September 28, 2013

Feliz Primavera ! (Happy Spring!)


2 important things....
1. I am training!!! woohoo! Yep just found out today. I go to Rosario tomorrow to find my child! I was not super surprised with this news, as I had a mini and there are lots of hermanas coming. But I am SO excited! I know it will be a lot of work and there are always hard things, but I also know that this last transfer has prepared me for it. Woohoo! 2 hermanas from my mtc district are finally coming! 
2. Mom, you would be proud. I made beans. And I don´t even have a crockpot. I found blackbeans, soaked them, cooked them with the garlic (forgot to pack the garlic press in my suitcase) and onion. I had a legit mexi meal (well i used empanada shells for tortillas....) My comp, once again, just gave me a look of disgust, but they were delicioussss!

Wow this was quite the week. It had some of the hardest/best days of the mish. I definitely have more faith than 8 months ago. There were some seemingly impossible moments, but we also had milagros! (miracles)  And tender mercies. Our investigador Ruben went to church!!!! One day, with my old comp, we were contacting in the rain. Well he has been progressing, and he came to church! And liked it. It was an extra milagro, because Sunday was rainy and so there were less people, but Ruben came igual!

This week there were 2 holidays, dia de estudiantes, and dia de primavera. Basically it means that every person and their dog was drunk for 2 days. It is rather inconvenient to have all these holidays, when the people go party and have picnics. Thirteen year olds buy shopping carts full of wine...its quite the party. And they make a giant snowman looking thing out of all the papers from school from the past year, and burn it on the beach.  (burning of the wolf??)
I had my first pig asado. It was delicious. I didn´t eat the pig foot, I prefer to not recognize what part of the body i am eating. I introduced some members to banana bread. (I had put it in a ziploc, and I also had to teach them how to open and close it. jaja the things we take for granted) My comp tried hot tamale candies (an elder had given our ward mission leader a big costco bag a long time ago) and she did not like them at all. Too much flavor. jaja. 

The evangelista church is taking over Colón. I don´t love that they actively preach against our church, and we seem to run into more and more people from the church every day. Maybe one day they will regret the mean things they say..jaja. We have contacted a lot, the truth is you have to talk to like 30 people to find one person interested. But there have been moments where I really understand the potential of each person - you just have to imagine every person you talk to in the street dressed in white in front of the temple. And then I just want everyone to hear and have the chance to accept Jesucristo and apply the atonement in their life. 

To answer your questions mom....there are a lot of missionaries from America. I don´t know the percentages....but i think the biggest percentage is from Argentina and Chile. We get mail from the mission office about once a month, mas o menos. When the leaders go to the mission home for a monthly meeting we get it. 
Enjoy pumpkin bread and everything fall! I´m sure pinterest is just loaded with delicious things...hahah.

I hope everything else is going well!
All is good here! LOTS of changes here....we will see what the next week brings! But I am grateful for this little bittle of time in my life that i can serve here in Argentina:)

love, hna andrews

I believe that if we could truly understand the Atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ, we would realize how precious is oneson or daughter of God. I believe our Heavenly Father’s everlasting purpose for His children is generally achieved by the small and simple things we do for one another. At the heart of the English word atonementis the word one. If all mankind understood this, there would never be anyone with whom we would not be concerned, regardless of age, race, gender, religion, or social or economic standing. We would strive to emulate the Savior and would never be unkind, indifferent, disrespectful, or insensitive to others.
If we truly understood the Atonement and the eternal value of each soul, we would seek out the wayward boy and girl and every other wayward child of God. We would help them to know of the love Christ has for them. We would do all that we can to help prepare them to receive the saving ordinances of the gospel.
-Elder Ballard

September 17, 2013

8 months!


Yes, today is 8 months as a missionary!

To answer some questions first....yep I am still here in Colón:) with my mini. There is one more week of the transfer left, so i will be getting a new comp in a week. No idea who.... As for having fun...haha. Well, let´s just say the past month hasn´t been the funnest part of my life. It went from being the funnest transfer of my mission to being completely different. This transfer I have learned to be more dependent on Jesucrist than anyone else, and to be happy with myself. There is no one to enjoy cinnamon rolls and hot chocolate or appreciates humor. I just try to not go crazy by myself. 
About the cinnamon rolls...yes I made the MOST delicious cinnamon rolls. Seriously were perfect. Let me brag for a minute...I didn´t even have a recipe, and they were cooked in an Argentine oven! My comp...well she did not appreciate them in the least bit or was even impressed. So I may have eaten a dozen by myself...

Monday (last p day) we were in Concordia and had zone meeting. During the day we went to a huge park, and Urugay was right on the other side. We ate ´churi-pan´, it´s like a giant hotdog. I have had to accustom myself to eating stuff like this....i know, i know. There is a new hermana (from the states) who just about died when she saw the sanitary conditions of how the food was cooked, and the water we were drinking. haha i assured her i still haven´t gotten a worm or anything.

We had conferencia de zona en Santa Fe! Half the mission was there, an an area seventy spoke. (elder di giovoanni?) as well as pres. Giuliani. It was so good: to be with other missionaries, to hear the talks. We had a little MTC reunion, my comp from the mtc was there was well as 2 other elders from our district! They spoke about developing Christlike atributos to become a disciple of Christ. Hermana Giuliani spoke about what we should have achieved by the end of our mission, the goals that we should be achieving throughout. 

After we went to Subway. Subway! It was at a mall, it felt just like the US. Pretty sure only the richest hang out here. I had a turkey sandwich, it even had sweet onion sauce! It was quite a site to see 30 missionaries all in line at Subway, all in heaven. Well, except my comp who did not appreciate it at all. She just told me it was expensive (um, i bought it for her...) and informed me she could get a sandwich for half the price any where else. (with a fried hunk of meat and mayo. not the same)

This week we may have had the record for failed appointments! I don´t know what the deal is, sometimes things just don´t work out perfect for days in a row. It´s definitely more difficult to work when you cannot see any progress. The week before we had so many little miracles and people we found, then the next week was like a slap in the face! haha kidding. But it was a week to test the faith and diligence. We ended with less investigators than we started with. And, it went from being 95 and humid to rain for the past 5 days. Rain as in torments of rain. When there is any cold or rain people hibernate all day, which is not the most convenient for missionaries. We also came in contact with the most negativity against the church, from investigadores, menos activos, from everyone. If you do not have a testimony and are converted it would be easy to listen to everything that is said and just give up. There are a lot of religions in this part of Argentina, and that preach directly against the church. Satan works hard here, in ways that i had never thought about before. 

That´s hilarious about meager Monday. I sure hope Sunday dessert lives on, I assumed that was a part of every house, but had to teach my last comp about that. 
Sorry for too many details about food, and not any cool stories about the people?!....
haha i will try the next week.

thank you for all your love and prayers!

have a good week!

oh p.s. my fave chapter from the book of Mormon lately is Alma 34. You can all read it:)
love, hermana andrews

September 16, 2013

September 9, 2013

truth is i only have like 2 minutes. literally. so a pic will have to do for the week. we are in Concordia for p day. maybe i will tell more the week that comes?
but hope all is well!

all is lovely here. and today just happens to be FIVE MONTHS IN ARGENTINA!!!! 
love, Hna Andrews

September 2, 2013

hello family!

happy september! HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD!

first of all....nope mom, i never received that. I know there are some letters that are waiting for me, we have a meeting tomorrow so i will be getting those, but i´m not sure who all they are from. And everything from the mission home is sent to us. 
I finished a week with my mini! I worked and walked more than any other week in my´s that scripture that says the lord is bound when we do what he says, and if not we have no promise. So, I decided to work and work and be obedient, and ya know what? We sure did receive a lot of blessings. We had to contact and search for people, but we had lots of opportunities to contact. I can see such a change in this branch in just a month and a half. The members are so willing to help. We started a ´21 day promise´ where they write names of nonmembers and pray and read a specific scripture every day (it´s a promise from an apostle, i tried it in other areas too), and the promise is at least one of the people will accept to listen to the missionaries. The members are so excited to to do this and have more faith. There is a kid who is leaving on his mission from the branch, so people are extra gung-ho to do missionary stuff. There were more people in church than any other week here. Our investigador, Antonela, went with her husband, which was such a relief. Another family, were menos actives who we have been working with, is getting ready to baptize the 8 year old daughter. The parents both bore their testimonies yesterday, and she shared how they were reactivated. One day the daughter Sharon said ´mom, i want to get baptized¨ and then asked why they didn´t go to church every Sunday. It shows the influence of kids on their parents! Super good sacrament mtg. (hahaha even though for some reason we sang a Christmas song before the sacrament....)
I just have SO much love for the people here and for Colón. I now understand that it is the love that needs to motivate us. I just want it to progress and the branch to grow! The mission leader said that i need to stop being so worried about everything, and be ´tranquil´. It is just that when you invest all of your time, thoughts, prayers, something you have love for it, and it´s hard for another person to understand that. Sometimes your efforts just never seem sufficient, because people have agency to accept the gospel or not. But I know we are happiest when we are completely invested in the people and area. 
One day we were contacting and the lady touched my comp´s stomach and  asked if she was pregnant. Hilarious. Another day a member asked me why my ankles were so swollen...not so hilarious. I didn´t inform her that i just have cankles. 
Things are going better with the mini. You are right mom, definitely good experience to learn from someone from the country. I am learning to look for good in people and love them.  And  missionaries go around in 2 for a reason. But what I know is most important is our relationship with heavenly father. 
I have had to had a lot more faith to just go up and talk to people, and teach in every moment possible. It has been super warm here, which means that everyone sits outside drinking opportunity to contact. 
I introduced my comp to some food this week. She liked the pancakes (with dulce de leche of course:), thought granola was disgusting, along with raw veggies. I have developed a love for is not like in the states, but really runny and comes in bags. I think this is what i will survive on all summer. 
I keep finding more and more vacay rental homes to stay at here, so save your pennies, we are coming back. 
Oh, and happy labor day! enjoy a bbq or whatever those American traditions are!
thanks for the letters, i love hearing about everything. 
Have a great week! 
love, hermana andrews
the river...and Uruguay