Have I told you lately how much I love you?! Cause I do SOOOO much. Once again I had an awesome week in the best city in the world, with the best companion in the world, with the best members in the world. I hope you have had wonderful adventures as well!
I'm feeling a little nervous for transfers knowing that I will probably be leaving my area. I have come to love Bragado so much and the people I have met here. I don't know if I've ever had a happier time in my mission. Ironically, we're still struggling a little without people progressing to baptism for this month, but I am finding so much joy in the work. Almost every day this week as we bike home I just thank my Heavenly Father for the miracles he is blessing us with. There really is no joy like that which can be found in the service of the Lord.
I feel that I should take a minute to tell you how grateful I am to have worked with Hermana Peterson this transfer. She has changed my mission. I have never worked so well with a companion in so much unity and love. In 8 weeks we have not argued once, or really even disagreed. The number of times which I have even been frustrated I can count with my fingers and those instances lasted no longer than minutes. She is so completely focused on her purpose as a missionary, she is the best teacher I have seen, and she is so completely full of love and patience for me and others. If I do have to leave, I know that she will take care of the investigators and less actives we are working with. I know she will continue doing the Lord's work here up until her last day. And I will continue trying to become more and more like her each day.
Since the beginning of this transfer, Hermana Peterson and I have been searching for ways to improve the way in which we work. We knew we wanted to work more with the members, but weren't sure exactly how. We started focusing on referrals and the recent converts but it was a little difficult to accomplish with the rules and indicators the way they were. Then we received the new direction for the mission and everything we had been wanting to do became so much easier and we began to do so with more purpose. Our teaching pool slowly began to increase in quantity and most importantly, quality. We went from having investigators that we knew from the first visit had no desires to change, to individuals with potential, to part member families with strong desires to be sealed in the temple. We have still not seen the fruit of our efforts with progressing investigators but I feel as though our trees are full of blossoms of potential that will be ready to harvest in the upcoming months.
This past week one of those wonderful miracles was with a reference from David and Cecilia. I have come to find that the true fruit of conversion is a desire to share the gospel and David and Cecilia have been giving us references every day. They told us of a family that lived above them that is married with three children. We were finally able to have a lesson with this family this week. We knocked on the door and Gisela (the mother) answered. Her parents happened to be there as well and we began talking to the whole family. It turns out that Gisela and her mom were baptized more than ten years ago but fell inactive for loss of the habit. They told us they had been having desires to come back to church for the past few weeks. We taught them and their husbands (both non members) about forever families and the temple and they were super excited. They really are a beautiful family with so much potential.
Miracles like this have been coming every day this week. We have found countless less active members just from contacts in the street or stopping to talk to them in front of their houses and with them we are finding potential investigators. This Sunday we still did not have investigators in church but almost every single one of the recent converts from the past year that we have been working with was in Sacrament Meeting. I know this work will continue to take time and patience but it will be so worth the effort to see families that stay in the branch and endure to the end.
A few other fun notes from the week:
I made homemade brownies this week based off what I have memorized from the recipe and throwing things together. They turned out pretty well, but not quite as good as at home.
David wrote Hermana Morales and me the cutest note all about their journey to find the gospel and how grateful they are. I'll translate it when I get home. They pretty much invite us to lunch every day and if we can't do lunch they give us facturas mate coido (because we can drink it now-I'd send you a pic but the computer isn't functioning).
We had a family home evening with David and Cecilia and his brother Carlos and Maria, whom we taught once before but were never able to go back. Carlos is curious and their daughters want to go to church but we're going to have to be patient in working with them. We played Pictionary and it was SOO fun.
I love you all so much and am so grateful for your wonderful letters of support and love. I hope you have a wonderful week! Wish me luck in the city!!!
Sincerely your favorite country girl,