Saturday, May 21, 2016

2016-05-18 Senior Week

This week was great! I finished up my senior week (means I had to call
everyone and set up appointments and fill 7 days with things to do it
was scary) and then handed the phone back to Harris after Sunday's
last appointment, it was such a relief haha. I don't envy all she does
as a trainer. I have a newfound respect.

Anyways, we got spoiled to breakfast by the son and daughter-in-law of
Elena (the lady who's getting baptized this week!) and we've been
upping our member work because it's hard to find people willing to
talk to us just on the street or bus.

BUT it does happen and this week we also set up an appointment with a
lady we found on the bus named Lucy a couple weeks ago. She's Peruvian
and is already living the standards of our church. When she told me
it's hard to find friends out here because Peruvians love to drink
when they get together and she doesn't drink I just couldn't hold it
in anymore and I was like "Lucy you know you'd love our church!" So
she just handed me over her number even thought she just told me she
doesn't really like church, it was awesome haha. She seemed doubtful
about some things during our first lesson this week but she wanted to
see us again so yeah, we'll see 🙃

We also had Elena's last appointment before her baptism, it was pretty
sweet. We talked about the sacrament and then just like, asked her
what her baptism means to her and let her talk about how the gospel
has affected her life. Her husband, they were so in love, he's passed
away. She believes her husband has been a big part of her experience
she had when she felt really strongly that after 3 years she finally
wants to get baptized. Then she fed us dolce afterwards like always,
we love her to death.

Also we had another unbelievably good lesson with Xiao. She has a lot
of questions about Jesus Christ and we honestly figured that we can't
just teach about Jesus Christ without missing a TON of stuff, so we
gave her a Chinese bible and Chinese Book of Mormon, kind of like
"read this!" She was all like "wow this is a very good gift wow thank
you so much" and we were like "haha nah" and she told us that this
book can help you in your life, that it's filled with wisdom, and you
could read it over and over again and always find new things. Xiao are
you secretly a hardcore Christian already and this is just some
elaborate trick?? She literally says stuff that we have never even
suggested but is totally true, she's the best. One of our bishop
counsellors told us the next day at ward council "I knew she would be
baptized as soon as she walked in to church her first day" and me and
Harris just looked at each other like "okay" haha but seriously, she's
an old soul. She totally gets it. She's prayed on her own since last
time we saw her too. She took a lesson on tithing during church in
stride! We love her so much!

Also we made pizza with the ward and brought one of our investigators
with us (she's one of the many who just isn't baptized yet because
she's not legal so she can't get married to the man who she lives and
has children with, it's frustrating). It was so much fun, I doubt I've
laughed harder than I did that night and also now I know how to make
pizza dough.

More members fed us, we're trying really hard to meet Leslie's parents
so her mom isn't so against Mormons, and we had a cool experience on
the bus where this guy started talking to us after a few minutes and
apparently he's totally has been to our church before and has a Book
of Mormon but then went back to Nigeria and hasn't been able to find
our church since. So we got his number right there to give to the
anziani and he was like "yeah give me your address I'll come to church
this Sunday." So cool!

It's not all satisfying and miracles out here though, for example one
of our long-time simps we are worried her daughter can't hear. The
ward has talked about it in ward council but nothing has been done
yet. The daughter makes animal noises, she never speaks. If she gets
much older and hasn't learned how to speak yet, even if she gets a
hearing aid she may never learn how to speak perfectly. We also had a
new convert who had us worried because apparently doctors from Nigeria
told her her father needs surgery on his appendix or he'll die and
this girl can't pay, she can't even pay for her own rent yet (he's
fine for now). And we had to do a drop lesson with a lady from Nigeria
who just talks and talks and absolutely refuses to accept anything we
teach or invite her to do and it was really hard. Anyways, the point
is that NOBODY in the MTC or before the mission tells you that you
might be trying to help a less-active member, only to find out they
can't read, so they can't read the Book of Mormon, and you're having
to decide what on EARTH you can do to help them. Like, do we teach her
to read? What do we do? So you have to make a lot of decisions out
here that nobody teaches you how to make. But we're doing it. And we
do see miracles. Missions are crazy but they teach you so much and
people finding more happiness in their lives because Jesus Christ is a
really touching thing to see.

Bought from the happiest old guy in a little shop on way home

Jill's apartment, opened up with nice weather

People from ward having fun making pizza dough

Caught in a downpour

BOM for investigator Xiao

La Reggia di Veneria

Sis Harris, CJ, and Jill

Italian Mac and Cheese so rich it almost made Jill sick

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