Tuesday morning we left, with no minutes to call, to go visit Sofia, an investigator that goes to church every Sunday and who only speaks Creole. We had no way of contacting the members that normally go with us to translate, but we decided that we would go see if we could at least just read the Book of Mormon with her. As we went down the 55 stairs to get to her house, we found Hna Anet, our most favorite member/translator! The Lord is so inspired. We were able to teach her the Restoration, something that we've felt she hasn't been able to understand well because of the language barrier. She finally understood, and for the first time, accepted the baptismal invitation. It's amazing how the Lord puts people in our paths.
On Thursday we had a Christmas party in Gazcue! Half the mission went and the other half went on Friday. Good times.
Friday we went to the chapel to fill the baptismal font for Jean's baptism. We sat as it filled, waiting for him to show up. The hour came and passed when he was supposed to arrive. The hour came and passed when the service was supposed to start. Another hour came and passed. After many calls and a member looking for him in his house, we found out that his work ended later than he thought it would and that he wouldn't be able to make it. So Jean's baptism is getting rescheduled.
Saturday we celebrated Christmas Eve with the Laureano Family, eating lots yummy food - empanadas, pastel en hoja, chicken, grapes, sweets, spaghetti, pork.... mmm. Love the Noche Buena here.
Merry Christmas to all! The reason for Christmas is so beautiful. I know that Jesus lives. I know that he is our Redeemer. He is our Savior. He is beautifully patient and loving with each one of us. Through Him we reach greater heights than we possibly could scrape on our own.
Love you all! Keep shining!
Christmas party, jumping, talking with the fam
Last week as we were walking through the street, I asked Hermana Quezada how we can work to bring more souls to Christ through baptism, and she said, ¨Service.¨ Honestly I was a little surprised because we´re always offering to help people, so I asked again. She gave me the same answer, ¨Service,¨ and just kept repeating the word until we decided to commit ourselves to serve more. Well Monday night we went to visit Kilsi, an investigator that´s been attending church for more than a year. We´ve been trying so hard to encourage her to take the next step and get baptised, but to no avail. When we got to her house on Monday she had a bunch of dirty dishes and was doing laundry. Upon noticing this, we decided it would be better to help her out than to share a message, so despite her protests we started to do her dishes. Afterwards we shared a short message and left. The next day we stopped by her house to ask for water. She asked us if we had received the text she´d sent us the night before. We told her no, and she went to show us the message which read: ¨Hermanas when is the next baptismal service? I want to get baptized.¨ With chills and huge smiles we hugged her and invited her to baptism this month. She is now preparing to get married and baptized before the New Year.
Every day the Lord proves to me more and more that this is not our work. It is His. Everything that led up to Kilsi deciding to get baptized was inspired by the Spirit. The timing of everything, the service that softened her heart, passing by her house the next day by chance, everything. The Lord´s work is marvelous.
Elot and Mariette moved two Sundays ago and since then we haven´t seen them up until Wednesday when we ran into Mariette in the street! Finally we know where they live and are starting to teach them again. They are the most adorable couple.
This week is ¨Holy Week¨. As a mission we committed ourselves to being exactly obedient for the whole week. We´re just starting, but the blessings from obedience are already coming. The faith is almost palpable. I am so excited for January. There are many miracles to come.
I love you all. Keep shining!
Once upon a time four sister missionaries decided that it would be fun to go climb a mountain on PDay. Well, after being set back a bit they finally went their way, ready for the long bus ride. 1.5 hours later they arrive. However, the other two sisters they were going to meet up with and had supposedly planned everything, were not there. Nearly one hour later, the other sisters showed up. There were only 30 minutes to spare, but laughing and happy nonetheless, they went to go find a mountain. Walking along the highway they found a dirt road that looked promising. They came to the end and soon realized that it was not a path that led to a mountain, rather to a dead end. They left it and got back on the highway. The mountains were far away and the time had come to go back home. They sat, tired, but still happy, on the nearest bench to laugh at their foolishness and lack of planning. And they caught the next bus home. What a glorious P-Day! :)
This week was.... Fun. A handful of our most amazing investigators decided to move outside of our area, we got dropped by several people, and one of them hid from us, but the Lord reached out in mercy and inspired several members to give us awesome referrals at the end of the week! We are so excited to start working with new people, especially when they´re referrals from members. This work is so much better when we work as a team. Hermana Quezada and I were tired of contacting one day and just talking about how there has to be a better way. We came to the conclusion that the work is just better when the members and the missionaries work together. Well, the Lord blessed us a day later with just that!
God is good. He listens to our prayers. When we adopt faith and hope as a part of our permanent mindset, things are so much easier.
´´For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace¨ Romans 8:6
I think part of being spiritually minded is keeping that eternal perspective in mind. It´s being positive. It´s being hopeful.
I love you all, Keep shining,
Our grand adventure.
Hermana Quezada and Hermana Shaw were contacting houses when an old lady called them inside and told them to share a little bit with her. They sung and shared a short message, it was clear she didn´t want to listen as much as she wanted to talk. They ended with a prayer and she got up and started putting platanos in a bag to give to them. They accepted graciously and she goes over and puts more platanos in the bag. They accept graciously and she stoops down to put MORE platanos in the bag. Astonished and grateful, the sisters thank her and are about to leave. She then looks at Hermana Shaw, and says, with all the strength of an old lady, ´´And YOU.... The Lord has a great surprise waiting for you... You will be astonished... REMEMBER. Remember.´´
I have no idea if that surprise is good or bad but hey. Cool. A lady predicted my future this week.
This week we had Mission Tour with Elder Zivic!! Way cool. And way good. I had the special and nervewracking privilege of playing violin and singing, ´´If You Could Hie to Kolob,¨ with Elder Auger on the piano. My voice left me on the first verse and I was dying inside... somehow I sang it through quietly as I prayed for help, and luckily it came back for the second. Yup. Fun fun stuff. I also got interviewed by Elder Zivic which was way way cool. He's pretty awesome and gave an incredible talk in Mission Tour.
Diego, my convert from Benjamin, came to visit me in church! He knew I was in Villa Verde and just decided to show up and surprise me! Go Diego go!
The Lord is preparing his children. We have seen that several times this week. A lady contacted us and asked us for a pamphlet. She told us she wants us to teach her children. In a hurry, she gave us her direction and number then scurried off. A member brought his friend to church yesterday and wow. He was participating so much, and even asked the member what he had to do to get the priesthood. On Friday I felt so drained and was dragging my feet to keep me going. We had nowhere to go and it was night time, but we decided to keep contacting until it was time to go in. We met Karolyn, a young mom that said we came right in the opportune moment. I know that God prepares His children. This is His work. I am awed at what He does.
I know that the Lord lives and that he looks out for His sheep. For those that embrace the gospel of Jesus Christ, the blessings come. Always in the time of the Lord, but they come.
¨´be of´good cheer, for I will lead you along¨ -Doctrine and Covenants 78.18
I love you all, Keep shining,
Interviews two weeks ago
Write me! I would love to hear from you! :)
Santo Domingo East MIssion
SDQ 4102, 2250 NW 114th Ave.
Miami, FL 33172-3652
8540 NW 66th St.
Miami, FL 33195 - 2698
Dominican Republic Santo Domingo East Mission