Wednesday, October 29, 2014

It's a Girl!

Dearest Familia,

The ongoing saying is that if you train, you're a mother, so congratulations to me, it's a girl!!  I am training Sister Ferre (Fairy) and she is amazing!!  I have so much to tell about this week, and then I'll tell you more about her :)

Julio - my first baptism!
So let's start with Julio's baptism :)  Everything was set and ready for his baptism Saturday at 3, it was 1 o'clock in the afternoon and we get a call on the way to the church, Julio was having some doubts.  Me and Sister Baros started to mega-panic!!  He is leaving for Bolivia in 3 weeks and was worried about not being able to attend church while he's gone for 2 months, so he didn't want to get baptized and go inactive.  We raced to the family history center, looked up Santa Cruz, Bolivia on and found tons of churches.  We called him back to tell him and then told him to pray about it and call us back.  He called us back a few minutes later and said "Ok, I'll see you at 2:30!"  Oh man I've never felt so relieved!!  He walked in to the church looking quite nervous, but smiling none the less :)  The Elders were put in charge of helping him find a baptism suit that fits.  Julio walks out in his white jumpsuit a few minutes later and I lost it laughing.  The Elders had him squeeze into an 8-year- old's baptism suit!  Julio is probably only 5'3" and skinny, but he's not THAT small!  I felt so bad, but I could not stop laughing at his little monkey suit!  He points his finger at me and says "You!  NO laughing!"  Then we were all laughing :)  I ran into the bathroom to find him a bigger suit.  Poor guy....he looked great in white though!  We took pictures, then started the baptism service.  He was really nervous, but only had to be dunked once! 

 Afterwards we asked him to bear his testimony to the group and he did awesome :)  He said "I got baptized because I wanted to start a new life."  He thanked me and Sister Baros profusely and said he knows that this church was true.  It was such a rewarding moment for us! 

 The next day he came to church and was confirmed.  After the blessing he sat down next to me and said, "Wow."  Yay Julio!!  Everytime we bike by his house now we say, "Hey!  A Mormon lives there!"  or "Hey!  That's our recent convert!"  It's been really exciting for me :)  A couple days after Julio's baptism we went to his house and we can all ready see the Spirit working with him as a companion.  He told us his work wants him to work Sundays til he leaves for Bolivia, but he'd rather quit his job instead.  The Holy Ghost is so necessary for conversion!  

On Sunday Xochitl and Daniel came to church on time and stayed for all 3 hours again!  Xochitl continues to participate in class, and loves the messages and teachers.  Daniel always falls asleep and is really calm in sacrament meeting with his mom there too, it's nice not to play babysitters :)  

Xochiltl and Daniel

Lorenzo, Yazury, and the girls also came to church again this week and Yazury even brought a friend!  
This week we went to visit Lorenzo and he said, "Ok, I want you to pick a day between November 1 and November 15 for my baptism!"  We almost passed out in shock.  We said, "Ok, November 8!"  So that's what we are planning for now!!  He's starting to get nervous and making excuses about doctors appointments now, but hopefully with faith and prayers we can help him set the goal he set for himself!!  Another lesson we had with Lorenzo was quite funny.  He was going off telling this long story/parable and I was completely zoned out.  Then I hear him tell us that he is practicing on us.  For when he has to address our congregation after his baptism.  Hahahaha sweet guy :)  In that same lesson his wife Lupita heard him say a word wrong and started cracking up.  She switches to her broken English and says, "You sound like a Japanese!"  Me and Hna Baros lost it!

On Saturday night our branch combined with 2 English wards for a trunk or treat fall festival.  It was so fun!  It also made me miserable.  They had a DJ there and he played so many of my favorite songs it was killing me!  I've yet to feel that trunky on my mission.  I made Sister Freeman sing me, "I Stand all Amazed" and then I felt better :)  I quite enjoyed eating all the free food though!  Pizza, popcorn, scones, and candy! 

Trunk or Treat activity

Planning like party animals

This week two investigators invited us over for "Goodbye Sister Baros" meals.  Selene and her husband made us food on Saturday for lunch.  Shrimp pasta.  I almost passed out when I saw all those shrimp and I had to breathe really slow and heavy to keep from crying.  I tried to explain that I have this thing LIKE an allergy to fish, so Selene says oh!  I have allergy pills, then you can eat it! AGH.  I said something like well, I'm actually just terrified of fish.  They didn't understand.  I was thinking about how to get around this and then Selene offered to dish me a plate of just pasta without the shrimp.  Hallelujah!  I gladly ate that pasta!!  They are such a great family, they're super sad to have Hna Baros leave, but it's ok, they're favorite is still here ;)  Just kidding!  The other meal was with Xochitl and Daniel.  She made us chicken legs with mole (this chocolaty salsa stuff) and rice.  It's not that great, but I was so grateful it wasn't fish that I didn't even care!  

Ok now the moment you've all been waiting for.  After 4 1/2 months I finally have a new companion!  I was SUPER nervous Monday night and Tuesday morning.  I had to be at the mission home by 7:45 am on Tuesday and had a trainers meeting with President Sweeney.  Then the trainees came in and we got another 90 minute training about the first 12 weeks.  Finally after building up all the suspense they started announcing the companionship's.  I have to admit, when I saw all of the trainees I picked my favorite one, but didn't dare hope I'd get put with her.  But then they announced our names!  I was so relieved!  Her name is Sister Ferre (Fairy) and she just got here from the Mexico MTC and has 0 Spanish background.  She's from Sandy, Utah (right by Grammy's old house actually) and just graduated from Alta in June!  She turned 19 in September and immediately left for her mission.  I cannot even tell you how happy I am with her.  Last night after lights out we talked until almost 1 in the morning and I can tell we are going to have a really good time together!  She has two little sisters and no brothers just like me :)  She's super bubbly and fun.  Her will come :)  She gets really nervous, especially last night when we taught our first lesson, but she shared her testimony of prayer and followed along great :)  She doesn't like cookies...but I'll fix that!!  Actually, her family eats all organic stuff which I found hilarious that I keep getting healthy companions.  I told her I live off quesadillas, cereal, and frozen waffles.  The best part is she has an iron stomach and will eat anything.  Elder Sessions left for the mountains this week so I wondered who I would get to eat my food!  Sister Ferre will do great!  I'm so excited to train now :)

My new companion.... Hermana Ferre
 Sister Baros took over Sister Wheelwright's place.  So now she's still in our branch, but with Sister Clark.  I don't know how I feel about that yet, I feel like I'm being watched still, but a lot of my stress left with her.  Even though we got along towards the end, it was time for a change for sure!  Sister Penalba left for temple square today :(  I had to say a quick goodbye so I didn't cry.  Same with Sister Mortensen...the night before she left she found a letter for me in the mission home and wrote a note on the back of it for me so I would get it.  If I can be a Sister Mortensen by the end of 18 months, I will have succeeded!  You've got to find Sister Penalba at Christmas time too!  I almost cried when I saw that picture of Mom and Sister Heuea downtown.  That's such a miracle!!!  I miss her so and Sister Heuea! :)  Elder Bowns got a native companion from Costa Rica, I haven't gotten to know him well yet, but he's the new district leader.  And Sister Martinez is training as well.  I'm sure I'll have more stories to tell once I get to know all of them better!  

After we got our trainees we went into the big transfer meeting where President and Sister Sweeney train us a bit and we listened to lots of musical numbers.  I played Come Thou Fount for a trio of missionaries who sang, it was fun to play again :)  It was the same arrangement I played for the Parkinson family in sacrament meeting and I picked it right back up, so that was really good!

This week for Halloween, our day is almost all planned out all ready.  After studies we have 3 hours of weekly planning, and then President gave us permission to go do a session that night and then eat dinner in Mesa!  What better way to spend Halloween right?  Normally we'd have to be in before 6, but now that we're going to the Mesa temple we just have to be in by 8:30.  It's been so long! I'm super excited :)  Especially after going to so many open houses, now I want to go in to a dedicated temple again and do work!

Well I believe that is it for this week!  It's been a roller coaster of emotions, and now I'm just trying to be the best example possible and trying to help Sister Ferre see how fun missionary work really is!  She loved it the minute she got on her bike though, so that wasn't hard!

Happy Halloween family!!!  I can't wait to see pictures! :)

I love you, I Love You, I LOVE YOU!!!!

Hermana Short

PS I forgot to tell you, Selene and the boys came to the temple with us this week!  

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