Firstly, thank you for the magnificent pictures and the more magnificent Easter eggs in them. All I have to say is WHAT TALENT! What artwork put into those hard boiled eggs. Here in Argentina all of the Easter Eggs are homemade hollow eggs of CHOCOLATE with frosting that seal the edges together. They are delicious, and I will have to make some when I come home for you to try!
BIG NEWS From Paraná. Hermana Diorio is being taken from me to open an area, whitewash, and train a new sister in ROSARIO. Words don't explain how depressing it is to say goodbye to a companion who you just LOVE. Hermana Diorio has been an absolute doll and sister to me, to see her go is more than a tough one. But, Hermana Rasband will be my next companion. And you know what? She is Justin Rasband´s little sister. Justin Rasband is my friend from AF who I went with to Prom my Senior Year :) Small, small world, right? Sister Rasband is wonderful, an absolute hoot, and I look forward to learning from her. Just sad to say goodbye to Hermana Diorio knowing that she is from Argentina and it will be hard to ever see her again in person. But thank goodness for Skype. On top of that, she received news this morning that her Grandpa passed away this morning. She began to cry and hugged me for a long, long time when President Giuliani called. I held her tight and she said she knows that Heavenly Father couldn't leave her with me as a companion because I'm her family now, and it would be too easy to face this trial if I was with her. That she needs to press forward alone, helping another new sister focus on missionary work. She amazes me. She is so strong and so selfless and so involved in serving others. She helped me stitch myself up in some of the wounds, emotionally, I had after Cañada de Gomez. Oh, it makes me emotional to type right now. I will most certainly bawl as she heads away on the cole for Rosario tomorrow. I love her so much! But I know that this time, this transfer, this change is due to God's will, not mine. and his plan is always perfect, not mine. So it will all be okay, and I know he'll take care of Hermana Diorio when I can't be there physically for her.
GOOD NEWS too is that Hermana Alicea was just called to be the Sister Training leader of the Southern half of the mission! She is SO STRONG and talented and I will be blessed to see her every month in Mission Leadership Council! WAHOOOOOOOOOO!
There's not much time for me this week, but I wanted to finish with a thought from this past week about Easter. My favorite Easter Hymn is not translated into Spanish and can´t be found in the Spanish Hymnbook, but I snuck my english hymnbook with me to Church on Sunday. I am one of hte 2 pianists for now, and as postlude I played this hymn in honor of the Easter Sabbath Sacrament Meetings of years past:
That Easter morn, a grave that burst
Proclaimed to man that "Last and First"
Had ris'n again
And conquered pain.
.This morn renews for us that day
When Jesus cast the bonds away,
Took living breath
And conquered death.
3. Thus we in gratitude recall
And give our love and pledge our all,
Shed grateful tear
And conquer fear.
My favorite verse is the last one. Christ, through his Atonement, Death, and glorious resurrection gave us the strength, knowledge, and power to overcome all fear.
All my love, and more news and spiritual experiences to share next week (I hope to hear from yours as well!)
Love forever, for always,