Monday, April 27, 2015

So I Found The End Of The Rainbow

Literally, there was a rainbow and I followed it all the way down to a river. So, if you were wondering, the end of the rainbow is in La Merced and there's no gold at the end, just some dirty water.

So this week has been quite the adventure. I feel bad for missionaries that feel like they just do the same thing every day. Yea, you've always got people to teach, and contacts to make and there's always going to be study time and whatever but there is always someting new and exciting every day. Wednesday there were emergency transfers, not for us, but the two girls that were coming to replace the sisters in a different area stayed with us. They were so sad because they were just called that morning and told that they were moving areas. I really hope I never have emergency transfers, you just grow to love the people and then you just have to leave them. Gah! It's so scary! Anyway, we kindof just had a girls night with them and that was fun. They were  both latina sisters so the girls night was in spanish so that was cool.

The other day our pension gave away a cat because it kept getting into her food... and then the cat came back (insert cat came back song here) so she asked us to put the cat in a bag and get rid of it. We brought it to this cat city we found up in the hills. And then that same day in the morning it rained like a ton and we walked down the muddy rainy road to our appointment... and this probably does not sound cool to anyone else but it was cool to me.

Hermana Johnson is super talented. She can find a harmony to just about any song. We did a special musical number in sacrament meeting yesterday. It was Oh My Father to the tune of Come Thou Fount. We sang the last verse in english and it was just super pretty. I'm always in awe at the wonderful power that music has to bring the spirit.

I love you all!!!!

Please pray for the apostals, I've heard that two especially are going through difficult health problems. If it's their time to go, yea, there's nothing stopping that, but your prayers are heard.

Also, I've received the Mower family newsletter every month that I've been here, so that makes me feel super special.

I love you all so very much and am so grateful that we are an eternal family.

(also, the 10th is my cumplemes, so we'll be skyping on my 3 month birthday)

Love, Hermana Blanca

Monday, April 20, 2015

Just A Piece Of Candy

Last monday my companion got a call at like 9 in the morning saying "hey, your companion's going to Lima at 11:30 today for immigrations" So I got a surprise vacation!... sort of. I rode to Lima with another sister from the jungle. We got there at about 10:30 (after having used several payphones along the way because zone leaders were supposed to meet us in certain places but didn't). Hermana Larsen was also there!!! There were only a couple people from our group who were there and she was one of them. I seriously love that girl. Anyway, so our group was the jungle sisters (yes, that is what we are refered to as), two sisters from huancayo and 3 elders from huanuco. We stayed in a hotel! and the hotel had carpet! I haven't seen carpet in months!
After immigrations we were too far away from the temple so we went to the beach and shopping... there is Dr Pepper in Lima, I would just like to let you know. Wednesday me and Hermana Goyzueta had another long ride back to the jungle. It was 10:00 when we got back, pouring rain and I have never been so happy to see our short, Latino zone leaders waiting for us. We were exhausted. I realized that I enjoy the work of the mission field much more than a vacation to the beach. It was good to be back in the mosquito infested jungle.

The best investigators ever! A family, a reference from a member, has just started investigating: Cristina, her husband and their four children. Cristina and her husband can't be baptized because of issues but Leslie (9) and Geremy (14) are so sincerely into the church it's crazy! They've told us and their parents that they want to be baptized. We were visting them the other day and Kilie (5) was making a lot of noise playing with a ball so I gave her a piece of candy from my bag and asked if she would sit down with us. She sat down in a chair, and quietly and happily took tiny bites of this small piece of candy. It had never really occured to me that she probably doesn't get candy too often. These people are so incredibly humble. They don't have much but what they do have they tresure and take care of.

I just want to take this time to thank a few people
1) Jacob Flaishans, thank you for shoving a cupcake in my face on my birthday several years in a row because that is what they do here so I'm super prepared. Our hermana leader's birthday was yesterday so we brought a cake over there and the tradition is the birthday person takes a bite of the cake and while doing so someone else shoves your face in. Then they throw eggs and flour and water on you..... It's super great :)
2) Jane Salgado, I'm not going to lie Jane's always been an example to me with her testimony, especially when she ends with "I know these things because the spirit has told them to me in my heart"... or something like that. That's what it really is though. You can't convince yourself that the gospel is true, you have to have faith and looking for evidence is not exercising your faith. Convinced does not equal converted.

I love you all

Love, Hermana Blanca

Monday, April 13, 2015

Como un Pizza

Well, everyone comments on my legs. Everyone!!! It's like they've never seen a with person with red spots before. I told my district leader when he asked if everything was good health wise with us that my legs were como un pizza (like a pizza) and he just laughed. It's ok, everyone just says I have sangre dulce (sweet/candy blood)

Me (jungle missionaries wear jungle dresses),
Hermana Johnson, joao's grandma, joao
and hermano samuell (the second counselor who baptized joao)
The baptism this week was incredible. It didn't really feel like my baptism because he just kindof fell into our hands when we came into this area but you know, some are sowers, some are reapers, and some just get handed the fruit to wash it off and clean it. Joao is his name. He's 15 and he's been coming to church since October but he only recently wanted to be baptised. I suppose you don't receive an answer until after the trial of your faith right? His testimony was incredible and it was even more special to have a 15 year old boy who I helped teach and who became my friend get baptized on the same day as my little brother. Basically Ben and Joao are lo maximo (the best)

My spanish is getting better, especially the understanding part. I mean, it's easy to teach a planned lesson or share a scripture that you planned/read that morning but it's even cooler to be able to sit there and understand what the person is talking about.They probably get tired of me staring at them the whole time, but whatever helps right? :)

I love you all!!! I got a call this morning that I'm going to Lima today. Short notice, but asi es la mision (so is the mission). So I get a little vacation to go to immigrations, I've heard you get pizza hut when that happens, so that's cool.

You all are the best, I love you so much :)

Con amor, Hermana Blanca

Saturday, April 11, 2015

For Ben

Hermana Blanca's brother Benjamin was baptized and confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints on Saturday April 11th. She of course missed the baptism, however she wrote her feelings to him in her own special way...a poem. With Benjamin's permission, I have posted it here.

For Ben

You've started, you've begun, you're on your way
Because of your choice you've entered in at the gate
But this isn't the end, this is only the start
For now is the time to serve with might, mind and heart

Now that you're clean you must try to help others
For you have so much more than seven sisters and no brothers
Go lift those that are crying and comfort those in need
Share the light you have, this is not a church of greed

You've got a new friend, live worthy of his help
Don't leave the Holy Ghost sitting up on the shelf
Pray for his guidance, he'll help you play your part
I may have Christ's name on my tag, but now it's written on your heart

I'm proud of you Ben and so is our Father in Heaven
Remember this day, just take this feeling all in
You may not be that big at this small age of eight
But just so you know, in my eyes, you're great

Monday, April 6, 2015

Your Legs Are So White It Looks Like You're Wearing White Socks

Just a short commentary about the title prior to Hermana Blanca's letter. As we first read this letter we wondered at the strange, but understandable title. When asked is someone told her this her reply was:
Yea, a 17 year old named Aldo, we were having a noche de hogar (fhe) at his house.
So, while we are completely used to this phenomena, it appears it is new to La Merced Peru. Now on to the letter. 

I Hermana White, having been born of goodly parents felt extremely blessed the week of conference in the year 2015 in the month of April.

Seriously we don't know how lucky we are. Physically and spiritually. This past week I've gone with my companion to teach families that have never come in contact with the gospel before, families that cannot be baptized because of living situations and families that recognize the light that we have in our lives. They want to teach their children the gospel but don't know where to start. They look at my companion and i and wish they could have grown up in the gospel like we have. 

I encourage you all to thank God for the family you have. For the opportunity that you've had to grow up in the gospel. Share it with others. They're looking for that opporunity too, they just don't know where to find it.

On a more temporal note, take a warm shower for me... I won't be getting one for a while. Atleast while I'm serving in this area :)

Also I would just like to let you know that the welcoming committee in the jungle is composed of mosquitos. My left ankle looked like a pregnant lady's ankle because it was swollen so much (it's getting better, don't worry but my legs just kindof look like they have the plague)

This week has been super fun. First, last pday we went to a waterfall! It was super wet (because, you know, of the water) and super beautiful. We had divisions the next day and I went out with one of the sister leaders to her area. We went out to eat for dinner to a little hole in the wall place that had english people working there! It basically blew my mind. And then of course we had conference! I LOVE CONFERENCE! How blessed we are in this time to have a living prophet that speaks to us and the opportunity to listen to apostles who have received direct revelation from God to know what to say to us. My companion and I watched conference with the sister leaders in a little room in the chapel where they set it up in English for us :) The Latino elders kindof looked at us weird when we brought in snacks and candy.... apparently conference party excitment is a U.S. thing. I know my questions were answered :) I hope you'll take time to go back over the conference talks and search for personal revelation. 

"I'm no saint, that is, unless you think a saint is a sinner who keeps on trying"

I love you all!!!
Happy Birthday Mia and Ben!!!

Love Hermana Blanca