The work right now is progressing here in Rafaela because the members are more envolved! But the work does not end when people are baptized, people constantly need nourishment, love, and friendship, and to have their testimony strengthened. Always, always, always. Like i told you mom in my last letter…you don't always know when people are struggling and might need an extra boost. Some of the most important missionary work is done through home and visiting teaching, and with the less actives members. We just need to put the Lord first in our lives, and think first about others and their needs. Look for opportunities to serve, don't wait for someone to give you an assignment; ask who the less actives are! And then go!!!

Lorena Franco shared with us that she read a talk about service and set a goal to do some kind of service (out of the ordinary) every single day! She said that when she put this goal, the Lord provided her with those opportunities. I know this is true. With Guillermo and his wife alone, i am seeing the impact that they have had on our ward, and they are only two people. If every member were like them, i can't even imagine the success of the church here.

Anyways. I definitely feel like i am learning a ton, and still have a lot more to learn. But i really do love this work. We've had some awesome experiences here. My comp is awesome! We have fun, and my spanish is improving…i'm kinda hoping all my other comps will be latina too just so that i will be able to understand and speak better. The weather here has been rather warm…not like summer yet. We had the weirdest day here though. Beautiful morning, crazy windy afternoon, and then a nice breezy evening. I love you guys a ton!


Until next week.

Love ya…hna. amundsen

Monday, October 25, 2010

rafaela week 12 - oct 25

Hola mis padres!

Hey. So guess what! I'm still in Rafaela! Hna. Hansen got transferred, which was sad, i really love that girl. My new comp. Is Hna. Garcia! She is from Paraguay! She is so rad. Super sweet, and is so funny too. so far we've had a lot of fun together. It really is a blessing from the Lord too, because i need help with my spanish. But she said my pronunciation is really good! And i understand most what she says, but i can see improvement already with the language. It's really good for me too because i'm at a point where i can communicate with her enough to ask how to say something, or if i don't understand she can explain it to me.

So…Oscar was baptized! Oh my goodness! It was such a miracle. He went to the hospital just a few days before and i was just praying that he would be feel better and have good health for Saturday. And the Lord answered our prayers! We had a few of the men in our ward help him out, and it went really well. Oscar said that when he was in the water he didn't feel any pain in his legs, which was a blessing for him. We also had the baptism of Gianella! She is 9 years old…her family has been less active, but she has had a good influence on her family and they have been coming to church. Her grandpa was able to baptize her. The spirit was really strong. She is such a sweet little girl! Now we need to continue teaching them because the work is not done. Especially Oscar, because we went to his house after his baptism (with my new comp.) she said that he cusses a lot. Which i never knew because i can't tell the difference!…so we're going to teach him about keeping his words clean.

I can't believe luke is coming home! Thanks for sending me his last letter! When he was talking about the whole NOE thing, we totally do the same thing, but with OLA. Because in spanish OLA is a wave. And we say that you have to ride the wave until you get to the island (eternal life). The O is for pray…the L is for leer…to read…and the A is for Asisiter the iglesia…attend church. And we tell them that there is a shark, which is satan, and that the shark will eat them if they don't ride the OLA. I love teaching this though, because it is so true…these are the things we have to do always. This is how we persevere to the end. When familias or people are struggling, we ask them if they are doing these three things…along with Family home evening. And they usually say no. And this is why they are struggling. There will always be trials, but if we continue to do these things the Lord will bless us and help us. I know that.

Oh man. I love this church so much! I love the gospel of Jesus christ. I gave a talk in church yesterday, and bore my testimony at the end, and before i could say anything i just started to cry. I know this is the Lord's true church, again established on the Earth. I am so grateful to be a member, and am so grateful for this opportunity that i have to be a missionary! I am so glad i came out on a mission. It blesses my life everyday.

I have to go. I will send pics next week. Know that i love you all, and am so very grateful for your love. Until next week.

Todo mi amor,

Hna. amundsen

rafaela week 11 - oct 18

HAPPY MOTHER´s DAY! It was mother´s day here on Sunday (it's spring here)...but i thought i should just tell you that i love you mom. A lot a lot.. Thanks for all you do.

This week is kinda crazy. So we found out last night that we aren't having transfers until Friday! So i have no idea where i am going!!! But what can ya's kinda weird. Anyway, thanks for your letters. Glad you liked the pics. Some of them didn't send through, so i'll have to send a few more soon. i know how to do it now. I hope all is well for the wedding too! How exciting! Rain pics turn out pretty cool...that´s the bright side.

Well. We have 2 baptisms this sat! And we should have 4 more coming up in the next couple weeks too! This week we have Oscar (finally! We are praying he will have good health this weekend) and also Gianella. She is 9, her family is less active, but they have been coming to church and we have been teaching her. Then we've got Marta and Luis...Lucas Franco (the dad of Guillermo, our lider misional)...and then Mateo!! We had an awesome lesson with Mateo yesterday, he is going to quit smoking!! We´ve gotta help him, but he wants to be baptized. I hope he will set the example for his brother and sister and mom. We gotta baptize this family!!

This week i feel like i learned an important lesson. I learned the importance of edifying the saints. There is always work to be done, and no matter how great you think someone is doing, they could always use a visit, a spiritual thought, a friend, or a smile.We all need to feel loved....We have the Familia Andereggen. They are recent converts that were baptized earlier this year. They are awesome...Hector, the hippie with the long flowy hair, is the father of this family. Gotta love them. They are awesome members. Super strong, always trying to help, they are poor, and even when they are struggling they give. We go visit them probably once a week or every other week. But we just found out that they have not had the lessons over again after their baptism, so we now have the assignment to do that. But the other day we went over there just to ask a question and we ended up having a whole lesson with them. Turns out that they are not doing as well as they appear. They too need strengthening and upliftng and encouragement. They give but don't feel like they receive. So we talked to them about that and promised to pass by them more. I can't explain what really happened. It was a great experience for me though. Lots of tears were shed, because when the people you love are in pain, it hurts. But i learned the importance once again, of edifying the saints, and how important it is that each one of us do our duty. That we help eachother out, and that we all need to be strengthened.

Also, this week we are a trio. Hna. Contrera's companion went home yesterday (finished the mission) so she has been with us, and will be with us til transfers. She's from chile so we've been speaking quite a bit more spanish in the pench. It's been good for me. I decided that i want my next comp to be a latin.

Anyway. I love you guys! Thanks for all you do. I guess you'll be hearing about where i go next week! Until then...

Todo mi amor.
Hna. amundsen

Monday, October 18, 2010


love the rain

with President and Sister Villalba

sweet pench

with scorpions!

Hna Hansen, Ruben, and me

a great day!

Hna Hansen and me

rafaela week 10 - oct 12

Hola Mi Familia!

Thanks for sending the love my way padres. So, HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD! Yesterday…i know. It was a Holiday here yesterday and everything was closed, so i'm writing today. Also…next week is transfers, so i will be writing Tuesday i believe. But i hope you had a good time, have fun with your new surfboard. don't break it.

Well i'm scared. I don't want to get transferred!!! I'm beginning to really fall in love with the people here in Rafaela. and plus, we have a few baptisms coming up. And i just gotta be here! I can't tell you how much i love our ward here. They have totally grown on me. And Marta and Luis are totally a part of the ward already. You should have seen everyone yesterday. There was this big ward activity at a park, and everyone was playing soccer…we couldn't play because it's a rule, but we watched and it was just as entertaining. Ruben was the ref, and he kept pulling yellow and red cards out on people and making jokes along the sidelines. Then you've got Hector…a recent convert that has long hippie hair, and a bandana around his head, and everytime he goes for the ball he dives and does rolls on the ground. Then we've got Guillermo, who really plays soccer, and he's doing all sorts of tricks and what not. It was so funny. Never a dull moment. I think i laughed the whole duration of the game.

But anyway. This last week we had the Pres. and his wife come to our pench to do interviews. That was really cool, he is totally inspired and just told us what we needed to hear. Me and and Hna. Hansen were like, “can he come every week for interviews?” And this week we really tried to put all our focus on the work. We tried to not talk about family, friends, or home, but to really live in the here and the now and focus on the people here. It's hard, but we are seeing blessings.

So i'm super stoked about one of our investigators…there is this guy in our ward named Miguel Lacroix. He is the only member in his family. He's married with 3 kids, the oldest is 19. Miguel joined the church about 3 years ago and has been and awesome member. But his family doesn't have any desire to join. But anyway, Miguel kept telling us to go by his oldest son Mateo. So we did. We went by a few times, but he was not there, and one time he was riding out on his bike with a cigarette in hand. Anyway…it's been hard for us to find Mateo, and he lives really far away, so it's been hard to find time to go out to their house a lot. But me and Hna. Hansen felt like we should keep trying. And about 2 weeks ago we passed by and Mateo was outside washing his dad's motorcycle. So i asked if we could help. Normally people say no. But he looked at me, handed me some stuff and i got to work. I was stoked! Because this was the perfect opportunity. So we chatted as we cleaned. He is really shy, but we told him who we were and asked if we could come by and talk to him sometime. And he said ya!

Anyway…we've taught him 3 times so far. We had lunch with their family…(the mom likes us and invited us! She said she's only invited one other set of missionaries over before), and Mateo came to the activity with us yesterday! He is so rad. He does smoke, so we gotta work with that. But he is really listening, praying and reading what we leave him. And he said he is already seeing the changes in his life! His dad is way stoked for him…i am too! He really is such a good kid. We are excited for him!!

But ya. I love missionary work! It's so rewarding! Also…i guess my trainer Brianna Redfern has a bunch of pics of me on her Facebook, maybe you can check it out. Have you sent my christmas Package yet? I need a couple things, but you can send them separately. I need super blue!, some really Strong bug repellent (i get bit while i sleep), and then i need some knee straps…remember how i used to wear straps under my knees when i run? Well, i kinda need some cuz my knees get sore from running in the morning. I tried making some but they don't really work.

Well, i have to go! I love you guys so much! I'm healthy, still not understanding what the heck people say here, but i'm loving it anyways! Until next week. Enjoy the Pictures! Let me know if you have questions.

Todo mi amor,

hna. amundsen

rafaela week 9 - oct 4

¡Hola Familia!
Well, i loved conference, the parts that i heard at least. we got to listen to sat morning in i didn't really understand any of that..couldn't go to sat. afternoon....and then we listened to almost all of sunday morning and afternoon conference in english! that was a treat. the elders some how figured it out and we all watched it in another room. But ya, i still have part of sunday and all of saturday to read in the Liahona, i´m excited! I love reading those. I find old ones in our pench and read them a lot for personal study. But ya, i definitely thought of conference at home, watching it together in our pjs, i kinda missed that. But how fun mom, that you got to go. what a treat!

This week in Rafaela...well, we found a couple scorpions in our pench. haha, that was fun. They weren't very big, and one of them was already dead. but this was the first time i have seen them. i hope they're not too poisonous. we'll be careful;) well, i'm so stoked for a couple of our investigadors! Marta and Luis accepted a baptismal date! they are going to get married and then baptized! they are so prepared, holy smokes, we do nothing, they are just so ready. it just show's that there are people out there that are prepared. they keep all their commitments, and want to live the laws and commandments. the ward already loves them. I feel like they are members already. they have 2 kids. Priscilla is 7 and Martin is 4 months. They are going to be so great, their baptism is the 23rd of October!

Also, Ruben is changing! for the better. he cut his hair and looks a little sharper, they came to conference this week and loved it! Ruben came to teach another one of our investigadors with us, so now he's helping us spread the gospel! and he even offered to pick them up for church! He is now volunteering to pray, when before we always had to ask him. It is so great! i think we baptized a good one!! And our ward is starting to pick up the pace. I am seeing changes in this ward! One of our members even noted it and thanked us. it's not us, that's for sure. sometimes i feel so unworthy of the blessings Heavenly Father gives us. But i think our ward is starting to come together because they have seen Ruben's change, and the success we have had with Marta and Luis who were a reference from a member, and now we have ward mission leader who is so strong, and we are getting more people to come and teach with us! and one of the members offered to do our laundry!!!! which means i have like 2 more hours on p-day to actually write letters instead of washing my clothes by hand! Why is the Lord blessing us. I don't even feel like i'm being obedient sometimes. We get out of our pench late in the mornings, we didn't run every day this week, we had an appointment with an investigador that was over an hour long (against the rules). these are the rules that we try to keep but aren't always exact on...these are the hard rules to keep. But i think the Lord sees that we are trying and He blesses us.

Well. ya. i don't know what else to say. The Gospel is real. It is so great to have a living prophet on the earth today. The gospel is living, not dead. thanks for your prayers. there are definitely days i struggle to stay focused and give it my all, so i thank you for your love and support. have i told you guys how much i love you? because i really do, a lot a alot a lot. i´m really grateful for you guys, for parents who gave me the greatest gift, the gospel! i hope you are all well. Kris, i was amazed at BYU why there were so many good looking guys but never in my ward either, just keep looking. Keep going strong with school Jules, high school only comes once. Jodi, stay away from the boys, you still have 9 more months before you are 16. Sarah, make and keep good friends,they are the best. and most importantly, seek the guidance of the Lord in all that you do. mom and dad, apply what you have just learned, love eachother, support eachother, and be continue to be good examples for your kids.
until next week,

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

rafaela week 8 - sept 27

Hola Familia!

That's funny mom, that you fell asleep so early. It's all good. And yes we had a baptism!! My first baptism in Rafaela. We were kinda worried about it though because we weren't there this whole week. But when we arrived back in Rafaela Friday night, everything had already been planned! Guillermo had taken care of it all! And all we had to do was show up! I was amazed! This never happens! Our ward really is amazing, and it's starting to feel more like home to me.

So ya, this week was pretty fun! We went to a place called Santa Tome which is in Santa Fe or right outside the city santa fe. This is where i worked with Hna. Kusilek. There were 4 of us girls in the pench (apartment-really it's a house, but we call everything a pench). Hna. Kusilek and i got to work together for 4 days! And the area we worked in was really beautiful. We were out on all dirt roads, and there was a lot of campo (field) and it was really green. The houses were not as nice, more run down and just cement and brick houses, but i loved it! We would just walk down this one road and all there was on one side of us was this big open field. And you could hear the wind through the trees (which sounds really cool), and we got to eat lunch outside one day, and we ate it next to this giant tree overlooking the river that runs through. i really loved being out there. I hope i am not stuck in the city forever. I love Rafaela, but i just like the peace and the nature feeling better. We had fun though. There is this one family of 11 that i fell in love with. Only half are members, but we got 4 more of them to accept a baptism date! So hopefully they don't fall through. Hna.Kusilek is rad. We think we'll be comps soon. She doesn't think it's weird that i read her blog before coming out, she thinks it's cool.

But we got back Friday night, to find that everything was ready to go for the baptism. Hna. Hansen got a fever, so all we did sat. was the baptism, and then she rested the rest of the day. But the baptism went great! Everyone helped out, and the ward was awesome about welcoming Ruben and supporting him. Hna. Hansen and I sang “i feel my saviors love”…ya i sang…it's weird, here, no one can sing, so they all think that we all have beautiful voices cuz we can keep a tune. But ya, the baptism was awesome! I really felt the spirit, i think Ruben did too. We ate lunch with them on Sunday to celebrate, we joke and say they've got a house full of mormons now!

After the baptism it rained a ton! Not for super long, but just long enough for me to get soaked! I love the rain, i think it's fun! And we were on our way back to the pench anyways because Hna. Hansen was supposed to rest. Anyways. Ya dad, i didn't know you had a new calling! That's awesome. Sounds like you and mom are going to be busy. I guess that's a good thing though.

Thanks for your love and support. Dad, you can tell people i´m doing great because i am. It's definitely though sometimes, but we keep on going. I so wanted to send you guys pics...but i can't get the program to work. sorry! i know i would want to see pics too.
love ya guys.
hna. amundsen
p.s. ya, i'm definitely not fluent in spanish yet, i've got a long way to go...a long way...

rafaela week 7 - sept 20

Thanks for your letter dad, i know what you mean.. the opportunities that we have to serve in the church are really for our own benefit. We are the ones that do the most growing as we try and help others. Well this week should be interesting. Tomorrow i will have been in the mission for 5 months, that´s pretty cool! Tonight we are going to Santa Fe. We will be staying with hnas. Kusilek and Peterson. I will be working with Hna. Kusilek in their area until Friday, while our comps go to this big training thing. like luke said in one of his letters, they have made some changes, and now they are trying to teach everyone how to be better missionaries. I´m excited! we could always use some help!

so..we have a mission leader!!! we are so excited! i have never had one, because the one in venado tuerto was inactive. His name is Guillermo Franco (you could probably google him because he plays soccer as his work). He´s in his late 20´s, returned missionary, has a super cute wife and a kid, and he is super organized and just stoked to help us out and get the ward exctied about missionary work! This is big because we could really use some help.

Also we have a baptism this weekend! which we are kinda stressed about because we are going to be out of town til friday night. but, it´s Ruben Garza...Gaston´s dad. We are stoked for him though. The only thing with him is his silly kiosco that they still refuse to close on sunday. so instead of coming to church every sunday, he will come every other sunday...i hope we can change that.

So yesterday in church, we were talking about the sabbath day in gospel Principals. And Alicia Garza (ruben´s wife) was there. (the bishop´s daughter, carla, teaches the class...whom i love, she is amazing, served a mission, and just knows so much and i can understand her better than anyone else when she talks!) And we started talking about working on sunday, because Guillermo (who was also there) plays soccer on sunday for his work, and so sometimes he can´t come to church. so we talked about how the Lord understands that. and then Alicia says something like.."ya, exactly, it´s the same for us. Because we have a store and we can´t close it on sunday because we have had this store here for the last 40 years, and the people are just used to it being open."and what not...and i was like, oh no! she is totally taking this wrong, she doesn´t understand that Guillermo has a boss, and no choice, but they have a choice because it´s their store. Anyway. Carla says,¨"ok, lets talk about commandments for a second here..." and she explained how we receive blessings from keeping commandments. and then she shared a story from her mission where basically the same thing happened. And how this couple that owned this bakery closed their store on sunday, and the lord blessed them to have twice as many customers every saturday. and how not only were they now keeping the sabbath day holy, but they were also helping others to keep the sabbath day holy. I am so grateful for Carla, for the members here, there are really some great members here.

oh! we totally had a door slammed in our faces this week! haha. We went to visit this family that had been taught once or twice before in the past. And when we went the dad was home. "Mr. Cerda" he opens the door, excited to see us. "Hnas.! Pasen pasen!" which is like "Come in, come in!" so we asked if his wife was home, he said, that no one was home, just him. and then he repeated "pasen, Pasen!, don´t you trust me!" we said, we want to come in, but we have a rule that there needs to be another woman. and then we was like "don´t come back again!" and slammed the door really hard in our faces. i looked at my comp, and laughed. I was like, he´s kidding right?! because it happened so fast, his mood just changed so fast. But he really meant it. so we walked away, moved on, but we were like, that was so weird!!

Anyways. That´s about it. Right now we have this awesome couple Marta y Luis. they have come to church the past 2 weeks and are progressing really fast. they are really good friends of the bishop´s family, and are already talking about getting baptized! but they just have to get married! they have 2 little kids, but they are so great and really want to do what is right. But that is what is going on with me right now. This week will be weird, but i´m excited to work with Hna. Kusilek in Santa Fe! she is way rad!

Well. The gospel is true. i´m so grateful to have the truth on our side when we teach, especially when we have a run in with Testigos de sat...haha. it´s so great to know that the Lord is behind us in this work. I love the pure and simple doctrine! i love it! love it! love it! And i love you guys too! A LOT! i really am grateful for my family:) even when my mom forgets about me :) (totally kidding mom, don´t feel bad. i know you are busy and that you really do love me). until next week.
todo mi amor con todo mi corazon,
hermana amundsen