Tuesday, September 17, 2013

First Earthquake, Food, Miracles and a Baptism!

Two weeks of fun times with Erica!!!  Two weeks ago:

Wow! hello again, here I am, another week has passed! this week was nuts! NUTS I tell you!  As you can see from the title of this email... I experienced my first earthquake this week!!!  Insanity!  It happened on...  Friday night.  We were at a member's house and just about to leave when all of a sudden... well the world started shaking!  I was just like what the what do I do!  So the family naturally freaked the heck out!  Everyone started yelling and they're like get out of the house corre corre corre! So my comp runs for the street and I'm making my way to the door pretty confused still and then they are like NO Hermana Morris come back!  The cables can fall and kill you!  So she runs back and then we just stand there.  I'm literally watching the road ripple!  Ripple!  Wow.  We just waited it out.  It was pretty strong and lasted for a good minute!  My legs were super wobbly afterwards so they made us sit and gave us some juice.  Then afterwards the family listened to the radio and the man was like terremoto terremoto!  Casas cayeron!  They thought it was a 7 on the richter scale but later we found out that it was a 6.5, but the epicenter was where I live!  So insane!  Basically that's all anyone talked about for the next 3 days!  Where were you during the temblor??  Afterward we were like well perfect everyone is at home with their families lets teach!  Good idea right??  Wrong!  No one let us in!  They were too busy watching the news and calling family.  We were about ready to stand on our soap box and scream,  "Repent ye people of coatepeque! arrepienta"!! HA!  Jokes of course.  Basically the best thing that came out of the earthquake was a reason for me to buy some pan dulce.  Hey if I was in shock or something I had to get something in my system!  Only looking out for mi cuerpo!  Ha! 
But really we have been having some cray weather here lately.  The rain is really steppin it up a notch! Crazy thunder and lightning like I've never even seen!  Ha this is especially fun when we are teaching lessons and its raining buckets on the metal roof!  Oh that's my favorite!  Ha, the other day we were teaching and we just couldn't hear anything it was so loud!  So I was praying and literally screaming my prayer!  Strange!  It's like I'm literally crying repentance to this people.... or screaming repentance? Same diff. 
Oh and another blessing from the rain, the humidity and what it does to my hair!  Curly hair is colocha here, and people just really are fascinated by my hair.  Everyone always touches it and someone even asked for a picture of it??  Ha its pretty hilarious, and huge, very much huge. 
So this week I had some... interesting food.  Caldo de pata pollo.  Yeah that's chicken foot soup.  

And wow, it is a chicken foot!  And you EAT it.  I wish I could say I loved it but... I hated it!  I felt like I was chewing on baby fingers the whole time!  Awful mental image I know, but imagine having to eat that with the whole family staring at you with that image in your mind.  Yeah def not my favorite!  I took some hilar pics.
proof I ate it!!!!

And now every time I see chicken here I look at their feet and try not to gag.  The bones fall apart in your mouth and you have to spit out their toe nails.  Yummmmm.  Be jealous of what  I'm eating.  Ha!

No I love all other food here.  I ate 10 tortillas with breakfast this morning!  Oh ha and Dad and Jill will love this, I eat ketchup on my eggs now!  But ketchup here has like 10x more sugar, its divine! haha im gonna buy like 20 bottles of it before i come home! :) 
So my district/ zone loves to play futbol, along with the rest of Guatemala. so I didn't play at first but I don't really have a choice so I've tried playing.  I'm horrible!  I tried a header and completely missed. Ha but since we play it 2 times a week,  I've decided to try.  Ha I haven't made a goal yet but they joked that they were going to buy a portable goal since I always shoot it like 3 feet to either side of the goal!  Eh I've got time to get better!
So we were in a lesson yesterday with one of our investigators.  His name is Rudy.  He rocks!!  I really have high hopes for him!  We brought a member and wow, we really can't do this work without them! We were teaching about the Book of Mormon and I asked the member lady, to give her testimony about the Book of Mormon!  Well turns out she was the first member in Coatepeque!  She has such a solid testimony and helped so much!  I felt the Spirit so strongly and I really think Rudy did too!  She reminded me of something that I have basically forgotten, these people are descendants of the Lamanites!  This book is written for THEM!  She testified of this and then he got really interested!  I really think he will read it!  I am so excited to meet with him  again! :)  Now we just gotta get him to church!
Miracle of the week, Sunday!  So Sunday we went around gathering investigators for church and it was just no after no after I don't want to after no.  And then we were going to the last house and her neighbor answered.  It's like an apartment complex.  We have taught her once and so we were like oh hey want to come to church!  And she was like yeah just give me some time to get ready.  Okaaaayyy? We will come back?  So we come back in a little and she is waiting there, ready, with her kid and sister in law!  My comp and I were like, wait I this a joke?  Are you coming to church with us???  She came!!!!!!!  Ahhhhhh!  It's crazy how the investigators that actually come to church are always the ones that we don't expect!  Maybe we should just not go get them, then they'd all come!  Ha! 
So this week I loved D&C 12:8.  It was in my mind all week!  We have to be humble to assist in this work!  And full of love!  
my town!

I really tried to focus on that this week and I'm really starting to notice the miracles that have come of it!  The Lord has entrusted La Esperanza, Coatepeque to my care.  I need to love them and help them find greater joy!  How great is my calling!  Wow!  I am so happy to be out here!  Don't get me wrong, it is HARD sometimes.  I often wonder why I'm here.   Then I remember, I'm here for them.  These beautiful people!  I'm here for my family, the greatest blessing of my life. And I'm here for my Savior Jesus Christ! I owe Him everything, the least I can do is dedicate this 18 months to Him! :)
I love you all!!!!

hermana moore :)

Last Week:

Hola!!!!!!!  Ha! I don't even know where to start with this week, like what didn't happen this week????? AH!
So first things first, Saturday September 14th we had a baptism!!!!!!! MY FIRST BAPTISM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Oh my goodness I cannot even express to you the joy I felt that day! So let me tell you about the investigator!  His name is Eric!  
Eric's baptism day!

Well, when we filled out his registro bautismal we found out that his name is actually Jerico, and that he is 11 not 10!  People don't really keep track of their age really well here!  Ha! But anyways, how we found Eric.  One day a hermana in our ward just brought him to church!  His grandma makes tortillas, so he would bring a family in our ward tortillas everyday and I guess they invited him to church!  PEOPLE, invite your friends to church!  You never know what will happen!  So he came for two weeks before we even noticed him, we just thought he was a member of the primary!  So we started teaching him and eventually met his whole family!  We are teaching them too but Eric wanted to get baptized!  So he did!  Wow,  I will never be able to express the joy I felt in my heart when he walked, more like ran, into the waters of baptism!  He was so confident!  No fear, he knew exactly what he was doing and he didn't want to wait another moment! And on Sunday when he was confirmed, wow!  So reverent!  I meant you have to understand, he is 11! He has the attention span of a fly; but when it comes to spiritual things, he just knows!  I love this kid so much!  I can just see him getting the priesthood in a year and then eventually serving a mission and ah!!!!!!!!!  Missionary work is real people!  It works!!!! D&C 18:15-16!!!!!
Sweet boy!

So that was incredible, :).  The rest of the week was hard but it just doesn't matter, because Eric got baptized!  He lives way the heck down in this far area called Masa, and we trucked down there everyday this week!  Up and down these hills, goodness!  But don't worry, my body isn't wasting away, I'm actually pretty sure I'm gaining weight!  Ha!  That's what all this delicious food will do to you!  I found a scripture this week that I LOVED!  Go read, Proverbs 28:25... that's what's happening here.... I am putting my trust in the Lord so He is making me fat!!!  Haaaaa, nah it's really just the tortillas and pan.  Bah I love pan!!!!!!  Oh I also saw a cupcake this week, so I HAD to buy it of course. :)  Oh and I achieved 3 months in the mission this week, so I had to celebrate!  We were in Reu that day because my comp had to do divisions with some other sisters, and they have a place called American Doughnuts, so we ate there to celebrate!  I had real doughnuts and HOT CHOCOLATE! 

Oh my, if you know me you know how amazing this was! :)  So yeah, I'm definitely eating my fair share of.... everything!  Oh and one of the bishop's sons went to the capital this week and brought back gourmet cookies, like shortbread ones dad!,  And gave us some!  So I ate those too :)  What didn't I eat this week would be a better way to address this situation! ;)

Ha so this week when we were teaching Eric one day, his WHOLE family was there, including his cray uncle, I'm pretty sure he is a pastor!  Well he just went off on a Bible rage, wouldn't let us get a word in!  So my district leader passed me a note that said he was gonna go take Eric in another room to do his baptismal interview, and good luck with this crazy man!  So I was just like no!  What do I do! Then the thought came to my mind, sing.  So sing we did!  We sang hymns for like 35 minutes, nonstop!  I figured he wouldn't interrupt that right!  Ha!  We literally sang hymns back to back until I couldn't sing anymore!  Then luckily crazy tio left and we just talked about blessings until Eric came back! :)  The Spirit always speaks to us when we are ready to listen!  Sometimes, you'll be told to sing sing sing! :)
So I mentioned how we went to Reu this week!  We got on a bus and actually left Coatepeque!  I was pretty excited because I haven't left in 8 weeks!  Since I got here!  Exciting, right??  Well after leaving I realized something.... I LOVE MY AREA!!!!!  Oh my goodness.  When I came back I was like I'm going to live and die here,  I just love the people and the city and everything about it!  It's familiar, it's home! (home away from home mom, don't worry!) 

But while we were in the bus coming back from Reu I was contacting, of course we are missionaries!  I met this super cool guy and lets just say that being a gringa is a great conversation starter!  And being from LA is awesome, because EVERYONE has a brother that lives here!  Ha! they're always like, do you know Jose Gonzalez.... and I'm like eh maybe?  Ha!  LA is huge and I live in "China Ville"! ;)   But it always helps me get familiar with these people!  So I'm grateful for that!  So we were just chatting and then he complimented me on my Spanish!  Wow, way to become my best friend!  Turns out, he has this awesome family and wants to come to church and learn more about the Gospel!  I taught him a little bit about the restoration but then I found out, he lives out of my area! :(  But oh well, I passed along quite the reference to another area! They better teach him!!!!
So this week we were warned about some gran tormenta, big storm.  We had to get extra food and water in our house, enough for 72 hours!  Basically all it was was just June gloom like in LA all week. Just no sun and constant drizzle.  Everyone was like,  "estamos en alerta naranja"!  "We are in orange alert"!  And nothing happened!  Ha!  But I guess a hurricane is heading our way today so I'll just wait and see what these gran tormentas really have to offer! ;) 
Yesterday was Independence Day here in Guatemala!  All week it was just so fun to see the flags everywhere and the festivities!  There was food everywhere, more than normal and wow on the 15th you could just feel the emotion and excitement in the air!!! :)  But, the 15th was a Sunday, haha so we had to just walk by the parades and try to get people to come to church!  Jill would have loved it! Marching bands up this wazoo!  Just everywhere!  These Guatemalans know how to do parades! Hundreds upon hundreds in traditional costumes and with dances and bands and wow!  It was incredible!!!! 
So one last thing before I go, miracle of the week. It was Friday night and as usual, all our citas fell through!  So we started wandering trying to find a new area to contact but then I just thought no, let's pray!  I mean this is the Lord's time!  We need to ask Him what He wants us to do! So we sat on a curb and prayed!  And right after we finished the prayer, these two girls walked up to us!  May I repeat, THEY walked up to US!  This never happens!!!!  They wanted to practice English but then they were asking about the church!  So we told them about our English classes and invited them to church!  And now we are going to go teach them!!!!!  Ah!  Miracles exist.... they are so real!  The Lord will reward us when we follow His will! :)  Ha when we talked for a while they were like, what were you doing there sitting on the curb...... waiting for you!  Even though we didn't know it! :)
Oh and today we went to the giant Guatemalan style market called Meta!  We bought vegetables and fruit for cheap ad they are huge and look so fresh!  It was so fun!  Dad, it was like the farmer's market at the Grove but 30 times bigger, and a little dirtier. ha!  But wow, so fun!  We are going to go every week to buy food now!
Remember this : D&C 58:2-4.  This helped me a lot this week!  Let the Lord bless your life!  Just Let Him! :)

love love love,
Hermana Moore!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Still Alive in Guatemala!

Hola! I am still alive! Ha, last week I emailed my parents and told them I had dengue, it's a sickness from the mosquitos and it's basically a really high fever and body aches. BUT I am happy to report that I have conquered dengue!  It only put me out of commission for.... 4 days.  But I am up and going and preaching the good word again!  Funny, before my mission I was like, I am not going to have a single sick day!  And I have had a week at this point... guess  I'm not as strong as I thought I was!  But we made sure to work SUPER hard the rest of the week and wow, we did work!  In just 3 days we found 15 new investigators with 3 families!  Bam take that dengue!  That which don´t kill me, can only make me stronger!  Thank you,  Kanye! ;)
We were in the primary activity.  I just smiled a lot.

So yeah, the end of this week was a great one!  Now I have super good bug spray that I use every 4 hours and I have had a lot LESS bug bites!  Oh hallelujah!  It's wonderful. so hopefully I never get dengue again! :)
This week we met a lot of new investigators!  We are truly so blessed here in Esperanza!  We received a reference of these 3 sisters last week and we have been teaching them everyday!  One of them is named E- and she is TALL!  Like me!  She is literally my height... and that doesn't exist here in Guatemala!  She is this beautiful, tall, amazon woman!  And we are best friends!  I seriously love her! We talk about how hard it is to find clothes that fit and shoes our size!  And she LOVES the Book of Mormon.  She seriously is eating it up!  She always reads so much and then wants to share her fave verses with us!  Sweet girl!  All of her sisters are like that!  So we are working with them a lot!  Oh and they always make us special juices every time we come!  Like melon and watermelon, with pieces of watermelon in it!  It's gourmet!  That and they give us these giant chip things that are fried imitation pork rinds.  Haha gotta embrace the culture.... anyway we love them!  Trying to get them to come to church but it's hard because they have to sell things to survive.  But we are teaching them about keeping the sabbath day holy!  So we will see how it goes! :)  They have this huge hammock so I 
taught a lesson on a hammock this week!  Hilar!  Dream come true! I'm buying one! :) 

I also taught a lesson while making tortillas by hand this week!  Yeah that's right!  Here there are tortillerias everywhere!  Like every street!  They make them by hand and they are divine.  I want to learn before I leave so we ask everyone to teach us!   We were contacting the other day and this lady owns a tortilleria!  So we were like, hey teach us and we will help, and secretly teach you the restoration? ha! We did all of that! :)  So funny!  It was way fun and  I'm one step closer to learning how to cook all this divine food that I love.  Seriously, how am I going to survive without my hot, fresh tortillas for every meal???  I know, I'll just make my own!!!!! ;)
One of the girls from our English class!

We also met a part member family this week! And wow, they are prepared for the gospel! His name is Elder, I kid you not. I guess his dad met with missionaries at some point and loved the elders so he named his kid Elder!  And now this guy has a family of his own.... so he named his first son.... Elder! I'm not kidding! These people NEED to get baptized!  They are so sweet and so interested in learning! 
This Sunday was amazing.  Our church attendance shot up like 30 people!  We had tons of investigators and less actives there!  But none of the investigators we tried to bring to church came.  It was all other random people that members brought!  Proof we need the members help!  We are really getting their help lately.  Our family home evenings are finally starting to work out with them!  And they're making us food!  Oh my goodness I love it when after a lesson they're like, and now... tortas! Freak yes!  I love food.  Speaking of food... we love our cook.  They really took care of me when I was sick.  That sweet family!  Ah I adore them! :)  They have 3 nurses in the family so they took turns caring for me! :)  And they feed us so well!  Except yesterday when they fed us the nasty chicharonnes soup again.  (Nasty soggy pig skins. my fave).  But tomorrow they said they are serving us something special..... pata de coche?  I'm pretty sure that means pig foot.
This lady owns a small hotel and serves us cheap breakfast on pdays!

We have been playing a lot of soccer as a zone lately.... joy.  These people love soccer.  I do not.  Ha! They are like, "Hermana Amor you have to run."  And I'm just like no, we don't play soccer we play baseball! or volleyball! or basketball!  Ah! I'm not quite a chapina yet because.... well.... I hate soccer! Ha! 
Well I'm out of time!  We are going to eat some Chinese food, yeah they have that here!  I'm stoked.  I love fried rice!  But I love you all and thanks for your prayers and emails!  It means the world to me! I hope you all have the best labor day and start to the school year!  Especially all my BYU people!  Live it up this year! for me! ;) 

Something I learned when I was sick:  Romans 8:18.  Look it up.  We are worth more than our trials. :)
 Oh also I've been reading  Jesus the Christ.  I'm obsessed!  Best book ever!!!!!1


hermana moore!!!!!