7:53 AM (2 hours ago)
yes EMAIL me! I go to an internet cafe on MONDAYS and the internet speed is great and everything. I get packages and letters every six weeks, so i would definitely prefer email. MONDAY is my pday
Thanks for emailing me! Tell Dad I love him and that I missed hearing from him this week. Im so glad you got to go to the temple with Caleb, and i am so excited that youre having all of those cousins come over, thats going to be so much fun! Thanksgiving doesnt exist here but thats okay, I am definitely feeling blessed and Im trying really hard to focus on the daily miracles in my life.
Keep stalking haha, I met Hrmna Brown on Saturday and it was hilarious, the first thing I told her was that I stalked her blog and we were laughing about it. All of the sisters are way cool.
OK. I hope the Christmas package gets here too, in our welcome packet we got some important package info. I dont know how you sent anything, but Im praying it gets here too so that my comp and i can have a little something for Navidad haha. ONLY SEND PACKAGES THROUGH THE US POSTAL SERVICE. Also do NOT send= money, cameras, electronics, used clothes (need to have tags on them), jerky, or action figures haha. Make sure that the address is=
Peru Lima West Mission
Carlos Salaverry # 3664-Los Olivos
Casilla de Correo 39-054
YES I FOUND THE ENGLISH KEYBOARD. This is awesome. Okay, anyway...thats that on packages. Pray that it gets here :)
Okay...I guess I'll try to tell you all about this crazy week haha, hopefully I can pull it off!
Last week I was pretty sickly. It was bad. But the elders offered me a blessing and it helped so much, nothing short of a miracle. Elder Allen and Elder Kaelin were the ones that administered and offered and they were so nervous, I forgot that for most of these boys it would be the first time. The power of the priesthood was apparent though, even through their shaking hands and voices and within a day I was feeling functional. So, Friday and SaturdayFLEW by. Saturday was a full day of field preparation, learning the ropes and sitting in the same chair ALL DAY LONG. It was awful...but really helpful haha. After that, my amazing district decided to do blessings for the field. That was an experience we all needed, and it was great because each of the elders had an opportunity to give blessings. The spirit was so strong there. My blessing said that I would pick up Spanish quickly and that it would be a talent that would bless others, I'm trying to have faith in that because right now it just seems like an impossible task. Elder Smith also said that I would have companions that needed my understanding and my help with their problems, that I would be able to help them stay motivated and feel comforted. It's amazing how much the Lord loves us and knows us, and how He is constantly connecting blessings- this week he has connected my patriarchal blessing and setting apart to every prayer and every other blessing I recieved. After those blessings we sang God Be with you and it was SO sad. I was doing fine until we were all looking at eachother during the chorus and one of the elders I had become really good friends with was crying. I lost it, and then I had to offer the prayer...I was a blubbering baby...it's hard when you've become like a family and everyone is going to a different mission than you are! Goodbyes were hard, I think mostly because we were all so nervous. But it's okay, a lot of them will be in Utah when they get back and It will be a blast to catch up with all of them!
Okay...now to the juicy, in-field info :)
Saturday I met the Archibalds. GREAT family. My president is a really spiritual, really funny, and really focused man. You can tell he loves the missionaries and though he's only been doing this for a few months, he has a routine down and this mission is functioning really well. Sister Archibald made us all a delcious breakfast, we had a little orientation and then the other missinaries came for cambios (transfers). I have been called to OPEN A NEW AREA in Huaraz with Hermana Cueva from ...dun dun dun....Trujillo! I am SCARED. OUT. OF. MY. MIND. Hermana Cueva doesn't know English, and I don't know Spanish...so it's been interesting. But she is a DOLL. So nice and so patient. After we found out who our companions are, we said goodbyes, I tried not to cry saying bye to Hermana Stirling, and then I had an interview with President Archibald.
My interview went really well. He got to know me a little better and then he told me a little more about what my purpose is as a missionary and gave me some fantastic advice about learning the language and serving the people. He helped me to know just what I need to do. He told me that Hermana Cueva is one of the best he has, and that she has the top baptisms out of the sisters most of the time. He said that she fits the scriptural definition of meek...quiet courage. He said I would learn a lot from her if I opened up my mind and worked really hard. Then he told me about the area that we are working in. There haven't been sisters in this area for a VERY LONG TIME. The elders found us a place with some recently less active members. He said they are a fantastic family, the wife has been RS pres, the husband a counselor, they are just going through a rough patch and need to be reminded of their testimonies and the reasons for going to church. .. It's going to be a challenge. Especially when it's my first area, a new area, and I don't know Spanish.
So Huaraz. The furthest area from the mission home. My area is 10 hours away. I didn't get any sleep the last night at the CCM for a lot of reasons...and then we didn't get on a bus for Huaraz until 11:30pm on Saturday night. We arrived at 6am in the area of some other Sisters, Hrmna Bark and Mccleud. They are so great! We stayed with them yesterday and will stay with them for most of Pday before going to our area because our house isn't quite ready for us. The sisters were SO kind though. We were able to go to church with them and their investigators, one was a fifteen yr. old that told me I looked just like Barbie...that made me feel good haha. In the afternoon, their pensionista made us a delicious meal...but our mission is SO high up that I've got a great amount of altitude sickness...so that's been fun. The sisters let us nap at 3...but we didn't wake until 8. I got up and studied and chatted with the american sisters while Hrmna Cueva kept sleeping, she isn't feeling very well. It was so fun to talk to them and to hear their experiences right now in the mission, I'm so glad they're in my zone and can help me with the language barrier. I went to bed just a few hours later and I feel better today, I desperately needed that sleep.
Huaraz is BEAUTIFUL. The Elders from Trujillo were jealous because this is the place people think of when they think peru. Mountains, incas, all of that. There are a lot of people in traditional clothing, and the place is breathtaking. All of the elders in my mission say that THIS AREA is exactly like Emperor's new groove...so go watch that and you'll see my life.
I'm scared. I'm nervous. But I'm ready. The Lord has constantly showed me little blessings and miracles in the last 72 hours to help me know I can do this. I just don't see how he trusts me, a brand new gringa...to open an area when I can barely communicate with my companion. What I do know though, is with God NOTHING is impossible, and I have his special blessing right now. Read DC 84. We talked about it during our meeting on Saturdayand so many things were important. section 106...I read it while we were learning and immediately thought of Hermana Cueva. She is going to make me strong. She is going to help me learn.
This gospel is TRUE. I know that my Savior lives because I have felt his presense in my life, especially during this week of constant change, struggle, and goodbyes. God loves his children, he has a particular love for his children in Peru. President Archibald reminded me that these are the children of those blessed in 3 Nephi 17. He told me to look at the picture of Christ in the Americas and notice the ANDES in the background. I'm IN the ANDES right now. These are his children and they need to hear his message. I will put all my trust and confidence in the Lord. This is a time when I have to rely on his merits COMPLETELY and it is so humbling to me.
I love you all so much. Thank you for your support and for your prayers. I feel them and I love you so much. I'm grateful to have grown up in the church with such a beautiful, loving family. You're all the best.