So the big news for right now is that this week we have transfers and tomorrow we will find out whether or not I will still be here in Catarina for another 6 weeks or if I will get a new area. Right now I am kinda fine with whatever will happen. I like it here in Catarina because it feels like home and I am becoming really close with the members and I know where everything is which makes it feel like home now. However, a change would be nice and to have a Latino companion to where I would be forced to speak Spanish for every moment. So I guess we'll find out what will happen. I will let you all know next week what's going down in the hood here!
Something funny and kinda disturbing that happened this week was one night we were contacting in an area and we met this nice lady who was about 30, who invited us in to sit down and talk to her. We were getting to know more about her and her family and how many people live with her in the house. We asked about her parents and all and then she kinda paused and looked at the floor. The lifted her hand and pointed just about where my feet were and where I was sitting, and she said that that was the spot where her dad was shot and where he died. She said that the bullet hole was still in the ground and sure enough there it was. My companion and I kinda looked at each other like, What??? so after she said that I was a little creeped out that I was sitting where a guy was shot and where he died. We had a good lesson with her even though she didn't accept the message. Just had to share that with you all!
Throughout the week there was a subject about the Gospel that really stuck out to me and that made me realize and appreciate more about the Plan that God has for us. I kept getting glimpses and realizing how much of a blessing it is to realize that I am sealed with my family and that we will have the opportunity to live together forever in God's presence. That is something that makes me smile every time I think of it. How grateful I am that we are under a sacred covenant that it gives me a reassuring feeling as well. It is always sad to see people that don't want to make the decisions to be able to live with their families forever. Who doesn't want that????? Just a shout out to my parents that thanks for getting sealed in the temple! Love you guys! :)
Another great blessing that I am seeing especially over that past few weeks and months is the gift of tongues in my mission. For those who don't know that the gift of tongues is a gift that God gives to us as missionaries in this sacred calling to learn the language faster in our missions to be able to fulfill the duties and responsibilities that we have to do during this time. I am seeing it because I remember when I was in high school and when I was taking Spanish class I was absolutely horrible. I would study and practice in school and at home but it was such a struggle for me and after 2 or 3 years of school I couldn't really remember any Spanish. However, here on the mission the language is coming so fast and that I am able to make full conversations will people, teach full lessons, and almost fulfill any task I need to do. I have seen the power in this gift and it is evidence to me that it is real and I know I have so much more to learn as I am nowhere near perfect but that it is something I have received through this calling as a missionary for the church.
Last week on Tuesday we had a multi-zone conference in Coatepeque where we had a test about Preach My Gospel that would test our knowledge of how much we know and apply ourselves as missionaries. I thought I was done with tests for 2 years!!!! Guess not... we had a little over an hour to complete it and the purpose of the test is to show the President of the mission if we are ready to train a new missionary or to be the senior companion. I hope that I did a good enough job to prove to President that I am ready to take more responsibility.
Something marvelous happens during the week, something that I didn't think would happen in a while. IT RAINED!!!! One day this week the clouds were building all day and finally during the night it just started to pour on us pretty good. I couldn't believe it and was pretty excited when I saw it. But man is it hard to teach a lesson when the rain is pounding on the tin roofs and you're practically yelling. haha. We walked in the rain all night just because it felt so good and we were drenched in it. Ya all my clothes were wet but it was amazing. It got me really excited to see and be in the rainy season which should be starting pretty soon.
As far as our investigators go, we are starting to drop a lot of them just because they are not really progressing and not doing anything to progress in the gospel so that means that we have to stop visiting them and find new people who are ready to receive our message, progress in the Gospel, and those who want to make covenants with the Lord. We have been starting to find new people to teach and ya there are a few people who are starting to progress but the hardest obstacle that we have seen is that almost none are coming to church and that is a big problem. We are continuing to teach the importance of coming to church but they all don't seem confident, or say yes but have things come up, etc. It is a little frustrating to hear and have happen but we are trying to stay persistent and finding those who are ready because God has prepared specific people who are just waiting to hear our message and to make commitments as well. That is where faith and perseverance comes in and trusting in the Lord.
I love this mission and trying to do the best I can and I have realized that when we don't want to do certain things that the Lord has asked us to do, that in the long run they will bless us. I love you and miss you all. Stay Sweet!
|This is an iguana at a member's house that I got to hold, her name is Mormona! And no, I didn't try to eat her! Haha!|
|I also got to hold a parrot!|
|The picture of the water in the "pila" is what every single house has and that is where they wash dishes, cut vegetables, prepare food a lot, and they have to pull the water out of a well to get it in there.|
|Us just chilling on a hammock as we were waiting for lunch!|
|The picture of us frowning is because in that spot it felt like Fall back home so were were sad.|
|The one of my arm. LOOK HOW TAN I AM GETTING! (FYI – Chandler doesn’t tan well so he is pretty proud of having a good tan line!).|
|The one with the me and the trees in the background is in a place called Bejucal (the J is silent).|
|These two are photos of outside of our house. The one that looks like a prison is our house facing the front door, we are on the bottom floor. The other one pretty much outside our house facing the main street.|