Thursday, January 28, 2010

What a wonderful couple of weeks!

Some excerpts from the last couple of letters.......

January 18---We had four baptisms this Saturday.  Yep, four.  Not a big deal--we're just real good over here in Aldo Bonzi.  Michel, who´s twelve; Gisel, who´s fifteen; Erik, who´s twelve; and Mili, who´s nine.

This is a picture of Hermana Daniels and
Mili at her baptism.

Those who were baptized and the priesthood doing the baptizing.      

Yes, they´re all pretty young, but Michel and Gisel are incredible.  They read everything we give them and both come to church alone cuz nobody in their family is a member.  Well, Michel´s dad is, but  he´s less active.  He´s got an older brother who´s a member but lives far away but he came to baptize him and it was real great  There were over fifty people at the baptism--probably more than sixty.  I really don´t think I´ll ever see a baptism like it ever again in my mission.  It was really cool to see so many people in white. Anyway, I was happy at the baptism, but I think I was more happy on Sunday when they got confirmed.  I dunno why, but I really liked that part.  

I have brown hair again as of today.  Like really brown.  I like it much much better I´ll send some photos...some day.  I like the dearelders.  Keep doing them.

January 25--We had lunch at our bishop’s house yesterday and we were walking to his house after church and he asked me where I´d been on vacations because in Argentina everybody is going on vacations right now.  I began to tell him some places and I mentioned Hawaii because I mentioned the family and how I had a family member who used to be President of BYU-Hawaii.  He replied... Wade?... I couldn´t believe it.  He served in the Dominican Republic with Matt Wade.

 Cousin Matt Wade is front row, far left.
Hermana Daniels' Argentine Bishop is in the purple shirt.
(circa 1994?)

I love my companion!

Hermana Leguizamon 
and a brunette 
Hermana Daniels.

As far as the work goes, we are having a lot of success.  We are having another baptism this Saturday.  Her name is Sol.  She´s sixteen and she probably weighs eighty pounds.  She is so sweet and her Grandma lives in the house right next to hers and is always playing 1940´s old music--the kind I love.  So when we teach Sol I really enjoy the music in the backround.  It is really nice.

Our recent converts are amazing.  Michel received the priesthood and we are now teaching his brother.  His dad, who is less active has been at church the last two weeks.  Also, the two little kids who´s Mom is less active were not at church because they were sick.  But the mom came with the other daughter who we´ve been teaching and she has a baptismal date, too.

My comp and I deep cleaned the pench.  It´s AMAZING. Being clean changes my life.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Aldo Bonzi Up Close and Personal

How are the feet? Hermana Daniels and Hermana Lopez on right.

Hermana Daniels and her companion, Hermana Di Stefano having a little fun!



LET'S CATCH UP November-December

On November 30, 2009 Hermana Jill wrote to us in a letter that she had visited a member’s home who showed Jill the blog we had started for her and apparently Jill was not that impressed. She wrote, “I’m not sure about the postings….AND I look disgusting in some of those pictures.” So we haven’t written for quite awhile. Well, at Christmas we asked her about it and she said we could still post to the blog, but we couldn’t put everything on it. I guess she thinks we have no judgement!!! But here goes…..

As of the end of November, Jill was living with her companion, Hermana Di Stefano, and two other sisters, Hermana Lopez and Hermana Bulger. She likes this arrangement.

December 7 she wrote: Wow I just read all your emails and got an info overload. I’ll just start with answering some of your questions. You guys grilled me about the work. Yesterday we had a day of miracles! My first day in the mission that I can say that I´m not kidding--we are blessed. We met a girl on Saturday. She was a referral from a member. She came to church on Sunday and we taught her Sunday night with the member and we asked her if she thought she needed the gospel in her life and if she had prayed. She began to cry and tell us that she prayed about Joseph Smith and she wants to be baptized. It´s incredible. Her name is Gisele and she´s fifteen and lives in the most humble circumstances I´ve been since being here, but she´s really smart and has a ton of potential. Sunday we had one of our Antiguo investigators at church and he´s been investigating the church for two years. He knows the doctrine better than all the missionaries. He was a Jehova’s Witness before and he´s been living with his ´¨woman¨ so hasn´t been able to be baptized but they separated this week and she´s in a different city. The story is they both went to their own churches yesterday--him at ours and her in her new area and they both asked to be baptized. Crazy. we´ll see if they follow through because they both drink a ton and have been trying to stop for two years, but we´ll be working with him. Also on Sunday I saw my favorite person in the mission. Her name is Irene and she´s probably in her sixties more or less. She calls me her amor and gives me huge besos whenever she sees me. They don´t really hug here in Argentina. They just do the kiss on the cheek thing and she gives me the kiss and grabs my face and then gives me a huge hug. She´s a skinny little thing but she came to church this week solo. Her grandson died. It was a pretty messy death, too, but she said she only came to church because she promised the missionaries, but she said she absolutely loved it. I love her. She´s like a second grandma here. It´s hard to write about the investigators because they´re always changing. But Sunday was a day of miracles! We had two contacts at the end of the night--one lady who we just went up to in the street. She used to go to church all the time but never could be baptized cuz the guy she lives with is still married to his first women. She told us she had seven kids and wants them to be baptized. The next contact was a nineteen year old girl in the street who lives right in front of us. We had already contacted her once and she said to us.. Hey actually my mom wants to talk to you guys... we were real confused, as you can imagine. Normally nobody wants to talk to us. So the mom came outside and asked us where the church was because she wants to go and she´s interested. It was the weirdest thing. We´re denied all day every day then we had one day where people actually wanted us. It´s nice to be wanted. I got the Christmas decorations in the packages and no they weren´t opened. We´ve been using the decorations for the members. They come in handy. I hope you don´t mind and we´ll be using the little manger scene for all the family home evenings we´ll be doing this month. Mom you are inspired. Anyway this is probably the longest e mail I´ve ever written you guys but it´s about the work and that´s why I´m here. I´m good. I´m happy. I´m adjusting. The language is coming more and more. Will be in the pench of four now for two more weeks. It´s kinda fun actually. Anyway, love you guys.

Love, Jill

On December 14, 2009 she wrote: Family, it seems you all liked hearing about the work. I had no idea. Guess I´ll write more about what I´m doing than what I´m thinking since it´s more interesting. This week was stake conference and it was weird. I was sitting there listening to the speakers thinking, Am I in Argentina or in the states because it was exactly the same. The stake presidency spoke and they had such strong testimonies. When we all got up to sing the intermediate hymn, one of the counselors started crying because the place was packed and I could see how happy he was to see the work going forward. It´s weird, the church is the same everywhere you go. Sorry I have no time. I had to keep switching computers because it wasn´t functioning and I had a ton to read but I love you guys. Know that I am good. I really loved all your e mails this week. Can´t believe Andrea got rear ended in the beamer, that sucks. Beth you’re naming your daughter London. I love that. (Beth said she wrote a whole paragraph cautioning Jill to not tell anyone the name because they were keeping that just between Beth and Michael—guess she missed that part!) I love your guys mail. I wish I could print it off and read them throughout the week, but as I get to speak more, I´ll be able to figure out more things. Anyway I love you guys.

Love Jill

On December 22, 2009 some of her letter reads: MOM DAD I just talked to you guys on the phone this morning. Haha! Mom it was funny to hear your gasp in the backround. I liked that. Sorry I woke you up but I figured I could catch you home in the morning better. I can´t wait for the phone call and I am so happy! That was incredibly easy to figure out. Dad I´ll try to write down some of the funny stories cuz there´s been many. Tell the kids to just have stuff to say. I’m excited!

So this week we worked hard. It´s been extremely hot and I´ve been praying that I can have the energy and motivation I need to work because we are outside all the time and vulnerable to the climate so we have to take whatever is thrown at us. We don´t really have too many promising investigators right now but we found a family of twelve kids. They have twelve kids because the parents are both re married, so the kids are from other marriages. The dad is a less active and I am scared of him. He told us he believes in God… We´re teaching their two youngest sons who both can get baptized and receive the priesthood. The youngest is insane. He remembers everything we teach him and woke up at six thirty in the morning to get ready for church and brought his Book of Mormon and everything. His name is Michael. The girl that we were going to baptize this transfer left for vacations, but she´ll be back in two weeks and she´ll be baptized. We have this investigator named Abel and he´s an evangelist but bad, his pastor asked him to be a pastor this next year or something like that. He comes to church by himself, but always leaves after to go to the other church. He´s so funny. He talks too much. My comp has to like yell and interrupt him so he´ll quit talking. Last night we ran into him in front of our pench because we live right above the Evangelist church. Aahh yeahhhh. Anyway we ran into him and he always gives us little gifts form the Evangelist church< It´s so funny. One night he called us at like eleven thirty in the night. My comp woke up and answered the phone. In the morning I was so confused and asked her what he was calling for and he called to see what time the ward dinner was.

So yesterday we had our p day navideno with the whole mission. We listened to talks from president and his wife, watched the Chirstmas devotional from the first presidency, ate lunch, and each zone had a skit. Ours was the best. I played Hermana Benton and Hermana Lopez was President Benton and the whole mission loved it. I looked just like her, we have pictures. But anyway it was funny. As far as this week goes I don´t know how it´ll all go down. Supposedly Christmas eve we have to go home early and new years day or eve, I don´t remember because we can´t really work and everybody is just drinking and stuff. But anyway I love you guys I´m glad to hear what Brian said when you were all together because I remember when I was home. It´s easy to forget your priorities and what´s important. I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas. Merry Christmas. And happy new year for that matter. YEAH FOR 2010. Tell my friends to take it easy, eh.

Love, Jill

I guess the phone call counted for the next week because the next email we received was on January 4, 2010: I have a lot to tell you. First off remember how I asked you all about the mesquitos because I was worried... well turns out it wasn´t mesquitos. I broke out in I don´t even know what it was, but I had little red dots ALL over my body and ALL over my face too. I just looked like one big zit. So I called Hermana Benton and she told us to go to the hospital. Hospital Britanico it´s called. It´s a British hospital supposedly it´s nice. It´s not. Hermana Benton told me I had scabies, the doctors at the hospital told me i had just mesquito bites. Seriously it was so weird I can´t even explain to you. We were with the doctor for like five seconds. He told me it was mesquitos, wrote out a prescription for a cream and then we were out of there. Anyway it doesn´t matter cuz three days passed and they went away on their own. I dunno what it was but don´t worry. I have pictures.

A lot happened with our investigators. We were supposed to have three baptisms this Saturday. Iwould tell you the whole story, but……. Anyway we´re going to baptize them later this transfer.

Today was transfers and I have a NEW companion. She´s also from Argentina. I´m so lucky! I´m going to be cruising with the Spanish hopefully because she doesn´t speak any English. Her name is Hermana Leguizamon and she´s the BEST sister missionary in the mission. I´m not even kidding. Everybody wants to be her companion. I´m so lucky. We are going to be living in a pench of four for the next transfer, too, so it´s just a party. I´m now leading the area and am responsible basically for the next few weeks til she gets to know the ward and the investigators and the area. I´m scared. But pray for me.

Yesterday we traveled to the CAMPO which is the country with the other two hermanas that we live with. It´s a long story but anyway we traveled like two hours outside of Buenos Aires and it looked like the mid west but more green. I loved it! I could breathe fresh air. We slept out there at the pench in the country and all the power was out in the little town so I took a shower in the dark with a candle. The pench out there is so cool though. Anyway I dunno what else to say. There´s so much to say but my mind goes blank in front of this screen.

I love you all. It was good to talk to you on Christmas. I hope you find happiness in the cold dark dreary winter that lays ahead of you after the holidays. SUCKERS

Love Hermana Daniels

January 11, 2010: So family my comp is not from Cordoba. She´s from La Pampa. And yes it was fun to have Pres and Sister Benton in our pench. It was funny because they called the night before at like ten to tell us they were coming and the pench was not in good condition so we spent forever cleaning it and now I´m so happy. I love cleanliness. They made us pancakes and bacon and had fruit salad and juice. It was amazing. Because Hermana Benton was doing divisions with the sisters in my pench and it was Hermana Godfrey’s (Hermana Lopez’ new comp) birthday, they did some extra goodness and we benefited. As for as my new comp, we teach with love. Don´t worry about me. I´ll probably only have one transfer with her though because she is going to finish her mission off in this area. So last night I had a weird dream about Kellie Carter and Sarah Ryther. I dreamed that I was training Kellie. I can´t remember where Sarah fell into the dream, but I know she was there. Anyway I was so scared because I still don´t know how to speak this language. Well, the work is amazing. We are having four baptisms this Saturday. I can´t believe it. They haven´t had baptisms like this in this area for years. We have another girl that´s getting baptized at the end of the month too. Michel, one of our investigators, will be a future missionary. I feel like if I can have the opportunity to teach someone that will go on a mission, I will feel like my whole mission was satisfactory. He´s amazing. The mom of the two kids that we´re baptizing came to church this Sunday and she hasn´t come for a real long time which is a blessing and we´re working with the family to re activate all of them. It´s a family of nine. All are baptized except the last three, but they´re all inactive. Anyway I love you guys. I´m sorry my e mails are always so lame, but I´m scatter brained at the cyber always. But keep writing me and know I love you.

Love Jill