Monday, October 21, 2013

My Sweet Family,

Well, it´s been a rough week. My new companion, Hermana Cerna, is driving me a little crazy. She really is a good missionary, and I do love her, but sometimes we just clash a little bit. Maybe I´m just having "seperation anxiety" from Hna. Jarvis, but I really do wish it was her here with me still. But the Lord knows best I guess right? Someday I´ll figure it out. I don´t know why we´re together, but he does, and I trust him.

We also may have lost our baptisms. They came to church yesterday and it was amazing! We had fast sunday yesterday so there were some awesome testimonies that were born and they all just loved it, but apparently the dad doesn´t want them to get baptized. It´s hard because he literally works all day every day and comes home just to sleep and then goes back to work so we´ve never met him and haven´t been able to teach him anything, but we´re going to fast this weekend, so hopefully a miracle will happen and he will change his heart. I love this family and all three of them have very strong feelings for getting baptized, I just hope the dad can see that and let them do it. They´re so ready and they need it. We´ll see, hopefully I can tell you otherwise next week. 

We did have one miracle happen though. Hna Jarvis and I were in a locutorio a week or so ago and we had a woman come up to us and tell us that she was a member but had been inactive for a long time. She asked for our card and then told us she would call us and then left. I honestly wasn´t sure that she would call us, but the other day she called and asked about church and she showed us for sacrament meeting yesterday! She´s so cool! I think she said she´s been inactive for 19 years and then all the sudden she just decides to come to church one day. Wow. Her name is Viki. She´s just awesome, and so sweet too! Man, I really do just love the people here. They make the hard things a little easier. I really do feel an honest love for them. Though some things may not being going well, there are some  awesome people here that are changing my life, and I hope that I can be a part in changing theirs as well. 

Well here goes another week. I can´t believe that this one marks 3 months! I know missionaries say this all the time, but I really do feel like it´s gone by so fast, but at the same time, I feel like I´ve been out forever. My last transfer with Hna. Jarvis went so quickly, I hope the next few with Hna. Cerna will be the same. 

I love you all! I know you´re doing great things at home and I hope that you are feeling the love of your Savior. I can promise you that He knows you, even by name, that you need only ask and He will share all the blessings he has in store for you. He lives. He will come again soon, that is why I am here. To share this message and to help prepare the world for his coming. Never doubt that he hears your prayers. Trust in His timing, and search for the good in your life, I promise it´s always there. You´re the best! I couldn´t ask for better friends and family to share my life with. 

Hermana Walton

(hermana Jarvis and I with the daughter of a member (Liriel) love her!!!
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Last weeks email... chatting with her now and will post this weeks soon.  Yee Haw!

Family! Hello!

Well first of all HAPPY BIRDTHAY MOM (tomorrow)!!!! Oh that´s so fun! You´ll have to tell me all about what you guys do, I want to see pictures and send me a piece of cake if you could too would ya? No, I´m just kidding. 

Well a lot of things are happening this week. It´s the end of my first transfer, which means I´m not a greenie anymore!!!! Not that I really ever felt like one, but it´s good to know that there will be missionaries younger than me and that I have some experience under my belt. Also it´s a transfer, so lots is changing...including my companion...which I´m not very happy about, but whatever the Lord needs me to do. Hermana Jarvis will be going north to a city called Benidorm and I will be gettting a NATIVE companion!!!! What?!?!?!?! Oh man, I don´t know what that´s going to be like. Her name is Hermana Cerna and she´s originally from Peru, but she´s been in Spain now for a while. She´s only been out for like 3 or 4 transfers so she´s fairly new which will be interesting, but good. At least she´s good at the language right? Needless to say, I probably won´t be using very much english for the next few weeks. I´ve heard she speaks/understands a little english so that´ll be good, but it´ll still be a change. 

Alright, now for the big news that relates to the title of this email. November 2nd now has two very important things. First, my sweet daddy´s birthday, and second, MY FIRST BAPTISMS!!!!!!! AAAAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!! Hahahahah, oh man, you guys, they are so cool! It´s this really sweet mom (Edita) and her two kids (Wilbur, 10, and Dayleni, 8) and they are from the Dominican Republic. We found them through some members (that´s honestly where finding is at. That´s why it´s being stressed right now so much to the members, because probably around 90% of good investigators are references from members) and they´re just super sweet and humble. Honestly so many people here are. They aren´t kidding about the whole "bad economy" thing here. That doesn´t even scratch the surface. I can´t tell you how many people I pass daily who are just out on the streets begging so that they can try to get by. It breaks my heart.

Oh! So something weird that I found out about last night, the way they do missionary farewells here in spain is just strange! There was one last night for a missionary in our ward and man oh man. So they do it on sunday nights, so it´s not part of sacrament meeting. They begin with "testimonies" which basically just turns into an hour long brag session about the missionary. Then they have a slideshow, then the whole family speaks, then they give the missionary a blessing (which I guess sometimes they just set the missionary apart right there in front of everyone) and then the missionary speaks, and then the bishop speaks, and then everyone eats. So it basically takes like 2-2 1/2 hours and it´s crazy! I´m so glad we don´t do that in the states. It´s not the way I would chose to do it at all!

So what else can I tell you...Dad I know you wanted to know more about our investigators, so maybe every week I´ll tell you about one of them. So someone we´re going to go visit after we finish emailing right now is Lorena. I don´t know if you remember her, but she´s the one we found in the park that started crying after we shared a prayer? Anyway, she´s so sweet! We taught her a lesson 0 (the book of mormon) and then we haven´t visited her for a few weeks because she´s been super sick, but we´re finally going back tonight. She´s a total Joseph Smith case! She´s been looking for the right church, and she´s getting baptized in her other church this month apparently, but we´re determined to change her mind and to sway her towards us instead.She has a little daughter who is 6 and she´s married, but we haven´t met her husband yet, so hopefully we can meet him soon and then have them baptized together. That´s something I´m realizing too, the family is the most essential part of this gospel. Everything we have, everything we do, is so that one day, we can make it back to our heavenly father and live with him and the rest of our spiritual family. He literally is our father, and we are his children, and more than anything he wants our safe return to live with him and become like him someday. The family is essential to God´s plan, and we must not defile or make light of so great a blessing the Lord has given us. 

Well I love you all! You are such a strength to me, and I don´t know how I would do this without you. Thank you for all your emails, love, letters, prayers, thoughts, all of it! I can´t tell you how much it means to know that you are all there at home cheering for me. I pray for you always and keep you in my heart. Wish me luck in my week of spanish! Haha, if next week´s letter is all in spanish because I can´t think in english anymore, be grateful, and then ask Luke to translate it :) I love you all! Have a great week!

Hermana Walton

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Whew!  Being able to email at 9a.m. is so much better than 3:30a.m.  :)

Hello Everyone!

Well I so hope that you all got to watch conference. It´s the best thing in the world, especially for missionaries. It was kind of a strange watching schedule, but it was good. We watched the relief society session on saturday at 4 pm and that was super good! I thought it was interesting that they focused so much on keeping covenants and the importance of them. Then at 6 pm we watched the saturday morning session live. Then we came back to the chapel on sunday and the elders watched the priesthood session at 11 am then we watched the saturday afternoon session at 2 pm and the sunday morning session live at 6 pm. We didn´t get to see the sunday afternoon session because that would´ve been at 10pm our time, which is just a little too late for us missionaries with bedtimes. We watched all of this at the capilla, and yes, we did get to watch it in english thank goodness. I can´t imagine having to watch 8 hours of conference in spanish. That would´ve been interesting, plus I know I wouldn´t have gotten nearly as much out of it.

I also went to Málaga this week. Like I told you in my last email. I left tuesday morning and then came back wednesday night. It was to pick up my residency card so that I can be legally here in spain and they won´t have to kick me out for having been here too long. It´s kind of fun, I have a little card, kind of like a driver´s license thing. Sadly I´ll have to leave it here when I leave, but maybe I´ll take a picture of it so you can see it. But it was so much fun! A lot of the other missionaries that I came with were there with me too and it was fun to catch up with them. It also reminded me of how funny the younger elders are. They are actually super immature. I mean I know I´m not always the most mature person, but I take comfort in knowing that I´m not an 18 year old elder. Haha, but I still love them. They make me laugh, and always will.

So who would´ve thought, but KFC is a big thing here. We went to one of our baby-sized pueblos for a cita but it ended up falling through so we were walking around and some families we knew were outside playing with their kids and they offered to take us home which was super sweet of them. So on our way back to the capitol they told us that they had been planning to go to KFC and they were taking us with them. So of course we weren´t going to tell them that they couldn´t go, so to KFC we went. It was kind of weird, and it´s definitely not as good here as it is back at home. But that was a strange experience. Haha. 

Well I hope everyone is doing well and that you are finding the hand of the Lord in your life everyday. I love you all and can´t wait to hear from you and talk to you next week! 

Hermana Walton