We received a letter from Alex's Mission President, President Barreiros. He said she is well and happy! Alex is now in the field serving with Hermana Galeano. They will be serving in an area called Republica.
I can't wait to hear from her next week! Thank you all for your support, prayers, and emails. I know it means the world to her.
Sunday, January 31, 2016
So the last few days I have been praying my heart out for courage to open my mouth and talk to the Latino missionaries more. Well, this week all of my roommates from the United States got moved out of my room and Latinas got moved into my room. (All part of President Doll´s plan) It has been extremely frustrating in understanding what is being said and then responding. But I love them so much! Their names are Hermana Jambo and Hermana Acebo and they are from Bolivia and Peru. President told me he had the strongest impression to put them with me and that this is ¨"preparing me for something great". Communicating with them goes something like this...Them: "Hola Hermana.” (And that is all I understand.) Me: "Muy bien gracias! ¿Comó fue su vida? What I meant to say was.... "How was your day?" what I said was, "How was your life?" they laughed and laughed and laughed.
This is my last week in the MTC so I thought I would share some of my highlights and what I have learned. I have learned that people in South America are so loving! The Latinas are always hugging you and kissing you on the cheeks, it’s so cute! And the Latino elders are so cool! I have absolutely loved playing soccer with them every morning. We would play at a big park and bunch of little kids would join us and parents would even come watch sometimes. I will never forget how fun that has been. I have loved my teachers SO much and I am seriously considering being a MTC teacher when I get home. (PS. One of my teachers is on the Chilean Voice right now, no big deal.) I have loved going to the temple so much (Doctrine and Covenants 109:22) and have loved getting to know my Savior and the scriptures more. I have loved meeting people from all over the world, they will be friends for life. Every Sunday Presidente has everyone write a 5-minute talk, in Spanish, and then he chooses 5 people to share. Well, this week I played the piano, translated all the announcements from Spanish to English, AND got picked to give my talk. I know this church is true because somehow I managed to give a 5-minute talk in Spanish without losing my mind. Basically I am just super grateful for the MTC and the memories I have had here. I won’t be able to email next Tuesday because I LEAVE FOR THE FIELD! So just know I love this gospel and I love all of you. If you want to pray for me this week I wouldn’t mind. I need all the prayers I can get. Read Doctrine and Covenants 31 this week. This scripture has reminded me that you are all hopefully being blessed for the service missionaries are giving all over the world and it reminds me how important missionary work is. Also read ‘Look Up’ by Elder Carl B. Cook. This talk changed my life! One of my teachers gave it to me because he knew I was upset about learning Spanish. This applies to all of you though so read it please. Have an amazing week everyone!!
President and Sister Doll's last day in the CCM
Tuesday, January 12, 2016
Sometimes it is so hard to believe I am a missionary! I have always looked up to missionaries and wondered what it would be like to be one. I can tell you it’s nothing like I expected. Its better! I am so incredibly blessed. The oldest group of missionaries left today which means my district is the oldest group here. HOW DID THIS HAPPEN! In 2 weeks I am leaving for the field and although I am incredibly scared, I am so ready to get out there and get to work! I also wouldn’t mind leaving the mystery meat at the cafeteria behind. Last week we got to go to the temple and I loved every second of it. Santiago has the only temple in all of Chile and so people will sometimes drive 28 hours to come to the temple. I am just realizing how dang spoiled we are back in the states. We had two temples within 20 minutes each way and these people drive for days to get here! So basically I have no excuse to not go like every day when I get home. Ha ha! So we watch devotionals almost all day on Sunday and I love it. We watched one this week by Jeffrey R. Holland, my favorite, and he told a story that I want to share with you guys. The story was about a bishop teaching his ward that no one was perfect. He asked, ‘who do you know that is perfect,’ expecting no one to answer. Then a woman stood up in the back and said, ‘the missionaries who brought me into this church.’ I bawled when I heard that. This week was crazy though. Someone threw rocks through the windows all over temple square. They broke 5 windows in the CCM and the Hospedaje where we live. But not one window broke in the temple, so amazing! So I have kind of a personal experience I want to share with you guys because I feel like someone may need to hear it. Last week the district older than us went out and did splits with the real missionaries out in the field. When they came back they were glowing! They are all going to Vina del Mar or Rancagua, on their missions but did splits in my mission, Santiago West. When they got back they were telling me how amazing it was but how rough Santiago West is. They said most of the houses were shacks and everything was very dirty. I have to be honest, at first I was a little disappointed. But then a picture of a cute little family popped into my head. A family in my mission who needs me and who I need. I then realized how divine my call is. I was called to Santiago West for a specific reason. It doesn’t matter what it smells like or looks like. God wouldn’t call me somewhere if He knew I couldn’t do it right?! I love this gospel. I wanted to share a little something with you boys. As I have been reading the scriptures more, I have come across something super cool. I have come to realize how many YOUNG men God has chosen to help with His work. He chose David*1 Sam 7/33* out of everyone to fight a giant. He chose Mormon *Mormon 2/2* to lead an army against the Lamanites when he was 16. And he chose Joseph Smith*JS His 1/7* who was 14 almost 15 to restore the gospel. And now He chooses 18 and 19 year old young men to share His gospel. I don’t think you boys understand how powerful and needed you are. Keep working hard Connor, Preston, McKay, Colton and all you other boys out there. God has great faith in you just as He did with many boys before you. I love you all. Have an amazing week and know God is with you always.
All Hermanas from AZ!!
A mission is hard. Much harder than I had even imagined. But I know if I were to come home tomorrow, which I am not don’t worry, I would already be forever changed. I have only been gone 3 weeks and still have a longggg way to go but I have already learned so much! I have learned most importantly that Christ has and will be with me every step of the way. Not only on my mission but for the rest of my life. Since being out here I have written a thing a day of something Christ has blessed me with in my journal. I challenge you all to do that too! You will be amazed at how blessed you are. This week has been amazing though!! I have had some health stomach issues, I am okay don’t stress, but I was told to go sleep last Friday afternoon instead of going to my classes. I was so frustrated because I wanted to keep learning Spanish but I obeyed. After a few hours, Hermana Doll, the MTC president’s wife, came in to check on me. *one of the many perks of the Chile MTC is she knows all 45 of us and checks on us daily* She went and made us a big fruit bowl with yogurt and we just sat and talked together for almost an hour. She asked me what I did before my mission and I told her I worked a lot to pay for my mission. When she found out I payed for it all on my own she got teary eyed and said, Hermana Beardall, this is why you are having a rough time. Satan knows how bad you want to be out here/your potential and you scare him to death! I needed to hear that sooo bad.. I just want you all to know that I know with every part of me that this church is true. I know the gift of tongues is real! I have been reading my English Book of Mormon next to my Spanish Book of Mormon an hour a day and it has been so frustrating. But I have picked up on so much more by studying the Book of Mormon than by flashcards or any other studying strategy. The Book of Mormon has SO much power and I love it so much. I am now praying in Spanish, bearing my testimony in Spanish, and communicating with the Latino missionaries more. I feel your prayers every day and I am strengthened by them greatly. Elder Holland said, You missionaries are the most prayed for group of people in the world. Thousands of people pray for the missionaries daily! I totally believe that so thank you for your prayers! And please keep them coming. hahaha I love you guys. Please let me know if there is anything I can do for you. Read Alma 26*1 but insert Arizona instead of Zarahemla. I had no idea when I left home that I would be so blessed. Remember, FAITH IS NOT FAITH UNTIL ITS BEEN TRIED!
PS. I am officially the piano player here and I don’t even get nervous anymore. Thank you for my piano lessons mom and dad...haha
I ATE A CUMPLETO THIS WEEK! Yes it is as awful as it looks. Esta bien
MTC Home Sweet Home!
Cool Wall in Santiago
New Year's Eve Party!
Wednesday, January 6, 2016
This week has been a blur! It is so true what they say about the mission. Days feel like weeks and weeks feel like days!! In many ways I feel like I just got here yet I feel like I have been here 6 months. Crazy stuff I tell you. But I have so much to tell you guys!! (Also please ignore all the typos in here. Spanish keyboards are the worst.) So Thursday was Christmas Eve and my companion and I started throwing up. hahahha So yeah all night long we just threw up and laughed and cried and it was so special. Christmas morning was so great though!! All of the senior missionaries and President and Hermana Doll made us breakfast and we all ate together. After breakfast I got to call you guys which was honestly the best/worst thing ever. But I am so glad you are doing okay! We are told that when we think less of home God will think about you more. I hope that is true. So Christmas night we got to skype with Elder David Bednar and the Ghana MTC. SO DANG COOL!! We got to ask him all kinds of questions and discuss concerns as missionaries. He said things that I had been praying for and had needed to hear sooo badly. Something I have been struggling with is patience while learning the language. I just want to be fluent already gosh dang it!! The teachers here tell us that each week we are here stands for how old we sound while speaking Spanish. For example, I am starting week 3 so I currently sound like a 3 year old. Pretty accurate. BUT ANYWAYS, Bednar said the most amazing thing about learning a language. He said, "What you are is far more important than what you say. Many investigators say they didn’t keep listening because of what was taught but what was felt." Pretty amazing. He closed by saying, "Remember, you are in the right place at the right time doing the right thing!" And this is what keeps me going. There have been a few times (okay a lot of times) where I have wished I was sitting at home eating Chipotle.. Or listening to music other than Motab.. Or going to soda shop with my cute family. But then I remember this isn’t my time. This isn’t about me. Or my chipotle craving... Or my homesickness. This is the Lords time so I will treat it that way. I know this church is true you guys, I wouldn’t be out here if it wasn’t. Okay I have the coolest story though!! Long story short, we go to the park every morning to work out. On Saturday morning we were doing laps around the park when we passed this man, I got an overwhelming feeling to talk to him but I pushed it away because… who knows. BUT WAIT. We pass him again and this time he stops us! He started asking me where we were from and what we were doing in Chile. I explained we were missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and we were here to share our gospel with others. He told us how amazing he thought that was and kept walking. At this point I am just kicking myself because I have now let him go twice!! So I ran up to the other missionaries playing soccer and asked if anyone had a pass along card or anything to give to him. and guess what.... Hermana Moon had felt inspired that morning to bring a Book of Mormon to the park. Coincidence? Maybe but I don’t think it was. So Hermana Moon and I ran up to the man with The Book of Mormon and taught him for 10 minutes! He told us he had been praying the last few months for answers about God and feels we were his answer to prayers. THIS IS WHY I AM HERE! He gave us his name and address and told us to please send missionaries so I am begging you all to pray for Chris and hope he reads the Book of Mormon! Embarrassing moment of the week. We practice teaching investigators every day that happen to be our teachers. Yesterday I was teaching Hermano Antileo (pretending to be Marcos) and I kept saying,"Yo se que Jesucristo encanta usted." I said it at least 4 times which I thought meant, "I know that Christ loves you." after the 4th time he stopped me and started dying laughing. He asked me to never say that again because I guess it means Christ has feelings for you, or has a crush on you. So the Spanish is going greeeeeat….hahahha. I love you all! Elder Bednar encouraged all of us missionaries to start off the new year with beginning the Book of Mormon with a topic in mind you need help with. Mine will be patience as you may have picked up on. So go get a cheap BOM from Desert Book (the ones us missionaries give out) read the BOM with your topic in mind and highlight the heck out of it. When you are done, write a one page testimony on your topic and put it inside. Then whenever you need help with that topic, you have an entire book to look at! I love you guys so much. Please catch me up on your daily lives and know I pray about you all every night. AND PLEASE DONT BE OFFENDED IF I DONT RESPOND THIS WEEK. I HAVE LIKE NO TIME! The church is true. Be good