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Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Halfway

Buenos dias!
Hermana H and I hit our halfway mark this week. Yup. We go home on December 15 (earlier because of the no traveling the week of Christmas rule). Sad. I wouldn't tell people I was at 9 months until I actually hit it. eh
This was a little hard because we taught two lessons to people who were not interested. It's sad, because usually they aren't home for the appointments they make, so we don't even get to teach them, but they were there. And then they didn't care. Nope. It's hard because if you count how many lessons we taught this week, and count those, that's a total of ten. So 20% of the lessons we taught we to people who were not interested. But that's ok! Maybe one day they will be. We planted a seed.
Our investigators G and M are super solid! There was a baptism this Saturday, and they went! Then M stayed for the English class (we taught some phonics, which was super funny. Hispanics have trouble with the h sound, and v, and r). Then G went to the General Women's Meeting! I had this panic moment, because she and the member that brought her needed the headphones (they put the Spanish translation on these headsets) and they weren't working. I was panicking because they don't really get a lot of English. But the guy there fixed it so it was all good. The best part was the dinner afterwards. They did some sort of burrito/pork wrap thing. The members were complaining because 1) sweet pork, really? 2) cold tortillas (the English members try to make them feel comfortable so they always do something with tortillas, but they don't understand that Hispanics only eat their tortillas warm) 3) I don't even like Cafe Rio (they tried to make something similar to something Cafe Rio makes) So that was pretty funny. But actually the best part was G really liked it and met a ton of people!
We had a cool lesson with a less active this week. We had a return missionary with us and he was boss. We totally had him coming to church. And then Sunday comes and he tells us like 30 minutes before church that he was left without a car. So there was nothing we could do for him. Next week though!
So I may have step throat. If so, it's super mild. I basically only had it bad for a day. Today I feel a lot better and I'm not even that swollen!
We had a great lesson with our investigator N. She has three daughters all under the age of 8. She really wants this for her daughters. Her husband drinks and isn't interested at all. We had a great lesson where the Primary President was there and told her all about the different programs for the youth. She liked it a lot.
There was this time that the Elders showed up 30 minutes late for correlation meeting. But they had milkshakes for us, so it was all good.
We had interviews this week with President Snow. Hermana H and I had to give a training on working with less actives and their friends. We really just asked questions and let everyone else answer them.
The English class is going. It's a little slow,  not a lot of people go. But you know, we're working on that.
That's about it!
Hermana Leete

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Aloha!

Aloha!
I've decided that I want to serve in the Samoan ward. It covers the entire valley, and at least part of the West mission. We're going to forget that they only call people who already know Samoan and Tongan and that getting called there would require me to learn both of them. But I think that would be pretty cool!
I have an awesome story that I forgot to tell you guys last week.
So last Sunday was Branch Conference.  Which meant that the stake leaders talked and gave the lessons and we had to have a translator (which is always fun to listen to because I can understand both of them). After church we had like a Branch Council with the stake leaders and all the presidencies and stuff. Anyway, they decided that everyone speaks enough English so they had the meeting in English. However, basically all of the Relief Society presidency and and a few other people, don't speak English. So they sent the missionaries to sit in between these people and translate for them. That is really super hard. Especially since they don't really get to the point quickly and I have no idea how to explain the new computer system thingy they are using. I sat there and was like, "I don't know what they are saying in English." So anyway, I kind of just said a lot of stuff. Like a lot. I have no idea what I said. But I did it!
I had a baptism this week! Well, kind of.
My investigator J in Ensign got baptized on Saturday! So I got to go and see it. It was pretty awesome, and well attended. And I got to see Hermana H and Hermana A again! Yay!

We found A this week. Yes. Her name is A! (That's not going to be nearly as cool when you abbreviate her name for the sake of the blog. Awkward.) We totally street contacted her. She met with some missionaries a while ago but she moved. She is super interested and has a ton of awesome questions. We totally spanglished the lesson, because she speaks fluent English but sometimes she can only think of certain things in English. Her husband only speaks Spanish but works a lot. Anyway. When we asked her to be baptized she looked at us and said, "of course!" Yup. Super awesome.
N is also a new investigator. She was a referral. She really wants the gospel for her kids, her 7 year-old is getting kind of rebellious. However, her husband is not interested and she works on Sunday. We're going to work on that.
We visited the M family again this week. They are members. I'm pretty sure they are practically deaf. The husband can hear more than the wife. The wife kind of just speaks over everyone. And I'm pretty sure she's catholic. Or at least asks like a catholic. I think she still prays to Maria. I'm not sure. But trying to visit them is super entertaining. Because they don't understand us.
Someone this week asked if my family was Spanish!
I went on exchanges this week with Sister R. She's serving down in Boulder City. It's kind of a cool place. Tons of members, and a nice little historic town. One of these P days I'm going to go to Hoover Dam. Apparently there's a member somewhere who will take us on an awesome tour. Soooo want to do that.
We had this awesome member visit with this part active family (Hermana A came up with that title, a family where only some of the members are active). We did a FHE with them, we started off with singing "Family Can Be Together Forever" (I can't remember what it's called in Spanish) and then taught them the Plan of Salvation. I felt like we needed to mention temples in there, so we did and they haven't gone to the temple in a while (they are kind of just returning to activity). We committed them to getting a temple recommend. (It was just the mom and the YSA age daughter.) Then as we were talking about the Celestial kingdom the mom asked about if parts of the family can be in different kingdoms. So we explained that to them. Then we went over the 21 day promise with them. Then we sang "Soy un Hijo de Dios." (I Am a Child of God) They were super touched by the lesson. I think it really was what they needed.

We had a pretty cool miracle from our English class. We were talking about giving directions and so I had written some places up on the board, like "church" and "temple." We ended up saying "church" a lot because that's where we were, but we never said temple. Until the one person in our class asked us what the difference was. So we explained that, and the Plan of Salvation, and have her give the closing prayer. Super awesome. And she lives in the Elders' area. Not as cool. But whateves, all the work of the Lord.
Thanks for the Saint Patrick's Day card. I did not get pinched. However, because of our festiveness we started a conversation with A and to prove we weren't Jehovah's Witnesses.
Love ya!
Que tengan una buena semana!(have a good week)
Hermana Leete

Monday, March 16, 2015

Pi, Pie, Lucky Charms, and a Pretty Awesome Week

Las personas que quieren saber acera de mi vida en Las Vegas,
That mystery text was from Hermana P. She is the branch president's wife. She's from Venezuela and spoils all the missionaries. She gave us the leprechaun hats and the jewelry. All attached to a box of Lucky Charms. Yay for not having to buy cereal! Don't worry, she'll probably send you pictures. Or even calling. She's been known to do that.

Yup, that mystery missionary I was with is my companion, Hermana H. She's super awesome and willing to work really hard. Because of health reasons, we can't bike, but she is willing to walk a lot and to do everything that she can. So it's not even a problem. She came out with me, but was in a different district in the CCM. She's still working on her Spanish, but is improving a ton! And she likes doing English fasts with me (where we only speak Spanish all day--which by the way is hard when you street contact in English. You have to switch back and forth all the time). So ya. She's awesome!
             
Pi day celebrations A.K.A Selfie with a Mini Pie.  Hermana H's mom made sure last p-day that we knew Pi day was coming. So we bought two tiny personal pies and ate them at 9:26 during companionship study. Hopefully I'll have time to send you the pictures.
Rachel's tooth?

English classes are fun. We haven't had much of a turnout. But we did get someone who came up from Boulder City to take our class. She has a driving test coming up soon and can't understand the instructor--and she has to take it in English. I realized I can't spell in English anymore because I never write in English. It was quite embarrassing. And teaching words like "blinkers": super fun. We're working on making it more spiritual. We already pray at the beginning and end of the class. We're thinking of doing a church tour and like pointing at the chairs and walls and stuff and being like, "chair," "wall," "chapel," "Joseph Smith is a prophet," "chapel." But we'll definitely use your ideas Mom.
This week was chalk (is that how you say that?) full of miracles. I don't even know where to start.

G and M. We were kind of worried about them this week. (These are our only investigators with a baptismal date. And that we see. Because the others are out of town or sick, or have a gate that you need a code to enter so you can knock on their door--ya, that doesn't work too well.) So Monday, we had an appointment and only M was there for some reason I can't remember. But anyway, he had read in the Book of Mormon so we read a bit with him and gave him some ideas of when he could read, like on the bus. He seemed super excited for us to give him that idea because he had never thought of it. Then Wednesday M came to our English class. Yay! And we also taught the two of them. We talked about the importance of reading and praying. G didn't really see the importance of reading, because if both the Book of Mormon and the Bible are the words of God, why can't she just read the Bible? So we explained that to her and told her she needed to pray about the Book of Mormon to know if our church was true. We tried to commit her to that and she flat out refused but said she would read. That kind of stuck us as weird and as a bad omen, so she were planning on dropping them if they still didn't read and pray. (Well, they pray already, but we mean praying about the Book of Mormon.) We came back Saturday, ready and expecting to have to explain again the Apostasy and why it's important and all that and getting them to pray. But when we asked them if they read, they said yes. Yay! We asked what they read. G was talking about Jacob and all this stuff and I was thinking that she must have just read the introduction to 1 Nephi. And then I thought she had just opened up to the Book of Jacob and read that. But no. She read 22 chapters of the Book of Mormon. She read from 1 Nephi 1 to 1 Nephi 22. Mind blown. M read even more. Needless to say, we didn't drop them. And they remembered their baptismal date for the 11 of April. Which we might have to change. Something about not being able to go to church because that is the only day they can visit their son in jail or something . . . They didn't explain very well. But we are going to change that!
We totally got street contacted the other day. Some guy stopped his car to talk to us, asked us if we were Jehovah's Witnesses (we said no, obviously) and then got super excited when we told him what church we were from. Apparently he's been looking for us for a while, is practically Mormon, and has been interested since he saw those family commercial things we sometimes put on tv in like the 80's. We gave him a Book of Mormon and a Restoration pamphlet and he said he would read it immediately. 0.0 He was super excited to talk to us.
We've been trying to use Family History in street contacts because like 99% of the people we talk to have talked to missionaries before and refuse to have anything to do with us. So when they tell me that they have talked to missionaries before I say, "have they told you about Family History, genealogy, before?" And then I proceed to try and get them excited about finding out about their ancestors. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. We found one person who has his "family bible" as he called it. We told him the familysearch.org would love all the information that he has so he can help someone else out.
So we decided one day, that we were going to explore a part of our area we had never been. It's up with all the really rich people, so we have good reason not to be there. Rich people=0 Hispanics. And it doesn't help that we don't have any of the gate codes for the neighborhoods up there, and 0 members and 0 potentials. Anyway, we're trying to be better and work up there more. So we went exploring. Lake Las Vegas is up there. And a resort. And a lot of mansions. And a lot of roundabouts. It was an interesting hour, I'll tell you that.
We contacted this no name referral the other day and set up an appointment with her. We came back for the appointment and she was there but like her son and some other people were there. Anyway, one of he times we came by we left one of our cards with the information about the English classes on it. So they started asking us questions about it. And then they let us in their house. And started asking questions about what we believe, and if they had to be a member to take the classes. We tried to share a lesson but they only wanted to ask questions. The best part of all this though, was the reason they didn't want to be a member.  They thought that the bishop can call our boss, find out how much we make, and take 10% from it right then and there. Don't worry. We cleared up that lie. They were super shocked and were like, "mentiras?1!?!?" And we were like, "mentiras." Apparently that is a big lie that is going around the Hispanic population and that's one reason why no one wants to talk to us. They still don't want to take lessons from us, but they have a Book of Mormon and a Restoration pamphlet and are going to read them. And they want to come to the English class. But that was a really funny hour. They like, wouldn't let us leave, because they had a ton of questions. But they weren't very good at letting us answer. They were super confused at the difference between Mormon and Joseph Smith.
Basicamente, this week was pretty awesome. Didn't really teach a lot of real lessons, or things that we get to count as lessons, but I felt like we did a lot of teaching along the way. It was pretty cool. Soooo ya.
That's all folks!
Hermana Leete.
PS That makes a little bit more sense.
PPS Thanks
PPPS So it's broken 80 degrees now. I'm not sure I'm going to need the cardigan until after summer. I looked a little pink in that picture because we walked around a lot and got sun burnt. It's March. This shouldn't be a problem. I am not looking forward to the real summer.



This is what happens when you leave your candles in the car in Las Vegas. A.K.A. Don't do it. 


Monday, March 9, 2015

Different Place, Different Branch

Hello.
I bought a new cardigan today. I'm sorry it was kind of spendy, but the one I had got a whole in the sleeve. As much as I wanted to, I could not convince myself that that was professional and I could wear it. So I bought a new one. I kept it though. I might burn if for my 9 month mark. Or cut it up. I'm not sure if I can burn it. We'll see. I don't have to think about that yet.

I'm in old Henderson now. So a different place, different branch.
Alta Vista is really really big. It goes all the way out to Boulder City and Searchlight. However, there's only pockets of people. There's like a neighborhood, and then nothing, and then another neighborhood.
Transfers. Nothing too exciting. We met down at the mission office. I didn't get sick this time. We were just switching companions. Hermana A and I just switched spots. So it was super easy.
This area had a lot of problems the last transfer. Like, a lot.We had no progressing investigators. None. We had one appointment planned for the week. It was just a bad last transfer. But it's ok! Hermana H wants to change this area! Which is great, because if we always do what we've always done, we'll always get what we've always gotten, verdad? So! Changes!
We are talking to lots of people. The unfortunate thing about that is that they have all been contacted by missionaries before. All of them. And they are like all formers. Who are very not interested. I feel bad for the English elders who we cover because they have such a tiny area. I think they know everyone. At least everyone knows them.
So we have some awesome investigators G and M. We taught them lesson 2 and set them for a baptismal date on April 11. It was super awesome. We were talking about following the example of Jesus Christ (we were leading up to asking them to be baptized) and G started crying! That is exactly what she has been trying to do her whole life! Anyway. They accepted. It was awesome.
Our investigator L, is also pretty awesome. We taught her lesson one and she is supppperrrr interested. She also accepted baptism. We'll set her with a date the next time we see her. She just totally ate the lesson up.
We teach two English classes a week here. We haven't got a lot of people to come, but we're working on it. We need to print off a lot of flyers so that we can put them up everywhere. We're thinking of going around to all of our disinterested potentials and giving them the information instead of trying to get them interested in the church. It worked for the elders.
Well I think that is everything interesting that happened. Oh! Tell the Primary that I love the valentines!
Hermana Leete

PS I'm going to try and send a lot of pictures, but I don't like macs and so I can't figure out how to do the stuff I want to do. So hopefully, you get them

Me and Hermana A
Coming home from pday sports


Me and a recent Convert

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Baptism, Transfers, and Miracles

 Familia

They told us we were going to get iPads in the fall, and then by the end of the year, and currently the rumor is in May. So yes. They are coming. When? I don't know. Before the end of my mission? I hope so. My companions have lost all hope. But they all die in the next two transfers, so they probably aren't going to get them.

It (Valentine care package) came at the same time as my other package. The problem was that I only get mail on P days. However, the Samoan sisters where over in Henderson and were coming over to East Las Vegas so they picked my birthday package up for me on like Saturday. But, I only got that package. I got the rest of it on Monday. By the way, I loved the conversation hearts. Super consecrated. It was awesome.

We have two cherry blossom trees outside of our apartment and it makes me sooooo happy.

Transfers!

I'm leaving to go to a branch in old Henderson called Alta Vista. My companion will be Hermana H (she was in my district for like two days in the CCM). So I'm excited. it will be weird to go back to a branch in Henderson. Let the hunt for Hispanics begin!

Welllll. President is actually super lax about the family visiting missionary rule. If they want, they can call the mission office and when they are there take me out for lunch. As long as it is only an hour, and they are going to be there anyway, it's totally fine. The mission office number is:000-000-0000. He would totally let them come be our members in our lesson too, if I was in an English area. But who knows what will happen in June.

BAUTISMO!

M C finally got baptized! It was awesome. Lots of tears. She was so cute. She wore all white and brought a white towel "for the occasion" and wanted lots of pictures. And her sons came. WIN. Still not interested, but I believe in planting seeds. A (the 8 year-old) asked how he could enter the "pool" we told him he had to listen to us.

Despite Hermana A and I losing our car (don't worry, the mission office let us use another one--however, we did bike voluntarily) we had a week of miracles. We found some pretty cool people, taught a lot of lessons, and had a baptism! Awesome.

The Story of Find C the New Investigator

Sooooo. We hadn't been able to get in contact with our investigator M for like two weeks and one day we felt like we should go visit her at like 2 or 3. We thought that was super weird because that is when she picks up her kids from school. But anyway, that's what we did. We ran into her RIGHT as she was leaving to go get her kids. We set up an appointment later that night. So we come for the appointment, had a member, and knocked on her door, and no one answered. We knocked a lot, and really really loud, but nothing. So we left and tried a different person. We came back the next day to try and find M again and as we were knocking on her door we saw someone to street contact, so we left the door and went and talked to this person. That was C. She let us in to say a prayer and her friend was there who was going to be meeting with other missionaries that weekend and totally encouraged her to let us come back. AWESOME. By the way, it turns out that M was there the other night, but couldn't hear us knocking. Woah. So many things lined up just right so that we could meet C.

We did two mini exchanges this week. They kept on getting messed up so we couldn't actually do a full one. Like one sister got a terrible migraine and had to sleep for an hour and it didn't go away. The ward mission leader made the sister training leaders a really special dinner with all of their favorite things so they had to go to that. I got to eat two dinners one day and none the next. It was just interesting. And I got to teach an excommunicated member. Apparently he took his name off the records. I don't know why though, he knows like everything. When I was in the stl's area, we found a new investigator named J. We were an answer to her prayer. She literally prayed right before we got there. When she closed lesson 1 with a prayer she was soooo grateful that we came and really wanted to know if it was true. Golden!

We have this investigator named J. He is absolutely fantastic! The first times he went to church he didn't stay for all three hours because he has scoliosis and his back hurts him. But when we asked him to stay he did. Afterward, he was like "Why did I never stay before? You learn so much!" He mentions that after every single Sunday. He also mentions his upcoming baptism every lesson we have. He is so amazing! He loves to learn, and he always loves having us over. He has truly repented and wants to come closer to God. Love that guy!

Anyway. I think that's about it.

Amor,


Hermana Leete
My District