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Thursday, February 25, 2016

New Address

Buenas dias familia,
17781 Ikaria Ct, Lakeville, MN 55044
This is where I live. I don't even know what to talk about this week, I feel like so much and yet nothing new has happened. I made it to Lakeville in a Toyota smashed with three sisters and ALL their luggage. Saying goodbye to my friends in Richfield was sad but ok, I was ready for change. There are only a few people that I really connected with and so I didn't say a lot of goodbyes, and honestly its easier to just leave. Hna W was sick Monday and Tuesday so we took it easy, I got all my stuff packed, and we visited a few people. The saddest for me were Hno Benjamin, Christina, and Victor. They are some of my favorite people in the world and I love them lots.

Transfers was a crazy experience for me, it was weird to say bye to Hna W. Its crazy when you spend literally every single moment with someone for 3 months and then say "say you later" and leave. It was a little sad too, but the sister that took my spot is awesome; she goes home at the end of this transfer and is a fantastic missionary.As a part of transfer meeting, we watched a worldwide missionary braodcast titled "Teach Repentance, Baptize converts." A huge focus in our mission and apparently all over the world is preaching repentance. The foundation of the Gospel is the Atonement of Jesus Christ. We can only accept the Atonement if we have faith unto repentance, repent, receive remission of our sins through baptism, and then receive the Holy Ghost so we can continue to have the strength to resist the things we've repented of. The unique message we share is that through the restored church of Jesus Christ we have the tools to fully repent and remain clean so we can enter the kingdom of God. When others feel the change, joy, and purity that comes from repentance, the will feel the desire to pray and ask God for repentance, the drive to attend church where they can partake of the sacrament, the longing to be baptized and be truly cleansed, and the motivation to endure to the end by attending church and renewing their covenants. Repentance and the freedom that comes from it are what will drive them to continue to repent and do the things they're supposed to do. I really like this new focus, but repentance is something that can be really hard to teach. I'm excited to learn more and learn to use this principle better.

Hermana Rowland is my new companion! She is the oldest of five, all girls, and is from Hurricane, Utah. She was Miss Hurricane her junior? year of high school and is really into performance, acting, and musicals. We have enjoyed discussing some of our favorites:) We get along really well, even though our personalities are pretty different. We came out on the same day, so its interesting having the same amount of time on the mission as my companion. We live with in a members basement, and they're really nice to let us stay, but I already miss my own space. I don't like having to share a kitchen, because every time we use it i feel like we're intruding. And then there are like little things that you don't realize you miss until you have your own space and then don't, like not having to take your shoes off the second you come in the house, or cleaning because you want to, not because you have a chore list. I'll be happy to move into an apartment again, but I really am grateful for their willingness to help the missionaries. 

The work here is really different. We had a pretty big teaching pool in Richfield, but here we mostly work with less-actives. We have 1 investigator. It's different. I love the families that I've already met. They are really humble people. Almost all of them live in trailers but they are so good about feeding us and letting the missionaries come over. The area itself is different too. It is definitely not the city. Minneapolis and the surrounding areas are really easy to navigate because its all on a grid. I always new exactly where I was and what direction I was going, but here its all cul-de-sacs and roundabouts. Much more tranquilo. I actually miss the city.

This transfer I really want to focus on having patience with our people and improving my personal prayers. I think this area is the perfect opportunity to do that, because working with less-actives is so frustrating for me. To me it seems so cut and dry, come to church=blessings, but sometimes it feels like no matter what I say or what they feel or what they testify of, it doesn't help. A lot of them have legitimate circumstances where they have to work, or things happen but for so many its just way too easy to skip church. It will be good for me to chill out, invite people persistently, be loving, and find some investigators along the way. Any suggestions? I've already met a lot of really cool people. One lady was in the Mexican army for five years because she needed money to get custody of her daughter, one family has a son on a mission in Mexico, lots of neat stories and people. Oh yeah! BTW, I gave a talk in church yesterday. It was the first talk I've given on my mission. I've born my testimony before, but I actually gave a fifteen minute talk in Spanish on how my mission has blessed my life. I spoke with another sister who just returned from her mission to Ecuador. My Spanish has felt waaaay more confident in the last week since I've been here. Hna R struggles with Spanish a little, and this is the first time that my Spanish has been better than my companion's. She has a hard time speaking, but she always gets the point across. She does better than she think she does. I didn't really know I could talk until I had to. It's all a part of this crazy adventure. I hope that my Spanish gets as good as I want it to be.

I cant believe Erin goes home this week! It seriously is INSANE how fast it goes. We hit our seven months yesterday! February is 7 days away, and then I'm halfway at the end of March! Crazy.

Hope you're all doing well, still no emails this morning, but I loved Sara's smile without braces. Way too cute. How is play practice for Lauren? Is Morgan getting good at volleyball? Their team looks pretty athletic, and I'm really jealous of how cool their jerseys are. did you get a chance to send that levothyroxine? Because as of today I'm officially out. I seriously cant believe January is almost over.  
Les quiero mucho! Cuidense y que tengan una bonita semana!

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