Sunday, July 28, 2013

Ya Way or No Way

Gosh there is so much...
Our friend Jesus in English class haha check out what he wrote.

Out to Letharby's Giant Icecream to celebrate Hermana Hanson and  Thomas' 6 months as a missionary.

Saturday - 

I thought it was going to be an  ordinary day, I don't know why but I wasn't expecting anything super mind blowing, I need to get over that. NO DAY IS ORDINARY - miracles are everywhere! 

We went to visit this family that we're working with. Angelica, the mom and then Ezmerelda and Angel (a boy) her kids, then her nices, Cynthia and Mari. 

They've had all three big lessons, now were just working on keeping commitments and stuff. So we decided to watch "Como hallar fe in cristo" how to find faith in Christ, the video by the church. 

It took us like 20 minutes, some moved couches and a bowl of grapes, to get the video started but once we did, the Spirit was so strong. 

Get this though.. Angelica stops the movie like 5 minutes in and spanish obviously.

"Can we pause this? I'm tired but I don't want to fall asleep so can we pause every few minutes and talk about what we're learning?" 

We were like.. umm SIIIIIIIII (yes!) 

She made all of the kids say how they felt about Jesus and what he did. She made sure they weren't giggly (which has been a problem in the past). 

We paused the movie probably 3 times (it's about 40 minutes long) to talk. 

During one of the pauses Angelica was like.. "I didn't really like you guys when I first met you (talking to us the missionaries) .. that's why I lied to you about what my name was.. but then I realized that if I rejected you, I was rejecting God. You've brought a great Spirit into our home, built our faith, and now you're like part of the family..."

It was so cool! Spanish people tend to go on.. and on.. so then she talked about how her kids need positive influences and stuff. 

After the movie, the Spirit was so strong. I think really visually realizing what Christ did for them was huge. 

But get this.. I was really feelin' it.. Like I have come to love these people and I want them to know of the joy of the Gospel so bad.. so I just straight up started to testify.. I was like..

We are representatives of Jesus Christ, our purpose is to help you come to the knowledge that Christ is your Savior, and then act on that knowledge and follow his example... and some other stuff that I can't remember.. I was getting cloudy up top, though! 

Hermana Thomas challenged them all to baptism and we found out that the nieces are leaving to go back to Frezno and they're just in Sac for the summer.. so we were bummed a little.. but Angelica said she wants to be baptized.. and Angel (her son), Ezmerelda still wants to be sure before she commits to anything so we're working on helping her understand the Book of Mormon and prayer. 

At the end we all knelt for family prayer and Angelica made her husband come in from the other room (he'd gotten home from work while  we were watching the movie) and pray with us. It was incredible. 

After we left, Hermana Thomas and I were like woahhhh. That was incredible! and she told me that when I was testifying.. my Spanish was perfect.. like I conjugated everything perfectly. I don't really remember everything I said, but I guess I'll take her word for it! 

Gosh I love this Gospel so much. I'm so grateful for an opportunity to share it with the world. To bring God's children home. What a blessing. I struggle sometimes with the patience it takes but I'm working on it.. I want them to be baptized and know that God loves them SO BAD but it takes time for people to come to that knowledge on their own. Which is our goal. For our investigators to develop testimonies of their own, and be truly converted to changing their lives for the better. 

OKAY the Ya way or No way story...

So we're going to a member's home (and almost always when I say home.. I mean apartment) for dinner, and she lives in the definition of SKETCHY complex. 

We're walking toward the front gate and their are 3 HUGE african american men just chillin. Me, being the person I am just smiled at them while my comp was freaking out haha. 

Then one guy goes.. "You can only come in here in the name of Ya Way.." 

Recognizing the reference to Steven Colbert, I responded, "Ya Way or No way!" 

I have no idea if that was sac-religious or what exactly that meant, but they thought it was hilarious.

That's another thing I've realized, most people are nice, if you just smile. The scariest looking people respect the missionaries. So I say hi to everyone, I mean I use good judgement ...  but yeah, it never hurts to smile and say hello (: 

Phil 4: 11-13 all things are possible through Christ who strengthens us. Mitch sent me this scritpure when I was in the MTC and since then, I've found SO MANY repitiions of that phrase in the Book of Mormon. It's so true. That's why it's said over and over again. 

Tenga un buen dia y recuerden que les amo muchisismo! 

Hermana Skidmore

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Hasty Lumbego

Haha okay so we were saying goodbye to sister scow and we said "hasta luego!" and she answered and was like "yes! hasty lumbego!" hahahaha It was the cutest thing!


Basically we are blowing our goals out of the water and we are very hard working, obedient missionaries. It's such a blessing to have a companion with the same goals and attitude about the work. 

Pero (but), earlier this week I was in a total funk, like it was bad. I thought I sucked at being a missionary because I had nothing to compare to. These past 2 weeks are all I know. THEN on saturday we did exchanges and I got to go to south sacramento zone. I exchanged with Sister White who is the Sister Training Leader (Like a District leader for girls) and she is in a trio so I got to be with hermana Cardullo and Hermana Sharp (rememeber how I met her

mana Cardullo's parents at TRC in Utah!? small world!) 

They were a BALL! ah it was so much fun! and it was really nice to have people to relate to me, they've been out for 2 transfers longer than me and they just really understood that Spanish is a struggle. 

So we visited this one family, and let's just say their apartment was like.. uh.. rough. Stuff everywhere. One of the kids wanted to eat a doughnut that he found on the floor and was like chipping of the icing, real interesting. But get this, the mom has cancer, so naturally life is a little rough. I totally judged them when I first met them, "like wow this is going to be hard." But then the Hermanas told me that the dad got baptized last week and that the little boy and little girl are getting ready for baptism this week! Turns out, the little boy, Antonio, is brilliant, like he LOVES reading the Book of Mormon and the folletos (phamplets... I don't know how to spell that in English haha.) 
Anyways, we were asking Antonio if he's excited to be baptized and he was like, "I don't know, I'm like 92 percent sure." So I had a nice little chat with him and asked him about his doubts. What would help him with the other 8 percent? So he said he didn't understand where the BoM came from. I was able to explain really simply and it felt so good. My heart really went out to these people. I realized why I'm a missionary. We offer hope. The gospel, the atonement, the Plan of Salvation, all offer hope for this family who has had it pretty rough. I noticed that Antonio (actually I just realized his name was Anthony, that's embarrassing, but I don't have enough time to go back and change it - so many similar spanish names!!) ANYways, I noticed that ANTHONY was a little sad, like frustrated, because of his life situation.. and so i was putting his paper back in his little notebook after we made book marks with a countdown to baptism and so I left him a little note that said "Anthony is great!" I hope he finds it when he really needs it. 

Okay yesterdaySUNDAY

We literally were cracking up as we drove to church..

Este es que paso.. 

We call all our investigators on sunday morning to see if they want to come. We planned on having two.

Then I felt like we should call Alan, our new 14 year old friend that we met tracting. Amazingly, he was like Siiiiii yo quiero asistir! I want to attend! 

So we have our bestie Jesus follow us because as sisters we can't drive anyone else, we go to pick up our investigator Edgar.. and we see that Edgar is talking to another man on a bike. Hermana Thomas and I both felt like we should talk to him. So we invite this RANDOM spanish man to church and he SAYS YES!  

So now there are 2 men in Jesus' car and we're going to pick up Alan, who we've never taught before, but he wanted to come. hahaa so we just like put Alan in the car with these three random men that he's never met and Jesus is lookin' so fly in his suit!! OW OW! haha 

THEN we had to go get another one of our investigators so that he could follow us in his car! 

We show up to church with CUATRO INVESTIGADORES! hahahaha We were just dyingggg on the way to church - ALL ABOARD THE CHURCH BUS ALL RANDOM STREET WALKERS WELCOME! hahaha 

Turns out they all really liked church, and Hermana Thomas was like, "We've never had that many at church before." 

I guess it's common to not have any show up for weeks at a time. IT"S CRAZY HOW THE BLESSINGS ARE JUST ERRRWHERE! 

Entonces, Estoy divertirse. (i am having fun!) 

I can do this. I can learn spanish. I can bring others to Christ. I love putting on my nametag each morning and wearing the name of our Lord right next to my heart. 

LOVE YOU ALL have a great week!

1 Nephi 21:16 

- Les amo mucho  - Hermana Skidmore

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Puedo Hacerlo!

There is so much I want to tell you! The first night was great, there were about 20 of us greenies (new missionaries) that all ate dinner at the mission home after staying the night with some members. I love my mission president and his wife. They're so cute! On tuesday, we met our trainers! All of the greenies walked into the chapel and all the trainers were singing "Called to Serve" it was rad! 

My trainer is Hermana Taylor Thomas. She's from Orem, UT and let me tell you. I could not have asked for a better trainer. She went to a Spanish immersion school for elementary school and so she is basically a little white fluent mexican haha. She is incredibly patient with me and is teaching me so much. 

Our area is called.. Del Norte (North) area of the East Sacramento Stake!

I live with a member! Her name is Sister Scow and she is 83 years old haha. She's so cute! We sleep in bunk beds and I have like a full kitchen and stuff which is nice! I'll try to send pics!

We drive a SWEET Ford Fusion.. the AP's old car (: but I feel so lazy because we drive a lot haha. I'm getting a bike today so that should help! 

Hermana Thomas says that she loves that I talk to literally everyone. I don't count out white people. We tract for a little while each day and if we run into an english speaker, we teach em! But I love speaking spanish. The spanish people are just really nice. Even if they don't want to hear a message about Jesus Christ, at least they make up an excuse that seems legit haha. I'm learning that people definitely exercise their agency.. which is a little disappointing sometimes pero esta bien. 

Tambien, there are chiuahuas running around everywhere! haha like little tiny ones I don't even know where they come from! 

I'll tell you a story from yesterday. We are teaching a lady named R. (I'll use her itnitals for privacy purposes). She is a seamstress and so talented! She works out of her garage. My trainer tracted into her a day or 2 before I got here. Yesterday it was a miracle that we were able to bring a member with us to the lesson with R. so Hermana Thomas and I were pumped. R. is a Catholic so she is having trouble with her family excepting her talking with the missionaries. BUT the member - Hermana Bustos, used to be Catholic so she totally related and really helped R. I challenged her to be baptized and asked her to read a scripture (That was my contrabution) haha. She she said maybe.. So we will keep working with her!

I also attended my first convert baptism this week! A 14 year old boy that the Elders in our district are teaching. It was the coolest thing! I bore my testimony (in Spanish - the whole thing was in Spanish) and It didn't completely suck! 

I pray more than I ever have before. This work is hard. I want to be able to speak Spanish so bad. I LOVE the people but I feel like they can't love me until they know I understand them. I've definitely noticed improvement in my comprehension, though!! I hang on to the scripture Alma 26:12. I seriously pray so much, for strength, for understanding. It's amazing how my faith has grown. I know that my Savior Jesus Christ and my Heavenly Father are watching out for me. That alone has brought me so much comfort. It's incredible I just want to share it with everyone! 

Les quiero much y siempre! 

- Hermana Skidmore