Thursday, March 3, 2016

We are Going to Have 200 More Kids!

March 3, 2016
Hola Familia y Amigos!
I seriously can't believe its p-day again... these weeks are just flying by!  Want to hear something crazy?!  Next Tuesday I'm going to hit my 5 moth mark in the mission...what?!?!  I still feel like I just left yesterday.
We Love Panadarias

Well we had a great week!  The weather has finally started to cool down and we've even had to wear cardigans in the early morning and evening somedays. :)  So yeah that’s been nice!  
Pano Fun!

Also, this week we were looking through our carpeta de area (area book-where we keep the teaching records of all the past investigators in the area) and we found 3 or 4 names in this one little hidden street of about 8 houses.  One morning we went and met Margarita, Karina and Estela - 3 different women in 3 different houses and they all were very kind and receptive and we were able to set up appointments to return and visit them again!  Ummm.... What?!  This is not normal to find 3 people in one day let alone in the same street!  Que milagro no? [What a miracle, no?] :)
Also, this week Jessica came back from vacation and we were able to have another lesson with her.  She is seriously tan Bueno [so good]!  She is so ready and knows that what we have taught her is true... solo falta actuar [she only lacks acting]!!!  It’s hard because her husband (who is not very religious at all) is always working and his only day off is Sunday.  So her excuse is that Sunday is their only day to spend together.  We've encouraged her to talk to her husband and keep reading the Book of Mormon and praying to get an answer.  But, we’ve also told her to take a step out of her comfort zone and act on the things we have shared with her to be able to grow and progress. 
The past couple weeks Hermana Baird and I have been teaching Music classes to some of the youth in our ward for service.  We've basically been teaching them how to lead music and the very basics of reading sheet music and playing the piano.  It has been super fun, but now that summer break is over and school has started again we probably won't get to teach them as often.  The truth is that Hna Baird did most of the teaching, but it’s been super fun nonetheless. :)  I’m glad we can use our talents to help others develop their talents too. 
Music Class

One of my favorite things about the mission is working with the less active members in our ward.  It’s really easy to talk to them and teach them because they have already accepted the gospel of Jesus Christ as the truth and have testimonies.  They just need to be reminded of that sometimes.  With our lack of lots of investigators that come to church, I have really been able to find joy and feelings of success when the less active or new convert members that we work with come to church. 
One couple we've been working with, Sol y Martin, got baptized about 3 years ago and recently moved into our ward.  We've been visiting them and helping them and their 3 adorable kids get settled into our ward and remain active.  The other day when we stopped by to visit them, we got talking and Martin mentioned that one of his good childhood friends had recently committed suicide.  You could tell that it had really affected him. Both Sol y Martin started to ask us a few questions about the plan of salvation.  We were able to explain it to them in a simple way and you could tell that it made a lot more sense and they felt comforted and hopeful for the future. We then talked about the importance of going to the temple to be sealed and about their goal to go in the next year or two.  When we told them that if they get sealed in the temple their family can continue to grow after this life, Sol got the biggest smile on her face and said, "We can have more kids??"  She told us that right now she's not able to have any more kids and then looked at Martin and said "Vamos a tener 200 hijos más!”  [We are going to have 200 more kids!] :)
It really was one of my favorite experiences so far in the mission because it reminded me of my purpose out here.  The reason I'm on the flip side of the equator walking miles and miles every day is to help people come to their Savior and the knowledge that through Him we can have our own eternal families.  Elder David Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said in his conference talk in October of 2014, "Our desire to share the restored gospel of Jesus Christ with you is a reflection of how important these truths are to us."  The knowledge that I have that I can be with my family forever is so important to me, and my desire to give that knowledge to others is what helps me keep going, even when the work is hard. 
I hope you all have a great week and know that I love and pray for you every day.  Thanks for all your love and support!
¡Les amo!  Hasta luego!

Hermana Bartholomew 

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