I can’t believe that a whole week has passed already! AND I CAN’T BELIEVE THAT MY MISSION IS ALMOST A THIRD OF THE WAY OVER. I’ll have been in the mission for five months on the 19th. Time goes by so so so fast here. It’s insane. This week was an adventure, as always, hahah.
On Tuesday, for our district-zone meeting (our zone is so small it’s only one district, haha) we all got there early to make crepes and do our personal study together! It was a blast and it reminded me of all the mornings you made crepes for us, Dad. 🙂 Only they put oreos and chocolate sauce inside with the fruit and it just WASN’T THE SAME. Hahaha. But I was just grateful to have crepes! (Sidenote: my companion and I found the big bottles of Nutella for 50 Quetzales — a steal — and we bought two for the house, hahah. NOBODY’S LOSIN’ WEIGHT THIS WEEK).
On Wednesday we went to Xela for a dermatologist appointment for some other new skin problems I’ve been having for about a month and ended up having to do some blood and skin tests to find out what’s up, haha. We spent the whole day in Xela and I had the worst headache! It was one that I had had since Monday, but on Wednesday it was increasingly worse and worse. We got back to Nahuala and went to cook cow heart (an Hna. Palomino specialty) with a family here. I ended up getting sick from all of the strong smells and my headache and we went back to the house early so I could lie down. I was sick that night and the whole next day and it was the WORST. I hate not being able to leave the house.
But Friday I was much better. 🙂 We had to go to Xela again for a doctor appointment that Hna. Palomino had because of a cyst, and then had to buy medicine and run a whole bunch of other errands for medical stuff. It got later and later and pretty soon there weren’t any more buses leaving for our area, nor for San Cristobal. (We were going to sleep there to wake up earlier for a service project the next morning with the ward and our zone.) President and Hermana Smith came to pick us up and we slept at their house. Hermana Smith is the sweetest woman alive. I love her so much! They are two amazing people. I have so much respect for them.
Saturday morning we woke up at FOUR THIRTY and President and his wife took us to the bus terminal. We went to San Cris and got to help with the ward’s community service project there! We cut grass near the river and cleaned up a bunch of trash and painted the trees with white chalk. It was so much fun to see all of the members and to all be helping together. 🙂 I looooove service projects because everybody helping is just happy. When you’re helping you’re happy, haha. It got a little out of hand and one of the members threw chalk paint all over me but that just made it even more fun, hahah. We went back to the Hermanas’ apartment and scrubbed the chalk out of our clothes and showered and went over to the Sapons’ to get Emmanuel ready for his BAPTISM! Hermana Guisela and Brisna couldn’t be baptized on Saturday because of problems with their family, but I know that they will have the courage to accept the gospel sometime in the future-the near future hopefully! 🙂
We went over to the Sapon family’s home to get Ema ready and he started to get scared. We assured him all would be fine and talked with him about the interview questions. That kid is INCREDIBLE. He bore us his testimony about repentance (he’s 10..) and told us how he always repented in his old church but never felt like God could really accept it, because it wasn’t the true church with the authority of God. Hahah, I love him so much. Afterwards, we walked over (late) to the chapel with him and his sister and mother and the chapel was locked… When we finally got inside, all of the water had DRAINED from the baptismal font! We stayed positive and I suggested we make a train and carry cups to the font, hahahah. The ward mission leader thought it would be a better idea to call someone to bring a tank of water. We got the font filled finally but the water heater began to turn the water cloudy and gray…. We were a little worried but we just carried on with the preparation. Then the San Cris hermanas realized they had forgotten the refreshments, hahah. We asked Emmanuel what he wanted (he said hot dogs…) and we ran to the store and bought hot dogs and buns and everything. When we got back Ema was all ready in his white clothes! (The pants were a little huge on him, but its ok. :)) We walked into the baptismal service and the water was blackish brownish green but we just stayed calm, hahah. It was incredible how many things happened that could have stopped the service from happening. But in the end everything went smoothly.
Emanuel was baptized by Elder Peña and the spirit in the room was so special. Earlier in the service, Hermana Guisela was crying–hard. I believe that she also knows that this church is true, and I know that she wishes that her father would support her in being baptized. She just needs the courage to do what is right! And what will bless her family eternally. When I talked with Emanuel afterwards, he just threw his arms around me and told me he didn’t want me to leave. I told him that I would see him again! And if not in Guatemala, I asked if he knew where. He said, “In Heaven!” And we’ll all be an eternal family together! It was hard to leave, but I am beginning to feel more like my purpose really is in Nahualá now. And with the way President Smith wants to do things, I think I will be there for a long time! My zone all says I’ll be there for 8 or 9 months, hahah.
I don’t know how long I’ll be here, but I am beginning to really love Nahualá!!!! We contacted a family last night and were laughing so so hard with the little son and his rowdy friends. The daughter of the family doesn’t study because she knows her family has needs and she has to help. There was something so special about her! I am excited to visit them again tomorrow. I feel so lucky to be able to meet so many amazing people, to learn their life stories and their trials and their talents.
Today was so much fun. We visited a lagoon with the zone and hiked up to a waterfall! The drive to the lagoon was BEAUTIFUL. I could not even believe it. I am going to miss Guatemala so much. When we hiked up to the waterfall above the lagoon, we didn’t know there was a pathway that lead up to the waterfall so we literally just HIKED UP THE MOUNTAIN. We were all dying laughing because it was crazy, hahaha. It is something I will NEVER forget. Hiking up a muddy mountainside through all of the plants. But once we got to the top it was incredibleeee. Afterwards we went to lunch with the zone and played UNO.
Something I re-studied this week that really inspired me was a scripture in Mosiah 28. The sons of Mosiah go to their father to ask permission to leave for the land where the Lamanites lives so they can help them accept the gospel in their lives. I LOVE in verse 2 how it says that they wanted to go so they could MAYBE bring the people to a knowledge of the Lord, and MAYBE be able to cure them of their hatred for the Nephites. But my favorite is verse 3. They wanted every creature to be able to have salvation. They could not stand to think that even one soul might perish…. These boys had been the ¨vilest¨ of sinners! And as they came to understand the Atonement of the Lord, their desire to share the gospel, even when they knew that there was a chance they might not have success, grew immensely. I want to have that same level of commitment to helping all of my brothers and sisters have eternal life and joy. I love this gospel so much! I love my Savior! I know that this church is the true church of Jesus Christ on the earth and I feel so honored to be able to wear His name every day. I LOVE THIS WORK!
I hope you are all safe and happy!
All of my love,