Feliz Ano Neuvo

January 3, 2013

Oh my word, I have so much to say and so little time to type it. I’ll do my best.

 

Christmas, after talking to you, we had breakfast with a family in the ward (where I did Skype. They had like 13 missionaries over. They are awesome), then went to a secret baptism, then had dinner with the same people we had Thanksgiving dinner with (the Tuckers; Pres. Tucker is one of the counselors in the mission presidency), and went caroling with most of our district. We went in our area, and we decided to go sing to the Syrian couple we found the a few weeks ago (did I tell you about them? I kind of don’t think so. Well, they are Syrian, and the husband got baptized in Las Vegas in 2002 but now is completely inactive and says photography is his religion. He’s kind of nuts, but they are a really cute couple). They were so happy to have us there and the husband insisted on taking a bunch of pictures of us so he did for like 20 minutes. Then we stopped by the apartments of a few different investigators and sang and set appointments for the week. It was fun.

 

I don’t really remember anything about Wednesday. I’m not sure it even happened.

 

Thursday I went on exchanges in ASL and it was one of the top three days of my mission. SO GREAT. I want to serve in ASL. Sis T (the sister I went on the exchange with) is such a great missionary and she’s really fun on top of that so we had a great day. I’m really good at acting out Book of Mormon stories. I played Alma the younger, Abinadi, and Satan in the course of the day, to name a few. We ended the night in Garden Grove and (long story) we ended up at Hna E’s house. It was really fun to see her again. She said she had a present for me that she was going to mail. It was a hand embroidered pillowcase of a peacock that her mom in Puebla made for me and Hna R (well, Hna R got her own. We don’t have to share a pillowcase). She’s so nice.

 

Friday all of our appointments fell through. It was sad. But then we took one of the laurels out with us and ended up finding some of our investigators and teaching them. We taught Is (I don’t know if I told you about him, either), and his wife wasn’t there, and it went way better than when she was there because she’s super into her religion but he’s really open. So, it was good. We also taught J2 which was good because he’s been super busy lately. We asked J1 if J2’s wife would be willing to meet with us. J1 and his wife, M, are separated and J2 thinks the gospel would help them both. We agree with him. J1 said he wasn’t sure but he’d talk to her.

 

Saturday we taught F and kind of DTR’d. He says he agrees with everything we teach him except that he thinks the Sabbath is Saturday. He doesn’t really see a need to change his religion. He won’t change his work schedule to be able to come to church. We really tried to just emphasize that he need to read the Book o Mormon and pray about it, but it wasn’t really working and I was afraid the whole lesson came off much more contentious than we meant to. We’ve been wanting to drop him for a while, but also he keeps getting thrown in our path, or he’ll do something that will make us think we should keep teaching him, so we keep teaching him. After that lesson, we decided we were done, at least for now.

 

Then we went back and taught Is again, this time with his wife, W, and it went super well. W was a lot nicer and more open than the first time and had a lot of questions and it was good.

On Sunday a white family walked in the chapel just before sacrament meeting started. A couple of them looked REALLY familiar but I couldn’t figure out how I knew them. It was driving me crazy.

 

Then, just as the meeting started, Hna S walked in and sat down with them. I’d only looked at pictures of her family for a transfer. That’s why they looked so familiar. She and her family came back to visit before she starts school. It was good to see her, even though she only left two weeks ago.

On Monday, a family called the zone leaders and asked if all the missionaries could come over for dinner. So, we went after P-Day was over and tons and tons of more people came and I couldn’t figure out what was going on until one of the missionaries told me that it was New Year’s Eve and that’s why they had invited us over. We had completely forgotten.

 

Tuesday we went to go teach a lady we met on the street the other day. We knocked and were waiting for someone to answer when J2 walked up behind us and asked why we were there. We told him we had an appointment in that apartment. He opened the door and walked in and all the kids ran over to him yelling, “Papi!” We had accidently found his wife! So now we are teaching both J2 and his family, but separately. It was kind of a nuts lesson (they have four kids) but M and the two oldest sons (H – 15, and J Jr – 8) accepted a baptismal date. Milagro.

 

We spent the night tracting and it was GREAT! We haven’t had time to go tracting in a long time with all the craziness of the holidays and we’ve been going insane because of it. We found eight new investigators! We also met this black Jehovah’s Witness who asked us why Mormons hate 47% of the population (I guess that’s some Mitt Romney statistic). He was glad that “they’re finally letting girls out” as missionaries.

 

Yesterday I spent most of the day at the mission home at a meeting. President talked about me going home and made me cry.

 

Then, last night was so good. We taught M again (we divided and conquered: Hna B took the kids and taught them in English and I taught M in Spanish with the member that had come with us. Not the ideal situation, but it’s about the only was to have any control over the environment in that house and have a decent lesson) and it was a great lesson. They are all three committed to working towards their baptismal date.

 

Then we went to J1’s and taught S. We set a new baptismal date with him for the 13th (Happy Birthday, Kelly) and planned out all our lessons/set all our appointments until then so he will be ready. He’s really excited and his family is excited, too. We’ve tried to send the missionaries in Puebla to them like, three times, but they’ve never gone. His family really wants to meet with the missionaries, too, but we don’t know how else to get the missionaries to go besides send a referral through Church headquarters, but obviously something isn’t working. J and S have both been giving us referrals like crazy lately, which we kind of love. Also, J told us that F talked to his boss so he could come in later on Sundays so he can come to church. We were shocked. Whenever we try to drop him, something happens and we feel like we can’t. So, we’ll see if he actually comes to church and then see. So, it was a great night.

 

In district meeting today, I saw the elders who are in my old area in Garden Grove and they said that C is preparing to be baptized. She accepted two or three baptismal dates when I was there but didn’t make any of them, so I don’t know if this one will pan out, but I will weep tears of joy if that woman gets baptized.

 

Quote of the week (from our first lesson with M and kids):

Sis B: What does it mean to pray?

J Jr: When you try to eat someone?

Sis B: Yeah, that’s a different kind of prey.

 

It made me laugh. I love you all. I’m happy. Sorry this is one of those massive missionary emails.

 

Con mucho amor,

 

Jess

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