Monday, September 30, 2013

#Forevergringa 9/23/13

Yesterday it was super windy!!! I don't know where it came from, but it reminded me of Rexburg! We have this carpet in our house and it's kind of weird.. it's not hard but it's not the softest carpet. But I have calluses on my knees from kneeling on it. I hope I keep those calluses for the rest of my life :)
I am doing great! My week was sort of strange because it wasn't a "normal missionary week." Sister Schwendiman was sick this week! It started last Sunday, we actually had to go home after Sunday school. Most of the week she was sleeping because she was so fatigued. We barely had about 9 lessons this week when on average it is 20. But my trainer and I are learning together and are working hard to help this area grow in the gospel of Jesus Christ.

This Tuesday we had an exchange, where we switch companions for a day! I was with Sister Richardson, a Sister Training Leader. She is so awesome! I loved seeing someone else's point of view and style. She helped me so much! BUT. Sister Richardson is only English speaking, and Sister Schwendiman went to another area on her exchange. So not only did I have to know our area, but I had to LEAD the lessons! I finally could understand why I was being pushed to my limits. My trainer had told me about this exchange and she knew I would have to take charge and I could only do that if I really knew the area. We had a team up or a member of the ward to come with us at every lesson so that was nice. We taught 2 or 3 lessons and I was able to talk! It was SO cool to lead the lessons and to be forced into knowing what I had to for these investigators. I realized that I knew more Spanish than I thought I did, and that was a really great booster for me. That night was Noche de Hogar or family night and we were in charge of it! I came up with a topic and a lesson plan and it was for our ward so it was all in Spanish. But I did it! It was way fun to teach and I got some compliments afterwards about how "I look so white but can speak Spanish really well." LOL #Forevergringa
SO. Investigator-wise:
We have an 85 year old Cuban investigator named Ramon. He is so funny! I probably get a good 5 words out of each of his lessons. He knows the bible REALLY well, the poor book is just falling apart. So we've been challenged to really know our stuff. He is so nice and he just loves us. He said in all his 40 years at his other church, no one took the time to stop by like we have. Little moments like these testify to me of why I love this church. We are taught to be kind and everyone likes kind people. So it must be true :) He took us out to lunch and he gives us kisses on the forhead all the time. I'll have to get a picture with him. He surprised us and came to church! Sister Schwendy sat with him and he told her he likes the church and he had lots of questions for us. We had a lesson with him after church and I didn't talk the whole time. Ramon likes to show us the bible basically the whole lesson and aint nobody got time for that. So we say Ramon- look. We dont gotta lotta time here. So you can listen to us and find out why we're here or we can have a little bible class. And then he listens :) Bold and loving, bold and loving. So I didn't talk for basically the entire lesson which was about 45 minutes. I was really struggling to stay awake and it was hard to translate his Cuban Spanish. Voices we being a little bit raised and it was really time to go, so I FINALLY spoke up. I had this super soft voice and I swear I was talking in slow mo because I had just had 3 hours of church and a 45 minute lesson where I didn't talk during all of that time, and I had to translate and use my lil brain a lot. So I was talking really quietly and slowly and the words just CAME. I just couldn't stop talking. I just bore my testimony of why I knew what we were telling him was true, how we loved him and that's the reason we wanted him to know it was true too. I probably talked for a good five minutes and at the end everyone was just staring at me (Ramon, my comp and our team up). They didn't know what to say. So we left and when we got outside, my companion said "that was like PERFECT Spanish!" And our team up said "how did you do that?!" IT WAS SO COOL. The church is true :)

DIEGO. He is the 20 year old who is from Honduras! He is AWESOME. Found him on a prompting, which I think I explained last email. He has been doing WONDERFUL. He has attended all of our activities- family home evening, institute, and this Sunday, HE CAME TO CHURCHHHHH!!!!! But, lets back up to Saturday. So although Diego has come to these activities, he hasn't had a lot of lessons. The last lesson, we gave him the restoration video. He watched it, and so on Saturday we had another appt with him. He was like wait I am like Joseph Smith. That's me! I have the same questions as he did! OH IT WAS SO COOL. And then we invited him to be baptized. And he nodded his head and it just kept on nodding :) I want him to enjoy the full blessing this gospel has to give him so I was STOKED when he said yes! His date is on October 13th. It would have been sooner but the 6th is conference!! He came to church yesterday and said he liked it a lot, that it was different but a good different. I couldn't be happier :)

This week we had leadership training meeting!!! It is where we have a huge conference for all new missionaries, trainers, zone leaders and sister district leaders. I SAW SISTER CLARK! It was so fun to see her and catch up with her! She is in the next area over. It brought back a flood of memories from the MTC :) But the training was two days. SO COOL. We did a lot of role plays and had a lot of lessons. We had some bomb diggity food too. Sister Jeppson is the BEST at that! We were spiritually fed too :) For the role plays, we would have a zone leader or sis training leader be the mediator, and we would have 3 missionaries, 2 to teach and one to be the investigator. For the last role play, I was walking to a group and I walked by president Jeppson. I love him! He is so involved and he was acting as a mediator. I greeted him and sighed with relief when I "escaped" and walked past him. OR SO I THOUGHT. I felt something grab my albow- his hand- and a voice said you're with ME. *GULP* Cue the seizure. Cue the passing out. Right about now...CUE ANYTHING!!!! How could I teach with him RIGHT THERE?! Sheesh was I pressured. BUT. We ended up having a really cool lesson on prayer. President would help me and the other missionary with things to say to the "investigator." I called him my holy ghost :)
At the end of the two day training, Elder Harris who is an Assistant to the President, said some closing remarks and added. "Wow. We are 20 years old and we just spend two day learning and training on how to be a disciple of Christ. Just think about that." It was a really cool point of view for me because I could be doing a lot of other things right now especially my age, and yet I chose to serve. I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY.

This week, we also had SERVICE! We picked some weeds at the town hall in the city of Passaic. It was so much fun! I love serving. It was cool to see other missionaries and talk with them. We also had talent night on Saturday! It was really fun. I actually sang last minute... 3 Elders were playing on a keyboard, the uke and a guitar and they needed a singer. It was nearer my God to thee, or Mas circa Dios, de ti. It was fun :)
Well, this week was slower but just like every other week, it ended. Take care of the missionaries in the ward. It'll come back around to me and Sammy :) I love you.
Con todo el amor in el mundo, y de su hija in noueavu (<-- haha french spelling!) Jersey, hasta ver.

Hermana Schaefer <3

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