Monday, May 18, 2015

{Week 75} Polanco - May 18, 2015

Hi family! I miss you guys. The other day we went to the Visitor's Center at the temple again, and the movie about the family made me cry. I'm excited to hug you all again.  And Tony Romas sounds great! And my favorite dessert is Black Forest in a Bowl! (just for your information...)

I'm not sure about what I want to talk about for my homecoming talk... I've learned so many amazing thing here that I could probably talk forever. I wouldn't mind talking about charity... or the Atonement... or the importance of having a testimony about Jose Smith and the Book of Mormon... or about seeking and following inspiration... or whatever other topic. It'd probably just be easier if they assigned me something.

(I asked her how Home and Visiting Teaching was going in her Ward, and this was her response:)
So about this ward... The visiting teaching and home teaching program in this ward is pretty much nonexistent. We are constantly trying to help everyone get excited about doing it, but this ward is a lot of talk and not a lot of action. We're working hard, but it's frustrating sometimes. I do love this ward, but I feel like taking the missionaries out will be a good thing. They're used to us doing all the work and visiting the less actives. It'll be good to get them working, even if it is al fuerzas. 

So this has been a great week with our investigators. Lots of good stuff happening!

 - Alejandro - when we first started visiting him, he just wanted to learn. He was NOT interested in getting baptized. But the other day when we saw him, he said ''I'm convinced. I can't make any excuses. I need to get baptized.'' He then said that he would definitely be getting baptized before we go home, but he felt like that week was too soon. But he also said that if we felt like he should be baptized that week, he would do it. Normally we would have said ''Yes! This week!'' but we both felt really strongly that we should wait a week to give us more time to teach him so that he would be more prepared. So now the plan is for this Saturday. He's been progressing a ton. He has changed so much since we started visiting him. Pray for him! 

I love seeing the changes in people's lives as they start to live and believe in the thing we teach them. It's amazing the power that the Atonement has to help us pick our lives up and change things around, and to help us become better people. 

 - Carlos - He is a huge example of how through faith we can change our lives. On Monday night, we went and knocked on his door, and he came out!... drunk. He was really sad, and said that he hadn't wanted us to see him like that, and that's why he was hiding from us. But he decided to come clean. We talked to him for about five minutes in front of his house, and we made an appointment for the next day. When we came back, we knocked on the door and his daughter came out, and told us that he was still drunk. Normally at that point, we would have just left and come back later, but Gustavo (remember Gustavo? he's fellowshipping Carlos and always comes with us to the appointments) asked if we could go talk to him anyway. So she let us in, and we went and chatted with Carlos for about thirty minutes. He's a really sturdy drunk, and if we didn't smell the alcohol, we wouldn't have even known he was drunk. We had a great chat with him - Gustavo helped him a ton. We talked a bit about the faith and how if he put in his part and had the desire, he could turn his life around. When we left, we could tell that he was sincere in  his desire to change. That night he went with Gustavo to the addictions class that Adolfo is giving in the church. We've been visiting him everyday to help him, and he is doing so great. He came to church on Sunday, and in the Gospel Principles class they were talking about faith, and the teacher asked him when he was going to start exercising his faith, and he said ''ya empezĂ©'' (I already started). His original baptismal date was for yesterday, but we had to change it. When we invited him to prepare to get baptized on the 7th of June, he said ''You bet. This time I'm really going to do it!'' He is progressing a ton! 

 - Bertha - she is amazing. When we put her baptismal date, she said yes before we even finished the question. We taught her about keeping the Sabbath day holy, and the next day she told us about the plans that she and her husband have to not sell hamburgers on Sunday night anymore so that they can keep the Sabbath day holy. You have no idea how big of a miracle this is. NOBODY here keeps the Sabbath day holy - they all buy food, and a ton work. So it's amazing to see her faith and desire to keep the commandment. And her husband doesn't want anything to do with us, but he is really supporting his wife which is a huge blessing. On Sunday I sat beside her 5 year old daughter Alison in church, and helped keep her entertained. That was so much fun - I miss watching kids in church!

We also went to the temple on Saturday - we took Alejandro, Gustavo, and Rosa and her family to the Visitor's Center at the temple. They loved it. 

Us with Rosa and her family at the Visitor's Center.

Us with Gustavo at the Visitor's Center.
They show us a video about a family there, and then after, ask what we thought about it. It's an amazing video, and always touches everyone. Victor, Rosa's 7 year old son, was crying really hard afterwards. The two Sisters giving the tour asked him why he was crying, and he said it was because he wanted a little brother or sister. He told them that his little sister died, and he missed her. It was so sad - not a dry eye in the group. Rosa was crying really hard too. It was amazing to testify with the Sister's there that their family could be together. The spirit was so strong. I love going to the Visitor's Center! And I am SUPER excited to go to the temple when I come home! I haven't been to the temple in a long time! 

Alejandro, Rosa, Israel, Gustavo, me, Victor, and Hna Ingram at the temple! 

And on Wednesday we went back to the President's house and finished designing the year long training program for the mission with him, his wife, and the assistants. It was a lot of fun! 

And funny story! Remember how I told you that Bertha's little boy is deaf? Well... he's not. When she first introduced us to him, she said ''this is my son Jonothan. He's 2. He's left handed.'' That's where we got confused, because the word for left handed is ''zurdo'', but we thought she said ''sordo'' which means deaf. So we went for like a week thinking he was deaf. And he's a really quiet kid - never talks, so we believed it. And honestly, how many people introduce their kid saying ''This is my son. He's left handed.''? So anyway, the other day she mentioned again that her son was ''zurdo''. So Hna Ingram asked how they came to realize that he was ''sordo'', and Bertha told us that they noticed that he had started to use his left hand for everything. And we were thinking ''What does using his left hand have to do with being deaf?'' So we were like ''Wait wait wait... what is he?'' And that's when she explained to us what zurdo meant, and we explained that we thought she had been saying sordo. We had a really good laugh over that one!

I'm really enjoying being with Hna Ingram. We laugh a ton, and we get along well and we work well together. It's a blast! 

Last night I couldn't sleep for some reason, so around 12 I went up and just sat on the roof for a bit. I could see the city lights go on forever. There was mariachi music and fireworks in the distance. There was a lot of noise, but at the same time it was really peaceful. It was beautiful. I love this place. 

I love you all tons. I hope you all have a great week. Be good, say your prayers, and enjoy Waterton!
Hna Taylor

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