Tuesday, September 20, 2011

9-19-11 letter

Well, this week was awesome and difficult all at once. Agency is a tough thing sometimes. We were supposed to have a baptism yesterday, and when we went to pick him up he wasn´t home and didn´t answer his phone all day and when we tried to go back that night and teach him and set a new date, he still wasn´t home. Sad. We are hoping all is well. The hard thing is that this is the second time that he has done this, so we have some work to do. Pray for him.
The work is progressing and things are easier now that we are starting to get to know the area. The members are wonderful and so very helpful, which makes everything easier. The only problem with members is that they feed us way to much! HA! But seriously, I thought that I would just eat super slow and then I would not have to accept seconds, but no... they won´t take no for an answer. Oh boy!
We have 2 "eternal investigators" who both need to be married to their "husbands" before they can be baptized. We had SUPER awesome lessons with both of them this week and they both accepted baptismal dates and both went to get the papers to be married (this is the most difficult part...simply going to get them!) and they are going to be baptized between sessions of GENERAL CONFERENCE on Sunday October 2nd. How cool is that! They are both practically members already who come to church and their children are baptized and now they are finally making this important covenant. WOW! Being a missionary is so amazing because you get to have a front row seat to watch the miracles that God creates. wow wow wow wow wow!

So people here have a really hard time pronouncing Shelley... most of the time, it´s Hermana Shirley! haha. So fun. I really love that.
My Spanish is getting better every day. I understand a TON of what is going on, and when it´s about the gospel, I understand almost everything. It´s harder to speak, but Hermana Gonzalez just expects me to speak, and so I do. The gift of tongues is real. Some moments, I think I will never get it, but then the next I express myself really well. It´s all coming. "Open my mouth and it shall be filled!" I really love how animated the Spanish is here. People sound like Italians the way they accentuate their words and all the animation in the sounds. It´s really great!
We are finding lots of great new investigators. The area is interesting, because like I said, there are no houses to knock doors and the apartments are all locked inside, so you can ring a bell and talk to them over the intercom, but that is not usually effective... so, we either have to have set appointments, have a member introduce us to their friends, or street contact. We have some really great investigators and I love them all. It´s crazy how full of love your heart can be as a missionary! We are regularly teaching Rudesinda, Sandra, Agosto, Isabel, Dandy, Javier, and Helda, and have had a couple lessons with Monica, Marisol, Julio and Carmen, and Jimmy. We find more every day, so that´s always great!
Missionary work is such a blessing! I love being a part of this. Speaking of how much I love this, I figure that I might as well let you all know this now... President Gulbrandsen always has Sisters stay for the later transfer (remember how Sisters don´t hit 18 months even on a transfer) which means that I will get to be here until the end of January 2013! I feel really good about this and it feels right. And you won´t have to worry about signing me up for school since I will miss the semester! I won´t have to worry about rushing home and starting right up. I can just focus on my mission and then come home and get a job and stuff. I know that you were all hoping for before Christmas, but know that I love you TONS and am so happy that we are an eternal family. We will have many Christmases together, and in my time here, I will be able to help OTHER families have that same eternal blessing.

I love you all so much and pray for you daily! Thank you for your prays and support. I really could not do this without you. I hope that all is well and that you are all doing well! 
Hermana Shelley  

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