Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Listen to the Spirit, because He is the teacher here...

Here's Hermana Hoggan and me right before we went to see Elder Bednar.
Here I am with Iris, a member.
This morning when we were on our way to go shopping we stopped by the ocean!

This is a church here in Centro de Campeche.
This is Esmeralda, our investigator who has a tumor.

Picking wyha
We went and picked wyha with some members from their tree.

Some fun coca's.

Okay I've got lots to say today:

Starting with Monday night. We went over to visit Esmeralda to see how she was doing because she was in the hospital all weekend. When we saw her she had this HUGE black eye and scrapes on the other side of her face. She had a hat on, trying to hide it. We asked what happened and she said she got robbed and someone punched her, but shes a bad liar. The next day we went back to go find her, but found her little sister. She said that she moved across the street into a different room. We went down and found her in this little dark room with her little boy. Her eye looked worse and she wasn't all there. She told us she didn't have food and was wondering if we knew someone who she could work for to give them food. She had been fighting with her mother and moved. We went to the little store on the corner and bought them water, bread and ham. We came back and talked with her for a bit and helped feed her little boy. When we were talking to her we really didn't know what to say so Hermana Hoggan started talking about the Pioneers and all of the struggles that they went through. It really was a moment that I won't ever forget. Just sitting on this dirt floor while Hermana Hoggan is sitting on this mattress that's just on the ground with her, and her baby is just crawling around. Two days later we went back to check up on her, and she was doing a lot better. They had gotten food and she looked and sounded a lot better too! We talked with her about hope and faith, And boy does that girl have a lot of hope for what she's been through! She is really great and is a great example to me to stay happy in the hard times, and keep having hope. 

Okay, Friday we went to go see Elder Bednar and boy did my testimony grow! If i had any kind of doubt before about this church, well no hay una duda! He started off by telling us not to take notes and to just listen to the Spirit, because He is the teacher here, and it needs our full attention. It was a little bit of a question and answer thing and also he just asked us questions too. While he was working with us he would pause and ask us if we are hearing things that weren't being said. I was getting a little frustrated because I felt like I wasn't getting anything. While people were asking questions I was trying to think of one to ask because really, how many times do we get the opportunity to do that!? But when I would think of one it would be answered. It was really cool in the parts because I started to feel the Spirit and really hear those things that it wanted me to hear. I learned so much and I felt the Spirit so strongly! It was really the testifying power of the Spirit that was in that room. I was able to hear the things that I needed to hear. I felt my heart open up more and more as he was talking with us. I really can't describe it very well, but it was just great and he helped me so much! The biggest thing I learned was to listen to the Spirit because He is the teacher here. He taught us how to be agents and act, and not be objects where others make you act. 

Also one last thing. There was this guy that just walked into the church yesterday and was super timid to come in. He cuts hair and he's pretty cool! He said that he was on the bus with his friend and his friend just left him, so he just got off and started walking and ended up in front of the church. He said he didn't have anything else to do so he just came in. We are going to visit him tomorrow and we will see what happens! 

Love you all, and hope you all have a great time together today for Memorial Day! Do a big FHE together!!! Okay, bye:)

Hermana Velasquez! 
...Oh and I'm still with Hermana Hoggan!

Monday, May 18, 2015

...the mission ISN'T the best thing that will happen in my life...

Children that I just love! These 3 kids are from an investigator and they are so cute; they have close to nothing, but they are the happiest kids I know! I gave them some of the stickers that you sent me mom!

This little one is named Abraham and he is a hoot! He is hyperactive, but really funny!

The Hermanas in my district for our last district meeting in this combio.

We went to Domino's!

Hello friends!

Here’s a recap of last week for mom. So last week on Sunday one of our investigators Jose’ got baptized! He is the only member of his family that wasn’t a member. His two children are members and his son is on a mission, oh and his wife is a member too. Before he HATED talking with the missionaries, then one day he told him that it was time for him to be together with his family and get baptized. I didn’t get to have the chance to teach him too much, it was mostly the other two missionaries, but I was able to see him get baptized, and it was so great to see. His wife and daughter were sooo excited! They skyped their son that night and the dad told him that he got baptized! It was amazing because he had NO idea that he was even taking the lessons with the missionaries. I think that would be the craziest thing to experience on your mission! And now when he gets back they will all be able to enter into the temple and be sealed!

Yesterday we had a really cool experience with the President of the branch. We went in to his office for branch council, but only he was there, so we sat down and had a little chat with him. He ended up having a breakdown to us about a lot of things that actually really helped me. He was talking to us about how there are a lot of returned missionaries that are now less active and how it’s actually a really big problem. This is some of what he told us: The mission isn’t the best thing that will ever happen in your life, it’s only the first. You will be sealed into the temple to a spouse, and then you will have the opportunidad to have children. With them you will have so many different spiritual experiences. It’s not just in your mission that you will get to have these great things come into your life. The things you take away from your mission, good or bad, you will still use them. He also said to keep helping out the bishops and the ward as long as possible and really cherish your callings in the church as much as you cherished your calling as a missionary. He was just so sad to tell us about all of the less active members that are former missionaries. He also told us lots more like how we need to marry someone that will push us to be on a higher spiritual level, and that we can keep pushing one another to always have a stronger testimony. He told us lots more and he cried a lot and it was really sad how concerned he was for us and for all of the missionaries and returned missionaries. He taught me a lot in the 45 minutes we were in his office. More than anything he reminded me to keep cherishing my time here as a missionary. It really does go by fast and I will never be the same because of it. 

One last exciting this this week; on Friday we are going to Merida to go and have a meeting with Elder Bednar! He is coming to talk to different groups of people and one of them is the MISSIONARIES! It will be really great, I’m sure. We will be in there for 3 hours with him. I’m pretty sure it will be one of those questions and answer things with him, and that will be really neat! I’m pretty excited for that! Also we have changes this Sunday, but I’m pretty sure Hermana Hoggan and I will still be together for at least 1 more change! We are also going to start an English class in the church so that will be fun to do as well! We are going to try and get some investigators that way! 
Well, I love you all so much and hope that all has gone well with you this week! Keep reading your scriptures and praying and have fun with your family Home Evening, and if you don’t have anything planned for FHE, start planning!!!!!

Hermana Velasquez 

Monday, May 11, 2015

Half-way through the mission!

Happy cinco de mayo! We spent cinco de mayo in the house while I was sick! It was quite the fiesta! 
What day is it??? Hump Day! Half-way through my mission!
One of the CrAZy hills here!
The baptism of Jose! He is super great and they told their son that’s on a mission that his dad got baptized that day and he had NO IDEA! 

Hey family! It was really great seeing you all on Skype yesterday! You all actually looked so much different and YOUR CHILDREN, they are all so big! I was so thrown off my Lucy, Jackson and Pyper! It’s sad that they had to grow up, but it’s just part of the circle of life, ha-ha. Thanks for talking with me and sorry I was talking like the whole time, I didn’t get the chance to hear much about all of you! Thanks for listening! I am in a missionary mode of wanting everyone to have the chance to get a hold of this gospel. I have thought about our extended family a lot here on the mission, because so many people here remind me of them all! Ha-ha, I think it’s cuz they’re Mexican! I want to share with all of them about this great plan that we have from our Heavenly Father. I know living the gospel truly brings happiness and I want that for our entire extended family! I also know that I overloaded on you about all of the poverty that’s going on here! My heart breaks for these people! 

This week our fasting and prayers were answered. Jose, who was the only member of his immediate family who was not a member of the church, was able to be baptized yesterday! He just surprised his family a while ago and said “it’s time that I join my family”.  He has a strong testimony and was somehow able to get this Sunday off of work, which is a very rare thing, and we pulled together the baptism in a matter of 3 days when we found out it would work! Then, yesterday on their Mother’s Day skype, he was able to surprise his son who is on a mission with the news that he got baptized!!!

So, this week I hit the half-way point of my time here on the mission! I didn’t burn anything; sorry brothers. I thought about burning a bra, but we got home tired and decided to sleep, ha-ha! I just want to tell you all how much I love you all and how happy I am to be a missionary right now. There is NO other thing I would want to be doing with my life right now. I love serving the Lord here in Campeche and the happiness this gospel can bring to a family! I know that I will be blessed in the future with this time I spent here and all of the great things I have been able to learn here. This has been the best/hardest 9 months of my life and I can’t wait to see what the next 9 bring! I can really enjoy these next months and learn even more! I love this gospel and the chance I have to bring others to it! Love you all so much!

Always be grateful for what you have.
Read, read, read your scriptures.
Share the happiness you have in your life with others.
Love, Hermana Velasquez