HelloDad, bummed to hear you guys are still stick. ME TOO. I had a fever yesterday. I called Hna. Villalba, and she said it’s going around, and that she too is just getting over a fever. So I have to stay inside for the next couple days. She wants me to recuperate completely and as quickly as possible. Today I don’t have a fever, but I still feel a little weak. But that is how it goes.This week we had a leaders training. It was really good, I feel pumped every time I go to those kinds of things. Transfers are coming. I think there will be lots of changes…there are 6 hermanas that will be going home march 1, 2010….so this next transfer is the last transfer for 6 hermanas, including my comp Hna. Hansen. And I guess we will be getting 6 new ones…so there will be a lot of people training and I might go up to comp mayor. (senior comp). It also might mean a lot of white washes (president likes to do those). But we’ll see…So transfers are next week (wed. the 19th of Jan). So that means I will be writing on Tuesday.So this last Sunday a member brought a friend with her to church. Her friend’s name is Grasiela, she is 47 yrs old with no top teeth. We began teaching Grasiela this week. She stopped smoking a little over a month ago because of a lot of health problems, and she can´t drink either…so word of wisdom…taken care of! When we began teaching her we just started chatting about her life and the things that she has been through. She really enjoyed church, she said she has never felt that way in any other church. She also received a blessing of health, and just told us about the peace that she felt with that. She is so great, and just really receptive. We talked to her about baptism and she would really like that. But I felt a lot of love for her the more I got to know her. I think that’s why Christ and our Heavenly Father love us so much, because they know us so well. For this reason Christ was so willing to pay the price for all of our sins. He knew us before this world even was.Anyway….so that’s the scoop this week. Can you tell Kris that his e-mail keeps sending me links to different sites, and that he needs to check it out, it probably has some kind of virus. Anyway…love you guys…I’ll let you know what’s happening for transfers next week!Love, hna amundsen
Monday, January 10, 2011
Wednesday, January 5, 2011
So i didn't write sat…everything was closed..and we have half p-day today. So it was fun to talk to you guys on Christmas by skype. The flia. Carrere are pretty awesome (those are the people). Sandra (the mom) is less active, but she is still our friend. She has a testimony still, but ya, a lot of people are like that. And yes dad…they all give kisses here. Every time you walk up to someone they give you a kiss on the cheek. We aren't allowed to kiss the men, only the women. But sometimes the men do it so fast you don't have time to tell them NO. but it's like the handshake or the hug. It's the way they greet one another. And when you end a phone call, they always say “un beso, chao” …which means “a kiss, bye”.
For the new year, we had dinner with a family and then headed back to the apartment. I went to bed, because we had to get up at 6:30am the next morning (like always). The good thing is it was P-day the next day. But I didn't sleep. I hardly ever sleep on P-day…I only did it on Christmas and maybe one other time. Actually…on Saturday our zone got together and we watched Toy Story 3! We got permission from president cuz it was a holiday and our zone had 5 baptisms last week…(2 of them were ours! !!). Then afterwards we played soccer, which i am beginning to really love. It was hot, but it was fun!
So…we had a baptism the 24th…I can't believe I forgot to tell you guys. It was 2 boys…Owen Pons (11) and Airton Pons (13)...brothers. Their story is pretty interesting. Hna. Morales has been trying to teach these boys since she got to San Nicolas in July. They were the only ones not baptized from their family. Their family was less active. This is what happened…I guess there were some family problems and then their dad, Luis, got sick with cancer. He lived about 2 months and then passed away this last September. During this time the family promised their dad that they would go back to church and become active members again. When I got here, we were able to get inside the house and teach them for the first time. These 2 boys are really great. The Baptism was really emotional for them, and for the whole family. Their uncle (the brother of their dad) was able to baptize them. It definitely didn't feel like I did anything. These boys were prepared and ready. I don't think any of this would have happened if their dad had not passed away. I think of the scripture in Alma 24:26-27...and how the Lord works in mysterious ways to bring salvation unto His people. But the number who had been brought to the knowledge of the truth was greater than the number that had been killed.
So, I got a little package from cary and Allison Nielsen (Breana's parents)! Tell them thanks if you see them! They sent me their Christmas card and some cds…one of the elders said the talk they sent me is really good. So i'll have to listen to it:). I'm working on some letters…i'm trying to write some people that wrote to me. It's starting to get warm here. We are going to start studying in the afternoons now…president's orders. Can't believe grandma and grandpa are moving! I got an e-mail from grandma today. I'm not supposed to write her back. But tell her thanks, I loved it. Sounds like Christmas was fun. I'm working on some new goals for this year….finish my mission would be #1…then I'll have a little time to do some other things… Dad…our ward….we have about 50-70 people that usually show up. I don't really know what kind of info you are looking for. We have a bishop... maybe you can ask more specific questions…most wards have like 300 members…most are inactive is all. What are some of your new years resolutions? I would like to know. Alright. I think that's it. I'll talk to you guys next week! We should be more on schedule now….thanks for the pictures!! It's good to see everyone's faces!
So heres the plan….there is a member that has skype, and it just so happens that we have lunch with them on Christmas. So after lunch i am going to call you guys by phone…it will be about 1:30 or 2pm here (don't know what time it will be there). I will call you guys, using a calling card, and just talk to you for a few minutes so that i can give you the number to our cell phone and we can figure out how to do the skype thing….if skype doesn't work we'll just talk by phone. President said we can use our cell phones, but you have to call me…I'M SO EXCITED! It's been 8 months.
So this week.....well....was kinda crazy...last p-day we went down to the river....it was crazy because it was like california...the houses are right on the river. They were nicer and taller, and the streets were smaller, i felt like i was walking down to t-street or something with all the palm trees. But when we got to the river it was very different....but it was cool nonetheless. But this week was crazy because...Tuesday night we arrive at the pench at 9:30 and we start planning. We get a call from our zone leaders saying we have to go to Rosario right now! Something about another hna.....we didn't know if a new one came, if we were having a mini, if they were going to put 2 new sisters in the area....no idea. So we were odedient and grabbed our stuff, and went running to the terminal. (the mission is crazy). We caught the last bus headed for Rosario just as it was pulling out. Turns out, one of the hnas. in Rosario had to go home for a few days (her dad was really sick...it turns out he passed away) and Hna. Espinoza, who is from El Salvador, was to come with us to San Nicolas until her comp returned.
Ok...question for Luke...hna. espinoza says she knows luke. It was one of his frist areas in Sonsate. The ward was El Castaño. Hepbert, mirna, hepbert and yesica Espinoza. I guess her parents aren't members, but they loved luke. Her mom helped luke with his spanish..and they gave him a roof tile with a drawing/painting on it. Anyways...she had only the best things to say about luke. So that was pretty cool.
But we were able to get more done this week, because we were able to do divsions 2 of the days. This was good for me, because i was able to get to know the area better. I worked in one area and Hna. Morales in the other area. And we found a bunch of new people...now we've just got to keep it up and see who is really ready and willing. Because a lot of people listen, but not very many get to the waters of baptism. But yes mom, we have to keep the lessons to an hour. We do our best to keep this rule, because we have to be obedient if we want the blessings. sometimes it's hard to keep rules like that...like not being able to teach men alone too...like old men, or crippled men, we know they can't do anything to us, but we still can't enter their house to teach them if they're alone. And therefore they don't hear the lessons. Or we teach outside. But we have to be obedient.
Anyways...we went again to Rosario sat night to drop off Hna. Espinoza. and slept there....then returned in the morning just in time for church. Luckily Rosario is only about 1hr and 20 min away...not 3 1/2 hours like Rafaela.
Hna. Morales completed a year in the mission the other day..so we ordered ice cream and celebrated. It was fun. tell Tanner congrats on the mission call! Well, it looks like we'll be chatting it up in spanish, holmes style. Well.....i love you guys!!!!! Christmas will be a little different, but it's the only christmas i have to spend away from home, so it's all good. Thanks for your prayers, they are needed. Talk to you guys in a few days...and have yourselves a merry little christmas!
Sunday, January 2, 2011
Family fam familia…
Hows it goin guys? Well...i arrived in san nicolas safetly, and i really like it here. Itss more like venado tuerto than rafaela. We have to wards here....wards...not branches....but they are very small wards. “Las Flores” is one...its really pretty, because it is in the city but also goes out to the “campo” where there are dirt roads, and fields...the houses are more humble, but i like it. It's pretty. Then the other ward is “Centro”...it's more rich, and you can tell the difference on sudays too...the people dress a little nicer and the ward is a little bigger...but it 's also really great. It's different...but with our 2 areas together, it's still smaller than my area in Rafaela. But i've got 6 hours of church every Sunday now.
My comp is great! Her name is Hna. Morales, from Chile. We get along really well. She is super loving.
So leaving Rafaela....the hard part was leaving the people....i went and said goodbye to some people Monday night....and those that i couldn't say goodbye to came over to our apartment...it was so great. I'll never forget these people. It was my first time really leaving an area. i learned a lot about myself last transfer, and it was really good for me.
Oh! There is this young mom in ward centro. She's super cute, and when i saw her she totally reminded me of Sarah Hallerman Davis! It was weird. She is brunette, but there was something about her, and it made me realize how much i miss Sarah. I am so far behind in writing letters....oh man. And i will be washing my clothes by hand again in this area....yay....(that was sarcastic). Which means....no time on Pday. We had a bunch of rain this week....it's warmer today. I guess it's usually pretty hot by this time of year....i've been lucky. Christmas traditions, i haven't really seen much of the Christmas spirit here at all. We'll see. I got to watch the christmas devotional last night, in spanish, so i didn't really understand much of it.
I am healthy and strong. Thanks for your letters. I really enjoy them. Sorry i don't always comment on your comments, but i read them. I'm working on sending something off to you guys...something super simple. But i am excited to talk to you! Hopefully we'll learn a bit more about that next week. It doesn't feel like christmas here. But it's all good. I'm really excited to work here! I love you guys!
Todo mi corazon,
Well i bet your just dying to know what happened with transfers…..so i'll let you know…I am leaving Rafaela, and will be going to a city called San Nicolas. It is in Buenos Aires (the province). My comp. is Hna. Morales…she is from Chile. Another Latina! This is so good for my spanish you don't even know. To be honest, i am really excited. I felt like my time was done here in Rafaela. But i've heard that San Nicolas is a hard area. I guess the Catholic church is really strong there, and they are hard core believers in the saints... so we'll see how that goes. I think i'll be learning a lot of patience....
So this week....this week we concentrated our efforts a lot with the less actives and recent converts. Guillermo talked with us about that this last week....he said that the Lord is not going to bless us with new people if we aren't taking care of our old ones. So that's what we did....and the Lord blessed us with a baptism!!! So we had Norma and Nora planned this week...to be baptized the 4th of Dec. But Norma already told us that she needed more time. Then when we talked with Nora at the beginning of the week, she said that it was a little fast for her too. Well, as a companionship we were praying a lot...if we should move her date or keep it for the 4th. We didn't really get an answer, but i felt like we should ask Nora how she feels... She was still missing some of the lessons....we went to her house 2 times and she wasn't there...thurs comes around....we teach her, ask her how she feels about her baptism...she was like “I'm ready! I know it's true!” so we were...alright...lets do it. Friday we taught the rest of the lessons....she had her interview that evening and she was baptized sat evening!
And you know what. Out of all my investigators, i think she was the most prepared. Her and Lucas Franco. You should have seen her. She was sooooo happy after her baptism. You ask her how it went and she gets all emotional and says, “there are no words to describe what i felt.” She is already talking about going to the temple, and how she wants to serve and share the gospel. She will be such a asset to the church! She is such a happy person. We found out after her baptism that she has a fear of water....It turns out she had a bad experience when she was little where she almost drowned, and hasn't been in the water since.....except to bathe of course. And i guess when she was walking into the baptismal font, she paused on the steps for a moment and said a quick prayer. Guillermo (who baptized her) asked if she was ok. She responded she was fine. Once in the water she said she was fine. Her daughter came to the baptism and was in tears... she said she couldn't believe her mom went into the water. When we asked Nora about it later, like, how come she didn't tell us about her fear of water...she said “because i knew i just had to do it.”
We met her through the Flia Franco....she takes care of an older lady that lives next door. So she was a reference from the Flia. Franco. Out of the 6 baptisms that i have had here, 5 of them were references from members....Marta and Luis were references too....(i still count them as my converts even though they are still waiting to get baptized)...But i have a testimony of the references now. Mom and Dad....you guys need to give names to the missionaries of people you know. And tell them you can use your name....you shouldn't be afraid to let them use your name. As missionaries our calling is to teach and preach...as members, your job is to find! So please, go find!
Let's see....yes, i'm a little fatter...not much.....it was sad...the other day i was wearing a shirt with short sleeves because it was really hot. And i told my comp how i felt fat in this shirt because my arms look fat. So we go to the house of the flia Garza...and Ruben starts making fun of me...telling me i'm gaining weight. And then he measures my arm with his fingers and holds up his hand to show how big my arms are. I told him he shouldn't be talking because he's the one with the belly.
Ok...i gotta go... love you guys...i don't know anything about calling for christmas yet....i'll let you know how the new area is next week. Wish me luck! Pray for me that i won't be so incredibly prideful...because that is how i feel...i need to be humble! Love ya guys!