Monday, December 29, 2014

To new beginnings...

Another Christmas... gone... And soon... another year. Crazy. But enough of that. This week was... a little trunky... Not gonna lie. We had to be back in our pensión by 7:00 on Christmas Eve and on Christmas because there's loads of drunk people in the streets. So we didn't have a ton of time to work. Not to mention, everyone was travelling this week. So... yeah. What we ended up doing, was taking cards around to our investigators and less active members in our area. We made some delicious (if I do say so myself) Christmas cookies and took those around too. It was pretty successful considering how dead the streets were on Christmas morning.

But by and far the best part of Christmas was getting to talk to my family. So good. But again... made me a little trunky. Haha. Hermana Franco, (the mission president's wife) told us the first day in the mission that the cure to pretty much everything is to work. And she's right. December 26 went right back to normal. And we worked. And all the trunkiness was gone. Also. It was fetching hot on the 26. I thought for sure I was going to melt right into the streets of Formosa and be lost forever to the world. I hear that January is the worst though. So... I have many hot days ahead. Guuuhhhh....

There really isn't much to report this week. We've been teaching Alex and Teresa and they seem really interested in learning about the Gospel. Alex loves praying and says that he wants to live all the commandments and everything. But when we try to get them to church, there's always something that interferes. Satan is working really hard against us and against Alex and Teresa. It's so obvious that he DOES NOT want them to be baptized. Bueno. All the more reason to help them.

Transfers are this week. Wednesday. We still have no idea what is going to happen. But here's the thing. We have to be inside by 7 again on New Year's Eve because of all the drunkards in the streets. But if I get transferred, I move on New Year's Eve. And who even knows how far I'll have to travel. I don't know what's going to happen. But basically, I'm a ranger (from the North) here in the mission. Always moving around, living out of a bag, helping people... You know... We just take things as they come here in the mission. It's all part of the adventure.

That's pretty much it for this week. Hopefully this next week is a bit more exciting. But until then, so long.

Hermana Hein

Pics: Christmas cookies and milk for Santa. (who doesn't exist here BTW) and Skype!! Wooo!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Feliz Navidad

Wow. Christmas is upon us. How crazy is that?? I can't believe it. Also. It's week 6! Transfers are next week! Who even knows what will happen. Hna. Fullmer has had 6 MONTHS in this area so we really have no clue what's going to happen. Because she also only has 2 more transfers in her mission. And she doesn't think that she will finish her mission here. So maybe we'll whitewash together... who knows.

This week was crazy. We had to do divisions otra vez with the Hermanas in Pirané. It's like... the Rexburg to the Idaho Falls that is Formosa. It's tiny. And hot. And there's GIANT COCKROACHES THAT FLY!! Ugh. I could have died. I already have a fear of giant flying beetles thanks to The Mummy. And now that fear has been realized. Oof... That's one reason I'm glad to be in my area.

Also, I love the people in my area. Most people are so nice and open to hearing what we have to say. And the members are great. Pretty much all the members here in Formosa are converts, so they understand the importance of this work.

This past week or two, we've had the opportunity to teach a little family that live really close to the church. It all started because this woman asked us to help her son with his English homework. So, we took the opportunity to share a little bit with them about what we do and teach them a bit too. We finally got to teach them the first lesson and they were so excited about it.

The boy, named Alex, is 12. And he is so great. And so smart. We gave him a Book of Mormon one of the first times we taught him and gave him the chapter about Nephi going back for the plates to read and he loved it. He was so excited to ask for more chapters to read. When we taught him about the Restoration, he asked us,

"Wait... if the true Gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored on the Earth today, where is it??"

"Bueno. You know that church across the street with the white steeple? Yeah... That's where."

His eyes got huge and he was SOOO excited that the truth was so close to his house. Unfortunately... Alex and his Mom didn't make it to church yesterday. We're a little disappointed but still excited to teach them more. They both have such a desire to learn. and they're so sweet. Teresa, Alex's Mom, gave us empanadas the other day!! Amazing.

I'm really grateful to be here. I know I say that every week but in reality, I'm supposed to be here. There's people like Alex here that I have been prepared to teach. No, my Spanish isn't the greatest. But that's okay. Because if I can teach with the Spirit, my ability to speak the language won't really matter. (DON'T WORRY. I'm still studying the language at every chance I get.)

I hope everyone has an amazing Christmas and always remember to keep the Lord at the center. Because with Him, we can do ALL things.

Con Amor,
Hermana Hein

The pic from this week: Pirané. That pic with the horses, is the very ESSENCE of Pirané: (minus the giant roaches.) horses, dirt and mud, ugly dress. Get it.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Pure Gold...

This week was pure gold. Some days here are really hard. It's hard to stay focused, it's hard to stay positive, and it's hard to speak without feeling like a complete idiot. But there are going to be those days. And while that sucks, it's not going to change. The only thing that can change is me. And yeah. I had those days this week. But the good that comes from this work, will ALWAYS outweigh the bad.

We had a baptism this week! My first in the mission. And I'm really happy. Good ole Norberto. Haha. His girlfriend is a recent convert who referred us to him. So, he took the discussions and now, here he is. The newest member of the Church. Norberto's great. So willing to learn and change. He understands why we have certain commandments that other people don't understand. It was hard to find time to teach him though because he works... always. We could only teach him like... twice a week during the siesta. And let me tell you what, it gets HOT during the siesta. But we did it. And Norberto seems really happy.

In all, I didn't really do much. I can teach okay. But it's very simple. And then Hna. Fullmer asks me to explain tithing in Spanish and things go right downhill. Haha. I'm grateful that I've had the opportunity to teach Norberto. It has been a great learning experience for me and I'm grateful that I was able to have some small hand in helping him be baptized. We couldn't have done this without the Lord. We couldn't do anything that we do without Him.

Also this week, we found a new investigator who I already love to death. Her name is Areceli and she's amazing. She's so open to learning and truly wants to understand. She's smart and thinks for herself and doesn't let the opinions of others get in the way of her desire to learn. We took her on a tour of the church this week and the spirit was so strong. We testified and we testified and testified, over and over again of the truthfulness of this Gospel and of the reality of the Atonement and how it can bless us everyday. (Pretty much all I can do is testify so this was bueno.) And she felt it. The Spirit was there. And he was speaking to her. And she heard him. It was amazing.

This Gospel is real. The Lord lives. And everything he does is to help us. I am so full of humility and gratitude to the Lord EVERYDAY. I couldn't do this without him. I have done things here in the mission that I NEVER would have had the guts to do before. Because I have asked for His help. And He has responded in FULL. I want everyone to know that I know. I want everyone to know that I have felt his love in every aspect of my life. Everyday there is another struggle. But this also means that everyday there's another opportunity to learn and grow through the love of the Lord. I am so excited to see what else I will learn here in the mission. It's been 4 weeks. And already I am so different from who I was when I left in October.

I hope this week is a good one for all of you. Keep the Lord in the loop and it will be. I promise.

Lots of Love,
Hermana Hein

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

The Will to Act

Whew. Week 3 down. I'm practically done with my mission. Haha. But it's crazy that I'm already halfway done with one transfer. Yeah... I know. That's nothing. But whatever. As long as I'm working, the time doesn't really matter.
In front of the new Cordoba Temple

Speaking of work... we really didn't do a lot of it this week because I was in Cordoba. It was awesome. Okay... The city was awesome. Waiting around to sign visa papers... not so awesome. We went with a group of like... 30 missionaries and the President's wife, Hermana Franco, who is AMAZING BTW. I was really grateful for the opportunity I had to get to know her a little better. Also, I was grateful that I got to take a HOT SHOWER WITH WATER PRESSURE! Amazing.

While in Cordoba, we had the opportunity to go see the new Cordoba Temple. It's not finished so we couldn't go inside or anything but it was awesome. I love the temple and I was grateful to just be on temple grounds. The temple is beautiful (like all temples, am I right?) and attached are some photos. :)

Also on our trip, I was reunited with Hermana Nakken which was amazing. And I also got to know some of the other Hermanas in the mission. Hermana Barker was my companion for the trip and she (as you read from last week... maybe...) is awesome.

The city is very... San Francisco. Lots of hills and trees and cool buildings... I really liked it. But I wouldn't want to serve there.

In Cordoba
It's almost Christmas. Crazy. Especially since it's so hot here. It doesn't feel like Christmas. But the church recently just made a video that we have been using A LOT in our contacts and it's AMAZING. I invite all of you to watch it. In English, I think it's called, 'He is the Gift'. WATCH IT. We have a new investigator that was just a contact. Some missionary in another area asked her to watch the video and she did and she wanted to know more. So here we are.

This week, I've learned a lot. I definitely feel like my Spanish is improving everyday and I'm becoming more comfortable teaching. The thing that helps the most, is just DOING IT. I'm here to serve the Lord. So I need to do just that. I need just open my mouth and speak or I'm never going to learn. There's no growth in a comfort zone. I have to have the will to do what is needed. The will to act. Faith is action. JUST DO IT.

Okay. I'm out for this week. Enjoy the pics of Cordoba... and my face. Because let's be real. I'm more interesting than a city... yeeeeaaaahhh... Alright. Until next week, then. Love you all and hope all is well.

Love, Hermana Hein

Monday, December 1, 2014

Oh ho. Week 2 in Argentina

Dear Familia:

Don't worry. It was mucho mejor. I decided the biggest reason why my week was so terrible was because I had such a crappy attitude. I let my frustration and my emotions get the better of me and it ruined my week. But this week, we did divisions with some of the other sisters in our zone. I went to Puerto with Hna. Barker and served with her for a day. It really opened my eyes. The people in her area were not as friendly and welcoming as they are in ours. And yet... she kept smiling. She kept sharing. And didn´t let the rejection get her down. It was just what I needed to see. So, the next day, when I got back to my area, I decided, "today is going to be better." And it totally was. Your attitude changes *literally* EVERYTHING.

Okay. It's hot. It's crazy that it's DECEMBER because I am literally sweating litres here. The last couple of days have been really nice though. My area is called Terminal III and it's very humble. Everyone says that Argentina is known for their amazing beef... but I haven't had any beef since I got here. The best thing I've had is called... Milinesa?? Yeah. Don't ask me how to spell that. But it was pretty good. Other than that... I haven't been loving much of the food here. I was really craving potato chips the other day...

Okay. Check this out. The secretaries of the mission called us yesterday and asked for me... Uh... crap. They told me I had to go sign some papers for my Visa......... in CORDOBA. Cordoba is like.... far. Like... a 12 hour bus ride far. I'm really excited. It's gonna be a long trip... but I get to see another part of Argentina OUTSIDE my mission. Crazy. We also have to go down to Resistencia this week for Consejo. Which is just for missionary leaders... which my companion... is...? (I can't even speak English.) So this week is going to be pretty crazy and we won't get to work a lot. Which means that when we can work... we're going to WORK.

I'm really grateful to be here and grateful to be learning so much. I only have 2 weeks in the field but I already know that this experience will help me learn and grow so much. I'm grateful for the Lord and all his help this past week. I know he's been with me literally every step of the way.

The pics from this week are all of us Hermanas in the zone at Multi-Zone conference and Hna. Fullmer and I with the hand turkeys we made for Thanksgiving. You've gotta be creative here in the mission.

Okay. I'm out for week 2. Love you all and I hope you have a good week.

Hna. Hein