HNA CONTRERAS ARRIVES!

PICTURES

feat. amor y pollo fello
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Hermana Anderson dies (This is mission terminology meaning her companion is going home and Emily is her last companion)

It’s the last couple of days of Hermana Anderson and we’ve been going big !!!!!!

Today we ate 2 ice creams EACH (Hermana Merrill so you know it was Yogun Fruz in jumbo).
It’s been sad because all good things come to an end….
I have learned so much from the example of Hermana Anderson and we have worked so hard together. We have had so many amazing experiences and seen so many miracles together. But it’s now time for us to go and learn other lessons!
I love it here in Los Jardines. It’s been a lucha but the members here are absolutely amazing and stong and love to share the gospel. We will keep seeing miracles thanks to their hard work and goodness.
This past week we taught an atheist. I was surprised because I didn’t know any lived here! Ok all joking aside it was a really cool lesson and a great experience to testify of God the Father and the Living Christ.
Whenever I start to write I always forget everything that happened this week.
But everyday I am so grateful for the mission and all i learn everyday. I love doing the Lords work, it’s the greatest joy.
Hermana Stephens

a prophet, seer, and revelator

wow what an incredible couple of weeks we have had! We have received a ton of amazing council from our leaders, including direction and council straight from the mouth of Elder Cook. It was an experience beyond words. The choir preformed beautifully (we were very proud). The spirit was amazingly strong, I will never forget what I felt when Elder Cook testified of the Resurrected Savior. I know without a doubt that he is an ordained Apostle of the Lord and a Prophet, Seer, and Revelator. I feel so grateful for the testimony I have receive from the Holy Spirit and for the chance I had to hear the words of the Lord like that. I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY. There is no greater blessing that being in the service of the Lord.
well, I’m having trouble remembering other things that have happened hahah but I do i have two embarrassing experiences from yesterday. 1. we had taught a class in young women’s and after bearing our testimonies and finishing, i went to go sit down and fell out of my chair. it would have been funny but we were feeling the spirit really strong and it was just awkward ahah 2. we took our investigator to a young single adult broadcast thing that elder cook was giving from Santo Domingo. We started to feel uncomfortable when he started talking about marriage, and then we looked around and it was basically a big group date, plus us and our investigador. lol
everything is wonderful down here. I’m grateful for the trials i have had, i know they are making me stronger! I love the work, and I love the Lord,
until next week
hna stephens

No email this week from Hermana Stephens! But here is a picture that was sent to me from the mission office where she serves as a Sister Training Leader!

So Emily Stephens has been out of touch the last two weeks. Well, last week we briefly exchanged messages (shortest exchange ever) and this was promised…”mom i love you im sorry i have to go!!!!!
I LOVE YOU I AM SO SORRY ILL WRITE AND SEND PICS NEXT WEEK.”
Well yesterday….came and went…nothing. I was a bit worried so I emailed her mission and received this response and picture! “Your daughter was with us in the office yesterday. She is well. We had a great conversation about schooling after the mission. I wish I could provide more info as to why she didn’t write. Just remind her next week how much her letters meant to you. BTW, this pic was from her visit yesterday.”

IMG_6076

This was sent on Wednesday:

Hey mom

im reallly sorry all the internet centers were closed! but dad sent me a pic of you guys outside the temple and you look so great. so happy.
my week has been really great. We have had some miracle lessions with this one member who is amazing. I love the work so much and it has been amazing here. this monday we went shopping and ate mexican food.

ok some things we did this week
we had a meeting with all the leaders of the mission on halloween. It was amazing i learned so much and the spirit was so strong. also my comp and i dressed up…i was her (i wore her nametag and her clothes) and she was me (in my nametag and my clothes). it was really really great
we had another rehersal with the choir and it sounds a lot better. I almost happy with it.
we had an awesome noche del hogar with a member family and their neighbor. The neighbor is super ready for the gospel and awesome and we sang karakoe. IT was super funny.
my comp got sick…sad
we felt the spirit a lot
i ate a frosty at mcdonalds.
okokok i love you talk to you on monday
em

the past 3 weeks…SATANAS ES BASURA

Sorry I’ve been mia for a little bit…its just been literally insane, we’re super busy always and I feel like a hardly have try to write!! But transferred happened this past week, and Hermana Anderson and I still together #dreamteam

Its been really, really great here in Los Jardines. It’s the promised land. The members are SO WONDERFUL with the work and really do love and help our investigators. We had a young adult activity last Monday in the house of some members with our investigador…I hadn’t laughed that hard in a while. At one point while we were sharing a spiritual thought, the dad of the family just goes on a rant and finished by saying SATANAS ES BASURA (satan is trash) and then he just gets up and leaves the room. That’s my new life motto.

Other fun things that have happened….

there was a sewer overflowing in the street for a week.  They fixed it but it still smells like sewer junk…

Also we have had some super AMAZING MARAVILLOSA experience with finding SUPER prepared people. One girl started crying when we shared lesson one, and then when we came back she had read THE ENTIRE PAMPHLET (that never happens) and part of the Book of Mormon!!!!!! We were ecstatic. Also one of our amazing investigators named Yissel said she knows Joseph Smith was a prophet, and then this past Sunday she came to church with her entire family. I could have cried of joy.

Also my comp and I are organizing a choir for when Elder Cook (oh yeah did i mention that THE Elder Cook, an apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ) is coming the MISSION SANTIAGO!!!!! Anyway we’ve spent the past week auditioning people over the phone that’s been really exciting and hilarious.  (This is mom speaking here: I also will tell you that Emily has been asked to conduct this choir and she is super excited about it…can you tell?!)

Basically the mission IS THE BEST THING EVER and I wish I could be a missionary my whole life (if i could also see my fam ….love you guys). Even though we are attacked often by the adversity, like always in life, we see miracles everyday. I have a stronger testimony of Jesus Christ, I feel the power of his atoning sacrifice more than I ever had. I love being His servant, I know I am imperfect but that is the miracle, He is still able to bring about His great and eternal purposes through us, the weak and young of the world. How I love this gospel and the Lord! I challenge all of you who are reading this letter (all 5 of you:) ) to look OUTWARD and not INWARD because that is where true joy is found.

love you all,

hna stephens

elder vasquez’s b-day

my desk

mcdonalds with the hermanas

elder morfin DIED

batidas 🙂

general conference…we hear the voice of the Lord!!!

what a wonderful weekend of general conference we were blessed to enjoy! I felt the spirit very strongly, especially during the first hour. These are just feelings that are hard to explain…so everyone go watch it for yourseves!!!! lds.org

I feel so blessed to be here in the mission, to see miracles everyday! I know the Lord loves us and wants us to be happy, which is why he gave us his gospel!!
love you all,
ps i lucky enough to eat the closest thing to east coast pizza that i could get

talk to everyone!!!!!!!

klok

para que sepan I survived hurricane maria and we are all doing ok here in the mission. There was a lot of wind and rain but we just stayed hunkered down in the house and waited it out. Unfortunately, I can’t say the same for other people here, there are some people who lost everything. Please keep everyone down here in your prayers.
But besides all of the rain, everything is going super well down here. These past two weeks have been full of miracles, but I want to talk about one miracle in particular. We had a zone conference like a week ago with Elder Fortuna of the 70, and I learned a lot about how we need to talk to everyone!! So one way we started doing that was in the Rutas! (rutas are these cars that drive on a rute…you can just hope in one and get out when you want.  Because we are in Santiago and our area is huge, we use rutas a lot). Before in rutas I would just sit back and enjoy the ride. Now, we contact!  Some cool things have happened because of it:
1. Hna Anderson contacted a member in another ward- lol
2. I contacted a guy who is an investigator of the elders in our ward- lol
3. We contacted a ruta driver that the elders in our ward had already contacted- lol
B ut all joking aside, miracles have happened! The elders contacted this lady named Laura in a ruta who lives in our areas. We were able to find her in her house yesterday and she was super amazing, funny, and had almost gotten baptized as a kid!! Her life could change because the Elders were not afraid to open their mouths.  Also, I have been really growing as a missionary.  I have been learning that a lot of people are really open to talk about religion (well most…I contacted a guy this week that told me that all religions are businesses…but then some guy in the back started defending God and it was super cool).  A lot of times we have fear to open our mouths and talk to people because we are not sure if they will reject us or start hating on the Mormons, but really most people are super nice and willing to talk! Whenever we feel scared to open our mouths, that’s Satan trying to stop the work.  An amazing member here, Patricia this week asked her friend to listen to us and her friend accepted everything and told Patricia that she loves the Book of Mormon. We never know who will accept and who won’t if we don’t open our mouths and ask!
I know the Lord knows us and he blesses us when we obey him. I love the mission so much; it is the best decision I have ever made, and everyday I pray to be worthy of the sacred calling I hold.
Hna Stephens
zone conference,
Vicky got baptized!! This awesome haitan dude who is trying to teach mecreol and has an awesome testimony
proselytizing in a hurricane no big deal