¡Mi Querida Familia!
El arco iris va a aparecer despues del tormento.
The rainbow will appear after the storm.
I apologize if my last email seemed down and out or cloudy skied. It was a rough week, last week. But Heavenly Father always blesses us with the best things after the hard times! This past week was one of WORK and MIRACLES.
After I wrote you on Monday, our zone left to eat at Drops, perhaps the only Burger Joint in all of Venado Tuerto. It was delicous! We enjoyed talking and laughing together before leaving to the church. Every Monday we like to spend as a zone, all of us missionaries together. As a missionary, it´s kind of like the other missionaries are our temporary family. Mondays are like Sunday night tapioca time at Grandma Reesa´s house :) Sometimes we play volleyball, we take turns making foods from our respective countries, like Arroz Chaufa from Peru or Empanadas of Chile. This past Monday Hermana Alicea and I started writing a song or two on the piano. She is a fantastic pianist! She loves to make up tunes, and I love to write lyrics, so we make a good team. We have created our own version of "Have I done any Good in the World Today," and we´ve had requests from the Members at times to sing "Come thou fount" together after eating lunch or dinner at their homes. There´s something magical about music.
Tuesday and Wednesday were FULL of finding efforts! We talked to every person we encountered on the street. We had a great street side lesson with a man taking a smoke outside his sister in law´s house, with hair like the 70´s and a huge mustache. He explained that he believes in the Bible and loves God with all his heart. When we gave him a book of Mormon and explained that it is another testament of Jesus Christ, a record of the People in the Americas, he got teary and expressed that this is the best gift anyone has ever given him. I was like "WOW" walking away. I didn´t see that one coming--you just never know who needs the gospel. He´s from Buenos Aires, so I don´t know that we´ll get to teach him, but we have an appointment with him in the coming weeks. We stopped a young lady out power walking with ear buds in, and she almost glowed when we gave her a book of Mormon. She explained that no one has ever given her a book before, and was delighted with this gift and wanted to learn more. Matias was watching his Nephew play outside right before they were sitting down to Almuerzo (or lunch. The biggest meal of the day here) and was surprised when we stopped to talk to him. We offered a brief lesson that God´s priesthood power has been restored, and also gave him a book of Mormon, along with a prayer. We love to pray, in the middle of the sidewalk or at the door, with anyone who will permit us to. We include their names, specifically, in our prayers and supplicate God for help with every detail we can remember about them from what they´ve told is. It´s amazing to see the change in people´s countenances after we pray.
Anyways, almost ALL of Tuesday and Wednesday were like that. It was a great experience, lots and lots of talking to people. We call those contacts, and count them daily in this mission as well. How many people we talk to daily. Tuesday and Wednesday combined we talked to over 77 people for the first time, in addition to our other appointments. The weekly goal for the mission is to contact 80. Needless to say, we worked!
Thursday we saw a miracle. Every morning we pray for a miracle in specific, and do everything we can to work towards that miracle. Thursday we prayed in the morning to find someone to put on date for baptism. That is something we have really been struggling to do--everyone has been declining! Sure enough, in an afternoon lesson with 72 year old Lydia, Hermana Alicea offered her Baptismal invitation. No one could have said no to her bold declaration! Lydia responded with a smile and, "Bueno." We are striving to help this sweet old woman who can hardly walk to prepare for baptism for the 2nd of November.
Friday. Miracle again. We almost forgot to pray for a miracle, walking down the sidewalk to our first appointment, when I said "Hermana Alicea! We forgot to pray for a miracle!" We stopped, and she prayed. She offered a very specific prayer to find a family with a father or mother who is less active, with children and a spouse who are not a member. I thought that was interesting, more specific than normal. But only 10 minutes later, a man approached us on the street. "Are you Hermanas?" he asked. Of course we replied that we were! He said his name was Marcello, gave us his address, and told us he was a member. He asked us to visit his home when we can. We were stunned and surprised! We paused to offer another prayer of relief and gratitude for an incredible and immediate answer. But that´s not all! Later that day, we were going back to visit a street contact for a man named Eduardo. He invited us into his home to meet his wife, who then told us that she is a member, but hasn´t been to church in 15 years. Her spouse and children are not members. We were amazed! Heavenly Father had blessed us with a double whammy!
Miracles are real, this I know. Never doubt that God is listening. Never feel bad to ask him for help, to ask for him to bless you with the things you need help with or hope to see improve in your life. Never stop working. With him, we make a great team. Without him, we are nothing.
Conference was spectacular! We were blessed to watch in English in the Relief Society room with all the Yankie American Missionaries. And 4 of our Investigators came!!! It was truly incredible. God loves us. The blessings come after the storm. Never forget!
Love you dearly and will send pictures next week,