Tuesday, September 24, 2013

It's another email from Hermana Pickett!

This is how high the river has been lately. Fun, right?

Hello! It's been another super week here in Honduras! We've been keeping good and busy. Lots of contacting, lots of lessons, lots of investigators, and two baptisms! Pretty sweet, right?

So Yeimy and Isis both got baptized this week, and both of the baptisms were wonderful. They looked so precious and happy. At Yeimy's baptism we were short on speakers, because she didn't want very many people to come (she's kind of shy) so I got to give a mini talk. I can't remember most of what I said, so I'm pretty sure the Spirit was helping me out. But I know I communicated everything I wanted to, so I feel satisfied with that. They were both confirmed yesterday, and Yeimy's mom is now coming to church regularly and she really likes it, as does Yeimy's aunt, who is also one of our investigators. It's pretty cool that her brothers were baptized, one of her brothers baptized her, and now Yeimy is such an effective instrument in bringing so many to the gospel. She's a pretty incredible kid. And Isis is pretty quiet, but she is a sweetheart. Addy and Clay, she's 9 and she is gorgeous, and I think if you guys were here you'd have huge crushes on her. You'd better learn Spanish so you can send her letters :)

yeimy's baptism! The first is her and her brother, Marvin, who baptized her, and then her with her family (marvin, edwin, Alma) and us

We're pretty excited about Darlin (who I might have called Darleny last week) and Lorena, who are both really prepared for the gospel but need to start coming to church. Also, we-re really excited about Johanna, who is taking the lessons with her husband Miguel Angel and their sons. They also need to start coming to church, but Johanna's mom is Gladis, who was just baptized a little while ago, so Johanna is really ready and willing to listen. Our family out in the jungle, the Sabion family, is doing a really great job of doing their reading and praying, and Vilma (the mom) has brought the boys with her to church two weeks in a row and stayed the whole time, but her husband needs to come, too.
The real nailbiter this week is the family Urquia, because this is the week they're meant to be married and baptized. But Satan is working on them super hard, and they're starting to get cold feet. But we were talking to them about it, and Hermana Escalante asked me if I'd like to tell them about the blessings I have seen in my family from the gospel. And family, you guys prepared me pretty well to bear testimony about the difference the gospel makes in a family. I kept my urge to start crying under control and I told them about how far apart we all live from each other, but how we are united in spirit and firm in the faith that we have each other forever. And when I had told them for a minute or so about the blessings that I have seen in our family and I know are promised to us, I asked them if they wanted those blessings for their family, their worried looks had melted into smiles and they both said yes. There are still some obstacles for them to overcome, but we are praying with all energy of heart for them, so I'm expecting a miracle (you know, if I said that sentence in Spanish, it would also mean "I'm waiting on a miracle" and "I'm hoping for a miracle" and though sometimes I wish I could be a little more specific, generally I think that's pretty cool, because generally, all three of those things are happening at once. I think that's what Mormon meant by hope).
The people here really are amazing. I have never seen such a generalized attitude of generousity. Never has anyone hesitated to donate their free time to come teach with us, and never has anyone hestiated to share their substance and feed us dinner or lunch. Mom, I was remembering yesterday when you told me I probably wouldn't eat with the members very much, because their don't have enough to share. They may very well not have enough to share, but they share it anyway. The fam. Sabion usually ends up keeping us with them for at least an hour, because either before or after our lesson Vilma will appear with food. And last night, we went to visit with a member and she asked us if we had had dinner, and we told her we hadn't, and she insisted that we eat dinner with her and her family. She didn't even plan for us in that meal, so I know there wasn't enough food there to feed two extra people. But she fed us anyway, and made sure we didn't want more after our first serving. And you can't stop in someone's home without them bringing out a chair for you, without them asking if you need a drink, etc. They are so ready to give of themselves to make others comfortable. If anyone is truly ready for the law of consecration, the Saints of Campana are. They are an amazing example and I know they're teaching me things I will never forget.
I completed my first month in the field this last Saturday and transfers are only a week away. It's pretty crazy how fast the time is going here. And speaking of time passing, this Saturday at the morning session of General Conference makes one year since the age for sisters was lowered from 21 to 19, and one year from the moment I knew the Lord wanted me on a mission. I've come pretty far from sitting in my kitchen and watching GC on my laptop while I tied a beard for Phantom, and I've got a longer way to go before this mission is done with me. But I've got a feeling that end product is going to be pretty cool.
I love you guys a lot. Really a lot. And I get to bear my testimony about that love pretty much every day, so that's pretty sweet. I hope everything is going well for you, that you are all healthy and happy and things are working nicely toward your well being. I'm pretty confident your lives are at least generally ok, because I pray for all of you a lot, and the Lord has made pretty splendid promises about fulfilling the prayers of a missionary, and I've got confidence in that. But I haven't heard from some of you in a while (yeah, you know who you are) and it'd be cool to hear how it's going so I can thank the Lord for filling those aforementioned prayers. Just saying.
Elder Holland said in his conference address last April that if our testimonies ever started to fail, we could lean on his. Here's my missionary testimony, just in case anyone needs something to lean on. I know that the gospel is the true and everlasting gospel of Jesus Christ. I know that God is our Father, and that He has done all things and will continue to do all things for our good, because He loves us more than we can possibly understand. I know that this gospel has been provided to us, by means of true prophets and scriptures of God, so that we might know how it is we may return to our Heavenly Father again. And because we are God's family, I know that He wants us to be happy with our families, now and forever, and His gospel bless our families in whatever thing we need. I know that within this church resides the fulness of God's truth, and the authority of His priesthood and the eternal ordinances we need for our salvation. I am so grateful for this gospel in every aspect of my life, but especially in my family. I am confident that as we live worthily, we will receive every blessing that God has promised, including peace and happiness in our lives on this earth.
Again, I love you all. Please don't forget your daughter/sister/friend in Honduras and please help out the missionaries in your home ward. They need you. And parents, please wish your fathers a happy birthday on Thursday (Dad) and Friday (Mom). And speaking of birthdays, can somebody tell Maddi Raleigh happy belated birthday for me (it was on the 17th) and express to her how strange it is that we are 20? Anyway, that was random, moving on.
All my love, 
Hermana Pickett

 this is the tortilla process: you pinch around the edges until it is sufficiently large, and then place it in your palms and clap your hands together and it somehow becomes a perfect circle. It's a mystery I have yet to fully understand, but I've got 15.5 months to practice

There is apparently a church called Ebenezer around here somewhere, and every time I see the name I think of Eden and it makes me happy, so I though I'd share that. Also

Isis's baptism (yeah, that's the same family you saw two weeks ago. Her grandfather is Candido, who was just recently baptized)

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